Smith Mountain Lake Mystery Writer

Contemplations from a quiet cove on Smith Mountain Lake.

My Photo
Location: United States

I'm a Southern gal who loves life, my husband and our family (which, to date, includes 13 grandchildren). I enjoy being with friends and family. But I also like being alone and thinking up plots for future books. I've published two novels, both mysteries, and I'm working on my third. For more about my books, visit me at If you ever hear me say, "I'm bored," please get me to the ER immediately! Paddling my kayak and snapping pictures of the critters I see relaxes me. Beach music has the opposite effect--when I hear those old "doo-wops" I want to dance.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Speaking at Moneta/Smith Mountain Lake Library

Friends of the Moneta/Smith Mountain Lake Library invited me to speak at the library on the evening of June 17th. Friend and fellow Lake Writer Phyllis Conrad gave me a fantastic introduction, an intro that made writing Secrets at Spawning Run and Secrets at Sweetwater Cove even more worthwhile. Phyllis has promised to do the same for my third novel, now in progress.

Photo courtesy of Charlie Walker

I talked about where ideas come from, the importance of research, keeping time lines straight, publishing, and the actual writing process. This was a good audience. They laughed, asked lots of questions, gave me intriguing ideas, and encouraged me to keep writing mysteries that take

Photo courtesy of Ron Roseveare

place at Smith Mountain Lake. I chatted with old friends, made new ones. I enjoyed myself tremendously. I continue to be amazed at the folks who come to listen to me. And I so appreciate them.

Labels: , , , ,

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Book Signings and Talks

Book signings and talks with fellow Lake Writers Becky Mushko and Karen Wrigley are always fun. Last week there were two such events. On June 3rd, we gathered at the Roanoke County 419 Library for an "Ask the Author" presentation.

Darlene Smithwick, Reference & Adult Services Coordinator for this incredible library, introduced us. She and her team provided a table draped with cloths for each of us, and provided bottles of water and individual microphones in case we needed them. To our delight, hook-ups for our laptops were handy so we could run our slide shows. Assistant director Michael Meise took lots of photos. And there were cookies! Real ones, the kind you eat. Can you tell I like cookies?

Becky read from her latest book, Ferradiddledumday, an Appalachian version of Rumpelstiltskin, and answered questions from the audience.

Becky Mushko talking about her book. The back-of-the-head view
on the right is of Claudia Condiff, another Lake Writer. I love her hair!
Photo by Michael Meise, Ro
anoke County 419 Library

Karen read from her book Beyond Woofs and Whinnies and talked about communicating with animals. Franklin, her Golden Retriever buddy, impressed the audience with his intuitive ability, sensitivity and absolute sweetness.

Karen (in white) and Franklin

I read from Secrets at Sweetwater Cove, talked about writing and where ideas come from, and thoroughly enjoyed myself. Even though the crowd wasn't huge, the folks were loads of fun.

Left to right: Me, Claudia Condiff, Brenda Sullivan (Franklin's person)
Photo by Michael Meise, Roanoke County 419 Library

Ram's Head Book Shop in Roanoke is one of my favorite independent book stores. When we arrived on June 5, Christine and owner Lolly Rosemond had everything ready. Our books were on the table, and snacks consisting of trail mix, cookies, and drinks were almost within arm's reach. And if you read this blog from the beginning, you know how much I like cookies!

Karen Wrigley and me at Ram's Head Book Shop
Photo courtesy of Becky Mushko

Even though there was lots going on in Roanoke, people came, stopped and chatted. We all sold books, but more importantly, we met some really interesting people. If you've never shopped at Ram's Head, you need to remedy that. They are located at Towers Shopping Center, and they have more than just books. Go. You'll be glad you did.

Labels: , , ,