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Dean James
Author of the "Cat in the Stacks" mysteries as Miranda James
Recent Activity
I spent twenty consecutive years in school, earning three degrees in the process, including a Ph.D. in medieval history. Then my graduate fellowship ran out, and I had to join the ranks of the gainfully employed. Since that time, 1985,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 15, 2014 at My Weblog
This past weekend I was in Cleveland, Mississippi, to do some events at my alma mater, Delta State University. Fellow authors Charlaine Harris and Carolyn Haines were there too, and we all had a great time. I won't mention how... Continue reading
Posted Mar 5, 2014 at My Weblog
Our guest today has a dual identity; some know her as mild-mannered college professor Wendy Watson; others are getting to know her as Annie Knox, mystery writer. Here is what Wendy says about her alter ego: "While Annie Knox does... Continue reading
Posted Jan 21, 2014 at My Weblog
My blog partner Catriona McPherson has stated as one of her reading goals for this new year an intention to read a Nancy Drew book. As a fan of Nancy for over forty years now, I definitely encourage her in... Continue reading
Posted Jan 7, 2014 at My Weblog
Also Starring by Elizabeth Foxwell Today's guest, Agatha winner Elizabeth Foxwell, is managing editor of Clues: A Journal of Detection (the only US scholarly journal on mystery and detective fiction) and editor of the McFarland Companions to Mystery Fiction series.... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2013 at My Weblog
Today's guest is Carolyn Hart, who has won so many awards and accolades I could fill a whole blog post listing them. Long known as a proponent of the traditional mystery, Carolyn has won thousands upon thousands of fans around... Continue reading
Posted Nov 19, 2013 at My Weblog
Today's guest is Carolyn Haines, winner of the 2010 Harper Lee Award for Alabama's Distinguished Writer of the Year. She is the author of the popular Sarah Booth Delaney "Bones" mysteries, in addition to several stand-alone novels. Recently she began... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2013 at My Weblog
Hi, my name is Dean, and I'm a biblioholic. That probably isn't much of a surprise to most people. After all, I'm a librarian and a writer. Librarians and writers love books, don't they? Sometimes to the edge of reason... Continue reading
Posted Oct 10, 2013 at My Weblog
This coming Sunday, September 15th, is the birthday of two women who influenced me profoundly. The first of the two is my late mother, Ruth. The second is the late, great Dame Agatha Christie, one of the world's bestselling mystery... Continue reading
Posted Sep 10, 2013 at My Weblog
I grew up on a small farm in Mississippi, an only child who was more interested in books and reading rather than athletics or hunting. Other than a brief infatuation with David Cassidy and the Partridge family when I was... Continue reading
Posted Aug 11, 2013 at My Weblog
I'm a re-reader, one of those people who likes to reread favorite books by favorite authors. I'm also a re-watcher, one of those people who rewatches favorite movies and television series. Multiple times, sometimes as often as once a year,... Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2013 at My Weblog
I've read mysteries for over forty years now and have read thousands of them. As long as they're in book form, I really get into them. With movies (and television), not so much, and I haven't ever quite figured out... Continue reading
Posted Jun 9, 2013 at My Weblog
For many of us, I know that Mother's Day and Father's Day can be tough. My mom passed away in December of 2001, my dad in Feburary 1990. I still feel both those losses keenly, even after much time has... Continue reading
Posted May 13, 2013 at My Weblog
Toby, my male rescue cat, was roughly 12-15 months old when I took him in, and he's been with me and Pippa, my female rescue, six months now. He's a big, cuddly guy, probably about 12 pounds, gray and white,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 11, 2013 at My Weblog
I suppose it was inevitable that I should end up writing a series with a cat as in important secondary character. (As I compose this blog, Toby, pictured above, is wailing at me like he's been abandoned in the Sahara... Continue reading
Posted Mar 14, 2013 at My Weblog
Margaret Wetherby Williams (1901-1984) wrote twenty-one mystery novels, published from 1938-1978, under the pseudonym Margaret Erskine.Whether she deliberately chose the Erskine pseudonym as a nod to one of the mistresses of James V of Scotland, I haven't a clue, but... Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2013 at My Weblog
The author of seventy-five novels, published over a span of fifty years from 1956-2006, Gwendoline Butler died last week at the age of 90. Educated at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford University, where she took a degree in history, she married... Continue reading
Posted Jan 13, 2013 at My Weblog
As the end of this holiday season approaches, I want to pay tribute to the author of one of the funniest holiday mysteries ever written, Charlotte MacLeod (1922-2005). I had the great good fortune of knowing Charlotte, and she was... Continue reading
Posted Dec 30, 2012 at My Weblog
There are times when life gets to be just a little too (fill in your own adjective here) for all of us. I've had the odd year here and there like that, and I imagine we probably all have. So... Continue reading
Posted Dec 13, 2012 at My Weblog
For November's "Femme Fatale of Yesteryear" I'm going to talk about one who masqueraded under a masculine pseudonym. Lucy Beatrice Malleson (1899-1973) wrote as Anne Meredith and J. Kilmeny Keith, but she is best remembered as Anthony Gilbert. As Gilbert,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 29, 2012 at My Weblog
Like many mystery fans -- both readers and writers -- I got my start with one of the mysteries series written for children. I was probably ten at the time. In my case it was Nancy Drew, because my cousin... Continue reading
Posted Nov 13, 2012 at My Weblog
The Femme of the Past for this month is Dorothy Bowers (1902-1948). This young Englishwoman had a short career as a mystery writer; she died from tuberculosis at the age of 46. She published only five novels, and they are... Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2012 at My Weblog
by Dean James Contrary to what readers sometimes think, many (if not most) writers don't make a full-time living from their writing. Among the membership of the Femmes we're fairly evenly split, I think, among those who write full-time and... Continue reading
Posted Oct 14, 2012 at My Weblog
Morna Doris McTaggart Brown, better known to mystery readers as Elizabeth Ferrars (E.X. Ferrars in the US), was born in Rangoon, Burman (now Myanmar) in 1907. She took a diploma in journalism and published two novels under her own name... Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2012 at My Weblog
by Dean/Miranda James I'm going to riff on Donna's blog post because I'm at a similar stage. I recently finished a book and about to start writing the next one. This is always an odd time for me. I'm thrilled... Continue reading
Posted Sep 13, 2012 at My Weblog