November 2, 2022A Little Backstory

Frequently Asked Questions

As this is my first blog for the new website, I thought I would share some frequently asked questions that I get at presentations along with my answers. That way, you can get to know me a little better.

QUESTION: What started you on your journey as a mystery/thriller and horror writer?

Well, as it says in my biography, I have always had a passion for words and a good story. I believe that is one of the reasons that I was drawn to the practice of law, especially Plaintiff’s personal injury law. As lawyers, it is our job to LISTEN to our clients and be able to present their story in a compelling fashion to a jury or a judge. Without a moving story, there is no result for your client or a result that is unsatisfying. No one wants to deliver that after you have prepared for trial, arbitration, or mediation. No one wants that after you have spent hours with the client going over the facts of a case.

On a more personal level, I felt the need to start writing creatively when my first husband died. John was just 40 years old when he passed away unexpectedly at the age of 40 due to gross medical negligence at the hands of doctors at UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles. I was widowed at 37 years old. He died in December 11. I was back at work full time by February the following year. While I grieved his loss, I found that writing creatively helped me to get though that very difficult time. Without my stories, I don’t think I would have survived and thrived the way I have. That is why my personal motto is: “Never quit. Never surrender.”

QUESTION: Are there books that you have written that have never been published?

Yes. I have two full length novels that have never been published. I call them my closet novels because they are literally in a back closet in my house. One is called Island Blue, set in Jamaica in the West Indies. The other I don’t even remember. Maybe I will edit Island Blue someday and get it published.

QUESTION: Do you ever get writers’ block, and if so, how do you deal with it?

Yes, I do sometimes but I don’t get frustrated. Story ideas and the related writing comes when they are supposed to. They cannot be forced.  I watch a lot of true crime on TV. Sometimes that will spark an idea. In my writing, I try to go into areas that are fresh and unique. I am not writer who sits down to write every day. There are lots of writers like that. I am not one of them. I also keep a notebook on my nightstand as sometimes, ideas will come in the middle of the night or just as I am waking up.

QUESTION: How did you come up with the character of Dr. Catherine (Cat) Powers?

I love to read thrillers and mysteries but got tired of reading the same old stereotypical male lead character, usually an ex-military seal, or ex-cop or ex-detective, almost always male. To me, these lead characters had been so done and overdone. So, I decided to write a “kick ass” female lead character and the idea of Dr. Catherine (Cat) Powers was born.

In my earlier days, when I was a lawyer in California, I was frequently conflicted between providing a good home life for my step kids and having to be in trial or preparing for trial, working long hours. So, I wanted to bring that to Dr. Powers character, as I think that work-life balance struggle is something that a lot of working women can relate to and deal with on a daily basis. I also thought it would be interesting to have Dr. Powers, a woman of science in her work life, rely occasionally on her sixth sense, which comes to her only in times of extreme stress. It is not until the upcoming novel BOMB BLAST that readers will learn where this power comes from.

So that’s it for now. Happy reading.