My Name is Kimberly Mullins, I am from the Houston/Galveston Texas Area. I have lived here my whole life. In real life I am a process safety engineers at a large chemical plant. I have written technical papers for my work and wanted to try writing fiction. I am happily married and have a son who is graduating college this year.
My writing style is a mixture of pantser and plotter. I normally have a high-level outline in place—I usually know the end before I know the beginning. I can write the beginning and end almost without an outline. When I start to fill in the middle, I have to go back to plotting.
Historical research is fun—researching the different time periods and inserting my characters into them. In m first book I used the backdrop of Chicago to build my story. 1871-1881 had so much to work with, this includes the backdrop of the fire but also the influx of people coming into the US and Chicago. We are a country of immigrants, I try to include the people coming into the area-Germans, Italians, Irish. I used some of my family histories to show the blending of the different cultural backgrounds.
My first book is Notebook Mysteries ~Emma. It is the beginning of a series involving a very independent girl in 1881 Chicago. Think of it as Nancy Drew but with knives. It is a cozy mystery set 10 years after the great Chicago fire of 1871, focused on a second-generation German immigrant family and their bakery business. Two young sisters face the challenges of a turn-of-the Century Boarding House life with pluck and determination, the oldest navigating affairs of her heart and running their rooms-to-let, while the younger Emma learns from special tutors and matures into an effective amateur sleuth, facing the rough streets of Chi-town, its mobsters and corrupt officials. Overcoming a tragic backstory, Emma seeks adventures, and she finds them.
My second book is book 2 in the Notebook Series. Notebook Mysteries ~ Decisions and Possibilities. I have decided that each subsequent book would be 2 years later in Emma’s life. It allows me to allow the characters to mature and move into more complicated cases. Book 2 starts in 1883 Chicago, 18-year old Emma Evans’s past and present come together in her personal life and her adventures. She has achieved her goal of graduating from business school and soon becomes wrapped up in an adventure. She involves new specialist and their skills in photography and disguises to add support to her latest case and one involving Pinkerton Detectives. In both cases, things are not as they seem. Emma must follow her observations to a conclusion that may not be wanted.
I enjoy reading all kinds of books, when I was in high school-it was mysteries and romance. I have always read and as a kid, I would constantly rewrite the ending of the books I was reading. I sat down about a year and ½ ago and said—can I do this? This book came out of that. I also wanted the girl to fight her own fights and show that even in the 1800’s -girls want more than just marriage. The target audience is young adult, but I am finding interest in women upwards of 55. My series does start to age the main character up-allowing her to have more involved adventures.
The hardest part? Arguing with my husband on my book endings—he is forever telling me I need to add more. The book is a series -1-4 are written and 5 is in draft. I will be releasing two books a year. I thought the series would be 10 total but now I enjoy writing them so much—I may keep going. It has been such a fun process!
#YAHistoricalfiction #YA #Historical #Historicalfiction