Sunday, April 8, 2012

Interview with Camille Minichino aka Ada Madison

Cover image of The Square Root of Murder by Ada Madison


1.  When did you begin writing?  Why?

Postmenopausal. Because it was time.

2.  When and why did you begin writing mysteries?

When I realized they were more fun and interesting than other genres. Also, the periodic table (theme of my first series) lent itself to murder and mayhem, with each element a mystery of its own.

3.  Are you writing a series or a stand-alone?  Explain your basic idea for your series.

I write 3 series. The latest is an "academic" mystery with a college campus in New England. My protagonist teaches math, as I did. Soon every phase of my life will be a mystery series.

4.  Tell us about your journey to publication with this book.

They asked. I wrote.

5.  Why did you choose to write about the topic, community, issues you chose?

I like to stay with what I know intimately. I love doing research for secondary characters and for plot threads, but for the protagonists' voices, it helps that I've been there.

6.  How have you found it to be published?  Share that experience.

Love it when the limo drives up and my handler takes me around the world to booksellers . . . wait. You mean really? Not like that.

7.  Do you have comments from readers or reviewers you’d like to share?

My first reviewer liked that my first protagonist had both "brains and hips."

8.  What other books have you published and where, when?

Besides 16 mysteries, a book on nuclear waste management. Not a big seller.

9.  Do you have a work in progress now?  Is it part of a series?

I'm working on the next one in each of the 3 series, plus a short story for a dollhouse magazine.

10.  If you belong to Sisters in Crime, and/or the Guppies, has that been helpful?  How?
I'm past-president and current board member of Sisters in Crime NorCal. It was tremendously   helpful as I got started, with workshops, advice, and camaraderie. I've met amazing people and have had the opportunity through the organization to pay it forward.

11.  What benefit to you has it been to go to mystery conferences like Malice Domestic?

Meeting fans, other writers, booksellers is always useful and fun.

12.  What else would like to say about your books, the next one in your series?

The mystery community is the best! I'm happy to be part of it, and hope to add more series to my list. Anyone interested in a nun sleuth in 1965?


Camille Minichino, a retired physicist turned writer, is the author of the Periodic Table Mysteries.  As Margaret Grace, she writes the Miniature Mysteries with Gerry Porter and her eleven-year-old granddaughter; as Ada Madison,she writes an academic series featuring Professor Sophie Knowles, math teacher at a fictional college in Massachusetts.  Visit her website: and blog htt://



  1. A great set of questions, Judy. Thanks for posting. I hope everyone had a good holiday weekend.

  2. A nun sleuth in 1965 sounds like a great read. I hope you have success with that idea.

  3. Thanks lllk10. I'll keep you posted!

  4. I read The Square Root of Murder right after it came out and enjoyed it very much!

  5. academyst -- I wish I'd thought of your handle first!
    I'm glad you enjoyed Square Root -- the series is on its way with #2 Probability of Murder out, and #3 Function of Murder later this year. Can't wait for the panel next week!