Shelly Frome is a member of Mystery Writers of America, a professor of dramatic arts emeritus at the University of Connecticut, a former professional actor, a writer of mysteries, books on theater and film, and articles on the performing arts appearing in a number of periodicals in the U.S. and the U.K.. His fiction includes Tinseltown Riff, Lilac Moon, Sun Dance for Andy Horn and the trans-Atlantic cozy The Twinning Murders. Among his works of non-fiction are the acclaimed The Actors Studio and texts on the art and craft of screenwriting and writing for the stage. His latest novel is a southern gothic crime-and-blues odyssey entitled Twilight of the Drifter. He lives in Litchfield, Connecticut.
Tell us about your book.
It's a southern gothic crime-and-blues odyssey. It centers on thirty-something Josh Devlin, a failed journalist who, after a year of wandering, winds up in a Kentucky homeless shelter on a wintry December.
As the story unfolds, a Delta bluesman’s checkered past comes into play and, inevitably, Josh finds himself on a collision course with a backwoods tracker fixated on the Civil War and, by extension, the machinations of the governor-elect of Mississippi.
In a sense, this tale hinges on the vagaries of chance and human nature. At the same time, some underlying force seems to be seeking closure and long overdue redemption.
What inspired you to write this particular story?
In a way it all started when a friend of mine invited us down to see a cabin he'd inherited in the backwoods of Mississippi. Leaving the wives for a while, he took me on a meandering walk through the underbrush. As the land fell away, we came upon a tangle of briers and twisted forked limbs lying in shallow rippling of water. Bob then turned to me and said, "Shelly, this here's Wolf Creek." At that very moment I began to wonder how many buried secrets this site contained.
What can readers expect when they open your book? Give us something that isn’t on the book blurb.
hey can expect an unsettling and, hopefully, intriguing scene already in motion just before nightfall within the hidden backwoods of northern Mississippi.
What do you feel is your greatest accomplishment as a writer? : The ability to set dramatic forces in motion until something inevitable and yet surprising comes to pass.
What is the best writing advice you’ve ever received? : The German poet Rilke once said that all art is the result of being in danger. Of going as far as one can go and then beyond.
Tell us 5 random things about you the person, not the author
1. : I need to break up routines.
2. : I tend to look beneath the facade and masks people put on.
3. : I seem to be outgoing but am really more comfortable by myself.
4. : I spend a lot of time daydreaming.
5. : I use my sense of humor to skirt around pain and sadness.
Where to connect online
Twitter : @shellyfrome
Where to buy