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Monday, June 27, 2016

Character Interview with Jack Halliman

Welcome back. And CONGRATULATIONS to yesterday's drawing winner, Lori D! For all of you who haven't been drawn, not to worry. There are still 4 more opportunities to win. Don't forget, the contest starts anew each day, so head back to my website and send a message via the Contact page to enter every day.

The winner of Sunday's drawing is...

Now, on to today's interview,

Introducing Jack Halliman

Today we have the pleasure of chatting with the Jack Halliman, bestselling author of the Franz Henle mystery series. We first met Jack in Marina Melee because he lives on his boat-- the Holey Ship--at the marina of that story's title: Porto da Vida Marina, on the island of São Jorge. If you recall, in Ye Gods! A Tale of Dogs and Demons, Jack sailed to Puerto Rico looking for a cure to his writer's block. Instead, he found a dead body and became one of two suspects in a murder mystery. The other was the chupacabra. Despite his efforts to focus on writing his next novel and not get caught up in the investigation, he still ended up in the middle of it all. But, with a little "inspiration" from Señora Milagros, he did manage to finish the manuscript for his next novel, too.

LMH: Welcome, Jack. Let me say, for anyone who has followed you from those early days when we first met you, you do seem to be mellowing with age. You were a real grouch back in Marina Melee.

Jack: Oh, come on. I wasn't that bad, was I? Maybe a little bit disillusioned. My marriage had fallen apart and the ex took more than her fair share of everything, including my daughter's affection. I'm over all that now. Janelle and I have reconciled. Me paying for her big fat wedding to that no-good Charlie helped, I can tell you that. But, yes, back in those days I was angry. But I wasn't a total ass. Don't forget, I took LaQuisha under my wing and tutored her and mentored her with her marina newsletter idea. Did you know, she's still at it? Some other marinas have even copied the idea. I keep telling her she should get out of that dead-end job, get her degree and go into journalism. I even offered to pay for it. But, she's devoted to George, and now that she and Albie are an item, I don't think she'll ever move. Anyway, I guess maybe I was a bit grumpy back then. But...(shrug).

LMH: OK, I guess it's understandable that you were in a bad place back then. How about now. Let's talk about that novel, Murder in Mayagüez. It was a bit of a departure from your usual Franz Henle story. What did the critics think?

Jack (groan): Do we have to talk about it? That could put me right back into a bad place. Let's just say I've learned my lesson. From now on, I'll stick with my tried-and-true formula for success: Franz sails off to some idyllic island for some R-and-R only to get caught up in a murder investigation---of the non-magical, non-supernatural sort. My fans were not pleased.

LMH: Wow. I'm surprised it wasn't a huge hit. I mean, with your fabulous writing, and Señora Milagros providing the...shall we say "some magical oomph" on top? It should have been great. And really, can we be honest here? The typical vampire/supernatural book reader isn't all that discerning about the quality of the writing, right?

Jack: I'll give you that. But, my readers are. To be fair, the writing is some of my best and I can't fault Milagros for the story. It's a terrific story, but just nothing my fans expect. I guess Kiki had a point when she said my fans--like her dad--like their books to be formulaic and predictable. Anyway, can we change the subject?

LMH: OK. You first met Eddie back in Ye Gods! and since then, you've become great pals. Tell us about that.

Jack: Ed's a great guy. We have a lot in common, with my background in law enforcement and all, and our love of Inspector Clouseau and the Pink Panther series. I mean, how often do you meet someone who can rattle off those Peter Sellers lines like that? I was used to people looking at me like I was nuts when I'd throw one of those classic on-liners out, but Ed just picked up on it. He's just an all-around good guy. Rafi, too. They've come over to São Jorge a few times, and I've visited them in Puerto Rico. We even took a sailing trip to the BVI together--the two of them, and me and my agent, Gail Murphy-Majors. You remember her from Ye Gods!, right? She's a pretty memorable character.

LMH: Oooh, you and Gail? Is there something going on there we should know about?

Jack: It's complicated. You know, she's married to her job and the agency, lives in New York. And I'm down here in the islands, living this laid back life. Well, at least it's laid back when I'm not being manipulated by Milagros and trying to round up Kiki, Carmen, and the god.  Anyway, Gail and I, we complement each other, but if we were always together, we'd drive each other nuts. So, we're taking things slow and casual for now. But who knows? By the time the final book in the trilogy, Ye Goddess! A Tale of Girls and Gods, comes out maybe we'll have progressed to something a bit more defined?

LMH: We're out of time, Jack. It's been a pleasure talking with you. We'll be looking forward to seeing how things develop between you and Gail!
Thank you all for joining us. Now head on over to my website and send me a message on the Contact page to enter into today's drawing for a FREE BOOK!

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