Sunday, March 10, 2019


Maybe I’m too skeptical, but I’ve never been a big fan of coincidences. When writing there are times when something comes into play that makes everything come together in a nice, neat package. I’d rather believe that this is the result of an active imagination and strong subconscious mind, working to weave what seems to be unrelated issues together, striving for that ‘hot damn’ moment.

But still I’m skeptical.

Take last week for example.  Tuesday was a routine day. However, this was also Fat Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday, which begins the Lent season. While I’ve never been to Mardi Gras, in Motown Fat Tuesday is associated with a different type of celebration: Paczki Day.  (pronounced Punch Key) Polish bakeries concoct truckloads of these decadent jelly donuts that will have people lined up around the block to get their favorite flavors.

Tuesday evening while I was unwinding, catching an episode of “Blacklist” on Netflix, the action shifted to Poland. James Spader’s character Reddington knew exactly where a clue led, to a little old lady in a bakery that was making…paczkis. 

The fact that I was watching this particular episode on Fat Tuesday made me laugh out loud.
Coincidence?  Or just a simple twist of timing.  You decide.

Here’s an excerpt from “Fleeing Beauty” the third book in the Jamie Richmond series. In this scene, Jamie, Malone and their friends Ian and Linda, are unpacking crates of artwork that were found in her late father’s studio. The intent is to develop a catalog of the works so they can be appraised by experts.

This sculpture was titled “Fleeing Beauty”. 

It was a woman caught in the act of running. Tendrils of slender marble in various lengths and thicknesses extended from her head, as if they were locks of hair billowing out behind her. Part of her face was obscured, turned against her shoulder as if attempting to hide her features from whoever was chasing her. The woman’s body was voluptuous, full of dangerous curves. There was something haunting about this piece. The guys became quiet, which was unusual. Linda slowly moved around it, taking pictures. 

“Holy shit,” Ian muttered.

“Watch your language,” Malone said, cuffing him lightly on the back on the head. 

“How did he do that?” Ian said, taking a step away. “She looks real.” 

“She looks alive,” Malone said. 

“Check the file,” I suggested. 

None of us could take our eyes off the sculpture. 

We spread the file out on the worktable. There were pictures of a woman standing in front of a drop cloth. She was blonde, with an impish smile on her face. She could have been in her early to middle twenties. It was impossible to tell how tall she was. Her figure was eye catching, with a tiny waist and rounded hips. Most of the pictures showed her in a one- piece bathing suit. There was one where she wore a sheer negligee. There were shots of her standing on a pedestal, others with her arms outstretched, and still others where she was looking over her shoulder. In a couple of photos, he must have used a fan to blow her hair back.

“She’s a doll,” Ian said. 

 “Jamie, I think this is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen,” Linda said softly. 

“You’ll get no argument from me.” 

Music this week is an old favorite from Eric Clapton

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