Vanessa Westermann’s debut mystery, An Excuse For Murder, was published in 2019 by The Wild Rose Press. Author Carolyn Hart called it “a riveting introduction to a charming, smart bookstore owner… and a lovely launch for a great new sleuth“.
An avid reader of mysteries, Vanessa is a former Arthur Ellis Awards judge, and has given a talk on the evolution of women’s crime writing, at the Toronto Chapter of Sisters in Crime. She holds an M.A. in English Literature, as well as a Bachelor of Education, and teaches creative writing.
Vanessa’s first foray into the world of crime writing began at the age of twelve, when she submitted a mystery short story to a children’s fiction contest. She did not win, nor was she shortlisted, but her parents did receive a letter from a concerned psychologist, wondering if Vanessa had witnessed a crime. This was not the case, although she had founded a spy club that recorded observations, using a code created with DIY cipher discs. Disappointingly, this never led to any startling revelations, besides the amount of caffeine grown-ups seemed to need.
Now a caffeine addict herself, she loves to draft her mysteries in cafés, using a fountain pen and a notebook, although she no longer writes in code.
Vanessa is a member of International Thriller Writers (ITW) and Crime Writers of Canada (CWC).
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For author photos, please credit Robin Westermann Bespoke Millinery.
Vanessa Westermann acknowledges funding support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.