Friday, June 9, 2017

NANCY MEHL: Faith-Filled Stories of Suspense and Mystery + a GIVEAWAY!


Interviewer: E.E. Kennedy 
 
It's a privilege and a pleasure for me to interview Nancy,one of my good friends, a kind, generous and highly gifted writer. Not all authors can give entertaining interviews, but Nancy sure can!



1)    Nancy, we’ve known each other a long time, dating back to when we both had the same tiny publisher. Just how long have you been writing? Have you always wanted to be a writer?   

I’ve been writing for twenty-two years. Of course, when I started I had no idea what I was doing, so the first several years were spent learning how to write.

No, I didn’t always want to be a writer. I was a writer, I just didn’t realize it. I started writing poems when I was only six or seven. My own parents didn’t believe I’d written them at first. And then in high school a teacher publicly accused me of plagiarism over a writing assignment. I should have realized the reactions I was received meant I had talent, but I was very insecure and it just didn’t register. I didn’t have anyone in my life to encourage me.

When I was forty-five, a Bible teacher mentioned that many times people can figure out the gifts God has given them by looking at what they did naturally as a child. That sparked something in me, and then a popular TV show, Murder, She Wrote put the final “nail in the coffin” so to speak. I finally decided to give writing a try. After a very strong confirmation from God, I’ve never looked back. 


2)    I know that you have a background in social work. Tell us a little bit about your experience and how it has influenced your work.

I think it gave me more compassion for those who are fighting disabilities and age issues. I find that most writers are very interested in people. They watch people, try to understand them, and are drawn to biographies. I believe it’s because we’re motivated to find out what makes people tick. It shows up in our writing. In my opinion, someone who doesn’t find people fascinating and doesn’t have a desire to understand them will never be a good writer.

3)    You write in a number of genres: cozy mystery, thriller, romance. What is your favorite? Which is the most challenging? Would you like to tackle another genre?

My favorite genre is mystery. Even though I write currently write suspense, my novels have a strong mystery flavor. I’m blessed to have a publisher who allows my “mystery side” to shine through.

Not sure which one is the most challenging. I’m moving into a new area in suspense and started writing in third person instead of first. My editor encouraged me to make the move, and I’m glad she did. Although it was a challenge at first, I’m beginning to really love it. Wouldn’t go back to first person – unless it was a special project that demanded it.

As far as another genre, I would love to write supernatural novels in the style of Frank Perretti. I actually wrote one book, Malevolence. It was book one of a three-book deal with a small publisher. That publisher decided to open an imprint I couldn’t support, and I was allowed out of my contract. The second book in the series is already written. Someday, I might edit Malevolence and book two. Maybe self-publish them.

4)    I really enjoy the character names you come up with, especially in your cozy mysteries. Do you have a technique or do they just come to you?

Most of the time they just come to me. Sometimes I scour the phone book or Facebook. I can’t tell you how many names I’ve taken from friends on Facebook! LOL!

5)    I understand your grown son Danny Mehl has partnered with you in developing book cover designs. How did that go?

Great! I respect his talent and let him design the covers his way. I very rarely ask for changes. He’s the one with the talent.

We’re taking it a step further. Later this month, Danny plans to open a publishing company. My out-of-print books will be the first offering. We’ll bring back my Harmony series, my Ivy Towers series, and my Curl Up and Dye series. I’m very excited about it!

6)    One of the most thrilling books of yours—or of anyone’s, for that matter—I ever read was your Graven Images, about a police sketch artist. Is there any chance you might re-publish it?

Okay, I’m going to have to read this book again. You’re not the first person to say this. I always tell people it’s the book I don’t want to talk about. In my mind, I feel there are too many problems since it was the first real book I ever wrote. I’ve actually had a couple of people get upset with me because I laughed when they said they liked it. One woman asked me if I was trying to say she had bad taste. I had to apologize profusely. LOL!

One of these days I’ll take a look at it again. Maybe it will make a comeback someday.

7)    The most recent book of yours I’ve read is Fatal Frost. (Loved it!) In it, you display an amazing knowledge of undercover detective work. What kind of research did this require?

I was very fortunate to find two fantastic sources: a retired Deputy U.S. Marshal who answers my questions with a page or two or three…full of incredible information. He is a writer’s dream! I also hooked up with a police officer who was a great help. Most of what I learned came through these two awesome men.


8)    Can you tell us a little about your latest release? And what else might be in the pipeline?

Here’s a synopsis for Dark Deception:

Kate O'Brien has been leading a quiet life in small-town Shelter Cove, Arkansas, for the past four years when her past suddenly comes roaring back to life. Four years ago, she and her twin sister were attacked by an elusive serial killer. Only Kate survived, and it was her eye witness account--along with some last-minute evidence--that convicted the suspect.

She's been in witness protection ever since, but new evidence suggests the convicted man isn't the murderer and she's been subpoenaed to testify in the new trial. Nervous about the risk, she'll only agree if the same Marshal who protected her during the original trial escorts her to St. Louis.

Deputy U.S. Marshal Tony DeLuca accepts the assignment to bring Kate to the trial, remembering how her strength impressed him. While in Shelter Cove, however, he gets a call from his chief, advising them to stay in Shelter Cove until a new development in the case can be straightened out. But when Kate's safety is threatened, Tony must race against the clock to keep her alive and put this ugly case to rest before anyone else gets killed.


As far as other things I’m working on, I’ve written the third book in my Defenders of Justice series, Blind Betrayal. It will be released in the spring of 2018. I’m also writing cozy mysteries for Guideposts and really enjoying that.
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GIVEAWAY! Please leave a comment below *AND INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS* for a chance to win a copy of DARK DECEPTION, Nancy's latest!  


35 comments:

  1. I love love Nancy's books she is a awesome Author . Would love to win a copy of her book .Blessings ,DanaGirl
    danagirlspille@gmail.com

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  2. Looks great!
    ladette@live{dot}com

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  3. Love it looking forward to reading it. Would love to win. Lourdes11743@gmail.com

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  4. Mrs. Mehl's books are always good! coppertop67(at)Hotmail(dot)com

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  5. This sounds like another great book from Nancy. Thanks for a chance to win.
    Blessings!
    Connie
    cps1950@gmail.com

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  6. Would love to win. brownsfan50@gmail.com
    Blessings!
    Susan

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  7. I read and enjoyed Fatal Frost. I would love to win a copy of Dark Deception. It sounds like it will be as absorbing as Fatal Frost.

    Cindy
    jeanfamily92@yahoo.com

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  8. Thanking God for the talents he has given you that I get to enjoy! Blessings, Kristie tklovenestataoldotcom

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    1. Aw, thank you, Kristie. I appreciate it.

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  9. Romantic suspense is one of my favorite genres so I am excited about this book. I also like that mystery is included. I love to trying to solve mysteries. Thanks for the interview and the giveaway.

    momrain(AT)aol(DOT)com

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    1. Even though my books are called "suspense," I do include mystery, Loraine. My publisher is so good to realize it's part of who I am as a writer. I have the best of both worlds!

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  10. Sounds so good and my very favorite genre as well. spotts06(at)comcast(dot)net

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  11. Would love to win a copy of this book as I have "Fatal Frost" :-) Thanks for the fun interview & giveaway chance.

    teamob4 (at) gmail (dot) com

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  12. I love all your books especially about the ones in Harmony, Kansas. Fatal Frost was good to. I would love to win a copy of this book. Keep up the good work.

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  13. I love all your books especially about the ones in Harmony, Kansas. Fatal Frost was good to. I would love to win a copy of this book. Keep up the good work.

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  14. Wow, this sounds great. My email is TSL9Snodgrass (at) aol (dot) com.

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  15. This would be so cool to win! Thanks. paulams49ATsbcglobalDOTnet

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  16. I'm looking forward to reading this one. I love suspense/mystery books. Thanks for the giveaway and interview. d[dot]brookmyer[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  17. I started reading you with the Harmony series and fell in love. I can't wait to read this!! Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy.

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  18. I enjoyed reading about you Nancy and I am sure your books are great! I am sorry to say ," I have yet to read one!" :) This interview has inspired me to find one of your books very soon and give it a try! :) Thanks for understanding.

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  19. This sounds like another great book would love to win

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  20. Can't wait to read this!
    thedanielsr(at)comcast(dot)net

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  21. Love this: "...that many times people can figure out the gifts God has given them by looking at what they did naturally as a child...". Best Wishes for all releases & thanks for offering this giveaway!!!

    gcwhiskas at aol dot com

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  22. Love your books! I can't wait to read this one. Loved you're asking your interview too.rose blackard (@) Gmail (.)com

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  23. Love your books. Enjoyed reading the interview.
    betsylu2@msn.com

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  24. Wonderful interview! I'm excited to read this series!!
    psalm103and138 at gmail dot com

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  25. Excited for your new book! Strgth4yu@hotmail.com

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  26. Nancy, I dearly love your books! Thank you for this interesting interview, and the chance to win your new book!

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