Thursday, January 12, 2012

Global Book Blast: Jennifer Chase Interview




GBB:            What was the inspiration for you to write this story?  What was your motivation to complete it?  Were there defining moments that helped you along the way?

My inspiration for Dark Mind came from visiting the island of Kauai.  It’s a place that I love to vacation because of its breathtaking beauty and remote areas.  I can really relax there.  During my last visit, I sat on this incredible deserted beach and thought about “what if”.  My creative mind was in full force and thought about what would this island do if there was a serial killer on the loose.  The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to complete this story and everything seemed to fall into place.  I felt that my background in forensics and criminology with my storyline idea meshed well for this particular story.

GBB:        Many writers do research or construct outlines before writing a story, take us through the process you used before you started writing.
I admit it, I’m an outliner and a lingering thinker even before I begin writing.  First, I jot down the basic ideas and then I begin an extensive outline along with my research.  The outline becomes a choppy first draft and a road map of sorts.  But, I don’t stick exactly to the outline because sometimes there are some variations in characters and pacing.  My outline helps me to see if there is indeed a complete story and if my pacing is correct, especially for a thriller.

GBB:        How did you come up with the title?
Titles seem to be either a slow process of finding the right one or one jumps out right away.  For me, I try not to think too much about them.  The harder I try to title a book, the worse the titles become.  I write down working titles until I hit a title that grabs my interest.  For Dark Mind, I wanted a simple title that conveyed the story of a serial killer.

GBB:        Tell our readers what the setting or backdrop is for your novel.
Dark Mind is set on the island of Kauai.  It’s a beautiful locale, but poses extreme challenges for the heroine as she tracks down a serial killer.  I used the island’s tropical jungles, rocky bluffs, large beaches, and difficult hiking trails as the backdrop for her as she investigates and traps a serial killer. 

GBB:        Without giving too much away, can you give us some background on the major characters?  Do you have a favorite character?
I love all my characters for different reasons, but I lean toward the heroine Emily Stone.  She’s tough, capable, has a personal calling, and is definitely smarter than I am.
The heroine, Emily Stone, is an ex-detective that pursues serial killers and child abductors covertly and emails her findings to the local police in charge of the particular case.  She’s been described as a vigilante detective and an angel of justice, but her identity is kept secret.  She began tracking serial killers alone, but now has inspired a few, select others to take up her life’s calling.
Rick Lopez is Emily’s love interest who quit his job as a police detective after he met her and has taken up her quest to help find serial killers and child abductors.  And Jordan Smith is a friend and an ex-FBI agent that worked for the Behavioral Science Unit. 
In Dark Mind, the main characters meet up with Sergeant Lani Candena.  A Kauai police officer who never fit in with the locals or fellow cops and wants to be a big city cop someday.
The serial killer known for most of the book as “Keo” is a heavily flawed and psychopathic character with deep mental disturbances, and believes that he is feeding an ancient Hawaiian god with offerings.  However, he manages to blend into regular society and keeps the reader guessing who he is in the story.

GBB:        Can you give us a brief summary of your book?
A Serial Killer Plagues an Island Paradise

Vigilante detective Emily Stone continues her covert pursuits to find serial killers and child abductors, all under the radar while shadowing police investigations.

Emily searches for an abducted nine-year-old girl taken by ruthless and enterprising slave brokers. Following the clues from California to the garden island of Kauai, she begins to piece together the evidence and ventures deep into the jungle.

It doesn’t take long before Emily is thrown into the middle of murder, mayhem, and conspiracy. Locals aren’t talking as a serial killer now stalks the island, taking women in a brutal frenzy of ancient superstitions and folklore. Local cops are unprepared for what lies ahead. In a race against the clock, Emily and her team must identify the killer before time runs out.

GBB:        Do you have a favorite part or chapter?
I love writing crime thrillers and I really enjoyed writing Dark Mind.  I particularly enjoyed writing the more action-oriented and fight scenes with the heroine in the parts of the book where she was put into some really precarious circumstances.  It challenged me as a writer of not only telling a story, but increased the suspense of the overall story.

GBB:        Are there any anecdotal stories pertaining to writing this story that you would like to share?
I don’t know about anecdotal, but when I first began putting down my ideas for this story I found out that Kauai really did have a serial killer in 2000.  I had never heard about it before.  There were three victims and these cases are still unsolved.  I realized my curiosity and fears had already been put to the test in reality.

GBB:        With all the new genres out there today, what categories and sub category would you say your novel falls into?
Dark Mind is a thriller, but the subcategory would be crime, suspense, and mystery.

GBB:        On a scale of 1 to 5 (with 5 being the most difficult) what is the reading level of your novel?
Dark Mind is a fast read with 3 being the reading level of the story. 

GBB:        What well-known author would you compare your writing style to?
This is difficult for me to answer, but I’ve received reviews that compared my writing style to early novels by James Patterson.  I like to write short chapters and not create excessive details in the descriptions to keep the story moving.  My hope is to keep readers reading to want to find out what’s going to happen next.

GBB:        Other than your current novel what other books short stories etc. have you written?
I’ve written ten screenplays, taught beginning screenwriting courses, and wrote a screenwriting workbook to help beginners pen their first draft.  I’ve also written three other crime fiction thrillers: Compulsion, Dead Game, and Silent Partner. 

GBB:        Are you working on any new projects?
I’m working on several short stories in the horror genre.  It’s a nice break after completing a full-length novel.  However, I’m already jotting down notes for my next novel.

GBB:        Is there a sequel or a prequel for Dark Mind somewhere out there in the future?
Dark Mind is number three and is part of the Emily Stone Thriller Series, but each novel can easily stand-alone.  Compulsion and Dead Game are the first and second in the series.  I will be completing the fourth in the series by mid 2012.

GBB:        Do you have any media or book signing appearances coming in the near future?
I’m in the process of scheduling appearances outside of online interviews.  I invite anyone who is interested to check my blog periodically for more information:

GBB:        Is there anything you would like to say to your fans or potentially new fans?
First, thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone who has read, supported, and followed me.  You make all this writing craziness well worth it and enjoyable.  Also, I welcome comments and questions.  Please feel free to contact me anytime and I answer all my mail.

I appreciate the opportunity to participate in an author interview.  Thank you!

GBB:        Thank you for your time.  We wish you much success with your novel.

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