Devon Ellington is my guest today with a look at her new urban fantasy Old-Fashioned Detective Work, the second in the Jain Lazarus series.
Welcome, Devon! Tell us a little about Old-Fashioned Detective Work:
Jain Lazarus is still somewhat of an enigma to Detective Wyatt East, in spite of their burgeoning relationship. When she disappears after a romantic weekend in Vermont and he’s the prime suspect, they both have to face parts of their pasts they thought were behind them.
Detective Wyatt East finds himself the primary suspect when hex breaker Jain Lazarus disappears after their romantic weekend in Vermont. In spite of the suspicions, Jain’s boss, Maitland Stiles, hires Wyatt to track her down, forcing him to face aspects of his own painful past and revealing more about hers.
Saddled with two rebellious runaway paranormal teens, he’s embroiled in a shapeshifter pack disagreement, and must learn to work with both a caustic dragon and a cantankerous mermaid to not only find Jain, but help her help an old friend who’s in over his head. Wyatt learns he is not without psychic abilities of his own, although he prefers old-fashioned detective work.
What are you working on now? Do you have any releases scheduled for this year?
I’m working on a lot of stuff! 😉 I’m working on the next Jain Lazarus Adventure, of course, CRAVE THE HUNT, which is primarily from Billy Root’s POV; I’m working on an aviation mystery set in the 1940s; and developing a couple of other series. I’ve got a few plays in the works, too, some of which had staged readings and need more work before I can send them out into the world again. I’m releasing a series of non-fiction Topic Workbooks, based on classes and seminars I teach, because I have to cut back my teaching schedule in order to maintain my writing schedule. I’m not sure what will release when, but there’s quite a bit in the pipeline!
How do you come up with ideas?
The world is a fascinating place. Ideas are everywhere, and I’ll never be able to write all the stories that inspire me. I don’t understand the concept of boredom. That’s foreign to me. I don’t see how anyone can say they’re “bored.”
What do you enjoy most about writing?
I like the writing. I love to sit down and write every day, let my imagination fly, figure out how to arrange the words on paper so they capture the reader and let the reader experience the world of the book from the inside.
What is the best thing about being an author?
The best thing about being an author is that I can follow anything that interests me. I can immerse myself in it completely, and then find an interesting and engaging way to communicate it. As a writer, nothing is ever wasted. EVERYTHING we experience on every level is material.
Do you have a favorite time of day for writing?
I write in the morning. I like to do my first 1K of the day on my “primary project” as soon as I’ve done my yoga/meditation practice, fed the cats and made coffee. Once that first 1K is done, I can face the day — blog, check email, work on freelance projects or whatever’s contracted and on deadline. The day is fluid — it changes, depending on deadlines and opportunities. But I prefer to write in the morning and edit in the afternoons.
How do you balance writing and everyday life?
The balance has to change, depending on contracts. Deadlines are sacred. If something happens, I don’t get to say to my editor or publisher, “oh, I got busy, sorry, couldn’t write.” It HAS to get done. If it means staying up later or going to bed earlier, that’s what you have to do. The past couple of months have been busy, because I’ve been in rehearsal for one of my plays, a benefit for the National Marine Life Center (www.nmlc.org — MURDER “SEALS” THE DEAL, which performed on April 7), and my agent is excited about a new project we’d talked about that she needed as soon as I could get it, plus hustle enough freelance work to pay the bills. I think I can take a nap sometime in June! 😉 But you do what you have to in order to get it all done.
Where is your favorite place in the world?
Cape Cod. That’s why I moved here a few years ago! I also love Scotland, Iceland, and New Orleans. They are places of my heart. I was a New Yorker for decades, and loved it, but it was time to go.
These are few of my favorite things:
“Again, Mr. Collins,” said Wyatt. “What can I do for you?”
“When did you last see Jain Lazarus?”
“We spent a four day weekend together about six weeks ago in Vermont.”
“Have you spoken to her since?”
“I left a few messages on her voice mail, but I haven’t heard back.”
“Yes, we know that. We have her phone.”
Wyatt felt a chill run down his spine. “Why would you have her phone?”
“Was she in good health when you parted?”
“We went skiing in the morning. We went back to change. She got a phone call – on the landline, not her cell, and said she had to go. She left before I did.”
“No one’s seen or heard from her since that weekend in Vermont.”
“Are you looking for her?”
“Yes. She was due in our office the very next morning to get briefed on a new assignment. The proprietor of the inn tells a different story.”
“What do you mean?”
“He says the two of you left in the morning, but you came back alone.”
“That’s not true.”
“And there’s no record of a call going through to your room.”
“That doesn’t make sense.”
“Did you argue with Jain that weekend?’
“No. We had a great time.”
“Don’t lie to me, Detective. I’m every bit as capable of discerning a liar as you are.”
“Then you know I’m telling the truth.”
“Either that or you’re even more talented than Jain believed. You are the last person we know who saw Jain before her disappearance.”
Devon Ellington is a full-time writer, publishing under a half a dozen names in fiction and non-fiction. She provides business writing and editing services to an international client base. Solstice Publishing handles her urban fantasy Jain Lazarus Adventures, and her paranormal romantic suspense novel, ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT (which takes place backstage on a Broadway show), was released by Champagne Books under the Annabel Aidan name. She also writes comic romantic fantasy/mysteries as Ava Dunne, and more paranormal/mystic tales as Cerridwen Iris Shea. An accomplished playwright, her work is produced in New York, Massachusetts, London, Edinburgh, and Australia.
You can find Devon at:
Jain Lazarus Website: http://hexbreaker.devonellingtonwork.com
Devon Ellington website: www.devonellingtonwork.com
Blog: Ink in My Coffee: http://devonellingotn.wordpress.com
Jain Lazarus Page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Jain-Lazarus-Adventures/267787063349359
You can find Old Fashioned Detective Work at:
Solstice Publishing: http://store.solsticepublishing.com/old-fashioned-detective-work/