Tuesday, January 27, 2009

An important month for mysteries

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

January is an important month for mysteries. Edgar Allen Poe, the father of the modern mystery story, was born January 19, 1809.

Several other of my favorite writers (Wilkie Collins, Joseph Wambaugh and Harlan Coben) were also born in January.

I found a neat web site which lists the birthdates of famous people. You have to wade through a lot of people, but just looking at the list for any day is interesting. More people are famous than I ever thought.

I started wondering about the birth of the modern mystery story. Here's a site that deals with things like that.

I'm convinced there are a lot of people who write mystery stories which are never published. I wrote mysteries for years without ever having one published. Most of them weren't very good, but they taught me what a blessing a great mystery story is. Writing good stories doesn't come easy, unless of course, you are a genius like Edgar Allen Poe and even then, he paid a high price in terms of the emotional and physical health out of which his stories came.

I visualize the time when amateur writers share their stories with family and friends through the Internet or a device like the Kindle.

Those of us who read and write mystery stories stand on some broad shoulders. We should celebrate those folks today.

PS The Poe picture is from this very interesting site. And here is an list of some of the other mystery writers born in January.

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