December 19
Day 19

The Supporting Cast

Most people who read my blog know I'm an aspiring author. I consider this a major step up in the world, because for almost 40 years I was an aspiring writer. I no longer aspire to write, I write. Now I aspire to be published!

There are a lot of people who encourage me in my quest. Seriously, I feel so fortunate to be doing what I'm doing, among people who are unfailingly supportive and helpful.

Many of these people are the authors themselves, writers like RJ Ellory, Hilary Davidson, Sue Ann Jaffarian, Stephen Jay Schwartz, and David Liss, who I've featured on this blog. Whether they know it or not, I consider them all important to my process in writing DIARY OF BEDLAM. They patiently answer my questions and kindly tolerate my wide-eyed "what does it feel like to be a published author" gaze.

But there are many other people who support me as well. This post is dedicated to them.

Mick West
Goes without saying, but I am fairly confident DIARY OF BEDLAM would not exist, even in its unfinished state, without my husband. And you can blame him for any mistakes in the manuscript, because he is  my primary editor.

Gretchen McNeil
Gretchen, whose own novel, POSESS, comes out in Fall 2011, was one of my first beta readers. Her feedback on the manuscript has helped to improve it way beyond what I could have done myself. Believe me, this is a woman you want on your side.

Julie Carruth
I've never met a reader like Julie. Ever since we were little girls, she read fast and furious, blazing through book after book. She is an invaluable beta reader because she knows books. She knows a good story, and she's not afraid to tell it like it is (with a little sugar to help it go down easier).

Ali Karim
Before Ali even really knew me, he was unabashedly enthusiastic about DIARY OF BEDLAM. When I finally got to meet him in person at Bourchercon 2009, he introduced me to every person (including Sue Grafton and RJ Ellory) we came into contact with. He has helped to build my confidence as a writer more than he could ever guess, and for that, I am eternally grateful.

Steve Weddle
I think I might want to be Steve Weddle when I grow up. His name is everywhere in crime fiction, and he never hesitates to promote authors he likes. Besides Ali Karim, I'm not sure I know a guy more enthusiastic about the genre. I just got the latest copy of Needle Magazine (Steve is the editor) yesterday, and with stories by Sophie Littlefield, Matthew McBride, and Ray Banks, it's sure to be a great one.

The Mystery Bookstore
There's a reason I never shut up about the Mystery Bookstore. They have been instrumental in my development as a crime fiction reader, and now a writer. I have met some of my favorite authors in that store, and a greater group of crime fiction enthusiasts, you will not meet.

Do you write crime fiction? Need some encouragement/inspiration? Follow these people on Twitter:

Jen Forbus
Janet Rudolph
Elizabeth A. White
Jon Jordan
Ruth Jordan
Lauren O'Brien
Judy Bobalik

It is absolutely certain I've forgotten someone in this list. For that, I am sorry.


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