Author DiAnn Mills has had more than fifty books published, the first in 1998. Her novels spanning several genres of fiction have won numerous awards and been on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists. In addition to her talent as a writer, DiAnn gives of herself in mentoring, and I owe a great debt to her for both her input and support in my own writing journey.
DiAnn’s latest book, The Chase, is drawn from a real-life cold case, and is the first in the Crime Scene Houston series. She’s graciously consented to give us an insight into the writing of that book.
RM: DiAnn, welcome back to Random Jottings. The Chase seemed to me to have a lot more about FBI and police procedures in it than many similar books by other authors. What kind of research did you do for this one?
DM: Thanks for having me back! For The Chase, I teamed up with the media coordinator of Houston’s FBI to write from solved cold cases. What helped me the most was the her willingness to answer questions and provide information. And she read every word.
DM: I’m a mom, and in my pre-writing days I directed a day care. In short, I care about kids. The idea of a child starving to death is a horrible thought, but this child had no identity or link to the past.
RM: Did you feel any unusual constraints in developing your plot line in this one because of the basis on an actual case?
DM: The first section of the book, in which I massaged the case’s details, was tough. I cried a lot. Once I had that portion written, weaving a fictional story came much easier.
RM: I notice that the main characters of The Chase will be featured in your next book in the Crime Scene Houston series as well. Will that book also be based an actual case?
DM: Yes. The Survivor is about a twenty-three year old case that targeted a child who’d survived a brutal attack.
RM: The female protagonist in The Chase is a reporter turned author of women’s fiction who’s making the move to writing suspense. There’s a great deal of “inside” material that will speak to writers. Will Kariss Walker’s journey to publish in a different genre continue in your next book?
DM: Oh yes. Kariss found her corner of the market with her suspense novels. She has a fearless streak to ensure her research is accurate. Weave that with a Special Agent who’s known for his daredevil tactics, and you have a team who’s ready for whatever danger tosses their way.
RM: And, as I always ask, any last words for my readers?
DM: I love to hear from readers! Please connect with me on my Facebook “Like” page, Here, we have lots of fun, contests, weekly discussions, and an opportunity to get to know each other.