Sunday, July 31, 2011

Baited Blood is Seeing Stars - 4-1/2 of Them!

Drum roll please!  Baited Blood, the 2nd book in my Madison Rose Vampire Mysteries is in the house! I received a few copies this week from my publisher, which means the book should be showing up at your favorite online and brick and mortar store in the next week or two.
Dead vampires are being left in the Dedham swimming pool.  And by "dead" I mean really DEAD.  Is someone setting the Dedhams up or sending a message? Madison and her undead pals are eager to get to the bottom of it before they are all exposed or before more vampires fall victim to someone's sick idea of a joke.

Romantic Times Magazine gave Baited Blood 4-1/2 stars!  "This is good, cheeky fun with a solid mystery, loads of possible villains and a genuinely sexy romp on the fang side."

And check out Criminal Minds today where I'm discussing the moral codes of each of my protagonists. Do they have one? Do they need one? Come on by.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

No Waterboarding, Please!

I'm over at Criminal Minds today chatting about how Madison, Emma and Odelia squeeze information out of people.  Each has their own distinct was of handling people and situations.  Drop on by and say hello.

I'm happy to announce Pull My Paw, the 2nd story in my Holidays From Hell short story series for e-readers, is now up on Amazon.  It's available for just $0.99, so download it today to see how the nutty Bowen family handles Mother's Day festivities. 

Coming soon - Where's Your Daddy? What's a family to do about Father's Day when Dad's gone missing?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

You're a Notary? Really?

Today at lunch I munched on a Lean Cuisine while reading my latest copy of The National Notary.  Specifically, what grabbed my attention was an article entitled "A Celebration of the American Notary." 

Did you know that Judge Roy Bean, Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), and even Jennifer Lopez all served as notaries?  Me neither! 

Reading that reminded me of a blog post I did almost two years ago on Inkspot about how my writing world and my paralegal/notary worlds often collide, so below is an update of that blog post.

As most of you know, by day I work as a paralegal in a law firm in Los Angeles. Mornings, evenings, and weekends, I don my author cape and crank out mysteries. Sometime my two careers overlap.

It’s wonderful in a weird sort of way. Like the time I called the California Secretary of State’s corporate division and identified myself as Sue Ann Jaffarian, paralegal with XYZ. The woman on the other end paused, then said, “Did you know there’s a writer by that name? Are you related?” When I told her I was both the paralegal and the writer, she told me how a friend had turned her on to my books. She also asked why I was still working as a paralegal.

Um, maybe because I'm adicted to food, shelter and healthcare?

Then there was the time our attorney service, the company that files our corporate documents all over the nation, called me and said when one of them ordered a book from Amazon, one of my books popped up as a recommended purchase. “Is that you?” they asked.


Or the day I called another paralegal at another firm to discuss some documents. I identified myself as I usually do and was met with the usual pause, followed by a skeptical, “You are not.”

Yeah, I am.  (She also asked why I'm still working in law - see answer above.)

Please know that situations like these don’t happen every day, but they do happen often enough to give me the warm and fuzzies and inform me that people are, indeed, reading my books. At least people involved with the California paralegal community.

In addition to being a paralegal, I am also a California commissioned Notary, and I must have mentioned that fact somewhere in my travels because once I received an e-mail asking me to perform a notarization. Since I don’t offer notary services to the general public, the request stymied me. The woman turned out to be an avid reader of my books and really did need a notary. Remembering I was one, she thought it would be cool to have me perform the service and have my signature on her document, complete with my official seal. I politely declined, informing her that I only provided notary services in the course of my job with the law firm. She was disappointed, but graciously understood.

By the way, my signature is not the same as my autograph. Just thought I'd clear that up.

Seems ole Sam Clemens and I aren't the only writers who were or are notaries. According to the article, Dave Berry is one, too.

Who'd a thunk it?

Monday, July 11, 2011

I Blame It All On The Pizza!

Last night I had the most bizarre dream. I tend to dream a lot and often I dream about the book I’m currently writing. Last night, though, was truly bizarre and had nothing to do with any of my current works in progress.

It started with me going to Sookie Stackhouse (yes, that Sookie Stackhouse) and telling her I needed a place to stay for the night. Instead of letting me into her house (WTH, she lets vampires inside!), she took me to this contraption in the yard that looked like one of those kiddie beds where the bed is up top, reachable by a ladder, and a play area or desk is built in below the bed. You know the kind I mean, a bunk bed with only the top bunk.

Anyway, the bed Sookie showed me was like that, but it was king size instead of a twin. After climbing the wooden ladder, I discovered a large cabinet at the end of the bed. Sookie opened it and this huge, creepy thing that was a mass of blue, slimy tentacles started coming at me. She beat it back, slammed the door to the cabinet shut and told me I’d be safe if I didn’t open the door. Yeah, right. There was no way I was going to sleep in that bed, so I decided to sleep in my car.

In real life, I drive a white Ford Focus sedan, but when I climbed down from the bed, said Focus was being towed away. (And, no, that isn’t a subconscious reference to any outstanding tickets.) That’s when Jason Stackhouse arrived on the scene and offered me this beat up convertible junk heap that billowed exhaust. It was getting late and the back seat was bigger than the one in my car, so why not?

I was almost asleep when Sookie rushed up and told me to get out of there. As I watched, she climbed up on the high wooden bed, opened the cabinet and lit the creature inside on fire, then set fire to the bed. As I drove off in the clunker, I saw her set fire to the house, too.

Oddly, there were no vampires, witches, werewolves, werepanthers, shapeshifters or demon babies in my dream. Nor did Eric Northman show up (sigh...), but I did learn a valuable lesson.

Never, ever eat pepperoni and fresh tomato pizza while watching True Blood shortly before going to bed.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Kibbles and Bits on the 4th of July Weekend!

Getting a lot done over this welcomed long weekend, including rest, fun stuff and time with friends.

Yesterday, after a 7:30 am hair appointment and several errands, I caught up with some favorite TV shows via On Demand.  There are so many great new shows on the USA network this summer.  Along with my return of the fun adventures of Annie Walker on Covert Affairs, USA released Suits and Necessary Roughness.  Suits was very good but I loved Necessary Roughness, a show about a therapist starting over after parting from her philandering husband.  Keep up the great work, USA!

I also watched the 2nd episode of this season's True Blood.  It was on On Demand ahead of time. Good grief! There's so much going on, I feel like my head's going to explode, though I could seriously do without the demon baby subplot.

Today, I'm over at Criminal Minds discussing how Emma Whitecastle became a ghost whisperer in my Ghost of Granny Apples books.

Now off to brunch with pal, Miles. We're hitting the famous Cantor's Deli over on Fairfax.  I haven't been there in ages.  Then it's back to the computer to work on my 2nd Holidays From Hell short story and work on edits for Gem of a Ghost, the 3rd book in the Granny Apples series.  There might even be some housework in the mix considering yesterday I sat on my butt watching TV, when I wasn't in a coma-style nap.  And who knows what Monday will bring?

There might not be no such thing as a free lunch, but for a limited time my publisher is giving away FREE Kindle downloads of The Curse of the Holy Pail, the 2nd book in the Odelia Grey mystery series.  And check out the reduced price on the e-book edition of Too Big To Miss, the 1st Odelia Grey book.

And don't forget, The Rabbit Died, the 1st story in my new Holidays from Hell short story series, is available for 99 cents over at Amazon.  Such a deal ... a freebie, a discount, and a 99 cent story! 

Don't have a Kindle?  You can download a FREE Kindle app for your smart phone, iPhone or computer.