Monday, May 14, 2012

Scene of the Crime with Author Liz Strange!

It was my pleasure to be introduced to this week's featured author earlier this year as a member of the mystery and thriller panel for the Independent Literary Awards. Liz Strange's book Missing Daughter, Shattered Family was on the short list, and I enjoyed getting to know her character, David Lloyd.

Liz Strange
This Canadian author has spoiled me a bit by sending me a brief bio and a few links, so let's reveal all these goodies before we move on to the interview. (Thank you, Liz!)

Bio: Liz’s love of mythology and the paranormal often finds its way into her stories, compelling her to create worlds where just about anything is possible. Her characters may fight supernatural beings, solve ancient mysteries, fall in love, or find themselves travelling through time.

In addition to writing, Liz works at a local hospital and is busy raising her four children. She loves rainy days, spicy food and has seen just about every horror movie known to man. When she has the time she would like to travel the world.

Please feel free to leave her a message at her website.

What was the very first book you remember reading and loving? What makes that book so special?

The every first book I remember loving as a child was The Monster’s Nose Was Cold. I still have a copy.

As an older child I really loved Island of the Blue Dolphins and I re-read it still every few years.  Something about this sad tale really touched me and transported me to a world/time/ situation I would never have experienced in real life, and it sparked a love of reading and my ongoing fascination with history/mythology/ cultural studies.

Outside of your writing and all associated commitments, what do you like to do in your free time?

I love to spend time with my family, exercise and read. I am also a huge film/TV fan, so I try to find some downtime every week to allow myself to keep up with what’s going on, and to discover some overlooked gems. I like everything from documentaries, foreign films to blockbusters.

If I were to visit your hometown, where would you recommend that I go? (I like seeing and doing things that aren't in all the guide books.)

Kingston, Ontario
Well, Kingston was the original Capitol of Canada. You’d have to see Fort Henry, City Hall and the original site of Strange House—yes there is such a place. My relatives were one of the founding families of the beautiful city where I live. We are also home to Queen’s University, which is one of the oldest universities in Canada, and one of the most respected worldwide.

We also have a fascinating Haunted Walk tour, where you can hear all the great tales of war battles, criminal misdeeds and unrequited love. Some of the highlights include a haunted Bed & Breakfast where the young woman waiting for her lost love likes to make appearances and the old Hanging Tower (no explanation needed).

You have total control over casting a movie based on your life. Which actor would you cast as you?

Winona Ryder
Winona Ryder. I’ve been told I look like her, especially when my hair is dark.

Now if you asked me to cast my books for a movie adaptation, well I could put together quite an impressive ensemble!

Who is your favorite recurring character in crime fiction?

I love Kinsey Millhone from Sue Grafton’s Alphabet mystery series. That girl has spunk and a sarcastic tongue like no other.

Name one book that you've read that you wish you had written. What is it about that book that made it come to mind?

Anne Rice's Interview with the Vampire. It’s brilliant, haunting, poignant and scary. I don’t think a story gets much better than that.

How did you celebrate when you first heard you were to be published? What did you do the first time you saw one of your books on a shelf in a bookstore? 

I took my kids out to dinner, pretty low-key, but I can honestly say it was one of the most exciting and validating experiences of my life. I have always written, right from childhood, so it was a  huge personal accomplishment.

I don't know if you've seen it, but I love Parnell Hall's video about book signings. What is the most unusual experience you've had at a book signing or author event?

I haven’t had any strange experiences as yet. To be honest I still find it weird that anyone knows who I am, or has read my stuff. I did get invited to my hometown’s Chapters as a special guest for their mystery book club and that was amazing. I felt so honoured.

What's the best thing about eBooks? What's the worst?

I think e-books are great because the low cost makes books more accessible and makes readers more open to taking chances on authors they haven’t read before.

The downfall I would have to say is pirating. The files are so much easier to copy, share, distribute than a printed version. That of course eats into the author’s financial compensation, and we all need to have an income.


On Sale Now!

Thank you so very much for spending this time with us, Liz. It was a pleasure to get to know you a little better.

May your book sales do nothing but increase!

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