Wednesday, May 16, 2012

#WriterWednesday - with Jamie Lee Scott

Welcome to another #WriterWednesday! 

I have a very special treat for you today, people: the wonderful Jamie Lee Scott - author, jewelry designer, horseowner, rodeo rider, restauranteur and screenwriter... and my very own critique partner!

No, I don't know how she does it all, either.

Jamie's new book, Textual Relations, second in the Gotcha Detective Agency series is just out. You can find it HERE.


Without further ado, here's Jamie:

Who Done It?


All my life I’ve loved mysteries. I read a novel in the third grade, called The Mysterious Blunder Bones, and I’ve been hooked ever since. So there was no doubt that when I became a writer, I’d write mysteries.


My process begins with an idea for a murder, the characters, and then I write an outline (fairly detailed) of the scenes that get me from beginning to the end. Herein lays the rub. Even though I have the victim, the plot, the outline, and I may even know who the killer is, the killer is never who I thought it was when I started.


Many people say they don’t outline because it kills creativity, but for me it’s just a roadmap for the story. I always make unscheduled pit stops along the way, because thoughts occur to me as I’m putting the words on the page, that didn’t occur as I was outlining.


I really hope people who read the books in my Gotcha Detective Agency Mystery series are surprised by the killer, because I usually change who it is at least three times as I’m writing. In my latest novel, Textual Relations, I changed my mind as to who the killer was just as I was writing the last chapter. Thank goodness there is such a thing as rewriting.




Yes, I know the plot, and the lay of the land, but I never know which way the characters will drag me. And it’s fun not knowing “who done it” until almost the end.


If you are a mystery writer, how do you plot your murders? As a reader, what do you expect from the mysteries you read?

* * *

A native of Northern California, Jamie was swept off her feet by a dashing farm boy and transplanted to Iowa 16 years ago. And after several years of running a restaurant with her husband, she felt the urge to kill people. I mean she decided to start writing mysteries. Let Us Prey is the first in her Gotcha Detective Agency Mysteries series, Textual Relations the second.

Jamie still lives in Iowa (though she visits California as often as possible) with her husband, 2 dogs, 2 cats and 2 horses. She writes with a view of her 6 acre farm.

Let Us Prey: Mimi Capurro is trying to put her life back together after the sudden death of her husband. Using the skills she learned as a secret service agent, she runs the Gotcha Detective Agency, along with her skilled computer forensics partner Charles Parks. Gotcha specializes in executive protection (bodyguards), and tailing cheating spouses.

Nick Christianson is running from the demons of his past, and that has put him back in his old stomping grounds in Salinas, CA. Nick has transferred from the San Francisco Homicide Division and is now adjusting to this new police department.

Mimi never expects to run into her old college flame Nick, when she takes on an executive protection case for New York Times bestselling author Lauren Silke. But when Lauren’s assistant is murdered, the homicide case, along with Mimi, land in Nick’s lap. Will Mimi and Nick be able to solve this murder without killing each other first?


Textual Relations: Mimi Capurro, owner of Gotcha Detective Agency, hasn’t seen her old college flame since they teamed up to find a killer several months earlier. Now, after breaking and entering into an alleged predator’s home, Mimi and Charles find a murder victim on the floor in his bedroom. When homicide detective Nick Christianson and his new partner, Piper Mason, arrive on the scene, this is not the way Mimi expected to see Nick again.
Even though it’s his job, Nick is loath to find the killer. That is until a teenage girl with ties to the victim disappears. Now Mimi, Nick and Charles race against the clock to find the killer and hopefully find the girl in the process.

* * *

And finally, just for you, a special excerpt from Textual Relations:

           
When I finally got out of the car, Charles stood outside
the door hand-feeding Lola her treats. As I walked up the steps,
he put his finger to his lips.
            “Huge fight going on in there. If we’re quiet, maybe we can
catch the rest before they realize everyone can hear them.”
            Charles grabbed Lola’s collar and led her into my office.
            When he came back into the kitchen, we stood quiet and
still. I knew the voices, but I’d never heard them at this
level.
            “When you make enough money to pay the mortgage and buy
food, then you can do whatever you want. But until then, you
live under my roof, and it’s my rules.” Jackie, one of my
detectives and my best friend, screamed.
            “That’s so unfair. It’s my computer.” That whining voice
belonged to Jackie’s fourteen-year-old daughter, Catey.
            “Get over it. Life is unfair,” Jackie said. Then there was
a slamming noise. “And it’s not your computer, it’s mine. I paid
for it, and I let you use it. If you don’t give me the
passwords, then you won’t be using it anymore.”
            “Fine, I don’t care. I’ll just use Amanda’s computer. Her
mom lets her have her computer in her bedroom. She’s not a
control freak like you.”
            “Well, good for Amanda, and when she starts smoking dope in
her bedroom, maybe her mom can join her.” Jackie must have stood
quickly, because I heard her chair hit the wall. “We’re done
here, young lady. Not only are you not going to have your own
computer until I have all the passwords, you’re grounded until
further notice.”
            “Until further notice?” Catey sounded flabbergasted. “You
can’t do that. You have to give me a time.”



So what are you waiting for? Go buy a copy of Textual Relations! You know you want to!

10 comments:

Jamie Lee Scott/Jamie Livingston said...

Yay, thanks so much for having me here today! Any chance to hang with Jenna is a great opportunity. I love her and her books.

Dana said...

Hi Jamie Lee!

Can I just say, 'Textual Relations' is the most fabulous title, evah! I'll have to read it for that reason alone :)

Best wishes,

Dana

Jenna said...

Thanks for being here, Jamie! And Dana, thanks for stopping by. You'll enjoy Mimi and Nick. And Sebastian. And Charles. :-)

Jamie Lee Scott/Jamie Livingston said...

Haha, thanks Dana. I like to have fun with my titles.

Thanks for having me Jenna. I enjoy spending time with Mimi, Nick and Charles. I hope everyone else does too.

Mary Sutton said...

And now I have yet more to add to my reading list. =)

As a writer, I'm kind of like you. I have a rough outline. I deviate from it frequently. In my yet-to-be-finished novel, I changed "whodunnit" at least three times along the way. And considered a fourth.

As a reader, I want to be captured by the characters. I don't mind if I figure it out by the end if the story is tight and the characters matter to me. But I love a good twist along the way, too. =)

And I love your titles.

Jamie Lee Scott/Jamie Livingston said...

Mary, as a reader, I agree with you, I want engaging characters. Keeping character fresh in a series is a challenge. Thanks on the titles. My next two novels are titled A Snitch in Time and What a Meth.

Jenna said...

I didn't know you were planning one called A Snitch in Time. That's awesome! LOVE that title!

Jamie Lee Scott/Jamie Livingston said...

See Jenna, I have a few surprises up my sleeve. I got the idea for the title from a murder that occurred about 30 miles from here. They spray painted "snitches die" next to the victim.

Rita said...

I love reading mysteries but realize I'm too much of a pantser to ever write one. I'm with Dana - Textual Relations is one of the best titles I have ever seen. Can't wait to download these on to my Kindle!

Jamie Lee Scott/Jamie Livingston said...

Thanks Rita. I'm so glad everyone likes the title. I hope you enjoy the novels. I really enjoy writing them.