I have a very special guest on my blog today. 🙂
Deborah Rogers is one of the sweetest authors I have met in the blogosphere. The psychological thrillers she writes are sure to bring a chill down your spine.
Hello Deborah and welcome to my blog, The Book Decoder. Tell me and my readers about yourself.
Hi Rekha! Thank you for inviting me on to The Book Decoder, it’s nice to be here. I’m Deborah Rogers, and I write psychological thriller and suspense books. I especially love the dark stuff: domestic thrillers, psychological thrillers, suspense, mystery.
I have always loved stories, regardless of whether they’re on the big or small screen or in a book. I think writing is my way of hanging on to that reader or viewer experience. Writing is also the vehicle for all the ideas I have. Sometimes my mind seems like a tap that I can’t shut off, and I’m forever thinking, Oh, that would make a good story, and so would that, and that would too! Writing is my way of bringing order to that chaos.
I owe my love of books to my parents. They would read to me and my brother and sisters when we were kids, and make sure the house was always full of books. I especially remember the trips to the local bookshop with my Dad where he’d spend ages browsing the shelves for the latest John le Carre or Wilbur Smith. Best of all, he’d let me pick one out for myself.
Tell us about Amelia Kellaway series.
I love Netflix, particularly things like Ozark and The Fall so I wanted to design a similar sort of thing but in book form. As a result, I created the Amelia Kellaway series, which focuses on Amelia, a young lawyer, and Rex Hawkins, a twisted killer. Three books make up the series so far: Left for Dead, Coming for You and Speak for Me. While each book can be read as a standalone story, the series is best enjoyed being read in order. I’m definitely planning on writing more books with Amelia. She’s a great character and is popular with readers, not to mention she’s fun to write.
The second book in Amelia Kellaway series, Coming for You is releasing on 30th June 2020. Tell us about it.
Coming for You is a psychological suspense thriller about Amelia Kellaway, a New York prosecutor who’s hiding a crippling anxiety disorder which drives her to compulsively check her locks and doors. The key reason for her obsession with security is the previous assault she suffered at the hands of Rex Hawkins, and her unshakable belief that he’s still out there and possibly stalking her. Amelia has told the authorities about her fears but no one believes her. Is she right? Or is she losing her mind?
In my first standalone psychological thriller, The Devil’s Wire, there was a minor character, a teenage girl, who was grappling with the beginnings of an obsessive compulsive disorder.
Since then, I have always wanted the explore the idea of a character having OCD in greater detail. As the follow up book to Left for Dead, Coming for You presented the perfect opportunity to do that because we’re inheriting a character who has already suffered a dreadful sexual assault and attempted murder – things that would undoubtedly leave a person traumatized.
A security focused OCD seemed like a natural fit for someone who has been victimized the way Amelia has. In researching Coming for You, I read a lot about PTSD and the psychological ramifications of trauma. The need to control one’s environment and to feel safe is a key driver for a lot of sufferers. So, the type of checking that Amelia displays throughout the book is pretty accurate. Combine that with the pressure of trying to hide it from everyone, and you have a very compelling character and scenario for a book.
Why psychological thrillers? What made you choose this genre over the others?
A good psychological thriller is essentially a character study and I love thinking about what makes people tick so the genre is right up my alley. Combine that with the fact that I’m also a massive true crime fan as well, and it’s no surprise that I like the psychological thrillers, suspense and mysteries books.
It such a strange thing that the terrible things that happen in crime fiction happen to people in real life yet we still want to read about them for our own entertainment. I’ve yet to figure out the psychology behind it all and probably never will. We are strange folk indeed.
You are a writer as well as a reader. How do you juggle your time between the two?
That’s a great question. I find it difficult to read for pleasure if I am writing a book at the time so I don’t tend to mix the two. Unfortunately, I’ve found myself reading less and less these days so recently I’ve been scheduling every third weekend off to read a book – that way I can fully focus and immerse myself in a story. It’s been working great so far.
How does a day in Deborah Rogers’ life look like?
I’m a stickler for structure and routine. Unlike some writers, I don’t focus on word count, I focus on time. I try and do five two-hour writing sessions at week. Over time, it builds up, and before I know it, I’ve got a book!
Usually my week shapes up like this: I wake at 5:45 a.m., have a coffee in bed until 6:30 a.m., then go write until 8:30 a.m. After that, I’ll do a workout and other stuff with my day from that point on. My thinking is clearest in the early morning, so that’s when I devote myself to writing.
Thank you, Deborah!