Have you included a lot of your life experiences, even friends, in the plot? I often tell people that all the characters are me. Naturally, the story taps into bits and pieces of my life, but it’s a work of fiction.
How important do you think villains are in a story? Every protagonist needs an antagonist to give them a push or two. What I have hoped to convey in my writing is that all heroes are flawed and there is good to see in the villains, as well.
What are your goals as a writer? I want to be able to keep on honing my skills as a writer, producing better and better books as I go.
Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)? Not much further than my garden. But I have plans for a future novel that is set in a small coastal down in Northern California, so I’ll have to go back there to firm up my mental pictures of the place.
What books have most influenced your life? I’ve read a lot of award winning fiction and those books broadened my horizons and helped me know just how high the writing bar can be set. Intimidating but good.
Have you ever considered anyone as a mentor? I love the concept – at every level of experience in whatever we do, there is always someone ahead of us who knows more, and someone behind who could use our guidance. I like a cascading model of mentorship, where we are always looking to pull the person behind up, while we are being pulled up by the person ahead.
Who is your favorite author and why? I love so, so many authors. This is a hard question. For sheer enjoyment, I could go back at any time and reread all of Weiss and Hickman’s DragonLance books. For the wonder of how an author can turn prose into an almost haunting melody, give me a Michael Ondaatje novel any day. For heart wrenching characters and a sense of place that will make you want to get in your car and travel to Cape Breton, Alistair McCloud. I could go on and on.
Can we expect any more books from you in the future? Definitely, the near future.
Have you started another book yet? Yes. The sequel to Disappearing in Plain Sight, which is entitled, The Light Never Lies.
Where do you see yourself in five years? Love this question. I would like to have completed all the books in this current series and be onto something new in the way of setting. I am hoping that my books will be selling. My husband should be slowing things down with paid employment so we can tackle the many projects around the old homestead we are always talking about. More travel, more time spent with kids and grandkids.
Are you reading any interesting books at the moment? I recently finished Barbara Kingsolver’s latest novel, Flight Behaviour. I have always loved her books, but I must say, the ending of this one had me disappointed and then thinking I need to go back and read it again because surely I have missed something.
Are there any new authors that have sparked your interest and why? I have recently read works by Linda Gillard and Joanne Phillips – both wonderfully gifted writers who know how to tell a story with skill and finesse.
What are some of the best tools available today for writers, especially those just starting out? Nothing can substitute for having read a lot. I also think that some of the better quality TV series have much to offer if one carefully watches for plot, characterization, and the role of setting. You can pick up amazing tidbits on how to go about storytelling from listening to the director and producer commentaries when you buy DVD packaged sets of TV series and movies.
What contributes to making a writer successful? Tons of hard, hard work. That’s my opinion now. If I ever get really successful, I’ll revisit the question.
Do you have any advice for writers? Don’t give up. It takes many, many hours of work to write something you will want to send out in the world with your name on it. Don’t short circuit the process by rushing it. When you think the story is ready, get feedback from others.
Do you have any specific last thoughts that you want to say to your readers? I believe Disappearing in Plain Sight is an important story because it gives the reader an opportunity to question their assumptions. That’s always a good thing. I hope you’ll give it a go.
What do you do to unwind and relax? I forget all about writing and go and spend time with my granddaughters. Or I wander in my garden.
What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing? I feel as though I’ve finally found my place. I value all the other things I’ve done in my life, but never have I felt as fulfilled as I do when I’m writing.
Sixteen-year-old Lisa-Marie has been packed off to spend the summer with her aunt on the isolated shores of Crater Lake. She is drawn to Izzy Montgomery, a gifted trauma counsellor who is struggling through personal and professional challenges.
Lisa-Marie also befriends Liam Collins, a man who goes quietly about his life trying to deal with his own secrets and guilt. The arrival of a summer renter for Izzy’s guest cabin is the catalyst for change amongst Crater Lake’s tight knit community. People are forced to grapple with the realities of grief and desire to discover that there are no easy choices – only shades of grey.
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Genre - Contemporary Fiction / Literary Romance
Rating – PG13
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