I read a lot as a writer and I’m often drawn to world news and current events. I remember reading an article about slavery and thinking, “slavery was abolished 150 years ago!” I think a lot of well-intentioned, well-read people are in the dark about what is going on to millions of women and children around the world. We live in our first world bubbles and think that third world issues never cross our borders. It’s egocentric, but I think we do it because life is easier to live everyday if you just don’t know. I’m drawn to the parts of our society that we sweep under the rug and don’t like to think about. The parts that make most people uncomfortable. That’s why I wanted to write about it. Because once you know, you can’t not know.
And so I started out to write a suspense novel about human trafficking. And then the whole thing just kind of took on a life of its own. When it was time for publication, there was a huge discussion about what genre to place the book under. I’m still not sure we found the right one! Paranormal was tossed around. Thriller. Crime drama. It’s all of those I guess. I kind of like that it isn’t pigeonholed!
There was no specific inspiration for the characters in Among the Shrouded. I knew I wanted to write about human trafficking and I wanted characters that were going to be tough enough but vulnerable enough to take us on that journey. Initially, I just had the idea for Mia to be able to see whether people were good or bad. I thought that ability would be an amazing gift for a police officer to have and would be helpful especially in hunting down human traffickers. I also knew that she wasn’t going to be able to see Thomas’ aura since would be the catalyst for their eventual connection. But once she couldn’t see his, I knew that he needed to have something special about him which kept her in the dark. I also knew that I wanted Kate to have some way to overcome what I knew I was going to have to do to her with regard to the trafficking. In the initial manuscript, neither Thomas nor Kate were aware of their abilities and they were much less pronounced. After the manuscript went through the first round of edits, it was suggested that I “beef up” their abilities. I decided to make them aware, just as Mia was, and I believe that led to a better cohesive story line in the end.
Sadly, I don't have any of the vision or intuition Mia possesses. In fact, I don’t have a single superpower. Unless lightning fast sock folding counts. In that case, I’ll make myself a cape to wear on laundry day!
This is were you get to read about what's going on inside my head. I apologize in advance - the place is a wreck.