I’m pleased to have author, Cheryl Tardif, as my guest today.
Patricia: Cheryl, where did you grow up? Did your childhood contribute to your desire to be a writer?
Cheryl: I grew up all over; my father was in the military. We lived in various places in BC, Canada, such as Vancouver, Nanaimo and Masset, plus Edmonton (where I now reside). And I spent three glorious years in Bermuda. That was pure bliss. Being uprooted and forced to leave friends behind and make new ones made me a shy kid, and I turned to reading as my escape. I read novels far ahead of my grade, with adult subject matter and content, mainly because that's what was around my house. It was through reading that my love for writing began to grow. I was in awe of writers who could create worlds and characters that were so achingly real, especially my idols, Stephen King and Dean Koontz. Back then, I was Cheryl Kaye, and I wanted nothing more than to write a book that would sit on the same alphabetized shelf.
Patricia: Where do you live now? Do you use that locale for settings in your novels?
Cheryl: I now live in Edmonton, Alberta, a city of over one million. But I live on the edge of town; I'm not a city girl. Edmonton is a setting in my most recent psychological suspense, SUBMERGED, and it also makes an appearance in CHILDREN OF THE FOG, a supernatural suspense. All of my novels to date have been set in areas of Canada.
Patricia: What inspired you to write your most recent novel?
Cheryl: My fear of drowning—or to be more precise, my fear of being trapped in a submerged vehicle—was the inspiration for SUBMERGED. In fact, most of my novels explore basic fears and/or societal issues. I've learned that fears are very common worldwide, and I'm not the only one who has imagined what it must be like to be in a car that is slowly sinking underwater. I was also inspired by a high school friend who overcame drug addiction after becoming hooked while on the job as a paramedic. Not everyone survives addiction—I know that deeply, personally. So SUBMERGED is my way of honoring those who have fought their demons and won.
Patricia: When did you “know” that you wanted to be a writer?
Cheryl: My mother would probably tell you it was when she found me scribbling in a Dr. Seuss book when I was a toddler. She was horrified, and when she asked me what on earth I was doing, I told her I was writing the story. Apparently, I thought The Cat in the Hat needed a rewrite. I don't ever recall not wanting to write.
Patricia: Name three of your favorite authors in the mystery/suspense genre. What makes them your favorites?
Cheryl: Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and J.D. Robb/aka Nora Roberts. King is the "king" of suspense so it's probably obvious why he's my favorite. He can take the simplest things and make them creepy. He can give me nightmares like no other. Koontz gives memorable characters, suspense with a softer edge, more emotional, perhaps. And J.D. Robb's In Death series is my all-time favorite mystery series because Eve Dallas is such a deep character, with a mysterious back story, and the other secondary characters add such humor, all the while a mystery unweaves before you.
Cheryl Kaye Tardif is an award-winning, international bestselling Canadian suspense author. Her novels include Submerged, Divine Justice, Children of the Fog, The River, Divine Intervention, and Whale Song, which New York Times bestselling author Luanne Rice calls "a compelling story of love and family and the mysteries of the human heart...a beautiful, haunting novel." Cheryl also enjoys writing short stories inspired mainly by her author idol Stephen King, and this has resulted in Skeletons in the Closet & Other Creepy Stories and Remote Control (novelette eBook), and she's written a non-fiction marketing book, How I Made Over $42,000 in 1 Month Selling My Kindle eBooks. Under the pseudonym of Cherish D'Angelo, Cheryl also penned Lancelot's Lady, a contemporary romantic suspense.
Cheryl's website: http://www.cherylktardif.com
Official blog: http://www.cherylktardif.blogspot.com
Links to mystery/suspense titles (eBooks):