Country's Barbecue hosts R.L. Griffin book signing

lgierer@ledger-enquirer.comFebruary 21, 2014 

Author R.L. Griffin is hoping people will come to Country's Barbecue today hungry for a good read.

Griffin will be serving up autographed copies of her books from 3 p.m. - 5 p.m. at the restaurant's Main Street Village location.

It is the same place where as a teen the author used to serve chicken.

She was Shaw High School student Reagan Griffin then. Now married, she is Reagan Sauls.

The author labels her books as romantic suspense and says they are a little saucy.

"I like to keep people guessing," she said. "There is always a twist."

A graduate of Georgia Southern University and American University, Washington College of Law, she is an attorney in Atlanta where she lives with her husband, Trey Sauls, also an attorney, and their 4-year-old son Griffin.

The writer, who used to play softball at Shaw, said she heard a lot of stories while working at Country's Barbecue back in 1995 and some have weaved their way into interesting characters featured in her work.

"All of the characters are fiction," she said.

Her first book, "Under Glass: The Curse of the Butterfly" was published in 2004.

It was not a success and she does not think favorably about it.

"I'm glad it is out of print," she said, laughing.

Her more recent works have sold well and drawn praise on websites where reviews are posted.

Since then, she has written three books, "By A Thread," "Tension," and "Seamless," one novella, "Mending," and is now working on two more books, "Heart in Wire" and "Razorblade Kisses."

She said she has sold thousands of books. Griffin has appearances planned for Las Vegas and Dublin, Ireland later this year.

Other than "Under Glass" she has self published her books which are available online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

"No middle man," she said.

Also, as an attorney she can't be bothered with the deadlines given by a publishing company. "I can work on my own schedule," she said.

She has a professional editor, Erin Roth of Wise Owl Editing, but said her toughest critic is her mother Mona Griffin who teaches journalism at Shaw.

"My mother will read a book three or four times," she said. "She won't hold back."

Griffin will come up with ideas at different times, often, while driving her car. She writes on a laptop late at night and early in the morning, usually sitting on a couch and sipping wine.

"I have insomnia so that works for me," she said.

She is pleased with her success.

"I was afraid only friends and family would read the books," she said.

She said her parents gave her the love of reading.

"I'll read three books at a time," she said. "I like any book with interesting characters."

She mentioned Brad Meltzer as one of her favorite authors.

Favorite memories of her time at Country's Barbecue were drinking extremely sweet tea, eating the turkey sandwich and drawing straws to see who the chicken lady was going to be on "all you can eat" nights. There is little suspense involved in what she will be eating Saturday.

"My favorites are the pork tenderloin and the fried pickles," she said.

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