Thursday, October 23, 2014

Interview with Margay Leah Justice, author of 'The Scent of Humanity'

Descended from the same bloodline that spawned the likes of James Russell, Amy and Robert Lowell, Margay Leah Justice was fated to be a writer herself from a young age. But even before she knew that there was a name for what she was doing, she knew one thing: She had a deep and unconditional love for the written word. A love that would challenge her in times of need, abandon her in times of distress, and rediscover her in times of hope. Through her writing, Margay has learned to cope with every curve ball life has thrown her, including the challenges of single parenting, the harsh realities of living in a shelter, coping with the diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis, and the roller coaster ride of dealing with a child who suffers from bipolar disorder. But along the way she has rediscovered the amazing power of words. 
Margay currently lives in Massachusetts with her two daughters, two cats, and a myriad of characters who vie for her attention and demand that their own stories be told. In her spare time, she is an avid knitter, knitting her way through a stash of yarn that almost rivals her tbr pile!
Her latest book is the romantic suspense/women’s fiction, The Scent of Humanity.
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About the Book:

Lightning doesn’t strike the same place twice. In theory. But in one small town, in one family, that theory is put to the test. 

Growing up in a rural town in
Massachusetts was supposed to be safe, but for SILVIE CHILDS, that safety was shattered by a kidnapping attempt that forever changed her life. Now, nearly twenty years later, that sense of safety is challenged again by the kidnapping attempt on her young niece, and Silvie is left struggling with one question: How can something like this happen twice in one family? 

It is a dilemma shared by NICK FAHEY, the detective assigned to the case. Arriving on the scene of the abduction attempt, Nick expects to run a routine investigation. Until he meets the victim, the niece of a woman he once considered a dear friend. Unfortunately, these days Silvie Childs can barely stand the sight of him. 

Once there was a time when Silvie Childs worshipped Nick Fahey, believing he could do no wrong. Until the accident that nearly killed her brother; the accident that Nick reportedly caused. Coming on the heels of her own near abduction, the accident skewed Silvie’s ability to trust men – especially Nick. But now, with the attempt on her niece’s safety, Silvie finds herself in the untenable position of having to trust Nick to bring the kidnapper to justice. 

That trust is severely tested when, after only two months, the case is closed for lack of new evidence. Feeling betrayed by the system in which she works as a paralegal and by Nick, Silvie takes matters into her own hands. Contacting local news stations to generate interest in the case, allowing herself to be filmed hanging sketches of the suspect on telephone poles, she will risk her own safety to protect that of her niece. When her efforts re-open the wounds of her past, she is once again forced to put her trust in the one man who still has the power to hurt her – Nick 

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Thank you for this interview!  I’d like to know more about you as a person first.  What do you do when you’re not writing?

Thank you for having me! I read a lot (no surprise there), but I also love to knit. I am a creative person through and through, so I love making something out of nothing and seeing the end result. I also love spending time with my family.

When did you start writing?

As soon as I could hold a pencil – or a crayon, as the case may be! I think I always told stories, in one form or another. I don’t remember ever not writing; it’s just something I always did.

As a published author, what would you say was the most pivotal point of your writing life?

Probably the first time I saw my name on a book cover. That’s when it hit me that this was real; I am now a published author.

If you could go anywhere in the world to start writing your next book, where would that be and why?

I’ve always wanted to go to Paris, ever since I was a kid. So I’d love to go there, sit by the Seine, and just write.

If you had 4 hours of extra time today, what would you do?

Work on my current WIP.

Where would you like to set a story that you haven’t done yet?

Oh, good question! I think it’d be fun to set something in Australia or Japan.

Back to your present book, The Scent of Humanity, how did you publish it?

I went the self-publishing route for this one.

In writing your book, did you travel anywhere for research?

No, because it was set in a small town loosely based on the one I grew up in, so a lot of it came out of my imagination.

Why was writing The Scent of Humanity so important to you?

Because the core of the story (the attempted kidnappings) is based on events that actually happened to me and my niece and I just felt compelled to write the story. When I first started putting it down on paper, it was like it was writing itself – like it wasn’t even me writing it. I couldn’t not write it; this story wanted to be told.

Where do you get your best ideas and why do you think that is?

My ideas spring up from everywhere. It could just be a certain turn of phrase or something I saw on the news. It’s almost like I don’t choose my ideas so much as they choose me!

Any final words?

I just want to thank you so much for having me here today. It has been such a pleasure visiting with you.

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