Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Today’s Spotlight Shines on Author Laurie Hanan

Sisters in Crime/Hawaii meets on the third Wednesday of the month at
Makiki Community Library from 6-8 pm. Meetings are open to the public. Annual membership is $10.00. This year, our blog site is focusing on members of SinC/Hawaii and their writing progress as published and as-yet unpublished authors. As a group, we support each other’s work, and offer friendship and encouragement in new projects. Several events throughout the year help to spotlight our interests, including book fairs/festivals and panel discussions or book readings. Check out the Meetings/Events page for upcoming events (and directly below for the February, 2016 meeting.)
Author Laurie Hanan

Today’s spotlight shines on long-time SinC/Hawaii member, author Laurie Hanan. Laurie is the successful author of the Louise Golden series, mysteries set in Hawaii. After publishing her fourth Louise Golden mystery, Stairway to Heaven, Laurie wrote a novella for a Kindle World, the Lei Crime World of author Toby Neal. Laurie’s novella is entitled Hoaka Moonshine. 

Laurie’s synopsis of the story:

When Dee Maltin bought the little beach cottage on Maui, all she wanted was to leave her memories behind. Now, fifteen years later, things are starting to go awry. Why does everyone else deny hearing the feral cats that keep Dee awake all night? What’s the smell that permeates her house no matter how much she scrubs? Why does her strange neighbor, who hasn’t spoken to her in all these years, choose this moment to strike up a conversation? A woman shows up at Dee’s door looking for her birth mother. Is she a con artist, or just deluded? Dee searches for answers and is soon over her head in one big Hawaiian-kine mystery. 

A 5-Star review of the novella, Hoaka Moonshine

(Moonshine, Hawaiian Style):
A novella is often a fast read with a bit of a punch at the end. Laurie Hanan’s novella, Hoaka Moonshine, was a fast read but far more than a lead-in to a quick-punch climax. 

The story captured my interest with the suspenseful opening lines. The characters immediately triggered reactions from me. Several times, I wanted to thrash the ears of the grown son, although I admit to having given more than a little leeway to “grown” children in my own family. Hearing that Dee, the protagonist, was “too old” to suck in her belly for appearance sake endeared me to her from the start. She is someone I would enjoy spending a day with in comfort. 

It was a pleasure to “visit” a quaint area of Maui that I know little about, Pā‘ia. The plot of Hoaka Moonshine (I love this title) held enough twists and complications to keep me reading, but never became improbable. I especially liked the satisfying conclusion. 

SinC/Hawaii: Aloha, Laurie. We are pleased to have you as our spotlight guest today; and we look forward to having you as our Guest Speaker at the February, 2016 SinC/Hawaii meeting. At the February meeting, you will discuss Amazon’s Kindle Worlds and your submission of the novella, Hoaka Moonshine, to The Lei Crime World. 

When you wrote Hoaka Moonshine, did you find any difference between writing this novella and your Louise Golden novels? 

Laurie Hanan: There was a very big difference in writing Hoaka Moonshine. Since it wasn't part of my series, I took a lot of liberty in creating the characters and developing the plot. With Louise Golden, I keep more or less within the bounds of a traditional mystery style: Mail carrier Louise discovers a crime has been committed on her mail route, there is a villain who needs to be found out, Louise eventually solves the crime when the police could not. Though there are mysterious events and questions that demand answers in Hoaka Moonshine, the story doesn't fall into the typical mystery genre.  I never explain whether the events are paranormal, figments of the character's imagination, or bizarre coincidences. I leave that for the reader to decide. There is no crime to be solved, no villain to be discovered and caught. It was a new kind of story for me and I had a lot of fun with it.

SinC/Hawaii: You submitted Hoaka Moonshine to The Lei Crime World. This is the Kindle World of Toby Neal, author of the Lei Crime Series that currently includes 11 novels (and counting.) During the writing process, did the author have any involvement in or offer you support during this new venture? 

Laurie Hanan: Once I'd completed Hoaka Moonshine to my satisfaction, I asked Toby to look it over. Involving the author is not a necessary--or even a usual--part of the Kindle Worlds process, but I wanted to be sure Toby was okay with my use of her characters. Toby graciously took the time to look over my story. She was very encouraging, which I totally appreciated, coming from such a successful author as her. After hearing Toby's comments, I wrote some additional scenes. Her advice greatly enhanced the final story. 

SinC/Hawaii: Thank you, Laurie, for taking time to share this informative information about writing novellas and about Kindle Worlds. We look forward to having you as our Guest Speaker on February 17, 2016 and hearing even more in depth information about the world of writing novellas.
SinC/Hawaii Meeting February 17, 2016
Makiki Community Library 6-8pm
Guest Speaker: Laurie Hanan
Skype Interview arranged by member/author Kent Reinker
Toby Neal, bestselling Maui author of the Lei Crime Series

Louise Golden mystery novels
by Laurie Hanan
Laurie Hanan's Amazon Author page:


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