I recently was honored to review the upcoming book of a writer new to me, Dorothy Bodoin. Dorothy and her writing both made a very favorable impression. She is multi-published. Besides being a fellow Wings author of a cozy mystery series, some of her romantic suspense books were chosen for reprint by Harlequin’s Worldwide Mystery imprint.
Dorothy’s eighth book in her Foxglove Corners cozy series, A Time of Storms, was released November 1, 2009 by Wings e-Press. Her other books in this great series are also available at that link.
I asked her if she would answer some questions so you can get to know her, too.
Dorothy, have you always been a writer? For as long as I remember. I used to draw characters and write first sentences of stories. When I discovered composition books, I moved on to longer lengths. When I bought my first typewriter, I was ready to write book-length fiction.
What motivates you to keep writing? I’m happier when I’m writing a book than at any other time, so I never take vacations between books.
Why are you drawn to writing mysteries? I always bought mysteries or checked them out of the library and especially liked the ones that surprised me. I often felt that those covers on the Nancy Drew books didn’t live up to their promise. When Gothic novels became popular, I read them almost exclusively. The best ones never disappointed me.
Are there any genres you haven’t yet written that you would like to try? I’d like to try writing a time travel one day and probably will.
A TIME OF STORMS is your eighth book in the Foxglove Corners series. Are the ideas for new books in the series still coming? I like to have one idea for the next book after the one I’m currently writing. I don’t want to look further into Jennet’s future.
Does a real-life version of Foxglove Corners exist? It certainly does. Foxglove Corners is really Metamora, Michigan, located in Lapeer County. It is exactly as I describe it. Even the wedding cake house, described in Darkness At Foxglove Corners, is a real place. However, many of the other houses and buildings are products of my imagination.
Have you personally been through a tornado experience? I’ve never lived through a tornado, but I know what it’s like to worry all night about tornado warnings. I have lived through severe storms, though, and remember one that brought down an enormous three-forked elm in our backyard. Years later, I’d planted a poplar tree that grew and grew until I was afraid it would crush the house. This happens in Darkness At Foxglove Corners But before it could happen in real life, I had it cut down. It cost around $20; having it chopped down cost $1200.
What comes first in ideas for a new book–plot, characters, setting or something else? It varies. Often it’s a Victorian house. Recently a friend told me about one of the experiences of a collie rescuer. This became the springboard for my WIP, The Dog From The Sky, which will be Jennet’s next adventure after A Time Of Storms.
How do you find names for your characters? I have three name resource books, but I rarely use them. I select names I like. Sometimes my characters choose their own names. Sometimes I have to change names to avoid having too many that begin with the same letter. Now, with fifteen books, I try to make sure that I don’t repeat names.
What do you like most about the writing process? What I enjoy the most about the writing process is going over and over and over a chapter until in my opinion, it’s perfect.
What do you like least about writing? What I like least is sitting at the computer for long periods of time.
What is the one thing you know now about writing that you wish you had known before you started? I wish I’d known about the importance of hooks and cliffhangers and pacing. Two of my early books had what I considered slow, romantic beginnings. I had to rewrite each one to add a hook. In each case, I took an incident mentioned in the first chapter and expanded it into a scene. I did this before submitting the manuscripts.
What do your friends and family think of your writing career? My family and friends have been supportive of my writing career from the very beginning.
What would you say are the pros and cons of small publisher vs. big-name publisher? I’ve never been published by a big-name publisher, but I like having a personal relationship with the small publishers I do have. I know I wouldn’t like meeting someone else’s deadlines or being pressured to sell a certain number of books or go on tour.
Is there a message you would like readers to take away from your books? Eventually everything will come out right although it may not seem so at the time.
Dorothy and I both hope you will investigate her books. You can read more at her website, too. I think if you do, you’ll have one more favorite author to add to your list. Enjoy!