News & Events

Cover Art Revealed

December 11, 2020

My publisher, Severn House (an imprint of Canongate, a British company) finalized the cover art for my upcoming book. I love it! The release date in the UK is March 31. In the U.S. it’s May 1 for the ebook and June 1 for hardcover. Paperback about 9 months later. Pre-orders on,, and

Editing New Roaring Twenties book

September 24, 2020


I’m working with my editor now on revisions for my new Roaring Twenties book, the first in a mystery series set in 1924 Chicago. The title? THE MYSTIC’S ACCOMPLICE. Severn House plans to publish it first in England in April/May, 2021, then in the US two months later. Soon they’ll start work on the cover art–my favorite part! Can’t wait to see what they come up with.

No More Jail Classes?

July 19, 2020

I was sad when my writing classes at the Richmond City Jail were canceled last March. Back then, I was naive enough to think the hiatus would last a few weeks. It’s become obvious that classes won’t resume for many months, probably not this year . . . maybe never. That makes me sad. The inmates in my class were serious about improving their writing, and I miss our weekly interactions. 

When my writing classes at the Richmond City Jail were canceled back in March due to the pandemic, I naively thought the delay would be for just a few weeks. Now I realize it may be permanent. I miss my classes and my students--all inmates who were serious about improving their writing. I wish I thought classes could resume in 2021, but I am beginning to fear the stoppage may be permanent.

A Book Club in Prison

February 3, 2020

The prison has classrooms and a library.

Book groups often ask authors to visit and talk about one of their books. I enjoy this and go whenever and wherever I’m invited, but today’s visit was a bit unusual. I went to the Virginia Correctional Center for Women in Goochland County, where their book club is reading the first in my Roaring Twenties series, The Impersonator. The prison looks rather like a college campus built in the 1930s that has gone a little shabby. I’d love to show you pictures but the only thing I was allowed to bring onto the grounds was my photo ID and my car keys. I found these stock photos online. Our meeting lasted over an hour and the women seemed very interested in the topic and appreciative that I could come.

This is the gate where we check in, like airport security.

Voila! My New Publication

January 4, 2020

My latest book is out, but you can’t buy one. No one can. It’s a corporate history of Markel, the international, Fortune 500 insurance company that was started in 1917 by Sam Markel. Sound dull? Not at all–the story is fascinating and the colorfully illustrated presentation is stunning. Markel executives intend to give it to employees and business associates all over the world. The book was three years in the making, and I’m proud of the result.

The Three-Book-Club Lunch

December 18, 2019

Yesterday I was asked to speak about the Roaring Twenties and my mystery series to a group of 40 seniors who belonged to three book clubs. They had arranged last year to read The Impersonator and come together for my presentation and a Q&A–and a lovely lunch!

All Henrico Reads: Introducing Scottoline

April 12, 2019

I was honored to be asked to introduce best-selling author Lisa Scottoline to a crowd of 1,200 fans last Wednesday night. Lisa was the featured author for 2019’s All Henrico Reads program and came to Richmond as part of her publicity tour for her newest book. If she ever decides to retire from writing, she’d make a great stand-up comedian! What a fun evening!

Lady Dunmore Presentation

March 25, 2019

The Fort Pitt Museum (Pittsburgh, PA) sponsored a conference last weekend that focused on Lord Dunmore and his war with the Shawnee. I was invited to give a talk about Lady Dunmore–which was great fun for me since I’m working on a fictionalized biography of the countess. I met and listened to terrific speakers and learned a lot that I can use in my book.

Murder at the Library

February 17, 2019

For the fourth year in a row, Friday and Saturday nights brought murder to one of Chesterfield’s libraries. This popular event, which sold out fast, included a whodunit performance by some exceptional hams, er . . . thespians–the employees of Chesterfield County library system–with wine/beer and lovely food, terrific door prizes (mostly packages of books–what else?), a quiz show game with prizes, and book signings with six area mystery authors. Can they top this next year?

Historical Novel Society Conference

December 21, 2018

I’ve just learned that I’ll be speaking at the 2019 Historical Novel Society Conference on June 21. My session, titled Weird-but-True Things No One Knows about the Roaring Twenties, is scheduled first, at 8:00 on Friday morning at the Gaylord National Resort in Oxon, Maryland (across the river from Washington DC). I’ll be up early that morning, you can be sure of that! For the complete schedule of speakers for the 2-day conference, click here.