southtownstar
SPOTTY 
Weather Updates

Sabadosa: Author credits much of her success to Oak Lawn Writers Group

Author Evelyn Cullet (left) her daughter Elaine Sinclair.  |  Supplied photo

Author Evelyn Cullet (left) and her daughter Elaine Sinclair. | Supplied photo

storyidforme: 55787219
tmspicid: 20478641
fileheaderid: 9507172

I first met author Evelyn Cullet when I attended a meeting of the Oak Lawn Writers Group in 2012. What drew me to her writing was her clever blending of mystery and romance, with a hint of humor.

A self-described “hopeless romantic,” she views herself as an “author of mystery romance and romantic suspense.” Cullet is a former member of the Agatha Christie Society, a current member of Sisters in Crime and acknowledges that she is a “lifelong mystery buff.”

Inspired by the works of Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers and Arthur Conan Doyle, Cullet has three published novels — “Romancing a Mystery,” “Masterpiece of Murder” and “Love, Lies, and Murder.” She’s working on her fourth novel, “Once Upon a Crime,” which is due out in 2014.

Cullet, who lives in Burbank, has been writing most of her life but didn’t get serious about it as a career until she took an early retirement from her office job in 2007.

She grew up on Chicago’s South Side and attended St. Joseph High School, where she first realized her passion for writing and wrote a few short stories. Later, at Daley College, she penned her first novel with encouragement from her English professor and hasn’t stopped writing since.

Cullet has been a member of the Oak Lawn Writers Group for two years and feels that her affiliation with the group has been vital to her success as an author. She said group members are a “talented, diverse, caring and supportive group of dedicated writers who work at their craft.” They give each other encouragement and frank feedback, which she says often helps her break through “writer’s block.”

Cullet said she’s blessed to have a family that offers her the support and encouragement she needs to be successful. Her husband of 42 years, Rich, never seems to complain about the number of hours she spends on the computer working on her manuscripts. Her daughter, Elaine Sinclair, does some of her proofreading and even suggests ideas for new stories.

She said two of her nieces, Carol Mitchell and Chris Talan, are her “beta readers,” which means they look over her manuscripts and give their personal feedback. It truly sounds like a family affair.

With all of this help and support, Cullet now takes time to pay it forward. Her “Evey’s Writers Blog” is a place on the Internet where she showcases authors and their novels to readers who may not know about them. She invites all who may be looking for interesting new books to check it out at evelyncullet.com/blog/.

For all of us who have ever dreamed of writing a book, here’s some advice from Cullet: “Join the Oak Lawn Library’s Writers Group. No matter what you write, fiction or non-fiction, you’ll enjoy the interaction and the camaraderie from other writers as they help you on your path to becoming a published author.”

News from our neighbors

It’s time again to rally together in support of Tatiana Ranftl, who is now 7 years old. Tati’s grandma, Vicky Ranftl, has asked me to spread the word about Tatiana’s Benefit, which will be from 4 to 9 p.m. Oct. 12 at 115 Bourbon Street, 3359 W. 115th St., Merrionette Park.

The event will raise money to get Tati to her scheduled New York City hospital appointments to sustain her life until a cure can be found for idiopathic pulmonary hypertension, a rare and life-threatening genetic lung disorder. For more information, please visit www.onebreathatatime4tatiana.org/.



© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.