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    When Smuggling Meets Screwball Comedy

    When Smuggling Meets Screwball Comedy

    When Smuggling Meets Screwball Comedy By Wendall Thomas

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    I love Romancing the Stone. I love Charade. I don’t care that loving movies from the 80s, the 60s, or even the 40s (Bringing up Baby or The Lady Eve) dates me, because strong, screwball heroines, thrown out of their element, ...

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    How to Start Writing a Mystery Novel

    How to Start Writing a Mystery Novel

    How to Start Writing a Mystery Novel By Steven Axelrod

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    The hardest part of writing a mystery novel is starting. I have a friend who dreads launching into the actual text of his book so much that he’s been writing ever more complete outlines for more than five years. The ...

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    Found and Bespoke: When Mystery Writers Mislead

    Found and Bespoke: When Mystery Writers Mislead

    Found and Bespoke: When Mystery Writers Mislead By Steven Axelrod

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    People at book signings often wonder if there’s some trick or secret technique for writing a mystery. They ask about plot, as if that were the key. The plot is an engine, but engineering the spark plugs is the more ...

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    A Thief in Cleveland: Writing My Debut Novel

    A Thief in Cleveland: Writing My Debut Novel

    A Thief in Cleveland: Writing My Debut Novel By Annie Hogsett

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    Where do I get my ideas? I steal them. One of the metric ton of things I’m fussing about with the release of my first novel, Too Lucky to Live, is: What sort of questions am I likely to get ...

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    Diana Gabaldon Discusses “A Clash of Spheres”

    Diana Gabaldon Discusses “A Clash of Spheres”

    By Poisoned Pen Press

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      The following essay is by New York Times best-selling author of the Outlander series, Diana Gabaldon. This is one of the most entertaining, elegant and deeply emotional books I’ve read in years. (I’m tempted just to write “EEEEEEEEE!” to ...

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    Cultural Diversity in Mystery Novels: Part II

    Cultural Diversity in Mystery Novels: Part II

    Cultural Diversity in Mystery Novels: Part II By Triss Stein

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    In December, I wrote about including real life diversity in mystery fiction. Depictions and plots that reflect that are an important part of the issue, but it does not end there. Deeper and more complicated is the question of how ...

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    Staying Human: Orwell’s “1984” Revisited

    Staying Human: Orwell’s “1984” Revisited

    Staying Human: Orwell’s “1984” Revisited By Steven Axelrod

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    George Orwell’s 1984 is riding the bestseller lists again, spurred by Kellyann Conway’s ominous reference to “alternative facts” when discussing the crowds at President Trump’s inauguration. This passage from 1984 leapt to many people’s minds: In the end, the party would announce ...

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    Pulling Out the Nail: Writing Lessons With Irvin Kershner

    Pulling Out the Nail: Writing Lessons With Irvin Kershner

    Pulling Out the Nail: Writing Lessons With Irvin Kershner By Steven Axelrod

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    I’ve been thinking about film director Irvin Kershner, as I work on a flat scene that desperately needs a jump start. Kershner died a few years ago, and even then I hadn’t seen him in decades — since an extraordinary ...

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