Today’s In the Spotlight interview is with Judy Griffith Gill
Judy Griffith Gill is the author of over fifty published novels. She’s a novel- writing teacher, Editor/Acquisitions Editor, and proof reader. I personally am published because Judy as Acquisitions Editor with Champagne Books liked my book, After the Mist and gave me a chance. I’ve since read a couple of her books and have found them well written and extremely captivating.
Please join me in welcoming Judy. Good morning Judy sit back in your favorite chair, or your hammock and let us begin.
Tell us something about Judy Griffith Gill, we have only wondered about.
Between the beginning of April and the end of September, yes. Neither my husband nor I like marinas, so we do a lot of anchoring-out where it’s calm and quiet and often secluded. I’m an unrepentant skinny-dipper but don’t like to offend others.
I love your answer so I'm keeping it, but what I meant to ask was, is it the norm for you to incorporate a place or situation you are in into the story you are writing?
Actually, no. I seldom write about a place I'm currently in or have lived in until I'm away from it and can see it from more distant perspective. Somehow, that allows me to pick out details without being overwhelmed by minutiae. For instance, though we spent a total of eight years in Germany, I didn't set a book (Golden Warrior) there until much later.
You have a long line of credentials, from author, to editor, to writing teacher, which do you find to be the most rewarding, and why?
My heart, corny as this will sound, is wherever my husband of nearly fifty years is. Since he does the yard work and grocery-shopping in Costa Rica to give me time to work, and drive me to Cahuita Park to swim in the Caribbean (which is only 500 yards from our house, but the swimming’s better and safer in the park) and captains the boat when we’re in BC, that means I want to be where he is because I need him. (Um, don’t tell him, but wherever my computer is also holds a warm place in my heart.)
You sound like a very busy lady, how do you find time to also write?
When did you first realize you were destined to be a writer? What inspired you?
What brought you to Champagne Books as Editor/Acquisitions Editor?
You have written over fifty books, a huge accomplishment, which book would you personally call your favorite?
What inspired you to write that book?
After my discussion with Ms. Nichols, and my then editor, the incomparable Elizabeth Barrett, who taught me a great deal in the near-decade we worked together, Billy perched himself on the deer-fence around my vegetable garden one morning and told me his story. I went into the house and started writing it. I still love that guy—like my husband, a “somewhat reformed juvenile delinquent.”
Billy Culver, church-mouse poor, handsome as the devil & twice as bad, driven away for something he didn't do, returns, just as handsome, now rich & powerful & out for revenge--against the town, against the girl he loved--then he sees her again. Arlene Lambert still loves him but the dark secrets she must maintain, for Billy's sake, keep them apart. Or would, if she could just say no.
Anything else you’d like to add?
If you go to Smashwords or Kindle to look for the few works I have up there, make it soon, because I’ll be taking them down in a month or two. I’ve recently signed with Open Road Media, a company interested in aggressively marketing e-book editions of a number of authors. I think it’ll be an interesting venture, and I’ll be working with Nita Taublib, whom I first met when she was assistant to Carolyn Nichols, the publisher at Bantam Loveswept. Ms. Taublib then went on to become Executive Publisher for Bantam, Doubleday, Dell. I’m thrilled to be working with her again because I trust her judgment and because it was largely due to her I became the first, and for a long time only, Canadian published by Bantam Loveswept. It nearly killed me to break with them, but editorial/author differences forced that. Then, a year or so later, BDD inexplicably folded the line and I was glad I’d established myself elsewhere. Note to authors: If possible, don’t limit yourself—break out into subgenres if you can to give yourself more options.
Cathy, thank you for this opportunity to talk to readers and potential editing clients. I should have warned you—I tend to be long-winded. But when you ask a writer to discuss writing, you run the risk of being unable to turn off her tap. And by the way, I’m pretty sure After the Mist would have been published no matter who was doing the acquiring. It’s a wonderfully well-crafted, spooky, scary book and I enjoyed it immensely.
Thank you Judy, it was such fun to have a small glimpse into your life.
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