A Kimpressive New Voice! (part une)
Happy New Year to everyone!
One of the really cool things about the writing community is how remarkably supportive it is. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting fabulous authors with remarkable backgrounds, and Kimberly McGath is no exception. She is a retired homicide detective who now spends her time writing true crime, fiction, and music. She's also written a heart-wrenching account of her son's illness which will move you to tears. If being beautiful and smart wasn’t enough, she’s also got a remarkable singing voice! I sat down with her to discuss her transition from investigating to imagineering. Below is the first of a two-part interview with Kimberly:
People probably think that being a police detective is about as far removed from author and singer/songwriter as you can get. Have you always had an artistic streak?
For as long as I can remember, music was the focal point of my life. Whenever my mind was idle, the music would take over. Even as a toddler, I would go into my parents’ room at night and serenade them with one song or another. My brother and I would dress up and perform musical numbers when my parents had company over. We were such hams! Music is rooted in my soul, and an integral part of who I am.
What made you get into law enforcement?
During my childhood I had a fascination with mysteries and puzzles. Although I’m not sure this is precisely why I gravitated towards law enforcement, I assume this is part of the reason. When my youngest child was entering kindergarten, I knew it was time for me to re-enter the work force. Whilst I had an education and background in psychology, my decision to enroll in the police academy was not a logical one, but rather based on instinct. Still to this day, I have a hard time articulating why I made the decision to be a cop!
You’ve worked homicides and sex crimes. You also worked diligently on cold cases, even spending hundreds of hours of your own time trying to solve decades-old homicides. Do you feel truth is stranger than fiction?
Truth certainly can be stranger than fiction. I witnessed many strange occurrences during my time as a detective. For example, a jail inmate asked to speak me and during the conversation he confessed to murder. If I saw that in a crime drama I’d probably think, “Yeah, right!” There were many twists and turns in many of my cases that seemed so farfetched, they were difficult to imagine, but I never saw any aliens or anything like that, so in that respect fiction wins.
Your first book Zodiac: Settling the Score, detailing the true identity of the infamous Zodiac Killer, is full of astute observations and very compelling evidence. When did you first get an inkling of the Zodiac’s true identity?
Back in late 2014, I was attending a cold case seminar. During a presentation about another serial killer, the Zodiac’s identity hit me on the head out of nowhere. Even though I have a passion for cold cases, I had never read too much about the Zodiac, so the discovery was rather baffling and unexpected. Once I started digging I found a treasure-trove of clues as to the killer’s identity.
Check out Kimberly’s Zodiac: Settling the Score at her website KimberlyMcGath.com. It’s also available through Amazon. And if you want to hear Kim’s amazing voice, check out her song From Now On. It really does give you Chills Down the Spine!