Nina Atwood - Psychological Thriller Featuring a Decades-Old Mystery

Nina Atwood - Psychological Thriller Featuring a Decades-Old Mystery

Nina Atwood is a licensed psychotherapist and award-winning executive coach. The author of multiple self-help books, Nina now writes fiction. About Roxanne is her third novel. Her previous novels are Unlikely Return and Free Fall. Her electrifying mystery/thriller series will launch in 2022. She lives in Dallas, Texas with her husband and an adorable rescue cat. As our Author of the Day, she tells us all about her book, About Roxanne.

Please give us a short introduction to what About Roxanne is about.

Roxanne has a loving husband, two adorable daughters, and a shining career in law. But it is not enough to eclipse her addiction to the perfect gin martini. Until a near-fatal, head-on collision changes everything. After waking from a coma, which stimulates old, buried memories, she sets out on a dangerous quest to uncover the truth of her high school best friend’s long ago, tragic death. But her quest puts her in the sights of someone dangerous, someone with horrifying secrets, and everything to lose. Will she get to the truth, and back to her life in a new, addiction-free way? Or will someone silence her forever?

What inspired you to write this story? Was there anything in particular that made you want to write this?

My background is private practice psychotherapy, and professional experience has shown me that the toll of addictions is steep. Often addicts don’t go into recovery until a significant life event wakes them up. I thought a near-fatal crash and the awakening of a long-buried mystery would be interesting as an addict’s ‘hitting bottoming’ event.

Tell us more about Roxanne. What makes her so special?

Roxanne has so much to lose if she doesn’t conquer her addiction – her husband, her daughters, and her practice as an attorney. At the same time, she has a big heart and strives to do the right thing. She’s complex – addict/wife/mother/lawyer/do-gooder.

Besides writing, what other secret skills do you have?

At one time I aspired to be an artist - oil paintings; I began studying around age 12 and by high school was selling my work.

Readers say this book reminds them a bit of Gone Girl. What drew you to the genre?

I love stories with twists and turns you don’t see coming, that keep you on edge, and with characters you can’t stop thinking about. I aimed to create just such a character in Roxanne, with lots of twists and turns in her story.

You are a licensed psychotherapist. How does this influence your writing?

Tremendously! I believe my background helps with creating characters with depth and stories that represent the human experience at a complex level.

The book is a page-turner with plenty of twists and turns. Did you plan it all out before you started writing, or did some of it just "happen" along the way?

That is a great question! Most of it was planned but there were surprises along the way as well. One of the things I love about writing is that the story and the characters often unexpectedly inform me along the way. The story at the beginning is similar to the final story, but not completely, and that is an absolute adventure for me as a writer.

Your book gives a unique insight into the troubled mind. How did you pull this off?

Lots of exposure to troubled minds over a 35 year career! I understand the vulnerability of being human, the damage that a person can incur along the way in life, and the healing that is possible. I try to wrap all of that into one story.

Your characters are flawed and feel real. Why did you create them this way?

As a writer, I believe in mirroring the actual human condition as much as possible, and let’s face it, we are all flawed. If we’re being real, we reveal that. One of my hopes as an author is that people will see themselves, or someone they love, in a story, and it will help them be more empathetic as a result.

When starting on a new book, what is the first thing you do?

Typically, I have a story in my head. I choose a starting point within the story, and I start writing the scene. Later, I may place that segment somewhere other than the beginning, and that’s okay. The most important thing is to begin writing something compelling that’s been playing out in my head, usually for days before I sit down and write. Later, I get more organized with characters and plot lines.

What are you working on right now?

I am developing a mystery/thriller series. The main character, Dr. Jill Rhodes, has a cameo in About Roxanne. The first book in the series will launch later this year. I’m so excited about it!

Where can our readers discover more of your work or interact with you?

Through my website:

Would love a follow on twitter:

About Roxanne

Nina Atwood
Roxanne’s husband, two adorable daughters, and a shining law career can’t eclipse her love of the perfect gin martini. Until a near-fatal collision puts her in a coma, stimulating old, buried memories. Waking, she sets out to solve the mystery of her high school best friend’s long-ago, tragic death. But uncovering horrifying secrets has put a ruthless killer on her trail.
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