An Interview with Gregory Jonathan Scott by Warren Collen.
Gregory Jonathan Scott is the Author of 2 amazing books. His latest release “The Plantation Affair” is currently being promo’d and we were lucky enough to get in a chat with him.
Warren: First of all, I’d like to ask you about The Plantation Affair. It was a real surprise to me when it became the fairy tale that it did. Where did the idea come from to do this?
Gregory: I’ve always loved the fairy tale concept and the one that stuck with me the most was Cinderella and her handsome prince. Love that tale. I do. For the longest time I’ve wondered what it would be like if the tale was told as a love story between two gentlemen. For this reason, I wrote the story, but decided to focus on what took place behind the scenes instead of the way the original story transpired and then abruptly ended as soon as the romance got started.
Warren: Did it start out to intentionally be that, or did it sort of develop as you were getting the ideas and getting the book started?
Gregory: The idea was in my head from the start, which I seem to believe it is with most authors, however as you move through the story, the book begins to write itself and spins in many different directions. I had a plan as to how I wanted the story to start, develop, and then finish, but was pleasantly thrilled at how it actually came out. Yes I strayed a bit, but the story was still portrayed the way I wanted it to be told.
Warren: I was intrigued by the characters Jeddah and the mirror man. I understand the basic thinking behind the mirror man, but you seem to have made him more than just a fairy godfather, but more of an all-knowing angel, if I may put it that way. More than just luck. And Jeddah was one of those characters that every person would love to have in their lives. Can you talk about these two a bit more, please?
Gregory: I believe a story needs several morsels of wonder to keep the reader intrigued. So yes, the Mirror man was one of those magical wonders who was meant to be an angel, guardian, or figment of the imagination and is definitely how I wanted to portray him, as well as Jeddah. My thoughts were to weave in the imaginary friends most of us had as a child who always seemed to be there when we needed them most. Unlike Jeddah, who mysteriously came and went as an actual person and everybody could see him, I kept The Mirror man solely in Logan’s head as a way to make him more personal to Logan as well as provide the illusion that he may not even exist.
Being that a bit of magic was needed to tap in on a fairy tale, these two characters were introduced in an angelic fashion without overloading the story and making it less believable.
These two enigmatic and magical figures were meant to be the guiding hands that brought Deklan and Logan together, who also understood them completely. We all need and would like somebody who we can easily relate to in our lives.
Warren: What kind, if any, research did you do for the book? It seemed to me that it was quite historically accurate, or at least as much as a fiction book can be. The relationship of the parents and children, the relationship of the owners to the farm workers, and the relationships between the workers themselves are just examples. And then also, the inequality of wealth, and the difference between the rich and the poor.
Gregory: To be honest, I started the book without much research just so that I could get what was in my head down on paper(msword). As mentioned earlier, the book wrote itself after the initial thought and idea. For instance, the time I chose for the affair was a bit more believable in eighteen seventy three instead of nineteen ninety three, at least I seem to think. It makes for a more historical event and far from what many readers are already familiar with, so it helps the imagination understand and believe the story could have actually happened. I also chose the major differences between the characters to give readers a better understanding of how difficult it can be for people I refer to as unique. Making Logan a cultural mix and a pauper pushed the envelope a little more and made the struggle stand out where I wanted it to be. With that, yes, I had to then backtrack and research photos, literature, history on the civil war and what actually took place during that time. It was fun and now I could probably be a history teacher after this one. Oh, and my trips to Savannah, Georgia and
Charleston, South Carolina helped me build the plantation home that I wrote into the book. Those homes were gorgeous and it amazed me that they had the capability to build such magnificent architecture back then with a handsaw and a wooden mallet. Amazing.
Warren: To slip to your first book, Heartbreak Beat, I am wondering what you have done in your life that made the planning and depiction of the concert so exciting? I could picture the stage show as it was going, and it was so exciting, much more than some you see live!
Gregory: Aaaaaah. You picked on a good one here. I have been to a few concerts and met some of the performers for brief moments. I have also, believe it or not, tried my hand at stage performance. That was a total bust and after my audition, was told I would be better with the props instead. Damn you Matthew Broderick, Damn you. I had to laugh that one off and just go with the flow. By doing this, I was able to see firsthand how setting up a stage took place. At the time I had no clue I would eventually write it into a book, but to say the least and by the order of life as we don’t seem to understand, this brief adventure was added to my life on a fluke because somebody else had a plan for me and knew that someday I would be using it to tell a tale. Funny how that works.
Warren: What made you decide to write a murder mystery as your first book? Heartbreak Beat was really exciting that way, and the suspense level was maintained during the climax of the book, and made it a very enjoyable murder mystery to read.
Gregory: My decision to make it a murder mystery entwined with a love story came to me when I felt a simple romance novel would have been too close to all the other books out on the market today. I wanted a story that was different from the rest and by writing suspense into the book did just that. Also by doing this, a whole new audience was tapped into.
Warren: How did you prepare and put together a book like that that keeps the people at the edge of their seats, and not give away the murderer? There were several characters that could have been the culprit, and it was fun to figure it out as I read. But I don’t understand how you can keep the clues to the level that it isn’t too easy to figure out, and therefore be anti-climactic! You didn’t do that, and kept the story alive the whole way through. How did you do that
Gregory: Truthfully speaking, that was the tough part. What I am about to mention may freak people out, but I had to think like a killer in a way that would make the reader or viewer wander in a direction I wanted them to go. A killer looks for ways to make you think one thing while they are actually doing another. That was where my head was mostly in order to keep the clues limited enough to make you wonder if you had it figured out, but made you want to keep reading to see if you were right. Masking the truth by constructing open ended suspects was the best way to build the stories finale into what it turned out to be. Additional characters with twisted thoughts helped turn the readers focus to a different place and think they had it figured out. I loved the concept of hiding the candy and making the reader search for the clues that helped them eventually reach the tasty treat. The reaction I have received most on Heartbreak Beat was, “Wait, What? No Way and OMG!” The plan worked perfectly and I am proud of the outcome.
Warren: Have you any plans for upcoming books, or a book that is in the works that you would like to talk a bit about?
Gregory Jonathan Scott
Gregory: I am currently working on the next book that will be a suspenseful MM thriller with cabalistic events embedded into it that will most likely make the reader wonder if it could actually take place. It will be a blend of modern day love and situations that many may figure to be unbelievably beautiful as well as trying. The book will include intriguing scenes of love that will blow the mind apart. I can’t wait to give this one up. It is going to exude that WOW factor.
Warrren: Thank you very much for doing this interview with me! Both of your books were wonderful, and I look forward to more of your works.