featuring guest authors; crafting tips and projects; recipes from food editor and sleuthing sidekick Cloris McWerther; and decorating, travel, fashion, health, beauty, and finance tips from the rest of the American Woman editors.

Friday, June 18, 2010


Today at Book Club Friday, I’d like to welcome multi-published author Mary Kennedy. Mary is a licensed psychologist and the author of the Talk Radio Mysteries. Dead Air was the first book in the series. Reel Murder is her latest release. In this series, described as "Frasier” meets “Murder She Wrote,” Maggie Walsh leaves her clinical psychology practice in Manhattan to move to sunny Cypress Grove, a small south Florida town. She joins the staff of local radio station WYME (great name, huh?) to host a daily talk show called “On the Couch with Maggie Walsh” where she dispenses humor, advice and a few psychological insights. And then the murders start.

You can visit Mary at www.marykennedy.net. Mary has graciously offered a copy of both Dead Air and Reel Murder to one lucky reader here at Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers. All you have to do to be eligible is post a comment. -- AP


It all began with Carolyn Hart.

When Carolyn heard that I was sending a few books and home-made goodies to the 389th Renegades in Iraq, she made an interesting offer. “Let me send twenty pounds of coffee, snacks and home-made goodies to celebrate the publication of Laughed ‘Til He Died. And some autographed books. It’s the twentieth release in the Death on Demand series, and this would be a nice way to commemorate the event.”

Nice?  It was fabulous!  A very generous offer, indeed. I was thrilled.  We decided to call it the “Hart to Heart Project.” 

Carolyn was as good as her word, sending more than twenty pounds of goodies and books to the troops.

But it didn’t stop there. We received such a positive response from the “389th Renegades,” that we kept on going.  We had to! They said they loved these boxes from home.

Other writers heard about the project and joined us.  Kate Collins sent autographed copies of some wonderful titles in her FlowerShop Mysteries. JB Stanley sent not only autographed copies of The Supper Club Mysteries and the Hope Street Church Mysteries,  but a big box of goodies. When Beth Ciotta heard about the project, she sent autographed copies of her fabulous romantic comedies featuring the irrepressible Evie Parish. Julie Hyzy joined in with an autographed copy of Eggsective Orders, one of her terrific White House Chef Mysteries. Jim Ciullo sent Maracaibo, Robin Burcell sent The Bone Chamber  and Kristan Higgins sent The Next Best Thing.

Carolyn and I were amazed at the outpouring of support. Carolyn kept sending goody boxes and copies of her mysteries. Meanwhile,  I kept making Kahlua brownies (five batches at a time!)  and shipping them. Since the 389th is a “sustainment division,” offering food, coffee, drinks and snacks, to convoys passing through, all the goodies were gobbled up and the books were cherished.

The 389th is coming home soon and all of us have fond memories of our friendships with the brave men and women serving in Iraq. And oh yes, we sent more than 200 pounds of home-made goodies and books. 200 pounds! Carolyn Hart’s “celebration” blossomed in a way that none of us could have expected.

The generosity of my fellow writers is truly an inspiration to me. When writers pull together, nothing can stop us.

Very inspirational, Mary. Thanks so much for sharing that with us. Remember, if you’d like to be eligible for the drawing to win copies of Mary’s two books, just post a comment. The winner will be announced tomorrow.-- AP



mary kennedy said...

Lisa, thank you so much for posting this! I know the Renegades will be thrilled and once again, I'd like to thank my fellow writers for their support.

Caridad Pineiro said...

That was a wonderful thing you all did! I'm rounding up stuff now for a med-evac unit that got stop-lossed. If anyone is interested in contributing, please drop me a note.

Hank Phillippi Ryan said...

Mary, how wonderful! Are you going to do it again?

(And congratulations on the books, Frasier meets Murder She Wrote--what a fantastic idea! And I have Dead Air, of course, so I dont need to be in the drawing!)

Caridad, I'm in! Emailing you right now.

love to all--

Becke Davis said...

Hi Mary! *waving to Hank and Caridad, too*

I suspect you pay the postage on this, so I wouldn't mind shipping some books to these wonderful troops directly.

Don't have books with my own name on the cover (unless you want garden books or *cough* 'N Sync), but I have a huge collection of old and new books in all kinds of genres, but mostly mystery, romantic suspense and romance.

Are you still looking for donations?

Knowing how hard you work, I think it's amazing that you spend so much time doing things for others. Not just this, but things like mentoring struggling writers and offering encouragement and support. All that while working a job that is ridiculously beyond full time AND writing a great series of books. YOU ROCK!!!

(BTW, don't put me in the book drawing - I'm already the proud owner of both books.)

Becke Davis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Becke Davis said...

Sorry about the deleted post, I made a glaring typo. I just wanted to say thanks to Anastasia for showcasing this great project!


Welcome to the new faces who dropped by -- waving to Hank, Caridad, and Becke! The other editors and I hope you'll come back often. And Becke, don't worry about that typo. We all make them.

Kttycat said...

It's so sweet to see when people pull together for a good cause.

Kathleen Ernst said...

What a wonderful story. Thanks for the inspiration.

mary kennedy said...

Thank you so much for the kind words. Anything I did was a drop in the bucket compared to what te 389th is doing for us, every single day. There isn't any need for further donations (although I appreciate the thought) and hope that everyone will send something to Caridad. She's been a great supporter of the troops and told me about this "Shoebox" project, which is brilliant. But thank you, thank you, everyone!

jeff7salter said...

Hello, Mary & Anastasia:
I started to post nearly two hours ago, but got caught in a LENGTHY phone call --- and I never talk on the phone.
Anyway, I'm fairly new to blogging but I really like the descriptions of the books in the Dead Air series.
I'm also gratified to learn of the books and goodies y'all sent to a unit of our troops overseas. I'm a Air Force veteran and I know how much it meant to get 'stuff' from home.


Welcome, Jeff.Thanks for stopping by. I hope we'll see you here often.

Kathy said...

A lot of us stampers do that with handmade greeting cards. We send boxes of the hand stamped cards to the troops so that they have greeting cards to send to their friends and loved ones back home.

Mary, I'm adding your books to my list of must reads.

mary kennedy said...

Jeff, thank you so much for the kind words. I can't begin to tell you how much those thank-you notes and e-mails I received from the Renegades mean to me. It was really an amazing opportunity to connect with a terrific bunch of people. The Renegades have their own FB page, btw, "Support the 389th Renegades." Loads of great pictures are posted. I think it's pretty impressive that Lisa and her troops took time out to visit a local one-room schoolhouse in Iraq to deliver books and toys to the children. They visited there on a regular basis, the kids were so happy to see them.

mary kennedy said...

Kathy, that is a fantastic idea about the cards! I love it, what a wonderful project.

Jessica said...

On behalf of the 389th FRG and Renegade families, thank you for all the love and support you have shown our troops. They enjoyed the books and treats to the max!! :) The Hart to Heart project is simply awesome! We feel blessed to have received so much support for our loved ones. Once again, thank you.
Respectfully yours,
389th FRG Leader

Carol-Lynn Rossel said...

Your books' premise sounds delightful to me (I'm an audio engineer).

Anonymous said...

What a great way to support our troops.

Janet said...

I am in awe of all you have done. Congratulations on your patriotism and hard work. Obviously you filled a void with marvelous goodies and books. Thanks for supporting our troops.

The books sound great and I will be looking for them in the book stores.

J K Maze said...

What a fascinating series. I really like the idea. I'm going to go to your webside and read about your books. They're going to be on my list to read. Also, the Hart to Heart Project is a wonderful idea.

mary kennedy said...

Thank you so much, everyone. And a special thank you to Jessica, FRG Leader for the 389th, who has done a terrific job in keeping the 389th in touch with their loved ones stateside. She is everyone's "go-to" person when they need something done. Jessie, you are the best!

mary kennedy said...

And Anastasia,a big thank you for inviting me!

mary kennedy said...

Carol-Lynn, very exciting that you're an audio engineer. I love audio engineers. When I lived in Nashville and worked a radio copywriter, I did a lot of voice-overs for radio and TV spots. I quickly learned that I could make more money doing voice work than I did writing the ads. And of course the audio engineers were wonderful, because they always made me sound good! JK Maze, Janet and Nancy, thank you so much for stopping by!

mary kennedy said...

Kittycat and Kathleen, thank you!


Mary, thanks so much for stopping by to visit with us today! We loved having you.

jeff7salter said...

When I was stationed at Thule AB in NW Greenland for nearly a year ('72-73), our base commander's office received a gigantic 'christmas card' rolled up on butcher paper, as I recall. When finally un-rolled, it took up a full side of the gym. I estimated it was approx. 500 sq. feet. Some "kids" at a college in the SW somewhere (I now forget where) had prepared it. I can't even guess how many folks had signed it, drawn on it, or written little notes. What a wonderful surprise when so far from home.
I wrote an article on it for the base newspaper (of which I was editor).
You can never go wrong when you do something special for American troops.

Beth Ciotta said...

I'm late to the party here, but wanted to mention how much I loved this article. Mary, I'm STILL in awe of all you've done with this wonderful project. Thank you for all you do and for allowing me to join in. Even though my part was very small, it gave me great joy.

Bless you and our troops!

mary kennedy said...

Thanks for stopping by, Beth. You made a very generous donation and even included your 2010 release, OUT OF EDEN. Lisa will be thrilled. Jeff, very interesting that you were stationed in Greenland and I love the idea of the gigantic "card" that was delivered. That's something I've got to keep in mind for another time, really love it! Thanks for telling us about it.