A group blog featuring an international array of killer mystery, suspense, and romantic suspense writers. With premises and story lines different from your run-of-the-mill whodunits, we tend to write outside the box. We blog several times a week on all topics relating to romantic suspense and mystery, our writing, and our readers. We welcome all comments and often have guest bloggers. All our authors can be contacted separately, too, using their own social media links.

We find our genre delightfully, dangerously, and deliciously exciting - join us here, if you do too!

Julie Moffet . Cathy Perkins . Jean Harrington . Daryl Anderson . Nico Rosso . Maureen A Miller . Sandy Parks . Lisa Q Mathews . Sharon Calvin . Lynne Connolly . Janis Patterson . Vanessa Keir . Tonya Kappes . Julie Rowe . Joni M Fisher . Leslie Langtry

Monday, November 30, 2015

Thanksgiving and the Christmas Crazies

by Janis Patterson

It’s half a week past Thanksgiving, and I can just about fit back into my clothes. The Husband and I joined his family at my mother-in-law’s for the holiday again. I will forever say I am so blessed to have The Husband’s family; mine is pretty much gone or far away, and his is both lovely and loving. My mother-in-law and sister-in-law cooked the holiday lunch, and they are absolutely superb cooks. Early on they learned never to let me bring anything – I am a decent plain cook and have never poisoned anyone (other than in print), but my skills are nothing compared to their culinary artistry. I do, however, excel at eating. And when you’re good at something, you should do a lot of it, right?

This year The Husband and I brought roses to his mother and aunt, for no reason other than they were so pretty. (They were on sale, too, but that really didn’t enter in to it – we found out they were on sale only after going into the shop to buy flowers!) As always, we brought home enough leftovers for three or four meals.

So what does all that have to do with mystery? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

We’re twenty-five days away from Christmas, the most blessed holiday of the year. The next twenty-five days will be full of shopping and parties and gift wrapping and family and friends… all the good things of the earth. And faith. We mustn’t forget faith.

Which means that Thanksgiving, for all of its overindulgence in food and family and laughter, is a watershed of reasonable quiet and reflection before the madness of Christmas begins. I, for one, enjoyed it thoroughly.

All year long I spend my days creating a group of people where murder could be a believable alternative, figuring out how to kill someone, how my character can justify killing someone, and how my sleuth solves the case. As we all know, this is not the most tranquil or restful way to spend your time. Now add in the inevitable Christmas crazies – which seem to start earlier each year – and a bountiful meal with family on Thanksgiving can seem like a respite even for those who do the cooking.

So – as deadlines, uncooperative characters, sudden plot holes, research and the Christmas crazies fill our days, let us take joy in our lives. We get to create wonderful stories. We – at least most of us – have families and friends and traditions. Thanksgiving was last week, but let us never forget to be thankful.

One thing for which I am not thankful, and one which I believe needs to be mentioned so that people will not think I am ignoring them. This begins the sixth week we have been without internet at home, and the only time I can log on is when I can make it down to our local internet café. Sigh. Just – sigh.


Susan Oleksiw said...

Thank you for posting something that didn't turn into a sales pitch. I lived in India when it was hard to get a phone line, and after a while I got used to it and enjoyed being free of "demands," etc. I had the same experience when I went back to visit. I had to find an Internet cafe (with reliable air-conditioning) to check email. After a while, I began to like that also. I hope your holidays are as relaxing as your post was.

Jacqueline Seewald said...

I enjoyed Thanksgiving as well. One of our daughters-in-law who has a larger home makes it now. I used to do it but we've downsized to an apartment. Anyway, we all contribute, which includes our family and hers. So there is plenty of food and conversation.

I think my next blog will be on Christmas shopping madness, a humorous one.
Sorry about your lack of internet service. I hope you get it back soon.

Anne Marie Becker said...

You said everything I'm feeling! And so eloquently. :) I usually cook, but had the opportunity to visit and relax instead this time. It was so nice to just let everything go and enjoy.

Marcelle Dubé said...

I'm much better at eating than I am at cooking, too. :-) Thanks for the moment of reflection.

Wynter said...

Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite holidays. How thoughtful that you brought flowers, which always make a table prettier. I'm in the good cooks camp. And I love to cook, especially when I'm stuck on a plot. That's when my family gets lots of creative, time-consuming dishes!

Rita said...

The holidays have been transformed into a media thing IMO. For me takeout and enjoying each other would do quite well.

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

I had a wonderful Thanksgiving, my family all pitched in so it was much easier than earlier times when I did it all. Because I have such a huge family, I just write checks--not to individuals except my kids and spouses--but to each family. Merry Christmas!

Susan Aylworth said...

Ah yes, the Thanksgiving gluttony and the Christmas madness have affected many of us. You put it well. Thanks!

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