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

Check out our March author interviews: 3/7--Karen Cantwell, 3/14--Shawn Reilly, 3/21--Annette Dashofy, and 3/28--WWK Blogger Debra Sennefelder (on her debut novel!). Please join us in welcoming these authors to WWK.

Our March Saturday Guest Blogger Schedule: 3/3-Heather Weidner, 3/10-Holly Chaille, 3/17-Margaret S. Hamilton, 3/24-Kait Carson, 3/31-Charles Saltzberg.

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Tina Whittle's sixth Tai Randolph mystery, Necessary Ends, debuts on April 3, 2018. Look for it here: https://www.amazon.com/Necessary-Ends-Tai-Randolph-Book-ebook/dp/B079MS67CM/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1520014972&sr=8-2&keywords=Tina+Whittle

James M. Jackson's Empty Promises, the next in the Seamus McCree mystery series (5th), will be available on April 3, 2018 at: https://www.amazon.com/Empty-Promises-Seamus-McCree-Book-ebook/dp/B078XJRYDG/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1520089649&sr=8-2&keywords=James+M.+Jackson&dpID=51kcxPsst-L&preST=_SY445_QL70_&dpSrc=srch

Dark Sister, a poetry collection, is Linda Rodriguez's tenth published book. It's available for sale here: https://mammothpublications.net/writers-m-to-z/rodriguez-linda-dark-sister/

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. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.

Shari Randall's second Lobster Shack Mystery, Against the Claw, will be available in August, 2018.

In addition, our prolific KM has had the following shorts published as well: "Making Tracks" in Passport to Murder, Bouchercon anthology, October 2017 and "Turkey Underfoot," appears in the anthology The Killer Wore Cranberry: A Fifth Course of Chaos.


Saturday, February 11, 2017

What’s Age Got To Do With It? By Marian Stanley


In my Boston-based thriller, The Immaculate, an elderly nun is murdered. Rosaria O’Reilly, mentored by the nun through a difficult childhood, is drawn into the search for answers to the nun’s murder.
Rosaria’s age is indeterminate, but I had thought of her in her early fifties.

Uh oh.

I was advised to make Rosaria younger.  Twenties or thirties or—on the near side of decrepitude—maybe forty. I stuck with early fifties with this logic.

1. She has more texture after the dings and bangs of life. Her ill-fated first marriage, her close friend Nuncie dying of cancer. Age gives a certain interesting texture.

2. She’s seen enough to get it. In time, one picks up more—the guile on an innocent-looking face or the false cheer of the abused wife.

3. Love is not just for the young. Boston cop Solly Belkin annoys and interests her so much that they may have a future together.

4. She can stand on her own two feet, with or without a relationship. Earn her own living, make her own decisions. Sometimes when things get complicated, Rosaria might wish she had someone to take care of her—but not for long. The price is too high.

5. She has perspective. She knows what’s important—whether it’s the old nun’s last secret mission or Nuncie’s right to die on her own terms.

My plan, as I finish Buried Troubles, the next Rosaria O’Reilly book, is to let her age—as we all do.

Like her protagonist Rosaria O’Reilly in The Immaculate (Barking Rain Press May 2016), Marian McMahon Stanley enjoyed a long international corporate career with a Fortune 500 company and, more recently, a senior position at a large, urban university in Boston. She is the mother of four adult children and a growing number of grandchildren. Marian writes in a small, bookish and historical town outside Boston and in Gloucester, America’s oldest seaport, on Cape Ann. She lives with her husband Bill and — just as in the story — a Westie named Archie.

The Immaculate tells the story of the murder of an elderly, social activist Boston nun in the days prior to the Globe’s Spotlight investigation and at the early stages of the current opioid crisis. Rosaria O’Reilly, one of the nun’s former students, left the neighborhood years ago for a very different life. Now, she and a monkish local detective piece together the motive, method and identity of the murderer through confrontations with a powerful philanthropist, a vicious Boston crime boss and an autocratic monsignor with ambitions for his prestigious Catholic high school.


Margaret Turkevich said...

an interesting set of characters! Looking forward to reading your book.

KM Rockwood said...

I get a bit fed up with the perky, shallow female characters we often see in today's books. Sometimes they are well-done and the story works fine, but they do lack the experience and insight of older women.

I bet Miss Marple was born middle-aged. I can't picture her in her twenties or thirties.

E. B. Davis said...

I think Agatha Christie had it right. The little old ladies are the best at crime-solving!

Warren Bull said...

It sounds like a character I would enjoy getting to know.

Marian Stanley said...

Thank you, Margaret - would love The Immaculate to have a new reader!
Yes, KM - no one would describe Rosaria O'Reilly in The Immaculate as "perky" and that suits me just fine. It's the rare person who has a fully developed sense of insight in her twenties, even our beloved Miss Marple.
And that is why you are right, E.B., old ladies are the best at crime solving! (Rosaria is not little - she's "big boned" but same sentiment.)

Marian Stanley said...

Thanks, Warren. After finishing The Immaculate, I missed the characters so much, including Rosaria, that I promptly started another book with her as the protagonist. Just finished it. Hope you have a chance to get to know Rosaria. Marian

Grace Topping said...

Good for you arguing for an older character.I attended parochial elementary and high school and had some wonderful nuns that taught me. Of course, most of the students were entranced by the younger nuns, but ultimately, it was the older nuns and their experience and wisdom that had the greater impact on me. I corresponded with one of them at Christmas time until her death at 96. I wouldn't have traded my experience with the nuns for anything.

Marian Stanley said...

So glad to know of your experience, Grace. The old nun in the story - Sister Mary Aurelius (secretly called Spike by her students because she could be tough) - was one of those old nuns that we all remember.

Gloria Alden said...

Marian, I've already written the book down to order. When one of my sisters and I started writing the series I write, she wanted my main character to be a perky young woman in her 20's. Needless to say, I couldn't write her as that young and made her older and continued the series on my own after those first few chapters. My main character is only forty - much younger than I am - but has a background that I can relate to. I also have older returning characters that play important parts. Although I attended a public school, I'm a Catholic and have had some good relationships with the nuns who had positions in my church. Like you I get so attached to my characters that not only my main characters, but I need to bring back others, too - except for victims and murderers, of course.

Marian Stanley said...

Thanks, Gloria. Sounds like we have the same philosophy on our characters. I hope you enjoy The Immaculate! Marian