It’s been my impression that mystery lovers enjoy reading about the specifics of location. When I write Sam McRae novels, I try to make Maryland almost like another character.

Most of the time, I’ve set my stories in either the spring or summer, with one exception. I set my second novel of the series during the fall, because it involved middle school students and schools.

I’ve considered setting one of the books during the holiday period right before winter, to explore what it would be like to be an orphan at that time of year. Seems like holidays might be odd for someone distanced from any living relatives. In any case, it’s a thought.

If nothing else, I could write about how badly Marylanders drive in snow. Not they’re great when it doesn’t snow. Just saying.

As readers, do you enjoy reading about the seasons where a story is set? How much detail do you want about location? Personally, I like to write about real locations. The details about specific businesses and organizations might be made up. I try to avoid linking murder and mayhem with real people and places. However, I try to give the flavor and feel of Maryland in my writing.

Certainly, I tried to do so in IDENTITY CRISIS, the first Sam McRae mystery novel. As it happens, I’m doing a GoodReads giveaway of that book. Just enter by Dec. 31, 2015, and get a chance to win one of three copies of IDENTITY CRISIS!


Or, better yet, sign up now for Alumni Night at the Bookstore (yes, click there!) at the University of Maryland, College Park! Registration closes on Friday, Dec. 4. The event is Saturday, Dec. 5!

And speaking of weather, have you seen the DC area’s forecast for December? To quote the article:

This is a monster El Niño, and  having such a large area of very warm water increases the potential that El Nino will dominate the weather pattern in North America this winter. It is fueling strong model consensus as well as higher-than-normal forecast confidence from the National Weather Service for a widespread warm December with wetter-than-normal weather in the South and East.

Good! Cause I hate snow!


We had a really nice November, as you can see here:

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