I’m pleased to have author Cathy Ace here from just outside Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Cathy was born and raised in Swansea, South Wales and migrated to Canada from the UK when she was 40. She’shere to speak about her writing and new release, The Wrong Boy that’s on blog tour with Escape with Dollycas into a Good Book.
Hi, Debbie. Thanks for having me along today!
My pleasure, Cathy. How long have you been published? What titles and/or series have you published and with which publisher? Have you self-published any titles? Please give details.
My first novel was published in 2012. THE CORPSE WITH THE SILVER TONGUE was the first in the Cait Morgan Mysteries – there are now eight books in that series (TouchWood Editons). They feature a Welsh Canadian professor of criminal psychology who travels the world solving “closed circle” mysteries (contemporary, but very much like Agatha Christie, in that they are true “traditional” mysteries). I also write the WISE Enquiries Agency Mysteries (Severn House Publishing), which feature four female professional PIs who run their business out of a Welsh stately home. They’re cozier than the Cait Morgan Mysteries. I have two collections which are self-published (Four Tails Publishing) – one is a collection of short stories, the other a collection of novellas. These two volumes contain the earliest tales about both Cait Morgan and the WISE women, and also about DI Evan Glover…who appears in my forthcoming novel THE WRONG BOY, which was published on January 9th 2019.
Congratulations! That’s quite a nice publishing record. Your mysteries sound very interesting.
Describe your goals as a writer. What do you hope to achieve in the next few years? What are you planning to do to reach these goals?
I hope to keep writing the two series across which I have already 12 books published, but also want to be able to work on standalones, which will be darker – though not gritty. In other words, I intend to keep my head down, and work hard!
Good luck with those goals. I also hope to start a new cozy series and keep writing standalones. I’d also like to publish some short story collections.
What type of reader are you hoping to attract? Who do you believe would be most interested in reading your books?
My Cait Morgan Mysteries attract readers who enjoy a true traditional novel, whilst the WISE Enquiries Agency Mysteries attract those who enjoy tea and cakes, a bit of gossip and real British mysteries. THE WRONG BOY will appeal to those who enjoy a thrilling tale of suspense with layers of deceit and old lies being ripped away…the effects of which impact a small community in Wales, and one family of three women in particular.
A widespread audience.
What advice would you give other authors or those still trying to get published?
Read! Not books about how to write, or about how to get published, but award-winning books in the genre and sub-genre that appeal to you. You need to know what’s good (and bad) out there to learn from the best and avoid the worst.
Excellent advice. As a librarian, I have access to a large number of books and try to read as much as time permits.
What particular challenges and struggles did you face before first becoming published?
I was very fortunate – after a career of writing professionally (in advertising and public relations) I self-published two collections of stories mailed them to a publisher, who asked me to submit a manuscript for one of the characters – and that was published. Right background, right place, right proposition, right time!
It all lined up for you. What a great story, excuse the pun.
Do you belong to any writing groups? Which ones?
No, writing is – for me – a solitary undertaking.
I can understand that. Some writers find groups helpful. Others, like you, prefer to go it alone.
What are your hobbies and interests besides writing?
I’m an avid gardener. Lucky enough to live on five acres, my husband and I actively garden about three of those acres. I love it!
Nice. A good way of getting healthy exercise and fresh air away from the computer.
What do you like most and least about being an author? What is your toughest challenge?
Easy….I love writing a first draft, and I hate editing!
Editing is a challenge, but I find promotion an even bigger one. First drafts are fun and a great way to flex the creative muscles.
What do you like about writing cozy mysteries?
I have to admit that whilst my WISE series is cozy, my Cait Morgan and DI Glover series are not and, for me, I enjoy writing in a mix of styles.
I feel the same way. I’ve written other genres but prefer mysteries of different types.
Can you share a short excerpt from your latest title or upcoming release?
These are the opening two pages of THE WRONG BOY.
John Watkins hooked open the bedroom curtains and wiped the frost-feathered window with his pajama sleeve. ‘I thought that’s what I could see. Somebody’s lit a fire on the hill above the village.’
His wife tutted her annoyance at him letting in the cold. ‘All the way up there? No.’
‘Yes. Come and take a look.’ Brass rings clattered as he pulled at the worn brocade. He breathed hard on a couple of panes to clear them.
Dilys gripped her steaming mug of tea with both hands as she shuffled across the room. The moon hung in the coal black sky, and glistened on the coal black sea. Her eyes shifted from the sparkling surf to the inky hillside above. ‘That’s up by the old RAF listening station, by the looks of it.’
‘Guy Fawkes Night. Probably some kids,’ mused John, rubbing his arthritic thumb. ‘They had that do at the pub in Rhosddraig tonight, didn’t they? Sparklers and hot dogs. Maybe someone had one too many and thought it would be a good idea to start their own bonfire up there.’
‘That’s dangerous, lighting fires all over the place.’ Dilys shook her head with resignation as she turned toward the bed, eyeing its welcoming mounds with delight. Even her bones felt tired. ‘It’s nearly midnight. Who’d be out there in this temperature, doing that?’
Her husband’s face creased into a smile. ‘It’s only one fire, not loads of them, Dilys. And I can think of a woman who – when she was a girl – would have been up for a bit of mischief like that.’ He winked and smiled. ‘Remember her?’
Dilys rolled her eyes. ‘Even sixty-odd years ago I wouldn’t have wanted to be out in this cold, not with you or anyone else, John Watkins.’ She sat on the edge of the bed, placed her mug beside the alarm clock, and pushed off her slippers with her toes. ‘Come on, let’s get back in here to warm ourselves, and get some sleep. We’re up early in the morning with a long day ahead of us. A diamond wedding anniversary, with a blessing in the church and a party afterwards, only happens once. You never know, there might be a surprise for you at the breakfast table.’ She patted her husband’s pillow.
‘Who’s that, now then?’ said John, ignoring his wife’s invitation. He was still at the window, bobbing his head to avoid the reflection of the bedside lamp. ‘Well, well, I don’t know how that family’s got enough to pay out for the sort of get-ups they wear these days. That coat alone must have set them back a bit. And look at that – riding a bicycle on the footpath. I’ll have a word with them about that, I will. And the fire, too.’
‘John, come on, it’s late, love.’
John clambered into bed, and kissed his wife’s cheek. ‘What were you doing sixty years ago tonight, I wonder?’
Dilys gave her husband a gentle shove. ‘Crying myself to sleep because I was terrified about my wedding night, that’s what. My mother – God rest her soul – had tried to tell me what to expect of being with a man for the first time; she didn’t do a very good job of it. I had a bad stomach that night too. Butterflies they were back then, not this blinking wind I’ve got griping me now; I can’t seem to shift it.’
John snuggled under the duvet. ‘You were such a sweet girl. Carried away with you, I was. And I love you even more now. You know that, don’t you?’
Dilys nodded and grunted.
John didn’t like to see his wife in pain. He thought she looked more than usually peaky. ‘Why don’t you sit up for a bit; rub your tummy. Maybe that tea will shift it. You took some of your medicine, didn’t you?’
‘Yes, I did. Don’t worry, love, it’ll pass. It always does – one way or another.’ Dilys chuckled. ‘Now, come on, night, night. It’ll be time to get up before you know it.’
John turned off the lamp.
It was gone four in the morning when John rang for the ambulance. For once in his life he cursed the fact that the farm – high on the coastal moor between the villages of Rhosddraig and Lower Middleford – was so remote.
Very nice. Great descriptions.
Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know about you or your books?
Knowing that THE WRONG BOY moves in darker territory than my two other series, I have written it bearing in mind the fact that I don’t want to shock or offend my existing readers, and hoping they’ll take a chance to journey down a Welsh country lane with me, to find out what really goes on behind all those twitching net curtains!
I think your readers may welcome a change of pace.
Well, it was great having you here, Cathy, and I’m sharing info about your blog tour and giveaway below.
I appreciate that, Debbie, and enjoyed the interview.
The Wrong Boy
by Cathy Ace
About the Book
The Wrong Boy
Four Tails Publishing Ltd. (January 9, 2019)
Print Length: 307 pages
Perched on a Welsh clifftop, the ancient, picturesque hamlet of Rhosddraig has its peaceful façade ripped apart when human remains are discovered under a pile of stones. The village pub, The Dragon’s Head, run by three generations of women, becomes the focal point for those interested in the grisly find, and it’s where layers of deceit are peeled away to expose old secrets, and deep wounds. The police need to establish who died, how, and why, but DI Evan Glover knows he can’t be involved in the investigation, because he’s just two days away from retirement. However, as the case develops in unexpected ways, it becomes irrevocably woven into his life, and the lives of local families, leading to disturbing revelations – and deadly consequences . . .
January 8 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW
January 8 – Reading Authors – SPOTLIGHT
January 9 – The Power of Words – REVIEW
January 9 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 10 – MJB Reviewers – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
January 10 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
January 11 – Ruff Drafts – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
January 11 – The Book Decoder – REVIEW
January 12 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 12 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 13 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT
January 13 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT
January 14 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW
January 14 – Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 15 – That’s What She’s Reading – REVIEW
January 15 – Cozy Up With Kathy – SPOTLIGHT
January 16 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
January 17 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
January 17 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT
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