My guest this weekend is Sandra Carey Cody, mystery writer and Missourian. She is the author of the Jennie Connor mysteries, published by Thomas & Mercer, an imprint of Avalon Publishing Group. These include Love and Not Destory, Left at Oz, Put Out the Light, Consider the Lilly and By Whose Hand.
I first ‘met’ Sandra when my debut novel was acquired by Avalon Books and I joined the group blog of many of their authors at Avalon Authors. Sandra is my guest this weekend to present her latest novel, Lethal Journal.
What About the Victim?
Writers love characters. We love creating them. We love forcing them to overcome seemingly insurmountable odds before they get to their happily ever after or, in some cases, get what’s coming to them.
If you write mysteries, as I do, the one character you really need to understand is the victim. Why? In a sense, everything in the book flows from some facet of this person’s personality or their history. Murder is a drastic act, way outside the experience of most of us. So it has to be believable that someone would cross into the ultimate forbidden territory and take a human life. What is it about the victim that would make someone want to kill him or her? More often than not, the reader never sees the victim alive. Their introduction to him/her is when s/he is found dead. So, how can a writer bring the victim to life for the reader? How does a writer make the reader care who killed him/her and want to see the killer get what’s coming to him/her?
Different mysteries use different techniques. In my latest book, Lethal Journal, I gave Jake Appleton, my victim, a journal. Jake’s a loner. No one knows what’s going on in Jake’s head. Ah, but he keeps a journal. When Jake is murdered and the journal can’t be found, we know where he kept his secrets and that’s where we begin our search for the truth about Jake.
Link to Lethal Journal on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1j7cXnW