THE COLLECTORS Interview with Greg Jolley

Available December 15th, 2020

THE COLLECTORS Interview with Greg Jolley

Brought to you by BHC Press

Where did the idea for the book originate? What was the writing process like?

“The Collectors” came from a compelling curiosity with odd collections and museums and, of course, the people who construct them and their motivations, obsessions and compulsions. I researched and interviewed a few curators in an attempt to understand their psychological passion for capturing rare relics and oddities. It was a fresh and foreign mental landscape to explore. There is a strange side to the desire to collect and revere objects of nostalgia as well as fulfilling morbid fascinations with the famous and infamous. Without exception, they loved to talk about the wonder and reverence they felt and the ways they had gone about their collecting. Questions about their motivations were answered evasively, at best.

The write itself took seven months. Three of them were spent doing the research and character and location sketches and getting familiar with my cast. The write itself was that fine daily  immersion that makes being a novelist so rewarding. 

Introduce us to the main characters in the book. Who was your favorite to write and why?

All three main characters were a challenging delight. While I didn’t have a favorite, Pierce was the most familiar. That said, all three were constantly entertaining and shocking. As often happens about a third of the way along, the cast took over the write and I became their story’s typing pool.

Pierce

He is always a surprising personality to work with, always turning left when all the road signs and my plans scream, “Turn right!”

Big of heart, passionate in love, and often a loose cannon, I pretty much turned him loose. Soon as he put his nose to the sand and started tracking Pauline Place, I was comfortable taking my hands off the wheel.

Pauline 

Pauline is the famous actress Pauline Place, who was a pleasure to work with again. She is a rare beauty, strong-willed, no one’s fool and capable of getting in serious trouble – often of her own making – as a challenge to herself and her ways and wits.

Deung

Ah, Deung… nothing more enjoyable than entering his twisted and dangerous mind. He was another chance to open the black box containing evil and dark lunacy, compulsions and sociopathic blood lust. Mix in the desire to wed and bed a deceased actress and he scared and revolted me badly more than once. 

Movies and filmmaking feature prominently in your book. What is it about movies that fascinates you?

For “The Collectors” it was the continued fascination with the psychology of cameras.

Many of the Danser novels are set within movie productions for two reasons. The first is inspired by the historical Jewish proverb that I paraphrase as, “God loves stories.”  I interpret this as meaning that our use of free will and our choices tell the stories he loves to watch unfold.

The second is a question. What is a camera, metaphorically? If our lives are movies of our choices, then we also get to decide which side of the viewfinder we live on. Are we behind the camera, calling the shots as we view our world and our lives? Or before it, center stage, immersed in our stories and delighting in each new experience and decision? Either side of the camera can be a fine and interesting place to live (or narrate) our tales.

Pierce has a fondness for cars, especially Willys and Packards. Are you also a car aficionado? 

I’m so not. Lol, I drive a Jeep. That said, automobiles do have a functional mechanical beauty. 

To this day, American culture has a strong affection for car brands and models. Why I don’t share this, for the book I needed to explore and better understand that psychological attachment to objects, much like the collectors in the novel do.

The villain Deung is a twisted and chilling character. What inspired him?

It was a fascination with wealthy lunatics who have the means to pursue their macabre compulsions. There are many real-world examples of them. Some of my favorites were in the 1800s, in London; men with their gruesome collections on display. Many of these museums housed true horror shows for both curators and audiences; places to take twisted delight in. The States also has its share of macabre collections and museums of cruelty, crime, violence and, well, evil. Truth be told, they are really hard to look away from.

Deung is a collector of odd things” and readers have described your book as not for the faint of any kind.” Without giving anything away, where did your inspiration for his macabre hobby originate from?

He certainly has collecting and acquisition and control issues that I wanted to explore. Same with his bent and twisted mind, where he lives far south of the sanity border. I wanted to better understand how some of darkest of sick minds can calmly believe that their murderous ways make perfectly good sense.

What is it that you enjoy most about writing thrillers and suspense?

I enjoy it all, which is why I write seven days a week, but the pre-write research and sketching is often the most interesting and creative part. During those months, I collect miles of Ingredients, which are snippets of dialogue, mapping locations, choosing the cast, and deciding both theme and structure. From this, the Skeleton of the book forms itself naturally. I usually come in at around ten thousand words before I enter the write. In the case of “The Collectors” I was fortunate to be working with Pierce Danser again, which made the start very easy, knowing that as soon as I turned him loose, the roller coaster had entered the tunnel.

Do you listen to music when you write? If yes, whats the soundtrack for this book?

For “The Collectors” it was Steely Dan. The write needed the complex, colorful and edgy jazz and heartbeat rhythms that the band loved to work with. While I didn’t listen closely, I did hear sparks of the caustic lyrics that can only encourage. 

What are three things most people dont know about you?

I rarely read fiction, but consume tons of nonfiction. I have a lifelong passionate love of fiction and consumed most of the best. The reason I decided years ago not to read fiction had to do with the influence on my voice and craft. I’m both careful and selective with what I allow to effect my writing of the Danser novels. 

I surf every day after closing the office, needing to enjoy and experience real people in the real world. There’s so much to learn and be inspired by that isn’t available in imagination on its own.

I love all the reviews and reviewers and can’t say enough about how important and meaningful they are. Unfortunately, I can’t read them. I do look at the ratings and I’m sincerely grateful for those, as I am for everyone who graciously takes the time to share their thoughts and insights. My relationship with my readers is of huge importance to me, no matter if they love a book or trash it. The rub is the indirect influence on the daily write. As an example, I recall being taken to task for wrecking four brand new Buicks in “Dot to Dot” which was considered unnecessarily wasteful. When I found myself worrying about this concern a few days later, I knew I had a problem. As with the decision to not read fiction, I’m a bit obsessive with what influences I’ll allow inside the daily writes. That said, I love all the questions about the books and always delight in replying to them.

What are you currently working on?

“Chas Danser

Book One: Vivre au Cinéma”

Seventeen-year-old Chas is an actor who also has a severe neurological injury, experiencing fugues when he smells eucalyptus. (Yes, there are such cases in real life).

He uses that rich, dusty scent to fully immerse himself in the films he’s in, which allows me to work with the craft and tools and magic of movies. In the Chas novel, the film he enters is “French Slaughter” a cinematic telling of the historic, failed attempt of the French to establish a holding in Florida in the 1500s. The Spanish respond to this incursion in the deadliest of ways. 

This is book one of a series, using the same movie immersion as its centerpiece, bookended by his real life deadly adventures in the crime and madness of current day Florida.

Please feel free to contact Greg at any to the following location:

Email: gfjolle@sbcglobal.net

Website: www.TheDansers.com

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8261931.Greg_Jolley\

FB – author page: https://www.facebook.com/greg.jolley.581

“The Collectors” is variable in eBook, Hardbound and trade paperback at all fine brick front stores and on line, including Amazon.com at: Amazon: http://amzn.to/2o4tIob

“The Collectors” by Greg Jolley

Pierce Danser is on the hunt for his soon-to-be ex-wife, the actress Pauline Place, who’s disappeared from the Black Island film set in the heat swarmed waters off the Mexican coast. A wealthy “collector” with a black heart and dangerous, evil mind has kidnapped her, planning a forced marriage to complete his manage of twisted museum pieces. As Pierce starts down the winding, dark, and deadly path in pursuit, his journey is a roller coaster through a horror show. No matter the grisly and dangerous obstacles, he is determined to rescue Pauline, even if it means the loss of his own life.

The clock is ticking, his resources are slim and he’s up against a man of great means as well as a twisted, cruel vision.

Cover Reveal! “The Collectors” by Greg Jolley

The Danser News

October 18, 2020

Cover Reveal! “The Collectors” by Greg Jolley

I’m please to share with you the cover of the second Pierce Danser novel, “The Collectors.”

As always, my publisher has done a brilliant job, capturing both the theme and vibe.

The Collectors

By Greg Jolley

Pierce Danser is on the hunt for his soon-to-be ex-wife, the actress Pauline Place, who’s disappeared from the Black Island film set in the heat swarmed waters off the Mexican coast. A wealthy “collector” with a black heart and dangerous, evil mind has kidnapped her, planning a forced marriage to complete his manage of twisted museum pieces. As Pierce starts down the winding, dark, and deadly path in pursuit, his journey is a roller coaster through a horror show. No matter the grisly and dangerous obstacles, he is determined to rescue Pauline, even if it means the loss of his own life. The clock is ticking, his resources are slim and he’s up against a man of great means as well as a twisted, cruel vision.

Here’s hoping you’ll enjoy “The Collectors” 
Let me know what you like or don’t?

As always, you can visit with me at 

My website: www.TheDansers.com

Email: gfjolle@sbcglobal.net

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8261931.Greg_Jolley\

FaceBook: https://www.facebook.com/greg.jolley.581

All of the Danser novels are available at: Amazon: http://amzn.to/2o4tIob

Preorder of “The Collectors” is expected to be available by my publisher early November.

You can purchase the novel direct from the BHC Press online store at Bookshop.org

Link to Greg’s page on the publisher’s site: 

https://www.bhcpress.com/Books_Jolley_The_Collectors.html

“Black Veil” by Greg Jolley

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Épouvantail Press Release: August 4th, 2020

MY READING ADDICTION INTERVIEW

“Black Veil” by Greg Jolley

 

Is There a Message in Your Novel That You Want Readers to Grasp?

In Black Veil, the two main characters are both determined to keep their secrets draped in darkness. For movie producer Florentino Urbino, he keeps his greed and madness and hunger for fame behind a black curtain that he can draw across his mind. The other main character, SeaBee Danser, has taken to wearing a funeral black veil to protect others from seeing the full extent of her steely resolve to survive, no matter what she must do. How and what we all hide is the primary theme, be it good or evil, light or darkness.

 Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Because Black Veil is about the real and tragic Donner Party, I had two concerns. The first was to treat all members of the party with respect. The second was to find a balance with the amount of factual detail so that the Black Veil story remained true to itself.

 How many books have you written and which is your favorite?

I’ve written twenty-five Danser novels. Eleven of them are slated for future publication and the others are on hold for future rewrites before I decide if they will see the light of day. I suspect they will. I love every member of the Danser family – and their stories – too much.

If You had the chance to cast your main character from Hollywood today, who would you pick and why?

 I would cast the evil and bizarre Florentino Urbino to be played by Johnny Depp, who would certainly bring to it his own quirks and style. My second choice would be my pal, film director Justin Diemert, who is brilliant with darkness, if he could be persuaded to move to the other side of the cameras.

 When did you begin writing?

When I was in my mid-twenties, an excellent age to wade into the waters of the art and craft of novelists.

How long did it take to complete your first book?

 Approximately a year and a half. Those were the days of draft after draft, before I developed a bit of confidence and learned from a lot of trials and errors. These days, the writes are a lot smoother. It helps a great deal to write seven days a week. It also keeps me sane and my life balanced between the world of craft and imagination and the real one.

 Did you have an author who inspired you to become a writer?

Yes, Richard Brautigan, which is funny because he was as much a poet as a novelist. His experiments and wit and honesty, as well as his minimal prose, lit up my imagination like only a few others (J.D. Salinger, Peter S. Beagle and later, Elmore Leonard).

What is your favorite part of the writing process?

The months of research and gathering of ingredients for each book. These are characters, locations, questions, photographs, quotes and vignettes, all loosely gathered. With Black Veil and the other books, I’ll typically have ten to fifteen thousand words before I start to write the novel. Of course, a lot of this material is cast overboard, as it should be. There is a true delight in the important act of killing our little darlings. 

Describe your latest book in 4 words.

 A suspenseful cinematic nightmare.

Can you share a little bit about your current work or what is in the future for your writing?

 Two weeks ago, I started the novel Small Lunatics which promises to be a fun and challenging write. The book is cast almost entirely with children – Florida street urchins. While I’ve barely started, I do know it’s a story of survival in a world gone crazy because, unfortunately, the adults are still in charge.

 

 

Please visit My Reading Addiction at: https://bit.ly/39XWfEL

The “Black Veil” Team

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Hi ya’s,

I’m so pleased by the reception of “Black Veil.” Now it’s time to offer all my gratitude to the amazing team I work with.  First of all, there’s my amazing editor, Nicki Kuzn, who breathes so much lucidity into the novels. Thank you also to the brilliant and creative publicist, Cami Hensley Owner, RABT Book Tours & PR. Thank you Vellum for the wonderful interior design. And to Fay Lane Graphic Design & Book Covers, your creative cover design still moves me.

Quite simply, these four women are invaluable partners in the “Black Veil” success.

One of the recent reviews:

“This was a really great book. The storyline pulled me in from the start and I found the story and characters well written and developed. The story had me in suspense and I didn’t want to put down. A really great story that I would recommend reading.”

All the best,

Greg

A Life Through Books: Greg Jolley Interview

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A LIFE THROUGH BOOKS INTERVIEW

“Black Veil” by Greg Jolley

What is the hardest part of writing your books?
For Black Veil as with all off the Danser novels, it’s the work with my private editor before the book goes to my publisher. We have an amazing relationship based on a lot of trust and she is a true professional when it comes to grammar and punctuation. We always go through a book three times before either of us is satisfied and while the work is not hard, it is often humbling and a challenge because I treat punctuation as the song’s rhythm section, which is often breaks a lot of rules.

What songs are most played on your Ipod?

For this write, it was Los Lonely Boys and The Hellecasters.

Do you have critique partners or beta readers?

I don’t work with beta readers (and I stay a million miles away from writing and critique groups), but I did work closely on Black Veil with my two favorite partners in crime. The first is the brilliant professional editor, Nicki Kuzn, who corrects my abuse of grammar and punctuation rules. The second is Robert Jolley, who is amazingly gifted at continuity edits. I love it when he says, “The gun was in the glove box. How did it get on the kitchen table?”

What book are you reading now?

Candide by Voltaire and The Lady and Her Monsters by Roseanne Montello (a Mary Shelley – Frankenstein study)

How did you start your writing career?

Like most of the best adventures, with a dare. Having a deep love of language and word play and stories since I was a child, and being a constant reader, I simple said to myself, “Why don’t you write one?” That was the spark for Distractions, published about two years later.

Tell us about your next release.

The next novel is Thieves, a Molly and April Danser story. It is scheduled for release by Épouvantail Books in December of this year. The sisters have lived a life of crime, mostly thefts from those they believe deserve it the most – social vultures such as 1-800 lawyers.  Things turn dark and twisted when an innocent man dies and an ex US Marshal decides that he has to put them down, permanently. Thieves is more of a roller coaster than Black Veil, which is actually more like a haunted house ride.

 

 

 

 

 

The Avid Reader Interview

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The Avid Reader Interview

“Black Veil” by Greg Jolley

7/13/2020

 

  1. For those interested in exploring the subject or theme of your book, where should they start? There are many brilliant non-fiction titles that tell the tragic story of the Donner party. For a similar fictional book, you could do no better than enjoy The Day of the Locust by Nathanael West.

 

  1. How did you become involved with the subject or theme of your book? I joined the Broken Television Film Company to both learn the craft and art of movie making and to research Black Veil. I was always interested in the tragic story of the Donner party and wanted to research it and retell it from a movie perspective. The themes of greed and evil are recurring in a few of my books, as well as exploring the light and darks sides of all of us.

 

  1. What were your goals and intentions in this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them?  

My goal with each Danser novel is always the same: Grinning with amusement and satisfaction while typing those two fine words, “The End.” I find each journey, each write, to be an adventure. I also love the fact that while I do miles of research and believe I know where the book is headed, the road is always full of surprises and the cast and events always take over. The writing is often like constructing a roller coaster while you’re riding it, hoping to get enough track laid out to support the journey to the end.

 

  1. Anything you would like to say to your readers and fans? As always, write to me and let me know your thoughts and reactions, as well as questions. I always learn so much from readers and have a tough hide for those who want to take me to task for why this or any of my novels don’t work for them.

 

  1. What did you enjoy most about writing this book? Building the skeleton while doing the research, months before the start of Black Veil. The skeleton is somewhat like a badly disfigured outline where ingredients such as the locations, cast, motivations and passions play off each other. I will typically have ten to fifteen thousand words of the skeleton and ingredients before I type a single page of a novel. Such was the case with Black Veil. Because this effort is unstructured, I delight in letting imagination and facts run riot.

 

  1. Can you tell us a little bit about your next books or what you have planned for the future? The next novel is about Molly and April Danser and is titled, Thieves. It is scheduled for release in December of this year. The sisters have lived a life of crime, mostly thefts from those they believe deserve it the most – social vultures such as 1-800 lawyers. Things turn dark and twisted when an innocent man dies and an ex US Marshal decides that he has to put them down, permanently. Thieves is more of a roller coaster than Black Veil, which is actually more like a haunted house ride.

 

  1. How long have you been writing? Oh, jeez. Since 1984. That’s when Distractions was published, the very first Danser novel. It also began my love of passionate eccentrics who have little regard for social norms and laws.

 

  1. Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in (Please insert name of book here)? In Black Veil, Film producer Florentino Urbino is a very dark man driven by jealousy, madness and rage, determined to ascend his second-rate status within the movie company filming the Donner Party story. Opposite him is six-year-old SeaBee Danser in her first acting role, up against tremendous odds, but also determined to win out in the end, albeit her motivation is to simply survive and lead the others to safety.

 

  1. If you could spend the day with one of the characters from (Please insert name of book here) who would it be? Please tell us why you chose this particular character, where you would go and what you would do. It certainly wouldn’t be with “Flor” Florentino – laugh. I have to go with SeaBee Danser, enjoying that strong and smart-assed little girl. I imagine lots of surprises from her as well as much shared laughter. I think I’d take her surfing followed by an ice cream lunch.

 

 

 

Ten Things You Didn’t know about “Black Veil”

 

Rainy Day Reviews

Published 7/8/2020

 Ten Things You Didn’t know about

Black Veil by Greg Jolley

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  1. The book was started while on the set of Broken Television’s filming of “Memoirs of Wroth City” where I learned so much about the behind-the-scenes magic.

  2. Justin Diemert is both a brilliant film director and an inspiring couch in the art of movie making.

  3. Because I didn’t yet see the theme of Black Veil, the dull and simple working title was “The Movie Book” during the first draft.

  4. There was a struggle to tell the Donner Story respectfully, all the while knowing how such events are often treated in films.

  5. Yes, I researched the gruesome details and effects of eating human flesh and the mental and emotional and spiritual impacts of doing so.

  6. For Black Veil, the use of alternating storylines was taken on as a creative challenge and to share the good and evil behind the player’s veils.

  7. The brilliant cover artist, Fay Lane, actually let me have a small voice with the amazing cover design.

  8. Unlike the cast in Black Veil, without exception I’ve found that actors and actresses are hardworking and dedicated to their art and craft.

  9. Black Veil is another of my ‘slender’ novels. I don’t worry about word counts with any of the writes, but they always seem to end themselves at around 60,000.

  10. I truly enjoy hearing reader’s thoughts and questions about Black Veil or any of the Danser novels. Engaging with readers is one of my main motivations.

All the best,

Greg

Blurb for “Black Veil” by Greg Jolley launching on July 1, 2020.

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Épouvantail Book Press Release

June 19, 2020

Blurb for “Black Veil” by Greg Jolley launching on July 1, 2020.

Murder and Madness in the High Sierras

The tragic and gruesome story of the Donner Party is being made into a movie, a tale of cannibalism and treachery high in the snowbound mountains. The cast is made up entirely of children. One by one, they are dying. The series of deaths are haunting the production, each one of the “accidents” at the hands of Florentino Urbino. Driven by greed and jealousy, he is killing off the film’s stars to line his pockets by selling off the gruesome footage of the accidents.

Six-year-old actress SeaBee Danser in her black veil is his next target. She is the only one who can see through the black curtain that Florentino Urbino drapes over his deranged and murderous heart.

Can she survive?

Can he be stopped?

Will any of the children be left standing?

Why Write Suspense?

May 4, 2020

Press Release: Logikal

http://www.logikalsolutions.com/wordpress/

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Why Write Suspense?

Greg Jolley, author of View Finder

Have an hour? I’ll buy the espressos. Writing each Danser novel has been an opportunity to explore human motivations through storytelling, which takes precedent over thematic concerns. The personalities of the cast for each book dictate the novel’s structure (i.e., wordy or smart ass? POV, levels of details). That said, the writes are really about turning these dear friends loose and scurrying as fast as I can to transcribe their antics and struggles. Quite simply, it is a helluva lot of fun and if it wasn’t, I would find another use for the seven days a week I spend with them.

A while back I answered the question from another angle.

Because of the dance. Who will lead? Who will follow? Or will they embrace?
           

The Danser novels are about individuals and their choices, as well as their instincts, passions, goals and compulsions. But always there is the dance, the suspense: Good or Evil?

What are the mechanics of suspense?

Let’s start with a decent, formal definition:

            “Pleasurable excitement and anticipation regarding an outcome…”

 ~ Source: iThesaurus.

Not bad.

The definition that I work with is from a good and interesting conversation with my brilliant and wise publisher, who said, “When you know who the protagonist and antagonist are.”

For the Danser novels, I’ve been working with my interpretation of that definition of suspense, “When you know the devil and who its perusing.”

Unlike the mystery genre, where the villain or devil are often not known until the cliff hanging, who-dun-it reveal, the suspense genre offers the opportunity to share both faces and minds of good and bad. In effect, make their light and dark paths viable for my readers. It is also a helluva lot more enjoyable for this writer. And this reader.

So, what is the attraction to books of suspense?

The dance.

Good and evil out on the floor, under the soft lights, the music swaying.