Call me an adolescent teen who spends most of her time in a basement (my office), but I love a good comic book, (alright! Graphic novel) when I read one. I love them even more when I can watch them on TV.
From The Walking Dead – the one I think of as the king of all graphic stories – to TV shows like Gotham, Arrow, Flash and more, the super hero theme isn’t going away anytime soon, nor would I want it to.
Even with all of these great shows, I always approach new attempts with a bit of skepticism. We’ve seen horrid failures as writers and directors take a crack at creating moving-picture-style heroes worthy of the original conception. And it was because of the first Daredevil movie that I figured the Netflix version of it wouldn’t be very interesting.
Available now for less than a dollar
While the Lei Crime Kindle World novella, Hidden Poppies is doing well and getting some early praise, I don’t want you to forget about the Harper Mystery companion short, The Ceremony.
The Ceremony tells the story of what happens when Master Sergeant Lauren Harper is finally recognized for her bravery. The best part is, the story is told from Harry’s perspective. I think you’ll enjoy it!
It’s hard to believe it was less than two months ago that one of my indie publishing idols, bestselling author Toby Neal, asked me to be a part of an incredible project. Amazon intended to launch a Kindle World, featuring Toby’s Lei Crime Series. Part of Toby’s Amazon launch involved convincing nine authors to write the first stories that would populate the new World. What an honor for Toby and what an exciting opportunity for me and eight other authors.
While the amount of time available to actually write the piece made my heart seize up in fear, I knew there was no way I could let the opportunity slide. Besides, there were eight other authors in the same short timeline boat and if there’s one thing I learned from my time in uniform, a challenge is best faced with a team at your back. Continue reading
On those rare occasions when it happens, vindication can be truly sweet. Today I’m basking in the honeyed glow of the I-told-you-so and enjoying every second of it.
Sometime ago, a friend of mine asked me to read her book Ladyboy and the Volunteer. From the first page, I knew I was reading something special. Her unique style and playful view of intense topics surprised me at every turn. That this was her first book astonished me.
Susanne Aspley and I served in the Army Reserve together. She’d been an Army journalist then, so I knew she could write. I had no idea she could write in a way that made me throw back my head in laughter one minute, and wipe a tear from my eye the next. She writes boldly, as if completely unaware of how penetratingly personal her words are. I simply could not put the book down. I admit, I’m one of those annoying people who sometimes talk to the screen when watching a movie or TV show. Susanne’s book had me talking to the pages, encouraging her, in shocked disbelief and in plain admiration. She’d written a dazzling tale that I knew would blow readers away. Continue reading
There are days when I sit at the keyboard with so many projects and ideas rolling around in my head that
I don’t know where to begin. Should I blog? Write another chapter in the new paranormal mystery I’m working on? Finish the novella for the Harper series? Tackle some marketing and promotion work? Sometimes, it’s nearly impossible to choose.
Today, the draw to writing comes from a completely new place. When I set out on this indie-publishing journey, one of the first authors I ever approached for help and advice was Toby Neal. I’d read most of her Lei Crime series books and loved her work. Much to my surprise, she was gracious enough to read my book, write an awesome blurb for the cover and ever since, has been an online friend and an invaluable source for advice and support. Continue reading
As a native of Minnesota, I know how to get through a snow storm. The main thing is to ensure you have all the supplies you need including food and medication. You don’t want to run out when the roads become impassable.
Next, ensure you’re prepared for a power outage. Fill your bathtub with water, make sure you have plenty of batteries for your lanterns and radio and charge up all of your electronic devices. Don’t forget your ebook readers, and laptops. Icy branches tend to fall on power lines, so you never know if you’ll have lights throughout the blizzard. Continue reading
When Cindy Young-Turner finished her first book, Thief of Hope, she did what most authors do. She wrote query letters in search of an agent and was thrilled to find one. A few years later (yes, it can sometimes take that long) she found a publisher.
The excitement of hearing from your agent that you have a publisher is indescribable and can only be comparable to the day you open the box and hold your first book in your hands. It’s an awesome feeling and never gets old.
Unfortunately, not all publishers are created equal. The decision to break your relationship with your agent or your publisher, is a tough one, but one Young-Turner made, and she hasn’t looked back since.
I sat down with her to talk about the decision that changed her writing world and ask her about the status of her second book. Continue reading
I’ll remember 2014 as the year several writer friends I know and respect published or republished great books. Mark Willen’s smart and poignant mystery, Hawke’s Point, Cindy Young-Turner’s republication of her engrossing fantasy, A Thief of Hope and the second book in Gale Deitch’s popular culinary cozy mystery series, Fine Dining.
Gale Deitch developed an impressive fan base after her first book, A Fine Fix, was published last year. Her readers have been asking for more in the series, and now they finally have it.
The star in Deitch’s kitchen-centric stories is Trudie Fine, a caterer who loves brightly colored clothes, is growing accustomed to a new boyfriend in her life in the form of a handsome detective, and whose loyalty for a close friend lands her in the middle of a murder investigation.
Facebook does this thing where, whether you want them to or not, they make a little compilation of the posts you’ve made throughout the year. Either in a groovy little video with canned music, or through a series of stills, they give you a look back at the most important posts that marked your year…or at least the posts which garnered the most attention.
When they first did this last year, I found it kind of creepy. Somehow, they’d come pretty close through their formulaic editing, to highlight some crucial aspects of my year. Creepy or not, they managed to do it again this year, highlighting the two big exclamation points of at least my writing year without my help.
It’s good to be home from the hospital and even good to be back at my day job. When I knew I would be out of commission for
a while, like most people who write as a passion, I figured sick leave would be a good time for getting some words on paper.
In fact, I didn’t write a single word. Not one.
The General’s Ambition had just been released. I had plans to attend the Fort Meade Officer’s Spouses Club Holiday Bazaar. I’d started a free promotion for The Peacekeeper’s Photograph and wanted to do some blog interviews and promotions for the new book. None of that was to be. I simply couldn’t concentrate on any of it.
I discovered that healing takes up a lot of time and energy.
My first day back at my day job was exhausting. The sight of more than 600 emails, a bunch of voicemails and projects that still awaited my attention, sapped my energy. I’m not sure when I’ll have balance again to be able to work a full day, then put some hours in at the keyboard. Eventually, I’ll be able to do that again.
In the meantime, I’ve had a new idea for a series I’m very excited about. I’ve started an outline (yes, I’m going to fully outline this one) and the newness of the idea is giving me the energy to put some time into the work.
Thanks to everyone for your words of support while I was away. It was good to know I’d been missed. I’m back now! Look for some blog interviews, maybe more free promotions for The Master Sergeant Harper Series. I may even post a couple of teasers for the new series one day soon.