September 9th Meeting

TOGETHER AGAIN!

Yes, we plan to resume in-person monthly meetings in September. RMMWA will host its first hybrid chapter meeting on September 9—in-person at the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association (CADA) at 290 Speer Blvd in Denver, and via Zoom at your place. Our guest speaker will be award-winning author, Fleur Bradley, who will present Kidlit 101.

To attend in person, please see the link below for payment.

To accommodate our Zoom attendees, we’ve rearranged our typical schedule. The meeting at CADA will start at 6:15 p.m. (MT) with drinks and networking, and dinner will be served at 6:30. Zoom attendees may sign on shortly before 7:00, which is when we’ll begin Introductions and Member News. Members will receive the link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members, please send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Meeting Agenda:

  • 6:15 Networking and drinks
  • 6:30 Dinner
  • 7:00 Introductions and Member News—Zoom attendees may sign on shortly before
  • 7:30 Mystery Minute
  • 7:40 Program

September 9th 2021 Meeting




Program:

Kidlit 101

by Fleur Bradley

Fleur Bradley Author Photo

read more…

August 12th Online Meeting

Our August meeting will feature past Edgar nominee Edwin Hill, speaking on the topic on Writing a Novel like an Eight-Part TV Series. Please join us for networking, education, and inspiration via Zoom on August 12th, starting at 6:30 p.m. (MST). Members will receive the link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members, please send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Program:

Writing a Novel Like an Eight-Part TV Series

by Edwin Hill

Edwin Hill Author photo

Writing a first draft can be a daunting task! This hands-on session will help you break up your novel into eight discreet, manageable (and much less intimidating) parts.

Speaker Bio:

Edwin Hill’s critically-acclaimed crime novels include Watch Her, The Missing Ones, and Little Comfort. He has been nominated for Edgar and Agatha Awards, featured in Us Magazine, received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly, Booklist, and Library Journal, and was recognized as one of “Six Crime Writers to Watch” in Mystery Scene magazine. His latest novel, The Secrets We Share, will be available in April of 2022. He lives in Roslindale, Massachusetts with his partner Michael and his favorite reviewer, their lab Edith Ann, who likes his first drafts enough to eat them.

Meeting Agenda:
6:30-7:00 Networking, Introductions, and Member News
7:00-7:15 Mystery Minute by ZJ Czupor
7:15-8:15 or so: Program featuring our guest speaker
After Party: Stay after the program to mingle and visit.

July 8th Online Meeting

Murder Mystery Online!

RMMWA July Meeting: July 8, 2021; 6:00 to 8:00 PM MDT

(Note early start, 6:00 PM)

Join us for a fun virtual murder mystery hosted by Kerry Hammond. You’ll hear witness testimony and get to ask questions. Whether a participant or voyeur, you’ll have a great time at this event.

1920s dancing couple
Flapper murder at the 1920’s speakeasy

The Roaring 20’s are in full swing, giving birth to the rise of jazz music, flappers and, with the end of the war, a renewed feeling of hope and joviality. It’s the era of prohibition, and organized crime is at an all-time high. The Half Moon Club is one of just two speakeasys in town, fighting prohibition by serving alcohol illegally and offering patrons the type of fun that can’t be had when the sun is up. Despite the constant threat of a raid, business at The Half Moon Club is lucrative, as men and women stream through the doors each night. When a flapper is found shot to death outside the club, the management and loyal patrons of The Half Moon Club scramble to identify the killer before the police catch wind of the killing and shut down the juice joint for good!

Members will receive the Zoom link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members, please send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Volunteer!

Want to participate in our July Murder Mystery? We need 10 women and 5 men to read various characters in our virtual game “A Flapper Murder at the 1920’s Speakeasy” to be held Thursday, July 8th on Zoom from 6-8 p.m. (Please note the earlier than normal start time!) Participants MUST be able to attend that night as any one of the characters could be the murderer, and really, what fun would it be if the murderer decided to bail on us?!

If you can read/play a character, please email Lori Lacefield at writer@lorilacefield.com and Kerry Hammond at girlygirl415@yahoo.com and note whether you’re volunteering for a male or female role (or either). Once we have enough volunteers, we will be assigning the roles and providing additional details.

June 10th Online Meeting

Sergeant Amy Wheeler, Professional Standards Sergeant at the Loveland Police Department, will be our guest speaker this month, presenting the program titled Officer Involved Shootings: Crime Scene Case Study and Human Performance/Memory of Critical Incidents. Please join us for networking, education, and inspiration via Zoom on June 10, starting at 6:30 p.m. (MST). Members will receive the link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members, please send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Program:

Officer Involved Shootings:
Crime Scene Case Study and Human Performance/Memory of Critical Incidents

by Sgt Amy Wheeler, Loveland Police Department

Sgt Amy Wheeler, Loveland PD

Sgt. Wheeler will take you through an officer involved shooting reconstruction where specific questions were answered with forensic examinations. She will also present information on how the study of human beings aids in investigations on critical incidents. This research-based information provides context to media narratives seen after these incidents occur.

Speaker Bio:

Sgt. Amy Wheeler is a 20 year veteran of law enforcement with extensive training in communications, crime scene investigation, crisis negotiations, internal affairs, and leadership.

Meeting Agenda:
6:30-7:00 Networking, Introductions, and News
7:00-7:15 Mystery Minute by ZJ Czupor
7:15-8:15 or so: Program featuring our guest speaker
After Party: Stay after the program to mingle and visit.

May 13th Online Meeting

We have another terrific program lined up for our May meeting. Dr. Diane France from the Human ID Lab of Colorado will present the program, Determining the Circumstances Surrounding Death. Please join us for networking, education, and inspiration via Zoom on May 13, starting at 6:30 p.m. (MST). Members will receive the link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members, please send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Program:

Determining the Circumstances Surrounding Death

by Dr. Diane France, Human ID Lab of Colorado

Dr. Diane France holding a skull skull

Do you want to know how to write about the circumstances surrounding death, from sharp force trauma to blunt trauma to gunshot wounds? A forensic anthropologist is often called to determine the circumstances surrounding death of a body, and the key to successfully diagnosing trauma means that we have to understand how bone reacts to force. After this talk, you will understand, as well!

Speaker Bio:

Dr. Diane France received her Ph.D. in Anthropology at the University of Colorado, Boulder in 1983 with an emphasis on forensic anthropology and osteology. In 1989 the American Board of Forensic Anthropology certified her as an expert in forensic anthropology. She has been recognized as an expert by multiple Colorado district courts as well as in Wisconsin. She is an adjunct faculty member of CSU, and is the owner and director of the Human Identification Laboratory of Colorado, an independent laboratory.

Dr. France has experience in archaeological techniques, particularly as they relate to recovery of human remains and evidence from outdoor scenes. She is a member (since 1989) and past president of NecroSearch International, a volunteer multidisciplinary organization that assists law enforcement in the location of clandestine graves and the recovery of remains and evidence from outdoor scenes.

She has served almost 18 years on the Board of Directors of the American Board of Forensic Anthropology and served for five years as its president. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS) and served as vice chairman and chairman of the Physical Anthropology Section of the AAFS. In 2010 she was awarded the T. Dale Stewart Award (the highest award given by the section). Dr. France served eight years on the Board of Trustees of the Forensic Science Foundation and served four of those years as its Vice Chairman. She also served as Chairman of the Research Committee for three years and has participated in the Research Committee for many years outside member since leaving the Board of Trustees in 2003.  Dr. France is the chair of the Anthropology subcommittee of the Organization of Scientific Area Committees, and has been a member since 2014.

Dr. France is also the author of five professional books and numerous other publications and is under contract for additional books.

Meeting Agenda:
6:30-7:00 Networking, Introductions, and News
7:00-7:15 Mystery Minute by ZJ Czupor
7:15-8:15 or so: Program featuring our guest speaker
After Party: Stay after the program to mingle and visit.

April 8th Online Meeting

New York Times bestselling author Mark Sullivan will present a program titled My Secret Weapon at our next meeting. Please join us for networking, fun, education, and inspiration via Zoom on April 8, starting at 6:30 p.m. (MST). Members will receive the link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members, please send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Program:

My Secret Weapon

by author Mark Sullivan

How cultivating a creative mindset gave me a long and rewarding writing career and how you can do the same in just a few minutes a day.

Speaker Bio:

Mark Sullivan portrait

Mark Sullivan is the author of eighteen novels, including the #1 bestselling Beneath a Scarlet Sky which has been published in 37 languages and is being made into a limited series starring Tom Holland. Mark has also worked extensively with James Patterson, with whom he wrote five #1 New York Times bestsellers in the Private series.

Before turning to fiction, Mark worked as an investigative journalist. Mark lives in southwest Montana, where he remains grateful for the miracle of every moment.

Meeting Agenda:
6:30-7:00 Networking, Introductions, and News
7:00-7:15 Mystery Minute by ZJ Czupor
7:15-8:15 or so: Program featuring our guest speaker
After Party: Stay after the program to mingle and visit.

March 11th Online Meeting

The March meeting of the Rocky Mountain MWA will feature a program presented by award winning author DP Lyle, MD. Please join us for networking, fun, education, and inspiration via Zoom on March 11, starting at 6:30 p.m. MST. Members will receive the link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members, please send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Program:

Poison—The Perfect Murder Weapon?

Let’s talk about poisons, toxins, and drugs.

  • What is a poison?
  • Are medical drugs good and poisons bad? Or are they one and the same?
  • How are poisons delivered to avoid detection?
  • How do a medical examiner and a toxicologist determine if a poison is involved in a suspicious death?
  • Did a poison or drug cause or contribute to the death? Is it always clear?
  • What are some common poisons, and how do they work?

Speaker Bio:

DP Lyle is an Amazon #1 Bestselling author whose 22 books include the Samantha Cody mystery series, multiple thriller series featuring Dub Walker, Jake Longly, and Cain/Harper, and the Royal Pains media tie-in series. Lyle has also written nonfiction books on forensic science and mystery writing, and has served as story consultant to fellow novelists and to screenwriters for television series including Law & Order, CSI: Miami, Diagnosis Murder, Monk, Judging Amy, Cold Case, House, Pretty Little Liars, and more.

Lyle has won both the Macavity and Benjamin Franklin awards, and has been nominated for the Edgar, Agatha, Anthony, Shamus, Scribe, and USA Today Best Book awards.

With Jan Burke, Lyle was the co-host of Crime and Science Radio, and hosts the podcast series Criminal Mischief.

For more information visit http://www.dplylemd.com.

Meeting Agenda:
6:30-7:00 Networking, Introductions, and News
7:00-7:15 Mystery Minute by ZJ Czupor
7:15-8:15 or so: Program featuring our guest speaker
After Party: Stay after the program to mingle and visit.

February 11th Online Meeting

Please join us at the Rocky Mountain MWA monthly meeting, which will be held via Zoom on February 11th, starting at 6:30 p.m. Members will receive the link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members may send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Program:

The New Wave of Diverse Voices in Crime Fiction

In the last several years, established and emerging crime writers of color have become increasingly visible in the publishing world.  Novels such as Blacktop Wasteland and Your House Will Pay have received critical acclaim and excellent sales. This presentation will discuss some of these voices and the ways in which mystery and suspense fiction is changing as a result of this new wave.

Speaker Bio:

David Heska Wanbli Weiden author photo

David Heska Wanbli Weiden, an enrolled citizen of the Sicangu Lakota Nation, is the author of the novel Winter Counts (Ecco/HarperCollins, 2020), a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice and Indie Next pick. Winter Counts was named a Best Book of 2020 by Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Amazon, and NPR, a notable selection by CrimeReads, and was a main selection of the Book of the Month Club.

David’s work has appeared in the New York Times, Shenandoah, Yellow Medicine Review, Transmotion, and other magazines, and he a professor of Native American studies at Metropolitan State University of Denver.

Photo by by Aslan Chalom

Meeting Agenda:
6:30-7:00 Networking, Introductions, and News
7:00-7:15 Mystery Minute by ZJ Czupor
7:15-8:15 or so: Program featuring our guest speaker
After Party: Stay after the program to mingle and visit.

January 14th Online Meeting

Please join us at the Rocky Mountain MWA monthly meeting, which will be held via Zoom on January 14, starting at 6:30 p.m. Members will receive the link and password by email, groups.io, and our newsletter. Non-members may send an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org to request access.

Program:

Watching the (Legal) Detectives

Colleen Collins and Shaun Kaufman, a married private eye team, have been “legal investigators” (working exclusively with law firms) for over two decades. Their presentation will cover criminal cases from misdemeanor to murder, as well as civil cases such as personal injury, auto accidents, and premise liability. They’ll discuss the inner-workings of high-stakes homicide cases, finding people who don’t want to be found, interviewing difficult witnesses, premise liability cases, and more. They have taught courses on private investigations to regional and national writers organizations, as well as co-authored several nonfiction books on legal investigations.

Speaker Bios:

Colleen Collins sold her first novel in 1996, and has since had 30 more books published in the romance, mystery, and nonfiction genres. Her noir short story “Look Your Last” is in the September 2020 anthology Coast to Coast Noir published by Down & Out Books.

Shaun Kaufman is a retired trial attorney with nearly four decades experience in criminal justice. He’s the co-author of How to Write a Dick and A Lawyer’s Primer for Writers: from Crimes to Courtrooms. He’s learned that one’s case is only as good as the evidence a PI gathers.

 

Meeting Agenda:
6:30-7:00 Announcements, Introductions, and News
7:00-7:15 Mystery Minute by ZJ Czupor
7:15-8:15 or so: Program featuring our guest speaker
After Party: Stay after the program to mingle and visit.

Mystery and Mistletoe Holiday Party

Please join us for the Rocky Mountain MWA Holiday Party, which will be held via Zoom on December 10, starting at 6:30 p.m. We’ll be announcing the winners of the Six Word Mystery Contest and playing a mystery game called Death on the Menu. Test your skill in solving this fun Whodunit! Nonmembers may request the Zoom link by sending an email to chapterpres@rmmwa.org.

Party Agenda:

  • 6:30-7:00 Announcements, Introductions, and News
  • 7:00 Mystery Minute by ZJ Czupor
  • 7:10 Announce Winners in the Six Word Mystery Contest
  • 7:25 Program—Death on the Menu, a mystery game


Program:  Death on the Menu

RMMWA’s authors weren’t happy they couldn’t host their annual holiday party with their favorite author and publishing friends in 2020, and, per Denver’s strict social gathering requirements, were forced to gather via Zoom. Smokin’ Scarlet, however, decided to go rogue, and invited four of her best author friends who write different genres to a small party hosted in her Aunt Agatha’s mansion while she was away. She asked each of the guests to wear a mask that best represented their genre, and bring his or her own drink and an appetizer for their own consumption to remain safe.

The party was going well, everyone keeping six feet apart, until HE crashed the event: Mean Mike, the local book critic and man authors love to hate. Mike makes it his mission to make authors miserable, and when he showed up—maskless—and took to munching the authors’ food and sipping their drinks, everyone at the party had a motive to wipe his mean, maskless face off the earth. So when he clutched his chest, turned blue, and died, all fingers pointed to those at the party.

Who killed Mean Mike?

From the clues provided in each author’s testimony, can you guess the color of mask each wore, the food and drink each brought, and what room they visited in the estate the night Mean Mike was murdered?  Then, given the clues, tell us who murdered Mean Mike?

To keep track of the clues, you can download this handy player form.

And if you are of legal drinking age, you might consider mixing a libation from our special drink menu for the party.