Monday, August 18, 2014

Read the Opening Paragraphs of BIG SHOES

Dana King tagged The Famous Author to be next in line for a blog hop. (Thanks Dana!) Writers answer four questions, then tag two other writers to answer a week later. Well, TFA called in sick today. The flu, he says. So I'm stuck me with contacting the other authors and writing the answers for him. Boy will he be sorry.

What am I working on?

TFA is working on #5 in my series, BIG SHOES. I stole this draft opening off his computer:

The big thing about my temporary business partner, Angelina “Mama Bones” Bonacelli, the mildest of professional consultations can deteriorate into crime and violence. Lunch negotiations have turned into shootouts. Her Power Point presentation to a Jersey state racing commission last summer was raided by the FBI. As a Jersey shore racketeer with direct ties to what's left of a once powerful New York crime family, Mama Bones even packs a loaded semiautomatic.

Our association has been ... well, problematic. Bullets, knives and poison keep turning up at our mutually occupied locations and joint functions. In fact, I am lucky to be alive -- charmed, really -- and I've decided I need a new partner and a new livelihood. Trying to explain these concerns and my desires to Mama Bones last month, following the funeral of one Heriberto Garzia, a man murdered right before my eyes, Mama Bones told me to take a vacation. Think about my future, she said. Don't rush into drastic change. "Maybe when Vic gets better, you'll feel different," she said. Not likely. Her son Vic -- my real business partner, who Mama Bones is subbing for -- remains physically wounded and mentally unstable following an earlier, unrelated shootout. Unrelated, except minutes before being shot, both victims were talking to me.

I did take some time off, per Mama Bones' strong suggestion, but the results are not what she'd hoped. An exhaustive detailing of past events and stern logic worked against her, particularly a list I made of her associates who were murdered or who disappeared in the last three years. Honestly, only a suicidal fool would stay. This morning, my vacation is over. I'm here to tell Mama Bones that Bonacelli Investments will have to do without me. I've sold my last tax-free bond.

I don't think Mama Bones is going to let me out of the business that easily, do you?

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

In the sub-genre of funny mystery, TFA tries to do what everybody else does -- make the reader laugh. The one thing that makes me (Austin Carr) unique is my background -- that is, growing up in Los Angeles and moving to New Jersey. It's a scary place for easy-going guys like me.

Why do I write what I do?

I don't write it. TFA does. What a dumb question.

How does my writing process work?

Same thing. I don't have a writing process. I don't write. I'm a character. I sit inside TFA's head and whisper stupid stuff to confuse him. Or sometimes I tell him dirty jokes, make him spit coffee all over his desk. Ha. Man does that tick him off.

Travis Richardson was just nominated for an Anthony and other awards. He's a fine young man with a lovely wife. You can look at his Amazon author page here and his blog here. Les Edgerton is another award-winning author, teacher, coach and mentor to hundreds of writers across the globe. You can see his author page here and his blog right here. Both of these fine authors will answer these four questions next Monday. Don't miss them, especially Travis.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Funny Crime Authors to Try Besides TFA

Donna Andrews was born in Yorktown, Virginia, the setting of Murder with Peacocks and Revenge of the Wrought Iron Flamingos, and now lives and works in Reston, Virginia. When not writing fiction, Andrews is a self-confessed nerd, rarely found away from her computer, unless she's messing in the garden. She is a member of Sisters is Crime, Mystery Writers of America, and Private Investigators and Security Association. www.donnaandrews.com












Jeff Cohen is the author of the Comedy Tonight and Aaron Tucker mystery series, and as E.J. Copperman writes the Haunted Guesthouse mystery series, whose sixth installment INSPECTOR SPECTER will be published by Berkley Prime Crime in December. Jeff collaborated with E.J. Copperman (and the negotiations were intense) on the Asperger's Mystery series from Midnight Ink, which begins in October with THE QUESTION OF THE MISSING HEAD, introducing Samuel Hoenig, a borderline genius with an autism spectrum disorder who answers questions for a living and narrates his stories.



Jeff Markowitz is the author of the Cassie O'Malley Mysteries, an amateur sleuth series set deep in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. Jeff holds a Bachelor's degree in psychology from Princeton University and graduate degrees in special education and human services. He has spent four decades working in the non-profit sector, developing services for children and adults with autism. Jeff's new book, the stand-alone mystery, Death and White Diamonds, will be released by Intrigue Publishing in January 2015. Jeff is a proud member of the New Jersey Authors' Network and the Mystery Writers of America.










The Famous Author (TFA) used to be a newspaper reporter. Big deal. I'm still the best thing that ever happened to him. You can click on my blue or green adventure on the right side of this blog, or you can wait until this pink one comes out in October. Though it's almost ready, the boss says October 14 because he's trying to earn some early reviews. Go Eric! TFA and I greatly appreciate the thought and extra work.




By clicking on each author's name (except TFA) you will travel to read about and potentially purchase a new clever and LOL mystery novel. I know, everything's lol these days. Shopping lists are ROTFL. But these three authors made me laugh literally, both this weekend at the Deadly Ink mystery writers and readers convention and conference, and also when I've read their books over the years. Promise: These are smart funny people.