I became a “Lady” (although I’m not sure I’ve ever been called that before) only a few days ago, so I’m going to introduce myself today. My path through life has been a meandering one. I have worked as a translator, a mechanical and architectural drafter, a technical writer and editor, a senior editor of a multimedia department, and a private investigator, and of course an author. I’ve been both traditionally and indie published, with 11 “how-to” books and 13 full-length works of fiction, along with a few advice ebooks, short stories, and two dust-collecting screenplays. I paint, do western line dance, hike, kayak, snowshoe, and sometimes scuba dive. I’m originally from the Kansas hills (yes, there are hills in some parts), but I’ve called the Pacific Northwest home now for decades.
All this chaos might explain how I’ve ended up with four different mystery series. (What was I thinking?) My Sam Westin wilderness mysteries are about crimes on public lands. Wilderness and wild animals are my biggest passions in life, and I spend a lot of time hiking and kayaking in wild places. There are so many ways to get into trouble “out there,” and calling 9-1-1 is not going to bring help any time soon, so suspense is naturally built into the setting.
My Neema series revolves around a gorilla who has been taught sign language. When I worked as a PI, my cases sometimes involved testimony from young children, so I’ve done a lot of thinking about who makes a credible witness. I’ve always been fascinated by animal intelligence, and a gorilla is estimated to have the intelligence of a five-year-old child. My poor human detective soon learns that while Neema knows some sign language, she doesn’t think like a person, and she doesn’t have a large vocabulary. So, when Neema offers clues like “skin bracelet” and “tree candy,” it’s up to the humans to figure out what this gorilla could possibly be trying to say. I didn’t intend for Neema to star in a series, but when readers loved The Only Witness, I had to write two more books.
I wrote the Run for Your Life trilogy for anyone who loves the Hunger Games books. I was inspired by the incredible young female athletes we see today. The protagonist, Tanzania Grey, 17 years old in the first book, is a champion runner who competes in extreme endurance races around the world, while living under a false identity and trying to evade the unidentified killers who murdered her parents.
The Langston Family Stories include Shaken, about a young, dark half-Hispanic woman managing a plant nursery she inherited after her father’s sudden death. The business has been plagued by an earthquake, vandalism, and arson. With so many damage claims, Elisa Langston becomes the target of an insurance investigation. As a PI, I am well aware of how hard it is to defend yourself after you’re accused (or even suspected) of a crime. Again deals with Elisa’s adoptive mother, Gail Langston, who lost three lovers (most recently, Elisa’s father) to violent deaths, so she’s afraid to love again. A handsome EMT, Leon, is pursuing Gail, but another person is shadowing her, too—a psychotic woman who wants Leon for her own. Eventually, I’ll write book #3 about Charlie, Gail’s beautiful blond biological daughter and Elisa’s stepsister.
Feel free to check out my writing on https://pamelabeason.com. I look forward to sharing my fractured imaginings with you all in more coherent future posts.