You (May Have) Heard it Here First!

Before my husband sends me one more email reminding me that I got the name of one book wrong in my post last week about deserted island fiction and I go berserk, I must make  a correction.

My favorite book by Alexandre Dumas, the one about love and revenge, is The Count of Monte Cristo. It is not The Man in the Iron Mask. I don’t know what I was thinking when I wrote the post and proofread it three times, but there you have it with my heartfelt apologies. Incidentally, if I had a DVD player on my deserted island, I would also take with me the movie version of The Count of Monte Cristo–the one starring Gerard Depardieu. The movie is many hours long and I would probably be rescued before I could finish watching it.

But now for my news: I am thrilled to announce that I have just signed a contract with Kensington Publishing for my third novel! If you could hear me now, you would hear shouts of joy, dancing, and all manner of celebrating.

For now, all I can tell you is that the story is about a personal chef on the Big Island of Hawaii who stumbles into a household that is not as perfect as it seems. The working title is The House of Hanging Jade, but I fully expect that to change as time goes on. It’s due to the publisher on May 1st, and after that I’ll be starting work on a new project.

The book is scheduled to come out in March, 2016.

In the meantime, I have one guest post to tell you about. Annette Snyder has a blog called “Fifty Authors from Fifty States.” I was lucky enough to land the post all about Hawaii and it went live this past Sunday. As many of you know, I love Hawaii and everything about it, so I had a great time writing the post. I hope you’ll visit Annette’s blog and take a look. The states go in alphabetical order throughout the year, so if there’s any state you want to know more about, take a look at her archives. You’ll find fun information and travel tips from every state and the authors who live there. Or, in my case, an author who wants to live there. Here’s the link:

http://annettesnyder.blogspot.com

I’d like to thank all my blog readers for their kind words, their friendship, and their support. You are the reason I enjoy doing this every week!

And Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Are you celebrating? We made Irish Potatoes over the weekend and we’re having Reubens tonight. I made sure the Swiss cheese was from Ireland. And our milk will be green at dinner, too (I know, I really need to tone it down). Got any other ideas for me?

Until next week,

Amy

 

 

This Blog’s Hopping!

This week I’m participating in the “My Writing Process” Blog Hop again. Many thanks to Annette Snyder for inviting me to join the fun.

If you’ve read Annette’s books, you know how good they are. If you haven’t, give them a try! Her book Intimate Flames was a 2011 EPIC Finalist, and her Travis Pass series is not to be missed. I am a big fan of her Fifty Authors from Fifty States, which highlights an author every Sunday that lives and writes in a different state. Annette’s website is http://annettesnyder.atspace.com and her blog can be found at http://annettesnyder.blogspot.com.

And now to the questions:
1. What am I working on?
Good news! This past Friday I emailed the manuscript of my second novel, The Ghosts of Peppernell Manor, to my editor at Kensington Publishing. Before long I’ll start the revisions on it. In the meantime, I am promoting my first novel, Secrets of Hallstead House, and tomorrow I’ll start work on my third novel, which will be set in Hawaii. I can hardly wait.

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
My books have a strong sense of place, so hopefully my readers will want to visit the places I write about. The romance is sweet and the suspense is not gory or terribly violent.

3. Why do I write what I do?
I love to read romantic suspense, so that’s what I love to write, too.

4. How does my writing process work?
I make a thorough outline before I start writing. I have a notebook filled with sections for research, characters, chronology, and plotting, among others. I refer to the notebook constantly while I write. The entire notebook is handwritten, though when I finally start writing I do it on the computer. I write at all different times of the day, depending on what else I have happening on any given day.

Now that I’ve answered the four burning questions, I will tell you where “My Writing Process” is going next Monday.

The first hop is to author J. L. Greger. She took early retirement from being a biology professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has now had three medical thriller/mysteries published – Coming Flu, Murder: A New Way to Lose Weight, and Ignore the Pain. Her next novel, Malignancy, which is partially set in Cuba, should be out this fall. For more information on her novels, see her website (http://www.jlgreger.com) and her blog (http://jlgregerblog.blogspot.com).

The second hop is to Amy M. Bennett. Amy is the author of the Black Horse Campground mystery series, published by OAK TREE PRESS. Her debut novel, “End of the Road, published in July 2013, won the 2012 Dark Oak Mystery Contest and is the first book in the series. No Lifeguard on Duty, the second book in the series, was released April 2014. You can visit Amy on the web at http://www.amymbennettbooks.com and at http://amymbennettbooks.blogspot.com/.

And last, but certainly not least, hop on over to Vanessa Coggshall. With two children and one on the way (very soon!), Vanessa seeks to balance the mom/writer lifestyle on a daily basis. She is currently working on a memoir which focuses on life with her three year old, Emmy, who was diagnosed with Williams Syndrome as a baby. Vanessa also just helped edit and publish an anthology written by parents, friends, and family members of children with Williams Syndrome. She blogs about her life experiences with her children and husband at Williams Syndrome Smile (http://williamssyndromesmile.com).

I urge you to visit these authors next Monday, when they post their own answers to the questions in the “My Writing Process” Blog Hop. They have very different interests and experiences, and their writing reflects these differences. They’re all fascinating, and I’m proud to call them colleagues.

Until next week,

Amy

Summer’s Almost Here!

I know I said I’d be participating in a blog hop this week, but I got my dates mixed up. So stay tuned for the blog hop next week.

In the meantime, summer is fast approaching. Can you believe June is just a few days away? I spent about fifteen minutes at the beach this afternoon with my middle child, taking a quick walk before we picked up my eldest from work. The beach was a little crowded (but beautiful, as always) and I wished we could have spent more time there. The beach got me thinking of summer travel destinations. Today’s walk notwithstanding, my kids don’t generally like the beach and I have to come up with other activities during the summer. Though we spend lots of time reading, we can’t do that all the time, so I thought I’d share with you some of the websites I like to peruse when it’s time to do something fun in the summertime.

The first one is http://annettesnyder.blogspot.com. Annette’s blog is called “Fifty Authors from Fifty States” and features a different author from a different state each week. Full disclosure: Annette has invited me to participate in next week’s blog hop and I will be appearing as a sidelight on her blog in July, as one of the authors from New Jersey. Anyway, each week is a virtual tour of an author’s home or adopted state (the states proceed throughout the year in alphabetical order) and there are some amazing travel tips in many of the blog posts.

For example, did you know that Pizza Hut opened its first store in Wichita, Kansas?

Did you know that you can find the world’s largest Cheeto in Algona, Iowa?

Did you know you can learn about pigeon racing in Moline, Illinois, at the Fall Flemish Fest? If you’re not interested in pigeons, try a Belgian beer or a 12.5-inch Belgian pie while you’re there.

Visit Annette’s blog to find out what an author from your state suggests for fun.

The second one is http://www.nps.gov. This is the website for the U.S. National Park Service. Here you can find information about the national parks in all fifty states plus the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and the Northern Mariana Islands. Visiting a national park can be a very inexpensive alternative to other activities, and you’ll almost certainly learn something during your visit.

The third one is http://www.traillink.com. This is the website of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy. You simply put in a zip code and it gives you a list of nearby trails for biking, walking, running, and hiking. It gives you the length of each trail and what comprises its surface (e.g., sand and asphalt or ballast and cinder). I’m planning at least one or two day trips this summer to try out some of the trails I’ve found on the site.

I hope you’ll take a few minutes to visit the websites I’ve offered and maybe plan to try something new this summer. You don’t have to spend a lot of money and you might find something in your own neck of the woods that you didn’t know was there.

And don’t forget to take a good book. (I have a suggestion: it’s called Secrets of Hallstead House and I hope you’ll read it and enjoy it!)

Until next week,

Amy