1. Vicki Boyd’s occupation as a psychic spy was based on the very real psychic spy programs conducted by the United States Government. Both the CIA and Department of Defense engage in psychic spying, which began during the Cold War. The Soviet Union began their psychic spy program first and America followed suit. Some of the supporters of the program have included Jimmy Carter and Charlie Wilson.
2. Brenda Carnegie’s role as a computer hacker was based on my own work in the computer industry. My specialty is white collar computer crime and computer intelligence but I always worked for “the good guys” – federal and local law enforcement. However, Brenda walks on the dark side, preferring to use her knowledge to commit crimes.
3. I comb through declassified materials to find inspiration for my CIA plots in the Black Swamp Mysteries series. I used to go through a lot of work to get declassified materials, including filling out paperback and proving that I wanted it for my writing career. Now a lot of agencies (including the CIA) place this information right on their own websites. So research is greatly simplified.
4. I watch documentaries on the CIA and covert operations to see how real spies do things from gathering intelligence, using satellite technology, ground operations and details of past operations. It gives me a better perspective on what is available and how their work is performed than watching or reading fiction.
5. Vicki’s and Dylan’s CIA fronts are as angelfish breeders in the small town of Lumberton, North Carolina. Lumberton is a real place and I use real street names, businesses and places in the series. The climactic scene in Secrets of a Dangerous Woman takes place at an old water filtration facility that is under renovation as an art gallery. This is a real place—and really is going to be an art center.
6. I choose their jobs as angelfish breeders because I keep and raise angelfish. I’ve noticed most people’s eyes glaze over when I talk about my fish and I realized it was perfect for CIA operatives. No one would be that interested in what they do for a living (as fish breeders), their work is solitary and no one would miss them if they disappeared for a few days (except the fish), and it was a perfectly legitimate career for them both. Of course, a whole lot happens in their CIA careers while neighbors think they are just two boring fish breeders!
7. The office for the CIA is located at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. There really is a CIA office at Fort Bragg, and there is also a psychic spy program there. It is located about 40 minutes from Vicki’s and Dylan’s home in Lumberton.
8. The house Vicki and Dylan live in was inspired by a real home in Lumberton. There are many such homes that were built around 1900 when tobacco was king. They have beautiful porches with intricate architecture, several floors, and often comprise 4,000 square feet or more. Oh, and many of them have ghosts.
9. I chose a CIA psychic spy, a CIA ground operative and a computer hacker as three of the main characters in the Black Swamp Mysteries series because it provides limitless possibilities for the series. Psychic spies can go anywhere in the world; ground operatives are needed to complete the missions; and computer hackers take plots into the cyberworld.
10. I knew it was unlikely that total opposites like good girl Vicki Boyd and bad girl Brenda Carnegie would ever be friends—so I made them sisters. They are bound together forever by blood and as such, they have a fierce protective nature toward the other. But being total opposites places a lot of friction and drama into their lives.
About the Author:
p.m. terrell is the award-winning, internationally acclaimed author of more than 16 books in four genres: paranormal romantic suspense, suspense/thriller, historical adventure/suspense and non-fiction. Vicki's Key, the second book in the Black Swamp Mysteries series, was a finalist in the 2012 International Book Awards (one of only five in the mystery/suspense category) and River Passage won the 2010 Best Drama & Fiction Award. She has been a full-time writer for more than ten years. Previously, she founded and operated two computer companies; her clients included the CIA, Secret Service and Department of Defense. Her work in detecting computer white collar crime and computer intelligence inspired many of her books. She is an avid dog lover and advocate for animal rights and founded the New Leash on Life program in Robeson County, NC, which rescues dogs and places them in the prison system for obedience training and adoption. She also co-founded The Book 'Em Foundation, whose slogan is Buy a Book and Stop a Crook; their mission is to raise awareness of the correlation between high crime rates and high illiteracy rates. She co-chairs the Book 'Em North Carolina Writers' Conference and Book Fair each year in Lumberton, NC, which raises money for literacy campaigns in our communities.
About the book
Irishman Dylan Maguire is back in Secrets of a Dangerous Woman, reuniting with psychic spy Vicki Boyd. In his first mission with the CIA, he must interrogate recently captured Brenda Carnegie. But when she escapes again, it's obvious she's had help from within the CIA's own ranks. With Vicki Boyd's psychic assistance, Brenda is back in his custody again. And now he must find out why some in the highest branches of government want her dead - and others will risk everything to help her. And when he discovers her true identity, his mission has just become very personal.
Publisher: Drake Valley Press
Release Date: September 2012
Giveaway – Gift Basket of goodies from the town of Lumberton where the Black Swamp Mysteries series is based (picture coming soon), to one lucky commenter from tour.a Rafflecopter giveaway