Paperback Writer welcomes Frank Scully author of Resurrection Garden, a mystery novel, which is the first of five books that Frank has under contract with Muse It Up Publishing. This is his first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book.
About Resurrection Garden
Jake Turner, a scarred veteran of the charge up San Juan Hill, has been a lone drifter through much of the settling of the west. Opportunity was growing out of the newly turned sod of the North Dakota prairie in 1904 when he stopped to take a part time job as a Deputy Sheriff, expecting to move on again when the dark parts of his past catch up to him.
An investigation into a murder of a man hated by everyone has threads that lead to his best friend, Isaac. Jake is ambushed and almost killed, but is nursed back to health by Isaac. While Jake follows the clues into a labyrinth of hatred, sordid crimes and missing money he becomes attached to an eight year old orphaned boy named Andy and falls in love with Isaac’s sister, Alice. After being alone for so long with no hope or care for what tomorrow might bring, Jake finds it difficult to accept these new emotional attachments.
Jake believes in Justice, but before he had only his own life on the line. When Andy is kidnapped and almost killed, Jake knows the killers will do anything to stop him. In order to protect Alice and Andy, he must break their hearts and leave them and North Dakota behind.
Jake knows he’ll be back. So do the killers. Trap and counter trap are laid. Jake knows there will be graves. He just doesn’t know who will be in them.
Read the Excerpt!
The sheriff joined me in my contemplation of the body. It wasn’t pretty. Thor had never been handsome and the ravages of being frozen under the snow for the winter and having birds and other animals picking away at the skin as the snow thawed and exposed the body made what was left of him downright disgusting.
One thing was evident though. He hadn’t died easy. Freezing to death is relatively painless. Wander out in the cold, get lost, fall asleep and don’t wake up. That wasn’t what happened to Thor.
“What do you think? Shotgun, maybe?” the sheriff opined.
“At least,” I answered. The hole in his chest was big enough to put a fist through. “But why? He musta been dead already when he was shot.”
“Yeah, first someone beat him to a bloody pulp, then gutted him and slashed his throat. And then shot him. Ain’t that what you said, Doc.”
“Looks that way to me,” Doc answered. “Can’t tell you much more until he thaws out all the way.”
“Somebody wanted him deader than dead,” the sheriff shook his head.
“Takes some hate to do all that,” Doc commented. “Got any suspects?”
Doc and the sheriff both turned to face me.
I let out a deep sigh. “I suppose you want me to find out what happened to him.”
Interview with Frank Scully
Thanks for visiting today.
It’s my pleasure, thanks for having me during my book tour. What can I answer for you?
Q: Do you work from an outline?
No, I do not. I start out with a theme and a plot summary. Then I develop my main characters with back story and have a general idea of the arc of the story before I start writing. The first chapter is the most important and often the most difficult to write. An author must hook the reader quickly and that requires something in the first few sentences and paragraphs that will keep them reading and get them interested in the story and the characters. Once I get a draft of the first chapter that I like, the story starts to flow. For me, it is like a movie running in my head, and my job is to get it down. The characters come alive and the story takes on a life of its own and sometimes they go in much different directions than the original plot summary that I started with.
Q: Who is your favorite author?
It would be difficult for me to pin down a single favorite author. One of the authors that got me started loving mysteries was Rex Stout. I still love his Nero Wolfe series. Martin Cruz Smith writes wonderful stories. Len Deighton is a master of plot development carrying a story over so many books and keeping the plot alive and the characters fresh. I admire Tony Hillerman’s body of work. I could go on and name a hundred others. Each has their own author’s voice and I have learned from them all.
Q: What are a few of your favorite genres and why?
My favorite genre is the mystery and suspense field. It is a broad genre encompassing everything from police procedurals and hard boiled to cozy and spy thrillers. I have read them all and enjoyed them all in American, English and other foreign versions. Mystery and danger are at the heart of it and provide a wonderful means of exploring character and life.
Q: Have you ever abandoned any books/novels in progress?
I have never abandoned a book in progress. I have substantially changed one and almost completely revised them but never abandoned one. I have dropped potential story ideas as I began to flesh them out and determined that it wouldn’t go in a direction that would interest me. I spend a lot of time before writing a book thinking about plot, characters, locations, scenes, twists and turns. It is in that time that I determine whether I will be able to finish the book.
Q: Do you have any advice for the audience, first time authors, those choosing the writing life.
Writing requires passion and perseverance. It also requires practice and involves more editing and re-writing than first time authors can ever imagine. Editing is like weeding a garden. No matter how much time you spend in the garden there is always another weed to pull. Get someone else to read your work. Accept criticism and use it wisely. Some is good and helpful and some is not. The difficult part is learning which is which.
Q: Who or what was your greatest influence that made you want to be a writer/author?
I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t interested in reading and writing or telling stories. I had some encouragement from a college professor but after school I was busy first in the Army and later developing a career as a lawyer and businessman for many years while always saying I was going to write someday. My wife pushed me to finally sit down and begin seriously writing about 20 years ago. She deserves the credit for any success I may have.
About Frank Scully
Frank Scully was born and raised in a small town in North Dakota and received a Bachelor’s degree in History with Phi Beta Kappa Honors and a Juris Doctor degree in Law from the University of North Dakota. He then served more than five years as a Judge Advocate General Corps Officer in the U. S. Army in the U. S., Vietnam, and Thailand. After that he attended the prestigious Thunderbird School and received a Masters in Business Administration with honors. In his professional career he has worked as an executive with large aerospace and defense manufacturers and also owned his own small business.
Depending on the vagaries of the universe he has been well off at times and broke, but never broken, at other times. Blessed with an understanding wife who gave him twin sons, he has remained through it all a dreamer whose passion is writing stories that will entertain readers.
Resurrection Garden, a mystery novel, is the first of five books Frank has under contract with MuseitUp Publishing.
You can visit Frank’s website at www.frankjscully.com.