Turning the Odometer Over Again

I’ve just taken my new mystery project over 50,000 words, and since I intended this to be a shorter piece than my last two, that means I’ll have first draft soon. Then the revision begins. I already have targets in mind, but I’m sure more will arise when I read material out loud, stumble over… Continue reading Turning the Odometer Over Again

Margo Howard Provides An Object Lesson In Mishandling Bad Reviews

From The New Republic: I’ll bet you don’t know what the Amazon “Vine Community” is. I didn’t. I was never even aware of it until my memoir was published earlier this year. Books offered on Amazon for pre-order have a notation: “This book is not eligible for review until publication date.” However, in the run-up to my… Continue reading Margo Howard Provides An Object Lesson In Mishandling Bad Reviews

I Seriously Doubt The Daily Mail’s Jack the Ripper Story

The Daily Mail–I can hear some of you groaning already–claims that an amateur sleuth and a scientist have finally unmasked Jack the Ripper. They claim that their DNA analysis of a scarf ostensibly found on Catherine Eddows (3rd victim) is that of Whitechapel hairdresser Aaron Kosminski. For The Mail this is a big wow, but for anyone… Continue reading I Seriously Doubt The Daily Mail’s Jack the Ripper Story

Game Theory and “Confession”

Among the Italian Supreme Court’s reasons for overturning Amanda Knox’s acquittal was their belief that her statement to the police, in which she placed herself at the murder scene and named bar owner Patrick Lumumba as the killer was powerful evidence of her guilt. (Never mind that the Supreme Court had, in earlier proceedings, found… Continue reading Game Theory and “Confession”

How To Tell If A Conspiracy Theory Is Daft

In 2011, Giuliano Mignini, the prosecutor responsible for making a pig’s breakfast of the Monster of Florence case and damaging, possibly beyond repair, the futures of Raffele Sollecito and Amanda Knox, defended himself against charges that he’s a conspiracy buff this way: “Why do they call it a conspiracy theory?” he asked. “What does ‘conspiracy… Continue reading How To Tell If A Conspiracy Theory Is Daft

The Unsinkable Rubber Ducks of Italy

Update (3/26/2015): Amanda Knox and Raffele Sollecito were acquitted today by the Italian Court of Cassation. So ends their legal nightmare. I wish them both the best going forward, and I’m glad the Italian justice system finally did the right thing. I wish they’d done it before trying almost every possible wrong thing, but I’m still pleased. Fifteen… Continue reading The Unsinkable Rubber Ducks of Italy