AI Ain't Gonna Replace Us View in browser 

"AI" n't Going to Replace Us

I was just in San Diego at Bouchercon, the World Mystery Conference, along with a couple thousand other people, about 600 of which were fellow authors. AI and the writers’ strike were hot topics; primarily how AI developers are using writers’ work to educate, and then monetize, their AI platforms, with not so much as a thank you to the writers.

Although I won’t speculate on how the strike will be resolved, it certainly appears to me that massive copyright violations are occurring, for which AI owners should be held responsible.

After listening and talking to scores of great writers, there is one thing of which I am certain. AI will not replace the good writers who entertain and inform and leave us in awe. AI might be able to produce a readable story, but it will not have empathy nor a soul. It will not leave the reader with a proud feeling in their heart, nor pain in their gut, nor sweat on their brow. It will not make the reader ache for the bereft, nor cheer for the hero.

In short, it will not have any of the human emotions that create a truly great book.

Bouchercon Royalty

I had the good fortune of listening to scores of outstanding authors, but standing head and shoulders above the crowd was David Baldacci (above left).  Baldacci has written over 50 novels that have been published in over 45 languages and sold in more than 80 countries. His books have sold more than 140 million copies worldwide and have been adapted multiple times for movies and television. Such success couldn't have happened to a nicer, more humble, more worthy person.  Check out his work and his life. Both will be well worth your time.

And kudos, for the third year in a row, to Minneapolis author, Jess Lourey (above right). Her novel, Quarry Girls, won the Anthony Award for best paperback/ebook/audiobook.  Jess will be the guest author at Minnesota Mystery Night in March, 2024.

I would be amiss if I didn't give you a few suggestions (from my Bouchercon experience) about a few special authors and their new books to add to your reading list:

Joshua Moehling, Where The Dead Sleep (thriller)

Vanessa Riley, Queen of Exiles (historical fiction)

John Edward Mullen, Nell, Marshall of Bodie (historical mystery)

Michael Stanley, A Deadly Covenant (mystery)

Lou Berney, Dark Ride (thriller)


Minnesota Mystery Night

One of the authors I hung out with in San Diego was Priscilla Paton, above, who will be the featured author at Minnesota Mystery Night on Monday, September 18, 2023, at Axel's in Mendota.  Paton will be in conversation with comic mystery writer, Jessie Chandler, below.  It promises to be a fast, hilarious evening. Join us at 7:00 p.m., or earlier for dinner (serving starts at 5:00 p.m.).  In either event, call for reservations: (651) 464-4840

Rob's September

The next few weeks I'm going to be extremely busy with book-signings. Please come and join me at any of these events. I'd love to find out what's going on in your life and chat a bit about writing and reading. Here's my schedule:

Sept. 16 - Rosemount Country Faire, Steeples Center, 14375 South Robert Trail, Rosemount, MN. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sept. 18 -Minnesota Mystery Night at Axel's. 7 p,.m.

Sept. 19 - Comma, a Bookshop, 4250 Upton Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN, 7 p,m.

Sept. 21 - SubText Books, 6 West 5th Street, St. Paul, MN, 7 p.m.

Sept. 22 - Guest appearance on Writers' Corner, Eagan cable TV. Check your local cable TV listing for date and time.

Sept. 23 - Barnes & Noble, 3216 W. Lake Street, Minneapolis, MN, 1 p.m.

Oct. 7 - Deep Valley Book Festival, Country Inn & Suites Conference Center, 1900 Premier Drive, Mankato, MN, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Oct. 14 - Twin Cities Book Festival, Minnesota State Fairgrounds, Progress Center, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.***


Midwest Mystery Works will make its first collective appearance at the Twin Cities Book Festival.  Come see all the MMW authors and their books at the MMW Table on October 14, 2023, between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Until then, follow your favorite MMW authors:

Brian Lutterman, John Baird Rogers, Chris Norbury, Julie Holmes and me, Rob Jung, by clicking on their name(s).

Happy Word of the Month

Iconoclast: In the world of writing, it means a writer who actively challenges established norms and practices (usually with an eye toward social justice). Thanks to uber-editor and author, Katy Munger for this one.

Leave'm Laughin'

I met an interesting couple and their dog, Burt, while strolling through a boutique shopping district on the ocean-front in San Diego.  They were from Phoenix, and it had been too hot to take Burt for a walk.  Burt, a 90-pound Cumberland Spaniel, was in need of exercise, so they drove to San Diego to give Burt a holiday at the San Diego dog beach. Here is Burt, coming and (appropriately attired) going.

That's it for this month, folks.  Welcome to all my new readers from Bouchercon. Happy to have you with us. Until next time, Daisy and I hope your days are sunny, and you take time to read a good book and hug your kids. Rob

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