Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving and Writing

Signing with Peggy Fielding and Warren Bull

by Jackie King

Most people love Thanksgiving. You don’t have to buy anyone a gift and sometimes one gets invited a fabulous dinner with family and friends. Grandchildren and football are an added bonus. And those of us who live in a free country have much to be thankful for.

These are only a few reasons why, back in 2009 when asked to pick a holiday for the anthology TWO FOXY HOLIDAY HENS AND ONE BIG ROOSTER, that I chose Thanksgiving. The other writer’s choices: Dusty Richards, winner of two Spur Awards, picked Independence Day; and Peggy Fielding decided on Christmas.

My novella, THANKSGIVING WITH A MYSTERIOUS STRANGER, is set in 1889 Guthrie, Oklahoma Territory, and features an evil Rooster named Henry, a mean-spirited mail-order husband who is gunned down in the first chapter, and, of course, a handsome stranger named Josh Savage.

After killing her husband, the villain tries to rape Hannah Smith, and while fighting him off she vows two things: if she lives, she will prove up her land and she will never marry.

Advice from Nancy Picard

While working on this story I attended a mystery conference in Manhattan, Kansas, where the above picture was taken. The keynote speaker, Nancy Picard, said that she liked to start books with food. Being a person who loves food and drink (especially coffee) I decided to take her advice. This is the way I began THANKSGIVING WITH A MYSTERIOUS STRANGER:

All Hannah Smith ever wanted was a house with yellow curtains, a small garden and a good cup of coffee. Right now she’d settle for the coffee, but she had only enough grounds for one final pot and she was saving that treat for Thanksgiving Day.

Hannah is ruminating her dilemma while sitting on a breezy seat in the outhouse of the claim that she and her mail-order husband George (he punishes her by not buying coffee) have filed. She’s holding a broom to fight off Henry the rooster, when someone rides onto the property and shoots George.

And her problems have only just started.

If you want a good Thanksgiving read you can download this anthology from Amazon for $2.99. There is also a hard copy for sale.

Halloween-GMMC 2008 where Nancy Picard spoke, and yes, I'm the witch!
Here’s wishing you a blessed Thanksgiving Holiday.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Pleasing all of the people all of the time? No chance.

Earlier this month, Jean Henry Mead wrote about changes in the publishing industry and the different genres in which she wrote. I found myself agreeing with every point, especially that we should be free to shift genres if we felt like it. My earliest ‘publications’ were parodies, written as school exercises and put into the school magazine by a teacher, so I suppose from the start I was something of an experimenter when it came to style or genre. In other words, I wrote whatever the style demanded. I still love parody and I think we learn lots from trying to write like others – not all the time, of course, but as occasional writing exercises.

As a teenager, I wrote poetry – truly awful stuff about love, broken hearts, lust and all that time-wasting but so painfully-felt angst. But my first real genre, when I began to realise that writing was what I wanted to do, was drama. I wrote stage plays for adults and children. My first real taste of ‘being a writer’, though, was when the BBC accepted one of my radio plays. They broadcast several more, mostly serious, dramatic stuff, but some comedy too and finally, skits and songs for revues.

Those days, I was praised for my dialogue so it was a surprise when I started to write novels to find that the characters in them sometimes sounded less natural and realistic than those in my plays. I think writing long prose works sets up different rhythms in your mind as you write and they get carried into the dialogue, so you have to read it aloud and rewrite it to get the proper rhythmic balance.

I’m talking about different forms rather than different genres, but I think it’s relevant, to show that most of us start out just writing, rather than writing ‘crime’ or ‘romance’ or whatever. When we do fall into a particular genre – in my case, crime – that becomes what we’re expected to produce. But if readers are allowed to have short attention spans, so are we. By that I mean that the prospect of churning out book after book, each featuring the same characters in more or less the same places, is challenging in one way but claustrophobic in another. Exploring fresh ground, shifting into different centuries, past and yet to come, bending realities and multiplying dimensions, they’re all ways of releasing and refreshing your writing.

With the need to engage in energetic marketing nowadays, I realise that publishing novels totally different from one another in terms of genre, might be confusing for readers. Those who read The Darkness, a police procedural as dark as its title which questions ideas of bad and good, will be very surprised if they think ‘I enjoyed that, so I’ll try The Sparrow Conundrum’, only to find it’s a satirical spoof of the crime/spy genres whose sole aim is to make them laugh. So they say ‘OK, I’ll give this guy one last try’ and they read The Figurehead and find they’re in the company of shipbuilding people in Aberdeen in 1840 and that a novel that starts with a corpse on a beach ends up with the mystery being solved but with a strong romance developing at the same time.

Oh, and if they then decide to read their kids a bedtime story, choose one about a miserable fairy called Stanley who lives under a dripping tap in a bedroom, then find out it’s by the same bloke who wrote the others, they may wonder which asylum I finished up in. More importantly, they probably won’t trust me to satisfy their writing needs because I ‘lack consistency’.

The point is that, for me, there’s no difference writing any of these books or, for that matter, the dialogue between Joseph and Mary when she tells him she’s been visited by an angel and she’s pregnant. If the subject’s interesting, it absorbs me. The characters dictate the sort of things that happen; they have their own voices, their own ambitions and flaws. So whether they’re in Victorian Scotland, a contemporary police station, a space colony or sitting under a dripping tap; whether they’re murderers, lovers, saints, fairies or Klingons, they force their way into your head and you have to deal with them on their terms.

Writing is like acting – if you want the audience to suspend their disbelief, you have to do the same, you have to commit to the reality of the play you’re performing, the story you’re writing. I feel as intensely in the scene when I’m describing the antics of Stanley as when I’m watching John Grant carve his figurehead or my detective work his way through external clues and internal devils. It makes life very exciting.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Being Creative While in Pain

by June Shaw

I know many of you writers know what it's like to try to be creative while you're in pain. Since I wound up with a severly herniated disc six weeks ago, many people keep asking if I'm writing a new book.

This afternoon, for example, I had a badly-needed pedicure. My heels had been snagging my sheets, and my toenails had gotten way too long. Ordinarily I could have taken care of both of these situations myself--use that heel thingie for my heels and trim my nails.

The problem--since I had surgery four weeks ago, the neurosurgeon had me lie down for two weeks. Since then, I can't lift anything heavy or bend over. The hole in my disc needs time to heal. I surely wouldn't trust disturbing that process with trying to reach my feet.

"Ah, so you had surgery on your back since I saw you," the young gent who gave me the great pedicure said. "And have you been writing another book?"

Pretty hard to get creative when you're limited or in pain, I've often thought when asked about this. "I've been doing marketing," I normally tell those who ask.
After all, Untreed Reads just put out my mystery series in ebooks that can be ordered by libraries, so I've been letting lots of them know about it. Also, this month Harlequin published my book DEADLY REUNION in paperback, so I'm letting some people know about that.

I've been getting ideas for other works, but really, I'm satisfied to heal for now and be around all these family members I love most.

Happy Thanksgiving to all, and if you're in pain, I hope you heal soon. It's nice to just take care of ourselves.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Stuff I left out....

by Carola

Inevitably, when researching for a book, one accumulates a lot of fascinating information that just has no place in the book. Here are some pics of places in Worcestershire that I visited while investigating the part of Worcestershire around Daisy's fictional home, Fairacres, for HEIRS OF THE BODY.

The City of Worcester has many historical associations. These pics are from the Commandery, which in medieval times served as an almshouse as well as a place of hospitality for pilgrims and other travellers. During the Civil War (British not American!) it was the headquarters of the forces of Charles I against Cromwell's Puritan army (Cavaliers v. Roundheads).

 While exploring Worcester, we toured the factory where Royal Worcester china used to be made. (Interesting, but not useful for my story!)

Above is a view of Worcester from the river, and on the right, the Cathedral gatehouse.

This is a house my friend and I visited on the opposite side of the Severn from Fairacres. Unfortunately it doesn't work as a model for Fairacres, but we enjoyed touring it nonetheless.

The house, believe it or not, was once occupied by a boys' school. What they thought of the presiding ladies' physical endowments is lost to history. Perhaps fortunately...
Much of the interior has beautiful old plaster mouldings. The occupants after the school were a group of Buddhists. They painted the normally white mouldings in vivid colours. Desecration, some might say, but I think they're beautiful.

Below are the old "pepperpot" church tower and a narrowboat on the river at Upton upon Severn, the nearest small town to Fairacres.

 Both are mentioned in the book but aren't important to the story.

On the other hand, I also came across unexpected information that changed the course of the story. I learned that the village, though it seems well set up from the river, regularly floods when storms in the hills from which it flows dump heavy rainfall upstream.
 As a result, the local doctor can't get to Fairacres, and Daisy can't take to him the body that's sitting beside her in the car...

Heirs of the Body is the 21st in the Daisy Dalrymple mystery series. It will be out in December in the US and UK and elsewhere, as well as in e-book formats.

Support indie mystery bookstores, order from  or

Monday, November 18, 2013

“What we have here is a failure to communicate!”

By Mark W. Danielson

I just returned from another successful Men of Mystery event in Irvine, California.  In my twelfth consecutive year and with Alexander “Sandy” McCall Smith and Scott Turow as primary speakers, the event sold out fifteen percent beyond its planned capacity.  As always, our guest speakers and wonderful hosts made it another memorable event.

During my time there, I swapped tales with fellow authors and recalled memorable scenes and characters from my stories with mystery lovers.  When several people at my table began discussing trains in Europe, my mind flashed back to train ride from Paris to Domaine De Chantilly. 

My co-pilot spoke French so I gave him the lead to get us there.  Looking on, I was impressed with his communicative skills as he purchased tickets for the two of us.  We easily navigated our way through the train station and enjoyed the view as the train headed north.  Predictably, the commuter train stopped several times along the way while my cohort and I talked and enjoyed the beauty.  Most stops had been short, but one seemed curiously long.  The scene became even more peculiar as we found ourselves alone with one sleeping passenger.  Being optimists, we stayed and continued to chat in spite of the oddity. 

Perhaps fifteen minutes later, people began to embark again.  Five minutes later, we were underway – heading south!  Needless to say, we got off at the first stop, bought new tickets and boarded the next train going north.  Upon arriving in Chantilly, we were lectured by the ticket agent because we had not purchased the correct tickets.  (I didn’t need to speak French to understand her anger.)  Lumbering into town, stinging from the train adventure, our excitement returned as we came upon a magnificent structure we soon learned was the horse barn in the above photo.  Beyond that was the castle, complete with moat.  Smiling again, touring the ground proved well worth the frustration.  Sadly, our misadventures were not over.

Having purchased the correct tickets this time, I looked forward to an easy return trip.  All was well until my astute first officer failed to notice our stop until the train pulled away from the station.  Less than amused at repeating our northbound flub, we disembarked at the next stop, bought new train tickets and headed back to Paris.  Once we left the train station, I told my FO I was resuming the lead and led him back to the hotel.  We joked about the experience on our return pond crossing. 

The moral of this story is you may be able to speak a language, but that doesn’t mean you can communicate.  As writers, it is our mission to ensure we convey clear thoughts in an entertaining manner.  Sounds easy, right?  If it was, everyone would be a published author.  Choose your words carefully and keep writing.           

Friday, November 15, 2013

Publishing's Future?

by Jean Henry Mead

Most writers attempt to stay current with publishing trends but technology has evolved so rapidly during the past decade that marketing experts are becoming desirable.

Hardcover books have become the dinosaurs of the industry, closely followed by paperbacks. And if projections are correct, ebooks will eventually become a product of the past. Some writers have tried to cover a number of bases to prevent genre slumps from cutting into their earnings as well. Writing in more than one genre has its advantages as well as its disadvantages. I've written mystery/suspense novels in a somewhat humorous vein as well as children's mysteries, Wyoming historicals and nonfiction books. After reading one of my mysteries, a reader suggested that I might want to write fantasies. :)

The disadvantage to writing in more than one genre is the need to switch gears and rotate genres on a regular basis. I know that Louie L'Amour wrote three books a year, but I like to enjoy the process of writing, not churn out copy as I did as a  news reporter. Two books a year is my limit.

Among the advantages is that you can halt work on a problem book to begin something else, before returning to the original manuscript. You can also combine more than one genre as I did with a book published earlier this year. No Escape: the Sweetwater Tragedy is an historical mystery. I researched the hangings of a young Wyoming couple on and off for more than twenty years before I had enough data to write the novel.

My latest novel, A Murder in Paradise, was released this week, the fifth book in my Logan and Cafferty mystery/suspense series. It's my last in the series, at least for a while. I tired of writing about two feisty 60-year-old widows traveling in a motorhome and stumbling over bodies, although, by now, they seem like old friends.

I enjoy writing novels based on historical happenings and researching not only the events but the people involved. Characterization is my strong suit, plotting my weakest, but with historicals, the plot is already laid out for me, thanks to the work of nonfiction writers. My adopted state of Wyoming is rich in historical events beginning with the western expansion of the mid-1800s, providing me with more than enough research for the rest of my writing life.

I don't plan to abandon the mystery genre entirely. I'll continue to write Hamilton Kids' mysteries, and I have a good narrator who's currently recording them for online audio book sales as well as my mystery series.  My historicals are also in the process of narration as well as one of my interview books. Thanks to an audio company, I've had a great variety of voices to choose from and it's fun listening to them audition to read my work. From what I've heard, audio books will replace both print and ebooks because they can be listened to while working, relaxing, driving or preparing dinner. It's undoubtedly the wave of the future and may do away with pleasure reading, just as teaching cursive writing has all but been abandoned in schools since the advent of the electronic age. We may soon be listening to our favorite books on Dick Tracey-type wrist watches or Walkman devices plugged  into our ears as we take our  evening strolls.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Mary Coley Writes Thriller Set in Osage County, Oklahoma

It's my great honor to present Mary Coley, author of the exciting suspense novel, COBWEBS! Her contemporary spine-tingling tale weaves a web back to 1906.

On Never Giving Up

by Mary Coley

Mystery and romance. There’s nothing more entertaining and intriguing than a puzzle to solve and characters who get into your heart and stay there. That combination is the pull in my suspense novel, COBWEBS. But there’s more, a real life historical element - a cold case with files open even today.

In the 1920s, full blood members of the Osage Nation in Oklahoma were under attack. It was a new type of Indian War, but just as deadly. The tribal members had become wealthy beyond belief; the Nation (all members together) owned the oil and gas royalties to the lucrative fields beneath the surface of Osage County Oklahoma. Tribal members listed on the Roll of 1906 received monthly checks for their individual portion of these mineral rights. But they cared little about this wealth. Money had no importance in their culture.

As I learned about this bit of Oklahoma history, and discovered I carried Native American blood in my veins, the story embedded itself in my psyche and cried out to be told.

Ten years ago, I drafted the first version of Cobwebs while working in Osage County. Professionally, I was a nonfiction writer; I’d written nonfiction pieces for every job throughout my career. I’d never attempted to write a full length novel from start to finish. Cobwebs became that novel.

Over the years, I edited and rewrote Cobwebs, received a lot of encouragement, but rejections from both agents and editors. It wasn’t quite ready. Then, more encouragement, and even a couple of tentative offers which never panned out.

But I couldn’t get the book out of my mind. I changed the POV from third person, to first; I added new suspense elements; I restructured; I honed my characterizations - and finally, the book had a new shape. My test readers raved. Cobwebs placed second in the Oklahoma Writers Federation’s 2013 contest, in the Mystery-Suspense division.

This past summer the book became reality. Cobwebs had been a living part of my life, and now the book is like a little fledgling leaving the nest. But it’s not the end of this writer’s journey - a sequel, AntHills, is in second draft right now.

Writers never, ever give up. When they believe in their stories, they know they’ll find readers who believe in them, too.

Take time to enter the world of mystery and intrigue in Cobwebs - A Suspense Novel. Enjoy - and remember - this cold case is still open. Now available at online book sellers.

Mary Coley
Mary Coley is an Oklahoma writer. During her professional career, she has worked as a journalist, a park planner, an environmental educator and a public relations officer. A native of Enid, Coley lives in Tulsa, where she is an active volunteer for Oxley Nature Center. She holds membership in state and national writers groups, as well as the Tulsa Chapter of the Women in Communications.

Learn more about Mary on her website,, or at her blog,

Her books are available at

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Is it a Mystery? Is it a Romance? No, it’s …

by Bill Kirton

Mystery and Romance – two genres which, on the surface, seem to operate in different dimensions and act on different parts of the psyche. In one, the bodice is ripped by the fumbling hands of a brooding, handsome gentleman whose hunger and love are matched by that of its wearer; in the other, the hands don’t fumble because they’re deliberate as they wield the razor of the serial killer who’s intent on adding another slice of flesh to the collection in his Sheraton mahogany display cabinet.

But both are subject to often strict conventions. For the most part, Romance calls for happy endings, but then so does Crime – well, endings anyway. The mystery must be solved, the culprit apprehended or punished in some other way. There are, of course, examples which subvert the rules, but we only recognise them because the rules are there. The point is that, in both genres, resolution is reached and fans are happy that their desires have been sated yet again.

In the end, though, the rules are only sacrosanct because the characters accept them as such. Romantic heroes and heroines believe in the possibility of happiness. Not only that, it’s a happiness which, according to the rules, will be eternal – happy ever after – a condition which, for (I’m guessing) the vast majority of real people, is unattainable. OK, so obstacles have appeared, but they’ve been overcome. So does that mean there won’t be any more? Probably not, so how can things be ‘happy ever after’. Does requited love really change the way the world works?

It’s hard to imagine a detective, faced with corpse after corpse, excess after excess in the books in which s/he features, having the same belief in the perfectibility of the species and a rosy outcome. And yet s/he works at solving the problems, bringing light where there was darkness. So the apparent bleakness suggested by all these misdeeds can be overcome. In a way, it’s illusory.

The more you look at it, the less cut and dried it seems to be. And I found this out for myself when a Crime novel of mine also became a Romance as I was writing it, mainly because, without any planning or direction on my part, two of the characters started being attracted to one another. At the end of the book, I wrote this:

Quickly, she raised her hands to his face and pulled him down towards her. As he leaned forward, he saw her lips part and then, suddenly, felt them warm and soft against his own. It was a lover’s kiss.

But that was all. Their social stations were different and no decisions had been made about their future conduct. The woman had the impulse to kiss the man and that was that. And it's generated a problem because, at the moment, I'm working on the sequel, which is set a year later, so what have they been doing meantime? The year is 1842 so they didn't have the freedoms we now enjoy, neither really wants to get married (yet anyway) and there's another murder to be solved. But until I (or they) work out what they've been doing over the past twelve months, I can't make much progress.

I'm not a Romance writer but, as has been said many times by many people, it’s the characters who drive the plot. So let’s try it. I’ll pluck a name out of the air – Marie-Rose Tremaine. There. I won’t describe her because you, the reader, prefer to shape her to your fancy. The name is slightly exotic, certainly, but it could equally be that of a simple Cornish girl. Remember Tess Durbeyfield, a.k.a. Tess of the D’Urbervilles, and look what became of Norma Jeane Mortenson.

Now let’s put her in a setting and see how she decides what the book will be. She’s standing by a gate at the edge of a field at sunset. In the corner of the field is a crumbling old barn. But the view is beautiful, it brings out all her yearnings for the love and affection she never got from her father, a retired Field Marshal. She sighs at the beauty of it all but her musing is interrupted by footsteps. She turns and sees a tall, handsome man walking towards her down the lane, a shotgun cradled over his arm.

Now over to you. Is it a Romance, a Mystery? What happens next?

Saturday, November 9, 2013

The Perils of Writing a Book

By June Shaw

I wasn't sure whether to call this post "The Perils of Writing a Book" or -- "The Perils of Cleaning Your House."

Why? you might ask.

Because one morning a month ago I sat at my desk in front of my computer and realized I wanted information from a piece of paper I'd placed on the floor to the right of my chair the evening before. Thus, with a smile, I twisted to the right from my seated position to grab that paper and zing -- excrutiating pain shot from my back and traveled down my left leg to my toes.

I took pain meds and muscle relaxers for two weeks but could still barely stand the pain. During that time, my left foot began to flop.

Eventually I was sent for an MRI, which showed I had a badly herniated disc. That, along with what I discovered was called foot drop in my left foot, made a neurosurgeon immediately schedule me for surgery.

I felt SO much better after the surgery, no pain in that leg and just about no foot drop. I was ordered to lie down for two weeks. Yes, I told him I was a writer and my computer... And he said No - No sitting, just rest.

Monday I went back to him after the two weeks, and he said okay, I could sit. "Go write another book," he told me. Yes!

I'm so far behind with everything but so almost pain free. And I guarantee you that when a sheet of paper falls to the floor, I leave it. (For the next month I need to be cautious and not bend over or lift anything heavy. A fork is just the right weight, I think.) My two grown daughters and my squeeze Bob have taken great care of me, and I would suggest to anyone that it's not good to twist the wrong way or twist and bend. I've been fortunate to live pain free most of my life, so I'm especially grateful.

During my month of pain and then lying down, the third book in my series, DEADLY REUNION, was released as an ebook from all distributors. And Harlequin, who'd bought reprint rights for their Worldwide Mystery division, also released it in paperback this week.

I'm trying to add both covers to show you but can't figure out how, and my brain and back are tired. I hope you'll check them out. And please excuse any errors in this post. I'm not up to proofreading it now. Anyway, I'm learning to avoid any work while I can: )

Best, June

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Misleading cover art

by Carola

I've already posted the covers of the Polish translations of my Daisy Dalrymple mysteries, and commented on the black cat that infests them though not appearing in the books

This is a much more misleading cover:

The Hebrew translation of Mayhem and Miranda, one of my Regencies. Unless they drastically altered the text in translating it, the pic has nothing whatever to do with the story.
Anyone buying the book expecting a bodice-ripper would be sorely disappointed. What's more, they spelled my name--I'm told--Carol Deen.

 This original paperback cover and the ebook cover on the right are far more appropriate.

That was probably the most downright wrong cover I've had, being of the wrong genre, but over the years there has been plenty of just-not-quite-right art.

Of my mysteries, the worst (twice) is Requiem for a Mezzo, the third Daisy Dalrymple mystery.

From this, wouldn't you reckon the victim was a blonde in a red dress? Or, according to the UK edition, a brunette in a blue dress?

 The audio version thinks it was a blonde in a black dress.

My mother, for one, kept switching between text and cover of the first one, thoroughly confused because it's actually a blonde in a blue dress.

This cover is really cute: the three-year-old, black-haired like her Spanish mother, is adorable. (We'll ignore the fact that the hero and heroine ought to be watching her and stopping her from feeding a swan--a highly dangerous act!)

Its sequel takes place about three months later. In the meantime the darling little girl has aged by five years or so and bleached her hair:


       The ebook cover----> is perfect. I was browsing in a thrift shop in England when I found a print of an artillery officer of the British Army in the Napoleonic era. That's what Captain Ingram is. My Regency ebook publisher used
it, so this is just right.

One that I can't show you because I managed to get it changed is the hardcover of Dead in the Water, the 6th Daisy mystery. It's set in Henley-on-Thames, a small, pretty town 35 miles or so west of London. Luckily my editor sent me a preview--which doesn't always happen. The art showed St Paul's, Tower Bridge, Big Ben... I can't actually remember which London landmarks, but several were squished in. I squealed loudly (via email) and he asked the art department why they'd done it. They said it was to show the book took place in England! As the previous 5 of the series had also taken place in England, it seemed an insufficient reason. They changed it. It's not a very attractive cover but at least it's not apparently set in London.

I could go on practically without end, but don't worry, I won't. Just one more art department decision.

They changed the title of The Actress and the Rake, and asked why, said it was too long. THREE LETTERS they couldn't fit in, apparently. I could have.

So don't ask an author why the cover doesn't fit the book. It's not his/her fault!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Is It Soup Yet?

By Mark W. Danielson

Remember the commercial where the kids keep asking if the soup is done?  The answer is never clear, but at some point their mom announces, “It’s soup!”  In writing, the same principle applies.  People keep asking when your next book will be out and then one day you announce it’s done.  Of course, how cooks, authors and publishers determine “when” will forever remain a mystery.

My latest novel was just released a week ago, so by chef’s standards, Spectral Gallows must be done.  I’m proud of the story.  It's a perfect blend of reality and fiction with a little help from the netherworld.  Of course, each reader will have to decide if the recipe suits their taste.

But let’s put Spectral Gallows aside for a moment and return to the writing process.  For most authors, it takes at least a year to write, edit, submit, review, edit, review, correct, and then resubmit a story.  By the time their book is released, the author has read so many times they are blind.  And it seems that no matter how many times proof readers have gone through the manuscript, someone always seems to find another typo.  Holding that thought, let’s compare this to picking mushrooms from a lasagna serving.  (Okay, I admit it.  I hate mushrooms.)  A person can spend an entire meal trying to pick those little suckers out, but inevitably one will end up in their mouth.  At that point you have two choices – swallow it or make a scene.  In writing, you either swallow your pride and accept a potential error or risk your career by ignoring your deadlines.  It isn’t until your reviews come in that you realize most people accept typos, so long as the story is good.  That’s why positive reviews validate your writing and warm the heart.  

Recently, I learned that several people were talking my book up and as a result I have a pending radio interview so I must be doing something right.  If you enjoy murder mysteries involving the paranormal and quantum theory, give Spectral Gallows a look, then settle into a nice bowl of soup.  Both are pretty cozy on a cool fall night.