Monday, June 6, 2011

Mitch Malone Mondays - Lauren Carr

Today I’m taking a whack at interviewing a former editor and former is the only way I agreed to do this. Editors and I don’t always get along but I’m intrigued enough about the Mac Faraday mysteries to give Lauren Carr a chance. Maybe editors can reform. Let’s see. Lauren, tell me about your life as an editor. Did you ever give newspaper reporters a hard time about misplaced commas?

I was pretty nice as an editor. In fact, my bosses would complain that I was light with the red pen. It wasn’t that I didn’t know that a comma belonged there. But now, looking back, I was young and sensitive and didn’t want to hurt the writer’s feelings. Maybe, Mitch, now that I have more of a backbone, if I was back at the editor’s desk, I would be one of those editors you hate.

In the federal government I dealt with writers, not reporters who were out beating the sidewalks like you and trying to get the scoop over the next guy. They were overworked and stressed-out bureaucratic types who simply wanted to get their projects done and move on to the next report. You never get stressed-out, do you?

The reports I edited were actually full-fledged books that would be bound and printed in the government printing plant. Our books would go to the highest level of our federal government. Copies would actually go to the President of the United States, the Vice President, and each member of Congress and the Senate, plus others throughout the government. So, if a word was misspelled or a comma was misplaced, and the President of the United States was to see it – it was a big deal. I guess I did an okay job because I never heard of him complaining about my sloppy editing.

I knew you couldn’t be that bad as an editor and now you write about Mac Faraday, a man who we all want to be—that’s $270 million richer after an inheritance. How did the idea for Mac and his millions start?

As with any plotline comes about, it was with a germ of an idea. A friend of mine had a baby when she was in high school, which she put up for adoption. Thirty years later, that baby found her. It was all a happy reunion and things turned out great.

When this happened, I started thinking, as I always do, What if? Of course, that “What if” involved murder in some way, shape, or form.
What if that unwed mother had gone on to be rich and famous — world famous — like the American version of Agatha Christie? And what if the child that had been put up for adoption had grown up to become a great detective — like the fictional detective in his unknown mother’s mysteries?

Those what if’s became the premise for It’s Murder, My Son. The irony is that Mac Faraday is a bankrupt homicide detective when he comes into his inheritance from Robin Spencer. His wife had left him for another man and had taken everything. On the day his divorce becomes final, his late mother’s lawyer chases him three city blocks (Mac hates lawyers as much as you hate editors, Mitch) before Mac believes that he really is a millionaire.

You seem to have a good handle on small town life. I couldn’t stand the small town I grew up in. I like the action in the big city. Have you always lived in a small town? What makes it preferable to the big city?

When I was growing up in the small town of Chester, West Virginia, I was dying to get to the big city. Small town life was so boring. When I lived in Washington, I loved a lot of things about it. I loved the theater and the night clubs and the museums and the excitement, too.

But I missed the small town values and wholesomeness. I missed how neighbors cared about their neighbors. Also, when it comes to mysteries set in small towns, everyone knows everyone’s business. Everyone has a secret and there is always someone who knows that secret, which makes mysteries in small towns so interesting.

Is Mac a good detective? Does he need a reporter to be at his beck and call and help him with crime? I may be available soon.

Sorry, Mitch, the reporter at Mac’s beck and call is Archie Monday and I don’t think Mac will be letting her go soon. She’s not exactly a reporter, but she is just as good. Archie was the late Robin Spencer’s editor and research assistant. I think you would like Archie as your editor, Mitch. She’s heavy with the red pen, but she’s very easy on the eyes.

Since Mac is retired from police work and new to Spencer, he lacks the connections he was used to having in Washington. But, if that information is anywhere out there in cyberspace, Archie Monday can get it. Archie sort of came with Mac’s inheritance. She lives in the guest cottage on the estate at Spencer Manor. Mac’s mother had left her the cottage to live in as long as she wants and Mac has no desire for her to leave anytime in the near future, if you know what I mean.

What’s next for Mac?

What does any homicide detective do with all his spare time when he comes into a multi-million dollar inheritance and a luxurious estate on Deep Creek Lake? If you’re Mac Faraday, you pursue the lifestyle of a millionaire playboy between solving mysteries.

His next mystery is personal. IN OLD LOVES DIE HARD, Mac is settling nicely into his new life at Spencer Manor when his ex-wife Christine shows up—and she wants him back! Before Mac can send her packing, Christine and her estranged lover are murdered in Mac’s private penthouse suite at the Spencer Inn, the five-star resort built by his ancestors.

The investigation leads to the discovery of cases files for some of Mac’s murder cases in the room of the man responsible for destroying his marriage. Why would his ex-wife’s lover come to Spencer to dig into Mac’s old cases?
With the help of his new friends on Deep Creek Lake, Mac must use all of his detective skills to clear his name and the Spencer Inn’s reputation, before its five-stars—and more bodies—start dropping!

Thank you Lauren for giving us the scoop on Mac Faraday. I wish you could give us the secret to inheriting millions but that will have to wait for another day. To see Mac in action, check out Lauren’s website at:

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