Happy Friday! Hope you had a good week. It's been quite a week for book releases, that's for sure. I'm super excited about this week's Five on Friday guest and I'll get to her in just a sec. First let's get some "around the web" stuff out of the way.
Publishers Weekly is interested in what you think the Great American Novel is. You can vote for your choice. I don't think you'll have any trouble guessing who mine was.
On Monday, Pop Culture Nerd posted our choices for the March Nerdy Special List. I offered up two but only one was a crime novel.
Speaking of book releases. This week both Hilary Davidson and Brad Parks had book releases. And over at Criminal Element they have sweepstakes to give away copies of both books, so be sure to stop over there and check them out. Hilary's ends this weekend, so don't delay!
If you hurry, Lesa Holstine has a contest that ends tonight. She's back in the saddle with her contests, and this one is a historical mystery giveaway.
If you're a Maisie Dobbs fan, be sure to check out Jacqueline Winspear's "Have You Met Maisie" contest.
The Friday Reads contest this week includes Harlan Coben's Six Years and James Thompson's Helsinki Blood.
And I think that's it for me for this week. So let me introduce my guest today. I met Dana Cameron for the first time at a Bouchercon and I believe right after that she was at Murder and Mayhem in Muskego, so I had the chance to spend some quality time with her there.
I'm not going to rattle off her impressive resume, you can check that out on her website. I'd prefer to tell you that she is a kind, friendly, outgoing, smart and creative woman who is incredibly funny. It is not only a joy to be able to socialize with her, it's an honor. And I hope you take away a little glimpse of that today. I know that she put a lot of thought into her responses--she and I chatted on and off about it--so I hope you enjoy today as much as I do.
I'm super excited because I'm getting ready to start her new book Seven Kinds of Hell, which comes out next week. Is that title great or what? And it's taking me out of my comfort zone, too, so I'm excited about that as well.
But let me quit yammering and let Dana take it away!
Dana from above, in the DC Metro station
The TV show I absolutely can’t miss is: Sherlock. Because tall, dark, and brainy is exactly my cup of tea. You can tell it was written by writers who are also fans of the canon. Its extreme depth of quality is similar to Battlestar Galactica, which, if it was still on, would be slugging it out with Sherlock for my heart (ooh, hands up who'd want to see Starbuck and Sherlock slugging it out?). Even if the stories are stronger in their beginnings and endings (not so much with middles), it is mind-bogglingly good.
If I could sit next to anyone (not related to me) on a cross-country flight, it would be Emma Thompson because she's done everything in theater and film—Shakespeare, a Swarzenegger movie, Jane Austen, animation, and science fiction—and done it brilliantly. She won Oscars for acting AND writing. When she realized no one was going to ask her to play James Bond, she came up with her own franchise. She's politically active, and she backs up her words with positive action. Also, she's married to Greg Wise. I would totally be cool and witty and not babble much at all on that flight, or tell her that I want her to play me in the movie of my life. Because that would be weird and excessive.
My favorite vegetable is: Potatoes. I wrote a lot about spinach, at first. I always feel great when I have spinach, and you can prepare it a hundred ways, cooked or raw. But then I returned to France for a visit. Even the boiled potatoes are heavenly there, and when you tuck into something fancier, like a dauphinoise, choirs of angels sing. I like spinach a whole lot, but I'm pretty sure you can't have a mind-bending, revelatory gustatory experience eating any vegetable but a potato.
The fictional character that most reflects my personality is: A Time Lord—maybe River Song. Because my idea of fun involves gathering up a bunch of friends and having adventures in history and science, sometimes escaping into a library when trouble looms. Occasional gunplay and advanced degrees as necessary.
The #1 item on my bucket list right now is: Visiting Egypt. It's the thing that got me interested in archaeology, almost as soon as I could read. Even though I never took a class in Egyptology and ended up, in fact, researching colonial new England and post-medieval Europe, everything in my writing and archeology careers has come from that initial, very early, impulse to study archaeology.
First of all, that has to be one of my all-time favorite pictures for this feature. And Dana sent me her materials when I was having a particularly rough time; that picture made me smile when little else was able to. And second, I just love it when our participants "get" this feature. Dana totally got it and I absolutely love today's installment. I hope you did as well.
I'm pretty sure Dana's going to be lurking around today, so I hope you'll say "hi" and leave her questions if you've got them. My thanks to her for the time and great responses. I encourage you to connect with Dana on Facebook and Twitter. As I said, she's so much fun. As a matter of fact, she and I were talking about shoes the other day...nice bright green ones!
With her new book release, Dana's also going to be out and about doing some events, so if she's near you, you should go see her! In the mean time, I wish you a wonderful weekend full of great books. Happy Reading, friends!