Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Author Guest / November 17, 2020

Unless you’re a certified saint, you’ve done things that weren’t very nice. Maybe you pulled your sister’s hair as a kid or shoplifted a Mars bar or two. Cut people off in traffic? You might have done worse. But why do most of us keep our antisocial urges more or less under control, while others go on to rob, destroy, and even kill?  I’ve always been fascinated by what motivates nasty characters, both real and fictional. My latest novel, KILLER COIN, explores the dark impulse of greed. I’m not talking about an extra slice of cake but greed so greedy it kills. Worst of all, that sort of greed often involves the people we trust most – relatives, lovers, and spouses. I’ve rounded up five of my favorite true crime podcasts about greed:  1) Criminal – The Money Tree At just 26 minutes long it’s a quick listen and involves no deaths but is guaranteed to shock you. Who can you trust? No one, after hearing this podcast! Bonus: you might feel better about your family. 2) Dateline – The House on the Hill  If you thought things couldn’t get worse after listening to the previous podcast, you were wrong….

Elka Ray | Top 5 Things About Moving Away From Your Hometown, Then Moving Back
Author Guest / August 20, 2019

In my next book, the romantic mystery Divorce is Murder, divorce lawyer Toby Wong is forced to move back to the small town she was happy to leave. I set the series in my own hometown – a place I love, yet left – on Canada’s gorgeous Vancouver Island. Writing about Toby got me thinking about why it’s good to leave – and come home.   1) You expand your worldview Every town and neighborhood has its own culture. By the time you hit adulthood, whether you fit in or not, you understand your hometown’s norms. Maybe you grew up somewhere super conservative, the kind of place where church is mandatory and couples marry young. Or maybe your parents’ friends were constantly organizing protest marches and writing letters to Amnesty International. Whatever your reality, to you, it was normal. Now move across the country – or better still around the world. You’ll soon see that your “normal” is someone else’s “certifiably crazy”. It’s mind-blowing how differently different people interpret things. Just yesterday, in Vietnam, where I live, I met a fisherman throwing styrofoam boxes and dirty diapers into the ocean. I told him off. He told me he was cleaning…