J.F. Posthumus

J.F. Posthumus

About Me

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Virginia, United States
A computer tech and artist that thrives on writing fantasy to escape the harshness of reality.
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Tuesday, October 19, 2010


What's Halloween without a little witchy magic? ;) 

So it isn't very much on the "writing" topic, but it's still a fun topic.  The research has been very fruitful, even if I didn't get to go to a local event due to a sprained ankle, but no matter.  A great friend (who was an officer for several years before becoming an EMT and who now works at a local hospital in the ER) has been VERY helpful.  I can ask him pretty much anything, and he has an answer.  He's also going to be one of the few who gets to read it it and point out all the inaccuracies. :)  No complaint there!!!

On the fun side, my little IMP has a slew of costumes to choose from for Halloween and my little Vampire Slayer is going to be getting a really awesome costume for his birthday.  Hopefully it will last until Halloween...  As for mommy, well, I've got plenty of costumes and am still debating which one to wear.  Batgirl, Poison Ivy, the sorceress, greek goddess, the Star Trek communications officer (think Uhura's outfit from the new movie)...  So many fun options and only three days to wear 'em.  :)  (Did I mention Halloween is my MOST favorite holiday???)  Since we have a wedding to go to the night of the 30th, I'll be wearing a tinker-bell-ish type gown complete with stilettos and (hopefully) will do something fancy-shmancy with my hair.  (Yes, I just made that word up.)

For those who are wondering about the ankle, I twisted it last Friday morning (the 15th), walked around on it all day, and realized it was swollen and bruised that night.  Our EMT/ER tech-friend advised getting it checked to make sure it wasn't broken Saturday evening, and I got it x-rayed at the ER Sunday.  I now have the nickname of "Gimpy" and "Hop Along" and keeping thinking I should be wearing a frog costume... 

As for my son's b-day, which is coming up, we're planning on taking him to Build-A-Bear at the capital (love saying that, hehehehehe) and a late lunch/early dinner at Maggiano's (aka little Italy).  Should be fun.  Especially since he has a coupon for Build-A-Bear since it's his birthday. 
Friday, October 8, 2010

Research and Murder

Murder and Mayhem.  Two lovely words that fit perfectly together. 

I've always been intrigued with murder mytseries.  You could probably blame my parents for that.  My mother and father, both, read mysteries and watched a variety of TV shows and movies about murder mysteries.  Perry Mason, Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, Columbo, McMillian and Wife, Murder She Wrote, Banacek, and way more than I can remember. 
    (Artwork copyright J.F. Posthumus 2010)

Me? I loved 'em.  I now watch Castle, Bones, and Psych.  I also adored Monk.  My daughter, who is only four, also loves Bones, Castle, and Psych.  She especially loves Bones (her favorite, I think, is the Man in the Bear). There's just something about solving a murder that keeps me entertained. 

Then, there's the stories about murders that took place before I was born, told to me by my parents and grandparents.  Of course, a few of those also include ghosts.  Do I believe in ghosts?  Yep.  If you don't, fine.  To each their own.  :)  But many stories of murder, especially those that took place in the past, include a ghost.  Typically of the person killed.  To me, that makes it even more interesting and spooky.

As for writing a murder mystery, trying to keep it semi-real isn't easy.  You can only find out so much online and through movies.  Fortunately, I have a friend who was a former police officer who I can ask questions.

But... who does one do when they don't have friends in the right career?  How do you get the guts to call up someone, be it doctor or detective, and question them on a crime scene or the symptoms of a deadly poison?  Or what poison can't be traced or the questions asked at a murder scene?

So many questions, so little time. 
Friday, October 1, 2010

A New Novel

So, I've begun a new novel.  It's something I've been wanting to write for a loooong time.  Not to mention, it'll be pefect for someone with a last name that translates, literally, to "after death". 

Haven't guessed  yet?  It's a murder mystery!  With a fantasy-ish twist.  Only because computers are from hell, gremlins live in said computers, and demons possess the living... as well as walk amongst us unknown.  Ok, so two out of three is fantasy. ;)  After all, everyone knows computers are from hell!

I have about six pages, or 1900-some words, written so far.  Another oddity is the fact I'm actually writing in first person.  The reason being: I'm writing something I know.  I'm using my own profession in the novel for the main character, so I have eight years of experience to pull from, not to mention the annoyances that can come from everyday use of a computer. 

Of course, I've still got a long ways to go.  From discovering the body, to finding clues and planting red herrings, to figuring out who dun it and why.

The best part of this novel?  The research.  I get to pick a co-worker's brain about golf (a game I abhor and mock happily), I'll be asking Mark's sister and mother about working at a library (yep, that's a part of it, too), and, of course, reading mystery novels.  Not just any, but murder mysteries! 

Who am I reading?  The Queen of Murder Mysteries, Agatha Christie as well as the every amazing Earl Stanley Gardner's Perry Mason novels.  Then, of course, there are the movies (Murder on the Orient Express, Perry Mason episodes) and tv show Midsummer Murders and Sherlock Holmes.  Ok, so Holmes isn't murder mysteries, but he is an excellent example of mysteries! 

If I could find copies of The Toff, I'd read those, too! 

Here's the first page, for those interested.  It needs some editing (Mark's supposed to go over it later), but what the heck? ::

“How was the golf tournament?” I asked Jamie, my co-worker and golf enthusiast as I booted my computer.
The game, tournament, had taken place that weekend and though I hated golf, I enjoyed hearing about my friend’s weekend. An important part of being a good co-worker was taking an interest in their lives. Or at least hearing who won and who lost.  I'd been off the week before and, though she'd posted a status on her Facebook page, there hadn't been any post about who won or lost after the update on the game. 

Jamie peered over the short partitions, a broad grin on her face. “We placed second. You would’ve loved it. It was on the weird side.”

That peeked my interest. I turned around from my computer, giving Jamie my undivided attention. Sweet, friendly, and bubbly, she could have been a cherub. Wavy blond hair curled under her chin and at her neck, heart-shaped face, and bright blue eyes. She even had dimples when she smiled. Jamie also wore flattering clothing that showed off her blond-bombshell figure. I’d met a few cherubs and every one of them could have been a model. Of course, I also knew she wasn’t a cherub, but I always wondered if she had cherubic blood in her ancestry somewhere.

“Congrats on the win! How was it weird? What happened?” I asked.

“Thanks. Each player had nothing over a 53. They all had birdies or less. Talk about weird. I’ve never heard, let alone seen, anything like that before. They were all checked for ‘loaded’ clubs, but they came up clean. They won the pot with ease. It was almost eerie the way the balls seemed to zero in on the hole.” Jamie explained.

Great. A wizard that plays golf and cheats to win. That’s really original. Not that I could tell Jamie that, she’d probably think I was crazy. So, instead, I jumped on the loaded club comment. Especially since it made me think of a club rigged to be used as a gun.

“Loaded clubs? How do you make loaded clubs?”