Saturday, December 06, 2008

Weekend Interview with H. Terrell Griffin

Happy Saturday! Today I'm pleased to announce a special author interview wiht H. Terrell Griffin, who is celebrating the release of his book Blood Island. Pay close attention, because at the end of this interview you'll find information about how you can win a signed copy of this book today!

Terry, welcome to Allie's Musings! Can you tell us a little about your background?

I grew up in Central Florida, served three years in the U.S. Army, earned degrees in history and law and practiced law in Orlando for 38 years. I was board certified by the Florida Bar as a Civil Trial Lawyer. I have a home on Longboat Key, Florida, where much of my book takes place, and spend as much time as possible on my boat. I’ve been married to the most delightful woman since I was in college and we have three sons and two grandchildren.

Ah, sounds like a lovely place to write! When did you first begin writing? Was there an event or moment in your life that triggered your desire to write?

I have been a voracious reader since I was a child. I discovered the joys of mystery novels while in college and have always aspired to write one. I was just simply too busy with my career and my family to take the time to try writing. As I was nearing retirement from the practice of law I decided that I had to take my shot if I was ever going to scratch the writing itch. I sat down and wrote my first book in 2005 and have been writing ever since. I think the triggering moment was when I realized that I wasn’t getting any younger and if I wanted to write a novel, I’d better get busy.

Tell us about your latest writing project.

My latest book, Blood Island, was released by Oceanview Publishing on December 1, 2008. The book takes place in Longboat Key, which is off the west coast of Florida just south of Tampa Bay, Key West and Orlando. The protagonist, Matt Royal, a beach bum former lawyer living on Longboat Key, is asked by his ex- wife to help find her 18 year old stepdaughter who disappeared while on Spring Break from college. The search takes him to the Florida Keys and to Blood Island where a very dangerous group of zealots have set up housekeeping and plan to cause great harm to the world. Matt, with the help of his friends Jock Algren and Logan Hamilton, set out to rescue the girl and stop the coming conflagration.

Sounds like an exciting read! Now, what do you find most difficult about writing? What do you find most exciting or rewarding?

I think the most difficult thing is to make myself sit down and write. I tend to go in spurts, spending days at a time at the computer and then slacking off for days at a time. The most exciting part of the process is finding out what the characters are going to do next, how they go about solving the mystery, what their next day is going to be like. I don’t write from outlines, but just let the characters take on their own lives and let the words flow. When I’m on a roll, when the writing is going just right and the characters are having fun, I am rewarded.

Describe your writing space...
I actually have two writing spaces, one in my study at home in Maitland, an Orlando suburb, and the other on the sun porch of my condo overlooking Sarasota Bay on Longboat Key.

What do you like to do when you're not writing?

I spend a great deal of time on Longboat Key, doing much of what my main character, Matt Royal, does; boating, fishing, and hanging out on the beach and visiting the local bars on our lovely island. I hold a U.S. Coast Guard 100 Ton Masters License and love being on a boat on the water. I’ve found that this life gives me a great deal of material for my novels.

I can definitely imagine that! What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your book?

I think the thing that surprised me the most was that I could actually write something that people would enjoy. People tell me that they enjoyed reading my books, and I am always a little surprised and a lot pleased. I have gotten so much pleasure from reading that I am overjoyed that I can actually create a book that gives others that same pleasure.

Now the good giveaway details:

H. Terrell Griffin is giving away a signed copy of his book, Blood Island, to one lucky tour visitor today. Go to Terry’s book tour page,, and enter your name, e-mail address, and this PIN, 5811, for your chance to win. Entries from Allie's Musings will be accepted until 12:00 Noon (PT) tomorrow. No purchase is required to enter or to win. The winner (first name only) will be announced on Terry’s book tour page next week.

Thanks for stopping by today, and have a wonderful weekend!