1. Tell me about your latest release or the book you wish to feature? Genre?
Hung Out to Die is my first mystery novel. The main character is Riel Brava. Riel, at least on the surface, is an unusual character for me. He’s male. Quintessentially male in many ways: confident, fit, good looking, charming, ambitious. He also has a distinctive personality trait; he’s a psychopath. The kind of psychopath that often succeeds in a corporate structure that calls for dispassion.
An American, Riel is currently living in Nova Scotia and working as CEO of the Canadian Cannabis Corporation. He aspires to return to the U.S. and run for president. First, he wants to hone his leadership skills and cement his business credentials.
Riel lives between worlds. His first name is Gabriel; his adoptive parents’ last name is Brava. Riel is neither French nor Latino. In that same way, Riel is a successful man in a competitive world, but it is a world he does not identify with on fundamental levels.
2. Where did the idea arise?
A bath. I’m a big believer in bubbles, candles, scrubs, essential oils, and music with birds chirping in the background. Friends call this bathroom time my shrine. One night immersed in a lavender cloud I realized it was time to begin writing my mystery. Get off the pot kind of thing. That led me to a litany of possible characters and crimes. Through the mist Riel emerged. Not fully formed but outlined enough that I wrote down my ideas before I even moisturized.
3. How much research was involved? Did you stay on point or be distracted by wanting to look at just one more thing?
There were key elements to the story that had to be authentic, at least in a fictional context. I have done a lot of reporting on the cannabis industry and have had the opportunity to tour a cannabis production plant before it opened. Likewise, for years as a freelance journalist I wrote on the health sector and health issues, including mental health and personality issues. As a communications specialist, many of my clients were from this sector.
I always find it easy to get distracted when I am writing. As a freelance journalist, however, I learned to stay on track. Working to deadline meant there often wasn’t time to travel down interesting but non-essential paths. You are also working to a specific word count as a journalist so you know no matter how interesting the asides, they will not make it into the article for length reasons.
4. How long did you take to write the book?
A year. There is part of me that thinks I got distracted from writing it too much during that year. There is another part that thinks that time helped to better formulate characters and plot.
5. Now a bit about you. How long have you been writing? What is your Sun Sign?
I have been writing for a lifetime. For many years, I was a freelance writer for online and print publications throughout North America. More recently I have turned and returned to fiction and poetry. I co-wrote my first book in 2006, Celebrity Court Cases: Trials of the Rich and Famous. This was a collection of articles on famous people, including Martha Stewart and Bill Clinton, who found themselves in trouble with the law. Last year The Thong Principle: Saying What You Mean and Meaning What You Say was published by a U.S. publisher. This year Hung Out to Die hit bookshelves, virtual and real.
I’m a Leo, although I am on the cusp with Virgo.
6. Do you write in a number of genres of stick to one?
I have published poetry and literary short stories. I have published thousands of articles in magazines and newspapers, online and in print. I have published personal essays, usually humorous. More recently, I have published non-fiction books and my first mystery novel as well as two mystery short stories. Whatever I am working on at the time is my favorite.
7. Where on the internet can you be found?
Amazon Author URL: amazon.com/author/donaleemoulton