Have you ever wanted to run away to a tropical island? I’ve thought about it on occasion. After reading Saving Grace by Pamela Fagan Hutchins, I was ready to jump on a plane! Pamela is going to share a bit about her writing life. This piece had me laughing (and nodding!). I hope you find it as entertaining as I did.
Before we get to that, let’s meet the woman behind the words:
She is known for “having it all” which really means she has a little too much of everything, but loves it: writer, mediocre endurance athlete (triathlon, marathons), wife, mom of an ADHD & Asperger’s son, five kids/step-kids, business owner, recovering employment attorney and human resources executive, investigator, consultant, and musician.
Pamela lives with her husband Eric and two high school-aged kids, plus 200 pounds of pets in Houston. Their hearts are still in St. Croix, USVI, along with those of their three oldest offspring.
Connect with Pamela in the following places:
*** Katie Connell is a high-strung attorney whose sloppy drinking habits and stunted love life collide hilariously in a doomed celebrity case in Dallas. When she flees Texas for the Caribbean, Katie escapes professional humiliation, a broken heart, and a wicked Bloody Mary habit, but she trades one set of problems for another when she begins to investigate the suspicious deaths of her parents on the island of St. Marcos. She’s bewitched by the voodoo spirit of an abandoned house in the rainforest and discovers that she’s as much a danger to herself as the island’s bad guys are. As the worst of her worlds collide, Katie drags herself back to the courthouse to defend her new friend Ava, an island local accused of stabbing the senator she’s been sleeping with.
***Here is Pamela to share a glimpse into her writing life:
A Day in the Life
Many writers will tell you about their writing “practice,” and the regular schedule they keep to stay on track with their novels. Schedule? Not me. Regular? Only if I eat prunes. On track? That’s what all-nighters are for. Don’t get me wrong. I write every day, a lot, but never on what I’m supposed to. Woopsie.
I am my editor’s worst nightmare. I am the writer that decides to tackle a complete rewrite 30 days before a novel is due. Meghan cringes when I post on Facebook that I wrote 10,000 words — roughly 40 pages — in one day.
My phone rings. “Take your time,” she says, in a tremulous whisper. What she’s thinking, though, is “Holy hell, that woman is going to dump a steaming pile of poo on me in 27 days, and it’s my job to dig through it.”
“No problem,” I say, from the comfort of my pink-flannel sleepy sheep pajamas and unmatched fuzzy socks. In Houston in April. I won’t budge on the outfit even if it means I have to crank on the air conditioner.
I am an embarrassment to my children. “Mom, can you like take a shower so I can have friends over after school?” my 17-year old son asks. “You’re getting kind of ripe.”
“Huh?” I reply, without looking up from the keys. I type, “She was defiantly beautiful and strong, soaring over a sea of green treetops, and behind her, the ocean, which looked like the sky. A view of the world turned upside down. I shivered.”
I am a lead cross strapped to my husband’s back.
“Do you need me to cook dinner, honey?” (“Again,” implied)
Can the man not see I’m working here? I wave my hand over my head, and he approaches to plant a kiss on the top of it, wary, ready to flee if things aren’t going well on the island of St. Marcos for my protagonist Katie.
Days pass into nights and too-bright next mornings. I pound Monsters and coffee. My hands shake. My heart races. The calendar flips and flips and flips. I lose track of days. I cancel coffees and lunches and hair appointments. I ice my swollen hands and pop ibuprofen, then toss the ice aside because it keeps me from typing. I am, ahem, driven. A new character has hijacked part of my book, a basketball-playing Vanilla Ice. I have to rein him in. I’m obsessed, possessed. Out of freaking control.
Until, one day, a day I can’t identify by name or number, I feel the rightness of the words slipping into place, and know that it is good.
“I’m done,” I announce.
“Done done, or just at the end?” My husband knows this difference is critical.
“Done done. It’s called Saving Grace.”
“Thank God,” he says. “Thank God.” The siege is over. He throws open the curtains. Dust swirls in the sun of a peaceful May afternoon. Flowers nod in the beds outside my window, welcoming me back to the real world.
I head for the shower. My lips are moving, but now it’s a grocery list I’m writing. My husband follows me, his entire body exhaling. Life is good again.
At least for now. But we will live it up while we can. The next book isn’t due for another six whole months.
Pamela Fagan Hutchins writes mysterious women’s fiction and relationship humor, and holds nothing back. Get swept away with her new release, Saving Grace, to fall in love with a rainforest jumbie house and a main character who is as much a danger to herself as the island bad guys.
I can honestly tell you Pamela’s swollen hands and manic days paid off with a fantastic story that held me captivated!
I hope you’ll take the time to connect with Pamela and explore her fictional world. We might need to take up a collection to buy her new ice packs. I’m sure she’ll need them as she writes the next book in the series!
Thanks for reading.
Tags: A Day in the Life of an Author, A Writer's Life, author interviews, Caribbean Life, Humorous Fiction, Mystery Authors, Novels Set In Caribbean, Pamela Fagan Hutchins, Pamela Hutchins, Saving Grace, Texan Authors