It’s time to get ready for summer!!!

The official start of summer, Memorial Weekend, is still a few weeks away, but there is no reason we can’t start early. Down here in Florida, the heat is cranking and the afternoon thunderstorms are starting. The snowbirds are on their way to the north and the pace is slowing down for those of us left in town. I love the summer!

The slower pace means time to relax, and that means books! This next series of author interview is by storytellers who have written beach worthy reads. It doesn’t matter if your beach is the ocean, a woodland lake or a concrete pool; it’s the idea of getting away and taking time for yourself.

One question each author is asked is what is in your beach bag. So I’ll ask you; what do you pack to get away?

Meet Daphne Mclean

Daphne writes Cozy Mysteries that you can find in Kindle Unlimited. You can also find all her books on her website. Her newest book, Death at Rugosa Bay, was released earlier this month. You can also connect with Daphne through her reader group on Facebook.

Where is your favorite vacation spot? Beach, Resort or Poolside?
Beach all the way. Nothing beats the briny scent of sea air, the cool breeze and your toes in the sand. Although, a best of both worlds scenario would be pool during the day, and beach picnic for dinner.

Everyone takes a tote back with them when they head out for a day at the beach. What is in yours?
All of your typical beach supplies, and of course, a book. I always bring a fun beach read with me. Although that’s wishful thinking these days. I have two little boys, and I typically end up collecting sea shells, building castles, and flying kites.

What makes your books perfect for a beach read?
The setting, the story or the characters? Honestly, it’s the setting. I love getting swept away to quaint little beach towns. Of course the plot is important, but I love the escape a fun setting gives me.

What advice would you give a new writer, someone just starting?
If your goal is to make money, accept the fact that you’ll have to write more than one book to do it. You’ll likely have to write more than one series as well. Also, research release strategies, and plan your release. Don’t just start posting books up willy-nilly. (I did, and it’s not the best way to proceed.)

How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
I’ve published seven books. Two are picture books, one is a non-fiction book for writers, and four cozy mystery novels. I have to say that my last book, Death at Rugosa Bay made me laugh AND cry as I wrote it. I’ve never gotten that emotional about my own writing before. I think it’s my best book yet.

When writing a series, how do you keep things fresh for both your readers and also yourself?
 That’s something I struggled with at first. The way I dealt with it was to have Jennifer travel to different locations in NJ. It’s tough figuring out ways to have the same person get involved with murders or keep running across bodies.

Are there any secrets from the book (that aren’t in the blurb), you can share with your readers?
One of my favorite characters makes an appearance in book four, and has a very special announcement!

What is the key theme and/or message in the book?
That a woman can be a great mother, and pursue her dreams.

How many plot ideas are just waiting to be written? Can you tell us about one?
 I have two more plots for this series. One will involve Suzanne and her rival at the PTA. I also am in the very beginning stages of plotting out a new series.

Who is the author you most admire in your genre?
I adore Tonya Kappes. I just heard her on a podcast, and I could literally listen to her talk all day. She’s also great to her readers. She writes them birthday cards!

ME TOO! SHE’S A HOOT!

Do you base your characters on real people?
They are a mixture of people that I know. Jennifer has parts of me mixed with fictional personality traits. Suzanne is like a woman I used to know, mixed with a former boss, and the Chief is like my grandpa, mixed with another friend of mine.

A big thank you to Daphne for starting out our summer reading series!! I can’t wait to load up my books and head to the beach!

Victoria LK Williams

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