Friday, September 30, 2011

Friday Files: Let's Meet Robert Roberts, author of "The Monkey Toy"

It's Friday and that makes it celebration time for many.  The Evernight Birthday Bash continues through tomorrow so there's still time to leave comments for prizes both here and at the main Evernight Publishing blog.   I'm giving away a PDF a day with winner's choice of any of my Love Covenant titles.
Today's questions: Where does Will's brother Seamus live?

Now that I have the housekeeping out of the way, let's get to today's guest.  I am delighted to have Robert Roberts here with us today.  He's a local writer where I live in that far southwest corner of Missouri and his first novel, The Monkey Toy, is earning some excellent reviews and gaining readers.  I have to brag a little because I read it before it came out to the public and I recommend it highly.  It's a fast paced thriller, very realistic, and sometimes a bit gritty.  It's not the kind of tales I spin but trust me, it's a read you'll enjoy and you won't forget.  You may not ever look at those little monkey toys quite the same way either.

Before we share our interview with Robert, let's take a peak at the awesome cover for his first novel:

A Page in The Life blog - Interview questions:

How long have you been a writer?
It’s a pleasure to be a guest on your blog, Lee Ann. Thank you for this opportunity. I first began writing stories about forty years ago, when I was in college, but only got really serious about it in the last couple of years. I’ve always loved telling stories, so I decided I should try writing a novel.

What do you like most about writing? And the least?
I really enjoy developing the storyline and characters, and strive to make them as real and believable as possible. Also, it’s so rewarding when a reader tells me that they couldn’t put the book down, but had to read more. On the other hand, I think my least favorite thing about writing, is marketing the book and all of the BS that goes with that part of it. Marketing is a necessary evil, but I’d rather just spend all of my time writing.

Did you dream of growing up to be a writer or did it just happen?
I didn’t give writing a thought when I was growing up, but an English professor I had in college gave me so much encouragement about my writing. She always loved my stories, and I guess that always stuck in my mind. I probably wouldn’t have even attempted writing a novel today, had it not been for her. Now, I think I’m hooked.
Tell us about your latest or coming soon book(s). What inspired it?
My first novel was released in August of this year, and it is a thriller, entitled, “The Monkey Toy.” It actually started out as an idea that I had floating around in my mind, which I thought would make a good movie. Since, obviously, I wasn’t a movie producer, I decided to “write” the book. It’s available in paperback and Kindle edition. It has gotten some good reader reviews on

Was there a lot of research involved in creating this book?
Some research was involved in this book, but I like to write about places I’ve actually been, because I think it adds realism to the storyline. For instance, in “The Monkey Toy,” I had travelled to most of those foreign countries when I was in the Navy, or when I worked as an international salesman for a printing press manufacturer.
How much time did it take from writing your first book to having it published?
It was about six months from the beginning of the project until it was published. That included the initial writing, the rewrite, editing, proofreading, and formatting the manuscript. It was fairly quick, since I’m a self-published author.

Do you work on one project at a time? Or do you multi-task?
I actually have a couple of projects going at once. In the mornings, I work on my current project on the computer in my basement office. Afternoons are usually spent handwriting in a notebook on a future project at the kitchen table, while I’m having a couple of cool ones, then I work on the marketing for my latest release.
When not writing, how do you relax?
Nothing’s better than a little trout fishing to relax my mind and body. Socializing with close friends is always great, too.

Please tell us what you’ve got coming up and what you may be working on in the future?
I just finished the rewrite on my next thriller, “Souls of the Desert.” After feedback from my focus group, I’ll complete the final edits, and proofreading. I plan to release it in January of 2012. A couple of chapters are completed on my paranormal thriller, “The Running Boy.” It should be ready for release in the latter part of 2012.

What’s a guilty pleasure you have?
I love to play slot machines. I’d say losing my monthly allotment of entertainment money at the local casinos is definitely a guilty pleasure of mine. Like everyone else, sometimes I win, but most of the time I lose.
Where can we find you on the ‘net?
I love to hear from folks. Please stop by and leave comments on:
Here are the links to purchase “The Monkey Toy”
Barnes and Noble:

Thank you for a great interview! I share your guilty pleasure, by the way!

Let's learn more about our guest before we get to the excerpt.

            Robert M. Roberts grew up in the Midwest and spent most of his childhood weekends in movie theaters. When he wasn’t taking in a movie, he was at his parent’s beer tavern observing the unique characteristics and mannerisms of the everyday bar patrons. As an adult, his service in the United States Navy and employment as an international salesman took him to many countries around the world, exposing him to different personalities and cultures. These experiences combined with the vivid imagination he was born with, is what inspires him to write novels of intrigue and suspense, with a touch of humor thrown in along the way.
            Robert currently resides with his wife and cat in a small town located in the Ozark Mountain region of the Midwest.
And now an excerpt :
“The Monkey Toy”
Excerpt from Chapter 42

Sometime around 3:00 a.m., Maria was awakened by the sound of loud static coming from the living room. She looked over at Juan, but he was not in bed. She arose from bed and walked to the living room. She gasped as she saw her husband sitting in his recliner with his mouth gaped open, and drool dripping from his chin. His eyes were turned back in their sockets, with only the whites exposed. In his hand was a butcher knife from the kitchen.
She stood frozen for a moment then noticed the screen on the television was white and snowy. Red pixels formed on the screen and spelled the words, Give it back, in a wavy, drifting font. Suddenly, her attention was drawn to the ashtray that sat on the table beside Juan’s recliner. The rose colored object began to glow, illuminating the whole room.
Maria let out a terrorizing scream. The television popped off and the light from the object went out. Juan made a groan and she grabbed the knife from his hand. “Juan, what’s happening?”
Juan, as if rising from the dead, uttered, “What?”
“What’s going on?” Maria yelled.
Juan came to his senses, but was still stunned. He looked around. “I only remember going to bed earlier.”

As she went over the events that just happened with Juan, it was obvious that he was clueless. Maria pointed to the object, “Get rid of it,” she demanded, as she raised her voice. “That thing is evil; it is something from the devil!” She paused for a moment and made the sign of the cross with her shaking hand. “You take it back to that ship where you found it!” she shouted. “I don’t want it in my house.”

The Monkey Toy is a great read!

Visit A Page In The Life tomorrow for the final day of the Evernight Big Birthday Bash, return Sunday for Six Sentence Sunday, and join me Monday on release day for Witness Protection Program, and for another guest, author Cara Bristol on Tuesday!


  1. Thank you for having me as a guest today, Lee Ann! As always, best of luck with all your books!

  2. Will's brother Seamus has a theater in Branson.
    GFC: June M.
    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com


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