Interview with David Burnett, Author of Ghosts Of Love

04 May 2021

What can you tell us about your new release, Ghosts Of Love?

Richard McNeil has lost every woman he has ever loved. His wife, Lisa, passed away in childbirth, leaving him a single father with an infant daughter. His daughter, Emily, now grown, is leaving him to get married. He recently broke off his relationship with Kim, his almost-fiancé. On the weekend of his daughter’s wedding, memories of all three haunt him like ghosts, and we learn of his life and his relationships with the three women through his memories.

Most problematic is his relationship with Kim. His “abandonment” by his wife and daughter must be accepted, he finally realizes, but what about Kim? He’s not really certain what happened. She had suddenly changed. She’d been cruel. Or so it had seemed to Richard. Is it not possible for them to reconcile and to be happy?

What or who inspired you to become an author?

I had long wanted to write. In college, my initial major was in journalism, and I’d planned to concentrate on learning to write human interest stories rather than breaking news. However, I was seduced by my first psychology course, and I didn’t look back, until years later. When I began to play with writing my first book, I’d no idea how to start. How could I possible write a book if I didn’t know he entire plot? How could I plot an entire book before I began to write? I know some authors do this, but I couldn’t−still can’t− imagine it! I came across a book about writing a first draft in ninety days whose author did not assume I had a plot, just an idea, and he guided me through the process of developing it.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

“Best” means I continue to think about the story long after I’ve turned the last page. All of these (six, I know) were completed years ago.

 To Kill a Mockingbird

Discovery of Witches

When You Were Gone

The DaVinci Files

Love of My Youth

Come Find me

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?

I’ve read a number of Susannah Kearsley’s time travel romances. I’m always interested in the mechanism through which characters move from one time to another and what they can and cannot do once they arrive in a new time period. I’d want to know how writing a time slip story differs from writing a straight historical romance.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

I enjoy telling a good story, and I enjoy imagining what my readers will think and feel as they read my book.

What is a typical day like for you?

I usually awaken early, make coffee and write for a couple of hours. We live at Folly Beach, near Charleston, and I walk on the beach and take photographs of the birds and the ocean. and I have quite a few images of egrets and gulls.

In the afternoon, I read and upload my photos. When it is warm, I sometimes go for a bike ride. I cook dinner in the evening.

You’re right. My day seems terribly unexciting when I see it in print. But I enjoy it!

What scene from Ghosts Of Love was your favorite to write?

Since I like the entire book, this one is really hard! I truly enjoyed writing about Kim, Richard’s almost-fiancé, “almost” because they were talking of marriage, they were assuming marriage, but they’d never actually agreed to marriage.

In on scene, we see the first time the two of them met. Richard was a psychology professor at the College. Kim was a professor of art. Kim had been summoned to the Dean’s office to meet Richard since he had been recruited to assist her with a research project. She believed she needed no one’s help, and she was prepared to dislike him.

The Dean typically looked and behaved like a businessman, and Kim assumed Richard would be just like him. She had come from a studio class and was wearing a paint-stained smock. Richard wore a herringbone coat, khakis, and a bow tie. Better than the Dean, Kim thought, but stuffy, still. She approached him, about to make some smart comment when she noticed his tie. Instead of the stripes or dots one commonly sees in such ties, the design depicted Rorschach inkblots.

“We were discussing personality assessment,” Richard told her. “I felt it was appropriate.”

In addition to his laid-back demeanor, Richard wasn’t bad looking. Kim decided she could work with him.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

The words sola Deo gloria appear at the end of several of my books. “To God alone be the glory.”

David Burnett is the author of the new book Ghosts Of Love

Connect with David Burnett

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