Before sitting down to write the second installment of her Mace Bauer mystery series, Deborah Sharp, 55, took part in the Florida Cracker Trail Ride, a six-day event, held every February, in which participants ride horseback along a 110-mile trail from Bradenton to Fort Pierce. In Mama Rides Shotgun, released last month, the trail ride serves as a backdrop to hilarious mayhem and intrigue.
What is on your nightstand?
Killer Cuts by Elaine Viets, The Inn at Eagle Point by Sherryl Woods and Shrinking Violet by Danielle Joseph (a young adult novel). Two good things about YA novels: They keep me up-to-date, or at least delude me into thinking I'm up-to-date, with the kids, and they're short enough to read before I fall asleep.
Reading other mystery writers (Elaine Viets) doesn't interfere with your own writing process?
I tend not to read mysteries when I write, but she's an exception. Her books are set in South Florida. I like to guess which local bigwigs, or people who think they're bigwigs, she's lampooning. . . . The truth is I read these days for total escapism.
Piper Castillo, Times staff writer