Recent Interview on the Pembroke Sinclair Blog

Welcome Beneath the Veil, a Place Where the Dead Have Never Left...

With his life turned upside down, a terminally ill man seeks answers from a family he never knew. Barry Ryan, a successful sculptor, goes on a journey to find his roots and the extraordinary family that somehow evades death and ties him to a terrifying future. 

Driven to find answers, Barry is joined by his sister and her boyfriend on the road to Auraria, a mysterious ghost town where terrible secrets lie hidden since the days of gold and greed. 

All is well until they cross the city limits and fall beneath the veil, a place where the bizarre rules the living, and the living are prey trapped in an ever-changing web. 

Generations of conflict come to light as these unfortunate visitors struggle to survive. Echoes of the past are lethal here...in this place where the dead have never left.

Q) What inspired you to write this story?

 Three years ago, I relocated from South Florida to a small town in the mountains of North Georgia. Located nearby is a ghost town named Auraria. Generations ago, Auraria was a bustling place with banks, hotels and people. Almost overnight, this town built on gold, sweat and blood dried up and withered away.

Whenever I drive past the town’s dilapidated buildings, I wonder, what if the residents there never really left. What if instead, they remained trapped in a terrifying place, shielded from the modern world? Each time I drive that twisting country road and pass that forgotten place I think that maybe like Auraria, other civilizations existed before us and perished with nothing left behind.

Mile after mile, month after month, these ideas took shape and became Beneath the Veil.

Q) How long did it take you to write?

 This book took me a year to complete. 

Q) What is your favorite thing about writing?

 I enjoy the solitude and ability to sit and think. It’s rare these days to take time to turn off the stream of data coming from computers, television, radio, phones and everything else. Writing gives me the time to unplug and use my imagination.

Q) What is your least favorite thing about writing?

 Proofreading, of course! I don’t know many people who like re-reading a manuscript over and over again. The first time through is fun, and oddly strange if you let the work simmer for a while. I often surprise myself with plot turns, forgotten once I wrote them.

Q) If you could be any famous person for one day, who would you be and why?

 Warren Buffett. I’d spend the day eating McDonald’s, drinking Coke and transferring money to my bank account.

Q) What is the oldest thing in your fridge and how old is it?

 A bottle of champagne from the ’96 Atlanta Olympics. By now, it might be better on eBay than in a glass.

Q) What can readers expect from you in the future?

My third book, The Knights of Moonshine, will be out Spring, 2014. It’s a story about three good old boys who plan a weekend of hunting and hard drinking. Instead, they become the prey when they encounter a gang of bikers who also happen to be werewolves.

Posted on August 5, 2013 and filed under Interview, Blog.

Twist and Shout. The Sounds of Hell's Fury

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Last month, while enjoying a quiet evening at home, my house was hit by Tornado. For most of the day the news stations were covering storm activity throughout the Atlanta area and posting county by county watches and warnings. By ten o'clock that night the coverage was over and programming returned to its usual monotonous lineups. I casually glanced out the window to the west and noticed a strange looking sky filled with flashes of lightning. I called my wife over to look at dark purple clouds painted across the horizon. We shrugged off the odd spectacle and returned to the kitchen to fret over a bowl of overcooked chocolate that failed to melt, leaving a plate of organic strawberries unadorned.

The sounds we heard next turned the burnt chocolate into a very small concern. In fact, the sounds were so bad, so disturbing, and so unique that only one thought occurred to us...RUN! And that's exactly what we did. Within seconds, we reached the door that leads to the stairwell to our basement with our four dogs (who all listened at the same time for the first time) while an F2 tornado shredded our house. We opened the door to the basement and were pounded by howling wind and debris as the basement doors blew inward.

We struggled down the darkened staircase and crouched against the concrete walls. As fast as it all started, the storm spun past. The house was quiet now, but being accustomed to hurricanes, we chose to wait before we emerged from our cement cocoon. Within minutes the phone began ringing with calls from concerned neighbors and soon there was a battalion of firemen and police swarming our front yard.

I chanced a look upstairs and found the damage to be far worse than we ever imagined. The inside of the darkened house was covered in a blanket of snowy white insulation. Most of the roof was torn off and it began to rain inside the house. In a now humorous moment of numb thinking, I placed a bucket under a leak in the remnants of a bedroom ceiling. My moment of futility was interrupted by a fireman ordering us all out of the dangerous structure once known as home.

 During the days following the storm nearly everyone we encountered asked the same questions. What did it sound like? Did you hear the train? The answer is it sounded worse than anything I ever heard before and more importantly, it sounded like nothing I had heard before. Picture a giant can being crushed while wind chimes are beaten with a sledge hammer. The sound was so bad and so wrong that all you could do was run.

Days after the storm, my second book, Beneath the Veil,  was published. Strangely, one scene in the book includes a devastating storm. The month before the tornado hit, a herd of cows stamped through my backyard with my dog Petey in hot pursuit. Earlier that week, I wrote a similar scene in a manuscript I'm working on called The Knights of Moonshine.  Was I prophetic in my writings or simply cursed by my own words? Probably neither, but as a writer I now realize that I would be wise to be a little kinder to my characters, or just maybe, I'll end up as one of them.