Guest Post with Giveaway ~ Chime & Punishment by Julianne Holmes

CLOCK TOWER RESEARCH

One of my favorite parts of writing this series has been the research. For me, the hard part is knowing when to stop researching, and when to start writing. When I decided to make the clock tower in the Orchard Town Hall the focal point of Chime and Punishment, I had a vague idea of what a clock tower looked like inside, mostly from movies. My plot relied on those imaginings. Thankfully, I know a clockmaker who offered me a chance to wind a clock a tower.

I still remember the day I was telling my friend Susan about the clock shop series, and she said something to me that changed everything. “You know my husband is a clock maker, right?”

David Roberts runs the Clockfolk of New England [http://jimclockfolk.ipower.com/clockfolk/index.shtml] with his brother James. A visit to the shop, as well as to the wonderful American Clock and Watch Museum [http://www.clockandwatchmuseum.org/] got my creative juices flowing about the clocks themselves. But talking to the Roberts brothers helped me understand the training, dedication, patience, precision, and passion that are required to be a clockmaker in 2017. These days, we can keep time with our phones. But clocks are much more than timepieces. That are works of art.

Last summer Dave invited me on a field trip, to a clock tower in a church in Massachusetts. He, or James, or Susan, go there every week to wind the clock. That’s one of the things about clock towers I knew intellectually, but didn’t really understand until I went with them. Clock towers need to be wound every week. For this clock, that meant 50 revolutions per day, or 350 to keep it running for the week. The tower required climbing stairs to the balcony, and then ladders to the tower. It was hot, really hot. Clock towers aren’t typically air conditioned or heated.

Once I was up in the tower I realized I needed to rework the plot of the book. Clocks in clock towers are amazing machines, but they are more compact, not sprawling. The mechanism I saw was built by the Seth Thomas company in 1912. Now, the arms to the clock faces and the weights, they add more visual drama. But the clock itself was what inspired me. It was built to be in a tower where very few people would see it, yet there are details like an acorn topped brass screw that are lovely. There is a complicated simplicity to how the machine works. Simple in that I understood it, and marveled at the paddles that slowed down the bell so it wouldn’t ring extra times. Complicated in that I can’t imagine being able to dream up a clock in a tower. Things like the clock weights needing a special shaft because they needed to run the height of the tower so the clock could run for a week. That isn’t how my brain works.

But my brain does write mysteries, and my visit to the clock tower helped me think through my plot. It also helped me pay more attention to clock towers wherever we go, and silently thank the folks who keep them running.

So how did I use my clock tower field trip in Chime and Punishment? You’ll have to read the book to find out!

Guest post provided by the publisher.

Series: A Clock Shop Mystery (Book 3)
Publisher: Berkley (August 1, 2017)
Genre: Cozy Mystery
ISBN-10: 042527554X
ISBN-13: 978-0425275542
ASIN: B01MRK5HU7
Buy: Amazon, Kindle, IndieBound, The Book Depository

chime-and-punishment

Expert clockmaker Ruth Clagan has another murder on her hands in the third Clock Shop Mystery from the author of Clock and Dagger.

 Years ago, the serenity of picturesque Orchard, Massachusetts, was shattered by a fire that destroyed the town's beloved clock tower. Ruth inherited the dream of repairing it from her late grandfather. Now that she’s returned home to run his clock shop, the Cog & Sprocket, she’s determined to make it happen, despite wrenches that are being thrown into the works by her least favorite person, town manager Kim Gray.

A crowd of residents and visitors are excited to see the progress of the tower at a fund-raiser for the campaign, until Kim is found crushed under the tower’s bell, putting an end to all the fun. The list of suspects is so long it could be read around the clock, and it includes some of Ruth’s nearest and dearest.

Time's a-wastin’ as Ruth tries to solve another murder in her beloved Orchard while keeping the gears clicking on her dream project.

Thanks to the publisher I have one (1) copy of Chime and Punishment to give away.

Giveaway open to residents of the US only.
Giveaway ends on August 27th

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

Winner will have 48 hours from the time of notification to confirm their win or another winner will be chosen.

julianneI wear many hats, and have a few different names.

As J.A. Hennrikus, my short story, “Tag, You’re Dead” was published in Level Best Book’s anthology Thin Ice. “Her Wish” is in Dead Calm. And “The Pendulum Swings, Until It Doesn’t” was published in Blood Moon. I am one of many authors who had their publishing debut via Level Best Books, and am forever grateful to the editors.

As Julie Hennrikus, I am the Executive Director of StageSource, a service organization for theater artists and companies in the greater Boston area. For me, theater is both my vocation and my avocation. I also teach arts management classes at Emerson College.

Julianne Holmes writes the Clock Shop Mystery Series for Berkley Prime Crime. What a thrill–a dream come true. Just Killing Time is due out in October 2015. Clock and Dagger will be released in 2016, and I am working on book 3 now. I hope you enjoy meeting Ruth Clagan and following her adventures as much as I like writing them.

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