Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Mud Bay

Mud Bay is the story of a detective trying to solve the mysterious car-crash death of his partner. Richard Esher travels to Olympia, Wa to investigate his friends death and is forced to confront the ugly truth about her before he is through. Esher loses everything as he relentlessly pursues the truth.
My story has been praised for establishing a very strong sense of geography. That was one of the main goals in writing this; I wanted to make Southwest Washington a character. I think I have succeeded. In fact I had such a strong sense of place and time while writing it, that the book has quickly become outdated. Now it is a sort of historical fiction set in 1995.
I wrote Mud Bay while I still lived in Olympia and the area comes across very strongly in the book. It took me several years of rewriting and trying to get attention for the book before I decided to self-publish in 2001. The book was a small success, but only a small one. Reading through the paperback edition I would often cringe at the lack of editing and the lapses in proofreading.
Recently I had a chance to go back and correct what I saw as errors. In the new edition I have tightened the writing significantly and clarified the plot a bit. What results is a better story with tighter writing, but still all of the characters that my readers have loved.
Esher began for me as a short story, Gone Daddy, I wrote while I was in college. That story and two other Richard Esher mysteries will be appearing soon in a collection called Crime Family that will be available as an ebook soon.
I am very proud of the cover art on these new editions. The drawings come from my father's sketchbooks. He was an artist all of his life, but he was very shy about sharing his work. After he passsed away I inherited his sketchbooks and I am proud to have them gracing the covers of my work.

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