Kori D Miller

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Children's Books

Author Profile

Kori D Miller

Here's the nitty-gritty: I write sinfully scandalous mysteries for adults, and create memorable adventures for young people. If you love Dr. Who, Sherlock, Star Trek, The Sneetches, Marvin the Martian, and Wonder Woman, then we should talk. I also love people-watching, and creating a storyline and dialogue for what I'm seeing. And I'd be lying if I said that some of those experiences don't end up in my books. Tweet with me @kmillerwrites.

Books

North Downing: A Dezeray Jackson Novel

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

PI Dezeray Jackson specializes in uncovering secrets and she won't stop until she discovers the truth. When private investigator Dezeray Jackson accepts accused murderer, James Keeney as a client, she initiates an investigation of the victim’s family, who were all cleared during the original inquiry several years before. As Dez gets closer to the truth, she uncovers secrets that, if revealed, will devastate the victim’s husband and brother. But with little time remaining to clear her client of a murder charge, Dez must identify the real killer, or watch an innocent man spend the rest of his life in prison. North Downing: A Dezeray Jackson Novel is book 2 in Kori D. Miller’s exciting mystery-thriller series. If you enjoy Evanovich, Grafton, or Muller, then you’ll love getting to know PI Dezeray Jackson. She’s smart, sassy, and has a penchant for good-looking men, a great game of pool, weapons, and unraveling secrets.

Book Bubbles from North Downing: A Dezeray Jackson Novel

For Hire: Assistant

I've never had an assistant. If I did, I think I'd want the person to be a cross between Dalton and Clive Dixon. Dalton has book smarts and amazing computer skills; Clive is street savvy and has a head for numbers. Dez doesn't like the way Dalton always knows when she's coming into the office, without her having told him, but she appreciates his computer know-how and sensible nature. What qualities would you want in an assistant?

It Ain't a Castle

Writing this opening scene was a lot of fun. That might seem a strange thing to say once you've read it, but having never been to the Nebraska State Pen to visit an inmate, I had to research this to make it as accurate as possible. It just so happens that I know a few officers, including one or two who work at, or have been to, the Pen. North Downing is the second book in my Dezeray Jackson mystery-thriller series. If you haven't read Hush (5 stars from Readers' Favorite), be sure to start there! Then, pick up North Downing. I'm already writing the third book, so you won't be waiting too long for it!

Deadly Sins III: A Dezeray Jackson Mini-Series

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

For hire: Smart, sassy PI with a penchant for weapons Private investigator Dezeray Jackson goes where the leads take her, and this time she's on the trail of a young, former drug dealer, she wants to protect, a college kid with strange habits, and a thief who could cost her the one job she's always wanted. It's just another day in the life of an up-and-coming private eye from the heart of the midwest. Read these great short stories during your commute! The Burning Possession Job Security

Book Bubbles from Deadly Sins III: A Dezeray Jackson Mini-Series

Hidden Passages

A necklace worth millions is missing. The suspects are all in attendance. But is Dez getting set up? She's working at Tracer International, but she has to pass a final test. Is this the test? She doesn't know. All she knows is that she's on assignment. Her only job is to secure a room that holds all of the items for an auction and now the most expensive item is gone. If you enjoy reading short mysteries, then you'll love the Deadly Sins Mini-Series!

Tough Negotiations

Here's the deal, my negotiation skills suck. Really, they do. So when I decided to begin a story where it ends about a kid with a gun, I knew I'd need to learn more about how to negotiate. Hostage negotiation is a completely different experience than business negotiation. In business, I always know that I can walk away. But Dez can't simply walk away from a young guy holding a gun to the head of Eddy Montgomery's niece. I had to make Dez into a solid negotiator. She's not perfect, and as these things continue in other stories, she and I will become stronger at this skill, but this first attempt isn't too bad. What do you think? How can I make Dez a stronger negotiator?

Running Scared

When people discover that I'm an author, the question I most often hear is, "Where do you get your ideas?" And most authors, myself included, will answer, "I'm never short on those." Anything can spark a story, but not every story gets developed. In this story, I knew I wanted you to get to know Clive. He's a recurring character in Dez's storyline. I didn't know how I wanted to do it, so I sat down and let my fingers do the talking. All of the Deadly Sins short stories give you a glimpse into Dez's life, the people who matter most to her, who she was, and who she's becoming. They're snapshots. For a limited time, DS3 is available for .99. I'd love to hear from you after you finish reading, so get in touch @kmillerwrites.

HUSH

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

What secrets are you hiding? We all have a few. Private investigator Dezeray Jackson specializes in uncovering secrets. And she won't stop until she discovers the truth. Dezeray Jackson examines the cold case of a 13-year-old girl from Fremont, NE. As details unfold, Dez is forced to confront her feelings about her sister's unsolved murder, manage her relationship with former lover, Patrick Murphy, and diffuse the tension he's creating with her current lover, Scott James. Things become more complicated when Dez begins receiving communication from a dead guy. If you like Janet Evanovich, Marcia Muller or Sue Grafton, then you'll love a series that combines all of their best traits into a smart, sassy, take no BS private investigator from the midwest, who has a penchant for weapons, scotch, fine wines, good-looking men, a great game of pool, and a Rottweiler named Godfrey.

Book Bubbles from HUSH

It's Getting Hot In Here

I'm not a romance author, so when it came time for me to write a sizzling scene in HUSH, I did what any author would do -- I listened to mood music. It's amazing how easily the words flowed after that!

Tell Me Lies

During the course of a few recent interviews, the interviewers marveled at how fiction writers, myself included, come up with our stories. Each time, I laughed and said, "We just make stuff up." And honestly, it's not that difficult to do. In fact, the more challenging aspects of writing, for me, are after I've written the first draft. Why? 'Cause now I have to make it all work. That's not always easy to do, especially if you're more of fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of writer. As I continue writing novels, I'm beginning to appreciate how helpful an outline - even a one-sentence/chapter outline - is. As for HUSH - it was mostly pantsing. And Fables? It ain't a real place. ;o)

Spewing Innocent Insults

I have to admit that I was channeling familiar experiences while writing this scene. Over the years, I've met countless people, who've been just like Mrs. Jasper. They'd say things like, "You don't sound black," and honestly think that what they said wasn't offensive. The voices of those people ran through my head and straight to my fingers as I created the dialogue between Mrs. Jasper and Dez. And like Dez, I always wanted to smack the person upside the head, but talked myself out of it. Violence isn't the answer even when you want it to be. As a pacifist writing a character who isn't, getting in touch with my younger, angrier self is what helps me put Dez's sarcastic, yet honest thoughts onto the page.

What's a Girl to Do?

Ladies, what do you do when two men are battling for your attention? When one brings you flowers and offers to make you dinner, and the other one usually brings you beer and take out, is it really a difficult choice? Patrick Murphy is the beer and take out guy, but he's known Dez since high school. Scott doesn't really stand a chance. Or does he? Read HUSH. Are you Team James or Team Murphy?

Dante

Children's Books

Dante is trapped inside a glass cage with no way to get out. Day after day, he watches as his friends are taken away by The Gatekeeper. Dante, determined to find his friends, plots his escape. One day, The Gatekeeper opens the lid and Dante climbs to the top. He dodges The Gatekeeper's hands and lands onto the floor with a soft thud. Will Dante find his friends, or something more - his forever family?

Book Bubbles from Dante

We're The Pets

It's so true that our pets train us, and that we don't train them. It's been years since I had ferrets, but now, I have dogs and cats. And, they have me well-trained! When one of our dogs wants out, he nudges my leg. He keeps doing this until I get up. If I ignore him, he either nudges me harder, or schratches my leg (ouch!) So, when he starts coming over to me, I usually get up to let him out. One of our cats expects me to follow him when he meows. If I don't, he turns around, meows louder, and doesn't move until he knows that I'm right behind him. Another of our cats taught me that when he wants outside, he'll sit quietly next to the deck door. He doesn't do this at any other door of our house! My ferret, Jester, trained me to open his cage when he rattled the door. I wonder if they think I've been difficult to train?

Ferrets Want to be Free

The other day, I visited a local pet shop. They had three, young ferrets, inside a glass cage, with four hinged lids. The lids were metal with holes about the size of a quarter. I watched as two of the ferrets played and wrestled. As I approached, the female ferret (she was the smallest and youngest) tried to climb up the glass to reach me. I was instantly reminded of Dante. One of the clerks opened the cage for me. I reached inside, and the female ferret latched onto my sweater sleeve, and started to climb out. I think all of the animals are just waiting for their chance to escape. Can you imagine being trapped and longing to be free? It took a lot of will-power not to leave with three new furry friends that day, but my ferret refuge isn't ready. For now, I'll keep making character sock puppets.

Ferrets Are the Best Pets

Ever since I saw "The Beastmaster," I've loved ferrets. Podo and Kodo were the cutest, funniest, and smartest little critters I'd seen in a movie. My first ferret, Jester, loved to steal shiny things. Once, he stole my apartment keys. Months later, I found them, on the floor, in the back of a closet! Puck was my second ferret. He liked hiding in cabinets and going to sleep. He also was an escape artist. Puck would find his way outside, go on a walk about, and return unharmed. I worried, but he proved he could take care of himself. Ferrets are great pets because they love to play and snuggle. They also adjust to your sleep schedule. That's always a good thing. What's your favorite furry, feathered, or furless friend?

Deadly Sins II: A Dezeray Jackson Mini-Series

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

Private Investigator, Dezeray Jackson, is settling into her new life back in her home town of Omaha, NE, but things aren't settled around her. Her main squeeze from high school returns searching for his brother's killer. Dez's friend gets her newly acquired painting, worth big bucks, stolen. Katrina, Dez's former best friend, enlists Dez's help to track down the guy behind a deal gone bad. A wealthy woman hires Dez to investigate her husband, but when the wife becomes a suspect in his poisoning, he hires Dez to find out who's trying to kill him. And, successful entrepreneur, Maxwell Hunter, seeks Dez's expertise to find the woman who took his son. Deadly Sins II is a non-stop reading ride!

Book Bubbles from Deadly Sins II: A Dezeray Jackson Mini-Series

Amateur Facebook Detectives

Have you ever lost touch with someone, and wanted desperately to find them? What did you do? Now that Facebook exists, it's a lot easier to narrow your search. You've probably re-connected with former childhood friends, found loved ones, or checked up on someone who wronged you. That's where this story begins. Maxwell Hunter is searching for a former lover. He's got a singular objective and hires Dez to help him accomplish his goal. But, can he be satisfied with how things end? Read "Yellow Bones," and telll me what you'd do in his position. Connect with me on Twitter @kmillerwrites #yellowbones.

Inspiration is Everywhere

I'm often asked where I get story ideas. We live in a pretty chaotic, strange, amazing, and freaky world. Some of my ideas come straight from news headlines. I'll read something, or listen to a story, and think, "What if?" Then, the game begins. I'll take some ideas to what I believe are ridiculous extremes. But, the reality is, well, reality. Nothing is stranger than that, and those seemingly incredible actions make the most engaging stories, don't you think?

Overbearing People Suck

Sometimes, an overbearing person is pretty straight forward to identify -- like Rick in the first part of this scene. Other times, though, a person's overbearing nature is beneath the surface. It's subtle. They're vampires hiding in the shadows. Katrina and Dez go way back. They became friends in high school, and know each other's secrets. Paste this link into your browser. http://koridmiller.com/2015/03/25/bffs-arent-always-who-they-seem/ What happens when your BFF makes a change -- one you didn't see coming? Did your BFF go down a wrong path? Tell me how you handled it, over on my website. The first person to share their experience will receive a free PDF or epub of Deadly Sins II.

Deadly Sins

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

There are four stories in this flash fiction book that will keep you guessing! Eccentric Mayville Toussaint hires Dez to find two men who stole a box from her. Toussaint’s instructions are simple — find the thieves, recover the box, and return it unopened. A dangerous game of cat and mouse, double-dealing and lying place Dez in harm’s way. Dez recovers the box — case closed. But when returning the treasured item, Dez learns that Toussaint has been playing her own game of cat and mouse … with Dez. Toussaint clearly is not who she seems. But who is she? ISBN: 9780991475629

Book Bubbles from Deadly Sins

Finessing the Game

I started shooting pool when I was about 13-years-old, maybe younger. Rocky, a big, black, nearly blind guy, sat on a chair in a corner of his game room overseeing my progress. Under his tutelage, I learned to recognize a bad stick and a table with shitty rails, hold a cue, site the ball, set up shots, bank, and play basic eight ball. Jimmy Hill (an early crush) and I played game after game, but I didn't get better until college. During college, I learned the art behind the game. It's not just about angles, or what English you use on a ball. It's a game of strategy and astuteness. Men challenged me again, and again. Sometimes, they'd win. Mostly, they wouldn't. I stopped playing years ago, but every now, and then, I get the itch. Writing these scenes takes me back to that time, and place, when life was less chaotic, and a single, spectacular shot made the game worth playing.

What's in the box?

Sometimes, I have no idea where I get my story ideas. This is an example. A name popped into my head: Mayville Toussaint, and I had to create a story that fit the name in my mind. I knew she was from the south. I knew she had a secret. As I sat at my computer, my fingers flew over the keyboard. Mayville told me her story. Well, part of it anyway. I still don't know the deal with the box. And, neither does Dez. Maybe you can figure it out. Deadly Sins I is free on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Kobo. Check it out. If you have a little extra time, please leave a review.

Body Parts

What would freak you out more, your dog finding a human body part and bringing it to you as a gift, or you finding one? This is just one thing that went through my mind, as I sat down to write this scene. Ultimately, I think both would mess me up, but finding it myself would be worse. A lot worse! I never once considered a career in medicine because 1) math and science aren't my strengths, and 2) it's icky. I'm content making stuff up and writing it down. Imagining "what if" scenarios is a game I love to play when I write. What do you do to get your creative juices flowing?

A-Hole Education 101

I don't know about you, but in my single, traveling days, I'd find myself in a few local bars, kickin' back and taking in the sights. I'd meet a few people, and usually the night would be entertaining and uneventfull. But, there's always a time, when you're not in the mood for chit-chat, 'cause you've been living out of a suitcase a few weeks too long. You just want to be left alone, but you gotta eat. And, there's always that guy who didn't get the memo. I used those experiences to create the character depicted in this scene with Dez. She's just witnessed the aftermath of a hit and run.

Children and Gun Defense =

If you're planning to enroll your child in a martial art, I encourage you to do a lot of research, and unexpected class visits. The scene I describe at the beginning of this story, happened to me. I walked into a dojang and observed the children, ages ranging from about 8 to 15, practicing gun defense. I'm a mom. The last thing I want to see, real or not, are children holding guns to each other's chests. While many of them could do the techniques, I struggled with the value of teaching it to children so young. I supposed the assumption was that they'd be approached by another child. They certainly wouldn't be able to disarm an adult male, or most adult females (They might be able to disarm someone my size. I'm only 5' tall.) What do you think? Should children learn how to disarm someone holding a gun? Why, or why not?

50 Shades' Got Nothing on Sasha

I might be in the minority with the view I'm about to share, but I'm okay with that. Here goes: I'm not a fan of Fifty Shades. I have several reasons, but the one positive thing that resulted from reading the first book (the only one I finished,) was the idea for this story. Dez is spending her last day in NYC investigating a stolen property case. Her client is socialite, Sasha Alexander who owns a rather unique gallery in SOHO. Dez discovers that Sasha and her friends are playing an unusual game, and the prize isn't what she expects.

Lazy People Can Have Ambitions

Have you ever met someone so lazy, that they made you tired just looking at them? That's the situation Dezeray Jackson finds herself in, again. She's stuck watching a young guy with zero ambitions, or so she thinks. This story was inspired by someone I met, who works very hard, to do absolutely nothing. It used to frustrate me to be around him. I learned to distance myself, and as the ever-popular Frozen song implores us to do, let it go.

Kori D Miller

Working Title: HUSH

This Book Is In Development

HUSH

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense

What secrets are you hiding? We all have a few. Private investigator Dezeray Jackson specializes in uncovering secrets. And she won't stop until she discovers the truth. Dezeray Jackson examines the cold case of a 13-year-old girl from Fremont, NE. As details unfold, Dez is forced to confront her feelings about her sister's unsolved murder, manage her relationship with former lover, Patrick Murphy, and diffuse the tension he's creating with her current lover, Scott James. Things become more complicated when Dez begins receiving communication from a dead guy. If you like Janet Evanovich, Marcia Muller or Sue Grafton, then you'll love a series that combines all of their best traits into a smart, sassy, take no BS private investigator from the midwest, who has a penchant for weapons, scotch, fine wines, good-looking men, a great game of pool, and a Rottweiler named Godfrey.

Rough-Cut Book Bubbles from HUSH

Some Gifts Suck

Someone has been leaving gifts for PI Dezeray Jackson, and generally speaking, she's not too thrilled about receiving them. Take this one, for example -- Who gives a person a finger from a dead person? Sometimes the best gift is the one you didn't give because it might rot in the box you sent it. That's pretty much how Dez feels until she finds out who the finger belongs to. That changes everything. HUSH is available now! You can get your copy everywhere great books are sold. No, seriously, you can get a copy at iTunes, Barnes

Boy Toys Do Grow Up

Honestly, I loved writing this scene between Dez and Scott. Whenever I read it, it makes me grin -- any idea why? How about you, ladies? Can you relate? There are Goodreads and LibraryThing giveaways going on right now. And I received my first official review for HUSH today. Look for it on Goodreads. It won't be available on Amazon just yet. Be sure to sign up for The Scoop or my Shadow Team soon! I've got special things planned for those who do.

HUSH Cover

The idea behind the HUSH cover didn't originate with the cold case Dez is helping Tamara investigate. It came from the death of Dez's sister. What do you think of the cover? Does it stir any emotions in you? Let me know! I'd love to hear your feedback.

Not All Pizza Joints Are Equal

We all have our favorite places to get a slice. And, we probably all have a strong preference for either deep dish Chicago-style, or thin-crust NY-style pizza. Dez's preference lands squarely on the thin-crust, fold-it-up, eat it while you're walkin', NY-style slice. She's not looking for fancy. Toss on a few mushrooms, not the canned variety, and she's happy. A slice with a bit of Italian spices, parm, and red pepper flakes washed down with a bottle of Lucky Bucket beer is a sensual experience. Now that she's returned to Omaha, NE, she frequents Zio's Pizzeria. It's a real pizza joint. The next time you're in Omaha, look it up. Then, go check out Lighthouse pizza. Oh, man their slices are HUGE! All this talk about pizza is making me want some. I guess I know what I'm having for lunch!

Life is a Pool Game

Are you a shooter? Can you imagine yourself in this scenario? I could because for years I met a lot of Leo Taylors. There's always that guy who believes because a woman has boobs she can't do certain things. I'd be lying if I said it wasn't fun putting them in their place. How is life a pool game?

Building Believable Relationships

Though I didn't include it in this scene, the draft of HUSH includes a few F-bombs in the dialogue exchanged between Dez and Patrick Murphy. To me, it's simply how these two characters relate, and it's a part of Dez's personality. But, I want to know your opinion. What do you think about characters cursing in general (as in thoughts) and what do you think about curse words exchanged in dialogue? Thanks for your input! I'm revising chapters 4-6 this week.

Ignorance isn't bliss

Sometimes being unaware of what's going on around you feels like a blessing. But, sometimes, there's a cost for that ignorance. In this scene, Tamara Steele is on the receiving end of another woman's bad attitude. Tamara doesn't understand why until Dez explains it to her. What do you think of this scene? What changes would you make, and why? I'm putting together a street team to help with promoting HUSH. Want to know what's in it for you? Go to www.koridmiller.com and shoot me a message. Thanks! KDM

What Do You Think?

I'm re-working chapters one and two. Based on feedback I received, I made changes to the second scene in Ch. 1. Thank you for your help! Now, in Ch. 2, Tamara and Dez are beginning their investigation of the Jessica Howard cold case. I needed to get them to Fremont, NE to find a few suspects. Let me know what you think needs to be tweaked in this scene. Here's a little background about Fremont: It has a population of about 25K. There's one public high school. It's the kind of place where everyone, who's anyone, knows your business. Thanks, again, for your insights! If you'd like to be an offical beta reader, and read the entire manuscript, get in touch.

Help A Writer Out!

"Hush" was my 2014 NaNoWriMo project. It's the first full-length novel for my Deadly Sins mini-series PI, Dezeray Jackson. My objective in these first scenes is to let you get to know her, establish a few other characters, and introduce the initial storyline. I'd appreciate feedback on the opening, and anything else you'd like to share about these first few scenes. As I revise "Hush," I'm writing the second book, "North Downing." Oh, and if you find a typo that I missed, please let me know! The little buggers are hard to find when your mind isn't in line edit mode. "Hush" is scheduled for publication this year. So, be sure to check in for more rough cuts, and giveaways, as I get closer to the final draft. The cover is a temporary one. I was learning about design. (Still am!) Thanks!

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