Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Kelli L Decker, Author of San Francisco Golden Crime

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Today we are interviewing Kelli L Decker about her mystery/suspense novel, titled “San Francisco Golden Crime.”

Tell us a bit about yourself.
I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and have explored many of the surrounding areas. I have a passion for Mother Nature, Mystery/Suspense stories and a love for animals.

Describe the plot of your new book, “San Francisco Golden Crime,” in a few sentences.
The book is based in, and around the San Francisco Bay Area. It tells the story of Mike & his black Labrador Farley who are new to the city. They’re taken on a suspenseful journey after Farley makes an unexpected finding that leads to so much more than anyone could guess. You will remember their story long after you have finished the book   
Who do you think would most appreciate this book?
Anyone who loves San Francisco, loves a good mystery/suspense story, a Novella short story approx. 100 pages, Dog lovers, tourist, someone who travels and wants to read on planes, cruises, hikes near the San Francisco Bay Area.

Tell us about the protagonist, Mike.
Mike is an Architect with a kind heart. He has recently relocated to San Francisco from Sedona, Arizona to accept a big assignment on the Franklin Project. 

Mike’s loyal black Labrador, Farley, is an important part of the story. What can you share with us about the relationship between Mike and Farley?
Farley is a black Labrador that is one of those loyal dogs who is able to sense the feelings of his owner Mike. He’s like a child always exploring, and seeing the good in everyone. Farley is dedicated in a way that only a true connection of love can create.           

Was it challenging to capture the unique relationship between Mike and Farley? Were you inspired by any of your own pets?
The relationship between Mike and Farley is one that needs no words, or commands. You will catch Farley sitting on Mikes lap while watching t.v., or sleeping all night alongside him in bed. The two hike together, eat together, and are true friends. I do have loyal pet’s and a love for all animals but, this story was inspired by my mother who was an avid mystery book reader who wanted to write her own story. She did not get the change and was taken from this world too soon.       

The story is set in San Francisco, which plays a major role in the story. What inspired you to set the story in SF?
I have always loved the side of San Francisco that is inhabited by Mother Nature (such as Hawk Hill). There are so many wonderful places in and around the city i.e. The Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf, The Sunset District, Lombard Street, the fine restaurant’s, and the ocean.   
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Author Kelli L Decker.
The geography of San Francisco is highlighted throughout your book. Did you have to do much research to ensure you did justice to the locations?
Yes, I wanted to go to the locations, or have been to the locations in order to get in the right frame of mind to convey a feeling in the book. I would write in certain spots like on a hill above the Golden Gate Bridge (called Hawk Hill) in order to get into the feel of what I wanted the reader to feel. 

What are some of the San Francisco sites readers can expect to encounter in your story?
Hawk Hill, where you have hawks circling around you at the top of a mountain that overlooks San Francisco, and the Golden Gate Bridge. Pacifica, along the California Coast where you see magnificent cliffs and crashing waves. The Marina district with its majestic architect. The Sunset District with its laid-back vibe, and smaller homes all in a row leading down to the ocean.       

What drew you to the mystery/suspense genre?
My mother was fascinated with reading suspense murder mysteries every single night before bed. I too gained the love of a good murder mystery and really wrote this book in her honor. 

In addition to having lots of suspense, your book also has heartfelt, touching moments. How did you balance moving the plot forward with suspense/mystery while also adding emotion to your writing?
I drew from real life experiences. We all have emotions good and bad, we all have a story and with it carries happiness, sadness, scary times, connections and empathy for others, and at times the loss of life.

Are there any authors who have influenced your writing style?
Lee Childs, Samuel Clemens aka Mark Twain, Dan Brown, Mary Higgins Clark, and many more. 

On a similar note, what are some of your favorite mystery/suspense novels?
The Da Vinci Code, The Girl on The Train, Memory Man, anything Alfred Hitchcock 

How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing off and on 10 years, it wasn’t until San Francisco Golden Crime that I had a story that I really wanted to share. I sincerely hope the readers are taken on a journey and don’t want to look up from the pages until they are finished with the book.   

Who was your favorite character to write?
It has to be Mike, because he’s the kind of guy who could be your brother, son, or friend, he’s very likable and relateable. 

How do you think you've evolved as a writer since when you first started?
I think I’ve evolved in a way where I have no judgement, or prejudice against any character because we never know who else we may have become due to circumstances, finances, health, or situations. I try to write with an open mind.

Are there any aspects (e.g. character building, world building) of your writing that you've been practicing?
I look at a Thesaurus often, and always try to have fun with words that rhyme, just not all at the same time ๐Ÿ™‚.

What are your goals as a writer for the next ten years?
Well, for the next year I’m working on a sequel to San Francisco Golden Crime. I try not to get too far ahead while one story is brewing at a time.

How have your readers responded to the book so far?
Really well, they like how the settings around San Francisco are described and they all fall in love with Mike & Farley. They like how they could not have predicted the outcome. I’ve had a lot of positive feedback from friends, and family too. They actually read the book!   

Is there any aspect of writing you don't like?
Not really, sometimes it’s hard to have total silence and that is very important.

On the flipside, what is your favorite part about writing?
I absolutely love developing a character. I love how the imagination can take you places where you can’t guess until you start developing an actual person on paper. I like the freedom to be creative, and at times even surprised that I laugh or cry in reading my own words.   

Have you ever had writer's block? If yes, how'd you deal with it? If you have not had writer's block, why do you think you haven't?
I have and what I do is step away from writing the rest of the day. I’ll take a long walk around Mother Nature on trails and then the stories start showing themselves. I’ll capture thoughts into a voice recording on my phone. At times parts of a story will come to me upon going to sleep, or right before waking up. I always have a notebook next to the bed.   

What do you have in mind for your next project?
The sequel to San Francisco Golden Crime.

Is there anything else you'd like potential readers to know about your book?
Just enjoy it, and take time to step away from the daily grind in a good book.

More Information
Buy “San Francisco Golden Crime” on Amazon.
Follow author Kelli L Decker Facebook. 
Watch the book trailer on YouTube. 

Book trailer for "San Francisco Golden Crime."

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