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Saturday, December 1, 2018


December 2018 Mystery Weekly Magazine featuring
"The Brew" by Connie Johnson Hambley
Christmas came early for me this year! I'm thrilled my short story, "The Brew," was published in December's Mystery Weekly Magazine!

Here's a writer's truth. "The Brew" is one of my favorite short stories that I've written. It was inspired by a local brew pub in nearby Ipswich, Massachusetts and named after a rock band my sons' 
friends started in high school that gained a decent following. I know local folk will recognize both the place and the band. Sitting at the brew pub's bar made from a single plank of a historic local tree* and sipping a pint of amazing oatmeal stout, I wondered about a boy who never left his small hometown and another who fled after high school to follow his dreams. What if they were best friends? What if one did the other wrong? What if they loved the same girl?

So, I wrote the story and submitted it to an anthology I have been published in before**. I waited and waited for news, was rejected! I've received other rejections for other works--what writer hasn't? But this rejection smarted. Instead of shrinking back into the dark and writing (which is actually a very healthy response for a writer!) I did something I have never done before...I submitted the story to a magazine.

And viola! The cover says it all! A touch of sweetness is added that circulation/readership of Mystery Weekly is larger than that of the anthology! Anger has its upsides. Maybe there's a story there, too?

So, at a hand-hewn wooden bar surrounded by hipsters and familiar faces, my story sparked to life.

In “The Brew," a rock star visits his home town, while his best friend teeters on the edges of sobriety and murder.

In this issue, I share the pages with:

Tom Mead’s “Invisible Death” is a gothic mystery in the golden-age tradition, inspired by the work of John Dickson Carr. It features a seemingly impossible locked-room murder in a snowbound country house.

In “Mrs. Bott’s Finest Christmas” by Michael Thomas Smith, a bar patron recounts a chance meeting with a notorious criminal who performed an act of kindness that didn't go as he expected.

“Outrace The Snowfall” by Dave Creek provides a hated billionaire, a snowed-in mountaintop mansion, and a fresh supply of poison—what could go wrong?

In “Nice Grammar, That Guy” by Andrew Welsh-Huggins, Susan and Allen Horton seem the perfect couple, which makes Susan’s bludgeoning death at the hands of a homeless man outside a Providence restaurant after a 10th anniversary dinner all the more shocking.

“Rolls Upon Prank” by Jeff Somers—even in sleepy backyards, guarded by the timid and the well-fed, murders can be committed ... and upset the balance of nature.

Try out your own sleuthing skills with “New Year’s Thieve”—a You-Solve-It By Laird Long.

The magazine is also available on digital newsstands and Kindle Newsstands subscriptions:

Give yourself or a friend a gift of a one year subscription. Click through for more information.

NEW! Enjoy Mystery Weekly FREE at over 30,000+ libraries and schools worldwide through their online system called Flipster. Ask your librarian for details!

Want to read "The Brew"? Click on one of the URLs above! 

Snow, Snow, Snow, Murder! Mystery Weekly Magazine Dec 2018 in Print @ Amazon—Digital and NEW Mobile @ & Kindle Newsstand (free 30 day trials) #MYSTERY

* For you tree lovers out there, the tree had become diseased and was at risk for falling on the neighboring houses. The good news is that much of it lives on as furniture...and bar tops.

** Serendipitously, Andrew Welsh-Higgins and I share the pages in Best Crime Stories of New England: Snowbound.