Saturday, December 30, 2017

The Alphabet now Ends at Y

www.suegrafton.com/bookshelf.php
"If high heels were so wonderful, men would be wearing them."
Kinsey Millhone

I was introduced to Sue Grafton and Kinsey Millhone when my mother started reading the series. At the time I was reading more science fiction than anything else, but I appreciated the series from the start. It was easy to tell what my mother did and did not have when it came to present giving. I might have a poor memory for titles, but I knew my alphabet.

The last birthday gift I gave her was N is for Noose. She was recovering from chemotherapy at the time.

I started reading the series after my mother died. Since my father wasn't a mystery reader, it was easy to convince him to let me nab the whole series. There were a few holes in the alphabet, mostly in the early books. It took me years to find A is for Alibi.

T is for Trespass put me off for a few years. At the time it was released, I was taking care of my father, the mail-order addict. He was sure that the more he ordered from Readers Digest and Publishers Clearinghouse, the more likely he'd win the big prize. He bought Australian lottery tickets from sellers in Hong Kong and once tried to send cash to a Nigerian Prince. T for Trespass was just too close to home for me.

"Ideas are easy. It's the execution of ideas that really separates the sheep from the goats."
Sue Grafton

I started back at the beginning of the alphabet. I still haven't found H is for Homicide, but I caught up to J is for Judgement, which was the beginning of my mother's solid run. By this time, after many rejections and long periods of just writing for myself, I was a published mystery author. Now I started to appreciate Sue Grafton's work for fellow authors and would-be writers.

I always said I'd finish the alphabet when the alphabet was finished. That suits by binge style of reading. Since the planned "Z is for Zero" was never started, the time to finish is now.

"Her daughter said Grafton would never allow a ghostwriter to write in her name and "as far as we in the family are concerned, the alphabet now ends at Y.""
Wikipedia

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Guest Post - Debra Purdy Kong

Debra Purdy is a fellow Imajin Author and member of Crime Writers of Canada.We also share similar views on covers and crafty killers.
 
Knitting Needles Instead of Guns? Only in Canada
As you probably know, book covers are really important to authors, publishers, and readers. This fall, I learned that writing a mystery about seniors who’ve developed a nasty rivalry over their knitted products presented a challenge for my publisher’s cover designer. After going back and forth with ideas, I’m very happy with the image, especially since a ball of wool and bloodied knitting needles is not your typical mystery novel cover!

In A Toxic Craft, no one uses a gun. After all, this is a cozy mystery set in Canada, where most citizens don’t own firearms. Security guards like my protagonist Evan Dunstan aren’t permitted to carry them. When I worked in campus security, I remember my supervisor saying that the day guards are allowed to carry guns is the day she’ll quit.

Most murders in Canada—that aren’t gang related—seem to involve knives. Although, before I became a security guard, a young woman was killed with a crossbow at the post-secondary site where I wound up working. The only violence I experienced, however, was a chair thrown at an employee by a frustrated student.

In this book, the hostility ramps up for Evan. Several attempts are made to get rid of nasty knitter Cora Riddell in a variety of ways. The inspiration for my cover comes from a threat near the beginning of the book, when a knitter named Flo threatens to stab Cora with a knitting needle. Does it actually happen? Well, that’s part of the mystery, isn’t it?

To order A Toxic Craft, go to:
Amazon: myBook.to/AToxicCraft
Kobo: http://tinyurl.com/ycsvuaj5

Debra Purdy Kong’s volunteer experiences, criminology diploma, and various jobs, inspired her to write mysteries set in BC’s Lower Mainland. Her employment as a campus security patrol and communications officer provide the background for her Evan Dunstan mysteries, as well as her Casey Holland transit security novels.

Debra has published short stories in a variety of genres as well as personal essays, and articles for publications such as Chicken Soup for the Bride’s Soul, B.C. Parent Magazine, and The Vancouver Sun. She assists as a facilitator for the Creative Writing Program through Port Moody Recreation, and has presented workshops and talks for organizations that include Mensa and Beta Sigma Phi. She is a long-time member of Crime Writers of Canada.

Look for her blog at http://writetype.blogspot.ca More information about Debra and her books is at www.debrapurdykong.com You can also find her on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DebraPurdyKong & Facebook: www.facebook.com/debra.purdykong

Be the first to know when Debra Purdy Kong’s next book is available! Follow Debra at https://www.bookbub.com/authors/debra-purdy-kong to receive new release and discount alerts.




Saturday, December 2, 2017

Colour Comentary



Jacques: This is Jacques Seaudeau and Gillian Hill from CKOI Radio reporting on this year's Santa Claus Parade. Gillian, what's the weather forecast for the day.

Gillian: Sunny and cold, Jacques. Perfect parade weather. The hot chocolate vendors will be doing well today. Fortunately the street is ice free now. Unfortunately, that was not the case earlier when the Pipe and Drum band were forming up. Due to a slip on the ice, they are down one drummer.

Jacques: That's not the only weather-related incident today. New Harlem Globe Trotters were booked to do an exhibition performance at the Sports Centre. They also agreed to march in the parade.

Gillian: I take it Globe Trotter performance is cancelled.

Jacque: Yes, but the boys and girls basketball teams from Our Lady of Lourdes will be taking their place in the parade. We've been assured they will do their best to mimic the jumps and passes that make the Globe Trotters famous.

Gillian: Hold on, Jacques. I have correction to make. It turns out the hot chocolate is free. They've got eight locations all along the parade route and one at the end. They're charging for cups but if you have a travel mug, they'll fill it up from their cauldron for free using oversized spoons crafted by Santa's elves.

Jacques: Are they in place now? I could use something warm about now.

Gillian: They're ready and waiting.

Jacques: Apropos of hot chocolate, the Dairy Breeders Associaton is marching with examples of the top eight breeds of milk cows dressed up as reindeer.

Gillian: I hope they have diapers. Next up is the the Let's Dance Studio. They usually gives us a jazzy version of Nutcracker Suite. This year they've opted for Swan Lake.

Jacques: Now a word from our sponsors. Why store and maintain equipment you'll only use for part of the year? Rent from Snow King. With their loyalty program, your sixth rental gives you store credit.

Gillian: That's a great deal and here's another one. City Jewellers is offering five gold bangles to the person who calls into CKOI with the gift given on the third day of Christmas.

Jacques: Listen! Can you hear the sirens. That will be the Fire Department leading the parade. You can see the areal floats. The kids are going to get a kick out of seeing their favourite cartoon characters drifting above them.

Gillian: Um, Jacques. What's that floating toward the river?

Jacques: I think they've lost two of the Teenage Ninja Turtle balloons.

Gillian: So, to summarize,we've got:
12 drummers drumming
11  pipers piping
10 Lourdes a leaping
9 Ladles waiting
8 Breeds for milking
7 Swans a swinging

Jacque: And don't forget the 6th lease is paying. Also, the 5 golden rings go to the 4th caller in for 3 French Hens

Gillian: 2 turtles above

Jacques: And that's it from Partridge City