I wasn’t a child who thought too much about the future. At least not beyond my own desires. There was a time when I wrote a story about being a writer and living on the Oregon Coast in a renovated barn. I would have two tigers as my pets. If you’ve ever read the “Cat Who” books by Lillian Jackson Braun, you know that the protagonist, Qwilleran, made walkways for his cats in his home. This was how I saw my barn, only the funny thing is, I’d never read one of the “Cat Who” books until later. When I did, it was deja vue and my mind went right back to that story I’d written in Jr. High
While I had dreams of being a writer as a teenager, it wasn’t until I had children that I decided to fulfill that dream. I started writing mystery. It was the genre I loved to read. But after two books and a bad start with finding help to make my books better, I segued into romance.
Three years ago, I decided to write what I had always wanted to write. I am a better writer, I’ve had enough classes on craft, and still read murder mystery books. I could do this. And I did.
The best part about how much I enjoy writing the mysteries, are the reader/fan emails I receive. All the years I wrote romance, I think I had a half dozen readers comment on how they enjoyed reading my books. With mystery, I receive something every week!
And a friend who has been with me on my road to becoming published, says my true voice comes out in my mysteries. It took me nearly 30 years to get back to the genre I love best, but I am here and I plan to stay writing murder mystery until my hands are so gnarled I can’t type anymore. 😉
As a writer, did you start with mystery or did you start in another genre? As a reader, have you always read mystery or did you discover it recently?
Oh, and the fresh perspective in the new year? I am only writing mystery. I’ve put writing romance books aside, so the mysteries can come faster!
6 thoughts on “New Year, Fresh Perspective by Paty Jager”
I’ve been writing since I was eight-years-old and I think I’ve improved along the way. In my teens and college, when Victoria Holt and Phillis Whitney were the rage, I practiced by writing my own “Gothic” romances – and some satires. That was before I was an English teacher and learned what Gothic really meant. But I always loved mysteries, whether on the page or on the screen. Film noir was always special to me. I loved 1940s films. So, in 1980 I completed my first serious mystery novel, a book that fit the humor, romance, and twisty plots of my favorite films. Life got in the way, so it took 35 years for me get it published. However, I never stopped writing, always perfecting my craft. Now, I’ve published two novels in my Jessica Minton series. I have a third one that needs editing, and I’m working on number four. That doesn’t include two other novels off-series that I wrote along the way. I promise to shut up now!
It’s interesting the genres you wrote besides mystery.
I’m so glad you found your voice again in mystery. I personally loved your romances, but I love your mysteries even more. I’m looking forward to more Gabriel Hawke and Shandra Higheagle books.
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Thanks Maggie! I really enjoy the research and the writing of the mysteries. I enjoyed the research for the romance but not so much the writing. Unless the story had a mystery element to it. 😉 Thanks for stopping by and commenting!
My first two books were historical family sagas based on both sides of my family. Then I moved on to mystery, though I wrote one romance with supernatural touches, and several what I call Christian horror.
Marilyn, The genres you’ve also written are interesting. I can’t read, watch, or write horror.
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