Author Interview with Donna Fletcher Crow

This latest author interview features Donna Fletcher Crow. Donna Fletcher Crow is the author of several works including the book I am currently reading, A Newly Crimsoned Reliquary. A Newly Crimsoned Reliquary is the fourth installment of ‘The Monastery Murders’ series. I selected this title from the Book Club Reading List. newly-crimsoned-reliquary (1)

When did you decide to become a writer?
I have written all my life. Before I could write I told myself stories. I was an only child living on a farm, so I had a lot of quiet time to fill. I became a professional writer when I wasn’t getting pregnant as we were hoping and I didn’t want to go back to teaching–English, of course. It took me 9 months to write my first book and then I got pregnant with our daughter.

How long does it take you to write a book?
That depends on the book. I can do 2 or 3 “normal” novels in a year, but an 800-page epic like Glastonbury took me 3 years to write.

How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
Forty-five. Whichever one I’m working on at the moment is my favorite, but I am best known for my Arthurian epic Glastonbury which covers 1500 years of English history from the birth of Christ to the reformation.

What are you working on at the minute? What’s it about?
We are in the final stages of publishing An All-Consuming Fire, book 5 in the Monastery Murders. I am holding my breath that it will be out before Christmas because this is a Christmas novel: A Christmas wedding in a monastery, what could be more romantic? And Felicity has never been happier, in spite of her over-bearing mother who wants to turn the whole event into a royal affair and Antony’s worries over the television series he is narrating on the English Mystics. Then Felicity takes on responsibility for directing an Epiphany pageant for Kirkthorpe’s wayward youth. At least, most of the vexing disruptions occurring on the filming locations are miles away from the Community of the Transfiguration. Until the threats move closer. Close enough to threaten Felicity’s life.

Will the murderer stalking the Yorkshire Moors shatter the joy of Felicity and Antony’s Christmas wedding?

What is the hardest thing about writing?
First drafts! I love research–sometimes I think I write just as an excuse to get to do the research, both the reading and the onsite work in England. I also enjoy rewriting. I know many writers hate this phase of the job, but I have always been fortunate in working with topnotch editors who have taught me so much about my craft.

What was the easiest thing about writing?
I wouldn’t say the research is easy, it can be slogging hard work and frustrating at times, but it’s still the most fun. There is also a great pay back time when the printed book arrives and you actually hold it in your hand for the first time.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
download (3)I can’t imagine not having some part of the process going on: planning, researching, writing, editing, promoting. . . it really is endless. But I do love to read, drink tea and garden. One thing that tops it all, though, is playing with my grandchildren!

What book/s are you reading at present?
I have followed the maxim to “write what you like to read” and I love reading English mysteries. The one I have going at the moment is Peter Lovesey’s Down Among the Dead Men, one of his Peter Diamond mysteries. I started reading Lovesey way back when his Inspector Cribb Victorian mysteries were on PBS Mystery! I got to meet Peter a couple of years ago at the St Hilda’s Crime Writers’ Conference in Oxford when I was researching A Newly Crimsoned Reliquary.

What is your favorite book and why?
janeaustenOh, that isn’t a fair question to ask someone who lives and breathes books! It’s easier to start with favorite writers. No problem there–Jane Austen right off the top. I’ve been a Janeite all my life. Persuasion is my favorite of her books. My own Elizabeth and Richard Mystery, A Jane Austen Encounter, follows the Jane Austen trail visiting each one of her homes.
My favorite crime writer is Dorothy L. Sayers. Busman’s Honeymoon might be my favorite of her titles, although The Nine Tailors is superb, too.

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