Saturday, June 21, 2014

Interview with Shelley R. Pickens, author of The Haunting of Secrets

Hiya peeps! Melange Books took a chance on me about five years ago and opened the door to make my publishing dreams come true. They've given many authors that chance since then, so I wanted to give props to Melange this month by interviewing several of their authors. You'll find some great insights, tips, and new books to read along the way. Enjoy!

Where are you from and what do you do when you’re not writing?

I am from Columbia, South Carolina but I live in Atlanta, Ga.  When I’m not writing I teach Spanish at one of the biggest high schools in the southeast.

How did you come up with the idea for this book/series?

I came up with the idea for my novel while driving home from South Carolina. It’s a three hour trip and I get lots of time to be creative!

Tell us about the writing process—what were your favorite and least favorite moments?

Coming July 17!
When I write I never quite know where the story will go. Even though I have the idea and outline in my head, the story seems to write itself sometimes.  And when I finish a chapter that I particularly like and I re-read it and think “Wow”, there’s no greater moment. My least favorite moment of the writing process is when I can’t remember what color eyes I made a particular character. Details are not my strong suit.

What’s your favorite cure for writer’s block?

A trip to the pool and a margarita seems to always work. J

Can you please share an excerpt? 

The whole world around me is moving in slow motion. It isn’t until I am hit in the face with a bloody hand wrenched completely off at the wrist that I realize the roar I had heard was a bomb. I begin my descent to the hard floor; my body constantly hitting pieces of table, metal mixed with plastic from chairs, and chunks of things stained red that I don’t even want to know where they came from. I hit the ground on my right side; the contact sends a painful jolt through my shoulder that travels the length of my body. My gloved hands cover my face to ward off the feet trampling all around me. The images of body parts flying through the air and blood spattering on the walls and floor are seared into my brain. In another life, it could have been art, a pretty mosaic depicting the tragedies of life. My first instinct is to avoid, at all possible costs, the touches of the hordes of people that come my way in a desperate attempt to flee the carnage. I have no idea where I am in the cafeteria anymore; I just know that I have to get out, get away from all those people; from all of their secrets.

What’s your next/current writing project?

I am currently writing the sequel to The Haunting of Secrets – Unhinged.  It’s almost finished I’m happy to say.

Here’s a totally random question for you:

Come up with your own silly haiku, but you must include the word “salsa”.

Sitting it mocks me
A salsa created true
Why do you burn me?

Thanks so much for stopping by! 


Shelley Pickens is a Spanish teacher by day and a novelist by night. She’s been in love with everything paranormal since she can remember.  After years of teaching high school students, she decided to take her firsthand knowledge of young adults and apply it to her passion for creative writing and fantasy.  When not teaching or writing, Shelley likes to spend time with her husband and two beautiful children in Atlanta, Ga.  Her escape from reality is her love of complex thriller and science fiction TV series like Supernatural and Sleepy Hollow.  In her spare time she is an avid watcher of little league baseball.  THE HAUNTING OF SECRETS is her debut novel. 

Book Trailer:
(an actual video with student actors from my school created by the kids in the video class. It's amazing!)


  1. Hi Shelley,

    If ever you need a margarita partner just let me know.

    Thanks for sharing the excerpt, you've left me wanting to know more!


  2. Great interview, Mysti. And I think I'll take your advice on the writer's block and try a Margarita next time, Shelley. Good luck with your book. It's a great story.

  3. This is so cool!! Can't wait to read the whole thing!!

  4. Great book! I can't wait to read it again.
    Congrats Shelley! And thanks for hosting the interview Mysti. :)


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