My guest today is Sharon Donovan.
lives in Sharon . Prior to the loss of her
vision, she was a legal secretary for the Court of Common Pleas where she
prepared cases for judges in Domestic Relations. Painting was her passion. When
she could no longer paint, she attended creative writing classes and memoir
workshops. After a long and winding road, a new dream arose. Today, instead of
painting her pictures on canvas, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania paints her pictures with
. Let’s talk writing! Sharon
Anne - Tell us about MASK OF THE BETRAYER.
When the whispers in the night, the whispers of her lover, are the whispers of a killer, will Margot escape before she becomes the next victim?
Deep in the foothills of
, a serial killer stalks. He
leaves his signature—a skull mask on the corpse. But when the homicide cop
realizes the crimes are the reenactment of a case never solved ten years
ago--all fingers point to Michael DeVeccio. And when Margot realizes she is
married to the killer, her life becomes a living nightmare. Red Rock Canyon
Anne – What a super and terrifying premise for a book! Is it part of a series? If so, include other titles.
Anne - What do you enjoy most about writing a series? What part do you loathe?
Anne - Of all the characters you’ve created, does one hold a special place in your heart? Why?
Profiling is a big part of this book. As with most serial killers, childhood abuse plays a vital role in the adult’s psyche. I needed to know why Michael killed with no remorse, and in order to do that, I needed to research his family roots. Part of creating a good villain is to show the vulnerable traits in order to garner sympathy as well as understanding.
The hardest part to write was getting inside the mind of a killer. To help better understand how fragile the mind is, I took some psychology classes. The mind has always fascinated me. It can bend. It can break. It can snap. What could have possibly happened in someone’s life to cause them to do such heinous things? Thinking like a killer is not a pleasant thought, but unraveling the many layers of the psyche to find out why it cracked was quite a challenge that could not be rushed.
Anne – Again, scary stuff. Would you share an excerpt with us?
The dance floor vibrated with footsteps as guests glided, clomped, and stomped across it. The Joker hopped around, laughing like a fool. The Deranged Clown grabbed Margot for a spin around the floor. Dressed in black and white checks and a black mask, An Evil Jester rubbed up against the Smoldering Temptress, whispering crude suggestions in her ear. Covered in voodoo pins from head to toe, the Voodoo Doll danced alone.
But it was Zorro who turned heads from the moment she’d sashayed into the ballroom. Drop dead gorgeous in a crimson body suit and long flowing cape, she had the attention of every male in the ballroom. Her long platinum hair billowed around her voluptuous body and red feather mask. Sheathed in a crimson scaled scabbard, her Zorro sword rested on her left thigh.
The men all stared. The Mysterious Stranger in a black cape swept Zorro away with the moves of a ballroom dancer, looking for all the world like her long lost lover. But as soon as the song ended, another masked guest asked Zorro to dance, and before long, she’d danced with nearly every man at the party.
“Michael,” Margot whispered in his ear. “Everyone is captivated by Zorro. Do you know who she is?”
Michael watched Zorro glide across the ballroom floor with ease. Chic and elegant with the legs of a dancer, she danced the night away, her patent leather heels never touching the ground. A crimson rose pendant graced her long, elegant neck. Michael knew precisely who she was. He’d given her the rose necklace on their wedding night. Taking one final look at Zorro, he pulled Margot into a tight embrace. After kissing her, he whispered in her ear. “I have no idea who she is. Darling Margot, I only have eyes for you. You are the perfect woman.”
The storm that had been brewing all day broke just as the bell tower tolled. Eleven piercing chimes rang out simultaneously with the rumbling of thunder. Winds from the
Zorro sat at the bar, sipping on a bourbon on the rocks. Michael crept up behind her and whispered in her ear. “Nobody makes an entrance like you do, Darling Candace. You have every man in the place rock hard.”
“Michael,” she purred, her smoky voice as smooth as silk. “I knew you’d recognize me.” She ran her hand over his masked face. “The role of Valentino suits you. You are still the most handsome man I’ve ever set eyes on.”
“And there were certainly enough of them,” his voice came out low and husky. “How many men, Candace? Did you ever keep count of how many lovers you had during our marriage?”
“You were the only one that ever mattered,” she rubbed up closer. “We had something real special between us. And being back in the ballroom tonight brings back all those memories. Like the way you used to hold me in your arms when we glided across the floor. And afterwards,” she slid her hand down his chest—and lower still. “We set the sheets on fire, remember, darling?”
“We had our moments,” he said. “But I also remember kicking your trashy ass out of Vegas and telling you to never return. And yet here you are, an uninvited guest at my masquerade ball. You know the extent of my wrath better than anyone. And yet you dare to defy me. Why is that, Candace?”
“Because I love you, darling,” sexuality oozed from every pore. “You and only you. Let’s sneak up to our old bedroom and see if we can rekindle some old flames. Come on, sugar. Let’s get between those satin sheets and set the night on fire.”
Michael leaned very close, massaging her leg with his fingers. In a voice raw with sexuality, he whispered, “Darling Candace. How can I resist. Meet me in Uncle Carlos’s suite in ten minutes. We’ll ring in the New Year together. You have no idea how much I want to be alone with you. Beautiful, beautiful Candace. I promise to make you scream.”
Anne – Wow! I see what you mean about Michael being charming. And deadly. How many rejections have you received? Was one more memorable than others? Why?
Anne – Any words of advice for struggling, unpublished writers.
Anne – Well said! J Where can readers find you online?
Anne – Thank you so much,
. It’s been a pleasure to
chat and get some insight into how you write. I wish you every success, and of
course, happy writing! Sharon
* * *