If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

September Interviews

9/2 Dianne Freeman, A Lady's Guide to Mischief and Murder

9/9 Ellen Byron, Murder in the Bayou Boneyard

9/16 Marilyn Levinson, writing as Allison Brook, Checked Out for Murder

9/23 Rhys Bowen, The Last Mrs. Summers

9/30 Sherry Harris, From Beer To Eternity

September Guest Bloggers

9/19 Judy Alter

WWK Weekend Bloggers

9/5 V. M. Burns

9/12 Jennifer J. Chow

9/26 Kait Carson


Keenan Powell recently signed with agent Amy Collins of Talcott Notch. Congratulations, Keenan!

KM Rockwood's "Secrets To The Grave" will appear in the new SinC Chesapeake Chapter's new anthology Invitation To Murder, which will be released by Wildside Press on 10/6.

Congratulations to our two Silver Falchion Finalists Connie Berry and Debra Goldstein!

Paula Gail Benson's "Cosway's Confidence" placed second and Debra Goldstein's "Wabbit's Carat" received Honorable Mention in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable 2020 short story contest. Congratulations, Paula and Debra!

Susan Van Kirk's Three May Keep A Secret has been republished by Harlequinn's Worldwide Mystery. The WWK interview about the book can be accessed here. We're so glad another publisher picked up this series.

KM Rockwood's "Burning Desire," and Paula Gail Benson's "Living One's Own Truth," have been published in the anthology Heartbreaks & Half-truths. Congratulations to all of the WWK writers.

Please join Margaret S. Hamilton's Kings River Life podcast of her short story "Busted at the Book Sale" here. Congratulations, Margaret!

Look Margaret S. Hamilton's short stories in the new Mid-Century Murder by Darkhouse Books. Margaret's story is titled "4BR/3.5BA Contemporary."

Grace Topping's second novel in Laura Bishop staging series, Staging Wars, was released by Henery Press on April 28th. Look for the interview here from April 29th.

Annette Dashofy's 10th Zoe Chambers mystery, Til Death, will be released on June 16th. Look for the interview here on June 17.


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

An Interview with Kendel Lynn

Kendel Lynn’s main character, Elli Lisbon, isn’t wealthy, but her clients are. Reading Kendel’s series always educates me as to how the top one percent lives. I rely on Google to fill in the blanks for me as I am not (evidently) familiar with half-million dollar cars or some popular clothing designers. As Director of the philanthropic Ballantyne Foundation, Elli deals with the wealthy population of Sea Pine Island, SC, but her job title could be described as fulfilling oddball requests from her husband-wife employers, the Ballantynes, who founded the organization. Elli deals with eccentric clients’ egos and idiosyncrasies with aplomb. Kendel’s second book in the series came out in May. Its title, Whack Job, is the perfect description of Elli’s clients and her job.

Please welcome Kendel Lynn back to WWK.          
                                                                                                                                                             E. B. Davis

Gilbert and Jaime Goodsen are in the midst of divorce. Both vie against the other for the one open position on the Ballantyne Foundation’s Board of Directors, which puts Elli in the position of
determining if either deserves consideration. When Gilbert sustains a non-fatal gunshot wound in front of Elli, she must find out whodunit, but the case is complicated by Gilbert’s stolen Faberge egg, another whodunit for Elli, and more issues.

Viaticals is an insurance tactic/product with which I had no familiarity. Would you explain to our readers what this is?

In a nutshell (eggshell?), it’s the practice of buying the payout on someone’s life insurance policy. Say you have a policy worth $100,000. A guy pays you $75,000 now (while you’re alive), and then when it’s time for the policy to payout (after you’ve passed), he gets the $100,000.

I loved the history of the Imperial Russian eggs designed by Faberge. Would you give our readers the short version and how the history relates to their value?

Tsar Alexander III commissioned Carl Faberge to craft an Easter egg for his wife in 1885. She loved it so much, they continued the tradition every year, even after the Tsar’s death (his son carried it on). These are the Imperial Eggs, and there were 50 created. Because of their history, they’re worth millions. Carl Faberge also created eggs for private clients and friends, and then his grandson fashioned eggs long after the revolution, but alas, these are not the ridiculously valuable Imperial eggs.

In the course of a day, Elli goes through at least three sets of clothes due to her proximity to violence, her temper, and her proclivity to jump in where angels fear to tread. Does Elli have an expense account or is she very well paid?

HA! She makes a decent living, and understands part of her role as director (and leader of all Ballantyne events), is to look her best. One cannot represent a billion dollar foundation in rubber flip flops. Though those suckers would be way easier to clean…

Elli’s lost college love, Lieutenant Nick Ransom is also on the case. He considers it his job, not hers, but Elli’s job necessitates her involvement, which Nick doesn’t understand. Elli took forensic course work in school. Why didn’t she finish that course of study, like Nick?

Elli explains it best in Board Stiff:  I’d taken two years of criminology classes in college before I realized I’d never make it to graduation. I fainted twice in one forensics class and had to close my eyes during most of another. The smell of blood, death, and loose body parts would either gross me out or freak me out. Neither reaction impressed the professors. So she switched from a Forensics major to straight Criminal Justice.

How can Nick afford a half-million dollar car?

Wise investing. He got in on the ground floor of a social networking startup and sold his stock at the right time. All of this happened whilst he was in the FBI, before he moved back to Sea Pine Island.

Time isn’t Elli’s friend. Although her job entails getting involved in these cases, she also must ready the Foundation site for events. In this book, the Ballantynes are giving a tea party for children cancer victims. Is time-micromanagement one of Elli’s talents?  

Oh she’s a multi-tasker! That’s where she really excels. Mostly. Juggling her to-do  lists, patrons,
vendors, and of course, crime-fighting.

Sid, Elli’s BF and sometimes sidekick, is a wonderful character. Is there someone you based the character on?

I love Sid! She’s the perfect BFF for Elliott. Sid tells her what she really thinks, keeps her on track, and is there when she needs her. One of my favorite sayings repeated at Malice this year: A friend will help you move. A good friend will help you move the body. That’s Sid!

One fun aspect of Whack Job is your references to Stephen King books. Poor Elli is creeped-out. Does horror lurk in the dark around every murder or is it the Romanoff legacy?

Her love of Stephen King books parallels her own life: she loves the dark and twisty, but it totally creeps her out and she freaks out. But she’s compelled to shine a light on that horror and face what needs to be faced.

Elli gets into messes even though she’s a germaphobic. But then, she also lives on an island and doesn’t like eating seafood. Does everyone have contradictions? Do you? Would you tell us yours?

Ironically, Elli and I have a few things in common… I lived on Hilton Head Island and absolutely do not like seafood! (Though I’m also germ-conscious and carry hand-sani everywhere I go, I rarely get into food fights or scale buildings.) Contradictions make us human and interesting and unique. I think it’s essential for well-rounded characters to have a least a handful of contradictions.

What’s next for Elli and/or Kendel?

SWAN DIVE! I’m busy plotting it now (I’m a plotter) and will write it by the end of summer, it hits shelves next April.

If given a choice, would you chose a grilled-cheese sandwich or a hot dog?

Hot dog! A Dodger dog, if I’m being choosy. With ketchup and relish, please.


Jim Jackson said...

Welcome back, Kendel.

I had the pleasure of reading Whack Job in preparation for moderating a great panel at Left Coast Crime that included Kendel.

I recall smiling when I realized it involved viatical settlements as they are also included in my Cabin Fever.

~ Jim

E. B. Davis said...

Funny, after reading Kendel's book, I ran into another book that included viatical settlements as part of the plot. It reminds me of reverse mortgages, but a whole lot tackier. Not a good surprise for relatives, but then they should be in "the know." I love your MC, Kendel. Keep them coming!

Shari Randall said...

A cozy with a dash of Stephen King - sounds like my kind of book! Those contradictions and little dark touches do make for interesting characters. Thank you for stopping by, Kendel. I'll put this book in my TBR.

Kendel Lynn said...

Hi all, thanks for having me. It's always a pleasure to be your guest. and thank you for all the kind words! A funny side note: my editor thought I made the whole viaticals thing up! I knew someone who actually bought them. Crazy. ps. Jim was an fantastic moderator. Made us all look good...

Art Taylor said...

A nice interview here! And now that I know Kendel is a hot dog fan, I think we'll have to plan an outing someday....

Unknown said...

E.B.-As always, a funny, interesting, and individual interview. Very Impressive!

I love Elli Lisbon--she's a hoot! Though sometimes I question her love of "shorty pants." Can't wait for Swan Dive!

Nancy G. West said...

I've been planning to read Kendel's books, but after reading E.B.'s interview with Kendel,
I really want to read them!

Nancy G. West

E. B. Davis said...

Thanks, Nancy! Kendel is always a pleasure to read and interview. I can't wait until the next installment. So many books and not enough beach days!

Kendel Lynn said...

Hey Art, if Bouchercon wasn't in November, I'd totally tack on an extra day for a Dodger game! (and wear my shorty pants, Diane.) Thanks, Nancy!!

Cari said...

Awesome!! I'm halfway through Board Stiff right now, and I'm really enjoying it.

Paula Gail Benson said...

Wonderful interview. Thanks, Kendel and E.B. I'm reading Whack Job now and thoroughly enjoying it. Looking forward to Swan Dive.