Author David Burnsworth stopped by ePen, and we chatted about his new release and time periods in fiction.
Five Star Publishing
by David Burnsworth
I write the Brack Pelton mystery series set in Charleston, South Carolina. And I have an overactive imagination, which has both helped and hurt me along the way. Sometimes I like to daydream about what time period I would choose if I had access to a time machine. While I believe we are all in this current time for a reason, and while I love being a Generation Xer, I found there are a few periods I would like to go back to. Sometimes I think I’d like to have been born twenty years earlier. That would put me in the baby-boomer category. Getting to experience all that great music of the fifties and sixties when it exploded onto the scene instead of from an oldies station, I think, would be such a treat. The beginning of Motown, the Beatles, Led Zepplin, the Eagles—the list goes on. What a great time in American culture. Also the cars: Jag E-types, Shelby Cobras, the introduction of the Mustang, the Pontiac GTO, and the Porsche 911. Woodstock and cruising, what could be better? And then there is the moon landing. Of course, every time has its ups and downs. I’m not going to judge the harsher side of the era, but I recognize that had I been born in 1953 instead of 1973, I would have been eligible for the draft and might have taken a one-way flight to southeast Asia. Another era I find fascinating is the time of the Greatest Generation. There is something about this group of people that is so resilient. Having to struggle to get through the Great Depression only to end up having to tighten their belts and head across the ocean to fight Hitler has made them All-Stars in my book. In my opinion, their tenacity made America the superpower it is. Watching the birth of Jazz and the blues; V-16 Cadillacs and supercharged Duesenbergs—all I can say is WOW! Except for that whole Depression thing, of course.
There are other times in history that would be interesting to visit, but I’d hate to get stuck there. I would like to experience Ancient Egypt and Rome, the Medieval period, the American Revolution, the Civil War, and World War I to see how accurate the history books are. But I don’t think I’d last long in any of those harsh times. Of course, I might have to try out the future as well. I hope I’m alive for our country’s three-hundredth birthday. I was just a toddler for the bicentennial so I can’t really say I remember it. Making it three centuries would be something, especially given how challenging the first forty years of this third one has been. One thing I am not looking forward to is autonomous cars. It might be the cure for distracted driving and give us back the time we spend in traffic or on the commute to work, but it might also put automakers like Porsche and Ferrari out of business. Who wants one of those if you can’t punch the gas pedal and steer it sideways.
My Brack Pelton series is set in modern day, Charleston South Carolina. I chose this era because, while life is never easy, I wouldn’t want it any other way. I chose the location because Charleston is one of America’s gems. It survived both the American Revolution and the Civil War and stands proud today as a reminder of why America is great. It forever changed me when I called Sullivan’s Island home and I am all the better for it. Trips down my fantasy memory lane are fewer these days. In addition to Brack Pelton, I have started a new series also set in the low country of South Carolina. My daydreaming is now spent solving mysteries in the holy city. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Burning Heat synopsis: As darkness blankets the holy city of Charleston, South Carolina, Brack Pelton, an Afghanistan War veteran, steps out of a rundown bar after a long night. Before he gets to his truck, he finds himself in the middle of a domestic dispute between a man and a woman on the sidewalk. When a little girl joins the couple and gets hit by the man, Brack intervenes and takes him down. But the abuser isn’t finished. He pulls a gun and shoots the woman. Brack saves the little girl, but his world has just been rocked. Again.
The next day, while sitting on a barstool in the Pirate’s Cove on the Isle of Palms, his own bar, Brack scans the local paper. The news headline reads: Burned Body of Unidentified Hispanic Man Found at Construction Site. Nothing about a dead woman in the poor section of town. Brack feels a tap on his shoulder and turns around to see an eight-year-old girl standing behind him. She’s the little girl he rescued the night before, and she wants him to look into her sister’s shooting.
Violence and danger make up Brack’s not-too-distant past. Part of him craves it–needs it. And that part has just been fed. Things are about to heat up again in the lowcountry. May God have mercy on the souls who get in the way.
David Burnsworth became fascinated with the Deep South at a young age. After a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Tennessee and fifteen years in the corporate world, he made the decision to write a novel. Southern Heat is his first mystery. Having lived in Charleston on Sullivan’s Island for five years, the setting was a foregone conclusion. He and his wife along with their dog call South Carolina home.
Webpage – www.davidburnsworthbooks.com