Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The Blank Page

2012 has been quite a year for me both personally and professionally. On a personal note, my mother fell and broke her hip twice, once in September and again in October. Thankfully, she’s doing well and I’m praying for a full recovery. It’s been a difficult time, especially for her, of course, but also for me because I’m her primary caregiver. It hasn’t been easy for either of us but I’ve learned a lot through it all – about her and about myself – and since I believe that everything happens for a reason, I trust things will work out for the best.
Book signing in April for "Mixed Messages"

Professionally, this year has been incredible! Post Mortem Press published the first two novels in my Malone mystery series, Mixed Messages and Unfinished Business. A dream come true! Some days, when I wake up in the morning, I have to pick up copies of my two books and hold them in my hands to convince myself that it really happened.
But 2013 is fast approaching and, although I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, I do set goals for the coming year, especially when it comes to my writing. A blank page is like a new year. It’s a fresh start, a chance to write the beginning of a whole new story. It’s exciting but it’s also scary. Where to start? What will happen? What part will each character play in the story? So many unanswered questions as I begin to plot and write the third book for my series.
My “plan” is to finish the book by the end of summer. Plan is in quotation marks because, if there’s one thing I’ve learned this year, it’s that the saying, “Man plans; God laughs,” is really true. None of us knows what the new year (or the new book) will bring but I choose to believe that it will be everything I hope for and more. I hope it is for you too!
Happy New Year!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Christmas Memories

        We all have lots of Christmas memories, some happy, some sad. Some we remember more than others.
There’s a scene in my mystery novel, Unfinished Business, where Ann and her older sister, Marnie, are remembering a Christmas from their childhoods: the year they decided to search their parents’ house, looking for their presents. More than anything, Ann wanted a Cabbage Patch doll for Christmas that year and, in a hidden compartment in the closet of the master bedroom, she found it. At first, she was thrilled but, as you can imagine, finding the doll put quite a damper on her Christmas. She ruined her own surprise.
That scene was a fictionalized version of what happened to me when I was a child. I wanted a Patty Play Pal doll so badly and, like Ann, I searched our house and found the doll hidden in my parents’ closet. On Christmas Day, I had to pretend to be surprised when I unwrapped the doll but I’m pretty sure my mom and dad knew the truth. Needless to say, that was the first and last time I ever went looking to see what Santa or my parents had gotten me for Christmas. (By the way, since my name is Patricia, I named the doll Cathy.) 
 My Dad, Mom, brother, me (with Cathy) and my maternal grandfather
I hope each of you has a very Merry Christmas and that you make some wonderful Christmas memories this year!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Three Christmas Treats

A book is one of the best gifts you can give someone for Christmas. Here are three mystery novels that take place at Christmastime to add to your shopping list. Oh, and don't forget to include your own name!

The story takes place the week before Christmas when the stress of the holidays is enough to frazzle anyone’s nerves. Tensions increase when a friend begs Muriel to team up with a sexy private investigator to find a missing woman. Forced to deal with an embezzler, kidnapper, and femme fatale is bad enough, but add Muriel’s zany yet loveable family to the mix and their desire to win the coveted D-DAY (Death Defying Act of the Year) Award that’s presented on Christmas Eve, and the situation can only get worse.
Frank, Incense and Muriel is recipient of the prestigious 2011 Holt Medallion Award of Merit.

Readers to visit me online at my websiteblogFacebook, and Twitter.
Anne K. Albert

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A romantic Christmas vacation for…five? This wasn’t exactly what Jessie and Wilson had in mind when they planned their trip to the tropics. But when Jessie’s delightfully spry mother, Wilson’s surfer dude son, and Jessie’s rabidly hyperactive New York agent decide to tag along the fun begins. What kind of trouble can these three oddest of odd balls possibly get into? Take a guess.

Cindy Blackburn 
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Collies and people in peril cast a shadow over Christmas in Foxglove Corners. It’s December in Foxglove Corners, and the snow is falling. On Sunset Lake, Jennet Ferguson sees a skater fall through the thin ice and calls for help. But there’s no girl and no body. Meanwhile, in the nearby town of Lakeville, a collie stands accused of murdering her mistress. As she plans a Christmas celebration and a New Year’s Eve wedding, Jennet discovers that she must first solve the mysteries of the phantom skater and the killer dog.

Dorothy Bodoin