Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Ann Littlewood

From Julia Buckley's interview with Ann Littlewood, author of Night Kill:

You refer to your first mystery, Night Kill, as a zoo-dunnit, and you suggest that very few mysteries are set in zoos. With so many animal lovers in the world, why do you think this is not a more common setting?

I have a couple of theories. One is the association of zoos with children and possibly an assumption that only books for children would use this setting.

Another is that there just aren’t all that many zookeepers, period, and therefore not many who write fiction. Every zookeeper has a trove of fascinating stories, so let’s hope more of them decide to write! Another reason may be that people outside the profession think of zookeeping as rather sweet and undramatic, more appropriate for heartwarming anecdotes than for murder.

Trust me, it’s a dangerous profession, the relationships between keepers and animals are complex, and keepers share the same emotions and conflicts as the rest of humanity. And it's got all those great animals, so it’s a rich milieu for crime fiction. Night Kill is driven by grief and anger—I don’t think you’ll find it sentimental. In fact, I felt I had to go back and lighten it up a bit and add some humor.
Read the complete Q & A.

Visit Ann Littlewood's website and blog.

Writers Read: Ann Littlewood.

--Marshal Zeringue