Monday, August 2, 2010
Interview with Best Selling Mystery Author Betsy Brannon Green
"Betsy Brannon Green skillfully weaves a rich tale of intrigue and romance in a small Southern town."
Hello Betsy, my dearest friend! To those who may not know, Betsy has read several of my novels, gave me a few blurbs, and even wrote the foreword to my second book, Edith and the Mysterious Stranger. You can read one of her blurbs on my sidebar. The first book Betsy wrote, Hearts in Hiding and the sequel Double Cross, just happen to be my favorites. After reading the “Duty” series (Hazardous Duty, Above and Beyond, and Code of Honor), I was taken into her story right away and it instantly became another favorite. Okay, enough about my thoughts! Betsy, please tell us about your new book.
Murder by the Book is the beginning of a spin-off series. My first book, Hearts in Hiding, began my writing career and the “Haggerty Mystery Series”. I loved working with familiar characters in the town of Haggerty but occasionally I’d get a request from someone to do something new. So I wrote the Duty Series – which was a nice vacation from Haggerty. But then I wanted to go back – but I wanted the new book to be fresh and a little different – within the confines of the series. So I came up with the idea to write a story based in a town that neighbors Haggerty (Midway, Georgia). This gave me the opportunity to create all new characters and then introduce some of the Haggerty favorites into the story. It was a lot of fun to write and came out in October of 2009. The sequel, Murder by Design, will be released in October of 2010.
Very mysterious! Where do you get your inspiration for your novels?
I get a lot of inspiration from the people and places around me. There are a lot of characters in the South. Many people ask me if Miss Eugenia is based on a real person. She is actually a composite of many amazing southern women I have known. She got her name from Mrs. Eugenia Akin – our landlady when my father was in medical school in Birmingham. And Haggerty is based on the beautiful little town of Headland, Alabama. It is truly an inspiring place.
I love Miss Eugenia. She is such a busybody and that makes her endearing. Do you know the outcome of each story before beginning a mystery? Or is it a mystery to you, too? Do you ever surprise yourself?
I always THINK I know the outcome of a book when I begin, but often the characters and the plot takes on a life of its own and things change as we go along. Sometimes I am surprised by the growth the characters experience during the course of a book – or my attachment to some characters – especially the bad guys – by the end. An example of this was my bad guy in Double Cross. By the end I hated to kill him – but I had to.
I loved Double Cross. It was so intriguing. You really fooled me on that one. What does your family think about your writing?
My family loves the fact that I write twice a year when my royalty checks arrive. The rest of the time they endure it. I got more complaints about the time I spend at the computer in the beginning – but now my books and the time it takes to write them are something they accept. My daughters all read my books and my husband listens to them on CD (although he’ll tell you they are not his genre – actually nothing is except the scriptures). But my sons don’t read them. My oldest son said it was the love scenes that made it impossible for him to read. My second son read Hearts in Hiding recently and said he loved it and wants to be just like Mark Iverson. So maybe they will eventually come around!
I have to laugh because I know exactly what you mean. Out of six daughters, only two have read all of my books. The rest are either too busy with college or children or it isn’t their genre such as fantasy. So yes… I understand completely. Okay, tell us something about the real you that we’ll never forget.
I have been trying for over a week to think of something unforgettable about myself and I’m afraid I’ve come to the conclusion that there isn’t anything! It was always my goal to have 10 children and I wanted to name my first three daughters Faith, Hope, and Charity (only had 8 children and didn’t name any of them the above).
Hilarious! I love it! Now I know the real Betsy who wanted ten children but ended up with eight and didn’t name them her 3 favorite names. Awesome!!!