Yes, my new book, Race with Danger, is a bit of a departure for this mystery and romance author. But here’s why I wrote it:
It was fast to write, and these days, you have to publish a lot of books quickly to survive. Young adult books, while dealing with serious subjects, typically don’t have a lot of depth or a lot of description.
Teen books typically have a lot of action–my biggest strength as a writer–and a lot of angst. Race with Danger is written in first person, present tense—a popular combination for many YA books. I thought it might be difficult for me to switch from close third person past tense, but no–the story just seems to flow naturally in the present.
I admire books with strong female characters, especially young ones. I also admire a lot of the teen girls I meet–many are smart, gutsy athletes, and I wanted to honor that in my protagonist.
But Race with Danger is a suspense story, so that’s not a departure for me. And it is also the first book in a mystery trilogy. The ongoing backstory is that my character is trying to solve the mystery of her parents’ murders and find out what happened to her brother.
I’m well into writing the second book of this Run for Your Life trilogy, but I haven’t given up my other series, either–I’ve already begun The Only One Left–the 3rd Neema mystery–and Burned–the sequel to Shaken, and the 4th Summer Westin mystery. I wish I could pack more hours into each day.