CANAAN CAMP (Richard Carter #3) was the second
of the series to be written, but is best read after COLD TEARS. (RC #2) Each of the novels is a stand-alone
story. If you happen to read one out of order, you won't be at a loss as to who these people are or what the heck
happened to them before this.
I found the going easier this time. There was less redacting, but still
a lot of editing. During this project, I found my "voice." That may be easier for some authors than it
was for me. A key that I discovered was something I should not do, rather than something I should do. I have a good
eidetic memory. I can hear what I have read—sometimes too well. While in college, a professor joked that
when I wrote about Milton, my writing read a little like Milton. Also, my training is in history where the unpardonable
sin is plagiarism (of ideas as well as words). The upshot is: I do not read fiction while writing fiction.
For authenticity of the motivations, actions, and thought processes of my serial killer/sexual predator,
I kept books and articles written by members of the FBI's behavioral science unit (John Douglas, Roy Hazelwood,
and Robert Ressler) on hand next to a copy of DMS-IV and (for Canaan Camp) "A
Primer on Drug Action." These are still on the bookshelf above the worn-out keyboard upon which I wrote
the first ten books in the series. The result, I believe, is a story that takes the reader into the mind of a truly scary
and evil individual without in any way becoming a tribute to such monsters. There is tension aplenty for the invested reader.
I enjoyed getting to know the new characters
in this story, especially Richard's boss Shug Shively, Raven, and Shane. I enjoyed writing
it. Like many of you, I suppose, if I find myself not caring about the characters in a book, I won't finish reading
it. The same thing applies to my writing. I'm sure you will enjoy learning more about Jill and Richard as well as
a very special young woman, Raven Bliss. I would love to share them with you.