Paula Gail Benson

Heartbreaks & Half-Truths: 22 Stories of Mystery & Suspense Edited by Judy Penz Sheluk

by Kathleen Costa

I personally love collections: pins, movies, cookies, of course, and short stories. Short story collections afford me a marvelous opportunity to enjoy a variety of authors, many new to me, all at one time as well as being exposed to a variety of writing styles. These twenty-two shorts, edited by friend and author Judy Penz Sheluk, offer a glimpse into each author’s interpretation of the book’s theme “heartbreaks” and “half-truths.”

An Unexpected Christmas Gift: A Christmas Mystery Short Story

by Paula Gail Benson

I have a habit of viewing life as a screenplay. It happens when you spend twelve years teaching film studies to university undergrads. You start to view most things as fodder for a movie script. Take tonight, for example, a week before Christmas. I’m here at the Study Break Cafe, a local hole-in-the-wall on the edge of campus. A place I’ve spent many significant moments. First job. Study dates. Surprise proposal. Uh, let’s not explore that proposal back-story.

A Father’s Legacy: Looking at Robert Dugoni’s Life and Work

by Paula Gail Benson

Many descriptions apply to New York Times bestselling novelist Robert Dugoni. In addition to being the author of such fast paced legal thrillers as The Jury Master, Wrongful Death, Bodily Harm, and Murder One, he has worked as a reporter, actor, and attorney. He brings his knowledge from previous occupations to his writing, but he also brings something else: an uncanny ability for creating characters and placing them in realistic, thought-provoking situations.

Pelican Spring: A Mother’s Day Mystery Short Story

by Paula Gail Benson

The quest for scholarships is a rite of Spring, but in my twelve years as a law school admissions director, I had never seen a situation like this one.
I’d attended plenty of meetings with potential students, seeking to optimize their chances at partial or full scholarships. What I had not previously encountered was a student-parent-financial-package-tag-team.

The Mama Factor: A Mother’s Day Short Story

by Paula Gail Benson

For four months, in February of my sophomore year in high school– now almost thirteen years ago– I decided that for all practical purposes my life had ended at age fifteen. I wasn’t being overly dramatic, just realistic. What hurt the most was the fact that the end was my own fault.