About J.J. Murphy
J.J. Murphy, an award-winning health care writer in Pennsylvania, has also been a long-time Dorothy Parker fan.
J.J. started writing THE ALGONQUIN ROUND TABLE MYSTERIES after the birth of twin daughters, as an escape from toddler television.
Where did you get the idea for MURDER YOUR DARLINGS?
The inspiration for the book actually started with the title. Every writer has heard that advice: "murder your darlings." It means to edit out anything you write that seems overly precious. I realized it would be a great title for a murder mystery set among writers and editors. And somehow I got it into my head that one of the members of the Round Table originally coined the phrase. But I found it's often attributed to William Faulkner. So I simply put all three elements together. I’ve been a fan of Dorothy Parker since college, and I’m a member of the Dorothy Parker Society. I love her sharp wit, her cynical humor, and her piercing eye for emotional insight. She’s a natural to be the detective in the story and, by contrast, Robert Benchley makes the perfect happy-go-lucky sidekick. (There’s an element of romantic tension there, as well.)
Do you have a writing routine or schedule?
A schedule? It's "catch as catch can." I have a full-time job and seven-year-old twins. So, the only time I have to write is at night after the kids go to bed and the dishes are done. I write for 2 or 3 hours two nights a week on average. Some weeks, I have no time or energy to write. I don’t have a special writing room or office either. Most of MURDER YOUR DARLINGS and YOU MIGHT AS WELL DIE were written on a beat-up old laptop at the kitchen table. So, if I can find the time and energy to write a novel, almost anyone can.
Are there more ALGONQUIN ROUND TABLE MYSTERIES coming?
Absolutely! A short story, HAIR OF THE DOG, is currently available. And the third book in the series, A FRIENDLY GAME OF MURDER, which takes place in the snowbound and quarantined Algonquin Hotel on New Year’s Eve, is coming in 2012.
Still have questions? Don't be shy. Feel free to send in a comment or question.