Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Diane Gilbert Madsen - Q and A - Part 2

Editor's Note: Welcome back to Diane Gilbert Madsen for Part 2 of our Q&A!

Diane Gilber
t Madsen Q&A - Part 2

CMM: Do you have a favorite place to write: office, library, under the stars? Under the stairs?

DGM: I usually write in my office which is in my home. I live on a five-acre parcel in rural southwest Florida called Twin Ponds. My office desk is positioned in front of a window overlooking Sunrise Pond, making it sometimes hard to concentrate, like the time I spotted a Florida Panther at 8:30 AM walking slowly around the pond toward my house. I suspect he’d just had breakfast because he was very lethargic and sat down on the apron of my garage with his rump against the garage door. It’s quiet and the desk is big – my husband put it together for me so I can spread out ideas and workbooks and research papers. I like to have classical music playing in the background. I have two little Japanese Chins, Sugar and Spice, and they always go into the office first thing in the morning – so you know I’m a creature of habit.

CMM: You do talks and booksignings… have you had any interesting experiences during that?

DGM: I love booksignings. You get to meet the most interesting and friendly people and you often get to hear from other people who’d like to write. I love to meet fans of my work who’ve read my book and want to get it inscribed. At a recent booksigning, I had Gary Reinstrom, the piper, come for a few hours. He and my video were the hits of the evening. It was around Christmas and he played Christmas songs on the pipes. It was wonderful.

CMM: Reviews are a mixed blessing for most authors; we love the good ones, hate the bad ones, and know they are just one person’s opinion. How do you deal with negative reviews? Do you even read reviews?

DGM: I just read an article on bad reviews and how a writer should NEVER comment on them. That being said, I regard reviews as a marketing tool. Good reviews help sell books and bad ones don’t. Obviously I desire to have good reviews, which “A Cadger’s Curse” has luckily garnered. But tastes vary – thank goodness – and not everyone is going to love you or your book.

CMM: Did you always want to be a writer growing up, or did you have other aspirations?

DGN: Growing up, I loved to read and went to the library faithfully every Saturday. I would read anything, but I was especially attracted to mysteries. When I was in grammar school, my cousin Sharon and I (in the same grade) liked to write “little mysteries.” We would do alternate chapters and amaze ourselves at how the plot turned out. I also loved the business world, and went on to become the Director of the Economic Development Department of the State of Illinois where I was in charge of the Tourism and Film and Economic Development offices. Then I owned my own business for over 20 years, including my own grantwriting business here in Florida - talk about the urge to write and the urge to murder. The more I learned about the business world, the more I wanted to write mysteries!

CMM: What do you read? Any favorite authors?

DGM: My favorite authors are Doyle, Sayers, Christie, Tey and John Dickson Carr. I like to read Michael Connelly and Stuart Kaminsky (especially the Lew Fonesca series set in Sarasota), anything by Dick Francis, Nicholas Blake, Amanda Cross, Patricia Wentworth, Sara Woods, Barbara D’Amato, Carolina Garcia-Aguilera, and John Dunning. There are so many good mystery writers out there right now, I can’t name them all. It’s like a feast - the second golden age of great mystery writers. I also like history and biography. Right now I’m in the middle of reading “The Gardner Heist” by Ulrich Roser; “Forty Odd Years in the Literary Shop,” by James L. Ford; “Scotland is not for the Squeamish” by Bill Watkins; “To the Tower Born,” by Robin Maxwell; “The Egyptologist” by Arthur Phillips; and “The Book of Air and Shadows” by Michael Gruber.

My website is:

Thank you so much to Diane Gilbert Madsen for joining us here at Cozy Murder Mysteries!


  1. Very interesting post. It's always fun to find out more about authors, how they write and what they enjoy reading. I'm looking forward to this book. It will also be interesting to see if the panther shows up in any of Diane's books in the future. :) Thanks for introducing me to another wonderful author.

  2. What great stories she has to tell... a panther!! I hope she doesn't let the doggies out to play alone!