Monday, March 27, 2017

UPDATE Cover Reveal March 31 #AlohaFriday DARK PARADISE: An Anthology

A long time coming, an anthology of 17 mystery short stories set in Hawai'i, by 17 local authors, has been in the planning stages for two years. On Friday, March 31, they will hold a "Cover Reveal"
on their Facebook page for

Mysteries in the Land of Aloha

(The Facebook page DARK PARADISE goes live on March 31, 2017)

Plan to visit with these authors on Facebook, Friday, March 31. Along with the cover reveal, they will share some of the short story plotlines, details about themselves, and tidbits of writing information they've picked up along the way.

The anthology, with a Foreword by author Toby Neal, will be released in trade book and ebook formats at Each of the 17 mystery short stories offers a unique perspective  about living in Paradise (spoiler: it's not all rainbows and Mai Tais.)

Each participant will reveal something about their short story . . . without giving away the plot. Please visit each site listed below for a sneak peek at what is lurking behind the fabulous DARK PARADISE cover!

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List of participants’ websites:

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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Sisters in Crime/Hawaii Members Join in Two-day Fun-filled Celebration for THE MAKIKI COMMUNITY LIBRARY 40TH ANNIVERSARY

Sisters in Crime/Hawaii Chapter on O’ahu enthusiastically participated in the Makiki Community Library 40th Anniversary Celebration, September 17 and 18, 2016. As a volunteer-run library, they are dependent on donations. They also sponsor SinC/Hawaii monthly meetings. For these reasons, we were eager to support their fundraiser. 

During the library’s big used-book sale, SinC/Hawaii members presented round-table discussions focused on the art and craft of writing. SinC members introduced fresh topics each hour during the celebration. Library patrons were encouraged to join in the discussions.
SATURDAY September 17, 2016

SinC/Hawaii set-up for
Makiki Community Library 40th Anniversary Celebration


On Saturday, Kent Reinker (Alain Gunn) covered Writing Beyond Your Own Experiences: Imagination or Research?

Lizbeth Hartz opened a discussion session with the topic
Fictionalized Memoir vs
Memoir base on True Story.

Vicki White covered Researching a Story Setting.

Gail Baugniet discussed the topic of Writing the First Draft and her participation in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) each November.

(Watch for future posts covering these topics in further detail.) 


Authors  . . . never at a loss for words!

Researching a Story Setting
discussion led by
Vicki White (D.V. Whyte)

Makiki Library Board Members, President Wendy Maxwell and Della Au Belatti
lighting candles on the 40th Anniversary Celebration cupcakes for the kids!!!

Special Spinning Wheel game for the kids to win lots of donated prizes! 

One boy had so much fun he returned with his coin jar and proceeded to dole out money to his friends to pay for a chance to spin the wheel and win a prize.

Makiki Library Board Members Johnny and Linda Prado "manning" the Spinning Wheel game and keeping the table refreshed with enticing prizes for the neighborhood children.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Rose Mary Thompson opened the day's celebration with
a discussion about Research,
and shared stories about her personal research projects.

Dawn Casey fielded questions
on the topic of Historical Creative Non-Fiction
along with writing memoirs.

Larry Mild sharing information
about writing in the mystery genre
To round out the two-day celebration,
before the Fairy Grandmother arrived with magic and fun
for the keiki (children),
Rosemary and Larry Mild presented
 “A Quickie Exploration of the Mystery.”


Interrupting with C - A - K - E . . . NO PROBLEM!
Makiki Library Board Member Julie Wo
sharing birthday cake for Board Member Harold Burger



Sisters in Crime/Hawaii meets the third Wednesday of the month at Makiki Library, 6-8pm.  Please check the "Meetings and Events" page on this site for the most up-to-date information.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

SinC/Hawaii Speaker for August, 2016: MAUREEN A. FINN

Sisters in Crime/Hawaii members met at Makiki Community Library for the August meeting featuring Guest Speaker Maureen A. Finn.

Maureen had attended the Hawaii Book and Music Festival in May, 2016, in Honolulu. She stopped by the SinC/Hawaii booth to visit with members and learn about the chapter. After a short discussion, she was asked to speak at our August meeting and she eagerly accepted.

Maureen A. Finn worked for twenty-eight years as a forensic scientist in the Toxicology Lab of the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office in Chicago. She recently moved to Honolulu with her husband, who is now with the Honolulu Police Commission. Her college degree was in biology and chemistry. She interned in the Illinois State Police crime lab.

Larry and Rosemary Mild and Dennis Keating listen as
Jenny presents a lei to Maureen

SinC/HI members welcomed Maureen at Makiki Community Library where they hold their monthly meetings. She was greeted in true Hawaiian fashion with a lovely flower lei, presented to her by member Jenny Delos Santos.

As you can see, we take over the mystery section of the library - so appropriate for crime writers!

Maureen A. Finn and Jenny Delos Santos

After introductions to the group, Maureen opened her talk about working in the Toxicology Dept. with, “I really learned on the job.”

Relying completely on SinC/HI Secretary Rosemary Mild's minutes, here are highlights of Maureen's riveting talk.

--The Medical Examiner must be an MD and board-certified in forensic pathology. In 1976 Cook County switched to an ME from a coroner, who doesn’t even have to be a doctor. (Often a political appointee.) The ME’s office there (includes the morgue) has about 4500 cases a year of unexplained deaths (when no doctor is present).
--When Maureen was still in training, she got to do testing on the late Harold Washington, the first black mayor of Chicago, who died suddenly at age 65 of a heart attack.
--Her lab received the corpse of a “body packer”: a mule, who had swallowed 33-34 packets of cocaine; three broke, sending cocaine throughout his intestines. He died in his hotel room. The drugs were worth millions. Late at night she called her boss for instructions: to put the evidence bag in the freezer. DEA agents came two days later to pick it up. Maureen had to sign it out in the presence of witnesses.        
--Tissues are kept for one year; blood for two years. DNA is done in the Crime Lab.
--The infant mortality rate in Chicago is high, often because of drugs. Her lab had a rash of cocaine babies (also heroin or alcohol). They would examine every part of the baby, including tissue, brain, etc. to confirm death by drug overdose.
--While testing for overdoses of illicit and prescription drugs, she had to observe strict protocols. A full tox screen takes eight weeks or more. In her lab, fifteen of the eighteen workers were scientists.
--A few of Maureen’s favorite books: Fatal Vision, Helter Skelter, and In Cold Blood.

Photos taken at the meeting and contributed by Leslie Foster:

Photos with Maureen: Larry & Rosemary Mild, Kent Reinker, Lizbeth Hartz, Jenny Delos Santos, Gail Baugniet, Larry & Rosemary, Dawn Casey, Leslie Ishimi, Sandy Ritter, and Shauna Jones. In attendance but missing from the photographs are Rose Mary Thompson and Vicki White (we'll get you in the photos next time!)