BLISS HOUSE is number four.
I never imagined I would have four novels out in the world, all available in one form or another.
In fact, for at least half of my life I never thought seriously of being a writer at all. But then I suddenly, irrevocably, absolutely knew that it was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. It took me a long time to come to this particular story–almost exactly twenty-five years.
BLISS HOUSE is my love story to Virginia. Oh? you say. What kind of crazy person writes a haunted house story as a love story? I wish I could give you a straight answer, but the truth is that I really don’t know. I only know what comes out of me. And in this case it was a combined love for the region’s geography, a fierce admiration for classic haunted house stories like Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House, a lifelong passion for architecture, and the need to tell a dark story that grew inside me, slowly, and couldn’t wait to get out. It’s my belief that a writer doesn’t have much control over her material. It’s just…there. And when it comes to love–I’ve always been way better at saying things on paper than I am in person.
I learn a thousand things when I write a novel. Not just facts, but much about how to write. Before I begin a book I’ll go on a reading binge–not necessarily reading similar books (in fact I very much avoid those), but all kinds of books. Before I wrote my first two published novels–ISABELLA MOON and CALLING MR. LONELY HEARTS–I was very much focused on learning how plots work. But when I got to DEVIL’S OVEN and, especially, BLISS HOUSE, I began to concentrate on how people work.
While BLISS HOUSE is the story of a haunting, a crime, and a dark mystery, it’s also a story about mothers and their children: Rainey and Ariel, Bertie and Jefferson. Then there’s–Nope! I can’t tell you any more because it will give you too many clues to the mystery. (Sorry!) I want my novels to be more than dark tales. I want them to be dark tales with very human faces and very human emotions.
BLISS HOUSE is a big house bursting with stories. I spent 400 pages exploring just a few. But there are many more–oh, yes, many, many more. And I can’t wait to share them all with you. For now, though, start here.
P.S. Please help me spread the word about BLISS HOUSE. After you read it, will you tell some friends, or leave a review at your favorite book site? If you don’t see it in the store, please ask them to order it. Distribution will be limited for a while, until the word gets out, and every little bit helps. Thank you!