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Kobo Sale and Update

Kobo is having a sale in Canada and the U.S. for the next week of various mysteries in both audio and ebook. Check it out here. If you somehow haven’t read the first three Maggie May mysteries, the box set is part of the promo and on sale for $4.99 right now.

As for me…

I really don’t know where time goes. I made the (foolish? smart?) decision to sell my house earlier this year which meant that writing took a back seat to staging, packing, moving, living in a hotel for three weeks, moving again, unpacking, etc.

I wish I could say I’d moved into my forever home and wouldn’t be doing this again anytime soon but the pup and I actually moved into an apartment so that’s not true.

Fortunately my old girl (she’s now EIGHT) is loving apartment life. She’s been dragging me on hour-long walks most mornings exploring the neighborhood which has at least six of those mini free libraries. (A very good sign of a good neighborhood IMO.)

She’s lost ten pounds which makes the vet happy. I…have not, I don’t think. But that’s because I’ve been enjoying chocolate croissants, Coke, and good beer, so I’m okay with that.

Unfortunately I realized that by writing the Housebound Holiday book I wrote myself into a corner and I have yet to decide how to get myself out of that corner. In the meantime it seems I’m making videos about how to use a software no one uses. (It’s sometimes painful to be a Learner. See CliftonStrengths for an explanation…)

That may lead to my recording audio versions of the books at some point, though, so who knows it may work itself out in a positive way.

Anyway. I wish I had better news than that, but it’s been one of those years. Probably for most of us at this point.

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RIP, Grandpa

I just got the call that my grandpa passed away. He was the inspiration behind Grandpa Lou in my cozy mystery series and truly one of the most stand-up men I’ve ever known.

Unfortunately, real life is not as sunny and shiny as the world of a cozy mystery so my grandpa didn’t live in the mountains of Colorado anymore nor was he living next door to give me a hard time about my narrow-minded misconceptions of the world.

Sadly, I hadn’t seen him in years. My pup and I were able to visit with him and his lovely wife on our way back to Colorado seven years ago and it was a good visit. But he wasn’t up for travel anymore at that point so never made it here to visit me and I tend not to travel too much because of the pup so I never made it back to him.

I probably never said as much as I should’ve to him about how much he meant to me.

He didn’t have an easy life. And he certainly didn’t start off on the right side of the law. But the man I knew always had a good heart and a gentleness about him. He loved my grandma and was by her side until the day she passed.

He was a gifted craftsman, too. For thirty years I’ve had a cedar chest he made for his mother that’s a thing of beauty. While other furniture might’ve been left behind on various moves, that’s always been one of my most treasured pieces.

And I’m grateful to him for the years he and my grandma spent with us in Colorado helping my dad to run his often struggling sign business. Those were good years when they were with us. Eventually they had to move on to more steady work–he was a hard-rock miner most of his life–but I won’t forget the times we had.

We lost touch after my grandma and then my dad died. (18-year-old kids aren’t the best at keeping those ties alive, especially in those pre-internet days when you had to send letters or make expensive long-distance phone calls.) But thanks to the efforts of his new wife we were finally able to reconnect about a decade ago and spend those few days together.

I’m glad he was able to find love and family and a good home and that he lived his last days with someone who loved him by his side. He deserved that happiness. It was a good end for a good man who made the best of a tough start.

Love you, Grandpa.

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Collections Now Available

For those of you who are still reading through the Maggie May and Miss Fancypants series (or who found your way here and haven’t yet started it but have heard such wonderful things you just want to dive right in), just a heads up that the first six books are now available in two three-book collections in both ebook and regular paperback versions.

(No large print on these ones because each one is about an inch-and-a-half thick in regular print.)

The second book does also include the short story, Halloween at the Baker Valley Barkery & Cafe.

And for those who have already read all the books, I do expect there to be more, but this has been a year and I may have a big move up ahead, so unfortunately no timeline to provide yet.

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Free Fiction February

I assume for anyone following this blog that you’ve already read A Dead Man and Doggie Delights, but just in case…It’s available for free in ebook for the month of February.

And if you have already read it, PD Workman has a list of additional free mysteries available right now up on their blog. Not sure how long the titles will be free and haven’t personally read any of them, but worth checking out. From the covers I’d say they’re mostly more mystery than cozy mystery with perhaps a shade of thriller for some of them.

In other news…I do expect there to be at least two more Maggie May and Miss Fancypants mysteries. (I’m too much of a feminist to end with the next book I have in mind.)

I had hoped to have at least a short story out for New Year’s but, well, yeah. Let’s just say writers are not immune to what is happening in the world these days and it can be a challenge sometimes to write funny mystery in the face of life and what-not.

I had a draft and could’ve pushed it through but I think it would’ve suffered if I’d done so. And now I think I might expand that to a novel with a mystery involved as well which takes more time.

Unfortunately, I do have a few things to tie up before that next title will be out. I have some non-fiction titles that needed updating and since non-fiction is what pays the bills at the moment, that has to take priority.

Hopefully someday writing about my lovable dog and quirky people will take the place of the non-fiction, but I’m not there yet.

Sorry I don’t have better news on the new book front but hope you’re all doing well in these crazy times and love to your adorable pups for those of you lucky enough to have one.

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A New Print Option

For those of you in the United States or Canada who buy print versions, I just wanted to let you know that I’ve added another option for you, Aer.io. You can find the store here.

Ignore the “from” prices it’s showing. It seems to show the latest published book price as the from price which means the hard cover large print version prices are showing. But if you click on any of those books you’ll see that you have a choice to purchase the regular paperback, large print paperback, and large print hard cover versions at a discount of somewhere from 8-17%.

This is a new-to-me site but it lets me discount the print versions a bit for you and is run by the folks who actually print the print versions of my books and I’ve always had good experiences with them. (Knock wood.) There is a shipping charge, so it may not be a cheaper option even with the discount than Amazon or Barnes & Noble or any other large retailer, but wanted to let you know about it just in case it was a better option.

Nosy Newfie Cozy Mysteries

Large Print Editions Now Available

For those of you who read in print, just wanted to let you know that there are now large print editions of the Maggie May and Miss Fancypants mysteries and the Nosy Newfie Holiday Shorts available in both paperback and hard cover.

The hard cover version is mainly for libraries, it doesn’t have a dust jacket like you’d normally see on a hard cover, but hard cover stand up better to the wear and tear of multiple readers. (And for the record I am thrilled and delighted every time a library buys my books so never ever hesitate to read my books through a library if that’s what works best for you.)

But the paperback versions are there for anyone who likes a little bit of an easier read.

There are lots of quirks to large print books, including that all italicized text is bolded instead. Also the font used is different.

To give you an idea of the difference between the regular books and the large print ones, this is what page 1 of A Dead Man and Doggie Delights looks like in large print:

Compare that to what page 1 of A Dead Man and Doggie Delights looks like in regular print.

Clearly much easier on the eyes, even for me. But the books are a little larger in size and about 50% longer because of the size of the text which means slightly more expensive as well.

Going forward I should have large print editions available at the time of publication. Sorry they weren’t before but I just learned a new formatting software and this turned out to be a fun project that let me use what I’d learned to create these new versions.

Anyway. If that’s something you’re interested in, Amazon has the paperback version for $14.95 USD or the case-laminate hard cover version for $24.99. Barnes & Noble also has the paperback version and the hard cover version. Most stores and libraries should be able to order it for you even if they don’t have it in stock.

Nosy Newfie Cozy Mysteries

Finally, Finally, Finally

A Fouled-Up Fourth is FINALLY available on Nook. You can find it here.

Sorry for the delay but this one was completely out of my control. The Barnes & Noble website was hacked last month and it took them this long to get everything working right again. They were able to get customer access to their books within a few days but reporting to authors took longer and publishing new titles as well as any book updates took until now, almost a month later.

Crazy to realize how much we rely on technology to work well, but we do.

Anyway. If you’re a Nook reader you can now get A Fouled-Up Fourth in either print or ebook through B&N. (Print was published but not showing on their site so that’s what’s up with the publication date there.)

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A Fouled-Up Fourth Is Out!

Or at least I’ve done my part to get it out there and now I’m waiting on the various sales platforms to do their part. Which most of them have, but as usual the paperback version is running a little bit behind the ebook version.

Here’s the universal link that should take you to your store in your country: https://books2read.com/fouledupfourth

And here’s the blurb.

Lucas Dean is dead and, honestly, Maggie May Carver couldn’t be happier. So when the cops can’t figure out who did it? Fine by her.

But when a second person turns up killed in the same unique fashion, Maggie’s interest is piqued. Sure, her cop husband will probably solve it without her help, but what’s the harm in asking a few questions here or there? After all, if the cops don’t want her help, they could always solve the case themselves.

As you can see, the blurb shows a certain mood for 2020, but hopefully it will be a good entertaining diversion as we head into the U.S. presidential voting watch. If you haven’t and can, please vote and make your voice heard. And then, escape with Maggie, Fancy, and the crew as they track down yet another killer.

Nosy Newfie Cozy Mysteries

Status Update

At some point someone on Facebook commented on an ad I was running for the Maggie May and Miss Fancypants series and said they loved the books and wished there were more. I, foolishly because I like to jinx myself, responded that I was working on the next one and thought it would be out by September 30th.

Well, as you may have noticed, it’s October 1st and the next book is not out.

But it’s on the way. The first draft is done and the story is solid and I’m well on the way to getting it into shape for release. So it’s coming. I even think I know how soon, but, having learned from my earlier mistake I’m not going to tell you an exact release date. Just chalk it up as coming soon.

In the meantime, Kobo for anyone who likes to read ebooks, is running a buy 2, get 3 sale on cozy mysteries right now, at least in the US and Canada. (Books 1 through 4 of the Maggie May and Miss Fancypants Mysteries are included, but it’s also a great chance to read other cozies, too.) The sale lasts for the next couple of weeks, so if you want something to read in the meantime, check it out.

Nosy Newfie Cozy Mysteries

A New Release And A Warning

Yesterday I hit publish on a new Maggie May and Miss Fancypants story. It’s not a new mystery (although there is a bit of a mystery involved), but instead a short story about how Maggie and the crew are handling current events.

It’s called A Housebound Holiday and will be available on all major retailers in the next few days. (Print is approved and will be making its way to your favorite store soon, Apple is still not up yet. Ebook on all the other major retailers looks like it is available already.)

I mentioned when I published A Poisoned Past and Puppermints that I hadn’t decided at that point how to handle current events in Maggie’s world. I thought about ignoring them but I think they’re too much a part of our world right now and will continue to be so for at least another year. Also, Maggie being Maggie, she had thoughts and reactions to all of it that I thought were worth sharing.

So, much like the Halloween short story was my chance to get all the ooey-gooey lovey-dovey feelings about Matt out of the way before writing the next mystery, this short story is my way to get all of the oh dear, what kind of chaos is this feelings out of the way.

Here’s where the warnings come into play.

We are experiencing events that, depending on who you are and how you’ve been impacted personally, are traumatic. And serious. People have lost loved ones they didn’t expect to lose this year.

But there are aspects to what we’re experiencing that are humorous. (I can’t be the only one trying to find more room in my freezer every time I panic-buy more meat.)

I’ve included some of that in the story.

I did this because I grew up with a terminally-ill father who was in the hospital or the ER most every year at least once. And to survive that constant feeling that I might lose him, I learned to see the humor and the bright spots in the darkest moments.

Not everyone will handle dark situations the same, so this story will not be for everyone.

If you think that seeing someone joke about aspects of what we’re dealing with will cause you pain, do not read this story. I’ll include in the next novel anything you need to know.

There are also aspects to what we’re experiencing right now that are stressful and scary and some of that is also part of this story. (You know Maggie’s grandpa wasn’t going to be one to want to sit home because he’s old, right? No one dies in this story, but Maggie’s concern is real.)

Also, sadly, this whole situation has become very political. So the way Maggie and her family talk about events may be upsetting to those who don’t share those views.

Maggie, like me, thinks this is serious. She thinks this can harm the ones she loves. And she wants people to take it seriously. If you don’t share that view, maybe skip this story.

Because of what I did in this story, the next novel shouldn’t have to deal with any of this. The Baker Valley is going to be sealed off for however long this continues.

If you do read it, I hope you enjoy it. If you don’t, I completely understand.

Housebound Holiday