Blog Tour: Scourge by Charley Pearson
Financially independent, biochemistry genius Stacy Romani grows up off the grid, while her Roma family takes advantage of her knowledge for their own gain.
Watching his family farm struggle, and traumatized by mass
slaughter, Aatos Pires wants to heal animals but gets seduced by industry and goes to work for a big pharmaceutical company.
When Aatos’ co-worker Trinity creates a deadly doomsday virus, it puts the world population in jeopardy as it spreads exponentially. . .with no cure in sight.
Stacy and Aatos work alone to find a cure, as the CDC and FBI close in. Will they find a way to stop the plague or will it be the end of the world?
~ Praise for SCOURGE ~
“Imaginative and full of action...continually shifting the quirky plot into places that are both surprising and fantastical...succeeds with its scientific intrigue and decisively high stakes.”
- Kirkus Reviews
20 Questions with Charley Pearson
Thanks for inviting me to the interview!
1. What do you love most about writing?
The feeling when a scene comes together, and you know it’s got the right flavor, speed, and resolution. Occasionally, I get there myself, but more often it’s after a critique partner kicked me in the kazungus and threw out options, or just said it’s not working yet.
2. What is your favorite movie?
This is never an easy one for most people. I guess I’d have to say The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. Saw it first in college and several times since. Interesting moral compass for the hero, and one bit of sage advice that could make numerous dramas end in 2 minutes instead of after 2 painful hours: “When you have to shoot, shoot. Don’t talk.”
3. What’s one thing you’ve always wished for?
Enough guaranteed income to write full-time. Of course, once one retires with a decent pension, one tends to go hiking in the mountains, reading books and watching movies we never had time for when working and raising a family, playing tennis or computer games or.... What’s that? Be careful what you wish for, you say? Nonsense, I’m writing. Really. Stop bugging me!
4. What mythical creature do you wish actually existed?
Hmm, I’m a writer, and we’re required to avoid cliches like the plague, so dragons are right out. Unicorns and vampires? Don’t even go there. So let’s see. Maybe the “sorceress/sorcerer/entity with a heart of gold,” the character with tons of power who doesn’t get corrupted by it. That would be a pretty fantastical creature, wouldn’t it?
5. What is one place you’ve always wanted to go to?
Japan. My father was on Tinian during WWII, gave the weather reports for the B-29 raids on Japan (i.e., target selection), and suffered PTSD after the war due to all the damage he had been party to (and seen while island-hopping). It would be interesting to see first-hand what the country has become now.
6. If you could go back in time, what year would you go back to?
Already did this. Went back to 1969, called NASA, and got them to replace a faulty valve so the moon landing went off without a hitch. (What, you don’t believe me? Cheesh, I get no respect.)
All right, if I were to go back again, I’d target late 1781, after the effective end of Revolutionary War fighting in the colonies, and bug the heck out of Benjamin Franklin, the coolest dude in history.
7. What’s your favorite thing to do during the summer?
Hike in the Smoky Mountains. Or sit around by a waterfall and read, preferably with a sandwich containing far more calories than I just burned off hiking.
8. What one thing do you really want but can’t afford?
Plane tickets and hotels and restaurants to visit far-off places, for a few weeks at a time, especially in locations that might be good for stories. So feel free to connive and con all your friends into buying books so writers can do these things. Lying is permissible.
9. What job would you absolutely be terrible at?
Portrait artist. I can’t draw, but I’m really good at not being able to draw people. I’m practically an expert at unrealistic faces.
10. What are you absolutely determined to do?
Live to 137. We’re not old until we hit triple digits, and a great aunt almost made it to 108. One should always aim high, right?
11. Would you rather live for a week in the past or the future?
The future, definitely. Quite interested to see where things are going, as it’s rarely what’s been predicted.
12. What weird food combinations do you really enjoy?
Chocolate ice cream and white wine. Spent a long evening with a tour group indulging in this in Yerevan, Armenia, back in 1972. No idea why, but at the time, it was perfect, and we just kept ordering more of each.
13. Does fate exist? If so, do we have free will?
No fate. It’s all free will, though hard to control our own sometimes when chocolate is involved. And we’re also at the mercy of what other people are doing with their free will, even when they’re trying to help (“You! Put down that chocolate and back away slowly.”). Considering the actions of millions and millions of people, all with their own agendas, then adding in innumerable random events from nature when our survival instinct is to seek reasons for everything—angry gods or inevitability or whatever—and it’s easy to see how belief in fate can garner a following.
14. Could you survive in the wilderness for a month?
Only if I could plan for it. Need weapons for hunting, a book for plant identification, practice starting fires, etc. Shelter, warmth, food, protection from predators, and a good book and pair of reading glasses would be essential. By the way, does this wilderness have internet?
15. What’s the funniest word in the English language?
Kumquat. Or Kadiddlehopper, Red Skelton’s character’s name. K sounds are always funny.
16. What is your biggest pet peeve?
People who don’t know the rules of the road, and make driving a chore. Yeah, I’m not unique on that one. No idea why, but patience for clueless drivers doing inconsiderate things seems so much harder than patience for other foibles of humanity. Go figure.
17. If you were challenged to a duel, what weapons would you choose?
Very powerful hand grenades. I don’t expect to win, so by god, I’m taking down the other jerk with me.
18. If someone narrated your life, who would you want to narrate it?
Morgan Freeman, of course. Does anyone answer differently? So much for being original....
19. What song is stuck in your head today?
Well, now it’s Bonnie Tyler’s Making Love Out of Nothing At All, since I was listening to that the last time I was writing (for mood purposes), and now you’ve got me in a writing mindset. But until you asked, it was The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, due to some recently seen movie. Boy, would those two make a confusing duet.
20. If you could change your name, what would you choose?
Goodness, never thought about this one. Maybe I’d try for a moniker used in fantasy computer gaming, like Tulugaq (Inupiaq for raven), or Don Armour (for a warrior). Heh, heh. Seriously, why would I change it? I’m already recognized as a world-class unknown. There are people as far away as Balikpapan who have never heard of me.
Thanks for the questions. I sort of dodged a few of them, but I suppose I should learn some politics, and dodging questions is a necessary skill set, right? Anyway, hope you enjoy SCOURGE!
About the Author:
Charley Pearson started in chemistry and biology, then moved on to bioengineering, so the Navy threw in some extra training and made him a nuclear engineer. This actually made sense when his major task turned out to be overseeing chemical and radiological environmental remediation at Navy facilities after the end of the Cold War, releasing them for unrestricted future use. Now he writes fiction.