INTERVIEW with Crystal D. Budy

Crystal D. Budy is the writer of the North Coast Mystery Series. The newest title is Echo of Chaos and is due to be released at the end of July, 2012. Budy is from a small town in Ohio called North Kingsville, about an hour and fifteen minutes east of Cleveland. The North Coast Mysteries are set in Ohio. Although Budy currently writes in the mystery genre, she is looking to explore others as well. Echo of Darkness brings together characters Rob Karlton and Stevie Winters who were featured in the two previous "Echos," Echo of Silence and Echo of Darkness.

In Echo of Chaos, Special Agents Rob Karlton and Stevie Winters are not what anyone would call friends. When they are assigned to locate not just the several million dollars worth of valuables that have been stolen from Councilman Joseph DeGlauser's home but his missing ex-wife as well, these two agents are forced to put aside their differences. They must try and weed their way through the many enemies in the Councilman's sordid career while the rest of the violent crimes unit tries to solve the murder of two of DeGlauser's peers. Did Councilman DeGlauser stage the break-in to get rid of his leech of an ex-wife? Are the murders, disappearance, and burglary connected? Was this the work of a professional or is someone angry with the politician's ultra-conservative views? Join the Cleveland FBI's Violent Crimes Unit as they attempt to unravel the hidden agendas of those involved as they wind through the seedy underbelly of the local political scene.

Echo of Chaos is the third exciting novel in the North Coast Mysteries series. Based in Cleveland, Ohio, in the FBI's violent crimes unit, the series follows a group of FBI agents in work and life. Murder, kidnappings, and mayhem spell out the lives of these people -- and their personal lives aren't much better.

When asked how she comes up with her ideas, and how she is inspired, Budy states, "I pull a lot of it from current and past events, then place my own spin on it. Writing is what I love to do. When I'm writing, I can get lost inside my own reality. I control everything there and it's a form of therapy for me. I can find inspiration in just about anything but in all honesty, I do it because I love it."

Her covers are designed by the amazing Karri at 

In reading Budy's work, it appears effortlessly and flawlessly executed, but she does have one challenge: "The hardest part for me is usually spinning a suspenseful mystery. I don't want something to be too predictable, yet I don't want people to be flipping back through the pages trying to figure out where the heck I came up with that ending. That's the hardest part for me because I want it to be believable while still be interesting."

Budy's favorite authors, for a variety of reasons, include, "James Patterson's suspense, Janet Evanovich's humor, Kelly Armstrong's fantasy, and Nora Roberts' romance. I also am partial to classic authors such as Jane Austen, H.G. Wells, and Victor Hugo." As far as new authors, Budy says, "I sadly haven't done a lot of reading lately between writing, school, and work. I've enjoyed the stuff I've read by Kirkus MacGowan. The last new 'mainstream' author I tried was Heather Gudenkauf. I've only read one novel by her but it instantly gripped my attention. I'd read more by her."

Some of Budy's writing influence comes from another author. "I'd say that there is a lot of Janet Evanovich-like humor in my writing; or at least early Stephanie Plum." And then, "there's also a darker side to my writing and characters than hers. I'm honestly not sure that I can answer that question with any one person who has influenced me."

Some authors become inspired by music. Budy mentions several that can get her into writing mode. "For some reason, Hinder, Muse, and Red Wanting Blue. I can relate a lot of their songs to my characters. I wouldn't say they influence it, but they get me in the mood while I'm writing and a lot of their songs reflect how my characters are feeling. A little bit of Tom Petty and Aerosmith never rocked the boat, either. ;)"

It may be amazing to Budy's fans how long she has been writing her well-developed characters. "I have been writing many of the characters in the North Coast Mystery series since I was twelve-years-old."


Echo of Silence is the first book in the series (available at Echo of Darkness is the second one. They are both available on Amazon Kindle and as a trade paperback. Echo of Chaos, the third in the series, should be out on Kindle and paperback at the end of July. 

Budy can often be found on the blogs of others and social networking.