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Do You Have A Second Brain?

Recently, on, a woman reviewed my "animal" mystery: Hot Blooded Murder. In it, she called my amateur sleuth, Bryn Wiley, "mentally deranged" because Bryn frequently consults with what she calls her "Second Brain" or, in everyday parlance, her gut instinct.

When I'd made up my mind several years ago to try and write a mystery—just to see if I could pull it off—I wanted a female sleuth who was different from other sleuths. Most are intrepid. Take Kinsey Milhone, Sue Grafton's sleuth. Kinsey treads where others fear to go. My protagonist, Bryn, fears to go and yet, despite her overwhelming fear, she treads. And she relies heavily upon her gut instinct. Kinsey, not so much. (Nevertheless, Kinsey always manages to catch the villain.)

Growing up, I often had gut instincts, feelings that warned me that a pending situation was dangerous. But my family, my friends, my teachers, everyone, all poo-poo'ed my gut instincts, warning that to heed …

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