Sunday, March 31, 2013

Heading Home

Today I'm heading home from out wonderful week-long Caribbean cruise. Right now I'm more than likely on the plane heading either to St. Louis (We have a lay over.) over Chicago. *sigh* Back to reality.

Next week I'll share some photos and stories from the trip.

For today...

Happy Easter!

Until next time,

Happy Reading!


Saturday, March 30, 2013

Ft Lauderdale Day Two by Margot Justes

The morning was spent at the restaurant, sitting outside in the sunny warmth, drinking coffee, writing my daily journal, and waiting for everyone to join me. I love mornings like that. After a buffet breakfast at the hotel that included everything from freshly squeezed orange juice, to an omelet station to plain Greek yogurt, and not bad restaurant coffee, the day was mine.

On my second day in Ft. Lauderdale, I found the Bonnet House, and wrote a blog about it. I love to walk, so taking a cab was not an option for me, I find pleasure in seeing as much as I can on foot, whenever possible.  All I can say it was an exhausting and exhilarating day, and the trek to find the Bonnet House was worth every blister.
I went back to the hotel to meet up with friends, who are gold members at the Hilton. Nothing went right for them from registration going forward, the staff apologized at every turn and were always ready with free vouchers; they were flowing at a rapid rate. The last mishap included a sixty dollar credit at the restaurant. Guess where we ate lunch? The management handled everything with aplomb, and abject apologies, and the ever ready free vouchers.

The hotel restaurant was located by the pool, a lovely place to sit and relax. I do not have a Hilton membership, but everything went according to plan, that included a beautiful room, with a view of the water, so there were no free vouchers for me. I do however intend to join the club.
Diet not going too well, after a solid breakfast, we had to use the sixty dollar voucher, after all, we were checking out the next morning for our cruise. A Margherita Pizza seemed like a good idea for lunch, filled with tomatoes and fresh mozzarella, it was delicious. The rest of the late afternoon was spent with friends. We fell in love with the Casablanca Café and we went back there again for dinner.   
I know we should have tried something new, and usually that is what happens-but you have to realize-the eggplant was simply amazing and not to be missed. I would go back there again just for the Moroccan eggplant. We saw a small fender bender on the A1A, no one was hurt and people involved were chatting amicably. The roar of the cars is amazing on that road, it seems to be non-stop.

After dinner, the walk along the shore was a delight, blisters and all; the area is stunning, we had a full moon and the reflection in the water was mesmerizing.

Margot  Justes
A Hotel in Paris
A Hotel in Bath


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Contest Juding Time! by DL Larson

I just received 5 entries for the Daphne deMuir Writing Contest.  I'll be judging the Paranormal category, where the eccentric and supernatural happen. Digging in to the surreal scenes always amazes me at the diverse imagination of others.  The deadline to have the judging returned is April 20th. 

That's a tight window.  Preparing for my book, getting ready for Easter and spring planting crowding into my "To Do" List is bound to make my schedule for the next few weeks a challenge. 

Spring is chaotic, spring never looks like it does in the pretty magazines where the flowers magically appear and the yard looks as if a twig or leaf would never dare drop and mar the picturesque landscape.  Well, here in realilty, my yard is short on pretty and long on needing attention. 

I plan to try the balancing act.  I'll work in the yard, work at the library and come in feeling tired and achy in places I don't want to mention.  But I'll have these "out of this world" stories to rejuvenate me.  Or so that's my hope.

I'll let you know as the weeks slide by.  Until then, have a wonderful Easter, Passover, or simply enjoy the spring-like weather.

Til next time ~

DL Larson

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Marilyn Meredith's Dangerous Impulses

Please Welcome F.M. (Marilyn) Meredith to Acme Authors Link 

F.M., also known as Marilyn Meredith, is the author of the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series. She first became interested in writing about law enforcement when she lived in a neighborhood filled with police officers and their families. The interest was fanned when her daughter married a police officer and the tradition has continued with a grandson and grandson-in-law who are deputies. She’s also serves on the board of the Public Safety Writers Association, and has many friends in different law enforcement fields. For twenty plus years, she and her husband lived in a small beach community located in Southern California much like the fictional Rocky Bluff. She is a member of three chapters of Sisters in Crime, Epic, and Mystery Writers of America.
And on Facebook and Twitter as MarilynMeredith

Marilyn's Shares Her Writing Journey With Us Today -
Looking Back Over My Years as a Writer  
by F.M. Meredith

Sometimes it’s a good idea to look back over your accomplishments and disappointments in order to see how far you’ve come.

My first book (an historical family saga) received nearly thirty rejections before finding a publisher. (This was back in the days of typewriters, carbon paper, submitting full manuscripts in a box with another pre-addressed and stamped box inside.) I knew nothing at all about promotion and expected the publisher to do it all. One thing I do know, the distribution was good because people spotted it in markets and drugstores. The editor who bought it left the publisher—a big setback.

The second book (also an historical family saga) was accepted by a publisher that turned out to be a crook—and guess what, I self-published with another company that also turned out to be dishonest. I bought a lot of the books and managed to sell them myself, but never received a single royalty.

I changed genres and wrote my first mystery, The Astral Gift. This poor book found a home first with another crooked publisher (back then, there were lots of them preying on writers), 50 books were printed and the publisher disappeared. The Astral Gift had two more publishers after that.

Somewhere in this time period, I found another publisher who wanted me to make my submission camera-ready, long before print-on-demand companies, I struggled but managed to complete the project only to learn the publisher died.

When I wrote my first Rocky Bluff P.D. mystery, it was accepted by an e-publisher before anyone had a clue what this meant, nor were there any e-book readers. This was an unsuccessful venture. I’ve already written about what happened next, the series went through two more publishers until finally begin published by Oak Tree Press.

My other series about Deputy Tempe Crabtree has had a similar rough path to publication and staying published. An agent told me she wouldn’t represent me unless I changed Tempe’s name. She thought it too unusual. I found another agent who loved the name but accomplished nothing in four years. I struck out on my own and sold the book to a small independent Press, Golden Eagle. Four books were published, and then the publisher who’d become a friend, passed away unexpectedly. Hard Shell Word Factory republished the series as e-books, including a prequel. The publisher sold the company and all this series was picked up by Mundania Press both as e-books and trade paperbacks.

None of it has been easy. Would I do it again? Only if it were in this time period of computers and the Internet. Today, self-publishing is much easier with far better results. There are many legitimate small presses out there looking for good books to publish. It is easy to contact authors for a recommendation of their publishers. You can find out about all the best ways to promote through the Internet and get lots of advice and support from fellow authors.

This is the briefest of histories, there were other books and other mishaps along the way, but this is what I remember the most clearly. One thing that I mustn’t forget is I learned a lot along the way, some from other agents I had, much from writers’ conferences, writing magazines and books, but the very most from the members of the critique group that I joined over thirty years ago.
Now a bit about Marilyn's latest, Dangerous Impulses:

An attractive new-hire captivates Officer Gordon Butler, Officer Felix Zachary’s wife Wendy is befuddled by her new baby, Ryan and Barbara Strickland receive unsettling news about her pregnancy, while the bloody murder of a mother and her son and an unidentified drug that sickens teenaged partiers jolts the Rocky Bluff P.D.

 And A Contest!
The person who comments on the most blog posts on this tour may have a character named after him or her in the next Rocky Bluff P.D. crime novel or choose a book from the previous titles in the Rocky Bluff P.D. series in either paper or for Kindle.

Rocky Bluff P.D. Series: Though each book in the Rocky Bluff P.D. series is written as a stand-alone, I know there are people who like to read a series in order. From the beginning to the end:

Final Respects
Bad Tidings
Fringe Benefits
Smell of Death
No Sanctuary
An Axe to Grind
Angel Lost
No Bells
Dangerous Impulses

Find F.M. (Marilyn) Meredith at: 
On Facebook and Twitter as MarilynMeredith

Check Out F.M. (Marilyn) Meredith's last stop on the tour tomorrow, March 28, when she visits Chester Campbell at

Please leave a comment to welcome F.M. (Marilyn) Meredith to Acme Authors Link.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Creativity of another kind

Thought I'd share today that I'm featuring the work of a unique artist today at my other blog, GirlZombieAuthors.  See some incredible "zombie" and monster dolls here.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Up, Up, and Away

Hopefully as you read this, depending on the time of day, I'll be either on a plane heading down to Miami or on board a cruise ship heading out to sea.

The hopefully part comes in because we're expected to get, of all things for this first weekend of Spring, a snow storm here in the Midwest. Since hearing the weather report on Wednesday, I've been in a bit of a panic. We're on a fairly tight schedule to get from the Miami International Airport to the Port of Miami in the first place. For a while now I've been a bit nervous about a delay on our flight. (It never dawned on me to schedule one for the day before and stay overnight in time I'll know.) With the bad weather coming it definitely slid from nervous to panic. Thus, there were tears, frantic phone calls and Internet searches trying to find a flight out on Saturday, an Amtrack route, or a rental car, and pleadings for prayers from friends for some peace and calm.

In the end, there was no way we could pay the exorbitant fees involved in changing flights. Amtrack doesn't go directly to Miami. And rental cars one way cost a fortune, too. We were forced to stick with our original travel plans.

As of right now, (I'm writing this on Saturday.) it looks like we'll be okay with the flight. A friend mentioned the earlier we go the better as then we're not waiting for the plane to come in from another airport before taking off with us. We're scheduled to go at 9:00 a.m., which he said was good. I even checked the on-time averages for flights out of O'Hare at that time on Sundays and they were listed as 100% on time. The weather system looks like it will hit farther south and/or later in the day here.

So, I'm breathing a little easier, but will finally exhale all the way when I'm sitting on that plane and we've put wheels up around 9:15.

As for the Caribbean part, we couldn't be more thrilled. We honeymooned on a cruise fifteen years ago and are so excited to be going on another one now. We decided this is the first 'real' week-long vacation the two of us have had alone in, well, fifteen years. We are scheduled to hit the ports of Nassau, San Juan, and St. Thomas. We were scheduled for a stop in Grand Turk as well, but apparently there have been some issues with food causing possible sickness there, so the cruise line has decided to skip that port. Fine with me. I don't want to take even the slightest chance of getting sick on board.

I just want to soak up all the fun and sun I possibly can in a week! And who knows, my honeymoon cruise inspired the locations for Wild Wedding Weekend. Maybe this one will spark some new never know.

Until next time,

Happy Reading!


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Day One by Margot Justes

For the first time, I decided to keep a daily log of my vacation, and I would like to share it with you.

The morning arrival at the airport was uneventful, as was the flight to Ft. Lauderdale, just the way I like it.
The Hilton Ft Lauderdale Beach Resort is lovely, the room had a view of the ocean, and the hotel is hidden and a bit away from the hubbub and incredible loud environment along the A1A. Talk about vibe-the ground shook from the all the people drinking, enjoying themselves and the cars roaring up and down the street.

I will I say, I have never seen so many beautiful cars on parade; Lotus, Aston Martin, Ferrari, to name just a few. The revved engines purred like wild kittens. I have retained an affinity for sports cars, in my youth I used follow formula one races.
We decided to eat at Café Casablanca. I had a Moroccan sampler, how can one go to Café Casablanca and not order a Moroccan dish. I also had a traditional gratinee French onion soup. It was almost as good as the ones I used to have in Paris many years ago, in the old market place known as Les Halles; it no longer exists.  

My Moroccan dish had the best ever roasted eggplant with lots of garlic; nice chunks of eggplant and garlic. I love eggplant and garlic. The vampires stayed away, there was so much of it. Positively yummy. Hummus, tabouleh salad served with warm pita completed the meal. The hummus was rich with olive oil and a tad spicy.
The restaurant is situated across street from the water, and dimly lit, so even the atmosphere was pure magic. I highly recommend it. Did I forget to mention we sat outside? We did, and the view was fantastic.

A short stroll back to the hotel in the evening along the shore was delightful. We decided to sit by the Jacuzzi and dunk our feet, too tired to change. I helped my friend down the stoop, she didn’t want to get wet. Alas, I didn’t have a firm grip on her hands, she missed the step and flopped in the water. No worries about getting wet. Much too late for that.
At first we weren’t sure whether to laugh or not, but that lasted for about a second, after making sure she wasn’t hurt, we burst out laughing.  The water was warm and the bubbles soothed my aching feet. Not a bad day-not at all. In fact it was perfect.

Margot  Justes
A Hotel in Paris
A Hotel in Bath


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Powerful Words, Part 2! by DL Larson

So, I took my own advice and edited my WIP with my new writers tool, my powerful word search.  My weakest link as a writer is the opening of a story.  Once I'm going, I can hold the attention of the most reluctant reader.  I re-write and edit my opening many times, striving for an intriguing circumstance that pulls the reader in.  Changing a flat tire would be easier, I'm sure. 

My current WIP is a sci-fi romance.  I'm writing Book Three.  But Book One has a weak opening and that just can't continue.  Everytime I look at it I do the slow grrrrrrrrr.  My character is focused, but she does not grab the reader as I had hoped.  I've already pulled the bits of history from the opening that many writers type in to get their imagination flowing in order to zero in on the story.  So that's not the problem. 

The problem, I discovered, is the lack of power words. 

Here's an example:  'Tracy blinked to clear her vision and looked again.  The large, scratchy letters filled the subject line on the pink memo in her grasp.'

The only power word in those two sentences is scratchy.  This will never do.  Tracy may well be a great gal, but the reader is not intrigued.  The writing lacks umphh!  As a writer, I need to deliver a better opening.
So I try again.

'Holy cow!  Holy rotten cow!  Tracy gawked at the dark, scratchy letters on the pink memo in her grasp. She'd landed in a nut house.'

This is better.  The reader now knows several things about Tracy.  1.  She doesn't swear, so she's a pretty nice lady.  2. The note on the pink slip must be odd indeed. 3. Tracy is uncomfortable and the reader wants to know why.

There's a few other things going on as well.  Repetition of words gives a bit of insight to the character, Tracy.  I easily could have written 'holy shit.  Holy rotten shit.' But that gives a different feel to the character, so the power words I chose are important to maintain my character's personality.  I could have written 'pink memo in her fist.'  Or clutched. But again, the choice of grasp flows better with the word gawked, so the cadence creates an image in addition to the color image, dark letters on a pink memo. 

'She'd landed in a nut house.'  This has possibilities.  It could be stronger, but I don't want the reader to misunderstand my character who has already shown she is pretty innocent in her befuddlement.  It does tell the reader a few things. 1. She must have recently 'landed' this job. 2. Whatever she's reading is not normal, it smacks of weird. 3. The reader wonders what is being asked of her.

Power words intrigue the reader and heightens their involement in a story.  I know that.  I've used power words many times, I just need reminding to use this tool.  So I'll remind you as well.  Power words make for a powerful story!

Til next time ~

DL Larson

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Please Welcome Mystery Author, Athol Dickson, In His January Justice Tour

Reeling from his wife’s unsolved murder, Malcolm Cutter is just going through the motions as a chauffeur and bodyguard for Hollywood’s rich and famous. Then a pair of Guatemalan tough guys offer him a job. It’s an open question whether they’re patriotic revolutionaries or vicious terrorists. Either way, Cutter doesn’t much care until he gets a bomb through his window, a gangland beating on the streets of L.A., and three bullets in the chest. Now there’s another murder on Cutter’s Mind. His own.

Athol Dickson’s mystery, suspense, and literary novels have won three Christy Awards and an Audie Award. Suspense fans who enjoyed Athol’s They Shall See God will love his latest novel, January Justice, the first installment in a new mystery series called The Malcolm Cutter Memoirs. The second and third novels in the series, Free Fall in February, and A March Murder, are coming in 2013.
Critics have favorably compared Athol’s work to such diverse authors as Octavia Butler (Publisher’s Weekly), Hermann Hesse (The New York Journal of Books) and Flannery O’Connor (The New York Times). Athol lives with his wife in southern California.

Pump Up Your Book and Athol Dickson are teaming up to give you a chance to win a fabulous prize!

Here’s how it works:

Each person will enter this giveaway by liking, following, subscribing and tweeting about this giveaway through the Rafflecopter form placed on blogs throughout the tour. This promotion will run from March 18 – Mar 22. The winner will be chosen randomly by Rafflecopter, contacted by email, and announced on March 25, 2013. Visit each blog stop below to gain more entries as the Rafflecopter widget will be placed on each blog for the duration of the tour. Good luck everyone!

If the Rafflecopter form doesn't load, please visit the JANUARY JUSTICE TOUR PAGE to enter the giveaway:

Monday, March 18th
Tuesday, March 19th
Wednesday, March 20th
Thursday, March 21st
Friday, March 22nd
Please leave a comment to welcome Athol Dickson to Acme Authors Link.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Easter is around the corner! Make a literary memory.

Memories are what make good stories. Holidays were always nice times, each having their own particular memory. Easter, of course, was a religious holiday but we also looked forward to the Easter Bunny (what do you mean he's not real?) bringing us baskets with candy, eggs and toys.

As an adult, it's nice to get together with family and yes, get that basket with candy (chocolate!) and take time to color eggs. Who says you get too old for certain things?

Giving your characters special relationships, getting them involved in particular events or giving them hobbies, is what makes them real. Those events or pastimes can also give insight into a character's personality.

For instance, in my upcoming zombie book, GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie, the main character Becca enjoys collecting Day of the Dead figurines because she likes the colors and the often whimsical figures make her happy. Later, though, those same figures are a kind of symbol of how her life has changed when she was turned into a part-Z.

** Stay tuned for a cover reveal game coming to my other blog, GirlZombieAuthors once I get a photo I can use for that.

* Have any special holiday memories to share or that you've used in your own books or stories?

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Happy Saint Paddy's Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day! A day where everyone's just a little bit Irish, even if they're not!

May luck be with you where ever you go...and may you find your own pot of gold at the end of the rainbow...

Until next time,

Happy Reading!


Saturday, March 16, 2013

Bonnet House by Margot Justes

I always assumed that Ft. Lauderdale, Florida was all sun and fun, mega yachts on its many waterways, and sports cars that rev up the A1A; the beautiful motorway along the shore. It’s a place to get away from winter, but I found out there is more. There is the Bonnet House.

I found it, but not without getting lost first. Wrong Way Rodal struck again.  I even had a map, but didn’t bother looking at the legend. It was close to the restaurant where we had dinner the night before. So I walked toward the Casablanca Cafe, and walked, and walked, and no Bonnet House. Well, I walked in exactly the opposite direction. The concierge said to turn right, and I sometimes have a problem with left and right, and I turned left, because it was so close to the restaurant. Well, it was not.

It is not an easy place to find, but well worth any effort.  Bonnet House is pure magic. According to our tour guide,  it was so called because there were alligators in the inlets, along with water lilies, and when the gators surfaced, they seemed to wear the lily, and it looked like a bonnet.

The property was originally purchased by the Birch family and later through marriage, American artist Frederic Clay Bartlett, enjoyed spending winters in what was pristine, ocean front property in Ft. Lauderdale . The Birch-Bartlett union brought with it art and philanthropy.

Frederic Bartlett was a successful artist, and in high demand. The house reflects an eclectic taste in art, furniture,  right down to the design of the home. He possessed another talent, his undeniable appreciation of the new art movement in Europe.

Impressionism was in full swing and Post-Impressionism was lurking in the forefront, and he collected what we now consider the masters of that period, Seurat, Gauguin, Matisse, Van Gogh, Cezanne, Renoir, Picasso to name just a few.

Our guide told us Frederic Bartlett offered his collection to the Metropolitan  Museum of Art in New York, and they turned him down. Fortunately for us in the Chicago land area, the Art Institute  did accept his gift.    

Now, whenever I'll visit my old friends, I’ll thank Mr. Bartlett for his incredible generosity.

If you’re in the Ft. Lauderdale area, do not miss the Bonnet House, it is well worth a visit.

Margot  Justes
A Hotel in Paris
A Hotel in Bath
Hearts & Daggers
Hot Crimes Cool Chicks


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Using Powerful Words! by DL Larson

Last weekend I attended a writers retreat on deep editing.  I was in great company with many of Windy City RWA members.  The presenter was Margie Lawson, psychotherapist, editor, and international presenter, who whipped us through a grueling and head-exploding work session.  Toward the end of the day, the song "Amazing Grace" pounded through my brain ... 'I was blind, but now I see!' 

Words have power, we writers know that. Yet many times we become satisfied with mediocrity.  Then we wonder why our work doesn't have that spark we want.  The answers are varied, but I can give you a simple reason why we don't see our own less than stellar writing. 

Let's say I wrote:  "Bigger than a mountain." 

There is nothing wrong with this description.  It conveys something pretty darn huge.  That's what I want my readers to understand.  So I move on to the next sentence and the next.  Then my work for the day is done and the next day I re-read what I wrote.  Yes, this something is definitly bigger than a mountain and I pick up my writing where I left off.  By the third day, I skim over 'bigger than a mountain,' because now I'm focused on something else.  By the fourth day, 'bigger than a mountain,' is set in and part of the story.  By the fifth day I'm married to this phrase.  It's not going anywhere, it says what I want it to say.  I don't give it the time it needs to be a stronger part of the story.  I'm content with it because I've read it so many times it sounds perfect in my mind. 

Now the truth is 'bigger than a mountain,' is lazy writing; not intentional or careless.  It is the phrase that filled the void I needed and I moved on, not bothering to think if I could find better words.  Of course I could find stronger, more powerful words rather than 'bigger than a mountain.'  But it has become part of the story and I don't recognize it for the lack-luster phrase that it is.

This is where deep editing takes affect.  Again this is just one simple element of deep editing, but perhaps it will open your eyes to recognize these chunks of poor writing.  A simple test to find these unsightly phrases is to skim over your paper, highlighting words that could easily be replaced with stronger images.  Don't read, let your eyes search out weak wording, hightlight it, and then move on.  Once these phrases and words are spotted, take the time to restructure with power words that will thrill your reader to read them.

'Bigger than a mountain.'  What would you replace this phrase with?  I would probably replace the whole phrase and not refer to a mountain. 

"Astroid-sized bubble."  "The Grand Canyon hovering above me."  Get the idea?

Now the image has impact.  Your reader wants more.  And so you deliver!

Til next time ~

DL Larson

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Jury Duty, A Blessing or Curse

I've got Jury Duty on Monday. Being the great citizen I am, I'm hoping they don't pick me. Some people actually love jury duty. Depending on your point of view, it could be a Blessing or Curse.

Anyway, the idea got me thinking. Maybe I should write a book about someone who gets jury duty, is picked as a juror, and very much regrets it.

Then again, I have other books to finish first. I'm going to sign off now and work on, you guessed it, Blessing or Curse. I really want that book to be done, so everyone can read it!

Morgan Mandel

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Time Change

This Spring Forward time change is always a tricky one. Losing that hour takes longer to adjust to than gaining the one in the fall. For a week my body will be wondering why it's getting up so early. The feeling of going to bed earlier doesn't seem to balance that out, either!

In the past, Daylight Savings Time went from mid-April to late-October. In recent years we've been switching earlier (mid-March) and ending later (November). In theory, this seems great. Longer daylight hours for a longer period of time.

Trouble is, this time of year is ugly. Seriously. The snow on the ground is dirty and yucky. The trees are bare. If the snow melts the grass is yellowish-brown. And the gardens are piles of mud with no green in sight. And it's cold. I want to see this for a longer period of time into the evening? Not really. It's actually kind of depressing. Same at the other end in the fall. By November, all of the colorful leaves have fallen from the trees, leaving the limbs bare. The gardens have all been emptied. And chilly weather is definitely here to stay.

I've heard the original idea for Daylight Savings Time came from Ben Franklin. I'm not sure when it actually was put into place as a reality. And who makes the decision about when it should start and end? Is that a government thing? A weather-bureau thing? Hmn? I may need to do some research...just for fun. Maybe I'll spend my extra hour of daylight tonight doing that...

Until next time,

Happy Reading!


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Another Hurdle Accomplished in the Publishing Process! by DL Larson

Picking out a book cover is an unnerving challenge, much like naming a child.  Once it's done, one has to live with it.  Yes, many change their book covers, but the first will always be around - somewhere. How I can be so decisive in some aspects and a complete opposite on other issues, perplexs me.

I asked my girl pals to vote on their favorite book cover, the three I had narrowed it down to.  We ended up in a tie and so I realized I would have to make the final decision.  I knew I would, but their input was valuable and made the final pick much easier. 

With that done and the author photo complete, I sent these last bits to the publisher.  Now I have to concentrate on publicity and marketing strategies. My news article came out last Saturday in our local paper, the Ottawa Times, Ottawa IL. (a town of about 19,000.) The reporter, Kate Reynolds, featured a whole page on me.  I was dumbfounded, a little self-conscious, but pleased she gave me such an honor.  If anyone wants to read the article, you can find it on line at The Ottawa Times, Ottawa IL, the weekend paper for March 2-3, 2013.  I'm in the HOMETOWNS section, B5, the title: Active In Earlville. The address is below.

I know I need to keep moving, promoting myself as an author, and I will certainly try to do that.  I've found if I pretend DL Larson is one of my kids, I do much better in promoting myself.  Perhaps it's my generation, but tooting my own horn goes against everything I ever learned.  It's awkward for me and I am uncomfortable in extreme.  So, thinking of myself in the third person and stepping away just a smidge gives me the gumption to proceed.

My plans are to reach out to other papers and tell them DL Larson has another novel coming out.  Once I have my ISBN# and a photo of my book, I will take another step in promoting my book.  What exactly that will be is yet to be decided.  Any suggestions you might have in this process?  I'd love to hear them!

Til next time ~

DL Larson

Ottawa Times:  search: Larson, 3/1/13;

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Taxes, Taxes

No post today. I'm on deadline to get my taxes ready for the accountant on Friday.

Wish me well!

Morgan Mandel

Monday, March 4, 2013

Public speaking..... arrggh!

I'm a talker. I'll talk your ear off but.... not in front of a crowd. I am scared to death of getting up in front of a group.... I've done it but...I get sooooo nervous.

Necessary evil with a book coming out in July - GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie

But I woke up this morning with some great ideas for  a powerpoint... easier to talk when people's eyes are engaged on pix and not on you, right?'s still scary...

So - how do you tackle speaking to a group? What's your best - worst moment?

Sunday, March 3, 2013

You Know It's Been a While When...

So, I was doing some household chores this morning. We were out of town last weekend, so some of the standard chores didn't get done. But, I have to admit, I discovered some things I'd let go for a lot longer than a week.

Out on the back porch I still had tins of Christmas cookies. Now, I can look at that in two ways. On the positive side of things, there were actually some left over, so I didn't pig out and eat them all over the holidays. On the negative side, what was I thinking letting delicious Christmas cookies go to waste?

On the bed in the spare room was an outfit I'd set out to wear but never did. It was purple to match the color I'd done my the beginning of February.

There was a pile of things on the stairs to be taken up when I go...the pile had dust on it. Now, I take half a dozen trips up and down the stairs on a daily basis, which means I've had plenty of opportunity to take those things up and put them away in their proper spots...

My laptop...the corner of it I could see that wasn't covered with coupons and other papers...also had a layer of dust on it. Which means I haven't done a heck of a lot of writing lately. Okay. I've done zero writing lately. At least new stuff. This past week I got my galleys for The Vampire and the Vixen, so I did edits on that. But nothing fresh. No progress on a Work In Progress.

Yep, I've definitely let things slide lately. I really need to get back on track.

On a completely different note, to celebrate Read an Ebook Week, my debut novel, This Time for Always, is available FREE today at The Wild Rose Press! Click here to pop on over and grab a copy...

Until next time,

Happy Reading!