Saturday, July 18, 2015

Author Interview and Giveaway: The Jamie Quinn Mysteries by Barbara Venkataraman

The Jamie Quinn Mysteries
by Barbara Venkataraman

Hands down, The Jaime Quinn Mysteries are one of my favorite series to date!
~Back Porchervations

Death by Didgeridoo
(Jamie Quinn Mystery Book 1)

Self Published
Print Length: 111 pages

Reluctant lawyer, Jamie Quinn, still reeling from the death of her mother, is pulled into a game of deception, jealousy, and vengeance when her cousin, Adam, is wrongfully accused of murder. It’s up to Jamie to find the real murderer before it’s too late. It doesn’t help that the victim is a former rock star with more enemies than friends, or that Adam confessed to a murder he didn’t commit.


The Case of the Killer Divorce
(Jamie Quinn Mystery Book 2)

Self Published
Print Length: 109 pages

Reluctant lawyer, Jamie Quinn, has returned to her family law practice after a hiatus due to the death of her mother. It’s business as usual until a bitter divorce case turns into a murder investigation, and Jamie’s client becomes the prime suspect. When she can’t untangle truth from lies, Jamie enlists the help of Duke Broussard, her favorite private investigator, to try to clear her client’s name. And she’s hoping that, in his spare time, he can help her find her long-lost father…


Peril in the Park
(Jamie Quinn Mystery Book 3)

Self Published
Print Length: 140 pages

There’s big trouble in the park system. Someone is making life difficult for Jamie Quinn’s boyfriend, Kip Simons, the new director of Broward County parks. Was it the angry supervisor passed over for promotion? The disgruntled employee Kip recently fired? Or someone with a bigger ax to grind? If Jamie can’t figure it out soon, she may be looking for a new boyfriend because there’s a dead guy in the park and Kip has gone missing! With the help of her favorite P.I., Duke Broussard, Jamie must race the clock to find Kip before it’s too late.


Jamie Quinn Mystery Collection: Box Set Books 1-3
Print Length: 338 pages

Birdhouse Books Interviews Barbara Venkataraman 
Birdhouse: When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?

Barbara: Good question! I never really made the decision, I just started writing when I was in the second grade. I wrote a bad poem about a duck (but it was probably pretty good for a second-grader) and, luckily, it was lost a long time ago, along with my Popsicle stick art. In college, I was an English Lit major and was thrilled to discover that I could earn a degree by analyzing novels. I would've done it anyway. As an adult, I've written legal manuals for laypeople and loads of articles for newsletters, not to mention legal pleadings, appellate briefs, and memoranda of law--I forgot to mention that I'm a lawyer--but none of that is as much fun as writing a cozy mystery series.
Birdhouse: What was your favorite book as a child?
Barbara: I would have to say "The Chronicles of Narnia". The thought of going through the wardrobe and finding yourself in another world fascinated me. Being one of four kids, I could relate to the sibling rivalry, but I loved the magic, the betrayal, the alliances, and the misdirection. The simultaneous stories and the two worlds ultimately colliding made it my favorite series.
Birdhouse: What is your writing day like?  Do you have any interesting writing quirks?
Barbara: My writing days are always different, there's nothing typical about them. I'm still a practicing attorney, but I'm fortunate to have a practice that allows me to work from home most days. That means I will have several documents up on my computer screen at once: one or two for work, and the current chapter of my book. I like to toggle back and forth, sometimes rewarding myself with some fun writing after finishing something for work. As soon as I finish a chapter, I re-read it on a different device (which somehow changes my perspective) and then I e-mail it to my "reader girls", eight women who send me their thoughts and corrections. Three of them are my sisters, but that doesn't stop them from being honest with me. Ouch!
I have plenty of quirks, and some of them even involve my writing! When I get stuck in my writing process, I write down questions that need to be answered or I do research for a later chapter. I have occasionally written chapters out of order when I'm really stuck, but the thing that helps me the most is being in water. I can't explain it, but a relaxing bubble bath or a dip in the pool makes me more creative than anything else. I do enjoy a glass of wine (or a frozen Margarita, pass the salt, please), but it's not conducive to writing.
Birdhouse: What was the most surprising thing you learned while creating this book?
Barbara: That my characters have a mind of their own! I have a loose plan for where each chapter is going, but sometimes my characters decide that we're not going to follow the plan. It never ceases to amaze me. The biggest surprise was with my first book, "Death by Didgeridoo", when the murderer turned out to be somebody else!
Birdhouse: Who are your favorite authors?
Barbara: I love humor writers like Dave Barry, Carl Hiaasen, Erma Bombeck, and Mary Roach. I love science fiction and fantasy and, of course, mysteries. I could read the Harry Potter series over and over. When I was growing up, I was a big fan of Kurt Vonnegut. Having read everything I could get my hands on, and I'd never seen anything like Vonnegut before--his humor, his conversational tone, his brilliance, and his willingness to do the unexpected, to break free from the pre-set genres that came before. Reading Vonnegut was life-changing.

Birdhouse: What is your next writing project?
Barbara: I am currently writing the fourth book in my Jamie Quinn Cozy Mystery Series. It's called, "Engaged in Danger" and features all the same fun characters, plus a few new ones. There's lots going on! It will be out July 1, 2015. After that, who knows?

About the Author
barbara new pic
Award-winning author, Barbara Venkataraman is an attorney and mediator specializing in family law and debt collection.

She is the author of “Teatime with Mrs. Grammar Person”; “The Fight for Magicallus,” a children’s fantasy; a humorous short story entitled, “If You’d Just Listened to Me in the First Place”; and two books of humorous essays: “I’m Not Talking about You, Of Course” and “A Trip to the Hardware Store & Other Calamities,” which are part of the “Quirky Essays for Quirky People” series. Both books of humorous essays won the “Indie Book of the Day” award.

Her latest works are “Death by Didgeridoo,” first in the Jamie Quinn series, “The Case of the Killer Divorce,” the second Jamie Quinn mystery, and, just out, “Peril in the Park,” the latest in the popular Jamie Quinn series. Coming soon, “Engaged in Danger”–the next Jamie Quinn mystery!
Author Links

Win a choice of e-book or audio for the 3 book collection -
  a Rafflecopter giveaway


Peggy said...

These books sound wonderful. Thank you for the opportunity to enter and have a chance to win this awesome prize!!

dlhaley said...

These books sounds very interesting. Thanks for the chance to win.

BJM said...

I'd love to win this series. It is fun to meet a new set of characters.

Rachelle Anderson said...

I love a good mystery! Thanks for the giveaway.

Melissa B. said...

I would have to share this with my mom. She's really into mysteries right now.

Darlene said...

i love to read any books but these sound especially good.

Anonymous said...

I love to read, and I love mysteries . . . and I am a birder! thanks for the chance to win.

Emi Pearce said...

I would prefer the audiobook to the ebook, thanks!

C said...

Love good mysteries! Thanks for the chance!!!!

Sand said...

I've got my mom hooked on audiobooks!