Tag Archives: Mysteries

The Strand Magazine names The Dark Corners of the Night to its Top 12 Mysteries of 2020

I’m absolutely thrilled — and honored — that The Strand Magazine has named The Dark Corners of the Night one of its Top Twelve Mystery Novels of 2020.

Meg Gardiner has the power to craft haunting novels that’ll stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page. And The Dark Corners of the Night is just that novel, atmospheric, chilling, and a sojourn into the mind of deranged killer, while striking a deft balance with a realistic and endearing protagonist in FBI behavioral analyst Caitlin Hendrix who is destined for the big screen.

If you haven’t read the other novels on the list, jump right on that.

Deadly Ink: August 10-12

dI flyer 2018

The weekend of August 10-12 I’ll be at the Deadly Ink mystery conference in New Jersey. I’m delighted, and excited, to be this year’s Guest of Honor.

I’ll be speaking on several panels, talking about thriller writing, and generally hanging out with folks who adore crime novels as much as I do. And I’ll be crossing my fingers for UNSUB, which is nominated for Deadly Ink’s David Award along with a host of wonderful novels.

I hope I’ll see some of you there.

My Creative Mornings talk: Mystery & Storytelling

A while back I gave a talk to Creative Mornings, “a breakfast lecture series for the creative community.” Every month Creative Mornings picks a topic, and groups in 183 cities around the globe bring in local speakers to lecture on it. Earlier, I posted some of the artwork that people drew at the talk.

I spoke to Creative Mornings/Austin on the topic of Mystery. The video of my talk is now online. Here you go.

Murder & Mayhem in Milwaukee

I had a wonderful time committing Murder and Mayhem along the sunny banks of Lake Michigan. Milwaukee was welcoming and full of cheese. The conference was a blast. Mostly because I had the privilege of interviewing the incomparable Sara Paretsky. Enjoy these photos.

Bouchercon 2016: Blood on the Bayou


Today I’m heading to New Orleans for Bouchercon 2016: Blood on the Bayou.

Here’s my schedule:

NOIR AT THE BAR – Welcome to Bouchercon
WEDNESDAY, 4:30-6PM LaGalleries 6

WALK A MILE IN MY SHOES – Diversity, Disorder and Detection
THURSDAY, 9:00AM-9:50AM LaGalleries 6

DOIN’ WHAT COMES NATUR’LLY – Writing believable characters
SATURDAY, 1:30PM-2:20PM LaGalleries 1

ECHOES OF SHERLOCK HOLMES — Author group signing

If you see me wandering the French Quarter with my face covered in powdered sugar, you’ll know I’ve raided Cafe DuMonde for their entire supply of beignets. Stop me and say hi.

My Top 20 List of crime novels for MysteryPeople


MysteryPeople is celebrating its fifth anniversary this weekend in Austin. As part of that, they’re going to publish their list of Top 100 Crime Novels. They asked me, and other authors, to submit our own Top 20 list. Which I did, though it killed me. How could I choose only twenty crime novels as my top picks? Twenty novels is barely a starting point.

But I buckled down and listed twenty fantastic crime novels — books I love for their stories, characters, language, influence on the genre, and staying power. Click the link for the entire list. The authors are listed in alphabetical order.

Countdown to the MysteryPeople Top 100: Meg Gardiner’s Top 20 List.

Upcoming event: MysteryPeople’s 5th anniversary celebration


On Saturday, November 7th, I’ll be joining crime fiction aficionados to celebrate the fifth anniversary of MysteryPeople — BookPeople’s Mystery bookstore-within-a-bookstore in downtown Austin.

MysteryPeople: Our Life in Crime
Authors, Booksellers and a Critic on the Novels That Define the Genre and the Future of Mystery/Crime Fiction Reading

Celebrating MysteryPeople’s 5th anniversary with a discussion of where crime fiction’s been and where it’s going. Besides the panel discussion there will be trivia, giveaways, and of course, cake and beverages. The store will also be unveiling its list of MysteryPeople’s Top 100 Greatest Crime And Suspense Books.

All are welcome!

Saturday, November 7, 2015,  3:00pm
Book People — third floor
603 N. Lamar Blvd
Austin, TX 78703

And if you’re not reading MysteryPeople’s fantastic blog, with all its essays, reviews, and author interviews, what are you waiting for?

Upcoming Events: Bouchercon in Raleigh


Next month I’m attending Bouchercon 2015, the world mystery convention, in Raleigh, North Carolina. The con runs October 8-11. Besides talking about mysteries and thrillers, taking part in the late night authors’ fight club, and eating Carolina barbecue, I’ll be on a couple of panels.

Crime and Mystery meet Conspiracy, Science and Medicine
8th October 2015
Meg Gardiner [Moderator]
Dirk Wyle
Ross Pennie
Patricia Gussin
Mike Tabor

Keeping it Moving / Maintaining Pace in the Narrative
10th October 2015
Alexandra Sokoloff [Moderator]
Meg Gardiner
Glen Erik Hamilton
Terrence McCauley
SJ Rozan

I hope to see some of you there.

Phantom Instinct: out in paperback in the USA


Hey, hey, USA… I almost forgot to tell you: my latest thriller, Phantom Instinct, is now out in paperback.

I think you’ll like it. But you don’t have to take my word for it. Don Winslow says: “It’s fast-paced, sharp, and unforgettable.”

So there you go.

Why I Love Writing Mystery Fiction, Part Infinity + 1


Why are fellow Austin writer Jeff Abbott and I smiling in the photo above? The clue is in the books we’re holding. We’d just enjoyed a highly entertaining talk at Book People, and were waiting to get our copies signed by the author.


Look, it’s Harlan Coben! Who, aside from being a fantastic author, is warm and generous and an all around nice guy. Many thanks to Scott Montgomery (on the right, wearing the “Random Cowboy” tie) and everybody at Book People for bringing Harlan to Central Texas.

Coming March 24: The Mystery Writers of America Cookbook


Here’s something new for you: The Mystery Writers of America Cookbook.

Along with “plot stirrers” such as Lee Child, Charlaine Harris, and James Patterson, I have a recipe included. (To all my relatives: stop laughing. Right now. Just stop.) The book will be published March 24. Check it out at the link above.

Congrats Susan Daly — friend of the blog & published mystery author

From the earliest days of Lying for a Living, Susan Daly has been a loyal reader and wonderful commenter. She’s the person who inadvertently created the blog’s Grammar Geeks Unit. And she won my first ever contest, by coming up with my favorite verb name. UnknownHer prize was to become a character in my novel The Dirty Secrets Club — a television reporter with a past. Her character had a history as a porn star who dressed up as a nun. Susan took it with good grace. As for what happens to her character… sorry, no spoilers.

Susan has been writing for a while, and now she has joined the ranks of published mystery authors. She has a short story in The Whole She-bang 2, an anthology of stories published by Sisters in Crime Canada.

From the book’s page on Amazon.com:

This is the second collection of mystery stories by Canadian members of Sisters in Crime… The stories have a variety of characters: shop owners, children, a thief, vengeful women, unhappy wives, a poet, police officers of both sexes and more… The stories are set mostly in Canada, in a wide variety of locations, including British Columbia, Northern Ontario, Alberta and Quebec!

Of course it’s also available from Amazon Canada.

Congratulations, Ms. Daly. It’s wonderful to share shelf space with you.

Now Write! Mysteries

For anybody who wants to learn the secrets of writing thrillers and mysteries, Now Write! Mysteries has just been published by Penguin. I’m one of the contributors. My essay is “Ratcheting up the Suspense.” It’s about “How to keep readers guessing, worrying, and turning the pages by structuring scenes to have at least half a dozen mini-turning points.”

Check out the list of contributors. I’m jazzed to be included with a boatload of great crime writers and well-known writing gurus, including Peter James, Sophie Hannah, James Scott Bell, and Louise Penny.