L.A. Chandlar is the National Best-selling author of the ART DECO MYSTERY SERIES with Kensington Publishing featuring Mayor Fiorello La Guardia and a fresh take on the innovation and liveliness of 1930s New York City. Her debut novel, The Silver Gun released in 2017, followed by the sequel, Agatha Award nominated, The Gold Pawn. Book 3, The Pearl Dagger releases 2019. Laurie grew up in Michigan and has been living and writing in New York City for 18 years. She has been speaking for a wide variety of audiences for over 20 years including a women's group with the United Nations. Her talks range from NYC history, the psychology of creativity, and the history of holiday traditions. Laurie has also worked in PR for General Motors, writes and fund-raises for a global nonprofit, is the mother of two boys, and has toured the nation managing a rock band.
What fueled wonder for you when you were a kid? I just had a Twitter discussion with my friend Don Bentley (check out his debut release! LINK: Without Sanction) about C.S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia, specifically the first book in the series, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. He’d shared how he’d scoured his grandma’s house for years looking for a wardrobe. I was the same! Hoping to find a doorway to another world of color, adventure, and dreams. Another one of my wonder-decisions was from a commercial where Juicy Fruit Gum grew on trees. I of course planted a piece of Juicy Fruit Gum, hoping desperately that in the morning there would be a large Juicy Fruit tree grown taller than our house with thousands of packs of gum hanging off the branches. I bet there were millions of pieces of gum planted throughout the United States in the 1970s and 1980s. (You can see the actual commercial in link above. Note of caution: you WILL be singing the song all day). On a scary scale, when I was a child, we had painting in our dining room of a girl who looked like a young, but beaten down servant. Her […]
Featured 1930s Crime Fighters of Color In my 1930s Art Deco Mystery Series, it’s been an absolute joy to highlight marginalized people in history who fought to change the world when discriminatory laws were in place and the odds were stacked against them in a multitude of ways. One of my main characters is Mayor Fiorello La Guardia – New York’s three term mayor who was half-Italian and half-Jewish. It had only been about 40 years since Italians were allowed on the police force, not to mention the anti-Semitic views he endured. I loved adding Sam Battle to the cast of characters, the NYPD’s first black officer who saved lives, stopped a riot pretty much single handedly, and changed the force’s divides in powerful ways (Langston Hughes wrote a manuscript about him (!!!) and the book One Righteous Man: Samuel Battle and the Shattering of the Color Line in New York by Arthur Browne was written from it. Highly recommend). Jane Bolin makes an appearance and will have future highlights. She was the first black woman to graduate Yale Law School, the first to join the NYC Bar Association, and the first to join the NYC Law Department. In 1939, Mayor La Guardia appointed her as the […]
Writing can be a lonely job. So we often need that extra little help with things like editing, computer dusting, and of course marketing. When we need to read our drafts out loud? Our cats, dogs and hamsters are our best audiences.
This is a toughy for most authors. Being an author is about building a business. And it is in this realm, too. Yes, publishers -some of them- have publicists that work with you. But often they have too many authors whom they also work with and you might actually be the best one to decide on marketing ideas.
I was a Debut author last year and I’ve had a long road of publishing already. I am not an overnight star. But I’ve worked in the music and fine art industries long enough to know that the overnight successes are not often the ones who make it past one-hit-wonders. I dig that. We are all building MUSCLE as we climb this publishing mountain and I am so fine with hard work. I love to learn and I’ve started my own list of things I’ve learned and things I wish I’d known earlier. So I posed this little question to my MissDemeanors so we could all glean some intriguing tidbits of wisdom as we are writing, as we are slugging it out, as we are conquering our own self-doubt and mountains that mark our own personal success. Here you go.
One of the most moving things I learned about the 1930s, was the way art was able to overcome divides of all kinds. Just like today. Just like always. But the 1930s was absolutely incendiary with civil rights brewing, the Depression, Prohibition, the strange in-between times between the two world wars, just a scant twenty years.