Q&A with Author Nadine Matheson

Read below to get to know author Nadine Matheson!

I was so lucky to get an ARC of The Jigsaw Man by Nadine Matheson and let me tell you how much I LOVED it. It is a great mystery read, makes you feel like you’re visiting London and will keep you guessing the entire way.

You are a criminal defense attorney in London. Has real life ever been stranger than fiction?

Most definitely life has been stranger than fiction. My most memorable case involved a woman accused of fraud and had used multiple identities. My client insisted that she was, let’s call her, Emma Smith, even when the prosecution brought the real Emma Smith and her entire family to court. It was absolutely crazy and to this day I am no closer to knowing this woman’s true identity.

What’s something about your job that you wish people knew? 

There is absolutely no glamour in my job. My working life is not an episode of Suits. Sitting around in police station at 4am is not glamorous and there is so much time spent waiting.  I was never told in law school that I would spend so much time waiting for either clients to arrive, or for the police to be ready for interview. There was one occasion where I attended court for my case which was scheduled to start at 10am. The case wasn’t called on until 3.30pm.

Will there be more books with DI Anjelica Henley?

Absolutely. DI Anjelica Henley’s story isn’t over. I’ve recently finished book 2 in the series so there will definitely be more of her.

Why do think there aren’t as many #ownvoices novels in the mystery/thriller genre? 

There are many #ownvoices in the mystery/thriller genre but for some inexplicable reason these voices are not being elevated or promoted as voraciously. I suspect that there’s a misconception that #ownvoices writers can only tell one type of story which is not true. Our storytelling is as diverse as the #ownvoices writers. I’m hopeful that things are now changing and that these talented writers are being placed on a higher platform.

What are some of your favorite #ownvoices novels?  

The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan, Blacktop Wasteland by S.A. Cosby, Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid, This Lovely City by Louise Hare, Take it Back by Kia Abdullah

Do you work from an outline or just fly by the seat of your pants?

I could never fly from the seat of my pants. My characters would be wandering around aimlessly in the middle of a field if I didn’t have a plan. I always outline the first draft of my book. I call my outline a safety net. My outline is not something that I stick to rigidly as sometimes a character can take you off in an unexpected direction and a subplot can appear out of nowhere.

Coffee or Tea?

Tea! Always tea with milk, sugar and a biscuit on the side! There has to be biscuits.

What do you use to inspire you when you get Writer’s Block?  

Nature. The best thing for me to do if I get stuck is to leave the house. I will usually walk around my local park or go to the river. I love being near water and I find that it’s the best place to be if I need to expand my mind.

Favorite Season (Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer)?

This is not an easy question because I love all seasons. I love the crispness of winter, the new beginnings of Spring and the gentleness of Fall, but Summer is probably my favorite season. Summer feels like freedom.

What has been the hardest thing about publishing? What has been the most fun?

The hardest thing has been trying to meet the deadline for the second book whilst trying to finish edits on the first book. The most fun has been holding my book in my hands for the first time and having readers contacting me to say how much they’ve enjoyed ‘The Jigsaw Man.’

What advice would you give budding authors?

Read a lot and write the story that you want to tell. Don’t worry about what’s number one in the bestseller charts or if anyone will buy your book. The most important thing is to write your story and to finish.

Who would play DI Henley in the TV/movie adaptation?

Naomie Harris.

Do you find yourself unnerved or even somewhat scared while writing crime stories?  

No. There’s not been one moment where I’ve felt the need to fall asleep with the light on after whilst writing my stories. It may be that I’m very skilled at compartmentalizing. I’ve always said I wouldn’t have lasted six weeks if thought about all of the cases that I’d worked on as a newly qualified Criminal Defence Attorney. I’m able to sleep very well at night.

What are you reading right now? 

Lightseekers by Femi Kayode.

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