Amy Metz’s debut novel, Murder & Mayhem in Goose Pimple Junction, was released in August of this year. I had the honor of meeting Amy online through the World Literary Cafe, and we soon discovered that we live in the same city! Amy graciously agreed to let me interview her for this blog. Here are some of her thoughts on her first book and on her life as an author.
1. How would you describe Murder & Mayhem in Goose Pimple Junction to someone who has not yet read it?
Murder & Mayhem In Goose Pimple Junction is a mystery with a little romance and a lot of humor. The mystery revolves around a seventy-five-year-old murder that my main character, Tess, attempts to solve. She’s new to the southern town, and as she gets to know its crazy residents, she meets Jackson, with whom she fights her attraction because she’s sworn off men. But he’s a mystery writer—who better to help her crack the case—and he’s persistent.
Goose Pimple Junction is mostly a friendly, warm, charming town, and its residents tend to have a lot to say, and a unique way of saying it. But there are a few people who are as cold as an IRS agent’s heart, and that’s where the mayhem comes in.
2. How much of the book is based on real life (either yours or someone you know)?
The entire 1930’s part of the book is based on real events in the lives of some of my ancestors. The real murder has never been solved.
3. How did you get the idea for the novel?
I’ve wanted to write this story ever since I was a little girl and heard my father tell the stories about what happened to his aunt, uncle, and grandmother. I’d go down to my grandparent’s basement and read the newspaper accounts of those times, and I knew the story should be told. It just took me a while to write it.
4. Which came first, the title or the novel?
Definitely the novel, or at least the idea of it, as I said in the previous question. When I started writing the book, I knew I wanted it to be set in a funky southern town, and I remembered visiting Goose Pimple Junction in 1985. I loved the name, and it stuck with me. It just fit perfectly with my vision of the town.
5. What scene or bit of dialogue in the book are you most proud of, and why?
I love the scene where Jack and Tess question a bad guy biker dude. He was so much fun to write, and I really enjoyed the dialogue in the scene.
6. Considering a book from the first word you write to the moment you see it on a bookstore shelf, what’s your favorite part of the process? What’s your least favorite?
My favorite part is writing the details and the characters layers, and seeing those layers mesh with the bare bones plot layer I wrote first. Making a scene come alive with dialogue and the characters’ personalities is what I consider to be writing the soul of the book, and I love it.
My least favorite part is the one hundred thousand fifty-second editing round. Well, maybe not that many. But I’m usually pretty cranky at the end of the editing process. By then I’ve read it so many times, but I still find things I want to rewrite. It seems never ending. That and the monotony of looking for nits for the umpteenth time—both of those things
drive me crazy.
7. What genre have you not yet written but really want to try?
I have about three chapters written of a thriller, and I really want to finish it. It’s going to call for a lot of police procedure and private investigator know-how, so it will be a challenge, but I want to do it.
8. What book are you reading right now?
I’m currently reading three, depending on where I am. Around the house and in the car I’m listening to Patricia Cornwall’s audio book, Unnatural Exposure. I take a Kindle when I go out in case I have to wait somewhere. Currently, I’m reading Life Minus 3 1/2 by Dennis Hart. And, at home, I’m working my way through John Sandford’s Prey series.
9. What’s up next for you?
I think the next thing to be published will be my photography coffee table book of a historic home in Louisville. I just finished the second book in the Goose Pimple Junction series, and it’s in the querying process now. I have three other books started—two more GPJs and the thriller.
10. Is there anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Just thank you for buying my book, and if you haven’t—why not? No, seriously, I am truly thrilled when someone reads my novel. I would love to hear reader comments, and by all means, if one or all of my characters become your imaginary friends, please let me know!
My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks also for reading this interview. If you’re reading this, chances are good you got through the whole thing. Thank you! And thank you to Mishael Austin Witty for hosting me.
>>And thank you, Amy Metz, for letting me host you, even though I missed your release date by a few months!
You can buy Amy’s book at Amazon by clicking on the picture below, or you can buy it from Barnes and Noble by clicking here.