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The National Excellence in Storytelling (NEST) Contest – Open for Entries and Judges! #NESTContest2022

 

The Second Annual National Excellence in Story Telling (NEST) Contest (formerly NRCA/IDA) – NOW open for entries and judging!!

If you have a novel or short work published in 2020 or 2021 you are eligible to enter.

  • Now open for entries and judging applications.
  • Sponsored by Central Region Oklahoma Writers (CROW)
  • Entry Deadline:   March 22, 2022
  • Winners to be announced on or around  June 29, 2022

~ Seven categories with two winners in each category–one for novels and one for short stories/novellas.

~ Prizes: First place winners will receive…

* A lovely customized engraved award

* One free month of promo with Author Promo Pal Marketing Services

* Your book/win shared to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

* Featured in a ‘winner’ trailer that will be shared on Social Media and on this website

* Winners and finalists will receive certificates.

~ FEES: $25 for novels, $20 for shorts.

(Entries are PDFs and must have an original publication date of and must have been for sale in 2020 or 2021)

 

FMI and to enter or judge: https://crowowfigroup.wixsite.com/website/nestcontest

 

 

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One month of promo (including a review) for only $25!!

My friend has revamped her promo package and is now taking submissions from January on:

Author Promo Pal Package from T.P. Warren

Free up your time for what you love most…writing!

This can supplement whatever promo you are doing yourself, but you will always know that your book/name is being shared in the social media world.

(Promo runs from the first of a calendar month to the end of the calendar month – spaces are limited, so sign up soon – you can sign up for only one month, or continue to use the service for as many months as you’d like, as long as space is available. You can promote the same book, or a different one each month)

Here’s what you get for $25…

1- An honest review of your book on BookBub and Goodreads. The review will be recommended on BookBub and shared to Twitter and Facebook * (you will need to provide a PDF or ‘gift’ the book to me) (I will attempt to share on Amazon but not all reviews are accepted there)

(Note: This is not ‘paying for a review’ because the service is for the overall promo, but as a bonus, it includes a review.)

2 – 10 tweets per week about your book (you compose the tweets and APP tweets them each week)

3 – A teaser image created for your book that fits within the Twitter parameters and the same image resized for Instagram.

4 – Your book will be shared on Author Promo Pal’s Facebook page each week

5 – Author Promo Pal will post a snippet and buy link to your book here: (You will need to provide a mini excerpt from your book) And I will share the post on Twitter.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/610037685802608/

6 – Your book will be listed on a blog post on Alicia Dean’s blog: https://aliciadean.com/alicias-blog/

7 – Your book will be listed (and will remain) on Alicia Dean’s “Fabulous Books” Pinterest board https://www.pinterest.com/pin/83738874311769848

8 –  On Goodreads, I will shelve up to 3 of your books (which raises their visibility). I will comment on 1 of your 5 star reviews (which makes it appear in my newsfeed and the newsfeed of my friends). I will also like a few other 5 star reviews.

9 – I will share your book on Instagram twice throughout the month.

To sign up, contact me at AuthorPromoPal2022@Gmail.com to reserve a spot. If I have openings, I will let you know how to pay and send your information

 

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Diana Rubino ~ For the Love of Hawthorne ~ #AHAgrp

Please help me welcome today’s guest, author friend Diana Rubino…

Nathaniel and Sophia Hawthorne called themselves Adam and Eve as he suffered the shame of his family’s connection to the Salem Witch Trials.

Meet Diana

My passion for history and travel has taken me to every locale of my books and short stories, set in Medieval and Renaissance England, Paris, Egypt, the Mediterranean, colonial Virginia, New England, Washington D.C. and New York. My urban fantasy romance, FAKIN’ IT, won a Top Pick award from Romantic Times. I’m a member of Romance Writers of America, the Richard III Society and the Aaron Burr Association. My husband Chris and I own CostPro, an engineering firm based in Boston. In my spare time, I bicycle, golf, play my piano, devour books of any genre, and spend as much time as possible living the dream on my beloved Cape Cod.

About FOR THE LOVE OF HAWTHORNE

Salem, Massachusetts witnessed horrific and shameful events in 1692 that haunted the town for three centuries. Accused as witches, nineteen innocent people were hanged and one was pressed to death. Judge John Hathorne and Reverend Nicholas Noyes handed down the sentences. One victim, Sarah Good, cursed Noyes from the hanging tree: “If you take away my life, God will give you blood to drink!” She then set her eyes on Judge Hathorne. “I curse you and your acknowledged heirs for all time on this wicked earth!” Hathorne was not only Sarah Good’s merciless judge; he also fathered her son Peter and refused to acknowledge him.

In 1717, Nicholas Noyes choked on his own blood and died. Every generation after the judge continued to lose Hathorne land and money, prompting the rumor of a family curse. By the time his great great grandson Nathaniel was born, they faced poverty.

Ashamed of his ancestor, Nathaniel added the ‘w’ to his last name. His novels and stories explore his beliefs and fears of sin and evil, and he based many of his characters on overbearing Puritan rulers such as Judge Hathorne.

When Nathaniel first met Sophia Peabody, they experienced instantaneous mutual attraction. Sparks flew. He rose upon my eyes and soul a king among men by divine right, she wrote in her journal.

But to Sophia’s frustration, Nathaniel insisted they keep their romance secret for three years. He had his reasons, none of which made sense to Sophia. But knowing that he believed Sarah Good’s curse inflicted so much tragedy on his family over the centuries, she made it her mission to save him. Sarah was an ancestor of Sophia’s, making her and Nathaniel distant cousins—but she kept that to herself for the time being.

Sophia Peabody’s home next to Charter Street Burying Ground, resting place of Judge Hathorne, Salem, MA

Sophia suffered severe headaches as a result of childhood mercury treatments. She underwent routine mesmerizing sessions, a popular cure for many ailments. Spirits sometimes came to her when mesmerized, and as a spiritualist and medium, she was able to contact and communicate with spirits. She knew if she could reach Sarah and persuade her to forgive Judge Hathorne, Nathaniel would be free of his lifelong burden.

Sarah Good’s son Peter had kept a journal the family passed down to the Peabodys. Sophia sensed his presence every time she turned the brittle pages and read his words. John Hathorne’s legitimate son John also kept a journal, now in the Hawthorne family’s possession. Living on opposite sides of Salem in 1692, Peter and John wrote in vivid detail about how the Salem trials tormented them throughout their lives.

Nathaniel finally agreed to announce their engagement, and married Sophia on July 9, 1842. They moved into their first home, The Old Manse in Concord, Massachusetts. Wanting nothing else but to spend the summer enjoying each other, we became Adam and Eve, alone in our Garden of Eden, Sophia wrote in her journal.

The Old Manse, the Hawthornes’ first home as newlyweds

As success eluded Nathaniel, they lived on the verge of poverty. After being dismissed from his day job at the Salem Custom House, he wrote The Scarlet Letter, which finally gained him the recognition he deserved. But the curse he believed Sarah cast on his family still haunted him. In the book he asks for the curse to be lifted.

The House of the Seven  Gables, Salem, MA, built in 1668

Sophia urged Nathaniel to write a novel about the house, knowing it would be cathartic for him. While they lived in Lenox, Nathaniel finished writing The House of the Seven Gables. The Gothic novel explored all his fears and trepidations about the curse. He told Sophia, “Writing it, and especially reading it aloud to you lifted a tremendous burden off my shoulders. I felt it physically leave me. I carried this inside me since my youth and couldn’t bring it out to face it. And I have you, and only you, to thank.”

But he did not believe the curse could be lifted.

Sophia invited renowned spiritualist John Spear to The Gables. She explained that she needed to complete one final step to convince Nathaniel the curse was lifted.

Read More About John Spear

http://mysteriousuniverse.org/2014/06/the-bizarre-mechanical-messiah-of-john-murray-spear/John Spear

John Spear urged Nathaniel to forgive Judge Hathorne. “You don’t have to say it out loud,” John said. “Just forgive him in your heart.”

Nathaniel whispered his forgiveness.

John, Nathaniel and Sophia went to Judge Hathorne’s gravesite to give the journals proper burial.

Grave of Judge Hathorne, Charter Street Burial Ground, Salem, MA

Why I wrote FOR THE LOVE OF HAWTHORNE

I live near Salem and have been to all the Hawthorne landmarks there, and in Concord. The House of the Seven Gables has been my favorite house in the world since I’m a kid. I’ve always felt a strong spiritual connection to Salem, and always wanted to write one of my books set there, including the witch trials.

I read several of his books and stories, to get a better background on him. Nathaniel wrote from the heart, about his true beliefs, and his loathing of how the witch victims were treated. He did consider it disgraceful, and it certainly was. He added the ‘w’ to his last name to distance himself from the judge. That tormented him and his family all his life. It must have been cathartic to him to have his writing as his outlet.

Visit Salem

 www.salem.org

I was fortunate to get a private tour of the House of the Seven Gables when I was writing the book; two of the guides, Ryan Conary and David Moffat, showed me around, and it was fabulous.

The Wayside, the only home the Hawthornes ever owned, in Concord, MA

Nathaniel added that room at the top for his writing studio 

An excerpt from FOR THE LOVE OF HAWTHORNE (Sophia and Nathaniel’s visit to his cousin Susan Ingersoll at The House of the Seven Gables) 

I went over to a curio cabinet and swept my eyes over the items on the shelves—a china doll wearing a calico dress, a stack of gold cups and saucers, a red and blue glass checkerboard propped up to display its surface…and a wooden hammer on the top shelf. Upon closer inspection, I saw it was a gavel that judges use in trials. Out of curiosity I picked it up and a shock ran through me as if electrified. Dear God, was it that gavel?

I dropped it to the rug. It landed with a thump. I bent to retrieve it. Somehow I knew it wouldn’t shock me this time—that was only an initial warning. “Something about it made me want to touch it, to pick it up and hold it.”

Nathaniel approached me. He stared at the gavel in my hand, horror darkening his eyes. His lips parted but no words emerged. I knew what he was thinking—the curse. He turned to his cousin, pointing at the gavel, his arm trembling.

Susan hurried over to us, took it from me and placed it back on the shelf. “Yes, it’s Judge Hathorne’s. What happened, Sophie? Are you all right?”

I looked down at my open hands, palms up. They burned as if I’d touched a hot poker. “That gavel—it carries something evil. Has anything happened to you with this, Susie?”

Nathaniel backed away and before Susan could answer me, he grasped her arm. “I begged you to get rid of that accursed thing! You know it shouldn’t be here!”

She looked from him to me, heaving a deep sigh. “I’m not inclined to dispose of it, Natty. It’s a family heirloom, notwithstanding its past.”

He gripped the chair, his face drained of color. “It’s downright evil. You know what he used that thing for.”

She held her hands up in surrender. “Very well, I’ll conceal it.” She took it off the shelf and slid it behind the checkerboard.

“That should not be in this house!” He stood his ground, his eyes fixed on the checkerboard as if it would melt in such close proximity to that horrid object.

“It’s fine there, Natty. It’s concealed from sight now.” She looked at me and gestured for me to sit again. I sat and gulped my sherry.

“Nathaniel’s always overcome with distress at the witch trials.” Susan explained what I already knew.

“And so should you be,” he cut in.

“If I must speak for Judge Hathorne, I heard stories of him from my grandfather.” Susan looked from Nathaniel to me. “The whole hysteria that caught up the judge was started by unscrupulous men to further their own riches. But spectral evidence was still admissible. No sane person could believe that blithery.”

 Purchase FOR THE LOVE OF HAWTHORNE 

http://getbook.at/LoveOfHawthorne 

Connect with Diana

My Website

www.dianarubino.com

My Blog

http://www.dianarubinoauthor.blogspot.com 

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/DianaRubinoAuthor/?ref=hl

Twitter

https://twitter.com/DianaLRubino

 

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Freelance Editing Special – One Week Only!! #AHAgrp #FreelanceEdit #WritingCommunity

Need a content edit or copy edit but thought it was too costly? My normal rates are always reasonable, but for one week only they are even MORE reasonable!! 

Content edit:

Word counts under 100k – $250.

100k and over – $300

Proofread:

Word counts under 100k – $300.

100k and over – $350

Ends October 9, 2021

Even if your manuscript isn’t ready, you can purchase an edit at the discounted rate and send the MS when it is completed.

Sample edit of $1,000.00 words avaiable upon request.

Contact: Alicia@AliciaDean.com

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The Spotlight is on… Karen Guzman ~ #WRPbks #AHAgrp #Blog

Please help me welcome today’s guest, Karen Guzman, with her latest release, Arborview….

When the recipe for a new life is bittersweet…

Ellen Cahill’s financial future rides on the success of her new pastry shop. A bruising divorce has drained her bank account, along with her spirit. A man enters her life promising love, but Ellen, haunted by the past, questions whether she can pull off this new beginning.

College student Rosa Escamilla has her own culinary dreams—and a difficult mother who’s dead set against them. Rosa won’t be deterred. She scrapes up the money to enroll at a prestigious culinary school, setting out to prove everyone wrong.

When hidden betrayals by the people they love most surface for both Ellen and Rosa, can they overcome the blows they never saw coming on the road to where they want to go?

Excerpt:

The light was dying in Arborview. Ellen had to get going, but she wasn’t ready. Descending the ladder meant reentering her life. The time she spent here, suspended among the branches, did not banish the uncertainty that crept back when her feet hit the ground, but it did give her reprieve.

The stillness, the silence, slowed her mind. Be still and know that I am God. She used to love that old Psalm. This must have been what it meant. Her thoughts unraveled in Arborview, exposed in a cool, piercing light, a calm glow giving her hope.

It had been a week since she’d heard from Alice, and the memory of her guilty laundry-room face lingered. Perhaps Ellen had been too harsh, too judgmental. That was a big thing today, wasn’t it? Judging. Nothing was supposed to be off limits, nothing truly wrong, or shameful. Ellen had broken down and left a voicemail, but Alice had not returned the call.

The warm impression William had left in her bed, the faint whiff of his cologne on the pillows, had stayed with Ellen, too. He was coming to take her to dinner in an hour.

William had struck a chord with his pastry shop idea. It had taken root and grown all week within Ellen, its tendrils reaching into her heart. She could see it: a little storefront place, a jingling bell on the door, cakes and pies in the window, a soft wash of light on the gleaming display cases inside.

Buy link(s):

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/arborview-karen-guzman/1140053868

https://www.thewildrosepress.com/book-post/arborview

https://www.amazon.com/Arborview-Karen-Guzman-ebook/dp/B09DNQH267/ref=sr_1_4?dchild=1&qid=1632415749&refinements=p_27%3AKaren+Guzman&s=books&sr=1-4

https://books.google.com/books?id=nOBDEAAAQBAJ&pg=PT172&lpg=PT172&dq=apple+books+karen+guzman+arborview&source=bl&ots=pgp5N-onJb&sig=ACfU3U2sP91yID2ykuadkBCEudy-765-GQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjAxceBx5XzAhXdF1kFHdKnAt8Q6AF6BAgOEAM#v=onepage&q=apple%20books%20karen%20guzman%20arborview&f=false

Bio:

Karen Guzman is a fiction writer and essayist. Her new novel, Arborview, will be published on September 29 by The Wild Rose Press. Her debut, Homing Instincts, was published by Fiction Attic Press in 2014. Karen’s short fiction has appeared in a number of literary magazines, and her story collection, Pilgrims, was a finalist for the St. Lawrence Book Award.

Karen is a regular contributor to the Collegeville Institute’s Bearings Online magazine. She is the recipient of a 2021 writing fellowship at the Collegeville Institute.

You can find Karen’s books on Amazon, and learn more about her work at www.karenguzman.com

Social media links

www.karenguzman.com

https://www.instagram.com/kagauthor/

https://twitter.com/kguzman_author

https://www.facebook.com/kgwriter/?ref=py_c

www.amazon.com/author/karenguzman7

www.writedespite.org

 

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New Service – Editorial Feedback on Proposal #FreelanceEdit #AHAgrp

I have something new I’m offering to authors…if you have a request or are planning to submit to an editor or agent, this is the service for you!

Editorial Feedback on Proposal

$100 for first 3 chapters (not to exceed 10,000 words) and query letter and synopsis

Submitting to an editor or agent? Or perhaps you just need an assessment of your beginning chapters? Have a professional editor with 15 years’ experience review/edit your first 3 chapters and your query letter and synopsis

Contact Alicia@AliciaDean.com

Or…if you need a full edit, check out details below:

The one-round content edit includes but is not limited to continuity, opening in the right place, awkward or unclear wording, inconsistent characterization, point of view, telling vs showing, grammar, active vs passive voice, etc, and a partial proofread. The proofread round is a complete, line by line edit for all errors–grammatical, spelling, etc.
Fees and Time Frame
FIRST ROUND CONTENT EDIT (See below for Proofread rates)
Up to 10,000 words: $157.50 – 1-2 weeks
10,001 words to 20,000 words – 202.50 – 1-2 weeks
20,001 words to 40,000 words: $252.50 – 2-3 weeks
40,001 words to 65,000 words: $302.50 – 3-4 weeks
65,001 words to 100,000 words: $355.00 – 3-4 weeks
100,001 words to 120,000 words: $405.00 – 4-5 weeks
120,00 words to 150,000 words – $455.00 – 5-6 weeks
Above 150,000 words, contact for quote

PROOFREAD ONLY – For a complete. line by line proofread:

Fees and Time Frame
Up to 10,000 words: $232.50 – 2-3 weeks
10,001 words to 20,000 words – 302.50 – 3-4 weeks
20,001 words to 40,000 words: $352.50 – 3-4 weeks
40,001 words to 65,000 words: $402.50 – 4-5 weeks
65,001 words to 100,000 words: $455.00 – 4-5 weeks
100,001 words to 120,000 words: $505.00 – 5-6 weeks
120,00 words to 150,000 words – $605.00 – 5-6 weeks
Above 150,000 words, contact for quote

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National Excellence in Story Telling (NEST) 2021 Contest Winners ~ #NESTWinner2021 #CROWGroupOK #MustRead #Books #WRPbks #AHAgrp

Central Region Oklahoma Writers is pleased to present the winners of…

Contemporary Novel

First Place

What A Guy Wants by Judi Fennell

Publisher: Mergenie Books

Second Place

The Magnolia Inn by Carolyn Brown

Publisher: Montlake Romance

Third Place

Gravity by Mona Sedrak

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Fourth Place (Tie)

The Banty House by Carolyn Brown

Publisher: Montlake Romance

Fourth Place (Tie)

Good Vibes at the Vine by JB Schroeder

Publisher: JB Schroeder LLC and Two Feet Press

Fifth Place

A Ranger for the Twins by Tanya Agler

Publisher: Harlequin

Contemporary Short

First Place

A Song For Another Day by Maria Imbalzano

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Second Place

Power Play by Anna DePalo

Publisher: Harlequin

Third Place

Crazy Old Money by Kilby Blades

Publisher: Luxe Press

Fourth Place

Snowflake Cottage by Linda Carroll-Bradd

Publisher: Inked Figments

Fifth Place (Tie)

Practically Persuaded in Pittsburgh by JB Schroeder

Publisher: JB Schroeder LLC and Two Feet Press

Fifth Place (Tie)

A Perfect Grey Christmas by Anna Sugden

Publisher: Self-Published

Fifth Place (Tie)

Cinnamon’s Courageous Heart by Ryan Summers

Publisher: Self-Published

Erotic Novel

First Place

Tempt: A Wicked Sanctuary Novel by Marie Tuhart

Publisher: Hot Blooded Press

Second Place

You Can’t Buy Love by Melanie A. Smith

Publisher: Wicked Dreams Publishing

Third Place

Never Date a Doctor by Melanie A. Smith

Publisher: Wicked Dreams Publishing

Erotic Short

First Place

Honeymoon Hideaway by Mia London

Publisher: Mia London Books

Second Place

Blue Steel Hearts by Eve Lyn

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Third Place

Full Metal by Eve Lyn

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Historical Novel

First Place

By Promise Made by Susan Leigh Furlong

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Second Place

The Runaway Wife by CiCi Cordelia

Publisher:  Soul Mate Publishing

Third Place

Willie, My Love by Judy Ann Davis

Publisher:  Self-Published

Fourth Place

FELICE by Kathleen Bittner Roth

Publisher: Kensington Zebra

Fifth Place

A Scandalous Portrait by Callie Hutton

Publisher: Self-Published

Historical Short

First Place

The Blueberry Swirl Waltz by Maria Imbalzano

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Second Place

Grayson by Linda Carroll-Bradd

Publisher: Inked Figments

Third Place

The Christmas Bride by Kara O’Neal

Publisher: Self-Published

Inspirational

First Place

Patriot’s Courage by Penelope Marzec

Publisher: Prism Book Group

Second Place

My Heart Weeps by Pamela S. Thibodeaux

Publisher: Temperance Publishing

https://books2read.com/MyHeartWeeps

Third Place

Our Town Atheist by Victoria Buck

Publisher: Harbourlight/Pelican Book Group

Fourth Place

Eight Nights to Win Her Heart by Roni Denholtz

Publisher: Self-Published

Fifth Place

Lioness: Mahlah’s Journey by Barbara M. Britton

Publisher:  Pelican Book Group

Paranormal Novel

First Place

A Glimmer of Ghosts by Hunter J. Skye

Publisher:  The Wild Rose Press

Second Place

Unseen by Cassie Laelyn

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Third Place

Waking the Dead by Kerry Blaisdell

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Fourth Place

Touch of Evil by Cecy Robson

Publisher: Cecy Robson, LLC

Fifth Place (Tie)

Rumpel’s Redemption by Tamara Grantham

Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing

Fifth Place (Tie)

Lightning Strikes Again by Roni Denholtz

Publisher: Self-Published

Suspense Novel

First Place (Tie)

Colder Than Sin by Toni Anderson

Publisher: Self-Published

First Place (Tie)

Only Obsession by Marissa Garner

Publisher: Self-Published

Second Place

Retrograde by Desiree Holt

Publisher: Totally Bound

Third Place

Time to Run by Susan C. Muller

Publisher: Self-Published

Fourth Place

Cold & Deadly by Toni Anderson

Publisher: Self-Published

Fifth Place

A Pride of Brothers: Rick by Peggy Jaeger

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Suspense Short

First Place (Tie)

Stranger in the Storm by Patricia McAlexander

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

First Place (Tie)​

Blood and Breakfast by Alicia Dean

Publisher: Self-Published

Second Place

A Shot of Murder by Brenda Gayle

Publisher: Bowstring Books

Third Place

Running Wild in Reno by Shirley Hailstock

Publisher: Self-Published

Young Adult Novel

First Place

Finding Frances by Kelly Vincent

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Second Place

Cherokee Summer by Susan Antony

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Third Place

The Haunted Purse by Kimberly Baer

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

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Author Interview with Ana Diamond & New Release ~ Body Conscious #WRPbk #AHAgrp #Blog

Please help me welcome today’s guest, Ana Diamond….

Please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets? I grew up in the suburbs of New York just outside of New York City. I also lived in New York City for 15 years. Now I’m back in the suburbs rasing two kids. I have 2 rescue cats who are also sisters.

Why did you choose this genre? I’ve always been drawn to mystery. I like intrigue and romance always keeps me reading.

Do you have another occupation, other than writer? If so, what is it and do you like it? I work in the medical field in a large hospital in NYC. It is the complete opposite of  writing and creating but I find that it keeps me grounded and pays the bills. 

Do you collect anything? I collect candles, dolls, Disney animated production cells and makeup.

What was your first job? Medical Assistant. 

Have you written any other books that are not published? Yes, many. I have dabbled in different genres to figure out where I might fit in the best. 

Are your characters based off real people or did they all come entirely from your imagination? Entirely from my imagination. 

How did you come up with the title?

It’s a play on words. It has a much more literal meaning since the story is set in a funeral home where there are lots of bodies and the story centers around a body that is found but doesn’t belong.

What’s the main thing that you could get rid of in your life that would give you more writing time?  My day job.

Your favorite…

Place you’ve visited:  Bora Bora

Place you’d like to visit  Egypt

TV show from childhood Sesame Street

Food  A fresh salad 

 

In a small town, gossip can get you killed

Blurb:

Mortician, Lily Reynolds is used to seeing bodies, but not the type murdered in her own funeral home. As Detective James Rivers zeroes in on her as the town’s number one suspect she must rise above the accusations and rumors to solve the case herself while keeping her attraction to the troubled detective at bay.

James has a past. The last time he let someone into his life she wound up dead. Vowing never to let that happen again he has sworn off dating for good. Until he meets Lily. In his gut he knows she’s not the murderer but pressure to solve the case puts him on the wrong trail while he struggles to keep Lily off the case.

Can she solve the case on her own or will their scandalous romance get in the way of proving her innocence?

Excerpt:

“That’s Detective James Rivers,” Abrams said. “He came all the way up from New York City to our little town in the scenic Hudson Valley. He’ll be the lead investigator on this case since I know you ladies will be frequent callers.”

“Let’s be clear, I’ve never called you,” Lily said. “It’s always been Shanna.”

Abrams gave her a coy smile. He seemed flattered by the idea.

“Nice to meet you, Detective Rivers,” Lily said, finally turning toward the man who approached them.

Her breath caught in her throat. She didn’t know what she had been expecting, but not this—the angelic face with large sky-blue eyes, pronounced cheekbones and silken black hair. The only part of him that matched her ideas of what detectives looked like were his tattooed arms. She should know; her dad had been a cop.

May he rest in peace.

But James’s tattoos weren’t subtle. Snakes slid up his arms, past his rolled-up shirtsleeves, coiling around his thick forearms and biceps. One corner of his mouth lifted as he caught her staring.

Buy Here:  https://books2read.com/anadiamondauthor

Bio:

When Ana Diamond isn’t writing about tough gals finding love in unexpected places, she’s at work by day in the medical field. She writes romantic cozy mystery novels with feisty strong women and alluring men who can’t resist them. Her books are fast paced, entertaining and heartfelt all at once.

Ana is a 2020 Tara Contest Finalist for Body Conscious and 2015 Melody of Love contest finalist. She lives in New York with her husband, two children and two needy but wildly entertaining kitty cats.

https://twitter.com/AuthorDiamond

https://www.facebook.com/anadiamondauthor/

https://www.instagram.com/anadiamondauthor/

https://www.tiktok.com/@anadiamondauthor?

Email: Ana@anadiamondauthor.com

 

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Happy Re-Release Day to Me!! Soul Seducer ~ #AHAgrp #WRPbks #ParanormalRomance

 

Audra Grayson became a nurse in order to help save lives. But one night after a brutal beating, she almost loses her own. The near-death experience opens a door between the world of the living and the world beyond. Two Grim Reapers invade her life. One is charming, with the angelic blonde looks of a saint and the black soul of a psychopath. The other is dark, dangerously attractive and, in spite of her distaste for his reaper duties, she finds herself inexplicably drawn to him.

When Audra’s patients begin to die unexpectedly and her loved ones are threatened, she will risk her life—even her soul—to save them. But can she risk her heart to an inhuman being whose very purpose is to take those she is trying to save?

Excerpt

Audra whirled. Dimitri stood a few feet behind her. He once more wore the leather jacket. His brow was drawn into a frown.

“Dimitri. You came.”

“What’s wrong?”

He moved closer, lowering his head to stare into her face. Her breath caught when the electric spark reached out to her.

“I didn’t know how it worked,” she murmured, her mouth suddenly dry. “I wasn’t sure you’d hear me.”

“Of course I heard you. You were yelling loud enough to wake the dead. No pun intended.”

She didn’t smile. “Gaylen. Do you know where he is?”

He shook his head. “Not at the moment. Did something happen?”

“Yes,” she whispered. “My patient. Mr. Neufeld. I think Gaylen…killed him.”

Dimitri reached a hand out as if to take hold of her arm. Although he couldn’t physically touch her, somehow it seemed as though he did. His hand hovered near her elbow, and she let him lead her to one of the visitor’s chairs. When she was seated, he took the other chair. Leaning forward, he rested his clasped hands between his knees.

“Tell me what happened.” His voice was low, mesmerizing…soothing. Not what one would expect from a dealer of death.

“Mr. Neufeld was scheduled for gall bladder surgery tomorrow. Nothing life threatening. I was with him only moments before, and he was fine. Then…” She looked down to where her hands rubbed back and forth over her thighs. “I saw Gaylen. Outside my patient’s room. He went in. Walked right through the door. By the time I got to him…”

“The man was dead.”

She lifted her head and nodded. “Gaylen was standing there, looking…satisfied, happy even. He killed him, didn’t he?”

Dimitri sighed and unclasped his hands. Resting an elbow on the arm of the chair, he rubbed his temple. “It seems so. I should have been there. I didn’t know.”

“You could have stopped him if you’d been there?” He nodded. “Then why weren’t you? Can’t you just follow him around? Make sure he doesn’t do things like this?”

He grinned, dimples appearing briefly. “I can’t just follow him around. For one, I have duties to perform. For another, I don’t always know when he’s up to his…shenanigans. Occasionally, I get a feeling…a premonition of sorts. Sometimes, I arrive just a few seconds behind, like at the mall, too late to stop him. There are times when I arrive ahead of him. In that case, he can’t do anything, because another reaper is already there. But it’s all just random and luck and timing. No pattern, no rules to follow, nothing I can do to ensure he doesn’t continue taking souls before their time.”

She wasn’t entirely convinced he spoke the truth. Dimitri was a reaper, too. He took lives, just like Gaylen. But there was something different about Gaylen. He seemed to delight in what he did. Then again, maybe Dimitri did, too, but he was just better at hiding it.

 

https://www.bookbub.com/books/soul-seducer-by-alicia-dean

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Author Randy Overbeck – Human Trafficking & New Release: Crimson at Cape May

Please help me welcome author, Randy Overbeck, with an article on an important topic…

In the U. S., another teen girl is trafficked every 90 minutes!

Today, we have plenty of crises to deal with—political unrest, the traumatic toll of the Coronavirus, a devastated economy that will take years to recover. 

But there is one crisis—tragic, devastating and universal—that is going on everyday, in small towns and large, in inner cities and suburbs, which gets almost NO headlines or news coverage. Based on the best estimates, in the U. S. alone, 5000 teen girls get sucked into the world of human trafficking every year. That’s a hundred young girls a week, fourteen a day, almost two every hour.

And almost no one talks about it.

That why, when I penned my new novel, Crimson at Cape May, a ghost story/mystery, I chose to tie the whodunit to the crime of human trafficking. The narrative is set in Cape May, New Jersey, a breathtakingly beautiful resort town on the East Coast with pristine, white beaches and the largest collection of beautiful Victorian mansions in the country. A perfectly apt, small town setting for a murder mystery. 

And not very far from this idyllic getaway extends a network of human trafficking smugglers, who supply young girls and women as prostitutes, up and down the eastern seaboard.

Of course, all the events described in my novel are fictional. But the reality and the truth is amazingly close to the world captured in the novel. Crimson at Cape May has been described as a cold case murder mystery wrapped in ghost story, served with a side of romance, all set in one of the most beautiful locations in the country. But it is also a novel that reveals the ugly truth about the scourge of sex trafficking and bondage. 

The narrative for the novel is set more than twenty years earlier, in 1999, but the facts about human trafficking captured in the story are sadly still true, only more so today. In fact, did you know that in 2021, there are more people being trapped in human trafficking than at any time in human history.

Her is a link to a brief article with some astonishing—and depressing statistics:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/investigations/2019/07/29/12-trafficking-statistics-enormity-global-sex-trade/1755192001/

Now, my new novel is no treatise on the subject of human trafficking. It is, as advertised, an award-winning, five-star amateur sleuth mystery and suspense with romantic elements, as they say in the business. I’m confident readers will be captivated by the breathtakingly beautiful scenery, fall in love along with Darrell and Erin, feel compelled to help the street-wise kid, Cassie, and solve the whodunnit of the baffling murder. Scores of Amazon, Goodreads and Bookbub readers have already shared how much they enjoyed the novel.

But I also hope and pray that readers come away with a better grasp of the problem of human trafficking and maybe, just maybe, a desire to do something about it.

 

BLURB—CRIMSON AT CAPE MAY

No matter how far you run, you can never really escape a haunted past.

Darrell Henshaw—teacher, coach, and paranormal sensitive—learned this lesson the hard way. With his job gone and few options, he heads for Cape May to coach a summer football camp. The resort town, with gorgeous beaches, rich history and famous Victorian mansions, might just be the getaway he needs. Only, no one told him Cape May is the most haunted seaport on the East Coast. One resident ghost, the Haunted Bride, stalks Darrell, begging for his help.

He can’t refuse.

Joining forces with Cassie, a street-wise teen and another sensitive, he investigates the bride’s death and discovers her murder is connected to a far greater horror. But can Darrell and Cassie expose those behind the crimes before they end up being the killer’s next victims?

 

REVIEWS—CRIMSON AT CAPE MAY

“With both elements of mystery and suspense, readers across genres will find this second book about Darrell Henshaw intriguing…I highly recommend it.” ★★★★★Literary Titan

“It’s a ghost/mystery story filled with suspense and action. The plot is so engrossing it had me hooked from the very first page.” ★★★★★—Nana’s Reviews, Greece

“An exciting paranormal mystery I couldn’t put down… A great read. Highly recommend!” ★★★★★N.N. Light’s BookHeaven

 “Rollicking good…Darrell is a wonderful protagonist, an ordinary man put into extraordinary situations and rising to the challenge..” ★★★★★ —Over My Dead Body magazine

“I loved everything about this book. As a ghost story combined with a mystery, a romance, a social injustice and stunning historical details, Crimson at Cape May has something for everyone.” ★★★★★—ReaderViews

 “Masterly spooky adventure…an accomplished work of haunting mystery fiction that fans of the genre won’t want to miss out on. Highly Recommend.” ★★★★★—ReadersFavorite.com

BOOK TRAILER—CRIMSON AT CAPE MAY

Social Media Sites:

randyoverbeck@authorrandyoverbeck.com

www.authorrandyoverbeck.com

@OverbeckRandy

FB: Author Randy Overbeck

PURCHASE LINKS—CRIMSON AT CAPE MAY

https://www.amazon.com/Crimson-Cape-Haunted-Shores-Mysteries/dp/1509231633/ref=sr_1_2?crid=1BCBKCDPQRK3L&dchild=1&keywords=crimson+at+cape+may&qid=1599856137&sprefix=Crimson+at+Cape+May%2Caps%2C163&sr=8-2

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/crimson-at-cape-may-randy-overbeck/1137088608?ean=9781509231638

https://www.bookbub.com/books/crimson-at-cape-may-by-randy-overbeck

BIO

Dr. Randy Overbeck is an award-winning educator, author and speaker, capturing state and national accolades for his work. As an educator, he served children for more than three decades in a range of roles captured in his novels, from teacher and coach to principal and superintendent. His thriller, Leave No Child Behind (2012) and his recent mysteries, Blood on the Chesapeake (2019) and Crimson at Cape May (2020) have earned five star reviews and garnered top awards and recognition from sites such as Literary Titan, ReadersFavorite.com, ReaderViews.com and N. N. Lights Bookheaven. As a member of the Mystery Writers of America, Dr. Overbeck is an active member of the literary community, contributing to a writers’ critique group, serving as a mentor to emerging writers and participating in writing conferences such as Sleuthfest, Killer Nashville and the Midwest Writers Workshop. When he’s not writing or researching his next exciting novel or sharing his presentation “Things That Go Bump in the Night,” he’s spending time with his incredible family of wife, three children (and their spouses) and seven wonderful grandchildren.

 

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