January 9 2017

The unexpected #murder…

The theme here is where there is murder…there is love…

I know. Odd, but in my fictional world, its a reality. But sometimes a murder or death in a book isn’t what I had planned. Wasn’t in the plot, but becomes a moral imperative.

The first time this happened was in Rekindled. When Kaylee returned home, her father hadn’t been murdered and the opening scene wasn’t her standing over his dead body and her ex-husband, Blaine, the Assistance Chief of Police isn’t about to arrest her…nope.

I wrote this book during #NANOWRIMO (National Novel Writing Month) and when I hit 50k words at the end of the month I went, huh, my heroine could have left at any time and there was no reason for my hero to even have anything to do with her…no conflict. Bummer. Hate it when that happens.

I was ready to send the manuscript to the shredder when it hit me: What if the one person who had offered to help her out of her sticky situation was now dead and she was the best suspect?” I didn’t expect there to be a murder in Rekindled.

My writing process has changed over the years. I’m pretty much a plotter with closet case tendencies to pants my way through it. Meaning, I usually  know the end, its a matter of figuring out how to get there. But every single time I write a book, something very unexpected thing happens. I was a little shocked at who ‘done it’ when I finished the draft of To Protect His Own (available for pre-order and also you can enter to win a free Print copy at Goodreads!)

Now that the draft of that book is done, I’m on to number 6 in the New York State Trooper Series. It has no title right now. Just “Josh’s Story”. Interesting thing though, the heroine isn’t who she says she is which puts our State Trooper in a very compromising situation and as of right now, no murder. But lets where where the draft takes me… Also, I could use title help, so feel free to toss some out there. The basic premise is: What if the woman you’re sleeping was hired to ruin your career and reputation?

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

January 3 2017

Finding the right poison…for a fiction book…

Most of my ideas come from the news, true crime stories, weird stuff you just can’t make up. I just finished the draft of TO PROTECT HIS OWN. The opening scene was particularly hard for me because the Hero’s father was poisoned, but I wasn’t sure what the poison should be or how it would be best administered. I also didn’t want the father to die…just yet. So I needed something that could kill him, even weeks later, but something he could also survive. I also needed something immediate. Not something that happened over time because the kicker in this story is that the poison wasn’t meant for him, it was meant for the heroine.

When I first started writing, I bought TONS of books on writing as well resource books for writers. One of those books was BOOK OF POISONS.


The book gave me a few possible poisons to pick from, but the book is very basic, listing the poisons along with a few bullet points about reaction time, antidotes/treatments, and with some poisons, a short case study. The book doesn’t go into detail about each poison, so it required a little more research. Hello GOOGLE.

Research is interesting. Not just because you learn new things, but while sometimes you end up going down the research rabbit hole. That’s always fun. Talk about knowing a bunch of useless information… but a lot of that stuff makes for great conversations. My husband and I went to dinner with some friends the other night. He happens to be a dentist. He’s always asking me about my writing and his wife is my biggest fan. Love them both. Anyway, we got talking about all sorts of ways to kill someone. The poor people in this restaurant. But now I’ve got this idea for a killer dentist! Geez. Got to love Murder and Mayhem!