Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Luck of the Irish!

By Debby Giusti

Top of the mornin’ to you, Seekerville!

Hope your Irish eyes are smiling and you’re wearing green because everyone’s Irish on St. Patty’s Day. Dust off your brogue, pick up your shillelagh, shove a shamrock in your pocket and start looking for the pot of gold in your local neighborhood.

A few weeks ago, I found a close-to-home treasure I had never explored and wanted to share what I discovered with you.

The Atlanta Southern Crescent Alumnae Panhellenic Association, of which I’m a member, was invited to tour Riverwood Studios, in Senoia, Georgia. Just a few miles from my home, Georgia’s premier production facility has produced some of my favorite movies, such as Sweet Home Alabama and Fried Green Tomatoes.

Riverwood President and CEO Scott Tigchelaar (right) warmly greeted us and ushered us into the screening room where Kevin Costner and Ashton Kutcher had watched their dailies.

His uncle, Academy Award winner Paul Lombardi and great uncle Joe Lombardi, who won a lifetime achievement award from the Academy, built Special Effects Unlimited, the largest physical effects company in Hollywood.

Their work can be seen in numerous films, including Clear and Present Danger, We Were Soldiers, Uncommon Valor, The Godfather, Apocalypse Now, as well as television shows such as CSI Miami, X-Files, Wipe Out and “24.”

In the late 1980s, Paul expanded his Hollywood operation into Georgia. The cost of filming is significantly cheaper in the South, and the mild climate and easy access to the Atlanta airport made the small town of Senoia a choice location.

(Do you recognize the home, in the above photo, from Fried Green Tomatoes?)

The quaint historic homes and surrounding rural areas provide authentic backdrops that have been used in a number of films. The main street was covered with dirt to replicate the 1930s in Fried Green Tomatoes, but remained contemporary for the TV show, Meet the Browns.

Always looking to the future, Scott recently bought additional property and is refurbishing many of the older buildings in town to be used in upcoming films.

(The Veranda B & B, photo below, is where Jessica Tandy stayed while filming Fried Green Tomatoes. My son ran into her, literally, in our local grocery store. I stood in line behind Kathy Bates at BlockBuster and wondered who the stagehand was.)

Partnering with Southern Living Magazine, the industrious filmmaker is overseeing the production of the Southern Living Idea Home 2010, a brownstone (photo below) which will draw some 40,000 visitors to Senoia this summer. Scott will showcase the row of homes in future movies and plans to build a Whistle Stop Café, larger than the one featured in Fried Green Tomatoes and located in Juliette, Georgia, to expand tourism as well.

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil changed Savannah forever,” Scott said, speaking of the movie based on John Berendt's book by the same name. "Tourism increased significantly after the movie’s release, and the same will happen to Senoia.”

Knowing the Seekers would be interested, I asked Scott what he was looking for in a book to option.

Northern Exposure but with a Southern twist,” he was quick to reply.

“So quirky Southern?” I said.

“That’s right. As well as family entertainment, like Little House on the Prairie, and character driven dramas.”

Although 3-D is big, Scott calls it a gimmick. “At the end of the day, what’s popular will be good entertainment. You can have big names, but if it doesn’t work, the film will flop.”

“The important thing,” Scott said, “is a good story. Start there. A good story is always in vogue.”

The studio’s most recent film, Killer, will be released on June 4th and stars Ashton Kutcher and Katherine Heigl. The photo above shows the two-story, Victorian home built within the sound stage for the movie.

Anyone recognize this horse? Actually, it’s made of rubber foam. Tom Cruise rode the “animaltronic” horse in The Last Samurai, filmed by Warner Brothers in New Zealand. The rubber horse runs on a track and can be programmed to fall, drop and/or roll as if wounded or maimed.

The Andersonville sign, in the photo above, is from the TV movie of the same name. Propellers, top left, were in Clear and Present Danger. The Rose Hills Convalescent Home sign is from Fried Green Tomatoes, and Scully wore the tin form, bottom right, in X-Files.

Visiting Riverwood Studios was a lot of fun. I've signed up to be on their mailing list in case they need extras for their films. Wouldn't that be a hoot! Plus, I could blog about it in Seekerville!

What are the special treasures you've found in your local neighborhood? Leave a comment and your email address to be entered in the drawing for KILLER HEADLINE!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!

Wishing you abundant blessings,
Debby Giusti

Stop by the Craftie Ladies of Suspense to read the conclusion of The Irish Mystery!

Folklore claims the fairies of old hid a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Down through the ages, leprechauns have guarded the treasure.

A leprechaun left something special on my doorstop yesterday. Can you guess what it was?

That's right! My latest Love Inspired Suspense, KILLER HEADLINE, in large-print hardcover!!!

I love the cover, and the back of the book contains a blurb and short bio, which mentions some of my other writing credits.


  1. Debby, first of all, it's not morning.

    Second, LOVE THE COVER!!!!!


    Third, I love that you found an unexplored treasure near you. I wonder why we travel all over to see stuff, then ignore what's close to home.

    There's a little museum near me that is a group of buildings that have been hauled in. An old RR Station. A jail. A schoolhouse. Church. Plus a big building with all the historical stuff they could gather, old furniture and lanterns and clothes and well, you name it.
    Love that place. I always wish I spent more time over there. I think it helps to really see the things I'm writing about in three dimensions. I do so much research online.

    Thanks for the reminder to get out from behind the computer more often.

  2. Deb,

    Interesting. I love going to places like that. That house looks like the one I should be living in.

    Down in the town of Ridgeway a bit south of me. They have a little tribute to John Wayne and the Movie True Grit. Since it was filmed there.

    It isn't much but it's an interesting side note.

    The town of Delta, another one south of me, holds the Ute Tribal Council every year. With dancing and with costume.

    We have a dinosaur dig just west of us.

    There's alot of history all around, form mining towns to ghost towns to the place where Butch Cassidy and his gang hid after they robbed the Telluride Bank.

    Or the foothills around here where Alfred Packard was said to have held a Donner Pass type dinner for himself.

    I think we forget the richness of the history around us that can be woven into our stories. And Colorado has areas where the world seems lost in time and it really gives you a sense of time standing still.

    And that's just one state.

    Thanks again for reminding us of the side trips we can take, and little things we miss simply because we don't take the time to look.

  3. Debby:

    Fun post.

    About five miles out of town is the Jesse James Saloon. And we're situated between a tourist lake and a state park.

    The nearest thing to Irish about me is that I had my youngest son on St. Patrick's Day. He's the one who served in Gitmo and Iraq. He reads my mysteries and answers questions when I want law enforcement information.

    Is it okay if I shout out that I just received notification I finalled in the Merritt Contest!!!


  4. Wow this was such a fascinating post, Deb. And I just recently re watched Fried Green Tomatoes AND I Sweet Home Alabama. Two totally favorite films.

    Happy Irish to you and all of Seekerville.

  5. Helen, I just saw your comment.

    CONGRATULATIONS. THAT IS HUGE. Merritt is one tough contest.I never ever finaled in that one. Kudos to you, Contest Diva!!!!

  6. Oh my gosh I love the large print cover!!!!!! Awesome, Debby!

  7. Helen, awesome. Totally awesome. And be sure to add to your bio...

    "...a contest Tina Russo never finaled in..."

    Because they're few and far between, Cupcake. Ask me. I know. I've been seeing Tina's 'back' for years now.


    Deb, Deb, Deb, you've not only grabbed my attention by the lapels of my shirt but I love, love, love Fried Green Tomatoes, Jessica Tandy, Sweet Home Alabama (Patrick Dempsey AND Josh Lucas... are ya' kiddin' me?????)

    Oh my stars, I have to move to Georgia. It's obviously a must.

    Can you do something about the gators and the bugs? And the humidity? Then call me. We'll talk.

    Near us we have the Genesee Country Village a historic recreation set in Caledonia/Mumford New York. And of course Niagara Falls is just an hour west.

    But not too many famous folks line up in our rural village, unless you count the near-sighted milkman that dogs learn to fear and avoid because his big gray van is an agent of death...


    That's about it.

    Can I pretend to be from the Big Apple???? Because I can make that sound interesting!!!!


    Great post, Juice. Love it.


  8. Hi Mary,
    Okay, Top of the evening to you, girlfriend!!! :)

    Your museum sounds delightful and perfect for the wonderful books you write. I'm a visual person so seeing something helps me write about it.

    Love Google. Often I'll hunt for a picture of an object before I try to describe it in a story.

  9. Tina,
    WOW!!! History surrounds you, doesn't it? I lived in CA for a couple years -- in the Mojave Dessert, no less. A restored ghost town was nearby. When company came that was the first place we took them. Always fun to see the reenacted gunfights!

  10. Oh Debby,
    How Cool! Your treasure is a BIG one not a little one. Wow!

    And good morning, btw.

    Well, near my hometown is Andy Griffith community, so there's the car Andy used, and most things on main street are named after the shops in the show. I've told you guys this before, but Andy is m y fourth cousin and grew up beside my grandmother in Mt. Airy, NC.- nearby.
    Other places pretty close to me are Lake Lure (Dirty Dancing) and the lovely city of Asheville. The Songcatcher was filmed there, and the Biltmore Estate was used in the movie Hannibal and Patch Adams. Last of the Mohicans was filmed around here, using some of the great landscapes of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

    There is one very interesting and spooky house that is in my hometown community. It's a little over hundred and fifty year old and is known as the Syndey Allen home. Beautiful house, an a historic landmark. The reason it's popular is because the family who used ot life there were kind of like Mountain gangsters ;-) They even had an underground tunnel from the house so they had an escape route. The 'big' story is that when one o fhte sons was being tried for murder, the other brothers and father came into the courthouse and started shooting. Then escaped and a statewide manhunt started for the murderers. It took weeks to find them and slowly...hunt them down. National news. The bullet marks can still be seen in the courtroom.

    Oh my, sorry for the lengthy post. :-)
    Congrats on the book, Debby. It looks great.
    And Happy St Patty's Day

  11. OOh, Tina - it would be cool to see a dinosaur dig.


    We're so proud of you, Helen!!!

    Happy Birthday to your son! All the military guys and gals are my heroes. Thank him for me, okay?

    Plus, how great to have a guy who knows the military and law enforcement check those details in your writing.

    My hubby and son help me, as well. We've even done fight scenes -- without actually hurting one another, of course -- to ensure I've got the correct action. :)

  13. What a fun post, Debby! Thanks for sharing. The hard cover book is GORGEOUS! Congrats!!!

  14. Interesting post, Debby!!! I hope you'll get to be a movie extra one day! I'm wowed with your gorgeous hard cover for Killer Deadline!!!

    Mary, I want to visit the museum near you! A couple hours away from me is a living museum. Visitors are expected to play along with the actors who stay in character. Fun!

    Helen, congratulations on the Merritt final!!!! That's awesome!


  15. Tina,
    We hadn't lived here long when Fried Green Tomatoes was being filmed. Everyone in my town was excited because the stars were always popping up in various stores.

    Kathy Bates was in an old T-shirt and looked like she worked "backstage," when I saw her in BlockBuster. After she left, I asked the clerk who she was. The BlockBuster gal pointed to a poster for the movie "Mercy," which was out at that time, staring Kathy. "You don't know Kathy Bates?" the gal shouted, about ready to pass out.

    Some of my friends were in one of the scenes at the Whistle Stop Cafe. It's fun to see them when I watch the movie.

    Movie Trivia: The scene in Sweet Home Alabama when Reese goes to the pet cemetery was filmed in the sound stage pictured in the photo of the Victorian home.

  16. Thanks, Camy! I love the cover too. I learned it was out in hardcover when I received a Google Alert. Then four books arrived on my doorstep the next day.

    The author is always the last to know! :)

    BTW, the Thorndike books now have paper jackets!!!

  17. Ruthy,
    Hope you're wearing green today. Of course, you are!!!

    We haven't mentioned food...full breakfast bar and lots of coffee.

    Later today, the wee leprechauns are serving corned beef and cabbage, boiled potatoes and soda bread.

    Green beer, anyone?

  18. St Patrick's Day already? Oh man. I've got to run out and get corned beef and cabbage for tonight.

    See what happens when I don't write important things on my to-do list?

    I absolutely loved Sweet Home Alabama! Fell in love with the town, the people and of course, the pet cemetary. Who would've thought you could build something that realistic on a sound stage??

    Movies and books walk hand in hand. So much each can learn from the other. I'm thankful my crit partner writes scripts. She's the first one to tell me which parts are booooooring.

    Mega congrats on the hardcover of Killer Headline! Looks absolutely gorgeous!!

    Okay, running off to get corned beef before work. Wow. What a start to a day!

  19. Helen! Congrats on finalling in the Merritt contest! That's huge! Prayers are flying for you!!

  20. What fun that must have been to visit Debby! I loved all the pics.

    Congrats Helen!

  21. How fun and so interesting, Debby! Thanks for sharing! And thanks for reminding me it's St. Patty's Day! Have plenty o'Irish runnin' through me veins, but better wear a touch o'green so I won't get pinched today!

  22. Hi, Debby! How fun!
    You know, I have the perfect story for them to make a movie from! It's called Magnolia Summer and it's set in north Alabama in 1880. Very fun and very Southern. But I still don't have an agent to represent it and it's driving me crazy. It's been finished for almost a year. Maybe one day it'll get published. It's taken my medieval almost four years to get published, so maybe in the next three ... sigh. I still hate waiting. You'd think I'd be used to it by now.

  23. Hey, Deb, what a COOL cover!! A definite keepsake, I'd say.

    And very, VERY cool blog today -- hobnobbing with Hollywood!! How fun is that??!! I wish there was something like that in St. Louis, but the closest we came was a couple of summers ago when George Clooney shot parts of Up in the Air here. Sigh ... I missed him.

    Happy St Pat's to one and all!!


  24. Debby,

    What an exciting "gem" in your neighborhood!

    A couple of hours away from me is a Prairie Village in Madison, SD. It has some really unique relics from by-gone days. They still have a working steam powered 1893 Herschell Spillman carousel! Not quite as exciting as a movie production company but still fun. : )

    Great cover for the large print edition.



  25. I love hard cover books the cover doesn't get warped when your reading, which I love because at times that can be awkward especially when your reading a new library book and you know you were the first one to read it!:)
    Sorry If that's a odd reason but that's one of the reasons I love them:)
    Speaking of the library I think that is my treasure in my town!:) I absolutely love the library I always love it when I walk in, I could stay in the there for hours, I feel like I'm on a treasure hunt because I never know what goodies I will find!:)
    Please enter me in the drawing for your book it looks so good!:)

  26. The thing I especially love about my local museum is, if I'm very, very GOOD, sometimes they let me TOUCH THINGS!!!!!!!!!!!!

    They had an old time doctor bag and they let me open it and lift all the tools. Weird, interesting gadgets.

    My only regret is things aren't labelled well enough. (for me!)
    I want to know what EXACT year things came from.

    I'm particularly fascinated with the guns and you know what? They will NOT open up those locked cases and let me hold a Winchester 73.

    I mean, I wouldn't SHOOT IT.

    Still, I haven't asked but I've HINTED. No go.

    Also they have a Stradivarius (sp) violin on display, just sitting there on a counter top.

    I said, "That thing's worth millions, why don't you sell it and a mansion for your museum?"

    Their response?

    It's not really a Stradivarius.

    I said, "It says it is, right there on the card labeling it."

    They said, "No, read closer, it says, the guy who donated it, always thought it was a Stradivarius, but it's not."

    I read closer.

    It's not.

    They continued with their tale. "But he was a talented area fiddler and was sort of famous of his 'stradivarius'. Always boasted about it."

    So, when he donated it to their museum (or his descendents did maybe after they found out it was worthless) it became sort of a local legend.

    I just loved that. Completely charming local lore and that violin sitting there labeled a Strad.

  27. Hi Debby:

    Thanks for the heads-up on Killer Headline in the large print hardcover. Tulsa Library has a copy and I’m next on the list to get it. It is a genuine luxury to read a large print hardbound book.

    If you want “Southern quirky” why not collaborate with Mary? A Connealy/Guisti screenplay would be guisto! (Just right).


  28. Great book cover!

    Fried Green Tomatoes is one of my favorite all-time movies. Thanks for the behind-the-scenes look :D

  29. Pep...

    Last of the Mohicans was filmed in the Blue Ridge????


    Was New York unavailable for consultation???

    Land sakes woman, tell those stinkin' thieves to leave my history alone, for pity's sake!!!

    Like you Southerners don't have ENOUGH GREAT AND MAGNIFICENT stories to tell.

    Oh my stars. I need coffee.


  30. Debby,

    Thanks for sharing one of our local treasures! I'm excited about what Riverwood is doing now.

    In Newnan, probably unknown to most of our citizens, there is a very small, but informative African American Museum. There are wonderful artifacts to view, books to purchase and the hostess knows the answers to all of your questions.

  31. Terrific cover, Debby!

    And Helen!!! Congratulations!!!

    Hey, I was an extra in a couple of movies shot in Texas. Necessary Roughness (Scott Bakula, Kathy Ireland, Hector Elizondo), and Leap of Faith (Steve Martin, Debra Winger). Not that you will find me even if you look hard. I was in crowd scenes. However, in a revival scene in the Steve Martin movie, you might spot the sleeve of my daughter's red-and-black striped shirt.

  32. Oh my this was a nice trip. Thanks, Debby. It reminded me of a visit to Beaufort SC. Sigh. I'm about ready to get in the truck and drive south!

    Pepper, my daughter loves your part of the country. She has been to "Mayberry" more than once. I have yet to get to the west side of the state, but it's got to be amazing.

    Yes Ruthy. Last of the Mohicans... sad but true.

    Congratulations Helen! A little confirmation feels great, doesn't it?

  33. Sorry to 'bestill your heart', Ruthy. A lot of Last of the Mohicans was filmed around Asheville in a place called Chimney Rock. The indian village is still on display there and the waterfall...ooh, just beautiful.
    We hiked up there when I was about 6 months pregnant with my first kid. Crazy - but hey...

  34. Debra,
    Your daughter's got good taste ;-)

    I grew up shopping in "Mayberry" - the mall in Mt. Airy, NC is even called Mayberry Mall. LOL. Mt Pilot can be seen from the town. Very lovely place. AND a great place to grow up.

  35. happy st patricks day!!!

    love your book's cover debby...can't wait to read it :)

    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

  36. Pepper,
    Thanks for sharing all the interesting info about your area.

    The Biltmore Estate...oh, my gosh...what a beautiful place. I didn't know movies had been filmed there. No wonder with the gorgeous grounds as well as the estate itself.

    How fun to hear about the Andy Griffin community. And you're related!

    Dirty Dancing is another favorite movie. Love the music!

    We should form a research database for Seekerville with all the great trivia bits we're talking about today.

  37. Thanks, Lisa! I like the cover too!

  38. Remember to leave your email addy if you want to be included in the drawing!

  39. Hey Debby!
    First off, I LOVED Killer Headline! It was fantastic! And I'm loving following the continuity series just as much {probably more even!} as you said I would *wink*

    Now, that is SO cool that the studio is right near you! I LOVED both Fried Green Tomatoes and Sweet Home Alabama! They are really great and I own both of them because I like them so much. It sounds like you had a lot of fun and I hope you get to be an extra someday because 1)you'd probably be great at it and 2) it would be a ton of fun, I bet!

    Really fun post, Debby!

    Congratulations, Helen! That is so exciting!!!

  40. I'm happy jigging today.

    Thanks for all the congratulatory messages.

    Tina, I'm overwhelmed at your comment about the Merritt being so tough. If I had known that sooner, I might not have had the courage to enter.

    Ruthy, I'm trying to follow the trail you and Tina pioneered. :)
    Winter's End 'Twas a sweet read. Truly enjoyed it.

    Debby, I'd love to have your new book. I think I have all but that one. Mysteries and contemporaries are my main diet.

    HOWEVER, I did enjoy Janet Dean's Sutstitute Bride.


    helengray AT boycomonline DOT com

  41. Janet, your living museum sounds interesting. If you stop back, be sure to give us more info!

  42. Yep, Debby,
    There is a lot of history here.
    I was just thinking that Doc Holliday was buried in Glenwood Springs after he sought treatment at the sanitarium there. The Hotel Colorado and the hot springs. I like to walk through there and look at all the historical figures that visited. Wyatt Earp spent some time there.

    Pepper said -- OOh, Tina - it would be cool to see a dinosaur dig.

    Tina's quip -- I wanted to see them dig too, Pepper, but they just laid there.

    My part Irish eyes are smiling over that one.

  43. Hi Audra,
    You mentioned the close tie between screen plays and novels, and you're so right.

    Did you know Hollywood guru Michael Hauge will be the big star at the Moonlight and Magnolias Conference, this October, hosted by Georgia Romance Writers? Should be a great weekend packed with wonderful instruction by Hauge.

    Missy and I are GRW members and both plan to be at the M&M. Lots of Seeker friends will probably be there as well...Walt, Dianna Shuford, Debbie Kaufman, Lindi Peterson, to name a few. Let us know if you're coming so we can get together!

  44. Debby,

    I already have a copy of your latest book, so please don't enter me in the drawing.

    I have a separate question though. My wife loves Fried Green Tomatoes and is constantly on the lookout for restaurants that have 'em. Where in Atlanta would be the best place to get Fried Green Tomatoes, since there's not a Whistle Stop cafe open yet.

  45. Great post. I would love to have your book.


  46. Hi Kerri,
    It was a fun day, but what amazed me was that I hadn't realized everything they were doing, and the place is close by.

    More movie trivia: The ending of Sweet Home Alabama shows the hero's new studio store with the beautiful glassware. The building--remember it's bright red--is Starr's Mill, an historic landmark not far from the studio.

  47. Are you Irish now, Glynna? Enjoy the day and find your rainbow and your pot of gold!

    It's raining in Georgia, but no sunshine so no rainbow!

  48. Hi Melanie,
    Wouldn't it be fun to have your story filmed in my neighborhood? You could write the screen play, and I could have a tiny part...maybe say "Seekerville rocks!" as I walk across the set!!!

    Magnolia Summer -- great title. Have you considered submitting to BelleBooks? It's a small press started by a number of our Georgia Romance Writers. Deb Smith is the editor, and Deb Dixon is also part of the group. They publish Southern voices! Deb S. only takes electronic submission. Check out their guidelines on their web site.

    BTW, Missy has published with BelleBooks. If she stops by, maybe she'll provide more info.

  49. Hi Julie,
    Have a great St. Patty's Day!

    Savannah, GA, has a huge festival each year on the riverfront. Today they'll be a soggy bunch.

    Anyone live in Chicago? Don't they color the lake green? Or is that an urban legend?

  50. Vince I'm trying to picture me and Debby writing a book together.

    Debby is quite the Master of Mayhem.
    I've been known to write crazed action scenes myself.
    We might get into a contest trying to top each other and bring about such whirling forces that we would suck the whole universe into a black hole.

    Oh, and I'm also the Master of the Worse Case Scenario.

  51. Ah, Rose, how special to have a working carousel in your neighborhood!!! Remember the movie? An oldie but goodie.

    Leavenworth, Kansas, has a C. W. Parker carousel museum.

  52. Debby, I did consider submitting to BelleBooks, but I was afraid my book was "too Christian." I guess I could give it a shot.

    I'm from a very "back of nowhere" kind of place, Lower Alabama, but Harper Lee (author of To Kill a Mockingbird) grew up about 40 miles from me. She still lives there with her sister. When I was in college, I drove there and sneaked into the old abandoned county courthouse, from which they built an exact replica where they filmed the court scenes in the movie. I climbed the stairs and wandered around the courtroom. There were photos of Gregory Peck from when he visited Monroeville during the making of the film. It was really cool. The court house was deserted, and after I got done looking around I went back down the steps and left without ever seeing anybody. Now I think they've made it into a museum. I haven't been back there in almost 20 years.

  53. Hi Lindsey,
    You're entered in the drawing!

    Great comment about your library being a local treasure!!! I don't visit mine often enough these days. Shame on me!

    There's nothing like walking into a building filled with books. Some of my best memories as a kid are making my way through the stacks, deciding which books to check out!

    I like to read hardcover books, as well. Also love the trade paper size, like Mary and Julie and Camy and Myra's books.

  54. Mary,
    Your story about the violin needs to be in a book...really! I could see this guy always thinking he had an original treasure so his music is very good. Then he learns the truth. What he thought was special is very ordinary. He can no longer play. Of course, something else is happening in his life that mirrors the violin story. Maybe he thought he was highborn, then learned the truth about his parents. He's doesn't know who he truly is and sinks into despair. Enter the heroine who sees him as special and unique. Her love changes his heart, and he views himself in a new light. Once again, he plays, but now, the music from the little violin is breathtaking.

    Okay, enough! Sorry!!!

  55. Mary,

    So they won't let you shoot the Winchester 73? Have you ever gone to a gun show? The dealers let the people touch and feel and point. Shoot? No! But just about everything else.

    Not sure how many antique guns they have, but it's worth a try.

    BTW, if anyone wants to add details to Mary's violin story, please do!

  56. Hey Vince!!!

    Thanks for letting me know about Killer Headline in the Tulsa library! Give the librarian a kiss from me when you check it out! Hmmm. Maybe that wouldn't be a good idea. But tell her I certainly appreciate them getting my book.

    A Connealy/Giusti story? Now wouldn't that be fun!!! Maybe a time travel? Mary, could be the 1800s and I'll be contemporary. Everyone could move back and forth through time.

  57. Hi Georgiana,
    Thanks for stopping by today! FGT is one of my faves, as well!

  58. Ruthy,
    It's all about money. Filming in the south is less expensive.

    Does that mean Southerners are cheap?

    No way!!!

    Also the good weather means more days to shoot.

    Aren't you having a rough winter in NY? Hope you weren't affected by the latest storms.

  59. Edwina,
    I didn't know about the African American museum! Thanks for the tip.

    Edwina lives in a lovely town filled with beautiful old homes.
    I did a Google search and the following films/shows were shot in her hometown:

    Zombieland, staring Woody Harrelson; October Road, ABC TV movie;The Sheriff and the Satellite Kid; NBC's I'll Fly Away; Fluke; Get Low, staring Robert Duvall, Sissy Spacek and Bill others.

  60. MYRA!!! You never told us!!! A movie star!!! As Ruthy would say, Oh My Stars!!!!

    We want more details. Two movies!!! WOW!!!

    I loved LEAP OF FAITH!!! Read the book and thought it was well done. Can't remember who the author was and Google is giving me a new book by the same name. Steve Martin was great in the movie!!! I'm heading to BlockBuster to check it out and find you in the crowd!!!

  61. Hi Deb,
    Beaufort is beautiful, isn't it! Plus, lots of movies were filmed there. Scott said it was THE place to film a few years back.

    The tree house scene in The War, with Kevin Costner, was filmed in Buford. The rest of the film was made in GA.

    More trivia: Scott said the sound of rain is the hardest noise to block out of a sound studio.

    The one we toured was freezing cold. He said, even in winter, when they're shooting, the temp soars due to the lights. They burned out two generators, running the air conditioners while working on Killers.

  62. Pepper and Deb,
    Sounds like a road trip to the Carolinas is a must do this summer!!!

  63. Hi Karen!!!

    Hope your day's going well! Spot any leprechauns yet?

    I've got you in the drawing!

  64. Hi Hannah,
    Glad you liked Killer Headline. I'm reading Marta Perry's Twin Targets, which started the continuity off with a bang. She's a great writer! Watch for her Amish stories!

  65. Interesting that Scott wanted a story like Northern Exposure set in the south.

    Did anyone read the Publishers Weekly article Tina posted on the Weekend Edition? Joan Marlow Golan, Executive Editor of Steeple Hill, mentioned the upcoming LI continuity set in Alaska. Kind of a Northern Exposure and Men in Trees mix.

    Maybe we need to revisit Northern Exposure as it seems to be popping up on everyone's story wish list!

  66. Helen, we're happy jigging with you!!! Perfect thing to do on St. Patty's Day!!!

    I've got you in the drawing!!!

  67. Hi Tina,
    Doc Holliday...Wyatt Earp...names I remember from TV shows I watched as a kid. They came to life for me on the screen.

    Don't know if today's kids know those old West figures.

  68. Hi Walt,
    I did a Google search and came up with a number of restaurants that serve Fried Green Tomatoes:

    Mary Mac's Tea Room on Ponce de Leon--an old restaurant that used to be THE place for good Southern food!

    Horseradish Grill.

    Agnes & Muriel's -- we used to have one in my area, trendy but good.

    Flying Biscuit Cafe -- never been, but heard they throw biscuits at the customers. Hopefully they don't throw the fried green tomatoes.

    Someone else mentioned West Egg Cafe.

    Have you ever eaten fried sweet potatoes? YUM!

  69. Hi Denise,

    You're entered in the drawing!

    Happy St. Patrick's Day!

  70. Black hole sounds futuristic!

    I still like the time travel idea, Mary! :)

  71. Melanie,
    You sleuth!!! I can see you breaking and entering the Court House!!!

    I didn't think Harper Lee was still alive. Wasn't To Kill A Mockingbird her only book?

    Wonder if she'd like to be on Seekerville?

  72. That's right, Debby. To Kill a Mockingbird was her only published novel but there are rumors that she has a book or two that will possibly be published posthumously.

  73. Random comment from Camy: I didn't wear green today but I spun green yarn. Does that count?

  74. Melanie,
    How hard it would be to publish a book with such success...and then to write another book that may or may not be as well received.

    I'd love to chat with Harper Lee. Wouldn't you?

  75. Camy,
    Of course, your green yarn counts!!! You're amazing. An accomplished writer and a talented knitter.

    I want a Camy scarf! Maybe you should take orders.

  76. Ohhh see this is right up my alley! I LOVE historic buildings and homes! I live right beside George Washington's Gristmill, it's the most "famous" site in my town! Pretty interesting but it will be even better if they ever get the water wheel up and running.

    I hope you get cast as an extra! That would be so cool!

    XOXO~ Renee


  77. Camy,

    I didn't actually wear green a clothes form anyway, but I was green with envy and there's a bit of green in my tattoo.

  78. Here's a VERY brief history and some pics of the mill! :-)

    XOXO~ Renee

  79. Renee,
    Your mill is on the same site as the mill featured in FGT!!! For a minute, I thought you lived in Northern VA. I went to Mt Vernon High School. George Washington's wine cellar was on the far side of my parents' property. Mount Vernon was just down the street. And there was a Grist Mill in the area. But you're talking about a PA mill. It looks beautiful!

  80. Okay, Tina P. You have to tell us about your green tattoo!!!

  81. So you want to know about my tat hey?

    It's this cute little butterfly. I have it on my upper left hip. I'm pretty proud of myself I didn't wince at all to have it applied.

    Not at all.

    Probably cause I got it the other day out of some bubble gum. LOL

    I don't have the guts for a real one.

  82. Love it, Tina!!! You had me!!! I thought it was real for sure!

  83. Deb,

    I've considered it, but I don't know if I could handle the pain. I'm such a weenie.

  84. Me too. I don't even have pierced ears!

  85. Hi Debby, Late today as spent time with Dad.

    Loved the movie sets. We have lots of those here in Arizona especially when westerns were the "in" thing.

    Hubby hiked today in the Superstitions which hold the key to all kinds of lore-especially lost gold mines. Gorgeous country. Red rock spires and mysterious canyons hiding legends and lost hikers.

  86. Debby,

    Senoia's just about 2 hours from me. Sounds like a day trip's in my near future! What a hidden treasure you've found!

    Thanks for sharing.

    Awesome cover, btw!

  87. Sandra,
    I love the Southwest!!! Your area and the local lore needs to be in a write it and I'll read it!!! :)

  88. Hi April,
    You're only two hours away? We keep talking about having a writing get-together at the local Starbucks. Sure would be fun to see you there!

  89. Debby,
    Anything to do with coffee and I'm all over it. Add great writerly company and there's no way I'd miss it.
    If it ever formulates, count me in!

  90. Love the hard cover! This was a very interesting post, Debby. Glad you shared the pictures too. Very cool!


  91. Thanks, Cheryl, for stopping by!

  92. Being a resident of Senoia I can honestly say, yes, the studio is a big thing here.

    A few movies & stars we've also seen has been Cuba Gooding Jr. and Beyoncee in Fighting Temptations, Patty Duke filmed a Christmas movie here, and there was a country singer (can't remember the name) who filmed a tv movie. It's always interesting because we'll see the signs go up, certain streets blocked and covered with dirt, and everybody'll start asking...what movie are they doing now? For fighting temptations they actually took someone's side yard and converted it into a cemetary for a scene in the movie. When they did it my husband and I wondered how they could ever pass it off as a cemetary, but when we saw the movie it looked just like a real cemetary. Guess the angle of the camera shots really do make a difference.

    As far as the town, several historic locations have received really nice renovations in preparing them for their role in the movies. The church used in Fighting Temptations looked almost new when they were finished with it. But, when they changed the church sign in front on only one side I was confused for a while until I learned they were making a movie. Beulah Baptist on one side and Senoia UMC on the other...LOL.

    Just started Killer Headline. Enjoying it so far.

  93. Hi Dianna,
    Thanks for all the great info on Senoia. Cuba Gooding Jr. and Beyoncee!!! I didn't hear about their movie.

    How fun to live in a town where movies are always being filmed!!!

    I know a gal who lived next to Patty Duke when she was in town for her Hallmark Movie. My friend took over brownies to welcome her. The new neighbor introduced herself as Anna, although my friend thought she LOOKED like Patty Duke. Guess Anna is her real name.