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Brought to you by OBS reviewer Sammy

  • Be sure to read our review for Booneville Retribution here at OBS.


S. Furlong-Bollige_authorSammy: I really liked your short story, it was well written, realistic, with a positive theme showing through. What prompted you to write this story?  

S. Furlong-Bolliger: I wrote this story a few years ago during the height of the recession. Here, in the Midwest, many of our small towns were greatly affected by the downturn of the economy, with plants and factories closing and many people without work. There’s a sort of disparity that blankets a town during difficult economic times, but there’s also a sense of determination and inner strength that perseveres and draws us all closer.  I wanted to try and portray that sentiment in my fictional town of Booneville.

Sammy: I really wanted to read your story because my Dad was in Vietnam, he died over there, so I’m always interested in people that write stories about being over there. How they changed etc. Is your story from personal experience were you in Vietnam or from someone you knew that came back changed?

S. Furlong-Bolliger: First of all, thank you for the sacrifice your family has made for our country. No, I have never served in the military, although my father served in the Army and my father-in-law was a Korean War veteran. I have the greatest respect for our military and our veterans and am fascinated by their stories. I was able to use what I’ve garnered from listening to stories of several Vietnam vets as a base for Larry’s flashbacks.

Sammy: The 4th of July is coming up. Will you be having a fireworks display?

S. Furlong-Bolliger: The Fourth of July is big at our house. We usually start off by going to a parade, much like Booneville’s parade, where we sit on the curb, wave small flags and cheer for all the local groups. Afterwards, we get together for a large family barbeque, hand-cranked ice cream and several competitive rounds of bag toss. Then, just before dark, we pack up a few leftovers, grab our lawn chairs and head back into town where we plunk down in the park and watch fireworks.

Sammy: You wrote about Larry and his friends of their isolation, disappointment and difficulty being back, and with all the changes in their work situations. What really struck me about your story was that Larry didn’t have any support from his wife. Not for his job situation, or how he and his friends might be feeling. It would be interesting to see things from her perspective. Is there a story in the works from that angle? I’d be interested to read it. 

S. Furlong-Bolliger: Isn’t Dawn something? You’re right; she’s not a bit supportive of Larry. In fact, Larry and Dawn have a ‘fair-weather’ marriage. They’re okay when things are going well, but as soon as times get tough and money becomes tight, things tend to turn bad. In the story, Larry and Dawn have reached the point where things aren’t just bad, they’re downright ugly.

Writing a story from Dawn’s angle is an excellent suggestion. I’m going to give it a try. Thank you!

Sammy: What genre is your story in? Besides the obvious short story.  

S. Furlong-Bolliger: That’s tough. I wondered the same thing but was pleased when the publisher classified it as a mystery. There is a crime involved, and an element of suspense, but it’s not a classical whodunit.

Sammy: Thank you for the opportunity to read your story. It had a great feel to it, which sounds strange given the subject matter. You really pulled that off well! Thanks

S. Furlong-Bolliger: I’m glad you enjoyed reading Booneville Retribution. Thank you for the opportunity to answer such thoughtful questions.

Thank you to author S. Furlong-Bollige for a wonderful interview!