Decatur Book Festival part one

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on August 30, 2008

At first the idea of a book festival sounded very boring. Then I saw the ad announcing an appearance by Mary Kay Andrews.
Miss Andrews ( you always use Miss when referring to a pen name) has been my favorite author this summer. I found “Hissy Fit” at a yard sale, and have gotten three others at the library since then. Maybe she can sell something to Hollywood and make money on it.
I got to Decatur about noon, and parked at the First Baptist Church. It was my duty as a recovering Baptist. The old courthouse was easy to find, and as I walked in, I realized that I had never been in that building. By the time I was old enough to get traffic tickets, the county business had moved into a boring building across the street.
Going upstairs with minutes to spare before the lecture, I saw the author in the back of the crowd. I said
” you are my hero. I got Hissy Fit at a yard sale and four others at the library” Soon it was time for her to speak.
Her first comment was that it felt funny to be speaking in a courtroom. You can stop writing mysteries, but you are still a murder mystery writer.
While discussing where she got ideas for her stories, she told of the time she was driving kids to school in a carpool. There was a crew of convicts picking up trash by the road. She she realized if she had a gun, she could kill one and no one would know she did it.
Her love of “junking’ and antiques got a working over. There was the time when Miss Andrews and her friend Celestine Sibley were going to a funeral in South Carolina. The two ladies stopped repeatedly to look at antiques, and missed the service. They did arrive in time to eat some funeral food.
While plugging discussing her latest book “Deep Dish”, she mentioned the time she looked in the obituaries ( Irish sports page), and saw Ellen Kate Picklesheimer. The name made an impression on her, and she used it in her book, without the standout last name.
After Miss Andrews was through, a lady named N.M. Kelby read from her book “Murder at the Bad Girls Bar & Grill”. It was about a man who owned a bar in front of a housing development in Florida, and discovered a body one day in a dumpster. Miss Kelby had a freebie, a temporary tattoo advertising the Bad Girls Bar and Grill.
After the two ladies spoke, it was time to take questions. Miss Andrews told the story of how she wrote mysteries under her “real” name, and wanted to try something new under a different handle. That way, if it flopped then no one would be the wiser.
This was too predictable, so this reporter raised his hand.
“Why do so many people in the obituaries have funny names?” “Well, that is a question to ponder” It should be no surprise that Miss Andrews said this is the south, and we like funny names here. A man in the back of the house raised his hand. ” I work at a funeral home, and I have seen thousands of obituaries. We should get together and let you see them” ” Miss Kelby chimed in, and talked about ninety year old men who use childhood nicknames in their obituary.
Before much longer, this subject was exhausted, and the authors went into the Clark Harrison room to sign books.

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  1. Decatur Book Festival » What You Saw said, on September 4, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    […] Chamblee 54 on Day One, Pictures and Reflections […]

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