Live at the Scene

Live at the Scene is an investigation in the most literal sense. When young TV reporter Cadence and her cameraman Drew are assigned to a disturbing kidnapping case near Sacramento, Cadence discovers she’s not content to sit back and trust in the small town cops. She launches her own investigation, and in the process, scrutinizes journalists’ complex roles as both voyeurs for the public, and trusted filters. And because one of the missing children has a troubled past she can’t help but identify with, she begins to examine her own history as well. The investigations feed off each other until both come to a tumultuous climax on the same night.

While Live at the Scene is driven by the themes of exploited innocence and morality in journalism, there are lighter sides too. We follow Cadence's neurotic daydreams, her interactions with her comical, tortured-artist sister, and her attempts to connect with Drew.

The book was inspired by the 2009 killing of Sandra Cantu in Tracy, California. I was working as broadcast news writer at the time, haunted by how reporters could spend all day soaking in the details of this case and then go on camera calm, collected, and dry-eyed. I still work as a TV news writer and producer. I have a master’s in creative writing from Saint Mary’s College of California, and my first book, a memoir, is due out from Ooligan Press in 2019. The 109,000-word manuscript of Live at the Scene is under revision, but I would love to send it to an agent with serious interest.