Title: Desert Fox (A Skyler Foxe Mystery #5)
Author Name: Haley Walsh
Publication Date & Length: November 7, 2014
Skyler and his friends go to Palm Springs for the annual White Party and find murder!
Out and proud high school English teacher Skyler Foxe and his posse of friends go to the annual Palm Springs White Party for a weekend of fun, frivolity, and luscious men. But there are boy troubles of all kinds ahead. Skyler’s boyfriend and high school coach Keith Fletcher has to endure an embarrassing number of Skyler’s former hook-ups, one of the SFC might be going solo, Skyler encounters unexpected and unwelcome participants at the party, and there’s a murder on the dance floor, literally at Skyler’s feet! Both Skyler and Keith are drawn into investigating more than murder when the FBI asks Skyler to do the unthinkable.
First off, I’d like to say thank you for taking the time to answer these questions so me and my readers can get to know a little bit more about you!
Now for the hard part:
- Can you describe in detail what your writing environment is like?
I have a home office and a very messy desk, with the occasional visit (and typing in my manuscripts) from my cats. I’m surrounded by built in bookshelves (the hubster built it especially for me!) and they are just stuffed with books; manga, yaoi, m/m romance, and tons of medieval research books since I also write medieval mysteries under another name. In fact, there is a suit of armor that stands guard behind me. And speaking of behind me, there are even more bookshelves and more books. I have Dr. Who toys, a Shakespeare action figure and a Shakespeare bobble head, knights in armor battling on the shelves, a tiny statue of death (because why not?), some snowmen because I love them, some skulls, some pelts, and a bunch of antique cameras because my hubby is a commercial photographer.
- Is there one of your characters that you relate to (from any of your works)? Why?
It would have to be Skyler. He’s the excitable/dramatic one and comes off mature when in fact he very often isn’t, jumping to conclusions without thinking it through first. And I’m very much afraid that that is me. Now mind you, he’s very smart, too, so that also works. J
- If you couldn’t be an author, what would you do instead?
I’d go back to what I did before for fifteen years: I was a graphic artist and art director. Though I’m pretty curmudgeonly now and it’s really best that I work all by myself in a little room writing books.
- Is there anything that you learned during the writing process that you wish you had known before hand?
I’ve been writing for a long time prior to getting published—a LONG time—so the process is the same, though I find myself outlining more. As a “woman of a certain age” I find I can’t remember like I used to, so I’ve got to write it down. What surprises me more is about the publishing industry, how hard it is for writers—even multi-published writers as I am—to make a living at this; how hard we have to work on promotion. It’s sad to know that there are many talented authors out there not being read because they just can’t get the word out, something that the publisher should be responsible for. No wonder so many of us are becoming hybrids: self-publishing as well as going with a traditional publisher.
- Is there anything that you wish you could change about your book now that it is out?
I’ve read it over quite a few times in the editing and proofing process. Though going back to the first in the series, I think I would have cut down considerably on the erotic elements. I find that books with erotic elements, no matter how well-written the rest of it is—just aren’t taken seriously.
- How do you come up with new ideas for your story?
Since it’s sort of following a timeline of Skyler’s story from when he met his love interest to all the trials and tribulations he’s had to endure both from his community and family and with solving the mysteries, that I found ideas just bubbled up. We are watching his life unfold, right along with his relationship issues. So ideas present themselves. We also follow the school year since both protagonists are high school teachers. There’s drama among the students as well. This latest books, DESERT FOXE, happens during spring break, so Skyler gets to go to the White Party in Palm Springs for it. And all sorts of hijinks ensues.
- What’s next for you as a writer?
I have so many things on my plate! I am continuing my series of medieval mysteries, I have begun an urban fantasy series that my agent is shopping around, and I am currently writing a steampunk paranormal. You can find those things at www.JeriWesterson.com.
- Where do you live? Do you think this influences how or what you write?
I live in the same area as Skyler and am familiar with the problems of LGBT people in this rather stuffy and conservative area of southern California. It’s my chance to poke a stick at it. And Skyler is just fun to write. It’s great to kick back, write humorous situations, and a little adventure.
- What is your favorite genre outside of the one you write in? Why?
Since I write in so many genres now, I don’t think there is one outside my genre.
- Do you have any vices? Shoes, coffee, shopping…etc?
Chocolate. And shopping. Shopping for chocolate.
Thank you so much for taking your time to answer my questions. I wish you much success as a writer!!
Thank you! You can find more about me at http://SkylerFoxeMysteries.com