Cozy Mystery Accepted at Mysterical-E


I am happy to report that my cozy, “The Case of the Careless Cat,” has been accepted by Mysterical-E. Earlier, they published my homage to Raymond Chandler, Café Noir, and I look forward to appearing in this mystery venue again.

“The Case of the Careless Cat” is the first cozy mystery I’ve written. It’s set in a Plains State farm town inspired by visits to family in Nebraska, and I like the characters and the  narrator’s voice (it’s narrated by my detective figure who is, of course, way ahead of the actual detective in the town). I originally wrote it in response to a call for submissions of brief stories, so I’m not sure how well the mystery works, but I still find it a charming bit of fluff, and I am happy it will soon be out. I’m even thinking of writing more stories using the same characters and setting.

The photo is our own, pretty careful cat, Merlin, taken by me.

“Theda and Me” Accepted for Anthology of California Horror

1280px-1933_Bugatti_Type_59_Grand_Prix_34Photo credit: 1933 Bugatti Type 59 Grand Prix. Sfoskett~commonswiki (assumed). Ralph Lauren Collection, Boston Museum of Fine Arts. 17 June 2005. Wikimedia CommonsCC BY-SA 3.0.

I am pleased to announce that my story, “Theda and Me,” has been accepted by the new publisher, Soteira Press, for their two-volume Horror USA: California anthology. The story is about a screenwriter who has a strange relationship with a mysterious silent-film vamp. I like the story, but it is not a typical horror story. It is also historical fiction and a philosophical meditation on the meaning of life and death. At least one place I sent it to didn’t seem to get the allegory. Hmm, “Theda LaMorte.” I wonder if that could possibly have any symbolic significance?

The most fun part of writing the story was researching early Bugatti automobiles. Just in themselves, those things were terrifying. Ettore Bugatti’s own son died testing one. If you want to see what they’re like to drive, check out this episode of Jay Leno’s Garage (he has more than one episode on Bugattis; I wanted the oldest models). Second most fun was finding out all the dirt on early Hollywood–things haven’t changed much at the scandal factory of the stars.

Anyway, I am grateful to Soteira for finding merit in the story. I will post again when it is published, and I hope you will have fun with it as well. In the meantime, I will be  enjoying familiarizing myself with the press and reading some of its output.