I want to be a better writer. I want to learn and grow, to know how to tell stories in a different and more challenging way. I've learned it doesn't get easier each time. It actually gets harder.
If there is still an American dream, reading is one of the bootstraps by which we can all pull ourselves up.
A book I would take with me to a desert island is 'Paradise Lost,' which I studied in college and hated so much by the end of the class that I never wanted to see it again.
I'm going to name a name: Janet Evanovich. She writes the same book over and over, and I read every single one of them and eagerly anticipate them.
I've always been drawn to dark stories. I enjoy reading Flannery O'Connor, Patricia Highsmith, and Margaret Mitchell.
The most enduring stories in literature generally have some kind of crime at their center, whether it's the bloody butchery of 'Hamlet,' the lecherous misanthropes of Dickens or the lone gunman from 'The Great Gatsby.'
Crafting a piece of gripping, narrative true crime that engages the world is not that different from crafting a piece of crime fiction.
I love puns. I've been known to turn the car around just to take advantage of a good pun situation. It really is the highest form of humor.
I've always been drawn to historical fiction.
Prosecutors and public defenders deserve to make a living wage.
I think crime fiction is a great way to talk about social issues, whether 'To Kill A Mockingbird' or 'The Lovely Bones;' violence is a way to open up that information you want to get out to the reader.
My father and his eight siblings grew up in the kind of poverty that Americans don't like to talk about unless a natural disaster like Hurricane Katrina strikes, and then the conversation only lasts as long as the news cycle. His family squatted in shacks. The children scavenged for food.
Oh, I'm completely OCD about neatness.
No matter where you are on the political spectrum, libraries make sense. It's such a small investment. Every dollar supporting a library system returns five dollars to the community.
My dad believed in scaring us as we were growing up. Scaring the boys who wanted to date us more.
When you write as a woman, there's this feeling there's going to be a softness.
As a Southerner, I love obstacles for my characters.
Being a Southerner, I'm interested in sex, violence, religion and all the things that make life interesting.
Southerners have this love of embellishment. Even when you read a police report, there's some backstory.
When I was growing up, my stepmother's sister was the chief detective in one of the adjoining towns, so she piqued my interest in crime.