But I still wanted to know how Husom got started writing these frightening books in the first place. It turns out that long before she wrote her first suspense novel, Murder in Winnebago County, Husom had written poetry, essays, and a romance novel or two. She never gave mysteries or suspense much thought until her beloved father, a retired jurist, drowned unexpectedly at the hospital where he was recovering from a bout of pneumonia. For his family, the death was inexplicable and emotionally shattering. The circumstances surrounding the loss haunted Husom for a year. She needed answers and began working out many scenarios in her head. Her father had been a district judge, considered fair and compassionate, and, despite this, he had received occasional threats. Husom imagined someone carrying out a vendetta, and the seeds for her first novel and first villian, serial killer Alvie Eisner, were born.
The third novel in the series, Altar by the River was inspired by local true-crime events involving the daughters of a local minister who were forced to undergo satanic ritual abuse by prominent businessmen. This is the kind of material, when you think about it happening in your own back yard, will have you staying up all night to finish the story.
Not everything about Husom's stories is scary, though. When I asked the author what she loved about writing, the answers recalled, of course, her memorable and super-likable heroes: protagonist, Sergeant Corky Aleckson, and special friend, Detective Smoke Dawes. Husom said she feels an immense satisfaction when she can transport the characters, heroes and villains, from inside her imagination to the page, and make them come to life for the reader. Some of the best compliments she's received are: "I think I'm going to run into these people on the street", and "I wish I could hang out with Corky."
This writer is not only one of the nicest and most genuine people I have ever met, she's also the busiest. She and her husband Dan own and operate a retail and service-oriented business, Sole and Body, in downtown Buffalo, MN. They have four children and six grandchildren whom they see often, but always on Sundays for a full-family, dinner gathering. The writer is a member of her local Rotary Club and is on the board of Fishing Klinic for Kids Minnesota. Am I done? No. I just learned that Husom threw in her hat in the ring to run for one of five seats for Wright County Commissioner. I hope you win, Christine Husom!
The Noding Field Mystery, Husom's fourth novel, will be published by Second Wind Publishing in November.