Interview with Twist Ranger

What are you working on next?
I'm working on the first in a series of Redwood County medical mystery novels. My protagonist Dr. Fiona Tyler is an Emergency Department physician with an unusual problem. A shaman who thinks Fiona is his soul-bride is proving his love for her by dropping deranged, drugged, and dead people in her Redwood County hospital. Redwood County is a beautiful place with a high weird to rational ratio but this is beyond quirky.
What is your writing process?
My writing process is similar to my housecleaning process and my painting process and my gardening process. I can sum it up as "spurts and lags." I'll tend to do a great deal of work at once and then little to nothing for a period of time. I can chip away at some projects a little bit at a time, then finish in a great flurry. Over time, I've given up worrying about it. It all comes together in the end.
How do you approach cover design?
I'm working with a cover artist. Because these Redwood County medical mystery novels are a series, I wanted a consistent design that would brand the series. We're considering using images from my own original art as a part of the covers. I have an encaustic (hot wax) painting of the shaman in VENOM.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I'm working on Book Two in the Dr. Fiona Tyler Redwood County medical mystery series. “Sickest quickest” is the mantra. The Saturday night in question, sickest includes the loopy patient playing with the entrails spilling out of his belly. Most people wouldn’t be quite so happy about crocheting their intestines into doilies. The worst part is the police say this patient is one of series of assaults with evisceration, the rest of whom are dead. Who is spilling the guts in Redwood County? The police nominate Fiona’s boyfriend, who is confined in the state facility for mentally disordered forensic offenders at Atascadero.
Describe your desk
My desk is cluttered. I subscribe to the geological stratum theory of file management: if I've used something recently, it'll be on the top of the pile where I need it. If I haven't looked for it for several days, it's gotten buried, which is fine.

I also have an empty cardboard box for the cat, and a small cedar wood box with the ashes of my dead dog. They were best buddies. For some reason it's important to me that no papers or objects touch the cedar wood box, so there's a clear perimeter around it.

The desk also boasts paper calendars from current and prior years, some carved wood letter openers from Madagascar, a brass crane standing on a turtle from China, miscellaneous recipe printouts that sounded good at the time, a jar of pliers and screwdrivers, a broken ceramic art piece that fell off the window when the tree hit the roof, five or more obsolete computer peripherals, and a dead printer that succumbed to a power surge. The working computer monitor and keyboard, of course, and the requisite stuffed jar of pens only two of which are functional.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I'm a writer, artist, traveler -- I love to Go See. I go to France frequently, also Italy and Spain. I've been to Africa three times. All of my experiences play into my writing and art.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read primarily historical fiction for pleasure, such as Diana Gabaldon, Patrick O'Brien, Sharan Newman, Margaret Frazer, Lindsay Davis, Ellis Peters, Elizabeth Peters.

With these writers as inspiration I'm chipping away at a historical novel set in the time of the Spanish Inquisition and the first voyage of Christopher Columbus. The protagonist is Heironymous Bosch, a major artist of the northern Renaissance who created demons, hell-scapes and pre-surrealist paintings.

Writing and art are always intertwined for me.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I have an android tablet with a very tattered leather cover that's great for travel.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I think one of the greatest joys of writing is solving problems. Nice, fictional problems, that are occasionally susceptible to reason and logic, unlike messy real life problems that just seem to bounce around in a pinball machine of doubt, missteps, and confusion. There's a plot! Life never seems to have a plot.
Published 2016-02-02.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

The Garden of Earthly Delights
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 61,340. Language: English. Published: March 30, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Historical » Renaissance
"It's your turn to steal the horse," Dona Teresa says. Heironymous Bosch, a major artist of the northern Renaissance who created demons, hell-scapes and pre-surrealist paintings, is fleeing Seville one step ahead of the Inquisition after Teresa inadvertently poisons a servant in the royal household with an innocent medicine Bosch altered to get the right bilious green color for a painting.
Laying Down The Law
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 52,190. Language: English. Published: March 30, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths
Liberty Mellers Perkins is a Southern rural champion of justice. She got her law degree with the aid of a drip-dry lawyer suit, but gave up business drag for t-shirt and jeans when she set up legal practice in her hometown of Lulu, in Watermelon County Florida. Her redneck clients are prone to sinking fits, gossip, secrets, and bourbon whiskey. So is Lib.
Karma
Series: Redwood County Medical Mysteries. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 54,300. Language: English. Published: March 31, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths
“Sickest quickest” is Dr. Fiona Tyler’s mantra. Fiona is the Emergency Department chief at rural Redwood County hospital. This Saturday night, sickest includes the loopy patient playing with the entrails spilling out of his belly. Most people wouldn’t be quite so happy about crocheting their intestines into doilies. Who is spilling the guts in Redwood County?
Venom
Series: Redwood County Medical Mysteries. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 68,080. Language: English. Published: March 30, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Women Sleuths
Book One in the Redwood County medical mystery series. Dr. Fiona Tyler has a problem with diagnosis. Were these patients poisoned? Is it international terrorism? The nucleus of a statewide epidemic? A shaman who thinks Fiona is his soul-bride is proving his love for her. Redwood County is a beautiful place with a high weird to rational ratio but this is beyond quirky.