Hello, everyone. Please welcome my Maine friend, Jule Selbo, here for a return visit. Jule’s mystery novel, 9 DAYS, A Dee Rommel Mystery (second in the series), has its official release September 28, 2022. You can comment at the end of the post to be entered to win a copy of this terrific book.
Take it away, Jule!
A Perfect Situation
Thanks to Barbara Ross and the Wickeds for inviting me to post about it and to offer a BOOK GIVEAWAY! (Read on for how to enter.)
When I started the Dee Rommel series, I soon realized I’d set up two perfect situations for myself. The first: a reason to do deep research dives. I can get giddy when I head to my libraries in Portland or Falmouth or my favorites in Lincoln County – Gibbs and Skidompha – or one of the most welcoming – Waldoboro Library in Knox County (near a funky camp I’m doing my best to make comfy) to check the online catalog for books and magazines on a certain subject and then browse through them for nuggets of insight. I can also lose myself in Internet searches (doing my best to ignore the demon ads for gummies that will make anyone skinny). I watch YouTubes. I call offices and/or people to see if they’ll share information. (Most will.) I take people with certain expertise out for coffee or wine (one source allows me to pick his brain regularly if I buy him a glass of whiskey at Ironsides Bar in Portland’s Hotel Regency).
In 10 Days (released September 2021) my research focused on artificial intelligence, artificial limbs, MDMA (club drugs), privacy issues (what we give up for convenience sake), and the variances of high and low crimes. In 9 Days, my research was aimed at the pros and cons of inherited wealth, small pistols, melting silver, Portland’s West End, astrology – its history, its heyday, its falling out of favor and who embraces its tenets and why.
The second reason I’m in writer’s nirvana: I love long character arcs. In Dee’s case, I get to “live with” a character with flaws, strengths, and a strong ego dotted with insecurities. She needs to grow and change, and I have ten books to explore that. My admiration may have started with Nancy Drew and Sherlock Holmes and then continued with Perry Mason (Gardner) Julia Snowden (Ross),Mickey Haller (Connelly), Kinsey Malone (Grafton) V.I. Warshawski (Parestsky), Mac Almeida (Maxwell/Day), Jack Bowditch (Doiron), John Byron (Coffin) and countless others. My interest probably magnified during my time as a television writer – plotting arcs for characters on Flash, Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, Melrose Place and more. If it’s a choice between a stand-alone and a series – I’m series all the way.
10 Days has two “A” crime stories that Dee Rommel juggles in the ten-day time frame. In one, the antagonists are skilled, manipulative and greedy. In the other, the antagonists are heartless and immoral. These, and the “B” (supporting) stories, help reveal Dee’s need for justice and her very wobbly belief in goodness and love. In 9 Days, the antagonists are rich and entitled; Dee compares herself and her beliefs to theirs, puts her trust in the wrong people and faces the consequences.
I’m working on 8 Days now, deep into research on tracking devices, trafficking rings, and how history repeats itself. The antagonists have built a long history of successful criminal activity using inhuman actions. Dee (so far) is avoiding becoming viscerally and emotionally connected – but the fallout of witnessing this particular injustice remains to be discovered.
My plan is to write ten books: 10 Days, 9 Days 8 Days 7 Days… (you get the idea:J). So, I’ve got lots of library time ahead, a lot of people to interview, a lot of Internet searching to do and lots of intricate character arc-ing to explore!
Thanks again, Wickeds!
Readers: Who is your favorite main character in a crime/mystery series and why? Answer below or just say, “Hi” to be entered to win a copy of 9 Days.
*Giveaway perimeters: 9 DAYS, A Dee Rommel Mystery. Paperback (USA only), Kindle (open to all). Deadline for entry: October 5, 2022.
About 9 Days
A powerful family will stop at nothing to protect its secrets…
Famous astrologist Agnes Sants-Mekler, a member of one of Maine’s elite families, pleads guilty to murder. Her gifted, pre-teen son, Zar, says she’s lying and he wants Dee Rommel to prove that – in nine days.
Former policewoman Dee Rommel, not yet thirty, is dealing with a permanent, life-changing injury sustained while part of Portland’s police force. Her medical leave is up; she’s made a contested decision to delay her return to the department and continue working with her godfather, PI Gordy Greer. Dee discovers the police are content with Agnes Sants-Melker’s confession, but her intense curiosity – and need for justice – compels her to dig deeper to find the truth. As she sifts through the evidence, misdirections, and deceptions she finds that trusting the wrong person is unraveling a more devious plot – and leading to a life-threatening confrontation.
9 Days is the thrilling second installment in the award-winning Dee Rommel Mystery series
Jule Selbo spent a few decades working as a produced screenwriter in Los Angeles and then moved, four years ago, to Portland, Maine to focus on writing in her favorite genre (crime/mystery). 10 Days: A Dee Rommel Mystery was listed on the 2021 top-five list of Kirkus’ best crime/mysteries, nominated for a Clue Award, a Maine Literary Award, and received a Foreword Review Honorable Mention and a nomination for the Silver Falchion Award. 9 Days, A Dee Rommel Mystery is the next book in the ten-part series. https://www.juleselbo.com,