Follow by Email

Tuesday, May 19, 2015


by Sunny Frazier

Writing short stories for the Dead Bird started my career. Nearly every one of the stories I've written have gone on to publication in a variety of magazines, ezines and anthologies. However, I have kept several in my coffers waiting for the right opportunity to send them out to the public.

This last month an anthology called “Justice Shall Be Served,” came out in both Kindle version and paperback. This is a collection on stories from law enforcement and military writers. The proceeds go to families of fallen members of both groups.

I submitted a story called “Baby Blue.” It's based on a real case out of Hanford, CA, close to where I live. I'd heard about the Booker T. Hillary case when I was 10. He murdered a young woman in the country who was making her prom dress while her family was at the movies. Her body was found in an irrigation ditch.

Years later, at a San Joaquin Sisters-in-Crime meeting, a detective gave a speech telling how, years later, the case came up for review and what forensic knowledge kept the man behind bars. The case has also been on Forensic Files.

I decided to use that case for the basis of a short story. I made the viewpoint character a woman, based on my friend in the police department, Kate Anderson. While I stuck to the facts (changing the name of the killer), my subtext was age and gender discrimination still rampant in law enforcement.

Another big surprise this month was the Kindle publication of “Valley Fever: Where Murder Is Contagious.” This was an anthology that came out a dozen years ago. Cora Ramos, JoAnne Lucas and I, all members of the San Joaquin Chapter of Sisters-in-Crimes, decided to take our Dead Bird stories and compile them into a book. Now Cora has put the stories on Kindle and given them a new life.       

Sunny Frazier is a long-standing membmer of the San Joaquin chapter of Sisters in Crime, and the author of the Christy Bristol mysery series, The lastest is A Snitch in Time.


  1. I love short stories, as you know, Sunny. I have that collection, and it is a perfect read for those hot summer days, when a novel seems like too much work! I also think that some of the best writers around got their starts writing short stories. There is no hiding behind verbosity in a short story.

  2. You write masterful short stories--and I should know!

  3. You rock Sunny Frazier! I was lucky to meet you and super fortunate you agreed to provide a story for the anthology. Thank you for everything and keep leaking those short stories from your coffers :-)

  4. Short stories are fun reads and fun to write also. They make a writer sharpen plotting and character development skills. I'm delighted to hear you have so many of them you are willing to share with us, Sunny.

  5. I absolutely agree, Lesley! They are excellent training ground for any serious writer.

  6. I still have the original book of Valley Fever. I thought each and every story in it was excellent. Glad to hear it's coming out in Kindle. Maybe there's hope for some of my old stories. I really enjoyed your post.