Writer’s Notes

Writer’s Notes


10 Responses to “Writer’s Notes”

  1. Lee Says:


    update to Teena Brandon/John Lotter/Tom Nissen case.

  2. indianni Says:

    Thank you. I’ll add an update on Crime Library.

  3. phil powers Says:

    i was wondering after reading about the axeman of new orleans how is it he was able to kill his victims in their sleep after breaking down their door with an axe i’d think they would hear that noise especially knowing there was a serial killer on the loose so yeah were they really still asleep after he broke the doors down or did he kill them and then break the door down while leaving i mean wouldnt their neighbors also hear the noise of the door breaking down it just seemed abit odd and i thought maybe you might have come across an article to explain that part

  4. indianni Says:

    There’s a big difference between breaking a door from the outside and the inside, so I don’t think anyone would have mistaken them. It’s also possible that he removed part of the door in some other manner, and it’s likely the doors were rather flimsy. He probably broken them quite quickly.At that time, no one was using the phrase “serial killer.” For all anyone knew, it was the work of a hitman for organized crime.

  5. PAM PYLANT Says:

    I have read the Clairmont Serial killer story and I am perplexed as to how they can have the name of the perpetrator early on and a whole lot of evidence against him and yet they allowed him to go on killing people?? They even had witnesses who apparently were not interviewed in your story. Couldnt they have identified him in a line-up without letting more women be killed. I dont think this particular story had a very good investigation done and yet you go into detail about all the logistics. It wouldnt take someone with any common sense to put two and two together here. It seems to me when someone is labeled as a victim it doesnt magnify the point that these are people with lives just like you and me and they were killed senselessly. I prefer to have them named as more than a victim. Very scary!!

  6. indianni Says:

    It’s easy to ask these questions in retrospect because we see more from this perspective, but the police did not have good evidence against him at first. It’s not quite fair to decide how poor an investigation was unless you can clearly state there was cover-up or totally inept handling. No investigation is easy, and not all cops are well-trained.

  7. Gaye Lynn F. Says:

    I read the Clairemont Serial Killer today and it was an eerie experience for me. I, too, lived in the Canyon Ridge apartments at the time of the first murder. I was across the parking lot from where Tiffany was killed, also in an upstairs apartment. I moved to Pacific Beach for a month, came back and moved into an apartment in Buena Vista Gardens, just before the second murder. My roomate was a leasing agent for the apartments and was required to tell potential renters about the murders. She was also friends with the maintenance man who found Holly, and I vividly remember him telling us the details, standing in our apartment that was identical to hers.

    You wrote that a city councilman met with some Clairemont residents and they were in a “state of terror”. I’d say that’s pretty accurate for many of us. I remember the Guardian Angels patrolling the streets. We installed cheap alarms on our doors and slept with knives under our pillows. In addition to being scared, I was very angry that one person could hold an entire neighborhood hostage. My friends and I would call each other when we got home from work and say, “I’m not dead, are you?”. “No, I’m not dead yet”. Our dark humor was the only way to stop feeling so insane about it. Sometimes I would just feel this scream welling up inside me.

    What I did not know about was many of the details you wrote about. I did not realize he was a resident of our apartments. I also was a member of the Family Fitness on Miramar and hadn’t made that connection. I never heard all of the details of the trial as I had married and moved away by the time it took place. But as a woman who (at the time) was of similar age and description to the victims, your story hit closer to home than it did even at the time. And to think I had moved to Clairemont because I found North Park to be too crime ridden. There, my upstairs neighbor had been murdered and left for two days before the police kicked in his door and found him. I thought Clairemont would be quiet and uneventful.

    Until today I did not realize that much of my tendency to advocate for women suffering in violent relationships stems from the anger I felt during the murders. No woman (or man) should suffer the way those women did. And no neighborhood or family should be held hostage by one person.

    Thank you for your work. I will have to read more of it!

  8. indianni Says:

    Hey, thanks for letting me know. This series of murders really does underscore the notion that random murder can show up anywhere, even in the safety of your home. Predators can always figure out how to get what they want. I found the legal proceedings for the appeal interesting as well.
    I do appreciate that you took the time to tell me about your ordeal from those days. I’m sure it was horrific. And I’m glad it’s been channeled for something good.

  9. Derek Says:

    Ms. Ramsland,

    Do you have any advice for an amateur historian who would like to get a “True Crime” book published? I have what I believe to be an interesting story and an outline of the book. I am still gathering information and I have nothing close to publishable, but I do have a rough draft of the first three chapters. ANY advice or tips would be appreciated. How do I get my foot in the door of a publisher? Are there any who accept unsolicited work? Is this all a big waste of time?

  10. indianni Says:

    Go to conferences specific to your genre and meet editors and agents. Face to face is the best venue. It’s a difficult endeavor, but it’s not a waste of time. To find conferences, go to the Website for Writers Digest.

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