Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
So excited to welcome Nancy Haddock back to Escape With Dollycas!
Out of the (Supply) Closet
(Post received from publicist)
Hello. My name is Nancy Haddock, and I have an office supply problem.
What’s that got to do with writing, you ask? Read on, dear hearts.
I’d like to trace my addiction to my children’s school days. Yes, folks, there was a time when open-all-night stores did not exist. Once too often, my children informed me they needed a particular kind of folder, poster board, or pen at 11 pm. When every retailer had closed.
While I managed not to go “Mommy Dearest” on my munchkins, I did retaliate by binge shopping school supply sales. I had four or more folders in every color. With and without pockets, with and without brads. I had lined paper, plain paper, graph paper, and yes, even carbon paper for those pesky tracing projects.
I bought spiral notebooks in every conceivable color, some with pockets, some 3- and 5- subject thick. I mastered the art of stacking 3-ring binders, again in multiple colors, and naturally in multiple thicknesses from ½ inch to 3 inches.
Need poster board in any color of the rainbow? Crayons? Art pencils? Black, blue, red, or green ink pens? I’m telling you, I had all that and more. Tape, liquid and stick glue, display boards, sticky notes, and the ever popular rulers. It got to the point where other mothers would call me in a panic for a supply fix. While I refrained from meeting them under a bridge to pass off the goods, I had to keep mum so their children would believe their parents were magical.
I’m getting to the writing part.
So there I am with a walk-in closet, a wall of floor to ceiling built-in shelves, all dedicated to school supplies. But wait. I can use some of these dandy items! The folders work just as well for my works-in-progress notes as they do for my kiddo’s school papers. The pens, pencils, binders are, of course, useful for my writing needs. If the children can’t use the yuck-yellow poster board, I’ll overlook the color and use it for a visualization board.
And don’t get me started on the sticky notes and index cards! There’s a whole sticky note story I’m almost embarrassed to share.
Fast forward to the kids being in college. So maybe I’m not hoarding poster board any longer, but the habit of buying—and over-buying—school supplies is established. Except now I call them office supplies.
I mean, really. Can a writer have too many notebooks? The multi-subject kind are great for notetaking at local conferences. They keep the topics nicely separated, don’t you know. Then there are the single-subject spirals so useful for travel because they are lighter and less bulky. Naturally, we can’t forget the small notebooks, suitable for tucking into one’s purse and keeping in the car.
Then there is printer paper. Come on. Office supply stores run sales on cases every week. They need me to have oodles. And who can pick up plain white paper without adding at least a few packages of color paper—and hanging folders to color code one’s files. I my favorite shades and add them to the pile in the closet. With the coordinating file tabs, thank you very much.
Now we fast forward again. I’m moving from Texas to Florida, and I have to pack everything in about two months. Yikes! Sure we were having a giant garage/ estate sale to unload a huge amount of stuff, but my writer friends come to the rescue. They get first dibs on my treasures. Some took the books I could part with (yes, I had to be sedated for that), and they also had first shot at the office supplies.
The first friend who showed up still had young children at home. I donated bags of school supplies to her. The second friend who came by shook her head and I swear she was ready to call the men in white coats on me. But, hey, everything went to a good home.
Okay, I kept a lot of the sticky notes. I kept so many that years later my daughter called for a favor. She had begun landing art department jobs in the TV and film industry, and she needed inspiration for a writer’s office. She asked me to take photos of my writing space. Which was pretty much papered with sticky notes. And it still is.
So I have a problem. At least I don’t need a whole closet for my stash anymore. Just a few dozen drawers.
Thanks for your kind attention and understanding. I have to dash off now. It’s school supply sales time again!
Paint the Town Dead (A Silver Six Mystery)
2nd in Series
Setting – Arkansas
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery (September 6, 2016)
Cover Illustration by Ann Wertheim
Cover Design by Diana Kolsky
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
An Imprint of Penguin Random House LLC
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
E-Book ASIN: B015DLUR2G
From the national bestselling author of Basket Case comes the second mystery starring the crafty and cantankerous Silver Six.
Leslee Stanton Nix—aka “Nixy”—thought moving to small-town Lilyvale, Arkansas, would be about as thrilling as watching paint dry. But keeping up with her retired Aunt Sherry and her troublemaking housemates—collectively known as the Silver Six—has proven to be as exciting as it is exasperating.
To kick off the grand opening of their craft shop, the Handcraft Emporium, Nixy and the Silver Six invite Doralee Gordon to teach a gourd painting class. Doralee’s spirit gets squashed when her ex-husband crashes the class with his new fiancée, but things really get messy when the bride-to-be later turns up dead. Now it’s up to Nixy and the Silver Six to use their melons to find the killer—before someone else gets painted out of the picture…
The Handcraft Emporium is all ready to open and The Silver Six, Ms. Sherry, Dwight Aloysius Baxter, Maisie Holcomb and her sister Aster Parsons, Eleanor Wainwright and Fred Fishner. With Nixy’s help have several classes planned to draw in the customers. The first class is a gourd painting class and they invite Doralee Gordon to show off her talents. Things get a little heated when Doralee’s ex shows up with his sister and fiancée, to take the class and try to make Doralee very uncomfortable. When the fiancée is found dead the next day and Doralee becomes a suspect The Silver Six are all excited to solve another crime. This may not be good for Nixy’s new relationship with Detective Eric Shoar, but the man seems to have the patience of a saint.
Nancy Haddock has written a wonderful mystery the immediately draws the reader in. I was surprised by the title change. The teaser chapter in the last book, Basket Case, said it was to be GOODBYE GOURDEOUS, while Paint the Town Dead works, I liked the first title better. The cover is GOURDEOUS and the mystery is delightful. Several twists and moments that had me giggle and a couple that has me laughing out loud. This story was a real treat.
I enjoy every one of these characters, they continue to surprise and make us see age is just a number. They are continually on the go. I wish I had half their energy. They do get their noses out of joint when they think Nixy and Eric are investigating without them. But the things are quickly back in place.
As for the new characters, Kim, the fiancée, is a greedy little witch trying to reel in husband #3. The perfect victim and the deeper the Six dug the more suspects they found. I almost felt sorry for Ernie, the ex, almost!. We also have T.C. and Amber, a dog and a cat, that were found in the alley behind the emporium. They quickly worm their way into everyone’s hearts, including mine.
This story checks all the cozy boxes, unique small town, colorful characters, an intriguing mystery to solve, a bit of romance and a bunch of humor.
As the temps get cooler, snuggle up in a blanket and get comfy with this cozy.
About The Author
Nancy Haddock is an award-winning and national bestselling cozy mystery author. Basket Case is her first book in the Silver Six Crafting Mystery series with Berkley Prime Crime, and the second book, Paint the Town Dead, is a Sept. 2016 release. Nancy draws on historic wealth, southern culture, and the plain old quirkiness of places and people for her books. She lives with her husband and rescue dog Baron.
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