This book is bargain priced from 11/12/2013 until 01/31/2014
Camping can be murder! Frannie and Larry Shoemaker are retirees who enjoy weekend camping with their friends in state parks in this new cozy mystery series. They anticipate the usual hiking, campfires, good food, and interesting side trips among the bluffs of beautiful Bat Cave State Park for the long Fourth of July weekend–until a dead body turns up. Confined in the campground and surrounded by strangers, Frannie is drawn into the investigation. Frannie’s persistence and curiosity helps authorities sort through the possible suspects and motives, but almost ends her new sleuth career–and her life. As a bonus, each chapter ends with a camping tip or recipe–some useful, some not so much.
Targeted Age Group: adult
Book Price: 2.99
Link To Buy Bargain Book
How is Writing In Your Genre Different from Others?
Cozy mysteries often take place in a small town or confined area (like a campground!), have an amateur sleuth as the main character, and rely more on clues and logic to solve the mystery than police procedures. There is also less gore or explicit violence. The most difficult part of writing a cozy, I think, is making the sleuthing believable. Most of us are never in a situation to solve a murder mystery so it requires a little suspension of disbelief on the part of the reader anyway, and the writer doesn’t want to stretch that too far.
What Advice Would You Give Aspiring Writers?
Write. To paraphrase a writer friend, “You can edit a pile of garbage but you can’t edit a blank page.” So you have to write something to start. A neighbor of ours used to say, “I’m going to go do something even if it’s wrong.” Same thing. You can’t correct or revise nothing.
Karen Musser Nortman was a secondary social studies teacher in the West Liberty, Iowa, Community Schools for 22 years and a test developer and senior test associate with the ACT WorkKeys testing program for 18 years.
In retirement, she has combined an early love, fiction writing, with the Nortmans’ avocation, RV camping. The Nortmans camp regularly through the spring, summer, and fall in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, and Missouri with friends and enjoy exploring the local attractions as well as hiking, cooking, and biking. The Frannie Shoemaker series tweeks their real life adventures with a touch of murder thrown in
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
We tent camped when our children were young and then got too busy as they grew older. Six or seven years ago, we decided we wanted to get back into camping but didn’t want to sleep on the ground any more, so we purchased an used travel trailer. I was surprised a few years ago when I realized there were very few adult mysteries that take place in campgrounds.
The nature of campgrounds is that most of the other campers are strangers and you never even learn their names. Yet you see them in pajamas on their way to the shower house, or coping with the many mishaps that befall RVers, or taking part in activities that may seem a little odd. It’s like getting a glimpse of someone on a passing train and trying to figure out what they are doing. It just seems like a natural setting for a mystery.
Some of the humor and some of suspense is provided by those same mishaps. There is nothing in my books that we haven’t experienced, observed, or heard around a campfire—except finding a body.
I also wanted my characters to be realistic senior citizens—neither decrepit and helpless nor trying too hard to be teenagers.