Jessie: Chained to the desk feeling envious of all those at Left Coast Crime!
I’ve gotten to know Alyssa over the last couple of years as a member of the Sleuths in Time group on Facebook where she does much of the heavy lifting. Alyssa writes books that are such fun to read and I am delighted she could join us here today! She has offered the chance to win an Advance Readers Copy of Murder at Crossways to one commenter who resides in the US!
KellyL you are the winner of the giveaway! Jessie will contact you to arrange for the delivery of the prize!
Hi Wickeds! Thanks for having me here today!
As long as I have your ear, I have a confession to make, and I’m hoping you and your readers can keep a secret, because I wouldn’t want this to get out. But here it is: I never fully grew up. Yup, it’s the truth. Specifically, I never outgrew playing “pretend.” Or daydreaming, for that matter. And I suspect this is what led me to be a writer, because I can live in my daydreams and not be criticized for it because . . .
Hey, I’m working!
Who didn’t hear, “Stop that daydreaming,” when they were young, especially in school? I did it all the time, except – and this is true – during writing time. Then, suddenly, I was the most focused kid in the class. But can we talk about the guilt that went along with fazing out (phasing out?) during, say, math? Because if we were caught daydreaming, we were led to believe we were doing something wrong, something BAD, something that didn’t accomplish anything when our attention should have been focused on boring old numbers – there, I said it! Numbers bored me. Words thrilled me!
And let me tell you, it didn’t matter how much attention I paid to my math lessons, I was NEVER going to become a mathematician. But I DID become a writer, and I’ve learned that daydreaming CAN be productive, if you channel it for the right (write?) purpose. So it’s a very good thing for me and other writers that we continued (albeit secretly) to allow those scenes to unfold in our minds while outwardly pretending to pay attention to, well, whatever it was we were supposed to be paying attention to.
So what’s my favorite game of pretend? Why, “olden days,” of course. For as long as I can remember, the past has fascinated me – all of it. The clothes, the modes of transportation, the manners, and even the challenges (except the lack of modern plumbing, of course). I’m all too happy to turn off the present and retreat into my imaginary worlds of Gilded Age Newport or post WWI England. So, whether it’s collecting antiques that put me in the mindset of life a hundred or more years ago, attending our local Renaissance fair in costume, or sitting down to write every day and being immersed in the past, I’m delighted to do it—guilt free!
Readers: Did you discover a talent or a predisposition in your youth, and did you follow through with it as an adult? If not, do you wish you had?
Alyssa Maxwell knew from an early age that she wanted to be a fiction author. Growing up in New England and traveling to Great Britain fueled a passion for history, while a love of puzzles drew her to the mystery genre. She is the author of The Gilded Newport Mysteries and A Lady and Lady’s Maid Mysteries. She and her husband reside in Florida. You can visit Alyssa at http://www.alyssamaxwell.com