Mary Jane’s latest Charlotte Adams book is CLOSET CONFIDENTIAL (Berkley Prime Crime, July 2010) and it’s the fourth in the series. She says she’s grateful for all the tips she gets from Charlotte. During her visit here today she’s going to talk about, well I’ll let her explain.
Oops, she’s out of the books and into my head!
It’s a beautiful September day. The sun is filtering through the trees and I am thinking about all the things in life that make me feel lucky. I was fortunate to have parents who had a house full of books and encouraged me to love books and reading. I hit the jackpot in my friends and family and colleagues who are fun and supportive. They’re quite booky too, now that I think about it.
I also feel blessed in a being part of a community of readers who share book information, opinions and friendship. Naturally, I’m grateful to Mason Canyon for inviting me to Thoughts in Progress, another wonderful community of book people. Of course, all these people (and you) are real. But I am also lucky to be connected to some folks who are not quite so real.
When I say not real, I mean figments of my imagination. That’s right. In particular I am talking about Charlotte Adams, professional organizer, amateur sleuth and general busybody, a creation of my fevered brain. I suppose this is a good time for me to confess that I am not naturally organized although I do have a organizer sleuth who has solved murders in four – soon to be five – mysteries.
There’s a reason we came together. I am a naturally chaotic person and could easily leave a trail of debris, but I’m also a person who can’t create unless things around me are reasonably serene. I can’t have the stress of tripping over clutter, searching for lost papers, and missing appointments. That is why over the years I have purchased every organizing book and magazine I could get my mitts on, as well as watching shows such as Clean Sweep and Neat. The tips and techniques have done wonders for me. I will always be a natural Little Miss Messy, but now my house is in reasonable shape, I am not ashamed to open my closet door, I can write two books a year and I maintain a pretty effective To Do list.
Things aren’t perfect, but they are under control. I owe all of that to organizers. When I realized just how much an organizer learns about clients from helping with their homes, offices and lives, I thought this would make a perfect job for an amateur sleuth. And, sure enough, Charlotte Adams has never let me down. From the beginning in ORGANIZE YOUR CORPSES she has foiled criminals, solved storage problems and bumped heads with the police. Of course, she does tend to get arrested wearing her frog jammies and pink fluffy slippers, but we wouldn’t her to get too conceited, would we?
Charlotte has dealt with overall organizing in a hoarding situation in ORGANIZE YOUR CORPSES, with out of control collections in THE CLUTTERED CORPSE, with office chaos in DEATH LOVES A MESSY DESK and most recently, closet chaos, in CLOSET CONFIDENTIAL. Coming soon will be THE BUSY WOMAN’S GUIDE TO MURDER and, you guessed it, time management.
Charlotte is organized and kind. She offers an organizing tip at the beginning of each chapter. I have tried and benefited from each of these tips. They’re a little extra treat for my readers who
|One way to stash yarn|
Now, if only Charlotte would confine her opinions to her books. I have to confess that she can get to me. For instance, now, after I’ve taken three trips in rapid succession, my desk is piled with business cards to be filed, notes to follow up on, email addresses to be added to my mailing list, that kind of thing. I hear her imaginary voice telling me to ‘get at it’. And I will as soon as I finish talking to you. Never mind, it’s a good thing I hear that
voice. I still need Charlotte, but I think she’s lucky to have me too. Who else would bail her out of jail and give her all those fabulous shoes and the cute little dogs?
|Charlotte's new shoes!|
Am I the only one with a relationship with a fictional character? Is there someone in a book who has an impact on you? Or is there information that has changed your life? Over to you, readers … Thanks for being with me today!
Oh, M.J., thank you for stopping by today and sharing these thoughts with us. I, for one, am glad you have Charlotte as a figment of your imagination so that we can also get to know her.
Since we know a little about Charlotte, now let me tell you a little about Mary Jane. She is a lapsed librarian, a former mystery bookstore owner and a lifelong lover of mysteries. She is a former President of Crime Writers of Canada and served two terms on the board of directors of the Canadian Booksellers Association. In addition to the four Charlotte Adams books, Mary Jane is the author of the Camilla MacPhee series, the Fiona Silk adventures and nearly two dozen short stories. She has won two Arthur Ellis awards for best mystery short story as well as the Crime Writers of Canada Derrick Murdoch award and was nominated for a Barry Award in
|Daisy and Lily in pearls.|
Mary Jane is a frequent speaker on crime fiction, Canadian mysteries and the writing process. She lives and plots in Ottawa, Ontario, along with her long-suffering husband and two princessy dachshunds. For more information on Mary Jane and her writing, visit her website at www.maryjanemaffini.com
I also have a book trailer of CLOSET CONFIDENTIAL to share. Enjoy!