Saturday, July 30, 2011


My mystery novel, FULL MORTALITY, was nominated for an Agatha Best First Award last winter. Though one of five finalists, the book did not win. Several of us “also rans” were moved to tears.

 But with a mental head slap, and the support of fellow writers, I moved on.

Next thing I know it’s summer and FULL MORTALITY is nominated for a Macavity Best First Mystery Award. I receive Twitter congrats from author Lawrence Block and New York Times writer, Joe Drape.

Joe Drape
joedrape Joe Drape 

Congrats to @SasscerHill for high honors for her debut mystery novel Full Mortality. Must read, and look forward to more. 23 Jul

Oh boy, here we go again. I had so much fun at Boucherdon 2010. I saw author friends and idols

met Lee Child,

fought Jack Reacher,

and spoke on the “Off-beat Protagonists” Panel on Thursday, and on Friday a “30 on the 30" session they titled “Racing from Death: Mysteries at the Racetrack.”
I wasn’t under the extra pressure of an award nomination last year, didn’t know enough about the Macavity, and realized I’d better get educated right quick. 

After learning the basics (“Macavity's a mystery cat. He's called the Hidden Paw;
 For he's a master criminal who can defy the law . . .”) I emailed Janet Rudolph, founder of  the Mystery Readers Journal – whose members vote on the Macavity Awards.

“Is there a ceremony?” I asked. “Do we finalists know anything before hand, or do we sweat it out like I did at the Agathas, only knowing the results when the announcement is made?”

She replied, “The Macavity Awards will be given out during opening ceremonies. Sadly, you won't know if you won until 'the moment'...”

I thanked Janet for the reply and noticed my eye teeth are already watching my fingernails in preparation for the nail biting Bouchercon blast. 

“I must,” I thought, “be sure to pack a crutch supply of bourbon to help protect my nails in St. Louis.”

In the great event the gods bestow a Macavity Best First upon Full Mortality, I promise not to brandish my bottle of bourbon before the Bouchercon attendees. 

Sunday, July 3, 2011


Ever ignorant Sasscer Hill; her book’s a nominee?
A Macavity Cat award she asks herself, whatever could that be?

Quickly, so my ignorance could not be truly seen,
I looked it up on the internet, then asked Jon L. Breen
Macavity's a Mystery Cat, Jon said, he's called the Hidden Paw 
By not knowing who he is you’ve broken every mystery law!

In shame I read the poem by T S Eliot
And was not surprised to find I liked it quite a lot! 

Here is my favorite stanza from Eliot’s poem:

“Macavity's a ginger cat, he's very tall and thin;
You would know him if you saw him, for his eyes are sunken in.
His brow is deeply lined with thought, his head is highly doomed;
His coat is dusty from neglect, his whiskers are uncombed.
He sways his head from side to side, with movements like a snake;
And when you think he's half asleep, he's always wide awake.”

For more on this award follow this link:

Please stop by the Lipstick Chronicles on Sunday, July 3 and read how riding a steeplechase race is like writing a novel. Check it out. It’s not as ridiculous as it sounds.  
An educated mystery cat