Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Dorothy Gilman. The best. Ever.

The unexpected Mrs P There is a shelf in my office dedicated to Dorothy Gilman. I have a copy of every one of her books. This collection began with “The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax” and continues through the entire Mrs. Pollifax series, adding other stand-alone books along the way, such as “A Nun in the Closet,” “The Clairvoyant Countess,” and “Girl in Buckskin.”

The Mrs. Pollifax copies are especially well-used, having endured multiple readings. Each time I begin with anticipation, having forgotten some of the details, and the read is always comforting and satisfying – as if I’m being reacquainted with old friends. Mrs. Pollifax meets the most interesting people, she finds deep courage within herself in every situation, and her friends are long-lasting and true. Her adventures are both entertaining and educational; how is it that a retired woman can go from contemplating the edge of her rooftop while watering her geraniums to running around the Albanian countryside? Or disguising herself as a Chinese grandmother? Or surviving torture in Hong Kong? Mrs. Pollifax can do it all, with love in her heart and steel in her backbone.

Dorothy Gilman Dorothy Gilman has served as an unknowing mentor and friend for me all these years. When I need a break from writing, I read her books. When I need inspiration, or a reminder of what it feels like to get lost in great writing, I read her books. When I want to see again how she creates characters which are both lovable and complex, I delve into her books. It seems whatever trait I need to study, I find them in her writings.

Mystery Writers of America has granted Dorothy Gilman Grandmaster status, which I heartily applaud. Gilman has done so much for our genre, and has shown that a female mystery author can and did achieve success with books that appeal to both genders (my father was also a Mrs. Pollifax fan!). She began her career back in the sixties, long before Sisters in Crime existed -- long before most of our now-lauded female crime writers took the stage. She wrote what she wanted to write, not following a trend of any kind, and was wildly successful. Her books are still in print, after over forty years of being on the shelves. Would that we all could be so fortunate!

Thumbs up Congratulations to Ms. Gilman for writing such wonderful books, for continuing to entertain and challenge us, and for this award. She deserves every accolade heaped upon her.


Judy Clemens
Fan Girl

Monday, December 14, 2009

Have you paid your dues?

Sisters in Crime Renewal Notice – Deadline: January 31, 2010

This notice is only being sent to members who are due for renewal in the SinC data base. Please Remove this line as you don't know if the member has renewed or not. Replace it with...we disregard this message if you have renewed.

Sisters in Crime is looking forward to an exciting new year and we want to make sure all of our members have renewed their membership for 2010. Renewals can be handled on the web site at

As a member you have a username and password. You must be logged in to renew your membership. Dues remain $40 for all US and Canadian members. Add $5 for all other countries.

1. Click here to go directly to the SinC home page -

2. Click on grey box which says, Join Now, under the pictures. There will be a pull down menu which says, Renew – click on Renew and enter your username and password. This will take you to your membership profile where you renew your SinC membership

3. You may also Renew by clicking on Renew on the right side under Quick Links.

4. Pick regular member and view your membership profile – make updates and hit the Submit button at the bottom of the page

5. Next a payment screen will come up and you can choose to pay by MC/Visa or by check. If you pick the check option you will need to print a copy of your invoice to send with your check. Once we receive the check you will receive a receipt by e-mail

Want to renew by mail? Please send Beth Wasson an e-mail and she will send you a membership form to fill out and send back in the mail with your $40 check. Add $5 for all countries except Canada. E-mail Beth at

Need your username and password? Contact Beth at, who would be happy to take your phone call on weekdays, between 10 AM – 3 PM CST at 785-842-1325. I can help you Login to the Sisters in Crime web site. Don’t hesitate to call; it will only take a few minutes.

Sisters in Crime, PO Box 442124, Lawrence, KS 66044,, 785-842-1325

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The mission of Sisters in Crime is to promote the professional development and advancement of women crime writers to achieve equality in the industry.