– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –
Today I’m on the ‘Cake & Corruption’ blogtour, organised by Frolic Blog Tours.
To promote this book I have a Q&As post, but before I let you read it first some ‘basic’ information.
About the Author :
S.C. Merritt writes cozy mysteries featuring female sleuths, plots with a twist, lots of humor, and a little sprinkle of romance. Her Sweetwater Springs Southern Mystery Series is set in a small, Alabama town full of quirky characters, delicious restaurants, and lots of murder. Recipes are included in each book.
When not writing, she is traveling, watching classic movies and tv shows, or collecting flamingos.
She lives in Mississippi with her husband and miniature Schnauzer, Izzy and dreams of living in a tropical locale someday.
Title: Cake and Corruption
Author’s name: S.C. Merritt
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Series: Sweetwater Springs Southern Mystery series, Book 6
Publish date: March 4, 2021
Publisher: S.C. Merritt
Page count: 184
It’s wedding week and as mother of the bride, Glory wants her daughter’s wedding to be a day she’ll never forget. But when her address is found in the pocket of an unidentified body in a car crash, Glory’s biggest nightmare becomes reality. The past has followed her to Sweetwater Springs and it’s not going away without a fight. Can she solve the mystery and maybe even her husband’s two-year-old cold case murder in the process?
First of all thank you very much for taking the time to answer my questions, I really appreciate it. Here we go! 🙂
Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
I’m a 59 year old wife and mother of two grown/married children. My husband and I live in Mississippi, but are moving soon to Georgia for his new job.
I work full-time as a church secretary but am looking forward to writing full-time someday.
I love to read and watch cozy mysteries, so on a whim, I decided to see if I could write my own story. I never, ever intended to publish anything. My mom and daughter read it and encouraged me to give it a shot. That was in January 2020. 6 books and 3 novellas later, I still have to pinch myself that people actually read what I write. I’m having the time of my life. My only regret is that I didn’t discover this passion sooner.
Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
I wasn’t a huge reader growing up. I did read alot of Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys. I watched ALOT of mystery TV with my mom and grandmother. We never missed episodes of Perry Mason, Hawaii Five-O, Barnaby Jones, Mannix, Murder She Wrote, Rockford Files. The list goes on forever.
Is there a writer whose brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
Absolutely! And I do it quite often. The writing community is so open and helpful, especially to new authors. I’ve written to many of my favorite authors to ask their opinions on different things, or their advice on a certain style. Jenna St. James, Hope Callaghan, Laina Turner, Melissa Bourbon, CeeCee James are all authors who have been amazingly helpful and encouraging to me as a newbie author.
If you could, which fictional character (from your own book(s) or someone else’s) would you like to invite for tea and why?
Jessica Fletcher comes to mind. She has so many life experiences to pull from for her book ideas.
Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
Not really. I like to have quiet if possible. Right now, I don’t have an office. My husband is working remotely and he has the office. The other two bedrooms are taken up with other family. I dream of having my own office where I can have complete quiet and focus on the world I’m working in at the moment.
Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
I read and watch alot of mystery, but sometimes I get it from online articles I come across. People who know I write mystery will share things with me that they think would be a great plot twist or murder motive. My books are set in a fictional (but very recognizable) version of my hometown in Alabama. Sometimes the characters are recognizable, but I try not to paint them in a bad light, or worse, make them a murderer. Although, I have had friends ask to be killed in one of my books!
Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
Definitely a pantser, but I’m trying my best to learn to be a plotter. I know I could write so much faster if I plotted, but I just can’t seem to wrap my head around it. Sometimes I don’t know who the killer will be until the last few chapters. If I change my mind, I have to go back and rewrite to make it work.
Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
Writing’s the easy part. Even publishing is easy when you get the hang of formatting. The hard part is the marketing and social media. I took some bad advice at the beginning from someone who told me I had to be on every platform and I had to do this and I had to do that. No. You don’t. I stressed myself out so much over social media, website, advertising, that I almost quit.
The best thing you can do is start simple. Start with what you’re comfortable with. I knew facebook and Instagram, so that’s what I do. I have a website. I finally got a monthly newletter going out. When I had a little money in my account, I hired a personal assistant who does my newsletter and lines up other publicity things. She is a huge help. I know there are other things out there, but right now, it’s enough for me.
What are your futureplans as an author?
Write, write, write. They say the best marketing for your books is more books. Especially in the cozy genre. Readers are voracious. They love to binge read and as long as they want to read my books, I want to keep writing them.
Last, but not least : Can you give my readers one teaser from your book, which is featured here on my blog, please?
“Glory Harper.” Hunt glowered at me. “If I didn’t love you so much, I’d strangle you with my sash.”
I could see the red tinge running up the back of his neck and all the way to the tips of his ears. I struggled so hard to keep from grinning, my face hurt.
“It’s freezing in here! Where’s that breeze coming from?” Hunt tugged at the costume trying to cover more of his bare legs.
“You look great! So handsome and manly,” I cooed, batting my eyelashes and stifling a giggle.
Kelly walked over to Jake, raised up on her tiptoes and planted a kiss on his rosy cheek. “So do you, baby.”
“You two are going to owe us big time for this one.” Jake raised his arm, clanking his armguard against the sword hanging from his waist, and pointed at us.
“I think a Roman guard is a totally logical part for both of you to play since you have plenty of experience in law enforcement,” Kelly said.
“At least my uniform has pants!” Jake retorted.
“Those skirt things are a tad shorter than I expected, but at least they fit. I just hope you’re both wearing running shorts underneath.” Kelly knelt to lace up Jake’s sandals.
Hunt Walker was chief detective on the Sweetwater Springs police force. He and I had been dating for about a year. My brother, Jake Miller, was his right-hand man. Jake was right. Kelly and I were going to be paying for this for a long time to come.
Isn’t that a great reason to pick up this book and to find out more?!
Thanks once again for this lovely interview, S.C. Merritt.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds
P.S. Are you an author (or publisher) who also wants a FREE interview like this? You can always contact me via e-mail!