1. You have lots of references and quotes from the Bible, are you a big reader of Biblical items and/or the Bible itself?
I think anytime you are going to write about a subject for a few hundred pages – whether it’s the Bible, a place, a time period or anything else – if you really want to bring the reader along with you, you have to do a lot of research. I read huge portions of the Bible while researching The Sounding, as well as dozens of books on Catholicism, Judaism and Israeli History. The Sounding, I feel, is truly a book about both good and evil. So, my research had to include both sides. I read the Bible and its counter – The Apocrypha (those books that were once a part of the Bible but were eventually banned/discounted). I even traveled to the Vatican where I gained access to the underground catacombs that the Church is built right on top of. I tried to immerse myself in as much history as I could in order to bring it to life in my pages.
2. How did you come up with the idea for the book?
I came up the idea for The Sounding in a religious studies class I was taking at college. We were reading the Bible as if it were a piece of literature. We took it apart theme by theme, just as you would in any English class. And two themes kept coming up for me again and again, because they simply don’t go together: prophecy and free will. Many things that happen in the Bible are prophetic – they are fated. And yet, the Bible gives each of us the free will to make our own choices, sometimes, even at the expense of prophecy. Eve in the Garden of Eden, of course, is an easy example, but there are many others. So, when we came to the final prophecy and began discussing it, I couldn’t help but ask: what if we could change it or make it happen early with our own choices? And that’s what The Sounding is all about. Grounded in real history and real prophecy, it takes everyday events in today’s world and manipulates them to bring on the circumstances of the last prophecy in the book of Revelation. A band of characters joins together to protect the final prophecy, including one character with the holy ability to steal energy with a single touch. But, just as this guardian is sent by God to keep His plan in place, a dark and evil force sent by the devil himself is set on hunting them one by one and bringing the end of days upon us.
3. What do you do or did before you started writing?
I began writing The Sounding while I was still in college. After graduation, I still had quite a bit more writing to do. So, I put writing on the night shift and began a career at a public relations agency. That evolved into a career as an advertising account manager and copywriter. And that’s where I am today – I work at an agency during the day and write fiction at night. The balance works nicely – it allows me to get my feet wet as a newly published author, and thrillers are always better written when they are typed out at night anyway…
4. What is your favorite book, series or writer?
That’s a tough question! I have so many favorites and I love to read. But, if I had to pick one book I would not want to live without, it would be Stephen King’s The Shining. I love that story…such a wonderful combination of the things that go bump in the night and the darkness normal people are capable of. It is full of thrills (which I love in a good story) – both the kind that make you jump, and the kind that make you think.
5. How about the person who inspired you most in your life so far?
Another really hard question. But, I think I would have to say my parents have inspired me the most. They have always believed in my dream of writing, and their support has given me the confidence to dare to do something outside of the ordinary career path. Everyone has someone who serves as their backbone against the rest of the world. My parents have always been mine.
6. What is your favorite television program and why?
Right now, I’m in love with Dexter! I always find villains to be the most interesting characters. On Dexter, you’re always cheering on a villain, really. It’s twisted and fun.
7. Do you listen to music as you write and if so what do you listen to?
I do. In fact, I am listening to music even as I am writing these answers! For me, music is a writing must. I listen to classical music while I write, and I try to match the music to the type of writing I’m doing. If it’s an action scene – I’ll find something exciting or angry. If it’s a romance scene – I’ll pick something softer; more haunting. Then, when I edit the scene or need to pick-up where I last left off, I can play the same music. I find it really helps me get into the same mood, even when it’s been a while since I last wrote or visited that particular scene. It helps me write from a consistent place and I credit it with keeping away writer’s block!
8. What would you like to tell our readers about your book and why they should read it?
If you enjoy being taken away from reality for a little while; if you want a book that will pull you in and make you forget you are reading, then I think you will like The Sounding. The story has plenty of heart-stopping thrills, but is also has some characters that I don’t think you’ll forget easily. It travels the continents and will definitely take you to some new places. I really hope you’ll add it to your bookshelf.
Thanks so much for taking the time to help our readers get to know you better. Good luck with your writing.
Come back Monday for a chance to win a copy of this book. Thank you Carrie and 23 House Publishing.