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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A Leap Day Gift For You & an Anthology Launch! (Promo over!!)

Come into Creepy Calverley Old Hall


Today is the day when a new publisher takes its big leap into the world with the launch of an anthology of short stories: Dark Light! Join me in a warm welcome to Crushing Hearts and Black Butterflies... their brand new books look slick and-- well-- really dark! So have a peek at them and cheer them on as they get started with their book launches and all of the exciting whirlwind that goes with it! My short story 'The Transformation' is included, too!

As I'm in a celebratory mood with the anthology launch, and the recent launch of my short story 'Family Secrets' on Kindle over the weekend ( ) I am giving away Base Spirits for free on Amazon Kindle all day today! (February 29th only- I hope you can make it!)

Grab one for yourself, and tell anyone you know who loves a great ghost story!

Enjoy the read! Drop by and tell me what you think, and please leave a review on my Kindle page if you truly love it. It's getting heaps of 5 star reviews. I just want to share the love and reach new readers. Won't you be next?

Monday, February 27, 2012

'Family Secrets' Revealed!!

Click here!

Hi everyone-

Despite the frantic month of February being... well... frantic!-- I have managed to get in under the wire as promised, and released my new short story 'Family Secrets' on Kindle! Click on the caption below Neil Jackson's excellent cover design to find it on Amazon. Here is the blurb:

A sinister short story about a family's long-buried secret...

Even as a young child, Jill had instinctively hated her grandfather-- and he'd always despised her just as deeply. Turns out her feelings were far from irrational...

During a summer vacation at the family cottage, Jill unearths the evil behind her Grandpa's dark personality. For years, everyone accepted that Grandma Annabelle's death had been a tragic accident. But what if Grandpa was guilty of her murder? Jill learns the horrible truth. Worse yet, Grandpa knows she's discovered his secret.

If an old man once committed a brutal murder, how far will he go to keep his past crime hidden? His terrified granddaughter is about to find out-- as Grandpa is due to visit over an extended family holiday...

(Includes a bonus novel excerpt from the author's acclaimed historical ghost thriller-- 'Base Spirits'.)

Here's that link again:

I'm pleased to say that on the very first day, sales exceeded the entire previous week's figures for Base Spirits! Hopefully word will spread, and having more work out there will make creating buzz and building readership a lot easier. I'm looking ahead toward next month at releasing another short story... and of course, the Dark Light anthology launch is this week... so my story 'The Transformation' will soon be available as well!

Busy times...

Thursday, February 23, 2012

New Chills and a Giveaway... Coming Soon!

I just finished my final edit on a short story, 'Family Secrets'. This is a newer and (I think) far better version of what was my first-ever published work of fiction in a mystery and suspense anthology-- Wordscape 6 --put out by the Canadian Authors Association back in 2000. The evocative cover art has been designed by Neil Jackson. What do you think? Pretty creepy stuff. Who's the figure on the dock... and what's his big secret? You'll have to read it on Kindle to find out. I am attempting to fly solo with the all the formatting and downloading hoopla. It's likely easier than I think. This should be up by the end of the month or the beginning of March.

Next week on February 29th, my story 'The Transformation' will be published in Dark Light-- the debut anthology from the intriguing new company Crushing Hearts and Black Butterflies. I'm happy to be in print again with a new dark tale of a lonely woman swept up in a dream of a romantic new life... but at what cost? The other stories look good, too. If you like the darker side of fiction, this may be something you'll want tin your library... and keep an eye on C.H. & B.B. for more amazing new writing!

To celebrate the launch, I will be holding a giveaway... stay tuned for details!

Meantime, Base Spirits was given another fantastic 5 star review! An American reader, Victoria Maggio, took a chance with my novel and loved it. "Strong characters, vivid descriptions and historical detail join together to create a world where I could lose all thought of myself and dive headlong into the unknown and not want it to end. Having to stop reading was a jolt to my system and I couldn't wait to get back to the story and find out what happened to these lives I had become a part of. What evil awaits them in the darkness... ?" You can link to the rest of her review here:

I also had a blast with a local book club discussion of Base Spirits the other evening. They unanimously loved reading it, and I loved talking with them about it and answering their thoughtful questions.

Keep an eye peeled (God, but that sounds painful!!) and watch for my new stories... and next week's giveaway!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Creepy Book Trailer for Base Spirits!!

The very kind folks over at Authors Anon ( posted a brand new book trailer for Base Spirits today!

Click here and prepare to be creeped out:

Enter if you dare...

Oooh! Scary, kids! Much, much more frightening than Dr. Tongue's Evil House of Pancakes! Ar-OOOOOO!

Like what you saw? Then come check out the real deal at Amazon Kindle:

Or if you'd like an even more real paperback: or by mail order from my local Stratford indie bookshops, Fanfare Books ( ) or Callan Books ( If you order through my locals, I can sign & personalize the books before they are shipped.

Seriously-- Authors Anon did a wonderful job, and I am so pleased and chuffed to little mintballs. I'd given them some images of the original artwork from the time of A Yorkshire Tragedy and the real-life location of Calverley Old Hall in Yorkshire... and lo and behold. I am grateful for their hard work. Go check out their website (link above). Authors Anon is a tireless, talented advocate for new indie writers. Their beautiful site is full of great discoveries, new writers and their books, and a list of very useful links for all.

I'm off to get some pancakes. I have a craving for some weird reason.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Great Reviews and News for Base Spirits!

The week is unfolding with all sorts of wonderful news...

First off-- as I mentioned in my last blog post-- I had a great review of Base Spirits from Jon P. Bloch of the Kindle Book Review team. He called it a 'distinctive debut worthy of attention'. If you want the full 4 star review, here's the link: He also thought it could be easily dramatized as a screenplay... interesting, as I had a message from a Facebook pal in the 'business' just last night suggesting that very thing. I have but to come up with a screenplay, and he has some producers in mind who are looking for a dark project to back.

That would be perfect-- but where to start? If anyone has suggestions or experience, I'd sure love to hear some advice! My friend was encouraging, though. He figures if I can manage to write a novel, I am capable of writing a screenplay. My day job does require me to write film and TV scripts, but they are specialized and purely technical to provide descriptive narration for the blind and visually impaired.

I had a lovely Valentine's gift in the form of another stellar review from Stacey Turner on See Spot Read! Here's a quote that certainly warmed my cockles:
"Honestly, there wasn't anything I didn't enjoy about this book. Since I'm hesitant to give out five star reviews (they're flung out so willy nilly these days that who really believes them?), I'm definitely giving this one a ringing four star recommendation. Anyone who enjoys history, ghosts, possessions, England, or horror in general, is going to enjoy this book. I don't know how many people know who Barbara Erskine is, but her novels are what this book put me in mind of. And I'm a huge Barbara Erskine fan. Which makes me a huge Ruth Barrett fan."


That is yet another comparison to Barbara Erskine-- I think that's the third so far from enthusiastic readers. I've gone out and bought my first Erskine novel today so I can see for myself what makes us similar (if I can just find some time to read! My TBR pile is threatening to topple over and crush me.)

Base Spirits is also one of two Book of the Day selections on the new RG2E (The Reader's Guide to E-publishing) site. They seem like an exciting new source for connecting readers with new writers-- if you are either/or, take a look and sign up-- although their primary focus is on readers. There are regular giveaways of intriguing new e-books and a Kindle e-reader or two... For all you writers out there, RG2E is a sister site to the very popular WG2E (The Writer's Guide to E-publishing). Check them out for great tips and articles.

A busy week indeed-- and it's resulted in a modest bump in sales. I'm also newly on Triberr and experimenting with that site, and there is still a featured author spot to come before the week is out! *Whew* Stay tuned... and thanks for dropping by.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Bookish Things are Brewing this Month!

A lot seems to be happening around here for me this month...

Since experimenting with putting Base Spirits on KDP Select, I have noticed an increase in sales numbers. Nothing like enough for me to quit my day job (oh please, oh please...!!), but hey-- any improvement is a good thing, right? There will be another giveaway blast coming up next month in a big promotion with some fellow indie authors, so watch this space for the fun.

Reviews are coming in for Base Spirits, and they are very positive!

Jon P. Bloch from the Kindle Book Review called it 'an impressive debut' and posted this very kind review on my Kindle page today:

Kara Malinczak posted this lovely review on her Great Imaginations blog at the end of January:

Best of all are the kinds of reviews left by book-loving readers who just really liked the book. No one asked them to post a review, so it means the world when they give you 5 stars and leave comments like this one from my page:

"As a fan of Barbara Erskine I was intrigued by the plot of this book. Once started I could not put it down. The historical tragedy, coupled with the modern day tragedy of an abusive, controlling husband was inspired. Reading was tense from start to finish. Can't wait to read more by this author who has en- captured all the elements of great storytelling." (Thank you Josie, wherever you are!)

Later this month, I will be sitting in with a local book club as they discuss Base Spirits as their February selection. That should be fun! And this week I am doing two different features and promotions on websites... I'll post links once they are up.

I also have two NEW short stories being published this month!

Dark Light Anthology

'The Transformation' will appear on February 29th in the debut anthology Dark Light from an exciting new publishing company 'Crushing Hearts and Black Butterflies'. Here's a link to their book trailer:

I am also e-publishing a darkly disturbing, stand-alone tale 'Family Secrets' on Kindle this month. Watch this space for all the details, links and dates!

But for now, I'd better get some sleep and hit the ground running in the morning...

Friday, February 3, 2012

Big Hearts in February

I had a lovely incident of kindness shown on my blog earlier this week from TJ Reed. He's someone I don't know in real life, but he'd happened upon Spirited Words and liked what he read... so much so that he awarded me with a Liebster Blog Award! The rules are thus: if a reader finds a blog with less than 200 followers but feels the blog deserves more attention, they can award it with a Liebster.

I found the story of the Liebster's origins here on author Crystalla Thoma's 'Rexrising' blog which also clearly outlines the details of the rules:

First off, I'd like to thank TJ Reed for his kind nomination. His blog They Won't Get Us is found here:

If you're reading this now, why not go check out their stuff and join in the fun?

As for naming 5 blogs I think deserve more love, here are a few of the many I'd like to see gain more of a following: Stant Litore is a zombie author with a heart of gold and is capable of prose that will knock your socks off. For lovers of historical fiction, Gev Sweeney is well worth a visit. She is someone to watch. A showcase of some very exciting new indie authors championed by the tireless Anon! Horror writer Billie Sue Mosiman has lots of great books and not nearly enough followers! And lastly JT Warren-- another horror guy with heart and aspirations to help fellow indies.

All in all, it seems a lovely way to pass on the love in this month of hearts and flowers! Have you some folks in mind who deserve a Liebster, too?