2017-2018 Meetings

Sisters in Crime – Heart of Texas Chapter strives to bring interesting and educational presentations to our members. Our meetings are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted. Below is a list of past meetings. If you would like to attend a current meeting check out our Upcoming Meetings page.


The Military Police & Foreign Area OfficerPresenter, Lt. Col. Michael Grygar


How to Launch Your BookPresenters, Sue Cleveland & Dixie Evatt, who write as Meredith Lee

Sue Cleveland & Dixie Evatt






MARCH 2018

Creating & Stealing New IdentitiesPresenter, Mystery Novelist Billy Kring

Billy Kring







APRIL 2018

Strategies for Solving Problems of Character, Scene, Plot, and StructurePresenter, Michael Noll, Program Director, Writers’ League of Texas 

Michael Noll







MAY 2018

Breaking the Madalyn Murray O’Hair Kidnapping/Murder Case – Presenter,  Ed Martin, former  U. S. Treasury agent, now private investigator at Sage Investigations

Ed Martin is a former U.S. Treasury agent and currently a private investigator at Sage Investigations.  In 1975 while working for the Treasury Department, he and his family moved to Austin where he became a senior agent and lead agent in the investigation and prosecution of income tax evasion and fraud investigations.  He resigned from the US Treasury in 1984 and became a Supervising Examiner for the Texas State Securities Board in Austin. He became adept in broader definitions of fraud: Ponzi schemes, oil and gas fraud, and securities fraud.

Ed returned in 1991 to the IRS Criminal Investigation Division as a Special Agent to investigate fraud and money laundering cases.  He was the lead agent and instrumental in solving the 5-year old mystery of what happened to Madalyn Murray O’Hair and her two adult children.  After the trial of one of the criminals convicted in the O’Hair case, the Austin Chronicle stated: “If not for the methodical investigation of Special Agent Ed Martin and the FBI they (Gary Karr and David Waters) would have gotten away with murder.”


JUNE 2018

Travis County Search and Rescue, and How SAR Dogs Work – Presenter, Elizabeth Bryant, Travis County SAR

Elizabeth Bryant with Border Collie Bodhi, live search dog

Elizabeth Bryant, K9 Unit Leader at Travis County Search and Rescue, will present a general overview of Search and Rescue at the June 10 meeting of Sisters in Crime Heart of Texas Chapter . She will also share specific information about how dogs work.

Elizabeth Bryant is the K9 Unit Leader at Travis County Search and Rescue, a nonprofit group of volunteers who work with law enforcement to find lost and missing persons in wilderness areas.  Before joining TCSAR in 2013, she was a professional dog trainer. Over the years she  has trained service dogs, taught pet obedience and dog sports classes, and provided consults for behavioral problems.  At TCSAR, she became the first team Field Training Officer, trained new Ground Unit members in basic SAR skills, and developed the K9 Unit and Search Management Unit Task Books. She also worked both live find and human remains detection dogs.  She has certifications with both the National Association of Search and Rescue and the International Police Work Dog Association.


JULY 2018

Poisons Presenter, HoTXSinC member Dr. David Ciambrone, author of Poisons: The Handbook for Writers

Dave Ciambrone

Dr. David Ciambrone is a retired aerospace and defense company executive, scientist, professor of engineering, and a forensics consultant and is now a best selling, award winning author living in Georgetown, Texas with his wife Kathy.  He has published twenty-one (21) books, four (4) non-fiction, two (2) textbooks for a California university, and fifteen (15) mysteries and has new mysteries in work.

Dave has been a speaker at writers groups, schools, colleges, writer’s conferences and business/scientific conferences internationally.

Dr. Ciambrone also wrote three newspaper columns and wrote a column for a business journal.

Dave has been VP of the Sisters in Crime Orange County, California chapter and President and treasurer of HOTSINC. He was also president of the San Gabriel Writer’s League and was on the Board of Directors of the Writer’s league of Texas. He is a member of MWA and the International Thriller Writers.

Dr. Ciambrone worked with a police agency and was a consultant to police/sheriffs and coroners, including the Los Angeles Coroner’s Office.

Dave is a Fellow of the International Oceanographic Foundation. He has a Bronze Trowel Award from the Archaeological Institute of America. He is also a member of the Order of Merlin of the International Brotherhood of Magicians. The Chinese Government appointed him a Dragon Master (龍重要資料).



Copyright & Legal Issues for Authors –Presenter, Manning Wolfe, author of the Texas Lady Lawyer mystery series

Manning Wolfe
Manning Wolfe

Manning Wolfe’s legal thrillers include Dollar SignsMusic Notes and Green Fees. Manning’s a member of our chapter.

Have you ever wondered if someone could steal your manuscript?  Have you ever badmouthed someone in your book and wondered if they could sue you?  Have you ever wondered if it’s safe to say your character drank a Coke or a Lone Star Beer?  These are the questions that Manning will cuss and discuss.  She’ll also provide information on copyright, use of photos, ISBN’s, tax obligations, and more.  Expect plenty of handouts for more in-depth study, and as a reminder of the tips she gives in her talk.

Don’t get caught with your proverbial pants down! Come out and learn the nuts and bolts of Legal Issues for Authors! Hope to see you there!



Geographic Profiling of Serial Killers – Presenter, Dr. Kim Rossmo, Director of Texas State University’s Center for Geospatial Intelligence and Investigation

2018-09 pixabay CC0 usa-155594_640

Geographic profiling is a criminal investigative methodology for analyzing the locations of a connected series of crime to determine the most probable area of offender residence.  Its major function is suspect prioritization in serial murder, rape, and similar investigations.  Such cases are difficult to solve because they involve stranger offenders.  These “whodunit” investigations can involve thousands of suspects and often suffer from problems of information overload.  In such situations, geographic profiling can assist in case information management.  Crime locations are not distributed randomly in space but rather are influenced by the road networks and features of the physical environment.  Consequently, when properly interpreted, crime sites can function as spatial clues.  A focus on the crime setting – the “where and when” of the criminal act – offers a conceptual framework for determining the most probable area of offender residence.  The area of research known as environmental criminology studies the interactions between people and their surroundings, and views crime as the product of offenders, victims, and their setting.  The three theories underlying geographic profiling – crime pattern, routine activity, and rational choice – provide the foundation for understanding the target patterns and hunting behavior of criminal predators.

Dr. Kim Rossmo holds the University Chair in Criminology and is the director of the Center for Geospatial Intelligence and Investigation in the School of Criminal Justice at Texas State University.  He has researched and published in the areas of the geography of crime and criminal investigations.  Dr. Rossmo was formerly the Detective Inspector in charge of the Vancouver Police Department’s Geographic Profiling Section, which provided investigative support for the international law enforcement community.  Dr. Rossmo is a member of the Police Investigative Operations Committee of the International Association of Chiefs of Police and is a Commissioner on the Austin Public Safety Commission.  He has studied the geospatial structure of terrorist cells, patterns of shark foraging, and the geography of illegal border crossings.  He has published books on geographic profiling and criminal investigative failures, and a crime atlas for Texas.  Dr. Rossmo has been awarded the Governor General of Canada Police Exemplary Service Medal.



Paranormal Research – Presenter, Robert Ansley 

Robert Ansley is an actor, director, and producer of short films that have screened at many film festivals including SXSW, Tribeca, and Cannes.  He started his crime fighting career in 1979 with the Austin Police Dept, and was promoted to Sgt. just three years later.  Austin author Bruce Sterling noted in his book “Hacker Crackdown – Law and Disorder on the Electronic Frontier” that Robert was one of the first police officers in the nation to set up a sting operation to catch hackers committing computer crimes.  In 1989 Robert was lured away by a small computer company called “Dell” to provide executive protection for Michael and his new wife Susan.  In addition he eventually traveled the globe designing security systems and practices for Dell facilities worldwide.  After suffering a serious spinal injury Robert retired and once he was on the mend he began pursuing his fascination for paranormal investigations.  His company, Imagine Your Dreams LLC had been producing short films for festivals and now produces paranormal films for his new organization Austin Paranormal Research.  Together with his business partner, Elizabeth Lloyd they investigate client claims of hauntings and Poltergeist activity in the greater Austin area.  Their work has appeared in the prestigious magazine Paranormal Review, published by the Society for Psychical Research in London, UK.


The Intersection Between Mark Pryor’s Job as District Attorney and Crime Fiction Writing – PresenterMark Pryor, District Attorney and Author

Mark Pryor is a former newspaper reporter from England, and now a prosecutor with the Travis County District Attorney’s Office, in Austin, Texas.
He is the author of the Hugo Marston mystery series, set in Paris, London, and Barcelona.
The most recent is THE SORBONNE AFFAIR, a “flawlessly constructed whodunit,” according to Booklist. His previous novel in the series was THE PARIS LIBRARIAN, which the Toronto Globe & Mail says “has it all . . . a finely structured plot that’s one of Pryor’s best books yet.” The first Hugo Marston novel, THE BOOKSELLER, was a Library Journal Debut of the Month, and called “unputdownable” by Oprah.com, and the series has been featured in the New York Times.
Mark is also the author of the psychological thriller, HOLLOW MAN, and its sequel, DOMINIC, published in January of 2018. He also created the nationally-recognized true-crime blog ‘D.A. Confidential.’ As a prosecutor, he has appeared on CBS News’s 48 Hours and Discovery Channel’s Discovery ID: Cold Blood.


December 2018

Party! and Showcase of Members’ Work


January 8: What Happens When You Shoot Someone?, presented by Dave Ciambrone

February 12: Interdiction – A Way of Keeping Children Safe, presented by Sgt. Cody Mitchell, Texas Rangers

March 12: Drones, presented by Andrew Maximov

April 9: Cyber Security, presented by Richard Taylor

May 21: Audiobooks, Marketing, & Short Story Submissions, presented by Helen Currie Foster

June 11: Hypnosis, presented by Dr. Douglas Derrer

July 9: The Military Justice System, presented by CPT Mike Winn

August 13: Austin Police Department Bomb Squad

September 10: The U. S. Marshals Service, presented by Supervisory U. S. Marshal Hector Gomez

What are you writing? Readings by HoTXSinC Members

November 12:  Texas Highway Patrol, presented by Staff SGT Robbie Barrera

December 10: Holiday Party, and Original Radio Play by KP Gresham

**We will also have a booth at the TEXAS BOOK FESTIVAL on November 4-5.

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