Larkin Day just moved back home—at 35 years old. With no money, no job prospects, and nowhere to live except her mother's guest bedroom, Larkin is pretty sure this is the worst thing that's ever happened to her. Then her mother signs her up for community choir. Then the accompanist asks her out—and stands her up. Then he turns up dead.
…and that only covers the first three chapters of Ode to Murder, the first in a new series of cozy mystery novels by Nicole Dieker. Ode to Murder is out October 4, 2022.
I met Nicole over a decade ago through her online videos and a few shared fandoms. Throughout the years we collaborated professionally; I’d hire her to edit some of my writing, she’d interview me for her personal finance articles, etc.. I was always struck by how well Nicole crafted a story. Whether she was writing about her journey to financial independence, mastering the piano, or Gilmore Girls fanfic, I was engaged and eager for her next update.
So when she posted that she had recently finished writing a cozy mystery novel and was considering her various publication options, I immediately reached out. I spent the next two days reading the first book in the series, followed by the outlines for the next five books.
I was all-in at that point. I loved the characters, especially [redacted] and [redacted] (I don’t want to exonerate, or implicate, any suspects). I enjoyed the fictional setting of Pratincola, Iowa, a modern small town that felt both familiar yet distinct. As an avid music collector and fanatic, the musical themes throughout hooked me. And most importantly, the murder plot crescendoed to a satisfying pay off.
I hope you take a similar liking to Nicole’s work because Shortwave is also publishing her perzine series, WHAT IT IS and WHAT TO DO NEXT. This zine creates its own definition of what a perzine can be by combining the traditional personal stories with an instruction manual for understanding reality. WHAT IT IS and WHAT TO DO NEXT kicks off a quarterly release schedule with “Vol. 1: Down the Rabbit-Hole”, due out July 12, 2022.
Please join me in welcoming writer, teacher, and musician, Nicole Dieker as the inaugural author of Shortwave Media’s expanding catalog. She will be the second author represented by the press, joining my award-winning novel, Face the Night, published three months ago in March 2022.
Both of Nicole’s first-in-series titles are now available for pre-order from the Shortwave Shop. On October 4, 2022 you can join Larkin Day, a new and unlikely amateur sleuth, on her investigation in Ode to Murder.
And if you’re too excited to wait until October, consider picking up the first volume of WHAT IT IS and WHAT TO DO NEXT. This zine series might just change everything, or at least ask everything to reevaluate itself.
Click here to read Nicole's announcement of her two new book series.
- Alan Lastufka