HOTXSINC Meeting: January 14, 2018

Our mission is to promote
the ongoing advancement, recognition,
and professional development of women crime writers.
                                             ~ SINC Mission Statement


Program: US Army Lieutenant Colonel Michael Grygar
Art Taylor: Sue Grafton, A Remembrance (of Sorts)
HOTXSINC Election of Officers
The Word on Our Members
Selected Sites
May Your Coming Year
Nolo Contendere



Sue Grafton: Alphabet crime author dies aged 77

 “As far as we in the family are concerned, the alphabet now ends at Y,”
her daughter said in a statement posted to Facebook.


On January 14, Join us at HOTXSINC’s


We’ll meet at the delightful

Café Express

   3418 N. Lamar, Austin 78705
512 452-9888

~ Same time ~
Second Sunday, 2:15 p. m.

Parking behind restaurant!
Great menu!


Our dues remain the same
~ $20 for the year ~
and should be paid
at the first meeting.
Cash or check, please.


Our 2018 programs will be terrific
starting with

US Army Lieutenant Colonel Michael Grygar

LTC Grygar will speak about his work as a Military Police officer (MP) and Foreign Area Officer (FAO). 

If you have questions about the Army, military police, or how the US Army trains and supports foreign military forces, bring them to the meeting.

 LTC Michael Grygar entered military service in June of 1992, enlisting in the US Army Reserve as a Combat Medic. He was commissioned as a 2LT in the Military Police Corps through the University of Texas at Arlington ROTC program in 1996, while simultaneously earning a degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice. LTC Grygar entered Active Duty in 2002. In 2009, he began Foreign Area Officer training at the Defense Language Institute where he studied Portuguese. He has completed a Masters in National Security Studies with a focus
on Latin America at the Naval Postgraduate School.  

 LTC Grygar has been assigned to Fort Leonard Wood, MO; USAG Bamberg, Germany; Iraq; Monterrey, CA; US Military Group, Guatemala; Fort Polk, LA; Afghanistan; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Fort Sam Houston, TX. He has served in a wide variety of assignments as a Military Police officer and then as a Foreign Area Officer, including positions as a Battle Captain in Iraq; Commander of the Headquarters and Headquarters Company of the 793rd MP BN; Director of Emergency Services/Provost Marshal of the US Army Garrison in Bamberg, Germany; visiting instructor at the Guatemalan Command and General Staff College; Battalion Operations Officer, and Battalion XO of the 2nd Battalion, 353rd Infantry Regiment; instructor at the Brazilian Command and General Staff College in Brazil; and as the Political Military Affairs Division Chief within the Regional Affairs Directorate.

He is the recipient of the Bronze Star Medal (1 OLC), the Meritorious Service Medal (1 OLC), the Army Commendation Medal (1 OLC), the Army Achievement Medal (1 OLC), the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the NATO Medal, the Parachutists Badge and the Air Assault Badge.


Sisters in Crime Heart of Texas Chapter meets monthly on the second Sunday of the month, at 2:15 p.m. at Cafe Express,  3418 N. Lamar, Austin 78705512 452-9888

For information about the Heart of Texas Chapter contact Joyce Arquette, Publicity, (512) 266-6543.

Check out our blog/newsletter at


Sue Grafton: A Remembrance (of Sorts)
by Art Taylor


HOTXSINC Election of Officers

At the December 10, 2017 meeting, HOTXSINC elected officers for 2018. There being no nominations from the floor, the nominating committee’s slate of candidates was elected by acclamation:

President – Helen Currie Foster
Vice President/President Elect – Noreen Cedeno
Secretary/Membership – Francine Paino
Treasurer – David Ciambrone



K. P. Gresham’s radio play “The Case of the Poisoned Holly” was performed by a cast of HOTXSINC members at the annual holiday party on December 20, 2017. She spoke and signed copies of her mystery MURDER IN THE SECOND PEW at BookPeople on December 8.



Most of the articles listed below appeared on The Passive Voice: A Lawyer’s Thoughts on Authors, Self-Publishing and Traditional Publishing. Subscribe to The Passive Voice to receive daily blog updates via email.

Amazon Review Policy Change & More

“Amazon now requires you to purchase a minimum of $50 worth of books or other products before you can leave a review or answer questions about a product. These purchases, and it looks like it is a cumulative amount, must be purchased via credit card or debit card — gift cards won’t count.”

Stability in the book marketplace does not mean commercial publishers continue to maintain their share

American Literature Needs Indie Presses

How Indie Presses Are Elevating the Publishing World

The Secret Life of ‘Um’

Business Musings: Sustainability

Astronauts Get Writer’s Block, Too: An Interview with Scott Kelly

Another Bay Area Barnes & Noble bites the dust

The Rise of Surender Mohan Pathak: HarperCollins India Wins Big With Hindi Pulp Fiction

“Hindi pulp fiction writer Surender Mohan Pathak has been made ‘the Agatha Christie of India’ by Minakshi Thakur, who saw potential in a genre ignored by other publishers.”

Google Chrome will block autoplay video starting January 2018

Content duplication issue briefly keeps Sharon Lee and Steve Miller’s latest self-published chapbooks off Amazon

“Now, Amazon is in a strange situation; it cannot itself decide if it’s a publisher or a distributor, but in either case the demand for a copy of our contract with our publisher is out of line, and Steve and I will not comply.”- Author Sharon Lee

The Passive Voice: “In an update to the OP, TeleRead says Amazon customer service solved the problem. PG is happy to hear that in part because the authors seem like nice people.
“PG is usually on the little guy’s/gal’s side in these kind of disputes, but in this case, he understands Amazon’s concerns:…”

5 Things I’m Not Doing to Launch My Book—Plus What I’m Doing Instead

Nobody Has a Clue Barnes & Noble (BKS) /Q2 2018 Earnings Conference Call / November 30, 2017 10:00 AM ET

Barnes & Noble losses: Blame it on Harry Potter

Barnes & Noble Wants to Clear ‘Tchotchke’ Clutter, Sell More Books

Anti-Amazon: A Favorite Investment Theme For 2018

How to use Authentic Historical Detail to Trigger Emotions and Memories in Your Reader

But what about us?



May Your Coming Year…

May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness.
I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful,
and don’t forget to make some art–
write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can.
And I hope, somewhere in the next year,
that you surprise yourself.

~ Neil Gaiman



  1. Members, send news for HOTXSHOTS! to kathywaller1 at gmail dot com. Send links you’d like included. Deadline – January 28, 2018.
  2. Send a headshot and titles of books and/or stories (plus links) for the HOTSHOTS! author page. In addition, send a link to your website/blog.
  3. Send links to your website/blog for the HOTSHOTS! blogroll.

HOTXSINC November 12: New Laws That Went into Effect September 1st – & – This Month We Meet at Bookwoman!

Our mission is to promote
the ongoing advancement, recognition,
and professional development of women crime writers.
                                             ~ SINC Mission Statement

Change of Meeting Place

HOTXSINC will meet at

BookWoman Bookstore
5501 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78751

November 12th

Our thanks to Bookwoman for providing a place
***filled with books***
for our November 12th meeting




Exhibitor Tent 4

Saturday, November 4 – 10:00 a.m. t0 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, November 5 – 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Stop by!

HOTXSINC authors will
sell their books,
meet the public,
spread the word about
SISTERS IN CRIME ~ Heart of Texas Chapter
and support public libraries throughout the state

Texas State Capitol Building and Grounds

HOTXSINC’s booth is courtesy of  a grant
from the Sisters in Crime national organization 


November 12 Program: Sgt. Robbie Barrera on New Laws That Went into Effect September 1
The Word on Our Members
HOTXSINC Authors Guest on MysteryPeople Blog
Friday Fictioneers
Ramona DeFelice Long on NaNoWriMo
Selected Sites
The One Thing More
Nolo Contendere

New Laws That Went into Effect September 1, 2017

Sgt. Robbie Barrera

At the November 12 HOTXSINC meeting, Sgt. Robbie Barrera of the Texas Department of Public Safety will speak  about new laws that went into effect September 1.

Sgt. Barrera graduated from Texas State in San Marcos and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice with a minor in Sociology. She is a Master Peace Officer and an approved Instructor for the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE) and FEMA. She is certified as an Advanced Public Information Officer through U.S. Department of Homeland Security. She has served the state of Texas for over 24 years and currently serves as a Sergeant in Media and Communication. She was named Trooper of the Year by the Austin Exchange Club. She has been recognized for her public service by Safe Kids, Travis County Sheriff’s Office, MADD, Travis County Underage Drinking Program, FEMA, People against Violent Crime, and TABC.



Sisters in Crime Heart of Texas Chapter meets the second Sunday of each month at Book People, 603 North Lamar, Austin, phone 512-472-5050. Meetings begin at 2:15 p.m. Take the elevator to the third floor.

NOTE:  On November 12, 2017, Heart of Texas Chapter will meet at 

BookWoman Bookstore
5501 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78751

For information about the Heart of Texas Chapter, contact Joyce Arquette, Publicity (512) 266-6543, and visit our website at


Murder is a plant of slow growth … ~ Mignon Eberhart


***** *****

It was said of Miss Letitia
that when money came into her possession
it went out of circulation. 

Mary Roberts Rinehart


The Word on Our Members

N. M. Cedeno‘s THE WALLS CAN TALK, a ghost mystery, is available in ebook format.


Laura Oles debut novel, DAUGHTERS OF BAD MEN, will be released by Red Adept Publishing on November 14, 2017. The story follows Jamie Rush, a skip tracer working in Port Alene, Texas, and her search for her missing niece.  DAUGHTERS OF BAD MEN was named a Killer Nashville Claymore Award Finalist in 2016.


Meredith Lee’s new novel, SHROUDED: A CRISPIN LEADS MYSTERY, is taking to the road. A book club in Morrison, Colorado, featured the thriller in a two-and-a-half group discussion on October 22.  Another group of readers is planning a book sale/signing celebration in Stephenville, Texas on Sunday, November 19 from 2-4 p.m. The celebration will be at 1442 Private Road 2114 (South US 81).

Meredith Lee is the pen name for the Austin-based writing team of Dixie Lee Evatt and Sue Meredith Cleveland. For more about their debut novel go to


Patricia Flaherty Pagan‘s award-winning mystery story, “Padre,” has been published in the anthology TALES OF TEXAS. The anthology of short stories by Texas authors is available in select indie bookstores and on Amazon. The publisher will donate a portion of the fall sales to benefit Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.


Coincidence means only a connection that’s not seen.
Roots meet underground. ~ Charlotte Armstrong

***** *****

It is a curious thing
that when one speaks from the heart
it is invariably in the worst of taste. ~ Ngaio Marsh


HOTXSINC Authors Guest on MysteryPeople Blog

In recognition of Sisters in Crime’s 30th Anniversary, MysteryPeople  has hosted blog posts by four SINC authors. Three Heart of Texas Chapter authors led off.

October 5 Fran Paino

October 9 Dave Ciambrone

October 19Noreen Cedeno

post by Terry Shames, president of Sisters in Crime Northern California Chapter, completes the series.

Thanks to MysteryPeople for helping celebrate SINC’s 30th Anniversary.


As cows need milking and sweet peas need picking,
so writers must continually exercise their mental muscles
by a daily stint. ~ Joan Aiken

***** *****

Don’t matter if you believe in them or not.
If they’re there, they’re there,’ Mrs. Phipps said. ~ Joan Lowery Nixon


Friday Fictioneers–Flash Fiction Opportunity


Rochelle Wisoff-Fields:

Each week, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields hosts Friday Fictioneers, bloggers from all over the world who share 100-word stories. Every Tuesday, she posts a picture prompt. The following Friday, Fictioneers post their stories on their own blogs and link to InLinkz, a collection of links to all the stories posted that week. (Stories may be linked before and after the posting Friday–but not after a new photo prompt has been posted.)

Instructions for writing and for linking appear on Rochelle’s blog and on the Friday Fictioneers’ Facebook page.

Below are some examples of stories by Friday Fictioneers.

Tresha Barger: “Right or Wrong (2)”

Clare Hempstead: “Duplicity”

Susan Spaulding: “Deadly Curiousity

Kathy Waller: “‘Shrooms”

Janet: The Assignation

Dawn M. Miller: Friday Fictioneers: Haunted by Knick Knacks

Linda: “Old Tree”


The most important thing she’d learned over the years
was that there was no way to be a perfect mother
and a million ways to be a good one.~ Jill Churchill

***** *****

Perfume companies ought to bottle the smell of crisp bacon.
Forget pheromones.
I’ll bet a woman with a little spot of bacon grease behind her ears
would attract every male within a five-mile radius. ~ Blaize Clement


 Ramona DeFelice Long on NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo–National Novel Writing Month–begins November 1. Writer and editor Ramona DeFelice Long offers advice for beginning and winning the challenge.

–from Ramona DeFelice Long






 The mills of God work like lightning compared with the law. ~ Mary Stewart

***** *****

 His books distracted him for a while.
They were like the aspirins you take when you’ve got a headache.
They kill the pain for two hours and then it comes back.  ~ Barbara Vine


Selected Sites


Chicago’s Radio Days Return in ‘Homicide for the Holidays’

Many, often most, of the Selected Sites come from the blog The Passive Voice: A Lawyer’s Thoughts on Authors, Self-Publishing and Traditional Publishing.  (“Passive Guy is an attorney, entrepreneur, former tech executive and writer.”) Each issue offers summaries of articles related to writing and links to the full articles in various publications. Those listed below are drawn from a number of PV’s posts. You can receive daily updates of The Passive Voice via email by subscribing to the website. In addition, when you purchase books from Amazon, you can support The Passive Voice at no extra cost to you–instructions appear in the blog’s sidebar.

From Amazon, a Change That Hurts Authors

Self-Published ISBNs Hit 786,935 in 2016

The Attention Economy

“Does Each Click of Attention Cost a Bit of Ourselves?” [Conversation; link embedded in the article above]

Sonny Bono Memorial Collection

Why the Seattle Mystery Bookshop Must Close

Fast-Draft Writing for NaNoWriMo and Every Other Month

Help! I Don’t Know How to Rate Books!

Hey, Websites: Think Before You Link to Amazon

Sexual Harassment Is a Problem in Publishing

 Amy Tan on Writing and the Secrets of Her Past

The 5 Weirdest Lawsuits About Authors Stealing Ideas

Supreme Court says copyright law does not protect publishers in discount re-sales

When Copyright Goes Copywrong

[“Charade: The Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn film, a big-budget Universal Pictures release, fell out of copyright immediately upon release because the title screen failed to actually use the word “copyright,” instead stating “MCMLXIII BY UNIVERSAL PICTURES COMPANY, INC. and STANLEY DONEN FILMS, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.”]

Bookstore Sales Dropped 10.9% in August

Amazon Bookstores Offer Peek Into Whole Foods’ Future

A new study shows that students learn way more effectively from print textbooks than screens

How Harvey Weinstein Used His Book Imprint to Cover His Tracks



Love and a cold cannot be hid.
It is, I believe, a Spanish proverb. ~ Patricia Wentworth

***** *****

Have you ever noticed the softness of a kitten’s feet?
– they are like raspberries to hold in one’s hand.
~ Anne Douglas Sedgwick


The One Thing More

You are the lady to help people. The words came back to her as she made her way home that evening. It was pleasing to know that people thought that of you, but worrying, too. You could not help everybody–nobody could–because the world was too full of need and troubles, a wide ocean of them, and one person could not begin to deal with all that. And yet, even if you were just one person, and even if you could not solve everybody’s problems, when somebody came to you and looked frightened, you could not say, Go away. I cannot do anything for you. You say instead, Yes, I will do what I can. And then, when you go home from work at the end of the day, you sit on your small verandah watching the day turn to dusk, nursing a cup of red bush tea in your hands, and wonder what on earth what you could possibly do to help.

~ Alexander McCall Smith, The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party


Nolo Contendere

  1. Members, send news for HOTSHOTS! to kathywaller1 at gmail dot com.
  2. Member authors, send head shots and titles of your publications to kathywaller1 at gmail dot com for the HOTXSINC Author page. See how your information will be used at
  3. If you find errors–from typos to information that’s incorrect or that should appear but doesn’t–please email Kathy. HOTSHOTS! will live forever on the Internet. We want it to be accurate.

Kathy Waller, Editor
kathywaller1 at gmail dot com


October 8: Party! Sisters in Crime’s 30th Anniversary





HOTXSINC September 10, 2017: U.S. Marshals

Our mission is to promote
the ongoing advancement, recognition,
and professional development of women crime writers.
                              ~ SINC Mission Statement

September 10 Program: U. S. Marshals
October 8: Party! Celebrating 30 Years of Sisters in Crime 

The Word on Our Members
Contests and Calls for Submissions
Selected Sites
The One Thing More
Nolo Contendere


The U.S. Marshals Service is the nation’s oldest and most versatile federal law enforcement agency, established in 1789. The Service holds a uniquely central position in the federal justice system and it is the enforcement arm of the federal courts, involved in virtually every federal law enforcement initiative. Presidentially appointed, U.S. Marshals direct actions in 94 districts, one for each federal judicial district and approximately 3,709 deputy marshals and criminal investigators form the backbone of the agency.

On September 10, U.S. Marshal Hector Gomez will speak to Sisters in Crime. He will cover the history of the US Marshals (1789 – present), historical and contemporary missions, establishment of the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force in Austin , and high profile local apprehensions. There will be an interactive discussion, and Q&A’s.

“Hector Gomez, Supervisory Deputy US Marshal.  Started my career in 1986 (31 yrs), posted in Brownsville, McAllen, Denver and Austin.  Assigned to general investigations, Witness Security (WITSEC) Division, and Task Force Commander of the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force.  Assigned to high threat trials in leadership and support roles involving Timothy McVeigh, Unabomber, John Gotti, Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs, White Supremacists and Narcotics Cartels.”


Sisters in Crime Heart of Texas Chapter meets monthly on the second Sunday of the month at 2:15 p.m. We are now meeting at Book People, 603 North Lamar, Austin, Phone 512-472-5050.  We meet on the third floor.

Sisters in Crime is an international organization of women and men whose mission is to promote the professional development and advancement of women crime writers to achieve equality in the industry. Speakers include published mystery authors and technical experts who help writers craft better mysteries and readers enjoy what they read. Meetings are free and open to all. Check out the Sisters in Crime website at

For information about the Heart of Texas Chapter, contact Joyce Arquette, Publicity (512) 266-6543


Are those cat hairs on your lapel, or have you been dating a blonde with a crew cut? ~ Lilian Jackson Braun











2:15 – 4:00 P.M.


603 N. LAMAR




“There’s something dangerous about the boredom of teenage girls.”
                                                           ~ Megan AbbottDare Me


The Word on Our Members

ThirtyNineStars will sponsor a book launch for Meredith Lee’s debut mystery novel, SHROUDED, on September 9, 2017, at The Writing Barn in Austin, Texas. The event is set for 3:00 to 5:00 pm.
 On November 10 at 7:00 p.m., Meredith Lee will speak and sign copies of SHROUDED at BookPeople.
Sue Cleveland & Dixie Lee Evatt

About SHROUDED: “Insecure American graduate student Crispin Leads has come to the Vatican to study burial rituals and catch up with her oldest friend, Sister Lew, historian for the Shroud of Turin. Within hours of Crispin’s arrival she witnesses a murder and is drawn into an investigation of multiple homicides.”


A Twitter Chat Party was held for the launch of DAY OF THE DARK: Stories of Eclipse, on August 24. Stories by Laura Oles and M. K. Waller appear in the anthology.



A woman’s body doesn’t quit just because her heart breaks. ~ Margaret Maron 



“Like accidents, marriages result because those involved
happen to arrive at what might be the wrong place,
at the same time.” ~ Margaret Yorke


 Contests & Calls for Submissions

Fiction Writing Contests Worth Your Time (Fall 2017 Edition)

Glimmertrain: Short Story Award for New Writers

Glimmertrain: 2017 Submission Calendar and Writing Guidelines           



Music has power to create a universe or to destroy a civilization. ~ Katherine Neville



9/5/2017 MysteryPeople
Sherry Thomas: Speaking & Signing!
@ BookPeople

9/9/2017 ThirtyNineStars
Meredith Lee: Book Launch! 
@ the Writing Barn

Hector Gomez, U. S. Marshal
@ BookPeople

Craig Johnson: Book Launch!
@ BookPeople

9/13/2017 MysteryPeople
William Kent Krueger: Speaking & Signing!
@ BookPeople

11/10/2017 BookPeople
Meredith Lee: Speaking and Signing!
@ BookPeople


… danger was always at its most lethal when disguised as respectability. ~ Susan Moody


 Selected Sites

From Writer Unboxed

Do Daily Deal Services Work? One Author’s Experience with 18 Promo Sites

Telling the Truth in Fiction

Weaving Backstory into Frontstory

Seven Things I Learned from Wrecking My Novel

Unspoken Dialogue

5 Creative Nonfiction  Skills for Novelists

Blueprint, Territory, Language, Portal, Singular Lens: 5 Ways to Read as a Writer

Your Publicity Timeline: Is There a Best Month to Publish Your Book?

The Trouble With Action

Stealing from Aesop

Every Good Book Is a Mystery, Even When It’s Not

Should You Ever Write for Free?

Thanks to The Passive Voice for sharing the following sites:

Hurricane Harvey: Bookstores ‘Bent, Not Broken’

‘Murder by the Book in Houston reported on Facebook that it “has a few damp places where water came in, but it is minimal compared to what we expected” so it plans to open today from noon to 6. “We’re happy to provide anyone who comes in with free coffee, charging stations, wi-fi and restrooms,” the store wrote. “Please pass this along for those who have lost electricity, or who just need a break from sitting home in the rain.”

Final Chapter for Pears’ Cyclopaedia after 125 Years in Print

Copyright Fable: Debunking the Seven Second Rule

Twitter Will Render Children Illiterate in 20 Years Says Jacobson

Rendezvous with le Carré

The World’s 50 Largest Publishers, 2017

What If Barnes & Noble Went Bankrupt?

Information Sickness: How It Hurts Us and How to Escape

The Evolution of Female Pen Names from Currer Bell to J. K. Rowling


The crimes that become iconic etch themselves into the collective consciousness
because they suggest a frightening truth:
that the universe does not rely on cause and effect.~S. J. Rozan



The One Thing More



When you’ve just made the most complete fool of yourself,
you feel the need of a specially high horse to ride. ~ Patricia Wentworth



Nolo Contendere

Members, send news for HOTSHOTS! to kathywaller1 at Member authors, send titles of your published books and stories, and a head shot, for the HOTXSINC author page, to the same address.

M. K. Waller, editor
kathywaller1 at

HOTXSINC August 13: Austin Bomb Squad

Our mission is to promote
the ongoing advancement, recognition,
and professional development of women crime writers.
                                             ~ SINC Mission Statement

August 13 Program: Officer Jeffrey Joseph of the Austin Bomb Squad

Call for Readers @ the October Meeting
The Word on Our Members
Launch Party for Meredith Lee’s SHROUDED
Selected Sites
Counting Down to the Eclipse
The One Thing More


Austin’s Bomb Squad

On Sunday, August 13, Officer Jeffrey Joseph of the Austin Police Department will present a detailed overview of  the Austin Bomb Squad Unit and the services provided by the bomb technicians and their K-9 counterparts. The presentation will be followed by a question and answer period.

Officer Joseph is a twenty-year veteran of the APD and has worked in the Bomb Squad Unit for five of those years. Given the tumultuous times we live in, his presentation promises to be a fascinating and relevant presentation for all.


Sisters in Crime Heart of Texas Chapter meets the second Sunday of each month at Book People, 603 North Lamar, Austin, phone 512-472-5050. Meetings begin at 2:15 p.m. Take the elevator to the third floor.

For information about the Heart of Texas Chapter, contact Joyce Arquette, Publicity (512) 266-6543, and visit our website at


Most crime fiction plots are not ambitious enough for me.
I want something really labyrinthine
with clues and puzzles that will reward careful attention. ~ Sophie Hannah


Call for Readers @ the October Meeting

SISTERS IN CRIME Heart of Texas Chapter


Excerpted Readings from Heart of Texas Chapter Authors

An important goal of Sisters in Crime is to promote and assist our authors in as many ways as possible.

OCTOBER 8, 2017: At the regular October meeting, members who have paid their 2017 dues may read from a current work or a work in progress. Each reading will be limited to five minutes in order to allow time for as many writers as possible to take advantage of this opportunity.

If you are a current member in good standing and are interested in presenting excerpts of your work please send in your name to Sisters in Crime Vice President Noreen Cedeño, noreenm74 at There are a limited number of slots available and the deadline for sign-ups is September 1, 2017.

Non-members please join us. In addition to the members’ excerpted readings a portion of the meeting will be devoted to HOW TO GET REVIEWS – More information to follow.


I’m sold as a literary writer in Holland; I’m sold as crime fiction in England.
I think of it as just literature. ~ Karin Slaughter


The Word on Our Members

Dave Ciambrone

from Dave Ciambrone
I’ll be speaking at the
Llano Quilt Guild on August 21st at 10:30 a.m., at the Country Quilt Shop, 100 E. Exchange Place, in Llano, Texas; and
the Main Street Quilt Guild on September 26, at the YMCA, 1812 N. Mays Street in Round Rock, Texas.
I have a booth at the Chisholm Trail Quilt Guild quilt show on September 29 and 30 at the Dell Diamond in Round Rock, Texas.


Nancy G. West

from Nancy G. West
Susan Yerkes writes an article about the Aggie Mundeen mystery, in Rio Magazine:



Laura Oles

Kathy Waller

from Laura Oles and M. K. Waller
DAY OF THE DARK: Stories of Eclipse,
edited by award-winning mystery writer Kaye George, was released by Wildside Press on July 21. The anthology was inspired by the upcoming August 21 total solar eclipse, the first visible across the entire continental U. S. in ninety-nine years. DAY OF THE DARK comprises twenty-four stories, including Laura’s “Ocean’s Fifty” and M. K.’s “I’ll Be a Sunbeam.” Authors talk about their stories on Debra Goldstein’s blog, “Day of the Dark, Part I” and “Part II.”


He won’t hurt me. I have a secret weapon. ~ Sandra Brown


Launch Party for Meredith Lee’s SHROUDED

Sue Meredith Cleveland & Dixie Lee Evatt

ThirtyNineStars will sponsor a book launch for Meredith Lee’s debut
mystery novel, SHROUDED, on September 9, 2017, at The Writing Barn
in Austin, Texas. The event is set for 3:00 to 5:00 pm.

Meredith Lee is the pen name for the Austin-based writing team of
Dixie Lee Evatt and Sue Meredith Cleveland. SHROUDED, the first
installment in the Crispin Leads Mystery Series, is the story of a
graduate student whose trip to Rome to study burial rituals at the
Vatican is derailed when she is witness to a murder.

Copies of the book will be on sale at the event for $14.99, plus tax.
Authors will be present to sign books and answer questions. Prelaunch
commercial sale of the book is scheduled on Amazon and at
BookPeople, Austin’s independent book store at 6th and Lamar, in
mid- to late August.

The book is already receiving pre-publication praise. SHROUDED was a
finalist in the 2017 Writers’ League of Texas Manuscript Contest.

The Writing Barn is located at 10202 Wommack Road, Austin, Texas

To learn more visit


I had a vision … of being found on the pavement by some passerby,
with a small punctuation mark ending my sentence of life.
~ Mary Roberts Rinehart


Selected Sites

Thanks to The Passive Voice for the following suggestions.

Amazon Prime will be in more than half of US households by year’s end

Is There Anything Better than BookBub?

The End of Typing: The Next Billion Mobile Users Will Rely on Video and Voice

Links to The Passive Voice on



Subscribe to The Passive Voice by email on the blog’s sidebar.

Thanks to Writer Unboxed for posting the following.

Stealing from Aesop

Writing Through Life’s Stages: The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same

Storyboarding with Scrivener (or, A Love Affair with Virtual Index Cards)

Publishing Moves On. Do Readers?

What to Read When You’re Not Reading Books

Every Good Book is a Mystery, Even When it’s Not

Using Ergonomics to Design the Optimal Workstation


The point of quotations is that one can use another’s words to be insulting.
~ Carolyn Heilbrun


Counting Down to the Eclipse


This image of the moon crossing in front of the sun was captured on Jan. 30, 2014, by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory observing an eclipse from its vantage point in space.
Credits: NASA


NASA Eclipse Website

Earth and Sky


I feel like I need to give people a note with the book that says,
‘I’m OK, no worries!’ ~ Gillian Flynn


The One Thing More

Woody’s Words of Wisdom from Paws N Reflect

If a dog will not come to you after having looked you in the face,
you should go home and examine your conscience. ~ Woodrow Wilson


Nolo Contendere

  1. Members, send news for HOTSHOTS! to kathywaller1 at gmail dot com. Deadline for inclusion in the August issue is Friday, August 28.
  2. Member authors, send head shots and titles of your publications to kathywaller1 at gmail dot com for the HOTXSINC Author page.

Kathy Waller, editor
kathywaller1 at gmail dot com

HOTXSINC March 12, 2017: Drones


Our mission is to promote
the ongoing advancement, recognition,
and professional development of women crime writers.


Reminder: HOTXSINC now meets on the 3rd floor of

603 N. Lamar (6th St. and Lamar), in Austin, Texas.


SINC heart 4

News from Our Members
From SINC National
Events @ MysteryPeople
Writing Groups

Conferences, Workshops, & Retreats
Prompts and Challenges
Selected Sites
Nolo Contendere

Last Month’s Meeting

SINC heart 4

Andrew Maximow, Business Development and Training Instructor at Drone Dynamics, will speak about drone technology at the HOTXSINC meeting on March 12, 2017.

If you want to be the worst spy ever, fire up your drone and launch it to gather intelligence.  The buzzing motors and bright flashing LED lights will help maintain your stealthy position.  Seriously?  Unfortunately, drones have received a bad rap in recent years especially with negative newspaper headlines like, “killing war machines,” “invasion of privacy,” “ban the drones,” “threat to the public,” etc.  Much of this stems from the complete lack of understanding, increased use of drone by the military, and a few “bad apples” that makes for sensational news.  All that being said, counter-drone is top of mind for Public Safety organizations and law enforcement departments across the nation.  With advanced technology like autopilots, night vision, autonomous navigation, augmented reality, and optical flow & thermal sensors, drones are quickly becoming the tool of choice for terrorists, bad guys, and overall nefariousness.  The good guys are scrambling to understand and acquire the technology for all sorts of applications, including  counter-drone, situational awareness, search and rescue, crime scene investigation, missing person, drug interdiction, fire fighting, barricaded subject, and disaster relief – all in the name of saving lives!
"Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)" by CISRO licensed under CC BY 3.0. Via Wikipedia.
“Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)” by CISRO licensed under CC BY 3.0. Via Wikipedia.

Andrew Maximow, Business Development & Training Instructor, possesses more than 20 years of advancement and achievement leveraging technology to transform the customer experience, including 4 years in the drone/UAV/sUAS industry. In his business development role at Drone Dynamics, Mr. Maximow is responsible for solution selling to AEC (architecture, engineering, and construction) market segments as well as local and state government entities. Andrew created the Drone Dynamics Drone Training Program. Prior to that Andrew led the Enterprise Services organization at 3D Robotics, resulting in engagements most notably with BNSF Railways, Kiewit, Liberty Mutual, and Google Fiber. Prior to 3DR, Mr. Maximow held a variety of senior positions at Cisco Systems, including development of Channel Partner services, and as Dir. Professional Services with P&L responsibility, with over $50M in recurring revenue. He has also demonstrated expertise in business development, solutions selling, planning, executing growth, and exceeding profitability and customer satisfaction goals.

He possesses B. S. and M. S. degrees in Industrial Engineering.

HOTXSINC meets from 2:15 to 4:00 p.m. the second Sunday of each month at BookPeople, 6th St. and Lamar, in Austin. For more information, email JArquette (at) austin (dot) rr (dot) com.


Photographs used by permission of CISRO under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0) licence.

“English: Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) offer a cost-effective way of inspecting power lines, bridges, buildings, and cooling towers. CSIRO researchers are developing technology that will allow UAVs to safely and reliably perform such tasks with only minimal guidance from a ground-based operator. This UAV research is part of the Smart Skies project, which will develop and demonstrate automated separation management technologies that allow greater use of the National Airspace System by manned and unmanned aircraft through the integration of information and communication technologies. The CSIRO Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) component of the Smart Skies project will allow UAVs to safely fly close to structures such as power lines, bridges, buildings and cooling towers and transit through controlled airspace.” –


  My friends call me Miss Worst Case Scenario. ~ Patricia Cornwell


SINC heart 4 News From Our Members

sue-cleveland-photo-02-14-2017Sue Cleveland read an excerpt from her piece “Decoy” during the 2017 Association of Writers & Writing Programs Conference & Bookfair (AWP) at Minerva Rising’s contributor event in Washington D.C. “Decoy” appeared in the spring 2014 issue, Turning Points. The issue received a Notable Edition nod in the 2015 Best American Essays edited by Ariel Levy.

Writers published in Minerva Rising gathered during the AWP conference to celebrate the literary journal’s fifth birthday by reading their work and applauding Executive Editor Kimberley Brown’s vision of creating a journal that “celebrates the creativity and wisdom in every woman.”

Where were the writers from? There were too many to ask, but here’s a sampling: Maine, Texas, New York, the Carolinas, Washington D.C., and Massachusetts. What moved me the most about the readings? Gutsy honesty.


George Wier @ HOTXSINC, February 2015
George Wier @ HOTXSINC, February 2015

George Wier will be the keynote speaker at the Cuenca International Writers Conference in Cuenca, Ecuador, March 14 through 17. According to the conference website, “There is something magical in the Andean air of Cuenca—sparks of creativity and possibility which will open up your mind and bring fresh ideas to your writing as well as helping you gain valuable knowledge of the publishing industry.”


Nancy G. West
Nancy G. West

Nancy G. West has released “Book News: The First Ever Newsletter.” To subscribe, email her at

A podcast and the transcript of Nancy’s interview with Laura Brennan can be heard on or downloaded from on the February 10, 2017 post on Destination Mystery.


Solar eclipse, Our First Century, ca 1876; Internet Book Archive. No known copyright restrictions. Via Flickr.
Solar eclipse, Our First Century, ca 1876; Internet Book Archive. No known copyright restrictions. Via Flickr.

Stories by Laura Oles (“Ocean Fifty”) and M. K. Waller (“I’ll Be a Sunbeam”) will be published in crime fiction anthology DAY OF THE DARK, compiled and edited by Kaye George. DAY OF THE DARK will be released by Wildside Press on July 21, 2017, exactly a month before the North American total solar eclipse on August 21.



Manning Wolfe will present Legal Issues for Authors at the Houston Writers Guild Annual Conference, April 28 – 30. Click here to register. Manning writes, “My LIFA presentations are part of my service to the writing community. They are free to any organization or group when and where I can reasonably fit them into my schedule. If you need a speaker, email and ask when I’ll be in your area.”


Alexandra Burt has published the following guest posts: “So I Wanted to Be a Writer,” at My Reading Corner; “The Summer of Evil” at; and “What Remains When Your First Language Fades Away at Literary Hub.

Kirkus Review says of Alexandra’s novel THE GOOD DAUGHTER (Berkley, February 7, 2017), “Burt knows how to propel a strongly character-driven novel forward, using intrigue, mystery, plot twists, and rich—sometimes grisly—sensory imagery. . . .  both fascinating and unsettling and speaks to the strength of the human will to survive even under the most adverse conditions. Burt’s tale captivates to the bitter end, by which time ‘everything that was done in the dark has come into the light.’”

Alexandra spoke and signed THE GOOD DAUGHTER at BookPeople on February 21.


 In first person, readers feel smart, like it’s them solving the case.
~ Patricia Cornwell


 SINC heart 4 From Sisters in Crime National

To active members:

Volunteers are needed for the SINC booth at the American Library Association conference in Chicago, June 22 – 26. You may volunteer your time and/or donate your books (up to 3 books, signed or unsigned OR send 5 copies of the same book for our new Book Club Bags). If interested, fill out the web form in the Members Only section of the SINC website. If you have any questions, please contact Cari Dubiel, Library Liaison.


I never know what’s going to happen in a novel.
I don’t have a plan or an outline. ~ Donna Leon


SINC heart 4 Events @ MysteryPeople

MONDAY, 3/06/17, 7:00 p.m. –

7% Solution Book Club discusses The Red Death by Walter Mosley

MONDAY, 3/20/17, 1 PM

Murder in the Afternoon Book Club discusses The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen.

WEDNESDAY, 3/29/17, 7 PM

Hard Word Book Club discusses Find A Victim by Ross Macdonald.

SATURDAY, 4/8/17, 6 PM

Philip Kerr, speaking and signing his latest Gunther mystery, Prussian Blue.

TUESDAY, 4/18/17, 7 PM

Greg Iles, speaking and signing his final installment of his epic trilogy featuring Penn Cage, Mississippi Blood.

THURSDAY, 4/20/17, 7 PM

Megan Miranda, speaking and signing her sophomore crime novel, The Perfect Stranger.

WEDNESDAY, 5/31/17, 7 PM

Lori Rader-Day, speaking and signing her latest psychological mystery, The Day I Died.


All of us sing more from sorrow than from joy.
It is tragedy that leaves a mark on the mind and calls for the tribute of a song.
Happiness is its own gift, and needs no other. ~ Sharon McCrumbThe Songcatchers


SINC heart 4 Writing Groups

© David Davis, Alien Resort
© David Davis, Alien Resort

15 Minutes of Fame, a writing

practice group, meets the third Saturday of the month at Twin Oaks Branch Library, 1800 S. Fifth (corner of S. Fifth and W. Mary), Austin, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Participants do timed writings, then read aloud what they’ve written (but only if they want to read aloud). Strictly recreation–no critiques.





Horse sense is the instinct that keeps horses from betting on men.
~ Josephine Tey


SINC heart 4 Opportunities

The Masters Review Blog
“March Deadlines: 10 Awards and Deadlines to Meet This Month”


Crime is a very hard genre to feminise.
If you have a female protagonist
she is going to be looking after her mum when she gets older;
she is going to be worried about her brother and sister;
she will be making a living while bringing up kids. ~ Denise Mina


SINC heart 4 Conferences, Workshops, & Retreats

DFW Writers Conference 2017 – Dallas, TX ; May 6 – 7

Killer Nashville 2017  – Franklin, TN; August 24 -27

Elizabeth George on “Process and the Novel” – Tuscany, Italy; May 22 – 31

California Crime Writers Conference 2017  – Culver City, CA; June 10 -11
(Presented by Sisters in Crime LA / SoCal Mystery Writers)

Writers’ Police Academy – Green Bay, WI; August  10 – 13

Mystery Writers Conference 2017 – Corte Madera, CA – September 7 – 10

Bouchercon 2017: Passport to Murder – Toronto, Canada; October 11 – 15

Write, Travel, Transform: Machu Pichu and the Sacred Valley of Peru – Machu Pichu, Peru; October 17 – 31

Find more conference listings at–

Association of Writers and Writing Programs, “Directory of Conferences and Centers”
Author E.M.S., “Upcoming Conferences and Events”
Shaw Guides, “Guide to Writing Conferences and Writing Workshops”
LitReactor, “A List of 2017 Workshops & Conferences for Writers”
Sisters in Crime, “Conferences, Events, and Trade Shows”

Writers Retreat Workshop: Memories, Guidance, Inspiration Since 1987 – San Antonio, TX; May 6 – 13

The Write Life“31 Incredible Writing Retreats to Attend in 2017”

Writing Retreats with Laura Davis

Women Writing Retreats


I always make a point of keeping the most pleasant-sounding name for the murderer.
As he or she is bound to come to an unpleasant end,
it seems the very least the author can do. ~ Ngaio Marsh


Prompts and Challenges SINC heart 4

Blogging from A to Z Challenge [April 2017]


My work is less violent because we tend to write what we want to read…
and I’m not that interested in gruesome books.
Any violence, to fit in well with a crime novel, has to have compassion.
~ Ann Cleeves


SINC heart 4 Selected Sites & Pages

Mystery Thriller Week
“How to Write a Thriller in the Style of Alfred Hitchcock”

The Stiletto Gang
“Two Years of Wisdom in 250 Words or Less”

Ramona De Felice Long
“4 Tough Questions for Your Critique Group”

Mysterious Writers
“Writing Ideas from Some of the Best” 

The Short Fiction Mystery Society Blog

Mystery Writers of America
“Amendment to Active Membership Status Guidelines”

Nightstand Book Reviews
The Edgar Awards – 2017

Thanks to The Passive Voice for sharing the following links:

“Revenge of the Copy Editors: Grammar Pros Find Internet Stardom”

“Real Writers”

“Why I’ve Ditched the Kindle for Print Books (and Why You Should, Too)”


She always says, my lord, that facts are like cows.
If you look them in the face long enough, they run away.
~ Dorothy L. Sayers


SINC heart 4 Nolo Contendere  

  1. Member authors – Send headshots and info about publications–titles of books and short stories (publishers, dates, where stories were published, links to books, if you wish). Also send links to your websites/blogs.
  2. Members – Send your news for blog, at least two weeks before meetings if possible. I try to publish at least a week before each meeting. Whatever I have when the blog is published is what I’ll include.
  3. Members – Submit brief (~ 300 words) book reviews, articles (about classes you’ve taught; tips for writing; the writing life; links to websites you like, info about conferences, workshops, anything you think will interest readers.
  4. Members – Send links to your blog and /or website for inclusion in our blogroll.
  5. If you notice errors or omissions, please let me know so I can correct them. Regarding odd variations in spacing, font size, and other such matters–those are WordPress’ idea. It will take a conversation with tech support to root them out.

Kathy Waller, Editor
kathywaller1 at gmail dot com


 Chemists employed by the police
can do remarkable things with blood.

They can weave it into a rope to hang a man.
~ Marjorie Allingham


 Last Month’s Meeting 

Texas Ranger Cody Mitchell spoke about Interdiction for the Protection of Children, a program he created, designed to train law enforcement officers to recognize indicators of missing, abducted, and exploited children during routine traffic stops. The program also teaches officers to identify, in the absence of a child, indicators that an adult individual has, or will, offend against a child.


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