Author Name: D. M. S. Fick Novel: Lewis Sinclair and the Gentlemen Cowboys Genre: Traditional Mystery Release Date: Hardcover April 2023; Paperback April 2024 Website/Platform Name: dmsfick.com Contact Information: firstname.lastname@example.org
1. Can you give me a brief overview of your novel?
A missing brooch. A face set in cement. This is not your average music festival. Country artist Lewis Sinclair is on the brink of stardom when his girlfriend leaves him for his no account manager. When that manager is found dead with his face in cement, Lewis must clear his name before he's number one on the Top Suspects List instead of the charts.
2. What inspired you to write it?
I was at the Down from the Mountain concert of bluegrass artists who performed on the Oh Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack. I realized no one that I knew of had written a mystery that takes place at a music festival and that I was friends with someone who worked at a very successful one. She gave me a media pass to attend and what I experienced mixed with my imagination became the novel.
3. Tell me about the main characters in your book. What makes them unique or relatable?
The characters in my book form several found families. The camaraderie they share is infectious and carries the reader through the book with warmth, bravery, and amusement.
4. What themes or messages do you hope readers take away from your novel?
Be kind. You don't know what another human has experienced to bring them where they are. Music, food, and family (found or otherwise) are ways to strengthen ourselves to exist and flourish in this sometimes cruel world.
5. How did you approach the writing process for this book?
I used several stints of vacation time to write the majority of the first draft. I used contest and submission deadlines to keep me on task.
6. Do you have any writing rituals or habits that you follow?
If I'm stuck, I set up some kind of party with food and laughter in good company for my characters to take part in. It's fun to write and provides unexpected and fruitful plot twists.
7. Were there any challenges you faced while writing this novel? How did you overcome them?
Life gets in the way of creative expression. You have to make a living and that takes a lot of time and energy. I just stuck with it and eventually, whatever I could afford to give to my book paid off.
8. What advice do you have for aspiring authors who are working on their first book?
If it gives you joy to write, stick with it. It has to give you fulfillment because the process of getting published is a struggle. Seek information about publishing and writing and have a writer friend.
9. Can you share any upcoming projects or future plans in the world of writing and literature?
Another traditional mystery with the Gentlemen Cowboys is in the later stages of rewriting. I have a completed Women's Fiction novel I'm seeking a publisher for and am working on the first draft of a sequel to that book.
10. Is there a particular moment or review from a reader that stands out to you and made your journey as an author more meaningful?
The books editor of a major newspaper read an early version of Lewis Sinclair and liked it. Their encouragement kept me believing in my book through the downs and downs of the submission process.
11. If there's one thing you'd like your readers to remember about you and your work, what would it be?