April 2012 – Guest on “The State of Things”, Host – Frank Stasio, WUNC – FM (NPR station)
Click here to start audio (takes a few seconds to start, approx. 15 min. long)
Feb. 2012 – Radio with Jeff Diamond, WNCT 107.9 in Pirate Country! Greenville NC
SEC 2-12-12 (click this link to listen, approx. 15 min, takes a few seconds to start playing)
Andy Holloman Interview on His Debut Novel, Shades of Gray at Suite101.com (Nov. 2011)
Read more at Suite101: Andy Holloman Interview on His Debut Novel, Shades of Gray | Suite101.com http://anca-dumitru.suite101.com/andy-holloman-interview-on-his-debut-novel-shades-of-gray-a396736#ixzz1e5uEWape
The L-Word.com website (Nov. 2011)
One of those new writers that I had discovered through twitter is Andy Holloman, brother of Laurel Holloman, whose debut thriller, “Shades of Gray”, is scheduled to be released early in 2012.
Shades of Gray Review
The premise of the novel is a journey of an ordinary man, John Manning, who is faced with extraordinary circumstances in his life, finding himself in the volatile world of drugs and danger in order to save his daughter’s life. In 2001, Lucy, John’s six-year-old daughter needs a kidney transplant and John has to secure a large amount of money for the surgery. His business, Durham, North Carolina based travel agency, had suffered from events of 9/11 and he teams up with one of his clients, Wanda, whose livelihood was also affected by the same events. She also needs money to escape the clutches of her dangerous boss so she could move to California with her daughter, Tonya.
Together, John and Wanda form an unlikely partnership to smuggle drugs via cruise ships, since John has an extensive knowledge of the industry. They both embark on a dangerous journey of distributing and selling drugs to get the money they need and the story deals with the questions, like how far should a father go to save his child? Can two people from completely different worlds help each other? And how dangerous their journey really is?
I had a privilege to read an advance copy of Andy Holloman’s novel and he delivers a well-written and very suspenseful and heartbreaking thriller that keeps you on the edge, using flashbacks as a means of characters introduction and bringing the readers to a twisting and shocking conclusion.
Andy’s first novel also came with a surprise when Laurel Holloman posted this on twitter, “yes that’s one of my paintings on his book cover. Just happened to work great, I think, and that paintings headed hopefully to Milan soon.”
Interview with Andy Holloman
L-word: You are known as Mr. Mortgage but soon your debut thriller, “Shades of Gray”, will be released to make you also known as a novelist. What prompted you to write a novel?
Andy Holloman: Well, as is typically the case, it is a long story. In the 1990′s I owned a group of travel agencies in the Raleigh/Durham NC area. I had a sales agent in my Durham office that brought to my attention the story of one of her clients who appeared to be buying air travel tickets in an unusual (but legal) way and my staff person thought this woman might be smuggling drugs. Later, this woman was found murdered in her burned out home and it was ruled as a drug related homicide (no arrests were made). After 9/11 and the decline of the travel industry, a story idea lodged itself in my brain and wouldn’t let go. To what lengths would a person go in order to save their business? After my company closed in 2003, I began writing the story and it literally poured out. I found that the process was challenging and the creative side of me truly enjoyed all of the parts of laying out the story.
L-word: The main setting of the novel is North Carolina where you actually live. How helpful was it to write about a familiar background?
AH: For this story, I feel that it was essential to use North Carolina as the setting and I found it extremely helpful to include the cities, landmarks, and places around me as scenery for the novel. North Carolina is not only my home, but my true love when it comes to places I’ve seen in this world and I have done a good deal of traveling. Our state is more diverse than most folks would know, especially here in the Triangle area (Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill) and we have the best beaches (Outer Banks, or OBX) and mountains in the west.
Dorothy Dreyer and We-Do-Write
Gladly. I’m a pretty typical, 40-something guy. Live in the Raleigh, NC area with my wife of 20 years and three wonderful kids (well, they’re wonderful *most* of the time). I enjoy the outdoors in NC, (beaches, mountains), camping, running, and being involved in my kids lives. My day job is in real estate financing and I also do some real estate buying on the side. Went to university at UNC-Chapel Hill and did a fair amount of writing then and after college (nothing published).
How long have you been writing?
I’ve been seriously writing since about 2002, when the idea for my first novel “Shades of Gray” got stuck inside my brain and I found that the only way I could get it out was to write it down.
Tell us about SHADES OF GRAY. What’s the story about?
My novel is a thriller that is revolves around the life of single father and travel agency owner who finds himself in a very bad financial bind when his daughter is diagnosed with a rare kidney disease, and his formerly thriving business is ravaged by the effects of 9/11 on his industry. He teams up with a client of the business that is a drug dealer, and a single mom, and together they form a partnership to smuggle drugs aboard cruise ships. The story is mostly set in the Raleigh/Durham NC area with brief stops in Mexico and St. Thomas, V.I.
How did the idea of the story come to you?
I was a travel agency owner myself for most of the 1990′s and one of my staff alerted me to a client that she suspected was doing something illegal during her travels. This client was later found murdered in her burned down home and thus our suspicions about her appeared to be true as the incident was reported by the police as drug-related. After this event (and the downfall of my business post 9/11), I began to think about the age old question of “How far would one go to save their company?”
Wow, interesting. What’s the hardest part of writing for you?
Re-writing. No doubt about it. I truly enjoyed laying out the story for “Shades of Gray”. It was fun to develop the characters and put them in difficult situations. I enjoyed the sculpting of the plot and finding interesting ways to reveal clues and provide foreshadowing as to what would be coming about at the end. But the re-writing, OMG! That has been tedious. I read an author who described the process of creating a novel not as “writing” but as “re-writing”. Boy this is so true. It takes a lot of time and energy to re-write. It has been valuable in that I can see now where the novel is much improved over its earlier forms.
Let’s get to know you on a deeper level. What do you absolutely have to have nearby when writing?
I need the following when writing – Coffee and sodas, lots of caffiene. If it is after five o’clock, then I need a glass of red wine. I must have absolute silence, so no music. And I must have my handy, dandy notepad with my thoughts and my outline at the ready.
If you could have any super power, what would it be?
No doubt about it, flying like Superman.
Here’s the part where you thank the people who are supporting you. Let’s hear your shout outs.
I truly owe the most incredible debt of gratitude to my best friend, my wife. She has been through so much with me and remains the most honest, caring, and loving person I’ve ever met. To have her in my life has made writing possible and has made me the luckiest person I know.