CJ Carmichael

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On Writing My Twisted Cedar Mystery Series….

While I’ve written over 45 romance novels, my first love as a reader and aspiring author (if you can call a twelve-year-old that!) was mystery. I devoured the Trixie Belden series as a kid, then went on to enjoy Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys and pretty much everything Agatha Christie wrote. Nowadays, my favorite mystery authors run to the like of Liane Moriarty, Kate Atkinson and Laura Lippman.

What appeals to me most as a reader, is what I’m trying to do now as a writer. I’m not into on-scene violence, gory details, or clinical forensics. It’s the people—characters—who fascinate me. Their motivations and secrets, their past and hopes for the future. I also love the psychology of small towns, the idea that every knows one another’s business—or at least they think they do!

In writing my Twisted Cedar mysteries, I wanted to create a town and characters that felt real and interesting to both me and my readers. And I wanted multiple mysteries, some that are solved in each new book of the series, but others that carry on until the final novel. When I hear from readers who say they couldn’t stop reading and that the ending shocked them—that makes me feel I’ve achieved my goal.

Twisted Cedars Reading Order:
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