A Master’s Inn Character Interview
Hello, my dear readers! Hope you all had a great holiday season. And if you’re like me, you didn’t shed a tear to see 2020 hit the trail.
Today, we have the great good fortune to corner Barb Masters for an interview. Just by way of review, Barb is married to Tom Masters and they are the owners of the Master’s Inn, a bed and breakfast located in northeastern Washington State, right on the border with the panhandle of Idaho.
If you remember, we interviewed Tom a few weeks back. He’s a Marine veteran who experienced three tours in Vietnam. He and Barb have been married more than four decades, and they’ve been through a lot together. And, as we heard from Tom, some of those experiences are off limits in an interview. Hopefully, there won’t be as many of those constraints with our interview today.
According to reviews I’ve read about the Master’s Inn, Barb is the gracious hostess and Tom is the hard working big guy behind the scenes. They make a good partnership, and I hear Barb’s a fantastic cook. I told her I’d extend an invitation to all my readers to contact her on their website to book a visit. If you’re interested, just put it in your comments.
Okay, I’ve got her on the line, so let’s get this chat going.
ME: Barb, good to talk to you! Did I catch you between batches of your famous chocolate chip cookies? I can almost smell them over the phone.
BARB: How did you know, Deb?
ME: Oh, a little Tom told me.
BARB: Yeah, he’s been loitering in the kitchen, getting underfoot. I shooed him out after he handed me the phone…but I’m pretty sure he thieved a couple and stuck them in his shirt pocket. I try to limit him on the sweets, but he’s never been a man who could be managed.
ME: That’s the impression I got when I interviewed him. So, switching gears. As you know, my readers want to get to know all of you before your story is released. I thought I’d ask some questions that will help them know you a bit, kind of from the inside out, so-to-speak. Are you game?
BARB: Well…okay. Do I have the option of saying, “I have no recollection of that, Senator”?
ME: Oh, that’s a good one. As a matter of fact, Tom let me know–in no uncertain terms, I might add–when I stepped on his toes. I had to do some back-pedaling in a hurry.
BARB: I heard about that. Sorry if he was rude. Most of the time he’s not, but if you push his buttons, watch out. It’s something I had to learn early on.
ME: Point taken. Let’s see, I think I want to start with this question. Should be an easy one: How did you and Tom meet?
BARB: In high school. He was my date for my first prom. His best friend, Mack, told me it took him about three months to get up the nerve to even say hello to me. I thought that was cute.
ME: Very. He seems so self-assured now.
BARB: The Marine Corps does that. It either makes you or breaks you. And sometimes it breaks you before it makes you. That goes for spouses, too.
ME: Tom wouldn’t talk about it.
BARB: And I just said all I’m going to say about it. But, I have a question for you, if you don’t mind.
ME: Go ahead.
BARB: Where on earth did you dig up that picture you texted to me…when you asked permission to use it? I haven’t had long hair for at least ten years.
ME: Tom sent it to me. He said it was his favorite picture of you. Was it taken at your home?
BARB: No, it was taken at my parents’ lake house. That’s their dog in the picture…
ME: Oh, what’s his name?
ME: Just Dog?
BARB: Yeah, my dad’s favorite actor was John Wayne, and in one of his movies he had a dog named Dog.
ME: I see. Is it still okay with you if I use the picture for the interview? I don’t remember if you replied to my text.
BARB: I did, and it’s okay. At least I look ten years younger.
ME: Thank you. We’d better get on with this…I’m sure you’re very busy. How did you and Tom come to move to the Newport, WA area and open the Master’s Inn?
BARB: Well, that’s kind of a long story, one I don’t really want to get too deep into. Let’s just say we didn’t want to start a family in Boise. Tom had inherited his grandfather’s cabin, so we sold our hardware store, moved to the cabin, and began the remodel into a B&B.
ME: Wait…start a family? But Tom said you don’t have children. I got the impression you never had any. He seemed very adamant.
ME: Barb? You still there?
BARB: Y-yes, I’m still here. Tom said that, did he? Well, who am I to argue with a big tough Marine? Oorah and all that.
ME: I’m sorry—maybe I said something I shouldn’t have. Let’s get back to—
BARB: No, Deb, it’s fine. How would you know about our…
Look…I really have to get back to my preparations for this weekend. We’re hosting Tom’s nephew and family from California, and I’ve got a lot of work yet to do. Can we call this good?
ME: Oh, well, of course, Barb. I guess if my readers want to know you, they’ll just have to read the novel, right? It’s been very nice talking to you, and we enjoyed getting to know you a little bit. I’ve told my readers to look up The Master’s Inn website if they’re interested in booking with you.
BARB: Thank you. And now I really have to go. Goodbye.
ME: Have a great day, Barb!
And so, dear readers, you’ve met three characters in my debut novel, The Master’s Inn. It seems to me there just might be some trouble brewing. Did you get that feeling?
Let’s see…Tom and Barb both told us they’re hosting his nephew’s family, and yet…
And Joanie told us her parents are off to Las Vegas the same weekend, but somehow they all end up at…well, I’d better stop there.
As I’ve said, you’ll just have to read the story. I can say this though: fireworks are on the horizon at The Master’s Inn.
Stay tuned for the next Master’s Inn Character Interview. I’ve scheduled a chat with Susan Brown, Joanie’s long-suffering mother. And then perhaps I can nail down a time with Bill, Joanie’s “best Dad ever”, as she put it when we talked.
Should be interesting.