Interview with Fiona Gavelle, a Character in “Judge vs Nuts” by Una Tiers

Who are you?

Hello I’m Fiona Gavelle, I’m the protagonist in Judge vs. Nuts.

Where do you live?

I live in one of the most beautiful cities, Chicago, Illinois. We have a stunning lakefront to Lake Michigan, magnificent architecture, a wide range of cultural venues, and unfortunately politics and corruption. If you read the book, you will get a guided part of my favorite parts of the city.

Aren’t there a lot of books about corruption in Chicago?

There are plenty of non-fiction books about corruption in Chicago, but Judge vs. Nuts is a humorcide, that looks at another form of corruption. The non-fiction books will give you a headache; our book will make you laugh.

What is your problem in the story?

The police think that my dead client, Judge Laslo King was murdered. Really, there are a lot of ways it could have been a terrible accident.

Dead client?

Technically, I represent the executor of his estate, so not the dead person. That isn’t allowed even in Cook County.

Do you run from conflict?

Early and often, I must have watched too much television as a child and thought life could be relatively simple. That way of thinking leaves my head in the clouds much of the time. When I left my first job, I did it in the middle of the night. When I moved out of the apartment I shared with my husband, it was while he was at work. Now when it comes to clients, I want to believe I relentlessly protect their rights.

Do you think the author portrayed you accurately?

Una made me vulnerable and naive, but she also put Aunt Tess and Judge Adam Curie in to protect me when I’m not looking. Their advice is so subtle; they think I’m not listening.

Do you have any special strengths?

I can write loopholes and spot them immediately. Then I redraft, edit, spot another loophole and repeat. It takes a long time to write a simple sentence when you are getting paid hourly.

What, if anything, haunts you?

Going to divorce court alone. My ears were ringing and I had trouble remembering how to get home.

How do you envision your future?

I like to write. I like to teach surreptitiously. I’m the protagonist in three novellas and am nearly finished with the next full length book, Judge vs Lake Michigan.

Thank you for visiting with us, Fiona. Best of luck!

***

Bio: Una Tiers (pen name) is an attorney practicing law in Chicago, Illinois. She is an avid reader. After a particularly grueling day in court, she wrote a story pouring all her anger into eliminating the judge, at least on paper. With a smile, additional victims were added as necessary. The result was Judge vs. Nuts, a look at murder, corruption and the Chicago judiciary. Una is calmer now.

Judge vs. Nuts is available in Kindle format. https://www.amazon.com/Judge-Nuts-Fiona-Gavelle-Mystery-ebook/dp/B00UUS7GJK

Learn more about our masterpieces, see writing tips and other books at our website http://www.unatiers.com/

Una takes messages for Fiona.

We are on twitter (@unatiers and Goodreads (Una Tiers)!

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Interview with A. Gavazzoni, author of BEHIND THE DOOR

What is your book about?

My novel is about Hidden Motives, what leads people to behave the way they do. It’s a psychological and erotic thriller.

How much of yourself is hidden in the characters in the book?

I believe every character has traces of its creator. Sometimes it’s the way they behave, sometimes it’s their profession. Carl is a lawyer; so am I. Simone is a strong and independent woman; so am I. Peter has a great sense of humor; I love a good laugh. And Lara loves to dance, and I do too!

Did you do any research for the book? If so, how did you do it? (searching Internet, magazines, other books, etc.)

I have to research a lot, as I talk about psychology and crimes. I usually buy texts from universities or do my research on the subject (psychology) using books. For the criminal part, I have a wonderful consultant—a former FBI agent—and I send him questions about criminal behavior, penalties, and the way the FBI and police work.

What is your goal for the book, ie: what do you want people to take with them after they finish reading the story?

I would like people to understand nobody can be judged because you really don’t know their deep traumas and dramas. Strange behavior, a character flaw, or even a homicide can be the result of a hidden story, a buried memory, or deep suffering. No one has the right to judge without knowing the motives

Do you have any rituals you follow before sitting down to write?

Yes, I brew myself a strong cup of coffee, take a deep breath, and only then am I ready to write.

Do you prefer to write at a particular time of day?

I love to write in the morning, when my brain is fresh and my ideas are clear, but I write whenever I can because I’m usually very busy in the morning.

What are you working on right now?

I’ve just finished the sequel of Behind The Door, Lara’s Journal, Part I. I intend to do some research and to start Lara’s Journal, Part II in the beginning of January.

Are you writing to reach a particular kind of reader?

My novels are not pure erotica, but I can say 10% of it is erotic, so my target readers are adults. But I really would like to reach men and women as it’s a psychological thriller, and I would like to send the message of not judging to everyone.

Have you always wanted to be a writer?

Since I read my first book.

Have you ever had difficulty “killing off” a character in your story because she or he was so intriguing and full of possibility for you, his or her creator?

Yes. As she was one of my favorite and most complex characters, it was hard to eliminate her.

What, in your opinion, are the essential qualities of a good story?

Unpredictability—that’s the reason I’m always changing the course of my characters and presenting unexpected turns in the story.

What words would you like to leave the world when you are gone?

Life is short; enjoy it!

Where do you get the names for your characters?

Sometimes from friends I would like to honor, sometimes from a movie character I particularly loved… For instance, when I was a teenager, I saw Dr. Zhivago, and ever since then, I loved the name Lara. Other times, t I just go online and search for a list of the best baby names.

What one word describes how you feel when you write?

Happiness.

What is a talent you have that nobody knows?

I’m an amateur astrologer.

Where can we find out more about you and your books?

My novel can be find at https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01N4LR2HL/
And I can be found at https://www.facebook.com/A-Gavazzoni-513404948849469/), at agavazzoni.com, or on my blog www.agavazzoni.com/blog

Interview with Ann Hardy, hero of THE NORTHEAST QUARTER by S. M. Harris

Please tell us who you are.

My name is Ann Hardy. Who I am is something I learn as I go along. My story starts when I am ten years old and ends when I am twenty-two. I begin as a child of privilege and I finish up knowing how to take care of myself.

Welcome, Ann. What is your story?

My story is about the difficulty of keeping a promise no matter what. How you cling to that promise – even if the whole world seems to want to block you from keeping it.

Where do you live?

I live at Carson Manor in Winfield, Iowa. The Carson agricultural empire is one of the largest in the state. Founded by Colonel Wallace Carson, my grandpa. When he dies and my grandma remarries, then the empire begins to collapse and I move around abit.

Are you the hero of your own story?

I’m the central character all right. All hell breaks loose when my grandpa dies. I find myself alone – taking on all comers. It’s a me against them situation until the end of the book.

What is your problem in the story?

Just before he dies, my grandpa asks me to promise to safeguard The Northeast Quarter, the most valuable acreage on the estate, when it is my turn to take over. My problem is being able to keep that promise when every crook and conniver in the county converges on the Carson empire, looking to carve out a portion for themselves.

Do you have a problem that wasn’t mentioned in the story?

I can’t think of anything. Everything is pretty up front with me.

Do you embrace conflict?

I try not to. When you stand up for something, sometimes conflict seems to embrace you. I fight when I have to, but basically I try to avoid conflict. I find it’s better to match wits with an opponent until you spot his weak points. Then if you have to fight, you fight to win,

How do you see yourself?

I had to learn how to cope very early in life. I’d say I’m loyal to friends and family, ethical in my dealings with the world and implacable toward my enemies. My enemies were good teachers. They taught me about human character.

How do your friends see you?

In addition to being strong and loyal, they see me as mature for my age. They see me as a little mysterious because I keep a lot inside. They see me as very brave. Maybe I am, but whether this is true or not, I don’t let people see when I’m afraid.

How do your enemies see you?

Since my story begins when I am ten, they thought I was harmless at first. Then they began to see me as an adversary. At the end, when I go after them, they see me as an equal.

How does the author see you?

He better see me favorably. I’m modeled on his mother.

Do you think the author portrayed you accurately?

I would say so. Between 1918 and 1929 I had to grow up pretty fast. I had to learn to stand on my own feet. I think he captures that period and all the details.

What do you think of yourself?

The events in the story prevent me from doing much introspection. I’m like a soldier on a battlefield – dealing with whatever is in front of him. Looking back at the skirmishes, I would say I come through it pretty well.

Do you have a hero?

Arabella Mansfield. The first female lawyer in America and a native Iowan. I look up to her. Whenever I run into a legal problem, I always ask myself how Arabella Mansfield would have handled it. She inspires me to become a lawyer myself.

Where can we learn more about you?

All sorts of places:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/smharriswrites
Twitter handle: @smharriswrites

Facebook: S.M. Harris
https://www.facebook.com/S-M-Harris-1076962675676927/

Linked In:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/stuart-harris-236b358\

You Tube Channel
http://bit.ly/TheNortheastQuarter

Purchase the Amazon Kindle
http://tinyurl.com/z2mt6nn

Purchase the Amazon Paperbac
http://tinyurl.com/zwogha6

Interview with Steve Hagood, Author of CHASING THE WOODSTOCK BABY

woodstock-copy

Welcome, Steve. What is your book about?

Retired Detroit police detective Chase is approached by a nice old lady who asks him to find the baby she had, and lost, at Woodstock. The search takes Chase to a small town in Michigan that has a secret that it has been hiding for four decades. The man who runs the town will go to any lengths, including murder, to keep the secret.

What inspired you to write this particular story?

I have always been fascinated with Woodstock. When I heard the legend of the Woodstock baby I wondered what had happened to it. Why has nobody ever come forward to claim to be the baby, or the mother? My imagination took over from there.

Tell us a little about your main characters. Who was your favorite? Why?

Obviously, my protagonist Chase is my main and favorite character. A lot of Private Investigators in novels have a sidekick who acts as his foil – dark, mysterious, the guy who does the dirty work – Spenser and Hawk, Elvis Cole and Joe Pike. Chase is both of those guys rolled into one. He is the wise cracking, lovable guy who isn’t afraid to do the dirty work.

Sarge and Sally are Chase’s partners in the bar he owns. Sarge was Chase’s training officer when he joined the Detroit Police. He still acts as a mentor and a steadying influence. Sally is the brains of the operation. She acts as Chase’s de facto research department. She doubles as the female, creating sexual tension between the two.

Did you do any research for the book? If so, how did you do it? (searching Internet, magazines, other books, etc.)

Yes. I had to do quite a bit of research for this book. The internet is a wonderful tool for a writer. It can transport you to any place and any time you want. I was able to put myself at Woodstock through pictures and stories. Hopefully my writing puts the reader there with me.

What’s your writing schedule like? Do you strive for a certain amount of words each day?

I don’t really have a schedule. I have a day job and a family so it’s not always easy to find time to write. I write when I can. I live by the mantra “Writers write” to push myself to write something every day, even if it’s just a few paragraphs or sentences.

What are you working on right now?

I recently finished another Chase novel, titled Cold Dark Places. Hopefully we will see it soon from Indigo Sea Press. It’s a story about a college girl missing in Detroit, and the basketball player implicated in her disappearance.

What was the first story you remember writing?

I didn’t start writing until about thirty. The first story I wrote was a ghost story. I don’t know why. It’s the only ghost story I’ve ever written. It was about a group of friends on a fishing trip who were haunted by the ghost of a Civil War soldier. It wasn’t very good, but it was a lot of fun to write.

Where do you get the names for your characters?

Names are tough. One of the techniques I use is to open up the internet and use the first name that I see, if it fits the character that I need to name. I head up a scholarship given by my graduating class to the high school we graduated from. I offered my former classmates their name in a book in exchange for a donation to the scholarship. I had a couple people who wanted to see their name in a book, so it worked out for me, for them, and the scholarship.

What’s been the most surprising part of being a writer?

The most surprising aspect of writing, for me, is when the story builds upon itself. Sometimes I feel like a stenographer. I’m just the guy typing the words, the story is writing itself. In The Woodstock Baby there is a scene where Chase is questioning a suspect, the suspect denies any involvement and Chase says, “We have a witness!” I thought, “Wow, there’s a witness!” I didn’t know there was a witness until I typed it, and I’m the author! I couldn’t wait to see who the witness was because I sure didn’t know.

What writer influenced you the most?

I actually have two big influences. The late great Robert B. Parker made me fall in love with books. His Spenser stories are still my favorite. I’ve read them all multiple times. The fact that Chase is known by a single name is in homage to Parker and Spenser.

The other writer who influenced me is JA Konrath. I love his books, but it’s more than just his writing that influenced me. One thing the general public doesn’t know is that it is very difficult to get published – “you should publish that” a lot. If only it was that easy. Konrath called himself the king of rejection. He wrote nine full novels in two or three different genres before he got one published. He accumulated literally hundreds of rejections, but he never gave up. He eventually broke through and now has millions of books sold. He inspired me to never give up, to never stop chasing my dream.

What one word describes how you feel when you write?

Joy

If your book was made into a TV series or Movie, what actors would you like to see playing your characters?

Ironically, in Cold Dark Places I make mention to The Woodstock Baby and how some Hollywood people wanted to make a movie about the case. They promised to get Denzel Washington to play Chase, even though Chase is “white, younger than, and nowhere near as pretty” as Denzel.

In “real life” I see Chase as more of a Will Patton type. He has the ability to be caring and tough and make them both authentic.

There’s this other actor who I know named Tevis Marcum who I think would do an outstanding job as Chase. He’s from the Detroit area and has the look. Like Will Patton he has the ability to be caring and tough in the same character.

What is something you never leave home without (apart from keys, money and phone)?

My flash drive. My work goes everywhere with me. I do back it up to my computer however. It has gone through the wash a time or two. There is no terror like the terror of finding your flash drive in the bottom of the washing machine.

What is your favorite place, real or fictional? Why?

Saline, Michigan. It’s my hometown. I moved away for a while and when I returned I thought, “Ahh, I’m home.” When I needed a small town to set The Woodstock Baby in I chose Saline because “there’s no place like home.”

Where can people learn more about your books?

From Indigo Sea Press http://www.indigoseapress.com/Stiletto-Books–Crime-and-Mystery-Authors-A-H.php#Steve and www.stevehagood.com

Interview with Dan Janik, Publisher at Savant Books and Publications

danWelcome, Dan. Tell us, what made you go into publishing?

A desire to “pay back”—to other new and struggling writers—for the years of help I received during my early writing career. As such, we tend to focus on introducing “new” authors to the reading public.

What is the general background of your company?

Savant Books and Publications publishes works of enduring literary quality “with a twist” that ultimately transforms a reader’s established point-of-view. Our general target audience is high-school/first year college educated readers of American English worldwide but offer up our work to anyone just in need of a great story! We focus especially on North America, Canada, Europe, India, Australia, New Zealand and other English reading countries.

Are you getting from the business what you hoped to, monetarily as well as non-monetarily?

Yes. Savant’s business model was designed to be successful during “good” and “bad” times and it continues to prove such. We continue to be debt free and look forward to the publishing challenges of the years ahead!

How has the eBook revolution affected your business?

Ebooks have proven a mixed blessing. First, they save trees. At least that’s the idea. A second strongly positive blessing is that by virtue of being digital, the internet-delivered work is “fresh” and “new,” and less expensive rather than warehoused and shipped printed books.

Finally, a digital work can be machine-read, making an eBook also available as an audio book. The downside is that there frequently exists no verifiable information on sales (hence one has to totally rely on what the eBook “printer” reports which themselves are open to “creative accounting”). In addition, profiles of eBook purchasers suggest they tend to collect rather than read eBooks, rarely recommend good reads to colleagues and hardly ever do reader book reviews. Hence, it is difficult for early authors depending heavily on eBooks as a primary venue to garner that necessary “critical mass” of readership to establish author name and title recognition—the two most important issues for a new or early author.

Another somewhat larger issue is that of “self-publishing” within the eBook arena. The current tendency is for the quality of an eBook read to vary widely, affecting potential readers’ opinions of reading in the eBook venue. A bigger issue is the shift of emphasis from quality and service to more business-like product sales. In general this translates to an even more inhuman approach to publishing success in the eBook business. Finally, eBooks, as their Digital Management Rights (DRM) are frequently tightly associate with a digital “reader,” discourage decentralization and small business, which has always been the very “heart” of publishing.

Do you have a plan to survive since new ebook publishers are springing up every day?

We will continue to emphasize quality and service. In addition, we have our own bookstore(s) and offer our books in eBook format one year after they are released in softcover printed format. We are also working on developing an “a-Book” to be sold in bookstores.

Some people think that with more titles available today than at any other time in history, the novel as an art form is dying. Do you agree? Disagree?

I agree that more titles are available today, making “publishing” almost a whole new animal. I disagree that the novel format is dying. It is certainly changing with the new generation stressing visual elements (i.e. favoring “comic book” and/or “manga” style reads over purely printed word craft), much shorter length (e.g. “flash fiction” and “chapterized” internet works) over the traditional novel format, but the novel, per se, isn’t disappearing, it’s being refined and redesigned as will every “new” generation.

Do you publish anything or just certain genres?

Genre-wise, we publish widely; however, we do not publish gratuitous violence or sex, and favor historically-based fiction.

What, in your opinion, are the essential qualities of a good story?

We have a slightly different emphasis, calling a desirable product a “good read”. While a great storyline is essential, it is the writing of the story that distinguishes a “good read” from a less desirable one. When a target reader finds him or herself reading the work without pause (e.g. to reclarify a word, phrase or sentence), we at Savant consider the work a “good read”.

What advice you would give to an aspiring author?

Let go of hubris and vanity, and focus on word craft and service. It through service that one will garner the “critical mass” of readers necessary today to establish author name and work title recognition.

Who are the authors you have published so far?

Savant has been fortunate enough to publish the work of really great writers—all talented, with numerous award winners. We’ve also published CD’s of music, so don’t just think we’re all print books.

If anything has made it all worth it, it’s been being able to work with such a great eclectic group of writers. I wish I could name them all but, just to name a few: David Seaburn, Gloria Schumann, William Maltese, A.G. Hayes, S. Stanley Gordon, Helen Doan, and many, many more!

What do you do to sell the books you publish, for example, where do you advertise?

We’ve found traditional advertising and marketing ineffective, being more akin to gambling than investing. This is the key. Gambling means we give people money in the hope of better return without any guarantee of return of the principal. Investing, which we favor, means we give people money in the hope of a better return with guarantee of return of our principal. This is another “revolution” that has only just begun throughout the financial and business world that is going to strongly affect publishing.

Do you set up signings for the authors and then publish the ‘tour’?

Yes. We maintain our own bookstore(s) where authors are encouraged to have book release and author introduction parties. We also allow Savant Books and Publications to host theme and genre- related “parties”. We strongly encourage authors to do the same, offering them copies of their books and those of other Savant authors for 50% off the Suggested Retail Price.

How do you acquire your talent?

We maintain an open (unsolicited) manuscript submission policy, couple our submissions with a required 16-question questionnaire—which we take seriously. All submissions are read. Many are submitted, few are chosen.

Where can we learn more about you, your authors, and the books you publish?

Visit our website at http://www.savantbooksandpublications.com! You can also find us on all regular social media streams to see what’s new!

Thank you for telling us about Savant Books and Publications, Dan. Best of luck for a long and literary future!

Savant

Interview with Sherrie Hansen, Author of SWEET WILLIAM, a Wildflowers of Scotland Romance

Hi, Sherrie. I’m thrilled you have a new book published. What is your book, Sweet William, about?

On the outside, Sweet William is about castles, kilts, and cows. It’s about sweet vs. savory – in the kitchen, and in the bedroom. It’s about family, friends and bull semen. On the inside, Sweet William is about doing the right thing, even when your heart is screaming at you to do the complete opposite. It’s about the good ones dying and the ones who irritate you no end still hanging on and refusing to go away. It’s about the unthinkable, the impossible, having a life you love and being asked to give it all up and move to an alternate universe on the other side of the globe because there is no other option.

It all begins when Minnesota farm boy, William McKnight, and sassy Scot, Lyndsie Morris, are forced to work together in the kitchen of Rabbit Hill Lodge. William is a real sweetheart (sickeningly sweet according to Lyndsie). Lyndsie is a wee bit tart (although William is too nice to ever point out such a thing.) The atmosphere is as charged as an episode of Chopped. It remains to be seen whether someone will get cut, or if they’ll find a recipe that works. Things just start to get spicy when an angry bull butts his way into the picture, and Lyndsie has to decide if she loves William more than everyone and everything she holds dear.

What inspired you to write this particular story?

When William McKnight showed up at Michael and Isabelle’s wedding in Shy Violet, it was love at first sight (for me, not Lyndsie, who was totally irritated when he stole the limelight away from her dainty finger foods and crudités with his roasted grunter, buttery soft potato rolls and overly sweet Farm Boy Barbeque Sauce.) The two of them were so great together that I decided they had to be.

Sounds fun. Tell us a little more about your main characters. Who was your favorite? Why?

William is getting rave reviews from my readers. He’s being called my best hero ever. I’m still so enamored of Pastor Ian in Wild Rose, that I can’t quite see it, but that’s another story. I adored writing Lyndsie. She’s spunky and sassy and self-confident. She knows her own mind and isn’t afraid to stand up to anyone who challenges her. She loves her family and would do anything for them, even when she’s totally disgusted by their actions. She’s a very loyal friend – until she has to choose between her two best friends and a family member that all desperately need her – and they live on opposite sides of the globe. Lyndsie has such snark – and William’s sweet disposition is the perfect foil for her sass.

Did you do any research for Sweet William? If so, how did you do it?

Although I grew up on a farm, my dad never raised cattle, so I had to do a lot of research on various breeds of beef cattle and their traits and behaviors. I researched cattlemen’s association in Scotland and the U.S., the origins of the Aberdeen Angus breed, agricultural import and export regulations, and… bull semen. I accomplished my task by visiting Scotland, Devon and Cornwall, interviewing veterinarians, talking to my niece, Victoria, who raises beef cattle and shows them at the fair, and tracking things down on the internet.

What about your book besides the Scottish setting might pique the reader’s interest?

I’ve been told by several readers that when I started writing my Wildflowers of Scotland novels, they missed the local color, familiar places, and quirky Midwestern characters from my first five books, which are all set in Minnesota or Iowa. While I maintain that people are the same everywhere (check out the church ladies in Wild Rose if you doubt me), my local readers will be pleased to know that Sweet William is partially set on a farm in Southern Minnesota. Backdrops like the Minnesota State Fair and a family gathering at William’s family’s farm in Blue River, Minnesota, should make them feel right at home.

What was the most difficult part about writing Sweet William?

I’ve “killed off” bad guys, in both Wild Rose and Blue Belle, and sent nefarious pirates to the slammer in Shy Violet, but in Sweet William, I had to do away with a good guy. Writing those scenes, and grieving alongside my characters, cut me to the core and filled me with complete and utter trepidation about the time in my life when I will have to face this kind of loss.

Are you writing to reach a particular kind of reader?

One of the hardest things for me to do, as an author, has been to single out a particular type of reader to whom to market my books. They call it branding, and I’m terrible at it. My Wildflowers of Scotland novels are a good example. The focus of Wild Rose is faith and forgiveness, which appeals to a certain type of reader. Although there are no steamy scenes in Wild Rose, it does not fit the parameters of inspirational fiction – Rose is much too quirky, and well, too wild, for that. Blue Belle and Shy Violet are quite steamy, and the behavior of the bad guys in Blue Belle is sometimes gory, gross, and too explicit for the faint of heart. Sweet William is sweet, and except for one teeny, tiny, mildly steamy scene, suitable for all readers. It’s less suspenseful than the others, and focuses more on family “situations” for conflict. The thing is, my books are character driven. No two characters are the same. I think my books are better because I don’t try to put my characters in a box, but if you’re going to come along for the ride, you need to be willing to take whatever each particular character throws at you – me. If you’re open to it, I think it’s far more fun that way.

Which is more important to your story, character or plot?

As expressed above, I’m into characters. A reader recently wrote to me and said, “Boy, you know people. I have been practicing psychology and social work for 45 years and you must have been sitting in the office next to me. You know your stuff!” Although my characterizations are subtle, it thrilled me that she could appreciate the inner workings of the men and women I write about. I feel that if my characters are honest, well-motivated, and real enough, my plot will basically write itself based on their actions, fears, and needs.

Does your understanding of the story you are writing change during the course of the book?

How could it not, given how unpredictable people are? I always say that I write the first one third to half of the books, and my characters write the rest.

Have you written any other books?

Sweet William is a Wildflowers of Scotland novel, and follows Thistle Down (a prequel novella), Wild Rose, Blue Belle, and Shy Violet. I’ve written two stand-alones, Night and Day, and Love Notes. I also have a trilogy, the Maple Valley novels, about three quirky sisters who can’t stop with the quilts – Stormy Weather, Water Lily, and Merry Go Round.

Where can people learn more about your books?

Here are some links to places where you can learn more about my books:

https://www.facebook.com/BlueBelleInn
http://sherriehansen.wordpress.com/
http://www.BlueBelleInn.com or http://www.BlueBelleBooks.com
https://twitter.com/SherrieHansen
https://www.pinterest.com/sherriebluebell/
http://www.amazon.com/Sherrie-ansen/e/B007YXQJ4W/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1
http://www.indigoseapress.com/Star-Crossed-Books–Contemporary-Romance.php#Hansen

Don’t forget to check out Sherrie’s new release: Sweet William. https://amzn.com/B01H2TUD3U

Interview With Helen Donovan, Author of WHAT GOES AROUND

What Goes AroundWelcome, Helen. What is your book about?

What Goes Around is about Phoebe who is adopted at birth. She’s yearned to know where she came from for as long as she can remember, so after she graduates from college she hires a private investigator to find her roots. He does. She is thrilled when he finds two living relatives…that’s when things take a turn for the sinister. And I mean sinister.

Sounds interesting and ominous. How long was it before you began to write the story?

The idea germinated for at least three years, maybe longer. My game plan for when I retired was to do music full time.  And then when nature deteriorated my voice, I’d write. So that’s what I did. I sang, time marched on, but nature didn’t kick in. I could still sing but it was time. I had to make the decision. After a few months I told my friend and longtime accompanist that I was quitting.

What inspired you to write this particular story rather than, for example, something about music?

One afternoon I watched two members my friend’s family fly off the handle over nothing. Looking back over our long friendship, I must have had my head in the sand because that’s how her brother and sister always reacted. It was their behavior that intrigued me. Why do they react like that? Others would never react that way. What makes some people do what they do? Why does someone from a loving family commit murder and an abused kid becomes a priest?

Sounds like a good foundation for a story. How long did it take you to write the book?

Oh, at least three or four years. I had all of 96 pages and I thought I had a book but I knew I needed professional help. I was dead right. I enrolled in a general writing workshop that was led by a retired professor from Northwestern University, that’s in Evanston Illinois, and Jerry was merciless. At the end of six weeks I was among a few others he invited to participate in the advanced workshop, which I did. I recorded those sessions and rewrote What Goes Around.

How do you track or differentiate between characters?

What worked really well for me and what was suggested by another author was a flow chart. It was invaluable for remembering details. It ensures that if she always has an English muffin for breakfast on page 2 she gets the same muffin on page 296. Notes also help keep each character’s behaviors consistent.

Is there a message, or anything you want the reader to take away with them?

Yes, think about the age old debate: nature vs nurture. How much do we really know?

What was your greatest challenge?

Getting What Goes Around published. The only thing that kept me hanging in there after all the rewrites and all the rejections was keeping faith in the story that was based on a sound concept.Helen Donovan

So, now that What Goes Around is published, where can we learn more about the book?

From my publisher, Indigo Sea Press. http://www.indigoseapress.com/deep-indigo–mainstream-authors-a-l.php#Helen

You can also buy the book at Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/What-Goes-Around-Helen-Donovan/dp/1630662933

Thank you for talking with me today, Helen. Best of luck with your book!