Author Spotlight: Denise Swanson

murder of stacked librarian

Today is the DAY! Murder of a Stacked Librarian is out! In stores! Go GET IT!

 

Author Spotlight: Denise Swanson

Denise- when not writing your own cozy mystery series- what cozy mysteries do you enjoy reading?

That’s always a tough question because I read so many, but to name a few Heather Webber/Blakes three series, Sara Rosett, Marcia Talley, and of course Carolyn Hart’s Dead on Demand series which inspired me to write.

Do you have any #literaryconfessions?

Although I’ve seen the movie, I’ve never read To Kill a Mocking Bird, and with the exception of Ten Little Indians, I really don’t like most of Agatha Christie’s books.

Do you have a #literarycrush? 

I’m pretty fickle. I usually crush on the hero of the book that I’m currently reading, but one constant crush is Rhett Butler. I like the intensity of his love for Scarlet even though she is seriously flawed.

If you could be best friends with a character in a book, who would you pick? And why?

That’s another tough one, but I’d have to say Darcy Merriweather from Heather Blake’s Wishcraft series. I like Darcy as a person, and her ability to grant wishes is hard to beat.

What books are you looking forward to reading in 2013?

The book I’ve been saving as a reward to myself when I finish Scumble River # 17 is Charlaine Harris’ Dead Ever After, the final book in the Sookie Stackhouse series.

How many books are on your to be read (TBR) list?

I have about a dozen physical books and too many to count on my e-reader. I also have a couple of manuscripts that I’m reading for possible cover quotes.

Interview with Denise Swanson, author of The Scumble River series

murder of stacked librarian

I’m a cozy mystery fan. Have been for years. The books are light and fluffy- but with a good mystery at it’s core. Plus the characters are funny and enjoyable!

This week, Denise Swanson’s latest, Murder of a Stacked Librarian, will be in stores! Denise found some time to come by and talk to me- so read the interview- then go buy the book!

 

Interview with Denise Swanson

Denise, how did you create the character Skye?

When I decided to write a mystery, a school psychologist as the main character seemed like a good idea. No one else was writing about that profession and as a school psychologist myself, I knew I could give readers a true idea of what it was like. I also thought the profession lent itself to being an ideal one for a sleuth as we are trained investigators and everyone tells us their secrets.

 

Scumble River is a fictional town set in the Midwest (near Chicago, IL). How did the idea of Scumble River happen?

I originally was going to set the books in my hometown of Coal City, but when I was offered a publication contract, my husband asked me if I had ever heard of the word lawsuit and suggested that I fictionalize the setting. Scumble River is inspired by Coal City, and the two neighboring towns of Braidwood and Wilmington. My mother grew up in Braidwood and I was a school psychologist in Wilmington for several years.

 

Murder of a Stacked Librarian is the latest book in the Scumble River series. How has Skye changed from the first of the series to now?

Skye has changed a great deal from her first appearance in Murder of a Small-Town Honey. In that book, she had just moved back to Scumble River after being jilted and fired. She had maxed out her credit cards and had only come home because she had no other options. Throughout the series, she’s learned what she really wants out of life and grown up a great deal.

Denise, do you have an idea how you will end the Scumble River series? Or will you keep writing for as long as you can?

I currently have no intentions of ending the series. For a while, I thought when Skye got married that would be the final book, but then I realized there is life (and sleuthing) after marriage. 😉

I’m finishing up the honeymoon book now and have a great idea for the 2015 book. The big question is will my publisher offer me a contract past the 2014 book, which is the last one I’m contracted to write. Penguin makes that decision based on overall sales, but even more on the first week sales. So the sales of Murder of a Stacked Librarian between September 3 and 7 will probably determine if I get to write about  the 2015 book or not.

Do you have a writing space or routine?

I’m fortunate to have an office, complete with a cat. My routine is to write from about 8 AM to 2 or 3 PM seven days a week. My goal is five pages, but if I can write seven that’s even better.

Can you reveal anything that is happening next for Skye?

Skye does get married in Murder of a Stacked Librarian, but I can say whether or not it’s to her current fiancé.  Her honeymoon is fabulous, but there is a big surprise waiting for her there.

The Dozier family is a set of characters that Skye interacts with often in the Scumble River series. What was the inspiration for the Dozier family?

Skye’s interactions with the Dooziers are inspired by many of my own experiences as a school psychologist. As I like to say, there’s a little Earl Doozier in everyone.

The 3rd book in the Dime Store Mystery series (your other cozy mystery series) will be released in spring of 2014. Will the next Scumble River be released in fall of 2014?

Dead Between the Lines, the third Devereaux’s Dime Store mystery comes out March 2014 and Scumble River # 17 will be out the first Tuesday of September 2014.

 

*Special thanks to Denise Swanson for agreeing to be interviewed!

 

denise swanson

Denise Swanson writes both the Scumble River Mystery series and Devereaux’s Dime Store mystery series. Connect with Denise on Facebook!

 

Swanson’s Sleuths Street Team Interview 3: Nancy

swanson street teamA few weeks ago, Denise Swanson approached several of us about our opinions of a Street Team. A Street Team can vary from author to author- but for Denise- we hand out bookmarks, post to Twitter and Facebook, take pictures of our books and chatter excitedly about the new book, Murder of a Stacked Librarian (in stores Sept 3rd!)

For the next few weeks, I’ll be posting interviews with some of the members- and spreading the word about Scumble River and Densie Swanson. If you enjoy cozy books, I hope you’ll consider trying out a Scumble River book. If you’ve never read a cozy mystery- now’s the perfect time to try!

Interview with Nancy

1. How did you begin reading Denise Swanson books?

My sister got my interested in the Scumble River series.

2. Do you read other cozy mysteries?

Yes I read Cleo Coyle, Joanne Fluke, Heather Blake-Webber many more. I also am a big Janet Evanovich fan, but I am not sure she is considered “cozy” LOL. Another big time favorite author of mine is Mary Daheim. Her Bed and Breakfast mysteries and her Alpine series are really great.

3. You are a member of Swanon’s Sleuths (Denise Swanson’s Street Team to help promote her Scumble River books.) Are you a member of other street teams? What do you think of street teams- are they helpful to authors?

I was thinking of joining Janet Evanovich’s street team but not sure yet. I think they do help the author get the word out about there books!

4. What is your favorite Denise Swanson mystery?

I can’t choose a favorite I love them all!

5. Do you read Devereaux’s Dime Store Mystery (Denise Swanson’s other mystery series)? If you do, do you prefer Devereaux’s Dime Store or Scumble River? Or do you like them both?

Love both series of books. I am re-reading Little Shop of Homicide now actually. I need to get the second book.

6. What character in Scumble River would make the BEST best friend forever (BFF)? And why?

Trixie would make a Best best friend forever because she seems loyal but yet not in her friends business 24/7 but she is there when she needs her.  That is something that is great in a friend.

Swanon’s Sleuths Street Team Interview 2: Carrie

swanson street teamA few weeks ago, Denise Swanson approached several of us about our opinions of a Street Team. A Street Team can vary from author to author- but for Denise- we hand out bookmarks, post to Twitter and Facebook, take pictures of our books and chatter excitedly about the new book, Murder of a Stacked Librarian (in stores Sept 3rd!)

For the next few weeks, I’ll be posting interviews with some of the members- and spreading the word about Scumble River and Densie Swanson. If you enjoy cozy books, I hope you’ll consider trying out a Scumble River book. If you’ve never read a cozy mystery- now’s the perfect time to try!

 

Interview with Carrie

1. How did you begin reading Denise Swanson books?

I got addicted to cozies several summers ago.  I think I read Victoria Laurie first, and then because I enjoyed her series so much, I used Amazon to give me suggestions.  I bought Denise’s first book and read it in a few hours and knew I had to have all of the other ones!

2. Do you read other cozy mysteries?

I read LOTS of other cozy series.

3. You are a member of Swanon’s Sleuths (Denise Swanson’s Street Team to help promote her Scumble River books.) Are you a member of other street teams? What do you think of street teams- are they helpful to authors?

I am not a member of any other street team.  I think this a great way to bring exposure to great authors!

4. What is your favorite Denise Swanson mystery?

I absolutely cannot pick a favorite.  Each book has something unforgettable about it.

5. Do you read Devereaux’s Dime Store Mystery (Denise Swanson’s other mystery series)? If you do, do you prefer Devereaux’s Dime Store or Scumble River? Or do you like them both?

I have read both Dime Store mysteries and enjoyed them.  Right now I do prefer the Scumble River mysteries I guess because there are so many in that series that it just feels comfortable when I read them.

6. What character in Scumble River would make the BEST best friend forever (BFF)? And why?

I would love to be friends with Skye!  I am a high school English teacher and our lives seem so parallel at times!

 

Cozy-riffic Cuties: Murder of a Small-Town Honey discussion questions

murder of small town honey

It’s here: Today is the day to discussion for Murder of a Small-Town Honey by Denise Swanson. Part of the reason I chose this book to discuss is because I’m a member of the Swanson’s Sleuths Street Team, but mainly because- this is a great cozy series and I’ve been wanting to find people to discuss cozy books with!

 

Questions:

1. Skye leaves Scumble River on the heels of a memorable speech- but returns years later. Could you have returned? Would you have returned to Scumble River?

2.  What do you think of the town of Scumble River?

3. Honey has a past- and it ties to a few residents of Scumble River. What did you think of her past? Could Honey have learned from her past?

4. Skye is not a size 6 character. Is it refreshing to see a character that has curves?

5. For people who have read more of the Scumble River series- what are the differences in the Skye we meet in Murder of a Small-Town Honey and the Skye we see in later books? Has she grown-up? Changed? Still the same Skye? Embraced her small-town roots?

6. What did you think of the mystery? Engaging? Good first book in series? Needs more work? Chime in!

Thanks for coming by- for August- we’ll read Kate Collin’s newest book, Seed No Evil (out Aug 5th)!

Cozy-riffic Cuties Book Club: Sign-up for July Read!

murder of small town honeyI love cozy mysteries. They are some of my favorite reads. The characters, the mysteries, the settings- cozy mysteries are good!

But, not everyone likes them, and while I have the pleasure of talking to some of the most interesting book-ish folks, I do miss out on talking to people about cozy mysteries. Luckily, being a member of Swanson’s Sleuths and reviewing other cozy mysteries with Cozy Mystery Reviews has put me in contact with fans of cozy books. Then I decided- why not create an online book club for cozy books?

So here it is: Cozy-riffic Cuties- an online book club to discuss cozy mysteries!

For July- we will be reading Murder of a Small-Town Honey by Denise Swanson. Since several people that expressed interest in the group has already read this book (many of us are Swanson’s Sleuths Street Team Members), July will be a bit different than other months. While we will discuss the book, we also will be discussing things like the main character, Skye, and how much she has changed over the course of the books in Scumble River series.

We will meet and discuss for 1 day during the month of July. Can’t make it that day? No problem- come and discuss when you can! Questions  about Murder of a Small-Town Honey will be posted July 30th.

August and September book selection has already been picked by me, as well- Kate Collins newest, Seed No Evil (in stores Aug 5th) will be August and September will be Denise Swanson’s newest- Murder of a Stacked Librarian (in stores Sept 4th).

For October- we will discuss what book to read!

Any questions/comments/concerns- please direct them to me.

I look forward to discussing cozy mysteries with you!