Has a mystery novel ever made you do something, buy something or changed your beliefs in any way?

I'm posting this because...well, I finally did it. I went to tastykake.com and ordered a GIANT box of Butterscotch Krimpets, all because Janet Evanovich has Stephanie Plum inhaling them in every book, and also because the giant box was the smallest quantity I could buy.

It's the first time I can ever recall in my entire life that a book made me do something that I really didn't want to do. I KNOW those things are loaded with chemicals, not to mention artery-clogging hydrogenated oils. But Evanovich's repeated descriptions of them just broke me down, so there are 72, count 'em, 72 Butterscotch Krimpets headed to my house as we speak.

Now, I haven't totally lost my mind. Two days after the projected arrival of said Krimpets, there will be about 20 people in my house all night while we complete a movie for the Houston Film Race. We have 24 hours to write, shoot, edit, score the movie and turn it in, and I'm betting that by the time the 24 hours have flown by, the Butterscotch Krimpets will have flown by, too.

At least, that's my plan. and yes, I do plan to eat at least one, and pray that I can stop at one.

So how about all of you? Has a mystery novel ever made you do something against your better judgment, or made you buy something you would not have otherwise purchased, or has one somehow fundamentally changed your beliefs about something?

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I forgot to add that when I placed my phone order, the otherwise polite sales rep snickered and said they should probably give Evanovich a lifetime supply. I asked him why and he said ever since the Plum series became popular, all sorts of forlorn out-of-towners like me had called them up hunkering for Butterscotch Krimpets. He said that's one reason they put up the website, to let people who live in areas where Tastykake products are not sold have a chance to sample them. They make 479,000 Butterscotch Krimpets a day! A DAY!

Stephanie Plum should weigh 500 pounds by now.
Reading mysteries made me start writing them. I'll never be the same!
Ha! Now that's a good answer. Same thing happened to me, only I've never sold one. I'm about to sell my 10th non-fiction book though, on women and heart disease, so I guess I shouldn't complain!
Congratulations! Ten books makes a very impressive career, IMO.
Thanks, but I still have two day jobs. My dream would be to be able to make a living just off my books. I do actually make my living as a writer, but writing for other people. I'm just cranky enough not to want to do that any longer than I have to.

Since I live small and am very content that way, it wouldn't take a lot of money to make that happen. But I do have to wait until my two kids get out of grad school; one more year!
It was the movie, The Maltese Falcon, that did it for me. I was trapped in a hotel room on business, the Falcon came on and never having seen it, I watched, dumbstruck by how goddam good it was. (This was before you could just walk in and rent a movie to take home so you were at the mercy of broadcasters.)

The movie led me to the book, the book led me to others in the genre and I was hooked. It was a short trip from reading them to writing them.
Yeah, that's the biggest influence, isn't it? Loved those old crimefighters and sleuths.
A mystery novel did inspire me to clean the fingerprints off the gun and leave it at the scene.

But I've said too much. ;)
Ha! When's the trial?
There isn't because I took that advice. ;)
I never understood the bit about leaving the gun at the scene. Wouldn't you be better off chucking it in the lake or tossing it in the woods somewhere?
It would depend on the situation. If the gun cannot be traced to you, then leave it, rather than risk being caught by a traffic cop while transporting it to a disposal site.

If the gun can be traced to you, then you should have used a different gun, or have a damn good reason for it to be either missing (in the lake), or at the crime scene, or the prosecution can use that against you.

To be specific I didn't learn it from a novel, but a non-fiction biography of Meyer Lansky. The (possibly apocryphal) story goes that he was 13 years old and Bugsy Siegel was 10 and they were watching a crap game in an alley. An argument starts and one player shoots another, drops the gun, and runs away. Li'l Bugsy reached for the gun, only to get a clip on the ear from Li'l Lansky and dragged off. Lansky told Li'l Bugsy that you never pick up a gun with a body on it. You leave it there and walk away, where it can't be traced to you.


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