Book Tours: Guest Post for Fog City Strangler

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I’m hosting a guest post today for the tour for “Fog City Strangler” by Greg Messel. Enjoy the guest post, and I’ll leave the word to the author now.

Tis the Season

I live in Seattle, which is a beautiful, wonderful place to live. I live two blocks from the beach of the Puget Sound and I love to be outside enjoying it all.

However, we are now in the dead of winter and most days it’s rainy, blustery and cool. This is why cups of coffee are very important to Seattlelites. It’s that kind of vibe and that kind of weather. Put on your sweater, grab a good cup of coffee.

Maybe go cozy up to a good book or go see a movie–two other favorite past times of people who live in Seattle.

As the leaves turn in the fall and the rains move in, that’s when I get some serious writing done. I usually spend the summer contemplating and planning my next novel.

Then as the weather turns cool and rainy, I become immersed in the new world I’m creating in my new novel. This is my favorite part of the entire journey as an author.

Marketing not so much, but when I’m creating a new world and new characters it is a magical high. I can live in a time and place where I’ve never been.

The world which now exists in my mind is 1958 in San Francisco. As I research what life was like in that time and place,it’s amazing to realize how much the world has changed.

I did live in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1958 but I was eight years old.

I’m currently working on my new mystery novel “Shadows in the Fog” which is a sequel to my current book “Fog City Strangler.”

“Shadows in the Fog” will be the fifth novel in the Sam Slater Mystery series.

I’m about halfway through the first draft. I expect to spend the rest of the winter finishing it and polishing the story. I love that process, especially where the story starts evolving and starts writing itself.

I’ve heard writers describe the development of their book as somewhat “organic.”  I was always a little puzzled by that term in regards to writing but I have discovered what that means.

I start with a basic outline of where I thought I wanted to go with the story and characters. However, at some point you depart from the outline and the chapters are tumbling out. The story and characters are going places I did not imagine.

It is hard to describe how that happens to someone who is not a writer. I heard a story about a wood carver. He was asked by an admirer how he made these wonderful carvings. The wood carver simply explained, “I take a piece of wood and just start making some chips.”

I’m at the point where the chips are flying on my new novel. Ultimately, I hope it will be the best thing I’ve ever written. Next year, I hope it’s finds an audience and readers enjoy it.

However, for now, it’s that wonderful time when I’m promoting my new book “Fog City Strangler” and I’m in the process of writing my new novel, where, when the characters live only in my imagination. They are my private property for a few months this winter. Then they will become public and everyone will start giving their opinion of my story and the characters.

This process is what keeps urging me on to write on these rainy fall and winter days in Seattle. It’s magic.

Author Bio

Greg MesselGreg Messel grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and now lives in Edmonds, Washington on the Puget Sound with his wife, Carol.  Fog City Strangler is his seventh novel and is the fourth in a new series of Sam Slater mystery novels. Greg has lived in Oregon, Washington, California, Wyoming and Utah and has always loved writing, including stints as a reporter, columnist and news editor for a daily newspaper.

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About The Book

FogCityStrangler_3DGroupAs 1958 nears an end San Francisco is being terrorized by a man who calls himself the “Fog City Strangler,” who preys on pretty young blonde women.  The strangler announces each murder by sending a note and piece of cloth from the victim’s dresses to the local newspapers.

Private eye Sam Slater is worried that the Fog City Strangler may be eyeing his beautiful blonde wife, stewardess Amelia Ryan. Sam’s angst mounts as the strangler continues to claim more victims. His anxiety is further fueled when TWA launches an advertising campaign with Amelia’s picture on a series of billboards plastered all over the city. Sam fears the billboards may attract too much attention–the wrong kind of attention.

Meanwhile, Sam and Amelia are hired to try to find the missing daughter of a wealthy dowager who fears she has lost her only child. The missing woman went for a walk with her dog on Stinson Beach, near San Francisco, and seemingly vanished into thin air. The woman’s husband arrived at their beach house and found the dog running loose but there was no trace of his wife. The police are stumped in their investigation.

As Sam and Amelia look into the disappearance of the woman on the beach they discover that nothing is as it seems at first glance. On a stormy night a shadowy figure sets fire to the beach house where the couple is staying–hoping to stop their investigation.

Fog City Strangler is a stand-alone thriller but is part of the Sam Slater Mystery Series–Last of the Seals, Deadly Plunge and San Francisco Secrets.

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