The First Two Pages: “The Hospital Boomerang” by Kevin Tipple

In April 2015, B.K. Stevens debuted the blog series “The First Two Pages,” hosting craft essays by short story writers and novelists analyzing the openings of their own work. The series continued until just after her death in August 2017, and the full archive of those essays can be found at Bonnie’s website. In November 2017, the blog series relocated to my website, and the archive of this second stage of the series can be found here.

Kevin Tipple is the current president of the Short Mystery Fiction Society, but even outside of his official position, he’s been a long-term champion of both short stories and the SMFS and the genre more widely. While many people may know Kevin best for his work with the organization and for his reviewing and blogging, he’s also an accomplished fiction writer as well, with stories in publications including Lynx EyeStarbladeShow and TellThe Writer’s Post JournalMystery Magazine, and others, and in anthologies too, most recently Notorious in North Texas: Metroplex Mysteries Volume III. His latest story, “The Hospital Boomerang,” was published in the new collection Larceny & Last Chances: 22 Stories of Mystery and Suspense, and it’s already earned a fine honor, being selected by fellow short story writer Robert Lopresti as the story of the week at Little Big Crimes!

Edited by Judy Penz Sheluk, Larceny & Last Chances features stories by Christina Boufis, John Bukowski, Brenda Chapman, Susan Daly, Wil A. Emerson, Tracy Falenwolfe, Kate Fellowes, Molly Wills Fraser, Gina X. Grant, Karen Grose, Wendy Harrison, Julie Hastrup, Larry M. Keeton, Charlie Kondek, Edward Lodi, Bethany Maines, Gregory Meece, Cate Moyle, Judy Penz Sheluk, KM Rockwood, Kevin R. Tipple, and Robert Weibezahl. You can find several buy links for the book here.

As Kevin explains in the essay below, his approach to writing short stories may be a little different from other writers’ process, but the essay offers a great look at how writers might draw inspiration from various sources—and in the process, gives us a nice preview of the story itself.

Thanks to Kevin for his work here and for his commitment to short mystery fiction generally. And do check out last week’s essay by another of the anthology’s authors, Julie Hastrup, writing on her story “Skeeter’s Bar and Grill.”

Please use the arrows and controls at the bottom of the embedded PDF to navigate through the essay. You can also download the essay to read off-line.


4 thoughts on “The First Two Pages: “The Hospital Boomerang” by Kevin Tipple

  1. Larry Chavis

    Interesting process, Kevin, and a great essay. By the way, where can I donate to the iguana thing? 😉

    Keep on writing, Jefe!

    Larry Chavis

  2. Justin L Murphy

    Congrats on getting profiled and all the best with your short stories. You’ve done a lot of good for The SMFS.


    1. Kevin Ralton Tipple

      The Real Person!

      Author Kevin Ralton Tipple acts as a real person and passed all tests against spambots. Anti-Spam by CleanTalk.

      Thank you, Justin. I tried.

  3. Kevin Ralton Tipple

    Thank you, Art, for the opportunity to explain myself a bit today. Hope the takeaway is that there is no one and only right way to do things. The point is to get the words down.

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