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Julie Tollefson won the Mystery Writers of America Midwest Chapter's Holton Award for best unpublished manuscript (member category) for her work in progress, In The Shadows.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

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Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Where Has the Summer Gone?

This year, the arrival of August and the approach of the end of summer have taken me by surprise. I have so many things I thought I would get done this summer, and of course it looks like I won’t get to half of them.

First the things I did do. For the first time in years, my family had a gathering that did not revolve around a
Stunning views from the hotel
 in Rancho Mirage.
funeral. In late April, my niece Mary graduated from Redlands University in California. All of my surviving siblings came. Unfortunately, since the graduation was early, several nieces and nephews were not able to come. They had last classes and exams of their own.

We stayed in a lovely resort in Rancho Mirage. It was definitely up-scale, with wonderful facilities and comfortable rooms with stunning desert views. Maybe a little too up-scale for the likes of us; the valet parkers (there was no alternative to valet parking) managed to lose my daughter Laura’s “rolling wreck,” the old Honda she’s hoping to make last until she finishes her college education. We figured they had probably hidden it out of sight. They did find it eventually.

Old Hondas are out of place
at trendy resorts
At least I had flown, rather than driving my 20-year-old pickup truck.

In July, my husband’s family had a reunion in Ocean City, NJ. When they were kids in Philadelphia, their father got a week’s vacation every year and they made an annual trek to Ocean City. Steve says he’d do odd jobs, etc, all year, and then blow his entire savings on the boardwalk in a week. Now, the four kids get together every few years and bring 91-year-old Grandma back to Ocean City with the whole family. She now lives in Cheyenne, WY, so it’s quite a journey for her.

Those were the major events for this relatively quiet summer. The spring daffodils were magnificent, and I’d started out with great plans to get the gardens back in shape and keep the yard cut. It’s not a suburban lawn—we live on seven rural acres, much of it wooded—but I like to keep it cut enough so we can use some of the property. I even bought a new mower this season.

Somehow much of it got away from me. The deer ate the daylilies and hosta in the back, but for some
Nothing says summer like the beach.
unknown reason, they haven’t bothered the front. Groundhogs have moved in and tunneled all over. When it got really hot, I stopped my evening mowing, but of course the plants didn’t stop growing.

Surely I can catch up when the weather gets cooler and I can get out the brush cutter to cut everything down to size. Which needs to be fixed—when am I going to get the help I need to load it on the pickup truck to drive down to my friend who will fix it?) And be ready for next spring.

On the adventure side, this was the year I was going to go visit people in the Midwest. Probably in my 20-year-old pickup truck. But I haven’t made it. And while I was busy not making plans most of the people I’d wanted to go see made their own plans and would not be home.

We are going to visit Mackinac Island in September, and stay in the Grand Hotel. That’s a bit up-scale for us, too, but since cars aren’t allowed on the island, they can’t lose one that doesn’t meet their standards.
Family at the shore.
There’s always the New England trip to visit relatives in Cape Cod and friends in Boston. But somehow that hasn’t materialized, either.

I’ve kept up with my writing, although of course not as much as I would have liked. I’m working on an experimental middle grade mystery, but I don’t know if I’m cut out to write for that age. And I’ve begun to outline my next Jesse Damon crime novel. One of my short stories is in the edit stage for a Guppy anthology, and I’ve just had one accepted for my SINC chapter’s Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers and Felonies. I have one or two more floating around out there (I should keep better records!) that I haven’t heard about yet.

How’s your summer going? Have you managed to accomplish most of what you wanted to?



14 comments:

Kait said...

Sounds like a wonderful summer, Kathleen! What great pictures. The Rancho Mirage thing made me laugh. For years I drove a battered, but very serviceable, old Toyota, same thing used to happen to me!

Margaret Turkevich said...

Happy travels to you! Great photos. Congratulations on your acceptances and publications.

Art Taylor said...

I'm with you, Kathleen--not sure how this summer has sped by. But good things to look back on in our case too, and glad you had some travels and adventures (and kept the critters out of the front yard). And congrats on the writing news! So looking forward to the new Gups and Chesapeake Crimes anthologies, and wishing you luck on the next novel too. :-)

Warren Bull said...

It sounds like summer was a fun and productive season. Who knows what fall will bring?

Shari Randall said...

Sounds like a great time and how wonderful that you got your family together. We've tried for ages, but there's always a cousin or two missing.
You've still gotten an impressive amount of writing done. Kudos on your acceptances and keep going with that novel.

Linda Rodriguez said...

Sounds like you had a terrific summer with lots of family get-togethers. That's something we never quite seem to manage. Part of one family together here, part of another family here, individual family members often, but we never quite pull off bringing together a huge family that's scattered all over the country and on other continents, as well.

And keeping up with your writing during all that was really impressive. Now, it's back to the grindstone. ;-)

KM Rockwood said...

Kait, I parked my old pickup truck in near a friend's house in a fancy development, and she laughed and said the neighbors might complain. It's over 20 years old, and would have hit the junk yard a while ago if I didn't have a good buddy who maintains it for me. We're partners in owning a street stock race car, and he has all the equipment and tools to handle that, so the old truck is no problem. Just takes time.

KM Rockwood said...

Margaret, thanks. I can't take credit for those pictures. Some people (like you--I've seen some of yours, especially the flowers) have an eye and a talent, but folks like me need to find people who are willing to share.

KM Rockwood said...

Art, I appreciate the encouraging words! My general goal is two novels and twelve short stories a year. Although of course many of them don't see completion and quietly join the "What in heaven's name were you thinking there?" folder in my computer.

KM Rockwood said...

Warren, I'm looking forward the fall. It's my favorite time of year.

KM Rockwood said...

Shari, I'm amazed that we got so much of both families together. My husband's family manages it every few years, but my family doesn't. I'm grateful to the brother who arranged the get-together around his daughter's graduation.

KM Rockwood said...

Linda, the grindstone rules! Thank goodness for laptop computers.

Grace Topping said...

Your car story made me laugh. I loved my 20-year-old Plymouth van and was sorry to see her go. It was driving a good but old car that enabled me to do other things with my money. The Plymouth lives on with my niece.

KM Rockwood said...

I had an old Plymouth once, Grace. In fact, it was my first car. Would you believe the driveshaft broke on it? (It's probably the only time one of those "drive train warranties" would ever have actually been useful.) The car was pretty old, by then, though, and the mechanic said all he could think of was that it had to be a casting defect, but certainly wasn't worth fixing.