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Archive for The Chill of the Night

Hayman to Participate in Literary Barn Raising for Cynthia Thayer

“Maine has an unusually strong, tightly-woven writing community, and when tragedy happens to one of us, it impacts us all.”

(writer Shonna Milliken Humphrey in Portland Press Herald)

Darthia Farm prior to the fire

When novelist Cynthia Thayer lost nearly one hundred farm animals (among them draft horses, calves, pigs, and sheep) to a devastating barn fire on the early morning of May 7th, injuring herself in an attempt to save them, Maine’s literary community collectively gasped. Cynthia is not only a beloved member of the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance community, but her Darthia Farm operates organically and participates in the Community Supported Agriculture program. Peaks Island author James Hayman joins dozens of other authors who will band together for what they’re calling a literary barn raising this Friday, June 1st from 5-8 pm at Longfellow Books in Portland.

In a Maine Crime Writers essay, Jim shared how he befriended Cynthia:

I initially met Cynthia when she came down to Peaks Island to conduct a writing workshop at the island branch of Portland Public Library.  When I was introduced to her, I told her that I was hard at work on my first fiction.
“How much have you written?” she asked.
“One hundred and fifty pages,” I replied.

James Hayman

“Would you like me to read it and give you my opinion?”
“I’d be thrilled,” I said, surprised by her generosity.
“I have to warn you,” she said, “I’m not your mother.  If I think it’s dreadful, I won’t spare your feelings.”
I told her I wouldn’t want it any other way. I emailed her the manuscript that night and she called me back less than twenty-four hours later.
“I have to tell you,” she said, “You kept me up all night.  I think the book’s terrific.” Once again, I was thrilled. These were the first words from anyone whose literary judgment I respected that made me think that maybe, just maybe I might really become a novelist. She then offered a number of suggestions on how to improve the manuscript.  In each case, she was right. Her suggestions did improve it.

From there, Jim explains, Cynthia became a good friend and mentor. He’s pleased to join the legion of friends and colleagues who are raising funds to help rebuild the barn and acquire new livestock. You can learn more about Cynthia’s writing here and either attend the book-signing event at Longfellow Books or donate to the Darthia Farm Fund.

Literary Barn Raising, June 1, 2012

In “The Chill of (Summer) Night”

Longfellow Books Advertises Release Party

Like other Mainers, Portland residents are famous for their independence. Some even call it stubborness. Longfellow Books on Monument Square is one of the few remaining independent (“fiercely independent” according to its website) bookstores in Portland. It’s also a member of the popular Buy Local movement, a campaign that encourages large changes in the regional economy through small shifts in spending habits.

Longfellow Books knows a good thing when they see it and they want you to buy this summer’s thriller from a local author – James Hayman. For that reason, a promotion for The Chill of Night‘s book release party decorates their store window.

The Chill of Night

Jim’s work ethic is Yankee in nature and he has followed the publication of his first thriller, The Cutting, with another Detective McCabe story set in Portland. See his interview on 207. I’m a fan of Jim’s and a fan of Portland’s sense of place so I don’t plan on missing this book or its release party. As a Mainer, I’m fiercely independent about these sort of things you know. See you there.

Longfellow Books

One Monument Way, Portland

June 22, 2010 7 p.m.

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