October 28, 2016

Nancy Parra/Nancy Coco - Cozy Mystery Author Spotlight and Interview

I am going to be hosting a number of cozy mystery authors on my blog for the next two months. If you have not had the pleasure of enjoying a cozy mystery I encourage you to do so. The cozy mystery industry as a whole is in danger of being lost as the publishers are ending a number of series. Please note that not all series I will be sharing are in danger. There are many that will be continuting on as normal. I just wanted to do my part to make everyone aware of this genre as a whole. 

Today I will be showcasing Nancy Parra/Nancy Coco

About this author:
Nancy J Parra AKA Nancy Coco is the author of over 20 published novels which include three mystery series: The Gluten-free Baker’s Treat Mysteries (Berkley Prime Crime), The Candy Coated Mysteries (Kensington), and The Perfect Proposal Mysteries (Berkley Prime Crime). Her writing has been called witty and her protagonists plucky by reviewers around the world. Nancy is a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America and writes for the Killer Character Blog on the 8th of every month. Nancy loves to hear from readers.

Where to follow this author:

When did your love of writing begin? 
I started writing stories in 5th grade, but didn't write my first full novel until I was 20- 17 novels later I sold my first book just as I was turning 40. I've sold 24 books since then.

What made you chose this genre? 
I started out writing romance, but the books always had a mystery theme. I went back to school to get my Masters and decided to study the mystery genre. The rest is history.

Do you have a scheduled writing time, place and/or routine? 
I set goals of 5 or 10 pages a day depending on how close I am to deadline. So I don't go to bed until that's done- hopefully it's done in the morning but some days get away from me and it's done in the evening.

What do you do to get over writer's block?
I write badly- lol- I don't have writer's block. I sit down and write daily- some days I allow myself to write badly-I can always go back and fix it later. The secret is to always write.

What was it like to get y our first publishing contract? 
Amazing! I danced around for days- but the closer it got to publishing the more afraid I got- being published is sort of like walking naked through Walmart- it's very hard to show something so personal to the world and let the world judge it. But it is totally worth it! :D

How has the publishing/writing world changed since you first started writing? 
Everything is so different now. There are more voices heard-that's a good thing. There are more ways to publish-also good. 

You write about strong female characters. Are they modeled after anyone? 
I would have to say all the strong, beautiful women I've met over the years. There are so many wonderful role models around us of every day women building families and friendships and following their dreams. 

When you are not writing what do you like to do? 
I like to bake! I make up almost all of the recipes in my books. It's creative and messy and fun. It's also immediate. No waiting two years for the finished product.

Do you have any advice for beginning authors? 
There's a funny saying- What to tell new authors- -quit while they are still happy! lol. I say keep writing as long as it makes you happy. Life is too short not to be happy.

Do you have a favorite author or book you would like to recommend to your readers? 
 There are too many wonderful authors to name just one. I do go back and reread Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House series. It's so different reading them as an adult. 

Please tell us five random things about yourself
1) I hate lima beans
2) I love and cherish all four seasons.
3) I once lived on Guam- there is only two seasons there- wet and dry and even in the dry season it rains somewhere on the island every day.
4) I've discarded nearly as many books/manuscripts as I've published.
5) I collect cookie jars

Nancy's new book coming out in 2017

What did I learn about this author:
Nancy has a goal of writing 5-10 pages a day. Like me she is a fan of Laura Ingalls Wilder and likes to re-read her books. She has lived in Guam. She did not sell her first book until she was 40. What did  you learn about Nancy?

Stay tuned for the next author!


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