A fourth-generation Californian, she has also published short stories of murderous revenge, most recently in the Fish Nets and Thin Ice anthologies. Edith Maxwell's pseudonym Tace Baker authored Speaking of Murder, which features Quaker linguistics professor Lauren Rousseau and campus intrigue after her sexy star student is killed. Edith is a long-time Quaker and holds a long-unused doctorate in linguistics.
A mother and former technical writer, Edith lives north of Boston in an antique house with her beau and three cats.
Edith as Farmer by Mystery Author Edith Maxwell
I'd been a gardener since college days in the early 70s, and when the chance came to not only buy a property north of Boston that had been an engineer's hobby garden but also leave my day job while our sons were young, we snapped it up. Our one-acre farm was already planted with blueberries, apple and pear trees, and grapes. The previous owner signed an affidavit stating that he had not used chemicals on the sizable vegetable plot, so I was able to get a head start on gaining organic certification from the Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA).
So when it came time to list my credentials in my proposal for the Local Foods Mystery series, it was no stretch to write, "The language and tensions of a farmer like Cam are rooted in my own life." It was a great life for a while. I was home with my children most of the time. I grew healthy organic food for my family and for others, and I was good at it. I communed in old clothes with the birds and the weather, and my commute was a two-minute walk. I even won an award for my Gold Cherry tomatoes at the county fair one year.
During the last winter between farming seasons, I wrote more than half a murder mystery set on - guess where? - a small organic farm. I'm using some of the fictional world I set up then, and several of the main characters, including farmer Cam Flaherty, in this new book. I'm so happy I can now reimmerse myself in that world without having to do all that heavy physical work, which, frankly, my body isn't quite up to any more.
Edith, thanks so much for being my guest today. I love the idea of farming because I grew up on a farm, but I've downsized my garden to four 4x4 raised beds and find that's plenty of work for me.
More about A Tine to Live A Tine to Die:
It's farming season in Westbury, Massachusetts, and geek-turned-novice farmer Cameron Flaherty hopes to make a killing selling organic produce. A quirky Locavore Club belongs to Cam's farm-share program. But when a killer strikes on her property, her first foray into the world of organic farming yields a bumper crop of locally sourced murder.
To clear her name, Cam has to dig up secrets buried deep beneath the soil of Produce Plus Plus Farm. And when the police don't make progress in the case, she has to catch a murderer whose motto seems to be, “Eat Local. Kill Local.”
To learn more about Edith and her books, visit her website and blog. She also contributes to the Wicked Cozy Authors blog. You can find her on Twitter (@edithmaxwell) and on Facebook.