The writer will be one of many at this weekend's festival.
This Saturday, April 14, the 12th annual Ohioana Book Festival will welcome readers from across the state to the Sheraton Columbus Hotel at Capitol Square. The fest features roundtable discussions, book signings and meet-and-greets with about 120 writers and illustrators in genres including poetry, essays, nonfiction, young adult, memoirs, fantasy and photo collections.
David Selcer’s genre of choice is mystery. Like several other local writers—three of whom were covered in the April issue—Selcer sets his books against the backdrop of Columbus, where he’s lived since 1970. Once a partner at Baker and Hostetler, he also keeps the subject of his stories close to home with his Buckeye Barrister mystery series about a fictional lawyer’s thrilling legal cases.
On Saturday morning from 10:45 to 11:30, Selcer will be part of a panel on the greatest fictional detectives based in Ohio, which will take place in the Sheraton’s Legislative Room A. He praises Ohioana for acting as a springboard for Ohio authors to get much-needed publicity for their books. “Writing a book is half the battle; getting people to know about it and read it is the other half of the battle,” Selcer says. “And Ohioana really helps.”
He gave us a little more insight into his writing style and his books.
Number of Books: Five fiction
Newest release: “Dream Catcher Murders,” Buckeye Barrister mystery series (June 2017)
Synopsis: Troubled lawyer Winston Barchrist III travels from his home in Columbus to Sarasota, Florida, to help his biggest client wriggle out of a land deal gone sour in the fourth book in the series. On his first day in Florida, Barchrist goes to a meeting with the developer only to find him dead in his penthouse apartment. The attorney winds up tangled in the bad land deal, with a murder hanging over his head, scrambling to clean up the mess.
Main character: After nearly being disbarred while working at a large law firm in Chicago, Winston Barchrist III moves to Columbus to give his career a fresh start. He mostly represents penny-ante crooks and takes on easy divorce cases and car wrecks ripe for quick settlements. But every now and then, someone walks through his door with a case bigger than anyone anticipates.
Author’s inspired reading: Mystery writer Stuart Kaminsky
On writing a strong lead character: “It needs to be somebody from out of the ordinary, and when you start writing about this person, you have to let your imagination run strong and wild, and yet you have to anchor it to something truthful and true that people can accept.”
On setting books in Columbus: “I’ve lived in Columbus since 1970. I’ve watched it grow. It’s been a wonderful place for me to live and grow up and practice law with some modicum of success, and I’ve just seen the city burgeon and come into its own. And I really think that it’s a big city that ought to be a supporting background for various novels.”