Babes in the Woods

  Babes in the Woods     I live in Melbourne but was born in San Francisco. Why my parents left the United States for a place where they had no home or jobs lined up, no friends or family, is a mystery best explored another time. But as a result of my divided loyalties […]

SOME OF OUR FAVORITE WORLD WAR II SPY NOVELS 

SOME OF OUR FAVORITE WORLD WAR II SPY NOVELS    Restless — William Boyd I’m a huge fan of William Boyd; he’s such a versatile writer, you never know what you are going to get when you pick up one of his books — other than an excellent story. Restless has a sort of urgency […]

THERE’S TOO MUCH SEXTON BLAKE!

THERE’S TOO MUCH SEXTON BLAKE! Of all fictional British detectives, none has had so many adventures published as Sexton Blake, none bar Sherlock Holmes has been so famous, and none has fallen so rapidly from such a height into such obscurity. Were all his cases still in print, you’d be faced with more than 4,000 […]

Isolation: A Suspense Writer’s Best Friend

Isolation: A Suspense Writer’s Best Friend   A curtain of silence over the city. Empty streets criss-crossing the landscape. Shuttered storefronts and pedestrian-free sidewalks. Furtive, nervous looks from the scattered few venturing out in the open. A scene from a Stephen King novel? An episode of The Twilight Zone with Rod Serling lingering in the […]

10 Reasons to Become a Fiction Author

10 Reasons to Become a Fiction Author   When I began my journey as a writer, I had no concept of the difficulty involved in taking a book from idea to publication. After attending a plethora of writer’s conferences, reading a gazillion books, and gathering feedback from numerous industry professionals, I am pleased to announce […]

girl reading

How re-reading helps fuel my writing

How re-reading helps fuel my writing   One of the difficulties I’m experiencing regarding the lockdown and new social distancing norms, is that I’m having trouble working. I’m sure many of you can relate. It’s a strange time to be in a creative field because there’s nothing I want to do less in all this […]

Selecting the Right Subject and Location for Your First Novel

Selecting the Right Subject and Location for Your First Novel   One of the many challenges facing the debut novelist is to select the appropriate subject matter and the optimal setting.  Your mind may already contain vivid snapshots of your characters and exciting fragments of your plot, but you may not yet have explored fully […]

The Magic of the Cage-Free Character

The Magic of the Cage-Free Character Cage-free characters do not arrive in novels prepackaged and preprogrammed. But when a cage-free character does forge his way into existence, an author can count himself as lucky. And I do mean very lucky… So what is a cage-free character? He or she typically starts off as a minor […]

MY TOP TEN CRIME NOVELS WITH AMATEUR SLEUTHS

Top 10 Female Sleuths

Top 10 Female Sleuths   Each of the characters in this top ten list features a female sleuth who stars in her own series. This list is in no way comprehensive. I love far too many books to list them all here, but the following heroines have stuck with me for a variety of reasons. […]

THE BOY ON THE TRAIN 

THE BOY ON THE TRAIN   I’m about to publish my ninth novel – and all nine have been written on the commuter train between my home in Connecticut and my job in Manhattan.  My commute has been so much a part of my novel writing that my first book, The Cold Truth, is dedicated […]

The Fifteen Toughest Book Titles to Play Charades With.

The Fifteen Toughest Book Titles to Play Charades With.   What sparked my original interest in writing suspense?  Truth is, the suspense novelist Robert Ludlum may be the reason you’re reading this – or any writing from me.  Meaning – when I was in junior high, I read an early novel of his, The Osterman […]