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becke_davis
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

As a struggling writer, that's something that amazed me when I attended panels at Bouchercon last year. It was my first time there, and I was interested in hearing about the methods mystery authors used. I know a lot of romance authors, and it's split pretty evenly between plotters and pantsers, as far as I can tell.

 

I figured mystery writers would be all plot, plot, plot and I was shocked that so many said they worked out some aspects of the plot and then just wrote to see where the story would go. I LOVE that (and do it myself) but I never figured mystery authors worked that way. It's magic, in a way. One of the things I love about writing, and I think it's so cool it happens that way for so many other writers.

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Well, here's a secret. I carefully plotted out my first mystery (EVERY MOVE SHE MAKES) and gave it to a woman to read. I think because it was so carefully plotted, I was telegraphing the suspect without knowing it. The woman finished the first chapter and said, "He did it," pointing to the guy who had committed the murder. I took the book back, changed it. Now I often don't know who the bad guy is. I start writing to see where it takes me. In thrillers it is a bit different, because you usually know who the bad guy is up front. But you still want to have some surprises for the reader, and so that is where I often don't know where the book is going. I let it take me where it wants to go, just to see what happens. More often than not, I like it better than what I had tentatively planned!
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becke_davis
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

It's obviously a method that works for you! I haven't read your other books yet, but I'm going to!

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mary_kennedy
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Becke and Robin, I would have posted way before this, my computer has been in a spectacular crash-and-burn mode! I just read all the wonderful posts. Robin, I was fortunate to chat with you very briefly at Bouchercon in Baltimore.  At that time, you were headed to Europe--sounded very exciting. I'm a huge fan of your work, discovered FACE of a KILLER and became hooked! I think what's so interesting about your books is the way you manage to develop wonderful characters and still keep the action-going. That is a skill I really admire! I do workshops for psychologists from time to time and I wondered if you could recommend a book on hostage negotiation? I think maybe Clint Van Zandt wrote one, not sure. If you have any recommendations, I'd love to hear it. Good luck with your exciting (and strenuous!) book tour. I told Dan Levy that your latest release THE BONE CHAMBER was on my night table. It is terrific, you are the best!           

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becke_davis
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

This photo is of Toni LP Kelner, Hallie Ephron, Robin Burcell and G.M. Malliet at ALA Midwinter/Boston. Photo taken Jan 16 at the Sisters in Crime signing booth.

g m malliet photo 3.JPG
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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

 


mary_kennedy wrote:

Becke and Robin, I would have posted way before this, my computer has been in a spectacular crash-and-burn mode! I just read all the wonderful posts. Robin, I was fortunate to chat with you very briefly at Bouchercon in Baltimore.  At that time, you were headed to Europe--sounded very exciting.

 

I do workshops for psychologists from time to time and I wondered if you could recommend a book on hostage negotiation?


 

 

Mary and I actually have chatted several times on Facebook and e-mail since Baltimore!  I love the internet.  It turns a very large world into a small world! 

 

Wouldn't you know that once I figured out how to sign on via my netbook, it lost the ability to connect to the internet!  (It shows a connection, but won't connect to the page!)  So all the cool posts I'd hope to do while in Boston did not materialize!

 

Mary, I can't think of any books offhand.  We're trained by the FBI, from negotiators themselves!  They might give us handouts, but no books. I do remember them recommending a book, which I bought.  GETTING PAST NO, by William Ury.  Unfortunately that is it.  (But I'll bet it's for sale here at B&N!)

 

 

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Have you ever read a book, watched a movie or a TV episode in which someone suffered from Too Stupid To Live (TSTL) syndrome?  I am guest-blogging about it today on Meritorious Mysteries in a piece entitled "Danger, Will Robinson!  Dinner Invitation with Jessica Fletcher is Fatal!"  I'd love it if you stopped by!

 

http://mysteryheel.blogspot.com/2010/01/guest-blogger-robin-burcell.html

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becke_davis
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Oh, doesn't that drive you nuts? I'll have to go check it out. Did you post about this on Twitter? I'll retweet it for you.

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mary_kennedy
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Robin, thank you! I'm going to B and N today and will look for (or order) GETTING PAST NO. I've found a few psych books on the topic, but they weren't particularly helpful. This sounds terrific, thank you so much!   

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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Re: "TDTL--Too Dumb To Live--heroines"--I guess the classic is baby-sitter in a horror flick. She gets threatening phone calls. Gruesom predictions about what's going to happen to her.  Finally she receives a call, and the caller tells her (cue scary music here),. "the calls are coming from INSIDE the house." What does she do?? Does she run to the front door to escape?? No. She runs up the stairs. DUH. I've seen this several times and it always cracks me up. I usually throw the remote across the room at this point, too. 

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

 


mary_kennedy wrote:

Re: "TDTL--Too Dumb To Live--heroines"--I guess the classic is baby-sitter in a horror flick. She gets threatening phone calls. Gruesom predictions about what's going to happen to her.  Finally she receives a call, and the caller tells her (cue scary music here),. "the calls are coming from INSIDE the house." What does she do?? Does she run to the front door to escape?? No. She runs up the stairs. 


 

Unless of course you're talking about the SCARY MOVIE spoofs.  Those are a crack up!

 

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

I am *very* excited.  A wonderful article came out today in the San Francisco Chronicle.  It gives a bit of background on my police career and the writing.  Here's the online version. 

 

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/01/21/DDTU1BFKVC.DTL

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becke_davis
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Robin - Michelle Buonfiglio has a blog about authors as rock stars over at B&N's Unabashedly Bookish. With articles like this one, I'd say you definitely qualify as an Author Rock Star!

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

 


becke_davis wrote:

Robin - Michelle Buonfiglio has a blog about authors as rock stars over at B&N's Unabashedly Bookish. With articles like this one, I'd say you definitely qualify as an Author Rock Star!


 

LOL!  Who hasn't secretly dreamed of being a rock star!!!  Since I can't play music (very well--I'd qualify for the comic auditions from Amer. Idol), It's nice to know that there's still a chance for me yet!

 

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

If you're wondering how writers get their ideas for books, stop by where I'm guest blogging today and read how I came up with the plot for THE BONE CHAMBER.  You might be surprised!

 

http://masoncanyon.blogspot.com/2010/01/guest-blogger-robin-burcell.html

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

So I'm still intrigued about the chance of becoming a rock star.  Looked up Michelle Buonfiglio's blog.  Very fun.  I'll check it out more thoroughly when I get back from Los Angeles.  So if you don't hear from me until Sunday, you'll know why!  (But I'll try to pop on in between signings!)  It's raining down there, and all the flights were cancelled from Sacramento airport yesterday due to the weather.  Hard to believe that could happen in L.A.!  Keeping my fingers crossed that all is well this morning!

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becke_davis
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

I hope the weather improves, Robin - that sounds nasty!

 

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Yes!!!  I made it!!!  I'm a rock star!!!

 

:smileywink:Thanks, Becke!  

 



 

 

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becke_davis
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

[ Edited ]

By the powers vested in me, I hereby dub you: Rockin' Robin!

 

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Robin_Burcell
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Re: January Feature: Robin Burcell's THE BONE CHAMBER

Becke!  That is too cool! What a great thing to come home to, after a long weekend on the road!  It was a productive weekend, even though L.A. was wet and soggy and it took two and a half hours to drive what should have been an hour drive (gotta love L.A.!)

 

But I did manage to squeeze in a few Barnes & Noble stops!  So here's a shout out to the wonderful stores where I signed books, and the great employees who chanced to be on duty when I dropped in:

 

B&N in Hungtington Beach off of Edinger, where I was met by the Asst. Manager, Chuck.   I signed about 10 books there.  (You can find all of them on the New in Mysteries Paperback section.)

 

Jonathon and then Mike the on duty manager at the B&N at the Metro Pointe shopping center across from South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa. 

 

And last but not least, Ryan from the B&N Westside Pavillion store on West Pico Blvd in Los Angeles.    Ryan was unbelievably busy, customers coming up in droves, and yet he very kindly made time for me to sign their stock on hand.

 

The stores were beautiful (as usual), and the employees extremely friendly!  It was great fun to walk in and see my book on the shelves!

 

Next week it's off to Chicago and Wisconsin!