North Carolina Triad Chapter of Sisters in Crime


February 19, 2017

Jennie Spallone and Chris Roerden tag-teamed on several rewriting techniques: curing weak phrasing by substituting strong verbs, curing idioms by substituting more universally understood phrases, and curing clichéd plot situations by giving them a twist (the butler didn't do it).

January 15, 2017

Mary Angela Harmon shared her unique skills to help her fellow writers more accurately craft characters with paranormal abilities. Since age 4, she has experienced the paranormal. A professional psychic reader and healer since 2009, she also teaches others to connect to their guides and angels and do readings themselves.

December 11, 2016

After WGHP TV-8's photojournalist J.J. Murphy filmed Mike Levins' November seminar, he returned for our December Q&A session and filmed us doing what we do best: helping each other be more productive authors. He and Bob Buckley then edited the footage into an article which aired Monday 12 December 2016. Watch it online at

November 13, 2016

As wonderfully documented by Triad City Beat's Naari Honor, High Point Assistant Fire Chief Mike Levins explained how to investigate a fire scene. Mike gave us a thorough step-by-step analysis of the deductive process, applicable to the deciphering of any mystery. Especially valuable: the commitment to refusing to form an opinion, theory, or conclusion before gathering and examining all evidence.

September 22, 2016

Our local chapter presented a $1000 “We Love Libraries” grant from the national level of Sisters in Crime to the UNCG Library. The presentation was held in the elegant Hodges Reading Room, featuring an impressive sampling of the Library’s Special Collection of Detective Fiction. L-R: Keith Gorman (Assistant Dean for Special Collections & University Archives), friend-of-MWW Jane Tesh, Jacque Perkins, Jennie Spallone, Marc Fountain, Kathryn Crowe (Interim Dean, University Libraries), Chris Roerden, and friend-of-MWW Ramona Shepherd.

September 18, 2016

After our regular program, members posed with a facsimile of SinC’s check to be presented 4 days later to the UNCG Library. Winners of the “We Love Libraries” grant are drawn by lottery, so let's hope that random chance will someday operate in favor of our wonderful host and co-sponsor, the High Point Library! L-R: Roxy Bruntmyer, Judy Barillaro, Jamie Stegner, Marc Fountain, Angie Harmon, Jacque Perkins, Chris Roerden, Caroline McGuinn, Brandon Williams.

September 18, 2016

Dr. Melissa Floyd-Pickard, Professor & Chair of the UNCG Department of Social Work, helped us develop believable characters and plausible actions/reactions. Fascinating case examples gave us a clearer understanding of the various kinds of mental disorders, their proper names, and both the telltale and profound behaviors they typically cause.

August 13, 2016

Our 6th Annual Writers Networking Lunch was a great success. Held again in Claremont, NC (near Hickory), friends and colleagues gathered to discuss our craft, share experiences and advice, and most especially to hear our guest speaker.

August 13, 2016

Alan Gratz (, author of a dozen published books and counting, spoke to us on How to Manage Writing in Multiple Genres. In particular, as the original (1984) Ghostbusters put it, "Don't cross the streams." One novel which tries to appeal to two separate audiences may end up appealing to neither. By contrast, it is possible to pursue one line of books on a certain topic (for example, steampunk alternate history) while in parallel pursuing a carefully separate second line of books on another topic (say, fiction set in the real world, both past and contemporary).

August 13, 2016

Among those in attendance were Lynette Hall Hampton, Chris Roerden, Wendi Gratz and Teresa Fannin. Alan and Teresa are two of at least three chapter members who hold dual "citizenship," both in SinC and in SCBWI.

July 17, 2016

Jacque Perkins is a Forensic Nurse appointed by the governor to work with the NC chief medical examiner’s office. In a presentation which included tools of the trade, case studies, and an extensive question & answer session, she gave us an in-depth look at how violent crimes are investigated in the real world. It's a balance of the need to gather/preserve evidence with the need to restore control to the traumatized. On the worst day of a person's life, Jacque and her colleagues are there to empower the living, and to speak for the dead. Those of us who write crime stories are greatly in her debt.

Wonderful People

Joyce and Jim Lavene wrote more than 70 best-selling books, and each served as chapter president (Jim in 2011, Joyce from 2012 to 2015), but numbers aren't what made them wonderful. Jim and Joyce were wonderful parents, and wonderful friends, and everyone who knew them misses them dearly.

April 17, 2016

While Jim Lavene was still with us, our chapter honored Joyce Lavene's memory by establishing a bring-one, take-one magazine exchange on the third floor of the High Point Library near the books on mystery and crime.

We now humbly extend that memorial to include both Jim and Joyce.

April 17, 2016

Mark Mathosian, P.I., is a 30-year veteran investigator of financial fraud in Florida. We were thrilled to hear his analysis of how crooks commit the most popular economic scams, such as stock and advance fee loan swindles, as well as mortgage, bank, and business opportunity frauds. We learned who investigates, how the criminal justice system responds, and the language and methods specific to big-dollar financial fraud. This program was a very kind gift offered to us by our Triad neighbors, Winston-Salem Writers, who joined us at the High Point Library for Mark's informative and compelling presentation.

April 15, 2016

Kim Suhr, MFA, Director of Red Oak Writing in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, teaches an online course in Point of View for SinC members and nonmembers alike.

February 21, 2016

Why does the phrase, "Round up the usual suspects," spring to mind? Our incoming president Nia Avery is standing top left by Marc Fountain and Jackie Osborne. Seated are Angie Harmon, Chris Roerden and Lynette Hampton.

High Point Public Library

Nancy Metzner, SinC member and Director of Reader Services for the High Point Library, receives one of MWW's checks (annually since 2010) expressing the chapter's gratitude for library sponsorship.

February 8, 2014

Author Nancy Gotter Gates, an original MWW member, hosted 3 years of monthly MWW programs in Pennybyrne's conference room + annual year-end parties in her lovely apartment.

August 11, 2013

Founding mother Lynette Hall Hampton (High Point), author of (currently) 40 books, thinks back as editor Chris Roerden (Greensboro), author/ghostwriter of 11 books, recalls the chapter's first gathering exactly 10 years earlier. The day's annual Networking Lunch, held at a Catawba County restaurant, enjoyed a record turnout from SinC members and guests from several cities in South Carolina and from numerous cities throughout North Carolina.

August 11, 2013

Author Michael Havelin, Asheville (left) talks with YA author Alan Gratz, Mitchell County, while John Gordon, Asheville (standing) adjusts his camera; (rear) author/psychotherapist Bryan E. Robinson (Asheville) talks with his sister, visiting from Asheboro.

August 11, 2013

L-R foreground: authors Michael Havelin (Asheville), Alan Gratz (Mitchell Co.), Tony Rankine (Hickory); background: authors Bryan E. Robinson (Asheville), Kaye Barley (Boone).

August 11, 2013

Our friends from SinC Upstate SC chapter often visit our Annual Networking Lunch. Here, author Ellis Vidler (Greenville SC) hugs our founding mother, Lynette Hall Hampton.

March 10, 2013

Teresa Fannin, head of the Carolinas Region of Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators and a MWW member of long standing, presents the ever-popular "Writing the Young Adult Novel."

March 9, 2013

Winston-Salem's Barnhill Books hosts a workshop for a dozen W-S writers led by MWW's Chris Roerden.

May 1, 2010

Jeffrey Deaver, international bestselling author of more than 35 thrillers, headlines MWW's first Skill Build, an SRO event cosponsored by High Point Library, also featuring presentations by author and former cop Lee Lofland and MWW's Chris Roerden.

"Write what you care about."

Sara Paretsky became the inspiration for Sisters in Crime and its continuing efforts for parity in book reviews, contracts, and awards for women from the outpouring of support that followed her 1986 speech at Hunter College deploring the growing use of graphic sadism against women in mysteries . (This is a more recent photo.)