What genre are you most comfortable writing? I consider myself a mystery writer, though my books are not classic mystery or crime. They don’t follow the rules of the genre, but they do have a puzzle to solve. I really deviate from mystery in the fifth book to which I just gave birth. (It’s not out in the world yet.) I’d say it’s bordering on general fiction, since it has elements of romance, psychological thriller, historical fiction and mystery. I just go where the story takes me.
What inspired you to write your first book? One day on a long drive I noticed an operator in a red Canadian lumber jacket working the lift bridge. I imagined that people passed him by every day without registering his existence. I began to wonder: what if he is a monster who cleverly blends into the scenery? From that came a book that explores the juxtaposition of unspeakable evil with love and community. The theme runs through most of my books. I’m fascinated by why people become murderers or abusers.
Who or what influenced your writing once you began? When I first retired and began serious work on my unfinished novels I was advised by a friend to join Sisters in Crime and Crime Writers of Canada. These organizations led to critique groups, mentors, friendships and networks. In the last couple of years, my publisher, Cheryl Tardif of Imajin Books, has been a huge influence.
Who or what influenced your writing over the years? My daughter has been an enormous influence on my writing. She encourages me, inspires me. Even when she was little she was interested in what I wrote. My son is a scriptwriter so his advice and direction have helped enormously. My husband has supported my obsession without faltering once. I’m very fortunate to have a family and friends who encourage me all the way, who offer critiques and spend hours editing, and motivate me to finish.
What do you consider the most challenging about writing a novel, or about writing in general? I think perseverance is my biggest challenge. It’s similar to a love relationship. In the beginning you’re all excited and the interaction is easy. Then come the more difficult times, in turns boring and frustrating. You get bogged down by detail. If you stick with it, you’ll come out the other side and enjoy your affair once more.
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Genre – Psychological Suspense
Rating – 18+