Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, and Thorny Rose Mysteries. The eleventh installment in the Mac Faraday Mystery series, Cancelled Vows, was released on January 28, 2016.
Lauren is a popular speaker who has made appearances at schools, youth groups, and on author panels at conventions. She lives with her husband, son, and four dogs (including the real Gnarly) on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.
Gnarly’s Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/GnarlyofMacFaradayMysteries
Lovers in Crime Facebook Page:
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& I’ll go off the deep end if I want to!
Remember that song, “It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to, cry if I want to, cry if I want to …”?
Well, that song has been going through my mind for the last several days.
It all started when I received an email from a budding young writer who had reached out to me years ago. When he had first reached out to me, he was working on his debut novel and asked me for advice about getting it published. Now, four years later, he has finally finished writing it.
Now, it is not unusual for someone to take a long time to write a book. I started A Small Case of Murder in 1998, and it was published in 2004. I know another author who spent ten years working on his first book. Some writers take a long time.
However, when I heard from this young writer that he had finally finished his book and was ready to send it to a publisher, I discovered why he took so long to complete it. At one point in his email, he said some friends suggested he do this with the plot, and others had recommendations about characters. Another suggested he include a glossary. Yet another suggested maps and drawings. And then another friend …
What was to be his book had turned into a group project with every friend, family, co-worker, acquaintance, long lost relative, classmates, UPS delivery driver, barber, and enemy having input about everything from characters to plot and marketing.
Hard as I try, I am not immune from receiving literary input from friends and relatives. As a matter of fact, right now, my husband and I are having a passionate disagreement about my plans for the next Mac Faraday Mystery, which will be coming out this summer. The working title, Candidate for Murder.
Yep, Gnarly is running as an independent for mayor of Spencer, Maryland.
“Gnarly cannot run for mayor,” Jack said. “It’s illegal.”
To this, I pointed out a website which listed four four-legged candidates who ran for mayor and won. (http://mentalfloss.com/article/31231/4-animals-ran-mayor-and-won)
“Is he even an American citizen?” Jack argued. “And what about his police record?”
“He was never convicted,” I said.
“Like you don’t think his opponents are going to uncover his kleptomania?”
“Having issues will make him more human,” I said. “I mean sympathetic. He’ll be able to feel the voters’ pain.”
“What about when he got slapped with a paternity suit in It’s Murder, My Son? Like no one is going to dig that up!”
“Proves he’s a lover, not a fighter.” With confidence, I assured him that I had it covered.
Then, Jack told me that it was a stupid plotline and I’ve gone off the deep end. I told him to blow it out his ear.
That was when he started a fight.
Not only is it an impossibility for writers to make each one of their friends and family happy when it comes to writing a book—but it can be equally difficult to make every reader happy. Sometimes a plotline may go in a direction that may make some faithful readers unhappy, or a character may make a choice that will frustrate other readers. Yet, the vast majority of the readers will love the new direction the author has decided to take for whatever reason.
Years ago, I was a very loyal reader of a popular mystery author’s series until she took a direction with her characters that infuriated me. Even though as an author I respect, and even understand, why she went in that direction, it still made me stop reading her books, simply because I didn’t like the direction she had chosen to go.
Yet, since they were her books, then she had every right to take her characters and her books in the direction she wanted.
Writers very often have to remind themselves, “It’s my book.”
That’s exactly what I told Jack today, adding, “When you write your book, you can have Gnarly impeached.”
To which he replied, “And I will, too.”
Poor Gnarly. I have a feeling it’s going to be a tough election.
Lauren Carr takes fans of the Mac Faraday mysteries to the
Big Apple in this nail biting adventure. In Cancelled Vows,
David, Mac, and Gnarly, too, rush to New York City to
dissolve David’s marriage to an old girlfriend—and he’s got five
days to get it done. When murder throws up a road block, it is
up to David’s best man, Mac Faraday, and Gnarly, K9-in-waiting,
to sort through the clues to get David to the church in time!