I hope this edition of The Kathy Chronicles finds you well and wrapped up in a mesmerizing mystery or tantalizing thriller. Here’s the latest in my literary world:

In June I attended the California Crime Writers Conference (CCWC) in Los Angeles. Sponsored by Sisters in Crime/LA and the Mystery Writers of America/Southern California, the CCWC was two packed days of author panels, craft development workshops, and the chance to make lasting connections within the crime writing community.

But the biggest mystery event of the year was the Bouchercon World Mystery Conference, held in San Diego in September. This conference, designed for both mystery writers and readers, brought in 2,000 visitors and boasted an impressive lineup of Guests of Honor, including David Baldacci, Ann Cleeves, and C.J. Box.

I had the pleasure of meeting one of my favorite authors, S.A. Cosby, master of “Southern noir” crime fiction, and talked with him about his second novel, “Blacktop Wasteland.” I dare you to put this book down after reading the first page. I couldn’t! Blacktop Wasteland, a NY Times bestseller, won a host of awards, including the LA Times Book Prize in 2020 and the International Thriller Writers Best Hard Cover Fiction Novel of 2021. Cosby came out with a new novel in June, “All The Sinners Bleed,” but my heart will always belong to Blacktop Wasteland.

Amazon Link – Blacktop Wasteland https://amzn.to/3SFYJQK
Amazon Link – All the Sinners Bleedhttps://amzn.to/47jjTsq

I entered the 2023 Bouchercon short story competition for crime fiction set in and around Southern California. Winners were included in the annual Bouchercon Anthology, with proceeds going to local charities in the host city.

Over 180 authors submitted short stories; 17 were selected. My short story “Wild Fire,” featuring an African-American female fire fighter whose personal life is a hot mess (pun intended), was one of them!

This year’s charities are Traveling Stories in San Diego and 826LA in Los Angeles. Traveling Stories provides one-on-one literacy support and mentorship to children. Participants in the program fall in love with reading, grow their reading level, and build confidence. To learn more, visit www.travelingstories.org.

From Los Angeles, 826LA is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting students ages 6 to 18 with their creative and expository writing skills, and to helping teachers inspire their students to write. They provide tutoring, help for English language learners, and assistance with student publications. Their programs strengthen each student’s power to express ideas effectively, creatively, confidently, and in their individual voice. For more info: 826la.org

This is a photograph of my first book signing as an author, a dream come true! I sat next to two of the participants in my weekly writing workshop whose stories were also included: the talented Anne-Marie Campbell, author of “Palms Up,” and L.H. Dillman, author of “To Hell and Back.” All three of our stories are included in the Killin’ Time in San Diego anthology. I encourage you to pick up a copy. I’m told they make great stocking stuffers…

Killin’ Time in San Diego (Short Story: Wild Fire) – https://amzn.to/46k4lmR

Crime Under the Sun (Short Story: The Body in the Barrel) – https://amzn.to/49AgIhn

By the way, these moments were captured by my ride-or-die posse Wendy and AnaMaria. I would not have published without them. Thanks Divas!

I’m thrilled to announce that the global radio network Authors On The Air invited me to host my own writing podcast. Entitled The Quill & The Quantum: AI & Writing Craft, my podcast explores the intersection of artificial intelligence and the art of writing. In each episode, I talk to authors and other creatives about how they use, or don’t use, AI in their creative process.

I’ve already recorded three episodes, and uploaded one to Spotify, YouTube and Soundcloud. I invite you to check them out via the links included in the descriptions below.

  • Jon Lindstrom, the multi-talented actor, filmmaker, and author, shares insights on the importance of AI in the SAG-AFTRA strike. Fans of tv shows such as General Hospital, Bosch, and True Detective are familiar with Jon’s work as an actor. His new book, Hollywood Hustle, comes out in February. o YouTube: https://youtu.be/Oa3GTTmv1zw or JonLindstrom.com
  • DJs Mike Sincere & Jezzy B, self-proclaimed “Vibe Curators + Creators,” discuss the impact of AI in the DJ space. We had a great time evaluating the DJ handles suggested by Open AI’s ChatGPT. YouTube: https://youtu.be/x4TwuxK8eo4 or DJMikeSincere.com
  • Actor and award-winning independent filmmaker Michael Whaley of “Frasier” and “CSI Miami” offers his perspective on where AI excels in filmmaking and where it falls short. https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-whaley-633b353

Let me know what you think of these podcasts in the comments section, and don’t forget to hit “like”.

As the year draws to a close, so does my tenure on the Board of Sisters in Crime/Los Angeles. I’ve enjoyed my stint as Treasurer in this organization that promotes women in crime fiction, and wish them the best.

OMG, if you’re still reading this you are a true friend! The following link will keep you up-to-date on my latest exploits: KathyANorris.com. Your kind thoughts and words of encouragement are deeply appreciated.

Thank you for being a part of The Kathy Chronicles community. If you received this email in error, please unsubscribe below and I’ll remove you from the mailing list.

Warm regards,
Kathy A. Norris