Today Melanie Casey joins us to discuss her latest release Missing, the third title in her paranormal crime series featuring Cass Lehman and Detective Ed Dyson, and we offer readers the chance to win a copy.
BLBR: Thanks so much for taking the time to speak to us today Melanie. You must be incredibly busy right now with Missing being officially launched earlier this month.
I’ve recently devoured the series’ first two titles, Hindsight and Craven – I’m not typically one to ‘binge-read’ series, but after the first title I was hooked. But for our readers not as familiar with your work, could you sum up all that your series offers?
Melanie: The Cass series is a bit like the TV show Medium mixed with CSI and a dash of Offspring. The main character Cass has the psychic ability of retrocognition. When she passes the place where someone has died suddenly or violently she flashes back and relives the last few minutes of her life. The series sees her grappling with the reality of her ability and teaming up with Detective Ed Dyson to try and put here talent to good use.
BLBR: One of the things that really hooked me was your character development. Despite Cass Lehman’s unusual abilities and experiences, somehow you’ve made her and those she interacts with feel so grounded, so authentic. Do any particular characters embody the traits of people close to you?
Melanie: My Dad tells me I have a habit of creating minor characters that mirror family members but I never realise I’ve done it until he points it out. I don’t try to create characters that mirror those around me. When I create a character I like to give them normal traits and normal lives to a large extent. My characters sit around the table and eat a lot. They get cranky with each other and they have doubts and demons.
BLBR: I’ve read a few crime thrillers in my time, but have been impressed by the unusually complex and twisted and chilling nature of the criminal acts perpetrated in your novels. Where do you get your ideas from, and is it emotionally draining spending time invested in this type of subject matter?
Melanie: My husband would love to know the same thing. I read a lot. I watch a lot of crime on TV (CI on Foxtel is fertile territory). I find the criminal mind intriguing. There aren’t that many really clever criminals. To quote on of the lawyers from the Attorney Generals Department here in Adelaide, most criminals are mad, bad or sad. Not many of them are criminal geniuses. It’s not really draining creating fictional psychopaths. If I was writing about real crime it would be different I think.
BLBR: I understand you were working in Government before realising your talents as a writer, and you’ve published three novels now in quick succession, 2013, 2015 and 2016. How do you balance this workload with your day job?
Melanie: I have a very understanding husband and my kids are still young enough that I can write when they go to bed. Writing is like anything else. If you love it enough and want to succeed at it you need to carve out time. I do a couple of hours about five nights a week and give up watching TV or doing other things at those times. One of the lecturers at the Professional writing school here in Adelaide told me that if you want to succeed as a writer you have to treat it like any other business and devote time and energy to it.
BLBR: How many more books do we have to look forward to featuring the gutsy Cass and white knight Ed?
Melanie: I’m afraid that’s it for Cass and Ed for now! I have a couple of stand alone novels written that I’d like to see hit the shelves. The next planned one is pure paranormal and has an angel theme. I also have another paranormal crime series planned and I’ve written about fifteen thousand words of the first instalment.
BLBR: It’s always interesting to hear what writers enjoy reading for pleasure. Can you share with us a recent favourite novel, and/or a title you are particularly looking forward to?
Missing is available from:
Booktopia(Aus) | Amazon | Kobobooks | Book Depository
To celebrate the release of Missing the lovely people at Pantera Press have offered a paperback copy for giveaway to one lucky reader.
- open internationally
- extra entries for spreading the word via Twitter [+2] and Facebook/Google+/Webpage [+4]
- extra entries for registered participants of the Aussie Author Challenge 2016 [+1 for challenge commitment and +1 for each review link submitted to date as part of the challenge]
- entries close 11 March 2016
- the winner will be randomly selected and must respond to my email requesting their mailing address within 5 days otherwise their prize will be forfeited and another winner selected
SORRY, ENTRIES CLOSED – Winner announced HERE