Gestalt Mystery Writing

I wrote the first Coot Long mystery in between double hip replacements. My left hip was replaced in January of 2015. As I recovered (once I got to the point I could focus), I lay in bed flat on my back so the new hip wouldn’t wrench out of the socket, and I read mysteries. Before I went under the knife, I’d solicited mystery...

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What I Learn from My Blog

Most people read blogs to learn from them. But it works the other way around too: the person writing a blog learns from the process, the readers, the stats, the comments. Today, I’ll share with you some of the pearls of wisdom I’ve learned from writing this blog: If you put “naked” in the title of a post, you get a LOT...

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Memories Unearthed by Dorian…

She was young, the same delicate age as my vulnerable grandson is now. Full of pip, but spindly arms and legs, no bigger than a minute. All she’d ever known was the lapping of the Gulf, innocent of actual waves. Even so, had she grown up with the Atlantic, it wouldn’t have mattered. A riptide is a riptide. We were exploring our...

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Labor Day & I’m Tired

Oh, y’all. I’m worn out. In the last 3 days, I’ve incorporated massive revisions to HARBORING EVIL that were sent by the agent. I’ve also revised its long synopsis, drafted a short synopsis (shorter is SO much harder.) Drafted a long synopsis for Harboring Malice, hopefully the second installment in the series, and drafted...

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And It’s Off!

I just sent the revised HARBORING EVIL manuscript to my agent. She had some great suggestions for improving the plot, which sounded simple when she described them, which didn’t turn out to be simple at all. But I feel the story is more mature, the characters more memorable. We shall see if she agrees. HARBORING EVIL is a traditional mystery....

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As Naked as You Wanna Be

Each time we appeared in public, we wore fewer clothes. My sister, my cousin and I – Redbird Brain Productions – hit Capital Street the first time in long dresses, flouncy skirts and, for me, a full-length carrot costume. We were “Goon With the Wind,” a walking-float in the annual St. Paddy’s Day Parade. When we rounded the corner, 75,000 people...

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I am Not so Alone

I pride myself on being independent. Ever since I was a little girl, my mantra has been, I can do it myself. Or more accurately, let me do it my way. Which often leads to forging new paths, which often means doing it myself. But a miracle in my literary life has occurred: I’ve gotten an agent, and I don’t feel so all alone. My...

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Flowers that Stink

I like flowers that stink. But then, growing up, I loved the smell of dry cleaning fluid that seeped through my grandparent’s Everyready Cleaners. Driving to their house, when we passed the linseed plant, I’d roll the window to suck in the sickly sweet air. Unwatched, I’d crawl into the back dash of Mamo’s Dodge to get close to the hot cardboard...

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Riding Out A Hurricane

The last several days we’ve been bracing for Hurricane Barry here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast where we have a house near New Orleans (Memphis, New Orleans, and the Gulf Coast—I know, it’s confusing.) Thankfully, we were not much affected, but others further west in Louisiana were. The flooding looks terrible to me, but they’re...

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