Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Forensics4Fiction—a Valuable Source for Mystery Writers

I discovered a great website for mystery writers, Forensics4Fiction, hosted by Tom Adair. The website can help you get the details right.  For example, what is in a Rape Kit?  If your victim has been shot through the heart, where did the shooter aim?  This is how Tom Adair describes himself:
I am a retired senior criminalist with 15 years of forensic experience. I don’t usually like laying out my credentials because I’m not that different from hundreds of other forensic scientists out there but I want you to know that I do have the expertise to write about these topics. I have served as the president of the Association for Crime Scene Reconstruction, Rocky Mountain Association of Bloodstain Pattern Analysts, and the Rocky Mountain Division of the International Association for Identification. While in law enforcement I was triple board certified in forensic related fields and one of only 40 board-certified bloodstain pattern analysts and 80 board-certified footwear examiners worldwide.
In addition to writing over 60 scientific papers, I have worked as the editor of an international peer-reviewed science journal and have been interviewed by and consulted for television, text books, novels, magazines, and newspaper articles including documentaries on the Discovery Channel and National Geographic. (Adair, http://forensics4fiction.wordpress.com/about/). 
Adair says he created the site to provide information about forensics to crime writers and readers alike.  As a crime writer, I can say without pause that tracking this site will kick-start your imagination.  Getting to know Tom Adair through the crime writer social media site CrimeSpace is likely to pay dividends as well.  He seems willing to provide suggestions and advice if you need help getting the details right when writing about a particular crime situation.  For example Tom writes, “Crime scenes can be very diverse and certain forensic applications in one case may not be appropriate in another. If you have questions please forward them to me and I’ll do my best to address them as they pertain to your specific plot.”

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