Friday, October 3, 2014

Guest Post author Mary Jane Maffini

This morning, my daughter sent me a photo of a great hooded T-shirt she found online. It said, I KNIT SO I DON’T KILL PEOPLE. 

It was such a simple and yet powerful message.  Words to live by.  I do knit. However I still have to kill people, if only on the page.  
The sentiment made me think about the therapeutic value about not only knitting, but also bumping people off – on a highly selective basis, natch.  You readers are probably quite safe. 

Way back in the dim mists of time when I was in the library biz, I attended what felt like gazillions of meetings.  There was often someone who’d seem to get a charge out of resisting whatever was planned or who lived to highjack the agenda or play political games. As the hours ticked by, I’d feel the steam rising from my collar and on really bad days, I’m sure that flames shot out my ears.  Luckily, around that time, I discovered the soul-soothing power of writing.  I messed around with several forms until I eventually came to realize that mystery was the vehicle for me. I loved reading them and I knew I’d love writing them.  Not only that, but the genre gave me a ‘dumping ground’ for all those pesky people who lived to make trouble at work and elsewhere.

In real life, I could smile and make nice, but sure enough, there was always some jackass who would try and cut me off with a big honking SUV.  But at night, there was the thrill of fitting the troublemakers for cement overshoes and then giving them a small push off the boat. In the case of the Caddy Escalade, it plunged into a ravine.  Very satisfying. Oh yes.

In fact, now after so many years, many of my friends are also mystery writers. I meet many more at conferences and through mystery organizations. Some are my buddies on mystery blogs such as and

The one thing that most of them have in common? They are lovely, kind, congenial people. They support each other’s efforts.  And why shouldn’t they?  They’ve learned to get rid of frustrating people on the page. That allows them to smile and be happy in the rest of their life.

As therapy, I highly advise it.  The price is right too. And it there are aspects of life that can’t be solved by a dab of poison, length of rope, or push from the top of a staircase, then I still have my knitting to keep me sane.  If worse comes to worse, those size 4 needles would make a wonderful weapon. 

Leanne, thanks for inviting to visit your blog.  I feel honored to be here. (I'm delighted that you came for a visit, MJ)  Of course, you are very nice indeed and I promise not to be dangerous. (And thank you for that. : ) )