Mark de Castrique
Revealing the Mystery of Writing a Mystery
Edgar Award-nominee Mark de Castrique will share how he approaches the creation of his mystery novels. He'll examine the elements of a good story as they apply to the genre. He'll discuss the three types of detectives – amateur, law enforcement officer, and private investigator – and this opinion on the strengths and weaknesses of each. Plotting in a mystery is key. What makes a good plot? Why do plots fail? How can humor and homicide share the same pages? Finally, Mark will offer his Point of View on POV and the ways POV shapes the story and impacts the reader. It's all part of revealing the mystery of writing a mystery.
Mark was born in Hendersonville, NC, near Asheville, and went straight from the hospital to the funeral home where his father was the funeral director and the family lived upstairs. The unusual setting sparked his popular Barry Clayton series and launched his mystery writing career.
He is the author of twenty-three novels: seven set in the fictional NC mountain town of Gainesboro, nine in Asheville, four in Washington D.C., one science thriller set in 2030, and two mysteries written for Middle Graders and set in the Charlotte region.
His novels have received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and Booklist. The CHICAGO TRIBUNE wrote,“As important and as impressive as the author’s narrative skills are the subtle ways he captures the geography – both physical and human – of a unique part of the American South.”
Mark is a veteran of the broadcast and film production business. In Washington D.C., he directed numerous news and public affairs programs and received an EMMY Award for his documentary film work. Through his company, MARK et al., he writes and produces videos for corporate and broadcast clients.
His years in Washington inspired his DC thrillers, THE 13TH TARGET, involving a terrorist plot against The Federal Reserve, THE SINGULARITY RACE, a winner-take-all quest for Artificial Intelligence, and SECRET LIVES and DANGEROUS WOMEN, featuring feisty and fearless ex-FBI agent Ethel Fiona Crestwater.
Mark and his wife Linda have two daughters. They live in Charlotte, but can be often found in the NC mountains or the nation’s capital.