Author Interviews

Author Interview with Linda Maria Frank


I’m interviewing Linda Maria Frank today, author of teen mystery series the “Annie Tillery Mysteries”. Happy New Year, Linda, and welcome to my blog!

Author Interview

1.)When did you know you wanted to be an author?

In 1992. I was on library duty in the high school I taught in at the time. I was writing a case study involving art forgery for my forensics classes, and I thought, this would make a great book. And that story eventually became Girl with Pencil, Drawing, which was not the first book, but that moment in time was when I wanted to become an author.

2) Where did you get the inspiration for the Annie Tillery Mystery series?

The inspiration for the books comes from my background teaching science, in particular forensic science. My course was interactive enabling my students to solve cases presented to them, creating crime scenes, isolating clues, researching the analysis of clues, and bringing a suspect to justice in a mock trial. Through my own research I began to develop some of the cases that were most interesting to me. I began to put characters in the stories, and the next step found me taking a few writing courses that produced the books.

Annie is based on many of my female students. Folks ask if she is my alter ego. I think there is a bit of the author in many of the characters they create. Annie is the teenager I would have loved to have been, especially in the period during which I loved Nancy Drew.

The forensics background and my love of Nancy Drew led me to use this tag line for the series: “Nancy Drew Meets CSI”.

3) What is your editing process like?

To help me write the best book I can, I take a writing course every time I write a book. I have a mentor who reads, edits and suggests changes. I belong to a writing group, Long Island Children’s Writers and Illustrators, which allows group critique. When I am ready to publish, I hire a professional editing service from the publisher, or a professional editor.

4) Did you set any writing goals for 2014? Did you accomplish them?

I published the third Annie Tillery, Secrets in the Fairy Chimneys, in February.

I have ramped up my marketing campaign which includes, to name a few things: I do social media. I blog. See the very interesting articles about forensic science on my website, . I am doing this blog tour. . I do workshops in schools, libraries and museums. I sell my books at book fairs and craft fairs. I post the books on every website that will take them. I give complementary copies to teachers. I did a book launch at the Book Revue in Huntington. I have a local access TV show, The Writer’s Dream, aired on L.I. and appearing on YouTube. The books are on Amazon in ebook, hardcover, soft cover, and digital audio. I think the greatest success is from utilizing all these resources. My greatest pleasure comes from getting comments from my readers when I see them at an event after they have read one of my books.

5) What are your writing goals for 2015?

My goals for 2015 are:

  • To start the next Annie Tillery Mystery
  • To continue my marketing campaign
  • To continue to bring my local access TV show to more stations, and make it accessible to more guests.

7) Are you working on something now? If so, can you tell us a little about it?

I am working furiously on marketing. This January, I will start my next Annie Tillery, which will involve her great grandmother, forays into her past, and a mystery in her WWII past. I am looking forward to the research that L.I., the Cradle of Aviation, will involve.

About the Books

The Madonna Ghost

 The_Madonna_GhostSeventeen-year-old Annie Tillery and her Aunt Jill set off for Long Island’s Fire Island for a vacation of surf, sun, and sailing. Annie is happy to leave behind the stress of her relationship with her parents.  Aunt Jill, who is an NYPD detective, is mixing her vacation with a case she must keep secret from Annie.


Girl with Pencil, Drawing

Girl_with_Pencil_Drawing 2-1 (2)Amateur detective Annie Tillery is at it again. After she wins a series of art lessons at a prestigious art gallery, Annie shows up for her first lesson to find her instructor, Francesca Gabrielli, in a volatile argument with John DiCristiani, the art gallery’s director, over his incessant requests for her to illegally copy art masterpieces.

Secrets in the Fairy Chimneys

 Secrets_In_The_Fairy_ChimineysAnnie Tillery joins boyfriend, Ty Egan, and his best friend, Cedric Zeeks, at an archaeological dig in Turkey.    All is not what it seems  in the fascinating city of Istanbul.   The gang finds themselves tracking treasure hunters and thieves through mysterious passageways in Istanbul’s old city, and the treacherous caves surrounding the ancient archaeological site.

Author Bio

Linda Maria Frank: With the introduction of the Annie Tillery Mysteries, Linda has been launching a new career as author. Inspired by a childhood passion for Nancy Drew books and the popular television series, CSI, she successfully married an appealing heroine (Annie Tillery) with a gripping story plots to create these new fiction books for mystery readers. The Madonna Ghost has earned the distinctive “Editor’s Choice” and “Rising Star” awards. In Girl With Pencil Drawing, the second book in the series,  Annie stays one step ahead of the bad guys. The third book, Secrets in the Fairy Chimneys, released this year, will soon join the others in digital audio.

Frank’s first love was teaching science, her assignments ranging from Middle School to graduate level courses at Hofstra and Adelphi Universities. It was the forensic science courses that gave her the story lines for her heroine, Annie, who is based on a composite of former beloved students.

 Presently Frank is the producer of “The Writer’s Dream”, a series of shows with writers who discuss different aspects of the profession, seen on youtube.

The Madonna Ghost won Rising Star from iUniverse. It also got the author a spot into the Authors Show 50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading. The author is a finalist this year for Secrets in the Fairy Chimneys. The cover for “Secrets” is a finalist in the Book Goodies cover contest.




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Chapter 1 of “Secrets in the Fairy Chimneys” on YouTube

Author Page on Amazon

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