New Paranormal Historical Fiction Novel Based on Murders of Two Black, Gay Lawyers

New Book Announcement: The Plan
Contact Susan Klopfer
Cuenca, Ecuador
International (Magic Jack) 505-369-5141
Fiction Book Loosely Based on Life of Lawyer, Minister Cleve McDowell of Drew, Mississippi. Was Building a Community Church Before He Was Killed
Retiree Writes Murder Mystery Historical Fiction Novel/Based on Actual Civil Rights People, Places and Events; JFK Assassination Emmett Till Lynching Explored
Short Summary of The Plan: The tight bond between Clinton and Joe, two gay, black lawyers (one of them, married) is broken when Joe is reportedly found hanged. A suicide seems impossible to Clint, and Joe’s widow is acting cagey. Clinton Moore believes Joe Means was tortured and murdered because of his and Joe’s shared obsession—investigating and fact gathering about civil rights cold case murders and assassinations.
The Plan took a year to create, write and publish, says author Susan Klopfer. “It only came to fruition after I retired and moved to Cuenca, Ecuador–when I had enough alone time to think and write.”
Klopfer says her book came about because of an experience she had in the Mississippi Delta, where she and her psychologist husband lived on the grounds of Parchman Penitentiary, where Fred Klopfer worked.
She had met “Ella” who lived in a small village seven miles away “—a nice lady with an interesting hobby, helping prepare young girls for their debuts, even though few young women in Mississippi still follow this tradition, unless they are from wealthy families.”
Ella, who also headed the local Culture Club, was driving Klopfer home one morning, “We’d just left Drew, when I noticed something unusual to the left, near the highway. A conspicuous white, rusted metal fence, halfway open, with kudzu vines growing on it, and a couple of tall pilings standing tall, behind the gate.
Klopfer, a former news reporter and book editor, asked Ella about the site. “Living in Mississippi was a new experience and I was curious about anything new or different. We’d moved there from Nevada with no preconceptions.”
“The damned gate? It was going to be his home,” Ella blurted.
Klopfer remembers how her Delta friend’s cursing hit her by surprise. “I didn’t react. I settled back in my car seat waiting for her story. But it was far shorter than I’d expected.”
Brief, in fact.
“He was a bad man. A lawyer. He was murdered,” was all that Ella would tell the writer.
“Of course, I wanted to hear more. I always like a good story. But Ella said she didn’t want to talk anymore about him or say what happened. I had to learn who, what, when, where and why on my own.” 
Ella dropped Klopfer off at her home, a turn-of-the-century red brick house set near the prison’s gas chamber. “Thank God it was not being used in those days,” Klopfer recalls.
Ella could not stop for coffee. “She had to get back because her cleaning lady was due to arrive at any minute, she told me.”
That afternoon, Klopfer began digging to learn the full story, starting with a telephone call to a minister’s wife who she’d recently met. “That would be Cleve McDowell, the first black law student to enter Ole Miss. He got kicked out!” the wife told her.
“I learned some of the Cleve McDowell story that day, but it took a few months to drag it all out from the minister. I had a feeling that I was the first person to learn the whole story, as much of it that is known. Of course I had to search old records, lie a little bit to a courthouse clerk, and track down several older people who’d known this man, to learn as much as I could.”
Cleve McDowell became the main character Clinton Moore in The Plan. “I changed dates and locations, moving the story from Drew to Clarksdale, but not much else, at least in the beginning of the book. I wanted to remain as close as possible to the history.

“I learned in this process that McDowell was a compassionate man who had friends. He deserves to be remembered, and I hope this book helps.”
Klopfer says she picked up a piece of “interesting JFK assassination history” that she weaves into The Plan. “I learned of a Delta man, a private detective named John D. Sullivan, who ended up working in New Orleans with key figures named by well-known JFK assassination conspiracy researchers.”
Sullivan died from a suspicious gun accident at home, that Klopfer writes about. “Even the man’s children say they don’t believe the story told about how their father died.”
Klopfer believes that “the real Cleve McDowell” would have had contact with Sullivan. “They would not have liked each other. Sullivan was a right-wing, former FBI agent who was a racist.”
She also believes McDowell got into trouble over his investigations of cold cases. “Maybe he learned something about the Kennedy assassination. I certainly could not leave out this potential link. He also could have learned more about who killed Emmett Till. He’d worked on this case for most of his professional life.”
The Plan starts in New York City, with a history professor who intends on contacting Moore to congratulate him on his seventy-second birthday. But the professor gets interrupted by the sister of a colleague at Penn State who disappeared in South America—in the Chilean Andes—in 1985. Trying to assist the woman, he forgets to call his Mississippi friend.
The Plan moves to the Mississippi Delta. “A murder takes place, and Clinton Moore narrates the rest of the story. It is his journey to find the murderer of his best friend, Joe Means. And his own killer, as well.”

But the book takes a paranormal turn, she admits.
Klopfer notes that “Joe Means” is also based on a true person who she believes was murdered in Montgomery Alabama. “Henry S. Mims was a friend of Cleve McDowell’s. They went to school together. It is said he committed suicide, but after what I learned, I don’t believe that story. He also was a lawyer.”
The Plan has a gay subtheme. “The Plan is historical fiction. I took liberties to make it more interesting to readers.”
Will there be a sequel? “Definitely,” Klopfer says.
The Plan, as it moves from the Delta to Ecuador, has a strong link to Chile, where recent trials have taken place over a Chilean and German-run terrorist/torture camp, by the name of Colonia Dignidad.
“Look this up on the Internet. Colonia Dignidad exists,” Klopfer says.
“And it is where the sequel begins.”

The Plan, by Susan Klopfer
Words: 68,380 (approximate)
Language: English
ISBN: 9780982604977