Prague And Krakow Spark Supernatural Ideas

My recent travels to Prague and Krakow sparked all sorts of ideas for novels, including for a new supernatural thriller series. A Non-Supernatural Mystery In Prague First, though, private investigator Quille C. Davis will travel to Prague to question a psychic medium, who is also a murder suspect, in my Q.C. Davis mysteries. While the Q.C. Davis mystery series is not supernatural, Prague's long history of mysticism and alchemy make it an ideal home for the psychic medium character. And ...
Read More

New Release: The Forgotten Man

Chapter One: A Likely Suspect It’s not every day you interview the man who might have murdered your sister. I leaned into the airport restroom mirror and dotted concealer over the dark circles under my eyes, then brushed lint from the jacket of my suit. It was my best suit. The one I saved for appellate arguments and pitches to gain new clients. Its warm brown color set off my olive skin and nearly black hair nicely. I wanted the man I was meeting to answer questions about his daughter’s d...
Read More

Detectives At The Edwardsville Public Library

Edwardsville Public Library Stacks
Recently I visited the Edwardsville public library in Southern Illinois as part of my book research. I discovered the value of researching in person, American Girl dolls, and an outdoor bandshell. While my Q.C. Davis mystery series mostly takes place in Chicago, the detective/lawyer main character was born in Edwardsville. In the next book in the series (working title The Forgotten Man) she'll strive to solve two 1980s murders. For that, she needs 1980s yearbooks, newspaper articles, and ...
Read More

Investigating A Difficult Woman

The Q.C. Davis mysteries are not message books. They're plot-driven, follow-the-clues detective mysteries. But I do begin each with a core idea. In The Worried Man, it was the pain of death by suicide as well as Quille’s family history. In The Charming Man, the concept of friends, many of whom are like family, trapped in an apartment complex during a blizzard sparked the story. And for The Fractured Man, I focused both on long-lost childhood friends and how the urge to recruit others to a cau...
Read More

Sneak Peek At Mystery In Progress

Q.C. Davis Mysteries 1-3
It's not every day you meet a man who might have murdered your sister. That's how the next Q.C. Davis mystery starts. This is the one where Quille looks into the murder of the sister for whom she was named: the original Q.C. Davis. No working title yet, but I am about two-thirds through a first draft. And I'm doing something new. Chapters in the earlier books were cleverly titled Chapter 1, Chapter 2, etc. Creative, right? Quite a few readers told me, though, that you prefer c...
Read More

When The Phone Rings At Midnight

The Fractured Man Q.C. Davis Mystery Series 3
A midnight phone call rarely brings good news. This idea sparked the opening scene for one of the Q.C. Davis mysteries, The Fractured Man. But it didn’t inspire the plot. I say “industry” because I love self-help minus the industry. Tony Robbins' book Awaken The Giant Within helped me reframe my thoughts and overcome anxiety when it was a real struggle. Other books on happiness, productivity, and success helped me make career changes and improve my relationships. But self-help has ...
Read More

Chicago Knows How To Rebuild

Chicago Riverwalk South Loop
One reason I love writing the Q.C. Davis mysteries is they highlight what I love about Chicago, where I live. The news is full of bad news about the city (but that's what news is, right?). But Chicago also is home to fantastic restaurants, striking indoor and outdoor art, and beautiful buildings. Sometimes when I'm walking at twilight I stop and stare at the skyline and think how lucky I feel to live here. What you may not know is that this abundance of stunning (and sometime...
Read More

New Release: The 5th Q.C. Davis Mystery Is Here

The Hidden Man (A Q.C. Davis Mystery)
The Hidden Man (New Release) He wants his father's killer found, but his secrets kept. She vows to solve the murder no matter what. Will what she doesn't know eventually kill her? Until now, Chicago lawyer Quille C. Davis has investigated crimes, but only to help her loved ones. Now she's been hired to solve the murder of a well-known class action attorney. The victim died with a secret. Quille suspects it relates to his fascination with UFOs, an interest he shared with his long-time gi...
Read More

Fictional Detective Visits Real Chicago Restaurants

Fictional Detective Dines Out
When I started the Q.C. Davis Mystery series I wasn't thinking about restaurants. But they quickly became key to the books. Why? First, because I love dining out. Second, and more important to readers, is that sleuths need to interview a lot of people, and scenes with just questions and answers start to feel repetitive. One way to vary those types of scenes is to set them in places readers might enjoy visiting or to feature food or drinks they want to try. Now the question readers ask me ...
Read More

A Sleuth Whose Superpower Is Listening

I didn’t set out to write a series featuring a sleuth who is kind. All I knew was that to write a private or amateur detective mystery, I needed a main character with special skills. Skills that could help her solve crimes where police failed.  My first choice about Quille C. Davis, the sleuth in the Q.C. Davis Mysteries, was an easy one. I made her a lawyer because I am one and know what skills it requires. Sleuth, Lawyer, And Former Actress Like me, Quille appears in court and handles law...
Read More