Thursday, May 15, 2014

Bob at the Lake VBT

Take a crabby woman of a certain age, move her to the wintry shores of a New York lake, and then throw in a martini-loving ghost from 1920s Manhattan. Last, stir in the good-looking grape grower who lives up the hill. Now there’s a recipe for a potent screwball cocktail!

“Trust me, it will hit you like a brick of gold.”

That’s Bob. He’s my ghost. Well, not my ghost since I’m sitting here writing, but the ghost who lives with me. Other women probably get muscleman ghosts who can fix plumbing and take out the garbage, or romantic ghosts who set their hearts a-flutter. Me, I get a ghost who’s middle-aged, plump, and who likes to lounge around the house in a silk smoking jacket from the nineteen-thirties. Not exactly the kind of ghost I’d ever imagined I’d get. I will admit, though, that Bob does make an amazing martini. A martini that, in fact, hits you like a brick of gold.

I found, unfortunately, the longer Bob lived at my place, the more I appreciated his skill with martinis. Which was probably not a great thing for my liver, or my relationships with my sisters, but what the heck.

Remember the Great Recession? According to the newspapers, some consumers seem to be wiping it from their memories, but it had a big impact on a lot of people, including me. That economy hurt. Lost jobs, lost houses, lost marriages, lost hopes—lives turned upside down in the flutter of a pink slip. People scrambling just to keep from drowning—couch surfing, penny pinching, living newly frugal lives.

Like millions of others, the economy sucked me into its undertow...

Roz, thanks so much for stopping by. So, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself?
Emily, I’m so happy to be here today. I loved my brief visit with you and your engaging readers in late February, so I’m delighted we can spend more time together. Thanks for inviting me!

How did you get started writing?
I spent decades writing in the business world, mostly in Manhattan. Bob at the Lake is my first venture into fiction, and wow, has it been a fun ride!

What was the inspiration for your book?
I read Harpo Marx’s autobiography Harpo Speaks! by accident when I was a teenager and have been fascinated by the Algonquin Round Table ever since. Now that I’ve become a ‘woman of a certain age’ (woca), I thought it would be a lot of fun for a crabby woca to encounter a martini-loving ghost from the Round Table. The book kind of took off from there...

What’s the one genre you haven’t written in yet that you’d like to?
After the Bob series, I’d like to write a novel set in World War 2 England.  So many of us are blessed to live in the midst of abundance in the USA today; I’m fascinated by how people coped with radical shortages during the war. How do you feed a family of four for a week on one pound of hamburger and eight eggs?

Are there any genres you won’t read or write in? Why?
Although I enjoy cozy mysteries, I don’t like sadistic murder novels, or novels awash in blood and gore. Life is too short and scary enough as it is. “The butler with a candlestick in the library” is about as graphic as I care to get when it comes to mysteries. 

So, what are you working on right now? Got any releases planned, or still writing?
I’m just wrapping up the second novel in the Bob series, tentatively titled Bob at The Plaza. A highlight of the novel features Roz going toe-to-toe with ghosts of the Round Table. I can’t figure out if the encounter is terrifying or hilarious, or a combination of both, which usually seems to be the case when Roz is around.

Alright, now for some totally random, fun questions. Favorite color?     Rose.

Favorite movie?
Moonstruck, which features Cher as a crabby woman of a certain age. Are you sensing a consistent theme here?

Book that inspired you to become an author?
Martin Pippin in the Apple Orchard, a magic book that has been on my bookcase since I was about ten years old. Eleanore Farjeon was a genius with gentle whimsy and the world of make-believe.

Alright, you have one superpower. What is it?
The ability to levitate boulders just by pointing my finger at them. I know, I know--as superpowers go, it’s pretty lame, but you’re talking with a woman who spends her summer heaving rocks into a stone wall to keep the lake at a respectful distance from her house.  Now every time I wrestle a rock into place I’ll be wishing I had that dratted superpower!

You can have dinner with any 3 people, dead, alive, fictitious, etc. Who are they?
George Washington, who actually turned down several requests to become America’s king in the early years of our country.  Winston Churchill, who failed at so many things early in his life yet emerged to save England in World War 2. Lord Peter Whimsy from the Dorothy Sayers mystery novels. I think I actually fell a little bit in love with Lord Peter for a while...

Last question: Which of your characters are you most like and how/why?
(Sigh. You would have to ask this question.) All the crabby women of a certain age in the room raise your hand. Oops, look! There’s my main character Roz and...uh oh...there’s me! (Sigh…)

That’s all from me, thanks so much for taking the time to stop by!

Author Bio and Links:
Roz Murphy is the pseudonym of a shy, retiring writer who doesn’t want her neighbors to know how nutty she really is. Brooklyn-born and Jersey-bred, Roz now lives on the misty shore of one of New York’s beautiful Finger Lakes. Prior to that, her business writing career took her to many locations, including Manhattan, where she worked for a number of years. As a freelance and corporate writer, Roz won several national and international writing and communications awards.

Now Roz is pursuing her first love—fiction. She’s writing the ‘Bob’ books, the humorous chronicle of a crabby ‘woman of a certain age’ who moves to the wintry shores of a New York lake—and gets a ghost. And not just any ghost, mind you. Bob’s a plump, middle-aged ghost from 1920s Manhattan who swans around in a silk smoking jacket and drinks far too many martinis. Stir the good-looking grape grower who lives up the hill into this mix and you get a pretty potent screwball cocktail!

When she’s not reading, writing, hill-walking, staring mindlessly out the window at the lake or piling rocks onto her ever-diminishing lakefront, you can usually find Roz hanging out with her family, travelling, or exploring the amazing wines and wineries of the Finger Lakes.

‘Bob at the Lake’ is exclusively available as a Kindle download from Amazon. Please join Roz Murphy Author on FaceBook for updates on the many adventures of Roz, David—and Bob.


  1. Emily, thanks so much for hosting me today! I'll pop in and out throughout the day. I know you have great readers, so I'm really looking forward to hearing from them. Just curious...any other wocas out there??? (I'm thinking of making a tee shirt...)

  2. I love the premise of the story.


    1. Rita, it's such a FUN book! Hope you get a chance to check it out. (Literally--it's free in the Amazon Prime Library.) Thanks so much for stopping by today.

  3. Emily, I loved spending time with you and your readers today. Hope to see you all again one day soon!