A little bit about Cindy:
Cindy comes to us from The Granite State - New Hampshire, where she puts her love for the written word in the form of mystery. When she's not spinning stories for us to read, she's ferociously editing those we write. She's definitely a multi-tasker as an author, freelance editor for The Wild Rose Press, and has her own editing side business known as The Fiction Doctor.
So settle in with a cup of coffee, tea, or beverage of choice, while I grill (I mean...ask) Cindy about her fascinating and busy life.
Cindy, a big part of your life revolves around writing and editing, so you obviously have loved books forever. Is there anyone or anything that influenced this amazing passion?
I have always been an avid reader. I think I cut my teeth on the Bobbsey Twins. I graduated to Nancy Drew and then Agatha Christie. At one point, I owned all her books.
Being a professional in the industry, do you completely outline your story beforehand or are you a chapter-by-chapter writer? If you outline, did that structure automatically fall into place or did it develop over time?
I like to outline. It's very rough and subject to change, but it gives me a layout for the clues and specific timelines in the story. My plots tend to be kind of complicated - two or three plots woven together - so it's easier for me to keep things straight. Because things are subject to change, I do though, only outline a few chapters ahead.
Your genre is mainly suspense and intrigue. Have you written in any other genre?
I think I've tried them all. My first paying job was as a contributor to a local magazine doing interviews and historical themes. Next job was a weekly column for a local newspaper, an Erma Bombeck style look at raising children. I co-authored a YA fantasy trilogy. I wrote a 5 book MR adventure series. And a very well accepted non-fiction compilation of hikes in southern New Hampshire. I think I finally found my niche in mystery/suspense though. Phew!
You've recently released, A Lethal Dose of Love. Can you tell us a little bit about the book?
Lethal Dose, as readers will learn in the dedication, had a very auspicious beginning. We were in our motorhome traveling toward lake Ontario in upstate New York. I spotted the Welcome to Sackets Harbor sign. In that flash - the single nanosecond, an idea came to me. In four days I had the entire outline completed. Special note: Lethal Dose of Love will be free from Dec. 5th to the 7th.
Would you like to share with us any books from your backlist? Or comment on any series you have?
I am quite proud of a brand new series -- Smith and Westen Mysteries. The object was to combine a truly mismatched couple in high-end insurance investigations, finding objects other investigators failed at. The result of the first book, On The Hook, I hope is humorous and fast-moving. Book 2, Just Smashing, has just received a contract. Book 3, Bank on It, is in the works.
Here's the blurb and a small excerpt from On the Hook...
A Picasso painting, worth a hundred million dollars, disappears en route from Chicago to New Hampshire. En route is to be taken literally because it happens while the truck is moving. The painting is there, then it's not. It's gone, but it can't be.
Kendra Jean Valentine, underwriting agent for the policy, is on the hook. She scrapes together enough to hire two women to work the case.
Westen Hughes owns a failing pet shop. With creditors phoning daily, she jumps at the chance to earn a bundle of easy money, even though the offer comes from high school nemeis KJ Valentine, who stole everything in high school: head cheerleader, homecoming queen and the star quarterback.
KJ pairs her with Westen's total opposite: Phoebe Smith, a snake-loving, underwear-hating, tuba player with more baggage than Logan Airport.
Ten percent of a hundred million is...well, it's a lot so Smith and Westen join forces on a rollercoaster ride to find one of the world's most valuable paintings.
Kendra Jean Valentine's eyes were burning and her back was aching. Not to mention she was about to have a pee-gasm. Nine hours of staring at the rear end of a semi can do that to a person. Her entire reputation was wrapped up in the contents of that twenty-foot trailer. If anything happened to it she hated to think what her future would look like. Worst case: she'd end up in jail; lesser case, she'd have to pay back the insurance companies. No problem -- at her current salary, repaying a hundred million dollars would only take two or three centuries.
"What are you laughing at?" asked Theo, one of the guards helping with the transport.
"You laughed. I wondered what was so funny."
"Nothing. I am so glad this trip is almost over." They'd stopped at an intersection less than a block from the Concord Art Museum.
"Just a minute more."
"Good thing. The curator's got to be freaking out. We're almost an hour behind schedule."
"You couldn't predict there'd be an accident on the highway."
Up ahead, the left blinker of the big truck came on, flashing red inside their car. As he'd done all day, Theo kept their car within twenty feet of the trailer as it turned into the driveway of the art museum and maneuvered down a graded lot and around the building. "Hey Phil," Theo called to a second guard dozing in the back seat. "Rise and shine."
For the first time since leaving Buffalo, KJ lost sight of the doors of the trailer as the truck swung forward, stopped, then eased back to the loading dock. She'd said she was glad the trip was over. He had no comprehension of how glad. This was the first thing she'd done entirely on her own -- that she'd dared to do. Pretty sad when you think about it -- taking thirty-eight years to grow some balls.
When the words all start to run together, it's time to take a break. What do you like to do to disconnect for a while?
I love gardening, anything physical that gets me away from the desk. I tend to work long hours. I spend a lot of time with my two daughters and granddaughters who live nearby. I love knitting and crocheting, though admittedly I've run out of drawer space for my sweaters. The good news -- I've lost 22 pounds and a few of the sweaters are way too big. They have found a new home so I have room for more...
If you could go any place in the world to recharge your batteries, where would it be?
One place is Italy -- Florence, Tuscany area. A friend and I are actually doing it in July! Can't wait. I'd also like to spend a week (or a lifetime) in a cottage overlooking a nice, warm ocean. That's the last thing on my bucket list.
Thank you so much for being my guest, Cindy! Wishing you tons of success with your career and I can't wait to hear about your travels to Italy. Keep writing, my friend!
You can connect and follow Cindy here:
Website: www.cdavisnh.com or www.fiction-doctor.com
Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&fieldkeywords=cindy+davis