Genre: Fantasy, contemporary, metaphysical
Publisher: Cinnabar Press
Number of pages: 405
Word Count: 135,000
Cover Artist: Jennifer FitzGerald
Teddie likes her country music and her old pick-up truck and she's not sure how she let her best friend talk her into spending a semester abroad in Darjeeling India. Once she arrives, her innocence quickly collides with an underworld in which young women are bartered and sold. As she fights to understand a depravity that she never dreamed existed, Teddie finds that her own mind develops a unique ability for locating her friends and that an ancient group is willing to train her to use her innate skills for out of body experiences to save others.
It will require trust in ideas she barely believes, and more courage than has ever been expected of her. When it becomes clear that the alternative may be her friends' deaths and the unchecked growth of an evil crime lord's empire, Teddie accepts the challenge and shows those guilty of unspeakable crimes just how powerful a young woman can be.
Available at Amazon
Note: this is collection, not a series. The books can be read in any order.
So when the three American girls came to her office begging for help to find their friend, Amy sighed. This had all the markings of just the sort of case that would get her in trouble with the agency. The involvement of the three American students only made it more probable that this whole thing would reach the press and ultimately the ears of Amy’s superiors back home. So many reasons to give these girls the brush off.
And only one not to.
“What did you say her name was?” Amy asked.
“Usha.” It was the girl with the East-Asian ancestry who spoke up first. “She’s really smart and so happy to be in school, and she has these beautiful big trusting eyes and you’ve got to help us find her.”
The tall confident girl with the long blond hair jumped in. “The school’s been really busy with the aftermath of the earthquake all week. Last night they finally got a hold of her mother who says she has no idea where her daughter has gone and so the school now says that she is just a runaway who couldn’t handle the advanced classes and they are washing their hands of it!”
The pretty one with the head full of black curls added, “We know better. There is no way that’s true. Usha was doing great in her classes. She is in some kind of real trouble.”
“Okay,” Amy sighed. “Start at the beginning and tell me honestly everything you know. No holding back.”
The three girls sat down eagerly and starting talking all at once. Amy smiled at their vehemence, their innocence and their concern for their friend. There was an uncle from another city, and huge debts to be paid. There was no one local to help. The girl wasn’t even from Darjeeling. Amy looked at the photo one of the girls had on her laptop. She sat for a minute in silence as she carefully studied Usha’s face.
A young hopeful human being, full of potential. Just as all young people were. Was that reason enough to get involved? Of course it was.
Did you always wanted to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
I wanted to be astronaut, but my mother told me that was ridiculous. Actually, I wanted to be the chief science officer of the Star Ship Enterprise, but even I knew that was ridiculous. Somewhere along the way I got the idea to learn all the science that I could, and then to tell stories about the ways that it mattered.
When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?
I sold a short story to mainstream science fiction publication a couple of years after I graduated from college. To me, I’ve been a writer ever since, even though I took a break of a couple of decades before I started writing again.
Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?
I consult four days a week as a geophysicist for a small company exploring for oil in Africa, and I write the other three days. My work as a geophysicist has paid the bills for years, and I do love the physical sciences and am fascinated by the earth. It spills over into my stories in various ways.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?
I just published my fourth book, c3. It takes place in Darjeeling, where a Texan teenager encounters a human trafficking ring and then an ancient group offers to train her to use her innate skills for out of body experiences to save her friends. If I had to summarize it I would say “Read it because it will be the oddest book that you have enjoyed so much in a long while.”
How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?
Six to nine months, but editing takes at least as long. Writing a book is like having a baby. Writing a book and then turning it into a finished polished product is like giving birth to an elephant.
What genre would you place your books into?
I’ve been told that I write magical realism, a sub genre of speculative fiction. I try to take the every day world and add a few barely believable twists. In my case, they always involve various superpowers, so I guess you could say I write superhero books too.
How long have you been writing?, and who or what inspired you to write?
I used to make up bedtime stories for my little sister. She was not only nice enough to beg me for more, she’s stayed nice enough to still be one of my best beta readers All my life characters have marched their way through my head, having all sorts of adventures and interactions while I waited at traffic lights or took a shower. It was more a matter of deciding that I really had to start writing this stuff down again, which I started to do in 2010.
Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?
Oh yes. I know that I shouldn’t, but I do.
How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
I look at the year they were born and the region of the country (or world) and often pull up lists of popular names from that time and place. I try not to start two character’s names with the same letter, and I look for names that are easy to pronounce. After that, I just go with ones that feel right.
Are character names and place names decided after their creation? Or do you pick a character/place name and then invent them?
Usually it kind of happens at the same time, with a little back and forth until it seems right. Every once in a while I change my mind at the very end and rename something.
Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
I start out with a general idea of personality but as the plot goes along some characters surprise me. Bitchy women insist on doing good deeds, that sort of thing. I go ahead and let my characters evolve as the story goes on.
Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")
There are a few to be honest, but I focus a lot on tolerance. I firmly believe that the best and worst human qualities are well distributed among every age group, both genders, every race, culture and religion, every sexual preference, every style and every income level. To me, one of the missions of a writer is to take a reader outside of their own head and into that of another. More than anything, I’d like to increase our understanding and appreciation of each other. The moral of my stories is that we are all so much more alike than we realize.
What is your favorite book and Why? Have you read it more than once?
Two books affected me a lot as a young girl. Madeleine L'Engle and her “A Wrinkle in Time” hadn’t been out all that long when I first read it and I thought it was greatest thing ever. Jane Langton wrote a book called “The Diamond in the Window” and I obsessed over that book in grade school. Both stories shaped my young view of the world and convinced me that there was real magic tucked in-between and all around the layers of ordinary reality.
Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favorite/worst book to movie transfer?
Often they don’t. I think they did pretty well with the Harry Potter series. The worst attempt I remember is David Lynch’s “Dune”.
Your favorite food is?
Ice cream. Coffee ice cream to be specific although pistachio and caramel are close seconds.
Your favorite color is?
Green. Deep rich emerald green.
Sherrie Roth grew up in Western Kansas thinking that there was no place in the universe more fascinating than outer space. After her mother vetoed astronaut as a career ambition, she went on to study journalism and physics in hopes of becoming a science writer. She published her first science fiction short story long ago, and then waited a lot of tables while she looked for inspiration for the next story. When it finally came, it declared to her that it had to be whole book, nothing less. One night, while digesting this disturbing piece of news, she drank way too many shots of ouzo with her boyfriend. She woke up thirty-one years later demanding to know what was going on.
The boyfriend, who she had apparently long since married, asked her to calm down and explained that in a fit of practicality she had gone back to school and gotten a degree in geophysics and had spent the last 28 years interpreting seismic data in the oil industry. The good news, according to Mr. Cronin, was that she had found it at least mildly entertaining and ridiculously well-paying The bad news was that the two of them had still managed to spend almost all of the money.
Apparently she was now Mrs. Cronin, and the further good news was that they had produced three wonderful children whom they loved dearly, even though to be honest that is where a lot of the money had gone. Even better news was that Mr. Cronin turned out to be a warm-hearted, encouraging sort who was happy to see her awake and ready to write. "It's about time," were his exact words.
Sherrie Cronin discovered that over the ensuing decades Sally Ride had already managed to become the first woman in space and apparently had done a fine job of it. No one, however, had written the book that had been in Sherrie's head for decades. The only problem was, the book informed her sternly that it had now grown into a six book series. Sherrie decided that she better start writing it before it got any longer. She's been wide awake ever since, and writing away.