James Huskins's Blog
July 15, 2016
Next Wednesday, July 20 I will be participating with other authors in Summer Beach Reads at the Snug Gastro Pub in Canton, GA. If you’re in the area, please stop by and say hello. I’ll have copies of my books if you’d like a signed copy.
Hope to see you there!
June 28, 2016
Headed to the shoemakers today (yes, they still exist), I was passed by this:
I do believe Jean found me!
In my work-in-progress (book 3), we get up-and-close with my out-there character Jean – visiting her home and going for a ride in her psychedelic van. Yancy is beside himself with her driving. But it’s still early days in the novel. I’m trying to work out the twists and pacing. I tried (I really did) to be a pantser, but I have to have at least a basic outline. But new words coming soon.
May 25, 2016
May 24, 2016
Tales of the Arabian Nights has an interesting twist in the new groovy mystery HOT ICE.
In real life, Sir Richard Francis Burton (famed explorer, writer, translator, diplomat and spy) is credited with translating the Tales into English. He also owned a large star sapphire, which he called his talisman. He carried it everywhere during his travels for luck. My research for the book could not locate it today, so I assume it’s part of a private collection.
In the book, that sapphire is called….
….“The Star of Arabia!” The enormous, blue star sapphire at the center of the necklace caught the light in a dazzling burst that seemed to outshine the row of diamonds to either side. An audible inhale traveled among the guests….
I used the Bismarck Sapphire above as a model, tho the Logan Sapphire would be closer to size.
Don’t you just love expensive jewels? But square-cut or pear-shaped,
these rocks don’t lose their shape…. Oh sorry, I was watching Gentlemen Prefer Blondes this morning :-)
May 23, 2016
The Arabian Nights is also the theme for the beauty pageant. In the new groovy mystery HOT ICE, the current Queen Scheherazade is passing on her crown, but not before she gets much-sought-after publicity to launch her acting career.
….The beauty queen, Sally Weaver, had marshaled her court to one side of the theatre entrance where they were certain to be seen. Every so often she would raise her compact, checking that her rhinestone crown and imitation necklace were positioned beneath a recessed spotlight in the ceiling….
It’s all about good lighting, right? More to come with the next installment.
May 22, 2016
The Tales of the Arabian Nights inspires many of the activities at the Indio Date Festival, where the latest groovy mystery HOT ICE takes place. One of my favorites is the musical pageant, which Yancy attends with a tipsy hippie and midget in tow.
…. The overhead lighting flickered in a measured pulse, signaling the curtain would soon go up. A fresh wave pushed toward the bar as the current in the room shifted into the music hall. Yancy flanked their group as they shuffled through double doors and across the parquet to the section reserved for company guests. A dissonance of notes sputtered from the orchestra pit as musicians tuned instruments, adding to the rumble vibrating through the hall….
Yancy is in Indio because Jean has hired him while there on a working holiday. She must repair and update the costumes for the musical, which she had designed some years earlier.
Like the fabled tales, there’s more to come in the next installment.
May 21, 2016
I recently came across these at a collectors bookshop:
The Arabian Nights! These stories feature heavily in my new release HOT ICE.
First of all is setting. The book takes place at the Indio Date Festival. The Arabian influence is everywhere, from temporary architecture to elephant rides.
I’ll have other ways these classic books feature in my mystery in future posts. Yes, just like the fabled tales … we have to wait for the next installment :-)
March 5, 2016
Speaking of games (last week’s post had the JB game), who remembers The Mods? I just LOVED these paper dolls … of my sister’s, yeah that’s it. :-) And dig those groovy outfits!
Back in the day when women sewed, my Mom made me some cool threads. Navy blue bell-bottoms, hip-hugger pants with matching vest that had gold anchor buttons. Add a paisley-print shirt, wide white belt and platform shoes – and I was the coolest-dressed kid in sixth grade!
But back to the mods. We liked to dress them up and take them to Beatles concerts in front of the turntable. Dance, mods, dance.
February 27, 2016
The secret agent craze kicked off with Bond, James Bond and dominated the 60s in a big way. There were board games (above), cartoons (Secret Squirrel), TV shows (Get Smart, Mission Impossible, The Saint, The Avengers, I Spy, Man/Girl from UNCLE) and movies (Flint, Matt Helm, Harry Palmer) – just to name a few. Even Fred Flintstone paid tribute in a few episodes.
I loved all the spy gadgets, hidden compartments and secret passages that filled the screens of the 60s. In fact, you can watch for some to appear in upcoming groovy mysteries. HINT: My current work-in-progress certainly seems ripe for a bit of that ;-)