“The idea for this book just occurred to me, same as always,” said Joe Shumock about his latest novel, The Last Parade. “With all that was going on politically and with COVID, it appeared to be a good time.”
This fifth installment in the author’s Letter Series finds former CIA Agent Rage Doyle uncovering a plot for a military takeover to replace the president. An investigation into the death of a congresswoman hints at a plan in the making. Her bereaved grandmother shared her loved one’s recent projects with a sitting senator and that she kept a journal of her time on the Hill. As Doyle and his unique group of associates investigate the young woman’s assassination, they uncover clues, follow money, and stir up danger. With the death toll of the conspirators’ foes rising, astonishing evidence that pandemic-stricken America has only days before facing a coup. Can the damning proof be found and a counter plot be executed before America’s last parade?
Joe is well known for his ability to weave a mystery with surprises around every corner, yet his craft for the sinister also extends to the sensual. In the books of his Letter Series, all involve an amorous subplot. “For those who’ve read the earlier books, The Last Parade brings a former relationship to the forefront again.”
“This writing experience was different from my other seven books as most of the editing happened last year when my wife, Pat, and I took a four-month long, 14,000-mile road trip with an uncounted number of overnight stops in an RV. We traveled from Alabama through the middle of the U.S. then into Canada at Sault Ste Marie, winding eastward to Nova Scotia. Along the way, we visited the house and area that inspired Anne of Green Gables. We traveled through New England as we headed back south. Great trip and finally, a finished book.”
“Writing has appealed to me from childhood. Like so many others who would like to write a book, life got in the way. Finally, I sat down and began writing. I am now working on books number eight and nine. I also have written some short pieces I will be sharing soon on social media and my website.”
“Obviously, I didn’t ‘write what I know’ in The Last Parade. I wrote about an idea and researched as needed. When possible, I visit or have visited the locations important in my stories. For Sacrifice of the Lambs, I spent three weeks in Prague, Czech Republic. I have lived in New Orleans and have visited almost all the other locales in The Last Parade. The characters are mostly figments of my imagination. Some readers accuse me of being the Rage Doyle of my stories. Not true. Rage is smarter, better looking, and has had a more interesting life.”
Joe and I have worked together on a pair of mystery/suspense novels, a children’s chapter book, and a Biblical novelette since we met at the Decatur Book Festival in 2015. During editing, we’ve cultivated a good rhythm with a rapport that is honest and includes abundant laughter. But even good relationships have bumps in the road, and this time, Joe admitted to me, “It was COVID. I thought I should use it. You didn’t. We compromised.”
To budding authors, Joe offered, “Write something every day. Set a reasonable words-per-day goal and work to meet it. That’s 1,200 words for me. Try to work from an outline. Listen to your editor and others, then work it out.”
It’s true: writers have most of the fun, but editors can too! Joes’ books are always lively and satisfying. And with very positive reviews, readers agree.
For information on Joe Shumock and his books, visit www.JoeShumockAuthor.com