Well, don’t tell a soul, but I have. That’s how the first inklings of Tail of the Dragon sprouted in my brain.
That’s when I first considered murdering a lawyer or . . . lawyers.
Whaat, you say? A lawyer? Why? Well, a long time ago, I worked for a lawyer who was loud, abusive, critical and just downright mean. That’s when I first started to ponder how I was going to do away with him. Don’t be shocked. Tell the truth now. Haven’t you ever considered killing your boss? Maybe not all of your bosses over the years, but surely there must have been one that irritated you more than any other. Well, perhaps irritated isn’t a strong enough word. How about infuriated you until you saw red and you were tempted to throttle him with your bare hands. Damn the consequences!
It was Shakespeare who said in Henry V, “Let’s kill all the lawyers.” So it’s definitely not a new idea. And then of course, Vlad the Impaler invited all the local lawyers to dinner and beheaded them. So I’m not alone. Am I a monster? Certainly not! I was just an overworked, underpaid, harassed legal peon.
I used to wonder if there was a way I could electrocute him using the cord to his hard drive. I thought of poison – poison chocolates maybe. After all, the chocolates could have been delivered by anyone. Even a client. Not me. Certainly not me! Several years ago, a secretary in a New York City law firm arrived at the office toting a gun and shot her boss dead as he sat in his executive chair. See? I wasn’t alone in my deathly fantasies. I had a lot of sympathy for her!
Did I do it? Nope. That’s why I’m still here. That’s why I decided to kill some lawyers in Tail of the Dragon. What else is an evil-thinking author to do but create such a story? Julia Bonatti, my San Francisco astrologer, has no such lethal leanings. She just wants to do good. That’s why she agrees to sniff around her client’s law firm and try to find out who’s sending death threats.
Of course, as the bodies pile up, she soon realizes she’s bitten off more than she can chew.
And worst of all, even though she’s sure of the astrological clues, no one will listen. What’s a well-meaning astrologer to do except get to the root of the problem and bring down a murderer?
Now tell me the truth. Have you ever considered murder? Even if it was just a fantasy?
Be honest now!
This post first appeared on July 26, 2018 at Lori’s Reading Corner.