His brother said my husband Bill walked around unconscious most of the time. I thank God for that little quirk. Bill misses a lot of the dumb stuff I do.

Nosy, I have always been unusually observant. As a child, that “gift” annoyed people. I saw and heard and sensed things around me that some adults didn’t appreciate my noticing. I did not record that information consciously, it drove in and parked in my brain.

My observations were sometimes a convenience. When little sister Nancy asked if anyone had seen her sandals, I said they were on the patio.

“Who put them there?” she demanded.

“I don’t know. They’re really muddy.”

Her confusion cleared. “Oh, yeah. I remember.”

I almost always knew those kinds of things, information available, sometimes, but not often, particularly helpful.

Bill was in Vietnam when I got the newspaper reporter’s job at the Norman (Oklahoma) Transcript. I covered the courthouse beat. District Judge Elvin Brown and I formed a mutual admiration bond. Curious about the absent Bill, the judge said, “Is your husband as smart as you are?” I laughed.

“He’s not as observant as I am, thank goodness, but he’s wiser. For instance, I see and hear things but I don’t know what they mean. If I mention them to Bill, he can figure out what they mean.”

A few weeks later, Judge Brown met Bill. They, too, formed a mutual admiration bond. One day Judge Brown said, “I was confused by your answer when I asked if Bill was as smart as you are. He is, only in a different way. Makes you very compatible as a couple.”

When I wrote THE RIBBON MURDERS, my first romantic suspense novel, I made the female newspaper reporter nosy and observant, like me. The cop, on the other hand, is like Bill. He misses many obvious clues, but when she points them out, he knows how they fit into the homicidal puzzle.

Judge Brown is in the book, too, along with a savvy sheriff and an obnoxious deputy, all drawn from real people.

Writing novels is a hoot. Reading them is pretty good, too. Find mine online at:



About sharonervin

I write novels for and about women. I work half-days in my husband and son's law office. A former newspaper reporter, I have a B.A. in journalism from the University of Oklahoma. I have four grown children.
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  1. Sue Kindred says:

    Interesting how you understand yourself and your husband. Love the way you explain things. Makes me think a little deeper. Thanks!

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