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Archive for April, 2013

I have certainly been remiss with respect to attending this blog.  Shame on me!  I’ll let myself off the hook, though, because I’ve been pretty diligent about working on my whodunit.  Not that it means anything in and of itself, but it feels pretty good to see “18,900 words” at the bottom of my screen.  I’ve been out to actual scenes I used in my book because I didn’t want someone telling me I didn’t at least get the locales correct.  I have had to take a few literary liberties, but not so obvious as NCIS (CBS) giving the impression that the agents quickly commute between DC and Norfolk, or that one can go from the Navy Yard to Manassas in ten minutes.

I sustain a state of wonder over the notion that my favorite authors can keep track, while writing, of what day of the week it is, which character said what, or even exactly how much each detective knows at any given time.

“How’m I gonna…?” seems to be a question which has to be answered over and over, and every time I solve that puzzle, another awaits.  I’ve been going back and reading through a series by perhaps my (currently) favorite author, Michael Connelly, the Harry Bosch series.  Every time I pick up one of his books, I am convinced that this book of mine will never fly.  At the least, I know I will have to go back through and flesh out every sort of description – characters, scenes, processes – to give life to them beyond my natural tendency to be overly concise.  Practice seems to make perfect, or at least maturation, because I find that I now recognize the too bland passages almost immediately.  I still keep on typing, though, to get the idea down “on paper.”

Some of the characters are based upon folks I actually knew decades ago, who were characters themselves.  Since I’m approaching 66, I doubt if any of them are still around to recognize themselves.

Well, it’s time to get back to my “murder board” (actually a legal pad), so I can update what my detectives know, so that, when they convene again on Monday (theirs and mine), we can get some work done!

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This is more of a survey than an opinion piece, though I’ll share mine.  It seems that a reporter published information from a police source who had been ordered by a judge not to disclose information in order that the defendant might be assured of a fair trial, not in the press but in the courtroom.  (See the quote below.)

“Sylvester issued a gag order to law enforcement authorities in the days following the July 20 attack, in which Holmes allegedly killed 12 and injured 70. Holmes’ attorneys claim Winter’s story, published on July 25 and picked up by media outlets around the world, has jeopardized his right to a fair trial.”  Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/04/01/fox-news-reporter-faces-aurora-judge-over-refusal-to-reveal-sources/#ixzz2PEo6cawp

My question is whether the public’s need to know – not their curiosity or their lust for information – should trump the defendant’s right to a fair trial or possibly even free a guilty person from justice being meted out.  In this case, the reporter is not just protecting a confidential source, but is aiding and abetting a violator of the law, one who puts himself and his opinion above the law.

On the other hand, when does a gag order go too far and violate the intention of the framers of the Constitution?  In this case, I’m siding with the judge.

What say you?

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