Book Talk with Jeannette de Beauvoir

Author Jeannette de Beauvoir shares her process of naming her main character her newest novel, The Deadliest Blessing.

Jeannette de Beauvoir blog tourOne of the joys of writing fiction is being able to populate your own world. Seriously, how cool is that? You can choose who lives next to whom, what they do for a living, explore quirks and personalities that are as familiar or as foreign as you like. And that process includes selecting names.

Okay, so it’s maybe not such a joy, after all. The truth is, I hate selecting names.

My characters come to life as I write, not before. They shift and morph and often change the entire narrative arc of my stories. They become who they are in chapter five, or eight, or ten. So, the name I started with generally just doesn’t fit the character as they emerge, as they talk with other characters, as they make choices, as they tell me where the book needs to go. Ah, but word processing makes that easy, doesn’t it? Just do a global search-and-replace, and voilà! Kate Stewart is now Miranda Weatherby.

The exception is the name of the protagonist in my current mystery series. I found a name for her and it… just worked. The third book in the series, The Deadliest Blessing, just came out, I’m writing the fourth book, and Sydney is still perfectly, marvelously, appropriately Sydney.

I have to wonder if her name works because I didn’t make it up. I didn’t spend a lot of time thinking about it ahead of time. It was a gift from the gods of travel.

I’d gone up to Québec to do a talk about a prior character and series, Martine LeDuc, the protagonist of my novels Asylum and Deadly Jewels. I live on the tip of Cape Cod, so this is a long drive! But I was prepared: I had a set of CDs from The Great Courses, and I was good to go. I’d already taken their class on the Vikings, the history of London, women in medieval literature, and a few I’m probably forgetting, and I was looking forward to the new set on the history of espionage. Continue reading

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Peggy Ehrhart Presents, Murder, She Knit

Ehrhart Murder she knitMurder, She Knit A Knit & Nibble Mystery Book 1 by Peggy Ehrhart
Genre: Cozy Mystery

Synopsis

Since her only daughter left for college, widow Pamela Paterson has kept busy as associate editor of a craft magazine and founder of the Knit and Nibble knitting club in quaint Arborville, New Jersey. Now, she’s trying out a new hobby—solving murders!

Pamela is hosting the next Knit and Nibble meeting and can’t wait to liven up her otherwise empty home with colorful yarn, baking, and a little harmless gossip. She even recruits Amy Morgan, an old friend who recently moved to town, as the group’s newest member. But on the night of the gathering, Amy doesn’t show. Not until Pamela finds the woman dead outside—a knitting needle stabbed through the front of her handmade sweater . . .

Someone committed murder before taking off with Amy’s knitting bag, and Pamela realizes that only she can spot the deadly details hidden in mysterious skeins. But when another murder occurs, naming the culprit—and living to spin the tale—will be more difficult than Pamela ever imagined . . .

Knitting tips and delicious recipe included! Continue reading