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newschat November 2008

Dear Correspondent,

Autumn greetings. The neighbors are pressing their Gravensteins, the sun is slipping ever southward, and as this author throws another chunk of alder on the fire, her thoughts turn to her best friends: her readers.

Escape with me for a moment the cares of the day as I discuss pleasures ahead.

Michigan friends, I'll be appearing at Borders Book Shop in Beverly Hills (yes, Michigan), corner of Southfield Rd. and 13 Mile, on Saturday, November 22 at 1 p.m. Join my discussion of books, reading, and the bare edge of sanity I tread (and get a signed first edition of THE ACTRESS). I guarantee chocolate and good company.

The title for the next Rita Farmer mystery is official: THE EXTRA. Due to hit store shelves in May / June, it follows our heroine as she, dressed in police costume as a movie extra on location, gets drawn into a real crime scene. Inner L.A. has never looked so good. Readers have asked if George Rowe, Rita's favorite P.I., will feature in this one. He does. Does this one include do-or-die acting, nail-biting suspense, quiet heroism, and tasty comeuppance? Better count on it. But didn't Rita give up acting? Ah, the plot thickens.

In a time when publishers are cutting off under-performing authors left and right, I'm pleased to report that my agent has accepted my publisher's offer on the third book in the series, same deal: hardcover to mass-market paperback. Working title: THE SCOUT. More to come on that.

My publisher, St. Martin's Minotaur, has made the unusual move of designing a new cover for the paperback edition of THE ACTRESS, due out in April (and now pre-orderable from online retailers). The new cover's a hoot, tres dramatic and thrilling, with a poufy-lipped Rita casting an apprehensive glance, a nightscape of L.A. with movie-premiere searchlights, and breathless quotes from hot reviews. My debut in the mass-market format. Makes me happy.

Local friends, you might get a kick out of the Port Angeles Symphony's holiday concert, December 6 at 7:30 p.m. in the high school auditorium. Lots of great music (& plenty of percussion executed by yours truly and my buds in the section).

Lastly, if you're up for a winter writing workshop, consider joining me at A Book for All Seasons in Leavenworth, Washington on February 21. When the year turns, check their web site for info. http://www.abookforallseasons.com/

Thanks for reading.

Elizabeth Sims

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