FEATURED AUTHOR: MARC JEDEL
ABOUT THE BOOK
When a camping trip uncovers a murder, this amateur sleuth is stuck putting out the fire . . .
Marty Golden enjoys time with his nieces, but he wanted to spend the weekend with his new girlfriend — not chaperone a Girl Scout camping trip. Once he stumbles upon the corpse of a friend in the woods, the outdoors adventure becomes an open-air disaster. When the police label it an accidental death, the meticulous Marty vows to investigate the murder. After all, it’s poor manners to let your friend’s death go unsolved.
On the hunt for clues the cops ignored, Marty uncovers a disturbing connection to himself. And as he digs deeper, a misbehaving pup, a kooky cousin, and a maniacal ninja put his survival skills to the test.
Will Marty unravel the mystery before the killer, or his imagination, gets to him?
Chutes and Ladder is the side-splitting second novel in the Silicon Valley cozy mystery series. If you like quirky sleuths, wacky side characters, and laugh-out-loud moments, you’ll love this offbeat whodunit.
Buy Chutes and Ladder to decode a great mystery today!
Title: Chutes and Ladder: A Silicon Valley Mystery
Author’s name: Marc Jedel
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Series: A Silicon Valley Mystery series, book 2
Publisher: BGM Press (March 12, 2019)
Print length: 213 pages
LOVE IT OR LEAVE IT WITH MARC JEDEL
Easiest thing about being a writer: Working from a detailed outline. I don’t have to try to remember who dies, or whodunit, or why. And believe me, without an outline, I get confused partway through. (I’ve tried.) With an outline, I can focus on crisp writing and coming up with funny situations/anecdotes to throw in there. This also means less editing, and I can hang on to what little sanity remains.
Hardest thing about being a writer: For me, it’s figuring out the details of the plot in advance. I’m definitely an outliner. Other authors are ‘pantsers.’ While I wear pants about as often as the next author, I definitely can’t write without an outline. I like to have all the main parts of the novel pretty much settled before I start writing.
Things you love about where you live: Like my protagonist, Marty, I live in Silicon Valley. What I like best about living here includes the weather; the rich, diverse culture which also brings great food along with it; and lots of things to do from kayaking and hiking to museums and plays.
Things that make you want to move: What I like least is the traffic, the high cost of living, and did I mention the traffic?
Things you never want to run out of: Cheese.
Things you wish you’d never bought: Percussion instruments for my kids. No wait, that was my sister who bought a drum set for my kids. So the thing I bought that I wish I hadn’t would be a record player for my son. Do you know how hard it is to transport albums and a record player across country to college? Why can’t he listen to Spotify like everyone else?
Words that describe you: I’d say ‘persistent.’ I hate to give up when one more attempt might solve the problem. That’s usually a sign of a good engineer. Or detective!
Words that describe you but you wish they didn’t: Others have called me ‘aggressive’ or ‘obsessive.’ Yet, one of my favorite bosses once told me that often a person’s biggest strengths are also their greatest weaknesses. So, I’ll stick with ‘persistent;’ it’s more positive.
Favorite music or song: If I’m just listening, I like rock and classic rock. When I’m writing, I need to have instrumental music in the background. It drowns out the noise of my brain scurrying around to look for good sentences. Whenever I listen to music with lyrics while writing, I find that I end up writing down the lyrics. Sometimes I think this works out pretty well, and when my editor agrees, they stay in the book. Chutes and Ladder has a variety of song lyrics woven into the dialogue so pay attention when you read!
Music that make your ears bleed: I hate loud, thumping music. I’d tell you what kind that is, but I never stop on those stations long enough to figure it out. Just enough to know it’s not for me.
Favorite smell: I like the smell of Italian food, Mexican food, Indian food, Chinese food . . . I guess you could say I pretty much like the smell of food .
Something that makes you hold your nose: I recently discovered that I hate the smell of boiling bones. Don’t ask me how I know this.
Things you always put in your books: Humor, goofy side characters, mostly realistic decisions made by characters.
Things you never put in your books: I write clean cozy mysteries where violence or sex takes place off the page, if at all — mostly because writing violent scenes when it’s dark outside would probably frighten me and writing sex scenes would frighten my family and friends.
Things to say to an author: “I liked your book.” Or “I think you could have done xxx better.” Or just about anything, good or bad. Most authors love to get emails or social media comments from their readers. The connection to actual readers is awesome. Public service announcement: contact an author today.
Things to say to an author if you want to be fictionally killed off in their next book: “I don’t read.” Or “Are you into writing because of the money?” Or “I have this great idea for how someone could be killed off in your next book.”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
For most of Marc’s life, he’s been inventing stories. Some, especially when he was young, involved his sister as the villain. As his sister’s brother for her entire life, he feels highly qualified to tell tales of the evolving, quirky sibling relationship in the Silicon Valley Mystery series.
The publication of Marc’s first novel, Uncle and Ants, gave him permission to claim “author” as his job. This leads to much more interesting conversations than answering, “marketing.”
Family and friends would tell you that the protagonist in his stories, Marty Golden, isn't much of a stretch of the imagination for Marc, but he accepts that.
Like Marty, Marc lives in Silicon Valley where he can’t believe that normal people would willingly jump out of an airplane. Unlike Marty, Marc has a wonderful wife and a neurotic but sweet, small dog, who is often the first to weigh in on the humor in his writing.
Visit his website, for free chapters of upcoming novels, news, and more.
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