Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Sarah Weinman is a character

Sarah Weinman is a character. I'm not talking about the real Sarah Weinman, but the characters she has inspired in novels.

In this post, I noted her appearance in Michael Connelly's Echo Park:
On page 211, Connelly's protagonist Harry Bosch is on the phone with a reporter with whom he has traded information in past. He wants the unlisted telephone number of a politician who has slimed Bosch in the papers. The reporter doesn't want to give up the number and risk getting caught.
Bosch quickly grabbed the Daily News, which was folded to the page with the political fallout story. He read the byline.

"Okay, well maybe Sarah Weinman or Duane Swierczynski will feel comfortable giving it to me. They might want to have an IOU from somebody who's in the middle of this thing."
It works: Harry gets the number.

Sarah Weinman and Duane Swierczynski don't cover crime in L.A. for the Daily News, but they're real persons who are up to their ears in crime elsewhere.
I checked with Sarah to see where else her fictional counterpart may have appeared. Here's what she replied:
it was very cool of Connelly to namecheck me and Duane...had no advance word. As it happens my name was also used in Robert Crais's HOSTAGE and Sparkle Hayter's NAKED BRUNCH (where I was a dead werewolf chick with extreme sexual proclivities. Gotta love Sparkle...)
Here's the passage from Hostage:
Talley started the car and eased off the hard-packed soil of the orchard onto a gravel road, following it down to the state highway that ran the length of the Santa Clarita Valley. When he reached the highway, he turned up his radio and heard Sarah Weinman, the BCPD dispatch officer, shouting frantically over the link.
In Naked Brunch "Sarah Weinman" has a few more lines. A character "Carol" is talking about her with someone else:
"It was a terrible time for the Center. A young girl came into the program, Sarah Weinman. Darling young woman, so funny, so full of life. She and I would get going and laugh so hard we'd pee our pants...."
And "Sarah" figures further in the story.

--Marshal Zeringue