Hi guys! Hope your weekend went a bit more smoothly than mine (flu bug x 6kids = ick)! I am pleased to be a stop today on the Bad Apple virtual book tour by Bewitching Book Tours. Today, I get to share and interview that I did with the author Barbara Morgenroth! I love getting inside the author's heads a bit and learning more about who they are. I hope you enjoy! Be sure to check out more about Bad Apple & Barbara below the interview!!
Bad Apple is the story of how one bad act can have repercussions through years and through lifetimes.
2. What inspired you to write this story?
You live life and things happen. This happens here, and that happens somewhere else. If you have a storyteller’s mind, then maybe you see a connection between things that aren’t connected.
A neighbor of mind presses apples into cider. I watched him do this one autumn and not strictly legal. You can’t press your apples and sell the cider. If someone brings their apples to you and you press them, that’s still okay. Too many laws for my tastes.
Some years ago I was involved in a murder. No, I never made good on a threat to kill someone, a friend was murdered in his home, beaten to death with a baseball bat and I was the one who called the police. That gave me an introduction to the police and since I was so interested, they shared all their files with me after the case closed.
I wanted to understand this horrible event and explain it. The deeper I delved into the lives of the killer and the victim, the less sure I was of anything. It took years for me to be able to put all the pieces together.
That’s when I decided to write Bad Apple. I knew I could never write the story I wanted to tell if it was aimed at adults, so I wrote a YA because that audience is so smart, clever and accepting of difficult material. Unlike adults.
Oh my goodness! How horrible to have been involved in something so horrific. And how sad to lose your friend in such a violent manner. I am very sorry!
3. What is the main lesson that your book is trying to teach?
Evil exists, very bad things happen, but repair is possible.
Love is possible. Kindness is a key element in a successful life.
4. Moving on to your writing career, how long have you been writing?
My whole adult life minus about 2 years when I taught horseback riding. The owner of the farm property wanted to go back to dairy farming so I thought I would start writing. I wrote one dreadful book, apparently learned a lot and had the next book published.
I got into television for some years then returned to books.
Horse trainer? A woman after my own heart :)
5. Did you always dream to become an author?
I thought I was going to be a horse trainer or a photojournalist then later in life when I’d had lots of adventures, I would slow down and start writing books. Life had other plans for me.
6. I’m always curious whether or not authors read the same types of books that they write.
No, I don’t. I don’t even know who is writing in the same general vicinity of my work, unless I see their books on Amazon’s “People Who Bought Bad Apple also bought....” I’m sure other people are doing great books that I would love. But I would find that a distraction. It’s better for my work to stay focused.
7. So tell us, what book genres do you love to read?
I love biographies, cookbooks, history of the medieval world and photography. Sometimes I do read mysteries and they can be very enjoyable. I have friends who write romances so sometimes I’m pressed into reading their books. I don’t write romances so they’re pretty safe for me.
I love to write Young Adult because if you write a romance you have to follow the pattern of a romance novel. Otherwise readers get upset because you may have done something they didn’t expect. With a Young Adult audience, they’re willing to tackle difficult subjects, serious life situations, and if you throw some humor in, then they accept it as reality.
That my YA novels are also read by adults who tell me they want books with more substance than “adult” literature only confirms how great this niche is.
I never really thought of it like that but you are exactly right! I read several genres of books but if you read my review blog, my favorites are romance & YA. I DO get ticked when romance novels don't go somewhat with the 'approved' pattern! lol I never noticed that before.
8. What are you reading right now?
I’m reading two biographies. One is the life of Irving Berlin, the genius songwriter who wrote White Christmas and God Bless America among thousands of other songs. The other book is about Ruth Harriet Louise who was a portrait photographer for MGM studio in the silent era of Hollywood. Louise is very interesting because she quite easily rose to prominence on her abilities. Hollywood was more open to women working in those days. There were many women screenwriters, a couple directors, there was Pancho Barnes who was a stunt pilot for the movies for a while and still photographers. Women weren’t just actresses in Hollywood. They actually made movies.
9. Have any particular authors inspired you to write?
9. Have any particular authors inspired you to write?
Ross Macdonald’s work taught me an awful lot even though he wrote mysteries. He was a writer with great skill. I thought James Kirkwood had the same kind of style I did. It’s hard to say if someone inspired me particularly. If you have something to say, no one is going to hold you back. It will pour out. That’s when you should be a writer, when you don’t have a choice.
10. Do you have any upcoming projects?
I’m in the middle of Bittersweet Farm Book 2 at the moment.
Then I have promised every Bad Apple fan that I will do Book 4 next,
it will probably be titled Parked. Neal and Truly will do an album titled Parked By The Side Of The Road. After that, I have something I’ve been thinking about for a couple years based on where I live. That’s so far into the future, I’m not sure how I’ll feel about it when I am a free woman again! Every time I think I’m free, something sneaks in that I just have to write first. Before I started Bittersweet 2, I had to write a short story called Jingles All the Way about a dog who finds a new home and solves a crime. Yes, I know, Jingles says he wrote it, I just took dictation. Writers! So fussy about getting credit!
Wow! That was awesome! Thanks so much for stopping by today!!
And now- more about Bad Apple and the author herself !
Genre: Mature YA
Word Count: 39,000
Cover Artist: Photo by Aleshyn Andrei. Cover design by Barbara Morgenroth
“You tell and next time you won’t even be able to crawl away.”
Neal Marchal lived with this threat for the next eight years. When she finds her neighbor murdered, she knows who did it. The why is the secret the family has been keeping forever. The reminder to never reveal the secret is her limp.
She rebuilt her life and now Neal has everything to live for—music, performing and a growing affection for the young man who pulled her to safety.
Then Joe comes home. Neal knows Joe’s going to finish what he started 8 years ago because she told. But this time Neal vows the outcome will be different.
About the Author:
Barbara was born in New York City and but now lives somewhere else. By now, she thinks of herself as a country girl and knows more about gardening and animals than how to ride the subway.
Starting her career by writing tweens and YA books, (and did the cover photography for her first two books published by Atheneum so continuing to do the covers to her ebooks is predictable), she was actually aiming at the small screen. Television seemed like the perfect place for her even if she had no clue how to get there. Life is funny and often presents opportunities. Advice--Grab Them! Through a neighbor, Barbara wound up getting an introduction to a lower honcho at ABC and an audition to write for them. Her hopes were more than dashed, they were disintegrated, evaporated, demolished when ABC couldn't find a place for Barbara on General Hospital. (No Luke and Laura in her future!) To ease the crushing disappointment, Barbara wrote “In Real Life I'm Just Kate” about a 17 year old girl who becomes a star on a soap opera. That became an open sesame moment and shortly thereafter Barbara became the last headwriter for NBC's daytime serial, The Doctors, where she was ordered by the network to kill Alec Baldwin, shooting him not once but twice. With two different guns. From different directions.
Ah, good times.
You can read the book that started Barbara’s television career as the Kindle YA ebook, “Just Kate”, now with a substantial tweak because living life made her smarter.
You can also read about some could-be-hers-could-be-rumors experiences gleaned during Barbara’s stint in daytime television in the Kindle romantic comedy, In Under My Head. Barbara is a recipient of a Writers Guild of America Best Writing Award for her work on One Life To Live.
Whether you're looking for a Mature YA or a romantic comedy, Barbara has a book for you!