Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Interview with writer/author Brett Scott Ermilio

Today’s special guest is Brett Scott Ermilio. He’s blinking under the hot lights while answering writing-related questions and questions about the first book in his new romantic suspense trilogy, The Connolly Affair.

During his virtual tour, Brett will be giving away a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a lucky randomly chosen winner. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances of winning, feel free to visit his other tour stops and enter there, too!


Writer/Author Brett Scott Ermilio lives by the Jersey Shore with his 8 crazy roommates: his beautiful wife, 4 amazingly insane kids, 2 small yapping dogs and one moody fish. Writing screenplay, TV pilots and books, Brett enjoys all aspects of creativity.

In 2007, Brett wrote, directed and produced his first feature film, Two Hitmen. The nephew of music producer, Neil Scott Bogart, Brett recently published Going Platinum: KISS, Donna Summer and How Neil Bogart Built Casablanca Records with Lyons Press. A feature film version entitled Spinning Gold, and staring Justin Timberlake, is being produced by Brett’s family members and is due out early next year. Additionally, Brett has published his award winning screenplay, Jacob, as a book earlier in 2015. His romance/suspense trilogy, The Connolly Affair, released May 29th, 2015. Book 2 is due out towards the end of 2015.

Aside from working on books, Brett has numerous TV projects in the works and is excited about any and all opportunities that comes his way.

Brett is represented by Jason Leibovitch of LEIBO Management.

Welcome, Brett. Please tell us about your current release.
The Connolly Affair is a romance-suspense trilogy. It is a powerful story keying in on romance, love, drama, suspense and lots of thrills. Book 1, The First Dance, finds Nicki Connolly’s marriage to Aiden flatlining. She is caught in a daily grind in which her partnership at her law firm is taking her away from her two daughters. At the same time, her husband is resenting Nicki as he is taking a back seat to her career. To make matters more complicated, Nicki is heading a class-action lawsuit on behalf of her cousin and others. This is applying a tremendous amount of stress to both her personal and professional lives.

Then comes Taylor Diamond. Taylor is handsome, smart and seemingly infallible. He is brought into Nicki’s firm and the owners place Taylor as her second chair. Nicki is annoyed and infuriated at first. But as she speaks with Taylor and they work on the case, she finds something in him more than just a good looking attorney. But dark forces loom and converge upon Nicki and Taylor. As obstacles grow, the two form a fiery bond just as the case and her life reach an epic breaking point.

The Connolly Affair delivers a suspense-filled thrill ride that will have readers on the edge of their seats.

What inspired you to write this book?
My wife inspired me to write this story. She loves reading suspense books. Combining the elements of romance and suspense in this thrilling setting was a wonderful challenge for me. She is VERY happy with the end result. And of course, she is reading the early draft of book 2 as we speak…so she is extremely well-versed on the story.

Excerpt from The Connolly Affair:
 I arrive back at the office to a lot of excitement. There is a strange buzz circling around—an energy that is infecting the halls of the normally docile office to the point of drawing me over into the conference room. The first look I get is from Lincoln and it is full of concern. It’s a strange glare, considering the positive energy circling all around.
            Bob, Charles, and James are all hovering over someone—something. As they applaud and step back, I see with my own eyes their new toy. Taylor Diamond. Taylor is an incredibly aggressive young attorney with a long list of clients and an even longer list of success. He looks like he just fell out of a Yale fraternity magazine; the ideal stunner of a man. His face maintains the perfect jaw structure, his blue eyes and perfect wavy, black hair only further compliment his broad shoulders and, near perfect, six-foot physique. Oh, my God. He’s incredible. For a moment, I forget that I am a partner in my law firm and not a school girl, staring at the shockingly handsome, cool senior at Liberty High.
            Taylor slowly stands up, his body and height safely rising above and encompassing my own shadow. He even smiles like an all-star. It’s all too much and I fall victim again, disappearing into his blue eyes. I quickly recover as his hand was left extended for a good three seconds before my brown eyes could even recognize his hand existed.
            “Oh, sorry,” I reply, shaking it. I awkwardly clasp my other hand on top of his as if I were an eighty-year-old man, consoling a youngster. What the hell is wrong with you, Nicki? Pull it together!
            “Nice to meet you. I’m Taylor Diamond.” He smiles and seems kind. He isn’t cocky. “I’ve actually heard a lot about you, Nicki. You’re an amazing attorney. I’m very excited to be here,” Taylor’s words roll of his tongue with ease and are like a secret potion, drawing me further and further into everything that is him.

What exciting story are you working on next?
Aside from working on this trilogy, I am working on a few other projects. I have 2 TV pilots heading out this summer to companies for consideration. I also am working on a potential kids show with Nickelodeon. A side project I am working on is a crime-thriller series which I am chipping away for fun slowly until I wrap up The Connolly Affair.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Great question. I am a firm believer that everyone is a writer. But in the sense of me writing projects that are cohesive and may have value to the rest of the world, when I finished my first screenplay at age 16. I taught myself how to write a movie script and formatting my first one in MS Word. The script was terrible! Ha. But I saw my potential and loved writing that crappy story. So it started me on a path of writing and writing and more writing.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
My entire life has been two jobs: writer and (insert other job here). I wrote the original 415 pages of The Connolly Affair: The First Dance in just about three months. I was holding a 50 hour a week job as a restaurant General Manager and have 4 kids. It was insane. I was writing everywhere! I used a notebook and hand wrote the entire first book, typing in chapters in the early morning and late at night. I pushed myself like never before because I knew the story was special.

At this moment, I am just a writer for the first time in my life. I have many projects I’m working on and I love having the time to dive in.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I have two. The first is, I’ll listen to the same song over and over again if it inspires my story. I’m talking up to a thousand times. The second is I sometimes will speak before/as I’m typing. This makes it appear as though I have imaginary friends all around me. I do this in the bathroom when I’m handwriting notes (which I will do from time to time). My wife thinks I’m crazy and makes fun of me for it.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Baseball player. I played until college and was a catching prospect at one point. I had a good run. But I chose not to do steroids or other supplements which MANY players, good and bad, were doing around me.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I want to thank everyone for sharing this time. I hope you enjoy the stories I tell. I have many of them and I will always do my very best to deliver great engaging stories that challenge my readers and my audience. I take great pride in telling stories and hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy writing them.


Thanks, Brett!


Unknown said...

Thank you for the chance to win :)

Unknown said...

Thanks for hosting me, Lisa! I wanted to ask your readers a question. What drives them MORE to take a chance on a new author, the cover or the the description ?

Unknown said...

I enjoyed the interview and I'm happy that you can devote your time to writing! Your book sounds great! Thank you for sharing!

Unknown said...

Thank you Betty!

Mai T. said...

What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing against being published or the other way around?

Unknown said...

I have the experience of both so far. My music biography "Going Platinum: KISS, Donna Summer and How Neil Bogart Built Casablanca Records" was published late last year through Lyons Press. My fiction have been mine. I'll break this up for you.

Publishers: Advantages- They handle marketing, the editing process, formatting and production. They eat the upfront costs and charge author's back.

Disadvantages- Cover control (it's a collaboration where publishers will win out), pricing (they control pricing and can jack the ebook costs to drive customers to hard covers which they get the greater percentage of), slow to get residuals and sales results.

As for being self published, obviously flip things around. I truly enjoy developing the cover. And I love price control and immediate sales updates. I also like not giving a publisher 85% and then my agent another 15% of what's left over!

I think the best result is to self-publish and then get picked up by a publishing house. Try and keep control of the ebook pricing and give your publisher the paperback and hard cover standard deals they want. That's an ideal situation.

I sway slightly to the self-published side but I honestly stress over the editing and formatting. Because you are using independent contractors who have no real oversight except for the author, mistakes can happen and I hate that. Hope that answers your question! Feel free to ask any follow-ups!

Victoria Alexander said...

Great post! Thanks for sharing :)

Cali W. said...

Thanks for the giveaway! I like the excerpt and cover. :)

Patrick Siu said...

I have enjoyed learning about the book. Thanks for sharing it.

Glenda H. said...

Thanks for sharing...enjoyed your excerpt. I'm glad you can devote your time to writing now...your earlier schedule sounds insane. I look at covers but the description is more important to me.

Unknown said...

Thanks Victoria!

Unknown said...

Thanks, Cali! This series is only gonna get better. It's a great trilogy!

Unknown said...

Def Glenda. My earlier schedule was brutal! Now I'm trying to launch a company though...so it won't get any easier! Ha ha.

Unknown said...

Thanks Patrick.

Unknown said...

I enjoyed the interview. I am looking forward to reading more about the book. Thank you for the post and the giveaway!

Anonymous said...

thanks for the chance!