Tuesday, January 29, 2013

LynDee Walker Gets Lost in a Story

Hey Get Lost in a Story readers, Susan here. I have a treat for y'all today, but first I wanted to let you all know that, sadly for me, this will be my last Get Lost in a Story post. I'm afraid I took on too much over the past year. I'll miss you all and the rest of the crew, but I'll still be dropping in to see all the great books and authors featured here, so I'll be staying in touch. It has been an honor and privilege to be a part of the Get Lost in a Story crew! Enough about me...

LynDee Walker grew up in the land of stifling heat and amazing food most people call Texas, and wanted to be Lois Lane from the time she could say the words “press conference.” An award-winning journalist, she traded cops and deadlines for burp cloths and onesies when her oldest child was born. Writing the Headlines in Heels mysteries gives her the best of both worlds. When not writing or reading, LynDee is usually wrangling children, eating barbecue or enchiladas, or trying to walk off said barbecue and enchiladas. She and her family live in Richmond, Virginia.

The Book...

Crime reporter Nichelle Clarke’s days can flip from macabre to comical with a beep of her police scanner. Then an ordinary accident story turns extraordinary when evidence goes missing, a prosecutor vanishes, and a sexy Mafia boss shows up with the headline tip of a lifetime. As Nichelle gets closer to the truth, her story gets more dangerous. Armed with a notebook, a hunch, and her favorite stilettos, Nichelle races to splash these shady dealings across the front page before this deadline becomes her last.

What they're saying...


Author LynDee Walker sure knows her way around a plot twist. She kept me turning pages late into the night, following the rollercoaster adventures of her fashionably feisty heroine—crime reporter and designer shoe fanatic Nichelle Clarke. Front Page Fatality is smart, funny, and loaded with surprises. A terrific debut mystery.” —Laura Levine, author of the Jaine Austen mystery series


Front Page Fatality is delightful, with engaging characters, a crackling good mystery, and of course, high, high heels. LynDee Walker writes with wit and intelligence and the confidence of a newsroom insider. What fun!” —Harley Jane Kozak, Anthony, Agatha, and Macavity award-winning author of Dating Dead Men and Keeper of the Moon (March 2013)


“Gives those designer shoes a workout! Nicey’s adventure kept me guessing. Goes down as smooth as hot chocolate with whipped cream.” — Alice Loweecey, author of the Falcone and Driscoll Investigations


“This is a joy to read: Nichelle is a likable character who does put her nose into whatever seems curious to her. … Highly recommended to the fans of cozy mysteries!” —Mystery Tribune



Get your copy... 

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Let's chat with LynDee...

Susan: LynDee, thank you so much for joining us today here at Get Lost in a Story. I’m so excited about your new release! Can you tell us when Nichelle first appeared in your mind? What was the genesis of this character? Did you always want to be a reporter?
LynDee: Susan, thanks so much for having me! I love Get Lost in a Story and am very excited to be here!

Nichelle first appeared in my mind in the summer of 2009, in quite a pinch and unsure how she was going to get out of it in her “characteristically unsuitable shoes.”

I did always want to be a reporter—for as long as I can remember, anyway. I’ve never been sorry that I left journalism to be with my little ones, but I missed writing. I think Nichelle was my brain’s way of fixing that. 

She was just there, in quite a pickle chasing a story, when the day before she was not. I tried to ignore her for a while, but she pestered me until I opened my laptop and started writing. That scene is still one of my favorites. And once I was bitten by the fiction bug, I got so lost in the story I kind of disappeared for the five weeks it took me to write the rough draft. I have distinct memories of Saturdays when I looked up from the computer after dark, wondering why I was dizzy, and figured out I had been so immersed in Nichelle’s world that I’d forgotten to eat all day! And if you knew how I feel about food, that would really tell you how much this took over my life that summer.

Susan: How much do you and Nichelle have in common?
LynDee: We both always wanted to be journalists, we both love shoes, and we both have the same kind of dog. But she can wear the shoes all day (and even run in them, which I never would have believed possible until I watched a dear friend do it). She also has the moxie to tell people what she’s thinking, and the ability to come up with the kind of witty replies to folks on the spot that I usually end up thinking of hours after a conversation and wishing I’d said. 

Susan: What five things are in Nichelle’s purse right now?
LynDee: A pen, a notebook, a tin of Godiva white chocolate pearls, a mini flashlight, and an Origins liquid lip gloss in bonfire. 

Susan: I know you are originally from Texas and now reside in Virginia. Is Nichelle a Southern girl as well?
LynDee: Indeed. Nichelle grew up in Dallas and moved to Richmond after college, when she didn’t get hired at the Washington Post. Virginia is so beautiful, and Richmond was fun to write about.

Susan: Where is your very favorite vacation spot?
LynDee: It’s a photo finish between the beaches of the Outer Banks in North Carolina and Walt Disney World, but I think Mickey wins by a hair. I love how well everything is done at Disney World. It’s more an experience than an amusement park.

Susan: Do you have any unusual talents we should know about? We had someone here a while back who can peel and eat a banana with her toes. Can you top that?
LynDee: Oh, heavens! I don’t know that anyone could top that! I can pick up small objects with my toes, but I’m nowhere near that level of awesome. I can tie my hair into knots with one hand, and they fall right back out when I let go. It’s not so much a talent as a blessing thanks to my grandmother’s Apache heritage giving me super thick hair, but people are often fascinated by it.

Susan: What is your most interesting quirk?
LynDee: I can recite the entire script of the Disney movie The Santa Clause, because my oldest monkey went through a phase when she was two whereupon we watched it at least twice a day for a solid year. (“Those flames were really big, dad.” “Yeah. Turkey’s funny that way.”) 

Susan: Time to dish now… What is your most interesting vice? (Your family isn’t going to read this blog—I’m certain of it.)
LynDee: Facebook. It took me forever to come up with an answer to this one, because I am such a goody-two-shoes. Food is up there, but that’s not interesting. However, if a vice is something that sucks time and/or resources from you, but you can’t stay away from it, anyway, then I am definitely addicted to social networking. I haven’t found any groups for it, though. Maybe I should look on Facebook …

Susan: What’s the most daring thing you’ve ever done? Been skydiving? Ridden a bull?
LynDee: I am not the most daring girl around. I’m terrified of heights and have been to the rodeo enough times to think a person has to be just a little crazy to try to ride a bull. I have ridden some pretty mean roller coasters, though, and I’ve driven in D.C. at rush hour. That’s not for the faint of heart.

Susan: What do you do to unwind and relax?
LynDee: There’s nothing better than a really hot bath and a glass of wine. But driving around by myself with the radio up, singing as loud as I please, works too. 

Susan: What is something that not a lot of people know about you but you WISH more people COULD know?
LynDee: Now that I’ve pondered this one for several days, I can honestly say, to know me is to know me. I am the very least introverted person on the planet. I really wish I had a cool secret to share, but I have come up with bupkis. And hubs and my best friend couldn’t think of anything (well, not anything I would share for fear of sounding insanely egotistical) either. I’m a writer, a mom, a wife. I love sangria, Mexican food, chocolate, small children, animals, music, and hydrangeas. Summer and Christmas are my favorite times of the year. 

Susan: What’s your idea of a perfect evening?
LynDee: A quick dinner and a game with my little monkeys, followed by early baths and bedtimes. Then a glass of wine, a funny movie, a blanket, and a fire with my hubby. It only shakes out that way once in a blue moon, but the best evenings are ones where we get to play with the children and hear about their days, and then have some alone time at the end of ours. 

Susan’s GOTTA ASK: What is your favorite scene in Front Page Fatality?
LynDee’s GOTTA ANSWER: I think this was the hardest thing anyone has asked me yet! It’s like telling me to pick a favorite child. But in the interest of not copping out, I’ll say the boat crash. The reader learns a lot about Nichelle and a couple of the other characters in just a few pages.

Susan: What's next for you?
LynDee: I finished Nichelle’s next adventure in December, and hope to have news about it in the very near future!

Connect with LynDee Online...

EMAIL: lyndee (at) lyndeewalker (dot) com
GoodReads: http://www.goodreads.com/LynDee_Walker
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/lyndeewalker

LynDee has a question for y'all...

If you could spend a day in anyone (living or dead, fictional or non) else’s shoes, who would you choose, and why?
Y'all please answer and leave your email address as a comment to enter LynDee's drawing:

One commenter will win a signed e-card (which is a SUPER cool innovation from Henery Press so you can have an autographed memento, but a book for your e-reader) good for an electronic copy of FRONT PAGE FATALITY.

Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North America addresses only. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants. Winners of drawings are responsible for checking this site in a timely manner. If prizes are not claimed in a timely manner, the author may not have a prize available. Get Lost In A Story cannot be responsible for an author's failure to mail the listed prize. GLIAS does not automatically pass email addresses to guest authors unless the commenter publicly posts their email address.


  1. Great interview ladies! To answer you question LD, I would say I'd like to live in one of my daughter's shoes. Not too exciting, but I have no idea what they do all day. :)
    Congrats LynDee! Can't wait to spend time with you & Susan at Malice Domestic!

    1. I think I'd like that, too, Ris! Especially the part where I clean up after my daughter. :) Thanks for stopping by, and yes -- I can't wait to see you girls at Malice!

  2. Awesome interview, Susan and LD! Love the answer to those questions--especially about your perfect evening. That sounds pretty perfect to me, too. If I could be anyone for a day--Agatha Christie. Maybe I could get some insights into her brilliance.

    Congrats on FPF, LD! You've got a winner on your hands!

    1. Thank you, Terri! I think Dame Agatha would be a great person to be for a day. And she looks like she'd wear comfortable ones, too.

  3. "I think Nichelle was my brain’s way of fixing that."

    What a great way to continue in the reporting/journalism world. Nichelle is so great at what she does, I love it!

    This is such a great interview, I could go on and on :) I love getting to see inside the mind of the author. I am also ECSTATIC about book two!! Hooray, congrats LynDee!

    Julie Gallo
    Editorial Intern
    Henery Press

    1. Thanks, Julie! :)

      I have some things to fix in the new one, but you won't have to wait too much longer.

  4. One day in someone's shoes... well if it's high heels, I'm out! I'd probably say Ben Franklin - he just did a little of everything and that's kind of interesting!

    1. Karin, I like that! Monkey number one is a huge Ben Franklin fan. :)

  5. LynDee, I've given this a lot of thought, and I think I'd like to spend a day in Susan Elizabeth Phillips's shoes. I'm hoping some of the magic would rub off. :)

    I so ejoyed this interview! Thanks so much for doing it. I'm also really excited about hanging out with you and Larissa and all the other Hens who come to Malice.

    Happy release day! I agree with Terri--you have a winner on your hands!

    1. Thank you, Susan! You had such fun questions for me. This was a great interview. Can't wait to meet you in person! :)

  6. Welcome LynDee and best of luck with Nichelle's story. The waiting can drive you crazy.

    Spending time in someone else's shoes? Only for a day? Deserves waaaayyy too much thinking for me. LOL


  7. Thank you, Angi!

    I saw on Facebook that we share an Alma Mater. Very glad to be on GLIAS today! :)

    1. So how long were you in Texas and where do you find ANY real enchiladas in Virginia? :-)

    2. Born and bred! I grew up in Fort Worth, studied Journalism at NT, and moved here in 2006. The lack of good Mexican food is depressing. The best enchiladas are a two-hour drive north or east: there's an Uncle Julio's in D.C., and an Abuelo's at the beach. :)

  8. Awesome interview, LD and Susan! :) I'm excited for FRONT PAGE FATALITY; I just started yesterday. I already really love Nichelle and her adoration of shoes.

    I literally LOL'd when I read the part of you knowing every line to The Santa Clause! I almost think that's a talent rather than a quirk, haha.

    Great interview!
    Alicia Tonne
    Editorial Intern
    Henery Press

    1. Thank you, Alicia! Glad you're having fun with Nichelle!

  9. Hi, LynDee, hello Susan! Welcome to Get Lost in a Story. First of all, the plot sounds amazing, Susan's questions are awesome, and I love the name Nichelle; it's so unusual and as my name is Donnell, I'm always grateful when someone has an unregular name... So where did Nichelle come from?

    As to your question about who I would spend a day with, I'd choose Daphne du Maurier and bring her to the present. I'd let her see the mark she has left on this world with her writing, when she died discouraged about all the "literary" critics -- of whom told her her books didn't belong. Nice dream anyway.

    Best wishes with Front Page Fatality. Be sure to come post your book cover on Goodreads with us in our Goodreads -- Get Lot in a Story Group. Bye!!

    1. Hi Donnell! Thanks for the welcome (and the compliment—I'm so glad the plot sounds interesting)! I'm not entirely sure where Nichelle came from, to tell the truth. I remember that when she first popped into my head, I wanted her to have an unusual name because mine is so uncommon, and then she was Nichelle. I wanted a nickname, too, so that was a factor.

      I love your answer about Daphne du Maurier. Wouldn't it be lovely for her to see what an impact her work has had on the world?

      Thank you for the Goodreads invite! I will do that. I didn't know y'all had a group. I'm still learning my way around over there.

  10. Guess that should be irregular not unregular... :)

  11. Hi LynDee, very nice to learn about you and your books!

    1. Hi Clover! It's been so nice to be here today. Thanks for stopping by!

  12. Nice interview. Angelina Jolie's for Brad Pitt


    1. I LOVE it! My kind of girl. ;)

      Thanks for stopping by!

  13. Thanks again to Susan and the Get Lost in a story crew, and all of you who stopped in to chat and make my release day special! It was amazing.

    The e-card goes to: (drumroll please) Clover Autrey!

    Clover, please email me your address at lyndee (at) lyndeewalker (dot) com.

    Thank you!