where the writers are

Libby Fischer Hellmann's Blog

RSSSyndicate content
Feb.12.2014
Confession: I am a Valentines Day cynic. Not for me the cards, roses, candy, and romantic dinners. In fact, for me Valentine’s Day is a Hallmark holiday that breaks up winter. It’s also a merchandising opportunity for florists, candy stores, restaurants, and jewelers. I mean, really, why do we only...
Continue Reading » 1 comment
Jan.30.2014
I started reading spy thrillers around the time of Watergate (Hmm… think there’s a connection?). The first two I read were The Wind Chill Factor by Thomas Gifford and The Eye of the Needle by Ken Follett, and I was blown away by them both. The Wind Chill Factor – Thomas...
Continue Reading »
Jan.20.2014
  I just finished my latest Georgia book. Now, understand that when I say finished, I mean the first draft is done. It has been through my writers group, and right now several people whose opinions I trust are reading it. Which means it will go through several more iterations and drafts before...
Continue Reading »
Nov.06.2013
"Good writing is supposed to evoke sensation in the reader - not the fact that it is raining, but the feeling of being rained upon." E. L. Doctorow I love that definition. Sensory detail succeeds when a writer uses the senses of touch, taste, sight, smell and sound to create a visceral,...
Continue Reading »
Oct.24.2013
You know how Bill Maher has his New Ruleshtick? Well, I’m taking a page from his playbook. Many of you aren’t going to like this, but I think it has to be said: STOP publishing all these ebooks. I don’t want to sound negative, but it’s getting nuts out there. Ever since the self-publishing...
Continue Reading »
Oct.24.2013
Today, more than three million tourists visit Cuba every year (except for Americans, of course). In fact, tourism is the country’s #1 source of revenue. People are drawn by Cuba’s climate, beaches, attractive prices, and remarkable history. It wasn’t always this way. Poor post-revolution relations...
Continue Reading »
Oct.07.2013
As you know, I’ve been talking about Calle Libro, the first English language bookstore that’s opened in Havana since the revolution. While they’re wildly popular, like many businesses in Cuba, they do not have the funds to buy books. So, for those of you who want to help, whether you’re planning a...
Continue Reading »
Sep.24.2013
  I’ve been in a writing group for 16 years. I joined way before I was published, and they deserve most of the credit for the fact that I did get published. It was in my group that I learned most of the craft of writing crime fiction as well as what works and what doesn’t. And while there are...
Continue Reading »
Aug.29.2013
I like that my latest release, Havana Lost, hit the shelves around the same time a little miracle happened. After decades without an English language bookstore, one has opened in Havana. It’s the first one since the revolution. Does the new store, aptly named Cuba Libro, mark the start of Cuba...
Continue Reading »
Aug.20.2013
Havana Lost has launched at last. Feedback has started to roll in. And I’m fascinated by how many readers say they are ‘disturbed’ by Frankie Pacelli’s transformation from a young vulnerable likeable girl into—well (spoiler alert averted), what she ultimately became. My response? She had to. When...
Continue Reading »
Aug.15.2013
My latest book, Havana Lost, goes live on Amazon this Friday. And I can’t help comparing what it used to be like launching a book with my traditional publishing head on to what it’s like releasing a self-published novel.    The traditional publishing book launch experience As a...
Continue Reading »
Aug.07.2013
One of the most common question writers are asked is, "what made you start writing crime fiction?" For years I always answered the same way: I can tell you how and when I started writing, but I wasn’t exactly sure why. I didn’t plan it. I was going to be a film-...
Continue Reading » 3 comments
Aug.05.2013
This is a reprint from CrimeSpree magazine but it appeared back in 2007. So I think it’s safe to say  most of  you never read it. I’ve updated it. As I wait for the reviews of Havana Lost to come in, I can’t help but remember the first (and only) first professional review I...
Continue Reading »
Aug.02.2013
This is a reprint of a column I wrote last month for Women’s Voices Magazine. The August issue is out tomorrow with a newcolumn. I hope you’ll come on over and check it out. There are dozens of smart, articulate, talented women writing about everything you could imagine. You can find...
Continue Reading »
Jul.23.2013
This is a reprint of an essay that appears in the current Mystery Readers’ Journal, Fall edition, which is all about Chicago. The magazine also includes essays by nearly two dozen other Chicago authors, including Marcus Sakey, Michael Sherer, Jack Fredrickson, Sheldon Siegel, and others. For more,...
Continue Reading »