I’m so excited to be a part of Pressing The Issue Blog tour and today I have Daryl Wood Gerber here to answer a few questions:
Which came first your protagonist, your story or your tone/setting – title, cover art?
Ha! That’s a lot of questions. Well, if I’m writing in the series, then the protagonist, because it’s always her story I’m trying to craft. Next, I like to come up with a theme for the book. It could be a food-related theme or a seasonal or fair-type theme. That then drives what the title should be. For example, when I wrote Stirring the Plot, I was writing about a group of benevolent witches (who aren’t really witches) raising money for literacy. Stirring the “Plot” was a play on words for witches stirring their cauldron and “plot” because each of the books in the Cookbook Nook Mystery series have a book-driven word in them. Final Sentence, Inherit the Word, Stirring the Plot, Fudging the Books, Grilling the Subject, and now Pressing the Issue.
As for the cover art, I pick pieces of art and send them to my editor so they can pass them along to my very talented artist! She has made some beautiful covers for all of my series!
What is your process for determining your style, your voice, your word choice?
The voice comes to me for each of my protagonists. I hope they don’t sound the same. They have different backgrounds and different histories, so they shouldn’t. As a former actress, I sort of pride myself on finding a voice for each of my characters. Word choice definitely matters. In this particular book, I focused on the Renaissance Fair and how people would speak throughout. It was a hoot researching all the terms used at the fair and how to teach newbies how to use fair-speak in order to have fun and a bit of authenticity. There are websites devoted to finding the right parsing of words and sentences for a fair. Research, research, research really matters to me.
Do you have an interesting quirk about your personality that you’d like to share?
I’m Type A. Can you tell? I like to get things right. I get embarrassed when I mess up. Truly embarrassed. I will apologize for days if I make a mistake. It’s not pretty. But this aspect of me does make me try harder all the time. I don’t let up. I make all my deadlines. I’m usually early. I work extra hours if that’s what it takes. I’ll wake at five a.m. if I’m running behind just so I can get caught up.
As for another quirk, I love to laugh, and I have a very hearty laugh. You can’t miss me in a crowd if someone tells a good joke.
Most mystery writers do quite a bit of research for their books. What was the most interesting or bizarre thing that you have ever had to research for one of your books?
Agatha Award-winning Daryl Wood Gerber writes the brand new French Bistro Mysteries as well as the nationally bestselling Cookbook Nook Mysteries. As Avery Aames, she pens the popular Cheese Shop Mysteries. A DEADLY ÊCLAIR, the first French Bistro Mystery, comes out November 2017. Daryl also writes stand-alone suspense: DAY OF SECRETS and GIRL ON THE RUN.
Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote.” She loves to cook, and she has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky who keeps her in line!
Review of Pressing The Issue
Review (4.5 Stars): What a great mystery this was! This is the sixth book in the Cookbook Nook mystery series and each one keeps getting better and better. Jenna is helping the residents of Crystal Cove prepare for their annual Renaissance Fair and everyone is excited to take part in all things medieval. Her good friend, Bailey, is finally getting married at a local vineyard but is afraid that something terrible is about to happen to ruin her nuptials. When they find the body of the vineyard’s owner, it is up to Jenna to follow the clues to find another killer before it is too late.
I love this series and I was so excited to read another installment of the Cookbook Nook series so I could catch up on the lives of Jenna and her good friends. Ms. Gerber always seems to know how to mix the right ingredients that will create a well-written and entertaining mystery and Pressing The Issue is a shining example of this. I loved following the characters as they experience the Renaissance Fair and the yummy treats described always makes me want to visit Crystal Cove in person. This book was fun and kept me guessing until the very end about the killer, which is a delight for this reader. Can’t wait to read more from Daryl Wood Gerber and I am looking forward to spending more time with Jenna and the gang in the near future.
To one commenter today, Daryl is giving away commenter’s choice of one of the first five Cookbook Nook Mysteries or any of the Cheese Shop Mysteries PLUS some fun swag, including recipe cards and a utility measuring spoon. Giveaway ends on February 26th.
Grand Prize Giveaway:
If the commenter visits ALL the blogs on the Cozy Blog Tour (there are 7 in a row), he or she can be entered for the big prize. This is not a rafflecopter. Just drop in and visit them all and leave a comment. The links are below. What’s the prize? A Cookbook Nook Mystery, A Cheese Shop Mystery, a darling cat tea towel, a darling plush Tigger, and a Medieval Tapestries coloring book to honor the Renaissance theme in the book.
COZY BLOG TOUR:
February 20 – The Power of Words – REVIEW, INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY
February 21 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW, INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY
February 22 – That’s What She’s Reading – REVIEW, INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY
February 23 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW, INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY
February 24 – My Devotional Thoughts – REVIEW, INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY
February 25 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW, INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY
February 26 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW, INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY