Morgan is looking forward to junior high school and all the adventures it holds in store for her. But after a collision on the volleyball court, she wakes up on the first day of school trapped inside her mom’s teenage body circa 1974. It doesn’t take long for Morgan to discover that living life as a seventh-grader in the ‘70s and dealing with everything going on in her mom’s life back then — from uncool parents, to annoying older brothers, balancing friendships, and to ultimately doing what she can to survive bullying at the hands of the school’s biggest jock — is anything but groovy.
Check out my newest book, Anything But Groovy, available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle. I was honored to be interviewed recently by Ellen Gable Hrkach, who’s not only a talented writer, but an outstanding publisher and someone whom I’m honored to call my friend…
Where did you get the idea for Anything But Groovy?
The idea for Anything But Groovy came from experiences I had as a junior high school student growing up in a small Midwest city. Those years were so pivotal in my life that I was able to clearly recall countless events and places that served as the background for this story.
This book is very different from your previous books (Heaven Intended Series: historical romance) because it’s a time travel book set in current times and in the 1970s. Are the characters based on real people and is this story based on actual events that happened? Or are the characters and events mostly fictional?
Like any book I write, characters are based loosely on people that I’ve known throughout my lifetime. The events are based in part on things that I experienced in my growing up years. That being said, I’ll stick with the disclaimer from the front of the book: This book is a work of fiction. Although the setting for this novel takes place in the 1970s, some of the names, characters and incidents are products of the author’s imagination. Real events and characters are used fictitiously.
I really enjoyed the TV, music, toy and food references that really transport the reader back to those days. Do you have a great memory or did you use a diary/journal to write about all those 70s references?
Thank you, I enjoyed reliving the pop-culture references myself! (Man, we watched a lot of TV, considering we only had three channels to choose from!) I do have my diaries from my growing up years, but, to be honest, I did not reference even one of them when writing the book. For some reason, my experiences from my junior high years are seared into my brain. Maybe I tucked them away because I knew in my heart that some day I’d write a book about that critical time in my life.
What do you hope the reader will take away from reading Anything But Groovy?
I hope this book will be an enjoyable blast-from-the-past for people who lived through those years, an eye-opening read for teens in this day and age to see what life was like for their parents and grandparents growing up in the “Wonder Years,” and that this will be a book that different generations will read together to create some conversations about the joys and challenges of growing up, no matter in which era.
You are a contributor to another book just released titled Treasures: Visible and Invisible. What is the name of your story and can you give us a brief synopsis?
My story is Lucky and Blessed which tells the tale of two teens, Ambrose and Honora, living in 1540 during the Reformation, and how they help each other make it through a difficult time. There’s a good chance that this will be a full-length novel somewhere down the road.
Who are some of your favorite authors and what do you like about their books?
As a huge fan of history, historic fiction is my preferred genre, and I was first introduced to it by some very talented authors who specialized in “bodice-rippers.” I’ve always preferred clean romance, so I was so happy to be introduced to the Catholic Writers Guild. There are some outstanding authors in that group. It would be hard to name every author that I admire from that group, but here’s a shout out to one of my favorites, Ellen Gable, who writes the style of books that I truly enjoy reading.
Are you working on any other writing projects? If so, what are they?
There’s always something on the drawing board! I just finished writing the fourth book in my Heaven Intended series called A Freedom Such as Heaven Intended. A Faith Such as Heaven Intended will be next up. Right now I’m in the beginning stages of a time travel book where a teenage girl working at a golf course is hit by lightning and travels back in time to the oldest golf course in the world, St. Andrews, and has to learn to navigate life and love during the late 1600s. Lucky and Blessed will be expanded when time permits. In addition, I’m working on a screenplay for a movie and pursuing turning the Heaven Intended series into a set of movies or a limited-run television show on a streaming service.