Fascinating!

The book Fascinate: Your 7 Triggers to Persuasion and Captivation has caught my attention. It may have been written as an analysis of marketing techniques that build brands, but as a crime fiction author, I’m taking note. I want my novels to fascinate readers, so I’m keeping this list on hand as I craft my next story. Here are the seven triggers that draw people in:

  1. Lust: the anticipation of pleasure, which we crave Read more

Writing the Right Novel

Have you set aside a novel in progress because it was just too hard to write at that point in time? I just did. The futuristic thriller is on hold and I’m back to working on the fifth book in my Detective Jackson series. I feel so relieved.  I still plan to write THE ARRANGER (set in 2023), but I’m not in the right space to do it now.

It’s hard for me to admit something is too challenging, but that’s the truth of this situation. Because I’m still a full-time freelance editor, Read more

Birthday Book Giveaway

thrilled-to-deathToday’s my birthday and what better way to celebrate than to give something away? I have two advanced review copies of THRILLED TO DEATH, my third Detective Jackson novel, to offer. Here’s the back cover copy:

Monday morning, a young mother disappears after a doctor’s appointment. Monday evening, a young socialite leaves a risqué lounge and never makes it home. Read more

The New Gatekeepers

Laura Miller, founder of Salon, asks: “How do you find something good to read in a brave new self-published world?” She writes about the horrors of the slush pile and wonders how readers will fare if traditional publishers stop functioning as gatekeepers. She points out that gatekeepers are necessary to steer readers away from the “all the dreck.” Bloggers—who read and review a much wider variety of books than Library Journal or Publishers Weekly—are already doing this to a certain degree. Read more

One Reader at a Time

shopping-in-the-rain1The highs and lows of book selling can give you whiplash. One minute a reader says, “Your series looks terrific, I’ll take all three” and your heart swells with happiness. An hour later, it’s pouring rain, you haven’t sold a book in an hour, and you start to wonder if it’s worth. And by it, I mean the whole novel writing experience. Because novel writing and selling books are intrinsically linked. Read more

Does Prison/Capital Punishment Work?

CJ West and I both explore social issues in our novels, but often from different ends of the political spectrum. CJ is launching The End of Marking Time, a novel that follows Michael O’Connor as he pleads to a futuristic jury to spare his life. The book is a fascinating look at how the penal system might operate in the future. So we thought it would be fun (crazy) to hold a forum on capital punishment and our penal system. A homicide detective joins us anonymously and gives his perspective.  Read more

Agents, Bookstores Turn to Publishing

There’s been a lot of industry news lately, but some game changing developments that caught my eye were buried in a report under Joe Konrath’s deal with AmazonEncore. In a nutshell: Agents and bookstore are becoming publishers.

Scott Waxman, of Waxman Literary, has created Diversion Books, Read more

Recent Thoughts About Publishing

keyboard-smallOne-star protest. The Kindle reader practice of giving a book a one-star Amazon review to protest the price  is bullshit. It’s like stiffing a waiter or complaining about the service because you’re pissed about the cost of your meal or the restaurant’s policies. It punishes the wrong people. If you don’t like the price, don’t buy the book. Stop hurling tomatoes at the author. Read more