Geronimo!

Sometimes, you gotta leap. I did that today. I set up the pre-order for the first of the Celebration House Trilogy novels – Building Celebration House. The book will publish on March 1st.

Is it done? No. Then why on earth did I do this? Because I am, sigh, a procrastinator. And deadlines force me to complete my art.

So, here’s the plan:

  • Building Celebration House will publish March 1st.
  • Stay at Celebration House will publish April 1st,
  • Return to Celebration House will publish May 1st.

2017 ! It’s gonna be a heck of a year.

Hands and arms inside the cart: Once again, I relearn why I write.

 

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Crime and Catnip

Today I interview author T. C. LoTempio about her newest installment in her Nick and Nora cozy mystery series, Crime and Catnip. Welcome!

Why do you write cozy mysteries?
I’ve always loved mysteries ever since I read my first Nancy Drew, so it was more of a natural progression. I actually started out writing horror, then graduated to paranormal romance, but when my vampire novels weren’t selling, I came up with the idea for the Nick and Nora mysteries. Penguin at that time was more receptive to cat-inspired cozies than they are now, and they bought it in January of 2014

Please tell us about your book. What ideas or images inspired this novel?
Crime And Catnip is the third in the Nick and Nora mystery series. The series was inspired by my tuxedo cat Rocco, who has a mind of his own and definite opinions on things as his blog followers will attest to.

Do you have an ideal reader in mind when you write? If so, please describe that reader.
Honestly, I’m grateful to have any readers! I’m so appreciative of all who have read the Nick and Nora series and are supporters! If I had to describe the average reader who likes my series, it would probably be career women who love cats!

Please describe your writing routine.
I sit in front of the computer, crank up my CD player, and hopefully do not spend hours staring at a blank screen. I work from an outline that changes daily – and, of course, Rocco and brother Maxx are nearby for inspiration! I try to write one to two hours a week at least three nights during the week after work, and an average of between four to six hours on Saturday and Sunday (which is why I have no life). It generally takes me about four to five months to crank out a book, from idea inception to outline to finished product.

What advice do you give new writers just starting out?
Read, read, read and write, write, write. This truly is a profession where practice makes perfect. And never give up!

More about Crime and Catnip:
Nick and Nora aren’t just pussyfooting around this time as they deal with a missing person’s case and murder.
While catering a gala for the Cruz Museum, Nora Charles agrees to look into the disappearance of director Violet Crenshaw’s niece, a case previously undertaken by her frisky feline friend Nick’s former owner, a private eye whose whereabouts are also currently unknown.
As Nora and her curious cat Nick pull at the string of clues, they begin to unravel a twisted tale of coded messages, theft, false identities, murder, and international espionage. Nora dares to hope that the labyrinth of leads will not only help them locate the missing young woman, but also solve the disappearance of the detective. That’s if Nora can stay alive long enough to find him…

Grab your copy here: Amazon

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How to connect with T.C.:
Website: www.catsbooksmorecats.blogspot.com; tclotempio.com
Email: roccomom53@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/toni.lotempio.5
Twitter:@RoccoBlogger

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Better Off Thread

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Ho Ho Ho! Let’s share a cup of Christmas cheer this morning with a spotlight on Better Off Thread by Amanda Lee.author-photo-for-better-off-thread

More about Better Off Thread:
better-off-threadMarcy is busy helping her customers make hand-crafted ornaments at her embroidery shop, the Seven-Year Stitch. But despite the yuletide bustle, when her friend Captain Moe asks for her help, she can’t refuse — especially when the favor is to play the elf to his Santa for sick children at a local hospital. Despite the ridiculous outfit, Marcy finds herself enjoying spreading cheer until the hospital’s administrator is found murdered.
Although the deceased had plenty of people willing to fill her stocking with coal, evidence pins the crime on Moe. Now it’s up to Marcy, with the help of her police officer boyfriend Ted and her Irish Wolfhound Angus, to stitch together the clues to clear Moe’s name before someone else winds up crossed off Santa’s list for good.

Grab your copy here: Amazon

How to connect with Amanda Lee:

https://www.facebook.com/GayleTrentandAmandaLee

https://twitter.com/GayleTrent

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Literally Dead

literally-dead-large-banner640Today author Lois Winston visits to share news of her newest cozy mystery, Literally Dead. Welcome, Lois.lois-winston-author-photo

Why do you write cozy mysteries?
I started out writing romantic suspense that dealt with serial killers, spousal abuse, and other gritty topics. Then 9/11 occurred in my backyard, and I found myself spending most days staring at a blank screen and a blinking cursor. I just couldn’t write about such gruesome topics any more. The seamier side of life had become too real. In an effort to escape reality, I began reading books that made me laugh. Laughing releases endorphins and makes you feel better. It helped.
My agent suggested I try writing a cozy mystery. I had written one chick lit book several years earlier, and she thought my humorous voice would be a good fit for the cozy genre. Turns out she was right. I’ve written five novels and three novelettes in my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series and am currently working on the sixth book. Literally Dead is the second book in my Empty Nest Mystery series, following Definitely Dead.
I’ve learned to never say never, but I don’t see myself going back to gritty realistic suspense any time soon. I’d much rather make people laugh than have them jumping up at night to check the locks on their doors and windows.

Please tell us about your book. What ideas or images inspired this novel?
A few years ago I stumbled upon the William Powell/Myrna Loy Thin Man movies on TCM. After watching the first, I binge-watched the remainder. I loved the rapport between the two characters as well as the humor in the movies. I began to think about writing a series that paid homage to them. However, I wanted to give my series a modern day spin. In the Empty Nest Mysteries, Gracie Elliott, the wife, is an amateur sleuth. Her husband Blake does his best to try to keep her out of trouble.
Literally Dead takes place at a writing conference. Gracie is an aspiring romance author. I’ve attended dozens of writing conferences over the years and have witnessed quite a bit of infighting. I thought it would be fun to extrapolate this to its ultimate conclusion—murder. (Note: All characters in the book are purely fictional and are not meant to represent any actual authors.)

Do you have an ideal reader in mind when you write? If so, please describe that reader.
My books are meant as escapism. They’re for readers who are willing to suspend disbelief and who enjoy a good laugh.

Please describe your writing routine.
I really don’t have one. There are days when I can write for eight hours straight and other days when I’m lucky if I can get a page written. I don’t outline my books, but I do write a short paragraph that gives me Point A (the start of the book) and Point B (the end of the book.) I know the victim before I begin writing. Sometimes I know the antagonist, but that’s subject to change as the story unfolds. Getting from Point A to Point B is a meandering road, often filled with detours and dead ends, but I eventually arrived at The End.

What advice do you give new writers just starting out?
Don’t quit your day job! The reality of publishing is that very few authors can make a decent living from their writing. This is something Gracie learns in Literally Dead. When her job in the textile industry is outsourced to a Third World nation, she begins writing, thinking it will provide her with the kind of income she’s lost. Too many aspiring authors only hear about the six and seven-figure deals scored by authors like James Patterson and Nora Roberts. They sit down to write a book thinking they’re going to get rich. Few do. If that’s the reason you’ve decided to write, you’re writing for the wrong reason. Write because you can’t not write. If you’re lucky and persevere, you may beat the odds and succeed.

More about Literally Dead:
lit_dead_ebookcoverAfter her last disastrous episode as an amateur sleuth, Gracie Elliott is back. The budding romance writer has spent the past year crafting her first novel. Her hard work and determination pay off when her manuscript wins the Cream of the Crop award, a contest for unpublished writers, sponsored by the Society of American Romance Authors. First place entitles her to attend the organization’s annual conference, normally open only to published authors.
With husband Blake in tow, a starry-eyed Gracie experiences the ultimate fan-girl moment upon entering the hotel. Her favorite authors are everywhere. However, within minutes she learns Lovinia Darling, the Queen of Romance, is hardly the embodiment of the sweet heroines she creates. Gracie realizes she’s stepped into a romance vipers’ den of backstabbing, deceit, and plagiarism, but she finds a friend and mentor in bestselling author Paisley Prentiss.
Hours later, when Gracie discovers Lovinia’s body in the hotel stairwell, a victim of an apparent fall, Gracie is not convinced her death was an accident. Too many other authors had reason to want Lovinia dead. Ignoring Blake’s advice to “let the police handle it,” Gracie, aided by Paisley, begins her own investigation into the death. Romance has never been so deadly.

Grab your copy here: Amazon

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How to connect with Lois:
Website: www.loiswinston.com
Email address: lois@loiswinston.com
Twitter twitter.com/anasleuth

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Murder at the Moonshine Inn

moonshine-inn-large-banner640Author Maggie King stops by to share the inspiration behind her new cozy mystery, Murder at the Moonshine Inn. Welcome, Maggie.maggie-king-author-photo-72

Why do you write cozy mysteries?
I like to write dialog, and the murders in cozies are primarily solved by talking. I don’t need to arm my fictional detective with guns or other weapons. She uses her wits, technology, and persistence.
In cozies, the readers and the amateur detective have much in common in that they are all average citizens. However, the average citizen (that includes me!) does not want to investigate a murder, but gets much satisfaction from vicariously hunting down a killer and seeing justice served.
That said, I probably will eventually write a police procedural or private investigator series. But I won’t include much on-page violence — something along the lines of the Chief Inspector Barnaby series by Caroline Graham.

Please tell us about your book. What ideas or images inspired this novel?
Murder at the Moonshine Inn is a tale of family, money, betrayal, a book group, a redneck bar … and murder. Hazel Rose is asked to find out who killed a high-powered executive in the parking lot of a redneck bar. Hazel’s cousin Brad is the prime suspect and she feels she must help her family. Even though Brad won’t give her the time of day, he’s still family. As Hazel and the members of her book group investigate, they witness firsthand how much money matters — and how some will stop at nothing to get their hands on it.
The idea for Murder at the Moonshine Inn first came to me when my husband retired and started researching his family tree, discovering many new-to-him relatives. He’s in touch with all of them, except for one who suspected that my husband only wanted money.
Years ago, I knew a family in California whose patriarch, a wealthy widower, remarried a much younger woman who lived life in the fast lane. She could often be found sitting on a barstool in a redneck bar. He was attracted to her beauty and youth. She was attracted to his bank account.
I put the two ideas together and tossed my own fanciful imaginings into the mix. The result is Murder at the Moonshine Inn.

Do you have an ideal reader in mind when you write? If so, please describe that reader.
My ideal reader is anyone with a strong sense of justice who likes solving puzzles and expects strong women characters.

Please describe your writing routine.
I create long-hand before I sit down at my computer. There’s something about paper, hand, and ink that boost my creativity, especially when I’m stuck on a plot point. The big question writers get these days is “Are you a plotter or a pantser?” Plotters completely outline before they write their novels while pantsers sit down at the computer each day, waiting to be surprised, writing literally by the seat of their pants. I’m not strictly either. I outline, but it’s a very flexible outline that allows my pantser side to have a big part in the process. The truth is that I start out as a plotter, but I tend to take too long because I want the outline to be oh-so-perfect and so I switch to pantser mode for a while just to get some momentum going. This back-and-forth works for me. My daily walks also enhance my creativity.

What advice do you give new writers just starting out?
Write, write, write. Read, read, read. Pick two or three authors whose style you like and study how they structure their stories and create characters. A good book about mystery writing is You Can Write a Mystery by Gillian Roberts (I studied her Amanda Pepper series).
Author James Pendleton once told me, “Don’t ever let anyone discourage you.” I might tag on “including yourself” to his sage advice.

More about Murder at the Moonshine Inn:
murder-at-the-moonshine-inn-cover-lowWhen high-powered executive Roxanne Howard dies in a pool of blood outside the Moonshine Inn, Richmond, Virginia’s premiere redneck bar, the victim’s sister enlists Hazel Rose to ferret out the killer. At first Hazel balks — she’s a romance writer, not a detective. But Brad Jones, Rox’s husband, is the prime suspect. He’s also Hazel’s cousin, and Hazel believes in doing anything to help family. Never mind that Brad won’t give her the time of day. He’s still family.
Hazel recruits her book group members to help with the investigation. It’s not long before they discover any number of people who feel that a world without Rox Howard is just fine with them: Brad’s son believes that Rox and Brad were behind his mother’s death; Rox’s former young lover holds Rox responsible for a tragedy in his family; and one of Rox’s employees filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against her. The killer could be an angry regular from the Moonshine Inn or just about anyone who ever crossed paths with the willful and manipulative Rox. When a second murder ups the ante, Hazel must find out who is behind the killings. And fast. Or she may be victim #3.

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Grab your copy here: Amazon

How to connect with Maggie:
Website: www.maggieking.com
Email address: maggie.king@yahoo.com
Facebook: MaggieKingAuthor
Twitter: MaggieKingAuthr

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Mâtowak Woman Who Cries

matowak-woman-who-cries-tour-bannerToday, I welcome author Joylene Nowell Butler to talk about her latest suspense novel, Matowak Woman Who Cries. Welcome, Joylene.author-joylene-nowell-butler

Why do you write suspense thrillers?
I like novels with an adrenaline rush. I like the thrill of sitting on the edge of my seat as I read through the story. I love it when I forget I’m reading, live the story, care about the characters, and worry about them.  That’s the reaction I want from my readers. I want to hook them into a compelling read that they can’t put down.

Please tell us about your book. What ideas or images inspired this novel?
After I finished the prequel to Matowak: Woman Who Cries, Sally Warner, one of the characters began haunting me. It was as if she had a story to tell and wouldn’t leave me alone until I wrote it. I tried ignoring her, but she wouldn’t go away. I finally agreed because she seemed so desperate. Matowak is about 60-year-old Sally finding her husband dead on the kitchen floor eighteen months after their sons die violently. The investigator, Danny Killian, thinks Sally may have killed her husband; and if that’s so, hopes to find enough evidence to ensure Sally is found not guilty for reasons of spousal abuse. Sally has no idea how to prove she’s innocent.

Do you have an ideal reader in mind when you write? If so, please describe that reader.
I envision a reader like myself, someone who wants what I want: to be moved and changed by what I read. I want my readers to think about my characters long after the story is over.  

Please describe your writing routine.
I spend mornings and evenings with my husband, who, thankfully, is an early bird. As soon as he leaves in the morning, (he sells firewood) I sit down and answer emails. Then I open my latest WIP and work until noon. Before lunch, I go for a 2k bike run, mostly uphill, then I come home and write/edit/revise until around 4pm. I spend evenings with my hubby and don’t return to my computer until 7am the next morning.

What advice do you give new writers just starting out?
Read all the best writing manuals. Read anything by Don Maas, Alexander Sokoloff, or Dwight Swan. Or any books recommended by your mentor. Then apply what you’ve learned while studying your favorite novels. Don’t be afraid to use colored markers on those novels. Highlight active verbs, sentence structure, or sentences that pop out as unique and visual. Study until you understand why this particular novel works. There is no end to what you can learn by reading a best seller.

More about Mâtowak Woman Who Cries:
matowak-woman-who-cries-by-joylene-nowell-butlerA murder enveloped in pain and mystery…
When Canada’s retired Minister of National Defense, Leland Warner, is murdered in his home, the case is handed to Corporal Danny Killian, an aboriginal man tortured by his wife’s unsolved murder.
The suspect, 60-year-old Sally Warner, still grieves for the loss of her two sons, dead in a suicide/murder eighteen months earlier. Confused and damaged, she sees in Corporal Killian a friend sympathetic to her grief and suffering and wants more than anything to trust him.
Danny finds himself with a difficult choice—indict his prime suspect, the dead minister’s horribly abused wife or find a way to protect her and risk demotion. Or worse, transfer away from the scene of his wife’s murder and the guilt that haunts him…

Grab your copy here: Amazon

Mâtowak Woman Who Cries is available in eBook at Amazon.ca and Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C

The print copy is available at:
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com.

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Mâtowak Woman Who Cries by Joylene Nowell Butler

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Tangled Up in Brew

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Today I host author Joyce Tremel who is sharing the news of her new mystery, Tangled Up in Brew. This is the second book in the Brewing Trouble Mystery series. Welcome, Joyce!joyce-tremel

More about Tangled Up in Brew:
Beer Today, Gone Tomorrow…
tangled-up-in-brew-cover-artBrew pub owner Maxine “Max” O’Hara and her chef/boyfriend, Jake Lambert, are excited to be participating in the Three Rivers Brews and Burgers Festival. Max hopes to win the coveted Golden Stein for best craft beer. But even if she doesn’t, the festival will be great publicity for her Allegheny Brew House.
Or will it? When notoriously nasty food and beverage critic Reginald Mobley is drafted as a last-minute replacement judge, Max dreads a punishing review. Her fears are confirmed when Mobley literally spits out her beer, but things get even worse when the cranky critic drops dead right after trying one of Jake’s burgers. Now an ambitious new police detective is determined to pin Mobley’s murder on Max and Jake, who must pore over the clues to protect their freedom and reputations — and to find the self-appointed judge, jury, and executioner.

Grab your copy here: Amazon

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How to connect with Joyce:
Webpage – http://www.joycetremel.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/JoyceTremel/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/JoyceTremel
GoodReads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13746162.Joyce_Tremel

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The Book Club Murders

book-club-murders-large-banner640Today I welcome Leslie Nagel to my blog to talk about her new book, The Book Club Murders. Welcome, Leslie.book-club-murders-author-photo

Why do you write cozy mysteries?
Cozies appeal to my tidy soul. I grew up on Nancy Drew and Hercule Poirot. I would finish a story and then immediately reread it in order to trace the clues from beginning to the big reveal. Sometimes I even wrote them down, laying them out like a treasure map. But the best part of a cozy is the amateur sleuth. I wanted to be that girl. Mysteries are plot driven, but unlike police procedurals or thrillers, cozies are also very character driven. The flaws, fears and dreams of the amateur detective drive her or his desire to get to the truth and find the killer. This is what I believe makes them so appealing, and what made me want to create my own sleuth and give her a good puzzle to solve.

Please tell us about your book. What ideas or images inspired this novel?
The Book Club Murders is set in my hometown of Oakwood, a small suburb of Dayton, Ohio. It’s the story of desperate housewives, a dysfunctional book club, and a stubborn redheaded club member desperate to find out who’s killing women and arranging their bodies in imitation of books from the club’s mystery reading list.
I was power walking down on the train tracks-turned-bike-trail one day when I realized how remote and isolated it was, despite being just a few hundred yards behind a row of quite normal backyards. If I scream, I thought, would anyone be able to hear me? What a super place for a murder this would be. A crime scene from a book I’d recently read popped into my head as being a good fit for that desolate setting. The literary connection prompted the book club idea, and then it was only a matter of finding more books with suitable scenes for my killer to copy.
Those train tracks became the first crime scene in my novel. Each of the crime scenes are actual places in Oakwood. Once I began writing, I started with that creepy trail and began tracing backward. Who would have the nerve to commit a murder down here? And why would they do it? Would the reason be sufficient to provoke a second murder? A third?
Small towns are full of secrets. This story exposes the seamy underbelly of upper class suburbia. It reveals the innermost fears and desires that drive people to commit desperate acts, motivations many readers will find familiar, whether they live on a farm, in a New York high rise, or in a cozy home on a tidy street in a suburb like Oakwood.

Do you have an ideal reader in mind when you write? If so, please describe that reader.
My ideal reader loves a good puzzle almost as much as she or he loves to read. My reader keeps an open mind about social values, has a good sense of humor, and likes it when the answers don’t come easy.

Please describe your writing routine.
I teach part time and have partial care of an aging parent, so my routine is less than routine. I’ve heard a lot of famous writers talk about putting in two hours every morning like clockwork. What a luxury that would be! I figure they must have secretaries and housekeepers to manage the realities of life.
When I am able to carve out a couple of hours at my desk, I begin by rereading the last few pages I wrote. It’s my habit to end a writing session with a note to myself about where I want to go next. So after rereading to get back into the story, I consult any notes I’ve made and plunge right in. I am a methodical person. Making checklists helps keep me on task. That may sound crazy when you’re talking about a creative process, but it works for me.

What advice do you give new writers just starting out?
First, listen to every piece of constructive criticism you receive. My attitude was that, as a novice, everyone in the industry knew more than I did! I was lucky to get feedback from some agents who rejected me. This allowed me to revise and improve my novel until it was good enough to attract an agent.
Second, you have to do the work. Putting in the time, doing the necessary revisions, going back to the beginning and outlining the plot and characters with notecards or post its — whatever it takes to make your manuscript the absolute best it can be, you must be prepared to put in the time. It took me more than six years from writing the first sentence to signing my first book deal. Most of that was spent doing revisions. There are no shortcuts to success.

More about The Book Club Murders:
Charley Carpenter has poured heart and soul into her clothing store, Old Hat Vintage Fashions. She’ll do anything to make it a success — even join the stuffy Agathas Book Club in order to cultivate customers among the wealthy elite of Oakwood, Ohio.
Although mixing with the most influential women in town has its advantages, Charley finds the endless gossip a high price to pay. But after two women with close ties to the Agathas are brutally murdered, everyone falls under threat — and suspicion. When key evidence indicates that both murders are the work of the same hand, Charley realizes that the killer has arranged each corpse in perfect imitation of crime scenes from the club’s murder mystery reading list. She uses her membership in the club to convince Detective Marcus Trenault to use her as an inside informant. Not that he could stop her anyway.
Intelligent, fearless, and every bit as stubborn as Marc is, Charley soon learns the Agathas aren’t the only ones with secrets to protect. Passions explode as she and Marc must race against time to prevent another murder. And if Charley’s not careful, she may find herself becoming the killer’s next plot twist.

Grab your copy here: Amazon

How to connect with Leslie:
Website: http://www.leslienagel.com/
Email address: leslie.a.nagel@gmail.com
Facebook: http s://www.facebook.com/LeslieNagelAuthor/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/leslie_nagel

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Dandelion Dead

dandelion-dead-book-blast-large-banner640-1Today I spotlight Dandelion Dead, Chrystle Fiedler’s newest cozy mystery.

chrystle-dandelion-deadMore about Dandelion Dead:
dandelion-deadBusiness is blooming at Nature’s Way Market & Café, and shop owner, holistic doctor, and amateur sleuth, Willow McQuade has never been happier. Her new medicinal herb garden is a hit, so is her new book, she’s in love with ex-cop and animal rescuer Jackson Spade, and enjoying teaching seminars about edible plants and natural remedies.
But everything changes when Willow’s old boyfriend and TV producer, Simon Lewis, winemaker David Farmer, and his wife Ivy, ask her to cater a party at Pure, their new organic vineyard, to kick off North Fork’s Uncorked! week and the competition for Wine Lovers magazine’s $200,000 prize. Pure’s entry, Falling Leaves, is the favorite to win, and the wine flows freely until after Simon’s toast when smiles give way to looks of horror. Ivy’s twin sister, Amy has been murdered! Turns out, the poison that killed her was actually meant for David. But who wants him dead? A rival vintner? Or someone closer to home? This time the truth may be a bitter vintage to swallow.

Chrystle Fiedler is a freelance journalist specializing in natural remedies, alternative medicine and holistic health and healing, and is the author of the Natural Remedies Mysteries series. Her many consumer magazine articles have appeared in USA Today’s Green Living, Natural Health, Remedy, Mother Earth Living, Spirituality & Health, and Prevention. She is also the author/co-author of seven non-fiction health titles including the Country Almanac of Home Remedies with herbalist Brigitte Mars, and The Compassionate Chick’s Guide to DIY Beauty with Vegan Beauty Review founder, Sunny Subramanian. Chrystle lives on the East End of Long Island, NY in a cozy cottage by the sea.

Grab your copy here: Amazon

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How to connect with Chrystle:
Website: www.chrystlefiedlerwrites.com
https://www.facebook.com/dandeliondeadbook/?fref=ts
https://twitter.com/ChrystleFiedler
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3360187.Chrystle_Fiedler

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A March to Remember

a-march-to-remember-large-banner640Anna Loan-Wilsey combines history and mystery when writing her Hattie Davish Mystery series. She visits my pages today to talk about her fifth book in the series, A March to Remember. Welcome, Anna!loan_wilsey_headshot_small

Why do you write cozy mysteries?
I write cozy mysteries because I love to read cozy mysteries.  I enjoy, as both a writer and reader, the puzzle and the story, not the blood and gore.  I also relish the challenge of writing about an amateur detective who otherwise shouldn’t be involved in murder.

Please tell us about your book. What ideas or images inspired this novel?
My book, A March to Remember, is the fifth novel in the Hattie Davish Mystery series, where each book finds Hattie solving crimes in a different historical town in 1890’s America. In this adventure, Hattie, a private secretary, finds herself in Washington D.C. in the employ of her mentor, Sir Arthur Windom-Greene, a British aristocrat and historian. Their visit coincides with the arrival of “Coxey’s Army,” the first ever protest “march” on Washington. When one of the marchers is found murdered, Hattie suspects some of Washington’s most prominent politicians might be involved.
I was definitely inspired by the actual historical “Coxey’s Army” and their May 1, 1894 march on Washington. Unprecedented, it was one of the most sensational newspaper stories of its day and yet I’d never heard of it. What fun it was to bring all the many characters of this historical event to life and throw Hattie right in the middle of it all!

Do you have an ideal reader in mind when you write? If so, please describe that reader.
I don’t have an ideal reader in mind when I write. I hope my books appeal to anyone who enjoys a good mystery, who appreciates history, who loves a good puzzle to solve, or who simply likes to spend an afternoon reading an entertaining story.

Please describe your writing routine.
I write when my young daughter is at school.  As I’m most productive in the morning, I try to sit down in front of the computer the moment she’s off to school.  Then I work until my stomach grumbles reminding me I’ve missed lunch or until the alarm goes off reminding me I have a child to pick up from school.  My brain is mush after 4:30pm so it works out for everyone!

What advice do you give new writers just starting out?
The advice I have is the same I received when I was just starting out- persistence, persistence, persistence. In that same vein, I would add edit, edit, rewrite and edit again! Both pieces of advice have served me well. When trying to get an agent, I was once told not to get discouraged until I’d been rejected 100 times. After lots and lots and lots of rejections, I had an agent read my first 50 pages only to tell me my manuscript wasn’t ready. So I spent a year editing and rewriting and then tried again. This time, the very first agent I sent it to asked for the full manuscript and eventually offered to sign me.

More about A March to Remember:
cover-artTraveling secretary Hattie Davish is taking her singular talents to Washington, D.C., to help Sir Arthur Windom-Greene research his next book. But in the winding halls of the nation’s capital, searching for the truth can sometimes lead to murder…
Hattie is in her element, digging through dusty basements, attics, and abandoned buildings, not to be denied until she fishes out that elusive fact. But her delightful explorations are dampened when she witnesses a carriage crash into a carp pond beneath the shadow of the Washington Monument. Alarmingly, one of the passengers flees the scene, leaving the other to drown. The incident only heightens tensions brought on by the much publicized arrival of “Coxey’s Army,” thousands of unemployed men converging on the capital for the first ever organized “march” on Washington. When one of the marchers is found murdered in the ensuing chaos, Hattie begins to suspect a sinister conspiracy is at hand. As she expands her investigations into the motives of murder and closes in on the trail of a killer, she is surprised and distraught to learn that her research will lead her straight to the highest levels of government…

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