Guns, Drugs and Dinero, Writer Calls For Help

Next time a writer calls for help, I’ll be ready with a set answer, “Can I check my schedule and get back with you?”  Especially if the request involves guns, drugs and dinero.

How It All Started

Let me start at the beginning.  A few weeks ago, my friend, Julie, had cornea and lens replacement right before she was set to release her novel, PILZ. After weeks of working on a cover design with a prior designer, deadlines and obligations got in the way and forced her to search for someone new. That someone was me.

I received her email at midnight in Times Roman size 20 font.  Dear God, the surgery made her blind.  But, I think she used this as a way to trick me into helping.  I was just an amateur photographer.  What could I do?

Back and forth we emailed.  She sent me an example of her dream cover and we arranged a photo shoot for Friday.

Guns, Drugs and Dinero

My last email to Julie:

Don’t forget to bring the .38 Special.  Gather up bags of prescription drugs from your senior friends.  You need way more pills for the cover.  And don’t say you can’t find any.  Bring piles of cash too, at least two thousand dollars, fifties and hundreds only.

My husband read the email and expressed his concern for my safety, “I really don’t want her coming over her, especially when I’m gone.  You never know.”

In the end, it all worked out and a graphic artist pulled through at the eleventh hour to design the perfect cover.  And just so you know, Julie’s earlier response to my request for pills went as follows:

“It isn’t that I can’t find pills.  The problem is that to ask people for their left over controlled substances is soliciting drugs.  Technically it’s a crime. I don’t think it would ever be a real problem, but I hate to put people in that position.”

PILZ – The Novel

PILZ is a sizzling crime thriller written by an insider whose legal career exposed her to the underbelly of the medical profession. It is spine-tingling murder and betrayal that will leave you wondering how far to trust your family doctor.

Julie Royce, attorney, is currently editing two novels: her legal thriller PILZ and her historical fiction story Ardent Spirit, about American fur trader, Magdelaine LaFramboise. Julie has published two travel guides and writes a monthly travel column for Her website and blog are at

About staceygustafson


  1. The pill deal for PILZ is hysterical. Knowing you both and about the book cover dilemma, makes your post is even more humorous.
    The cover turned out great.

  2. jeania murphy says

    Really fun little piece…keep em coming.

  3. Love this. Really cute.

    If that email got into the wrong hands, you’d have lots of ‘splain to do!

  4. Reading this blog was a challenge. Seeing nothing but a white fog with my left eye, and having to be six inches from my oversized computer screen to see anything with my right, it was still worth the effort. You find the funny in everything. Thanks for the smile and thanks for your friendship and patience.

  5. Hector Timourian says

    great story, and it’s true. It’s a good thing the police didn’t see the email.

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