Love, Romance, and…Murder?

It is a truth universally (well, maybe generally) acknowledged that romance in a good crime novel must be relegated to a sub plot. If solving the mystery is primary, we’re told, the book is a crime novel. If the outcome of the romance is primary, the book is a romance. Makes sense. But what if the romance is the mystery? What if the romantic relationship between two people creates or solves the crime? Because it’s Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d mention five crime novels where the heart of the plot (pun intended) is romance.

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Pea-Soup Fog & Monkey Glands: Ten Reasons Why Victorian England is the Perfect Setting for Murder

“Sexual repression, dark alleys, great detectives, ornate prose,” says author James McCreet (“Why we all love a Victorian Murder,” The Guardian, 15 May 2011). “No wonder the 19th century is our template for crime fiction. A murder is somehow more quintessentially English when committed on the cobbles of a foggy East End alley. If there’s a silhouetted top hat, a rustle of crinoline and a scream cut short with straight razor, all the better.”
I couldn’t agree more. Here are my Top Ten Reasons why Victorian England is the perfect setting for murder:

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Is There a Best Time to Pitch a Book? Five Strategies for Success

We’ve all heard stories about successful authors who could literally wallpaper their offices with rejection letters. We’ve also heard about first-time authors whose manuscript was snapped up on their very first attempt at querying. Querying an agent or acquiring editor at a publishing house can be a complicated, lengthy, and frustrating experience. But are there proven strategies for giving your manuscript the very best chance of acceptance? Turns out there are.

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Do You Read Your Reviews? (Tell The Truth)

Before I was published, a writer friend advised me not to read the reviews of my books posted on sites like Amazon and Goodreads. I must have looked at her funny because she went on to say, “I never read reviews. My daughter screens them and sends me only the good ones.”
As inexperienced I was at that point, I knew I couldn’t follow her advice.

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Five Things I Can Never Do Again

A question I’m frequently asked is, “When did you become a writer?” I usually answer with one of my favorite quotes (no idea who said it): “You aren’t a writer because you write; you write because you’re a writer.” In other words, writing isn’t something you do but something you are. Writers must write. And once you start writing, you’re never the same, and you can never go back. There are certain things you can never do again.

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Going Indie: An Interview with Dale T. Phillips

If you’ve ever attended a writers’ conference, chances are you’ve run into Dale T. Phillips, who makes friends like most people make mistakes–easily and frequently. Years ago, Dale made the decision to go indie, that is to publish his own books. Recently I caught up with him and asked him to share his secrets for sustaining a long career and making money while doing it. Even those of us who are traditionally published can learn a thing or two.

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