Magpie Moments: The Appropriate Hurricane Beverage (If It’s Good Enough for Jimmy Buffett…)

Aloha! Being Friday and all, I thought I’d take a break from my week of soul-sucking, admin-type things (the next “dashboard” I see better have a V8 engine attached) to give you a quick Magpie Moment, one perfectly themed for your upcoming weekend. “I’ll have the margaritas waiting,” Lisa called out. Our mother had always preferred drinking margaritas to hurricanes at a Hurricane Party. (She’d said it would take more than seventy-five mile-per-hour winds to make her drink anything so vile.) Chapter Thirteen, No Safe Winterport Having lived in New Orleans, I’d have to agree with Syd’s mom. Hurricanes are Read more…

Shades of Winterport on Vacation, or Why You Don’t Ask a Writer for Directions

Another airport, another Friday blog post. <Glance at calendar> But wait—it’s not Friday; it’s Sunday. Yeah, about that… I actually wrote the following post on an airplane Friday, intending to upload it at the next airport when we landed, but then things got complicated. One of our flights was delayed (while we sat on the tarmac with no internet), which meant we missed our connection at LAX, yada, yada, yada… The short version (I may share a longer version this coming Friday if I haven’t gotten it out of my system yet) is we spent Friday night in Honolulu, made it to Read more…

Magpie Moments: Not the Cheeseburger Pie!

We haven’t talked about food for a while, so I thought it was time. Or maybe I’m just hungry. I took a wary bite. The last dish my sister prepared for me was probably a bowl of cereal, so I was pleasantly surprised. “I’m usually not a fan of chilled quiche, but this …” “I know,” Lisa said, smiling. “It doesn’t just taste like cold eggs with some cheese thrown in. It has depth and subtlety.” “And sausage.” My eyes twinkled. “Of course, I should be easy to impress. Thank God mom never tried quiche. We’d have all ended up Read more…

Magpie Moments: The Glamorous Life of a PI on the Road

A few weeks ago, I wrote a Magpie Moments post (bits of real life, incorporated into Sydney’s adventures) about the Delta Orlando Resort. This week, I thought I’d write about less luxurious accommodations. “… I travel a lot, and I always feel funny about using the hotel phone. Like I can feel the last person’s face there.” Lisa looked at me as if I were wearing my underwear on the outside of my clothes. “It’s no worse than the bed, or—” she almost couldn’t bring herself to finish, “—the toilet.” “True,” I said. “And, unlike me, Graeme probably never stays in Read more…

Magpie Moments: A Hotel by any Other Name

As of yesterday, No Safe Winterport, the fourth Sydney Brennan book, is live! Woo hoo! Well, the ebook is anyway. Apologies to my paperback readers. I’m still waiting for a paperback proof copy (yes, I’m that paranoid) to make its way across the wide Pacific Ocean. It’s unlikely that I accidentally uploaded my grocery list instead of the manuscript, but in this unreasonably hot summer anything is possible. (By the way, I’m one of those people you hate in the grocery store because you think I’m that addicted to my smartphone; I’m actually staring slavishly at its screen because my grocery list is a Read more…