Posts Tagged ‘Ernest Hemingway’


Posted on September 3, 2018 - by

Channeling my Inner Hemingway

LUCY BURDETTE: Death on the Menu is in bookstores! Finally! One of the things I had to do while writing this book was to channel Hemingway

What does that mean? I’ll tell you…but a little background first. Sometimes I go in directions I never imagine when I’m writing, and end up adding a subplot that I certainly didn’t plan. For example, in DEATH ON THE MENU, food critic Hayley Snow is checking out a suspect and discovers that he is a Hemingway wannabe.

And then while googling and studying up on Hemingway, I learned that there actually was a contest for “Really Bad Hemingway” in which contestants submitted a page of bad Hemingway-esque writing and prizes were awarded. So then of course I had to write a page that this character had supposedly written.

Here’s how it went, starting with Hayley chatting with her suspect:

“Fun fact: did you know there is a contest for bad imitations of Hemingway’s writing?”

I shook my head.

“You should Google it—there are some snippets posted online and they’re a hoot. I entered a couple of years ago and got an honorable mention.”

“You entered a bad Hemingway contest? Do tell!”

He laughed. “Of course I have it memorized for moments like this. I called it ‘A Farewell to Harm,’ and it went like so:

He had hired the guide again after one too many women gone wrong. ‘You drink too much,’ the woman said. ‘You stink of beer and fish.’
The man and the guide had been at sea for hours, and reeled in two marlin. Both of them were big as Spanish bulls and that strong too; heaving silver bodies, that glinted in the sunlight and left the man and the guide breathless.
‘Let’s have a drink,’ the fishing guide said, though he knew the man’s history. ‘One drink won’t hurt you.’
‘OK, but only if it’s rum and beer. And only if you pour the rum slowly so the foam resembles the beach at low tide.’
‘Not until five. The tide won’t run out until five PM,’ the fishing guide said. ‘That’s when you see the foam.’”

By the end of Rusty’s recitation, I was laughing too hard to speak.

Lucy again: Are you a fan of Hemingway’s writing? why or why not?

About the book: Lucy Burdette, Death on the Menu from Crooked Lane Books
Food critic Hayley Snow is thrilled to be working at a three-day international conference at the Harry S. Truman Little White House. But things get off to a bad start when Hemingway’s Nobel prize gold medal (which belongs to Cuba and is on display for this weekend only) disappears. And they only get worse when a body is discovered in the storeroom.Hayley must spring into action before the killer adds another victim to his menu.

Posted on January 26, 2012 - by

Pop Quiz on Key West

So many people have asked me “why set a mystery series in Key West?” that I thought it would be fun to have a pop quiz about the island. I will list the answers at the bottom, but no cheating–don’t look until you’ve answered! And then tell me how many you got right–Good luck!

1.  The local residents on Key West are called:

a. Islanders b. Parrotheads  c. Corals  D.  Conchs

2. What’s the name of the major east-west thoroughfare, known for its shops and bars?

a.  Duval St.

b.  Whitehead St.

c.  Simonton St.

d.  Hemingway Blvd.

3. How many miles from Cuba is Key West?

a.  500

b.  30

c.  90

d.  200

4. Name a famous current or former writer who calls/called Key West home:

a. Ernest Hemingway

b. Judy Blume

c. Meg Cabot

d.  Annie Dillard

e. Tennessee Williams

f.  all of the above

5.  What’s the biggest holiday celebration on the island?

a.  New Year’s Eve when a red high heeled shoe drops from the top of Bourbon Street Pub and a conch shell slides down the top of Sloppy Joe’s bar

b. Fantasyfest, a nine-day adult Halloween celebration culminating in coronation of a king and queen at the Royal Coronation Ball

c. The Conch Republic Independence Celebration commemorating the city’s attempt to secede from the United Staes on April 23, 1982  in response to US Border Patrol roadblocks

d. the nightly Sunset Celebration at Mallory Square

6. A dog up for adoption at the pound in Key West might be assessed for:

a. his reaction to iguanas

b.  his relationship to roosters

c. a fondness for polydactyl cats

d. willingness to wear a costume in the Fantasy Fest parade

e.  all of the above

7.  If you were going to poison someone in a murder mystery set in Key West, you might use:

a.  conch chowder

b.  key lime pie

c.  margarita

d. conch fritters

Answers:  1. d–Conchs!  2.  a–Duval Street of course!  3. c–90 miles to Cuba!  4. f–all of the above–the island is crawling with artists and writers! 5. trick question–how could you possibly choose? 6.  e–only in Key West! 7. I could tell you, but it would spoil the story in AN APPETITE FOR MURDER!

And meanwhile, in case you’re curious about where the recipes have gone, I’ve recently joined a wonderful group of blogging cooks and writers called Mystery Lovers Kitchen. Here’s my first post about a light and delicious lime sponge cake.



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