by Marilyn Meredith
The San Joaquin Chapter of Sisters in Crime had Five Sacramento Mystery Authors Visit Fresno earlier this month for a book talk and two of them granted interviews: Patricia Canterbury and Louise Crawford.
I met Patricia Canterbury for the first time in Seattle at a Left Coast Crime. Since then, I’ve bumped into her from time to time at various book fairs being held around the Sacramento area.
Besides the fact that Patricia wrote children’s books and had a great personality, I knew little about her. So I asked her to tell me a bit about her back ground.
Patricia: My background is I’m a native of Sacramento, a world traveler, art collector, weaver and author. I’m a political scientist and was a top administrator in California State Government.
Marilyn: Wow, I only knew you as an author; glad I finally found out more, very impressive. I always like to ask authors this question, when did you first become interested in writing?
Patricia: I’ve always been interested in writing, having won my first writing contest when I was 10.
Marilyn: And what was the first book that you ever had published?
Patricia: The first book I had published was The Secret of St. Gabriel’s Tower, a midgrade historical mystery set in the 1920s in a fictionalized “colored” northern California coastal town.
Marilyn: What book are you promoting now?
Patricia: I’m promoting my first non-children’s contemporary mystery, Every Thursday. It features deputy district attorney, Nancy Noire, who had dinner with her boy friend, architect Jack, every Thursday. The novel opens when Nancy finds a body in Jack’s apartment and he’s missing.
Marilyn: That sounds very intriguing. Where can we buy a copy of Every Thursday?
Patricia: Every Thursday is on Amazon, in Barnes & Noble, Borders and many independent bookstores.
Marilyn: Thanks, Patricia. It was great to learn more about you and about your new book.
L.F. (Louise) Crawford holds an M.A. in Psychology, handy in developing characters and their murderous motivations. She started writing 16 years ago and is an award-winning author of over 14 books.
Marilyn: Louise, would you tell me about your back ground, where you are from, etc.?
Louise: I am a native Sacramentan. I wish I could say I was from Bora Bora or some exotic place, but I’m not. I do know a ton of my relatives are buried in the Fowler cemetery… but that’s another story.
Marilyn: When did you first get interested in writing?
Louise: In my early 20s when a friend asked me if I wanted to write a spy novel, ala Robert Ludlum, together. She lived in Washington and was going through a divorce, and thought it would help her through it. I was married, but things weren’t going well, so it was a great escape for me, too. It was also a great learning experience. Even though I read a lot, I was not a natural writer and it wasn’t easy.
Marilyn: What is the first book you had published?
Louise: Blaize of Glory was published by New Concepts Publishing and later republished by Five Star in hard cover. It was my first mystery and the beginning of a 4-book series about a psychologist who works with addicts in Sacramento. She gets sucked into using her P.I. license to help a friend solve a murder, meets a detective hunk and, in each book, she faces some inner demons. The first 3 are in electronic format. The fourth will hopefully come out in a year or two.
Marilyn: Which of your books are you most proud of — or what book(s) are you promoting now?
Louise: It does seem that I’m most proud of the book I’ve most recently written, or the one I’m working on, because of the level of enthusiasm for the project. Bad Moon Rising, which I’m currently promoting, definitely falls into that category. I loved the idea of Detective Murry’s encounters with the supernatural getting stronger through each book, after his initial “vision” in the first book, Beverly Hills Voodoo, which was sparked by a sorcerer of the black hand.
Marilyn: Tell me about it (them).
Louise: I gave you a taste with the previous two questions! The Blaize/Zoloski series starts with Blaize of Glory, then Hat Trick, then 12 Jagged Steps. The 4th book, Blaize of Trouble is waiting for approval and a pub[lication] date from Five Star Publishing™.
Beverly Hills Voodoo revolves around a headless corpse in Beverly Hills — the wife of a prominent judge who admits his wife practiced Voodoo. I was interested in how people bring their culture with them to another country and how it continues to impact their lives. I was also intrigued by the research in Voodoo, so there’s some history worked into the story. The hard part was in not letting it slow the action.
The second book in the series is Fortune Cookie Karma. It deals with a serial killer in Beverly Hills who stakes out his victims, all women, with ice picks. Detective Murry has visions of his girlfriend, the medical examiner, becoming the next victim so he’s highly driven to find the killer, even if his partner and boss question his information or “intuition” as he calls it.
The third book, Bad Moon Rising, ties up the love story between Murry and the medical examiner, but through unexpected means. It also introduces New Orleans Detective Jean Gallan. I found I liked her a lot so she may get her own book.
Marilyn: Where can I find your books?
Louise: My website has links or you can go to Hard Shell Word Factory for the first Murry’Kidman book. Amazon has kindle versions of my Blaize books and Beverly Hills Voodoo, as well as some used copies of Fortune Cookie Karma, and the latest book, Bad Moon Rising. Five Star Publishing™ has a website as well.
Thanks to both authors for joining us here at Kings River Life Magazine.