Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
I am reposting content from my blog tour post from September 2020 as this book is going to be available as a free download today, January 15th, 2021. Read on to discover more about Not Myself Today and Muriel Ellis Pritchett….. including her answers to my interview questions which I originally shared then.
High school soccer star Lindsey Anderson was at the top of her game with graduation approaching and a full-ride soccer scholarship offer in her hand. Then she dropped dead on the soccer field, only to wake up in the body of a teenage sex-trafficking victim. No one believes who she really is. Not even her dad. Chased by her new body’s drug-dealing pimp and rabid parapsychologists out to dissect her, Lindsey searches to get her body and her life back before graduation day. Can her BFF and the high school nerdy boy she detests help save her life?
Born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, Muriel Ellis Pritchett graduated from the University of Georgia and began her journalism career while living in Japan and Germany. Her journalism career included playwriting, editing and writing for magazines and newspapers, and working in public relations, university relations, and media relations.
After retiring, Muriel’s family doctor recommended she get a hobby. So, she began writing fun fiction about feisty older women who had been wronged and had to pull themselves up out of the muck. But her award-winning fourth book, Not Myself Today, is a change in genres—a YA paranormal thriller. It is scheduled for release September 24, 2020. Her first three “fruity” books, fun romance for older women, are Making Lemonade, Like Peaches and Pickles, and Rotten Bananas and the Emerald Dream. She is currently working on another “fruity” book, titled Sour Grapes and Balmy Knight.
When not writing, Muriel loves cruising all over the world, eating good Belgian chocolate, and spending time in any Disney park. Her favorite Disney attractions are SOARING at Disney World’s EPCOT in Florida, Alice’s Curious Labyrinth at Disneyland Paris, Journey to the Center of the Earth at DisneySeas in Tokyo, and Indiana Jones Adventure at Disneyland in California.
Facebook: Muriel’s Fiction for Women @murielellispritchett https://www.facebook.com/murielellispritchett/
Back in September, as part of a blog tour, Muriel Ellis Pritchett kindly answered my questions. I’m sharing her answers with you again today so you can find out more about her latest YA paranormal novel, Not Myself Today. Read on to discover her inspiration, her writing process and more about her and this intriguing sounding book!
Where did you get the inspiration for the book/series?
I normally write fun women’s fiction about feisty older women who have to pull themselves up out of the muck and move on with life. I jokingly call my genre Rom-Com-Henlit. So how/why did I suddenly switch from writing women’s fiction to writing a young adult paranormal novel? That is a good question, and I wasn’t exactly sure how my publisher, Black Rose Writing, would feel about it. But he was cool and agreeable about it – as long as I continued to write my fun books for older women.
My two adult daughters inspired me to write Not Myself Today. Oh, let me be quite honest here. They told me they read fantasy and paranormal books. They insisted that I write something they and their friends would enjoy reading. So, I’m really hoping they will read and like this one.
What is your writing process?
I am a morning person. I rise by 7 a.m., eat breakfast, and get to work. Each book begins with a detailed outline, a list of characters and bios, and plot twists. I know how the story will begin and exactly how it will end.
With every book I write, I spend hours doing research. With my last book, Rotten Bananas and the Emerald Dream, I had to research stowaways, smuggling on cruise ships, maritime law, various Caribbean islands, and all about Colombian emeralds.
Each week I meet with my writers’ group. For several hours, we critique each other’s new chapters. We are ruthless because we want each manuscript to be the best it can be.
Do you write using pen and paper or on a computer?
I mostly work on my PC in my office, where I can look out my window and see what’s going on in my neighborhood. Once I edited a manuscript on my iPad while on a three-week cruise. When the weather is nice, I have been known to work outside while sitting in my deck swing with my laptop. I do make copious notes to myself in steno notebooks about character details or time of events outlines or page numbers where each chapter begins.
Who is your favourite character out of your stories and why?
My favourite character would have to be one in my women’s fiction “fruity” books. Everyone adores Eula Mae Davis because of her dry humour, her Southern drawl, and her Southernisms, like “Well butter my butt and call me a biscuit” or “Bless yore pea-picking little heart” or “Y’all come back now, ya hear?” Since she is so popular with my readers, she has become a recurring character in my women’s fiction books.
How and why did you choose the names for your main characters?
I looked through the list of popular girl names for 2000, searching for names that seemed to match the teenage characters I envisioned in my mind. Lindsey definitely sounded like a high school soccer star name to me. Annabeth seemed the perfect name for a young girl raised in a small, rural town in South Georgia. And Neeley just popped out of the list as the perfect match for my gum-popping, street-savy runaway. (Last names come out of the phone book.)
With all of the YA paranormal story possibilities, why/how did you choose to write a body-switching story?
Back in the 1970s, I took a children’s literature class at the university. I read a hundred junior novels in that class. I was particularly fascinated by Mary Rodgers’ children’s novel Freaky Friday, in which the daughter and mother swap bodies. Over the years, I read other body-switching books—with girls switching bodies with boys or a boy waking up in an alien or a woman ending up in a horse. But like writing a cosy mystery, there seemed to be a formula. Both parties learned something—a life’s lesson—from the body-switching; it had to be a funny story, and in the end, everyone got their own body back.
When I sat down to write a YA paranormal for my daughters, I decided I didn’t want to write about vampires, werewolves, witches, fairies, or zombies. I wanted to write a body-switching story, but I didn’t want it to be a fluffy, light-hearted story. No, I was thinking something along the lines of Freaky Friday meets Stephen King. And . . . I didn’t want my protagonist to get her body back.
Thank you so much for answering my questions – I’m so glad your daughters inspired you and hope they and their friends give you some very positive feedback to inspire you to write more!