The Best Books I Didn’t Read of 2014

This is the time of year when people make lists. All sorts of lists, but for our purposes, here today, I'm talking about book lists.  Everyone wants to tell you the best books they read in 2014 and I'm okay with that. I enjoy the recommendations. But what I want to talk about, what has… Continue reading The Best Books I Didn’t Read of 2014


Guest Blog Post By Jeff Markowitz, Author of “Death and White Diamonds”


Jeff Markowitz (photo credit, E. Harcus) Jeff Markowitz
(photo credit, E. Harcus)

Death and DiamondsI wrote the first draft of “Death and White Diamonds” in eight weeks during the summer of 2013. But that is not entirely accurate because I wrote the first paragraph in 2006. Perhaps I should explain. It’s all about finding the dead body.

Whenever I’m travelling or otherwise outside of my normal routine, I have a certain writing exercise that I do. I look for the dead body. It’s an exercise in finding story ideas. I think of it like a musician practicing his scales. I imagine dead bodies in the airport, on the train, at black-tie galas and minor-league baseball games. I imagine the dead body and then I write a few sentences to capture the moment.

I’ve found dead bodies in middle-eastern bars on M Street and on the elevator at the Kennedy Center. I’ve found dead bodies floating in Baltimore’s Inner…

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Blog Tour Spot – Day 2 – Jeff Markowitz’s first chapter of Death and Diamonds


Death and Diamonds



The weather was changing, clouds blocking out the stars, wind whipping the surf into a frenzy. As high tide approached, the beach was nearly gone, just a narrow strip of sand between water’s edge and dune grass, the rhythm of the waves pounding at the shore, washing away the evidence. My attention was drawn to the distant lights of a lonely freighter. There was a chill in the air. I hardly noticed. The knife was still warm in my hand.

I looked down the beach. Not ten feet away lay Lorraine, her blouse ripped, an ugly gash just above her left breast, a delicate thread of blood making its way between her breasts and running down along her abdomen. I couldn’t take my eyes off the blood. Something in me stirred. Was it wrong that I saw her, at that moment, perhaps for the first time, achingly lovely?

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