My mother has been a major influence on my life. She instilled a love of mysteries in me at an early (grade school) age. I grew up on Agatha Christie who became my idol. Mom always encouraged her children to reach for the stars. Never admit you don’t know how to do something, just learn it and do it.
My dad has always encouraged me to persevere. He embraced that “you can do it” attitude. Mom and Dad were the ringmasters of our family circus!
My brother and I co-wrote mysteries (again in grade school). I remember sitting on his bedroom floor and writing a detective story in the Sherlock Holmes/Dr. Watson style. We called the detective, Walter London. Now that I’m all grown up, I’ve started writing short stories about Walter London. I don’t have a clue (no pun intended) how we scripted the original stories, so I know my current Walter London stories are completely different, but it brings back good memories. Boy, how I wish we’d kept those old manuscripts!
My sister loves mysteries, too. We recommend books back and forth. Her preference is a good courtroom drama, so I dedicated my Jazz Kincaid story to her. When my first novel hit the library, she took a picture and had it framed for my office wall. And she had her book club read it which made me a bunch of new friends.
My daughter, Jennifer, is a published mystery writer in her own right. She’s also a professional editor and always has good input on how to make my stories better. She pushes me to be a better writer.
My daughter, Dana enjoys my stories and always points out that one big correction that all my other critiquers and beta readers missed.
It takes a village, right?