Welcome to our guest author, Gerald Griffin, author of Of Good and Evil. Enjoy the exclusive interview!
Gerald was born in Flint, Michigan. After obtaining his AS and BBA degrees in his home town, he received his MA and Ph.D. in psychology from Michigan State University. Upon graduation, he moved to Atlanta, Georgia, there joining the private practice of another psychologist. A year later, Gerald set up his own private practice as a consulting psychologist, his professional activities including marriage counseling, psychotherapy, psychological evaluations and executive consultation. During his 18 years in private practice, he was listed in WHO’S WHO in Georgia; Marquis WHO’S WHO in the South and Southwest; Outstanding Atlantans; Personalities of the South; Personalities of America and Notable Americans. Over this same period he wrote the published non-fiction book, THE SILENT MISERY — WHY MARRIAGES FAIL, followed by the three published novels, THE CORRUPTORS, THE DEATH DISCIPLE and THE LAST COMING. Easing out of private practice to enter writing full-time, Gerald moved to Gainrsville, Georgia, there producing two published ghost written non-fiction books. Then he wrote the published novel OF GOOD AND EVIL. Presently, he is putting the final touches to its sequel, A TIME OF RECKONING.
What inspired you to become a writer?
I think I was a born writer, with the inspiration to write already in my DNA. Reading books at an early age set this inspiration loose, this becoming evident in the 9th grade. At the time, while reading about King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, I said to myself, “I can write like that.” And I did. Beginning right then, I wrote a book with a similar theme entitled, “Sir Griffin and the Fair Princess Velva” — Velva a girl in my class whom I had a crush on. My teacher found out about the book and read it chapter by chapter to the class, a new chapter each day. She was so surprised by the creativity of the story, my classmates so amazed, that from then on my inspiration to become a writer some day was never in question.
Define a great book.
If you’re speaking of fiction, assuming the book has intriguing substance, in a nutshell, I’d say a book that is crisp, clean and clear, with vivid and vibrant characters resonating perfectly with a galloping plot without a dull moment so as to keep the reader on edge and glued to the book from start to finish.
Where did the inspiration for OF GOOD AND EVIL come from?
Several places. Initially it came from events at home and around the world affecting our national security, especially the 9/11 terrorist attacks; and from the difficulties of returning war veterans to adjust back to normal society because of unresolved combat trauma. These were the inspirational seeds! But for the book to work also required incorporation of love, friendship and other vital aspects that would give the novel the needed life to round out the hard-hitting theme I wanted. But, as the writing progressed, came the biggest challenge. To pull off the theme’s message in a spellbinding manner, I had to take an approach to good and evil never before attempted, inspiring me to achieve a sense of nobility with the novel going beyond the trappings and cliches of the genre, giving the novel its soul.
Can you share a little about your novel with us?
Of Good And Evil is a hard-charging suspense thriller— vivid characters, harrowing action, international locales, captivating love story. The protagonist, Ron Sheffield, a gifted but troubled Green Beret, is discharged form the army for going “crazy” and from there the fireworks begin. Ron is brutally beaten and shot by the Mafia, and is hospitalized near death. His life is dramatically saved by Amber Ash, a wealthy young woman with “special abilities” similar to Ron’s. They fall in love and from there the two are propelled into unending danger, among them battles with mobsters, terrorists and a government cell out to kill them over alarming Iraqi documents Ron possesses from his army service. During these battles, with surprising twists at every turn, Ron is forced by his own mental demons, oddly helped by Amber’s estranged billionaire father, to savingly become a specialized hit man for the Mafia. Through this unlikely contact with her father, Amber and Ron are brought to face a powerful and noble secret society with a different mind-set than theirs, and a different type of conflict ensues. Eventually, Ron is faced with the imminent nuclear obliteration of a major American city — and Amber and the secret society as well — by a suicidal terrorist cell that only Ron can possibly stop, but finds it impossible to do so. A cliff-hanger ending! Throughout the book the reader is engrossed in humanity, hate, love, villains, friendship, tragedy, sorrow, all intermixed in one enticing conflict keeping the reader on edge and unable to put the book down.
Can you tease us with a short excerpt from your novel?
Certainly. From Chapter 6:
Now Ron stared at the door with a feeling of revulsion. It grew the longer he stared. A loathing of those inside suddenly surface then intensified; an overpowering emotion he couldn’t control. A powerful hatred etched his face. He had to have catharsis. Blowing up the place wasn’t enough.
It has to be eye-to-eye.
Looking at him, Amber knew what he was about to do, and shivered, horrified. “Why are you going in there?”
“Just making sure there’s no patrons or innocent staff around,” Ron said, cognizant of how lame that sounded.
“That’s ridiculous! You know there aren’t.”
Amber knew there was no stopping him. She watched apprehensively as he opened the passenger door and got out. With an inscrutable smile, he looked at her. “Relax, this has to be done. Keep driving around the block until I come back out.”
A shadow clouded her eyes, the pulse beating densely in her throat. “What if you don’t?”
“Then you’ll know hell has frozen over.”
If you could use five words to persuade us to read your book, what would they be?
SPELLBINDING ACTION SUSPENSE LOVE NOBILITY
And if I could add two more words to these: UNENDING SURPRISES
Since women are a large readership, what’s there about your book in particular that will appeal to them?
It’s as much a woman’s story as a man’s tale. To begin, the novel has a beautiful, unusual and captivating love story. One reviewer stated that the love between Amber and Ron is, “…by far the most genuine romance I’ve ever read about.” Also, the novel has strong, vibrant women characters whom are essential and pivotal to the story’s plot. Women readers will be caught up with these female characters, identifying with them, living through their emotions. Several women who have read the novel have let me know that they, “Love it!” The question of what’s there about the book appealing to women is thoroughly answered by my New Year’s resolution for women who love to read, the latest posting on my blog, http://geraldggriffin.blogspot.com .
What are the most gratifying things that have happened with your book so far?
Tremendous reader feedback — Powerful reviews — My novel presently being explored for a movie/TV series
My film representative said of the novel: “You have the best novel I have ever, ever read and had the pleasure to work with and on. I am honored.”
Of the reviews, I will quote from three of them:
“Of Good And Evil is the very embodiment of what a paranormal thriller should be. It truly boggles my mind the sheer caliber of talent this author possesses. His book is not only the best paranormal thriller I have ever read, but also the best book I have ever read. Of Good and Evil is such a marvelous tale that you don’t even have to be a fan of its specific genre to enjoy it, and to me that is the mark of a brilliant story.” Shane Porteous, Author (RASCISS, GRAVE CALLER, HOW GODS BLEED)
“In creating the character of Ron Sheffield, Gerald Griffin has proven himself to be a writer of extraordinary skills. Of Good And Evil is a novel that is so finely written, so well plotted and paced, that the reader is immediately drawn into the book from the first page. That Mr. Griffin is able to use mere words to introduce the reader to Ron Sheffield is nothing short of breathtaking— it is not often that a writer can make so complex a character, a person with such internal torments and external gifts, resonate so perfectly with a plot and locations that keep the reader glued to the book from start to finish. A MUST READ!” Rick Friedman, Founder, The James Mason Community Book Club
“With the real world as his background, Gerald G. Griffin, in his brilliant thriller Of Good And Evil, takes the reader on a wild ride, giving his audience a well-conceived story delivered with the talent of a born writer. Ron Sheffield, Gerald’s gifted but tormented main character, has everything a great writer needs to engage a reader on an emotional level. This is the gift of a truly great story-teller, and with this book Gerald has gone that step further that separates writers from great writers. I am to be able to tell you a little about Gerald and his novel….” Tracey Alley, Author (ERICH’S PLEA, URSULA’S QUEST)
What is your website and/or blog?
Where can OF GOOD AND EVIL be purchased?
Online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million and other online sites, including the publisher.
Amazon:http://www.amazon.com (use search box) Barnes & Noble:http://search.barnesandnoble.com UK:http://www.amazon.co.uk Publisher:http://strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/OfGoodAndEvil.html
THANK YOU Gerald for stopping by The Mountain Muse and providing us with a very interesting interview!