Interview with Christine DeMaio-Rice, Author of DEAD IS THE NEW BLACK

Cover Design by Flip City Author Services

Today I”m interviewing Christine DeMaio-Rice, author of the hit cozy mystery, Dead is the New Black.

In your new cozy mystery DEAD IS THE NEW BLACK, your amateur sleuth, Laura, works in New York City’s fashion industry.  Yet you live on the West coast and studied screenwriting.  Tell us about your NYC and fashion connections.

I was a young painter fresh out of School of Visual Arts in 19(gurgle, cough). I realized that not only did I need money, but that I was no longer interested in painting. I was utterly burned out. Luckily, a friend of mine from high school was just exiting Parson’s and told me I could turn my talents to something artistic and lucrative, just as he was. I borrowed his portfolio and got a job as a designer.

Did I just say that?
Which character in DEAD IS THE NEW BLACK was the most fun for you to write about?

Sheldon, the prick lawyer. He doesn’t care about anyone else. Well no. He does, but his wife’s dead by page 5, so he doesn’t care what anyone thinks of him, and all he wants to do is liquidate any memory of his wife. Every time he walked into a room, I just imagined him strafing it with napalm.

I think she knows how to use them…
Not to sound shallow, but the very first thing that struck me about DEAD IS THE NEW BLACK is the cover.  It’s a knockout, and you created it yourself.  What’s your process when you design a cover?

Not to be shallow? Listen, covers are this fun new career for me, so feel free to be shallow.

Every cover is different. For this one I had about seven ideas and they all sucked. The VOGUE lettering sucked. The young tailor sucked. The sewing supplies. Suck. The runway. Suck Suck Suck. So I just typed “New York” into Shutterstock and on like, page 45 this photo you see came up with a space for a title right on that building (which I believe is is SoHo). I diddled with it for three weeks. I cannot even tell you how many layers it has. All told, the file is 75mb. I’m much more efficient when I do other people’s covers.
What’s next for Laura?  Can you spill a few details about the next book in the series?

Well, romantically, it’s not all cut and dried. No walking off into the sunset. No one gets to work 70 hours a week and maintain a relationship, I’m sorry, but that’s a fantasy.
Professionally, Laura’s about to learn how hard it is to run your own business, and all about the fallacy of creative purity in fashion.

And there’s a murder, of course, because I do need to sell books.
Dream casting for Laura?  Jeremy?  Ruby?

Laura and her sister Ruby are played by one of two pairs, and I don’t care which is which. Either Heather Graham/Kate Hudson or the Olsen Twins.

I refuse to let …

… the Olsen Twins appear on my blog.

Jeremy, I just don’t know. He was originally Jeremy Piven, then he grew into something else. He actually looks like someone I know, but I can’t say or he’ll be too uncomfortable to be my friend any more.
This photo reminds me of your author pic, Christine!
Thanks for stopping by, Christine!  I’m reading Dead is the New Black right now and enjoying it immensely.    
To check out a recent review, go here: BigAl’s Books and Pals.

To buy Dead is the New Black, click here:

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