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2017 Derringer Finalist Linda Barnes

I'm a member of the Short Mystery Fiction Society, an informal association of writers, publishers, and fans that has kept mystery & crime short stories in the public eye since 1996. On April 1, the Society announced the finalists for its 2017 Derringer Awards, and I had the idea to promote the finalists with interviews.

Well awarded for her novel series starring 6' 1" Boston cab-driving P.I. Carlotta Carlyle, debuted with 1987's A Trouble of Fools, Linda Barnes won Best Short Story (1,001–4,000 words) with "The Way They Do It In Boston". Introducing a new protagonist, the story was published in the September/October 2016 Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine.

Describe your story in up to 20 words.

Drew Casey, under-employed army vet, learns the Boston ropes the hard way.

What were the most difficult and most enjoyable parts of writing the story?

The most difficult part was writing in third person after decades of writing a first-person private eye. The most enjoyable was seeing Boston through the fresh eyes of a newcomer.

Do you have a (juicy) story about how the story came to be published?

Alas, no. I rarely write short stories and was delighted that this one was picked up by EQMM.

How does it feel to be a Derringer finalist?

Feels great!

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