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"G.L. Blackhouse" inks international book deal

"G.L. Blackhouse" inks international book deal

Butterfly Secrets among Amazon's top 100 works of fiction

Author credits childhood tragedy for providing inspiration

More book in the Butterfly series forthcoming!

Local woman who writes under the name “G.L. Blackhouse” has inked an international book deal. We are very proud of her success. 

The newspaper reached out to her to see if she would be willing to answer some questions. She was gracious, open, and very willing to entertain whatever we wanted to ask.

We were pleased to get to interview her about her Butterfly series, her “process,” and other topics of interest to all of us. As is commonly the newspaper’s practice, we asked her certain questions which will be headed by our initials, “JTV,” for Jackson Times-Voice. Her responses will be headed with “GB.” 

JTV: From where did you derive the pen name "G.L. Blackhouse?" 

GB: The initials are from my first and middle name. Black comes from the first letters of the last name of a friend who has been my honorary editor since the beginning, and House derives from Shouse, my last name.

JTV: What provided the inspiration for "Butterfly Secrets?" 

GB: My writing journey has been a long but fulfilling one. When I turned ten years old, we buried my beloved grandfather. Experiencing a profound loss at such a tender age, I needed an outlet to cope. I turned to write and have pursued it since. 

Through the pain, I discovered a passion for writing, and like an old friend, it has always supported me throughout my life. As far as the inspiration for Butterfly Secrets, it is fiction, but like any good story, we take elements of what we know and the stories we hear from others and intertwine them to bring them to life. 

Stories, in general, fascinate me, and everyone I meet always inspires me in some way and I find myself thinking their experience would make a great story. As Joseph Campbell discovered in A Hero's Journey, we all are relaying the same story just in myriad different ways.

JTV: What is the name of the publishing company that signed you in April of 2020?

GB: House of Glamourgan.

JTV: What made you write "Butterfly Secrets?" 

GB: Since I was young, I've had a love for writing and stories. I had a story to tell, and I didn't know another one like it. As Toni Morrison says, "If there's a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.”

JTV: Are you working on a sequel and, if so, what is the working title? 

GB: Yes. I just began part three of the Butterfly series. It is called Butterfly Wings. I also recently finished the rough draft of a sci-fi series called "The Wall." I also have a multitude of other books in the works.

JTV: How many novels do you foresee being part of this Butterfly series? 

GB: Three 

JTV: Are you “Amelia Smith?” 

GB: Yes and no. I have had dreams of loved ones' deaths and, like her, felt frustrated when I couldn’t prevent it. I had a profound loss at ten, but "Amelia Smith" is more appropriately a representation and homage to the stories I have heard of the many people who have inspired me with their journeys and struggles in life and have overcome incredible odds. 

JTV: Is the death of “Jordy,” when “Amelia” was 15, analogous to your own situation with the death of your grandfather and exactly how so? 

GB: Yes, in that it happened at pretty close to the same age. Imbuing my loss at that age helped me convey the emotional aspect of the story that I wanted to encapsulate. In any story I tell, even though I write fiction, it is essential for me to bring relatable characters that others can relate to. One of my favorite quotes is Maya Angelou, who says, "People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel. 

JTV: Tell us about the lesson "Sometimes you have to break a heart to heal it." 

GB: As humans, we all experience pain in one form or another, whether it is loss, heartbreak, illness, and so forth. I hope to provide relatable characters to everyone, no matter our differences. 

The pandemic has taken its toll on everyone in some form or another. It can leave us all feeling a little isolated at times. 

One of my favorite lines that best captures this is from Leonard Cohen in his song, Anthem. He says, "There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in." 

My books purposely have some heavy topics to hopefully inspire people from all walks of life that no matter their situation, they can succeed. Not only that; but they can come out stronger.

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