The author was born and raised in Butte, Montana, which is the setting for Curiosity Kills. She is intimately familiar with the area and the people. It wasn’t that long ago that her relatives and friends worked the mines there to remove precious metals. Now the underground mines are closed and one, in this fictional work, has become the center of a conspiracy of international proportions.
Linda is a retired bureaucrat who is living the good life in the southwest, where she devotes her time to travel and writing. Curiosity Kills is her first novel. Misguided Patriotism is in the works.
- What prompted you to write an international conspiracy story?
It didn’t start out that way. My original idea was slightly different than what finally evolved. I like it better. I was vacationing in Butte, Montana, visiting relatives, when I read an article in the paper. I added my imagination, and this provided the little nugget from which my novel grew.
- Since your protagonist is an investigative reporter, I’m curious to know if you have a background involving some type of reporting.
No. I have no newspaper or media background.
- Did this book involve a lot of research?
Yes. I spent many happy hours doing research. Some I used and some I didn’t, but it was all very interesting.
- How do you come up with your story ideas?
I read, listen and learn about what is happening today. Then I embellish the story. I have always been suspicious about what is reported in the media. That, combined with my wild imagination, provides the premise for a story.
- How do you develop your characters?
I sometimes use people I have known as a blueprint for characters. That is only the beginning, though. I embellish those characters to suit the story. Other characters grow as the story evolves. I have always been a people watcher. That helps.
- Do you outline your stories before writing them? If not, what technique do you use?
I have done it both ways. In Curiosity Kills, I did not do an outline. The story seemed to unfold as I wrote. I did have a beginning and an end, but everything in between came later.
- How long did it take to write Curiosity Kills?
Ten long years from inception to publication. The story went through many incarnations during those years and there were long periods of time when I did nothing on the story. Life gets in the way sometimes. I had too many distractions.
- Which author(s) has influenced your writing and why?
I cut my teeth on Robert Ludlum. His stories were intriguing and I loved the fact that I never did know who the bad guys were until the very end.
- What are you working on at this time?
I am working on a sequel to Curiosity Kills. It is called Misguided Patriotism.
- Do you have any advice for new authors?
If you have an idea for a novel, write it down. It’s only a rough draft in the beginning anyway. It won’t be perfect. With word processors today, it’s easy to revise what you have written to make it better. Never give up. Nothing happens overnight. As a new author, it’s very hard to get from writing to publishing, but it can happen with dogged persistence.