Immersion Master Class…Or What 5 Days at the Top of a Mountain in Colorado Did for My Manuscript

Love these observations from A1 YA writer Julie Glover – fellow Margie Lawson Immersion Grad about our experiences in the Master Writing class last weekend.

Julie Glover, Author

From October 9 through 13, I attended an Immersion Master Class hosted by Margie Lawson. Immersion is an intensive workshop during which you receive general writing coaching and specific help with your manuscript.

So what did I get out of my trip to the Rocky Mountains for this writing workshop? Here are five takeaways:

1. Receiving terrific writing instruction. Writing coach Margie Lawson offers some wonderful craft classes online and through her lecture packets. However, some teaching is specific to Immersion.

Margie Lawson and Me (oh, and Calypso) Margie Lawson and Me (oh, and Calypso)

This was my second Immersion class, and this round reinforced what I’d learned before and added new craft knowledge. Margie not only explains principles of good prose, but provides examples so you can see how other excellent authors wield these useful tools.

2. Spending time with fabulous writers. Our writing group came from here, there, and yonder. With writers from Colorado, Texas…

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Tinderdoption—My Connection with Puppy Love




With online dating gone mainstream is it any wonder the system has gone to the dogs?



DentsuBos, the Montreal-based ad agency played cupid over the summer and asked me to help them out. Their creative team matched Rosie Animal Adoption up with the Tinder Dating app. A relatively quick gestation later, Tinderdoption was born.



Sweet pups who need homes pop up on the pages of Tinder-daters who list dogs as a “like.” The hope is Tinder-ites will fall for the canines and adopt them.

I was called in to Studio LaMajeure on Bleury Street a little over a month ago to do a narration for the televised public service announcement that that describes the service. It’s a smart use of blended media and it’s getting a lot of support, play and tweets. Here’s the finished product of the ad featuring voice a la Kim:

I hadn’t worked with the people from Bos in a while, so it was good to get reacquainted. Xavier from Creative was in studio along with English copywriter Helen, who did a brilliant job at direction. It was all pro-bono work on everyone’s part, including Mathieu Morin, the sound engineer from La Majeure.

Charity campaigns are always fun to work on. It’s a great feeling to help organizations out especially when it involves your particular brand of skillage. But even more so, when the brainchild is as refreshing as this.


When a dog’s profile pops up, it’s light hearted and funny. Think lines like ‘this single is ready to mingle,’ ‘Fifi is recovering from a bad relationship,’ or ‘big hearted bruiser looking for life long partner.’ The tone resembles the app but also effectively communicates to the user. Tinderdoption features a cute pic, a brief introduction and a suggests the place to meet up, if the user wants to take the relationship further.

It’s a bright marketing idea from DentsuBos, an example of how social media can make lives better and it’s also a success. The campaign fetched a lot of new leads for the Canadian adoption centre.


Romance Weekly #LoveWriteChat




Welcome to Kim Town, my corner of the Romance Weekly blog hop. Where 20+ fabulous romance authors answer questions about what it’s like to write.Thanks to the fascinating Veronica Forand, author of Tackled By the Girl Next Door, for the intro and to Fiona Riplee, author of The Sixxers, for this week’s fun questions.


Does humor help or hinder you in your creative process?

Absolutely helps. Doesn’t humor help everyone, through everything? That being said, what I think is funny is not always appropriate. (Just ask my gym buddies) I love corn. (My husband has the corniest sense of humor and I just love it.) But this doesn’t always fit with my characters. In my twenties, I hung out with several comedians – including the fabulous Miss Carla Collins, (whom my daughter peed on —’nother story) pictured here—even took a nerve shattering stab at stand-up myself once. I find situational comedy relatively easy to write. Humorous internalizations are more difficult. The gems are those one line zingers that seem to effortlessly fall from the hero’s or heroine’s mouths that take so long to come up with.


What is a favorite go-to book or movie you use to unblock a problem in your writing?


Legally Blonde, MGM

Legally Blonde, MGM

This may sound really dumb, because it’s not strictly a romance and Blake Snyder call it an example of the “Fool Triumphant”, but I love to watch Legally Blonde. Something about a girl who grows and wins, who drops the loser and picks up the dreamboat, and doesn’t have to change her core beliefs and or her fluffy feminine penchant for pink and feather boas. I just find that so inspiring. Elle Woods is my favorite character study. My favorite romance movie for plot derived from character study is The Princess Bride. I LOVE William Goldman. Before Snyder, before Vogler, before Truby, before Robert Keyes, I read Goldman’s Adventures in the Screen Trade. His treatise on character derived plot still enthralls.


What’s the most inspiring book you’ve read this week or month that’s generated a new idea?

Unknown-1There’s two. In the non-fiction category it’s Kristen Lamb’s Rise of the Machines: Human Authors in a Digital World. I’ve spiffing up my blog site and adding new weekly features. And I credit that to Kristen’s advice. If you haven’t read her book, or heard of her, check her out. ❤ She’s awesome: In the fiction category, I’m going to have to say it’s friend Sarah Hegger’s forthcoming medieval Fairest Faye. I really ‘got’ her main character (and love her hero) and it helped me decide on a plot direction for the Victorian paranormal I’ve outlined. That being, fixing the B-story with strong elements of the emerging feminist movement of the 1880’s. Bang up to the elephant, wot?


Fun questions! Thanks for stopping by. Keep hopping. Next on the tour is my good friend Vicki Mixon, writer of romantic suspense.

Sitting Shiva for Mum



I’m so glad this week is drawing to a close. A week and a day ago, my dear mother-in-law, Lillian died of complications from stomach cancer. We, her family — my husband, Ed, father-in-law Dan, brother-in-law David, older cousin Mona & my daughter Jennifer — scrambled through our grief to clean and prepare the house for Shiva, meet with rabbis, a grief counselor, cousins, aunt & uncle, write eulogies and deliver them, attend the funeral and spill earth on the grave of someone to whom we didn’t want to say good bye.


Lillian left such a large hole in our family because her presence was magnificent. Strong, yet soft. Being a Jew By Choice, I had little experience hosting Shiva. Lillian had always gently guided me through whatever rituals and traditions I took on. Friends and family helped us clear tasks, sort through things. Jennifer cut the grass early and culled the refrigerator. Out-of-town friends, Mark and Bob rolled up their shirt-sleeves and washed utensils, so I could re-organize my out-of control drawers. Other people would be taking over my kitchen. And I was supposed to relax about that.


Mourning Chairs

Mourning Chairs

My uncle’s new wife Marianne stepped in and covered or “schmeared” the mirrors with Jen. Cousin Bev shopped for paper plates, utensils and soft drinks. The funeral home brought the mourning chairs and books. We gathered pictures of Mom, taped some up on glass bookcase doors and Jen made a computer slide show of recent ones.


What I learned is that it’s not my responsibility to actually do anything other than co-ordinate meals that friends and family sponsored and greet guests who came to visit and talk with them. Bringing food, sponsoring meals, visiting the house in mourning, participating in the nightly prayers, these are all opportunities for others to do “mitzvahs,” or good deeds. The doors are left unlocked, doorbells are not rung, and I wasn’t supposed to thank people for coming, so as not to diminish the good deed they were performing. That was difficult. Eventually I got in the habit of saying, “It was good of you to come,” or “Your company meant a lot.”




In theory, I’ve always liked the Jewish response to death both for it’s respect for the dead and the mourning. In practice, it’s been intense. Exhausting. And uplifting.

I’m going to miss my mother-in-law. We had a bumpy start, coming from such different cultures, but we forged a good long-term relationship with a lot of love. Like Naomi to Ruth, she taught me so much about traditions I didn’t grow up with, but decided to adopt.


What about you? What’s your experience been with Shiva or the death of an in-law?


Romance Weekly #LoveWriteChat







Hey! Romance Weekly is 6 months old today. Happy birthday to us. Were celebrating all day on our facebook page and starting today we’re taking our weekly author blog hop in a new direction. It’s fun. It’s entertaining. It’s open. And you’re invited to hop along!


from SoulMate Publishing

from SoulMate Publishing

The Bride Gift, Soul Mate Publishing

The Bride Gift, Soul Mate Publishing


Thanks to Sarah Hegger, darling author of wonderful medieval The Bride Gift for the introduction.

This week’s theme is from Jo Richardson, author of Cursed be the Wicked.



My Top 10 Romances of All Time


Jane Eyre

Jane Eyre

1. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte

Because she refuses to be less than she is and he loves her for it.


2. Natural Born Charmer – Susan Elizabeth Phillips

Because she’s prickly and desperate and he falls for her purple lollipop eyes.


3. Faking It – Jennifer Crusie

Because he’s a con artist and she’s an art forger. (Need I say more?)


The Princess Bride

The Princess Bride

4. The Princess Bride – Samuel Goldman

Because he proves himself worthy over and over again.


5. The Firebrand – Susan Wiggs

Because the hero sees the heroine’s inner beauty and falls in love with it.


When Harry Met Sally

When Harry Met Sally

6. When Harry Met Sally – with Billy Crystal & Meg Ryan

Because husbands and wives should be best friends.


7. The Gift of the Magi – O. Henry

Because they gave what they valued most to make the other happy.


8. Catch of the Day – Kristan Higgins

Because she’s clueless Malone is in to her & he refuses to let her clean for him.




9. Brigadoon – with Gene Kelly & Cyd Charisse

Because time stops when they’re together & I love the way they dance.


10. Small Town Girl – LaVyrle Spencer

Because she is a story master and this old one-that-got-away tugs at my heart.




In Her Dreams

In Her Dreams

It’s tough to narrow down. What’s one (or two) of your top romance movies or books? Please let me know (below).


Then I’m hopping over to Katherine Givens, author of In Her Dreams to see her picks. Come with! She’s at


Stuck Overnight in an Airport

lightning_pinkSo I’m stuck in the airport overnight on my way home from a writer’s conference in Texas enroute to Montreal. Big storm heading east and flights are cancelled. All of them. The local airport hotels are packed-booked too. My options are few.

Quick! Mad dash to the end of the terminal where there were a few scattered club chairs with actual padding. Screech. Detour to a souvenir shop. Buy two blankets—the a/c is chilly— a pillow, some snacks, a drink, and boom. I claimed my space.

You see, this is not my first overnight at an airport.

Frankfort, four years ago, with mother and both daughters.

Mexican-Train-DominoesWe were ill-equipped. No extra layers. No warmth. No padding. We did have entertainment. Dominoes. Played Mexican train for hours.

We staggered around bleary-eyed , occasionally shivered, and made up ridiculous word games, like taking the first letter off our names and replacing it with ‘h’. So Kim became Him. Jennifer was Hennifer. Lisa was Hisa. The funniest was my mom’s name. Mary Lou. She became Harry Hoo. No matter what letter we substituted, hers was the height of hilarity. Larry Lou, Mary Moo. Dairy Doo. Parry Poo.

Maybe you had to be there.

My other overnight airport stay was not so fun. Mostly because of anxiety.

Husband Edward and the girls and I were stuck in the Caribbean. My father had just suffered a heart attack and we were trying to get home as fast as possible to be with him. It was one of those flight-delayed, finally-boarded, wait-in terminably-on-the-tarmac, then forced-to-deplane nightmares that had my kids burst into tears along with several drunk revellers.

The drunk revellers took the party back into the over-bright airport, but my dashing darling saved the day. Er, night. Clever man found the airport VIP room, where for $50 we shared a comfy couch in a darkened area and were fed unlimited sandwiches and soft-drinks.

My room for the night

My room for the night

Sigh. I’m about to go plug my computer in and read for a bit. Cuddle up with my airplane blanket and C-shaped neck pillow. I’ll tell you how the overnight goes.

Oh yeah. The kicker?

Tomorrow’s my birthday. Nice present. Huh?


What about you? Got any overnight airport stories to amuse me while I’m stuck in Detroit International?

Fun Fluff & Other Stuff

0Happy TGIF! 

Helping me celebrate the beginning of the weekend is J.J. Devine, author of The Cheyenne Bride and the newly released Into The Darkness. She’ll tell you more about her work in a moment, but first Zee Questions Pleeze:




Getting to Know You:


What did you have for breakfast? I don’t eat breakfast often, when I do it is usually brunch, (bacon and eggs, biscuits and gravy, or maybe pancakes and waffles)

What are you wearing? LOL, in my defense it’s almost bedtime, so jammies

When was the last time you cried? When my granddaughter passed away.

What was your favorite Hallowe’en costume? Well, seeing as this is one of my most favorite holidays and yes, I do dress each year to go out with the grandchildren, my costume is always a witch J

What’s the first thing you notice about the opposite sex? Whether or not they have a sense of humor. I love to laugh.


The Good/The Bad


BarShot5_color_HRWorst habit: I’m a smoker

Worst movie: Traffic, yuk

Worst food: Liver hands down

Worst alcoholic drink: Beer, gross, I’m a whiskey woman myself J

Worst vacation: I love vacation, even the bad ones, like planning a week long camping trip and it rains the whole time. I’m still up for it J


Fav fruit: Peaches (I was born in Georgia and spent a good part of my growing up running in and out of that state)

Fav dessert: Cherry Cheesecake hands down

Fav color: Red

Fav sport: I’m not into sports, but if I had to choose, baseball

Fav flower: Roses


This or That:


IMG_53911Soup or salad: Salad

Fame or fortune: You mean I can’t have both, LOL. Hmmm, probably fortune

New York or LA: I’ve never been to either, but if I had to choose LA

Jeans or yoga pants: I’m a country girl, so jeans all the way

Mac or PC: PC

Twitter or facebook: Both

Manicure or pedicure: Both

Dogs or cats: Both

Nightie or pj’s: Pjs

Coffee or tea: I’m a southern girl so sweet tea all the way


The Really Important Things:


ford-mustang-convertible-1What store do you shop at the most? Walmart, because I hate to shop and I can get everything in one place

If you could be any (other) nationality, what would it be? Native American, I love the rich history of their culture.

You own a yacht. What do you call it? The Dreamer

What’s your favorite sports car? Mustang

Do you let your sig other buy jewelry for you on their own or help them pick it out? We’ve been married almost 29 years, so yes I do. He knows my taste and does a very good job at picking out jewelry. In fact the necklace he bought me for Christmas has gotten more compliments than any other piece of jewelry I own J


More This or That (Just ‘Cause They’re So Much Fun):


Independence DayThanksgiving or July 4th: July 4th

Morning or night: Night

Summer or winter: Both

Chocolate or vanilla: Both

Print or ebook: Both

Rock or pop music: Both

Heels or sneakers: Both

Europe or the Caribbean: Oh oh both for sure J

Wealth or health: Health

Fly or be invisible at will: Fly definitely, couldn’t you see it, me in my witch’s costume, flying around town on Halloween night J


More about J.J. Devine:


AIbEiAIAAABDCLGchuiIweiwTCILdmNhcmRfcGhvdG8qKGZjOTljZjY4NWYwNGI2MTc0ZjRjNzMxYTUwYTdmMGJmN2VjMGFlOTgwAagIOCaF9NyOqqogU2oP5T9cXoXGJ.J. Devine grew up loving the written word. She spent her days daydreaming and imagining what life would be like if she lived between the pages of the books she read. Today, she still spends her days dreaming. Only now she pens them into the romance novels she enjoys writing to share with her readers. On her down time, she enjoys spending time with her hubby, children, grandchildren, and pets. As well as helping to bring public awareness on the subject of domestic violence.



UnknownAuthor Links:






0July 9, 2014 with the help of Soul Mate Publishing I just released the first of my paranormal series, Into the Darkness. It’s a coming into oneself story about a young woman, Raven, who believed for the first twenty-five years of her life she was nothing more than a mortal woman. Imagine her surprise when she not only found out she was part witch, but the man who sired her was a vampire. The story takes you on Raven’s journey from innocence into finding her true self. Of course she has the help of a very sexy vampire, Dragon. You may have met him somewhere out there in the blogging world the last few weeks. He does love to visit the world wide web a bit J

You can grab your copy of Into the Darkness on Amazon:


Social Media = Friend Glue

John Lee

John Lee


Don’t you love that social media has changed our ability to foster friendships? I mourn all the great friendships started before everyone had a computer and a facebook account that wasted away because I was too cheap to phone or too lazy to find a stamp and walk to the mailbox.

Like Lila, my amazing roommate from University who married her high school sweetheart, went back to her hometown of Thunder Bay and became an A-1 theatre director and actress. Like TJ, another awesome roommate from early radio days in Sarnia, who became a successful producer and writer in Toronto. And like RosieMary, another flatmate who moved from Montreal to Tremblant—only two hours away—to become a ski bunny and is now a naturopath.


Why didn’t we stay in touch? My part in it was that I suck at letter writing. Actually I suck at letter mailing. ‘Cause I’d often write the letters, but they’d never make it out of my office to the post-office. Then time would go by and I’d be embarrassed for not calling/writing/etc. which made even my crippled communication attempts whither and die. Ergo, Kim’s history of crappy maintenance of long distance friendships.


The Bride Gift, Soul Mate Publishing

The Bride Gift, Soul Mate Publishing

Thank Heavens for facebook and Twitter and Viber and email. Because of the convenience they offer, I don’t let that happen anymore. Tomorrow I am re-uniting with my dear friend and fellow writer, Sarah Hegger at the Romance Writers of America conference in San Antonio, Texas. When we shared the same town, we were gym buddies, community meeting partners and became fast friends in our quest to write romance novels and get published. She moved to the other side of the continent a year ago but merci to social media, this is a friend I didn’t lose touch with. In fact, we’ve only gotten tighter. Sarah is published now and as her number one fan, please forgive the blatant promotion of her Amazon chart topping medieval on the side of this blog. (It’s a damn good romance)

In other good news, Lila, and TJ and I are friends on facebook, but so much life has gone by it’s almost inappropriate to try to re-kindle the closeness we once had. Thus, the mourning. The connections I have with them now are bittersweet.


What about you? Does social media help you maintain friendships or do you think it makes relationships superficial? Is it a help or a hindrance?


Fridays: Fun Fluff & Other Stuff

The Bride Gift, Soul Mate Publishing

The Bride Gift, Soul Mate Publishing


It’s Friday. It’s July (my fav month) and I’m launching a new weekly feature, introducing an author friend and asking them all manner of unwriterly things.

This week it’s Sarah Hegger, author of The Bride Gift, an Amazon #1 Bestseller.

After this fun & fluffy interview, she’s going to tell you a bit about her next medieval book, Sweet Bea. She’s releasing it September 1st, but you can pre-order it right now.



Getting to Know You:


What did you have for breakfast? Yoplait 100 calorie Greek Yoghurt (to counter the pizza)

What are you wearing? Shorts and a tee-shirt. It’s 100 degrees out there.

When was the last time you cried? On the weekend.

What was your favorite Hallowe’en costume? A sexy witch I made for myself.

What’s the first thing you notice about the opposite sex? Arms, yum!


The Good/The Bad


UnknownFav fruit: Cherries

Fav dessert: Ice cream (Haagen Dazs), oh and baked cheesecake

Fav color: Green

Fav sport: Cricket

Fav flower: Iris


Jason Kelly

Jason Kelly


Worst habit: Drinking out of the bottle/carton

Worst movie: Last Exit to Brooklyn (great movie but so depressing I couldn’t shake it)

Worst food: Fish Blech! Yuck!

Worst alcoholic drink: Pretty much all of them

Worst vacation: Montreal at Christmas 16 years ago, freezing cold and no snow


This or That:


Soup or salad: Soup

Fame or fortune: Yes, please

New York or LA: New York

Jeans or yoga pants: Yoga Pants

Mac or PC: Mac

Twitter or facebook: Twitter

Manicure or pedicure: Pedicure

Dogs or cats: Dogs, dogs, dogs, dogs

Nightie or Pj’s: PJ’s

Coffee or tea: Coffee (when my husband makes it for me.)


The Really Important Things:


Polly C.

Polly C.

What store do you shop at the most? Nordstrom (I have a shoe thing)

If you could be any (other) nationality, what would it be? Spanish

You own a yacht. What do you call it? Amanzi (Zulu word for water)

What’s your favorite sports car? E-Type Jaguar

Do you let your sig other buy jewelry for you on their own or help them pick it out? He has great taste in jewelry.


More This or That (Just ‘Cause They’re So Much Fun):


Thanksgiving or July 4th: Thanksgiving

Morning or night: Night

Summer or winter: SUMMER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Chocolate or vanilla: Vanilla

Print or ebook: ebook

Rock or pop music: Rock

Heels or sneakers: Heels

Europe or the Caribbean: Both

Wealth or health: Health

Fly or be invisible at will: Invisibility.



Who am I?


Sarah Hegger

Sarah Hegger

Born British and raised in South Africa, Sarah Hegger suffers from an incurable case of wanderlust. Her match? A hot Canadian engineer, whose marriage proposal she accepted six short weeks after they first met. Together they’ve made homes in seven different cities across three different continents (and back again once or twice). If only it made her multilingual, but the best she can manage is idiosyncratic English, fluent Afrikaans, conversant Russian, pigeon Portuguese, even worse Zulu and enough French to get herself into trouble.

Mimicking her globe trotting adventures, Sarah’s career path began as a gainfully employed actress, drifted into public relations, settled a moment in advertising, and eventually took root in the fertile soil of her first love, writing. She also moonlights as a wife and mother.

She currently lives in Draper, Utah, with her teenage daughters, two Golden Retrievers and aforementioned husband. Part footloose buccaneer, part quixotic observer of life, Sarah’s restless heart is most content when reading or writing books.


She loves to hear from readers and you can find her at any of the places below.






Sweet Bea


Lyrical Press

Lyrical Press

Is anything sweeter than revenge?


In a family of remarkable people, ordinary Beatrice strives to prove herself worthy. When her family is threatened with losing everything, she rushes to London to save them. Unfortunately, she chooses as her savior the very man who will see her family brought low.

Garrett has sworn vengeance on Sir Arthur of Anglesea for destroying his life when he was a boy and forcing his mother into prostitution for them to survive. He has chosen as his instrument Sir Arthur’s youngest daughter, Beatrice.

Can Beatrice’s goodness teach Garrett that love, not vengeance, is the greatest reward of all?



Available for preorder on Amazon


Thanks so much Sarah. Fun getting to know the author behind the great stories. Please leave a comment below of you liked this feature.

Romance Weekly #LoveWriteChat


from SoulMate Publishing

from SoulMate Publishing




If you’ve just come from J.R. Richardson, author of the fabulous Cursed be the Wicked, the lady who penned this week’s questions, welcome! If you’ve come from somewhere else, welcome, welcome! This is my stop on Romance Weekly’s author blog tour.



How often do you write?


images-3I want to write everyday. I don’t. I probably get to write 4-6 days a week. Sometimes it’s new words, sometimes it’s editing. If I’m in the new words phase, it varies between 200-2,000 words, depending on whether I have narrations or other demands. If I’m editing, I try to do 2-3 chapters a day. I haven’t figured out how to add up word counts during editing days. And how do you figure time done plotting? Anybody? I dream of spending 6-8 uninterrupted hours a day writing. That’s my goal – so far unattainable, but as the kids get older and my husband gets more and more supportive and understands that I need unbroken quiet, my hope grows. (Because like Elna Rae says, where hope grows, miracles blossom)


images-4Do you think it’s important to your craft to write as much as you can, and as often as you can?

When I write more I produce more. But I’ve gone through times when I haven’t been able to meet my word counts. I don’t want to derail myself by thinking if I don’t write as often as I can that I’m a failed writer. You only fail when you stop trying. Life will let you write more sometimes and less others. Sometimes we need to refill the well, so we don’t run dry and that’s part of the process, too.



Stephanie Gauvin  on Mt Assiniboine

Stephanie Gauvin on Mt Assiniboine

What is your opinion on the saying “if you don’t write every day, you’re not a writer”?

For me it’s similar to acting. I am definitely an actress. What I call a “career” actress, because I’ve been able to live off nothing other than acting for over 20 years. I don’t get an acting gig everyday, but I do land 3-4 of them a week. I acted and practiced the craft for several years before I could “quit my day job”. It’s the same working in any art. You must practice your craft, hone those skills, until you are marketable. I act when I’m not getting paid to act. I notice my own feelings, emotions and those of others. I observe people. A lot. Since I’m primarily a voice actor, I read out loud and “play with my instrument”. In effect, I “act” daily. This is transferable to writing. Or painting. One of my artist friends, who happens to be in Who’s Who in American Art, responds the same way whenever some one asks her, “How long did it take to do that watercolor?” “30 minutes and 30 years,” she’ll say. There’s more to writing than writing. There’s reading and thinking and observing. And social media. Can’t forget that.


Ok, hop with me now to Veronica Forand’s blog. She’s a multi-award winner, Veronica is. Including being a Finalist in the Daphne Du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense.