teaching the sciences. She resides on Long Island, where she is currently writing
the Annie Tillery Mysteries series, which includes Th e Madonna Ghost; Girl
with Pencil, Drawing and Secrets in the Fairy Chimneys. She also produces the
television show, The Writer’s Dream, on YouTube, and serves as an active member of several
What inspires you to write?
My many years of teaching forensic science, my inspiring students and my love of Nancy Drew gave me the impetus to take the many mini-stories and case studies I wrote for my forensics students and turn them into my three mysteries, mentioned above.
Tell us about your writing process.
After I have a general idea of the story plot, I make a list of main characters, and possible lesser ones. I write an detailed outline, which includes the major events for each chapter, taking the story on a journey from beginning to end. I insert the forensic elements in the logical places. I also add what research I’ve done or need to do in the appropriate chapters. I then figure out how to take that chapter to a page turning conclusion so that my reader will not want to stop, but go on to the next chapter.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I do read the dialogue out loud. This helps me to judge if it is realistic, authentic and if it makes my characters sympathetic to the reader. Are they likable, or not to be trusted? Creating an mp3 file of each chapter is helpful to check out these features.
What advice would you give other writers?
Take notes when you start, using categories like story line, plot, characters, character sub-plots, setting, research. Try to have a schedule to do your writing, and stick to it. Share your experiences with other writers on blogs, and in writers’ groups.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I self-published. Once I realized how much control I would have over the process, how far self-publishing companies have come in producing a quality product, and how little marketing a traditional publisher would do for unknown writers, the decision was easy. Having a self-published book is a lot of work, but it’s my work, my decisions, and my success.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
The availability of Ebooks and digital audio , as well as the capabilities of marketing on the Internet have opened up the world of books as never before. Self-publishing has traditional publishing adapting to a new market of authors. The availability of websites for posting one’s books, like this website, is just one example of the opportunities that exist.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?
Mystery, YA and “girls” of any age
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print
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