Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Starving The Beast

I've been on hiatus for quite some time, and I'm feeling the bite. Social media is a beast that dies if you don't feed it. The same goes for author fame and book royalties.

Nearly three years ago, I transferred hospitals and went from part-time to full-time. Then a little over a year ago, a radical change in my personal life thrust me into the role of single mother to three teens. I've managed, but it has all but extinguished my writing career.

It also lowered my search engine status and the number of visitors to my blog when I do post. And my book royalties have taken a big hit. I realize not publishing a novel in almost four years has been a significant factor, but the lack of blogging and tweeting hasn't helped.

My spirit is also lagging. I love writing, and I miss it terribly. Worst of all, I feel like I've let my readers down. I have all these ideas for stories but no time to research and write them. I know that will eventually change, but will my heart and my readership survive until it does?

I poured myself into my family this summer. My twins are seniors this year, and though their older sister still lives at home, she's already in college. This could likely be the last summer they have together before they go their separate ways.

Now that they're back in school, I've made a decision to blog again, even if it's only once a month. I'd do it more often, but I don't like to blog without making visits.

I've also got a writing project in the works. Well, it's more of a polishing project. I'm getting the first two novels I ever wrote ready for publication. Maybe -writing gods willing- I can get them published before the end of the year.

I've really, really missed you guys. How've you been?
What's going on in your life?

Sunday, May 27, 2018

New Release! Some Very Messy Medieval Magic by C Lee McKenzie

I'm peeking out of my hiatus hidey hole once more to help a friend. Author C Lee McKenzie lost her husband just days after her latest book release. Lee is a talented author and a lovely human being. Please help us spread the word for her.


By C. Lee McKenzie

Pete’s stuck in medieval England!

Pete and his friend Weasel thought they’d closed the Time Lock. But a young page from medieval times, Peter of Bramwell, goes missing. His absence during a critical moment will forever alter history unless he’s found.

There’s only one solution - fledgling wizard Pete must take the page’s place. Accompanied by Weasel and Fanon, Pete’s alligator familiar, they travel to 1173 England.

But what if the page remains lost - will Pete know what to do when the critical moment arrives? Toss in a grumpy Fanon, the duke’s curious niece, a talking horse, and the Circle of Stones and Pete realizes he’s in over his young wizard head yet again...

Release date – May 15, 2018
Juvenile Fiction - Fantasy & Magic/Boys & Men
$13.95 Print ISBN 9781939844460
$3.99 EBook ISBN 9781939844477

C. Lee McKenzie has a background in Linguistics and Inter-Cultural Communication, but these days her greatest passion is writing for young readers. When she’s not writing she’s hiking or traveling or practicing yoga or asking a lot questions about things she still doesn’t understand. http://cleemckenziebooks.com

Get your copy here!

Monday, April 30, 2018

New Release! TICK TOCK: A Stitch in Crime

I've come out of hiding to help announce the release of the IWSG anthology, Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime. What a great theme!

A big congratulations to IWSG and the contributing authors!

Thanks for hosting the Tick Tock Mystery writers, Melissa!

We’re all very excited about the upcoming release of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group anthology. When we answered the call for the mystery / crime / thriller genre submissions, the stipulation was that the story had to revolve around a clock, or be time sensitive or something related to a time theme.

What is time? According to Wikipedia, “Time is the indefinite continued progression of existence and events that occur in apparently irreversible succession from the past through the present to the future.”

In the Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime anthology, we have this definition covered at all different angles.

Check it out!

A Stitch in Crime. A play on the old saying, a stitch in time saves nine. Meaning that taking care of a small problem now, saves a lot of work later. In this story, forging a link between this world and the next saves an eternity of separation.

Three O’clock Execution. A man is convicted of murdering his wife—is there enough time to clear him if he’s innocent? A wrong result is irreversible.

Until Release. The time theme at its best. Seven characters with different points of view converge until they meet at a certain point in time.

Cypress, Like the Tree. The Cypress tree is symbolic of immortality. Immortality and time go hand in hand.

Center Lane. What do you do when you know you only have 48 minutes left?

The Tide Waits. Time and tide wait for no man is a saying that predates modern English. The premise fits this story perfectly. Even the rich and powerful have to answer to the tides.

Heartless. With countless girls already dead, the race is on to find the next victim before it’s too late. A classic mystery/time theme.

One More Minute. About the extra time you need when you can’t say goodbye. The minute we all wish we had.

Reset. A wrong needs to be righted. Don’t we all wish we could travel back in time to change something?

The Little Girl in the Bayou. History is about to repeat itself unless a girl can be reached in time.

Gussy Saint and the Case of the Missing Co-ed. Gumshoe at its best…but can the hard-boiled detective account for his time when he becomes a suspect?

We hope you enjoy our stories. There is a variety to choose from in nearly any mystery/crime/thriller sub-genre. It’s on pre-sale now at all major venues and will be released on May 1st by Dancing Lemur Press.

Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime

Can a dead child’s cross-stitch pendant find a missing nun? 
Is revenge possible in just 48 minutes? 
Can a killer be stopped before the rescuers are engulfed by a city ablaze? 
Who killed what the tide brought in? 
Can a soliloquizing gumshoe stay out of jail?

Exploring the facets of time, eleven authors delve into mysteries and crimes that linger in both dark corners and plain sight. Featuring the talents of Gwen Gardner, Rebecca M. Douglass, Tara Tyler, S. R. Betler, C.D. Gallant-King, Jemi Fraser, J. R. Ferguson, Yolanda Renée, C. Lee McKenzie, Christine Clemetson, and Mary Aalgaard.

Hand-picked by a panel of agents and authors, these eleven tales will take you on a thrilling ride into jeopardy and secrecy. Trail along, find the clues, and stay out of danger. Time is wasting…

Release date - May 1, 2018
Mystery & Detective/Crime/Thrillers
Print ISBN 9781939844545 eBook ISBN 9781939844552

And it is now up for Pre-order. Get your copy today!

Friday, February 23, 2018

Book Wedding!

Hello, friends. Long time, no see. I've missed all you cyber-buddies more than you know.

I'm taking a break from my (crappy-life-imposed) hiatus to tell you about the upcoming nuptials of good friend, and a unique promo opportunity.

Most of you know by now that my alter ego is a NICU nurse. One of my co-workers--an awesome young lady whose bubbly personality makes me smile every time I see her--is getting married in May. She and her husband-to-be are planning a special theme, and they need our help.

Shyrleen and Chris both love to read, so Shyrleen decided to incorporate books into the table decorations at her wedding reception. Not only that--these books will become gifts for her guests when they leave! Neat, huh?!

That's where we come in. Shyrleen has been gathering books from friends and secondhand stores, but she needs more. When I heard about her plans, I offered to donate some copies and spread the word. I get to help a good friend, promote reading, and get some (almost) free advertising. It's a win-win-win!

Here are the details...

What: New or gently used books. Novels are great, but non-fiction works, too. (Content preference: No sex, mild language, violence okay.) Sending duplicate copies is okay as long as the number is within reason.

There will be children at the reception, so children's and middle-grade books are welcome.

Bookmarks and related swag (pens, etc.) are also welcome. Authors, consider autographing your books and swag.

When: Shyrleen and Chris have set a date in mid-May, so I'll set mid-April as the deadline.

Where: I've offered to collect the items and deliver them to Shyrleen. Mail donations to Truelove Press.

What do you think of Shyrleen's bookish reception?

How's your life going? Any exciting news?

Monday, October 30, 2017

Release day! FULL DARK: An Anthology

We made it! FULL DARK is now available!

Cover designed & donated by Dark City Designs
Thank you, Harper L. Jameson! 

What happens in the dark will come to light.

Full Dark is a collection of eleven short works with impressive depth and range. Twisted tales of ghosts, villains, and the paranormal await you—mystery, heinous fantasy, and pure suspense. Acclaimed and award-winning authors as well as a few talented newcomers have joined forces to be your guide. Venture into the dark if you dare.

Just A Matter Of Time by Loni Townsend
Forerunner by David Powers King
Taking Care Of You by Carrie Butler
The Apartment by Lisa Buie-Collard
The Caricature by Nick Wilford
Shifting Sands by Elizabeth Seckman
Shadows Falling On Rainbows by Celeste Holloway
Meringue, Murder or Marzipan by Tonja Drecker
Haunted Lake by Michelle Athy
Soul Coin by Laura Rich
Retribution by Melissa Maygrove


FULL DARK is a benefit anthology. 100% of the proceeds will be donated to the Gary Sinise Foundation, an organization that does many wonderful things for our country's active military, its veterans, and the countless first responders who sacrifice so much to keep us safe.

Publisher: Obsidian Books
Official release date: October 30, 2017
Paperback ISBN: 978-0-9960397-4-1

Where to buy: 

We're also on Goodreads

Follow on Twitter: #FullDark11 
Share tweets and help us trend!

And tell your friends!
Reading anthologies is a great way to find new authors.

I'd like to send a huge THANK YOU to all the contributing authors, as well as Harper Jameson and Diane Wolfe, who worked so diligently on this project, stuck with me through the rough spots, and met some insane deadlines. You guys are the best. I'd also like to thank all the friends and bloggers who helped promote FULL DARK. We appreciate you!