I would like to welcome Author Mary Koppel to my Mysterious Musings Blog. Mary is new with Cozy Cat Press with her new book Volunteer To Die. Let’s welcome Mary and find out some interesting facts about her. Welcome, Mary.
Please share a little insight as to who Mary Koppel is?
Mary E. Koppel is an Episcopal priest, mommy, and a lover of travel, reading, and adventure. I really enjoy meeting people and listening to their stories. I also love to make people laugh because I love laughing.
What was the first thing you ever wrote that made you think perhaps you would like to be a writer?
When I was in high school, in my senior year, I wrote an essay for a poetry project in Dr. Hood’s English class. I had worked really hard on the project, but I felt pretty good about what I had written. Dr. Hood actually read it to the class. I think that was the turning point for me. I realized that if I put the effort in, I could write. It would take a few more years for me to put into practice what I learned and start writing regularly and then put myself out there.
What tweaks your creativity?
My creativity is tweaked by sunny days and flowers. When I read a really good book or watch a great movie, I am inspired to create.
Tell us about your latest book.
In my latest mystery, Denise Reed is an unemployed youth minister with too much time on her hands and driving her mother crazy in New Orleans. Her confidence is shot and she needs a push to get out of this unemployment funk. Through a chance encounter at Riverview, a luxury retirement home, she stumbles across the mysterious death of an aide at Riverview and a rash of small thefts there.
With a little help from a new friend, she takes a job at Riverview, embarks on her investigation and slowly regains her confidence.
What is the favorite thing about your main character?
I love Denise. My favorite thing about her is that sees so much humor around her. She is smart and kind. She wishes she was a Victoria Secret model, but who wants to eat that much celery?
What is your characters most serious flaw?
Denise doubts her skills, and yet she has so much to offer. I foresee her building up her confidence as the series continues.
What makes you smile?
My daughter makes me smile. She is at a glorious age, filled with really cute observations and cuddles.
What makes you mad/sad?
I feel mad/sad when I witness people being mistreated. I wonder why it is difficult for humans to be decent with each other.
Writers get discouraged at times. Have you ever been discouraged and what do you do about it?
I have been discouraged about my writing. In fact, for many years I was discouraged and did not write much more than in my journal. I learned the best thing one can do to work through discouragement with writing is to continue writing. Not every bit of writing is good, but writing builds upon writing.
What advice would you give to new authors or those dreaming of becoming an author?
I think that those dreaming of becoming an author and new authors should read, read, read and write, write, write. I wrote regularly in my journal. I also wrote for about 4 years on a blog with a friend before I had the confidence to write a book.
What are you working on now?
I have just started the second Denise Reed Mystery and I am also writing a novel of romantic suspense. This summer should be a lot of fun.
Did I forget to ask anything you would like us to know?
Gosh, I feel like you have asked me such wonderful questions. Thank you!
I like to end my interviews with an author’s favorite quote. What is yours?
My favorite author’s quotation is from Maya Angelou’s “Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now.” The quotation is: “Living well is an art that can be developed: a love of life and ability to take great pleasure from small offerings and assurance that the world owes you nothing and that every gift is exactly that, a gift.”
Volunteer to Die: A Denise Reed Mystery
Denise Reed is over-educated, unemployed, and about to drive her mother crazy. Denise (and her daughter Emily) has been hiding out at her mother’s home in New Orleans, pretending to job hunt while feeling sorry for herself. One Tuesday she volunteers with her mother at the exclusive independent living facility, Riverview. At Riverview, Denise meets Louise Butler and learns about the mysterious death of an aide, Tina Moore and a rash of small thefts.
Only a few weeks before, the young aide reported a theft at Riverview and within 24 hours she was dead. Was it an accident? Or something more? Is someone really stealing at Riverview? With encouragement from Louise, Denise takes a job at Riverview and begins to investigate the thefts and Tina’s accident. Before she knows it, Denise is Tai Chi-ing her way out of her unemployment funk, crushing on a Jason Statham look-alike named Jason, and avoiding a pimple-faced thug. Will she be able to sort out who she can trust? Or will she end up like Tina Moore?
This is a great start for a new author. What better place to find mystery than in a nursing home? The main character is likable and believable. Didn’t we all drive our mother’s crazy at one time or another? When Denise teams up with one of the residents to solve the crime, look for anything to happen. I look forward to his author’s next book.
You can find Mary at:
Make sure you take the time to comment and I will give away an e-copy of her book later this week.
Thank you Mary for visiting us.