Thursday, September 13, 2012

Q & A With Debut Author, Peter Salomon

Today I have a double treat for you. (1) I’m not going to bore you with my babble and (2) I have a very special guest visiting. My dear friend, Peter Salomon was kind enough to stop by BBE during his blog tour. Last week Peter launched his debut novel, Henry Franks, and it’s been getting some wonderful reviews. I had the pleasure of reading the first draft, and from page one I knew he had a hit on his hands.

Since Peter has been making the rounds on the blogosphere to promote his work, I thought I’d make this interview a bit fun. So...let’s get started.

Welcome Peter! I’m so glad you stopped. For those readers who don’t know who you are (gasp), let’s start with something simple. Tell us a little about yourself. Where are you from? When you were young, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I was born and lived outside of New York City for the first 18 years of my life and with the exception of one year in Boston have lived in the south ever since. I was born in CT and raised in NJ and then moved to Atlanta for college and stayed in GA for a very long. Only recently have we been searching for a permanent place to live now that the kids are older. We did MA for a year and then New Orleans for three and now hope to stay for a very long time in Chapel Hill, NC. On the plus side, this has allowed the kids to see a great deal of the eastern US.
I had a brief flirtation in my early teens with being a doctor but that really didn't last all that long. I always wanted to be a writer, I just never really knew how to go about doing that so I've done a number of other jobs along the way. It's now much easier to find solid, helpful information to determine how to make a living through writing but when I was just starting out there was far less so I feel as though I had to stumble blindly for a very long time. Thankfully it seems to have worked out!

We’ve been friends for a long time and I’ve read a lot of your earlier works so I know what an amazing writer you are. Who would you say has most influenced you and your work?

At the top of the list would be my grandfather, Andre Scara Bialolenki, even though he was unpublished. He was a fantastic writer and wonderful man who encouraged and supported me so very much until he passed away. I grew up reading science fiction and fantasy novels, losing myself in the worlds they created. I have a great many fond memories of staying up all night
curled in a chair with Terry Brooks or Orson Scott Card or Frank Herbert. I was always one of those readers who would read anything but I definitely gravitated towards those two genres.

For a lot of people, the image of a writer is that of a recluse, hunched over their keyboard 24/7. Since we both know that’s not true, tell us what you do when you're not writing. Do you have any hobbies or interests?

With 3 kids? Seriously, though, my BA is in Theater and Film Studies so I have always had a soft spot for musical theater and films of any kind. I also enjoy photography even though I am not even half the photographer my father is.

As I mentioned, I’ve read Henry Franks and I have to say I was in awe at not only your imagination, but how detailed you were with the scientific end. For those who haven’t yet picked up the book, tell us more about it. What inspired you to write such an ‘out there’ book?

HENRY FRANKS is about a teenage boy who was in a car accident that killed his mother and left him horribly scarred, with no memory of his life before the accident. Everything he knows about himself is what his father has told him and, as the story progresses, he begins to wonder if his father has been telling him the truth. Plus there's a serial killer and a hurricane and a girl-next-door to keep things interesting.
I started writing the book from the father's point of view as he raised his son but quickly found that I was far more interested in the son's perspective so I started it again. I was drawn to the search for identity and wanted it to be a very small, almost claustrophobic sort of story, with very few characters and settings in order to amp up the 'creepiness' factor. It is YA Horror, after all.

You must be thrilled the book is out just in time for Halloween. Do you have any current projects you're excited about and can share with our readers?

At the moment I have been working on two new manuscripts (both YA) that I wrote while HENRY FRANKS was out on submission. Plus two (or three) picture books. The two YA manuscripts are both action/adventure type of stories that deal with similar identity issues as HENRY. Sort of.

For any new writers out there in need of advice, what would you tell them?

The best advice I ever received, from my grandfather, was just to keep writing. A blank page is pretty much useless (unless you're going for REALLY avant garde poetry...though I wouldn't recommend it). And learn to love revising...editing is your friend!

Well, I do like revising, so good advice. ;-) Now, open there anything else you’d like to say to my readers?

Just that I'm thrilled to be able to visit and can honestly say that I wouldn't be here, promoting the launch of my debut novel, without your help along the way in the editing/revising process.

It’s been my honor!
Thank you for stopping by.

To learn more about Peter and his work you can visit him at his website:
You can also catch him at
Twitter and Facebook

Peter will also be stopping by for more questions, so feel free to ask him anything.

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Wake Me Up When September Ends

I can't believe it's September already! Where did the time go?? These last few months have been crazy, to say the least! One minute it's June and we getting ready to go on vacation with the kids, and celebrate my birthday the next, school has started and I'm chauffeuring Manda back and forth to school. Sometimes it feels like I've just awoken from a very long sleep...yet I'm still a bit tired.
Have a seat, and I'll tell you all about it.
It all started when we got home from vacation at the end of June. We'd gone to Utah, up in the mountains, and I figured my exhaustion was due to that....have you ever been up in the mountains at 9000 feet? It takes your breath away....literally! So, anyway, after we got home I was feeling drained, but didn't pay much attention to it. July 4th was coming up, but we didn't really have anything planned so I was pretty much vegging at home and getting in some reading. Also, I had just finished my novel, House of Cards (which I'll tell you about later) and I was letting it 'gel'. Anyway...on the night of the 4th, I got a message on Facebook from an old friend who told me that she just saw on the local news (of my hometown) that my best friend's 27 year old son died in a drowning accident. I was devastated! I called her on her cell and spoke to her for a bit, then called my aunt and spoke with her. I wanted her to be there for Dani since I was 20 hours away. After I got off the phone I told my husband what happened and he told me to book a flight so I can be there in person. (Have I mentioned what an amazing man I married??) So I got to Port Arthur that Saturday...actually flew into Houston and drove to P.A. I was still feeling pretty crappy, but played it off as jet was a four hour flight because of layovers. I stayed in town for five days, staying at my cousin Michelle's house and spending as much time with Dani as I could. When I got home that Thursday I was still very exhausted and again, played it off as jet lag and lack of sleep the whole week I was gone. I thought I was coming down with something because I couldn't eat, or sleep and was just....blah! I tried to rest, lived on watermelon and cantaloupe because the were the only things that didn't taste like paste and tried to get my act together because I was leaving for California on the 23rd---ten days from when I got home---to attend the RWA conference. I was also in charge of setting up the literacy signing and still had a lot to do. So, the Saturday before I was to leave, I was feeling really awful and weak, so I asked my daughter if I could use her glucose meter to check my blood sugar. Let me just say, two months earlier my doctor told me I was borderline diabetic...borderline...which meant to me...I was close, but no cigar. But something told me I should just check my I did....and, yeah...they were high. 535 to be exact! Being the queen of denial that I am, I checked again, than waited an hour to check again. In the meantime I was texting back and forth with my cousin, Michele, who's an RN. She told me to go to the ER and get checked out and get some insulin. So...after some hemming and hawing and waiting for the monsoon to die down, Manda and I went to the ER. (We were the only ones home and she didn't want to stay alone during the storm.). Needless to say, I was just as bad once I got to the ER as I was before I left the house. The doctors and nurses weren't too happy with me....for good reason. Manda has type 1 diabetes, so I should have been aware of the signs. They hooked me up to an IV

....and it took three nurses and 6 tries because I was so dehydrated! (picture, courtesy of my daughter because she was enjoying not being the one to get stabbed. haha)
Then they told me they were going to watch me for a couple of days until my sugars stabilized., I was going out of town in two days, they had to get me out within 24 hours.
So....bore you yet??? Suffice it to say, they kept me overnight. Now, to make the rest of this long story short.... I made it to California, still sick and taking pills for my sugar, spent 7 days there, got home, hopped a plane for Wisconsin for my niece's wedding, got home, sent Jeremy off to school and my husband off to Pittsburgh (something to do with his work), got the house as clean as possible and did some shopping because my sister and niece were flying in to spend ten days with us (yay!) and my sugars were still in the 400 range and now my blood pressure was dropping to 80/60. *sigh* So by the end of the week I made an appointment with my doctor and he put me on insulin shots, which I have to take once a day with the pills, which are twice a day. My sugars have pretty much stabilized and my BP is back to normal and I'm feeling human again. And, just in time too, as I am starting a new path in my for me, that is.
In November I am going to be self-publishing my newest novel, House of Cards!! I'm very proud of this book because I feel it's my best work to date. It's definitely my best writing! Sometimes I even go in and read and think "Wow, this is good! Who wrote this??" hah
The book is a thriller, with the hint of a romance, and takes place in Brownsville, Texas. It's about Jesse Pena, a young woman who's trying to prove that her brother-in-law murdered her pregnant sister, but she's having a hard time getting anyone to believe her because she looks crazy half the time. And the brother-in-law has made it known to the press that Jesse and her sister are borderline schizophrenic. I recently had the cover done by a wonderful friend and fantastic author, Robert Gregory Browne, and I couldn't be more proud of how it turned out. I hope you'll look for it in November. =)

The Romance Reviews

The Romance Reviews