Egger, Andrea (A.) 1967-

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EGGER, Andrea (A.) 1967-

PERSONAL: Born December 7, 1967, in Elgin, IL; daughter of George W. and M. Marjorie (Boehm) Egger; children: Jeffrey A. Rider, Jr. (stepson). Ethnicity: "Caucasian." Education: University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign, B.S. Politics: Democrat. Religion: Baptist.

ADDRESSES: Home—411 West Mesa Ave., Gallup, NM 87301. Office—Gallup Independent, 500 Ninth St., Gallup, NM 87301; fax: 505-722-5750. Agent—Danielle Chiotti, Lee Shore Agency, Philadelphia, PA. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER: Gallup Independent, Gallup, NM, reporter, c. 1994—.

AWARDS, HONORS: Best in show award and first-place award, New Mexico Associated Press, for investigative reporting.

WRITINGS:

Grave Accusations (nonfiction), New Horizon Press (Far Hills, NJ), 2001.

WORK IN PROGRESS: Two "true-crime" books, Ice upon My Soul and Trails and Tribulations, with Thomas F. Mumford.

SIDELIGHTS: Andrea Egger told CA: "I have always been a writer, since I wrote short stories as a child. I didn't consider that as a career until I was in college and had to pick an undergraduate degree before going on to law school. However, once I took my first journalism course, I was hooked, and I never had the urge again to be a lawyer. (Well, OK, the money would be better.) I have worked at my current job on the crime beat for eight years, and I fell in love with the field. I would like to be the next Ann Rule and Edna Buchanan combined into one person. When I was inspired to write my first book, Grave Accusations, I found my true niche in writing—books, and true crime in general. Living in the small southwestern town of Gallup, New Mexico, I find this a very untapped area as far as true crime is concerned, and I see many more books coming out of this area. Grave Accusations was conceived after a trial I covered for the newspaper about a police officer in Farmington, New Mexico, two hours north, who was accused of shooting his wife to death in the abdomen with a shotgun.

"The issue of whether his wife could have killed herself seemed preposterous—or is it? The book investigates this and proves the killer's identity beyond almost all doubt. After this trial I kicked around the idea of a book, because it was such a bizarre occurrence and a serious injustice people needed to know about. After a few wasted years of 'You can't write a book; you're not that good' and other insecurities, I finished the book, found an agency, and they found New Horizon, my publisher. That's a lot easiersounding than the process really was—lots of rejection letters before the agent and even more before the publisher. But I was inspired by a foreword in John Grisham's A Time to Kill, in which he described more rejection letters than I received for that book, his first book, and a first publication of an obscure 5,000 copies from a small publishing house until The Firm got him recognized and the movies began.

"Writing will always remain my passion in life, and although I am a terrible procrastinator, I will get my work published. I'm determined to do so."