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Taking Up the Pen: What's Next

This is the final post in a series. The first three posts are Taking Up the Pen: Duo Releases Award-Winning Mystery, Taking Up the Pen: "Seeking Like-Minded Souls" and Taking Up the Pen: Going to Press.


LIKE THEIR PROTAGONIST, the future has unlimited possibilities in store for Sue and Dixie. Shrouded’s Crispin Leads has only begun her journey. The fictional heroine will be featured in a sequel later this year.

Crispin’s creators have and will continue to have stops along their own journey, including a speaking engagements at the Austin Women’s Club on April 25. With so much on these Sue and Dixie’s plates, what makes it all worth it?

Dixie jumped in: “I have one more story for you about something that happened up in Stephenville, Texas,” she began.

“There’s a scene in [ Shrouded's] chapter 6 where Crispin goes to a cemetery, which she often does, and she’s reflecting on a memory from her mother who taught her to look at the context surrounding where words are spoken.

“When we do readings, there’s a section Sue usually reads and there’s a section I read. Primarily because you don’t want to give away the story. It’s just a little short two or three paragraph read.

“After I finish my part, this guy comes bolting up to me. He said, ‘I HAD AN EPIPHANY!’ And I said, ‘Oh really?’ He said, ‘Yes, my grandmother had us put a stone to mark her grave next to her husband’s. On the front side of his gravestone, it was all this stuff, full of all his accomplishments and how he did this and that. On hers it was blank, with just the names of her grandchildren listed on the back of the stone.’ He said, ‘I never understood why she did it that way. It looked so lopsided!’

“Then the young man said, ‘After you read that, I finally understood my grandmother. She wanted it that way because that’s what was important to her,” Dixie explained. “The children were the most important thing to her.”

Sue sat back in her chair. “Now, that’s a metaphor,” she said.

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