Category crime thriller novels

Pulled in Different Directions? Just make a damn decision.

We all get that occasional pull to do something different. Stop a project, a job, or a contract, in midstream and toy with something different–something new. I’m never sure if it’s boredom, or the thrill of the hunt for something new. But that urge for something fresh seemed to hit me this week and it […]

Goodreads Giveaway for BURY THE PAST

Crooked Lane Books is sponsoring a book giveaway over on Goodreads. You can enter the giveaway for your chance at an early copy of the second book in the Detective Penley series. https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/254896-bury-the-past Enter to win 1 of 3 galley copies of BURY THE PAST, the second Detective Penley mystery by James L’Etoile. Sacramento Police […]

Drafting Small Town Life

The setting of a new novel I’m drafting is a small town. Small town life–sounds quaint and idyllic doesn’t it? In a larger city, the darkness has more places to hide. The unseemly and profane have a place–usually on the other side of the tracks. That negative space seems somewhat isolated and contained among the […]

Bedrock – The Violence Control Unit

From the outside, the goings on in prison are invisible. If you live close enough to one, you might catch a glimpse of concrete walls and high mast yard lighting. If the wind is just right, you could hear the shrill buzz of an alarm in the distance. For most people, that’s the only thought–a […]

Cover Reveal – The Leaked Edition

Everyone likes a good leak, right? No, not that kind of leak–I’m talking about the information kind. They must be a popular thing, because I can’t turn on a television news broadcast without someone blathering on about leaks. It doesn’t seem to matter what the leak is about–it turns into a hot, salacious topic and […]

Story Surgery

There are times in my writing process I feel like a hired gun with a scalpel. A slice here, a nip and tuck there–gut the beast. Readers, editors, agents and publishers all shout (okay maybe not really shout–but it seem that way at times) for me to make a change in a POV, or my […]

Blurred Lines – the true crime connection

Crime fiction is a strange place. Crime writing takes advantage of a basic human flaw–the willingness to see the victimization of others as a spectator sport. It seems that it’s been part of human nature since we “civilized people” would gather together for a rousing session of Christians Versus Lions–The Ultimate Cage Match. Fast forward […]

Reader’s Choice Awards

I need your vote! This week I discovered that my Novel AT WHAT COST (Crooked Lane Books) is up for Best Thriller in the annual Killer Nashville Silver Falchion – Reader’s Choice Awards. The ballot went out this week and what’s cool about it is that you don’t have to register for the conference to vote. If […]

Is Sacramento A Serial Killer Friendly Place?

Location, location, location… I’m often asked why I chose to set my crime fiction in Sacramento, California, instead of one of the more well known west coast crime magnets of Los Angeles, San Francisco, or Fresno. Michael Connelly and Robert Crais have L.A. locked down with their Harry Bosch and Joe Pike series. But, Sacramento is an […]

Speaking of Mysteries Podcast

I recently had the opportunity to do an interview podcast with Nancie Clare, the host of Speaking of Mysteries. If you haven’t gotten around to her site yet, you really should. She and podcast interview partner, Leslie Klinger have put put together over one hundred author podcasts, including some of my favorite mystery writers; Michael Connelly, […]