On Feb. 15, Kathryn Halberg of Springboro released her second book, “Hidden Agenda.” The newest release by the author is the second in a series of books called “The Eller Series.”
The series, which follows the Eller sisters, began with “Animal Attraction,” released in June 2021. Halberg, who has served as the social media program director at Wright State University for the last eight years, was inspired to finally write her first novel amid the stress of the 2019 faculty strike on campus.
“I found myself in a situation where I was getting so drowned in the day-to-day work that I needed to find some kind of escape,” Halberg said. “That’s when I decided, you know, I’ve never written anything full length before. I’ve always written short things, like advertising, and this would be a great chance for me to kind of tackle something that I never thought I would do before. So, I just sat down and just told my boss that I was going to just live in a creative land during these certain hours every day. So, that’s where I started. Controversy led me to a creative outlet.”
“Animal Attraction” follows Rachael Eller, a successful Cincinnati businesswoman struggling to choose between two “amazing” men — a prospective client and a veterinarian. The second book, “Hidden Agenda,” follows Rachael’s younger sister, Carlie Eller, as she attempts to discover which man — a sexy best-selling author or charming self-made millionaire — is out for revenge and which could be The One while attending a conference in Chicago.
Though she admits the romance genre is rather saturated, Halberg knew she had a story worth telling — or multiple stories, that is. However, she did face a bit of anxiety before publishing her first novel, until those close to her convinced her that she had, in fact, written something special.
“I wasn’t even sure I wanted to publish my book,” Halberg said. “I originally was just letting my sisters read them and a couple of really close friends. They’re like, ‘You really should publish this. It’s really good.’ There’s a lot of anxiety around that — especially when you work for a public university. I was like, ‘What are they gonna think about this?’ A lot of people have a very negative connotation when you say romance books. I always say it’s like the female equivalent of the superhero movie, right? When the guy gets the girl. They’re very formulaic, but it’s about creating relationships and how that evolves and how we relate to each other as people.”
Outside of work, which she admits is an around-the-clock gig constantly monitoring Wright State’s social media accounts, Halberg is a wife and mother, meaning one will most often find her crafting novels while everyone else is asleep.
As it turns out, Halberg’s unorthodox writing schedule has paid off. She has now written five books since deciding to try her hand at writing novels. In the future, readers can expect another installment in the “The Eller Series,” an untitled book, and her new foray into middle-grade fiction, called “Nothing and Everything: A One-Day Seventh Grade Exposé.”
The middle-grade fiction book, set to be released March 8, follows the separate struggles of 12 seventh-graders on their first day of school. The story dives into themes surrounding LGBTQ identity, menstruation, racism, and alcoholism.
Those interested in picking up a copy of one of Halberg’s books can do so by heading to Amazon.com. Readers can also learn more about Halberg at her website.
About the Author