Interview: Cindy Blackburn
MM2: Cindy, tell us about your Cue Ball Mystery series?
Former pool shark Jessie Hewitt usually knows where the balls will land and how the game will end. But she keeps getting caught up in the middle of this and that pesky murder investigation. Maybe it’s because her hunky beau Wilson Rye is a homicide investigator? The Cue Balls are cozy mysteries with a lot of humor, a little romance, and far too much champagne. Murder meets menopause. Take a guess which wins.
MM2: Where did you get the idea to write this series?
Jessie just came to me one night, kind of magically. She tells me the stories, I write them down. For instance, I didn’t know she was a pool shark until the first scene in Playing With Poison. She was in a bar, there was a pool table, and I immediately knew all about her past. Magic!
MM2: What advice do you for have writers who want to write a mystery series?
Give it a try! For me, I like writing about my characters. I’d say be sure you have a sleuth you love, give her a strong voice and let her roll!
MM2: Tell us about your writing schedule?
I write all the time, or close to it. Early morning, with coffee in hand and cat cuddling up nearby, is when I get the most work done. I am less productive in the afternoons, so that’s when I take care of other parts of my life. Most evenings I try to write a little before bedtime. I think my subconscious then works on my stories all night while I sleep.
MM2: Time to time do you have a favorite book that you like to reread?
I reread Sue Grafton, Joan Hess and early Janet Evanovich a lot.
MM2: Do you collect books?
No. I live in a small place and moved last year. So I actually got rid of a lot of books. I am reading on my kindle more and more. Hubby tells me I’m the opposite of a packrat.
MM2: How many books have you written?
Four Cue Ball Mysteries so far. Playing With Poison, Double Shot, Three Odd Balls, and Four Play. I’m thrilled that there are fifteen balls in a pool ball set. I have lots of work ahead of me!
MM2: When you want to take a break from writing and go somewhere to unwind or vacation. Where are some of your favorite places to visit?
I live in a shack in Vermont every summer. Rustic, rural, on a lake. In other words—heaven! I also like to take tropical, warm vacations in the dead of winter. South Beach, Miami, Florida is one of my favorites. I go to Europe anytime the budget allows.
MM2: Who would you like to thank for being in your corner through thick and thin of your writing and becoming published path?
My husband John. The Cue Balls would simply not exist without his help. He’s a technical expert, and writing a book these days takes A LOT of computer skills! As the dedication in Playing With Poison reads, John bought me a lap top and suggested I use it to write a book. So this was all his idea.
MM2: What would you like to say to your readers?
I hope my books take you away from everyday stresses and strains. I hope they make you laugh. A lot!
MM2: What would you protagonist say about what comes next for her?
Jessie is rather relieved that I’m giving her a break for a few months. She’ll be back for the fifth Cue Ball Mystery, Five Spot, at the end of 2014. In the meantime, I’m starting a new series, the Cassie Baxter Mysteries. Cassie’s first adventure is called Unbelievable and will be available this summer.