Think they’re too big to care? Think your review or testimonial doesn’t count? Not true!! Every author will get viewed by a new reader every day! Help that reader to know they can count on this author to deliver on that writer-reader contract!! Takes a few minutes – JUST DO IT!


Guardian Angel by Sara Paretsky

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m a longtime V.I. Warshawski (and Paretsky) fan and enjoyed this novel very much. Loved the premise and the characters and I think that this book had more than the usual number of twists and turns. As usual, I thought I might have it figured out once or twice only to find I wasn’t even close. Highly recommend Guardian Angel for the female PI-loving readers!

View all my reviews

COOKIES AND MURDER by Amazon Bestselling Author Sharon E. Buck

This latest book, number 7 in the Parker Bell Florida Humorous Mystery, was released in July and is sure to continue to make Parker Bell fans laugh so hard at times that they’ll cry.

Book 7 of the Parker Bell Humorous Mystery

A fun, over-the-top mystery set in a fictional Northeast Florida town set on the St. Johns River, the characters are delighted to be southern with all their cultural nuances and surprising idiosyncrasies. Gators, football, grits, Coca-Cola, BBQ and loyal friends are some of that culture you’ll easily recognize. You’re going to want some of these people as YOUR friends!

From the description:

A cookie factory being burned down, Miss Suzie’s Delicious CC (chocolate chip) Cookies that may or may not be part of a drug cartel aka the Bunny Hop Gang and then there’s the unfortunate murder – let’s face it, what murder is ever fortunate – of the new owner of the cookie factory. It’s time for Parker Bell and the always sugar-and-caffeine infused Lady Gatorettes to solve the latest murder in Po’thole, Florida.

This is a book meant to be a purely fun read and it doesn’t disappoint! Great for the beach or a weekend getaway, the pacing is quick and the outrageous technology will make you shake your head in amazement. Available in paperback and Kindle formats.

Wishing you laughter and light in your life!


DEADLY REVENGE by Rainy Kirkland

Sometimes life just gets in the way of doing things you love to do. For my husband that’s fishing, for me, it’s reading. It’s always been reading for me since I was a little kid and hid in a maple tree to finish the latest Nancy Drew or Hardy Boys.

Since the initial pandemic lockdown, I’ve resumed this restorative hobby and I’m delighted that I have. Long nights pass more easily, and I now consider myself isolation-proof!

I’ve known Rainy Kirkland for many years through our writing. She’s a teacher extraordinaire and has always been very generous with her knowledge and time. So, when I rediscovered her here in Florida, it was like Christmas.

And to find out that she’d written a Florida trilogy was fun too, but I only read book 1 before I ceased to carve out time to read at all. I was busy building and learning a new business and then, well, time just marches on.

Take a look – and then get this book! In the classic format of the wonderful mystery storytellers, Rainy gives you time to breathe – at least in the first chapter or two. Then you’d better hold on tight!

Deadly Revenge by Rainy Kirkland

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Intricately plotted, the twists and turns in this one will keep you reading well past your bedtime! The characters will stick with you long after “The End” but then that’s a trait of any story written by Rainy Kirkland. Looking forward to reading Book 3!

View all my reviews


Book Funding Ideas

Change can bring with it opportunities as well as challenges. The key to success? Be brave! Explore new ideas and employ courage – give them a try!! Virtual socializing is here to stay – we can learn from the pioneers! Have a awesome week and keep writing and reading. NQ

New ideas, new opportunities

From the experiences of some of the big-time authors and book stores of all sizes – take the time to read this Mystery Writers of America (MWA) 3-article series on the Virtual Book Event!!

Taking Book Tours Virtually

Tips for Virtual Touring

Noir at the Bar

Quick Bytes: Current Writing News


There’s a lot going on, there’s no denying! And from a variety of sources, the writers and readers among us may enjoy reading about these “publishing industry” tidbits! Feel free to share with others if you’d like!!


Don’t Miss Opportunities:

Sept 2, 7 PM, “Ask Ben Hale Anything” is presented virtually by Rik Feeney and the Orlando Florida Writers Association group. Ben is indie published and sells hundreds of thousands of books. Want to ask him how he does it? What’s important? How he writes so many books? Then don’t miss this fun event, right from the comfort of your own home! To make this online event a success, Rik requests you email him any questions you have for Ben to He’ll collect and organize them so Ben can address each of your concerns.

$99 ENTRY FEE. Early bird deadline August 17, 2020. 
$125 ENTRY FEE. Regular deadline September 21, 2020. 
Writer’s Digest’s 8th Annual Self-Published E-book Awards honors the best self-published e-book(s) in eight of the most popular categories with $5,000 in cash, a featured interview in Writer’s Digest magazine, and a paid trip to the ever-popular Writer’s Digest Annual Conference in New York City. In addition to $13,000 in total cash prizes, all entrants will receive a brief commentary on their work from one of Writer’s Digest’s judges.

$15 ENTRY FEE. Deadline October 1, 2020. The first-place winner will receive $1,500 and publication of his or her winning story in Cutthroat: A Journal of the Arts. The second- and third-place winners will receive $500 each. Honorable mentions will also be awarded to entrants whose work demonstrates promise. Stories must be original unpublished fiction, typed and double-spaced, and may not exceed 3,500 words in length. There are no theme or genre restrictions. The literary competition is open to all U.S. and international writers whose fiction has not appeared in a nationally distributed publication with a circulation of 5,000 or more. 

News Bytes:

[From Publishers Weekly]

AUGUST KICKS OFF WITH BIG GAIN IN PRINT SALES – Is everything REALLY doom and gloom? Maybe not exactly – and this is a repeat of the steady growth in book sales since April.

[From Serious Writer]

One of several excellent tips – this is an outfit that may be just what a writer needs – look for them on Facebook and signup at their website for their free email support!

Read: If you want to write good books, you need to read them. This means reading books inside and outside of your genre, especially ones that were published within the last five years.”


Nancy Q.

Repackaging Just Might Save Your Brand

Your book took a monumental amount of time/energy/money to get it out in front of your readers. You sold some books and got some terrific reviews, even some super-nice emails! Back in the time when you could meet with book club members or do in-person book sales, you enjoyed your time with fans and sold books, too. Bravo!! Way to go.

Here’s the secret to building fans and keeping books selling: (Drum roll, please…) Write the next really good book and get it out to the fans, regularly. This is true for fiction and non-fiction books. If you’re traditionally published, your publisher is going to want a minimum of a book a year; and that’s not a bad model for all of us to shoot for.

It’s very likely that you’ve written a fun short story or some poetry or maybe even a novelette, or an essay you’re proud of that can be expanded easily into a small book. If not, you are an expert on something, and that knowledge can provide an answer to a problem for someone else. Those things have more value than you think!

Repurpose those articles into a mini-book that you can put out as an Ebook for .99 – 2.49! Give your readers something new to read while you’re working on that next full-length book. Those poems that you’ve written but shared with very few would be a wonderful gift when bundled together, with or without some applicable photos that you’ve taken along the way. In ALWAYS CHASING ‘EM, Daria and I pulled together a collection of some of our short mysteries, many already published years ago but no longer available, but also some that placed or even won contests but never saw publication before. We’ve heard it has been a fun read for our fans which is what we wanted it to be!

The bottom line is that to impact YOUR bottom line, you have to keep great material out in front of your readers so they don’t forget you and so they don’t lose their precious enthusiasm for your work! Enthusiastic readers are your biggest asset – so look through those archived works and see what you might be able to repurpose for those fans!

Do you have three or more books finished and they’ve been out awhile? How about offering a boxed set for readers? New look, new format – no new writing really required! Or how about turning it into an audiobook? There are a good number of ways to spark new interest in older work, which results in new interest in new work, too!

And in this unusual time, remember to treat yourself kindly – that will make being patient easier, too. Productivity will probably be down a bit – no worries. Every day, invest in some quality quiet time, a nap when needed, eat well, get a walk in the outdoors and be grateful for all of the blessings in your life, great or small.

Keep reading and writing!

Nancy Q.



This post will be quick as I’m chasing yet another deadline! I hope this finds you well and taking good care of yourself as well as your tribe!! Oh – and have a safe and Happy 4th of July! 

Here we go!

  • KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE. What TV shows do they watch? Movies? What music do they enjoy? What do they do on weekends for enjoyment? How do you do this, you ask? Join reader groups online and get to know those readers. Do you write in a specific genre? Just Google that genre and/or sub-genre and you’ll find many places you can visit to learn about YOUR potential readers. Have people emailed you about one of your books or a talk you gave? What was important to them? Make up a character sketch of that “ideal reader” and keep those points in mind when writing your book and your marketing copy!
  • REACH YOUR READERS where they hang out. Where do your friends go on Social Media? Google for the stats if you have the demographic information for your reader and find out where they are. This way you can focus on paid advertising or even promotional offers in those places.
  • BE A CONSISTANT MEMBER OF THE TRIBE. Join groups before you launch your book. Read, contribute, listen, and learn from the group. Sure, it’s okay to mention your book, writing challenges, etc in some contexts, but those tribes don’t exist for our promotions. They exist to be in relationship with one another, so get known as a useful and healthy member of the tribe and that tribe will be eager to support you when that book comes out! If you are a writer, you’d better be a pretty active reader, too – so relate to reader groups as a reader!
  • BE RELIABLE with your blog posts, your newsletters, your Facebook updates, or any other Social Media information. Industry statistics show that Social Media work is only effective when done on a regular schedule and those posts provide value for the reader.
  • DO THE THING YOU ENJOY and that enjoyment will shine through. Do you love blogging and hate Facebook? Well, do the blog and then just tell the blog where your Facebook page is – you don’t have to go to FB at all! Do you love Instagram and find that fun and exciting for you? Then do Instagram – which is owned by Facebook by the way. Love those short tweets? Then Twitter is your game. Whatever your love, use it and provide quality content, consistently! You’ll be building fans steadily.
  • WRITE THE NEXT BOOK! Writing the next book for your fans is the best thing you can do to build your writing career. Don’t cut corners – put out that same quality that they’ve learned to rely on you for, and plan to do it as often as you can!
  • BE FLEXIBLE and willing to try new things. Learn from reader input and learn from writer input. Have a colorful and wacky idea for a reader event on Facebook Live or Google Teams? Go for it! It might be the perfect thing. Have you gotten a terrific offer to advertise in a cool magazine like Redbook or Woman’s World? If you can do it with your budget and you feel strongly about doing it – go ahead!

Keep reading and writing – we’ll see you next week!!

Nancy Q.

How are you???

BookBrushImage-2020-5-14-21-727Please let me know what you’ve been doing during the Stay-at-home order where you are! Emails so far range from “I can’t focus so I’m sleeping a lot” to “I’ve written an entire novel and reorganized my 2000 square foot house.”

I fall between those two extremes. One of the most powerful and unforgettable blogs of encouragement I’ve read in the past few months wrote, “It’s okay if you’re not okay.”

Those six words were like an epiphany for me. Initially, I wondered what was wrong with me – I struggled to focus and giving up, tackled the closets and the file cabinets. I shredded tons of stuff that needed it, found clothes that will better suit others, and found the little pocket knife I lost while moving in December. That about describes March 17 – April 1.

It was an April Fool’s Day that didn’t happen. But I read that blog. And laughed for quite a while. I brought up an old short story, worked about an hour on it, filed it in a new file with a new file name, and took a nap. When I woke up, I didn’t feel guilty about that nap. It was okay if I wasn’t okay. And a nap helped.

I’ve learned in a different context how to take care of myself – and that’s been a gift. I did complete the final draft of the next Amazing Grace story – KEEPING FAITH. Daria and I cooked up the wacky idea of thanking our fans for their faithfulness during this long wait for new book with a short collection of our short stories – the ones that either won awards or were published many years ago. So, that’s coming together nicely and will be launched on July 4! For a mere $1.99!

Announcement Ad.2The WC Publishing team came together and got Nick Marziani’s new novel published and launched on May 31, an appropriate day to launch a Catholic Christian action-adventure novel! We decided to launch despite all the reasons why it might not be a good idea – is there any time better than the present one? Maybe – or maybe not.

I’ve learned about the wonders of Draft2Digital (thank you, Jack!) and have jumped on the Indie Bookstore bandwagon and now shop at for my books (thanks to IBPA!) Our business model has changed to take advantage of some of these more advantageous platforms and for our authors, I suspect they’ll see more sales and just maybe, by working together and sharing those victories with the world, we’ll save the Indie Bookstore. And, we’d better. 

I’m still taking a short nap almost every afternoon. I swim for a half-hour in the morning at the community pool, have breakfast and work until noon. I take a break – focus is still a challenge many days – then I go back to work. I have resumed keeping my tasks written down on a calendar where I can see them and mark them off – but  not so many I could never get them done. Being home is now helping me to be far more productive at the company and my writing.

So, I hope that even though the world may be opening up again, you’ll be careful and take care of your mind and your body. Laugh much, hug your loved ones when you can and if you can’t visit, call them – often. Wash your hands and wear your mask when indoors with people.

Set yourself free of the expectations that you’re too cool to get caught up in all that’s going on in the world. That you’re too strong to be affected. That you “should have” gotten more done in the past three months. Kiss that “should have” goodbye and remember, “It’s okay to not be okay.”

Writers write – that’s how we stay sane. I’m not at all convinced that it matters what you write, just as long as you write some, every day.

Stay well and I’ll see you next week! And don’t forget – let me know what you’ve been doing, or struggling with, okay? Email me at I send you a big virus and germ-free hug! 

Nancy Q.

Support Your Local Indie

Laughter IS the best medicine –

Me: Alexa what’s the weather this weekend?
Alexa: It doesn’t matter – you’re not going anywhere.

Bookstore Owner

Sticking together has perhaps never been more important than it is now, and will be over the next 6 – 9 months. There are ways to support our local bookshops and authors. Publishers Lunch included this information in their newsletter last week. And consider buying gift cards for upcoming birthdays, virtual graduations, and holidays.

The New York Times had a wonderful article on reinventing the book launch by a group of debut authors. Being creative and keeping our eye on the positive will be what powers us through the current and upcoming challenges! Check it out!

UH-OH!! Author’s Guild has rung the alarm for uncontrolled digital lending. Perhaps well-intended (?) it won’t help your book sales any! Check this out and see if YOUR books are being distributed free and without your permission. You can opt out – so be sure to read all the way to the bottom of the article.


  • MWA Grand Master, Barbara Neely, activist turned mystery writer, died at 78. Her creation, Blanche White, was probably the first fictional black maid to solve a murder while working for a wealthy white family.
  • Sara Paretsky has reported to our Sisters in Crime family: “It is with tremendous sadness that we tell you that we have lost KATE MATTES, one of the founding steering committee members of Sisters in Crime.” Kate was the owner of the incredible bookstore in Cambridge that was set up in a Victorian mansion. “Kate’s Mystery Books” opened in 1983.
  • SIMON & SHUSTER is up for sale. The publisher of Stephen King, Judy Blume, and so many others is part of the ViacomCBS corporation and is not considered essential to the corporate strategy which is putting all its eggs into the digital video streaming basket.

See you next week! Want to share some of YOUR news? Let me know – email me at


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