Mesdames on the Move: April 2022


April not only begins awards season but also offers new opportunities for growth and exciting new ways the Mesdames can reach out to you, dear readers. Cat Mills has two new films, Lynne Murphy‘s collection of short stories includes a new novella and Lisa de Nikolits is interviewed as part of an international conference. And speaking of conferences, M. H. Callway is featured in Left Coast Crime and a number of Mesdames are featured in Canada’s first Maple Leaf Mystery Conference in May.


Potluck and other Stories (Carrick Publishing), Lynne Murphy‘s new anthology is now available in paperback and ebook from Amazon. Four of the stories in Potluck have been published in anthologies from the Mesdames. The book also includes a novella, “A Damaged Heart.”

The Zoom launch for Potluck is set for Saturday, April 23 at 2:00 p.m.

For a glimpse into the background, her humour and the darker side of Lynne Murphy‘s imagination, read Rosemary McCracken‘s excellent interview with Lynne on Rosemary’s Moving Target blog. It’s a virtual feast of information and fun about our Golden Funny Girl, Lynne Murphy. Rosemary also provides links where you can buy Potluck and Other Stories.


Cat Mills is excited to announce she has two films coming out!

Me, Mahmoud and the Mint Plant is a short animated documentary about a Canadian nurse in war-torn Iraq, who uncovers the secret behind a mysterious man and his beloved mint plant. The film is on CBC Gem and YouTube.

Cat Mills

The Billboard Squad is a 25-minute documentary for Al Jazeera Witness. The film won the 2020 Hot Docs Short Pitch competition.

For 15 years, activist Dave Meslin has been fighting to remove illegal billboards in Toronto. As he struggles to tear down two notorious eyesores, he must face his demons of burnout, suicide and the death of his beloved mentor.

The Billboard Squad will be released on Al Jazeera Witness broadcast and YouTube channel on May 9th.


Borka Richter, Associate Professor at Kodolányi János University of Applied Sciences | KJU · Department of English Language and Literature, interviewed Lisa de Nikolits as part of the International conference “Seizing the day: Current Research in Global Englishes”. The conference was hosted online by Kodolányi János University, Budapest.

Lisa spoke about Global Englishes in her writing, from a South African and Canadian perspective.

Left Coast Crime Conference

The Left Coast Crime conference is in Albuquerque, New Mexico from April 7 -10. On Friday, April 8th, 2:45 p.m., M. H. Callway is on the short story panel, Let’s Keep It Short. On Saturday, April 9th, 1:30 p.m., Madeleine is moderating the panel on noir fiction, What’s Noir Got to Do With It? There’s also a strong representation of members of the Short Mystery Fiction Society, including a get-together breakfast on April 9th.


The Maple Leaf Conference takes place over five days, May 24 to 28. It will be a virtual thrill for mystery lovers—readers and writers alike— with daily Author Spotlight sessions and panel discussions.

Interviewers for the Author Spotlights and panel moderators and members are now confirmed. Mesdames participating on panels and interviews are the following: Melodie Campbell (interviewer and panel member); Donna Carrick (panel moderator); Madona Skaff (panel member); Lynne Murphy (panel member); Caro Soles (panel member); Madeleine Harris-Callway (panel member); Rosemary McCracken (panel member); Jane Burfield (panel member); Catherine Astolfo (panel member); and Lisa de Nikolits (panel member).

There are more Author Spotlights, including Maureen Jennings and other leading Canadian crime writers and more panels, too. For the full program, visit the Maple Leaf Mystery Conference web pages.

Author Spotlight: Ian Rankin Interviewed by Melodie Campbell

Ian Rankin, Author Spotlight
Melodie Campbell
Melodie Campbell

Melodie will interview Ian Rankin. Author Spotlight. Friday, May 27 at 2 p.m.

Changing Faces in Crime/Mystery Writing: Moderator Hyacinthe Miller

Some unique voices in Canadian crime fiction. Mystery writers who write from differing perspectives, featuring characters who are BIPOC, LGBTQ or have a physical disability. Panelists: Anthony Bidulka, Liz Bugg and Madona Skaff.

Love with a Murderous Twist: Moderator Donna Carrick

Romance in a mysterious setting. Great love stories inside a life of crime. Maybe just a great love interest that plays a role in solving a mystery. Panelists: Hannah Mary McKinnon, Joan Donaldson-Yarmey, Linda Cahill and Amy Tector.

Deadly Laughter: Moderator Joan O’Callaghan

Can Murder be funny? Even in the tensest situations, we sometimes need a laugh or two. Crime and mystery with a touch of mirth. Panelists: Melodie Campbell, Lynne Murphy, A. J. Devlin and Caro Soles.

The Big Short: Moderator Merrilee Robson

Sometimes the best-told tales are short ones. Short crime and mystery stories have been around forever. Hear from some of Canada’s best. Panelists: Madeleine Harris-Callway, Rosemary McCracken, Jane Burfield and Alice Fitzpatrick.

Maple Leaf Murder East: Moderator Judy Penz Sheluk

Mystery and mayhem from Ontario and Quebec. Authors with tales of murder and suspense from big cities and small towns. Panelists: Michael Foley, Catherine Astolfo, J. A. Menzies and Lisa de Nikolits.

Melodie Campbell
Melodie Campbell
Cathy Astolfo
Jane Petersen Burfield
Jane Burfield
Donna Carrick
Lisa de Nikolits
Madeleine Harris Callway
Madeleine Harris-Callway
Rosemary McCracken
Rosemary McCracken
Lynne Murphy
Lynne Murphy
Caro Soles
Caro Soles

For full conference details, visit the Maple Leaf Mystery Conference site. Tickets for the entire five-day event can be purchased for just $25! Register early and get a tote bag!

Note: Coming mid-April is an in-depth interview with Mike Martin in conversation with M. H. Callway. Mike chaired the CWC for many years and is the founder of the Maple Leaf Mystery Conference.


All stories are in for the Mesdames’ fifth anthology, In the Spirit of 13. Stand by for the cover reveal, coming soon.

Announcement of the Shortlists for the 11 Crime Writers of Canada Awards of Excellence takes place on Wednesday, April 20, 7 pm. The event will be virtual again.

This entry was posted in Anthologies, events, News. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.