Monthly Archives: July 2013

Speaking of bogged down . . .

I have two other manuscripts in progress besides the upcoming Snow Job, and I seem to have researched myself into a corner. Two, actually. I’ve asked friends, I’ve put out the word on Bloody Murder’s G+ page and I’ve even taken an ad out on Craig’s List. I need a lawyer. Not for a will or contract (thought I probably should write the former). I need to run a scenario and discuss the legal implications of a tangle that Zofia gets involved in during book 5.

I need to start reaching out more. I had another mystery, one that takes place in New York featuring a detective named Bunny Andover, that I ended up getting stuck on because I could not find a forensic toxicologist willing to talk to me.  Time to book some time in the library. Meanwhile, you just might meet Bunny in a future Bloody Murder book. She has the auburn hair that always captivated Captain Hastings,* and like Zo, kind of fell into detecting. Bunny, however, is actually a PI and borrows her vocabulary heavily from Hammet and Chandler. I like her a lot.

There’s also an in-person art auction out there somewhere that is just dying for me to attend, take pictures and make notes. I’m waiting to hear from the PR department at Sotheby’s and have a few other feelers out.

I did not enjoy doing research until I started writing novels. Go figure


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Romance in the air . . .

I got an unasked-for critique (in person, not in a review) recently and it got me thinking. This person said he didn’t like how Zo acted when she was with Michael. I was a bit taken aback by this because I thought she was pretty much the same throughout Now (spoilers for Post Parcel ahead), Zo was under a hell of a lot of stress in her second mystery. There were a couple of places where she fell apart. I like to think if Michael hadn’t been there, she would have fallen apart on Jerry or Marie or Feliz.

I try to write my characters as people with full lives not being defined by their relationships. This is actually most difficult with Feliz because family is very important to her. She would do anything for her kids. Marie has bad luck with romance. This could be because of losing her dad at ten and a love/hate relationship with her mother and the society in which she grew up. Jerry adores his wife and kids. Michael is close to his mother and sisters, but estranged from his father (you’ll find out why in a future book).

This means, there’s a fine line to walk. There’s a balance that must be maintained. Relationships can be interesting, and can also be clues in solving a mystery, but too much time spent involved in relationships bogs a story down a bit. 


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