Free Panel on Writing Fiction Using Psychology in Studio City

Learn how crime writers use psychological perspectives to motivate characters and build suspense  

The Southern California Chapter of Mystery Writers of America is hosting afree panel discussion, Biblioanalysis: Psychology in Mystery Writing, at the Studio City Public Library, 12511 Moorpark Street, Studo City, California 91604, on  Saturday, May 17, beginning at 3:00 p.m. The event is open to the public.

The scheduled panel members are:

  • DENNIS PALUMBO (Moderator)

L.A. Times Bestselling Author Stephen Jay Schwartz spent a number of years as the Director of Development for Wolfgang Petersen, where he worked with writers, producers and studio executives to develop screenplays for production. Among the film projects he helped develop are Air Force One, Outbreak and Bicentennial Man. His two novels, Boulevard and Beat, follow the dysfunctional journey of LAPD Robbery-Homicide detective Hayden Glass as he fights crime while struggling with his own sex-addiction. Stephen has worked professionally as a screenwriter and is currently writing an international thriller.

Christa Faust is the author of a dozen novels, including Choke Hold, Money Shot and Hoodtown. Money Shot was nominated for an Edgar award, Anthony award and Barry award, and won a Spinetingler award. She worked in the Times Square peep booths, as a professional dominatrix, and in the adult film industry both behind and in front of the cameras for over a decade. She lives and writes in Los Angeles.
Craig Faustus Buck spent most of his career as a journalist, TV writer-producer, and nonfiction book author. He is now concentrating on crime writing and feature films. He co-authored four pop-psychology books including a #1 NYT nonfiction bestseller and incorporates that background into his crime fiction. He has published numerous short stories, his noir novella, Psycho Logic will be published in April by the Stark Raving Group, and his agent is currently shopping his novel, Go Down Hard, which won First Runner Up for the Claymore Award at Killer Nashville. His indie feature film, Smuggling for Gandhi, is currently in preproduction, slated to be shot in June.

Laurie Stevens is a novelist, screenwriter and playwright. Her debut novel, The Dark Before Dawn, begins a psychological suspense series. The novel earned the Kirkus Star, was named to Krkus Reviews’ “Best of 2011,” and was honored at the 2012 Hollywood Book Festival. Deep into Dusk, the second in the series, won the Southern California Book Festival, was honored at the London Book Fest, and named Shelf Unbound’s 2013 Notable Page-Turner. Her story “Kill Joy” is featured in the anthology, Last Exit to Murder. Laurie lives near Los Angeles with her husband and two children. To learn more, visit

Formerly a Hollywood screenwriter (My Favorite Year; Welcome Back, Kotter, etc.), Dennis Palumbo is now a licensed psychotherapist and author of Writing From the Inside Out (John Wiley). He also blogs regularly forThe Huffington Post and Psychology Today. His mystery fiction has appeared in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, The Strand, Written By and elsewhere, and is collected in From Crime to Crime (Tallfellow Press). His acclaimed series of mystery thrillers (Mirror Image, Fever Dream, and the latest, Night Terrors), feature Daniel Rinaldi, a psychologist who consults with the Pittsburgh Police. The next, Phantom Limb, comes out in September. All are from Poisoned Pen Press. For more info, please visit

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