CHC: Pari Noskin Taichert was a small mystery author I met once who convinced me it was time to pull out the novel again and give it another go. The international critique group that I joined kept me on task, and I never would have become the writer I am today without them. As for one writer and style? I don't like to stick to one or two. I love to find authors who write great mystery or suspense material. I love learning from those who have gone before me. I learn from reading more than anything else.
CHC: Any story requires research to be smart. My stories are rural and along the South Carolina Lowcountry, i.e., the beach. In my mysteries, I've had to research weather patterns, tide tables, wildlife, flora, food, firearms, shot patterns, clothing, dialects, foreign languages, and agricultural practices. You have to get facts correct. Since I set my stories in real places, the facts have to be right. And since I use law enforcement, the practices and tools in that arena must be credible. I visited Edisto Beach in March and rented a charter to study tide, dolphins, and creeks feeding the bay. Research can be quite fun.
EJHO: As founder and editor of FundsforWriters.com, you are always sharing your expertise and wisdom on the complicated and challenging business of writing and publishing. Perhaps you could share with us the greatest lesson you’ve learned about writing so far.