Monday, February 23, 2015

Radio Interview on WWNO

I'll be doing an interview onTuesday, 24 February, with Susan Larson on The Reading Life, talking about the next Sebastian St. Cyr mystery, Who Buries the Dead. If you live in New Orleans, you can listen to it at 1:30 p.m. Central Time at WWNO 89.9. It will also be rebroadcast this Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at noon. If you're not in New Orleans, you can listen to it live stream by going to http://wwno.org/listen. You'll also be able to go to the website and find a link to the podcast on the lower right section of the page.


In other news, I've been working on the outline for the twelfth Sebastian St. Cyr book, Where the Dead Lie, although I'm still not quite ready to sit down and write yet.  I've also been doing a ton of interviews and guest blogs for various sites, and I'll be posting those when they go up. 

And I'm gearing up to head out on my book tour next week. Just seven days until Who Buries the Dead hits the stores!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Happy Mardi Gras, Everyone!


It's Mardi Gras time here in New Orleans. That means parades, king cakes, mounds of beads, house guests, crawfish boils, traffic jams, and late nights.

I've been in the city long enough that I take a rather laid back approach to Carnival. If the weather's beautiful and the crowds aren't too hideous, I go. This past weekend, the weather was gorgeous.
Today is Lundi Gras, the day before Mardi Gras, so of course everything is closed and I have husband and DD2 home from work/uni (DD1 is already driving back to San Antonio). I'm going to TRY to work on plotting out Where the Dead Lie. But it's already noon and I'm still nursing a latte....

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The Subconscious Is a Scary Thing

As a writer, I've learned to trust my subconscious. If I'm having trouble with a plot, I'll go off and do other things for a few hours (or a few days) and let my subconscious work on the problem (sort of like an alcoholic turning things over to his higher power). The answer always seems to pop into my head eventually in some mysterious but helpful fashion, and while I'm always grateful, I've never questioned the alchemy involved too closely.

Yet even after all these years, the process can still sometimes take me by surprise. Remember the cross-dressing Frenchman, La Chapelle/Serena Fox, in WHY KINGS CONFESS? At the time I wrote that book, I could not have told you where he came from. All I knew was that he was a great character, particularly for a murder with a mysterious female shoe print left at the scene of the crime.

But then the other day when I was doing some research on French spies in London, I ran across a reference to the Chevalier d'Eon and went, "Oh, yeah!" You see, I now remember reading about d'Eon some thirty years ago (Jeez; was it that long ago? Yikes.) when I was doing historical research in Paris. But I had totally, totally forgotten about him.

So who was he? Born into an impoverished noble family, he joined the army, fought in the Seven Years' War, was a noted fencer,  and dressed as a woman to serve as a spy for Louis XV in Russia and England. In fact, for the last 30 years of his life he dressed as a woman. There is no doubt in my mind that he inspired the character I created, but it all took place in my subconscious.

And that's scary.

P.S. I've also been criticized by people who found Sebastian's easy acceptance of Serena in that book an anachronism. Yet a betting pool was actually started in London about d'Eon's true sex, with the Chevalier himself being good-naturely invited to take part. He was even allowed to attend court dressed as a woman when he returned to Paris. He claimed to have been born female, but after his death he was discovered to be anatomically male.

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Friday, February 06, 2015

He What?

So the art department was getting ready to do the photo shoot for the cover of #11, WHEN FALCONS FALL, and they went to book the same male model they used for WHY KINGS CONFESS, WHO BURIES THE DEAD, and the new cover of WHAT ANGELS FEAR. And they were told....

He's gone. He joined the Navy.

Oh, dear. To be frank, he never looked like Sebastian to me. I still like the KINGS cover, but not so much the way he looks in the other two. Now they're scrambling to find someone who sort of looks like him. I said, "Can't we just get someone who looks good?"

And maybe, just maybe, can you let me help pick him?

So far, I haven't received an answer on that.

In other news, here's another great review of WHO BURIES THE DEAD, this one from RT.

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

So This Arrived in Today's Mail...


Yes, it's a copy of WHO BURIES THE DEAD, hot off the press.

This time of year is always oddly unsettling because I'm dealing with three Sebastian books at once. This morning, I was busy plotting out Book # 12 (Where the Dead Lie), when my editor called to talk about the edits and cover conference for Book #11 (When Falcons Fall). Then the doorbell rings and it's the postman with boxes and boxes of #10, Who Buries the Dead, which is scheduled to be released the first Tuesday of next month.

I tend to get a little confused.

The good news is that my editor loves When Falcons Fall. She's the first person apart from my husband, Steve, who has read it, and he thinks it's the best book in the series so far (I think my own favorite is still Why Mermaids Sing....). But my editor agrees with him, so maybe he was on to something. And I'm sorry if that comes off sounding like teasing since y'all won't be seeing that book for another thirteen months, but it's such a wonderful feeling to know that the book works, and the Powers That Be are happy, and I'm not looking at a huge rewrite (which would be difficult given that I am gearing up to go on tour for Who Buries the Dead).

On other fronts, it's been so cold that we haven't been able to deal with our bee problem yet. And it's Mardi Gras time here in New Orleans again, so you know what that means.