Thursday, August 20, 2015



Jill Gardner — owner of Coffee, Books, and More — has somehow been talked into sponsoring a 5k race along the beautiful California coast. The race is a fundraiser for the local preservation society — but not everyone is feeling so charitable . . .

The day of the race, everyone hits the ground running . . . until a local business owner stumbles over a very stationary body. The deceased is the vicious wife of the husband-and-wife team hired to promote the event — and the husband turns to Jill for help in clearing his name. But did he do it? Jill will have to be very careful, because this killer is ready to put her out of the running . . . forever!


Lynn, tell us about your series. Is this book a standalone, or do readers need to read the series in order?

Killer Run, like all the Tourist Trap mysteries, is a standalone within a series.

All of the books are set in South Cove, California, the best little tourist trap on the central California coast. The town folk include people you love, people you love to hate, and a few additions with each book. Guidebook to Murder won the Reader’s Crown for Mystery Fiction this year.

Where’s home for you?
Right now, I’m living in a historic river town on the Mississippi river. I love the small town atmosphere and the proximity to my job along with various shopping areas.

What’s your favorite memory?
I must have been pre-school as we moved out of this house by the beginning of third grade, but the front closet had an entrance to the crawl space below. The thick iron handle was recessed into the floor. I remember sitting in that closet and making up stories about how it was a portal to another land.  

What’s the most valuable thing you’ve learned?

The difference between writers and authors is determination. They keep getting back up when they get knocked down. This may not be your time, but it only takes one editor to love your book. All the rest is luck. Julia Quinn said in her keynote at #RWA15 this (or a version of this) – “You can’t please everyone, every time.”

Do you have another job outside of writing?
Currently yes. I license and title vehicles for a leasing company here in St. Louis. Not the most exciting work, but I get to play with my imaginary friends a lot while I’m working.  

Would you rather be a lonely genius, or a sociable idiot?
Like most authors, I’d take the lonely genius. I do like my time alone because, let’s face it, if you’re thinking about your story, you have your characters to keep you company.

What’s one of your favorite quotes?
Never give up, never surrender. I just attended the annual Romance Writer’s convention and in different forms, I must have heard that sentiment daily at sessions.

How did you create the plot for this book?
I’m a pantser, but I go into the book knowing a few things. Like for Killer Run, I knew they were going to sponsor a run, that Jackie was going to be more active in the sleuthing part (Jill needs to keep an eye out on that one), and that a new business was being added to the mix.

I love finding out new and interesting things about my town and the people who live there. Harrold, the owner/operator of The Train Station is going to throw the gang a big curve. 

What’s the hardest thing you’ve ever had to write?
The middle of the book. Any book, every book. There’s a story called The Phantom Tollbooth and it talks about the Doldrums . . . I feel like I’m lost in that mythical country every time I hit halfway and my mind starts playing tricks on me.

That's where I am right now! What are you working on now?
Starting this week, I’ll be returning to South Cove for Tourist Trap #7. I signed a three-book contract extension at the beginning of 2015. So happy the readers are enjoying Jill and the South Cove gang because it means I can keep writing the series.


New York Times and USA Today best-selling author, Lynn Cahoon is an Idaho expat. She grew up living the small town life she now loves to write about. Currently, she’s living with her husband and two fur babies in a small historic town on the banks of the Mississippi river where her imagination tends to wander. Guidebook to Murder, Book 1 of the Tourist Trap series won the 2015 Reader’s Crown award for Mystery Fiction.

Connect with Lynn:
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