If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book next year, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com

Our April author interviews: Perennial author Susan Wittig Albert--4/5, Sasscer Hill, horse racing insider--4/12, English historical, cozy author, TE Kinsey--4/19, Debut author, Susan Bickford--4/26.

Saturday Guest Bloggers in April: Heather Baker Weidner (4/1), Christina Hoag (4/8), Susan Boles (4/29). WWK Saturday bloggers write on 4/15--Margaret S. Hamilton and on 4/22--Kait Carson.

Julie Tollefson won the Mystery Writers of America Midwest Chapter's Holton Award for best unpublished manuscript (member category) for her work in progress, In The Shadows. Big news for a new year. Congratulations, Julie.

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Warren Bull's new Lincoln mystery, Abraham Lincoln In Court & Campaign has been released. Look for the Kindle version on February 3.

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published.

Margaret S. Hamilton's short story, "Once a Kappa" was published as a finalist in the Southern Writer's Magazine annual short story contest issue. Mysterical-E published her "Double Crust Corpse" in the Fall 2016 issue. "Baby Killer" will appear in the 2017 solar eclipse anthology Day of the Dark to be published this summer prior to the eclipse in August.

Linda Rodriquez has two pending book publications. Plotting the Character-Driven Novel will be released by Scapegoat Press on November 29th. Every Family Doubt, the fourth Skeet Bannion mystery, is scheduled for release on June, 13, 2017. Look for E. B. Davis's interview with Linda here in June!

Cross Genre Publications anthology, Hidden Youth, will contain Warren Bull's "The Girl, The Devil, and The Coal Mine." The anthology will be released in late November 2016. The We've Been Trumped anthology released by Dark House Press on September 28th contains Warren Bull's "The Wall" short story and KM Rockwood's "A Phone Call to the White House." KM writes under the name Pat Anne Sirs for this volume.

James M. Jackson's 4th book in the Seamus McCree series, Doubtful Relations, is now available. His novella "Low Tide at Tybee" appears February 7 as part of Lowcountry Crimes: Four Novellas, which is available for order.


Monday, April 28, 2014


Last night I had the nicest surprise in my inbox – the galley of the latest anthology by the Chesapeake Chapter of Sisters in Crime. Homicidal Holidays contains my new short story, “Disco Donna.” Happy dance! And I should mention it also has a new story from our own E. B. Davis! Publication is set for this fall.

In “Disco Donna,” three very modern teenage girls stumble upon proof of their town’s most famous urban legend. Disco Donna was the 80’s girl too hot to care about her bad reputation. Donna was murdered on Halloween night, left in her bed clasping a single red rose. Her killer was never found and theories of the murderer’s identity are still whispered in the town’s cafés, shops, and high school hallways.

It was great fun to create my own urban legend and even more fun to work with the talented authors who shared their expertise and time to take my story from rough draft to less-rough draft, sharpening plot twists, highlighting characters, and omitting needless words. We discussed techniques for breaking and entering, ink colors, and the best ways to hide things you don’t want your parents to find. When my drafts came back heavily tattooed with editorial marks, my heart fell, but each suggestion helped me tighten and improve the work.

Now the story is a galley. To sailors, the galley is a kitchen. To lovers of B movies, a galley is a Ben Hur style long boat powered by men chained to oars. In publishing, the galley, or “galley proof” is the mock up of the book, the penultimate step before it goes to be printed. It’s the last chance. The galley is the dress rehearsal of the publishing process. All the writing and rewriting and editing and polishing have taken place and now we’re looking for typos. It’s done. Don’t get any ideas, the editorial coordinator warned me. (OK, Barb!) It’s too late for changes, unless they are huge.

So I am thrilled and a bit afraid to review my story. What if I do find that huge mistake? What if’s make for good story ideas, but also for a bad night’s sleep. But then I remember the great advice and help I have received from my Sisters in Crime editors. Thank you Marcia, Donna, and Barb! Without your help, I wouldn’t have slept as well last night.

How did you feel when you first saw your work in galley form?


E. B. Davis said...

It felt great, Shari. I found no mistakes, but what I did ponder were changes in word usage. Did I really want that comma there--is it technically correct or does it confuse? Perhaps I could have stated that better. Will all my nits add up to impact that is less that what I hope for because I was less than perfect? It felt great, but then again, a story is never finished.

KM Rockwood said...

I agree with E.B. Every time I get a galley (and mine seem to come at the worst possible times, with a very quick turn-around) I find myself second guessing all sorts of things. Why didn't I say it that way? Is this pronoun confusing--should I have used a name? Or have I used the name too often?

But galleys are down to typos and obvious, horrendous errors, so I try to quell my doubts and concentrate on making sure it's as error-free as possible.

Shari Randall said...

So true, E.B. I've heard that most authors look at their first published works and cringe. There was an article in the Washington Post on Sunday where Gene Weingarten revisits the Agatha Christie short stories he loved as a teen and realizes that her early stories were pretty rough. She got better as she went, and that gave him hope. Same here.

Shari Randall said...

You're right, KM, I've got to bat away the horror and just get the work done.

Warren Bull said...

My reaction was similar to everyone else's excitement mixed with anxiety. When possible I jump in quickly which tones down both emotions.

James Montgomery Jackson said...

It was the first time I actually believed I would be in print. It was for my bridge book and it was pretty exciting. Now when I receive them it’s: you want it back by when?

~ Jim

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Always excited--but finding all the mistakes can be frustrating. Better in the galley than in the printed book.

Sarah Henning said...

Huge congrats, Shari!!!! Yay!

Gloria Alden said...

Congratulations Shari and E.B., too.
I didn't see the galleys for my first published story which was "Cheating on Your Wife Can Get You Killed" and won the first and I think only short story contest put on by Love is Murder and appeared in Crimespree Magazine. The first galley, I saw was for "The Professor's Books" in FISH TALES, the first Guppy anthology. I think that was when I truly felt like an author. And yes, it's a great feeling, but a worry, too, that I might have been able to make it better.

Kara Cerise said...

Congratulations, Shari!

I was excited yet concerned that I would encounter a huge mistake. The what ifs could have made me crazy if I let them.