This Author Spotlight features award-winning author and criminologist Jennifer Chase.
Jennifer holds a bachelor degree in police forensics and a master’s in criminology. In addition, she holds certifications in serial crime and criminal profiling. She’s a member of the International Association of Forensic Criminologists.
Jennifer is an award-winning author, freelance writer, and a criminologist. She has authored four crime fiction, thriller novels: COMPULSION, DEAD GAME, SILENT PARTNER, and DARK MIND. She has authored a non-fiction book HOW TO WRITE A SCREENPLAY incorporating a step-by-step process to write a screenplay. She currently assists clients in publishing, ghostwriting, book reviews, blogs, articles, screenwriting, editing, and research.
Jennifer's novels can be seen below.
DARK MIND (see above), SILENT PARTNER
and HOW TO WRITE A SCREENPLAY.
1. How did you get into writing?
I’ve always had a love affair with books. Writing was a reward for me and I’ve taken on that challenge for as long as I can remember. Originally, my life took on a more business aspect into the corporate world, but writing was always calling to me. In 2008, I decided to take a serious look at writing crime fiction and I haven’t looked back.
2. What do you like best (or least) about writing?
I love the fact that story inspirations and ideas can come from anywhere and at any time. The novel possibilities are endless and drive me forward to produce books, along with a little bit of fear too. I find some of my most interesting ideas and characters when I’m relaxing, walking my dogs at the beach, or housecleaning.
3. What is your writing process? IE do you outline? Do you stick to a daily word or page count, write 7 days a week, etc?
I’m one of those annoying writers that must have an outline – more than just a basic couple of pages. It actually turns out to be a choppy first draft and it’s a way for me to see the overall story, pacing, subplots, and suspense level. I can tweak anything at any time, but it’s nice to have a roadmap before you begin any journey. I try to stick to writing a minimum of 2,000 words per day, except Sundays. Afternoons seem to be the most productive time for me, so I delegate mornings for my consulting and errands.
4. Who are some other writers you read and admire, regardless of whether they are commercially “successful?”
I love most thriller and mystery authors, whether they are mainstream or indie published. I admire the writing style and sometimes interestingly unique story lines of Dean Koontz. I would love to get a peek inside his head sometime and see what else I could learn about writing. He’s been one of my favorite authors for a long time along with Jeffrey Deaver, David Baldacci, John Grisham, and Tess Gerristsen. All of these writers have an incredible way of layering and developing in-depth characters and making you care about them.
5. Should the question mark in the above question be inside or outside the quotes?
Outside – but ask me again tomorrow and I might answer differently.
6. What’s your stance on the Oxford Comma?
I think I was at the same frat party with Ox when I was in college.
7. What is your book Dark Mind about and how did it come to fruition?
Dark Mind is part of the Emily Stone thriller series, but it can easily be a stand-alone novel.
A Serial Killer Plagues an Island Paradise…
Vigilante detective Emily Stone continues her covert pursuits to find serial killers and child abductors, all under the radar while shadowing police investigations.
Emily searches for an abducted nine-year-old girl taken by ruthless and enterprising slave brokers. Following the clues from California to the garden island of Kauai, she begins to piece together the evidence and ventures deep into the jungle.
It doesn’t take long before Emily is thrown into the middle of murder, mayhem, and conspiracy. Locals aren’t talking as a serial killer now stalks the island, taking women in a brutal frenzy of ancient superstitions and folklore. Local cops are unprepared for what lies ahead. In a race against the clock, Emily and her team must identify the killer before time runs out.
One of my trips to Kauai inspired this particular story a few years ago. I remember clearly, when I sat on a beautiful, deserted beach and I thought “what if”. I thought about what would happen if there were a serial killer on the loose and how the island would cope and even solve the case.
8. What’s your current writing project?
I’m in the process of outlining my next Emily Stone thriller called Dead Burn (working title). This particular serial killer is enticed by arson and the many ways to trap his victims in order to play out his twisted fantasies. I love the challenge of creating even higher stakes for my heroine to encounter and a cleverer, hideous killer to hunt down. Tentatively, it will be released in the fall of this year.
9. What book(s) are you currently reading?
I’m currently reading Under the Dome by Stephen King and A Slice of Carmel by Barbara Chamberlain. I also frequently find myself in non-fiction books for research, such as Criminal Profiling by Brent Turvey and The Psychopathic Mind by J. Reid Meloy.
Ah, yes, Under the Dome. Dark, realized, compelling, with great antagonists you despise. Vintage King. Okay, commercial concluded.
10. Who or what inspires your writing?
I’m inspired by everything around me, whether it’s in my yard, neighborhood, top news stories, or interesting people I meet along the way. The world is an inspiring place for writers.
Finally, is there anything you’d care to add? Please also include where people can read your published stories, buy your book, etc.
Thank you so much for having me here today!