Welcome to my blog, the writing space where I share my mystery novel work-in-progress (WIP), writing tips, and my love of my home state, Wisconsin. I’m writing The Backyard Model Mysteries, a series about a retired model who uses her skill at spotting “posers” to solve mysteries in her beloved hometown.
The stories put the land of fish fries and brandy old-fashioneds on the page. Truly, if you’ve ever visited Wisconsin, you know that the state and its unique beauty is a character. The scenery behaves like a character. From the state’s insane weather—I recently was in Minocqua, where temps careened between 90 and 48—to its rolling hills and lakes, the location is unique and unpredictable, just like a person. Wisconsin, the state, is a national treasure. And so are its people. Wisconsinites are diverse and amazing; we possess heart, humor, and a distinct accent. As I’ve mentioned in my pitches to agents: “‘Yooper’ accents are the new black.”
I’ve lived here all my life; I wouldn’t have it any other way. I teach college writing, blog for a writing website, and I also am an over-50 model with an agency in Chicago. The inspiration for The Backyard Model Mystery series came after my husband and I purchased a property with a stunning backyard. “What a great place to write!” I exclaimed as I stepped behind the house. “What stories could I tell here?”
And so, it came to pass, that a mystery novel about a retired fashion model who solved murders was written. My protagonist never was a supermodel in New York City—but she did gain a superpower: While being a mannequin, she developed skills of observation and perception. She could evaluate people based upon their body language and word choices; the overdevelopment is similar to a person who loses one sense, and then another emerges to compensate.
Mel, my main character, didn’t know she had any unique skills until she was tested. She retired, returned to her hometown, and opened a craft mall. When a woman is found dead in her building, Mel must solve the crime. Otherwise, she risks losing everything.
In this space, I’ll discuss the mystery series WIP, tips about writing books, and anything else that comes to mind, including this wonderful state.
Thank you for stopping. I hope you return!
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Happy reading—and writing!