Friday, June 17, 2011

Clare O'Donohue's "Missing Persons"

Clare O'Donohue worked on the HGTV show, Simply Quilts for four seasons, eventually becoming the Supervising Producer, and has written and produced for a lot of other shows as well. In the last twelve years, she worked on shows for The History Channel, truTV, Food Network, A&E, Discovery, TLC, and others.

In 2008 she published The Lover’s Knot, the first in the Someday Quilts series, and followed the debut with A Drunkard’s Path and The Double Cross. The Devil’s Puzzle, the fourth novel in the series, arrives in the fall of 2011.

Here she shares some suggestions for the lead characters in an adaptation of her new novel, Missing Persons, the first novel in her new, edgier mystery series:
In Missing Persons, I introduce Kate Conway, a 37-year-old freelance television producer whose about-to-be-ex-husband has died under suspicious circumstances. Kate is left with a pile of secrets, her crazy in-laws, and her husband's girlfriend, Vera, who wants to be friends. And as much as Kate would love to fall apart, she has bills to pay. In order to keep a roof over her head, Kate is willing to compromise her ethics to do her job. (In this case exploiting the family of a missing girl for a true crime show). Her sarcasm and her stubborness keep her on her feet even when things become creepy and threatening. I could see Jennifer Garner in her role, because I think Garner can be tough and girl-next-door. She's very attractive but not glamorous and, I'm just guessing, but she looks like she could handle a dirty joke or a dead mouse, but would run like hell from anyone with a gun. That's Kate. Mirielle Enos, who is starring in AMC's The Killing, is another possibility. Her character is also tough while trying very hard not to fall apart and Enos is terrific at walking that line.

Vera is a bit tougher to cast. She's 41, blond, and earth-mothery. Kate wants to hate Vera but can't. I wanted to hate Vera when I started writing the book, but couldn't either. She kind of grows on you in a ditsy but intelligent sort of way. I kept thinking of the late, great Judy Holliday when I wrote the character. Both Vera and Kate are likable people who make some inexcusable choices, so it's a hard balance for an actress, but I think they'd be fun women to play.
Learn more about the book and author at Clare O'Donohue's website and blog.

Read about the crime novel O'Donohue would most like to have written.

The Page 69 Test: Missing Persons.

--Marshal Zeringue