Today on Writer’s Wednesday we welcome Carrie Stuart Parks, author of Formula of Deception.
Enter below for a chance to win a copy of Formula of Deception! Congratulations to Lora Piepergerdes who won a copy of Rachel McMillan’s Murder at the Flamingo! Note: This post contains affiliate links.
An Everyday Life that Never Happens
As an artist, forensic artist, law enforcement instructor, speaker, AKC judge, dog breeder, and somewhere in there a novelist, I never seem to have an ordinary day. My husband—and partner in our forensic corporation—and I live on the family’s 685-acre ranch in the mountains of Idaho. We are freelance everything, so the schedules we set are based on the next class or deadline coming up. Roughly once a month we will pack up and head out to teach a week-long series of forensic classes somewhere in the US or Canada. With classes lasting Monday through Friday, we have to catch a flight out on the previous Saturday (we can’t afford to get caught with a canceled flight the day before!) Our forensic classes are the bread and butter of our lives. Our forensic students provide the accurate information needed for any police, fire, nursing, and other topics that might end up on a novel.
When I started writing and illustrating drawing and watercolor books for North Light Publishers in 2001, I stopped doing art shows and trying to paint 150-250 watercolors a year. It was a relief to get out of so much pressure. Now I’ll produce 10-15 works a year, teach a class or two, and call it good.
I show our Great Pyrenees dogs, and they seem to require attention (make that demand attention.) I write in a chair in the living room, but the dogs don’t understand why the computer is in my lap, not them. Unfortunately, computer and dog are mutually exclusive. This year I decided to get my AKC Great Pyrenees judging license, so more time spent away from writing. Add to that being the Great Pyrenees columnist for the AKC Gazette and . . . well.
I LOVE speaking, but once again preparing for a presentation, even a minor one, will take time. The topics and participants reflect this strange life I lead. This year I spoke/will speak at the Great Pyrenees National, Spokane Watercolor Society, Coeur d’Alene Police Department, Writer’s Police Academy, and ACFW’s Early Bird and writing session.
At any time a call can come in from a law enforcement agency needing a composite or advice on a case. These are usually a drop-everything-emergency. Out the window goes all my carefully laid plans!
I’m not a prolific novelist. One book a year, no matter how hard I try, seems to be the limit. Reading background materials, researching, interviewing, and usually traveling to the location take an inordinate amount of time. So does plotting. I’m always thinking, worrying, fussing, and fretting that the books don’t have enough twists and turns, unexpected moments, a smidge of humor, plausible action, and realistic characters.
I’m blessed above and beyond to have a fantastic agent with Karen Solem, a great publishing house and editors with HarperCollins Christian, Amanda Bostic, and Erin Healy, and brainstorming partners and cherished friends in Colleen Coble, Ronie Kendig, Robin Caroll, Lynette Eason, Cara Putman, and others. My mentor, Frank Peretti, is always willing to help me when I make an utter botch of something.
This month we released my newest book, Formula of Deception, a mystery/suspense/thriller set on beautiful Kodiak Island, Alaska, and introducing a new character, Murphy Andersen. I hope you’ll get a chance to read it!
So, an average day? Week? Month? Year? I keep waiting…
Listen to an exclusive clip from the first chapter of Formula of Deception HERE!
More about Formula of Deception
An artist hiding from an escaped killer uncovers one of World War II’s most dangerous secrets—a secret that desperate men will do anything to keep hidden.
After the murder of her twin sister, Murphy Anderson changed her name and appearance and moved to Kodiak, Alaska, to avoid the press and publicity. But when local authorities discover she’s an artist and request her help in drawing a dying man’s memories, she unintentionally ends up in the limelight again—and back in the killer’s crosshairs.
The deathbed confessions of an Alaskan hunter have Murphy drawing the five bodies he discovered on remote Ruuwaq Island ten years ago. But what investigators find has them mystified. Evidence suggests that the bodies were deliberately destroyed, and what they uncover in an abandoned Quonset hut from World War II only brings more questions.
As one by one the investigators who were at the hut die, Murphy knows there is something much darker at stake. What happened on this island during the war? And who is willing to kill to keep its secrets buried?
“I love Carrie Stuart Parks’s skill in writing characters with hysterical humor, unwitting courage, and page-turning mystery. I hope my readers won’t abandon me completely when they learn about her!”
—Terri Blackstock, USA TODAY bestselling author of If I Run, If I’m Found, and If I Live
Carrie Stuart Parks is an award-winning, internationally known forensic artist. Over the past thirty-six years, she has worked on major criminal cases for such agencies as the FBI and ATF as well as numerous police and sheriff’s departments throughout the US. She is the author of over twenty books, both fiction and non-fiction.
Along with her artist-husband, Rick, a former visual information specialist for the FBI in Washington DC, they travel across the US and Canada teaching forensic art courses. They are the foremost instructor of forensic art in the world.
She has won numerous awards for career excellence. Carrie is a popular platform speaker, presenting a variety of topics from crime to creativity.
Animals have always been a large part of her life. Her parents, Ned and Evelyn Stuart, started Skeel Kennel Great Pyrenees in 1960. Carrie inherited the kennel and continues with her beloved dogs as both an AKC judge and former president of the Great Pyrenees Club of America. She lives on the same ranch she grew up on in Northern Idaho.