Interview with Peggy Edelheit, author of the Samantha Jamison series
Tell us about your Samantha Jamison series of novels.
They are about an author who ends up writing about the mysteries she unexpectedly finds herself thrown into, a story within a story. They are written in the first person, so only the reader sees what Samantha sees and are at the same disadvantage as her. Sam is constantly turning around and talking to the reader, sometimes asking them what they think is going on. They get involved in solving it with her.
What genre is it?
It’s a mystery thriller series with a touch of humor. Samantha is a reluctant sleuth.
What kind of readers will it appeal to?
Just about anyone who enjoys an entertaininng fast-paced, can’t-put-down story.
Complete this sentence for us: If you liked ________________ you’ll love the Samantha Jamison novels.
I had to smile at that one. I wouldn’t think of comparing myself to another author. I like to think my style is uniquely my own with a different take on how it’s presented to the reader.
What is the best thing about being a writer?
I get to make something out of nothing by writing whatever flows from my fingertips. I thoroughly enjoy my characters constantly vying for my attention, telling me what they should say and do. Sometimes it gets ugly and I have put my foot down. After all, I’m the author, right?
Do you write by inspiration or by a strict schedule?
I try to write everyday, even when nothing is flowing the way I like it to, typing away until it starts to gel and fit. I try not to lose momentum in getting the story down. I don’t outline. I like to compare it to throwing food against the wall to see what sticks. Some days nothing sticks, but I keep on writing anyway. When I have finished a book, it’s been edited, approved, and finally off to the publisher, that is when I take a small breather and mentally ponder my next mystery.
What’s the secret to writing a good mystery?
Keeping the reader engaged and keeping them in the loop as to what Sam is really thinking. If you lose the reader, they may put the book down and not come back. I present twists and turns the reader and Sam don’t expect. Numerous readers have told me they find themselves verbally warning Sam for what they think is up ahead. They also feel like they know the characters so well, they’re like friends, laughing along at their escapades. I like that. They are engaged.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I’m a lover of the written word and the worlds they create. So it was a natural that I’ve been making up and writing stories since I first learned to write. Although I read and appreciate every genre, mysteries were my preference. Later on, after ignoring certain voices in my head that began intruding on my daily life, I finally let them have their say. Sam just sort of jumped out to the forefront of the group. (There might be a little of me in her…okay, a lot.)
I’ve been lucky enough to travel the world with my family over the years and have drawn from those travels and experiences when writing. We also had a home in France, hence 86 Avenue du Goulet, Volume 3.
I have three sons and live with my husband and miniature Schnauzer. I spend time in both Bucks County, PA and South Florida.
Have you got a site where readers can keep up with your work?
What marketing do you do for your novels? Is it something you enjoy?
The only marketing I do is my website and Twitter. I find that if I were to get too involved in other social media I couldn’t do the one thing I love best, writing.
Your book covers are gorgeous in their simplicity. That’s not technically a question, but we just wanted to say that.
Thank you. I’ve always felt I needed to keep them simple and focused, a factor I have complete control of. I usually wait until I am about 2/3 to 3/4 done writing the mystery, then start thinking about my cover. Until then, I’m not sure exactly what kind of statement I want to make. If it doesn’t speak to me, it won’t to the reader.
Where can people buy your books?
Volumes 1-4 can be found on Amazon and their outlets. Volume 5 will be available on Smashwords, Apple, Nook, etc… This time on Volume 5, Mouth Of The Rat, I am going the digital route only. Since 99.9% of my sales are all digital-related, it’s a no-brainer.
Volume 6. (I usually don’t name a book until I have a good handle on the main theme) I always let the reader know where I am going at the end of each mystery. I guess you’ll have to read Volume 5, Mouth Of The Rat to find out. (chuckle) But I might surprise everyone though with Volume 5 1/2, an intermission so to speak. Now that’s a mystery in itself, right?
My main goal is to entertain my readers and hopefully distract them for a few hours getting lost in the pages of my imaginary world of my amateur sleuth, Samantha Jamison along with her cohorts and capers.
Let me sum up that I’ve really enjoyed this interview.