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So, what’s it like to be a mystery writer?

(The answer to that question today is: stressful! Vickie’s on deadline with the manuscript for My Fair Latté, the first book in her new Café Cinema series, due tomorrow! So, here’s one of her posts from the Chicks’ archives we believe is worth a repeat.)

I get asked this question and related questions —Why did you become a mystery writer? How did you end up being a mystery writer? — quite a bit. The short answer is that it’s cool, frustrating, exhilarating and infuriating in turns, and sometimes all at the same time. But since I was always better at multiple choice questions than essay, I’ll try to address the question in that way.

1. What’s the coolest thing about being a mystery writer?

  1. Getting to write “murder mystery author” under occupation
  2. Having a commute of 14 steps (from coffee maker to desk chair)
  3. Getting to kill (imaginary) people is fun and cathartic
  4. All of the above

2. What’s been the most surprising thing you’ve experienced since getting published?

  1. Getting fan e-mail and messages!
  2. How much time it is possible to goof around on Facebook
  3. How incredibly kind and generous other mystery authors are
  4. All of the above

Trying to meet deadline on manuscript

3. What are deadlines really like?

  1. Positive, they keep me on track
  2. Nerve-wracking, worrying if I’ll finish on time
  3. Heart-rending. I’m never quite ready to let my manuscript leave home
  4. Hell
  5. All of the above

Making deadline on manuscript

4. What are some of the things you get to say that you can’t believe you get to say?

  1. So, I was talking to my agent…
  2. So, I was chatting with author Frances Brody (who, as some of you know, stalked me at Malice)…
  3. So, I blog over at Chicks on the Case…
  4. So, I’m doing a little book tour…
  5. All of the above

5. What is a typical day like as a writer?

  1. There is no “typical” day
  2. I write nineteen and a half hours (at deadline)
  3. I spend nineteen and a half hours on Facebook (not on deadline)
  4. I drink copious amounts of coffee, write blogs, answer e-mail, mail ARCs or prize packages, think about the next book, write my current manuscript
  5. All of the above

6. What are the best, the worst, and the hardest parts of being a mystery author?

  1. The writing
  2. The writing
  3. The writing
  4. All of the above, times three

What’s your favorite or least favorite part of being a mystery reader/writer? Or what’s cool about your job? Please share in comments.

24 thoughts on “So, what’s it like to be a mystery writer?

  1. How that post made me feel:

    A. Nervous…Good luck Vickie!
    B. Excited… Can’t wait until the book comes out.
    C. Tired… Even thinking about writing is a whole lotta work
    D. ALL OF THE ABOVE!

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Go, Vickie! You can do it.

    My least favorite part is starting. Every day. Once I get going, I’m all in, even if it’s in and out during the day. But starting is HARD.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. The best: the mystery community, for sure!
    The worst: writing the dreaded middle of the book
    The most fun: the bar at Left Coast Crime and Malice Domestic (see “the best,” above)

    Great post, Vickie, and yay for getting your book turned in! Can’t wait to read the new series!!!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. All of the above. I’m sending a theme on all of the above questions.

    I love interacting with mystery authors. They are always so warm and fun to talk to.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Just think, Vickie, in little more than 24 hours, you will be a mystery writer of leisure! (Is there such a thing?) Go go go!!! Cake and champagne on us at the finish line.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Yay Vickie! Soon you’ll be basking in that just-turned-in-my-manuscript glow!!

    My least favorite part is getting started. (I’m happy to see I’m not alone! That blank page is ROUGH.) My favorite part is a gimme: this wonderful community of readers and authors! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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