A Visit With Susan Brown
A Master's Inn Character Interview
Hello, my lovely readers!
Today, I give you Susan Brown, wife of Bill, and patient mother of Joanie. I cornered Susan the other day and hit her up for an interview. The first date didn’t work because she was scheduled with a contractor doing a final walk-through of her newly remodeled kitchen.
She texted me pictures. I’m telling you, I wouldn’t mind going to her house for dinner…but preferably on a night when daughter Joanie is out. However, that’s another story.
If you’re feeling brave, you can meet Joanie here.
But on to the interview. I had Susan on the line a moment ago, but now I’m on hold—another dust-up with the daughter, I think. I’m sure glad that—
Oh, she’s back. Let’s get this show on the road, shall we?
ME: Hi, Susan. Everything okay?
SUSAN: Oh, yes. Nothing too serious. Joanie just needed a slight course correction. She’s pretty…um…high-strung. One of those fourteen-going-on-thirty teens, I’m afraid.
ME: Believe me, I remember what it was like having kids in the house—never a dull moment. Just when you think you’ve got them where you want them, they pull something on you.
SUSAN: You sound like Bill. Although, he and Joanie do have a great relationship. Sometimes I feel a bit left out…oh, never mind that. So, your readers want to get to know me, do they?
ME: Oh, yes! They’re dying to know you. While you were course-correcting Joanie, I told them about your new kitchen. Now we all want a dinner invitation.
SUSAN: Hmm…for how many? My house is big, but probably not that big…
ME: Just joking. Not to worry. We won’t descend on you just yet.
SUSAN: Oh good. I just picked myself up off my new evergreen stone kitchen floor. Nothing but the best for Bill, you know.
ME: Wow…sounds beautiful, Susan. And speaking of beautiful, I love your earrings. Where did you get them?
Susan: Thank you, Deb. Bill bought them for me when he was in New York five years ago, a little consolation gift because I wasn’t invited to go with him. And by the way, that photo of me is about that old…and taken a few pounds ago. I’ve been busy at the gym trying to lose a few for our trip to Las Vegas. There’ll be plenty of female competition…anyway, I want to look my best, since I’m invited this time.
Me: I’ve got a few of those photos lurking around my house in boxes, so I understand perfectly. Okay, first question.
How did you and Bill meet?
SUSAN: We’ve known each other since we were kids in grade school. He lived near us, right across the street from Michael…oh, that part doesn’t matter.
ME: So, you had a crush on him way back then? Was he sweet on you, too?
SUSAN: Well, not exactly. It—it was a little more complicated than that…really, I don’t think what happened when we were kids is important, is it?
ME: You’re probably right, but I do know how my readers are…they crave every juicy detail. So, when you got older, you and Bill started dating?
SUSAN: Not—not exactly. We…never dated, really. Like I said, it’s complicated.
ME: O—kay. When did you marry? I know Bill’s a Marine veteran from the Iraq war. Did you marry before he deployed? Or after?
SUSAN: Before—no…after. No, it was—
ME: Umm…Susan, are you trying to tell us you don’t know when you and Bill tied the knot—
SUSAN: Of course not, Deb! We married when he came home on leave, when my…I mean, when Michael—I mean—when his best friend died. It was a roadside bomb…look, can we move on?
ME: Oh, sorry. That must’ve been hard on Bill.
And just like that, you two got married?
SUSAN: No…not precisely that. He was home for a few weeks, and…things just happened. I hadn’t seen him since he’d deployed, and…his friend dying and everything. Like I said, things just happened. That’s all.
ME: I see. It does sound like it was the best thing that could’ve happened—for both of you, right?
SUSAN: Yes, we needed each other right then. Nothing else really mattered–anymore…
ME: And then, before long you became pregnant with Joanie. How exciting for both of you! After all that time apart and the horrors of the war, to be expecting Bill’s child, and then the prospect of bringing up a little girl together. How—
SUSAN: Look, Deb, it wasn’t like that. You make us sound like Ozzie and Harriet, for Pete’s sake, when we were more like…like Jack and Wendy Torrance. And anyway, I think your readers know enough about me for one day, okay?
Jack and Wendy Torrance??
SUSAN: You know…The Shining? Now look, our Las Vegas trip is this weekend and I’ve got to get back to my packing. Bill will be home soon and he expects me to be ready to go. Part of him is still in the Corps…everything has to be ship-shape all the time, including me. Can we wind this up?
ME: Of course. I do thank you for taking the time to talk to us. My readers are drumming their fingers, waiting for the book, but this gives them a peek into who you are.
SUSAN: I’m happy to do it. And I’ll think about having you and your readers over for an authentic French cuisine supper sometime—it’s Bill’s favorite. If there’s too many of you, I guess we could do it over several weekends…or something.
ME: Great idea! I’ll see if they all want to make the trip to Sand Point.
SUSAN: Well, let me know. Bye!
ME: Goodbye, and have a great day…
Oh dear, that was a bit tense. I hope I didn’t upset her.
And that comment about The Shining! Here I thought…oh well. Maybe she was just kidding…and, I guess it doesn’t matter what I thought.
What about Las Vegas? I think Joanie said something about that, too. If they’re heading to Nevada, how do they end up at…?
Didn’t you think, my dear readers, Susan was a bit vague about when she and Bill were married? I could’ve sworn I heard they married before he deployed. Even Susan herself seemed confused about it…another mystery, I guess. These characters are steeped in secrets, aren’t they?
If you’re like me, you can’t wait to get your hands on the novel to get to the bottom of things. Be sure to stay tuned for the next Master’s Inn Character Interview…Bill’s up next. Maybe he’ll clear up some of the mysteries. He’s a no-nonsense businessman, I’ve heard.
And, of course, stay tuned for the release of The Master’s Inn…soon!