Monday, August 27, 2007

Not My Fault

My grandfather once gave me the lecture on the importance of friends. Love em’, appreciate ‘em. Then he told me to be careful. “If your friends get into trouble, you will likely get involved.” Wisdom radiating from his deep voice as he continued, “Stay away from people who enjoy trouble.”

Boy, was my grandfather right.

Boy, am I glad I didn’t listen to him.

Now, I don’t mean the bad kind of trouble, just the kind of trouble that makes life . . . interesting. The particular situation I’m referring to was basically harmless . . . even if it did involve rope, a gun, a pair of handcuffs, a few agents, a handful of authors on a mission, a shower cap and a seaweed facial mask.

Now, don’t go judging me. I mean, name a writer who hasn’t dreamed once of twice of finding a sure-fire way to get an agent’s undivided attention. And even if you do judge me, before you condemn me, let me explain that it wasn’t my fault. You see, I have this friend.

Yep, it’s all Faye Hughes’ fault.

Okay…okay, maybe it’s not all her fault. Faye and I, well, we’re kind of dangerous together. If we’d grown up in the same town, gone to the same school, we’d have been the friends who not only didn’t get to sit together, we wouldn’t have been allowed to be in the same classroom. Why? Because when we’re together, one of us gets some crazy notion, the idea gets ping-ponged back and forth until what sounded like the talk of two lunatics suddenly begins to sound like a downright brilliant plan.

That’s how the I got into my last bit of trouble. Faye and I were in Dallas at the RWA national convention. We were talking about our workshop, “The Great Agent Hunt,” which we’re giving at the Romantic Times Convention next April in Pittsburgh. We wanted to do something different for the workshop, and the word “hunt” sort of set us off. The next thing I know, we were asking Ruth—another friend who doesn’t run from trouble and had a car—to make an emergency run to the nearest Wal*Mart to pick up a few supplies. God, I love Ruth, she didn’t even question why we might need a gun, a rope or some aqua-green seaweed facial mask.

The hard part was getting the agents into the room. Amazingly, our friends were all lined up to help carry out our plan. Their willingness had nothing to do with their being rejected by numerous agents and ready for revenge, either. Oh no, it was all due to the amazing thing called friendship and friends who…well, friends who don’t run from a little trouble.

Now, the agents had some reservations at first, but being outnumbered—they were sort of roped into the plan. We were set to go. We had the three agents, Kim Lionetti, Jessica Faust and Caren Johnson, on board. By this, I mean we had the rope, the gun, the seaweed facial mask and the hotel shower cap, but Teri, another friendly co-conspirator, refused to crawl under the bed. (Something about bed bugs. Crazy right? I mean, we’re tying agents to hotel chairs—among other indignities—and she’s worried about bed bugs!) Anyway, the point is, I needed another pair of hands and an under-the-bed person.

I thought about asking Teri to run get Suzan. (Yep, another friend. But Faye, who was in charge of taking care of the gun, reminded me that Suzan, a lawyer, had warned us that the less she knew about the details, the better we’d be if we needed her to defend us. Alison, another schemer in our plan, was already at her post, which was hiding in the closet. So, I sent Teri across the hall to get Jody.

Jody, oblivious to what was going on, came barreling across hall with more gusto than someone who weighs so little could possibly barrel, and said, “What do you need?”

I was standing there with the rope in my hands and my agent, Kim, fidgeting in a chair, Faye was toting the gun, Ruth was mixing up the seed weed mask and opening the shower cap, Jessica was handcuffed to the nightstand, (in all fairness, I have to state that the handcuffs were both Jessica’s idea and supplied by her,) Caren, who is feistier than she appears, was waiting, with her scowl in place, for us, in the bathroom. I told Jody to tie Kim up and then get under the bed.

Without even blinking, Jody grabbed the rope and proceeded to tie a slightly concerned-looking Kim to her chair. Halfway through the process, Jody turned to me and said, “Christie, you should get your camera out.”

Kim started getting really nervous, and I lost it and started laughing. “Jody, what do you think we’re doing? The reason we’re tying her up is to take pictures. We’re making a video for our workshop.”

Jody shrugged. “Hey. You guys are friends, you say tie her up, I tie her up. Real friends don’t ask questions.” She glanced at Kim and smiled. “I bury bodies, too.” That’s when I took the first picture. The look on Kim’s face was priceless.

And that is why I’m glad that I didn’t listen to my granddaddy. You see, all my friends are the type of characters who . . . well, enjoy a little bit of trouble.

While the real video won’t be debuted until the Romantic Times conference, Faye and I have done a teaser video that will give you an idea of the trouble we got into at the RWA conference. Go take a look and remember, it really is Faye’s fault.

So what about you guys? Do you have some friends who get you in trouble? Friends who would help you bury the bodies?

--Crime Scene Christie


Anonymous said...

I LOVE IT!!!!! The video and the story had me rotflmao!!!!

Gemma Halliday said...

Friends who help you burry the bodies are the best! I have a few of those. Oddly enough, they're all writers. Hmmm... you think that gun/rope/seaweed mask thing would work on editors, too? Plan hatching…


Hellie Sinclair said...

*ROTFLMAO* Yes, I have friends who bury the bodies first and ask questions later--and I try to be the same for them.

Huh. Several of my friends who'd do this ARE writers. Is that a theme?

Anonymous said...

All my fault, huh?

Don't believe a word she says, guys. I'm innocent. Innocent, I tell you!


Christie Craig said...


Thanks for posting. We seriously had fun. And I'll admit, I learned how loyal my agent really is. I mean, very few agents I know would let a client tie the up. I also learned how loyal my friends are. Gotta love 'em!

Crime Scene Christie

Christie Craig said...


You may have a point. Maybe writers are more trouble-makers than your average Jane Doe. Then again, I know some people who aren't writers who just enjoy a wild ride.

Oh, about the editor hunt. Chris and Leah, editors at Dorchester, have already been forewarned!

Hey...wanna help?

Crime Scene Christie

Christie Craig said...


I think you and Gemma might be right. So what is it about writers that leads us into trouble?

All the alone time? Hey, maybe the voices we hear in our heads aren't always just our characters talking to us?


Christie Craig said...


Don't lie to these people. :-)

Crime Scene Christie

Anonymous said...

Christy you are lucky that I think of you as a very goog friend. Imagine my surprise when I went to you blog and read The Truth.

Christie Craig said...

Oh, Ruth?

Did forget to mention I was actually using the pictures I took?

Crime Scene Christie

Anonymous said...

Ruth, I think she Photoshopped them.

Especially the "really" incriminating ones.

And, of course, I had absolutely nothing to do with it.


Faye, who knows she was framed.

Anonymous said...

I roomed with Christie and Faye at RWA, and I can say honestly that they do come up with some whopper ideas. "Innocent" Faye? Hmmm. I could tell some stories of my own about both of these ladies.....

Anonymous said...

uh oh.

(realizines that Teri may have evidence to back up her allegations, I wisely decide that now's a good time to grab a Diet Coke...)

Anonymous said...

Oh Christy and Faye, did I forget to mention that my phone has a voice recorder on it, as well as a camera. I always like back up evidence.

Anonymous said...


Hellie Sinclair said...

Well, my THEORY as to why writers are more trouble-making is a) we're more imaginative--we're constantly doing the "What if" game in our lizard brains and b) we usually can justify anything because we're constantly giving our characters motive.

Sure, in reality, we want to shave the passed-out frat boy's head because we have nothing better to do...and he was a bit of a prat earlier, but give us enough time, and we could have perfectly rational explanation WHY we're committing a felony.

There are also other little things like: we're bored, we have too much time on our hands because we're procrastinating on a current novel, or we were nerdy as kids and now we're acting out.

Christie Craig said...


Yep, you might have a point. We do spend a lot of time giving our characters motivations. It seems logical that we would do the same for ourselves.

And Ruth, (gulp) all I can say is that maybe it's time I call in Suzan, the lawyer. That said, I'm sure all the pictures you have will prove that I'm right. It's all Faye's fault.

Crime Scene Christie

Carol M said...

Your grandfather was a smart man! Of course, I don't think he meant the kind of trouble you just wrote about! lol

Allie Hollister said...

Too funny. The only friend I have, who would help bury the bodies (other than my DH), lives half way across the country. But I'll bet she'd hitchhike, if that's what it took, to help dig.


Estella said...

Love the teaser!
I have a couple of friends that would help bury the bodies if necessary.

Ciara Gold said...

Oh wow, I'm really bummed about missing this event now. I would have gladly crawled under the bed. LOL. Too funny.

Anonymous said...

LMAO What a great pic!!

Christie Craig said...


Indeed, Granddad was a brilliant man and honestly, I think he would love everyone of my friends.

Allie, if your husband is willing to help bury the bodies, he's a real keeper, and you're probably right, real friends will find a way to be there before the body starts stinking, hitchhiking or not.

Estella, thanks for posting. Hang on to those friends. Ciara, come join us next time. We can always use another under-the-bed person. Crystal, I'm glad you liked my picture. I thought Ruth was looking rather lovely.

You guys are the greatest.


Crime Scene Christie

Anonymous said...

Hey Christie, glad i found you after all those years. I mean so was this why i didnt hear from you after 10 grade. Was that when your grandfather warned you about the friends who like to get into trouble.
Im so glad you , me and your other long time friends meet at Shoneys that night. I never dreamed you were staying away because of your grandfathers warning about people who love trouble.

Christie Craig said...


Okay...what can I say, you were just too wild for me. :-) Of course, I've since discovered my own love of . . . trouble. Hey...I'll be in Gasdsden soon, and maybe we can paint the town red.

Crime Scene Christie

Anonymous said...

Watch out gadsden here we come. Maybe we'll take in a football game like we did in the good old days. But it won't be as much fun, I mean how funny would it look for 2 women our age to walk around and around the stadium during the entire game. ... i was just informed women our age have always done that.

TJ Bennett said...

As I always say...your friends will help you move. Your REAL friends will help you move the body.

Great story, CC!


Unknown said...

Hehehe, as I was reading this, my mind immediately went back to my school days where my best friend Lisa and I would concoct all kinds of silly plans and pranks that would always end up getting us in trouble! To this day, we'd still bury the bodies for one another! :D

Christie Craig said...


I heard a lot of saying close to that one, but not exactly like that one. I'm keeping that in my saying bank. Thanks for posting.

Terry, I'm not sure Gasdsden is ready for us, but here we come.

Penquinchic26, Lisa sounds like a great friend. And if you two ever need another plot to bury bodies, I have a big compost pile in my backyard. The ground is always soft.

Crime Scene Christie

Jana DeLeon said...

Too funny, Christie - and it reminds me of Jeff Foxworthy. He's talking about being in jail and calling a friend for bail, which he then goes on to say isn't really possible because if he was really a friend, he'd be in jail with you. :)

Unknown said...

Now that school is back in session it reminded me of my best friend and how we always sat together the first day of school - because you were always seated alphabetically. I honestly can't remember a year we weren't moved by recess!! Two heads always think better that one, I would have never made it through High school without Suzie!

Angie Fox said...

LOL Okay, let me just say your post should have come with a warning label attached: may cause the reader to snort Diet Coke up her nose.

My husband and I are dangerous to be around when we have too much time on our hands. Like the time our friend Ben happened to call and mention he'd had an interview for jury duty that afternoon. Hmmmmm...

Wouldn't you know? A few minutes later, Ben received a call from Sgt. Milson of the St. Louis Police Department. Ben had been selected for the jury and was to be sequestered immediately. Our friend bought it hook, line and sinker, which meant we could elaborate at will. An officer would be stopping by his house in 30 minutes to pick him up and drive him to an undisclosed location. Ben started packing as he was talking to us, which then ment we could tell him what items to toss in his suitcase.

In all fairness, though, it was partially Ben's fault. He was the one who introduced me to my husband. Perhaps he should have thought that one through a little better. ;)

Christie Craig said...

LOL! I swear when Foxworthy speaks, I swear he knows my family!

Brenda, my friend Faye says we each only have half of a brain, but when we put it together it makes a really good brain!

Angie, I love your jury story. And yep, I'm sure it's all Ben fault!! LOL!

Crime Scene Christie

Kathy Bacus said...

Christie, the video is a hoot! And Faye, we believe you were framed. Right, everyone??? (Snicker, snicker.)


Shel said...

Christie -
That is priceless and exactly the kind of activity my friends and I would enjoy! Have fun!