Dear MysteryPartners' Friends,
It's time to celebrate the passing of 2014 and welcome the year to come.
Living in the country makes us aware of just how much we're affected by changes in the weather. Here in the Texas Hill Country, we're still in a long-term drought, but we got enough rain to keep the grass and trees green and fill our plates with garden veggies. Susan's "girls" (three Red Star and two Buff Orpington hens) kept us supplied with eggs, and Blossom (half Longhorn, half Limousin) kept the pasture grass mowed. Bill was disappointed in his pecan crop—only five pounds—but that's enough for pecan pie.
Bill also continued to work on his woodturning, keeping busy in his New Mexico workshop (our log cabin in the New Mexico mountains) and offering his bowls and vases at several shows and—most recently—at the Lady Bird Johnson Wild Flower Center in Austin. Susan's spare time was filled with needlepoint and knitting (shawls, this year), and with her volunteer work for the Story Circle Network, where she serves as Coordinating Editor of the book review website.
2014 was a memorable year for our family. Grandson Jason Bruton married his partner, Emily Schenk. Granddaughter Dorothy Sanford and her husband Jason welcomed a lovely baby girl, Evie. Granddaughter Angel taught her first college-level course ("Water Quality Analysis") in the Environmental Engineering Department at the University of Nevada/Reno. During the year, we enjoyed visits with daughter Robin and son Michael—missed seeing son Robert, but have loved our weekly phone conversations with him.
And of course, there were books! Death Come Quickly (China Bayles #22) was published in April. The Darling Dahlias and the Silver Dollar Bush (#5 in Susan's Depression-era series) came out in September. During the year, Susan finished new books in both series for Berkley Prime Crime: Bittersweet and The Darling Dahlias and the Eleven O'Clock Lady.
There was big news, too, for A Wilder Rose, the true story of Rose Wilder Lane and her collaboration with her mother, Laura Ingalls Wilder, on the beloved Little House books. Susan published the book via her own Persevero Press in 2013. During 2014, large print rights went to Thorndike Press and reprint rights went to Lake Union Publishing, which will bring out a new edition in 2015! And audio rights went to Brilliance, so you'll be able to obtain it as an audio book. Award-winning author and voice performer Mary Robinette Kowal will narrate.
Through Persevero Press, Susan also reissued two more books: Work of Her Own: A Woman's Guide to Creating a Right Livelihood and Writing From Life. Our Robin Paige Victorian/Edwardian mysteries continue to be available, both in print and in ebook format, as well as Susan's eight-book series, The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter.
We hope that 2014 has been a wonderful year for you, wherever you are. As we look ahead to 2015, we wish you peace, contentment, and good health. Thanks for being readers and friends—we appreciate every one of you!
Susan and Bill