Saturday Afternoon, May 31, 1:33 pm:
I’m trying to get one of my children dressed for a cello recital. I, of course, have just stepped out of the shower. It’s hot in Albuquerque. Our family is one of two in the entire city that still hasn’t turned on the air conditioning, so the front door is wide open. The doorbell rings. Wrapped in a curtain, I peek out of the window in my office and don’t recognize the car parked in the driveway. DON’T ANSWER IT! DON’TANSWERIT! I screech.
An adult calls my name, pronouncing it correctly which means the person knows me. I put on an oversized Tee, my hair still dripping.
"Do you have the invitation to Sean’s birthday party?" a parent of one of my kid’s friends asks.
"What birthday party?"
"The one tonight."
We search and can’t find the invite. We call another parent who threw hers away last week.
(Did I mention that my husband is at work? Yes, he’s at work on a Saturday.)
Our uninvited guest begins to back out of the front door, horror on her face, as she registers the condition of our house. We plan to make pillows out of all the dog hair on the floors and I think we could feed several homeless people with the crud on our kitchen counters . . .
Welcome to my world.
With three minutes to spare before leaving the house at 1:42, I turn to the Inbox. This is usually a stupid impulse, akin to gambling at a casino or using that penny to scrape a Scratcher. Most of the time I DON’t win.
But every once in a while . . .
There it was: The note from John Purcell, the Anthony Chair, telling me that Murderati had been nominated for an Anthony Award for Best Mystery Website for 2007. We’re in astounding company:
* Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind — Sarah Weinman
* Rap sheet/January Magazine — J. Kingston Pierce
* Murderati — a Writer’s Blog
* Stop You’re Killing Me — Stan Ulrich & Lucinda Surber
* Crime Fiction Dossier — David Montgomery
Do you notice ours is the only one that doesn’t have a single name associated with it? We’re almost a democracy here.
More than two years ago when Naomi Hirahara and I spoke about starting a blog, I had no idea it would morph into this living creature that creates and nurtures community in the mystery world. I simply wanted the blog to be different, to offer fresh content daily and to provide real fodder for thought and discussion. I hoped it would help market our books ( and J.T.’s writing enough to get her first contract). We hit the ether publicly on April 3, 2006.
J.T. is the one to credit for the look of the site. She taught herself how to design the blog and did/does an astounding job. She’s the one to credit for the name, too, though we batted around some great ones (I was pushing for Murderama).
Blogging isn’t for everyone. It takes tremendous commitment and time. We worry when people don’t comment, when our numbers aren’t growing as fast as we’d like.
In two years, we’ve had 17 regular contributors (no particular order here).
Zoe Sharp Louise Ure Alex Sokoloff JT Ellison JD Rhoades Brett Battles (congrats on the Barry nomination!!!) Robert Gregory Browne Toni McGee Causey Michael Maclean Naomi Hirahara Simon Wood Ken Bruen (congrats for the Anthony nod for Best Paperback Original) Elaine Flinn Deni Dietz Jeffrey Cohen Paul Guyot et moi.
Yeah, that’s a lot. Believe me, it hasn’t always been easy. There have been flare-ups, ego conflicts, disagreements, emails flying back and forth, friendships threatened with dissolution. I’ve had to play Mama Bear when all I really wanted to do is run away screaming.
More often, there has been a wonderful camaraderie among the very different writers/personalities on this blog.
I think we’ve got something special here, a true and honest exchange. The crew we have now — including Tess Gerritsen who joins us on June 17 — gets along well. We’ve found our groove.
Thank you to everyone who nominated us. Thank you to everyone who visits this site.
We are truly honored.
P.S. I hadn’t planned on going to Bouchercon this year; my hubby is tired of all my travel. Now I’m trying to talk him into letting me fly out for a day or two. If anyone wants a tired New Mexican to sleep on her hotel room floor for a night, let me know. I want to bask in this joy.