Monday, August 17, 2015

Mystery Mondays: Meet author Charlotte MacLeod

A Canadian native, Charlotte MacLeod moved to New England with her family in 1923 and became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1951. She attended the Art Institute in Boston, and upon graduation became a copy editor for Stop and Shop Supermarkets. Several years later, she went to work for advertising company H.L. Miller and Company from which she retired in 1982. She moved to Maine in 1985 and remained there until her death in 2005.

Like most writers, Charlotte started her fiction career at night and on weekends. Highly successful, she published over thirty “cozy” mysteries both in the U.S and Canada (where she wrote until the name Alisa Craig). The Corpse in Oozark Pond was awarded a Nero Wolfe award and was nominated for an Edgar. She also won five American Mystery awards. Active in the world of fiction, she was co-founder and past president of the American Crime Writers League.

I was totally unfamiliar with Charlotte MacLeod until I searched the internet for a list of women mystery writers from the 1930s and 1940s. Despite not fitting the "search string" Charlotte showed up on the list. Described as a “lady” and apparently never out without wearing a hat and white gloves, Charlotte often said she so enjoyed writing her books that she would continue even if nobody read them. In 1994 she said, "I always loved to write. I love words. I can get ecstatic over a semicolon."

You’ve got to read a writer like that, don’t you?

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