Featuring author Constance Phillips and her new book, Resurrecting Harry, is a real treat! I had the pleasure of reading this beautiful story and was captivated by the characters, story and the writing itself.
Constance Phillips lives in Ohio with her husband, two ready-to-leave-the-nest children, and four canine kids. Her perfect fantasy vacation would involve hunting Dracula across Europe with her daughter, who also digs that kind of stuff. When she’s not writing about fairies, shifters, vamps, and guardian angels, she’s working side-by-side with her husband in their hardwood flooring business.
Constance is actively involved in her local Romance Writers of America chapter (MVRWA) and the Southeast Michigan chapter of the United States Pony Club. When not writing or enjoying the outdoors, she loves reality television or can be found at a Rick Springfield concert (just look for the pink Converse high tops).
For more on Constance and Resurrecting Harry read on!
About Resurrecting Harry
Can the greatest escape artist ever known break the grim reaper’s chains to save the only woman he’s ever loved?
In order to save Bess from self-destruction, Harry Houdini puts his afterlife on the line by entering a wager with purgatory’s keeper. He gives Harry a younger face and body, and a new name: Erich Welch.
Bess clings to his promise to deliver a coded message from beyond the grave, determined to provide the bridge for him to cross, even if that means befriending her husband’s sworn enemy.
Erich needs to help Bess over her loss and put her on the road to healing, but will any good come from resurrecting Harry?
Will Erich be able to help Bess recover from her loss and will any good come from resurrecting Harry?
Now let’s shine the spotlight on Connie!
Maer: Thank you so very much for joining us today, Connie. I’m sure my readers will want to know more about Resurrecting Harry and you, so let’s get started. This is such a fascinating subject choice. What gave you the idea to write about the Houdinis, specifically after Harry’s death?
Constance: The kids and I had been talking about the séances that Bess Houdini held for many years on the anniversary of Harry’s death. (It was probably near Halloween.) The next day I was running some errands – I always do my best story brainstorming in the car – and the idea of Harry Houdini really escaping death came to me. I toyed with it for a few days and then sat down at the computer and wrote the first chapter (excerpt here) . It just sort of spilled out of me and I knew it was a story I had to write.
Maer: How much research did you do into the lives of the Houdini’s, the location and the late 1920s when the book takes place?
Constance: I wrote those first two chapters with Harry and Jaden, and then I knew I had to do at least a little research. I read a couple books on his life and did some internet searches on he and Bess and the twenties. I wanted the knowledge about their lives to build characters, though, not recount facts.
The way I looked at it was the minute Erich Welch and Bess collide on the street, Bess’s life is changed. I was writing an “alternate timeline” kind of story. Erich, is – but isn’t – Harry.
It’s fiction, with nods to some events in the Houdini’s lives and the time period.
Maer: Do you consider Erich, Bess or both as the main character?
Constance: I started writing a book about an escape artist who did the impossible and escaped death, but it didn’t take me too long to realize this was Bess’s book. Her character goes through this huge growth arc and the romantic happily-ever-after became something she achieved instead of something she was given.
Maer: What other character was your favorite to write and why?
Constance: It would have to be Jaden. For Erich, Jaden is this big puzzle. He speaks in riddles, needles Erich and pushes him to face things about his past. Writing that character who has this veil of mystery and isn’t a cookie cutter of what he’s supposed to be was so much fun.
Maer: That was the impression I had, as well. Nice to know I got it right. What colors would you choose to describe Erich and Bess?
Constance: Bess is easy: bright red, the color of passion. She feels everything so deeply and loves so completely. Erich: blue…maybe green. He’s moody, a little envious at first. At times he’s regretful.
Maer: What authors do you enjoy reading?
Constance: Recently I’ve been enjoying our fellow Crescent Moon Press authors. Sasha Summers, Aaron Michael Ritchey, Shawnna Romkey, Jody A Kessler. Two of my long-time favorites are Sherrilyn Kenyon and J.R. Ward.
Maer: Constance, can you share a bit about your current project?
Constance: At the moment, I’m working on a contemporary manuscript. The heroine is faced with having to help her suddenly ill father come up with a balloon payment on his mortgage. She forced to take on a job that’s not usually done by women. That’s all I’m willing to say about it right now.
Maer: Hmmm…sound intriguing. Do you have any hobbies and if so, what are they?
Constance: I love to read, of course. I’ve recently become interested in making jewelry and crafted both of the bracelets I gave away at the CMP Angels Facebook Party last week. There will be another set given away at our twitter party next week.
Maer: What influenced you to write in the paranormal genre? Do you write in others?
Constance: I mostly read paranormal. I love the whole fantasy world and fantasy beings. When it comes to writing paranormal, I like building a world from the ground up. I also write contemporary stories and would love to someday tackle suspense…but I’m a little intimidated by that.
Maer: What music, if any, do you like to listen to while writing?
Constance: I have to listen to music that reflects the state of mind of my characters. When I was working on Bess scenes, one of my favorite songs to listen to was “Taking Chances” by Celine Dion.
***”What do you say to taking chances,
What do you say to jumping off the edge?
Never knowing if there’s solid ground below
Or hand to hold, or hell to pay,
What do you say,”
Just sort of epitomizes the decisions Bess has to make.
*** Taking Chances written by Kara DioGuardi and Dave Stewart
Constance, thanks so very much for stopping by and giving us some insight into your novel. I really did enjoy reading it and look forward to your next one!
You can stay updated with Constance at the following links: