Between the Lines
Gulf Coast Times
June 1, 2012
By: Yohana de la Torre, Chief Editor
Prudy Taylor Board is at it again!
Author, Prudy Taylor Board
And this time, the suspense couldn’t be better in Devil Eyes.
Board takes the reader through a chilling tale set in an elegant resort on a remote, steamy tropical island off Florida’s Gulf Coast. The resort is haunted by the spirits of a deranged French au pair who seeks revenge for the murder of her Seminole lover. The lives of the guests and staff are endangered by the evil, which was brought into focus through the eyes of a sensitive child and an antique toy — a stereopticon. The child, the daughter of the hotel’s manager, finds the toy stored in a closet. When she looks through the lenses, she sees acts of violence.
Board’s style is descriptive, captivating and inspired by writers such as E. L. Doctorow, Stephen King, Tami Hoag, John Dickson Carr, P. D. James, Charles Todd, Anne Perry and James M. Cain. So, one can only imagine the gripping and effective fictional piece she has conjured up in Devil Eyes.
GCT caught up with Board and here’s what she had to say:
YD: What inspired this book?
PB: “I really enjoyed writing Devil Eyes. The book is based in large part on my childhood growing up in the Bradford Hotel. A great deal of the book is based on Seminole customs and traditions and includes much of what I find fascinating about Florida — Seminole lore, alligator wrestling, the Chalo Nitka Festival and hurricanes.”
YD: You say you’d like your novels to be character driven, but because of your genre the plot takes over. Are your characters people from real life?
PB: “I very seldom base them on real people I have known. I actually draw my characters from my knowledge of human foibles, flaws, and virtues. I do like them to be unusual characters such as Johnny Tiger, the albino Seminole. It shows that “different” people have value, are important and make contributions.”
YD: Fiction has been written for centuries. Some stories take off and develop a legion of fans while others languish. How do you as a writer draw people into a work of fiction?
PT: “Any writer worth his or her printer ink knows that you must involve the reader in the story immediately…from the very first page. If we don’t capture their interest in the first paragraph, chances are good they’ll put our work down without finishing it. Prior to television, writers had the luxury of taking 50 pages to create the setting and establish characters and their backgrounds. However, readers today have been conditioned and want to know within the first few pages what the story is about, who the characters are, and where it takes place.”
YD: What advice would you give aspiring writers?
PT: “Learn your craft. It’s not enough to have a great idea. You need to understand point of view, plotting, and the structure of a book — scenes, chapters, how to create characters and how to hold your reader’s attention.”
YD: Do you have another novel on the cutting board so to speak already? If so, what’s the working title? What’s it about and what can people expect?
PT: “The Deadly Cleaver is my next novel. It’s fighting me, though. This book is set in Nassau. It deals with the immigration of illegal aliens. And I’m very excited because for the first time, I’m writing about a place other than South Florida.”
- For more on Devil Eyes and book signings, please visit Prudy Taylor Board’s blog site at www.prudy-taylor-board.blogspot.com/.