Thursday, July 25, 2019

Mystery Conferences 2020

Each year, mystery authors and fans have a choice of a number of excellent mystery conferences. In 2020 I plan to attend two of these: The Left Coast Crime Conference and Bouchercon.

Both will be held in California so I can drive to them. The Left Coast Crime Conference will be in San Diego March 12-15, 2020, and Bouchercon will be in Sacramento October 15-18, 2020.  At both of these conferences I will be hosting the Meet the New Authors Breakfast and potentially participating in one or more panels. The Left Coast Crime Conference typically has between 400 and 500 attendees, and Bouchercon is the largest mystery/crime conference with attendance exceeding 1500.

See you there.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Using Reality in Fiction

How much reality should be used when writing fiction? As a fiction writer, I try to make my scenes credible and often mix reality with fiction. In the historical fiction I’ve written, I portray actual events and people but in a fictional context. Since we don’t know what people actually said, I invent dialogue relating to what I think they said. Typically, the main plot, often a mystery, is fictional but my intent is to keep the time and setting as real as possible.

As fiction writers we need to make our stories credible enough so the readers can suspend disbelief. When we read fiction, we know that things are made up, but they need to be made up in a credible way.

One of my recent mystery novels, Death of a Scam Artist, is available in trade paperback and e-book editions. In September it will also be released in a mass market paperback edition by Harlequin Worldwide Mysteries. This mystery is set in a fictional retirement community populated with a number of quirky characters. One of the main themes is dealing with a scam artist who is taking advantage of the retirement home residents. Some of the examples of his scams are based on actual scams. Likewise, the opening scene is loosely based on an actual event described to me by a friend who is the CEO of a retirement community.
I enjoy testing the line between fiction and reality.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Vacation on the California Coast

We had an enjoyable short vacation with kids and grandkids in Pismo Beach, CA. This is the first time in about 40 years that we’ve gone north along the coast from the Los Angeles Area. Lots of good food and scenery and happy times with the new generations.

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Grandkid Visits

We’ve had the pleasure of seeing all of our grandsons over the last week. Our son and his family from Iowa have been visiting us, and we’ve also gotten together with our other two grandsons.

This is what keeps us young.