Friday, June 11, 2010

Guest Author Series - Welcome P.I. Barrington

P.I. Barrington is a fellow author at Desert Breeze Publishing and lives in Riverside, CA. She's the author of the Future Imperfect series and is here to talk about her latest release, "Miraculous Deception." Here's a little about Patti:

P.I. Barrington has returned to her original career choice of fiction writing after a long detour in the entertainment industry. Her experience includes work as a newspaper journalist, radio air talent, and at a major record company. She lives in Southern California with her dog and wildlife in her rural neighborhood.

Welcome, Patti. Now onto the questions!

STEPH: Can you tell us a little about Future Imperfect, Book 2: Miraculous Deception?

Miraculous Deception picks up almost immediately where Book One: Crucifying Angel ends. This book is a little different without the breakneck speed of CA but, I think it’s better in terms of character development and it has a few surprises. Betrayal, real and perceived, plays a big role in the story line.

STEPH: Do you cast your characters? If so, what does casting brining to your characters? Who is Gavin? Payce?

Always. Many times I have the casting before the character is developed. Casting helps with so many things—facial and verbal expression, physical activity levels, vulnerability or lack of it. In other words, can the characters physically fight to defend themselves or someone else? Do they have an angry expression on their face and how does that affect anyone interacting with them? Are they verbally sarcastic? Are they meek and timid? Casting kicks off so many possibilities in writing: theme, conflict, resolution. It’s invaluable. STEPH: Yes, exaculty! I agree. I love cast my characters because of the same things you mentioned!

Gavin McAllister is the first ever character that has been impossible for me to cast, I’ve never had that happen before. I originally cast Jared Leto as Gavin but he just doesn’t that world weary look that many cops have so I had to demote him—actually I picture him for a new character—that’s all I want to reveal right now.
Payce came from a shot of a woman target practicing in an indoor shooting range. At the time I didn’t realize I was setting up her personal conflicts until the story materialized. I have shots of all my characters, some I have only one precious shot, others I have a lot of shots in different settings, lighting, black & white and color. Nick Kincaid was from a shot of actor Alain Delon but from only one shot and it doesn’t look like he does now. Georgene Channing came from a shot of a model in a hairstyling magazine.

STEPH: What was the inspiration behind the Future Imperfect series?

My Desert Breeze Publishing editor, Gail R. Delaney had a seminal idea for an environmental breakdown overall setting. I took that and expanded on it to include the economic breakdown as well. (I swear it wasn’t due to the real economic crisis going on now!) That let me get away with breaking the rules about police and hospital protocol and procedure—civil service in 2032 Las Vegas now has to dispense with a lot of rules to just keep the city functioning as best they can. So police do triple duty, stressed to the max, and the coroner has to double up on being both the Coroner and the head of the city hospital. Also, that shot of Payce just opened up the storyline for me, lol!

STEPH: Why did you pick Las Vegas for the setting of the series?

Its crazy beautiful. It’s Sin City personified but at times it just has an incredible energy and physical beauty especially at sunset when the neon and the natural collide. And it’s the kind of setting and area that are perfect for disintegration of a place and its society. Another major part was Gavin being from cool and green Britain to the sometimes painfully arid and hot temperature of Vegas and Nevada. He’s out of his element there but he’s escaping a torturous past by going to someplace completely new and different. That’s Las Vegas to a tee—he wants to leave many times but he stays for Payce.

STEPH: What's next on your writing plate?

I’m finishing up a novella for a Desert Breeze sci-fi anthology due out in October. My sister and I have a cozy type mystery book that will be released in August this year as well. I have some secret projects as well but I’m too superstitious to talk about them!

STEPH: The Future Imperfect series is sci-fi/speculative fiction. What gravitates you toward that genre?

Boy that question begs a long answer. I think that it’s because the future whether near or far into the distance is wide open. Nobody really knows what the future holds especially technology-wise so you can kind of let loose with ideas that are out there. I also love the semi-military look and atmosphere that you can get with science fiction. I don’t know why, maybe it gives me a sense of power over impossible situations, or maybe I’m just a tech geek. Also for me, being an ancient history buff, it’s also about the psychology of humans. We really haven’t developed as a species regardless of our technological advances and I think that’s where a lot of our problems lie. Just because I can email you doesn’t make me a kinder person or even a responsible one and many people get the two confused. They think, “well we can go to the moon, we must be really advanced” when in reality we still have the same problems and even more with technology bringing in a new set of moral and ethical problems such as the debate over regulating the Internet. We’re still wishing and hoping for a future where our all problems with each other are a thing of the past. Anyone wanting to argue that point just has to look at the 9/11 tragedy.

People are still people and still have the same dilemmas we’ve had for thousands of years. And surprisingly, we still have some of the same technology! I went to the Pompeii exhibit a few years ago in LA and saw the identical gynecological instruments that are used today! No kidding! STEPH: That is wild! So unless we go too far with human recombinant DNA and mess with our genes and mutate into a different kind of being or species, people will pretty much always be people.

For me that’s what science fiction is about: people and their conflicts. Oh, and I love a man in a uniform!

STEPH: What other genres would you like to write or explore, if any?

I would love to write historical fiction and Christian historical fiction. At one point I wanted to write Christian sci-fi but I get a little too preachy so I’m leery of letting myself run away with me.

STEPH: What's the latest movie you saw at the movie theatre?

I think it was G.I. Joe. But honestly I was very disappointed. I was hoping for something close to Halo but it was just a lot of explosions and too much ridiculous special effects. At points it was just silly. Halo may be grim and violent but at least it has—yes I’m going to use that word again—verisimilitude.

STEPH: I see you live in Southern California. Can you share a little about it with us?

I’ve lived here virtually my entire life. I’ve always been proud of this state, happy to live here. It’s always had that sense of being the place that’s ‘happening’ to use an old phrase. Someone in Hollywood or talking about it called us the PR department of America and I think that’s true though sometimes we present a not so exemplary image. We’re the place of dreamers who truly believe they can make their dreams come true and even though there have been countless crushed and broken hearts and dreams, people still come here in droves with a sense of hope. I think both Los Angeles and New York City are the two places where a science fiction writer can get an idea of how a future society comprised of so many different citizens of race and species (alien) develops and exists. To put it simply, they’re great examples of world building. That’s just my opinion.

STEPH: Any hobbies you'd like to share?

I love gardening.

Book Two Future Imperfect: Miraculous Deception will release June 1, 2010 along with Book One: Crucifying Angel they can be purchased from,

Here’s a small excerpt from Miraculous Deception:

Gavin and Nick sat in Charlie's office, silent, shamefaced, bruised and most definitely hostile. The chief of police paced back and forth around his desk, beyond angry.

"Look at you -- both of you. You're like a couple of bruised up kindergarteners. I don't know what to say. I have never -- never -- had two detectives fighting each other like two drunks outside a bar. What the hell is the matter with you?"

Neither man answered.

"Nick?" Charlie waited.

"It's this asshole. He moves into Payce house and immediately starts boinking Amy Strand from Channel Eight."

Gavin opened his mouth to respond but never got the chance.

"You brought the press into this?" Charlie stared at Gavin, round-eyed.

"Well, not in so many words..." Gavin pressed two fingers against his black eye. "It was just, sort of... bad judgment. Besides that, nothing ha--"

"Bad judgment? I'll tell you what bad judgment is, McAllister. Bad judgment was the damned day I hired you."

Gavin said nothing. What could he say?

"That's putting it mildly,' Nick snorted. "Payce--"

"Whoa." Charlie held up an open palm. "I don't want to know what weird triangle you three have going here, though it's a safe bet Payce has no idea what's going on--"
"She doesn't," Gavin said in a tired voice. His eye began to ache.

"You made damn sure of that you British fu--"

"Nick!" Charlie said. "Enough already. Now, because of the scarcity of budget and personnel, I am not going to suspend you both or fire you -- which I should -- I am going to let you both off, each with a written warning." Charlie sat down behind his desk. "You two are going to have to work this out or I will fire you both and I'll make damn sure you won't be able to get a job as a security guard in a parking lot. Do you understand me?"

"We're still partners?" Nick deflated a little. Gavin understood the feeling.
"Yes. I can't think of a better punishment for the both of you. You can work it out or resign. That's your choice now boys. You are dismissed. Get out of my office." Charlie ignored them swiveling his chair around to gaze out his window at the rapidly rotting city of Las Vegas.

My website:

Patti, thanks for being here today

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