Writing Lite Tip 23: Watch lots of movies to help you learn pacing. Really.

Writing Lite Tip 23: Watch lots of movies. Really.

Before I was a writer, I studied to be a film-maker. Watching tons of movies gave me a sense of pacing. It showed me when to cut in and out of a scene. And how long it should be, Not to mention how to show, not tell. Or build suspense. I recommend movies highly. Cut [...]

Nobody's Child by Libby Fischer Hellmann

Free ARC of Nobody’s Child

Hi, all. My upcoming crime thriller, Nobody’s Child, will be released September 2nd, and I’m offering free ARCs (for just a few weeks) in exchange for an honest review by August 15. After writing 3 stand-alones, I’ve returned to the Georgia Davis PI series. Nobody’s Child is a very dark story, probably the darkest I’ve ever [...]


Nobody’s Child Goodreads Giveaway

Just wanted you to know I’m giving away some print ARCs of Nobody’s Child, my 11th novel and the 4th Georgia Davis PI novel. If you’re a Goodreads person, maybe you’d like to sign up. Btw, more news coming in a few days.   Goodreads Book Giveaway Nobody’s Child by Libby Fischer Hellmann Giveaway ends [...]

Learn what a "sting" is (at the end of a chapter). But don’t overdo it.

Writing Lite Tip 20: Learn what a “sting” is…

A sting is a suspense technique designed to encourage readers to keep on reading, i.e., go to the next chapter. Think “cliff-hanger” and you’ve got it. But it can also introduce a character, action, or thought that makes the entire chapter that preceded it be viewed in a different light. For example, you’ve just written [...]


Killer Femmes — The Glossi

Some of you may remember I created a “Glossi” for Havana Lost.  Well, we did it again, this time for Killer Femmes which is now available on Amazon, Nook, iBooks, and Kobo. Would love you to take a look… it’s a little book about the book. Kind of like the “play within a play” concept [...]

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My Writing Process Blog Tour

First off, many thanks (I think) to my good friend Stacy Juba for inviting me into “The Writing Process” blog tour. It just so happens I’m about to start a new project, so I’m thinking a lot about my process. Next week, Sujata Massey, Lenny Kleinfeld, and Christine Kling will post their responses to the questions [...]


WYCC Mystery Marathon and Me

A couple of months ago, I was honored to be included in the “Mystery Marathon”, an entire weekend of mystery shows sponsored by WYCC, a Chicago public station.  Over the weekend they interviewed me during some of the breaks between the shows. I’ve tried to edit out the pledge parts, so what remains is about 20 minutes of a [...]

Writing Lite Tip 12: Learn what POV is and how to do it. Really.

Writing Lite Tip #12: Learn what POV is and how to do it. Really.

POV is sometimes called “head-hopping,” and it’s probably the most common mistake new writers make. It means you can only be in one person’s head during a scene. Sometimes that means just a subtle difference, but it’s important.If you do it incorrectly too many times, it will stop a reader and take them out of the [...]


The 1980 Libertyville Rouse Murders

The Rouses were the model suburban family.  Father Bruce, a self-made man who built his fortune starting with a couple of gas stations and expanded into cable TV and real estate, built a 13 room mansion in Libertyville, an affluent suburb on Chicago’s North Shore. Wife Darlene was a member of all the right clubs [...]