Follow by Email

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

CANDY COATED SECRETS


It's the preliminary sketch for the cover of Candy-Coated Secrets. Isn't it fun?

POST CHRISTMAS


That Glorious time of year is past and a new year looms. 2008 saw the release of my first novel. 2009 will release two more. God is good. We spent the holidays with our children and their families, which makes for a large and noisy group, but I wouldn't have it any other way. I don't make new year resolutions, but I do have hopes. My hope for the coming year is to sign a single-title contract. It could happen. What about you?

Enjoy the picture of my youngest son (the black one)and our five grandchildren clowning around in front of the tree.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Merry Christmas

The Season is upon us. School is out, which means I'm also on a two-week vacation, gifts are bought, tonight is making tamales, a couple of parties have been attended, our day volunteering at the food bank is done, and I can sit back and enjoy the sight of a decorated tree and house with presents wrapped and waiting. If you could have one thing under the tree (for yourself) what would it be?

Me? I'd like a single-title contract for my historical romance, Shattered Superstitions. Anyone listening? God? Santa?

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Holiday Memories


What's your favorite? What makes your holiday complete? How do you celebrate? What was your favorite gift every received?

My favorite gift has to be my wedding set given to me by my husband on our tenth Christmas. Any time the family gets together makes the holidays complete. Here's the whole gang last year in front of the tree, except for my husband. He took the picture. What a motley crue!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Writing

How does one know what to write? I've started so many stories because a publishing house thought it sounded like a "good" idea, but then they turn it down and I'm left with half a book. I hate leaving anything unfinished, and someday all my work in progresses will be complete, but how do we know what to write? What do we put our sweat and time into?

Often, I've had an idea, started the book, then saw a new release with almost the same idea! Ugh! How do we find our niche?

Sure, we want our writing to be a ministry. And readers have told me how much my book has helped them, but I also have a goal. To retire in six years when my husband does and supplement with money from writing. Unreasonable? I pray not.

Write the book of your heart, people say. Sure, but every story I write comes from the heart. Oh, well. Can you tell I'm suffering from sour grapes today?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Wow! Long time no write


I really need to find the time to carve out the minutes to blog. One more thing on a long list of things to do.

Fudge-Laced Felonies will be available for retail the end of January. Candy-Coated Secrets will ship to the bookclub at the same time. For someone who wasn't gifted with patience, this seems to take forever. And no, I'm not asking God to teach me patience. Been there, done that!

My latest work, Shades of Crimson, was turned down by publishers as being too scary. Jeesh! Just because I read FBI profiling books and got into the head of the killer doesn't make it scary, does it? Okay, it was kind of scary. Someday the Christian market will be ready for a good thriller with a redemption story, right? Then I'll be ready.

I'm just so tired of Amish stories, you know? Too sweet. Although I did read one by new author, Beth Wiseman. Plain Perfect. Not your ordinary Amish story. I really enjoyed it.

Right now, I'm working on a historical that a couple of publishers expressed interest in. Of course, it'll have a healthy dose of suspense. Can't help it. Even my fun cozies have that. I'm managing to write an average of 10,000 words a week, but that will definitely slow down during the holidays.

Y'all have a great Thanksgiving!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

TWILIGHT

Well, I read the book to see what all the hoopla was about. It's good, but I didn't see the intense romance so many people are raving about. It's definitely suited for both young adult and adults, and the story does grip you. Yes, I'll read the others in the series. I've got to find out who turns; Edward or Bella. Okay, I cheated and I know who turns, but I've got to find out how they reached the conclusion they did.

For anyone wondering, Stephanie Meyer is a great storyteller, pulling the reader into the love of 17-year-old Bella's life. Is Edward hunky? Yes. Is the book clean? Yes. Can anyone from Junior High age and older relate? Again, yes. But don't take my word for it. Buy, borrow, or check-out the book and see for yourself.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

THE CASE OF THE BOUNCING GRANDMA by A.K. Arenz


Glory Harper, adventurous, skate-boarding, tramboline jumping, grandma is confined to a wheelchair because of a broken leg. While spying on the new neighbors, Glory spots a foot hanging from the end of rolled up carpet. When she alerts her family and the police, they don't believe her. Instead, they try convincing her the foot belongs to a mannequin. Glory decides to investigate on her own, bum leg or not! When handsome detective Rick Spencer enters the picture, Glory finds herself torn between a possible romance, or solving a murder.

In a humorous "Rear View" fashion, A.K. Arenz has crafted a wonderfully entertaining mystery complete with a quirky heroine, unforgettable characters, and a healthy dose of romance. I can't wait to read the next mystery involving The Bouncing Grandma

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Candy-Coated Secrets

We're moving right along. And fast! Candy-Coated Secrets has been moved from a release day of late April, 2009 to late January, 2009. I've just sent back my final edits and am waiting on cover art. I can't wait to see what the art department comes up with. What can they do with an elephant, a candy-maker, and a county fair...not to mention a couple of bears, Bigfoot, and a lion!

Friday, September 26, 2008

ACFW Conference 2008

This year's conference was held in Minneapolis. The weather was perfect, the rooms comfortable, the hotel HUGE! People were wonderful and welcoming. Appointments fell into place with ease. The ACFW board members outdid themselves again, and Angie Hunt's speaking was not to be missed.

Although, I attended, I ordered the CD of all the classes. Way too many to choose from and, since I don't live in a science fiction movie, I couldn't attend more than one class at a time.

Contracts were signed, agents found, and friendships made. Excitement ran high. A few people may have had hopes dashed, but we need to remember that publication isn't a guarantee. If we're meant to be published, it's in God's time, not ours. For learning the craft, the conference can't be beat.

And the multi-author booksigning at the Mall of America was the bomb! As kids today say. 125 authors attracted more people than you could count. The bookstore quickly ran out of most books. The man at Barnes and Noble said the mall hadn't seen anything like it since the guitarest from Motley Crue was there. Did God move that day, or what? An amazing experience!

God willing, I'll attend next year's conference in Denver. Start saving now, folks. The dates are September 17-20, and Debbie MacComber will be the guest speaker.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Bad Writing


I'm not going to mention the title of the book I'm reading, but it's by a well-known, multi-published Christian author. And, it breaks every writing rule in the book! How can someone who's been published many times get away with pov issues, passive writing, repetition, lots of exclamation marks, and just horrible story matter? NOT FAIR! I say. I must follow the rules, say something a million ways, not use a single cliche, etc.

I'd like nothing more than to toss the book, but as I've got to read it in order to review it, I'll have to muddle along. God help me! Anyway, thanks for letting me vent.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Mega Booksigning at the Mall of America

Wow! 127 authors beneath one roof! At this year's ACFW conference in Minneapolis, Sept. 18 thru Sept. 21, Barnes and Noble, ACFW, and the Mall of America have teamed together to bring one colassal booksigning event. And I'm one of the listed authors! Is this exciting or what? If you're in the area, stop by and buy a book!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Update

I know, it's been a while. I just sent the copy edits back on Candy-Coated Secrets. Look for it in April. I sent my agent my hopeful Romantic Suspense, Deceitful Promise, and am rewriting a historical; The Trail Worth Taking. So, it isn't like I'm not busy. And that's just my writing world. I won't even go into the trials of still having a 16-year-old at home and an 11-year-old. Both boys by the way. Hope all of you are well. Don't forget to pop in at www.mainlymystery.blogspot.com. A blog I co-manage with another author. That, too, keeps me busy. God bless!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Mind Test

I visited another author's blog and took this mind test: www.mindmedia.com/braintest

Here are the results. Scarily accurate!

Cynthia, your hemispheric dominance is equally divided between left and right brain, while you show a moderate preference for auditory versus visual learning, signs of a balanced and flexible person.

Your balance gives you the enviable capacity to be verbal and literate while retaining a certain "flair" and individuality. You are logical and compliant but only to a degree. You are organized without being compulsive, goal-directed without being driven, and a "thinking" individual without being excessively so.

The one problem you might have is that your learning might not be as efficient as you would like. At times you will work from the specific to the general, while at other times you'll work from the general to the specific. Sometimes you will be logical in your approach while at other times random. Since you cannot always control the choice, you may experience frustrations not normally felt by persons with a more defined and directed learning style.

You may also minimally experience conflicts associated with auditory processing. You will be systematic and sequential in your processing of information, you will most often focus on a single dimension of the problem or material, and you will be more reflective, i.e., "taking the data in" as opposed to "devouring" it.

Overall, you should feel content with your life and yourself. You are, perhaps, a little too critical of yourself - and of others - while maintaining an "openness" which is redeeming. Indecisiveness is a problem and your creativity is not in keeping with your potential. Being a pragmatist, you downplay this aspect of yourself and focus on the more immediate, the more obvious and the more functional.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

The Bone Box by Bob Hostetler


Reeling from his wife’s death, and nineteen years of being an absentee father, Randall Bullock goes to Israel to try to save his unraveling life. Archaeology seems to have lost the thrill it once held. Until Randall’s daughter shows up just as he’s uncovered the remains of “Joseph, son of Caiaphas” and a scroll depicting the ancient high priest’s involvement in the crucifixion of Christ.

The problem is, no one seems as interested in this find as Randall. Except for those he thinks needs this proof of Christ’s existence the least. In Randall’s eyes, Christ is no longer a name between the pages of a book. He lived, he died, he rose…and why can’t others see the evidence he’s uncovered?
Merging the time of Christ’s death with modern-day archaeology, The Bone Box is full of historical facts, redeeming grace, and proof of what Christ did for mankind.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Fudge-Laced Felonies Review



Title: FUDGE-LACED FELONIES
Author: Cynthia Hickey
Publisher: Heartsong Presents Mysteries
2008
ISBN: 978-1-69269- 181-9
Genre: Inspirational/ cozy mystery

Summer Meadows is angry when she gets home from vacation and finds out that her prize rosebush is dead. She’d asked Ethan Banning to water her roses for her, and he obviously fell down on the job. Wanting to make it right, Ethan takes Summer and they buy another rosebush. When Ethan digs up the dead plant, he discovers that someone had buried a bag full of diamonds, a rusty can full of cash, and a bloody gardening glove.

Thrown into a mystery by the act of the criminal, Summer sets out to discover what the meaning of it all, but then discovers that someone is targeting her. People are turning up dead, and Summer is beginning to fear she’ll be next.

Ethan begs Summer to let the police do their job, but that doesn’t stop her from throwing herself into harms way. Still, he can’t back off, he’s there for Summer and she can’t help but falling in love. But will this crime spree push Summer away from him for good?

FUDGE-LACED FELONIES is the first book in Ms. Hickey’s A Summer Meadows Mysteries series, and it’s a winner. Summer is a slightly klutzy, totally loveable heroine who stumbles into messy situations she can’t get out of easily. The reader can’t help but cheer for Summer and hope that things will work out for her.

The faith message is expertly woven in and isn’t preachy, and the setting is well-woven into the story. The opening lines of the book are really excellent. Readers are going to see a lot more of Ms. Hickey and her books – and, as Ms. Hickey’s critique partner, I know that the second two books in this trilogy are every bit as wonderful as the first. Don’t miss FUDGE-LACED FELONIES. $6.97. 244 pages.
Laura V. Hilton

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Another Review of Fudge-Laced Felonies

Check out my review at www.idealinhope.com. Click on fiction under book reviews.

Friday, July 25, 2008

ACFW Conference

I received notice today that I am on the list, along with 106 other authors, to participate in ACFW's biggest booksigning event to date. This will take place at the Mall of America, September 23, 2008. In the rotunda will be a revolving screen depicting bookcovers and photos of the participating authors.

I was getting a little depressed about the upcoming conference because I'm unsure of what I'll be pitching. Receiving the email with that news raised my excitement level back to the roof! And to put the icing on the cake, Heartsong Present/Mystery subscribers are receiving their copy of Fudge-Laced Felonies. I can't wait to hear the readers' responses.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Where the Truth Lies by Elizabeth Ludwig & Janelle Mowery


When Casey Alexander receives notice that her Aunty Liddy has died and left a suicide note, Casey refuses to believe her death was anything but murder. She leaves her web-design business and heads to her Aunt's home. It instantly becomes clear that someone wants Casey out of the picture or she'll join her aunt in the hereafter. Stalked by a shadowy figure, and finding bones buried in the yard, Casey is even more determined to find her aunt's killer.
Full of twists and quirky characters, Where the Truth Lies is an enjoyable, page-turning reading experience. Just when you think you've figured out "who-dunnit", Ludwig and Mowery throw you another curve. Well done, Ladies!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Mainly Mystery

I will be teaming with Nancy Mehl on hosting a mystery blog. We will focus on the art of writing mystery, interviewing authors, and reviewing books. Primarily our focus is mystery, but we'll be tossing in some suspense to keep everyone on their toes. Click on the link on the right to visit the Mainly Mystery blog.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Fudge-Laced Felonies First Review

I've got my first review!

Review of Fudge-Laced Felonies
by Cynthia Hickey
http://cynthiahickey.blogspot.com/

Reviewed by Barbara J. Robinson
Award-winning Author
http://barbarajrobinson.blogspot.com/

From the lead, “I marched into church on Sunday – not to search for God, but to find a killer,” spunky heroine Summer Meadows captures your heart with humor even in the darkest situations, as you journey with her to solve a diamond mystery. A light, easy read, this page turner takes you into the Ozark foothills. Set in a small town, Summer owns a candy store and is up to her wrists in chocolate, when she’s not knee deep in trouble playing detective.

Hooked from the lead, I was riveted in the mystery and completed the novel in several readings. When interrupted, I couldn’t wait to return to Summer’s world of chocolate, diamonds, and mystery.

Rich with fresh similes and metaphors, readers savor a taste of Southern grit as two handsome men compete for Summer’s attention, but only one of them truly loves her. She must decide between Man of God, Ethan, with rough, working hands, or smooth-talking Nate with hands softer than her own. Nate says all the right things while Ethan teases like a childhood friend, leading Summer to believe that he thinks of her as a sister. Then there’s beautiful Terri Lee who once dated Ethan and attempts to pick up where she left off. Summer knows her natural beauty can’t complete with her store-bought façade.

Summer is down-to-earth, but feisty. Used to being in control, she has to learn to let God guide her steps and relinquish control to the One who can make an eternal difference in her life. She’s a Christian who attends church every Sunday, but grows in her faith through her struggles and learns to depend on God to see her through.

Have you ever treasured your flower garden and thought it worth gold? Summer’s rose garden is worth a small fortune in cash and diamonds, and she must solve the mystery of who killed her prized rose bush before she ends up a dead summer flower.

Candy-Coated Secrets is the second book in the Fudge-Laced Felonies series – Heartsong Presents. If you love humor and mystery entwined, snag the book for great summer read. See http://cynthiahickey.blogspot.com/ for more information. ISBN-978-1-60260-181-9, $6.95 paperback, 244 pages, 22 chapters of love and mystery.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Writing is Easy

My soon to be eleven year old was getting ready to spend the night with a friend. My sixteen year old is out of the state for a couple of days. To me, this means uninterrupted writing time. My younger son, said, "Why can't you write anytime? It's easy. All you do is sit down and write the words." Wow. Out of the mouth of babes. If only it WAS that easy.

Sure, we do have to 'just sit down and write the words', but there is so much more involved. I lost my son's attention when I started explaining about plot lines, and the story making sense, then there's marketing, and selling to publishers, etc. It's way more than just sitting down and putting words on paper.

The words have to be right. They have to tell a story that a reader is interested in getting into. Your characters need to be real and interesting. Your setting must draw the reader in. Oh, how I wish it were as simple as a child thinks it is. Then, there's the mechanics of writing. Oh, boy!

Monday, June 30, 2008

Greer, Arizona


We just spent two and half days in what has to be one of the most beautiful places in Arizona. All but one portion of our family was able to attend and we rented a glorious log cabin. The temperature never got over 80 degrees during the day. Although the clouds built every afternoon, rain eluded us, as did the bears. I would've loved to have seen one. Through my telephoto camera lens, of course. Racoons stayed away too, but we saw plenty of deer, elk, squirrel, and chipmunks. My sweet husband paid for us women to go horseback riding while he babysat. What a fun day! The men caught their quota of fish every day. We've decided that a trip to Greer will be an annual vacation.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

ANOTHER STAB AT LIFE by Anita Higman


Bailey Walker lost everything. Her job, her apartment, her no-good boyfriend. Everything except a dilapidated Victorian, gothic, nightmare of a house. Complete with a macabre house-warming gift. Someone left her a dead cat. Can life get any better? Especially when you suspect every neighbor of wanting to drive you out of your new home? The walls of the house contain a secret that Bailey shares with handsome neighbor, Maxwell Sumner. The race is on as Bailey gets Another Stab at Life.


Anita Higman's cozy mystery is a delightful, page-turning story full of love and new choices. I've lost count of how many of Barbour's new mystery line books I've read, and I've been delighted with everyone. Anita's is no exception.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Gunfight at Grace Gulch by Darlene Franklin


Every girl likes to play dress-up and CiCi Wilde is no exception. In fact, she owns a vintage clothing store and runs around town in her merchandise. The annual reenactment of the Oklahoma landrun and gunfight between the Graces and Gaynors is one of her largest business days. But when one of the actors is actually killed, the script seems rewritten. With CiCi's friends and families as the main suspects. So, donning a new costume, she sets out to find the culprit before she is history.


Darlene Franklin's cozy mystery is fun, entertaining, and educational. Join in with the Wilde sister's as they concoct a daring plan to catch the murderer.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Controlling Interest by Elizabeth White


Natalie Tubberville wants to be a detective. Matt Hogan owns his own struggling detective agency. When Natalie's father buys half of the company and leaves a twenty-five percent share to Natalie, Matt wants to hit the roof! Share partnership with a Barbie doll? Never! The two set out on there first assignment together--finding a missing Pakistani bride who doesn't want to be found. Natalie and Matt fall into one hilarious escapade after another.


Elizabeth White has crafted a wonderfully funny, entertaining mystery romance. You'll laugh as you turn each page.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Employee of the Semester


I'm a little late in posting this, but I made employee of the semester at the school where I run the Detention. Countryside Elementary. It's a great feeling to know when someone's hard work pays off. Oftentimes, this side of heaven, we don't see the result of our, often backbreaking, efforts. But, occassionally, God gives a gift. The opportunity to see how much we are appreciated.


The funny thing about my receiving this honor, was with the end of the school year quickly approaching, everyone forgot to tell me until the day I was being presented!

Monday, June 02, 2008

A Suspicion of Strawberries by Lynette Sowell


All Andi Clarks wants is for one of her business ventures to pan out. And to decide where her heart lies in regards to handsome Ben Hartley. When Charla Rae Thacker, belle of the town, plans a spa-like day at Andi's soap store, Andi thinks success is in the bag. Then Charla has an allergic reaction and dies. Andi must clear her store of all suspicion, and keep herself from becoming a victim.


Lynette Sowell has brought us a delightfully enjoyable cozy mystery with all the elements we love. Suspense, romance, humor, and a mystery to solve. Fun read.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Murder on the Ol' Bunions by S. Dionne Moore


Absolutely hilarious! LaTisha Barnhart undertakes killer pantyhose and painful bunions when she suspects foul play in the death of her former employer. Nothing will keep her from the truth. LaTisha hobbles from one clue to the next, her uproarious personality often clouding her judgement.


S. Dionne Moore has crafted a master of a cozy. You'll laugh your way through the pages.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

In the Dead of Winter by Nancy Mehl


When Samantha "Ivy" Towers returns to Winter Break to put her aunt's affairs in order, it quickly becomes clear something foul is in the air. With the help of her friend, Amos Parker, Samantha sets out to find her aunt's murderer.


The town of Winter Break is a blip on a map, yet full of characters so rich you won't easily forget them. I can't wait to read the next book in the Winter Break series.

www.heartsongmysteries.com

Friday, May 23, 2008

Mom, we will miss you!



We think it fitting to celebrate Mom’s life with Proverbs 31 verses 29-31:
Her children arise and call her blessed;
Her husband also, and he praises her:
Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
But a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Give her the reward she has earned,
And let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

Verse 10: says, and we paraphrase, “A woman of noble character, who can find? She is worth far more than rubies.”

Agnes Mary Galaudet Hickey was born September 7, 1927. She lived through the Great Depression, the birth of Laughlin and Las Vegas, a World War, color television, 1% income tax, a steak sandwich for $1.15, a career as an LPN, and the raising of five children. She has seen the invention of slot machines, VCR’s, DVD players, and man walking on the moon. Agnes has loved a husband, five children, 15 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren. Her life was full, rich, and overflowing with love. Her legacy lives on in many hearts.

Through the ups and downs of World History, Mom kept her optimistic view of the future, keeping her eye on heaven. Above all, she cherished family often saying she had the best family in the world. In a world where love seems to be based on what can you do for me, Mom was the epitome of unconditional love. She had an inner strength that others struggle to possess, and few will attain.

Being the feisty, Irish woman Mom was, there were moments of disagreement, but even during her out-spokenness, her love for the person never dimmed, always shining brightly from her eyes. Mom never forgot a birthday or bypassed an occasion to send a Thank You note. Mom, today is our chance to thank you. For your love, your understanding, your undying support in all our endeavors.

Mom recently celebrated her 80th birthday, surrounded by her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She spent Mother’s Day in Laughlin, on her “last Hoorah” as she called it. She ecstatically told us about winning $11 and wrote us a letter of every step of hers and Mary’s trip.

The memories are endless.
Fond memories of vacations in Twin Lakes, Wisconsin.
The vacation to Colorado where the pass over the Rocky Mountains was closed due to snow. Joe said he saw a bear and Mom turned the car around and drove all night until they reached home.
The times she’d turn down her hearing aid, then grumble at Dad because she couldn’t hear him.
The Christmas Tom dropped his pants and stood filming his sister Betsy until she noticed him standing in his boxers. Mom wanted to know why he’d do something so bad and to stop teasing his sister. They were both adults by this time.
The time she dropped the “F” bomb and tried to drag the water house to the top of Tom and Cindy’s house because Tom told her that a fire cracker started a fire. She didn’t think that joke was funny until months later.
The time Cindy went with her to Vegas after Mom’s heart surgery and she tried sneaking out of the hotel room at 3:30 in the morning for “one more pull”.
The many times she’d talk of her brothers and sisters. Her love for them was strong.
The gifts she received that was always “too much”. The creative gifts she gave that left no doubt that were given with love.

Although Mom’s passing leaves a hole that can’t be filled, we know that this is not goodbye, but rather we’ll see you later. For now, rest happy in God’s loving arms until we meet again. We love you.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Mysterious Incidents at Lone Rock by Rajendra Pillai


Written in true Agatha Christie style, Mysterious Incidents leads the reader on a page-turning sequence of events with a surprising twist. Several actually.


Professor Rich Harrison and his colleague, the brilliant, algebra equation loving, Chinni Roy , detective in India, head to a friends estate for what they hope will be a relaxing weekend. They couldn't be farther from the truth when a gun shot blasts the night. Not only must they solve the crime, but Professor Rich must face matters of the heart.

www.heartsongmysteries.com

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Deadly Exposure by Cara Putnam


How could a murder happen in a crowded theater and right next to news reporter, Danie Richards? And now that it has, she can't leave things alone. Despite numerous warnings from the killer. To complicate things, a former love insists on protecting Dani. Something she balks against.


DEADLY EXPOSURE is a page-turning romantic suspense. Full of surprises with the right amount of romance. A great read!

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Homicide at Blue Heron Lake


Heading back to her childhood home to get the lakeside cottage ready to sell turns out more difficult than Emily Grant anticipated. Finding a dead body with her long-ago crush, Nate Holman, then discovering another body twenty years dead, it seems like Emily's vacation is anything but. Disaster and mystery threaten the awakening of love.


Friday, April 25, 2008

Everybody Loved Roger Harden


Everybody loved Roger Harden, or so they all thought until he winds up dead. In true Agathie Christie fashion, this mystery leaves ten strangers stranded on an island. One by one the bodies pile up and it's up to Julie West and the handsome Reverend James Burton to solve the mystery. The greatest mystery winds up being the type of man Roger Harden was. A great read.

www.heartsongmysteries.com

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Another Interview

My second interview is posted at http://ribbit-ribbit.blogspot.com/ Stop by and check it out!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Recipe for Murder


Everyone always said Pricilla was a "killer" cook, but this is the first time that something she cooked actually seemed to kill someone. All Pricilla wanted to do was help her son feed his guests at his hunting lodge. Then one of the guests ends up dead. The only thing left to do is clear her salmon-filled tartlets of all blame. Pricilla finds herself smack in the middle of a murder investigation while trying to matchmake her son and the daughter of Pricilla's good friend, Max.


Recipe for Murder is a frolicking fun read with a quirky, loveable, sixty-something heroine. I can't wait for the next Pricilla Crumb mystery.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Fudge-Laced Felonies Cover


Ain't it beautiful? I'm so happy. The book goes to the printers on April 21.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Trouble Up Finny's Nose


Finny's Nose is a mountain overlooking the quaint town of Finny. Ruth Budge, resident bird lady and saver of all things fowl finds her world turned upside down when she finds a romance novel her late husband was writing. After heading to town to clear her mind, she discovers a body in the town fountain.


Trouble up Finny's Nose takes the reader into the world of art, sculpture, and secrets. Soon Ruth finds herself biting off more than her, or her bird friends, can chew. And if things in her life weren't topsy-turvy enough, she's beginning to experience feelings for Monk, the town caterer. And at her age!


Dana Mentink has crafted another fun read for Heartsong Presents/Mysteries. Join the club. http://www.heartsongmysteries.com/



Saturday, April 05, 2008

Murder in the Milkcase


You'd think going to the grocery store would be a normal, mundane, everyday type of thing. But not to Trish Cunningham. Imagine her surprise when she reaches for the milk and discovers a dead body. And her husband wonders why her stomach is upset? Not only does Trish have a misbehaving teenage step-daughter, now she's a suspect for murder!


Her handsome husband, Max, begs her to leave things alone, then hires a snooty lawyer when Trish doesn't listen. She tries, but can't help herself from getting into trouble.


This is the first Heartsong Presents Mystery I've read and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Can't wait to read the others. From page one, Candice Speare takes the reader on an enjoyable ride where the characters become your friends.


Come join the fun and enter this great bookclub!

Friday, April 04, 2008

First Online Interview

My first interview for Fudge-Laced Felonies is posted for the April issue of Stepping Stones for Writers.
Check it out! http://www.freewebs.com/steppingstonesforwriters/

Monday, March 31, 2008

Fudge-Laced Felonies

Got my galleys today. Very exciting. Now, I've got to read the book, again, to do a final check for errors. I can't wait to hold this baby in my hands.

Now, if I could only get people to visit my blog!

Friday, March 28, 2008

A Matter of Wife and Death



Pastors’ wives are real people. Real women dealing with temptation, self-esteem, child-rearing, child-bearing, and rocky marriages. Often these women feel alone, unworthy of the path God has called them to. In A Matter of Wife & Death, (Secrets from Lulu’s Café Series), Ginger Kolbaba & Christy Scannell craft a story of five such women, sisters in Christ and fellow pastors’ wives of Red River.

On a retreat for the wives, a bickering session rises up and one of the women end up dead, another accused, and the others left questioning their friendship and right and wrong. The reader is taken in small part on a mystery. On a larger scale, the reader is taken along as these women discover what is really important in their walk as the wives of pastors, and the mothers of preachers kids.

As we read of their struggles, we realize how normal these women are who are often placed on pedestals. We laugh with them, cry with them, and pray with them. We rejoice as they triumph.

I thought at first I’d have trouble keeping up with and associating with five main characters, but as I read, I had no trouble at all and joined in with the women’s friendship group. Good job.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Delia Latham's Goldeneyes Release




There's a lot of buzz about Delia Latham's new release Goldeneyes. Now available in stores.

Delia Latham is a former newspaper Staff Writer and a frequent contributor to her hometown’s regional publication, Bakersfield Magazine. She also writes greeting card verse, short stories, articles, and songs. Her editing and proofing skills have been utilized by numerous authors, including Dr. Chuck Wall, founder of the Random Acts of Kindness movement.
A debut novel, Almost Like a Song, was released in June 2006; Goldeneyes will be released in March 2008 by Vintage Romance Publishing. Delia’s work is included in an upcoming short story anthology, The Shortstack: 20 Stories to Fill You Up.
The author lives in Bakersfield, California with her husband, Johnny, a Pentecostal minister. Her four adult children and four “beautiful, absolutely perfect” grandchildren daily light up her life. She loves to hear from her readers. Contact her through her website (http://www.delialatham.com/) or her blog (http://themelodywithin.blogspot.com/.)



Q. Who is Delia Latham?
A: I’m a Christian wife, married to a Pentecostal minister. My husband is the assistant pastor at our church, and I’m involved in the music ministry. I play piano and sing. I have four grown children and four beautiful, absolutely perfect granchildren – no, really, they are! We all live in Bakersfield, California. I was born here and have resided in or around this desert town my entire life.

Q: What books are on your nightstand right now?
A: Too many. I write reviews, so there’s always plenty of reading material in my room. Right now, I’m looking at Rainbow’s End by Irene Hannon, Veil of Fire by Marlo Schalesky, Abandoned Identity by Tamara Tilley – that’s just a few of the unread books. I just finished Loving Liza Jane by Sharlene MacLaren and – a little detour from the usual – The Darkest Evening of the Year by Dean Koontz.

Q: Your novel, Goldeneyes, is scheduled for release in March. What is it about?
A: It’s an historical romance about a depression-era man who does something horrible to satisy his alcohol addiction, and the ripple effect his action causes in the lives of two families over twenty years later.

Q: What inspired you to write Goldeneyes?
A: I grew up in Weedpatch, the little farming community where Part One of Goldeneyes is set. I’ve always wanted to write something using that location as a backdrop. This story has been brewing in my mind for several years, but it was hard for me to get past the reality of Weedpatch in my own life and get on with turning it into a fictional tale. I prayed a lot! Once God gave me the go-ahead, He also gave me the inspiration, and I’m very pleased with the completed product.

Q: Where do you get your ideas?
A: Ahhh … the question every writer gets asked most often - and for me, quite possibly the hardest, because I’m not always sure. Sometimes I get ideas from little snippets of history; a few of my stories are major exaggerations of tiny occurrences in my own life or the lives of people I know; and sometimes I sit down to write with absolutely no idea what I’m going to write about. Oddly enough, those are the times I usually wind up being happiest with the results, maybe because I’m most open for God to take my writing wherever He wants to.

Q: So you don’t always plot or outline your book before you write?
A: How’d you guess? No, I write like I do most other things in my life – totally off the cuff. I’m what the writing community refers to as a SOTP: Seat-of-the-pants writer.

Q: Which authors have most influenced your own writing?
A: Too many to possibly mention here! As a child, I devoured just about every book I could get my hands on: Nancy Drew, Trixie Belden, the Bobbsey Twins – even the Hardy Boys; I wasn’t gender specific as to reading material. As I got older, I graduated to romance and found Grace Livingston Hill, Barbara Cartland, Emilie Loring, and oh, yes – I discovered Harlequin Romance (oh, my!). Now some of my favorite writers are Joy Fielding, Lori Wick, Lori Copeland … the list goes on for miles. My favorite book of all time is Swan Song, by Robert McCammon – rather surprising for an inspirational author, I know, but it’s a beautifully written epic account of good vs. evil. Unforgettable!

Q: What other projects are you currently working on?
A: My current work-in-progress is surprising me by actually creating a connection between my debut novel and Goldeneyes, which I wasn’t expecting at all. I’ve also just completed something completely new - at least for me. While it’s still Christian romance, it will fit more easily into the Chick Lit genre, bringing in a touch more humor and lightheartedness than is in my other works.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Delia Latham Blog Tour

Come back on March 20th and spend some time in author, Delia Latham's blog tour. Here are the next scheduled stops.

24. Mar. 19 – Bonnie Winters - http://360.yahoo.com/indianabon
25. Mar. 20 – Cynthia Hickey – http://www.cynthiahickey.blogspot.com
26. Mar. 24 – Pamela James - www.pammer.blogspot.com
27. Mar. 24 – 28 – Tracy Ruckman – www.pixnpens.blogspot.com
28. Mar. 25 – Christa Allen - http://cballan.wordpress.com/
29. Mar. 27 – Melissa Meeks - http://forstrose.blogspot.com/
30. Mar. 31 – Gina Conroy – http://portraitofawriter.ginaconroy.com
31. April 20 – Marian Merritt – http://www.marianmerritt.com
32. April 27 – Margaret Daley – www.margaretdaley.blogspot.com
33. Throughout February and March – David G. Boggs – http://www.freewebs.com/davidgboggs/delialathamsnewbook.htm
www.davidgboggs.blogspot.com

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Murder, Mayhem & a fine man


Claudia Mair Burney has written the ultimate fun book! Lovers of any genre will laugh out loud during the antics of just turned forty, Bell and her blossoming romance with too handsome to walk the streets, Jazz Brown. The tension and interaction between the characters while working to solve the mystery of what appears to be a cult suicide will have the reader flipping the pages fast enough to cause heavy winds.

I had to force myself to slow down so I wouldn't miss anything. Murder, Mayhem and A Fine Man is a must read for readers of any genre. It contains it all: chick lit, suspense, and romance.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

When I'm dead?

Spoke with a daughter I haven't spoken with in a long time, and told her about my two book contracts with Barbour's Heartsong Presents/Mysteries. Her response: "Wow, that's great. You'll be one of those people that when you die, they make a movie about your book."

Isn't that hilarious? Why do I have to wait until I die? Summer Meadows would make a great TV series main character. Anyone listening? I want Mandy Moore to play her.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Leaving November by Deborah Raney




Moving back home is never as easy as it seems. Vienne Kenney thought she had her life planned out. Leave her po-dunk small town life behind her, pass her bar exam, and give everyone back home something to talk about.

She gives them something to talk about, all right. A failed bar exam, and turning her mother’s café into a high faluting coffee shop. One where the overall wearing, manure boot wearing townies are not welcome. And there’s Jackson. The man she had a crush on in high school. But Jackson, too, isn’t what she had planned for her life.

In Leaving November, Deborah Raney shows the reader how what we have planned for our life, may not be God’s plan, and how His plan is the best in the end. Come along for a fun, sweet, thought provoking ride.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Tag, You're It!

Margo Carmichael tagged me. I have to turn to the nearest book at hand, turn to page 123, go to the fifth sentence, and post the next three. Then tag five more people. I'm tagging the Crit-Kritters!

Here's my selection!

An irresistible impulse can be carried out directly or indirectly. Murder while under duress: occurs when someone feels that legitimate threats of death or physical harm have been made against himself or members of his famil, such as the case in which a child has been abducted and the kidnappers tell the father he must kill someone in exchange for the release of the child. This type of murder can be direct or indirect.

Come on, guys, I write mysteries. This is from a police procedural book.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Candy-Coated Secrets

Got my contract today for book two! Yahoo!!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Candy-Coated Secrets

Yippee! I got the contract for book two in the Summer Meadows Series, Candy-Coated Secrets. Thinks are moving along very quickly. I'm still excitedly awaiting cover art for Fudge-Laced Felonies. Once I do, I'll post it here.

The new series I'm working on is moving along at a nice pace. I'm enjoying the personalities of the characters and finding new, interesting, ways to "kill" people.

Happy Writing and God Bless!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Coming Up Empty

What to write, what to write?

Life has a way of keeping a person too busy to do much else but survive. Our teenage son seems to take up most of the time we have, with one escapade or another. Hopefully, he'll grow up soon and turn into the Godly man we hope and pray he does.

I've been reading quite a few good books lately. Found a new favorite suspense author. Allison Brennan. Scarey! A bit graphic, so if you're squeamish...

Still eagerly awaiting my first look at the cover of Fudge-Laced Felonies. Y'all will be the second to get a glimpse, after my husband of course.

I'm working on a new series, Tales from Timbuktu. Takes place in a fictional town in Arkansas. Working title is Hiding Behind Forgetfulness. I'm also working on Deceitful Promise which is a Romantic suspense. Busy! Busy!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Reluctant Smuggler

The Reluctant Smuggler, the third installment in Jill Elizabeth Nelson’s To Catch A Thief series, takes the reader from the snow covered landscape of Boston to the tropical jungles of the Yucatan Peninsula, to archaeological digs.

While trying to find flaws in the Mexican museum’s security system, Desiree Jacobs finds herself chased and the false artifact she carries stolen. Back in Boston, her fiancée, FBI agent Tony Lucano is almost killed during a raid and lies in a coma. Page turning thrills and suspense tie these two incidents together and threaten to jeopardize Desi’s and Tony’s upcoming wedding.
In The Reluctant Smuggler, Jill Elizabeth Nelson digs deeper in Desi’s and Tony’s love for each other, the dangers of crime-solving and protecting precious antiquities, and shows us the strength of true-love. The Reluctant Smuggler was my favorite of the three books in the To Catch a Thief Series. Full of romance, danger, suspense and God’s sovereignty. I’m looking forward to more adventures written by Jill Elizabeth Nelson.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Favorite

A critique partner asked me which of the three Summer Meadows books was my favorite. Here's my response:

Wow! I guess I'd have to say my favorite was the second one, Candy-Coated Secrets. It takes place at a county fair and Summer ends up being befriended by a nasty-tempered elephant named Ginger. It's silly, twisted, and fun. Of course, the first one, Fudge-Laced Felonies will always hold a special place in my heart because it's the one that got me the contract.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Finished First Draft!

Finished the first draft of book three in the Summer Meadows series. Feels good. I'll be having final edits of Fudge-Laced Felonies coming any day now, and I'm working on the first chapter of my new series. Marsha (Mars-Bars) Calloway inherits her father's doughnut business. Someone is using her doughnuts to poison people, them robbing them. When they wake from the medication, no not a killer this time, they can't remember the last hour of their life. What do you think? Sound interesting?

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Heartsong Presents Mysteries

Yippee! The website is up. Go on by and join the club to read the funnest cozy mysteries around. May's release will be my very own, Fudge-Laced Felonies. Be one of the first to receive it!
Just click on this link. http://www.heartsongmysteries.com/

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Happy New Year!

Wow, the beginning of another year. Resolutions? Oh, yeah. Lose thirty pounds, finish book two and three, write another one, get through the age of 16 with my son, write on my blog more, quit smoking...sounds daunting, doesn't it?

And, to top it off, my son got a restraining order served against him by his ex-girlfriend's parents. She got made when he broke up with her, didn't leave him alone, filled his head with "I'm sorry's" until I feel ill, and now the silly boy has to go to court for violation. Never mind she follows him around. And calls. And finds out where he's going to be and shows up. He believed her lies. Oh, the power females have over males. Especially ones with raging hormones. Well, my son's eyes are being opened--painfully. I pray God gets us all through it. My son's court hearing is February 1.

We still don't hear from our adoptive daughter who will be 19 on January 4th. Still praying she turns back to family and God.

The rest of the family is doing great and we celebrated a very happy Holiday season.

Here's to a blessed 2008 to all of you.