Interview with mystery writer Sallie Moppert

Mystery novelist Sallie Moppert joins me
today. We’re chatting about her new novel, Good Cop Bad Cop.

During her virtual book tour, Sallie
will be awarding a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift cart
to a lucky randomly drawn winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the
form below.
To increase your chances, feel free to visit
her other tour stops
and enter there, too!
Bio:
A New
York native, Sallie has a Master’s degree in Criminal Justice, with a
Specialization in Forensic Science. A lifelong mystery fan, she has combined
her love and passion for writing with her interests in criminal justice, law,
and forensic science.
Sallie
currently resides in New York with her family and her “zoo,” which includes two
dogs, two guinea pigs, a betta fish and a leopard gecko. She works as a
freelance writer/editor and a legal assistant.
Welcome, Sallie. Please
share a little bit about your current release.
Good Cop Bad Cop is a
series of short stories, each with its own mystery, that follows the life of
Samuel Marlowe from his first days as a cop to his rise to become the top
detective in the department and the pressures he faces to uphold the law or to
take matters of justice into his own hands. Sam learns that justice isn’t
always black and white and has to decide whether to use his position as the
lead detective at the department to stay on the straight and narrow as a good
cop or venture off as a bad cop. Of course, the road he takes for either path
is full of obstacles and challenges-such as the shooting death of his mentor,
breaking up a kidnapping and prostitution ring across the country, or having
his high school reunion held up by a former bully out for revenge-along the
way, enough to make him reconsider his choices before he is too far down a dark
path with no return (dun-dun-dun!).
What inspired you to
write this book?
The first story from Good
Cop Bad Cop
, also named Good Cop Bad Cop, I started writing was for a
contest and I instantly fell in love with Sam. He wasn’t your typical good guy
cop but, at the same time, he still was a good guy and an even better
cop. His dialogue was also very entertaining to write, as he is sarcastic and
doesn’t hold back; Sam says what needs to be said in order to get the culprit.
After I wrote Sam for the first time, I knew I wanted to include him in more
works, so I composed two additional stories featuring Sam and his partner,
Dahlia. I ended up writing the middle story in the collection, The Gray Area,
second, and the first story in the collection, Second Chances, third. The next
task for me was to figure out how the Sam in Second Chances ended up as the Sam
at the end of the book in Good Cop Bad Cop and that was a challenge but a lot
of fun.
Here
is an excerpt from Fight or Flight:
            Stephen Rochecort did his best to swallow, a task made
far more difficult on account of his desert-dry mouth. He’d just started a job
at Odette Penitentiary, located in Colorado. If Stephen was honest with
himself, he was completely and utterly terrified of being around so many
dangerous and violent criminals.
            “They’re like animals,” Warden Chandler had said at roll
call that morning. “They can sense your fear.”
            Yeah, that nugget of wisdom was going to make him feel
better. Instead, it only served to make him feel even more anxious and want to
reconsider his life choices. Hell, a six figure salary wouldn’t be enough for
his shit.
            Stephen let out a breath and straightened his posture in
an attempt to portray an air of confidence before entering the cell block. The
instant he stepped into Cell Block C, the row of jail cells transformed into a
zoo, as the caged prisoners began hooting and hollering in an attempt to rattle
the rookie guard.
            “Hey there, cutie!” one prisoner shouted. “Damn, you got
a tight ass!”
            Stephen shuddered. He never knew innocent phrases like
that could sound so menacing.
            “Yo guard,” a cue ball prisoner with various gang tattoos
and an unpleasant beckoned Stephen over with his finger. “Hey, you! Come here.”
            Stephen ignored him, not wanting to instigate any further
bad behavior, instead locking his eyes on the door at the other end of the
hall. The cue ball, however, did not appreciate being slighted. He banged violently
on his cell door and unleashed a litany of profanity.
            Stephen tugged at the collar of his uniform, beads of
sweat popping up on his forehead and at the nape of his neck. “When did it get
so hot in here?” Stephen mumbled to himself. “I can see the door at the end of
the hall. If I can reach the door, I can get the hell away from these guys. I
can make it. I can make it.”
            He picked up the pace, fumbling around in his pockets for
his keys. Stephen managed to locate his keys and gripped the one for the door
tightly, figuring he’d probably have a permanent indentation in his palm in the
shape of the key from the death grip he had on it. But that didn’t matter; the
door was in sight.
            The keys in his hand jingled against each other as
Stephen brought them up to the door with a shaking hand. As he did, a loud
buzzer sounded and the cell doors slammed open with a clang.
            “All prisoners report to C Yard for exercise,” a guard
commanded over the PA system.
            Stephen slunk into a corner to avoid the Cue Ball, but
the prisoner had other ideas.
            “Hey, when I tell you to come, you come,” he growled,
shoving Stephen. “You may have the badge, but I rule this place.”
            “Knock it off Dantes!” one of Stephen’s coworkers,
Clinton, yelled.
            The other guard hurried over to Stephen and got between
Dantes and him.
            “Don’t mind him,” Clinton said. “Dantes has been kind of
cranky ever since he found out that the Warden broke up his little gang,
putting his little friends in different Cell Blocks and transferring some to
other prisons. Now he has no one to boss around; poor baby!”
            Stephen glanced back over his shoulder, his fingers and
toes tingling as he took a look at the prisoner; Dantes didn’t appear to be too
pleased with the guard’s comments.
            “Ay!” the prisoner grabbed the guard’s shoulder and spun
him around. “Us prisoners run this bitch, not you screws!”
            “Back off, Dantes,” Clinton said, throwing the prisoner’s
hand off his shoulder. “I’m warning you.”
            “Warning me?” Dantes got in Clinton’s face. “Oh yeah?
Whaddya gonna do?”
            Clinton’s hand hovered over the can of pepper spray in
his utility belt as Dantes towered over him. Stephen rushed forward to assist
his coworker but, by this time, Dantes’ fellow prisoners had gathered behind
their leader as backup and stopped him in his tracks. One of the other
prisoners seemed to notice Clinton’s hand hovering over the pepper spray and
decided to strike first. He put Clinton in a headlock from behind while some of
the other prisoners held Stephen back.
            A sinister grin appeared on Dantes’ lips. Stephen heard
about him during training; the undisputed leader of C Block, Dantes’ word was
law.
            “It’s time these guards see what it’s like on the other
side of the bars!”
            Dantes’ declaration was followed by a chorus of cheers,
hooting and hollering. Stephen closed his eyes as he wished he had reconsidered
his life choices while chants of “riot” echoed throughout the cell block. 
What exciting story are
you working on next?
I have several more
stories with Sam planned out or already written that include his various
partners throughout the book, Edwin, Peter and Dahlia. They have a lot of fun
crimes to solve, including more murders, rape, stalking and so much more (okay,
not fun for those involved but fun for us to solve!).
When did you first
consider yourself a writer?
I think there’s probably
two instances in which I truly began to think of myself as a writer. I had my
first short story published at 18 years old in a local young writer’s
anthology. That was the first piece of fiction that I had published and it was
a wonderful moment. My English teacher, who was the person who had announced
that the anthology was accepting applicants, was thrilled when I showed her the
acceptance letter and posted it on the chalkboard to celebrate my success. The
second instance was when I was accepted for a position as a freelance writer
for a local newspaper. It was a great learning experience to be able to use my
skills on a daily basis and it also presented me with the opportunity of being
able to introduce myself as 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?
I would love to be able
to write full time, but my bills and expenses say otherwise! Plus, I have to
take care of my family’s “zoo” (two dogs, two guinea pigs, a leopard gecko, two
dwarf hamsters, two betta fish and an aquarium with corydora catfish) somehow
🙂 I work at a law office during the day. I don’t really have a set writing
schedule. I may sometimes write or read during my lunch breaks or I might have
my notebook out while my sister and I play some video games at night and I’ll
get some paragraphs in while it’s her turn. I make sure to carry a notebook or
pad of paper around with me most of the time because you never know when you’re
going to be hit with a good idea or quote. My favorite time to write is when I
have time off or on weekends during the summer. I love to grab a blanket,
notebook and my radio and just spend the day outside writing (if I can get to
my blanket, that is; my dogs like to commandeer my blanket if I get up to go
grab a water bottle or something because they’re spoiled puppers and I love
them).  
What would you say is
your interesting writing quirk?
One quirk that I have is
that I include a lot of little references to things I like or are important to
me. For example, the colors of the high school that Sam and Nina attend in GCBC
are blue and gold, which just so happen to be the colors of my favorite sports
team. The restaurant where the beginning of Victims of Circumstance takes
place, Quincy’s, is named after my dog, Quincy. 
As a child, what did you
want to be when you grew up?
I remember deciding I
wanted to become an author at about age 13. That was when I started writing my
first mystery novel. After I started writing that first novel, I’ve never
looked back 🙂
Anything additional you
want to share with the readers?
I am a HUGE animal
lover. Between the two of us, my sister and I have quite the “zoo” going –
including two dogs, two guinea pigs, two dwarf hamsters, a leopard gecko, two
betta fish, and an aquarium with corydora catfish. I also love sports, video
games and arts and crafts, I have a black belt in Tae Kwon Do and I’m working
toward my black belt in karate; I’m all over the place with my interests 🙂
Links:
Thanks
for stopping by today, Sallie!

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8 thoughts on “Interview with mystery writer Sallie Moppert

  1. James Robert says:

    My family and I all appreciate you bringing to our attention the book description of another great book to read. Thanks so much!

  2. Sallie Moppert says:

    –How many days a week do you spend writing?
    I don't have a specific number of days that I dedicate to writing. I carry a notebook with me at all times so I can try to get a few words in either if I have a free moment or inspiration just strikes me.

    –If you could spend one day with one of your characters who would it be, and what would you do?
    Interesting question! I would have to say Sam. I feel like it would be fun to do a ride along with him and watch him out in the field investigating crimes. I would also just enjoy hanging out with him, grabbing a pizza or something. My sense of humor bled through into Sam's mannerisms and personality, so I feel like we would have fun goofing around.

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