Supernatural Mystery Spotlight – Pearl Goodfellow
An interview with Pearl Goodfellow, author of: Hattie Jenkins & The Infiniti Chronicles
Q: I love cats. But, eight? Eight cats? Why so many? Not that I don’t love them!
A: I wanted my cats to be immortal. This was the idea from the outset. I did some digging to see if I could find a symbol or an archetype of some kind that would depict immortality or the ‘neverending.’ Instead, I stumbled on the symbol for infinity (the lemniscate) which is a figure eight but lying down on its side. I thought that was perfect. Ok, so it’s not the sign for immortality, but it’s the sign for infinity. So, to match the symbol I needed eight cats to round out the theme. So, yeah, a lot of cats. All with larger-than-life personalities.
Q: I want to live in the Coven Isles … particularly Glessie Isle. How did you come up with the idea for this rich and textured world? It’s so enchanting!
A: I know! I want to live there too! Sometimes, when I’m writing, I simply fall into the pages and that magical world. My idea for the Coven Isles actually came from the concept of Israel. A kind of safe-haven, a ‘homeland’ for the magical and faerie community. A place where witches, vampires, ghosts could all live harmoniously. There are, of course, ‘Unawakened’ people on the isles too. I didn’t want an exclusive feel to it, but instead fully inclusive. All kinds of beings living together. And (for the most part) peacefully.
Q: Where do you get your inspiration from? Do you read cozy mysteries too?
A: I haven’t had much time for reading so much lately, what with all the editing and writing. But I’m always watching Father Brown and Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries. Father Brown is the kindest, self-effacing man there is. His comedy is natural and stems purely from his personality (have you seen him try to throw darts?) How amazing that so much wisdom and humor can emanate from such a humble character. Miss Fisher? Well, have you seen that vixen at work? She’s amazing. An original. Sassy, pushy, sharp, and dresses to kill to boot! As for favorite mystery books, well, supernatural/paranormal cozies are what I’m into right now. I love Amanda M Lee, Annabel Chase (Spellbound – such a great series,) Angie Fox and Charlaine Harris. And, of course, I devoured everything Agatha Christie penned. I actually used to live close to her birthplace.
Q: I noticed Hattie isn’t a whiny, ditzy drama-queen. It’s refreshing to see a reasonable, sharp and balanced female protagonist.
A: Haha! I love that! Yeah, I couldn’t pen a clueless, hopeless female lead. I just couldn’t. I don’t relate even remotely to such a character type. It’s not that I’m against that kind of woman, it’s just that it doesn’t jive with me. I wanted a smart, strong, funny female lead. One with humility, but who’s also prone to human failings like the rest of us. Hattie matches all this. I think she’s someone I’d be friends with too.
Q: What are the 3 things that make a riveting mystery?
A: Well, I’m sure everyone would answer this differently, but, I’d say:
- Likable characters. One’s you genuinely care about and possibly be prepared to side with, if it came to it.
- Actively involving the reader. By that, I mean, inviting the reader to follow along and unravel the clues at the same time the protagonist is unraveling them. Placing clues in front of the reader, inviting them to pick them up or discard them. A good mystery should be a mutual sleuthing effort!
- Crafty placements of red herrings. Because you’ve gotta cast your reader in the wrong direction at the right time.