Monday, January 28, 2019

J. Vance Miller - Artist

J. Vance Miller 
 Used with permission.
Several people have asked me if the artist and painting featured in the book, The Disappearance of Millicent Hart, are real. Yes, they are.

I had the honor of viewing several J. Vance Miller paintings in a private collection decades ago and immediately fell in love with his work. Since then, I’ve seen his paintings in art shows, at art galleries, and online.

Vance Miller was born in West Virginia and later moved to Blacksburg, Virginia, where he painted Blue Ridge Mountain landscapes using a palette knife.

Glow Along the Little Stony, the impressionist painting described in the book, was found on the website (shown last on the Paintings tab). Prints of Miller’s work can be purchased through the website. The Contact tab lists an art gallery website with images of J. Vance Miller paintings currently offered for sale. Occasionally, Miller paintings come up at auction.

Miller’s paintings have enriched my life. I hope you enjoy them, also.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Book Launch Party

Photo by Pamela.
Used with permission.
Last weekend, I hosted a Disappearance of Millicent Hart book launch at Pamela’s Tea Room. The party began with a champagne toast followed by an introduction of the guests according to the characters in the book who used their names (with permission), or the role they played in the book’s publication.

For our meal, we had shepherd’s pie (prepared in the book by Pamela Powell, Millie’s neighbor and dear friend); egg salad sandwiches (a humorous nod to the hard-boiled detective stereotype - which McGregor is not); and salad. We had scones and a cake topped with an icing picture of the book cover for dessert. Of course, there was plenty of tea.

My publisher asked me to tell the group about the book I’m currently writing, and I read the first chapter of the second Detective Scott McGregor mystery, Murder Goes on Vacation. Literatea book-based goodie bags (E. Gads Hill Press) containing personally inscribed and signed books were given to the guests. What a fun and memorable book launch!

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Happy New Year!

I hope you enjoyed last night’s parties and don’t have much to show for it this morning in the way of a hangover or party residual (glasses and half-eaten plates of party goodies) stashed in various and unexpected locations in your house. I usually find those for days after a big party.

My neighbors party with illegal fireworks that rival Disneyland’s display. I usually stay up to watch those and the city’s fireworks, but last night I was so tired, I dozed off sitting up and dropped my drink. The shattering of glass startled me back into wakefulness. We’ll see if I get invited back to that party again next year.

I’m adding new entries to the standing resolution list of ‘eat better’ and ‘exercise more’:
  • Retire
  • Write in earnest every day
  • Leave a guitar in the living room in case I get motivated to practice
    (I’ll leave an empty space in case something important occurs to me later.)
I wish you happiness and personal fulfillment in the New Year.