Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Big Wait

For the writers in the ranks of Killer Nashville attendees, we go for the info. We go for the networking. And we go to go.

The writing process is, sadly often, very much about the hurry-up-and-wait. We wait for the muse. We wait for Microsoft Word to load. We wait for the printer. We wait in line at the Post Office. We wait for the rejection. We wait for the acceptance.

So it feels good to move; to scurry from one session to the next; to throw our lunches down our throats to leave enough time for the floss and tongue scraper before our pitch sessions. The vitality of bustling offsets the dreaded ‘writer’s spread’ of the added hip girth gained from waiting around in our chairs.

Oh, but how we dive and roll when we work. Mystery, suspense, and thriller writers dodge bullets. We run after suspects. We tear though alleys and woods. We beat the hell out of people. Sometimes we kill, and sometimes we die, in our minds – just to know what it feels like, so we can write it right.

That’s what we do while we wait. Don’t let anyone tell you that’s not real work.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

2010 Killer Nashville Guest of Honor

By Beth Terrell

Every year, there's much speculation about who will be the Killer Nashville Guest of Honor, and every year, when Clay tells me who it is, I feel a burst of excitement--"Wow! That's amazing!"-- immediately followed by a trickle of anxiety--"Uh oh. How are we ever going to live up to that next year?"

But every year, somehow we do. Mary Higgins Clark was the very first Killer Nashville Guest of Honor, followed by Michael Connelly, Dr. Bill Bass, and J.A. Jance. To this list, it's my pleasure and honor to add the 2010 Guest of Honor . . .

(Drum roll, please . . . )

Jeffery Deaver.

Deaver is an award-winning author whose books have been on best-seller lists around the world. They've been translated into 25 languages and sold in 150 countries. Two have been made into movies (The Bone Collector, starring Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie, and A Maiden's Grave, starring James Garner and Marlee Matlin). Among Deaver's works are stand-alone thrillers (such as The Blue Nowhere, A Maiden's Grave and A Body Left Behind). His series characters include quadriplegic Lincoln Rhyme, whose keen mind and vast knowledge of forensics enable him to solve even the most difficult crimes from his hospital bed, and Kathryn Dance, an expert in kinesics--the interpretation of body language, such as facial expressions or gestures.

Deaver's attention to detail is legendary. He does extensive research on every book, and if he says x type of sand is only found in y area, you can pretty much take that to the bank. Lee Lofland, a well-respected expert in law enforcement procedures and investigative techniques, says Deaver's research is among the best he's seen. When asked how much time he devotes to research, Deaver says he devotes about eight months to researching and outlining a book.

Although Deaver describes his books as plot-driven, many have characterized them as psychological thrillers. In the Q&A on his website, Deaver says, "I explore the psychology of crime and crime detection in my books: the minds of the criminal and his hunters. I also try very hard to create characters--both heroes and villains--with psychological depth. In other words, the people who populate my books are more than caricatures. We inhabit their minds throughout most of the book."

If you like thrillers, forensics, or psychology, check out Jeffery Deaver. And please join us for Killer Nashville 2010. Registration will be opening soon.

I'll keep you posted!