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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Interview with Bryan Mooney, Runner Up in the WOW Flash Fiction Contest

Welcome, Muffin fans, to today's interview with Bryan Mooney, runner up in our Flash Fiction contest. His story, The Mountain, is a challenging piece, filled with drive and perseverance. If you haven't read it yet, take a moment to consume this spectacular story, and then return here while Bryan and I talk shop about the story and writing in general.

Bryan is originally from the Midwest, but over the years he has traveled the globe extensively, before moving to the sunny beaches of South Florida.

Where is Bryan’s most inspirational location to hatch a new novel? “Oh that has to be Key West,” he was quoted in a recent interview. “Hemingway hung out there and wrote some of his best works in the low key place in the sun. But my all time favorite place to get lost in, has to be on one of the thousands of Greek Islands.”

His love of the Greek isles shows in his work. His most recent romance novel, A Second Chance is set on a remote Greek island. It is the story of a man traveling to a family reunion, who mistakenly disembarks from a ferryboat, onto the wrong island. He is stranded on the idyllic paradise for a week, waiting for the next ferry and checks into the only hotel on the island. The romantic hilltop retreat, he soon discovers, happens to be run by his first love.

When not penning romance novels on the beach, he and his wife Bonnie travel the world. Bryan enjoys sailing, gourmet cooking, ballroom dancing, photography, tennis and he loves to incorporate these activities into his novels.

WOW: Congratulations, Bryan! Welcome to The Muffin! I’ve read The Mountain about four times now and I’m impressed the consistency of conflict. It can be difficult to find a story that balances internal and external conflict. You have done a great job! How did this story idea develop?

Bryan: My short story, The Mountain, is the ultimate story of an attempt to have total control over someone. The heroine of the story refuses to be dominated and using her intellect and perseverance triumphs over all of her adversities. She refuses to accept the world on their terms, but more importantly, she refuses to give up.

The story begins with the age old question…What if you were put somewhere where someone tried to control your every thought and your day to day life? What would you do? How would you survive? The Mountain is just one answer.

WOW: Bryan, you definitely answer the question – and make readers think! One of my absolute favorite parts of The Mountain is the twist. Give me a story that catches me off guard with a plot twist any day! How does this make your piece stand out? Why do you think it's an element forgotten by many writers?

Bryan: The twist in the story The Mountain remains its strongest feature. Such a twist is very difficult to employ successfully which is why many modern day authors have abandoned even trying to utilize it. I have always loved to use a twist to keep my readers hooked and enthralled with my work. I want them to think and try to guess the ending. I always try to keep my stories fresh and interesting. An intriguing twist at the end is the best way.

WOW: Agree, agree, agree! As an editor, I think a twist is so important in flash fiction. It’s a storytelling element that sets a story (with a similar theme) apart from others. Makes it memorable. You achieve that goal! As I read your bio, I’m intrigued by the statement that you write romance that features strong female role models. How difficult is it to find that voice?

Bryan: I take a strong and independent woman and then put her into an impossible situation. Using all of her skills, intelligence and personal strength, she escapes the inescapable to be a better and stronger person.

For example, my recent book A Second Chance is the story of a headstrong female doctor who travels to Greece and has made a commitment in her life. She is tempted by life’s circumstances to change her mind and break her commitment and thus the conflict in her life torments her.

In my book Love Letters, a successful entrepreneur is intrigued by the love letters she finds in some old books at a flea market and decides to track down the author. She is fascinated and touched by the tenderness and love he writes in the letters. Then she finally meets him and that's when the story really begins.

Many readers have compared my books to the writings of Nicholas Sparks, James Patterson and Nora Roberts. I have no difficulty in finding and using a strong female voice. It surrounds us and all we have to do is listen for it.

WOW: Excellent advice! You mention quite a few authors whose work your books have been compared to. Are these the authors who inspire you? What have you learned from reading their books?

Bryan: The authors who inspired me from an early age on would have to be Daphne du Maurier, John Cheever, Nicholas Sparks and of course O. Henry. Their view of the world is so fresh and necessary and sometimes quirky. They taught me first and foremost to tell a good story, don’t disappoint your readers and for god’s sake, never bore them. As an up and coming author, I think I have accomplished that in my writings and my readers apparently agree.

WOW: All four authors are among my favorites. Okay, Bryan, you have conquered a WOW! contest, you have penned a number of books. What's next in your writing career?

Bryan: What’s next? Lots! I am putting the final touches on a new book entitled, Indie- A Female Vigilante. Early reader responses to my latest book about a headstrong independent woman have been fantastic. Pre-orders for this book have been incredibly strong. I expect it to be released in July of this year.

Catawampus is the next book in the romantic Nick Ryan Mystery Series and and will be available in bookstores in late August. Nick is a down to earth investigator who uses cold hard logic rather than special effects to solve his cases. He has lost Katie, the love of his life and he slowly recovers as he tries to find his way in the world.

And, a collection of my best and award winning romantic short stories is due out late August or early September. The new book is titled A Box of Chocolates.

It is going to be a busy summer for me. All of my books are available worldwide in both e-Book and paperback format through at Books By Bryan Mooney and also at Barnes and Noble, Nook, I-Pad and most other electronic media.

WOW: Thanks for sharing this information, Bryan. I’m sure our readers will want to check out more of your writing. Again, congratulations, and wishes for continued success.

by LuAnn Schindler

1 comment:

  1. Nice twist in The Mountain...didn't see that one coming.


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