A Guest Blog Post
Writers are thieves. We steal a facial feature here, a personality quirk there, and maybe an insecurity or two just to liven things up. By the time we are finished with the Dr. Frankenstein method of creating a character, the original source is obliterated. Clytemnestra (Clyde) Fortune, the protagonist in my Family Fortune series, is an ex-police officer and reluctant psychic. I am an ex-physician and would not be reluctant if I had any psychic ability. But, every character has a piece of their author somewhere inside.
In An Unhappy Medium, book four in the series, there are a few things we do share. The story opens with Clyde running to train for a charity fun run. That’s not the part we share – I have never and will never train for a charity run, fun or not. The part we share is that she hates it. Over the years I have tried to be a runner. I have close friends who are running fanatics. They train for marathons and iron man events – for fun! Walking and yoga are more my speed.
Clyde spends a lot of time with a bossy Shih Tzu named Tuffy. She and Tuffy have a difficult relationship. She doesn’t think he likes her very much and resents feeling manipulated by him. I spend a lot of time with a bossy Shih Tzu-Bichon mix. And while I am sure he likes me, I suspect it’s only because I’m the keeper of the fridge and pantry – he’s smart enough to know where the food comes from. Any moment when Clyde feels that she is an unwilling staff member to a megalomaniacal tiny dog, that’s my own life leaking through.
Finally, one of Clyde’s strongest psychic talents is her ability to find things. She puts herself into a trance-like state and concentrates on the lost item. She describes a tug or push toward the location. It’s like a psychic game of hot and cold. I, on the other hand, boast a talent for knowing where everything in my house is located. Several family members begin their search for items by saying “where’s the ____?” As if this were the magic finding phrase. While I often despair of these people ever learning to keep track of their stuff, I admit that I have trained them to rely on me just like the dog relies on me to feed him. I really can find things.
I hope you will find time to visit Clyde and the rest of the Family Fortune crew in their new adventure. This one includes zombies, pirates, and missing diamonds. Clyde’s sister, Grace, complicates matters when she returns to town with a dangerous secret plan. The gang must work together to solve a murder, find the lost treasure, and protect Grace from her past.
About the book: An Unhappy Medium: A Family Fortune Mystery
by Dawn Eastman, Berkley Prime Crime paperback,
291 pages, April 5, 2016, $7.99