Time to Howl: A Macavity Nomination!

So it was last Monday morning, and I was driving through the mountains of Pennsylvania on my way from Malice Domestic in DC to the Festival of Mystery in Oakmont. It’s rainy, so the scenery isn’t exactly spectacular, but I’m having a great time with writers Donna Andrews and Ellen Crosby, who’d generously allowed me to hitch a ride. Naturally we’re gossiping about other mystery writers… I mean, talking about literature. Then my phone rings.

It’s Dana Cameron, who I knew was in the DC airport to catch a plane back to Boston.

“Hey Dana!”

“Have you heard?” she asks.

My immediate thought was that there’d been a natural disaster.  “What?  What’s wrong?”

“You’ve been nominated for a Macavity!”


Excitement ensued, shared by Donna and Ellen. Eventually I get around to asking, “Who else is up for it?”

Dana pauses. “Well, me for one.”

Now that’s a true friend. She lets me cheer happily first, then gives me the chance to do the same for her. Which I did, again with Ellen and Donna’s aid. Since Dana’s story is in Wolfsbane and Mistletoe, one of the anthologies that Charlaine, it was almost like a double nomination. 

In case you don’t know, the Macavity Awards (named for T.S. Elliot’s mystery cat) are nominated by and voted on by members of Mystery Readers International and subscribers to Mystery Readers Journal. They’re handed out at Bouchercon, which will be in Indianapolis in October.

The slate of short story nominees is…

  • The Night Things Changed” by Dana Cameron (Wolfsbane and Mistletoe, edited by Charlaine Harris and Toni L.P. Kelner, Ace)
  • “A Sleep Not Unlike Death” by Sean Chercover (Hardcore Hardboiled, edited by Todd Robinson, Kensington)
  • Keeping Watch Over His Flock” by Toni L.P. Kelner (Wolfsbane and Mistletoe, edited by Charlaine Harris and Toni L.P. Kelner, Ace)
  • “Scratch a Woman” by Laura Lippman (Hardly Knew Her, by Laura Lippman, Wm. Morrow)
  • “Between the Dark and the Daylight” by Tom Piccirilli (Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, Sept/Oct 2008)

Dana and I have temporarily posted our stories online for members of Mystery Readers International to have a chance to read them, and we hope Tom’s will be posted on the Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine web site. (I’ll post the link if that happens.) Sean and Laura are constrained by their publishers from doing the same, but the books in which their stories appear are easy to find and well worth buying.

For the full slate of nominees for all awards, click here. There are some awesome books and writers on the list, and some good friends, too.

As for the rest of the ride through the rainy mountains, it’s amazing how much better the scenery looked after that.

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