Crime Time ~ Evil Stepmother ~ “Not My Mom”

#CrimeTime with Alicia Dean

Evil Stepmother,  Season 1, Episode 1, Not My Mom

September 8, 2002, Dickson, Tennessee

Kimberly Mangrum became stepmom to two children when she married their father, Terry Mangrum, Sr.  During the episode, Kimberly’s stepson, Terry, Jr. is interviewed. He spoke about life with his stepmom. In the beginning, Kimberly worked hard to win his and his sister’s affection. But she soon begins to exhibit mood swings, lashing out for no reason. Kimberly’s main source of contention is the children’s mother, Lee Ann Mangrum, who had full custody. The kids visited their dad on the weekends, but Kimberly wanted full control. She insisted that she begin doing the drop-offs to limit the contact her husband had with his ex. Kimberly uses those dropoffs to taunt and start arguments with Lee Ann.

Lee Ann is a loving mother, but Kimberly engages in conflict with her and tries to undermine her role as a mother, every chance she gets. Somehow, and this I never understood, Lee Ann ends up losing custody to the children to Terry and Kimberly. This gives Kimberly even more of an opportunity to terrorize and abuse them. She would have the kids phone their mother and call her awful names and tell her she was a horrible mother. One day in September, Terry Sr. receives a notice to appear in Court. Lee Ann is filing to get custody of her children. Kimberly is enraged.

Lee Ann Mangrum

The next day, a fisherman finds a body and a vehicle submerged in Turnbull Creek. Police learn that the dead woman is Lee Ann Mangrum. Authorities speak to the family and are told by Kimberly, Terry Sr. and the kids that Lee Ann came over the night before,  with a man named Bob. She was drunk and demanding that Kimberly give her Klonopin. Kimberly did so, and Lee Ann finally left.

The police discover Lee Ann’s trailer has been ransacked. They find her son’s DNA in the house and they find cigarette butts outside that contain Kimberly’s DNA.  When police question Terry, Jr, he says that when his mom was at the house that night, he wanted to talk to her. After she left, he took Kimberly’s car and drove to her house. She flips out on him and attacks him. In self-defense, he kills her.

Believing there is more to it, the police push him. He finally tells the entire story.

The night that Kimberly receives the letter that Lee Ann is filing for custody, she goes into the children’s rooms (the daughter was 11 and the son, 15) and wakes them. She tells them to ride with her to the store to get cigarettes. Kimberly drives to the convenience store and after she gets the cigarettes, she tells the kids they are going to make one more stop. She drives them to Lee Ann’s. Terry Jr. is relieved when his mom isn’t home, but as they are leaving, a car passes. It’s Lee Ann. Kimberly turns around and parks behind her. She grabs a bat from behind the driver’s seat and tells the kids to get out of the car. She then begins screaming at Lee Ann. Lee Ann locks the doors, but Kimberly breaks the window with the bat. She pulls Lee Ann out of her vehicle and begins beating her with the bat. She hands Terry Jr. the bat and tells him to finish her. He then beats his mother. Kimberly holds a knife to his side and tells him to help get his mother into her car. Afraid for his life, he does as she says. She instructs him to drive Lee Ann’s car and follow her, and he does. She leads them to a creek. They pull Lee Ann from the vehicle and Kimberly drives it into the water. She orders Terry Jr. to kill his mother and threatens to kill him and his sister if he doesn’t. He places his foot on his mother’s body and holds her underwater until she drowns.

They head back to Lee Ann’s trailer. Kimberly forces her stepdaughter to call her grandmother from Lee Ann’s phone, saying, “I’m scared, please help me.” I’m not sure for what purpose, unless it’s to make it appear she is being attacked. Kimberly holds a knife to the children’s throats and tells them if they ever tell anyone what happened, she’ll kill them both, and their entire family.

After Terry Jr.’s confession, police arrest Terry Sr. and Kimberly. Terry Sr. is convicted of accessory after the fact and sentenced to 10 years. Terry Jr. is sentenced to 8 years and Kimberly is sentenced to life. The daughter, Alyshia, is not charged.

Terry Mangrum Jr.

What a crazy, messed up, tragic story. I am a little reluctant to totally defend the boy. He was 15 or 16 at the time, and a big kid. I’m sure the stepmom had some psychological control over him, but that’s a bit extreme. Surely, he could have driven his mother to the hospital instead of following Kimberly. He’d have had protection from police. Regardless of all that, there is no punishment too severe for the evil Kimberly Mangrum.

What are your thoughts?

[I love true crime shows, and I watch them every night. (Since I write suspense, thriller, and mystery, it’s not a waste of time…it’s research, right? 🙂 ) I love Investigation Discovery and watch many of the various shows, although some are a little too cheesy. However, there are plenty of shows that are done well enough to feed my fascination with murder. Each week, I’ll blog about some of the recent episodes I’ve seen and I’d love to know your thoughts.]

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Crime Time ~ A Crime to Remember, “Bye Bye Betty”

#CrimeTime with Alicia Dean

A Crime to Remember,  Season 3, Episode 8, “Bye Bye Betty”

Odessa, TX, 1961:

One of the most captivating and disturbing cases I’ve watched on IDGo is that of Betty Williams. She was a high school girl who was reputed to be promiscuous and dated a lot of different boys. One of those boys was Mack Herring. After Mack broke up with her, Betty spiraled into depression. She began making comments to her friends about wishing to die so she could leave this world for a better place. She said she would take her own life, except she didn’t have the courage. She asked a few of the boys to kill her, but they refused. None of this was taken seriously by her friends.

One morning in March, 1961, Betty’s parents reported her missing when she didn’t show up for breakfast or for school. Police began interviewing her classmates. A boy named Ike Nail stated he had driven her home from drama rehearsals the night before her disappearance and dropped her off at around ten. Betty asked him to return in half an hour and meet her in the alley behind her house. He did and she climbed into his car, wearing pajamas. In a few minutes, Mack Herring pulled up behind them. Betty said, “I didn’t think he’d come. I’ve got to call his bluff, even if he kills me.” She got out of Ike’s car and into Mack’s.

Police interviewed Mack, who claimed he’d dropped Betty off at home later that night. Some of the story was inconsistent and the details did not quite add up. The detectives pushed him, and he finally broke down and told them what had happened—or at least what he claimed had happened.

He led the police to a stock pond in a secluded spot on the outskirts of the city. Once they arrived, he waded into the water. Shortly, he headed back toward them, dragging Betty’s body with him.

He claimed he had shot her because she begged him to. He said that when he picked her up that night, they drove out to the pond where they parked the car and discussed the killing. She then exited the vehicle, seeming to be happy Mack had agreed to her request. “Give me a kiss to remember you by,” he had said to her. They kissed and when she pulled away, she got down on her hands and knees and told him ‘Now’. Mack Herring raised the shotgun and fired, killing her instantly. After she was dead, he wrapped her body up, weighed it down with a heavy object, then dumped it in the stock pond.

At the hearing for Mack Herring, the defense showed Betty’s letter, which was written in her own handwriting.  This is a transcript of the letter:

“I want everyone to know that what I’m about to do in no way implicates anyone else. I say this to make sure that no blame falls on anyone other than myself. I have depressing problems that concern, for the most part, myself. I’m waging a war within myself, a war to find the true me and I fear that I am losing the battle. So rather than admit defeat I’m going to beat a quick retreat into the no man’s land of death. As I have only the will and not the fortitude necessary, a friend of mine, seeing how great is my torment, has graciously consented to look after the details. His name is Mack Herring and I pray that he will not have to suffer for what he is doing for my sake. I take upon myself all blame, for there it lies, on me alone!—-Betty Williams.”

Mack was found not guilty by reason of insanity. Some people say that Betty’s request to Mack was actually a ploy to make him see how much he cared for her. She hoped he would refuse to kill her and instead declare his love. How sad and tragic. Young girls that age can be dramatic and immature. In Betty’s case, it cost her her life.

What do you think? Should Mack have been found not guilty, or should he have been punished for his crime?

To read more, check out this fascinating, detailed article that shares other notes by Betty and further information.  https://www.texasmonthly.com/articles/a-kiss-before-dying/

[I love true crime shows, and I watch them every night. (Since I write suspense, thriller, and mystery, it’s not a waste of time…it’s research, right? 🙂 ) I love Investigation Discovery and watch many of the various shows, although some are a little too cheesy. However, there are plenty of shows that are done well enough to feed my fascination with murder. Each week, I’ll blog about some of the recent episodes I’ve seen and I’d love to know your thoughts. Let me know if you’ve seen the episode and, if so, what you thought about it.]

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Crime Time ~ Passport to Murder, “Nightmare in Bali”

#CrimeTime with Alicia Dean

Passport to Murder,  Season 1, Episode 1, Nightmare in Bali

August 12, 2014, Bali, Indonesia

Wealthy Chicago socialite, Sheila Von Wiese-Mack, and her daughter, Heather Mack, have a strained relationship. Heather’s dad died when she was ten and she grew up troubled. Hoping to repair their relationship, Sheila books a lavish trip to Bali for just the two of them.

Eight days into their trip, tragedy strikes. A taxi driver reports a suspicious suitcase left in the back of his cab. Police arrive and find the bloody. bludgeoned, half-nude corpse of Shelia Von Wiese-Mack. Authorities learn Sheila’s daughter was on vacation with her and begin a search, concerned for her safety as well.

A tip leads them to a hotel seven miles away. They enter the room, expecting to find Heather held captive. Instead, they find her in bed with a young man, who turns out to be Tommy Schaefer, her boyfriend from Chicago. Unbeknownst to her mother, Heather used Sheila’s credit card to book Tommy a flight and hotel to Bali as well. When Sheila discovered this, she was livid. She didn’t approve of Tommy anyway, and it wasn’t the first time Heather had stolen and used her credit cards.

Further investigation uncovered the true facts of Sheila’s death. Heather and Tommy planned it together, thinking Heather would inherit her mother’s fortune. Surveillance video showed Tommy entering Sheila and Heather’s room with a bulging item beneath his shirt. Heather had let him in, and he used the item–a metal fruit bowl–to beat Sheila to death. The couple thought they could flee Bali with Sheila’s money, but the hotel staff refused them access to Sheila’s safe, before her murder was even discovered, where their passports and the cash had been secured.

The couple were arrested, and Heather was now pregnant. The trial was held in Bali. The killers were facing the possibility of death by firing squad. They were found guilty but, because of their age and Heather’s pregnancy, they were not given the death penalty. Instead, Tommy was sentenced to eighteen years, Heather to ten. Heather would keep her baby in prison with her until the child turned two, then the child would be taken into foster care until Heather was released, at which time the child would be returned to her.

This is appalling to me. The vicious killers go from facing a firing squad to getting what amounts to a slap on the wrist? Eighteen and ten years? Heather’s daughter will be returned to her? I’m baffled. There was mention of the trauma suffered when her father died and what an impact that had on her life. Sad, yes, but what if everyone who lost a parent at a young age murdered their remaining parent? Heather and Tommy were not children. She was nineteen years old, he was twenty-one. They were both adults. They planned this and carried it out, viciously and without remorse. They even laughed and made faces for the cameras after their arrest. Authorities discovered that, prior to the Bali trip, the two attempted to hire a hit man to murder Sheila.

For years, Heather had been abusing her mother. The police were called to the home more than 80 times. This is not some childish, spur of the moment impulse for which she later showed regret. Heather Mack is a cold, calculating murderer. And now, she’ll be raising a daughter and will likely abuse her. Heather did not end up inheriting any of her mother’s estate…it will all go to her child. She killed once for that same fortune. It’s no big leap to think she’ll do it again.

What do you think? Am I being too harsh, or was their punishment not harsh enough?

 

[I love true crime shows, and I watch them every night. (Since I write suspense, thriller, and mystery, it’s not a waste of time…it’s research, right? 🙂 ) I love Investigation Discovery and watch many of the various shows, although some are a little too cheesy. However, there are plenty of shows that are done well enough to feed my fascination with murder. Each week, I’ll blog about some of the recent episodes I’ve seen and I’d love to know your thoughts. Let me know if you’ve seen the episode and, if so, what you thought about it.]

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December Featured Books – Bargains / Awesome Reads!!

#AHAgrp

Looking for something new and fabulous to read? Try these…

 

A man surrounded by guilt, a woman surrounded by heartache.

Annie Alexander has spent the last years trying to get past her husband’s death in combat. Her organic farm is beginning to thrive. Her daughter, Caroline, is obsessed with all the farm animals. Their goat, Anita, is literally a pain in the butt. But just as Annie thinks she’s recovering her life, a visitor comes.

Major Andrew Meacham arrives on Annie’s porch one snowy night and turns her world upside down. Then he’s gone as quickly as he came, like a phantom.

Months later Drew Meacham returns to Annie’s bucolic farm—this time he brings trouble. Yes, he’s a danger, but he’s also Annie’s salvation, teaching her to love again. Will the danger that follows Drew destroy them all, or will he be the man that Annie needs.

***************************************

When a wild mustang is shot in Montana, renowned horse whisperer and telepath, Emma Horserider, is called in to calm the herd and find out what happened. Once on scene, she is almost killed by a bullet-spewing drone and calls her black-ops brother for backup.

Emma’s help roars into her life covered in tattoos and riding a Harley. Remote viewer Bronco Winchester takes the assignment because he is ordered to, but he wonders what type of assistance his boss’s sister needs. That is, until he sees Emma, a valiant warrior woman proud of her Crow heritage.

Posing as a married couple, Emma and Bronco go undercover to infiltrate and stop a hate group. Both are anxious enough without the growing attachment they feel for each other. When the lives of many are on the line, they are not sure if they will live or die – let alone, have a chance at love.

**********************************

Diana Jennings is hiding in the tiny village of Stone Bay, Maine. A year ago she was Robin O’Shea, supermodel, wife, soon to be mother. But it all went bad one afternoon in her apartment in New York City. Her husband, in a rage, tried to kill her and succeeded in killing her unborn child. Now she’s recovering from the trauma, but has learned that what her husband did to her and her baby just wasn’t enough for him. He’s behind bars but has persuaded his uncle, the biggest mob boss on the east coast, to hunt her down and kill her. Helped by her lawyer and a New York cop, she’s taken on a new identity and gone to a place no one would expect to find her… the edge of America. The last point before Ireland. She hopes it’s far enough.

Sam Gardiner is a structural engineer working all over the world, building geothermal facilities in out-of-the-way places, constructing bridges, cleaning up after storms. FEMA has him on speed-dial. But he made a mistake. He killed a man who was abusing a woman… the headman’s son… in a village in the mountains of Afghanistan. The men in the village wanted their revenge, but he was saved at the last minute by American forces and a wad of cash. Now he’s back in Stone Bay vowing to never leave again when he runs into, literally, a woman on the run, Diana Jennings. She’s been hurt, he can see it in her eyes, and he has to make her whole again. But Diana’s not really on board with that.

************************************************

When a serial killer breaks into the home of bestselling author, Sage Quintano, she barely escapes with her life. Her husband, Niko, a homicide detective, insists they move to rural New Hampshire, where he accepts a position as Grafton County Sheriff. Sage buries secrets from that night—secrets she swears to take to her deathbed.

Three years of anguish and painful memories pass, and a grisly murder case lands on Niko’s desk. A strange caller begins tormenting Sage—she can’t outrun the past.

When Sage’s twin sister suddenly goes missing, Sage searches Niko’s case files and discovers similarities to the Boston killer. A sadistic psychopath is preying on innocent women, marring their bodies in unspeakable ways. And now, he has her sister.

Cryptic clues. Hidden messages. Is the killer hinting at his identity? Or is he trying to lure Sage into a deadly trap to end his reign of terror with a matching set of corpses?

********************************************

Get swept away by the ongoing saga of A Shift in the Universe…

Part 1 – Tainted:

A jealous, malevolent wife hooked on prescription drugs, a husband caught between reality and carnal fantasies, and an angel cast from heaven, are all bound together by their hatred for one woman whose spells and manifestations catch them in a downward spiral towards hell…Gina Faulkner, thought to be a voodoo queen, owner of Swamp Witch Pickles in New Orleans, is the center of it all.

Bane Colton, dangerous and cocky, sees Gina at the French Market and the game is on. He makes up his mind he’s going to break the feisty redhead with the infamous kinky reputation, body and soul. And Gina’s ready to be a player, until Bane’s estranged and demented wife, Beverly, wants him back.

Enter enigmatic Darsh, known to many as the Angel of Death, who’s watched over Gina since she was fifteen and has loved her almost as much as he’s hated her. Now they would come face to face. He could save her from certain peril, but could never save her from herself. Would she destroy them all? At the very least, a shift in the universe was coming.

Warning: Contains graphic content

******************************************

(Previously published in the Endless Summer Nights anthology.)

She loved him so much, she had to walk away…
Sidney Altman and Rodrigo Serrano once shared a scorching affair, before he returned to Brazil to take over his family’s fashion empire. Now she’s in Rio on business—and Rodrigo intends to win her back and prove that his biggest regret was ever letting her go.

************************************************

One soars like an eagle. One strikes like a thunderbird. But forboth hearts, revenge can be deadly when it’s nourished.

Anomaly Defense Director and shapeshifter Bert Blackfeather doesn’t need a boss with no experience. So what if she’s beautiful or gives him a jolt when she shakes his hand? He never plans to get seriously involved with another woman–not in this lifetime.Phoebe Wagner, an empath with psychometric abilities and an advocate for the deaf, gets more than she bargained for with Bert. One touch and she relives his IED injuries. So what ifhe’s handsome and hot? She doesn’t need to add his secrets to her own. Phoebe’s are bad enough.

When his niece goes missing from Hotel LaBelle, Bert goes to Montana to help–and Phoebe insists on going with him. Can these two hard-headed people share their darkest secrets in order to work together? It may be the only way to save an endangered child–and their own hearts when Bert’s past rears its ugly head.

**************************************************

Dedicated career girl Holly Grant has no time for romance. She doesn’t need a man to complete her, thank you very much. Building Grant Realty takes all of her time and attention. If she can close a deal for Turnaround Farm, her business will take off like a rocket. Her first problem is that Jeb Wakefield doesn’t want to sell his farm, and her second problem is Jeb’s grandson Dan, the finest looking man Holly’s ever seen.

********************************************

It started by accident. Conlee and Signa Bodishbaugh had their grandchildren by themselves for a week. No parents. No friends. Just the grandchildren. What to do? This story of how they learned to intentionally share favorite subjects and life-lessons to these little ones is not only a fun read, it is inspiring for anyone with the opportunity to bless children. You will follow ten years of watching this family interact with one another through studying such topics as The Tabernacle, Israel, Culinary School, Weather, and Physiology. When you finish reading, use your own inspirations to bless someone you care about.

*************************************

If you are an abused Christian woman, find your path to faith-based freedom from a minister’s abused wife, counselor and educator.

************************************************

She’s running for her life. He’s vowed to save her, whether she wants him to or not.

Sandra Hastings has just lost the case of her career. Mob boss Silvestre Buonovenura is exonerated and now out to get her. And if that’s not enough, the New York DA’s office has politely asked her to take some time off… maybe a lot of time… maybe forever.

Nick McCullough is a little bored with tiny Stone Bay, Maine, and his new job as Chief of Police. He’s hopeful though that a weekend camping with the lovely Sandra Hastings might just be the answer to his prayers, get him back on track, lift his spirits. Now he has to make sure that the mob boss who’s put a hit out on her doesn’t get the chance to complete his plans. Maybe his little weekend away won’t be as restful as Nick had planned.

*************************************************************

Eagle is not an ordinary dog,
but just how is he special?

Discover how
Eagle helps youngsters in legal settings and find out about the remarkable work therapy animals perform.

Eagle the Legal Beagle
provides an easy rhyming text and colorful illustrations to help children understand there are people who truly want to hear what they have to say.

Don’t forget to get your
Eagle the Legal Beagle
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https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0692516751/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i2

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Crime Time ~ Frenemies, “The Snitch”

#CrimeTime with Alicia Dean

Frenemies,  Season 1, Episode 11, “The Snitch”

Fort Worth, Texas, December 7, 2000

Murder in of itself is incomprehensible enough, but when a murder is committed by a family member or friend, it’s even more disturbing and unfathomable.

“The Snitch” is about two best friends Misti Mayo and Christine Smith, who were inseparable, as close as sisters. The two small-town girls began going to nearby Fort Worth to party and ended up connecting with some rather shady people. Misti and Christine eventually moved to Fort Worth and got an apartment together. By this time, Misti had given birth to a baby boy and she wanted to leave the wild life behind. Christine continued to hang out with the criminal element and often had her seedy friends over to the apartment. One evening, Christine and three others robbed a tire store. They brought the tires to the apartment to hide them. Misti was furious. She was worried she’d get blamed and go to jail, leaving her young son behind.

Shortly after the robbery, the cops came around asking questions and Misti told them who had committed the robbery. Christine and her cohorts learned that Misti snitched on them. One evening, they invited her to go out with them. Misti agreed, thinking they were going to dinner. The group drove her to a secluded area and began attacking her, stabbing, bludgeoning and basically torturing her—all with her son in the car. Misti begged Christine to stop them, but Christine participated. When Misti realized she was going to die, she requested that she be allowed to hold her baby one more time. They granted her wish, then took the baby away and headed to Shreveport. On the way, they wrapped Misti’s head in packaging tape to stifle her screams. She died en route. Oil was poured on her body, presumably to cover fingerprints, then Misti’s body was dumped. The group abandoned the baby in a van outside a Dallas restaurant, then went on with their evening. Ravenous, they went out to eat after the murder.

After Misti was reported missing, Christine at first told police that she had been raped in an alley and disappeared with her 4-month-old son, but she recanted her story and confessed. The episode included an interview with Christine and one of the other offenders. Christine didn’t appear remorseful in the least. She almost seemed to expect kudos for not murdering the baby as well.

Despicable…sick and twisted. I just don’t understand how the incident went so far. How do you progress from anger at your friend to savagely, painfully slaughtering her? Putting aside morals and conscience and basic human emotions, one thing that always baffles me about these types of cases is the thought process of the killers. You are afraid of getting in trouble for stealing tires, so you MURDER someone? Do they really think they’re not going to get caught? Sure, some do get by with their crimes, but the likelihood is very small.

All four of the perpetrators were found guilty, Christine and the two males were sentenced to life in prison, while the other female was sentence to 30 years in prison. Misti’s baby was given to a foster family. I was surprised there weren’t family members who would take the baby. Misti was only eighteen years old. What an all-around tragedy.

[I love true crime shows, and I watch them every night. (Since I write suspense, thriller, and mystery, it’s not a waste of time…it’s research, right? 🙂 ) I love Investigation Discovery and watch many of the various shows, although some are a little too cheesy. However, there are plenty of shows that are done well enough to feed my fascination with murder. Each week, I’ll blog about some of the recent episodes I’ve seen and I’d love to know your thoughts. Let me know if you’ve seen the episode and, if so, what you thought about it.]

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Author Interview with Jeny Heckman ~ New Release: The Sea Archer

I’m happy to introduce today’s guest, Jeny Heckman who has a new release with The Wild Rose Press…

 

Please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from? Where do you live now? Family?

I’m from the great state of Washington and have lived here most of my life. My husband, Jeff and I just celebrated our twenty-fifth wedding anniversary and we have two beautiful children, Paisley and Charlie, who both just recently graduated from university this past summer.

Where did you get the idea for The Sea Archer?

The Sea Archer title was easy to come up with. I needed to incorporate Apollo and Poseidon together so decided to choose from some of the symbols they’re known for. Although Apollo is primarily known for music he was also an archer that would shoot his arrow across the sky to bring forth the sun. And Poseidon is of course, god of the sea and this book is heavily grounded there, taking place primarily on Kauai and the hero being a marine biologist.

Why did you choose this genre?

I have never written this genre before but love reading it, so decided to be brave and give it a try.

It was really fun implying the “fantasy” world within the real one. Where you get that reasonable doubt that the fantasy may be possible. The paranormal genre has a natural fluidity for a series and I was looking to write one, so it worked out beautifully.

What is the most difficult thing about writing a book?

For me, the most difficult thing about writing a book is having a head full of ideas and unable to write them down. When you’re distracted or have a lot of demands that pull you away from writing but have all those ideas in there just waiting to be forgotten! It’s by far the hardest part. When I write, I don’t stop. So invariably need a lot of undemanding time or I’ve been known to get a little grumpy when interrupted.

What do you love that most people don’t like and wouldn’t understand why you do?

Well, I’m not sure most people don’t like it but many people don’t understand us introverts. Many writers are introverts and I think the perception is we’re hermits, and that we don’t like people or are somehow lonely and unhappy all the time. It’s really unfortunate because it couldn’t be further from the truth. I gain energy and inspiration from quiet, where others might gain energy and inspiration from others or “busyness” around them. For me, I have to be in the mindset and prepare to be around a lot of people or it stresses me out.

What actors would you like in the main roles if your book were made into a movie?

What a great question! There were definitely visual inspirations for my characters. However, they were in fact only visual. Jennifer Aniston, was the perfect model for Raven Hunter. She had the best girl next door, golden beachy waves and kind, beautiful and intellectual face. The absolute gorgeous Ben Dahlhaus was my inspiration for Finn Taylor. You could not get a better blend of beautiful, masculine, and cool all wrapped into one. Pierce Brosnan was the model for Donovan Fortner. Now, while I don’t believe Mr. Brosnan could ever be as awful as Fortner, that kind of Thomas Crown conceit worked well for him in my mind. Then sexy Gerard Butler was the visual for Wyatt Hunter. I have a picture of him on his motorcycle and scruffy beard, along with the others on my character board. The rest of the characters also had models for inspiration, however they were more unknown models.

What genre have you never written that you’d like to write?

Oh, definitely a mystery! However, I do feel like really good mysteries are hard to write! If you aren’t careful your audience is solving the puzzle before they’re supposed to which can be so frustrating for a reader. I love it when you never see it coming and it was the aunt’s, boyfriend’s, sisters, cousin.

What is your favorite quote?

Beginnings are scary, endings are usually sad, but it’s what’s in the middle that counts. So, when you find yourself at the beginning, just give hope a chance to float up and it will.

–Hope Floats

If you were stranded on a deserted island and you could have 3 (inanimate) objects, what would they be?

It would have to be a laptop with a huge hard drive, then uninterrupted electricity and Wi-Fi. Spoken like a true writer, right?

Have you written any other books that are not published?

I have! I wrote my first novel which was self-published, entitled, “The Catch.” Then I wrote another book, entitled, “Civility.” It was a book about a kind of second civil war in America. This was well before the last election but funny enough that was the catalyst in the book for trouble too. I was still trying to decide what to do with it when things started getting really heated in our country and decided I didn’t want to be part of the vitriol tearing everything apart, so shelved it.

If you could spend time with a character from your book, whom would it be? And what would you do during that day? (PG-13 please 🙂

That’s funny, I didn’t even hesitate until you said PG-13, then of course I changed characters. Dee, would have to be my go-to-gal. I find older people fascinating. They are so full of knowledge and wisdom and no longer feel it necessary to play games. They are just real and genuine, and those are my favorite kind of people.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Absolutely. I believe women are pretty powerful beings and yet can sometimes lose their way or get caught up in an inner made up story. I would love for a woman that struggles with some of the same insecurities that Raven does, to find a voice and role model in her. You must be brave in the world, and that you are entirely capable of most things. The same would be said for men. I feel like they don’t always get a fair shake. They are expected to be these strong individuals, the driving force in most things. I would hope a man might read this book and let go of some of those beliefs and feel safe to be just a little bit vulnerable, especially to a woman.

How much of the book is realistic?

I think the modern day story is very realistic, especially the emotions and awkwardness. I’ve seen or experienced many of the scenes in the book. Some made me actually laugh and some made me cry.

How did your interest in writing originate?

Wow! Well I’ll try and make this concise! I’ve always thought in stories and pictures. My imagination was always very vibrant and I loved to read and enter those “other” worlds. I never thought about writing until I was older and walking one day. My father-in-law was very ill and I was taking a break from caring for him. I had an idea for a story and the character wouldn’t stop talking in my head. When I got home, the kids were in school and I didn’t have anything going on so decided to write it down. At one point, I looked up and four hours had passed! I decided to play it out and in three days had a somewhat fleshed out story. I sat on it for a long time, just being busy with my active family and job. People read it and encouraged me to, “do something with it.” However, it wasn’t until my son (who isn’t a big reader), read it and said he wanted me to publish it. I decided to try and, “The Catch,” was created. I fell in love with the craft and started writing another book which was picked up by The Wild Rose Press and the result is or hopefully will soon be in your hands, The Sea Archer.

I’d like to thank the readers for taking the time to listen and hope they enjoy reading The Sea Archer.

 

Great, Jeny. Thank for joining me. I enjoyed getting to know you. Sorry I stifled you with that PG-13 thing. 😉 

Now, about your book…

When opposites meet the attraction is undeniable, but Fate has other plans.

Blurb:

Raven Hunter, a musical prodigy, flees to the Hawaiian Islands to pick up the pieces after her marriage to her manager collapses. Instead, she experiences extraordinary and unsettling events that are beyond her understanding.

Living in paradise, marine biologist, Finn Taylor has the unconscious but effortless ability to understand the needs of the animals he cares for. His playboy lifestyle is most men’s fantasy. That is, until the night he meets the shy and elusive new island resident. Suddenly his life no longer feels like his own.

The attraction is undeniable. However, vastly contrasting lives, peculiar dreams, and an unbelievable proclamation that they could be the direct descendants of Poseidon and Apollo threaten to divide them forever. Will they accept their destiny and begin the quest of a lifetime or will they remain in their comfortable yet separate existence?

 

Author Bio:

Jeny Heckman, loves romance. She especially loves romance with a paranormal and/or historical twist. Educated as an artist, banker, sales clerk, draftsman, charity fundraiser, jewelry maker, nursing student, hospice volunteer, photographer, mother, and wife, she felt her calling lay elsewhere. While taking care of an ailing loved one, she was inspired to write her first novel entitled, The Catch, about a female Alaskan crab fisherman, and self-publish it. Wanting to try something very different she pitched an idea to a New York agent who told her to run with it. This book is the first of that seven-part endeavor. When not ignoring her family and friends by writing you will find her time exclusively on them and photography. Jeny lives in Stanwood, Washington, with her husband of over twenty-five years.

Contact:

My Website:   www.jenyheckman.com

My Email:      jenyheckman17@gmail.com

Facebook:       https://www.facebook.com/heckman.jeny/?ref=bookmarks

Twitter:           https://twitter.com/jenyheckman

LinkedIn:        https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeny-heckman/

Instagram:       https://www.instagram.com/jenyheckman/

Goodreads:     https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41823002-the-sea-archer

Links for Purchase:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Sea-Archer-Heaven-Earth-ebook/dp/B07H51823S/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1538697812&sr=1-1&keywords=the+sea+archer

Barnes & Noble Nook: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-sea-archer-jeny-heckman/1129487886?ean=2940161651582

The Wild Rose Press: https://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/2444_jeny-heckman

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New Release Spotlight: Between The Shadows by Casi McLean

I love Casi’s writing…I am sure this is another great read, and I plan to find out soon! And, guess what? It’s on sale for 99 cents!!

A Gripping Novel By Award-Winning Author Casi McLean

Blurb:

She never expected to confront deadly villains…let alone fall in love with one…

After her friend, York, encounters the ghostly image of a young woman, Mackenzie Reynolds seizes the opportunity to initiate a time jump, thrusting them back to 1865 Georgia. Resolved to thwart the girl’s untimely fate, Kenzi stumbles into a deadly conflict over a stockpile of stolen Confederate gold.

An injured Civil War survivor, James Adams departs for home with a war-fatigued companion he’s determined to help. After pilfering a horse and kidnaping a woman, he never dreamed his hostage would steal his heart.

Kenzi and James must unravel a deadly plot, while helping York save his ghost woman from a brutal death. But can she leave York in a violent past to save James’s life?

 

Excerpt:

“Don’t you dare die on me, James Adams.”

Kenzi pressed the blood-soaked gauze against the left side of his abdomen. “I won’t lose you. Not now.”

Barely clinging to life, he opened his eyes a slit, raised his hand still clenching Colin’s gun, and shot two rounds.

Stunned, Kenzi snapped around. “No.” She screamed and dove for the gun through the hazy blue mist engulfing them.

“Brady…” His voice faded as he slipped into semiconscious mumbling.

Yanking the pistol from his grip with her right hand, she maintained pressure with her left. A heartbeat later, the cylinder encasing them rotated open. Kenzi stood then sprinted across the room and pounded on a fist-sized alert button affixed to the wall. The resulting alarm shrieked through the underground chamber, reverberating as it radiated throughout the compound. Two men dressed in white jumpsuits burst through double doors.

“Gurney. Now.” Kenzi screamed at the attendants. “And O-Neg blood. Hurry. Go, go, go.” She ran to James and knelt beside him. Lifting his head, she slid a knee underneath it for support and smoothed a chunk of his dark brown hair from his face. “I’ve sacrificed way too much to have you die now,” she whispered. “My ass will burn for this. Not to mention the repercussions for abandoning York.”

Pulse racing, she checked his bandage. Despite her efforts, streams of crimson still oozed from the wound. Pressing again on the gauze, she shook her head. “Geez. You’ve lost so much blood. Please, hang on.”

Again, the double doors swung wide. This time, a gurney pushed through, followed by the two assistants. One man ran to Kenzi.

“Help me lift him.” Her hands, slick with blood, shot to her white T-top, already drenched in crimson. On second thought, she swept them down the rear of her jeans. Sliding her slippery arms beneath his back, she braced her stance with one bent knee.

“One, two, three.” They heaved him in tandem onto the gurney. She doused her hands with Betadine then splashed more on James’s forearm, snatched an IV from the attached supply basket, and punctured a vein on the inside of his wrist with the sterile needle. Once connected, she hooked the blood pouch on the IV pole and barked at the team, “Let’s move. If this man bleeds out, there will be hell to pay.”

The men, poised with hands on the side of the rails, awaited their next move. “Where to, Dr. Reynolds?”

Kenzi stared at James’s ashen face, worried her meager experience wasn’t enough to save his life––but she had no option. “Surgery.”

Springing into action, one man rolled the gurney down the hallway, while a second leapt onto the base and slipped an oxygen mask over James’s nose and mouth. “I hope this guy isn’t allergic to Propofol.” He attached an anesthesia drip to the IV. “Damn, what caused this gaping wound?”

“He was shot…with a musket.”

********************

If  you sign up for Casi’s newsletter, you’ll receive a free story! After clicking the link, you can scroll down to receive an additional special prize.

http://casimclean.com/welcome-to-my-inner-circle/

 

Casi McLean

Romantic Suspense, Time Slips, And Supernatural Mystery with a Sprinkle of Magic ….

Award Winning Author

2016 Best Romantic Suspense  Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence

Winner 2016 Best Heroine Still Moments Magazine

2016 Aspen Gold Finalist for Best Romantic Suspense

2015 Top Pick by Night Owl Reviews

2015 Chicago Fire and Ice Finalist

2014 Winner 2014 AWC Short Story Award

Fiction:

Lake Lanier Mysteries

Beneath The Lake

Beyond The Mist

Between The Shadows

Destiny Series:

Destiny

The Gift

After Midnight

Convergent

The Pegasus Chronicle

Deep State Mysteries

Reign Of Fire

The List

 

Nonfiction:

Wingless Butterfly

So You Want To Be An Author

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