Wednesday, July 30, 2008

August update

Boy have we been busy! I have been to California twice for talks on poisons and selling books. The first trip was to LA and the Mystery Writer's of America chapter. Got to see some old friends as well. The second trip was to Orange County to Sisters in Crime (my old chapter). It was great and again go to see some old friends and made some new ones. I'll be teaching some classes for the Georgetown, TX public library Writer's College this fall and winter and doing some speaking around the area including at the University of Texas. Going to Port Aransis this October for some R&R (needed) and to Virginia to see my folks. I have also been in Fort Worth at the Sisters in Crime and at Frisco, Texas at a very successful book signing. The new book in a new series San Gabriel Secret will be hopefully out December 2008. I have a new Virginia Davies mystery adventure in work. The newspaper column, Uncle Dave, is going strong. So we have been busy but having fun!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Award-new book to publisher and new book in work

The job of a writer never stops. When you are not writting, you're selling or talking or ??? This is crazy but we keep doing it. This is because we love to write and when you have a great editor and publisher, you are really motivated. Well, so much for the intro. It's been that kind of week -this past week I mean. I did a class in writing a mystery over three evenings at Barnes and Noble. It was a success but I was glad it was done. Sunday I got the Barbara Burnett Smith Mentoring Author"s SAGE Award. It is beautiful and the event last Sunday was fun and boy did I get roasted. The President of our chapter of Sisters in Crime works at a bakery and had sugar cookies made that had the picture of my latest book on them. That was really nice and she's a great lady. It was a fun event. My book with Adam Thomas as the new lead character is at the publisher and I've started a new book with Virginia davies as the lead again. Have some talks coming up ranging from Poisons to forensics to Aprons. Don't ask. I'm setting up more signings and talks this summer.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Mystery in Three Parts

I am going to be teaching mystery writing the end of September on the writing cruise (see earlier blog) but now, as part of winning the Sage award, I will be teaching mystery writing at the WastLake Barnes and Noble bookstore in Austin, TX the 14th thru the 16th of May. This should be fun and a dry run for the cruise course. This is fortunate but now I have to get ready on top of a number of speaking engagements the Library Board, fixing a broken pipe and taling care of some grandkids while their parents are away for a while on top of normal tasks like cutting over an acre of grass and yard work. For this I retired??? I'm busier now than when I worked in California but without the murderous commute.
So, if anyone is interested in free class, come to the Westlake Barnes and Noble and take the course. If nothing else, we can have fun and the Customer Relations Manager is wonderful!

I'll be in Houston, TX at the Sisters-in Crime chapter this Saturday and at the Sisters-in Crime chapter in Austin, TX on Sunday. On the 19th of April I'll be at Hill Country Books in Georgetown, TX (north of Austin at 3pm to speak to a mystery readers group and in Ft. Worth on the 27th. So much for April. May looks worse but who's complaining? The people I get to meet are really nice and they usually purchase books and the travel is fun.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

2008 Sage Award

I have a little self congradualtions to boast about for a change. It is about the Barbara Burnett Smith Mentoring Authors Foundation Sage Award. See following:

The Barbara Burnett Smith Mentoring Authors Foundation is pleased to announce the Second Annual Sage Award. The Sage will be awarded to the Mentoring Author that demonstrates an outstanding spirit of service in mentoring, sharing and leading others in the mystery writing community.
The Sage recipient will be honored at the Fourth Annual Barbara Burnett Smith Aspiring Writers Event on Sunday, May 18, 2008, at Barnes & Noble Westlake in Austin, Texas.

Well guess what? I was nominated by persons unknown but I was selected as the 2008 Sage Award winner. I think that is great. I've always believed in sharing knowledge and helping and encouraging others but didn't think anyone really noticed. Biy was I surprised! I can't thank the selection committee enough. This is great. I hope the people I have tried to help got what they needed and are successful.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Newest book released

I'm happy to announce that my latest book THE POISONS HANDBOOK FOR WRITERS was released Monday March 10, 2008. You can get an idea of the subject matter by reading the following.

Writers love poisons.
They really do. In fact they love them a great deal. Guns are noisy and messy. Knives are hard to use and bring the killer to close to the victim. Most don’t have the fortitude for strangling and bludgeoning. But, a poison? Simply slip a bit into food or drink and walk away. No fuss, no muss. Poisons are simple and clean. Almost civilized.
But, what exactly is a poison? The short answer is anything and everything. There is an adage in medicine that says: What can cure; can kill. This is a very true statement. Too much water and you’ll die. Breathing 100% oxygen will destroy your lungs...and you’ll die. Take too much aspirin and you’ll die. The basic difference between a medicine and a poison is the dose.
A couple of aspirin will cure a headache. A handful will knock your system sideways. You’ll develop severe acidosis and die. A proper dose of digitalis can strengthen the heart and keep its rhythm regular. A lot will cause the heart to jump into a chaotic and deadly rhythm. So medications can be poisonous.
The opposite is also true. A poison in small doses does little harm. We all have low levels of lead and arsenic and even cyanide in our systems. In larger amounts, each of these is extremely deadly.
So, where do writers find the poisons they use in their tales? The medicine cabinet would be a good place to look. Or under the sink. A pharmacy or chemical supply house would work, too. But, the best place just might be your back yard or your local nursery.
The world is filled with toxic plants. The medicines digitalis, quinidine, and belladonna come from the Foxglove, the Cinchona Tree, and the Deadly Nightshade, respectively. Opium and its cousins morphine and codeine and heroin come from the Opium Poppy. So, the plant world is filled with writerly possibilities.
Where can writers learn about all these household and backyard poisons?
Enter Dr. David Ciambrone and his Book of Poisons. In this remarkable book he shares his extensive knowledge on all things toxic in a clear and concise format. The writer can easily choose the poison that fits his plot needs and learn all he needs to know about how the poison works and how it affects the unfortunate victim.
If you write crime fiction, you need this book. It will not only supply you with a vast range of knowledge, it will also tickle that little part of your creative mind that asks: What if? And that’s where the story starts.

D. P. Lyle, MD
Award-winning author of Forensics For Dummies
and Forensics and Fiction

It was really great of Dr. Lyle to write that great article that is the Forward to the book. If you are a mystery writer or just curious, this is the book for you.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Issues - new book and stuff

I have taken an issue with the announcement by Sisters-in Crime to delete the small presses from their books in print booklet. This should have been up to a vote of the membership not done by management. A lot of their members are published by small presses and this is a slap in the face. It is about time the bookstores and libraries worked with smaller presses. This has caused a lot of e-mail and blog traffic on the subject and most of it is not good. I think Sisters in Crime made a monumental mistake. This will and should cost them membership. Okay, now I'll get off my soap box.
Last night I sent me latest work to the publisher for reading. It was a long effort to finish it but after a number of rewrites and going through two critique groups, I think it was finally ready. It is about a retired engineer from California who moved to a small Texas town and writes a newspaper column under a woman's name because it is a handy hints column. He inherits a Confederate soldier's journal and this starts a wild, and dangerous ride to locate a long lost treasure, even though people around him are kidnapped, killed and have bad things happen (it is a mystery after all). It has a lot of action and suspense in it too. I've started another book in my old Virginia Davies series again.
In the mean time, I was appointed to the Library Advisory Board by the City and will go to my first meeting next week. This should be interesting.

Friday, February 29, 2008

News update and new book announcement

Today is February 29th. Friday and for a change I don't have anything booked except to catch up and write! I have good news. I just heard from my terrific publisher (L&L Dreamspell) that my newest book The Poison Handbook for Writers is being released. It will retail for $7.95 and contains information on easily accessible poisons and how much to use and what to expect and how long it takes to work. I should be real popular with the police agencies around the country. The book has sparked a lot of interest and I have speaking engagements fro Texas to California lined up. If anyone wants to have me speak, send me an e-mail and we can see what we can do. ( I'm working on another handbook called Murder 101. It tells you what really happens when you use various methods to kill someone. Hollywood and TV do not do it right. It will also discuss some of the other mistakes made by Hollywood and what you should say in your mysteries. I have another mystery going to my publisher probably next week and I'm starting another one. Between all the writing, book signings, speaking engagements and being in a number of writing organizations I have added another "job". I was appointed to the Library Board in Georgetown, TX. Isn't retirement fun? I thought I was supposed to play golf all day. I don't remember where I put my clubs. I will have to start adding working in the yard soon, my tractor will be coming back from it visit to the tractor hospital today, so my excuse is gone. Aslo working on the seminar / workshop for the writing cruise. Remember and sign up for it, it will be a lot of fun!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Writing Cruise in the Fall

The following is a great deal and will be a lot of fun.
Sept. 2008 Carnival Cruise-Burlee Travel Writing Cruise to the Caribbean

You always secretly wanted to be a writer. You’ve had stories in your head for years but couldn’t quite get to put them down on paper. You’ve had good reasons why not. Some of the excuses are I don’t write well, don’t have time and don’t know how. Well, Carnival Cruise and Burlee Travel have a deal for you. The Sept.28 thru Oct.5, 2008 Carnival Cruise-Burlee Travel Writing Cruise to the Caribbean will provide you the nurturing atmosphere and tools to start or continue to write that novel you’ve always wanted to. Learn what they mean by giving yourself permission to write badly. How to format and start writing and finding the time to write. Start that Romance or Mystery Novel in the creative atmosphere of the Caribbean with published authors Sylvia Dickey Smith and Dave Ciambrone. For more information or registration, contact Burlee Travel at 1-877-442-1494 or E-mail at
Come hang out with us for a week of fun and intensive mystery and romance writing classes on a Carnival cruise that you'll never forget!
Where else will you get your room, food, entertainment, adventure in the Caribbean and a writing seminar all for a price lower than most writer’s conventions or courses.
We'll be teaching:
One-on-one mentoring
Critique of a segment of your manuscript

Cabin prices are per person (based on double occupancy) including workshop fees, accommodations, food, entertainment on-board, port charges, government taxes and fees

Inside cabin $650.33 pp
Oceanview $760.33 pp
Balcony $930.33 pp
Consult your tax advisor to see if the cost is tax deductible for you.
Carnival Cruises has excellent children's programs for children of all ages.
Reserve your cabin by April 30 to guarantee your place on this unforgettable cruise.

Goings on and handy hints

This week has been rough but improving. Getting speaking engagements and signings is a tedious job but worth it. Besides selling books, you get to meet a lot of really nice people. This blog is new to me as well. I have a new book going to the publisher in March which is a new mystery and has a main character that writes a handy hints column for ladies under the name Aunt Kay. The book will have some of his columns in it with handy hints for around the house. Later in the Blog, I will insert some of these hints as well as other materials that maybe helpful.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Doctor Poison - Introduction


I'm Dr. Dave Ciambrone and I am a mystery author and scientist who now specializes in forensics and MURDER. I have five mysteries published with more in the works. The books are: Napa Nights, Pelican Cove, Castle Finlaystoke, Left at Georgetown and a new one coming out in March is The Poison Handbook for Writers.

I give talks on poisons and methods of murder or What really happens when you kill someone or MURDER 101. I will be letting you know more about what is happening shortly along with information the mystery writer can use. Upcoming events for March include:

Dr. David Ciambrone, Williamson County Sun’s Uncle Dave, will be signing his new books Left at Georgetown and The Poison Handbook for Writers at Hastings Bookstore (Round Rock, Texas) March 8th from 5:30 to 8pm
Dr. David Ciambrone, Williamson County Sun’s Uncle Dave, will be signing his new books Left at Georgetown and The Poison Handbook for Writers at Vino 100 wine store, Wolf Ranch Shopping Center, Georgetown, TX. On Thursday March 13th from 6-8pm

Dr. David Ciambrone, Williamson County Sun’s Uncle Dave, will be signing his new books Left at Georgetown and The Poison Handbook for Writers at Hill Country Books, Georgetown, TX March 19th from 2-4pm

Dr. David Ciambrone, Williamson County Sun’s Uncle Dave, will be speaking on Poisons and signing The Poison Handbook for Writers at Hill Country Writing League, Austin Community College-Cypress Creek Campus—at 7pm in Room 2232 on Thursday, March 27th.

See you soon.