2017 A to Z Challenge: F is for Fire Angel

2017 BadgeWelcome to day 6 of this years A to Z blog. If this is your first visit, nice to meet you, if you’ve been before, it’s always nice to have friends drop by. For the record. I think Mother Nature has completely gone off the deep end. After two days of rain, we have snow in the forecast again. I was sorely tempted to write about dartboard weather forecasts, but we hear more than enough about that from everyone around us.

FFor the letter F, I’ve decided to write about Fire Angel. When I first decided to become an author, I did so when I saw that Harlequin was looking for suspense stories. We all have things we would like to do but haven’t had the nerve to try (see my post for the letter B) but since I was no longer working and had plenty of time on my hands, I thought , why not? We had had a number of unexplained and as yet, almost six years later, still unsolved cases of arson in the area. While no human lives were taken, area farmers lost cattle, horses, and other animals all trapped inside the burning structures. The fires weren’t limited to barns, cars, and even empty houses burned to the ground. I kept wondering what kind of person would set fires for the ‘fun of it” like that, destroying people’s livelihoods if not taking their lives. That’s where the inspiration for Fire Angel came, but my villain has other issues.

Fire AngelI’m a huge fan of Criminal Minds and Motive, and both of those programs influence my writing style. In those shows, the viewer knows who the killer is, having seen him or her commit the act at the beginning of the story. The plot revolves around figuring out who it is, why they’ve done it, and stopping them before they can strike again. As they say on Criminal Minds, it’s time to give the profile.

Suspense is the state of waiting for something to happen.” – Alfred Hitchcock. In most mystery stories, whatever’s going to happen has, and the focus is on solving the crime.  JFK was assassinated. Find the assassin. In a suspense novel, nothing’s happened yet, but it’s a race against time. Terrorist have a dirty bomb and are planning to detonate it. You’ve got ten hours to find and stop them. My books are a combination of the two genres. Something bad has happened, something worse may, if we can’t find the perpetrator and stop him or her. The plot twists and turns, red herrings and dead ends, provide the suspense, and since I’m a sucker for “happily ever after” I toss a romance into the mix.  Unfortunately, my style doesn’t fit with Harlequin’s, and they didn’t offer me a contract, but Crimson Romance did.

Some of the readers of Fire Angel identify the arsonist from the clues given early in the story, others don’t. For some, I guess it spoils the story, but I’ve had very few reviewers see it that way. Up until last week, Fire Angel’s electronic version was with Amazon Encore. Since Crimson Romance has become an imprint of Simon and Schuster, Fire Angel has come home and is available on a number of different Internet vendor sites.  If you want to know more, you can find it and all of my books on my website. http://www.mhsusannematthews.ca/

Now, it’s time to visit more of the  A to Z Challenge Blog

11 thoughts on “2017 A to Z Challenge: F is for Fire Angel

  1. I laughed at ‘dart board weather forecasting’. At least the possibility of an inch of snow overnight did not materialize, but the general weather for the last 3 days has been awful. How is it that February was nicer than March and April so far?

    Thanks for explaining suspense within the mystery genre. And it must be quite the challenge to weave a convincing romance into the storyline and have it be an integral part of the whole.

    Phillip | F is for Found Poetry (and Fauxhio)

  2. Your books sound interesting; ironically we call my mother by the nickname of Angel! I love criminal minds, just got hooked on it on Netflix. I enjoy some of their abbreviations they use. I’ll check out your blog for the books

  3. You say “unfortunately” Harlequin didn’t want it, but sounds like it worked out well for you! Things happen for a reason.

    Except burning down barns. That doesn’t happen for any good reason.

  4. I really enjoyed your post on fiction writing and how you come to the idea in your books. I did participate in NaNoWriMo last year and have a draft to work over,( that I am procrastinating) your post helped me to figure out how to approach the dead ends I am facing.
    Thanks For Sharing
    Goal Of Art
    Best Wishes!

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