Title: Set You Free
Author: Elmer Seward
Published: May 20, 2017
Publisher: Bay Rivers Publishing
Content Warning: Some mild profanity and references to torture and murder (however there is no graphic violence).
Synopsis: Deena is running from a dangerous past. When she finds herself in a small fishing village tucked away on the banks of the Chesapeake Bay, she thinks she is finally safe. While there, she discovers a journal that weaves a story of secrets, passion, and unrequited love. In its pages, she discovers the answers to her struggle with the shadows of her own past. In the end, those shadows close in on her and threaten all that she holds dear.
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What was the inspiration for your story?
I’m not sure I can point to one event as the inspiration for Set You Free. The book actually encompasses two stories. The main story is about Deena’s flight from a couple of sadistic pursuers. She ends up in a small rental house where she discovers a journal. The story in the journal is secondary to Deena’s story. The odd thing is that I had a good idea what the journal portion was going to be first. The main story about Deena morphed over time. I don’t really remember, but I suspect that a news story led me in the direction I finally took with Deena.
What kept you going throughout the writing process?
I enjoy writing. It’s not a task for me. Even when I’m stuck on a portion of the story, I still enjoy it. Some people become frustrated with writer’s block, but I don’t see it as a block. It just needs some time to simmer. I know that it will come and when it does, it will be better for the extra time on the fire. I’m good with slow cooking.
Who is your most meaningful character and why?
Most meaningful character? That’s hard to say. Deena is the main character, so maybe she is the most meaningful. However, can you say the story of one anguished character is more important than another’s? Is her story any more compelling than Blake’s or Parsons’s? Maybe not. But her situation is more dangerous because she is not only haunted but also hunted by her past. She. Like the others, is shattered, but she is also running for her life.
Can we expect to hear more from these characters in the near future?
Probably not. When I reach the end of a novel, I’ve told the characters’ stories. I really don’t have much more to share. Could I write a sequel? I probably could, but I doubt that it would be as good as the original novel. I’d rather do a great job with new characters and problems than do less than my best writing a sequel.
How has this story touched your life?
Writing this novel has made me more aware of the horror of human trafficking and the toll it takes on individuals. It’s real, it’s ugly, and it’s nearer than we think. Victims need help and understanding.
What motivated you to start writing?
It’s funny, I started writing on a whim. I had started a morning exercise program and decided to begin putting a novel together in my head to break the boredom of exercise. After I had a couple of chapters in my head, I began putting them to paper in the evenings and weekends. This has become my writing process for all three of my novels (with number four on the way).
Excerpt from Set You Free by Elmer Seward:
I am one of the walking dead. Not as lucky as those flesh-eating monsters that roam the earth eternally. No, my flesh-eating monster lives within. It roams at will, minute by minute. Consuming me from the inside. Stealing what little life is left. My monster? The Big C. Advanced stages. No treatment. What do you do when you’re a nobody from a little nowhere town who’s accomplished nothing and has no family? What do you do when you’re told to “put your affairs in order” and you have no affairs? What do you do when the sum and total of your legacy is secrets and lies?
About the Author:
Elmer Seward was born and raised along the Chesapeake Bay in southeast Virginia. Growing up, the cemetery behind his house was his playground. The metaphorical theme of death and rebirth that figures prominently in his novels is probably influenced in some way by the time that his mother heard, through the screened window, a small voice crying for help. Rushing from the house and through the yard, she discovered her all-too-curious six-year-old son at the bottom of a freshly dug grave. In that moment, he discovered that trouble is much easier to get into than it is to get out of. Sometimes we need help getting out of the hole that we jump into willingly.
He is blessed to have a large blended family. He is also the reluctant servant of three crazy dogs, a Maltese, a Japanese Chin, and a BruMaltChiYorkie. All of these strongly influence the characters and events in his novels; however, his beautiful wife, Mitzi, is the true inspiration for the tender hearted but determined women in his stories.
He is the author of two previous novels, Hearts in the Storm and Dreams of the Sleepless.
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