Readers, myself included, love dialogue that seems genuine. We want it to ring true, to reflect character, to be appropriate for place, time and conversational partners. In other words, we want it to feel legit. Which brings me to slang. Evidently, it’s not cool to say legit any more. (It’s probably not cool to say cool, either, but I’ll leave that there.) The new legit … Continue reading Slang? Dang!
Welp…I’m moving. It’s just across town, mind you, and I don’t have a ton of stuff. But still…it’s the first time I’ve moved in 25 years. Here’s what I’ve discovered while packing up: I’m more sentimental than I realized. I’ve kept love letters, photographs, first grade drawings and college papers. Drawers and cupboards hide a zillion things I’d forgotten about and lost. Recipes. Missing glasses. … Continue reading A Moving Experience
It’s no surprise that most mystery authors’ search histories are alarming. After all, they contain deep dives into sundry murder methods, plausible alibis, inventive ways to dispose of pesky bodies, and oh so much more. Although I’m sure I’m on some kind of watch list, I don’t fear the proverbial knock on the door so much as targeted ads and news recommendations based on my … Continue reading Searching…
Years ago, my son attended his first Boy Scout camp. And got lost. In the middle of the night. As temperatures plummeted to the 20s and then the teens. He came wandering to the campfire the next morning, near-hypothermic, bleary-eyed and visibly shaken, but alive and well (relatively speaking). He recovered quickly when dosed with hot chocolate and smothered in blankets, then told his tale. … Continue reading Helpers
Here’s a snippet of a conversation between me and my best friend at a Jazzercise class some time ago: Me: Did you read about the body found floating in the Pacific? Bestie: Murdered by the scientist, right? Me (tying my shoes): Then decapitated. Bestie (lunging into a calf stretch): I think they only found the torso. Me: Oh, I hadn’t heard that. It was at … Continue reading Why Being a Mystery Author is Murder on my Social Life
Ah, Labor Day weekend. Summer’s last hurrah. A chance to celebrate workers. And in my part of the world, the days leading up to the advent of the school year. Of course, this year’s Labor Day weekend and the weeks that follow will look distinctively different than those of the past. As with many districts around the country, our kids will go back to school … Continue reading School Daze
My reality TV of choice is the true crime variety that airs on Investigation Discovery, the channel that features such inimitable classics as BrideKillas, Murder Loves Company, Deadly Dentists and Elder Skelter. But every once in a while, I’ll tune into non-murdery reality TV. A favorite: My Strange Addiction. Maybe it’s because I’m fascinated by tales of deep and meaningful relationships with puppets. Maybe it’s … Continue reading Oh! Exclamation point!!!
As many of us continue to shelter in place or work from home, mental health professionals recommend keeping a schedule to lend a sense of normalcy and constancy. Here’s how I’ve painstakingly laid out my days during this extended time at home. 6am: Rise early to write The New Project. 6:05am: Decide that I need to get myself in the Writing Zone. 6:10 … Continue reading My Very Busy Schedule
A couple of years ago, I was in a doctor’s office waiting room doing what I usually do: reading the true crime section of People, perusing Us Weekly to see if stars really are just like me, and considering what height I should claim to be. I was taking a reading pit-stop, thumbing through a piece about the royal family, when I heard the nurse … Continue reading Where the Armenians Are
My sister-in-law just delivered a beautiful baby boy, which brought back memories of one of my own pregnancies, also known as Kathy’s Era of Perpetual Annoyance. Maybe it was the hormones. Maybe it was the nine-plus pounds of baby squashing my internal organs. Most likely it was the incessant attention dedicated to my midsection, which had swollen to such impressively bulbous proportions that it inspired … Continue reading Comments? No comment.
I’m not a very sentimental person. I’ve shoved heirlooms into closets, squirreled away family photos and pitched old love letters in the recycling bin, all in the name of chaos control. Of course, afterwards I’m usually filled with two-slices-of-cake-and-three-glasses-of-champagne level regret. But that doesn’t curtail my enthusiasm for tyrannical tidying. The exception: Christmas decorations. Some people decorate with taste and elegance. I deck our ranch-style … Continue reading Ho ho hoooo boy. My holiday decor highlights.
For most people, the holidays call to mind shining lights, steaming mugs of cocoa, gingerbread humanoids, and feasts that call for elastic waistbands. For me, they conjure up the memory of my friend sailing out of our second-story window. Let me explain. A few days after Thanksgiving, my mom left 12-ish-year-old me and my best friend alone for a couple of hours. She instructed us … Continue reading The Power of Imagination