Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Scene of the Crime


by Linda Thorne



In February of this year, I had the opportunity to revisit the Mississippi Gulf Coast where I lived for eight years, and where I set  the first book in my series, Just Another Termination. I saw Biloxi and Ocean Springs again for the first time in fourteen years.


All the homicides in my book happen in the little city of Ocean Springs. Victim number one was found shot to death in her home. The second case, a double homicide, occurred in the little city twenty-five years earlier. The final murder takes place right out in the open, just off of East Beach in Ocean Springs. This last murder is the one that produces the clue to solve them all.

Below (to the left) is the picture of the intersection of East Beach Drive and Halstead road in Ocean Spring, Mississippi. To its right is a picture of the entrance to the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory across the street just opposite from the intersection sign. The last murder goes down behind these trees, leaving a crime scene close to the waters of the Mississippi Sound.
 


A lot of things happen in the book on East Beach (just southwest of the entrance to the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory). The picture of East beach on the left here shows the Biloxi casinos (tiny in the distance) at the west end of the Ocean Springs Bridge. The picture on the right below is at the southeast corner of East Beach and shows the tiny island where character, Jimmie Lee Albright, occasionally went to in his boat. These places are all so real to me both in my book and in real life.
I met a couple riding their bikes on East Beach Drive when I was taking these pictures. They referred me to Southern Bound Book Shop in Ocean Springs and Biloxi and now I have my books for sale in this Biloxi/Ocean Springs bookstore.

If you want to see more of the Ocean Springs/Biloxi book setting here's the link to my book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K6fo2qtu_vI

Note: Friday August 19th, I'll be a panelist at Session 5 and also Session 7 at the Killer Nashville Writers Conference held at the Embassy Suites in Cool Springs, Tennessee. If you're attending the conference, hope you'll stop by one or both of my sessions.

17 comments:

Morgan Mandel said...

I set some of my books in Chicago, where I grew up, and include some of the landmarks there. It's fun to include familiar places in books.

Linda Thorne said...

It is fun, Morgan. My book trailer here has pictures of a number of other places in my book where I set some of the bigger scenes.

jrlindermuth said...

Nice job, Linda. Sometimes the places only exist in our imagination. But photos showing a 'real' place offer a whole new perspective. I wonder if having such photos at a signing might attract interest in buying the books?

Linda Thorne said...

John, it made it easier for me to write my scenes because I used real places for almost all of them. That's not happening in my work-in-progress since it's not set anywhere I've lived. Right now, I'm making up places for the next book or trusting the internet for info on places that exist in this unfamiliar setting.

Maggie said...

I used to read stories set in the places I was about to visit. Now I prefer to read them after visiting---having a picture in my mind while reading is more meaningful to me.

Enjoy your panels, Linda. I hope to get to KN one of these years.

Linda Thorne said...

Thank you, Maggie. I hope you get to Killer Nashville some year too. There's so much variety in the sessions provided.

Liane Spicer said...

This is a great idea. I think I'll follow your lead and post some pics of significant places in my novels--places that have become inextricably linked with my fictional events.

Linda Thorne said...

Liane, I was taking Sunny Frazier's advice (like always) about pictures drawing interest. They do seem to brighten up posts.

Carolyn J. Rose said...

When I lived in Arkansas in the 70s and early 80s, I got down to Biloxi once a year or so - had some wonderful stuffed crab there once and can almost still taste it. Since the late 80s I've lived in the Pacific Northwest where I set my Subbing isn't for Sissies series in the fictional town of Reckless River, Washington.

S.J. Francis said...

Great post, Linda! Even better is your trailer for Just Another Termination! I love the Gulf coast and visit frequently, of course living in Mississippi makes it easy to do!
Cheers
S.J. Francis

Linda Thorne said...

Thank you S.J. My husband did the trailer for me, I was lucky as I would not have known where to begin.

Jewel Amethyst said...

You have given me ideas for promotion using pics of the settings in advance of the book release. Thanks for the ideas Linda.

Linda Thorne said...

Thank you Jewel. I hope I did give you ideas.
Carolyn, I swear I responded to your comment, but don't see it here. I regret that I never made it to the Pacific Northwest. My husband and I were close to it when we lived in the Central Valley of California. I doubt that will ever happen now because we live in Nashville, TN.

Earl Staggs said...

My first novel, MEMORY OF A MURDER, is set in Baltimore, where I lived for most of my life, and Ocean City, Maryland, our favorite vacation spot for all those years. My protagonist lived in a condo on Ocean City's fabulous Boardwalk. A friend of mine sent me pictures of some locations I wanted to use, but moat of the descriptions came from treasured memories. My second novel, JUSTIFIED ACTION takes place in several spots in Middle Eastern Europe. I've never been there and things being what they are in that part of the world, I don't plan to go. Many thanks to Google for that one.

Beth Fine said...

Linda, your current pictures and your descriptions in "Just Another Termination" prove the point I used with the young writers in my Detroit workshop last week: "Write what you know." The kids also learned to take real images/adventures/events and add a twist of imagination plus a borrowed hint or two from research or other people's ideas to plump up their concept into a full story line. They really got the message. So now, with your revisiting the scene of the imaginary crime, did you feel chills and thrills of how accurately you portrayed that southern community? Can't wait for the sequel even if I have to volunteer to proof it before you send it off to the publisher. I want to know what happens to the HR manager Kanagy as she develops into an even stronger detective!!

Linda Thorne said...

Thank you Earl. My best friend for-like-ever lives in Gaithersburg, Maryland I visited the condo she had in Ocean City a few times and before the condo I did go to Ocean City with her a few times. This brings up memories.


Linda Thorne said...

Thanks Beth for your supportive comments. I'm trying to do nothing but getting writing hours in on my 2nd book today, but it's already 12:30 and I haven't started. What you did working with the kids in Detroit was fantastic.