Geneva Chase is a hot mess
“Really, you write as a woman?” I’m often asked. “What the hell were you thinking?”
First, a little about Ms. Chase. She’s blonde, tall (five-ten), athletic, blue eyes, attractive, forty years old, and a snarky smart ass. Geneva is a reporter for her hometown newspaper in Sheffield, Connecticut, a bedroom community outside of New York City. As the first book opens, she’s seeing a married man, has been recently arrested for hitting a cop, has been married three times, and she drinks too much.
Geneva Chase is a hot mess. Likable and smart as hell, but still a hot mess.
“What the hell were you thinking?”
That doesn’t answer the question, “What the hell were you thinking?”
I started writing Random Road as an experiment. One chapter I’d write from the male protagonist’s POV and the next chapter I’d write as Geneva Chase. About ten chapters into the book, I discovered I was having much more fun writing as Genie. Through her eyes, I could view the world as a cynical journalist. Through her voice, I could make snarky, sarcastic observations. Simply put…she was fun!
A writer needs to be keenly observant of the world around him or her. Writing as a woman, I needed to study how someone like Genie would dress, what kind of jewelry she’d wear, how she would speak and move. I know more about women’s shoes than I ever wanted to.
Now, a word to the wise, it’s a fine line between being extremely observant and being creepy.
Honestly, I wasn’t thinking beyond Random Road when I wrote it. I certainly wasn’t planning on doing a series of Geneva Chase mysteries. But it was blessed with good reviews, deemed debut of the month by the Library Journal, and sold out of its first hardcover printing before the launch date. My publisher asked for two more over the next two years. Darkness Lane came out last June to excellent reviews and I’ve just sent the manuscript for the third Genie Chase novel, Graveyard Bay.
Response to Geneva Chase
I’ve had some interesting comments from readers about Geneva. I’ve had some women tell me how much they identify with her. I take that as a compliment.
I’ve had some men tell me how much they like the character and I actually had one guy tell me that he’s fallen in love with her. That made me kind of uncomfortable.
Thomas Kies’ next novel, Graveyard Bay, will be available in September 2019. You can pre-order your copy on Amazon.