Monday, January 18, 2016

A Conversation with Author Groovy Lee

Omnimystery News: Author Interview with Groovy Lee

We are delighted to welcome author Groovy Lee to Omnimystery News today.

Groovy's suspense novel is titled Cause She's a Good Girl (August 2014 ebook format) and we recently had the chance to catch up with her to talk more about her work.

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Omnimystery News: Introduce us to the lead characters of Cause She's a Good Girl.

Groovy Lee: Piper Banion's had to deal with a lot in her young life. When we first meet her she's in her last year of high-school with her loyal boyfriend, Blue, by her side, and dealing with the day-to-day struggle of surviving an abusive mother. She comes out of that ordeal a smart woman whose thoughtfulness and kindness will unknowingly save others. Shelly Jamison is a runaway mother who's embarrassed by her family's wealth, and loves to party. She befriends Piper and introduces her to a world of unconditional loyalty and support. Then there's Shelly's cousin, Oz Jamison, a successful PR executive who is capital S.E.X.Y. Though his presence is a huge temptation for Piper, she resists the pull he has on her, and opts for a friendship built on a foundation of the abusive childhoods they have in common.

OMN: Into which genre would you place this book?

GL: Cause She's a Good Girls is a suspense novel. Thriller has also been added to that description, which I like. This means it reaches out to a bigger audience.

OMN: Give us an elevator summary of the book.

GL: Cause She's a Good Girl is about a young woman named Piper Banion who has to deal with the fact that she will never know the unconditional love of a mother. Once she escapes that, and finds true friendship and acceptance in Shelly Jamison, she seeks to build a new life with her in California. But not so fast — there's a serial killer on the loose, and Piper begins to realize that not only has she met most of the victims, but there's a strange connection between them and her. The question is: Will she be able to solve their murders before the killer figures out that she's on to them?

OMN: How much of your own personal or professional experience have you included in the book?

GL: Like Piper, I grew up with an abusive mother and survived to become the person I am today; hopefully, a thoughtful, talented, kind human being. The word "crazy" has been thrown at me a couple of times. But I have a heart; I check it every day to make sure it's still beating out compassion for others. I also have a best friend whose loyalty and love is my saving grace.

OMN: Tell us a little more about your writing process.

GL: I don't use outlines or anything like that. Like a lot of authors, stories and characters live in my imagination until I put them on paper. Something someone says, a song, or the way someone looks evokes a story. For instance, Oz Jamison, looks just like R&B Artist Prince; and it came to me what an entertaining part that would play in the storyline. The song, "I Shot the Sheriff", was written into a pivotal scene in my romantic/suspense novel, Colors In the Dark. And I find that the more I revise my manuscripts, the more my stories expand into another adventure and plot, which is my favorite part of writing.

OMN: If we could send you anywhere in the world to research the setting for a book, where would it be?

GL: Oh my goodness — If I could go anywhere in the world to do research for my next book it would be France. My next storyline takes place in the Loire Valley, and I'm learning to speak French. I think France is a beautiful country for any setting in a book.

OMN: What are some of your outside interests?

GL: I love to do so much, so I'll spare you. But besides crocheting, landscaping, music, and collecting crystal, I'm an avid tennis buff. When it's tennis season I'm glued to the television screen, and my daughter knows not to communicate with me unless it's a 911 emergency. Even then, she should go ask the neighbor for help. Just kidding, she knows how to dial 911.

OMN: How did the title of Cause She's a Good Girl come about?

GL: Piper decided in life that she would save herself for the man she plans to marry. "Because she's a good girl" is what hinders the killer when deciding to make her his next victim.

OMN: What is the best advice you've received as an author?

GL: The best advice I've received as an author is that, not everyone is going to love your books, (I wish). You're going to get some constructive criticism. Take that and learn from it to make you a better author. You're also going to come across some who just want to be nasty in their reviews. Take it for what it is, and know that others who read such harsh reviews will see them for what they are — nasty and unnecessary; 1 and 2 star reviews are a badge of honor. Those that get you when they read your books will be your loyal fans; those that don't, just aren't your type of readers. I would also like to add that after learning the craft, write your way, not what you think will appeal to the masses. Write because of your great love for it, not for fame and a spot on the bestseller's list.

OMN: What kind of feedback have you received from readers?

GL: The kind of feedback and questions I most enjoy: I love it when a reader tells me that something in the book made them smile, or outright laugh; or they figured out the spoiler before I revealed it (helps keep me alert for the next suspense novel) or they absolutely love my male characters, even the bad boys and killers. I love all questions asked me, whether it's about the book they're reading, my next release, or me in general.

OMN: What kinds of books did you read when you were young?

GL: As a child, I read everything from Alice in Wonderland, Art books, Comics, History — I even read a shorthand book when I was 4. It was only when I began reading romance novels that I was inspired to become an author.

OMN: And what do you look for today when selecting a book to read?

GL: I look for an escape from reality, a journey I would never take or enjoy had I not read this particular story; and it has to always have a HEA ending.

OMN: What kinds of films do you enjoy watching?

GL: If it has suspense, aliens, predators, space ships, and monsters in them, those are the kinds of movies I enjoy watching. And Dean Koontz' Intensity inspired Cause She's a Good Girl.

OMN: Speaking of movies, do you have a Top 5 list of them?

GL: Yes!

1. The Wizard of Oz
2. Alien 1 and 2
3. Predators
4. Prometheus
5. Intensity

OMN: What's next for you?

GL: After my writing sabbatical is over, I will start on my next romance novel set in France. Hopefully, it will be released in summer of 2016. And I also plan to write a suspenseful, sci-fi novel which will probably debut in 2017.

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Groovy Lee lives in the deep South with her Queen, her daughter, and where the number 4 has two syllables. Ever since she could put complete sentences together, she's been creating plots and adventures that thrive in her vivid imagination. Her first suspense novel was featured on a television talk show and given a "Highly Recommended" — she's still smiling. That same novel brought joy and a moment of escape to a mother as she nursed her young daughter dying of cancer. To think that something she wrote helped in such a small way convinces her that all the hard work is worth it. Besides being addicted to bottled tea, when it's tennis season, you can look for her, but you won't find her; unless you know where her 53" television is. Even then, approach her as you would a wild grizzly — exactly, you wouldn't.

For more information about the author, please visit her website at GroovyLee.com and her author page on Goodreads.

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Cause She's a Good Girl by Groovy Lee

Cause She's a Good Girl by Groovy Lee

A Novel of Suspense

Publisher: Groovy Lee

Amazon.com Print/Kindle Format(s)

Piper Banion spent most of her eighteen years trying to do the impossible: Gain her abusive mother's love. But the older she gets, the more she realizes that a parent's unconditional love is something you don't have to vie for, compromise your principles for, nor beg for in your prayers. Connie will always see her as a worthless burden; The one who makes her skin crawl whenever the word "momma" comes out of her mouth. Still, it was hard making that life-altering decision that freed Piper from the chains of her defective childhood.

After five years of wandering from one small town to the next, she finds a true friend in Shelly Jamison, a runaway mom, slash, devout party girl, and outspoken rebel against the rich and powerful — her family included. Following the not-so-surprising pink slips they received one Monday, coupled with the alley fight between her and Shelly's boy-toy, Piper finally gives in to her friend's invitation to spend the summer at her family's estate in Destin, California. At last, she gets to meet Shelly's S.E.X.Y. cousin Oz Jamison.

Oz owns a PR firm in Seattle, Washington. Hardly a day goes by that he can't turn a corner without being asked those headache-provoking questions: "Are you Prince? Would you sign my Purple Rain DVD? Touch my copy of your latest CD? Better yet, touch me instead?" With skin the color of smooth vanilla; and the sensual glint in those caramel brown eyes, even a pledged virgin like Piper has to fight off the lure of his sexuality. She opts instead for a friendship based on their shared abusive backgrounds.

Piper is determined to forge a better life in California; But the collective cries of nine murdered women reaching out to her from those weekly news bulletins suspends that goal. Someone is killing all the women she comes into contact with, and that's where the connection ends. Her "pureness" seems to be the trump card that enables her to walk away from the rage that consumes the killer and the lives of his unsuspecting victims. But the next time they meet, a head start is all she'll get.

In the chaos of trying to get away, she learns that Shelly has disappeared. A muffled voice over the phone claims responsibility; and it's not the Silk Stocking Serial killer who's daring her to come rescue her friend.

Cause She's a Good Girl by Groovy Lee

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