Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Gayle Trent - Why I Write Mysteries

Welcome to a semi-regular Tuesday feature, 'Why I Write Mysteries'.

Today, Gayle Trent - author of the Daphne Martin Cake Decorating Mystery Series and the Marcy Singer Embroidery Shop Mysteries - tells us a little about why she writes mysteries and what hers are about!

Why I Write Mysteries

Gayle Trent

I've always loved mysteries. From Scooby Doo (one of my main characters is named Daphne!), to Encyclopedia Brown to Nancy Drew to more modern-day mysteries. I've always enjoyed trying to solve puzzles. I wanted to be as clever as the heroes and heroines who foil the villains’ plots.

I also love books you hate to put down because they’re so exciting. I’ve been thrilled when readers have told me they stayed up late to finish Murder Takes the Cake.

Cozy mysteries are a good fit for me because they aren’t too graphic, the puzzle-solving is central to the case, the amateur sleuth has an interesting career and the books have a comedic touch.

I write two cozy mystery series. One, for Bell Bridge Books, is the Daphne Martin Cake Decorating Mystery Series. Daphne is a professional cake decorator who runs her business out of her home in Southwest Virginia. One of my favorite reviews for Murder Takes the Cake came from Vixen’s Daily Reads:

“I absolutely was startled to find out whodunnit at the end and it was not one of those lame-o choices so the author could hurry and finish up. I could identify with Daphne’s relationship with her family. I think this was the part I liked best. Daphne has a cautious and teeth gritting relationship with her mother, a loving warm one with her father and her sister.

And the cake baking and decorating!!! I didn’t get the recipes in the copy I reviewed, so will get the book just for those. This is one of my criteria for a cozy, it makes me want to learn how to do the activity that’s the basis of the character and story……This one makes me want to learn how to decorate cakes.
Four frosted beans!”

- http://iyamvixenbooks.blogspot.com/2008/09/murder-takes-cake-daphne-matin-mystery.html

The other cozy mystery series I write is for NAL/Penguin under the pseudonym Amanda Lee featuring a heroine who owns an embroidery shop. The series is set on the Oregon Coast and features Marcy Singer, a spunky, thirty-something, entrepreneur who is handy with a needle. The first book in the Seven-Year Stitch mystery series will be out in August of 2010.

Please visit my website at http://www.gayletrent.com for more information and to see the book trailer for Murder Takes the Cake.

*Editor's note: You can also find Gayle at this fun blog: http://fatalfoodies.blogspot.com/ Dead Pan, Gayle's second Cake Decorating mystery, will be released November 1st, 2009! Thanks, Gayle!


  1. Thank you for hosting me, Donna. You have a terrific site!

  2. This is the first I've heard of the Daphne Martin Cake Decorating Mysteries but they sound fun! Definitely ones to add to my TBR list.
    Great guest post, Gayle.

  3. I love cozy mysteries. All those wonderful people, cake decorators, gift basket designers... all those people who can do stuff that I can't. But I still love cozy mysteries.

  4. We can't do all those things either, Sheila; we just like to pretend we can. ;-)