Friday, April 19, 2013

Beach Chat with David Edgar Cournoyer

This is the actual dining room
where I met David and Gloria
at breakfast one cold November morn.
Date: November, 2010.  Time: around 8 a.m. Place: A.Y.C.E. Breakfast Buffet at the Hilton Hilton Hotel in Deadham, Massachusetts.  Event:  New England Crime Bake, a conference for readers and writers of mysteries.  Sitting at a table near me as I gobbled up my scrambled eggs I spotted a couple who seemed to be discussing, of all things, murder!  I introduced myself and a friendship was formed.  We've stayed in touch over the years and finally, at long last, David has realized his dream of being a published mystery author.  My time has allowed me to read only a few pages, but what I read grabbed me and I hope to curl up with the rest of it soon.  BTW, his wife, Gloria is a mystery writer, too, and I hope soon she’ll be joining me for a beach chat.  But for now, without further ado, let’s get to know today’s guest, the author of On the Level.

Beach chat with:  David Edgar Cournoyer

Most cherished beach memory: Sitting on Avery Point in Groton, CT next to a classic Victorian home, sketching the light house in New London Harbor, and thinking what a great setting that would be for a novel.

Recommend a Beach Read: Anything by Carolyn J. Rose. The Great Grabowski had a nice ocean setting and a laugh a minute. But I put on the sun screen first when I settle in with one of her more serious works like A Place of Forgetting

One author, living or dead, with whom you’d like to sip Mai Tais with on Waikiki Beach:  Barry Eisler, if I could get him to stop throwing bombs long enough to enjoy the view. Barry tells a terrific story, is funny, bright, and irreverent about the publishing world.

Worst non-writing job you ever had: Let’s see, paperboy, dairy farm hand, textile worker, plastics fabricator, water resources researcher, home builder, evaluator for a community mental health center, college professor, anthropologist, Dean. It is difficult to designate one as worst. They all had their moments.  Until I became a college administrator at least I was providing goods or services that people needed.

Favorite quote or saying: It’s my life, and I’ll live it as I want to--if it’s okay with Gloria.

Song that you dance to (when no one is watching): I once danced the waltz to Sam by Olivia Newton-John in a ballroom dancing competition in Stamford, CT.  It is my fervent hope that no one was watching.  

Three of your favorite things: Not counting Gloria, Andrew, and Jason who are wife and sons, not things, I would say curling up in front of a fire with a good mystery by Dick or Felix Francis, making something broken whole again (like a rundown Victorian home, or a classic Italian sports car), and writing, of course. 

Two secret vices:  They won’t be secret anymore if I announce them on your blog. I’ll admit to engaging in long conversations with friends, rife with interruptions and overlapping dialog. I’m also a fanatical do-it-yourself guy.  I can fix or build nearly anything. As a result, I have a numerous jars containing spare and unidentified parts.   

One pet peeve: The disrespect of writers in the traditional book publishing world.  If agents and editors have time to say “send me your stuff” they have time to say “no thanks.”

Bio/Published works/Links:  David Edgar Cournoyer is a do-it-yourself fanatic who lives in Connecticut in a house built by his own hands.  He has restored several homes including a hundred year old Victorian-inspired bungalow in the seaside community that served as the inspiration for On the Level.  David is also an Anthropologist who has written extensively for professional audiences on the topic of culture and parenting.  His favorite author is the late Dick Francis.  

Click Here
for Buy Links
     David’s first novel, On the Level, is available for Kindle and in paperback from

     “This can’t be happening,” exclaims twenty-five-year-old self-employed handyman and aspiring architect Franklin Breault. On the eve of his final internship, Franklin’s mentor, architect Joe Simpson, is found dead. Worse, Franklin discovers Joe had been a blackmailer. The victims believe Franklin has their secrets, and they want them back. His precariously balanced life crumbles like substandard concrete as Franklin races to find the extortion files and a murderer, before he’s the next victim. All Franklin wants from life is to engage in his two passions: restoring Victorian homes and courting his business partner, Linda Kisslovich. Franklin had planned a two-for-one by restoring Joe’s rundown Queen Anne, enticing Linda to move in with him. But Linda dislikes the house and is seeing an old flame. Heartbroken, Franklin partners with Ginny Maxwell, a hot young IRS criminal investigator on the trail of missing millions that may lead to Joe’s killer. Romantic sparks fly, but Franklin can’t close the deal. Is Ginny holding out for a ring, or Joe’s files? With a stoic philosophy, dry humor, and the help of loyal friends, Franklin navigates a minefield of choices between expediency and morality. He begins this escapade with a carpenter’s view of ethics; either you’re on the level or you’re not. In the fiery climax he confronts his biggest ethical dilemma. Someone he loves is a murderer, and he must decide between loyalty and integrity. Any way he chooses, he loses. Set in a picturesque village beside Long Island Sound, where classic Victorians are outnumbered only by herring gulls, On The Level has the danger-driven pace of a mystery thriller and the complex love triangle of a romance.  


David said...

Hi Jayne.
I remember the New England Crimebake during which we met. You too have been busy since then. I can't wait to read your latest work.

I'll be dropping in all day in the event that one of your readers is a cryptologist and can get past the security screen for comments. David

Carolyn J. Rose said...

David, thanks for the plug. The Big Grabowski is now out of print, but will be revised and re-released this summer as Death at Devil's Harbor - more of a "beachy" title.

Jayne... said...

Hey, David! Glad you found the blog today. Or yesterday, technically, I guess. I agree that it is VERY difficult to comment on this blog. when I didn't have the captcha on I was getting spam comments...I Russian...and it took so much of my day to delete those. The price of "fame" I guess. :) Anyway, lots of traffic coming through so hopefully that will translate to a sale or two. Good luck!

David said...

Humor aside, it wasn't that difficult to post a comment. Also, I had the same experience with spammers on my blog. Vague comments and links to porn sites don't contribute anything positive to our blogs, so the security tests are a good trade off.
Olivia Newton John's performance brings back such embarrassing memories!

JL Greger said...

Did you used to be an in social work at U Conn? Amazing how you learn so much through blogs that you don't know from personal contact over several years.

Guess we're both writing mysteries now. My two are medical mysteries/suspense novels -Coming Flu and Murder: A New Way to Lose Weight. JL

David said...

Guilty as charged. After you left I spent a year as Dean of the School of Social Work. The view from there told me that a new career would be a good idea!

David said...

Both your books sound like good, if scary, beach reads.