News & Views

Mug Shot: Kellye Garrett

Kellye Garrett spent eight years working in Hollywood, including a stint writing for the CBS drama Cold Case. Having moved back to her native New Jersey, she spends her mornings commuting to Manhattan for her job at a leading media company. Her first novel, Hollywood Homicide, was released in August of this year. It was a Library Journal Debut of the Month and described as a “winning first novel and series launch” in a starred review by Publishers Weekly.

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What are you working on currently?
I just turned in the second book of the Detective by Day series. It's called Hollywood Ending and it takes place during Awards season, which is a three-month stretch at the beginning of the year when you have the Oscars, Golden Globes, Independent Spirit Awards. and what feels like every other major awards show known to man.

When and how do you find time to write?
I write whenever and wherever I can. I commute from New Jersey to Manhattan every day for work so I'll compose scenes while on the train and quickly jot down ideas and dialogue bits on the Notes app on my phone. When it comes to actually sitting down at my laptop, I tend to do that in the evening right before bed.

How much and what kinds of marketing do you personally do?
I'm still trying to figure this one out since this is my first book. I do blog with five other amazing authors who also write amateur detective novels at I'm also very active on Twitter. In addition, I'm lucky to be part of two amazing and supportive writing communities: Pitch Wars, which is a contest that pairs established authors with unagented writers to help them revise their manuscript for an Agent Round, and ’17 Scribes, which is a group of more than 100 debut authors with adult and New Adults book out this year.

Otherwise, I try to find creative way to promote my book so people don't get tired of me. Though I'm sure some still do! I recently started an online annotated guide to my book where I share background info and tidbits about the scenes, characters, etc.

What fictional detective would you like to be and why?
Hmmm. Maybe Detective Lou Norton from Rachel Howzell Hall’s series because she’s such a strong, smart and sometimes sarcastic black woman. Although I see that type of person a lot in my family and friends, I don’t see that nearly enough in mystery novels. On the flip side, it also might be fun to be Spenser for a day, just so I could spend the day kicking ass and cooking. Though I'd probably not choose a day where he has one of his brutal workout session with Hawk.

In five words or less, what advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Writing is rewriting.

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