A blog about writing and all things story…
So sad to hear about the death of our local true crime writer, Ann Rule. I had the pleasure of meeting Ann and having dinner with her one day (2004) at a PNWA conference that I attended as a spanking new writer. She gave me her business card, and an autographed copy of Without Pity. Then we met for coffee a few months later. Ann made me promise to not give up writing. She said it was a long haul but if it was something I really wanted, to just keep at it.
We talked about our mutual loves; gardening and second hand stores, namely Value Village and St Vincent De Paul. We were alike in our love for spending endless hours in gardens of lost treasures.
We also talked a good deal about Ted Bundy who (obviously) she knew, and how I once was acquainted with a sister of one of his victims. I worked with this woman and when we were unexpectedly thrown into the press spotlight via our jobs, I had to take over because she feared being recognized. We grew close on our job, and she told me her gruesome story –part of which was how she had ridden in his blue Volkswagen and how she had nightmares after he was discovered, nightmares of being trapped in that car, or wondering why he left her alone. I can’t share more here, but I did with Ann. She knew who I meant.
Ann once wrote of Ted Bundy in The Stranger Beside Me, the book about Bundy that brought her fame in 1980, ultimately selling more than 2 million copies. “I liked him immediately. It would have been hard not to. He brought me a cup of coffee and waved his arm over the awesome banks of phone lines.” Bundy’s first words to Ann were “You think we can handle all this?”
Then Ann told me about her first SPINE-CHILLING sightings and memories of the Green River Killer, Gary Ridgway. So Disturbing! She actually saw him in the back of a book store during one of her book signings, just watching her. She realized this later when she saw police picture of him, that he was the man that showed up at random signings and stood in the back of the crowd. She later learned he wanted her to write his story. There’s so much more to the story, but its Ann’s not mine. Enough said. Still, SO SPINE-CHILLING!
Anyway, you were a great story teller, Ann, but mostly you were a lovely, kind and generous person.
Thank you for spending a little bit of time with me.
Good-bye Ann Rule.
To read more about Ann Rule’s relationship with true crime, and Ted Bundy visit this page at The Washington Post.
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