Writer Jessica Laine

Author’s Studio – Festival of Crime Anthology


Last Saturday, I was fortunate enough to attend the Author’s Studio Workshop at the Edina Art Center which featured the editors of Festival of Crime: The Twin Cities Sisters in Crime anthology.  The anthology includes stories of murder and mayhem at festivals and fairs across Minnesota (spoiler alert: it’s a great read).  Editors and crime writers Christine Husom, Michael Allan Mallory, and Mickie Turk were interviewed by fellow Sisters in Crime member and anthology contributor, Colin Nelson in a relaxed and informative session.

From left: Michael Allan Mallory, Mickie Turk, Christine Husom, and Colin Nelson

One of the questions Colin posed to the group was why crime fiction remains so popular with readers.  Mickie quoted the writer Sue Grafton: “The mystery novel offers a world in which justice is served. Maybe not in a court of law, but people do get their just desserts.”

Michael added that people like the idea of resolution.  “Our friend moves away and we never hear from them.  It’s an unresolved issue, and we want to know what happened.”  Christine seconded the notion of resolution, stating that her first mystery novel was based on an unsolved crime.

I can relate to the need for resolution. My novel-in-progress, The Rip, is loosely based upon true events (including a break-in at my sister’s house) where things were not resolved to anyone’s satisfaction.

From left: M.E. Bakos, Cheryl Ullyot, Christine Husom, audience member, Mickie Turk, Michael Allan Mallory, and Barbara Merritt Deese

After the discussion, the writers gathered to sign copies of Festival of Crime.  Three other contributors to the anthology showed up for the signing: M.E. Bakos, Cheryl Ullyot, and Barbara Merritt Deese.  Also present was an older gentleman who (jokingly) asked me for my phone number.  His request took me by surprise, but it’s good to know I have options if things don’t work out with my husband.