As part of a Blog Tour organized by Great Escapes Free Virtual Book Tours, I am pleased to have Caroline Fardig as my guest today as she celebrates her recently released addition to the Java Jive Mystery series – A Whole Latte Murder. Having read and enjoyed a previous book in her Java Jive series, I look forward to reading this newest addition.
Writing’s effect on my life, or My life’s effect on my writing by Caroline Fardig
I love how writing has affected my life. I feel much more confident, and I’m much more well-spoken. I find that I notice people, places, and things more than I ever have—I guess it’s the writer in me looking for new ideas and inspiration. Conversely, I enjoy seeing what kind of effect that my life experiences have on my writing. Whenever I learn a life lesson or gain knowledge on a subject, it only makes my writing better.
I’ve had a really odd career path in my adult life. I went to college to be a music teacher, and I was for a while. I finally decided that teaching wasn’t for me, but I had learned some good life skills, such as crowd control and conflict resolution. At that point, I went in a completely different direction and became an insurance agent. It turns out, working with the general public in customer service and sales isn’t much different than working with whiny children. From working in the insurance business, I learned how to switch gears fast and wear many different hats—having to try to wheel and deal to sell someone a new policy right after having to empathize with a person who had been hurt in an accident. After my daughter was born, I took some time off to take care of her, and it was truly a wonderful experience. But, once she got in school, I felt like I needed something to do. I then got a job at a funeral home, being a greeter and helping with day-to-day tasks. It’s amazing how much work goes on behind the scenes of a funeral, and the difficult part is to make sure that everything gets done quickly, yet quietly and with the utmost respect and reverence for the dead as well as grieving family members. You have to be sympathetic, but not allow yourself to become emotional. From that job, I learned how to put my feelings aside to get my work done, and how to stay calm even when you think everything is going wrong.
My on-the-job training has become invaluable in my life, as well as in my writing. I can make my characters argue, and with what I’ve learned about dealing with conflict, I can easily maneuver them to a resolution—whether it be a positive or a negative one. In writing humorous books, it’s essential to be able to swiftly change the tone if a scene gets too deep and dark. From learning how to deal with different kinds of people and situations back to back, I can easily divert the characters away from getting too dramatic by shifting the focus of the scene to something lighter. When writing mysteries, you have to deal with death, and I’m often angered at how characters in books and movies lose a friend and just move on with the action like nothing happened. A lot of times, writers don’t allow their characters to take time to grieve. That’s something I wanted to do differently in my writing. My characters actually go to funerals, just like we would in real life, and take time to process what they’re feeling.
I’m grateful for all of the wonderful and unusual jobs I have had. Now, I can add writer to the list, which is another completely different experience. Being able to get your thoughts out on paper is very therapeutic, and I’m thankful that other people actually want to read what I write down.
About A Whole Latte Murder
Coffeehouse manager and reluctant sleuth Juliet Langley returns in a gripping novel from the bestselling author of Death Before Decaf and Mug Shot. Just as things are perking up in Nashville, a serial killer sends tensions foaming over.
Juliet’s personal and professional lives have recently received an extra jolt of energy. Her romance with the hunky detective Ryder Hamilton continues to simmer, and business at Java Jive has never been better. But her good mood quickly turns as stale as day-old espresso when she finds out that Ryder has been promoted to his precinct’s homicide division. With him risking his life to catch the worst kind of criminals, Juliet’s growing sense of unease ignites when a local college student goes missing.
Suddenly every Nashville resident is on high alert, especially Juliet’s neighbor Chelsea. Juliet does her best to calm the girl’s nerves, but her worst fears are confirmed when she finds Chelsea dead. Even though she tries her best to stay out of it, Juliet’s involvement puts a strain on Ryder’s first homicide case. The situation soon becomes even more personal for Juliet and her best friend Pete Bennett when one of their employees disappears during her shift. As a killer lurks in the shadows, Juliet, Pete, and Ryder seek out a double shot of justice.
About the Author
Caroline Fardig is the author of Death Before Decaf and the Lizzie Hart series. She worked as a schoolteacher, church organist, insurance agent, funeral parlor associate, and stay-at-home mom before she realized that she wanted to be a writer when she grew up. Born and raised in a small town in Indiana, Fardig still lives in that same town with an understanding husband, two sweet kids, two energetic dogs, and one malevolent cat.
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- Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Caroline-Fardig/e/B00C1866NE