Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Chile Pepper Crime

Today I arrive in Santa Fe for the Left Coast Crime conference. It will be a first visit to New Mexico and a chance to meet writers and readers I would not run into on the East Coast. The panelists presenting with me are a case in point: a varied group who write, as I do, about exotic places. Our panel is about that very subject — “When Location Makes All the Difference.” Let me introduce them to you (even though I haven’t met them yet). In addition to me, they are:

Jeanne Matthews, our moderator, was born and raised in Georgia, but currently lives in Renton, Washington. She has worked as a copywriter, a high school English and Drama teacher, and a paralegal. Her book Bones of Contention, published by Poisoned Pen Press, takes place in Northern Australia.

Pete Goodman was a journalist in the U.S. Air Force who wrote articles for national and international media. He’s been a university professor in Theatre Arts and an Executive Show Director for Sanrio Puroland, Tama Japan, a theme park. Now he has written a mystery called Smoking Frog Lives! that takes place among the Mayan ruins in Mexico.

RJ Harlick describes herself as an escapee from the high tech jungle, having worked for IBM and DMR Group. Originally from Toronto, she now splits her time between Ottawa and log cabin in West Quebec. A lover of the outdoors, she writes a series that takes place in the untamed wilds of Canada.

Sara Sue Hoklotubbe is a Cherokee tribal citizen who grew up on the banks of Lake Eucha in northeastern Oklahoma and uses that location as the setting for her mystery novels. Her first book, Deception on All Accounts, was published by The University of Arizona Press. Her second, The American Café, is due out in April.

We were assigned a great time slot for our panel—mid-morning on Saturday, so we should get a good crowd. Our discussion will center on how we chose to write about such far-flung places. I look forward to it and will tell about it next week, with pictures. Wish us luck!

--Annamaria Alfieri

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