A Colorado native, Peg Brantley is a member of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and Sisters in Crime. She and her husband make their home southeast of Denver, sharing it with the occasional pair of mallard ducks and their babies, snapping turtles, peacocks, assorted birds, foxes and a deer named Cedric.
Learn more about Peg by logging into her website at: http://www.pegbrantley.com.
Denise: Having focused 25 years of your life on owning businesses, financing real estate and selling products, do you feel you are more “at home” being an author?”
Peg: That’s an easy one! That previous life with those previous jobs doesn’t even feel like it belongs to me. I’m in a terrific place right now and I love it.
Denise: Did you write short stories before novels?
Peg: No. Short stories really require an understanding of craft. The writer needs to condense both the story and character arcs in a dramatic way. Since I’ve learned a bit more, I enjoy writing a short story every once in awhile—even garnering an honorable mention in a super-short story contest a few years ago.
Denise: How did you begin your journey as a writer?
Peg: My bonus son suffered a stroke when he was only 39. We moved him in with us to assist in his rehabilitation. My home-based business took a nosedive during that time. After he’d been with us for about two years, the thought finally entered my mind that as long as I was home all day anyway, I might as well write a book. Of course, I didn’t realize it would take me as many years as it did to learn. I may not be fast, but I’m slow.
Denise: How have you benefited from being a member of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers and Sisters in Crime?
Peg: Mostly support from those who are in the same place.
Denise: In “Red Tide,” Jamie Taylor and her human remains detection dog are on the path to revealing bodies buried for more than a decade. Was she assigned this case or does she have personal reasons for the investigation? What inspired you to write this novel?
Peg: Taylor’s day job is in a bank. Her avocation is working with her dogs on a volunteer basis as needed, and as she can get time away from the bank. She definitely has personal reasons for doing what she does. Her mother was buried alive several years ago. The inspiration for the story was the result of a news article about a man who had died in prison. Among he personal effects was a photograph. Not of a person, or an event, or even much of a place. It was a picture of an open field. My question was why would someone keep a photo of something that was of no significance, unless it was?
Denise: “The Missings” touches upon a frightening possibility. How difficult was it to explore this realm of unimaginable horror?
Peg: I guess I should be embarrassed by the fact that it wasn’t difficult, but that’s the truth. We have a lot of “throw away” people in our society and that’s a shame. We also have a need for openness and awareness regarding organ donation.
Denise: In “The Sacrifice,” what horrible reality is former lawman Mex Anderson trying to cope with?
Peg: Mex refused to be corrupted by the drug cartels in Mexico. As punishment to him, and a clear signal to any other law enforcement officials who were thinking about doing the same thing, they gunned down everyone in Mex’s family except for one of his sisters.
Denise: How is he trying to deal with his loss?
Denise: Who has found their way to his door?
Peg: The current head of the cartel responsible for the murders of Mex’s family.
Denise: Can Mex learn the truth and have his revenge or will he be haunted by this tragedy forever?
Peg: Mex does learn the truth. Revenge is a different matter.
Denise: What are you currently writing and does it continue to have a Mexican theme?
Peg: I’m working on my fourth book set in Aspen Falls. In this one, I’ll be bringing back Jamie and her dogs (she now has an accelerant detection dog) and some of the other characters in both Red Tide and The Missings.
Denise: What formats are your books available in and how can we order them?
Peg: My books are all available in paperback wherever books are sold, and as ebooks for the Kindle app through Amazon. The Missings is very close to having an audiobook available that I think will be outstanding.