Wednesday, July 1, 2009

It's That Time...Six-Word Memoirs!

Wow! How did it get to be Wednesday again already - and July 1st, too, holy moly. Anyone know where the first half of 2009 went? Well, this is Week 6 of the 6-Word Memoirs for those who are keeping track, and I have another good line-up for you today on the memoirs, so let's get to it.

Next up on our interview recaps is James Fredericks. James is a Fortune 500 executive turned legal thriller writer. He released his debut last year with BROTHER which happens to be about, well, yes, brothers - twin brothers to be exact. James enjoys cooking, traveling, playing the piano and spending time with his family. So his memoir is not really much of a surprise:

His family; his friends; his legacy.

Also from our interview recaps is Jane Cleland, the author of the Josie Prescott Antiques Mystery Series. This past April saw the release of the fourth book, KILLER KEEPSAKES, in that series about an antiques dealer in New Hampshire. Jane's first book in the series, CONSIGNED TO DEATH, was nominated in the best first novel category for the Agatha, David and Macavity awards. Jane's first short story, "Killing Time," which appeared in the Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine was an Agatha award finalist this year and is also nominated for the Anthony award. When she's not busy writing about Josie, Jane chairs the Wolfe Pack's literary awards and serves on the board of the New York chapter of Mystery Writers of America. I think I need to find out what her secret is because she says her memoir is:

Striving for clarity changed my life.

So who's new this week, you ask? Well it just so happens that two authors who had releases yesterday agreed to play in our memoir sandbox this week.

Ridley Pearson started his career as a singer/songwriter in an acoustic rock band. And despite the fact that he is now a New York Times Best Selling Novelist, he hasn't given up that music career. He is now a founding member of the Rock Bottom Remainders, an all-authors 60s rock and roll band - do you love that or what?

Ridley was the first American to be awarded the Raymond Chandler Fulbright at Oxford University, a "fellowship that recognizes published writers with emerging reputations." Ridley took advantage of this fellowship to research and outline the second and third books in his Lou Boldt series about a Seattle Homicide Police Sergeant. In addition to the Lou Boldt series, he also writes the Walt Fleming series about an Idaho sheriff and a slew of stand alone novels for adult readers. But that's not enough for Ridley Pearson! He also has some children's novels. He collaborated with Dave Barry on a series that explains the beginnings of Peter Pan, and Ridley also has a series called Kingdom Keepers, which is a mystery series set in Disney World.

One of the coolest facts about Ridley Pearson - in my humble opinion, of course: his daughters are named Paige and Storey. I just love that.

So this week, Ridley Pearson released the third book in the Walt Fleming series, KILLER SUMMER. And for Boldt fans, you can catch Lou Boldt in Ridley's short story, "Boldt's Broken Angel", that is part of the KILLER 2: Stories You Just Can't Put Down anthology. For Ridley's young reader fans, PETER AND THE SWORD OF MERCY will be on bookshelves in October. Whew. I guess if you're creating at this rate, your memoir would have to be:

Long days writing. All hours dreaming.

And last but certainly not least, an author who I just recently discovered but who never fails to make me laugh, Toni McGee Causey. And while she may be new to me, Toni is definitely not new to the publishing industry. She started out as a journalist then moved on to editing the BATON ROUGE MAGAZINE and selling to national publications. Since then she has worked successfully at screenwriting and now writing fiction. And hang on to your hats, Toni did her graduate work in Creative Writing and Philosophy. Now there's a dangerous combination for you!

It should come as no surprise that Toni has strong southern influences. She is a native of Louisiana and lives now in Baton Rouge. She also did her graduate work at Louisiana State University.

Yesterday, Toni's second book in her Bobby Faye series, GIRLS JUST WANNA HAVE GUNS, was released in paperback by St. Martin's Press. This is part of a back-to-back-to-back release this summer. At the beginning of June, the first book in the series, CHARMED AND DANGEROUS, was released in paperback and coming in August will be the third part of this action-packed trilogy, WHEN A MAN LOVES A WEAPON. You just have to know you're going to laugh with titles like that. And you have to know you're going to laugh when the author of those titles has a memoir like this:

Writing? Paid to be crazy? Cool!

If you'd like to check out the beginning of Cajun, eccentric Bobby Faye, you can read the short story, A Failure to Communicate, that Toni published in KILLER YEAR: STORIES TO DIE FOR.

Many, many, many thanks to James, Jane, Ridley and Toni for their willingness to participate in "You Have the Right to Six Words: Six-Word Memoirs from Crime Fiction's Greatest Writers." I had fun with these four excellent crime fiction writers and their memoirs. I hope you did, too. And I hope you'll meet me back here - same time, same place - next week for four more willing participants!


Corey Wilde July 1, 2009 at 10:49 AM  

What an outstanding group of 6-word memoirs!

I've read Causey's short story and I keep meaning to read the books, but you know the story about how many books there are and how much time.

Never knew that about Pearson's children's names. Cool.

beauvallet July 1, 2009 at 11:59 AM  

Jane Cleland's memoir sure makes you think.

Serena July 8, 2009 at 1:15 PM  

I love the last two memoirs in this list. fantastic.

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