Author: Penny Estelle
Title: At What Price?
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Publisher: Solstice Publishing
GIVEAWAY: Please leave contact information in your comment to be considered for an electronic copy of At What Price?
When and why did you begin writing?
About forty years ago, I started reading because I had two babies, and when you are up all hours of the night, what else is there to do? I thought, I can do this! How hard can it be? HA – I had lots to learn. I wrote a novel of about 400 pages. I sent it to a few publishers and was shocked when they didn't want it! No more writing for me for another forty years.
I decided to write for the older kids just before retiring because working in an elementary school, it was easy to see the middle age group just wasn't into reading like the little ones. Coming from an author who NEVER read as a child/teen, I know what I missed out on. Reading is something all kids of all ages should be doing. I figured I could write a few stories they would enjoy!
What do you do when you're not writing/editing or thinking about writing/editing?
I'm an outdoors person. I love four-wheeling and exploring! I also love traveling to see my seven grand kids and....I like the casinos!
Who is your publisher and how did you connect with them?
My first book was Hike Up Devil's Mountain. I sent it snail mail to one of the “big six” and got a polite thanks, but no thanks. I happened on an article about new publishing and eBooks. I looked into Solstice and liked what I read. I sent my story to them and almost had a heart attack when I received an email from them stating they were offering me a contract!
Where can we find you?
Any other news you'd like to share?
I have a series out titled the Wickware Sagas. It's a time travel adventure for the middle grade age group. Three of the five stories are out in eBook form, Billy Cooper's Awesome Nightmare, Ride of a Lifetime, and Flash to the Past with the other two coming out soon, Bumped Back in Time and Riches to Rags. The printed book, hopefully, will be out before Christmas.
What is your experience working or being around domestic violence?
My story, At What Price?, takes on the subject of drug abuse and abandonment. Unfortunately, my only personal experience was living with a brother who abused drugs. His addiction started when he went to Viet Nam. He was not the brother I knew, and it took years to get him back!
What gave you the idea for this particular book?
I have no idea. The abandoned little girl in the story is named Rio. That is my granddaughter's name, so it started out as a comedy and turned quickly. The characters just led me down another road!
What is the toughest part about writing about this subject?
Well for me, it was having the grandmother, continue to give in to her drug addicted daughter's demands. In the story, she would do anything to keep her granddaughter safe, including giving in to extortion. My first thoughts were I can't write about somebody that is this weak, but truth be told, I just don't know what I would do given the same circumstances. Would I actually call her bluff, or would I be too afraid of losing the one little girl who she had come to love so much?
Are experiences based on someone you know or events in your own life?
No. I did see a fight between a mother and daughter in the school office where I worked for twenty-one years where the daughter told her mother she would never see her grandson again if she didn't come around to her way of thinking. It was very disturbing to see the older woman deflate in front of my eyes!
What about your book makes it special?
I like the ending! Everybody comes into their own....if that makes any sense!
Do writing violent or highly sexual scenes bother? Why or why not?
I have never done scenes like this. I would love to give it a shot and hopefully I will, someday, write a story that has lots of violence or sex. I think those kinds of stories are big sellers! I'm not sure I would be very good at either. LOL
What was the process of creating this book from the first idea to the final published book?
It's a fairly short story, and as I said earlier, it was going to be a comedy, but it changed as soon as I started writing I finished this story in two weeks and Solstice picked it right up. It was out in eBook for probably six to seven months after I started.
Favorite Food........hands down – Mexican
Holiday........Thanksgiving. Huge family that brings food to the park. We eat and play volleyball!
Katherine Gardner is awakened at 6:30 in the morning with a call from a strange woman who claims to have her granddaughter, Rio. This woman is calling the police if Katherine doesn’t make arrangements for somebody to pick this little girl up.
Katherine is a fifty-six years old woman and all alone, since her husband died over three years ago. Her life takes a dramatic turn when six-year old Rio comes to stay with her. Rio is a scared little girl whose life is filled with uncertainty and fear.
In her grandmother, Rio finds a safe haven and an unconditional love that she has never known in her six short years and Katherine has found a love to fill the void that has been absent for way too long.
Unfortunately Katherine’s daughter, who deserted Rio, has other ideas.
Thank you Penny for letting me visit with you today. You have some great questions. I would love to offer a copy of At What Price? to somebody who leaves a comment!