My husband and I have been lucky enough to spend some winters in Key West, FL. What a fascinating town, chock full of interesting characters, gorgeous scenery, great food, and astonishing contrasts. It makes a perfect setting for a mystery series. For DEATH IN FOUR COURSES, the second book in Hayley Snow's food critic series, I was lucky enough to attend the Key West Literary Seminar's session on food writing a couple of years ago. So the book is set at a fictional food writing conference--all hell breaks loose when Hayley finds the keynote speaker floating face down in a dipping pool.
What are you working on next for this series?
I am almost finished with the third book in the series, called TOPPED CHEF. It features a reality TV cooking show for which Hayley fills in as a judge.
How did your Heroine come about in this series?
I've written two other mystery series as Roberta Isleib, the golf lovers mysteries starring Cassie Burdette, and the advice column mysteries, featuring psychologist Rebecca Butterman. Both of those characters were more serious and driven. Hayley is young and enthusiastic and a little bit lost. But once she falls in love with Key West, she'll do anything it takes to stay on the island. Although I shared the love of psychology with Dr. Butterman, and the golf with Cassie Burdette, it's an awful lot of fun to write about Hayley--and food! And it's already been fun to see her grow...
What book has most influenced your life and why?(if you can share the why?)
Oh that's a hard one. What comes to mind first is GONE WITH THE WIND. I can remember bringing it to class and hiding it in a textbook because I couldn't WAIT to see what happened. I loved the characters so much--I hope I can replicate in some small way in my books the kind of connection that Margaret Mitchell was able to make with her readers.