Cozy Mystery

Behind the Scenes with Daphne McLean

Hi All!

A big THANK YOU to all who filled out the survey last week, and volunteered to be ARC readers for me. We have a nice big team for now. I received many questions about me, my writing life, and how I came up with ideas. So, for those of you who asked, here’s a little about my story.

In October 2013, my son was about a year old. I was in a bit of a rut. I didn’t know any other local moms, and my good friends who had children lived over an hour away. “B”, my older guy, was a great baby. I mean they are all great babies, but this kid man. He was/is great. He was my little sidekick who just went with the flow. I loved being home with him, and having our own little adventures, but I was… lonely.

My good friend, and neighbor asked me to start going on daily morning walks. While she didn’t have kids, she loved “B”, and it seemed like it was a good idea for all of us. During that time, we would talk about everything. Marriage, friendships, kids, personal goals, you name it. Anyone that knows me knows that I dislike and avoid physical activity of all kinds. This person, “L” got me to walk daily. It was great.

Anyway, I’ve started and not finished a handful of books over the years. My process is to take something normal and innocent about my life and twist it in some way to make it different, complex, and sometimes sinister. It’s a way to be able to write what I know, without writing an autobiography. So, while we were out on these walks, I started thinking about this idea for a book about a true-crime loving stay-at-home mom, (raises hand) who happens upon a crime scene, and inserts herself into the investigation. I ran this idea by “L” and she said, “Write it!” So, I wrote the first three chapters, and sent them off to friends to see if there was something there, all of them responded to keep going. However, not too long after, life got a little different. “L” moved away, and “B” started needing more activity, and then before I knew it, my youngest, “W” came along and basically didn’t sleep for two years. (I forgive him, and love him deeply).

In late September of 2019, the air started to chill, and the leaves began to change. It reminded me of the time I spent walking with “L” and that old manuscript I started. A new family moved into “L’s” house and gave me a bit of inspiration. I re-wrote the first three chapters, outlined the rest, and by February 2019, I was a published author!

Pembury Acres and it’s inhabitants, are all (loosely) based on my life, and the people in it. The characters are a hodge podge of people I know, mixed with traits of other people I know. For example, the Chief is a mix of my high school ROTC teacher, my grandfather, and lots of police chiefs that I’ve seen on TV or read about in books.

Jennifer Temple and I are alike in that we are stay-at-home moms, we both have sons, chickens, and failing vegetable gardens. We also both love true crime. I however, can cook and would likely never stick my nose into a real police investigation. So there you have it. The inspiration for Red Picket Fences, and the subsequent books all came from my little neighborhood, and the people in my life.

If you guys have any more questions, please let me know!

Moving on… a few announcements Death at a Dinner Party is on sale for $0.99 until Sunday. It’s also now available in paperback! I’ve met many of you via BookFunnel, so I’m not sure if paperback is your preferred choice.

Also, I have two new books to share with you from my fellow author friends.

That’s all for now! Happy Reading!

Stay Cozy,

Daphne

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