Friday, October 20, 2017

SPOTLIGHT w/INTERVIEW - YA GHOST STORIES - Molly Greyson’s Ghost by Roberta Hoffer

Molly Greyson’s Ghost
by Roberta Hoffer
Date of Publication:  November 2016
Publisher:  Dragonfly Publishing, Inc.
Cover Artist:  Terri Branson
Genre:  Young Adult / Ghost Stories
Tagline: “Are there such things as ghosts?”
Sixteen-year-old Molly Greyson is a California girl.  At least she was, until her father got a job in Indiana.  Saying goodbye to friends and a life she loves, Molly moves to the Midwest with her parents. 

During the cross-country trip she encounters a carnival Gypsy fortune teller machine that issues mysterious warnings aimed directly at her. When the family arrives at the historical Kotter Estate, Molly chooses a peculiar round room as her bedroom.  Soon strange things begin to happen. 

What or who keeps appearing in her bedroom mirror?  Are there clues to be found in the musty basement?  Will her new boyfriend help her solve the mystery?  Can Molly Greyson learn to believe in ghosts?
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“Feeling brave I walked over to the third trunk.  It was much larger than the other two.  I flipped open the latch without any problem.  To my amazement, this trunk was filled with clothing.  I pulled out the first item.  It was an old animal skin stole of some sort.  It even had the head of the animal still attached.  I quickly tossed it to the floor, disgusted anyone would do that to an animal and have the nerve to wear it.  Then I found a beautiful purple satin dress.  The lace around the neckline was yellow and ragged.  When new, it must have been an elegant gown.
     I held up the gown in front of me and turned to Dillon.  “How do I look?”
     “Very nice,” he replied.  “It looks like it even might fit you.”
     He continued to sort through the photos.  Then he stopped and held one photo up to the light for a better view.
     “No, this must be a mistake,” he said with a puzzled look.
     “Let me see,” I said.
     I took the cracked and faded photo from his hand.  It was the girl with the curly blonde hair.  She was older and wearing the very same dress I was holding in my hands.
     Dillon took the photo from me and flipped it over.  His face turned white as chalk.  Then he held out the back for me to see.
     “Molly Greyson,” I read aloud.
     The room began to spin.
     I dropped the dress to the floor and fell to my knees.
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Author Info

Roberta Hoffer is a retired preschool teacher from a small town in Indiana.  She has been married to her high school sweetheart, Kevin, for forty-eight years.  They raised two children, Amy and Andrew, and have one grandson, Christian. 

Roberta loves animals and is an advocate for animal rights.  She owns two Yorkshire Terriers, Minnie and Buddy, both rescues.  When not writing she enjoys doing family outings such as paddle boarding, zip lining, climbing mountains, and exercise walking.  Her ultimate passion has always been writing books for children that will give back the joy they gave her when teaching.  To date she has published three adult fiction novels.  She also has a children’s chapter book series, “The Stonebridge Ghost Tales,” consisting of three books for the 8-14 age group, two picture books for the 3-6 age group which includes a coloring book edition, and two Young Adult mystery novels. 

Her first children’s chapter book, “The Ghost of Stonebridge Lane”, won The 2014 National Purple Dragonfly Award for first place in children’s literacy for children’s chapter books.  “The Ghost of the Frozen North”, Book two in the series, won The 2015 National Purple Dragonfly Award for second place in children’s literacy for children’s chapter books.  The three book series, “The Stonebridge Ghost Tales” was the silver medal winner of the Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards for 2015 for Best Children’s Chapter Book Series.

Ms. Hoffer explains her writing in these words:   “I am blessed to be able to write books that I can be proud of and know they can be read by any one regardless of age while conveying Christian values.”   Her personal advice to everyone is to treat people the way you would like to be treated and to always put God first in your life.

The Book Junkie Reads . . .  Interview with Roberta Hoffer . . .

How would you describe your style of writing to someone that has never read your work?  That’s easy.  I write as if I see the story unfolding on a movie screen in front of me.  As I describe the scenes I try to picture it in my head then put what I envision into words so that it will help the readers see what I see.  My ultimate goals are to have some of my books made into a movie.  Then I’ll see if they really see what I envision!

What are some of your writing/publishing goals for this year?  Over the last seven years I have published twelve books.  That’s almost two books per year.  So I have taken 2017 off from trying to publish a new book and decided to promote the  books  I already have published.  That’s not to say I don’t intend to write another book.  I currently have three books started. 

Do you feel that writing is an ingrained process or just something that flows naturally for you?   I have written poetry or short stories since about the seventh grade. I used to write love poems to my husband in high school before we were married.  I’ve been married for 48 years.  Maybe some of that silly stuff I wrote finally came true!   I don’t feel my writing is “ingrained.” I don’t come from a family of writers.   I feel more like it flows naturally, especially when I begin with one idea and the story line flows as each chapter unfolds.  Sometimes I use an outline and most often I begin with an idea and it grows into a story as I write. 

Do you have a character that you have been working on for a long time that still isn't quite ready, but fills you with excitement to work on the story?  In several of my books I have used family members, family pets, and acquaintances.  Some of my not so likable characters have come from characteristics that some of my less favorite acquaintances display.  I have used my grandson, Christian, as the main character in several of my books.  And yes, I am currently assembling the bones of a new heroine who will be the protagonist in my adult novel.  But, Molly Greyson has been my favorite character thus far for the Young Adult level and Sarah and Carter have quite a love affair in the Silent Vampire trilogy.

If you could spend one-week with 5 fictional character, who would they be?  It’s hard to come up with five as I love so many characters while I am reading then move on to another.   First, Louis, from Anne Rice’s Vampire series, (because I love vampire types) Professor Snape from the Harry Potter books, (because I like the idea of being able to use magic), Mr. Spock from the Star Trek series, (because I like his logic), Carter from my Silent Vampire Trilogy (because I created him as near to perfect as inhumanly possible), and Joe Darrow from the Kevin Costner movie, Dragonfly (because he is so full of love and determination to preserve his wife’s memory).  I’ll add that there are many more but these are just the few that came to mind.  And yes, most are of the fantasy, paranormal genre!

Where would you spend one full year, if you could go ANYWhere? What would you do with this time?  That’s a hard one.  I’m torn between the Caribbean Ocean islands and the mountains of Colorado.  Then there’s also the beauty of the Alaskan wilderness.  Maybe I’d split my time; six months in the Caribbean and six months in Colorado.  The six months in Colorado would have to be during the winter with all the wonderful powdery snow.  The other half of the time I would spend on an island laid back planning my next book sipping exotic drinks.  Of course, wherever I chose to be for that length of time I would need my family and two Yorkies with me or it wouldn’t be as enjoyable or even possible for me.

Can you share you next creative project(s)? If yes, can you give a few details?  Like I said earlier, even though I do not have a book ready for publication for 2017 due to the fact I have turned my focus on promoting the books I have already published, I do have other projects in the works.  I am currently working on a sequel to The Stonebridge Ghost Tales, my children’s chapter book series for ‘tweens.  Then there’s a Young Adult book I have started that deals with the paranormal and cats.  My third book that’s sitting at chapter four right now is an adult romance novel that is set during WWII.    I began my career with my Silent Vampire Trilogy, an adult vampire series.  I’m excited to go back to adult novels but you can rest assured that there is no erotica in my future; plain and simple romance.  My love has always been to write for no matter what age level.  The variety I cover keeps my life interesting and fresh.  I don’t ever worry about getting burned out on one single genre.   I’ll always have another direction to go that will keep it real for me and hopefully, for my readers as well!
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