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In Cold Pursuit

Dead Dry

Earth Colors

Killer Dust

Fault Line

An Eye for Gold

Dead Dry Details

Sarah’s Dead Dry Journal

Dead Dry cover
Rendering of cover for Dead Dry

February 1, 2005: Do writers really get post-partum depression? You bet, and post-partum euphoria, too. Right this moment I have both at once; that’s why I’m awake at 3 A.M. writing to you instead of sleeping off my current spate of over-work. I just finished the first draft of Dead Dry after starting it December 10th. Yes, that’s going to leave a mark.

You may have noticed that it will be 18 months between books. Hey, I was tired after publishing nine books in ten years! Everyone needs break once in a while! Hey! Throw another bone into my cage! I swear I’ll behave better next time! In all seriousness (me?), I took six months’ sabbatical after the last book so Em and I wouldn’t get stale. But several readers offered to lynch me if I goofed off any longer, so they win, the book is on its way into the pipeline.

Bob Raynolds &  Sarah in CO
Bob Raynolds, L, makes a point to Sarah, R, at Wildcat Mountain, Colorado. (Photo: Damon Brown)

What is the subject of Dead Dry? Water, a most essential Earth resource, something most of us take for granted. This is a story for everyone who wants to know where water comes from before it comes out of your kitchen faucet.

In researching this book, I drew from the work of Bob Raynolds of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, who with a legion of other geologists and engineers has been working hard to make sure the people of Colorado understand where their water is coming from…and going.

Point of the Mountain quarry, UT
Point of the Mountain quarry, Utah. (Photo: Damon Brown)

Dead Dry takes the intrepid Em Hansen back to Colorado to find out who killed a groundwater geologist who was found buried under ten tons of gravel at Point of the Mountain quarry in Utah. Em sees some old friends and gets to know some new ones much, much better, so stay tuned to this site for updates on the upcoming release of Em number 10!

April 1, 2005: Second draft off to my editor. Still on track. As my mother once said, "Sarah works well under pressure. Sarah works only under pressure."

April 6, 2005: Final day of field work with Bob Raynolds, Jim Reed, and a cast of old pal geologists. Yes, I sometimes write the book first and check the details second.

Jim Reed
Jim Reed telling us where he buried pig carcasses so he and associates could study ways to find buried human bodies. (Photo: Damon Brown)

May 19, 2005 The copyedited manuscript of Dead Dry just rolled in off the FedEx truck half an hour ago. This is my least favorite part of the process. Pray for me…

October 14, 2005: Where did the time go? Dead Dry was printed and released from the warehouse October 5th, and last night I found a shipment sitting on the doorstep, waiting for me to sign and ship on to the Poisoned Pen. I’ll only be doing one bookstore event for this book (see Events page) because on November 1st I’m off to Antarctica to research In Cold Pursuit!

CO field trip
Field work at Dinosaur Ridge, Colorado, near setting of Dead Dry, November, 2004. L-R: Star-Spangled Stegosaurus, unidentified woman, Sarah, Jim Thomson, Pete Modreski, Groovysaurus The statues are playful takes on the Stegosaurus, a large plant-eating dinosaur that lived about 150 million years ago in the West U.S.(Photo courtesy Pete Modreski)


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