Interview with C. A. Newsome

When did you first start writing?
I've always been a voracious reader. When I worked the 2010 Census, one of the enumerators told me he had written a novel. I was hungry for something new, so I asked to read it. He was an excellent writer, but I noted some issues with the book that would make it unsuitable for the popular market he was aiming for. He asked me to help him edit the book.

That began two of the most frustrating months of my life. We would meet, I would tell him my thoughts, he would be very appreciative. Then I would read his revisions and they would be the exact opposite of what I'd said was needed. He kept saying he needed to cut pages in order to sell the book, but he kept adding more. I told him that I was probably not the best editor for him, but he wanted me to continue. And then it would start all over again.

I wound up so angry, I wanted to kill him. So I picked up a pen and an old newsprint drawing tablet, and did it on paper. Four months later, I had the first draft of "A Shot in the Bark."
What's the story behind your latest book?
My Dog Park Mysteries are based on my many years of daily dog park visits. "Maximum Security" was inspired by my eldest fur-baby, Max. She's an escape artist, and she frequently brings back souvenirs from her jaunts. Ever since I started writing, I knew there would be a book with Max as a main character.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I never considered writing before indie publishing became viable. I always thought pursuing the traditional publishing route was like buying a ticket to an Eric Clapton concert, and seriously believing he might ask you to marry him.

I love having total creative control. I love cutting out the middle man. I love the immediacy of digital publishing.
What do your fans mean to you?
Fans are everything. They're the ones who make it possible for me to write full time. They keep me motivated. I love knowing when I've brought a bit of pleasure into someone's life. Fans let me know that I've done my job.
What are you working on next?
"Sneak Thief" features a kleptomaniac Beagle owned by a woman with a stalker. Of course there are other complications that pull in the dog park crowd.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I paint. I do the dog portraits on my covers. I polish flutes for a friend who overhauls them. And I visit the dog park.
What is your writing process?
I'll get inspired by a premise, then I figure how the crime happened. After that, I decide how my regular cast of characters fits in and I start writing. At that point, it's a matter of how they react to the situation. I set a weekly word goal. I try to write every day when I have a book going. That's not always possible, but if I meet my weekly goal, I'm satisfied.

After the first draft, I set it down for a few weeks. After the second draft, it goes to beta readers. After the beta readers comes several rounds of proofing and editing through a variety of methods. The final round goes to a retired English teacher with an eagle eye and a wicked pen.
Published 2014-02-04.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

A Shot in the Bark - Extended Edition
Series: Lia Anderson Dog Park Mysteries, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 70,240. Language: English. Published: December 28, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Cozy, Fiction » Mystery & detective » Amateur sleuth
(4.00 from 2 reviews)
A grieving artist, a smitten detective, a devious killer: You never know who you'll meet at the dog park. Detective Peter Dourson adopts a dead man's dog to find a killer concealed in the tight-knit group at Mount Airy Dog Park, not expecting to fall in love with the victim's girlfriend.
Fur Boys
Series: Lia Anderson Dog Park Mysteries, Book 6. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 76,600. Language: English. Published: June 22, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Cozy, Fiction » Mystery & detective » Amateur sleuth
Lia’s mural commission at a music school places her at the center of the drama when a Machiavellian voice professor is murdered, drama heightened by the theatrical tendencies of the suspects and complicated by the professor’s will. With Peter hamstrung by departmental politics and the assigned detectives barking up the wrong tree, it will take Lia and the dog park gang to unravel the truth.
Muddy Mouth: A Dog Park Mystery
Series: Lia Anderson Dog Park Mysteries, Book 5. Price: $4.49 USD. Words: 64,110. Language: English. Published: March 1, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Cozy, Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths
While the dog park gang prepares for Northside's famously eccentric Fourth of July parade, starving artist Lia Anderson is building a float commemorating two new books by local best-selling author Lucas Cross. When Lucas disappears at a book convention, Lia is the only one the women managing his career trust to discover the truth while protecting a secret no one suspects they have.
Sneak Thief (A Dog Park Mystery)
Series: Lia Anderson Dog Park Mysteries, Book 4. Price: $4.49 USD. Words: 82,470. Language: English. Published: May 13, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Cozy, Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths
Lia's new friend Desiree has a secret admirer who leaves her tiny aluminum foil sculptures. When Desiree is murdered, Lia not only winds up with the woman's kleptomaniac beagle, she also inherits Desiree’s stalker. On the outs with Peter and with the police on the wrong track, Lia will have to rely on her wits and her friends if she wants to stay alive.
Drool Baby (A Dog Park Mystery)
Series: Lia Anderson Dog Park Mysteries, Book 2. Price: $4.49 USD. Words: 77,550. Language: English. Published: January 22, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths, Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
(5.00 from 1 review)
Artist Lia Anderson is emerging from the trauma of the previous months with a new boyfriend, a new patron with an exciting project, and a new therapist to help her sort everything out. Life at the Mt. Airy Dog Park is returning to normal, and that suits Lia just fine. Then a stranger arrives with a message, starting her down a path that will ultimately have her fighting for her life.
The Kiss: An Anthology About Love and Other Close Encounters
Price: Free! Words: 129,620. Language: English. Published: January 15, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - multi-author, Fiction » Anthologies » General
A kiss is a simple communication. It can also be an exchange, a betrayal, an assault, a promise, a hope...or it could be a goodbye. The intimacy of a kiss cannot be denied. Whether shared, stolen or simply dreamed of, its recipient will be affected. Thirty-one stories by authors from around the world will tease your imagination as you anticipate ‘The Kiss’ in each weird or wonderful tale.
Maximum Security (A Dog Park Mystery)
Series: Lia Anderson Dog Park Mysteries, Book 3. Price: $4.49 USD. Words: 70,460. Language: English. Published: November 25, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths, Fiction » Mystery & detective » General
Lia Anderson's escape-artist foster dog shows up with a human femur, sending her detective beau on a hunt that ends with the arrest of the dead man’s high school sweetheart. Lia shouldn’t have skin in this game, but she helped Peter apprehend Kitty and now she feels responsible. When Lia's best patron takes up the woman's cause, the pressure is on for the dog park gang to uncover the truth.