Tag: mystery


Self-Publishing: Five Myths

There’s a lot of interest in self-publishing among authors—even those who have been traditionally published in the past. The problem is that there is so much false, outdated, or just plain wrong info out there that it’s hard to know what to think. I made the leap to self-publishing my mystery novels less than a year ago, but I spent two years researching and learning about how it works and what I could expect—and making some mistakes—that by now, I feel like I have a pretty good handle on the truth. I’m coming up on the publication of the third mystery novel in my Fin Fleming thriller series, and I’m very happy with my results. So in hoped that those of you who have been reluctant to test the waters might find this info useful, here goes. 1.    Self-publishing is expensive Self-publishing may require the author to make some investments, but the difference between what a traditionally published author and a self-published author must spend before publication is not that big. For example, many authors hoping to self-publish will hire a developmental editor, a copy editor, and/or a proofreader before they submit their manuscripts to querying. So do most serious […]

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Life Offline—An Analog Mystery

It’s not really a mystery I got a new job on the East Coast which meant I had to relocate from Colorado. Almost the only mystery was whether I could cover the 1600+ miles in three days. I did it, arriving at my hotel at 1 am. (You cannot pick up an apartment key at one o’clock in the morning.) I solved the mystery of whether I could report to my new job by 8 am, a mere seven hours later, when I arrived at 7:45. And I stayed awake all day! True confession One thing I did not do, was much of anything on the internet. Between so-so connections in hotels to long stretches on the road, I didn’t have much time for social media or web surfing. Now, I have a confession. (What’s better at the end of a mystery than a confession from the culprit?) I didn’t miss being online. My almost entirely (I did download audiobooks from Audible to listen to while I drove, I used DoorDash to order a meal a couple of times, and I posted a collaged photo of Fruit Loops and a Big Mac—not from DoorDash—on Instagram) analog road trip was a […]

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You Wrote a Book, Now What?

You want to be a published author. Perhaps you have written your first murder mystery novel and you think it’s pretty good. Don’t be shy! Pat yourself on the back! Writing an 80,000-90,000-word book is no small feat.

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3 Stories & a Moral

Some years back the Mystery Writers of America had an open call for stories about odd partners. I came up with a truly fabulous idea, wrote it. Sent it in. Rejected. Usually I’m philosophical about rejection, but this one stung. Took the story and stuck it in a drawer and festered until, last year, I saw an open call for a new MWA anthology with the theme of Crime Hits Home. I remembered the old story, rewrote it, sent it in and….. But wait. Meanwhile, I was working on another story and I absolutely loved the first line. I liked the rest of the story too, but I didn’t think any part of it beat the first line. Then I saw an an open call for the Malice Domestic anthology titled Murder Most Diabolical. Something about the word diabolical took root in my mind. It gave me a way to reframe the story, and so I set to work and…But wait. Meanwhile, I spent years workshopping a mystery novel about Anne Boleyn. The people in the workshop loved my novel. My agent loved my novel, but unfortunately, after a valiant effort, it didn’t sell. So I put it aside, but […]

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