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In Requiem of a Computer

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Most of us, myself included, have a love/hate relationship with our electronics. Some days we wonder how we survived without our smartphones and our tablets. Other days, we want to throw the blasted beasts out the window.

I've lost track of how many computers I've owned over the years. Laptops and desktops. My first was a Gateway running Windows ME. I didn't know about computer bugs, so every time it blue-screened, I assumed I'd done something wrong. It ran slower and slower. I added memory. It still blue-screened and booted up like a slug. By the time I'd decided to move on to something else, I was thrilled to see the thing go.

Each new computer arrived bright and shiny. And FAST. And each computer, laptop and desktop, eventually became bogged down by all the programs I installed until they limped and crashed.

Almost six years ago, I got fed up. I decided I was going to splurge on a computer with more memory and a bigger hard drive than I would ever need. My compu…

Writers Police Academy 2017

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Better late than never, here is my photo journal from last month's Writer's Police Academy.

This has to be one of the coolest hotels I've ever been in. While I didn't get to see much of Green Bay, the hotel and its decor definitely gave me a feel of the area.




First, we got to practice some hands-on police techniques. 








The drone demonstration was fascinating. I had no idea what these things could really do. Or in some cases, what they can't do.
Did I mention how awesome the hotel was?
There are always a few surprises when you get off the bus at the training facility.

Deadlines, Book Jail, and Catching Up

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The entire month of August got away from me! First, there was Writers Police Academy. Then I had an August 29 deadline for revisions to Uneasy Prey. So I have excuses.



I turned in my manuscript on time and now I'm catching up.

I should have a blog post ready by the weekend about my experiences at WPA, complete with photos. So check back!

Writers Police Academy--Looking Back

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Three years ago, I attended my first and only (so far) Writers Police Academy. At the time, the conference was held in North Carolina. Four of us from my Pittsburgh Chapter of Sisters in Crime piled into my Subaru Forester for one of the wildest road trips I've ever taken!

What happens in the Subaru STAYS in the Subaru. Just ask Martha Reed, Susan Thibadeau, and Mary Sutton. You won't get a real answer, but I bet you'll get a big reminiscent smile.

Writers Police Academy is a crime fiction writer's Mecca...a weekend of high intensity workshops and hands-on training sessions led by experts in law enforcement, EMS, and fire, among other emergency responders.






The weekend is like meth to this research addict. I learned a LOT, much of which went into my books.

Next week, I'm going back. WPA is now held in Wisconsin, so there will be no road trip. I'll be flying solo to Green Bay where I look forward to participating in the Shoot-Don't-Shoot Scenario Training, t…

The Search for a Chair

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After years of hiding my furniture under afghans, quilts, and throws, it's time. Out with the old and in with the new.

Except I don't want the new to look old within two days, which is exactly what might happen.

This is the old.

Skye started the shredding years ago. Then Kensi came to live with us and joined in the fun. I tried deterrents. Nothing worked. I tried slip covers. There's a reason they call them SLIP covers. They slip all over the place. What's uglier? Clawed furniture or bunched and twisted cock-eyed slip covers? It's a toss-up.

Lately I just threw blankets over everything.

Why buy new when Kensi's just going to use it as another scratching post? (She has three of the real things and uses them all, so redirection isn't the trick.) Because the old chair has lost so much stuffing and has gotten so saggy, it's no longer comfortable. Hubby would rather lie on the wood floor than lounge in his recliner.

So I went shopping. I haven't bought a…

But it's a DRY heat

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I'm running a little behind lately. Being out of town (out of STATE) for over a week will do that to you.

Back on July 4, Hubby and I flew out to Durango, Colorado, by way of Denver, to visit my best friend, Leta Burns, who had helped me with the details of No Way Home.

While there are no immediate plans for a follow-up to Zoe Chambers' New Mexico adventure, I'm definitely not writing off the possibility. Maybe even a short story to revisit those characters. That makes this a research trip. Right?

RIGHT?

Yes.

The flight was lovely. While I was hemmed in for the Pittsburgh to Denver leg, I had a window seat for the flight over the mountains to Durango. Still snow-capped in July!

We arrived safely at the Durango Airport, where Leta picked us up for the 45 minute drive south to what's become my second home: Aztec New Mexico. Prettiest drive ever.

Meet our housemate for the trip. Elsa is Leta's fur baby. She's shy--run first, ask questions later--but she quickly ac…