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2018 Derringer Finalist Robert Lopresti

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 15, the Society announced the finalists for its 2018 Derringer Awards. Members are voting to determine the winners, to be announced May 15.

In the meantime, as I did last year, I'm inviting the finalists for interviews. If you'd like to participate, email me your answers to the same following questions.

Robert Lopresti
Librarian, longtime Society member, and two-time previous Derringer winner Rob Lopresti's latest finals appearance is with the Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine #23 story "The Cop Who Liked Gilbert and Sullivan", contending in the Best Short Story (1,001–4,000 words) category.

Describe your story in up to 20 words.

A light opera-loving cop is dragged out of his cozy evidence room to try to solve a Savoyard’s murder.

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

Difficult: Trying to make an elaborate choreography look like a casual stroll. For the story to work certain things have to happen in just the right order, but the reader can’t notice what’s going on.

Enjoyable: I had thought up a clue! Clues are damned hard for me. I was so proud of having found a fair-play clue that it was a joy to build a story around it.

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

I’ll just say this. Almost every story of mine that has received any of honor or recognition was rejected at least once along the way. It’s important to remember that a rejection doesn’t mean anything except that one editor wasn’t looking for that particular tale that day. Press on!

How does it feel to be a Derringer finalist?

This is my fifth time, he said modestly. Trust me, It never gets old.


Jeff Baker said…
Again, congratulations Rob! And thanks for the wise words about rejection!

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