Author: Connie Berry

Save the Old Ladies

No, not those old ladies…as far as I know we’re fine. What I’m talking about are the lovely old houses of the past–especially the “grand old ladies” of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

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All I Need

I've been thinking lately about what I need to write. I need my computer, obviously. If I had to write everything out longhand, I'd never have finished my first manuscript. Then there are my books. Is that all I need? Not quite.

One of my husband’s favorite scenes in Steve Martin’s movie The Jerk takes place in the office of an extravagant mansion. Raised by black sharecroppers in an unpainted, two-room shack in the rural South (I know, I know), the jerk ends up with loads of money—only to lose everything he loves, including his wife, played by Bernadette Peters. When his wife tells him all he cares about is money, he sweeps a mountain of paperwork from his desk. “I don’t need any of this—except this ashtray. That’s the only thing I need. And this paddle-ball game.” As he staggers around the room, his list of necessary items lengthens. “All I need is this astray and the paddle-ball game—and the remote control. And these matches. And this lamp….” I’ve been thinking recently about what I need to write. I need my computer, obviously. If I had to write everything out longhand as some writers still do, I’d never have finished my first manuscript. Word processing is essential to me, but writing directly on a laptop isn’t ideal. I never can use the built-in mouse thingy right. So I also need my big monitor, my keyboard, and my mouse. Then there are […]

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Am I In Your Book?

One of the questions mystery writers are frequently asked by friends and relatives is, “Am I in your book?” Our answer is usually something like “No, but if you make me mad, I might kill you off!” A more truthful answer would be “You are–or at least a part of you is.”

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An Interview with Carol Pouliot

Is Time strictly linear, or can it be bent or twisted? The answer is well beyond my mental capacities, but the idea of time travel has always fascinated me. Today I have the distinct pleasure of interviewing Carol Pouliot, author of the Blackwell & Watson Time-Travel Mysteries featuring 1930s Detective Sergeant Steven Blackwell and present-day journalist and researcher Olivia Watson. Steven and Olivia share the same house in a small New York town—eighty years apart!

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What’s Your Passion?

People love hobbies. Some can be pretty bizarre—clipping and dying dogs to look like wild animals; collecting back scratchers or Ronald McDonald memorabilia; extreme ironing (I’m not making this up); doing cow impressions; playing dead.

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My Top Ten Favorite Books of 2019

For those who read, write, and love crime fiction, one of the best traditions of any new year is the listing of favorite books published by critics, reviewers, and bloggers on social media. This year I was honored to find both my novels (A Dream of Death and A Legacy of Murder) on several lists. Thank you!

I’ve decided to join the party (albeit a bit late) and nominate my top ten favorite books of 2019. As a self-confessed Anglophile, I make no apologies for the fact that all but one take place in England. Here they are in alphabetical order…

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The Cemetery of Lost Words

My favorite line in J. M. Barrie’s Peter Pan describes Captain Hook: “The man is not wholly evil—he has a thesaurus in his cabin.” I love that. Words are important. They convey meaning and create an intellectual and emotional response. Since we know words can hurt or heal, we should be certain ours are understood.

Some words are imprecise, flabby, and liable to misinterpretation. Other words nail the intended thought with such clarity and precision that the mind of the hearer or reader is enlightened and enlarged. I admire people—even Captain Hooks—who know interesting and beautiful words and use them with skill and artistry. That’s the job of the writer, after all.

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Into the Woods

I adore pinecones— the woodsy smell, the rough texture and complex structure, the memories they conjure.

Last week I was putting away the final remnants of my Christmas decorations when it occurred to me that I use pinecones and tree branches a lot in my house, not just at Christmastime but throughout the year. From my earliest childhood, the woods have been for me a powerful symbol of the enchanted forest with all its delightful and sinister possibilities.

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