Mystery writer Barbara Mertz of Frederick has donated $100,000 to Hood College to set up a scholarship fund for minority students interested in pursuing a mystery writing career.
"I first got the idea when I attended a mystery convention several years ago and saw no minority writers, men or women," said Ms. Mertz, who has written more than 50 mystery and suspense novels under the names of Barbara Michaels and Elizabeth Peters.
"While there are many good black women writers, there are to the best of my knowledge, none writing mystery novels," she said.
Hood sophomore Nicole Morris of West Orange, N.J., is the first recipient of the Elizabeth Peters-Barbara Michaels Scholarship. The scholarships will be renewable, with a new scholarship awarded each year based on a student's writing ability.