It is my pleasure to be part of the blog tour for a new cozy mystery – Bran New Death by Victoria Hamilton. I love Victoria’s Vintage Kitchen Mysteries and was delighted to learn of this new series. Unfortunately, I have experienced some glitches and haven’t finished the book yet, so my review will be posted later. However, I’ve absolutely LOVED what I’ve read so far and I’m crossing my fingers that my e-reader will cooperate while I’m traveling this weekend. What better way to pass away time in the airport than with a wonderful new mystery? In the mean time, Victoria was kind enough to answer some random questions. After this interview, I’m certainly hoping to meet her in person some day.Q – The Merry Muffin Mysteries is your second kitchen related mystery series.. Do you find it hard to keep the stories/characters straight?
A – Not at all, actually. It’s like asking me, since I have so many friends, do I ever confuse them? They are so distinct in my mind, that I don’t have any problem keeping them straight. However, I’ll tell you one glitch I ran into. I am currently writing three series, Vintage Kitchen Mysteries, Merry Muffin Mysteries, and as Amanda Cooper, the Teapot Collector Mysteries, coming in June of next year. Two are written in third person viewpoint, but Merry Muffin is first person. When switching from one series to another, I actually started writing a Vintage Kitchen Mystery in first person, and didn’t figure it out for half a chapter! It just felt so natural to be telling Jaymie Leighton’s story from that viewpoint.
Q – Do you enjoy baking or just writing about it?
A – I actually don’t bake much except – you guessed it – muffins. Those I do bake a lot, sweet and savory. I just find them the perfect baking project because they are pretty much foolproof.
Q – Do you read other mystery authors? If so, who?
A – I read a lot of other mystery authors. I never miss a Sue Grafton book… W is on my Christmas list this year. I adore Sara Paretsky and Louise Penny. I love Joan Hess, Mary Daheim, Diane Mott Davidson, Janet Bolin, Krista Davis… the list goes on and on!
Q – Did you always want to be a writer?
A – Yup, from a very young age. Here is a bit of… well, I hesitate to call it advice, but I guess it is. All of you out there… do you have or know any kids? Find out what they’re good at, what they love, and encourage them!! It took me far too long to figure out that I was a good writer and that there were ways to make a living as a writer. But from the age of twelve, that’s what I wanted, I just didn’t know how to go about it for a long time. Years of trial and error.
Q – Where is your favorite place to write?
A – At my desk, in my office. It keeps me focused and I write much more fluidly at a desktop computer than my laptop. The laptop is for copy edits and typeset edits. However… a good part of writing is planning, and I can do that anywhere. I jot down notes at all hours of the day and night, and in summer I love to sit out in the garden with a cup of tea or glass of wine and just think about where I’m going in a book and what to do next.
Q – What is your favorite muffin?
A – Oh my goodness, that’s like asking what is my favorite book. Are you allowed only one muffin? Mmm… nah, top three… cheddar, carrot, and banana nut.
Q – This question may seem off the wall, but I’m an elementary school librarian, so I have to ask – who is your favorite children’s book character?
A – Bless you for being a librarian, and the question is not off the wall at all. I adored books from even before I could read. So I think I would have to choose (again) a top three.
Lucy Pevensie from The Chronicles of Narnia: I read these books when I was a kid and loved all the Pevensie siblings, but if I had to choose I suppose it would be Lucy, the youngest who was my favorite.
The Prince from The Little Lame Prince and his Travelling Cloak by Dinah Maria Craik. I haven’t reread the book for some time, but I loved it as a child.
And most importantly (you’re going to laugh) Freddy the Pig from the Walter Brooks series. In particular I would have to say my first mystery novel to read was Freddy the Detective. I can date my love for mystery novels from the moment I met Freddy at the Bookmobile Library that pulled up in our neighborhood.
Thanks Victoria for visiting with us today. I look forward to reading many more of your books.
You can learn more about Victoria and her books by visiting her website.