Four years ago, Dallas-based lawyer Alicia Sienne Voltmer started writing her first novel, a supernatural legal thriller. Now, The Rise of Lady Justice is finally out, and ready to shock readers.
Voltmer, who practices labor and employment law, combined two of her greatest passions, law and creative writing, to make her literary debut.
“People say that law is a jealous mistress, and that is true,” says Voltmer. “Practice takes up a lot of time–weekends, holidays–it doesn’t matter.”
Because of her time-consuming career, it took a while for her to write and edit her novel, but she stuck with it because she believed in her idea and wanted to see it come to life.
“I think there are a lot of great supernatural thriller writers out there, there certainly are, and there are a lot of great legal writers out there, like the John Grishams of the world,” says Voltmer. “But I’m not aware that anyone has married those two concepts for adults. I’ve seen one author do it for children, but not for adults, and it just seems like an interesting thing, something non-derivative.”
Her novel takes place in Dallas and features well-known local haunts, like White Rock Lake, the Texas Star, The Old Red Museum, and Deep Ellum.
“I live in Dallas, so I am very familiar with the city,” Voltmer says. “There were just so many places that were attractive for character development and the background of the story. This is such a dynamic city, it lends itself to stories.”
The story follows Dallas litigator Addie Tanis, a rising star in the court room. After getting killed while making her opening statement on a high-profile case, she wakes up in the afterlife to find that her work in the legal world is far from over.
When tasked with finding two missing heavenly judges, she uncovers more evidence about her last worldly case, and if she can’t solve the case in time, the balance of our world and the afterlife could destroy everything.
For Voltmer, this story goes way below the surface, and highlights a prophecy she herself was given at an early age.
“I was sixteen at the time, and it was a state fair in California, and the prophecy was I would save someone’s life,” says Voltmer. “I don’t know if I’ve done that to date, certainly not overtly, but the idea of being able to do that is obviously amazing, so that’s stuck with me for a long time and I hope I can still show it.”
One thing that she hopes her writing does is bring more female representation to the genre. After seeing the lack of female authors in a male-dominated industry, she decided to take matters into her own hand.
“While I think men can write about women, and women can write about men, obviously it takes a personal perspective to write accurately,” says Voltmer. “I think we certainly have different experiences, and in law in particular, we have very different experiences, especially moving up the corporate ladder in law firms.”
Readers should expect to learn something about the law, all while experiencing twists and turns they would have never guessed.
The Rise of Lady Justice is available on Amazon.