I am thrilled to announce that Caught Read-Handed is available on bookshelves everywhere. And most library systems either have copies or have Caught Read-Handed on order. In e-book format the download is instant. So, why are you still here? Run and get a copy. I am dying to know what you think.
I am delighted to let you know that at this years’s Malice Domestic conference Well Read, Then Dead won the Agatha Award for Best First Novel. The Agatha Banquet is always a joyful event and for me this year was especially grand. Here is a picture of Fan Guest of Honor Bill Starck presenting me with the coveted Agatha teapot.
The memory of the evening will last a lifetime and so will the gratitude I feel at knowing that so many readers love Well Read, Then Dead as much as I do.
HOORAY! IT’S HERE.
I am delighted to announce that Wheeler Publishing has released the Large Print edition of Well Read, Then Dead.
As my poor eyes have aged (along with the rest of me) I find myself taking large print books out of the lending library more and more frequently, so I am delighted to finally have a copy of Well Read, Then Dead that I can read without wearing my eye glasses.
And I, as well as everyone with aging eyes like mine, would be delighted if you let your local librarian know that you’d love to see a copy of Well Read, Then Dead on the Large Print book shelves.
From the national bestselling author of Well Read, Then Dead comes the second mystery featuring Sassy Cabot and Bridgy Mayfield, who bring Fort Myers Beach, Florida, residents plenty of sinful treats and killer reads at their bookstore café, Read ’Em and Eat.
Happy to help her fellow bibliophiles, Sassy visits the local library with book donations for the annual fundraising sale. Unfortunately, the welcoming readers’ haven is in turmoil as an argument erupts between an ornery patron and new library volunteer, Tanya Lipscome—also known as “Tanya Trouble.”
She may lack people skills, but everyone is shocked when Tanya is later found murdered in her own hot tub. The man last seen arguing with her is soon arrested. But Alan Mersky, a veteran with PTSD, happens to be the brother of Sassy’s former boss—and he’s no murderer. Now it’s up to Sassy and Bridgy to clear Alan’s name and make sure the real killer gets booked.
Includes a recipe for Miss Marple scones!
I am delighted to tell anyone who will listen (and even those folks who are tired of hearing it) that Well Read, Then Dead has been nominated for the Agatha Award for Best First Novel, alongside Circle of Influence by Annette Dashofy, Tagged for Death by Sherry Harris, Finding Sky by Susan O’Brien and Murder Strikes a Pose by Tracy Weber. One of the five finalists will be awarded the famous teapot at the Agatha Banquet to be held at Malice Domestic on Saturday May 2, 2015.
And here is the definition of the Agatha Awards directly from the Malice website:
The Agatha Awards honor the “traditional mystery.” That is to say, books best typified by the works of Agatha Christie as well as others. For our purposes, the genre is loosely defined as mysteries that:
- contain no explicit sex
- contain no excessive gore or gratuitous violence
Materials generally classified as “hard-boiled” are not appropriate.
So, you might ask, how does an Agatha nominee celebrate her good fortune? Well for one thing, she makes a delicious ice cream pie, complete with brownie bits and buttercream frosting. The grandkids pronounced it delicious. You can see the remnants here:
And then we decided to pitch a tent on grandma’s patio. Well, in that activity there will be no awards for grandma. After about an hour I was politely dismissed and the kids did a much better job without me—so there.
When all is said and done, apart from occasional forays in the kitchen, it appears I am more useful at the computer keyboard than anywhere else.
In September 1955 a group of volunteers opened the first library on Estero Island in this tiny cottage. I can well imagine that if eight or ten visitors showed up at the same time to browse through the latest offerings, there would not be enough room inside the building for them all. To put the era in a literary context, the New York Times best seller list for late September that year included: AUNTIE MAME by Patrick Dennis, THE MAN IN THE GRAY FLANNEL SUIT by Sloan Wilson, and NO TIME FOR SERGEANTS, by Mac Hyman.
Through the years the volunteer library grew until today it is a stunning three story building complete with an impressive collection and a very homey atmosphere filled with an outstanding collection of art. For example, the elevator is glass and a local artist painted fabulous underwater designs on the shaft. I could ride up and down the elevator all day feeling as if I were on snorkeling adventure.
My friend Denise and I stopped for lunch at the café on the third floor where, along with chicken salad and walnut sandwiches, we had a gorgeous view of the Gulf of Mexico. We were greeted by Library Director Dr. Leroy Hommerding who showed us to a community room where some local residents and I had a lively conversation about Fort Myers Beach, the fictitious Read ’Em and Eat Café and Book Corner (setting of WELL READ,THEN DEAD) and, since there were a number of other writers in the room, we spent a fair amount of time talking about the process of writing. All in all I had a grand time. How could I go wrong having splendid conversation with readers and writers in such an inviting setting? And as a parting tidbit, I can tell you that the community library (under a fictional name) plays a prominent role in CAUGHT READ-HANDED, the next book in the Read ’Em and Eat series.
Earlier in November I traveled to Long Beach California for Bouchercon the annual convention of the mystery community: readers, writers, editors, publishers, librarians and, most especially, friends. As always I had a grand time because I got to visit with many friends that I rarely see.
I was delighted to moderate the panel entitled The Long and the Short of It—writing novels and short fiction. Panel members included Dana Cameron, Jeffrey Deaver, Brendan DuBois, Leigh Perry (aka Toni Kelner) and Simon Wood. With such a talented group, the conversation was lively and informative. There I am smiling down at the end of the table.
I also was a panelist on A Strange Mixture. We talked about amateur sleuths who have real careers and then, oops, murder gets in the way. Moderator Clare Toohey kept us on target and I enjoyed sharing the panel with Susan Shea, Tracy Weber, Don Passman and Beverly Allen (aka Barbara Early.) As you can see, it’s my turn at the mic.
And I totally enjoyed the Major Crimes Panel. The multi-talented Deb Lacy arranged for some of the writers and cast of the fabulous television show Major Crimes to talk about how the germ of a story idea becomes a gripping drama. Fascinating.
Next year, Bouchercon will be held in Raleigh, North Carolina on October 8th to 15th. I can hardly wait.
There are so many exciting events in the world of mystery readers and writers, I wish I could attend every one but then how would I get any writing done?
I am delighted that I will be visiting Long Beach, California from November 13 to 16, 2014. Bouchercon is the largest annual gathering of the mystery community. It is a great place to spend time with old friends and there is always a lot to learn at panels and workshops. For more information click here.
On February 7, 2015 I will be in Birmingham, Alabama attending Murder in the Magic City, a one day mystery conference for fans of all sub-genres of mystery novels. The Guests of Honor are Hank Phillippi Ryan and Craig Johnson so I am sure we will have a grand time. There will be a silent auction of baskets filled with books and book themed items which will benefit the Shoals Animal Advocates. SAA fosters, provides meds and vetting, spays/neuters, worms, coordinates adoption events and rescues homeless dogs/cats from the local community. You can read more about Murder in the Magic City here.
On Sunday February 8, 2015, I will travel to Wetumpka, Alabama to attend a luncheon, Murder on the Menu, which is the primary fundraising event for the Wetumpka Public Library. The nice folks in Wetumpka coordinate annually with Murder in the Magic City so that we authors (who don’t get out very often) won’t have to travel to the area on two separate occasions to visit each of these wonderfully homey events. You can read all about Murder on the Menu here.
Then on Thursday, February 26, 2015 I will be attending Sleuthfest, an annual four day conference for mystery, suspense and thriller writers sponsored by the Florida Chapter of Mystery Writers of America. This year the conference returns to Deerfield Beach, Florida. You can find more information here.
The grand gathering known as Malice Domestic will be held in Bethesda, Maryland from May 1 to 3, 2015. It is an annual writer and fan convention saluting the traditional mystery, and since “cozy” mysteries fit right in with the traditional mysteries, Well Read, Then Dead and I will be right at home. To learn more about Malice Domestic you can click here.
So over the next few months, I’ll be traveling here and there. I so enjoy meeting the readers and writers who fill my world. If you are going to be at any of these conventions, please let me know so we can spend some time together.