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Authors: Linda Peterson

The Devil's Interval (47 page)

BOOK: The Devil's Interval
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Early readers Tom Clarke, Fred D'Orazio, Scott Hafner, Sue Handa, Randy Hyde, Maria Hjelm, Phyllis Peacock, and Steve Tollefson provided encouragement and important feedback.

My Bay Area writing group—Ronnie Caplane, Greg Ellis, Gloria Lenhart, Susan Parker, and Christine Schoefer—were the perfect mix of heartless and helpful. Other writer pals were generous boosters; Barbara Austin, Bob Dugoni, Margret Elson,
Jonnie Jacobs, Jon Jefferson, Karen Mulvaney, Susan Shea, and Wendy Lichtman, thank you! Bill Dunk, fine writer and husband to another fine writer, Courtney Beinhorn, is always willing to spread the word. He gave me the opportunity to write about many passions, including baseball, shameless promotion, and Portlandia.

What do writers do when they're not writing? We read, and so a shout-out to my Bay Area book club (Johanna Clark, Janis Medina, Pam Miller, and Ellen Zucker) and to my Portlandia book club (Peggy Almon, Karen Halloran, Joni Hartmann, Susan Hartnett, Laurene Mullen, Nanwei Su, Sandra Tetzloff, and Joyce Wilson).

As always, I am indebted to my friend and designer, Jacqueline Jones (
www.jacquelinejonesdesign
), for her fine eye and generous spirit.

I have appropriated some friends' names for various purposes in this book. While I hope you find the characters of Lulu Brown, Susan Hawk, and Hal and Joyce Hothan engaging, the real-life versions are way better. And thank you, dear friend and colleague Kathy Halland, for giving me insight into the grace and power of Scandinavian grandparents.

There are some real folks in this book, notably musicians Karen Blixt, Alex Acuna, Frank Martin, and Sheldon Brown. If you want to hear the kind of jazz I imagined playing at The Devil's Interval, go directly to iTunes or to
karenblixt.com
and you can listen to Karen's music and decide she needs to be in your collection.

I am indebted to my friends and work colleagues who make writing possible: Ann Appert, Kathy Bowles, Betsy Brown, Caity Burrows, Ben Peterson, and Bob Rucker. Copyeditor Roz Kulick cleaned up my act.

As always, I am grateful for David Skolnick, my business partner and friend, and the guy who (a) sent me to the Book Passage mystery writers' conference years ago and (b) was the originator of most of the best lines in the book.

Amy Rennert is the best_______. You can fill in the blank however you want. She's the best literary agent, of course, but also
the best reader, cheerleader, and more. Dear Amy, hard to believe, but words fail me.

Amy brought me together with Prospect Park Books. Publishers Colleen Dunn Bates and Patty O'Sullivan and their colleague Jennifer Bastien make a great team, and I am grateful for all their support.

I come from a family of readers and writers, and have learned from all of them. My siblings Laurie Winthrop and Larry Winthrop and sib-in-law Pat Winthrop are not only fine writers themselves, they also see promoting my work as a personal mission. My sister, who once ran my informal New York chapter, now lives in Geneva and is an advocate for my work in multiple European locations. My immediate literary Peterson posse—Ken, Ben, and Kate—provide cheer every day. Will Peterson, age seven and the newest Peterson wordsmith, may one day be the first right-handed slugger in the majors to recite poetry at bat.

Finally, I am grateful to my parents, Vauneta and Murray Winthrop, who taught me that while cleanliness is well and good, it is really bookishness that is next to Godliness. Like all the rest of us in miraculously long marriages, Maggie and Michael will continue to pursue the kind of relationship Neta and Murray created. Mom and Dad, you still inspire all of us.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Linda Lee Peterson
is the managing partner of Peterson Skolnick & Dodge, a creative services agency based in San Francisco, Philadelphia, and Portland, Oregon. A longtime resident of the San Francisco Bay Area, she was inspired to set her mysteries in the city that inspired Dashiell Hammett. Linda and her family now live in Portland, Oregon.

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