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Thursday, March 23, 2023

'Believeably involved, emotionally invested'


“In a mystery, the sleuth must be believably involved and emotionally invested in solving the crime.” – Diane Mott Davidson

Mystery writer Davidson, born March 22, 1949, took a page (so to speak) out of author Robert B. Parker’s writing guide and decided to develop her ideas for mysteries around her two great loves – writing and recipes.  Thus, her novels use the theme of food and include several food or drink recipes within their pages.  On top of that, her clever titles are a play on food or drink words, like Dying for Chocolate, The Grilling Season, Killer Pancake and The Whole Enchilada (my personal fave).

Her protagonist, Goldy Schulz, is a small town caterer based in Colorado (also where Davidson resides) who solves mysteries on the side.

A native of Virginia who started writing while she was a student at Wellesley, Mott Davidson said she actually tried catering for a while and found it “exhausting.”  She honed her cooking skills after transferring from Wellesley to Stanford.  “If you don’t have much money, you have to learn to cook.”

Her advice to new writers is first write for the love of it.  “If you make best-sellerdom your goal, you're going to be in trouble.  It's a very nice thing to have happen, but if one makes that a goal like, say, a literary writer has the goal of getting the Pulitzer Prize, that's so unpredictable.”

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