Whenever I go too long between writing posts for this blog, you can rest assured I’m still writing. When I started this blog in 2009, I wrote all the time – at least a couple posts a week. Then I took a job writing for a local paper and it cut into my blogging time a bit. In 2012, I published my first book, Know Small Parts: An Actor’s Guide to Turning Minutes into Moments and Moments ints a Career with foreword by Richard Dreyfuss and endorsements from Kevin Costner and a dozen other industry luminaries. Next came Lemonade Farm, my first novel. Award winning and New York Times bestselling author Tom Franklin says, “It evokes the 1970s in a painfully accurate way, and is beautifully written. Her skill at characterization and turns of phrase, coupled with a great sense of place, makes this a heck of a novel.”
I thought I was done writing books and went back to frequently blogging until my first reading of Lemonade Farm at Garden District Book Shop. Someone asked what I was writing next and I wasn’t really sure how to answer. So I pitched an idea for a book or short series of books based on a screenplay I’d written called The Source. A sort of Indiana Jones meets DaVinci Code with immortals, reincarnates and martial arts fights. But later that night, I remembered that before I left L.A. Quentin Tarantino had said I should write a series of detective novels, that people would be fascinated by the way my brain works. I looked up the notes I’d started writing that night and laughed when I realized I’d set the story in New Orleans. The character I’d come up with seemed all wrong and I had very little in the way of story ideas, but the notes centered around a chandelier stored in the amateur sleuth’s grandmother’s attic.
I kept the New Orleans location and the chandelier and the Charlotte Reade Mystery series was born. The first 4 mysteries are already available and the 5th should be ready in 2019. The “mysteries, not murders” start in late 2009 as the Saints are heading to the Super Bowl in the middle of Mardi Gras. Featuring many New Orleans’ real-life characters like Dancing Man 504, actor Bryan Batt and the Pussyfooters parade dance krewe, many of the details in the books are based on this blog.
Yes, there are times when I’m just too busy living to write about life and there’s always too much to blog about – from being a Saints and Pelicans season ticket holder to the many festivals, events and parades we attend. But it’s the time I spend on my books that keeps me from blogging. Writing this blog has led me to finally becoming an author. So now being an author leads me away from blogging, but I truly love helping Charlotte solve her riddles, especially the secret of the haunted chandelier. Award-winning thriller author, Allison Leotta, says, “Whether you’ve been there or not, Laura Cayouette brings New Orleans to life. Her Charlotte Reade character isn’t just great at unraveling mysteries, she’s a terrific guide through the music, food and culture of the city.”
Whether you’re looking to curl up with a good book or shopping for gift ideas, I’m hoping one of my books answers your wish. You can always order signed copies of any of my books from Garden District Book Shop. And you can find summaries, reviews and even short promo videos HERE. I’ve also built a PLAYLIST of videos of music and other events, places and people included in this story on my YouTube channel. And I’ve created a clipboard of photos on Pinterest.
Though my Aunt Norma is actually the author, I’ve included her book, How To Be A Widow: A Journey from Grief to Growth, as I edited and published it for her. I also contributed a story about Richard Dreyfuss and a flight to Rome for Airplane Reading, a collection of stories about flying.
Thank you to all readers of this blog. Because of you, I hit 1 million views last week! Enjoy your holidays and thanks again!