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Showing posts with the label Loser

Being All-Indie

I reported recently on the reversion of the Simon & Elizabeth Mysteries, my historical series, to my own again. When you sign with a publisher, they get the rights to a book or series for X number of years. They're professionally edited, and the publisher builds an audience that can speak for their quality. Downside: the cost is high due to people other than the author needing to make a profit. When I got Simon's stories back, I got new covers and re-published the series at a much lower cost. Now Loser will get the same treatment. The Loser Mysteries center on a homeless woman who finds herself involved in solving a murder. From the beginning I knew it would be a 3-book series, since the stories begin with her at her worst and follow her recovery from trauma. The books are beloved by a certain set, and many suggested I might extend it, but once Loser is back to (almost) normal, I felt that further stories would only have presented more murders to solve. There were too f

Plain Talk for Writers: Series

3 Current Series: Upper left, Loser Mysteries. Upper right, Simon & Elizabeth Historical Mysteries. Lower left: Dead Detective Mysteries. Somebody Doesn't Like Sarah Leigh is a stand-along mystery. Publishers love series . They invest in an author's work, and series mean they can reap the rewards of that investment more than once. Readers love series . It's nice to know that characters we love are going to come back and visit us again, telling us about their latest scrapes. Writers love series--to a point. It's comfortable to slip into the minds of characters we've already created. We know how they think, what they'll do. (Even if we don't, we can look back at the books that came before and refresh our memories.) The problem with series-writing is keeping it fresh . Writers don't want their characters to "jump the shark," but it's obvious to me from reading some series that authors find it difficult to tell when they've r

Freebie Day 4: April 14, 2015

Killing Silence Want 2 free copies of this book? Respond here or on Peg’s News on Facebook to be entered in the daily drawing. If you haven't yet "met" Loser, you're in for a new and uplifting experience!   Book #1 of the Loser Mysteries Setting: Richmond, VA Loser lives on the streets, washing up in public restrooms and eating when the opportunity arises. When the father of a child who’s been good to her is accused of murder, Loser feels compelled to help. In order to do so, she’ll have to overcome her demons: the inability to speak normally, the desire to be left alone, and her tragic past, which haunts her every moment. This book is now available as an audio book as well as in print and e-formats.

Protagonists Who Are Difficult to Like

Now available in print, e-book, and audio                                                                                                                                                                             Killing Silence on Amazon There's been a lot of discussion on mystery readers' sites lately about books like Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train. Some pan them because the protagonists aren't very likeable; others claim they brilliantly reflect the realities of life. The fact that The Gold Finch won literature's highest reward indicates that reflecting reality is a big deal for the important voices in publishing and reading. I read The Girl on the Train last week, and I have to say it was well done. I was drawn into the woman's blurry world, and I guess I understand better now what it's like to be an alcoholic, promising yourself you'll do better tomorrow while you pour yourself another drink today. I never read Gone Girl , having heard th

Are You an Audiobook Person?

There are things we hear discussed among readers today, and one of them is electronic versus print books for reading. People say things like, "I want a book in my hand," or "E-books are so much more convenient." I'm okay with both. I like reading on my iPad when I travel, my Kindle at bedtime, and a "real" book anytime, anywhere. The other question is "Do you listen to books?" To that one I have to say no, or at least, not yet. I'm a fast reader, and I doubt I'd be happy with the slow pace of someone reading to me. I'm also a wool-gatherer, so I'd probably zone out when something interesting caught my eye. So I haven't done the audio thing yet. However-- I have to listen to my own books in order to okay them for release on Audible.com, Amazon's audio book company. It's been an enjoyable experience, and it gave me a different perspective on the book, the story, and the protagonist. Most recent was the firs

What Am I Working On?

Someone asks me this about once a week, so I thought I'd attempt an answer. I just finished the final edit for the 4th Simon & Elizabeth mystery, Her Majesty's Mischief . If you've been paying attention, I had some trouble choosing a title for this one, and readers gave me some great suggestions. I chose this one because it has a double meaning. Simon is sent to Scotland to try to determine if Mary, Queen of Scots is hatching mischief in the form of revolt against Elizabeth, now Queen of England. In his absence, Elizabeth hatches some mischief of her own, secretly sending Simon's old friend Calkin to investigate a murder in Simon's family. Both endeavors lead to trouble, of course. I have no release date yet for that one, but they said I'll get Advance Review Copies in December, which means it should come out about two months later. I will let readers know through my newsletter, so if you aren't signed up, you can text 22828. It will ask for a passwor

What It's Like When You're Expecting...a Book

My copies of KILLING DESPAIR arrived yesterday, and it got me thinking that expecting a book is a lot like expecting a baby. *When you tell people about it too early, all those months of waiting detract from the excitement. *You can't be sure when it's going to happen, despite the dates the experts throw out there. *There are periods of discomfort, and you have to remind yourself that something good is going to result. *Friends are supportive, but they're seldom as excited as you are about the coming event. *You wait for it to be "over" but soon learn there's more work after it's "over" than you ever imagined. E-book:  http://www.amazon.com/Killing-Despair-Loser-Mysteries-Three-ebook/dp/B00MKBH3MU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1408621189&sr=8-1&keywords=killing+despair Print: http://www.amazon.com/Killing-Despair-Loser-Mysteries-Three/dp/0990565513/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1408621189&sr=8-1 My signing itinerary

*Killing Despair* Countdown

The third Loser Mystery, Killing Despair , launches on August 9th from LL-Publications. (Trust me; I'll remind you when it's available and post the buy-links!) Loser returns to Richmond in Book #3, drawn there by new information about the murders of her husband and child three years earlier. Once there, she becomes a suspect in a current murder and must disappear into the world of street people, sleeping in alleys and hiding in the places no one goes. This time, however, Loser has more than her street friends for help. This time she might find the truth and escape her despair--if she survives. The books in this series ( Killing Silence, Killing Memories , and Killing Despair) were compelling stories for me to write, and fans tell me they are compelling reads as well. Loser is one of my more intriguing characters, difficult to write in many ways (like not talking much) but also very real to me. After three books, I'm done with her for a while, but there might be a time

"Where's That Book?" You Might Ask

Coming Spring of 2014 (I was told!) I've been asked many, many times in the last few months about upcoming books, with good reason. My last book released some time ago, and some fans have even asked if I'd stopped writing. No. (Couldn't do it if I wanted to, because my brain keeps sending out ideas.) What's happened is the slow publishing industry, which is frustrating for me as well as my readers. Months ago I submitted the next Dead Detective, the next Loser, and the next Simon & Elizabeth to my publishers. They're in various stages of production, with Loser #3 likely to be the next release. No date's been given for the 3rd dead detectives (and no reason why it isn't moving along). The date for Simon's fourth adventure is 2015, due to some issues at the publisher that have nothing to do with me. I know. It's frustrating. Most people know very little about how a book goes from manuscript to book, and most don't care, except when it