Saturday, March 7, 2015

INTERVIEW WITH MARTA PERRY



A lifetime spent in rural Pennsylvania and her own Pennsylvania Dutch heritage led Marta to write about the Plain People who add so much richness to the heritage of her home state. Marta has seen over fifty of her books published, and is currently at work on number fifty-seven. She and her husband live in a centuries-old farmhouse on twenty-five acres in a central Pennsylvania valley. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, sewing, gardening, baking, or enjoying her six beautiful grandchildren.






 

INTERVIEW WITH MARTA PERRY

SS: Tell us a little about yourself. 

Hello, and thanks so much for inviting me to participate on The Suspense Sisters site. I’ve been writing for more years than I care to count (!) and have over fifty books in print. I also wrote short stories when there was still a market for magazine fiction, with over three hundred short stories and articles published. I’m currently concentrating on the Amish books I write for Berkley Books, and the romantic suspense novels I write for HQN, as well as doing an occasional project for Love Inspired. My husband and I live in an old farmhouse on twenty-five acres of land in central Pennsylvania, but we flee the winters to our vacation home in South Carolina. When I’m not writing, I love to spend time with my six terrific grandkids, as well as gardening, reading, and sewing.

SS: When did you realize you wanted to be an author?

I read my first Nancy Drew mystery, The Secret in the Old Clock, when I was eight. Most young girls reach the end of the book and want to be Nancy. I reached the end and realized that the stories I loved were written by a real person, and maybe someday I could create stories like that.

SS: What are some of the challenges you face as a writer? Are there aspects of your life that are hard for family and friends to understand? What are they?

My writing life is much simpler now that my children are grown and out of the house. My husband has always been very supportive of my writing, and the flexibility of a writing career means that I can work anywhere—including on planes, in cars, and on cruise ships. It’s a far cry from the days when I’d close my office door and warn the kids not to disturb me unless there was blood or fire!

SS: What genre do you write and why? Are there other genres you’ve written or would like to try?


My books have always been either inspirational romance or suspense with a strong romantic story. I’m dipping a toe into the world of historical fiction with my current series from Berkley, Keepers of the Promise. Each book in the series has two storylines—one set in the present and one in the past. In the first book, The Forgiven, a present-day Amish widow gains courage to face the future through the story of a young Amish woman facing prejudice and heartache during World War II.

SS: How do you create characters? Are they based on people you know? 


My characters are always made up, although they may sometimes have traits or mannerisms of people I know or have seen. I always seem to begin the story process with a heroine faced with a seemingly insurmountable problem, and I start writing in my notebook about who she is and what drives her. No one looking at those scribbled notes would imagine they’d eventually turn into a book!


 SS: Tell us about your current release.
 

My current release is WHERE SECRETS SLEEP, Book One in my Secrets series from HQN books. It’s the kind of romantic suspense I love, with an ordinary person thrown into an extraordinary situation and fighting to survive. While finding love along the way, of course!
 

SS: Where did you get the idea for this book?

The idea for this book, in fact, for the whole series, came when my husband and I were doing one of our favorite things—saying at a bed and breakfast inn. The moment I saw the Victorian Italianate mansion that is The Towers Bed and Breakfast, I knew I had to write about it. Everything about the lovingly-restored interior spoke to me of secrets, and before we left, I had begun to sketch out a slightly larger version of the mansion which could be turned into housing for an Amish quilt shop and several other businesses, and around which dangerous secrets could threaten my characters.

SS: Tell us about your main character.

My main character, Allison, comes to a small town in an Amish area of Pennsylvania fleeing a terrible betrayal. Her primary purpose is to settle the estate of her estranged grandmother, but she soon discovers that won’t be as easy as she thinks. Instead of selling the property and going to a different city to start a new life, she finds she has to solve the secrets surrounding her grandmother’s death as well as come to terms with her own past before she can ever be free.

SS: Is there a spiritual message in your book? If so, what is it?

The spirit message, although not overt in the story, is one that I continue learning again and again myself—that God allows trials to force us to become the people He wants us to be, learning from the past without either running from it or using it as an excuse.

SS: What are you working on now?

Right now I’m doing the revisions to the next book in this series, WHEN SECRETS STRIKE, which will be out in October, as well as writing the third book in my Keepers of the Promise series from Berkley: THE REBEL.

SS: Tell us three things about yourself that would surprise your readers.
 

I’m a Dr. Who fan. My favorite books are classic British mysteries. I’m a weather geek, constantly following the weather channel!

SS: Anything special you eat or drink while you’re writing?
 

I don’t get through a writing stint without a cup of my favorite Double Bergamot Earl Grey tea, which caused a crisis when my local grocery store stopped carrying it. Amazon came to the rescue!

SS: Where can readers find you on the Internet?

Please visit my website at http://www.martaperry.com. Or see me on Facebook at Marta Perry books.

SS: Anything else you’d like to share with us?

If readers email me at marta@martaperry.com, I’ll be happy to respond with a signed bookmark and my brochure of Pennsylvania Dutch recipes. 







Marta is giving away a copy of her book, WHERE SECRETS SLEEP. For your chance to win, please leave a comment, along with your contact information. U.S. only, please.




37 comments:

  1. I would love to read this. Love Marty's books. TY for the chance.

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  2. It is always a pleasure to be introduced to authors whose books I would be excited to read and tell others about, so thank you for the willingness to participate in Suspense Sisters and a book give away!
    Janice
    pjrcmoore@windstream.net

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  3. Where Secrets Sleep sounds like a really good book. I'm looking forward to reading it. thank you for offering a copy.
    may_dayzee(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  4. Looking forward to reading this one! Thanks, Kristie Porter tklove nest {at} aol {.} com

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  5. Would love to read this.
    Sandy

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  6. I love Marta Perry's books!!! I would love to read her new book.

    strgth4yu(at)Hotmail(dot)com

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  7. I would love to read Allison's story and see how she deals with the secrets and oh the suspense for a reader! I love that Marta shares a love of Nancy Drew such as I did as a young girl reading too!
    marypopmom (at) yahoo (dot) com
    Maryann

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  8. Have enjoyed Marta Perry books for a long time. Would like to win a book.
    Charlyn515@gmail.com

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  9. I enjoyed this great interview and am intrigued by WHERE SECRETS SLEEP. It sounds like a story I would really enjoy! Thank you so much for sharing this interview and giveaway.

    texaggs2000 at gmail dot com

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  10. I just loved this interview with Marta Perry. Over 50 books! What a stellar career! It is also fascinating to read what compelled a writer to begin writing. Thanks for keeping us connected!

    KellysShining(at)gmail(dot)com

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  11. Thanks for having Marta over for a interview and this book sounds like a real "I need this book". I would like to win it. Thanks for a chance to do so. GOD less.
    Maxie > mac262(at)me(dot)com <

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  12. I love Martas books. Love the cover on this book.. lends an air mystery

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  13. Sounds intriguing! I have enjoyed other books by Marta Perry and look forward to reading this one. steveandellengray(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  14. I have never read one of Marta Perry's books would love to win this book and try out her books!
    karen_white_81@yahoo.com

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  15. Looks like a great book! Thank you for the chance to win it :-)

    teamob4 (at) gmail (dot) com

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  16. I enjoyed meeting Marta today. A new author to me. Thank you for gifting a copy. I'd love to read this..
    dkstevensneAToutlookvD OtCo M

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  17. I love Marts Perry (though I have only read one of her books). 😃 It was excellent.

    Stephanie C.
    grumpysmurf817(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  18. This looks great and the cover is beautiful! Thanks for this opportunity! Katie Edgar katie07edgar(at)gmail(dot)com

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  19. Marta's books are all so good, I am sure this will be great! Love them all. sonja dot nishimoto at gmail dot com

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  20. Would love to win!! The cover is eye catching!! Redcat1999@live.com

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  21. Sounds interesting! butterflii410 at yahoo dot com

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  22. Sounds intriguing. Thanks for the interview and giveaway.

    mo1202007@yahoo.com

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  23. Would love to win this book.
    Karen
    oakmkb@aol.com

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  24. This books sounds so good :)
    Lori P
    jlipayer(at)charter(dot)net

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  25. I can't wait to read this! I am a fan of all of Marta's books! mzieli01@yahoo.com

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  26. Marta sounds like such an interesting lady...thank you for a great interview and thank you for a great giveaway!

    mauback55 at gmail dot com

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  27. Sounds like a great book and a great series! I would love to win a copy! rmaney(at)firstarpchurch(dot)org.

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  28. I love mystery/suspense and I enjoyed getting to know Marta through this interview. Thanks for this giveaway.
    Blessings,
    Connie
    cps1950 at gmail dot com

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  29. This is a great interview. I love the sounds of this book series as well as finding out about the other series Marta is working on right now. Thanks for the chance to win a copy of her book.

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  30. I forgot my contact info: debbiewilder (at) comcast (dot) net

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  31. Sounds like another great book by Marta Perry. Would love to win and read this one. Thank you for the chance.
    kmgervais(at)nycap(dot)rr(dot)com

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  32. I used to love reading Nancy Drew (and my brother's Hardy Boys!). I really enjoy your books and would love to win this.
    cindy99@mac.com

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  33. I love Marta's books. I hope to win.
    Thereadmaster@me.com

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  34. I really love your books. Would love to get this one. ;)

    pmettert@yahoo.com

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  35. I'd love to read this one! I love her books!
    duellonlysis@aol.com

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  36. Would love to read Marta Perry's new book!
    mary-hart@att.net

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  37. Looking forward to reading this book. Marta's books are always satisfying when I read the last page.

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