Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Blaize Clement | The Journey From There To Here
Uncategorized / February 10, 2010

With my fifth mystery, RAINING CAT SITTERS AND DOGS (St. Martins Minotaur), having just hit the bookstores, and my fourth mystery, CAT SITTER ON A HOT TIN ROOF, a nominee for the 2009 Mary Higgins Clark Award, I sometimes catch myself looking back in some wonder at how I got to this point. I’ve been a writer almost as long as I’ve been a reader. I wrote because I had to write, the same way I had to breathe. But I also had to make a living, so while I wrote short stories, essays, plays, non-fiction, and books “ghosted” under other people’s names, I never considered writing as a serious career. My career was being a psychologist, which allowed me the freedom to write whatever I wanted to write. If an essay or a story found a publishing home, that was fine. If it didn’t, that was fine too. Not having to rely on writing to pay the rent, I could explore ideas, try out different voices, spread my wings as widely as I wanted. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was putting in an apprenticeship that would one day be vital to a new career. To…

Blaize Clement | Why Pets Are In the Dixie Hemingway Mystery Series
Uncategorized / January 31, 2008

The first time somebody asked why my Dixie Hemingway Mystery Series includes pets, I was a little taken aback. I mean, Dixie Hemingway is a pet sitter, for gosh sake, so there had to be pets. But when I thought about it, I realized it had been my choice to make the pets equal in importance to the human characters. Not with human characteristics or psychic abilities or super strength, but just regular pets like regular people have. So I gave it some thought, and finally came up with an answer. Every culture has mythic tales of a golden age when humans and animals lived as friends. In The Illiad, when a warrior was killed, his horse hung his head and wept. In The Ramayana, an army of brave monkeys rescued Princess Sita from an evil kidnapper. When the Buddha left his father’s palace to seek enlightenment, his horse wept too, when he had to return to the palace alone. And then there’s that serpent in the Garden of Eden who told Eve the truth about eating of the tree of knowledge. In all those old stories, animals represented wisdom and courage and loyalty, and the friendship between humans and…