Growing older, cactus style
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Growing older, cactus style

Isn’t this a great saguaro cactus? I found it in one of the mountainous parks in the middle of Phoenix. One of the marvelous things about that burg is that there are SEVEN mountain peaks you can climb, right within city limits. I’ve been up most of them, and they can be a tough scramble….

Above and below the clouds
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Above and below the clouds

Cloud edges in the desert appear sharper, because the air is dryer. A monsoon thunderhead can build in minutes, billowing thousands of feet into the air as you watch, and no two are alike. A favorite cloud-watching spot of mine is Sunset Point, about an hour north of Phoenix. Here, the overlook vista plunges you…

Why setting is so important in a mystery series
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Why setting is so important in a mystery series

When I began planning the Pegasus Quincy mystery series, my prime impetus was to share the beautiful Verde Valley with the world. The area is a paradox, a small valley with one major river and five named creeks in the middle of a state, Arizona, renown for its deserts. The first novel,¬†Death in Copper Town,…

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This afternoon I heard a cardinal sing

I woke this morning thinking I heard quail, and that¬†was patently impossible, because I was surrounded by dozens of parked semi-trucks beside my motel, miles and miles of freeway on the other side, and a room three stories up. But I awoke thinking I heard the quail. I had driven from my little town to…