Lorraine also writes the Agatha-nominated, New York Times bestselling Booktown Mysteries as Lorna Barrett.
MURDER ON THE MIND by L.L. Bartlett
The mind is a complex entity; it can play strange tricks. It did to Jeff Resnick when he awoke physically bruised and psychologically shattered from a vicious mugging. His recurrent visions of a slaughtered buck in a garage take on terrible new meaning when a local banker is found in the same condition. Jeff sets out to find the killer--no matter what the stakes.
A CRAFTY KILLING by Lorraine Bartlett
The last thing Katie Bonner wanted was to become the manager of Artisans Alley. But when her business partner, Ezra Hilton, is found lying at the bottom of a staircase, bludgeoned to death, she has no other choice. While the cops are proceeding by the book, Katie is investigating by the booths—for the answer to the killer’s identity lies in the hidden secrets of Artisans Alley itself.
MURDER IS BINDING by Lorna Barrett
When she moved to Stoneham, city-slicker Tricia Miles was met with friendly faces. And when she opened her mystery bookstore, she met with friendly competition. But when she finds Doris Gleason dead in her own cookbook store, killed by a carving knife, the atmosphere seems more cutthroat than cordial. Someone wanted to get their hands on the rare cookbook that Doris had recently purchased—and the locals think that someone is Tricia. To clear her name, Tricia will have to take a page out of one of her own mysteries—and hunt down someone who isn’t killing by the book…
DONNELL: Which of your characters would you most/least to invite to dinner, and why?
LORRAINE: I’d probably enjoy talking to Brenda Stanley the most, from my Jeff Resnick Mysteries. I admire her. She doesn’t’ take any guff. Least want to dine with? Bob Kelly from the Booktown Mysteries. He’s icky.
DONNELL: Do you read reviews of your books? If so, do you pay any attention to them, or let them influence your writing?
LORRAINE:I do read my reviews and often live to regret it. And, yes, they do influence my writing. I’ve chucked a couple of characters because more than one person said they found them unlikable—or—whatever.
DONNELL: Have you ever written a character who wasn’t meant to be a hero/heroine but he/she wouldn’t go away?
LORRAINE: Mr. Everett from my Booktown Mysteries. He was actually an afterthought. He was meant to be a little bit of comic relief, but then people starting writing to me and telling me how much they enjoyed him, and he became a fixture.
DONNELL: What name have you been dying to use as a lead character, but haven’t found the right fit yet?
LORRAINE: Actually . . . none. I do have an idea for another cozy mystery series, and have the name of the main character picked out, but that’s on the back burner and I actually hope I don’t have the opportunity to write the books for a long time. I’m very happy writing the Booktown and Victoria Square Mysteries.
I started a book years ago that I thought would make a good cozy mystery, but shelved the idea for a while. Then tried to write a women's fiction book with her in mind. I wrote 3/4s of a book and abandoned it. It just kept getting murkier and murkier. I might still write women’s fiction one day, but now isn’t the time. (I love her name, and I think about her quite often. And no, I’m not giving these names away!)
DONNELL: What’s in your refrigerator right now?
LORRAINE: A huge pot of black beans that I cooked in the crock pot. I love curried legumes.
DONNELL: What is something that not a lot of people know about you but you WISH more people COULD know?
LORRAINE: I wish more people knew about my Jeff Resnick Mysteries. They’re the books of my heart and have so found not found the audience they deserve. I suppose that’s not about me, but I think of my books as an extension of me.
DONNELL: I so relate, Lorraine. Love that your books are an extension. Well said. What is your favorite tradition from your childhood, that you would love to pass on or did pass on to your children?
LORRAINE: Since I have no children … that’s an impossible task.
DONNELL: What do you do to unwind and relax?
DONNELL: Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
LORRAINE: When you’re writing under contract, you can’t afford to have writers block. You just have to write right through it. But if I’m having a tough time getting ideas, I go out and sit in my car for a while. For some reason it’s like an isolation tank. Quiet, no distractions, and the ideas just start to flow. It’s a bit difficult to do in the winter in Western New York, though.
DONNELL: What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing?
LORRAINE: Doing a facelift on my bathroom. I honestly never gave it a thought that I could ever hit the New York Times Bestsellers list. I did hope one day I’d get nominated for an Agatha, and that did happen. (And I hope it happens again.) It would be nice to win some kind of award, but honestly, the biggest reward is just having good sales.DONNELL: What was one of the most surprising things you learned while writing/researching a book?
LORRAINE: That I hate the first 40,000 words with a passion. Once I hit word 40,001 – the book suddenly becomes fun. Go figure.
DONNELL: How interesting! Sounds psychological. If you could be one individual for a day, who would you choose and why?
LORRAINE: Oprah Winfrey. Being one of the most richest women on the planet has got to be exhilarating and terrible at the same time. I have a feeling I’d come back to my own life with a much greater appreciation of my circumstances and feel a lot less stressed.
DONNELL: (Wait, I think I can guess
LORRAINE: Cat. But I’d like to have a dog, too. I’ve had cats most of my life and the short time I was without one, I was miserable.
DONNELL: Which is your favorite language other than your native language?
LORRAINE: I wish I could speak another language, and my High School Spanish is pretty rusty. But I wouldn’t mind speaking Spanish or Italian—not that I have much use for it at this point in life.
DONNELL: If you were given a chance to travel to the past where would you go and specifically why?
LORRAINE: I’d go to England and meet my grandparents before they were old men and women. I barely knew any of them and I think that’s a shame.
DONNELL: What question are you never asked in interviews, but wish you were?
LORRAINE: I thought when I got published that readers and/or interviewers would want to have deep discussions with me about my characters and the plots of the books, asking me why so-and-so did this, and why such-and-such happened. Nope. Not even once.
DONNELL: Here's hoping we can help change that today. What’s the first thing you do when you finish a book?
LORRAINE: Pour myself a health whiskey and soda. After all that hard work, I deserve one.
DONNELL: What author(s) inspired you in your writing?
LORRAINE: Barbara Michaels. Her romantic suspense novels were the first “mystery” books I read. (I was 12 at the time.) I always said if I was to write a novel, it would have a paranormal theme like her books. I still read at two of her books (and listen to a couple more on audio) at least once a year. Funny, though, I never got into her Elizabeth Peters books.
Readers, there you have it. A few fun things about Lorraine aka Lorna Barrett. Today Lorraine is giving away FIVE goody bags. So if you leave a comment or ask a question and want to be entered, be sure to leave your e-mail address, or check back with GLIAS Winner's Circle in plain sight on the blog. To learn even more about Lorraine and her fabulous writing, check out her web page at http://www.lorrainebartlett.com/