AUTHOR INTERVIEW – Anne Louise Bannon
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About the Book
It’s back to the 1920s with socialite author Freddie Little and his editor and not-so-blushing bride Kathy Briscow. In fact, Freddie and Kathy are happily enjoying their newly-married bliss when Freddie’s sister, Honoria, finds a dead body in her apartment. Honoria had taken the young woman in as a favor to a friend but it soon becomes clear that the favor caught up. Honoria goes into hiding and Freddie and Kathy take up a chase that will lead all three of them across the country and into a conspiracy that, no matter how unbelievable, could get them all killed.
Interview with the Author
What initially got you interested in writing?
Daydreaming. I was a moody teenager who wanted to spend all her time in her head. So, to justify it, I began writing the stories I was imagining.
What genres do you write in?
Mostly mysteries – that is my favorite genre. But I also do a bit of fantasy and time travel. In fact, my first fantasy, A Ring for a Second Chance will come out in November.
What drew you to writing these specific genres?
I’ve always loved reading mysteries, so it was natural that I fell into it when I started writing seriously. But I also like some fantasy and during my moody teen-age years, it was all about J.R.R. Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings. I do have a space opera I wrote many years ago that I may eventually release, but that’s as close to a quest novel as I’ve ever done.
But I’ve always loved the puzzle of a mystery and good characters trying to solve something. It’s that “here’s a disaster in the middle of my life, how do I figure out who caused it and get it fixed?” kind of thing.
How did you break into the field?
I’ve joined groups, particularly the Mystery Writers of America. I’m not an active member at the moment (Note to self – fix that). But I’m active with the Sisters in Crime. If you’re going to get the support you need to get your stuff out there, that’s one of the best ways to do it.
What do you want readers to take away from reading your works?
My thing is about writing pleasant diversions. I write the kind of books you escape into when you’ve had the day from hell at work. I could never pull off the lofty thing. And before you write off pleasant diversions, sometimes that’s exactly what you need when everything else is going to hell around you. Right after my divorce, I got through by watching old Mary Tyler Moore re-runs on cable.
So, if you’re feeling pleased and relaxed at the end of one of my books, great. I’ve done my job. If something I wrote got you thinking about something, even better.
What do you find most rewarding about writing?
When the characters come alive and start talking to me. Love that part.
What do you find most challenging about writing?
The complete lack of renumerative reward. It’s mostly a time thing. If it paid better, I could spend more time doing what I love to do most in the world. Alas, I like eating and keeping the lights on.
What advice would you give to people wanting to enter the field?
If you can find anything else to do that will make you happy, then do it. That sounds terribly harsh – and it sounded that way to me the first time I heard it. But writing is not easy and the constant rejection is really, really tough. Only those who are really dedicated to their craft are going to survive. I love encouraging young writers – and certainly good writing skills are useful in a great many professions. Just be aware that it is extremely difficult to make a living as a writer.
What type of books do you enjoy reading?
Mysteries! Cozy mysteries, specifically. I love good characters and learning about different places through the eyes of someone solving a good puzzle.
Is there anything else besides writing you think people would find interesting about you?
My husband and I make the things most sane people buy. I sew some of our clothes, bake bread, make soap. He makes wine, roasts our coffee beans, smokes bacon. We also foster basset hounds through the Southern California Basset Hound Rescue.
What are the best ways to connect with you, or find out more about your work?
It’s all on my website annelouisebannon.com. I’ve got social follow buttons there, contact form, lists of all my work. You name it.
Photo credit: guy viau photography
About the Author
Anne Louise Bannon has made not one, but two careers out of her passion for storytelling. Both a novelist and a journalist, she has an insatiable curiosity. In addition to her mystery novels, she has written a nonfiction book about poisons, freelanced for such diverse publications as the Los Angeles Times, Ladies’ Home Journal, and Backstage West, and edits wine blog OddBallGrape.com. On the fiction side, she writes a romantic serial, a spy series, and her Kathy and Freddy historical mystery series, set in the 1920s. She and her husband live in Southern California with an assortment of critters.