I'm thrilled to be a stop on the
blog tour for author
Daryl Wood Gerber
and her new book
PRESSING THE ISSUE
Book 6 in the Cookbook Nook Mysteries
The Agatha Award–winning author of Grilling the Subject returns to the Cookbook Nook in Crystal Cove, where the annual Renaissance Fair serves up a helping of crafty courtiers, damsels in distress, and medieval murder . . .
As the annual Renaissance Fair comes to Crystal Cove, Jenna Hart’s Cookbook Nook is packed with tasty treats and all things medieval, while her pal Bailey is ready to swoon over her upcoming nuptials at a local vineyard. But when the two friends discover the body of the vineyard’s owner bludgeoned by a winepress, all their merriment fades, along with their hopes for a vintage year.
Which churlish varlet did the deed? Was it the victim’s errant brother, who stood to inherit the vineyards? Or the owner’s crestfallen ex-girlfriend? Mayhap it was the newly arrived comely wench, or her jealous husband. Fie on them all! Verily, Jenna can’t rest until justice is served, and she vows to track down the killer. But can she sniff out the truth before the villainous culprit strikes again?
Day 7 of the continuing interview with Daryl Wood Gerber, author of Pressing the Issue, the 6th Cookbook Nook Mystery.
Which of your books would you like to have made into a movie?
I would love to see any of my thrillers made into a movie—I love watching thrillers on the big screen—and I’d love to see any of my cozies made into TV series. I think the cozies, particularly, would do well on the Hallmark Channel. They are considered “blue sky” stories (happy endings), and the series is set on the beautiful coast of California. How much more picturesque could you get?
Did you ever, or do you still, take writing classes, seminars, etc.?
I took lots of classes, and I read a lot of books on writing. Yearly, I go to conferences for writers where they offer courses on plotting, dialogue, setting, character building, etc. I find refreshing my view of writing invaluable. I just bought a new workshop-style book for how to write a blockbuster. We’ll see if it works. Some of the books I’ve used repeatedly are Hallie Ephron’s “Writing and Selling Your Mystery Novel,” and Chris Reardon’s “Don’t Murder Your Mystery.” One of my favorite seminars was developing the character of the killer. I would hate for my killers to be one-dimensional.
How hard is it to write about food?
Well, it’s interesting, I’ll tell you that. I was taught early on not to create a scene at a coffee table. It’s static and boring, a teacher said. But in a foodie mystery, there are lots of café and kitchen scenes. So…what I try to do is make food part of the story and the scenes involving food active. Do the cooking. Taste-test. Move around the kitchen preparing the table and the setting. As for the food itself? I work hard to find words to describe what my characters are either preparing or eating. In Pressing the Issue, because it’s all Renaissance Fair-style food, I spent a lot of hours testing out recipes. Then I had to decide where those foods fit in the story. For example, Rhett and Jenna purchase Hawker’s Mush at the fair and taste it for the first time. They go to Mum’s The Word diner and enjoy shepherd’s pie. At the Cookbook Nook, Katie gives a seminar on making pasties.
Are any of your characters based on people you know and are they okay with that?
Ha-ha. Are they okay with it? I haven’t asked them because I don’t tell them. I’ve based a few characters on people I know or on compilations of people I know. A long time ago, a writing instructor advised a group of us to change the sex or the whole look of a character so the people we knew wouldn’t have a clue we’d based the character on them. After all, it’s the personality that matters most, right?
Have you ever considered having characters from one series make an appearance in the other series?
I haven’t done it overtly, but I’ve referred to Charlotte Bessette from the Cheese Shop Mysteries in the Cookbook Nook Mysteries. They met online. She advised Jenna about some cheeses. Come to think of it, I reference Charlotte again in Pressing the Issue. If you read it, you’ll see why. Plus I’ve mentioned a darling culinary bookshop on the coast of California in my French Bistro Mysteries. As for having the two worlds collide and actually seeing a character in that world, it might feel strange and take the reader out of the moment [almost breaking the fourth wall, as it’s referred to in theater], so I’m not sure I want to go that far…although Rhett’s folks do own a lovely restaurant in Napa Valley, and Jenna and he could to the wine country and stop in Bistro Rousseau for a bite, don’t you think?
Thank you to all who have come along on this journey and visited every day of the blog tour. I hope you’ve enjoyed learning a bit about me and my writing process.
To one commenter today,
is giving away commenter’s choice of one of the first five Cookbook Nook Mysteries or any of the Cheese Shop Mysteries PLUS some fun swag, including recipe cards and a utility measuring spoon. Now look to see the grand prize!
Winners will be chosen after February 26
at the end of the tour.
Visit ALL the blogs (see list below) on the Cozy Blog Tour (there are 7 in a row), he or she will be entered for the grand prize. This is not a rafflecopter.
Just drop in and visit them all and leave a comment. The links are below.
What’s the prize? Winner’s choice of a Cookbook Nook Mystery, winner’s choice of a Cheese Shop Mystery, a darling cat tea towel, a plush Tigger, and a Medieval Tapestries coloring book to honor the Renaissance Fair theme in the book!
I was so thrilled when I heard there was going to be another book in the Cookbook Nook Mysteries! It has been one of my favorite series since I read book one, FINAL SENTENCE. In this sixth book in the series, author Daryl Wood Gerber doesn’t disappoint!
PRESSING THE ISSUE is the perfect installment to this delightful series. All of the wonderful characters are back and at their best, this time deeply intrenched in the local Renaissance Fair. Seriously, I had a smile on my face the entire time I was reading it.
A fabulously well plotted mystery, I was so engrossed in the story, following along with, Jenna trying to figure the who and the why, that I lost all track of time and didn’t look up until I had finished the last page.
Fans of Daryl Wood Gerber, and the Cookbook Nook Mysteries, will not be disappointed. Haven’t read this series? If you love cozies, and a culinary theme, it’s time for you to get started!
DARYL WOOD GERBER
February 26 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW, INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY