Death of the PI? Hardly

The fictional private eye has never been all that realistic: he or she’s always been a crystallization of the times, doing things the hard and painful way when more effective ways exist. The key to the success of the PI in the public imagination is the nature of those more effective ways, and public doubt in them.

On Mysteries and the Status Quo

I’m a devoted listener to the podcast Writing Excuses — despite their claims to the contrary, they really are that smart — and found their most recent episode, on Middle Grade fiction, to be fascinating. (Defining Middle Grade is contentious, but loosely, it’s fiction for kids 9-12: think Charlotte’s Web, the first Harry Potter book, […]

The Body and the Bomb

Good news, everyone! My short story, “The Body and the Bomb” has been published over at Crossed Genres for this month’s issue on Mystery, linked from the front page.┬áIf you haven’t seen it yet, I hope you enjoy it! (And don’t just read mine! There’s some great stuff there)

A Scene From My Work In Progress

Just for fun, I thought I’d post a scene that I’ve been working on. This is from early in the novel, so while it contains important plot points, it’s not much of a spoiler. It takes place aboard the Colonial Union Ship William S. Halliday, which is currently docked with the Deep Space Telescopic Array […]

Still Scribbling

Looking back on my last few weeks of blog posts, one could be forgiven for thinking that I’ve spent more time writing about writing than actually writing! So, maybe a little update is in order. I have three primary projects right now, and have made some progress on all of them. First, I’m rewriting a […]

Reading: The Official C.I.A. Manual of Trickery and Deception

I’ve been looking for interesting books lately to help with my writing, particularly plotting. I found a great one not too long ago: The Official C.I.A. Manual of Trickery and Deception, by Keith Melton and Robert Wallace (though most of the text is by professional magician John Mulholland) Basically, back in the 1950s, the CIA […]

Insert Light Bulb Graphic

After finishing A Stab in the Dark, I decided to revisit the novella that kicked off my mystery-writing spree, Where Do They Bury the Survivors? If you missed it (easy to do, as it hasn’t been accepted anywhere for publication) it’s a locked-room murder mystery that takes place on a space station in interstellar space. […]

A Stab in the Dark: Out The Door

I finished up the most recent short story yesterday afternoon. I trimmed a few scenes, but made up for it by adding a whole other one (I’ll be curious if anyone coming back to this post can figure out which scene was added). It’s a good piece, one of the better mysteries-per-se that I’ve written. […]

Stab in the Dark: Rough Draft

I finished up a rough draft of my work-in-progress. I wound up wrapping it up at around 6300 words, though I may expand it a bit on the next draft. I added a scene looking for a particular piece of evidence, and discovered that the character addition from earlier shortened that scene considerably. Now comes […]

A Good Night (For Murder!)

Just finished up a good bit of writing: Just shy of a thousand words, net, on the current mystery story, A Stab in the Dark, after going back and making some revisions based on my notes from the plane. Adding a character (now Sgt. Van Rijn) was very much the right thing to do, the […]