Well, the baby finally was born. It was a long and hard labor, lasting almost two years, but in the end, I’d say it was worth it. Murder in the Cemetery, book two of the Edmund DeCleryk mystery series, has been published, and as I look back, the labor was one of love.
I thought this time it would be easier. I’d been through it before. I knew a little more about what I was doing and was comfortable working on developing the characters and plot. But I was wrong. It wasn’t easier. This time my expectations were greater, and I put more pressure on myself. I fretted more, and many times woke up in the middle of the night remembering details I needed to include or thinking about plot changes that would make the book better. I worried that my publisher, Patricia Rockwell, at Cozy Cat Press, wouldn’t like this one as much as Murder in the Museum, the first in the series. Happily, she did.
One of the biggest challenges in this book was keeping track of all the details. The plot is a bit more complex, so there are lots of them. Plus, there were recurring characters whose personalities and names I had to keep straight. When I introduced something, such as a conversation early in the book that gave hints to who the murderer was, I had to make sure I followed through to the resolution. Descriptions had to be consistent throughout. Ditto for points of view. And sequence of events, except when there were flashbacks, needed to be chronological.
During a trip Ed and Annie take to England (it has to do with what Ed discovered on the beach at the end of Murder in the Museum) a glimmer of something about the murder in this book wafts through Ed’s head. He dismisses it, but in a chapter close to the resolution, I had to make sure he remembers it. Annie also had a moment of discomfort when something niggled in her brain, but close to the end she remembered what it was, and it was a detail that helped to solve the crime.
I’m excited that the book is finished. Promotion has begun, but I’m also beginning to develop the plot for book three, Murder at Freedom Point. Whether it will be easier or more difficult to write than the previous two remains to be seen, but I know I will love the conception, gestation, labor, and what I certainly hope will be a very happy and healthy delivery.
Check out my website: https://www.karenshughart.com for a synopsis of Murder in the Cemetery, to read my blogs and newsletters, see what other books I’ve written or to purchase any of them.