What happens in Nashville . . . #mysteries #crimefiction #thrillers #killernashville

After spending much of your time alone in front of a screen–or typewriter, or pad of paper, or clay tablet, etc.–there’s a kid in the candy shop delight in attending writers’ conferences. Or is it more akin to parole? Either way, last weekend’s Killer Nashville conference (my first) was no exception. I heard presentations from novelists I admire, like William Kent Krueger and Janet Evanovich, got mistaken for thriller writer Kevin O’Brien multiple times–what an honor!–and met lots of like-minded people doing cool things, like fellow private eye author Elena Hartwell, who writes the Eddie Shoes series set in Bellingham, Washington. I introduced several folks to my series from Swallow Press about Columbus private eye Andy Hayes, and talked about a standalone thriller I’ve written–more on that soon. To steal a line from Hartwell: who knew murder could be so much fun? Next up: the Ohio Library Council convention in late September. Stay tuned for details . . .

My doppelganger?

Kevin O’Brien: my doppelganger?

With Elena Hartwell, August 2016

With Elena Hartwell on the “Blurring the Line Between Fact & Fiction” panel at Killer Nashville

A man, a chainsaw, a plan and, oops … #weirdwednesday #truecrime #really?

It was a sticky situation to say the least, a tree allegedly dripping sap onto a car that angered a man so much he took matters into his own hands, with the unexpected outcome you’ve come to, well, expect here on #weirdwednesday…

Thank God It’s Monday! #writing #crimewriting #mondays

“To be successful at anything, you only have to work half a day. That’s all. It doesn’t matter which twelve hours you choose…”

That was writer Billy Bob Billy (William Robert Williams), during the “Using Your Day Job To Fuel Your Writing” session on Saturday at this past weekend’s Killer Nashville writers’ conference, and it’s today’s get-the-week-started quote. Thank God It’s Monday!


No mystery here: I’m counting down to @KillerNashville #mysteries #crimefiction

It’s even better than Area 51: “Session 51” at  the Killer Nashville Writers’ Conference, this Sunday, Aug. 21, at 11:15 a.m in the Magnolia Room, titled “Blurring the Line Between Fact & Fiction.” Along with Sarah Wisseman, Philip Cioffari, Elana Hartwell and Paul H. B. Shin, I’ll be discussing how to properly integrate facts, historical figures and events into manuscripts, and how to do so “organically”. Here’s the schedule for the entire weekend; stay tuned for details on book signing times and locations. Hope to see you there!

Because the crash test dummies were busy that night … #weirdwednesday #truecrime #really?

Welcome back to #weirdwednesday, that mid-point of the week where we check our pulse as we look to the heavens for inspiration. Fortunately for our aching necks, we’re able to settle for Pennsylvania today, where we find this story of puzzling behavior by a clothing-challenged bridal shop owner who gives new meaning to the phrase window dressing …

Thank God It’s Monday! #mysteries #toledo #rossmacdonald #tgim

“I want to go back to Toledo, where people are nice. I always wanted to live in California but now that I’ve seen it, it’s a hellish place.”

That’s a purportedly homesick character in The Way Some People Die (1951) by Ross MacDonald, and it’s today’s get-the-week-started-off-on-the-right-foot quote. But wait, there’s more! Here’s a Aug. 1 bonus: a link to Elvis Costello and Burt Bacharach singing their duet, “Toledo.” Thank God It’s Monday!

Walter Mosley on Easy Rawlins and more #mysteries #fridayinterview @karenbates @morningedition

“One of the things that I understood is that you don’t exist unless you’re in the literature, and that doesn’t include history books. And the black people in California, they just weren’t remembered. They – nobody was telling their stories.”

That’s Walter Mosley, author of the Easy Rawlins mystery series and many other books and stories, speaking on Morning Edition about Rawlins, black postwar Los Angeles, his writing habits and much else, and it’s this week’s #fridayinterview