I have to take a break from the A to Z posts as I goofed when scheduling guests and forgot to reserve the month of April for A to Z posts. If I had my wits about me, I would have scheduled the guests on the day their name fit the alphabet letter, but I have not had my wits about me for some time. So I apologize for any inconvenience, and I guess I could use this as “o” is for ooops.
Anyway, please help me welcome Arleen Alleman, as today’s Wednesday’s Guest. Arleen has quite a background working with the U.S. Accountability Office, and more recently has started a mystery series. I’ll let her tell you more.
|I’m jealous. Arleen got to do a book-signing on a ship.|
I love to hear stories about people who try new things later in life. I’m a firm believer in diving into new endeavors and I know firsthand that it’s never too late to learn something new. About four years ago, I suddenly realized that I too had one of those stories to tell.
It begins with a vivid fifty-two year old memory of a warm New Hampshire day in a wooded backyard, where my contractor father built a sturdy tree house on stilts for my brother and me. I climbed up the ladder through the trap door, and settled onto a bench with a can of orange soda and a volume of Edgar Allan Poe. I don’t remember where that particular book came from, but at age fourteen I was already an avid reader. I do remember having the thought that being a novelist must be the most wonderful job in the world, since they can turn their imaginations loose and can work almost anywhere. This thought resurfaced from time to time over many subsequent years, but did not blossom into reality.
After graduating high school in Nevada, I briefly considered a career in journalism, but life took different turns as is often the case. Following stints as a fashion model and insurance adjuster, and after a divorce, I moved my two young sons to Colorado, where I finally went to college to study science—a great love of my life. Then I went on to enjoy a fascinating career as an analyst with the U.S. Government Accountability Office. There, I conducted in depth studies and prepared reports to the Congress on many diverse topics ranging from satellite systems and health care to endangered species, to name a few.
After retiring from that position, I studied jewelry design and spent five years creating silver sculptures—wearable art. I sold my creations in shops and galleries, and then opened my own little shop specializing in home décor. At the same time, my husband and I were discovering the world of cruising and soon found that we loved that mode of travel.
With time to think about what I wanted to do next, I turned to that ancient dream of being a writer, which had been tucked away in the back of my mind for nearly a lifetime. Using the cruise ships and sea ports as backdrops as well as my government work and other life experiences, I decided to dive into a new current, as my protagonist Darcy would say. I sat down one day and started to write.
Before I knew it, I had a published novel, Currents Deep and Deadly, the first Darcy Farthing adventure novel. The book features a strong female protagonist with edgy controversial views and a shipboard murder mystery with lots of travel and a little romance and family drama along the way. Somehow, taking it a day at a time, I had completed a frustrating learning curve on the processes of self-publishing a book and the basics of marketing. Both of which were more daunting than the writing itself. Over the last three years I’ve added two more novels in the series; Currents of Vengeance and Current Assets. The fourth, Alternate Currents, will be out this summer.
When I talk with people at book signings at Barnes and Noble stores, and on board cruise ships, the conversations often turn to trying something new later in life. Many people express the desire to write a book and it would be great if my journey encouraged people to just go out and try something they’ve always thought about doing. I have also met many new authors who, like me, are in their sixties and beyond. It seems that the world of self-publishing has opened up many opportunities for seniors to pursue dreams that might not have been possible otherwise. For that I am grateful.
BOOK DESCRIPTION: Author Darcy Farthing is writing at her new home in Marco Island, Florida while her boyfriend Mick Clayton conducts a GAO investigation of government property—asset forfeitures—stolen from under the noses of U.S. Marshals and a sheriff’s office. When close friend, Tom Smythe, is arrested for attempted murder of a deputy sheriff, the couple tries to identify who is behind the property thefts and corruption. When more deputies are attacked, Darcy and Mick are drawn into a bewildering government investigation and an alarming web of murder and conspiracy with a surprising link to Middle East terrorists; as well as a smuggling operation on a luxury yacht. As they inch closer to identifying a vicious murderer, the violence hits close to home when desperate criminals target Darcy and her already troubled daughter, Rachael.
Readers can visit Arleen’s Web site and find her on Twitter @aallemanwrites, or on Facebook as Arleen Alleman.
The books can be purchased on booksellers’ Web sites, such as
Xlibris Publisher’s book store; http://tinyurl.com/89e62dk