Monday, February 18, 2013

Lisa Lickel's "Meow Mayhem"


Title: Meow Mayhem
      Publisher: Whimsical Publications

Cover blurb:  After being left at the altar, Ivy Amanda McTeague Preston uproots herself and her cat,
an Egyptian Mau named Memnet, from her boring and lonely life to start over at the
urging of Mayor Conklin, a fellow pedigreed Mau owner.

Truesdale Thompson is ready to move in a fresh direction with his life. A private man
whose physical wounds are the only outward sign of a tragic accident in his past, True
and his cat, Isis, open a branch of his trendy little bookstore and coffee shop in Apple
Grove.

When Ivy takes a mysterious message while the mayor is away on business, only Ivy’s
criminology professor mom and True believe there’s something rotten in Apple Grove.
Can Ivy carry on her romance with True while saving the town from further Mayhem?

1) How did this story come to you? 
I was reporting for my community’s town government on the changing nature of downtowns and the loss of business, so the germ of the story began there. When I learned that a nearby city had tunnels along the river connecting stores that were built a hundred years ago, I knew I had to use the information somewhere. A story about creating hypo-allergenic cats, a love of history and my neighbor who uses a live answering service: put all this together and out pops a story.

2) Tell us about the journey to getting this book published.
I wrote this story as an experiment in first person; I’d never done that before, so it was quite a challenge. I have new respect for method actors, and those who generally write in first person. I wanted to try a full-length mystery since I’d been writing lighter romantic cozies for a book club, so went ahead and wrote Meow Mayhem on spec, but ran into some bad timing as I was between agents and mysteries weren’t doing quite so well for a couple of years. But then I tried Whimsical Publications after checking with another acquaintance who writes for them, and had the book accepted. There’s always much rejoicing when a manuscript is accepted.

3) Tell me three things about yourself that would surprise your readers.
I have absolutely no sense of direction.
I love science fiction.
I visited the Soviet Union for a college seminar.

4) What are you working on now and what's next for you?
Always working on something – I have an agent passing around what I feel is my most compelling story so far about a terminally ill woman caught up in an unethical stem cell trial; I am working on a new manuscript about a couple caught up in a murder scheme that is only the tip of the iceberg of intrigue.

5) Parting comments? 
Thanks for having me here today. Mysteries are fun, and I’d love to hear about yours, or your favorites, and what you like about them.

6) Where can fans find you on the internet? 
All of my social networking can be accessed from my web site: http://www.lisalickel.com