Saturday, January 05, 2019

Aimee Hix, Guest Blogger

Aimee Hix is the author of the Willa Pennington, PI Mystery Series. She's also our guest author blogging today. Before I turn the blog over to Aimee, though, I wanted to summarize her second Willa Pennington mystery for you. This is the description of Dark Streets, Cold Suburbs.

Sometimes home is the most dangerous place of all.
In a heart-pounding mystery featuring apprentice PI Willa Pennington, a long-standing cold case turns hot in a hurry.
People move to the suburbs for a better life—nice houses, good schools, safe communities. But there's no place you can go that's completely safe from danger. Willa Pennington knows this all too well after her first PI case almost got her killed. Helping her old mentor review a decades-old cold case seems much safer. Then she reaches out to a teenager in trouble, and suddenly a new case rips into Willa's life in a way she could never have predicted. It seems menace is always lying in wait behind someone's door. Especially on the dark streets of the cold suburbs.

Thank you, Aimee, for taking time to write to us.


Over the course of my twenty year marriage (closer to twenty one now), I have spent a lot of time in a dojo.

If you don’t know what a dojo is essentially it’s a classroom/learning facility for martial arts. Dojo is a Japanese word that means “place of the Way” (Way coming from Dao, a Chinese word meaning path of study - yup, a Japanese word with a root definition in a Chinese word because language is super cool) and it’s a pretty ubiquitous term regardless if you’re learning Kenpo, Chung Do Kwan, or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

I happened to pick those specific martial arts because those are the ones my family has been involved with that have kept me in dojos so much. Especially Chung Do Kwan.

My husband got his black belt in Kenpo before we met. Then he took my daughter, newly seven, and they began learning Chung Do Kwan and earned their black belts together in 2015 seven years later.

What does this all have to do with books and writing? I thought this was a book blog. Aimee, is this a martial arts post?

Yes and no.

See, I had a lot of time on my hands while they were in class together. That was when I decided to dip my hand back into the writing I’d been doing off and on since I was a child. Classes were three days a week, forty-five minutes a class. It was the perfect time. And full of inspiration too because getting to see how the mechanics of martial arts movements flowed made writing fight scenes so much easier.

And unless it was too cold, I wrote in my car because if you’ve ever watched a children’s martial arts class you know just how loud it can get in that room. 

Also, I don’t care how big and obvious your head phones are, friends will always wave to get your attention and ask, “How’s the writing going?” They meant well and they were excited for me too. None of them had any doubt it would happen. I’d write the book and it would be published. It was nice to have other people believe that because I wasn’t sure it would happen.

I wrote a lot at the library too. In fact, I wrote almost a full sixty percent of my first book WHAT DOESN’T KILL YOU at the library. Another twenty percent was at the dojo while my husband and kid were in class.

My first book launch was at the library shown in this first photo. They were amazing and made it such a fantastic event. They even held the library open late for us.

This launch will be at the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu dojo. 

They’ve been wanting to host an event for me since the first book, WHAT DOESN’T KILL YOU released, which is so amazing since *I’m* not the student there. DARK STREETS, COLD SUBURBS starts with a fight scene so it made sense to tie the book into the dojo. Plus one of our amazing friends who is the only female black belt in the dojo is going to do a self-defense demonstration . Kristin is a former Fairfax County police officer and current private investigator (like my main character Willa!).

And so I’m spending more time in a dojo than most people would think a writer would. And that works for me. I’ll be surrounded by loved ones in a place full of inspiration.

One final note: My daughter has a warning for you if you’ve never been in a dojo before … they smell like feet, sweat, and desperation. I’d kill to have come up with a line that great, let me tell you.


Thank you, Aimee. Aimee Hix' website is

Dark Streets, Cold Suburbs will be released on January 8. Dark Streets, Cold Suburbs. Midnight Ink, 2019. ISBN 9780738754703 (paperback), 312p.


Deb said...

I will need to put these books on my TBR list!

Diane said...

Right now for me on kindle for $.99

Library does not have it so I snapped it up.

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

My library does have the first book.

dru said...

Great post and best of luck on your second book launch.


Sarah H said...

I've always wanted to go do a dojo- despite your daughter's warning. Congratulations on your book!

Aimee Hix said...

Thank you all who've said they are adding my books to their TBR pile whether you're buying them or borrowing them. I appreciate your support.

If you do like WHAT DOESN'T KILL YOU, please ask your library to get the follow-on, DARK STREETS COLD SUBURBS. I love seeing my books in libraries! They are hands down my favorite place in the world. When I'm feeling blue or upset or out of sorts I always go there to find peace.

Sarah H, dojos are awesome! They're full of such wonderful energy ... and you get used to the smell. ;)

Kay said...

I was able to get the first book at Malice last year and Aimee signed it as well. Haven't gotten it read yet, but never fear, I will. And our library has it available too. I suspect they will be ordering DARK STREET COLD SUBURBS, but if not, I'll make a request. They almost always will order books that I ask them to purchase. Love the story about writing in the library. You just never know what people are working on, right? As to the dojo and the feet, I'll have to think about that! LOL

Best wishes, Aimee, for the new book and I think that the launch location is great!

Charlotte said...

I read a sample copy from Amazon. Liked what I read.
Checked my library, waste of time. They don’t carry this author’s books. So hard to get books from this library or from Pines system.
Amazon has it for sell for .99 cents for a Kindle. It could go up then it would be my lost, I bought it.
Looking forward to reading it when I can. Just added it to my long list.

Lesa said...

Thank you, Aimee, and thanks everyone for your comments and your welcome to her. Good timing with a 99 cents sale!