Crime fiction is firmly entrenched in our culture and in our hearts. We can’t get enough of the nail-biting and heart palpitations, the challenge of the hunt for a killer, the thrill of late nights trying to work out the solution before the cops do. Pleasure doesn’t demand analysis, but being inquisitive often results in needless deliberation, so I couldn’t help but ask myself why; what is it about a good mystery we love so much?
At first, the answer seemed obvious: who doesn’t want to decipher a puzzle? Whether you’re reading a mystery novel, doing the Sunday crossword, or trying to figure out why your dog or cat is eating grass, you are responding to a biological imperative to solve problems. It’s a genetically hard-wired skill that has kept our species successful and thriving for a couple hundred thousand years. The Pleistocene forests and plains were filled with intrepid investigators who deduced that spears and knives would come in handy for hunting, and they solved the mystery of Uncle Urg’s sudden death after eating a pretty mushroom he’d foraged.
But thinking further on the question, I looked at the genre more closely as it relates to human nature and realized there is another important component responsible for the enduring popularity of mysteries: secrets. Large or small, everybody has them, and our inherent voyeurism yearns to read about somebody else’s. As a writer, I think it’s intuitive to incorporate them into your work.
This explained to me why secrets have always been a set piece in the Monkeewrench series, not just within the plot, but within the characters themselves. The eponymous crew of computer geniuses has very dark pasts, an abundance of secrets, and with each book, another one or two is revealed, providing a depth of opportunity to explore not just a plot, but the human psyche and its evolution.
This is a big part of how the Monkeewrench gang became who they are – at the point of their conception, the only prerequisite was developing a set of characters you’d want to meet at a cocktail party. And who do you want to meet at a party? The people who pique your curiosity because you can’t quite figure them out; people who are a mystery you want to solve because you can’t help it.
Did all my silly mental gymnastics result in any significant conclusion? Not really, but I am now more certain than ever that mysteries won’t be going out of style any time soon.
Hi everyone, and thank you, Kristine, for having me back to do a follow up to my podcast interview.
Since ‘Graveyard of Memories’ was published, my life has been a bit of a rollercoaster of events. I’ve moved to a new house, changed jobs, had the cover of ‘Graveyard of Memories’ redesigned due to cover model issues, finished writing two more books, and have started working on the fourth – all in the space of six months.
There certainly have been a lot of changes, mostly positive ones, in my life over the course of these six months. It took sorting my personal life out and relieving the stress that was affecting my depression and anxiety for me to flourish and find my groove with my writing.
I came to the realization that ‘Graveyard of Memories’ was a story that I was destined to tell. It held a lot of pain, situations, and grief that I had experienced throughout my life. I put all my sorrow, anger, regret, fear and pain into that book, and having it published and putting it out there for everyone to read released a lot of pent up emotions within me and it consequently healed my soul.
Since then, I’ve found it extremely difficult to write or read anything too dark. ‘Graveyard of Memories’ was my outlet for all the darkness I had been holding within me for years. And now, I find myself leaning more towards the contemporary romance and paranormal romance genres than the horror genre.
My next book ‘Pineapple Crush’ is being published on July 7th and is available for preorder on Amazon right now. It’s a contemporary romance part of ‘The Ice Cream Shop Series’ and is being published through Fiery Vision Publishing. It has been an absolute honor to be a part of this series and to work with so many amazing people. I absolutely love the cover that Fiery Vision Graphics designed for this sweet story. Keep an eye out for the entire series which will be published every day throughout July.
‘Grayson Falls’ is my third book and will be published August 5th, also through Fiery Vision Publishing. Francessca Wingfield of Francessca’s PR & Design is the creator of the gorgeous cover, and Nathan Hainline is the cover model. This one is the first in a series of paranormal romances focusing on a supernatural town steeped with intrigue and hot supernatural creatures.
My current work in progress is the second in the ‘Grayson Falls Series’ titled, ‘Cooper’s Heart’ and I’m looking to publish this one by the end of September. The cover will be revealed on Facebook in July, so keep an eye out on Facebook.
I’m also working on a collaboration with someone very special for the third book in the ‘Grayson Falls Series’. This project is top secret for now, but it will be epic and hopefully available to publish in November.
I also have at least nine more projects in the works, all due between December 2019 and December 2022. Let’s just say that I’ve pretty much wiped my social calendar and apart from my day job, am locking myself in my writing cave and throwing away the key! Hahaha!
It is great, though, to be able to express myself in a more positive way through writing about love, romance, hope, and humor. The Universe has a mysterious way of eventually directing you on the right course you’re destined to be on.
So, that’s all from me for now. Thank you for reading, and please check out my links and keep in touch. Thank you again for having me, Kristine, it’s been a pleasure as always.