Tag Archive for: Ventura

Erle Stanley Gardner’s Influence on Me

Erle Stanley Gardner

Author Erle Stanley Gardner’s first book was published the year I was born. I didn’t bother to count how many books (many) or short stories (hundred plus) have been published, but there were a bunch.

When I was a kid, I went to the Lux Radio Theater to see the Perry Mason radio show being broadcast and got the autographs of all the stars.

A lawyer by profession, Gardner had an active practice in Ventura for many years. I began reading Gardner’s mysteries when I was a young mother living in Oxnard–where some of his tales were set.
I’m not sure if I started reading him because of the Perry Mason radio plays or the TV series, but both were my favorite shows for the entire time they were on.

Raymond Burr as Perry Mason

When I was in labor with my third child, much to my husband’s dismay, I wouldn’t go to the hospital until the Perry Mason episode I was watching was over.

I’ve visited Gardner’s law office and the Ventura coutrhouse where he defended his clients.

I participated in an Erle Stanley Gardner weekend in Temecula, where I learned he owned and lived on a large ranch until his death. He wrote many books while living there, four at a time. He had four secretaries he dicated too. (One he was romantically involved with.) During that Gardner weekend, I met three of those secretaries who had many intriguing tales to relate about the author.

Gardner took all of his friends (most lived on the ranch with him) on many camping trips, many into Mexico. He even wrote while he was off on these adventures.

No, I don’t write anything like Erle Stanley Gardner, but I think I did learn one big thing from him, a writer never really takes a vacation from his/her writing.

What about you other writers out there? Is there an author who has really influenced you?


Now I’ve Got This Up on the Right Date Now

Actually, I thought I’d written a post for my turn on the blog, but if I did, it disappeared. So I wrote one and put it up on the wrong date–so now I’m doing it again, just realize that I wrote it a week ago.

I spent Thursday through Sunday in Ventura CA–and though that’s a
wonderful place to visit, I was there for the Public Safety Writers
Association’s Board Meeting. We only meet once a year, though stay in touch via email.
For many years I’ve been the program chair for their annual conference in July,
but I’ve turned the job over to someone younger and certainly as
capable or more so than me.

While there, of course, I was too busy to get any work done–and now
that I’m home, I’ve got a long, long list of things I must
accomplish–and one is working on my latest book.

I’m also planning a blog tour for my next Rocky Bluff P.D. mystery.
While in Ventura, I took some photos of places that could be in my
fictional town of Rocky Bluff.

Ventura is a wonderful place right on the Pacific Ocean. It has the most
fabulous restaurants–many within walking distance of the hotel where
are board meeting was held. The town is also famous because Erle Stanley
Gardner had first law office here. And it’s the home of the San Buena
Ventura Mission. Years ago, I was a day care center teacher in Ventura
and was in charge of the school age kids during the summer. We walked
all over the old downtown. It has changed a lot since that time.

The beach

Ventura Keys–where the rich people live.

And now it’s time for me to hunker down and get some work done!