Guns, Gams & Gumshoes

A blog for PIs and writers/readers of the PI genre

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    A Guide for Writing Fictional Sleuths from a Couple of Real-Life Sleuths

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Posts Tagged ‘private eye novels’

Private Eye Writers of America Shamus Award Finalists 2013

Posted by Writing PIs on June 24, 2013

private detective

The Shamus Award is awarded by the Private Eye Writers of America (PWA) for the best detective fiction genre novels and short stories of the year.  For the first time this year, PWA also included ebooks in the competition (under the Indie category).

Below are the finalists, listed alphabetically by author, for the 2013 Shamus award (for works published  in 2012).  The winners will be announced at the PWA Banquet at Bouchercon in Albany, New York, on Friday, September 20, 2013.  Congratulations to all the finalists!


Robert B. Parker’s Lullaby by Ace Atkins

Taken by Robert Crais

Hunting Sweetie Rose by Jack Fredrickson

Blues in the Night by Dick Lochte

The Other Woman by Hank Phillippi Ryan


Hush Money by Chuck Greaves

Murder Unscripted by Clive Rosengren

Black Fridays by Michael Sears

Racing the Devil by Jaden Terrell

The Twenty-Year Death by Ariel S. Winter


Death Warmed Over by Kevin J. Anderson

And She Was by Alison Gaylin

Archie Meets Nero Wolfe by Robert Goldsborough

False Negative by Joseph Koenig

Pulse by John Lutz


“The Sequel” by Jeffrey Deaver in The Strand

“After Cana” by Terence Faherty in EQMM

“O’Nelligan and the Lost Fates” by Michael Nethercott in AHMM

“Illegitimati Non Carborundum” by Stephen D. Rogers in Crimespree

“Ghost Negligence” by John Shepphird in AHMM


Stranger in Town by Cheryl Bradshaw

Enamorted by O’Neil De Noux

One-Eyed Jack by Christopher J. Lynch

White Heat by Paul Marks

Devil May Care by James Mullaney

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THE ZEN MAN, 21st Century Nick and Nora mystery book, available on Kindle and Nook

Posted by Writing PIs on November 21, 2011

“I loved every word of THE ZEN MAN!” – USA Today Bestselling Author Delores Fossen

“Move over Sam Spade, Nick and Nora; make room for a Denver who-dun-it, Colleen Collins’s The Zen Man. Brilliant and fast-paced writing. I couldn’t put it down.”
~ Donnell Ann Bell,
 Award-Winning Author of The Past Came Hunting

Guns, Gams, and Gumshoes PI and author Colleen Collins’s eBook, THE ZEN MAN, is available on Kindle and Nook for only .99!

Book blurb

Just as washed-up criminal defense attorney, live-long Deadhead (nickname “The Zen Man”), and current private eye Rick Levine  decides to get relicensed as a lawyer, he’s charged with killing one — who just happens to be his ex-wife — and ends up in the slammer with a half-mil bail.

Out on bond, and with thirty days to find the real killer, Rick and his girlfriend Laura dig for dirt among Denver’s shady legal back rooms, criminals’ haunts and the city’s tony corporate centers. Flying bullets, trumped-up drug charges, and the FBI’s unwanted intervention doesn’t stop Rick and Laura from tracking key suspects…and eventually learning that true redemption begins at home.

Praise for Colleen Collins’s books

The suspense is taut and will have the audience wanting more tales like this (DARK ANGEL)
by clever Cassandra Collins, who already has a growing reputation for her romantic romps (under the name of Colleen Collins).”
~Harriet Klausner

“Colleen’s books never disappoint–they’re sizzling, snappy, and very sexy!” — Nancy Warren, USA Today Bestselling Author

“I do have a few must-buy authors in my list, including Colleen Collins who writes the best screwball comedy around.”
~ Mrs. Giggles

Author Bio

Colleen Collins is an award-winning author who’s written twenty novels and anthologies for Harlequin and Dorchester, as well as two nonfiction books about private investigations (How to Write a Dick, co-authored with Shaun Kaufman, and How Do Private Eyes Do That?).  Her novels have placed first in the Colorado Gold and Top of the Peak contests, and placed in the finals for the Holt Medallion, Coeur de Bois Readers Choice, Award of Excellence and the Romance Writers of America RITA contests.

After graduating with honors from the University of California Santa Barbara, Colleen worked as a film production assistant in Hollywood, improv comic, telecommunications manager at the RAND Corporation, technical writer and editor, and private investigator. All these experiences play into her writing.

Have a great week, Writing PIs

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PIs Talk About Mistakes in Private Eye and Crime Fiction

Posted by Writing PIs on July 20, 2011

Below are a few blogs over the last few days where PIs talk about mistakes they’ve encountered in private eye and crime fiction.

Steven Kerry Brown (former FBI, current PI), author of Complete Idiot’s Guide to Private Investigating talked about “Mistakes Crime Fiction Writers Make” at Jungle Red Writers: Click here to read

Today the Guns, Gams, and Gumshoes PIs talk about “Avoiding Mistakes in Private Eye Fiction” at Poe’s Deadly Daughters where we talk about mistakes we’ve encountered in recent private eye books and suggest fixes: Click here to read

Have a great week, Writing PIs

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