09-05-2013 11:13 AM - edited 09-05-2013 11:20 AM
Liz Talbot thinks she's seen another ghost when she meets Calista McQueen. She's the spitting image of Marilyn Monroe. Born precisely fifty years after the ill-fated star, Calista's life has eerily mirrored the late starlet's and she fears the looming anniversary of Marilyn's death will also be hers.
"Is there anything more enticing than curling up with a thrilling whodunit that keeps you guessing until the very end? Susan Boyer delivers big time with a witty mystery that is fun, radiant, and impossible to put down. I LOVE THIS BOOK!" --Darynda Jones, New York Times Bestselling Author
"Lowcountry Bombshell is that rare combination of suspense, humor, seduction, and mayhem, an absolute must-read not only for mystery enthusiasts but for anyone who loves a fast-paced, well-written story!" --Cassandra King, Author of The Same Sweet Girls andMoonrise, inspired by Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca
Please welcome USA Today Bestselling author Susan Boyer to The Reading Frenzy.
Hi, everyone! Debbie, thank you so much for having me on The Reading Frenzy today. I’m excited to be here!
Susan first congratulations on your debut, Lowcountry Boil, your first Liz Talbot mystery, for being an Agatha Winner, a 2012 Daphne du Marier Award winner and a 2012 RWA Golden Heart Finalist, that’s quite impressive.
Thank you so much! I’m thrilled with and humbled by the wonderful reception Lowcountry Boil received.
Tell us a bit about your newest Liz novel Lowcountry Bombshell (I love the title)
Thank you! Calista McQueen hires Liz to keep her alive and find out who is behind a series of unexplained incidents at her home. Someone is leaving things that don’t belong, taking things that do, moving things—generally trying to make Calista and others doubt her sanity. At first, Liz isn’t sure whether Calista needs a private investigator or a good therapist. But when her story checks out and the bodies start dropping, Liz goes to work. Liz’s relationship with her partner, Nate, takes a romantic turn in Lowcountry Bombshell as well. And, of course, her quirky friends and family, including the spirit of her long-dead best friend, Colleen, return in book two.
Susan I love the name of your hometown Faith, North Carolina, and I’ve always had a love affair with LowCountry fiction. It could be because I’m from the Midwest so “Southern-Fried” fiction is like a foreign language to me. What do you think makes us Northerners and everyone else flock to read this type of fiction?
I think part of the reason is the rich Southern tradition of being flamboyantly proud of our eccentricities. Southern fiction often has a character or two whose behavior falls somewhere between unconventional and bizarre, and they entertain us all.
Susan it seems from your bio your road to authordom was predestined and in 2004 you quit your day job to be a fulltime writer. Was this a scary prospect for you?
Well, I had a little push in that the company I’d worked for long-term went out of business. Most of the attractive job prospects I had would have meant relocation. My husband, who I used to refer to as my personal patron of the arts, said, “Why don’t you give the writing thing a try.” He knew this had been a dream of mine all my life. It would have been much scarier without his unwavering faith in me and his support. He tells me he is no longer a patron. He’s now an investor.
Susan it says that you had an overactive imagination as a child and that’s when your lifelong love of books began. What kind of reads do you like as an adult?
I have such eclectic reading tastes. A handful of my favorite authors are Charlaine Harris, Sue Grafton, Mary Kay Andrews, Dorothea Benton Frank, Dean Koontz, Robert B. Parker, Harlan Coben, Joshilyn Jackson, Cassandra King, Darynda Jones, Susan Elizabeth Phillips—it’s a long list. This is only a sample. I read everything from thriller to Southern fiction to paranormal romance.
Susan you’ve listed one of the best things about being an author on your bio -working in your pjs.
What’s the most difficult part of being an author for you?
Finding balance. There is so much more to this job than I ever imagined. I love interacting with readers both online and in person. The writing and the readers are the fun parts. But I’m literally running a small business. I do everything from request website updates to making travel arrangements and balancing the books. I have so many balls in the air, sometimes I find myself scrambling to stay in touch with family and friends. Many evenings I realize it’s eight o’clock, I’m still at my desk, and I haven’t had dinner.
So Susan if I read one of your books would I find your sister, your mother-in-law or your crazy Great Aunt Matilda between the pages, or is everyone from your imagination?
I’m laughing out loud here. The question I get most from my family and friends is, “Who am I in the book?” Some are disappointed when I tell them it’s all made up. A few of them nod and say, “No, really. Who am I?” None of my characters are based on real people. Now, I do sometimes take mannerisms or figures of speech from people I know or overhear at Starbucks or wherever and incorporate those things into my fictional characters.
If you had to describe Liz in three words what would they be?
Strong, resourceful, and loyal
What’s Liz’s next case going to involve?
A young woman from an old-money Charleston family disappears. She’s over twenty-one, and circumstances make the police believe she simply left home to get away from her family. But her father doesn’t believe that and he hires Liz to find out what happened to her. LOWCOUNTRY BONEYARD comes out May 6, 2014.
Susan will you be attending any author/signing events for Lowcountry Bombshell?
Oh, my goodness, yes! I’m so excited about my traveling schedule for Lowcountry Bombshell. I’m going to have the opportunity to meet a lot of readers and I can’t wait. Things start off Labor Day weekend, when I’ll be in Rock Hill, SC on Saturday, and Decatur Georgia on Sunday. There’s a complete schedule on my website, and they’re adding things all the time.
Susan thanks for stopping by and answering a few questions. Good Luck with the new novel!!
Thank you so much! And thanks again for having me!