Sunday, January 23, 2011

Interview with P.I. Barrington

P.I. Barrington, after an extended detour through the entertainment industry, has finally succumbed to the career of writing that has chased her down over the years! She lives in Southern California and is an avid ancient history buff, a determined gardener, and occasionally dabbles in art and music.

[Anne] When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer, P.I.?

[P.I.] I really didn't have much of a choice; it chased me down no matter how far I tried to run! I always end up writing in one form or another. I was Editor of my college newspaper and from that got hired as a reporter for my hometown newspaper, when I went into radio, I was the News Director, journalism again! Finally after working in entertainment, music in particular, I had a long break and decided to try my hand at fiction which was what I really wanted to write. I had a few short stories published, very tongue-in-cheek urban fantasy before I really made a serious attempt at finishing a novel.

[Anne] You have a new release. Please tell us about it.

[P.I.] Final Deceit closes the Future Imperfect trilogy which is a near-future crime thriller romantic suspense—what a mouthful, lol! It wraps up the two cliffhangers of Crucifying Angel and Miraculous Deception and also explains the characters and their relationships as well as resolves the unanswered questions and mysteries that started with the first book (Crucifying Angel).

[Anne] Sounds really great. What inspired you to write this it?

[P.I.] You know, it's funny but I've just started realizing that when I start either a book or a series/trilogy, I usually know the first and last lines of the book(s). That's how it happened with Future Imperfect. I knew the first line and the ending line of the books and (except for the epilogue which existed vaguely) and it just worked itself out from there. Final Deceit is the finale in more ways than one and I knew it had to be big and I knew it had to sort of wrap itself around itself to finish the storylines. Plus, I got involved with the characters and had to see for myself what was going to happen to them, lol.

[Anne] How did you go about researching your book?

[P.I.] I've been to Las Vegas a lot of times so I had basic visuals on the area but I did look at maps and aerial shots a little after I'd begun the trilogy just to double check and I did a tiny bit of research on animal mutations resulting from pollution of the early mining days. That was to be able to set up the environmental destruction of the area, the city especially. I didn't realize I set the military research facility pretty much on the actual spot where Area 51 sits until I went back to research something else and panicked until I figured that it would all work out even better that way. And nobody ever asks me about this but I also did some thinking about the technology I put in the series. It's almost like readers just accept it as matter of fact plausibility, which I guess I should be happy about! But things like the Sedadone foam spray for crowd control and the Ghoster technology are my own inventions. They really are based on basic biology of DNA sloughing for Ghoster and Sedadone and the tank cannon actually came from my thinking about real non-violent forms of crowd control.

[Anne] Do you have anything new in the works?

[P.I.] Well, I've got a bunch of projects going on right now and I'm trying to focus on one at a time to get at least something completed. I'm attempting a real fantasy which is something I tried to write in my teens but really lacked the discipline and world building techniques. I'm planning to make that a trilogy as well. But, like all of them, it'll have to sit in the queue until I finish the one I'm working on right now. I'm still superstitious in talking about projects before they happen though.

[Anne] What is your writing process like? Are you a plotter or a pantser?

[P.I.] Probably a little of both but more so a pantser. The closest I ever get to plotting out is writing disorganized notes on plot ideas and characters and conflict—a partial sentence here or there with an arrow pointing at something else on the bottom of a page—as I said very disorganized but just to not forget my idea. I actually did wake up in the middle of the night about two months ago with a perfect plot point but didn't write it down and now it's gone probably forever! Mainly, I know the first and last lines of the book or story and just start at the beginning and write. People are always telling me, "you can go back and correct and edit" but for some weird reason, I can't even if I need to do major rewrites of sections after the book is done. I just have to start and continue to the end and try to edit as I go along.

[Anne] If you could be anyone of your characters, which one would you chose to be and why?

[P.I.] I know she's not the main character but I've grown to love Amy Strand. She's I think closest to my personality in that she's an uncontrollable smart ass and she tries to hide her emotions behind a veneer of toughness. But she's also funny, she and Nick Kincaid are my comic relief in Future Imperfect. Their scenes, especially in Final Deceit were my favorite to write! I like Payce but she's much more cerebral, much more of a thinker than Amy who just goes directly at things in blunt kind of way.

[Anne] Say your publisher has offered to fly you anywhere in the world to do research on an upcoming book, where would you most likely want to go? (Okay so maybe this isn’t very likely to happen but since I’m asking the questions…)

[P.I.] The Middle East. All of it. Egypt, Iran(Persia), Israel, the whole shebang! I love ancient history in that area of the world and after I got through weeping with joy, I'd be in my khaki shirt and shorts digging away on some archaeological site! Oh, and can't forget my favorite civilization: Roman! Gaius Julius Caesar and I walking up to the Senate…forgot to tell you I am a geekette!

[Anne] Sounds like a blast to me! Okay, here’s another fun question. You’ve just been informed that your latest release was a NY Times bestseller and Hollywood wants to turn it into a movie. What actors would you choose to play your main characters?

[P.I.] Wow! Payce Halligan came from a headshot of a blonde woman shooting target practice and Gavin McAllister is loosely—operative word here—loosely—on John Nettles—at least his voice is. John has that British understated speaking style—you could stab him in the foot and he'd never raise that voice! I've never been able to cast Gavin successfully though I did age Jared Leto at one point. All the others have actors attached in my head. Nick Kincaid came from a shot of Alain DeLon smoking a cigarette; Ali Larder IS Amy Strand to a T; I demoted Jared Leto to Logan McKaye since I was never really happy with him as Gavin. Georgene Channing can only be played by Tamara Tunie. Those are the majors. I have the other characters but it would take a year to list the casting, lol!

[Anne] What type of books do you like to read when you’re not writing?

[P.I.] I read ancient historical though not necessarily romance or even Christian (though I do prefer Christian) but anything about ancient Middle Eastern civilizations. It's odd because I write futuristic crime thrillers most of the time, but for me ancient history is my addiction of choice!

[Anne] Name three things you can’t live without (excluding spouses and family because that’s a given).

[P.I.] Music, books, pen/paper.

[Anne] Great choices! What advice would you give to any aspiring writers out there?

[P.I.] Finish the book. Once you finish, the rest fall into place. But you need discipline to finish that first one. And two, be your toughest critic. If you are, you'll almost always put out something of quality which also enhances your drive toward success.

[Anne] That’s sound advice, P.I. Now, where can we find you on the web?

[P.I.]; Twitter/PIBARRINGTON; Facebook: P.i. Barrington;

[Anne] And where can we find your books?


[Anne] Is there anything else you’d like to add?

[P.I.] Just that I love to hear from readers directly! I love to hear their opinions on my work! They can email me at but be patient it may take a little while but I will get back to them!

[Anne] Thanks again, P.I. I wish you the best in all your writing endeavors!