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Isabel Long Mystery Series, Kindle

Free for One Day Only

I am writing about Redneck’s Revenge, no. 2 in my Isabel Long Mystery Series. The book is free Saturday, Nov. 14 — Kindle only on Amazon. I’ll post the link below.

Why am I giving away a book I created?

 Frankly, I want people to read it. And to be honest I might make a little money when people who are subscribed to Kindle Unlimited download pages.

Normally, the price tag is $2.99 but who could resist a deal, even a small one?

Another benefit: readers have been buying my other books outright.

This is my sixth time giving away one of my books for free, and I’ve gotten hooked. Of course, I do a bit of paid promotion to get the word out to a much broader audience than I could accomplish.

So what’s Redneck’s Revenge about? Here you go:

Just months after solving her first case, Isabel Long is in a funk. Her relationship with the Rooster Bar’s owner is over. Then she finds out she must work for a licensed P.I. before going solo.

But encouraged by her ‘Watson’ – her 92-year-old mother – Isabel snaps out of it by hooking up with a P.I. and finding a new case. But it’s not at all clear-cut.

The official ruling is Chet Waters, an ornery so-and-so, was passed out when his house caught fire. His daughter, who inherited his junkyard, believes he was murdered. Topping the list of suspects are dangerous drug-dealing brothers, a rival junkyard owner, and an ex-husband.

Could Waters’ death simply be a case of redneck’s revenge? Isabel is about to find out.

Curious? Here’s the link: Redneck’s Revenge on Amazon

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Isabel Long Mystery Series, Working the Beat

Smashin’ and Crashin’

So far, four books have been published in my Isabel Long Mystery Series, and now I’m working on the fifth. I’m not giving away what’s going happen in Working the Beat. Actually, that would be impossible since the story comes to me as I write. Yeah, I’m one of those so-called pansters.

I’m nearly 10,000 words into the novel, so what I can tell you is that so far this book has a demolition derby because Isabel, my protagonist, is at one in the chapter I’m writing — titled Smashin’ and Crashin’. Jack, owner of the Rooster Bar and Grille and Isabel’s love interest, took herIMG_4079 to the one at the Titus Country Fair. He even shut down the bar on a Saturday night. Well, frankly, none of his customers would likely pass up the derby to drink beer and play pool at his place.

Isabel’s never been to a demotion derby, but her interest is piqued because her next case, if she takes it, involves a death that happened at one. She was approached earlier in the day by the dead man’s rather crusty grandmother. Good timing, as Isabel would say. She can go to the scene of the supposed crime and come back the next day to investigate some more.

Jack naturally puts up with her snooping and her questions about the derby cause he’s crazy about her.

Unlike Isabel, I’ve been to a demolition derby at the Cummington Fair and even truck pulls. I had hoped to go to the one at the fair this year, but this pandemic ruined that plan. So, I’ve taken to watching videos of demotion derbies to refresh my memory. There sure are a lot of them, of varying quality. It’s not my sport of choice, but it is for the characters in Working the Beat. Well, maybe not for Isabel, but now, she is more than interested.

So, what’s with the title of this book? For journalists and ex-journalists like Isabel, a beat is the territory a reporter covers. It could be geographic area, say a city or group of towns, or a topic such as cops and courts, higher education, you get the idea. When I was a reporter a long time ago, my beat was the hilltowns of Western Mass. And working one, means staying on top of things, checking in with sources, being curious and available. Isabel did that as a reporter, and now, she does it as a P.I.

Yeah, you can probably tell, I’m liking this book.

PHOTO ABOVE: That’s one I snagged at the Cummington Fair’s demolition derby.

MORE: Thanks to all who downloaded their free copies of Chasing the Case, no. 1, and Killing the Story, no. 4 and the latest, this past weekend. Great to have more readers.

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Killing IG website
Book Sale, Isabel Long Mystery Series

Such a Deal: Two Free Books This Weekend

Yes, no. 1 and 4 in my Isabel Long Mystery Series are free to get on Saturday, Oct. 17 and Sunday, Oct. 18. That’s Chasing the Case and Killing the Story. The one catch is that deal is for Kindle readersChasing IG copy only.

So why in the heck would I give my books away for free? Simply put, to attract more readers to my series. Also, I do make money if the books are picked up by those who have Kindle Unlimited when they read pages.

I tried this experiment earlier this spring and was surprised by the results. I found readership rose on the other books in the series, plus the ones I’ve self-published — The Sweet Spot and Peace, Love, & You Know What. Last weekend, I gave away Peace etc. and found people picking up a short collection of short stories — Professor Groovy and Other Stories — that has been largely ignored.

Then, there are reviews on Amazon, where my series is available. Chasing the Case, the first, has now 118. That number jumped dramatically when I started giving it away.

As I’ve said before, there is writing and then there is the business of writing. The second is the trickiest, considering drastic changes in the publishing industry and the flood of self-produced books of varying quality. I have a strong ally in Darkstroke Books, for my mystery series, but as a small indie publisher, authors must actively promote their books. It’s kinda tough considering my time-consuming job as editor-in-chief of a daily newspaper and my early morning writing sessions.

But, hey, I am determined. And, I’ve learned to pay for promotions — not a lot — but that has made a big difference on these freebie weekends. My social media presence doesn’t have their reach, which is in the multiple thousands.

So, here are the links to Chasing the Case and Killing the Story. Enjoy and if you are so inclined, leave a review on Amazon. I do appreciate your support.

 

 

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Isabel Long Mystery Series, Killing the Story, Mystery, New release

A Healthy Obsession

I’m talking about writing fiction. I just can’t help myself and hopefully, there is no cure for it.

In college and a few years afterward, I was a poet. When I read the poems I’ve kept, I still like what I wrote. But I kicked that habit when I started having kids, lots of kids, six in all, now all adults. By then, I was more interested in prose although I couldn’t manage more than a few paragraphs and letters to friends. I read what other people wrote and thought one day I would do the same.

I honestly believe each kid I had is the equivalent of one or two books each.

Then, I got a job as a correspondent for the hilltown where I lived for a daily newspaper. Over the years, I covered more hilltowns, and then it became a full-time job. It wasn’t fiction, but I was writing and better yet, immersing myself in rural Western Massachusetts, which is the setting for most of my  books. And I was learning how to sustain prose.

It wasn’t until I became an editor for the same newspaper, that I started writing fiction. I didn’t write down the date, too bad, but from that day on, I couldn’t go without writing. Yes, I was hooked and pretty darn fast.

I estimate I overcame a 25-year writer’s block.

My fixation has led to completed books, published and unpublished, for adults and young readers.

Killing the Story is the fourth book in my Isabel Long Mystery Series, which started when I decided to try writing a mystery. All of my other books, save the ones for young readers, are what I would call literary fiction. But after I finished the first, Chasing the Case, I was fixated on the characters, the setting, and coming up with a story that would have twists and turns that would fool readers about who might have dunnit. (I will admit I don’t know either as I solve the cold case along with my protagonist, Isabel Long and her sidekick, her mother.)

In Killing the Story, Isabel is investigating the death of a small town newspaper editor. Was it an accident or murder? She’s determined to find out despite obstacles thrown her way by the local police chief. But then again, he and the victim have a dark history.

The book, which was officially released Aug. 26, just completed a blog tour that garnered some great reviews. Now NewInBooks is giving it a push.

And so, I am onto the next mystery. This one is called Working the Beat. I started this week, getting up at 5 a.m. to write before I head to work. (I am the editor-in-chief of a daily newspaper.) As of this morning, I hit the 3,700-word mark. Isabel is just about to find her next case. Damn, I’m excited.

Interested in reading Killing the Story? Thank you very much. Hopefully, you, too, will get hooked on my series. Here’s the link on Amazon: Killing the Story

ABOUT THE PHOTO ABOVE: Lobsters awaiting their doom in a tank during a recent visit to Cape Cod.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Killing The Story Full Tour Banner
Beatles, Isabel Long Mystery Series, Killing the Story, launch

A Magical Mystery Tour with Killing the Story

It’s a big day for me Wednesday, Aug. 26 as Killing the Story, No. 4 in my Isabel Long Mystery Series is officially released. I am celebrating a bit on FB at noon in the Eastern Time Zone in the U.S. with fun posts and contests. Please join me then although I will keep it up for 24 hours to accommodate people’s busy schedules and homes around the world. Here’s the link: Killing the Story Facebook party

Aug. 26 also will be the start of a blog tour via Rachel’s Random Resources beginning Wednesday and lasting eight days until Sept. 2. See the schedule above. The tour will be a mix of reviews and posts from readers who have received advanced copies. I am looking forward to what they have to say about the new book. I will certainly share them on social media.

And in a week’s time, on Sept. 1, Written Word Media will spread the word about Killing the Story via its weeklong promotion. More later.

As I’ve said before, there’s writing and then there’s the business of writing. And today there is a heckuva lot of competition. So I need a little help from my friends to spread the word and to spend a little money doing it.

If you have ordered Killing the Story, I thank you very much. If you enjoyed it, please leave a review on Amazon.

And, yes, there are three references to the Beatles in this post. Oh, why not?

Here’s the link to Killing the Story on Amazon: http://mybook.to/KillingTheStory

 

 

 

 

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