Wednesday, October 7, 2015

I’d Rather Be Writing

By Kay Kendall

When USA Today bestselling author  Lois Winston invited me to participate in her new cookbook adventure, I jumped at the chance. After all, the title captured my feelings exactly—WE’D RATHER BE WRITING, subtitled 88 Authors Share Timesaving Dinner Recipes and Other Tips. You can pre-order the eBook for 99 cents and receive it on October 30. A portion of proceeds will be donated to No Kid Hungry. Most of us authors juggle day jobs and family responsibilities along with our writing. Because we need to find time to write, we search for ways to save time. And cooking takes up such a huge chunk.

However, you don’t need to be a multi-tasking author to need time-saving recipes and tips, so in our new cookbook you’ll find easy, nutritious recipes for meat, poultry, pasta, soup, stew, chili, and vegetarian meals. The recipes require a minimum of preparation, freeing time to do other things—to read, exercise, garden, craft, write, spend more time with family, or whatever.

The 88 participating authors make up a varied group, writing a wide range of fiction—everything from mystery to romance to speculative fiction to books for children, young adults, and new adults—and some who write nonfiction. Some write sweet; others write steamy. Some write cozy; others write tense thrillers. Some are debut authors with only one published book; others are multi-published and have had long publishing careers. And, while some are even New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors, even they still need to perform feats of juggling daily.

We like to think of ourselves as a rather creative and resourceful bunch when it comes to carving out time from our busy lives. So in addition to timesaving recipes, we have added timesaving organizational tips too.

Check this list of contributing authors to see whose names your recognize: Lisa Alber, Reggi Allder, Judy Alter, Krista Ames, Rose Anderson, Cori Lynn Arnold, Judy Baker, Beverley Bateman, Donnell Ann Bell, Paula Gail Benson, Kris Bock, Maureen Bonatch, Ava Bradley, Susan Breen, Lida Bushloper, Michelle Markey Butler, Ashlyn Chase, Judy Copek, Maya Corrigan, Mariposa Cruz, Melinda Curtis, Lesley A. Diehl, Conda V. Douglas, Nancy Eady, Helena Fairfax, Jennifer Faye, Flo Fitzpatrick, Kit Frazier, Shelley Freydont, Mariana Gabrielle, Rosie Genova, Marni Graff, Joanne Guidoccio, Margaret S. Hamilton, L.C. Hayden, Linda Gordon Hengerer, Heather Hiestand, R.Franklin James, Kathryn Jane, M.M. Jaye, Elizabeth John, Stacy Juba, Gemma Juliana, Carol Goodman Kaufman, Melissa Keir, Kay Kendall, A.R. Kennedy, Lynn Kinnaman, Marie Laval, B.V. Lawson, Claudia Lefeve, Alice Loweecey, Cynthia Luhrs, Sandra Masters, Lisa Q. Mathews, J.M. Maurer, Sandra McGregor, Kathy McIntosh, Claire A. Murray, Ann Myers, Tara Neale, Stacey Joy Netzel, Jayne Ormerod, Alice Orr, Laurel Peterson, Irene Peterson, Pepper Phillips, Caridad Pineiro, Kathryn Quick, Renée Reynolds, Josie Riviera, Elizabeth Rose, C.A. Rowland, Cindy Sample, Sharleen Scott, Terry Shames, Susan C. Shea, Judy Penz Sheluk, Joanna Campbell Slan, Karen Rose Smith, Lynette Sofras, Kaye Spencer, Skye Taylor, Lourdes Venard, Lea Wait, Regan Walker, Lois Winston, and Aubrey Wynne.

We’d Rather Be Writing is available on Amazon at
Part of proceeds will be donated to No Kid Hungry <>

Kay Kendall is a long-time fan of historical novels and writes atmospheric mysteries that capture the spirit and turbulence of the sixties. She is a reformed PR executive who lives in Texas with her husband, three house rabbits, and spaniel Wills.
Terribly allergic to her bunnies, she loves them anyway! Her book titles show she's a Bob Dylan buff too. RAINY DAY WOMEN published on July 7. It is the second in her Austin Starr Mystery series.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Taking a Chance by Marilyn Meredith

With my latest Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery, I did something I'd only done once before--and this time with much more trepidation.

I sent Tempe and her husband to Morro Bay. Usually, the mystery Tempe has to solve is set in or around Bear Creek--a fictitious mountain community. Though it has a strong resemblance to the area where I live, I can change things around the way that will work best for the story.

Morro Bay is one of my favorite places to visit. We go there often or other places nearby.

This photo of Morro Rock was taken by my daughter on our last visit to Morro Bay.

In Not as it Seems Tempe and her husband, Hutch, go to Morro Bay for her son's wedding. Because the maid of honor is murdered, Tempe ends up doing her own investigation which takes her to other nearby towns like San Luis Obispo, Pismo Beach and more.

Because I have many friends who live in this beautiful area, I consulted them about some of the details, checked the Internet for others, and relied on my own memory.

When the book came out, I couldn't help but worry that I might have gotten something wrong. So far the reviews have been great--and no one has mentioned any errors. I hope they aren't just being nice.

I'm writing the next Tempe now, and she's returned to Bear Creek and I can rest easier in my imagination.


In Person Events--Love 'Em or Not?

Recently I participated in the Central Coast Book and Author Festival held at Pismo Beach. I so looked forward to the cooler weather of the beach since it had been in the upper 90s where I live in the foothills.

Guess what? We arrived to the hottest day they'd had all summer--and it was even hotter the day of the festival.

This picture was taken before the event began, that's me in the lower right hand corner. Fortunately my table was inside (still too warm in there, no air conditioning), but some poor authors had tables outside in the parking lot--a few with umbrellas, but many with no protection from the sun. The planners expected the typical cool overcast beach day.

My display, the banner was provided by the committee. They did everything right, but they had no control over the weather. Did it affect sales? I'm sure it did, those who browsed looked really hot.
Yes, I did sell some books, handed out many cards.

I also participated in panel which was held on the rooftop of the nearby hotel--and it was even hotter there. We did have umbrellas for shade, but it was still hot. People did come to hear what we had to say about Strong Characters.

Mara Purl was one of my fellow panelists, she's a delight.

Despite the heat I had a great time. Many of my fellow Central Coast Sisters in Crime members were there, and the only time I get to see them is at events like this because I live about 3 hours away.

One of my Facebook friends that I'd never met in person before introduced himself and his friends--and treated me like a celebrity. That was fun.

We stayed at a lovely hotel on the beach.

We also did some sightseeing around the area. We had some delicious meals.

My latest Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery is set in this beach area.

My answer to the title question is, I love in-person events.  So much so I'll be doing two more in October and another in November.


Friday, October 2, 2015

The Road to My Anthony Nomination--Special Post by Dru Ann Love

  • Extremely excited and thrilled that my peers nominated dru’s book musing
  • Extremely nervous because what if I win
  • I’ll have to stand in front of an audience and talk
  • Boosted by friends
  • Nervous again
  • I’m up against Hank!
  • I’m up against Kate!
  • It was suggested that I write an acceptance speech
  • Wrote it and it is 2 minutes long
  • As the week becomes days, I’m excited yet nervous
  • I’m up against Hank!
  • I’m up against Kate!
  • I already know I have at least one vote – mine
  • I’m simply honored that I was nominated
  • My blog was nominated for an Anthony Award for Best Critical or Non-Fiction Work
 Thank you!

Dru Ann