Author Interview: Regina Bethory

(Kelly was written by Kelly Blanchard. Regina was written by Regina Bethory.)

Kelly meandered the garden path until she came to a gazebo and went to the furthest edge to look down the stone wall to the ocean below. Not many gardens were oceanside due to high tide and unpredictability of the ocean, but this one was high enough to be safe, and Kelly inhaled the ocean breeze with a smile as she glimpsed around. Her gaze caught a path of steppingstones leading down to the beach,but she didn’t go exploring yet. An approaching figure caught her attention, and Kelly looked that way.

She smiled at the approaching young woman and went to greet her. “You must be Regina Bethory.” Kelly extended her hand. “I’m Kelly. Thanks for meeting me. I hope this place is to your satisfaction.” Kelly motioned to their surroundings. After all, Regina couldn’t decide between the beach and a garden, so Kelly compromised with both. “How are you doing today, by the way?”

“I’m doing well,” said Regina as she looked out to the ocean and inhaled the scent of salt and sand. “Glad to have some fresh air and pleasant weather. How about yourself?”

“Quite well also. It’s been a very productive day.” Kelly smiled at Regina. “Let’s take a walk, shall we? And tell me about yourself. What is it that you do in real life?”

“By day, I’m stuck in a city of cement and steel. I build naval ships for a US defense contractor.” Regina watched her footing carefully amongst the slightly uneven ground. “It has its rewards but can be dangerous. Being alert is important.”

“Oh wow! That sounds amazing!” Kelly’s eyes widened. That wasn’t what she expected to hear from Regina, but that came to show that writers could be indeed anyone. “I bet you have some pretty interesting stories to tell. I’m not going to ask for details of what exactly it is you do because I respect your job. However though…” Kelly stepped down a few steps. “How do you manage to write and all?”

Regina laughed. “I find that it is actually easier to write when I’m busy. When I have nothing to do, I always tell myself that I have plenty of time and end up putting things off.” Regina closed her eyes for a moment and relished in the feel of the sun on her face. “Staying busy creates a sense of urgency,” she said with a smile. “There was a time where I was juggling school on top of a full time job. And to top things off, my partner has three kids!” She laughed again. “Talk about hectic. And yes, I certainly do have some interesting stories. I will say that my workplace is very diverse and I’ve met a lot of characters through the years. It’s great inspiration.”

“Have you based any characters off of people you’ve encountered in work?” Kelly raised her brows but then noticed they were heading down a garden path that lead to the beach.

“Oh certainly. I’m working on a piece called Confessions of a Female Serial Killer where I kill off some of the people who have angered me through the years.” A chuckled escaped and Regina quickly put her hand to her mouth. “Sorry for my slightly sadistic sense of humor. The people I’ve told about that project seem highly receptive to it, so that’s a good sign. I’m also working on a series of novellas about a group of people who work for the Grim Reaper, called In Articulo Mortis and several of those team members have been inspired by great people that I’ve worked with through the years.”

“Oh, these sound quite delightful!” Kelly chuckled then smiled as they came upon the beach. “Sorry, I’ve gotta take my shoes off. Love to feel the warm sand.” She removed her shoes then straightened with her shoes in her hand, and she smiled at Regina. “So what story would you like to focus on? Unfortunately we only have time for one.” She frowned, but it was the truth.

Regina followed Kelly’s lead and removed her shoes as well. There was nothing better than the feeling of sand and gentle waves upon the feet. “Oh, of course. I was really hoping to talk about one anyway. I’m really excited about In Articulo Mortis. It’s been a cherished baby of mine for some time but I’ve kept it out of public eyes.”

Kelly raised her brows when she heard this, and she glanced Regina’s way. “Well, I hope you don’t mind thrusting it into the public eye with this interview since I will be publishing this, but tell me about it. What exactly is it about? Who are the characters, their conflicts?” Kelly smiled warmly then turned her face to the wind to get her hair out of her face.

“Oh don’t worry. I recognize that it’s beyond time to introduce this story to the world.” Regina took a seat on the warm sand and buried her feet until she could feel the coolness underneath. “It’s about a small town mortician who is recruited by the Grim Reaper to help him collect the souls of the dead. She soon realizes that others have been recruited not only from other countries but also from other time periods. Talk about diversity!”

Kelly smiled when she heard this. “Diversity is good! So, does she interact with these other people who’ve been recruited? Or how does it work?” She furrowed her brows and lowered herself to sit on the sand beside Regina.

“Certainly. They go out to collect souls usually paired into twos depending on how many they have to collect. However, some of the scenes are based on real life events from their points of view like the tsunami that happened the day after Christmas years ago. That event takes the entire team of them. The idea is to provide a new perspective on life from death’s point of view. So many people fear death. In a way, this series is meant to bring light to the dark topic. After all, it’s one of the few things we all have in common.”

Kelly nodded as she heard this. “Sounds fascinating. So who exactly are the main characters?” She stared at the rolling waves coming toward the shore, but then she looked at Regina quite curious because having two people from different eras teamed up as partners had to be a great story.

Enjoying the sound of the rushing waves, Regina pondered best where to begin. “The main character is Theresa Fairholm. She has a rough past with her parents and prefers the solitary route but finds comfort in the small town she works in. The relationships that form between the team members are so much fun to write. Gus, a 1340s layman from somewhere around modern day Prague, was recruited during the black plague outbreak. Evelyn, is an African-American doctor who was recruited in the 1970s while she was battling gender and race in a predominately white male field. Roald, is a former SS Officer from the Nazi regime. And Cameron is actually…a demon.” Regina looked to Kelly for any sort of reaction and tried to gauge her curiosity. “Yea. You can’t have a story about people collecting souls without the forces of light and dark. Cameron is one of those characters that you’re not sure whether you can trust or not. I like that about him.”

Kelly laughed. “Oh, I’ve interviewed several demons. Always interesting characters for sure. And I must say, this all sounds so…complex and yet really fun to write!” She grinned. “Where did you get the inspiration for this story?” She cocked her head to a side then looked back at the ocean to see the sun begin to set.

Regina gave a slight chuckle which turned into a nervous smile. “Actually, when I was growing up, I noticed that my three brothers always kept their bedroom doors closed at night. They were all older than me so now I understand the need for privacy but at a young age I didn’t understand. I thought maybe there were zombies in the bathtub or something so I started to follow their lead and shut my door at night. After years of keeping the door shut, I finally decided to open it for a few nights as a teenager. It was a very weird and vulnerable feeling. I constantly felt like I was being watched- like someone was looking in on me- even when I was home alone. So in a long, round-about way, that shadowy figure that was looking in on me was a guardian angel…and also the angel of death. Who says he can’t be a guardian too? And that’s where it all started.”

“You know, I’m so glad you actually brought up your childhood because I wanted to ask you how you got started with writing and all, and what made you decide to get serious about it?” Kelly turned to look at Regina. She could totally relate to what she had said about keeping her bedroom door closed, and there was always that feeling of being watched by something.

Regina furrowed her brow. “It’s funny you mention that because I wasn’t a fan of reading or writing during childhood. I think I wrote a few poems and a short story but ultimately my love for literature was brief due to the things we were forced to read in school. So for a long time I steered clear of that sort of thing. Harry Potter is actually what brought me back and renewed my love of characters and their stories. Instead, what I caught myself doing was going to the movies and leaving the theater thinking how the story could have been different. What could have changed? A lot of ‘what if’ questions… I actually had an English teacher in elementary school who refused to answer a questions if it started with ‘what if’ so I tried to fight it…but it was inevitable. What if prevailed. I was meant to write.” Regina laughed and looked out the the sun setting on the horizon.

Kelly smiled as she heard this. “You know, it’s funny how what some people are forced to learn steers them away from what they’re meant to do, but I’m glad you rediscovered writing.” Then she noticed the fading sun and sighed, pushing herself to her feet once more. “Unfortunately though, our time is up. It flies too fast in these author interviews. I may have to do something about that one of these days.” She offered Regina a hand up. “But I’m glad you came and chatted with me. I loved hearing about your story and you as well. I can’t wait to meet whatever character you’ll have me meet!” She smiled widely.

Regina smiled back. “Thank you so much for this opportunity. I’ve definitely got a few characters fighting for that lucky spot next week. I’ll have to pick carefully.”

Kelly laughed when she heard this. “Who knows, maybe we could do additional interviews, and I can interview them all. I’ve done it before! Come on, I’ll walk back with you.” She motioned for Regina to follow her back up the path.

<~>~<~>~<~>

Regina Bethory’s novel, ‘Articulo Mortis’, is available on Amazon. Check it out, and be sure to follow her on social media for more updates on her work:

Regina Bethory’s novel, ‘Articulo Mortis’, is available on Amazon. Check it out, and be sure to follow her on social media for more updates on her work:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01K9BF0LS/ref=cm_sw_r_fm_apa_TiARxbBC319KD

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Regina_Bethory

Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/ReginaBethory/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/madsrysto/

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2 thoughts on “Author Interview: Regina Bethory

  1. Pingback: Author Interview: Regina Bethory | Regina Bethory

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