Coastal Crime Fest was held Saturday, March 28, at the Central Library in Virginia Beach. Mystery by the Sea members welcomed fans and writers of mysteries to spend a day learning about the craft, reconnecting with fellow Hampton Roads writers, and meeting new friends.
Maria Hudgins, author of the Dotsy Lamb travel mystery series, started the day off talking about the craft of mystery writing. She offered tips on how to plant clues in a mystery manuscript and provided insider insight on how to come up with an outline.
Jim Healy, a retired FBI agent turned writer, entertained the audience with tales from the Edgar J. Hoover-era FBI and answered numerous audience questions about his work, both past and current.
Sheryl Jordan, author of Manipulation, Money, and Murder, spoke to the group about her path of self-publication. Her book is a fictionalized account of a murder in her husband’s family. She detailed the years of work and the obstacles she overcame to get the book into print.
The program concluded with a self-defense demonstration from Marty and Pat Rogers. The couple, trained in numerous types of martial arts, talked about situational awareness and how to keep yourself safe. They showed the group how to defend oneself against an attacker, including several ways to use a cane as a weapon.
Gift baskets, generously donated by Mystery by the Sea members, were raffled off during the event.