The Purse Project: Kate Collier

What does my purse say about me? Let’s start with why I have Vera Bradley purse.


Because it’s a colorful floral; all those pockets keep me organized; the strap is cross-body; and the bag weighs next to nothing. I also love the whole idea of two women turning a good product idea into a thriving business that benefits breast cancer research.


The matching zippered pouch holds delicious lip balm to prevent chapped lips and eyedrops to soothe my dry eyes. Why suffer when I want to take a walk on the lakeshore on a cold windy day?  Or when I can’t tear myself away from a writing session? The pouch also hides my loyalty cards. I recently added the black one, for MacKimmee’s on Church Street in Lenox, MA, where I finally found a simple black alpaca sweater, warm enough for the coldest days, dressy enough for dinner, and lightweight enough to carry in a weekend bag.


Two other cards are neither credit cards nor loyalty cards. The one on the left is an appointment card; that’s my acupuncturist’s office, which was originally the Trolley Barn for my town. The lime green card? That’s for Sonnenberg, an impressive mansion in my town. I love walking the grounds, meditating in the Japanese Garden, smelling the roses in the formal garden, and taking pictures of the changing landscape as the seasons unfold. The fabric pencil box was made by a cousin who is both a romance author and a talented craftsperson. Even though I do all my writing on my laptop, I’m lost out in the world without sharpened pencils (with erasers, please!) to jot ideas and write notes.


These items are obvious: a bookmark for my romance series, a business card for my mystery series, a B&N coupon, a hair clip, and mouthwash. Those in the know recognize the anniversary coin from a 12-step program (29 years and counting!). But what in heaven’s name is the teeny old man hugging his knees and wearing a quirky cap? That’s a Piskie from Cornwall.  I don’t leave home without that Piskie, and I don’t let anyone see me rubbing it for good luck.


Ah, more items that are always in my purse: a pick to tame wind damage after a walk, hand sanitizer, nourishing lotion for my hands, and yummy gluten free fig newtons.


Finally, the one item that’s so valuable it has to be pinned to the inside of my purse: the smartkey to my hybrid vehicle. I love my Prius, which is pushing 100,000 miles and still getting 48+ mpg. You’re thinking, cars come with two keys, don’t they? Yes, and mine did, too. But somehow I lost one key during a trip to Ireland, the trip before I got the Cornish Piskie.




Writing as C. T. Collier, Kate’s newest release is Planted, first in The Penningtons Investigate, a series of traditional mysteries set in the Finger Lakes of upstate New York.

Learn more about C. T. Collier and the Penningtons at:


2 thoughts on “The Purse Project: Kate Collier

  1. C. T. Collier says:

    So good to be on Comptonplations today, MJ! Thanks for the opportunity to meet your readers and tell a little about myself and my new mystery series, The Penningtons Investigate. What’s in everyone’s purse this holiday season? 🙂

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