Today's 5 Q&A is with Roberta Isleib, author of Preaching to the Corpse: An Advice Column Mystery
1.) Who are you?
I'm a clinical psychologist and the author of seven mysteries, the latest just out this month: PREACHING TO THE CORPSE. The first five books starred a neurotic lady golfer. The new series features a psychologist living in Connecticut who writes an advice column--not that she's an expert on her own life! DEADLY ADVICE was published this past March.
2.) Have you always known you wanted to be an author?
No. I've always been a voracious reader. And having spent half a lifetime in school, I've had a ton of experience writing. But the last time I wrote fiction was probably a short story in junior high school about the English rock group, the Monkeys! Somehow everything intersected in my forties and I began to realize that I'd like to "take a stab" at writing.
3.) Did you intend to be a mystery writer or is it something that naturally evolved?
I've always read mysteries--I enjoy the puzzle, but especially the evolution of the characters. So when I sat down to peck away at my first manuscript, writing a mystery seemed quite natural to me. I don't think I even considered anything else!
4.) Do you know "Who done it?" from the beginning?
I have a pretty good idea about the bad guy from the start. That gives me something to point toward as I write. And I'm finding that a more detailed outline makes for easier writing, something my husband has been nagging me about for years! But it's hard work to figure out the story before writing it, so I do a little of each. Outline, write, outline, write... And of course, storylines and characters evolve as the book takes shape.
5.) What's next?
I have just finished and mailed off the third book in the Rebecca Butterman advice column series. The working title is LINE IN THE SAND, though I have a feeling that will change. Rebecca's good friend, a social worker who does sandplay therapy, is found beaten and left for dead. Rebecca searches for clues in the sand trays to track a would-be killer. The book should be out next September. Then I'll try to take the month of January to think about what the next project will be. I'm looking forward to that! I will keep updating my website about what's coming and when:
Thanks for hosting me Lynn!