I grew up in San Antonio, Texas, and our family made frequent visits to other branches of the family who lived in the country nearby. Cozy mysteries, like those written by Agatha Christie, are set in small towns, or manors, instead of cities. Mine are set in small towns in Texas, or ranches—large or small. I draw upon the childhood memories of visits to the country, even though by now things have changed.
When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?
Writing is part of who I am. I love to read and write, and have done it forever. I started writing in grade school and continued it into college, where I majored in English literature, Creative Writing, and journalism. Journalism was my career. Lately, I’ve returned to fiction writing, that is, mystery novels, which I love.
Tell us about your cozy mysteries. Where can we find them?
I enjoy working on the Caroline Hargrove Hamilton Mystery series, with two books published and a third in progress. I’ll stay with the series. I like the setting and the population I’ve developed, with a chance to bring in new characters and find new problems for Caroline to solve.
Cemetery Whites is the debut mystery novel. Caroline Hargrove Hamilton is the heroine, the amateur sleuth solving the puzzles in her small town in the country. She and her cousin Janet find Professor Harrison lying dead in their family cemetery. He’s lying close to the hidden grave of a victim shot in 1875. They solve two problems, from 2010 and 1875.
The sequel, Chances Choices Changes Death, is set on a large ranch where Caroline and Janet are taking Western horse riding lessons so they can ride in the September trail. A single mother who lives on the ranch is found dead on the side of the country road, and her young son is missing. The book plot and subplots are intertwined, and Caroline and Janet become involved with episodes on the ranch. Many things happen. Caroline’s childhood English riding helps her get her Western horse to jump a fence and chase an ornery bull into the right pasture—one episode I enjoy reviewing.
Tell us about your work in progress.
The third cozy mystery is underway. Caroline and Bob Bennett are planning a wedding, and Caroline’s daughter arrives in DeWitt County. She’s a new character. She’s broken up with her boyfriend, lost her job, and run out of money. She decides to stay in the country and go into organic small farming. She’s funny.
Do you think your readers are going to enjoy your third book?
I enjoy writing it. I choose a setting, a family of characters, a main plot and subplots, and other things pulled from memory or found in research. When I start writing, a certain amount of humor develops. I’m having fun putting the chapters together, and it’s interesting to unravel the mystery, solve the puzzle, and laugh at certain people and events.
If an unpublished author asked you to give them one piece of advice, what would it be?
That’s a hard question to answer, because the advice might need to be different for one writer than another. What kind of book have you written? What is the market for it, what publisher would be interested in what you have produced? I might not have a good answer.
Why should readers read your book?
Those who enjoy books by Agatha Christie, or who watched Murder She Wrote on TV, might like my books. They set murder puzzles to be solved, an element of the cozy mystery. Cemetery Whites dips into Texas history, and Chances Choices Changes Death is set on a large cattle ranch with trips to small ranches and small towns, too.
What else can you tell us about your books?
Both of them are eBooks published recently by Maple Creek Media. They’re available Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other online sources. The price is $4.95. You can find out more on my websites:
About the Author:
Connie Knight grew up in San Antonio, Texas, with many childhood visits to her family in DeWitt County. Cemetery Whites is based on memories and stories shared, but all characters in this mystery novel are fictional, and so are the events.
Ms. Knight began writing in junior high, studied English and journalism in college, and worked for newspapers, magazines, and public relations departments. Cemetery Whites is her first Caroline Hargrove Hamilton Mystery novel, followed recently by Chances Choices Changes Death.
About the Book:
Myra Cade is a single mother, living with her father, Doug, and raising her son, Scott. She mostly keeps to herself and really has no time for anyone else. But shortly after serving paternity papers to Danny, the suspected father of Scott, she’s found dead at the side of the road in the country. Caroline and her cousin Janet, who are taking Western riding lessons at the nearby Robinson Ranch, find themselves drawn into the murder investigation and looking for the missing boy and the murderer.