Scroll down for a chance to win a copy of Samuel Parker’s book, ColdWater. Winner will be announced in the next Author Spotlight feature.
Congratulations to winner of last Author Spotlight of The Day the Angels Fell, Vanessa Kroeger! And to Erica Mae who won the Plainview set of 4 basket and the first two books in the May Hollow series.
Please e-mail your mailing address to my assistant Christen (firstname.lastname@example.org).
From the bold voice that brought readers down Purgatory Road comes a new pulse-pounding, spine-rattling tale of vengeance and justice.
Having forfeited his youth to the state prison system, Michael moved back to the only home he’d ever known. An empty shell of a man who now lived—if it could be called living—in the still vacant house of his parents in a town with one stoplight. A town that hated him. Had always hated him. And was ready to pick up where the prison system had left off.
Now he’s on the run from men who’ve tried to kill him once; but Michael is more than an ex-con. A powerful, sinister force creeps inside him, threatening and destructive. What—and who—it will destroy next is the only real question.
With a breakneck, staccato pace, and pitch-perfect dialogue, Parker takes readers on an amazing chase that will keep them up all night.
Can you tell us about your newest release? Is it part of a series or a stand-alone?
Coldwater is a stand-alone novel set in a small rural town “up north”. At this point I have not written any series fiction because I don’t think most of my characters would be able to survive that long.
Is anything or anyone in this book based on real-life experiences?
The genesis of this story was a local story about a young kid committing a horrible crime, and the reaction of the community to that crime. I thought it was a perfect lens to view the issues that I tried to examine in Coldwater…guilt, redemption, family, justice. Plus, I grew up in a small town so I seem to naturally gravitate to that type of setting.
Who was your favorite character in this story, and why?
Most of the stories I write don’t have a “hero” per se. Quite often, many of the characters are simply unlikeable, but that is the point though. I think one of the common threads in my writing so far has been: do people really believe in redemption? If so, then it covers even the worst offenders. I like to entertain that idea through the story. Michael Sullivan, the anti-hero in Coldwater would probably be my favorite, though some of the townsfolk have pieces of me written in.
Compared to your other books, was this one easy to complete or challenging? Any idea why?
This one was a bit more of a challenge because it was my first piece of writing that was done under a contract. Before, I just wrote for myself, but it was a little more nerve racking to be under obligation while writing. It was fun, I won’t deny that, but it just added a layer of pressure that I was yet unaccustomed too.
What was the hardest scene in this book to write? What made it difficult?
In my head I am always thinking plausibility, plausibility, plausibility. And it’s the plausibility of a character’s motivation that I seem to get stuck on for a long period. There is one character in Coldwater who is interjected well into the action, and thinking of a credible entry point for her was something I struggled with for about 6 months. The editors and pre-readers never questioned what I came up with, so I think I’m in the clear.
What did you (or your editors) edit out of this book?
The last chapter. The last chapter was swapped out due to some concerns that it was too dark. I trust my editor completely, but I must admit I was saddened by having to change it. I still have it on my laptop, maybe I’ll save it for posterity.
What’s the most difficult thing about writing from the point of view of the opposite sex?
I take the easy way out and have several women read the rough draft and simply ask them if the women of the story sound legit. It has saved me many, many times.
Samuel Parker is the author of Purgatory Road. Born in the Michigan boondocks, he was raised on a never-ending road trip through the US. Besides writing, he is a process junkie and the ex-guitarist for several metal bands you’ve never heard of. He lives in West Michigan with his wife and twin sons.