Marianna Morgan is the Private Investigator in my first novel The Case of a Cold Trail and a Hot Musket. People have asked me if Marianna is based on me. Not at all. Her personality is based primarily on my sister Linda. We all grew up in San Antonio and Linda is still there. She was instrumental in helping with logistical research and geography (that’ll be another post). In fact, the novel would not be nearly as exciting or complete without all of the people Linda introduced me to, the research she helped with, and the suggestions and guidance she offered.
Linda’s also a consummate organizer and knows pretty much every mover and shaker in town. Besides, she can find ANYTHING — you give Linda a “quest” (as we call them in our family) and she WILL find it, be it a person, place, or thing. I’ve never once received a reply of “Sorry I can’t help” and I’ve requested help with some pretty strange quests.
Linda is also a take-no-prisoners person with no tolerance for idiots, a wicked funny sense of humor, and the ability to come up with just the right come-back.
One conversation comes to mind from over 30 years ago. Linda was breaking up with the fellow she’d been dating. She collected every single item he’d given her or left at her place and tied it all into a large garbage bag, which she unceremoniously dropped over his fence into his yard. He asked, “Don’t you want to keep even one thing for sentimental reasons?” Her reply, “I don’t feel sentimental about you.”
I’m honored to style Marianna after my oldest sister. Had Linda not ended up in the career she chose, she’d have made a great Private Investigator. She already does everything a good Private Investigator does, except for shooting people (as far as I know).
Linda was the perfect model for Marianna since my goal was to create a character who knows her stuff, has a varied and interesting background, lives her life outside the customary and expected box, and has a sharp but not insulting personality. Her sense of humor is dry but she is actually a soft and sensitive person that few others ever see. In The Case of a Cold Trail and a Hot Musket you, dear reader, get a chance to see both sides of this feisty Private Investigator.
Marianna is not an exceptionally outstanding female specimen. She’s of average height, average build, brown haired. Although she does have a pair of penetrating green eyes, Marianna’s place to shine is not in her looks, but in her skill, her “smarts,” and her dogged determination to learn the truth and to always do right by her clients and her friends.
Who has been most influential or helpful in your life? Post about them here in a comment!
Want to enjoy Marianna Morgan’s most recent case? My book is available on Amazon both in print and Kindle versions.