Peggy Blann Phifer is an author and columnist, book reviewer and interviewer, and all-around awesome gal. She is also an avid reader who loves to escape by diving between the covers of a good book. And speaking of books…her debut novel TO SEE THE SUN just came out in January. Read on to find out about Peg, purple, and prose.
So Peg…what's up with all the purple?
Ha! You picked up on that, huh? Purple has long been one of my favorite colors, along with red and blue. Think about it: mix red and blue and you get . . . purple! It wasn’t until I reached my seventh decade that I decided to do something about it. You know, “When I am an old woman, I shall wear purple with a red hat that doesn’t go and doesn’t suit me . . .” (Jenny Joseph)
I’ve long been a non-conformist, refusing to bow to the dictates of fashion or the ‘fad de jure.’ It didn’t make me popular, but it made me . . . me.
Next, purple is the color of royalty. I could stretch things a bit and say I’m entitled to wear purple since I’m a “Stuart” descendant . . . you know, Mary Stuart, Queen of Scotland and France . . . the one beheaded by her cousin Queen Elizabeth I. Bonnie Prince Charlie and all that. If I’d lived in that day, I’d have been a Jacobite. I think. White roses and all.
Whoops, sorry I forgot to curtsey. Before you go taking off my head, who are some of your favorite authors and why?
That’s really tough, because they vary by genre, as you’ll understand when you see the list.
· Brandilyn Collins because she writes spine-tingling suspense like no other.
· Steven James because he writes tough suspense but mixes in with personal relationships.
· Deborah Raney because she allows me to escape from the heaviness of suspense writing (and, reading) and totally captivates me.
· James A. Michener because of his impeccable, detailed research. Some think his writing ponderous, but I disagree.
· Emilie Loring. She was of the Grace Livingston Hill era, but Emilie is the one who most influenced my writing. Part romance, part intrigue or suspense, not sure what it was called back then, but I devoured every book she wrote. I think her books, alone, set the tone for my writing. I wanted to write like her. Not sure I accomplished it, but I tried.
TO SEE THE SUN is your debut novel. Tell us a tale related to the writing of it.
I tried to follow the mantra: Write What You Know. It failed me over and over. I originally set the story in a past familiar area, only I didn’t take into account that it had been thirty years since I’d been there. Milwaukee, northern Wisconsin . . . it wasn’t coming together. For a contemporary novel, nothing fit. It wasn’t until I moved my story to southern Nevada, specifically, Las Vegas, that it began to click. After that, the ride was fun.
How much of you is there in your heroine, Erin Macintyre?
Very little, with the exception of a sense of humor, and, maybe, the vulnerability. Erin is everything I wish I was. Can anybody relate?
Use your sweet writing skills to describe when you first held your debut novel in your sweaty palms.
Oh, man! I’m not sure I can. I received the proof copy first. When I opened the envelope and saw the book . . . the REAL book . . . even though it wasn’t fully edited . . . I lost it. This isn’t happening! After all these years, I can’t believe I have a real book, with MY name on it! But when I received the box of the finished product . . .
Even now, as I think about it, I’m all squinched up with tingles and tears. I wrote a book and it’s in print!
That is pretty exciting, and the storyline for TO SEE THE SUN is even more exciting…
Pregnant and widowed hadn’t been part of her “happily ever after” dream. And now, someone was trying to kill her . . .
Erin Macintyre never expected to be a widow and a new mother in the same year, anymore than she expected mysterious notes, threatening phone calls, and a strange homeless man who seems to know all about her. The thought of raising a child without a father is daunting enough—worse when you have no idea who might want to harm you. Put an old flame into the mix, and her life begins a tailspin into a world she never knew existed.
When P.I. Clay Buchanan, stumbles upon Erin at her husband's gravesite, he’s totally unprepared for her advanced pregnancy. Her venomous reaction at seeing him, however, was predictable. But Clay can’t let her distrust, or his guilt, get in the way—not when he has evidence that proves Erin’s life is in danger.
With few options left, Erin begrudgingly accepts Clay’s help . . . and it just might be her undoing.
Read the first chapter here.
Thanks for stopping by for a visit on Novel Rocket. If anyone’s interested in finding out more about Peg, she can be found at:
Contact her at her website
Visit her blog “Whispers in Purple"