TCP Ep. 13. Serial Killers: 101 Questions True Crime Fans Ask with Dr. Joni Johnston

This was an amazing interview. I had information overload going into this not only because of the information contained in Dr. Johnston’s book but because of the interesting aspects of her career and research. I could have talked to Dr. Johnston for hours.

Dr. Joni Johnston is a clinical/forensic psychologist, private investigator, and true crime writer who became interested in the dark side of human nature after reading Helter Skelter, Vincent Bugliosi’s book about the Manson family when she was fourteen. She has spent her professional career in prisons, forensic hospitals, and courts and has worked with both offenders and victims. She also has a passion for communicating forensic psychology to the public and writes a blog for Psychology Today (The Human Equation), has a YouTube channel (Unmasking a Murderer), and a podcast (Behind the Mask). She also has a SubStack Newsletter, The Mind Detective. Her website is

Her book, Serial Killers, 101 Questions True Crime Fans Ask is a fascinating read where she takes fan questions and uses them as a platform to do a deep dive into a bunch of different issues surrounding the phenomenon of the serial killer and why we are so fascinated by true crime.

Don’t Forget, Blood Red Ivory available on audio, ebook, paper, and hardcover!

Thank you to Crush Limbo , “Yuppies on Scooters,” for the music.

Started with the TDW? Growing into the That’s Criminal Podcast

I’m a crime writer so I guess it fits the trope that I have a crime blog. Though I like the whole dark and scary true crime thing I can’t stand the idea of yet another one of those showing up on the internet. So here is the TDW? (“They Did What?”). True crime, just a little different.

I have an exercise I do where I like to practice writing by creating a scene based on something I find in the news. I know the usual crime beat covers the dark stuff but more often than not I’m drawn to the most ridiculous crime stories I can find.

I write about capers committed by the dumbest, or maybe the most ingenious criminals you’ve never heard of. It entertains me. If it entertains you, great. If not, I’m sure there’s somebody sitting in their mom’s basement typing away about some serial killer you’ve read about a hundred times before too.

In 2022, after talking to some podcast hosts I got the crazy idea to try out doing my own. I talk true crime, thrillers, and interview interesting authors and people as I come across them. After a dozen or so episodes it has turned into one of those, “Why did it take me so long to do this?” kind of experiences.

Anyway, check out the blog, and the podcast.

That’s Criminal Ep. 2 Notes




That’s Criminal Episode 1 Notes

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