Interview with thriller author Sam Berretti

Today’s
guest is thriller author Sam Berretti to talk a bit about himself, and his
novel, Double Mayhem – A Seekers Mystery.

Sam will be selecting and awarding an e-copy of his book to a lucky commenter on this post. The winner will be selected 1 week from today, on December 18. To be entered to win, leave a comment below and a way for Sam to get in touch.
Bio:
Sam
Berretti was born and raised in the High Plains city of Lubbock, Texas. After
finishing college at Texas Tech University he moved to Florida to attend
graduate school at the University of Florida and holds two Masters Degrees. He
is an avid naturalist and photographer as well as a writer. Although writing
started at an early age and took many forms, the first published book was Double Mayhem in 2012 (Createspace,
Kindle, and Smashwords).
Welcome, Sam. Please
tell us about Double Mayhem.
This
highly rated action thriller romance introduces Doris Watson as a unique
heroine. She is not a super spy, she is not a trained assassin, she is someone
real and much more lethal, a smart woman pushed into a corner. They say for
every person in the world there is a twin. 

For Doris Watson, that simple wisdom
becomes a nightmare reality that threatens her and the ones she’s come to love.
An ex-military engineer who leads a quiet life as an appliance designer, she is
recruited to perform one uncomplicated task: take a handoff of secret plans
from a Chinese agent who believes she is someone else. She accepts the
assignment and the only person she can blame is herself. She opened the door.
She said yes. Her lonely existence is shattered as headstrong men cross her
path. Dangerous men with dangerous needs. 

Suddenly embroiled in mob killings,
espionage, and police investigations, she has become a billion-dollar target of
sadistic crooks, the FBI, the NSA, and her psychotic look-alike. It is up to
her to protect herself and the mysterious psychic child who has been thrust
into her life. No one is who they appear to be. No one is telling the truth,
because the truth can make you dead. Forced to use all her training and wits,
she must find a way to survive. Forced to uncover the secrets of her childhood,
she must face a new reality. Some days you just shouldn’t answer the door. 
What inspired you to
write this book?
Having
been a fan of mystery and romance mystery books for years, I decided my next
serious effort would be in this genre. I believe strong women have played a
much more important role in history and business than we give them credit for,
having been obscured and unrecorded. Coming from a family of pioneer women, I
know what fortitude and grit are. I wanted a heroine that would be unique, so I
created a talented but rather normal professional woman who gets unexpectedly
drawn into international intrigue. I wanted to write a book that was
entertaining and offered a variety of characters to use for future
installments. I was encouraged to finish it by a small group of aspiring
writers, friends and family, and to them I owe a great debt.    
Excerpt:
Chapter 1
A
frail shadow of a woman sat huddled and trembling in a worn leather chair in
Chicago. Tracked-in snow melted on the dull carpet from the heavy shoes of two
intruders. Dressed in dark overcoats they loomed over her like dark mountains.
There would be no good ending to this. She knew that. She wasn’t going to tell
them what they wanted. She wouldn’t.
        “Where is she? Just tell us and we’re
outta here,” the shorter mountain lied. “We ain’t gonna hurt nobody. We just
want to talk to her, sweetheart.” This loser is not going to cooperate.
She’s dead. She just doesn’t know it yet. But she’ll talk before she dies
.
He liked it when they didn’t cooperate. He was good at getting people to talk.
That’s why they’d sent him. He enjoyed his job.
        Outside a freezing wind dumped snow on
grey buildings and people went about their own lives unaware. But no action
goes without consequence, and no consequence goes without causing yet more
actions. Some are seen and felt, some are invisible, and some reach thousands
of miles and touch the lives of the unsuspecting.
*****
        Tick, tock. Doris Watson stared into the
mirror on the bathroom wall of her Maryland apartment and smiled ruefully. A
blind date. She shook her head. She was twenty-seven years old this week, and
going on a blind date. Was there something wrong with this picture? She was a
strong willed woman and a successful professional engineer, but her only
significant other was Bucky the cat. A woman approaching thirty was expected to
be seriously searching for that special someone to spend her life with. So the
office chatter said, so her dear pushy aunt said. Time to get on the stick.
Clock’s ticking.  She leaned forward over
the sink and scanned the face before her with critical hazel eyes. She hated
all of this. Her philosophy was, if it was meant to be, by God, it would
happen. Mr. Right would kick her door down and demand her hand. She smiled at
herself. What a joke. She felt ill at ease dating. That was the truth. The
rituals, the expectations, the disappointments, all gave her a headache and
drove her nuts.  She was a person who
liked the comfort of her simple life. Go to work, design some amazing device,
come home, feed the cat and read a book. Good enough. Simple. Not good enough
for co-worker Betty though. She could kill Betty for setting her up with this
guy, a professor at the university who was probably a 10 on the nerd scale.
Trapped, obligated and coerced into a blind date. Happy birthday Doris!  The doorbell rang.
        Doris was a complex woman with a
distrust of men. Her personal experiences had not always been on the sunny
side. In fact, some had been on the “Satan’s got you by the throat” side. She
capped her lipstick and slipped it into her purse, right next to her 32 caliber
Guardian. Mace just wasn’t good enough for her anymore. She looked in the
mirror one last time and tried pasting an expansive smile on her face before
answering the door. Tick, tock.


What exciting story
are you working on next?
My
second book, which will be out the beginning of 2014, is about an Assistant
State Attorney in a small southern town faced with criminals that are taking
her involvement in their cases very personally. With a cast of wide ranging
characters, this is the first of a new series which will be funnier and less
edgy than the Seekers Mysteries and more along the lines of the Stephanie Plum
series. The next Seekers Mystery is in the planning stage.  
When did you first
consider yourself a writer?
My
first publication was a short technical piece about butterflies when I was in
high school. This inauspicious beginning whetted my appetite for writing and my
imagination brought me eventually to fiction. With the publication of Double Mayhem, I felt I had finally
really claimed the honor of being a writer.  
Do you write
full-time? If so, what’s your work day like? If not, what do you do other than
write and how do you find time to write?
Most
of my writing occurs in the morning, or late at night. Since I am a nature photographer,
graphic artist, husband and parent, my time is often fractured. I try to keep a
fairly rigid schedule, but family responsibilities and other interests draw me
away at times.
What would you say is
your interesting writing quirk?
I
almost always write with music playing — often things like classical,
soundscapes or light jazz. Music with lyrics tends to distract me as I create
dialogue.  
As a child, what did
you want to be when you grew up?
I
was always an artist, reader and writer. Creative to a fault, I think I always
saw myself writing.
Somehow,
life got in the way. Now I have come full circle to my very earliest
aspirations. My inner child is back at play.
Anything additional
you want to share with the readers?
I
love writing. I love the shear enjoyment of creating my own worlds of
characters and plots. It’s like do-it-yourself reading. Instead of following
along with what someone else wrote, you make up your own as you go. And then
you share it.
Social links:
Buy links:
  

Thanks, Sam!

Readers, don’t forget to leave a comment and a way for Sam to get in touch with you if you’re the winner of his random drawing on Dec 18. 

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