Wednesday, October 21, 2009

You Have the Right to Six Words - Week 22

We interrupt the Bouchercon posts because it's that time again! To share some more fun memoirs from Crime Fiction's greatest. We have a superb line-up this week, but before we cut to the chase, it has come to my attention that an impression exists out there that six-word memoirs is somehow my brain child. Sorry folks. I'm not that creative. If I've personally given someone that impression by something I said, I apologize, it is not so. As I would mention when I asked the question in interviews and as I pointed out at the beginning of this series project, this idea is not original. I picked up on it from reading the book NOT QUITE WHAT I WAS PLANNING: SIX-WORD MEMOIRS OF WRITERS FAMOUS AND OBSCURE. Since the publication of this book, three others were published and the creators have this website. So if you want to credit someone, credit the folks at SMITH Magazine. I've just borrowed the idea in an effort to highlight crime fiction writers. Please let me know if you have any questions.

And now for this week's authors:

Leading off this week is national bestselling author Shane Gericke (pronounced YER-key). I'm so thrilled to have him join us because I'm one of his devout followers over at the 7 Criminal Minds blog. Shane got his start in the writing biz while still in high school. He worked as a sports writer for the Frankfort Herald. Despite only making $30 a month in this position, he loved the job. It led to 25 years as a journalist, including a run as Senior Financial Editor at the Chicago Sun-Times. But these days, Shane is writing thriller novels featuring his police detectives Emily Thompson and Martin Benedetti. His first in the series, BLOWN AWAY, was named Debut Mystery of the Year by RT Book Reviews. Book number three in the series, TORN APART, will be published in July of 2010. Shane is a member of Mystery Writers of America and the Society of Midland Authors. In addition, he is a founding member of International Thriller Writers and is presently chairman of ThrillerFest. But would you expect anything less from a crime fiction writer living in Naperville, Illinois? The home of Dick Tracy!

As I mentioned at the beginning of Shane's bio, he's one of the 7 Criminal Minds bloggers. If you follow his blogging on Fridays you'll know he's smart, funny and genuine. It is truly my honor to have him represented here today. I'm supposed to pass along to you also that Shane invites you to visit him at He'd love to buy you coffee while there, but it's digital, and the powdered creamer wouldn't dissolve. He is descended from the seven Gericke brothers who immigrated to Milwaukee in the early 1800s. Six of them died of natural causes. One was kicked to death by a mule. Shane figures that explains everything.

O.k., so how does Shane sum up his life experiences with six words? With

Pedal to metal; blew through reds.
And I'm just full of Criminal Minds today. The Sunday blogger for 7 Criminal Minds is Gabriella "Gabi" Herkert, the author of the Animal Instincts Series. Yep, you know that one got my attention right away. Gabi claims that she is an "evil corporate lawyer" by day and that her behavior doesn't improve while she's writing her books by the light of the moon. Her friends are just like her (she's obviously out breaking knees with Sophie) and so is her dog, a Lab mix who bears a striking resemblance to the dog on the cover of her novel DOGGONE, the second book in the Animal Instincts Series. HORSEWHIPPED is the upcoming third novel in the series. Evil or not, Gabi's

Charging life's tricycle toward the
I just love that image, don't you?

Hallie Ephron has touched on almost every aspect of crime writing that you can. She's a reviewer, she's a writer, she's a teacher! Maybe it's in the genes. Hallie's parents were the screenwriters Henry and Phoebe Ephron, and her sisters Nora, Delia, and Amy are also writers. So maybe it was natural that Hallie should be an award-winning book reviewer for the Boston Globe or an award-nominated non-fiction writer with Writing and Selling Your Mystery Novel: How to Knock 'Em Dead with Style, or a writing workshop instructor. Who knows. But she is also a successful crime fiction writer. She published five series novels as half of the writing team, G.H. Ephron and she's also published solo with her psychological suspense thriller NEVER TELL A LIE. Her newest book, out this month, isn't a crime fiction book, but it is one you will hear about soon here at Jen's Book Thoughts, a beautiful little book called THE BIBLIOPHILE'S DEVOTIONAL. When not hard at work on her next psychological suspense novel, Hallie can be found blogging with the ladies over at Jungle Red Writers. For Hallie, it all comes down to:

Twisting the truth to creep them out.

And rounding out our bunch today we have an author you may not have heard of, but I think his work just might catch on. Yes, I was being facetious. John Hart is a New York Times bestselling author, and international bestselling author, and he's an Edgar Award-winning author. He has published three thrillers: THE KING OF LIES, DOWN RIVER, and most recently THE LAST CHILD. His books have been translated into at least 26 different languages and published in over 30 countries. John was born and raised in North Carolina, where he also attended college at Davidson College, just north of Charlotte. Here he earned an undergraduate degree in French literature and graduate degrees in accounting and law. Not only has he worked as a banker, stock broker and attorney, but he's also put in time sanding teak, working on helicopters and BAR TENDING! Well, do they call it that in London where you work in a pub, not a bar?

John found that he couldn't write in the off hours while working a regular day job, so he took a gamble, gave up the day job and devoted himself entirely to writing. The gamble paid off in spades. These days his family and writing demands occupy most all of his time, but he still tries to assist in protecting North Carolina's open spaces.

So how does John choose to immortalize this life full of accomplishment?

Raise hell. Settle. Write books. Cocktails.

Once again, an awesome line-up of fabulous authors sharing their 6-word memoirs. My thanks to Shane, Gabi, Hallie, and John for making time to play with us today. It is my distinct honor to have you all on Jen's Book Thoughts today. Thank you.

And to everyone who keeps coming back, thank YOU. Hopefully, I'll see you here next week, same time, same place for our Halloween week edition of "You Have the Right to Six Words!" And I'll be even happier if I see you back here tomorrow as we return to our regularly scheduled Bouchercon recaps!


le0pard13 October 21, 2009 at 9:44 AM  

Another great set of 6 word memoirs, Jen. I hope you have enough for the rest of the year. Thanks.

Shane Gericke October 21, 2009 at 12:31 PM  

Thanks so much for putting me in your blog, Jen--and for all the nice praise. You're too kind! Glad you had a good time at Bouchercon, wish I could have joined you there. Next year in SF for sure.

Maryelizabeth Hart October 21, 2009 at 2:29 PM  

What fun! Thanks for sharing!

Lori L October 21, 2009 at 2:30 PM  

This was another week of great 6 word memoirs! Thanks for continuing the series!

Kelli Stanley October 21, 2009 at 2:46 PM  

Another stellar set of six-word brilliance, Jen, and so great to see our wonderful Shane and Gabi--we missed them at B'con! I'm hoping we can set up a full-blown Criminal Minds party in San Francisco next year, at which you can be the guest of honor and share your own six word memoir with us! :)


Pop Culture Nerd October 21, 2009 at 4:19 PM  

Good stuff. I like the visual of Gabriella's memoir since I'm more skilled on a trike than bike.

Don't know how you get so much work done, Jen. Gathering memoirs, partying at B'con, writing up reports...I'm exhausted just thinking about it. Think I'll lie down and eat a donut.

Serena October 29, 2009 at 7:06 PM  

This is my favorite of these: Pedal to metal; blew through reds.

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