Physician, medical consultant, and author of medical mystery thrillers: Double Illusion, Wednesday's Child, Rabbit in the Moon (winner of Gold Medal, Florida Book Award; First prize Royal Palm Literary Award (Florida Writers Association),;Silver Medal, Mystery Book of the Year (ForeWord Magazine); Indie Excellence Award and National Best Books Award Finalist (USA Book News); Dead Air by Deborah Shlian and Linda Reid (winner 2010 Royal Palm Literary Award and Silver Medalist, Florida Publisher's Association's President Award) and Devil Wind by Deborah Shlian and Linda Reid (winner of best Audiobook Hollywood Book Festival, Next Generation Indie Next Award; First Place, 2011 Royal Palm Literary award
You are a medical doctor. The move from hard science to a creative pursuit such as writing fiction represents a significant shift. Share the background leading up to this decision and the ways this work shift has affected you on the personal level.
I was always interested in writing - even as a youngster. I wrote plays and poetry from grade school through high school including several musicals produced at summer camp. The recognition I received from teachers and classmates was certainly a great motivator. However, I also loved science and wanted to be a physician like my father. He told me that I could always be a writer after becoming a doctor, that there were many well-known writers who were also MDs. Unfortunately, medicine is a strict taskmaster, requiring one’s total attention and passion. So, while I wrote scientific articles and chapters in non-fiction medical texts while practicing medicine, it was only after I left full-time practice for administration that I found the time to write my first novel. All of the six novels I've written so far have medical themes.
Why mysteries like Wednesday’s Child and Double Illusion? What makes them so compelling for you to write?
The mystery genre requires a certain discipline in terms of how you tell your story i.e. how and when you reveal clues to solve whatever puzzle you’ve created for the reader and/or your characters to solve. At the same time, a good mystery should have interesting characters that are every bit as compelling as those you might find in a more “literary” novel.
Leigh Novak left behind a faithless husband to begin a new life with her young son Jeremy - as a family doctor in a small northern California town. But Hartwood held a bitter welcome for them both and a secrt only the children knew.