Welcome to PIPER PUNCHES, the Amazon bestselling author of The Waiting Room and Missing Girl (a short novella). Her latest book, 60 Days (Missing Girl Series – Book 1) was published November 10, 2016.
In addition to her novels, Piper’s work has also appeared in Legacy, An Anthology and featured by Indie Chicks, both print and digital platforms. She is also a writer for Thrive Global and proud to be featured alongside Katie Couric and Bill Maher for one amazing and lovely short period in time with a screenshot for proof!
Piper describes her writing as purposeful fiction that is meant to entertain and inform. Check out her website for works of fiction and truth. When not writing, she can be found planning her next trip, hiking, practicing yoga, and posting Instagram photos that make her seem much more interesting than she is. Connect with Piper by email, FB, Instagram or Twitter.
Check out her special offer below!
The Writers’ Lens is about "Bringing fiction into focus." What brings your writing into focus-- the characters, the stories, the love of words? It’s a combination of the characters and the stories. I love to tell stories. The reason I write isn’t to tell one person’s point of view, but to explore the human experience from all angles. What brings my fiction into focus is going beyond my comfort zone to uncover the reasons for the choices people make. When I write, my goal is to make my characters as three-dimensional as possible, bypassing stereotypes and generalizations. By exploring the idiocentric ways of my characters and making them fully present and active in their situations, I hope my readers get a full-bodied reading experience.
My characters are not outsiders looking in. They are not passive participants in the story. Every character, no matter how small their role, has a purpose because they are the story. My characters are truth. By exposing their flaws, exploring their fears, and picking apart their insecurities, my characters become as real as the person sitting next to you on the bus, in the coffee shop, in the school parking lot. When my fiction comes into focus – when everything falls into that magical space between imagination and realism – that is when you get a raw, authentic story that touches readers in ways they never thought possible.
What inspired your latest book? My newest book is 60 Days (Missing Girl Series – Book 1). It is the full-length companion novel to my short novella, Missing Girl. Both books deal with the issue of human trafficking. It a subject that has been in the news a lot lately. Yet, when I started developing the concept of these books about three years ago, many people didn’t realize how prevalent modern-day slavery is in their own backyards. Even now, when I speak with groups of readers about my books, the majority are still shocked that this is happening in the St. Louis area.
These books aren’t just about the act of human trafficking. What I really want to achieve with these books is to show the various ways people survive in situations where the line between victim and perpetrator is blurred. Where you no longer have control over your life, yet you continue to live.
Missing Girl takes a first person look at what it’s like for a young girl to be in this situation. It’s very narrowly focused. With 60 Days, the storytelling is different. In this full-length novel, the reader is taken on an epic journey weaving back and forth from the past to present to develop rich characters and a layered story. Both stories deal with hard topics, but there is a softness, a gentleness in the words so that I hope the stories touch you deeply.
How much fact is in your fiction? That’s a question I am asked all the time, especially with the topics that I tackle. My debut novel, The Waiting Room, is purely fictional. It is a heartwarming women’s fiction book that was solely written to entertain. Missing Girl and 60 Days are entirely different beasts. These works were written to entertain, but also to create awareness.
So, how much fact is in these books? The facts are that human trafficking and modern-day slavery do exist. The fact is that women, children, and men are traded every single day. The fact is that it’s much more profitable for criminals to sell people than drugs because people can be used repeatedly without overhead.
Beyond that, I encourage my readers to do their own research. I write purposeful FICTION. I take liberties to move the story along. While many of the ideas stated in Missing Girl and 60 Days are based on real situations, ultimately, the story was conceived entirely in my imagination.
What are your top 3 reasons for writing? I’m always so long-winded (that’s why I’m a novelist and abhor Twitter), so let me see how short and concise I can make this.
I write . . . to learn more about the human experience.
I write . . . to encourage empathy and compassion for a deeper understanding of each other.
I write . . . because I think everyone has a story and for as long as I can I want to bring these stories to life.
What’s your favorite ways to interact with fans? I enjoy attending book signings and readings. I have also participated in several writers’ workshops presented by area high schools. Reaching out to youth and helping them find the courage and self-confidence to explore their own creative spark is so enriching.
Also, I love to connect on social media. I’m not a big Tweeter, but I love engaging with fans on Facebook and Instagram. Facebook is great for conversations, whereas Instagram is the perfect platform where I can explore edges of my creativity, thinking outside of the box with my words and images. If you’re reading this, you should check out my FB and Instagram pages. The more the merrier.
Special Offer! I’d love to share a FREE digital copy of Missing Girl with you. Members of my readers’ group can get exclusive access. Follow the link, sign up and confirm, to get your FREE copy.
FREE COPY OF MISSING GIRL http://eepurl.com/cFMe1f
MISSING GIRL: “In life my name was Sophia Lucia Cruz. In death it is simply missing girls. Not even singular, but plural, as if there was never one single part of me that was unique or separate from all the other girls that were buried in that harsh Mexican dirt; victims of circumstance, irrevocable choices, and just plain bad luck. If I still had the capacity to cry, I would, because it is that sad and tragic. But when the knife slid deep into my belly and the blood gurgled at the base of my throat I knew that tears wouldn't save me and they won't change my story now.”
Sophia Cruz was what many would consider an average 17-year-old girl from Mission Valley, until the day she had a knife put to her stomach and fear inserted into her heart. Some may have called it stupidity. She called it a necessary sacrifice. Why else would she leave everything behind to walk arm in arm with the devil into a world of prostitution and human imprisonment?
This is Sophia's story. She wants you to know who she was before that day. Before she became just another missing girl . . . Missing Girl, is a powerful, provocative story that explores the depths of familial love and the horrors of the human trafficking epidemic that plagues our global community. Sophia's story is a fictional account of what so many real- life women and children experience every single moment of their lives when they are forced into sexual slavery and human imprisonment.
The bestselling author who brought you Missing Girl is back with a new novel that will pull you into the depths of darkness and make you yearn for the truth.
60 DAYS (Missing Girl Series-Book 1): Lizzie has made a lot of bad decisions throughout most of her adult life. She drinks too much. Takes too many drugs and chooses the wrong men. It is her obsession with finding her father – the man who disappeared suddenly from his family’s life 20 years ago– that eventually leads her down a dangerous path that has turned her into a person she doesn’t recognize. It’s turned her into a murderer. After all, isn’t she the reason Sophia is dead?
Emily is the better sister and always making the right choices – or so it seems. These days Emily’s life is unraveling at every end. She is struggling to pay for her mother’s healthcare. Her relationship with her married boss is threatening her promotion to detective and her physical safety. To make matters worse, she and Lizzie are further apart than ever. It’s after Lizzie takes off on a whim to chase the ghost of their father that Emily’s carefully constructed life spins out of control.
The authorities say that girls and women go missing every day, especially those with a history of addiction and a propensity for hanging out with the wrong crowd. Some are missed. Most are forgotten. Emily knows this is true, but she can’t accept it. She won’t accept it. Letting go of Lizzie is not an option. So when a pawnshop owner calls her with unexpected information about Lizzie’s disappearance, she heads south to the Arizona-Mexico border to bring her sister back at whatever cost. Yet, as Emily gets closer to the truth about Lizzie’s disappearance, she is forced to face her own truths about the ghost she’s running from and that she may not ever see her sister again.
60 Days is the highly-anticipated companion novel to the short novella, Missing Girl, and book one of the Missing Girl Series. Told from alternating viewpoints, 60 Days picks up after the shocking ending of Missing Girl. It takes the reader on a journey that weaves through past and present at electrifying speed. Exploring the themes of human trafficking, sisterhood, family loyalty, loss and addiction, 60 Days takes an honest look at how the choices we make can bring us to the brink of madness.
A boldly-written, psychological thriller, 60 Days will take you on an exhilarating ride to the explosive cliffhanger ending that will leave you stunned and asking, “What comes next?”