Interview with C.S. Lakin, co-author of ‘Deadly Dozen’

C. S. LakinC.S. Lakin writes novels in numerous genres, focusing mostly on contemporary psychological mysteries and allegorical fantasy. Her novel Someone to Blame (contemporary fiction) won the 2009 Zondervan First Novel competition 2009 (published October 2010). Lakin’s Gates of Heaven fantasy series for adults (AMG-Living Ink Publishers) features original full-length fairy tales in traditional style. Already in print are the first books in the series, The Wolf of Tebron. The Map across Time, The Land of Darkness, and The Unraveling of Wentwater, with two more to follow.

In addition to her mysteries and fantasy series, she has written the first book in a young adult sci-fi adventure series: Time Sniffers. Her contemporary mystery Innocent Little Crimes made the top one hundred finalists in the 2009 Amazon Breakout Novel Award contest, earning her a Publisher’s Weekly review, which stated her book was “a page-turning thrill-ride that will have readers holding their breaths the whole way through.”

She recently completed Intended for Harm, an epic family sage that is a contemporary take-off on the biblical story of Jacob and Joseph and is developing a swashbuckling dog memoir in the style of Moby Dick entitled A Dog after God’s Own Heart. She lives in Santa Cruz, CA, with her husband Lee, a gigantic lab named Coaltrane, and three persnickety cats. You can connect with her on twitter: @cslakin and @livewritethrive. Or visit her author page on Facebook:

About the Book:

Deadly Dozen 3The DEADLY DOZEN Book Bundle contains 12 complete mystery/thriller novels by award-winning and international bestselling authors: Cheryl Kaye Tardif, Catherine Astolfo, Alison Bruce, Melodie Campbell/Cynthia St-Pierre, Gloria Ferris, Donna Galanti, Kat Flannery, Jesse Giles Christiansen, Rosemary McCracken, Susan J. McLeod, C. S. Lakin and Linda Merlino.

THE BRIDGEMAN by Catherine Astolfo

DEADLY LEGACY by Alison Bruce

A PURSE TO DIE FOR by Melodie Campbell & Cynthia St-Pierre

CHEAT THE HANGMAN by Gloria Ferris

A HUMAN ELEMENT by Donna Galanti

LAKOTA HONOR by Kat Flannery

PELICAN BAY by Jesse Giles Christiansen

SAFE HARBOR by Rosemary McCracken

SOUL AND SHADOW by Susan J. McLeod


ROOM OF TEARS by Linda Merlino


With an individual list price total of more than $45.00 and over 640 reviews collectively on, the DEADLY DOZEN Book Bundle is a value-packed, rollercoaster thrill ride that takes you from amateur sleuth to detective to paranormal to ancient mysteries set in intriguing worlds and so much more.

For More Information

  • Deadly Dozen is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.

What made you decide to become a published author?

I’d been writing my whole life, and my mother was a successful screenwriter and novelist, so it was natural for me to experiment with writing. However, I never “decided” to become a published author; I just wanted to be an author and learn how to write novels. Once I completed my first novel, I landed an agent, but it would be twenty-three years of writing many novels and having numerous agents before I got my first publishing contract.

Would you consider your latest book to be a one of a kind? How so?

Innocent Little Crimes was my third of fifteen novels. So I’m not sure if you are referring to this featured book or if you actually mean my latest book—which would be the seventh book in my fantasy series. Some of my novels are “one of a kind,” such as my YA paranormal romance Time Sniffers. But Innocent Little Crimes is a psychological mystery that was inspired by Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None.

Where is your writing sanctuary?

I just mostly write at home, but sometimes to get away from my dog, who wants to play ball all the time, I go to a library to work.

What do you believe a writer should not do as far as getting his or her book published?

She should not rush to publish a book that is not ready. Which means first really learning the craft, then having the book’professionally critiqued, edited, and proofread.

What inspires you?

Well, that’s a very general question. If you mean what is the source of inspiration for my writing, I would say life in general, my faith, and great novels I read.

What is one thing you learned about your book after it was published?

I haven’t really learned anything about my books after they’re published, so I don’t really understand the question.

Why do you love to write suspense?

It’s a challenge to write a suspenseful story that requires a lot of twists, reversals, and surprises. I love writing complex characters and suspense affords a way to show a lot of conflict and clashing between characters. I’ve written quite a few suspense novels, but they are at the heart relational dramas, and I think people are fascinating and what readers care about.

You’re concocting a recipe for a best-selling book. What’s the first ingredient?

A great, unique character with a very strong core need.

What’s one fun fact about your book people should know?

That this is a take-off of Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None, but instead of each guest getting murdered, I “kill off” each character psychologically, pushing them to the edge and seeing what they will do to get what they need.

Did any real life experiences find their way into your book?

Sure, I always bring in real people and life experiences into all my novels in some form or another. Some of the characters in this book were inspired by real people (unfortunately!). I choose locales I love, and I had lived up in the Pacific Northwest for a time, so some of the setting comes firsthand.

Aside from writing, what’s your passion?

I edit professionally and spend most of my time helping and coaching authors, to help them write the best books they can. I love seeing beginning authors become successful in their careers. I also love to read, of course!

What’s next for you?

I’m currently writing my fifteenth novel, the second in my historical Western romance series (under my pen name Charlene Whitman). I’m also about to release Shoot Your Novel, the third writing craft book in my collection. I plan to start in on a dark comedy called The Menopause Murders at the start of the year and also release another writing craft book, based on the course currently running on my blog Live Write Thrive, entitled The 12 Key Pillars of Novel Construction. I work full-time as a copyeditor, so finding time to write and publish is a challenge!

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One response to “Interview with C.S. Lakin, co-author of ‘Deadly Dozen’

  1. Pingback: Deadly Dozen – Boxed Set (Book Spotlight)Top Best Selling Books 2014 | Top Best Selling Books 2014

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