“Love Me Or Leave Me” in Music of the Night

This week marks the publication of the new Crime Writers Association anthology Music of the Night—and with it, my first major full-length story in well over a year: “Love Me or Leave Me.”

“Love Me or Leave Me” begins with a man searching to find the source of some music heard dimly in the distance—at night, of course, given the anthology’s theme—only to discover that his girlfriend doesn’t seem to hear it at all. The search takes on an obsessive turn, and then a twist—before shifting to the girlfriend’s point of view. In all, the story has four sections, four different perspectives, and four different ways of storytelling, including a section comprised entirely of text messages.

The full title of the story is “Love Me or Leave Me: A Fugue in G Minor”—and while I doubt that subtitle will make the final edition of the book, it hopefully gives its own clues to my approach. While each of those four sections of the story are distinct, each of them strives to incorporate a set series of elements, playing on some variation of the given theme.

Music of the Night is edited by the great Martin Edwards, published by Flame Tree Press, and distributed in the U.S. by Simon & Schuster. The list of contributors is simply terrific—full contents below. I’m so proud to have my story alongside theirs, and feeling fortunate as well that three contributors will offer First Two Pages essays on their stories: Peter Lovesey, Christine Poulson, and Andrew Taylor. Stay tuned for those essays ahead.