The Chicks are so happy to welcome back Nancy Cole Silverman, whose third Misty Dawn mystery just launched. Take it away, Nancy!
When Ellen asked me if I’d like to blog about the release of my new Misty Dawn book, The House of the Setting Son, I jumped at the chance. Then I thought, rather than write about what inspired me to write the book, I’d take a survey. After all, I’m launching the third book in the midst of a pandemic, and it’s not something easily ignored.
So here goes. I’ll get to the book in a minute, but first, I have a few questions.
Has anyone else whose been socially distancing discovered now that their work-a-day world has changed, that they’re doing things they thought they might never do? Like baking bread, writing letters longhand, or picking up the phone and reconnecting with friends and family?
There is no doubt the coronavirus has changed the way we socialize, and many of us have been forced to adapt. I know I have.
For instance, I recently planted a victory garden. Something I’ve never done before and didn’t think I had room for in my backyard. But I somehow managed to squeeze a couple of tomato plants in between my rose bushes, along with some basil, cucumber, and eggplant. My husband calls me Farmer Nan. I know very little about farming or gardening, and when everything ripened at the same time, I went door-to-door with my basket of extras and shared them with neighbors.
I even started making bread. And not just bread, but according to my Julia Childs’ cookbook—which up until the pandemic I had barely cracked—the artisan variety with all kinds of seeds, sundried tomatoes, and onions. My husband loves it, and so do I. Forget counting carbs—we’re in lockdown here—and those extra corona-five pounds that’s managed to creep onto my body—are a matter of survival.
But who’s to notice.
My girlfriends and I all kid that if the virus continues, we may never get out of the house to go shopping again. And besides, at our age, no matter what garment we buy, we may never get our cost-per-wear out of whatever we purchase.
I miss parties. Movies. And meeting girlfriends for coffee. Most of all, I miss going out to dinner with friends. But we’ve adapted. My husband and I now do social-distance outdoor dinners with virtual hugs—nobody touches—instead, we pantomime a big squeeze and try to remember what it was like to once hug someone.
We recently had two couples over for dinner. That means I set three tables. All six feet apart. Used paper plates. Different serving utensils for each table and everyone brought a covered dish.
Yes, it’s a different time, and writing and launching a book during a pandemic has its challenges. When I started the Misty Dawn Mysteries, I was looking for escapism. I wanted to write something light that would make me and my readers feel a sense of joy. Steve Steinbeck (Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine critic) referred to them as “…charmingly entertaining…” and asked if I had been channeling Thorne Smith, the creator of the old TV show Topper. Perhaps I was. Misty Dawn’s sidekick is Wilson Thorne, a shade, and the series is a trilogy that should be read in order. I hope my readers enjoy it as much as I did writing them.
When this is all over, I plan to propose a National Hug Day.
How about you? What have you done you didn’t expect to do during these unusual times?
Bio: After twenty-five years in news and talk radio, Silverman retired to write fiction. In addition to her short stories, Silverman has two series with Henery Press, THE CAROL CHILDS MYSTERIES, featuring a single-mom whose day-job as a radio reporter often leads to long nights as a crime-solver, and the MISTY DAWN MYSTERIES, centered on an aging Hollywood Psychic to the Stars, who supplements her readings working as a consultant to LAPD and the FBI. Silverman lives in Los Angeles with her husband and a thoroughly pampered standard poodle.
Synopsis: When Misty Dawn, the former “Hollywood Psychic to the Stars,” receives a phone call in the middle of the night, she knows it can’t be good news. Dorine Witherspoon, an actress and former client is in town for the opening of her touring musical and tells Misty the show’s leading lady, Cassie Marx, has disappeared, and the understudy had to go on for her on Opening Night! Misty immediately suspects foul play and when she and Wilson, Misty’s psychic shade, arrive at the theater the next morning, they discover LAPD’s Detective Cesar Romero meeting with the cast and crew. Events on both sides of the veil take a dark turn when Romero asks Misty off the case, and Wilson appears out of his depth with ghosts who want nothing to do with him. Death, close calls, and forces on both sides of the veil threaten to undo Misty and destroy her relationship with Wilson unless she can find Cassie and restore order to the show.