- Your website states you “write award-winning mysteries that are splashed with humor, romance, paranormal and whatever sounds fun.” How do you balance such an array of what are often separate genres?
This mixed genre madness is what comes out when I write, so apparently my brain is a professional jack-of-all-trades. When I first started writing fiction many, many moons ago, I tried to write contemporary romances, but emoting enough to pull off a full-length romance was tough for me. Then I added in some hair-raising murders and creepy ghosts, along with humor and romance to offset the suspense, and suddenly the stories just flowed from my fingertips. Somehow, my muse juggles all of those genres with relative ease by nature, and most days I feel like I’m just along for the ride.
- Do you have a disciplined writing routine? Can you describe it?
I wish I had a disciplined writing routine, but in truth I have kids and too many cats, so I am often distracted. When I’m in the thick of writing a book, I aim for 2000 words written per day, and when I start running up against my deadline for finishing the first draft, I increase that goal by a thousand or two thousand per day. Sometimes I write in the morning, other times the afternoon, and periodically late into the night. Maybe someday I’ll have a set writing schedule, but for now, I write whenever I can find the time, whether we’re talking about a story, marketing pieces, or email replies to readers.
- Your website also states you’re a member of Sisters in Crime and Western Writers of America. How long have you been a member of these organizations?
I’ve been with Sisters in Crime for many years—probably about eight. I’ve been with Western Writers of America for about three years now. Until last year, I was also a member of Romance Writers of America and had been with them since the mid-1990s, but I’d grown away from that organization writing-wise, so I let that membership lapse. All of these organizations have been helpful over the years, but I don’t go to their conferences or meetings any more due to time restraints thanks to my kids’ school schedules. In the past, I’ve enjoyed meeting other authors who are also part of these organizations, so if you’re an author looking to network, there are great opportunities within them.
- What can readers expect from Ann Charles next?
DEVIL DAYS IN DEADWOOD, the 11th book in my Deadwood Mystery series (a blend of mystery, supernatural suspense, humor, and romance) has an ebook release date of May 29, 2020. The print book version will follow shortly (the audiobook will be out in early 2021, which seems farther off than it actually is). After DEVIL DAYS, my husband, Sam Lucky, and I will be releasing the 3rd book in the Deadwood Undertaker series, CAN’T RIDE AROUND IT, which is a mix of western, supernatural suspense, mystery, and humor. This book will be out by September 2020. After that, I’ll be working on the 12th book in the Deadwood Mystery series with the goal of releasing around the end of the year. So, it’s going to be a year of “Deadwood” for me.