Beneath the Deep...meet author Andrea Chatman
Dear Readers: Many of you know I am rather keen on most things from the UK including the Loch Ness Monster. When I found Andrea Chatman's book: Beneath the Deep I was pulled right in because she believes there are things out there... beneath the deep. If you need to shake your world up a little bit this winter, give Andrea's book a try.
Andrea: What inspired you to write Beneath the Deep? Great question! I love sea monster books and legends, but I haven’t found any fiction novels which approach the science from the Creation Science point of view. As a kid, I really wanted a book like this. So – as Toni Morrison advised - “If there’s a book you really want to read but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it”.
Did you have to do a lot of research or were these facts you just had? A bit of both. I am a scientist by trade (geologist and disaster scientist). I love to learn how things works, and I follow a lot of scientists who study the deep sea. Some of it – like the computer modeling – are things I knew. Others – like the AUVs and deep sea things, I had to research. Like my characters Daniel Smithson and Morgan Sullivan, I collect sea monster legends. All of the legends mentioned in the book are fairly well known. I also love the MonsterQuest tv show, where scientists try to figure out the truth behind the legend. How do you know how to write to put someone on the edge of their seat? I read a lot of Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys when I was a kid. Every chapter ended with a cliff hanger that kept me reading long after I was supposed to be asleep. I incorporated the style into my own writing. It keeps me engaged as a reader and a writer. Where do you live? Has this influenced your writing?
I live on the island of Maui, the number island tourist destination in the world. It is know for beautiful beaches, the world’s largest dormant volcano, and its laid back style of life. I lived here more than 20 years, and I love the people and the culture. Most of the Maui scenes in BENEATH THE DEEP were inspired by real life places. Do you write every day? Do you hand write and type in or simply work straight on your computer? I try to write a bit every day. Sometimes it is just documentation for things with my job as a disaster scientist. I find with my story it is best not to force it if I’m not connecting with the story. I just play a bit if that is the case. I started out writing in notebooks, but now mostly use my laptop or my phone’s notepad app – less chance that I misplace my notes.
What about your characters? Where did they come from? Both real and fictional people. I’ve ‘known’ Morgan Sullivan for many years. She started out as a Nancy Drew type detective, but her story has changed as I have gotten older. Most of my friends have caught on to the fact I have integrated several characteristics from people I know well into characters in the story. Nate, Morgan’s brother, is based loosely on my brother (who would totally lock me out of my own lab and said as much when he read that part). A few are loosely based on characteristics from tv characters that I love. Like Catlett, Daniel and Morgan’s grandfather Matt. Her grandmother is based on my own grandmother, who went home to heaven eight years ago and I miss everyday. Is this book a good gift? And who would you want to get it? I think this book would make a great gift for anyone who loves a great mystery and/or sea monster story. Several friends have told me that they have already gifted it to friends, kids, and parents. It is clean and fun, and not intensely scary. My 12-year-old niece has read it and loved it. Especially great if you have family/friends (or you yourself) are looking for a good novel with solid science from the Creation Science perspective. I have a fellow scientist friend who was very excited when she read the book. What about the book cover? It is very impressive. Did you have much input?
Isn’t it amazing? I love it! I did provide basic feedback on color of the title, placement and potential background images, but what I got back was AMAZING!!! I was really happy. What else have you written? I have written several disaster and science themed devotional articles for Focus on the Family’s Clubhouse and Clubhouse Jr. magazines. Which I love! I’ve also written and co-written a few scientific articles. And a lot of fanfiction. What is next thing from you that we can look forward to? I am currently working on the sequel for BENEATH THE DEEP, but I can’t share the title at this time as it would spoil too much. What do you read to be inspired and just to escape? Great question…I read all the time! To be inspired: I love Jon Acuff’s nonfiction books, especially Soundtracks which is about overthinking. For fiction, some of the writers who have inspired me the most are: Jules Verne (the man was a visionary before his time), Jennifer Donnelly – who’s book These Shallow Graves taught me the art of how to dole out a cliff hanger and pace a mystery, Steven Alten – who wrote the MEG books and THE LOCH, which is my absolute all time favorite sea monster book (not totally clean as the main character is a bit of a player, but the monster is incredible and it is set in Scotland), and Janice Boekhoff – who wrote the Earth Hunter Series (the only other creation science series I have found so far) and the Jurassic Judgement series (which is like Jurassic Park meets Con Air!). I also love Laurie King’s Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series. The first is called the Beekeeper’s Apprentice. I’ve read almost all of them and many several times. I love Sherlock Holmes. And Elizabeth Peter’s Amelia Peabody series which follows a pair of British archeologists in turn of the century Egypt (I love a good treasure hunt). What scares you?
Centipedes and giant cane spiders. Tell us a little about your family?
My parents are both geologists. My dad was the president of the creation club at Perdue University in Indiana. My life has been one giant field trip in which I’ve done pretty much everything but pan for gold. I have a brother and a sister. One is a geographer and the other is a ob nurse (my dad calls her the black sheep because she didn’t go into earth science – it’s a joke). I have several nieces and nephews, who I love and spoil as often as I can. One of my nephews is really into rocks now and it is a lot of fun. When you aren't reading or writing, what interests you? I love horseback riding though it has been a little while due to covid constrictions. I also enjoy martial arts and watching really good movies. I also love the Maui Ocean Center, especially the jelly fish room. And I love to travel – particularly to Scotland.
Where can my readers find your book? They can find BENEATH THE DEEP on Amazon in Paperback, Kindle, and Kindle Unlimited at: https://www.amazon.com/Andrea-Chatman/e/B09MN4DR1W/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_book_1 If my readers leave a message and connect with you, they will be put in a drawing for a free book. What would you like a reader to say to you, or ask you to encourage you to pick them for a book? And readers, if you are interested, leave email information. Share your favorite sea monster legend! What about your facebook site or blog? How can my readers learn more about you? They can find my Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/andreachatmanauthor/ and my Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/andrea_chatman_author/. I also have a website/blog at www.andreachatman.com in which I explain a little more about why I wrote BENEATH THE DEEP and share my favorite sea monster legends, beginning with the Loch Ness Monster. What have I forgotten to ask you that you want my readers to know about you and your book? I hope your readers love BENEATH THE DEEP as much as I do. It was really fun to write and I can’t wait to see where the story goes in the future. Ps I l