Kathy: Cameron Cripps-Hayman adopts the five dogs of her deceased neighbor in Deadly Dog Days. Are you a dog person? Have you adopted dogs of your own?
JMB: I am a dog person. I have a 3 and a half year old Morkie (Maltese/Yorkie), named Eddie, who’s my baby. Before Eddie, we had Sparky, a Toy Fox Terrier. While I’ve never adopted a dog, I do have two adopted cats.
Kathy: Setting plays such an important part in a mystery, especially a cozy mystery. What makes Metamora, Indiana the perfect setting for your series?
JMB: When I visited Metamora in the summer of 2014 with my mom, grandma, and great-aunt, I knew there was something special about it. My mom was the first to say, “You have to write a book about this place—your cozy mystery!” I’d been planning to write a cozy and immediately, I knew she was right. It was the perfect place to set my series. It’s a small historical canal town that has so much character, you can’t help but fall in love with it. The people are friendly and it’s a place you can’t help but want to return to.
Kathy: What first drew you to cozy mysteries?
JMB: Well, I thought I was plotting a romantic suspense series, and it turned out to be more of a cozy series, so I ran with it! I love quirky characters and you find so many memorable fictional people in cozies. The town and characters are welcoming and it’s great to come back to them in the next installment in a favorite series.
Kathy: Do you write in any other genres?
JMB: I used to. I don’t anymore.
Kathy: Tell us about your series.
JMB: The Dog Days Mysteries start with Deadly Dog Days, where Cameron Cripps-Hayman finds herself taking on the five unruly dogs of the woman she finds dead in the canal. Along with her group of eclectic town volunteers, she sets out to solve the murder after she becomes a suspect.
Kathy: Do you have a favorite character? If so, who and why?
JMB: Actually, I like writing the dogs and their different personalities the best.
Kathy: Did you have a specific inspiration for your series?
JMB: I guess you could say I’m inspired by the old TV series, Northern Exposure. I’m drawn to the quirky characters and small town, so it’s what I strive for when writing my novels.
Kathy: What made you decide to publish your work?
JMB: I publish all my work, either through a publisher or on my own.
Kathy: If you could have a dinner party and invite 4 authors, living or dead, in any genre, who would you invite?
JMB: Wow, this is a hard one. I guess I’d invite JK Rowling, Diana Gabaldon, Maria Semple, and Allison Pataki since they write my favorites.
Kathy: What are you currently reading?
JMB: I just started reading Today Will Be Different by Maria Semple, who is the author of my favorite book, Where’d You Go Bernadette?
Kathy: Name 4 items you always have in your fridge or pantry.
JMB: Chocolate chip cookies, coffee, granola bars, frozen pizza
Kathy: Do you have plans for future books either in your current series or a new series?
JMB: So far, 3 books are planned for the Dog Days Mystery series.
Kathy: What's your favorite thing about being an author?
JMB: Getting the cover art!