Monday, December 17, 2018

Interview with mystery author Maddie Day (aka Edith Maxwell)

Cozy mystery author Maddie Day (aka Edith Maxwell) joins me today to chat about the first novel in a new series, Murder on Cape Cod.

Agatha- and Macavity-nominated Edith Maxwell writes the Quaker Midwife Mysteries, the Local Foods Mysteries, and award-winning short crime fiction. As Maddie Day she writes the Country Store Mysteries and the Cozy Capers Book Group Mysteries. Maxwell lives north of Boston with her beau and two elderly cats, and gardens and cooks when she isn’t wasting time on Facebook.

Welcome, Maddie! Please tell us about your current release.
Murder on Cape Cod is the first in the Cozy Capers Book Group Mysteries from Kensington Publishing. Here’s the blurb:

Summer is busy season for Mackenzie “Mac” Almeida’s bicycle shop, nestled in the quaint, seaside hamlet of Westham, Massachusetts. She’s expecting an influx of tourists at Mac’s Bikes; instead she discovers the body of Jake Lacey, and her brother soon becomes a suspect. Mac’s only experience with murder investigations is limited to the cozy mysteries she reads with her local book group, the Cozy Capers. So to clear her brother’s name, Mac has to summon help from her book group co-investigators. For a small town, Westham is teeming with possible killers, and this is one mystery where Mac is hoping for anything but a surprise ending.

The book releases tomorrow (December 18) in a paperback exclusive from Barnes & Noble. It will rerelease a year later in all formats on all platforms.

What inspired you to write this book?
I spend solo writing time in a retreat cottage in West Falmouth on Cape Cod a couple of times a year and love the Cape in all seasons. Setting a cozy series in a fictional town in that area appealed to me and my editor alike. And with the miles of bike trails, it made sense to have a bike shop proprietor as the protagonist. Her participation in a book group that only reads cozy mysteries was icing on the cake.

Excerpt from Murder on Cape Cod:
Now I found the turn from the bike trail to the pathway that cut up to Main Street. Near the end of the path a hedge of scrubby coastal Rosa Rugosa separated the walkway from my postage stamp of a yard. The fragrant scent from the just-blooming native shrub mixed with the salt air and reminded me of my childhood here on the Cape. I slowed as I rounded a bend. I was scanning through the mist for the opening that would let me through the wall of roses when I tripped.

The obstacle in my path, oddly both soft and solid, was a sizable one. I yelled, arms windmilling like in a vintage cartoon. The air gave me nothing to grab hold of and I landed on my hands and elbows. I glanced down and back to see my knees resting on . . . Jake.

“Gah!” I shrieked and scrambled forward off of him. I crouched in place, my heart beating like the timpani in the Cape Symphony. Jake lay on his front with his head half-turned toward me, lips pulled back in a grimace, eyes unblinking.

“Jake!” I called. “Jake, are you all right?”

He didn’t respond. I inched closer and couldn’t detect any signs of breathing. I touched his temple but I didn’t feel a pulse under his too-cool skin. His skinny legs were splayed at an odd angle, and his back was still, too still. No breaths moved it up and down. He was never going to enjoy another free spaghetti dinner—or anything else. Jake Lacey was dead.

What exciting story are you working on next?
Next up is my seventh Country Store Mystery. Chef Robbie Jordan is going to leave southern Indiana to attend her tenth high school reunion in Santa Barbara, California. While there, a friend of her late mother’s hints that Mom’s death might not have been from natural causes, after all.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
My first paid publication was a short story when I was nine. I entered “Viking Girl” in a contest run by the local newspaper – the Pasadena Star News - and was paid two dollars. I have been writing in non-fiction of various kinds my entire adult life, but I got back to fiction – and specifically crime fiction – about twenty five years ago. I started writing mystery novels in earnest in 2009.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
Writing has been my full-time job for over six years. I am at my desk and working by seven every morning but Sunday. I usually write (or revise) until about eleven, then I go for my power walk, eat lunch, and do other authorly things in the afternoons. I am under contract to write three books a year, so I’d better treat it seriously.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I often talk out loud to myself on my daily walk. I plot the next day’s writing, then dictate a text to myself so I don’t forget. I think I’m known around my town as that crazy author lady who talks to herself. I don’t care. I like my plotting walks!

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I don’t remember! I recall wanting to be a teenager, but other than that? Not a clue.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Thanks so much for interviewing me, Lisa! I hope readers will visit my group blog, the Wicked Authors, and find me on my web site and on social media.


Thanks for being here today! Happy book launch tomorrow!

No comments: