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

October Interviews

10/07 M.E. Browning, Shadow Ridge

10/14 Alexia Gordon

10/21 Adam Meyer

10/28 Barbara Ross, Jane Darrowfield and the Madwoman Next Door


October Guest Bloggers


10/03 Kathleen Kalb

10/17 S. Lee Manning

10/31 Sharon Dean


WWK Weekend Bloggers


10/10 Jennifer J. Chow

10/24 Kait Carson













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For The Love Of Lobster Tales by Shari Randall is now available to download free for a limited time. Go to Black Cat Mysteries at: https://bcmystery.com/ to get your free copy! Thanks for the freebie, Shari.


Keenan Powell recently signed with agent Amy Collins of Talcott Notch. Congratulations, Keenan!


KM Rockwood's "Secrets To The Grave" will appear in the new SinC Chesapeake Chapter's new anthology Invitation To Murder, which will be released by Wildside Press on 10/6.


Congratulations to our two Silver Falchion Finalists Connie Berry and Debra Goldstein!


Paula Gail Benson's "Cosway's Confidence" placed second and Debra Goldstein's "Wabbit's Carat" received Honorable Mention in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable 2020 short story contest. Congratulations, Paula and Debra!


Susan Van Kirk's Three May Keep A Secret has been republished by Harlequinn's Worldwide Mystery. The WWK interview about the book can be accessed here. We're so glad another publisher picked up this series.


KM Rockwood's "Burning Desire," and Paula Gail Benson's "Living One's Own Truth," have been published in the anthology Heartbreaks & Half-truths. Congratulations to all of the WWK writers.


Please join Margaret S. Hamilton's Kings River Life podcast of her short story "Busted at the Book Sale" here. Congratulations, Margaret!

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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Poisons for our characters


I have been looking for a poison to use in my novel—one that looks like a heart attack. A friend of mine 
said antifreeze. Now who would be stupid enough to drink antifreeze?

My friend said to Google it. It seems there’s a woman in Georgia who had two husbands in their thirties die.
Their deaths were very much alike. The bodies have been exhumed and they have discovered one of the men  
was a victim of poisoning from ethylene glycol, a sweet odorless chemical often found in antifreeze.

Six years ago, the first husband’s death had been determined to be of natural causes, but now points to 
possible evidence of the same deadly chemical in his body. Both men suffered similar flu-like symptoms 
shortly before their deaths. 

Both deaths were initially ruled natural and attributed to cardiac dysrhythmia, or an irregular heartbeat. 
But after the discovery of ethylene glycol poisoning in the latest husband’s death it is believed may be due to 
byproducts of ethylene glycol. 

Earlier reports said the woman poisoned the men by putting the antifreeze into Jell-o.

Dogs and cats like the sweet taste of antifreeze and often die after tasting it, or walking through it and then 
licking their paws.

Now another shocker I found is toothpaste. Colgate doesn't tell you that fluoride is highly toxic -
so toxic that if a small child ate an entire tube of fluoridated toothpaste, it could kill the child. You know 
those candy and bubble gum flavors in the fluoridated toothpastes? Kids tend to like the taste and will eat it
instead of spitting it out.

One man in his 50s actually committed suicide by eating a tube of this toothpaste. But I would never be able
to figure out how to murder someone by having them eat toothpaste.

Antifreeze isn’t something they look for when doing an autopsy. It takes a special test to detect it in the 
system, and unless they suspect it, it often is overlooked. Since antifreeze causes flu-like symtoms--or a heart
attack, that may be one thing we can use when killing off someone. I remember years ago when people were
doing Jell-o shots. So you have a person who likes them, stick a bit of antifreeze in them and kill them off. 
They’ll die happy—drunk!

Do you have any unusual poisons you’d give to kill off someone in a book?

Really, sometimes I worry people will wonder about us when we write mystery novels and have to research
ways to knock them off!










5 comments:

Warren Bull said...

I've used Jimson weed tea. In a book of course. Its use in fiction gores back to the Scarlet Letter. I've used Calabar beans in a traditional ordeal. Many decorative garden plants are poison in part or whole.

I believe a University professor was convicted of killing his wife in part because of research he reported he had done planing to write a CSI-type mystery.

Pauline Alldred said...

The problem with poisons is the taste. As you point out, who eats a tube of toothpaste? If you know someone well, you can make sure the poison goes in a favorite drink but you still have to cover up the taste with something sweet.

After the twinkie defense comes to writing defense.

Maryn Sinclair said...

The thing is to pick something that isn't usually included in a tox screen. Most unusual things would have to be specifically requested as a test. I had a particularly clever murder in one of my books, I thought, and went to a pathologist to ask about it. He said there's no way to test for everything, especially if it looks like the cause of death is something else.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Anti-freeze in Jell-O shots! That's a very interesting way to kill someone.

Nice post!

Unknown said...

Frightening how it goes. Anything can be turned into a fatal object, or a murder weapon. Which makes forensic toxicology more important now than ever before, as technology rises in sophistication alongside human malice.

EnvironmentalDiseases.com