Clowning Around ~ A story for @RBwood’s HALLOWEEN Word Count Podcast

You can also hear me read this story on: Episode #43 of R.B. Wood’s “The Word Count” podcast.

The prompt for this podcast was to use these three words in the story: Cloak. Knife. Blood.

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I hate Halloween—with a passion. And every year it rolls around, even in this godforsaken hellhole, I am reminded of why I hate it.

“Ooooh…you’re the clown, you’re the crazy clown!”

I curl up tighter in my corner.

“Clowns! Clowns! The clowns are going to get you!”

And the taunts continue until someone yells for them to shut up. When my back hurts and my bum is sore from sitting on the cold, hard floor, I drag myself to bed and plug my ears with the corners of my thin blanket. There’s no use fighting it. The dream will come, as it has every year for the past ten years.

***

The teacher asked us to dress up for Halloween. There’d be a competition to see who had the best costume. Everyone in the class would get a vote to choose the winner—twenty-three votes, not counting my own. Miss Drage, our homely grade five teacher would also get a vote. I fretted. I didn’t want to do it, but I had no choice. I was already an outsider, and if I didn’t participate, it would only draw more attention to me. That was the only reason for doing it, as the prize of a basket of candies certainly didn’t entice me. I hated candy, which was another reason the kids in the class considered me strange.

I stressed the entire week leading up to the competition. I threw temper tantrums and snapped at my mom every time she asked me what was wrong. Finally, two days before I had to have a costume, she’d had enough.

“Young lady,” she said, “I’m tired of your sulky behavior. Tell me what’s wrong or I’m not buying you another book this month.”

“No!” I screamed. Books were my only refuge, and her threat was akin to death for me. It didn’t take much coaxing from her before I spilled the story of needing a costume.

“Damn it,” she said, “as if we don’t have better things to spend our money on.”

“I know, Mom.” I wiped tears from my face. “I know we can’t afford to buy a costume. I don’t know what to do.”

Somehow, Mom must have known this meant something to me, because aside from one Scholastic book a month, I never asked for much. Even as a kid, I understood her job as a factory piece-maker afforded us few luxuries.

That night, I went to bed with my tattered copy of Stephen King’s Carrie and reread parts of the book under the covers with a flashlight. “It’s okay to be different,” I whispered as I fell asleep. “It’s okay if I don’t have a costume.” I tried hard to convince myself that I didn’t care about some stupid competition.

***

“I’m making you a clown suit,” Mom said when I came home from school the next day. She held up flannel material that alternated red, green, blue, and yellow stripes, cut in the shape of a small body. “Come here and let me see if this fits before I sew the pieces together.”

“Oh Mom!” I rushed over and gave her a hug.

Mom wrapped the fabric around me, pinning key areas. “I’ll leave the legs a bit baggy,” she said, marking off the length of the sleeves with chalk. “How does that feel?”

“I love it!” I squealed.

Mom sewed late into the night, so I could bring the costume to school the next day. The intermittent chug-chug-chug of her Singer sewing machine, like an old steam engine, lulled me to sleep. I had a good feeling I was going to win the competition.

And I should have won.

My costume was the best, the most authentic, the one that looked like it cost at least fifteen dollars off the rack of a department store.

When all the kids stood in a circle awaiting Miss Drage’s count of the votes, my confidence quickly diminished. I received one vote, and that was the one I had put in for myself.

Lizzy Kemp won with fifteen votes—the popular girl, the one everyone liked because they were too afraid not to like her. She had a nothing costume cut from a black garbage bag, draped around her neck and secured with a clothespin. Some red food coloring streaked down the corners of her mouth. Countess Dracula, she called herself, flapping her plastic cloak when she won. She pranced around the circle with her winning basket of candies.

“I always knew you were a clown!” she said when she passed me, sticking out her tongue in my face. “Now we all know it’s true!” Some of the kids laughed. Miss Drage uttered a feeble “Now, now kids … be nice.”

Next to me stood Tim Sheppard. He tried to dress up as a pirate, but his costume consisted of a badly constructed eye-patch and rolled up pants. He didn’t have a sword, so he carried a knife—a steak knife. Lizzy made fun of him too, so I thought I’d do us both a favor. I grabbed his knife and stabbed Lizzy in the neck.

Her blood gushed dark and thick. That’s what I remember the most, how dark the blood was, so much darker than the fake blood on her face.

Thank you for reading.

Feel free to leave a comment or question. Feedback, whether good or bad is always welcome.

~eden

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NEW Release by @LarryEnright ~ The Blacker Death

Good friend and author, Larry Enright has just released a very timely book called The Blacker Death.

I’ve picked up my copy and look forward to this one. Find out more about Larry if you don’t know him already. Here’s an interview I did with him August 2011.

Congratulations on your newest book, Larry!

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the blacker death

Buy from Amazon worldwide

Soon to be released in paperback and other online retailers

* * * *

The Black Death. The Bubonic Plague. Originating in China in 1334, it traveled the silk trade routes from Asia, reaching Europe in 1347, where it spread across the continent in the worst pandemic in recorded history. By some estimates, it claimed the lives of two hundred million people, nearly half the world’s population.

Today, there are over seven billion humans on the planet. It no longer takes years for disease to spread by caravan across the deserts. It travels by car, by train, and by plane.

An outbreak of Ebola that started in the West African country of Guinea grabbed the world’s attention when it spread to Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, and Senegal. In eight months, the virus infected over 8,000 people. Over 4,000 died. It was the worst Ebola outbreak in history, the first true epidemic of the virus since its discovery in 1976. The Director of the CDC said it would only get worse before it got better.

Then it did.

They called it the Blacker Death.

(Note: Some language and situations in this book may not be appropriate for children under 18)

Connect with Larry

larry enright

Website | Facebook | Blog | Twitter @LarryEnright

Independent Author Network | YouTube Channel

Amazon author page | Goodreads | Google +

Larry Enright was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is an award-winning author and has one best-selling novel. He lives on a farm on where he grows his stories in peaceful climes.

His works include: the best seller “Four Years from Home,” “A King in a Court of Fools,” “Buffalo Nickel Christmas,” “12|21|12,” 2013 IPPY award-winning “A Cape May Diamond,” “Walter Stickle and the Galactic Rangers,” “Walter Stickle and the Goldotti of Deamus,” and “The Blacker Death.”

Find him at larryenright.com.


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Pre-order REFLECTIONS before it publishes Nov. 1st

I’m proud to announce a new release that drops this weekend. Reflections is a collection of short stories, poetry, and essays from some terrific authors, a few of whom I’ve had the pleasure to work with and interviewed on my blog—Darcia Helle, Maria Savva, and Jason McIntryre.

It’s on sale November 1st, but you can pre-order it now from:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon Canada

ONLY 99 cents! I love short stories, so I’ve ordered my copy already. Get yours now!

* * * *

reflections

Do you trust what you see?

Right becomes left.
Up becomes down.
Distorted, unreal.

Your world looks new when you see its…
REFLECTIONS

flourish

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New Release ~ PILATE’S BLOOD by @a_greenwood on SALE Oct. 30th

I’m proud to announce a new release from author and friend, J. Alexander Greenwood. I remember when he wrote the first book in his John Pilate Mystery series, and now he’s releasing his fourth!

Along with his many other fans, I’ve been waiting for Pilate’s Blood for some time. Now you can pre-order it prior to its release Oct. 30th at the low, low price of $2.99. The price will go up to $3.99 on Halloween.

The sale price of 99 cents for each of the first three books will also end on Halloween–so pick them up now!

Pilate’s Cross | Pilate’s Key | Pilate’s Ghost

Get yourself into Alex’s terrific mystery series if you haven’t already.

Now, let’s learn more about Pilate’s Blood!

pilates blood

Buy Links

Amazon: US | UK | Canada | Other regions

The long-awaited fourth book in the award-nominated John Pilate Mystery Series…

John Pilate reluctantly returns to tiny Cross Township…a place resembling a mutated Mayberry packed with guns, a serious lack of anti-depression meds, a rampaging crime boss and an imaginary friend who won’t shut the hell up.

Once a hero, now Pilate is broke, bored and forced to take a job imbued with more authority than the dogcatcher but far less respect. What’s worse is there’s criminality afoot and nobody to deal with it but Pilate. Sure, things could work out just fine…then again, it may come down to spilling Pilate’s Blood…Thicker Than Water, Twice As Deadly.

flourish

Connect to Alex

alex greenwood

Website | Facebook | Goodreads

Twitter @a_greenwood | Instagram | LinkedIn

Jason McIntyre, top-selling suspense author of On The Gathering Storm and Thalo Blue, likes Greenwood’s approach to his books.

“Greenwood offers a fresh take on the mystery thriller with his John Pilate Series. His novels are populated with flawed and neurotic—yet instantly likable—characters who find themselves thrown into maddeningly entertaining situations. Greenwood writes fun, accessible fiction that leaves readers asking for more.

Read Alex’s complete bio and get a list of all his books on his Amazon author page.

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Music Monday remembers Jack Bruce

I recently featured Cream on my blog, so it was very sad to hear about the passing of legendary bassist, Jack Bruce.

RIP Jack … hope you have year-round sunshine where ever you are,

eden

 

 

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Read: RAW by Peter Cantelon (@cantelon)

I have never re-blogged an article, and as it turns out, I don’t even know how to do it properly, so instead, I’m sharing it via a link at the end of my intro.

Normally, when I have something to say, I’m able to say it in my own words. This time, however, I’ve had difficulty expressing my thoughts clearly, and then … I came upon a blog last night that said what I could not say.

It speaks to the recent shootings in Quebec and Ottawa. It speaks to the unity of Canadian people, and it also speaks to a collective sadness. Over the next weeks, with the funerals of two Canadian soldiers, the nation will be mourning.

Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, a reservist, was shot Wednesday while standing guard at the National War Memorial in Ottawa, and two days earlier, Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent was run down in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu.

The killers were also Canadian, homegrown terrorists.

Please read the article, simply entitled:

 RAW

by Peter Cantelon

 

I don’t know Mr. Cantelon, but he has articulated his thoughts and feelings so well in his article, that I would be remiss in not sharing it. If you feel the same, please comment on and share his blog.

- eden 

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Filed under Important Announcements, Revelations & Humor

Eden’s Exchange Talks to Author D.A. Bale (@DABale1)

Author D.A. Bale and I met when I discovered her terrific blog. Its tagline is: A blog about indie authors for indie authors and readers alike. You will recall I had the pleasure of being interviewed by her last month.

I’m happy to return the favor and really enjoyed learning more about DA. I know you will too.

Please welcome Ms. Bale and discover her books.

* * * *

Welcome DA, let’s start off by telling my readers about your greatest extravagance.

I’m kinda a frugal person in most cases. As a single mom, most extravagances were spent on my son and providing him with incredible experiences. When he was a freshman in high school, he was chosen to be a part of a music tour of Europe. After reading the nomination letter, he just looked at me and asked if we could afford it. I told him I’d go in hoc for the rest of my life if I had to in order to make that happen for him. Ended up that I didn’t have to resort to such an extreme, but I’d have given my right arm to have enjoyed such an opportunity at his age. Travel opens up such a wonderful view of the world and you’re never the same for the experience it affords. I’ll always consider that trip to be a huge turning point in my son’s outlook, and no price is too great for that.

Perfect. I agree the lessons learned from travel are invaluable. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I’d learn how to sit down and shut up. Seriously, I can run off at the mouth and talk for days on end (as long as you feed me). When in Junior High, I even had a teacher who would give a party at the end of the week if I could remain silent from the moment I stepped into his class until the moment I walked out for the week. That earned me a lot of encouragement from fellow classmates – and much ribbing as well. Needless to say, I think we only had two or three parties in his class that entire year. At this point, I think I’m a lost cause. :)

I would’ve never guessed :D. What is one thing you want to do before you die?

This is an easy one! It has always been my dream to visit St. Petersburg, Russia someday. When I was a young girl, such an idea was a big deal because of the communist Iron Curtain under the Soviet regime. I never thought such an opportunity would be afforded in my lifetime, but after the dissolution of the Soviet state, the dream is now one step closer to reality. I hope someday to tour the Winter Palace and Tsarskoe Selo’s Alexander Palace and perhaps discover what really happened to the Amber Room after WWII.

I think you can definitely accomplish this one. My dream is to visit India. Do you have a motto you live by?

Just because you have the right to do something, doesn’t make it the right thing to do.

Agree. What do you consider your greatest accomplishment?

Besides raising my son? My greatest accomplishment otherwise would have to be the day I became a published author. From the time I was a little girl, I wrote, and wrote, and wrote. Teachers always commented on my papers and stories and about how vivid they were. My mom even kept some of her favorites, one being a paper about my first visit to the ocean and frolicking with the birds along the beach. Her accolades were the greatest praise I could’ve ever received. To this day, she still thinks a lot of my writing – and no matter how old I get, it continues to mean so much to me.

That is wonderful praise indeed. Let’s discuss your writing. Where do you draw your inspiration from?

Oh gosh, EVERYWHERE! My life. Experiences. Emotions. People. Places. I have very vivid and disturbing nightmares sometimes that provide much fodder for stories and novels. Sometimes I will sit down and just write book blurbs for stories that don’t yet exist. Many times this exercise will inspire an idea I need to explore further, so I’ll write a little treatise on characters and places to include in the story. Sadly, I will probably never find the time to write down ALL of them.

Running into the darknessWhat is the best advice you’ve received as a writer?

Make your bad guys really bad. In my first novel RUNNING INTO THE DARKNESS, I originally started writing it and merely alluding to the atrocities committed by the antagonists. After some encouragement and a little hand-holding, I decided to plumb some serious depths and write out the scenes to show them as they happened. It was amazing the myriad of emotions writing such scenes brought out in me. I experienced anger and fear, horror and such creepy feelings when crawling into the skin of said characters in order to write those scenes, many times I felt the urge to bathe repeatedly when finished. I cried buckets too. It’s these scenes that either grab or disgust readers when they comment or review. I guess the evoking of emotions in others means I did my job as a writer.

And here is a blurb for Running into the Darkness.

Samantha never intended to kill the President. As a doctor, she swore an oath to protect life – not take it. But that was before he ordered the murder of her family.

Swept from the frigid New York City winter, Dr. Samantha Bartlett returns to the Midwest to once again confront the sting of death – and face those she left behind. But she’s not alone. A strange man she dubs “Shades” haunts her every step as she seeks answers to the inferno which claimed her grandmother’s life, an eerie reminder of her parents’ deaths. The secrets Samantha uncovers forever shatter the image of those she only thought she knew.

Confronted by Shades, Samantha joins a secret underworld known only as the Elite, where a web of power and control is woven deep within governments worldwide. Their sights are set on the seat of domination behind the Resolute desk that is the powerhouse of nations – the presidency of the United States of America. Samantha becomes the Elite’s unlikely key to infiltrating the White House at its most intimate levels.

The Hippocratic Oath. All doctors swear by it. But the most despicable deeds must be avenged. The quest for blood swallows Samantha in a veil of darkness and threatens to destroy everything she once stood for.

And from the darkness there is no escape.

Name a few of your favorite authors and books, and why you like them.

Love Clive Cussler’s original works with the larger-than-life Dirk Pitt character. TREASURE and SHOCKWAVE are probably my absolute favorites in that series. One of my all-time favorites is Dean Koontz’s INTENSITY – and trust me, it lives up to the title. J.R.R. Tolkien’s LORD OF THE RINGS tops the fantasy chart, while Charlotte Bronte’s JANE EYRE is one among the classics I try to read nearly every year. I love Jane’s journey, the strength of her character and passion for living. She ends up doing what she believes to be right, regardless of what others may tell her. Perhaps I relate to her a little that way, as I’m a teensy bit of a self-minded individual too.

piercing the darknessWhat are your favorite and least favorite parts of being a writer?

Well my favorite part is easy – writing! Seriously, I love exploring the characters in a story and seeing how they change from perhaps how I initially saw them to becoming so alive they could almost leap from the page into the real world. There’ve been many times in writing a character within a situation where suddenly they take a turn I didn’t expect. Case in point, in RUNNING INTO THE DARKNESS a character was supposed to span the first two books, but then as I was closing in on finishing book one, he came up to me (in my mind, of course), laid down his weapon and said he would give up his life to save my main character. I fought him. I told him he was crazy. In the end I capitulated because in a small way, that action redeemed his earlier deeds. Of course, that left me in the lurch for PIERCING THE DARKNESS.

The least favorite aspect of writing…hmm. I’ll have to get back with you on that.

Okay, here’s a blurb of Piercing the Darkness while you think on that ;).

Samantha Bartlett is running for her life. Haunted by her past actions and with nearly every government agency on the manhunt, Samantha lives alone and off the grid. But those who have come under her care won’t let her simply shove them aside. Surrounded by the unlikeliest of humanity, Samantha still feels the sharp sting of loneliness, but for the first time in years she also tastes the sweetness of freedom – for the moment.

For FBI Agent Joe Roberts, Washington D.C. has become too dicey since President Warner’s murder – and a constant reminder of his encounter with their primary suspect. An opportunity arises to continue investigating Oleander Enterprises and what has become known as the Hitler Survival Conspiracy. Key documents are making their way from classified vaults back to where experiments first took place. Joe stops at nothing to intercept them, even when his actions place him on the Elite’s short list – and the FBI’s.

Debrille’s plans for an Elite Empire are nearing fruition, but without the brilliant Dr. Marcus, his life’s work threatens to crumble. The Bartlett woman needs to be silenced before ruining his carefully devised schemes. Debrille is tired of games with mere jokers, but the ace is in position – and only waiting to be played.

The search for the truth brings the participants to a breaking point collision. The battle lines are redrawn as reality pierces a lifetime of lies – and freedom can only be found in truth.

What part of writing a novel do you enjoy the most? The least?

I love developing the characters, having them come alive to me so I can make them come alive to my readers. The whole ‘what makes me tick’ part is interesting to explore because this is what truly fleshes them out to me. Rarely do I realize every detail about a character until I start placing them into situations and scenes in my novel – especially when they’re in those hot water moments. They even surprise me!

The least? That’s a hard one. Maybe not necessarily the writing of the novel itself, but the condensing into the book blurb/description. When you have to take your 70,000 to 100,000 word tome and strip it away into a three or four paragraph summary, you might as well strip the skin from my bones. Ouch! 

I agree it’s an art to summarize a novel and make it sound enticing. Is it important for you to know the title or ending of a book before you write it?

Title no. Ending yes – or at least some reasonable semblance of an end. Before I sit down to start a new novel, I generally have the beginning and end firm in my mind, with a few key moments thrown in here and there. Otherwise, I let the story and characters cut the remainder of the trail. The process is quite organic.

What is your best advice for new authors?

Regardless if you’ve had experience in another writing discipline in the past (screenplays, articles, poetry, etc.) you must learn today’s novel-writing techniques. The most important of these are:

Understand proper point-of-view usage and the importance of scene/chapter breaks to delineate shifts in character viewpoints. This is KEY if you want your readers to immerse themselves into your characters, to see what they see, feel what they feel, smell what they smell, and touch what they touch.

Pacing will either bog your story down or speed it up. Understand the pacing structures of your genre and how conflict comes into play to drive readers forward – give it some energy. Thrillers have action and fast pacing, whereas Fantasy will contain variations in pacing and moments of reprieve from the action to give readers a breather. Romance is guy meets girl, so it’s conflict and passion that provide the energy to move this one. Mystery is all about who-done-it, so make readers work and keep guessing to discover the prize inside. Just remember, no matter the genre, never be afraid to layer in some conflict to keep the pace moving. ‘Cause hey, that’s life!

Understand the concept of showing versus telling. Are you writing the story’s action and conflicts in real time so the reader experiences it as it is happening (showing), or are you just telling us what or why something happens after the fact? Do you, the author, feel it necessary to explain to readers why a character or situation within the story is written a particular way(telling)? The showing versus telling is probably one of the hardest concepts for new authors to grasp, but as long as you keep studying and learning about the difference, eventually you’ll find writing novels as showing to be effortless.

Lastly – edit, edit, and edit some more. Join a critique group. Open yourself up to criticism BEFORE publishing or else you’ll be sorely unprepared for the opinions of those who purchase your book(s). Think like an avocado and build a thick skin. Then keep writing!

the studyWhat is the genre of your books?

I’m a lover of thriller, mystery and suspense, with a little fantasy thrown in for window dressing. RUNNING INTO THE DARKNESS and PIERCING THE DARKNESS (the first two in the Deepest Darkness series) are thrillers, while my novelette THE STUDY is suspense. I’m also working on a new series of mysteries with just a touch of humor. As most of my critique group will tell you, I’m not very good with humor, so I figured I needed a new challenge. Thus the BEFORE & AFTER series was born!

What inspired you to write your series?

The Deepest Darkness series encompasses so many facets of my own life, emotions, and experiences in the world of power and politics. It began as more of a cathartic exercise until I made the mistake of sharing it with my critique group. After that, it quickly grew in scope as I layered in more characters and elements.

What has the reception been to your books?

It’s been interesting. Readers either love it with a passion or hate it with an equal passion. There’s very little in-between. What touches me the most is when someone will email me about how this or that character or situation spoke to them. Fan correspondence is one of the best aspects of being an author.

What has surprised you the most about writing your books?

That so much of my family loves it. Seriously! I was terrified to let me mother read it, but she surprised me most of all. My mom has been my biggest supporter. I don’t care how old we all get, it’s still a great feeling when a parent or two voices their pride in you.

Moms are so special in that way ;). Let’s have a quick lightning round to finish off.

Favorite place you’ve traveled to or would like to travel to? My favorite place of travel thus far has been Alaska – I love the cold and the incredible beauty of the mountains. Someday I’d like the opportunity to visit and explore around St. Petersburg, Russia and perhaps Scotland.

Name a food you can eat everyday. Bacon.

Salty or sweet? Major sweet tooth here that can only be satisfied with chocolate.

Cat/dog/other pet? I have two cats, but eventually I’d like to get my son a Husky. My cats will hate me for that one.

Favorite style of music? I can’t pick just one of my favorites. I love classical, orchestral movie soundtracks, rock, pop, jazz…about the only music styles I don’t like are country and rap.

The best gift you’ve ever received? When my son was young, my mother always took him Christmas shopping for me. One year he searched high and low to find just the perfect gift – a beautiful jeweled bookmark of purple enamel. I was so surprised and astounded that at such a young age, he knew his mother so well to personally choose a gift that represented two of my favorite things. I’ll treasure it always. 

So sweet ;). Your favorite season. Winter!!! I love the snow.

You and I are opposites there! Name something you cannot go a day without. A toothbrush and clean underwear. I know what you’re saying – TMI! TMI!! TMI!!!

Ha! Now THAT is an original and honest response! Thanks so much for coming by Eden’s Exchange, DA, and I’m thrilled we are connected.

Readers, please visit DA at all her virtual homes and buy her books using the links below:

Running into the Darkness

(Currently FREE!)

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords

Piercing the Darkness

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords

The Study

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords

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Connect To D.A. Bale 

da bale

DA Bale Publishing & Blog | Amazon Author Page

Facebook | Twitter @DABale1 | GoodReads

Sometimes life emulates fiction.

Life is filled with tragedy and Ms. Bale’s writing reflects this reality. However, there is always a silver lining…even if one must spend their entire life searching for it.

In her previous career, Ms. Bale traveled the United States as a Government Relations Liaison, working closely with Congressional offices and various government agencies. This experience afforded her a glimpse into the sometimes “not so pretty” reality of the political sphere. Much of this reality and various locations throughout her travels make it into her writing.

She dreams of the day she can return to visit Alaska.

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Music Monday connects Paperback Writer to my @Goodreads Giveaway

At the beginning of this month, I did a Goodreads Giveaway for one print copy of Stranger at Sunset. The giveaway took place from Oct 1-15. Here  are the stats from that promotion.

~ 1153 people signed up to win a copy.
~ 591 people added the book to their “To Read” shelf.
~ The giveaway was available to readers worldwide.
~ A reader from the USA won.

I consider it a goodwill gesture to do giveaways, and it’s an easy way to connect to more readers if you have a print version of your book. Given the success of my first giveaway, I will run another one next month.

In the meantime, Stranger at Sunset in e-book format is still 99 cents for another week, so pick it up!

Amazon | Apple | B&N | Kobo | Smashwords

This is a perfect song for writers. Enjoy and have a great week,

eden

 

 

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Filed under Musical Mondays

Join me with @skiwee47 on I LOVE BOOKS Internet Radio

ski wee

Ski-Wee’s Book Corner on Blogspot
Ski-Wee’s Book Corner on WordPress
Ski-Wee’s Book Corner on Tumblr
Twitter @skiwee47
Ski-Wee’s Book Corner on Facebook

* * * *

I had the great pleasure of being interviewed by Edythe Hamilton who operates numerous sites under the name of Ski-Wee. She also runs a radio show called I LOVE BOOKS.

Recently, we had a wonderful chat about my current book Stranger at Sunset, amongst other things. Edythe’s enthusiasm for what she does is infectious. She is a true lover of books and goes out of her way to support authors with interviews and reviews. Watch the terrific video she put together prior to our interview.

If you’d like to listen to our talk, hit the graphic below and be taken to BlogTalk radio. The hour-long show went by quickly because we had so much fun!

i love books ski wee

Enjoy,

eden

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2 Comments

Filed under Eden's Guest Blogs & Interviews, Stranger at Sunset

STRANGER AT SUNSET is in the spotlight at @BookBliss2013

book bliss

Website | Facebook | Twitter @Bookbliss2013

I’m featured today on the wonderful site of Book Bliss, curated by founder and author, Lexi Ostrow. She describes herself in the following way:

Screen shot 2014-10-16 at 3.14.57 PM

I live and breathe the written word as often as I can. From reading, journalism and creative writing something to read is never far from me. What better way to share great books and get the word out then with a blog dedicated to book reviews, personal writing experiences, teasers from personal and perhaps author work and author interviews.

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I’m honored Lexi has given me space on her site to feature my book.

Hop over to Book Bliss and read the Book Spotlight on Stranger at Sunset. For a short time longer, the e-book remains at 99 cents, so grab your copy before the price goes back up!

Enjoy,

~ eden

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4 Comments

Filed under Eden's Guest Blogs & Interviews, Stranger at Sunset

CONDITIONS by Christoph Fischer (@cffbooks) launches!

I’m thrilled to announce a new release from one of the most dynamic men I know. Author and friend, Christoph Fischer’s new novel, Conditions is available TODAY!

I pre-ordered my copy and can’t wait to read it. Find out how you can get your copy.

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conditions

Buy Links

Amazon US | UK | Canada | Australia | Worldwide sites

Be sure to mark Conditions as “To Read” on Goodreads

Add it to your AMAZON wishlist too!

When Charles and Tony’s mother dies the estranged brothers must struggle to pick up the pieces, particularly so given that one of them is mentally challenged and the other bitter about his place within the family.

The conflict is drawn out over materialistic issues, but there are other underlying problems which go to the heart of what it means to be part of a family which, in one way or another. has cast one aside.

Prejudice, misconceptions and the human condition in all forms feature in this contemporary drama revolving around a group of people who attend the subsequent funeral at the British South Coast.

Meet flamboyant gardener Charles, loner Simon, selfless psychic Elaine, narcissistic body-builder Edgar, Martha and her version of unconditional love and many others as they try to deal with the event and its aftermath.

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Connect to Christoph

Christoph Fischer 2

Christoph Fischer was born in Germany as the son of a Sudeten-German father and a Bavarian mother. Not a full local in the eyes and ears of his peers he developed an ambiguous sense of belonging and home in Bavaria. He moved to Hamburg in pursuit of his studies and to lead a life of literary indulgence. After a few years he moved on to the UK where he is still resident today.
He completed a historical “Three Nations Trilogy” in 2013, comprising of “The Luck of the Weissensteiners”, “Sebastian” and “The Black Eagle Inn.”
In May 2014 he published his first contemporary novel “Time To Let Go” in May.
He has written several other novels which are in the later stages of editing and finalisation.

Christoph was interviewed on my blog February 7, 2014.

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New Release ~ JUST CAUSE by @Carolyn_Arnold on SALE Oct. 16th

I’m proud to announce a new release from Canadian author and friend, Carolyn Arnold. She is releasing the 5th book in the Madison Knight Series. Just Cause is available by pre-order now and releases Oct. 16th!

Please learn more about Carolyn’s latest book and put in your order now!

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just cause

Buy Links

Amazon US | Amazon UKB & N | Apple | Kobo

A cold case pits Madison against the Russian Mafia, but things take a swift turn when the unthinkable happens a new threat arises and has Madison hunting down an unknown killer.

While trying to make sense of the clues, bodies are piling up, and the brass is hungry for explanations. In addition, Madison must balance all of this while nursing an injury, talking out her emotions with a therapist a bureaucratic necessity, answering to an eager journalist, and facing an internal affairs investigation.

As the answers come together, Madison narrows in on a possible link between the Russian Mafia and someone within the Stiles PD.

Will she have the courage to confront the person she believes is playing both sides, even though they hold a position of great power?

Things are about to be shaken up, and, for Madison, that means she just might have to let go of the past to embrace her future.

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Connect to Carolyn Arnold

carolyn arnold

Carolyn Arnold’s love for writing dates back to her teen years, but her passion was reignited in 2006 when a fellow employee said “tell me a story.” Since then Carolyn has never looked back.

TIES THAT BIND, the first in her Madison Knight Series, was published in 2011 and it became a Kindle Best Seller, reaching the top 100 in Police Procedurals in the US and in the UK. Her writing has been compared to New York Times Bestsellers such as JD Robb, Mary Higgins Clark, Sue Grafton, Michael Connelly, Tess Gerritsen, and more.

Carolyn was born in 1976 in a rural town of Ontario, Canada. She is a member of Crime Writers of Canada and lives with her husband, and two beagles in a city near Toronto.

Carolyn was interviewed on my blog November 11, 2011.

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Devil’s Nightmare: Premonitions by Rob Pruneda is on SALE! (@sharkbaitwrites)

I’m thrilled to give some space to my dear friend, Rob Pruneda (aka Sharky) who is launching his new book today.

HUGE CONGRATULATIONS, Rob!

Learn more about his Devil’s Nightmare Halloween Blog Tour, and his newest release ~ Devil’s Nightmare: Premonitions. 

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Devil's Nightmare Blog Tour

Devil’s Nightmare by Robert Pruneda is a chilling read, perfect for the Halloween season. If you are a fan of horror and suspense, you’ll want to check this one out. To hook you to the series, the first novel is only 99 cents on Kindle (and Kindle reading apps). For those who have been waiting for the sequel, Devil’s Nightmare: Premonitions is also now available worldwide.

Devil’s Nightmare Promotional Trailer

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Devil's Nightmare Front CoverDevil’s Nightmare (Book 1)

Detective Aaron Sanders’ abilities and fortitude are put to the test when he investigates a brutal double-homicide where a boy’s parents are found mutilated inside their home. The boy is the only witness to the crime and his clothes are stained with his parents’ blood. His clothes are also tainted with the blood of other victims from a separate and even more horrific crime scene at a nearby cemetery. All of the victims appear to have been killed in the same manner and the boy knows the true identity of the evil responsible for the multiple deaths, but he is unwilling to talk. No one would believe him. A threat on the boy’s life and a disturbing nightmare causes Detective Sanders to question his beliefs and his own sanity. This investigation ultimately leads Sanders in a fight to save himself and the life of an orphaned boy from an unimaginable evil that is spawned from the curse of the Devil’s Nightmare.

Available on Amazon (US), Amazon (UK) and Barnes & Noble

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PREMONITIONS for ebookDevil’s Nightmare: Premonitions (Book 2)

Sequel to the Amazon bestselling horror Devil’s Nightmare, Robert Pruneda brings fans of the first novel another horrific thriller full of twists, chills, and a shocking conclusion. Two years have passed since Aaron Sanders retired from the Austin Police Department after what the media has called The Saint Hedwig Massacre. He moves his family out of the capital city to start a new life as a small town cop in Lost Maples, Texas, where the population count is updated more often than the murder rate. That bit of reputation is about to change when Aaron is once again caught in the middle of a mysterious investigation that has an eerie familiarity. This time, however, he is certain what is responsible for the violent deaths . . . Or is he? Evil knows no boundaries and it is up to Aaron to figure out how to protect the residents of his community, and his family, from becoming its next victims.

Now available on Amazon (US), Amazon (UK)

Paperback coming soon to Barnes & Noble.

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Connect to Rob

Profile Photo

Robert Pruneda is author of the Amazon Kindle best selling horror novel Devil’s Nightmare and contemporary family sports drama series Victory Lane: The Chronicles. He lives in south Texas and has called the Lone Star State his home all of his life. Pruneda is also a classic car enthusiast and proud owner of a black 1981 Corvette that his friends call “The Bat Mobile.” He is very active in social media and is an avid gamer who can often be found fighting side-by-side with his friends on his favorite first-person shooter . . . but he prefers survival horror.

Follow Robert Pruneda on Twitter (@SharkbaitWrites) and on Facebook. You can visit his Website (Sharkbaitwrites.com) to follow his blog posts and stay current on upcoming novels.

Rob was interviewed on my blog April 27, 2012.

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Music Monday ~ Cold Turkey

It’s Canadian Thanksgiving, and yes, I love turkey even when it’s cold.

To those celebrating today, have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

To everyone else, enjoy John Lennon and have a great week,

eden

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Filed under Musical Mondays

Eden’s Exchange Talks to Mackenzie Brown (@MackBrownBooks)

Author Mackenzie Brown and I met sometime ago on Twitter and Facebook. He was genuinely sweet, so I invited him for an interview. I’ve also learned since then he’s extremely patient. He had to fill out the responses for my interview twice as the first document disappeared into the ether. Darn Internet!

It’s all the more reason I am happy to give Mack space on my blog to talk about himself and his books.

Please learn more about this lovely author and connect to him.

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Welcome Mack! As an introduction, tell readers how your best friend would describe you in 20 words or less.

So laid back he’s almost horizontal!

Good one! Are you a full time writer or do you have a day job? 

I work as a self employed contractor during the day and write evenings and weekends.

Prince of the City cover frontThat’s dedication. Do you have any great extravagances?

I love Lido Di Jesolo in Italy, (near Venice) and visit as often as I can. It’s like a second home to me.

Nice, I’ve never been to Italy. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I hate my crooked teeth and I’d have them capped if I could afford it.

What profession other than your own would you like to try?

Singer…I sound okay in the shower…but then again….

:D What is one thing you want to do before you die?

Easy answer…have an international bestseller.

POTC-NINE LIVES (FC)That could very well happen, and I hope it does! What are some of your favorite curse words?

Bar-steward.

That’s a new one for me. Do you have a motto you live by?

I try to enjoy the little things in life.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment?

Rearing two healthy, happy, teenage daughters.

What makes you laugh, and I mean, REALLY laugh?

Billy Connolly…simply the funniest man alive.

I think he’s terrific too, let’s talk a little about your writing. What motivates you to write?

The idea of writing one perfect passage.

What are your favorite and least favorite parts of being a writer?

Favourite part is the first rewrite, when the real work starts. Least favourite formatting for Kindle etc (Argh! Can be quite frustrating and time consuming).

Lost Boys cover (399 for FB)I know about that and agree. How would you define your style of writing?

Fast paced, multi genre.

Do you outline, plot and structure, or do you just sit down and write?

Outline notes for each chapter, but plenty of flexibility allowed for inspiration and creativity on the hoof.

Are you working on another book now? 

My next release Annie’s War is with my proof reader now. This is the true story of my Grandparents’ lives, set between 1914 & 1945. My plan is then to complete the five part Prince of the City Series of five short books. Book one and two are already published.

Book of Souls (E-FICTION MAG)What is your best advice for new authors?

If you start a project, always finish it. Even if you feel it is the biggest pile of crap you’ve ever written. When completed, walk away and leave it to simmer for a few weeks. Then go back to it with a fresh pair of eyes and begin the first rewrite, the most important part of the process for me.


Great advice and difficult to do. What is the genre of your upcoming book, Annie’s War?

Love story/Biographical novel about my grandparents dramatic lives, set between two world wars.

Why should people read it?

This book is an extremely poignant story and anybody who likes a passionate drama, should enjoy it.

Shifting cover -  500 dpi (E-FICTION MAG)What inspired you to write it?

My Grandfather told me his part of the story before he died, but my Grandmother’s stories were virtual family folklore and spoken about often at family gatherings.

What is the best way for someone to support your book, aside from buying it?

Re-tweet or re-blog any postings about the book.

Yes, sharing on any of the platforms is always helpful. Let’s have a quick lightning round to finish off.

Aside from people/pets, what is the ONE item you would save if your house was on fire? Easy answer…my laptop!

Me too! Favorite place you’ve traveled to or would like to travel to? I’d love to one day embark upon a grand tour of Europe.

Name a food you can eat every day. Pasta.

Salty or sweet? Salty.

Cat/dog/other pet? Oh cat for me. I have a female black cat, called Snoz. She wraps us all around her little paws.

Favorite style of music? Jazz.

The best gift you’ve ever received? A bicycle when I was ten years of age, my parents assured me they couldn’t possibly afford.

Favorite season. Spring, when the ground beneath our feet is alive with new life.

That’s beautiful, Mack. Is there anything else you would like to share with my readers?

I feel honoured to have so many friends within the literary community and love how we all help each other, which is as it should be. Long may it continue!

I’m with you there, Mack. Thanks so much for coming by Eden’s Exchange and answering each question—twice. You’re ace!

Readers, please visit Mack at all his virtual homes and buy his books on Amazon UK and Amazon US

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Connect To Mack 

Mack Brown profile

 WebsiteFacebook | Blog | Pinterest

 Twitter @mackbrownbooks

Find Mack’s book links here:  

Facebook: Prince of the City

Lost Boys (The Black Knight Series) | The Shifting

The Book of Souls (An Imelda Stone Adventure) 

Prince of the City -The Cat’s Whiskers | Prince of the City -Nine Lives

Book trailers for “Prince of the City – The Cat’s Whiskers” & “Lost Boys”

Mackenzie Brown was born and raised in Liverpool, UK, where he lives with his wife, two daughters and pet cat. With five published novels already under his belt, Brown is currently working on the third chapter of a new series of detective stories set in 1940s Liverpool and is soon planning to publish a novel documenting the early lives of his grandparents, set between the first and second world wars.

Mackenzie Brown’s inspiration for writing was borne out of wartime stories shared with him by his grandfather and personal hero, Angus Mackenzie Brown, a character featured in this upcoming book.

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Filed under Author & Artist Interviews

New Release ~ SCATTERGUN by @hefferonJoe on SALE Oct. 10th

I’m proud to announce a new release from author and friend, Joe Hefferon. His short story, Scattergun – A Reckoning in Two Acts is available by pre-order now and releases Oct. 10th!

Please learn more about Joe’s latest book and put in your order. At only 99 cents, it’s a steal!

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scattergun

Buy Links

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords

Scattergun is the first short work in a series examining the dark side of the human condition, set in the aberrant world of a synaesthetic Texas ranger, Lamar McNelly.

Book One: Riding shotgun in the mind of a wandering killer, stalking the plains of the rural west, until a violent confrontation in a Colorado rail yard pits the cerebral McNelly against the mammalian brain of an outlaw.

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Connect to Joe Hefferon

joe hefferon

Joseph Hefferon retired from law enforcement after twenty-five years and now writes full-time. Scattergun is the first of a series.

His novel, The Unlost, will be released in early 2015.

Joe was interviewed on my blog November 29, 2013.

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Music Monday ~ Every Breath You Take

I love this live version of “Every Breath you Take.” Sting performs here in Berlin with the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, saxophonist Branford Marsalis, and a host of incredible musicians. If you’ve never imagined this song with a symphonic arrangement, then please have a listen.

It will take your breath away.

Enjoy and have a lovely week,

eden

13 Comments

Filed under Musical Mondays

I am interviewed by @pebbleinwaters

Pebble in the still waters

Website | Google +Twitter @pebbleinwaters | Goodreads

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I am honoured to be featured on the site called “Pebble in the Still Waters,” home to Jaideep Khanduja who lives in India. Jaideep describes himself in a most creative way, as a techie by profession, writer/ blogger by passion and a global citizen by birthright.

I think that is a fantastic summary, and he shows this by generously offering his site to interview authors.

Those who know me well know India is a place I’ve always wanted to visit, so meeting Jaideep is serendipitous, don’t you agree? :)

Please read my interview on Pebble in the Still Waters, and I hope you enjoy,

eden

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6 Comments

Filed under Eden's Guest Blogs & Interviews, Stranger at Sunset

Stranger at Sunset ~ Goodreads Giveaway, Price Drop, and Gifting

Stranger at Sunset is now available in print, and I’m giving away a signed paperback, hosted by Goodreads! This giveaway is open worldwide from Oct. 1-15, 2014. Enter by hitting the graphic below. While you’re there, you can also add my book to your “to-read” shelf if you haven’t already. Sign up, you have nothing to lose!

If you win, I’ll write something really nice in your book just for you. ;)

Goodreads giveaway SAS

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Over the next while, I’m experimenting with pricing. There are many factors that go into setting a price for a book. After much research, I’m dropping the price of Stranger at Sunset from $4.99 to 99 cents for a limited time. This sale will only be available on Amazon and is effective immediately.

My book continues to be sold on  Apple | B&N | KoboSmashwords at the regular price until further notice.

* * *

Since I’ve had a couple of FREEBIES on Amazon recently, readers have asked if they can send my books as gifts. I checked into this and the answer is YES! You cannot give a gift of a FREE book, but you can do it for books that have a price tag.

Let me show you some important features on Amazon. Go to the Amazon page for my book (choose your country of account) and look on the right-hand side panel. Follow the colorful arrows and you’ll see what to do. The PINK ARROW points to the gift button. All you need is your recipient’s e-mail address to complete the process.

AMZ right side panel

 

Buy the book

 

Give the book as a gift.

Send as many as you like. Easy!

 

 

Send a sample of the book to your e-reader

 

 

 

If you don’t have a Kindle, you can still buy and read books from Amazon. Just download a Kindle app first. It’s free!

 

I hope you’ve found this helpful. and as always, thanks for your support.

Don’t forget to enter the Goodreads giveaway for an autographed copy of Stranger at Sunset, and pick up the e-book or send it as a gift for only 99 cents. It’s a bargain!

Thanks!

~ eden

 

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Filed under Stranger at Sunset

Music Monday with My Back Pages – THANK YOU (Part 2)

Since this is part 2, you know there was a part 1. If you missed it, please find it here.

“My Back Pages” is the perfect song for this Music Monday post for two reasons.

Firstly, in the back matter of many books, you’ll find an author’s thanks. So … this is my thanks to those who’ve helped with the promotion of Stranger at Sunset AND my recent free books—The Lottery and Unlocking the Mystery.

Secondly, this song echoes a sentiment I’ve been feeling of late, and that is …. The older I get, the less I know.

HUGS to those who’ve downloaded my books, paid or free, and reviewed them. Your reviews mean a lot to me and help me reach more readers, so THANK YOU. 

 * * *

Connect to all the wonderful people who’ve supported me in the past months and include them in your network.

Book review on Goodreads by Lydia Aswolf

Reblog by Jamie B. Musings

Guest blog for Junying Kirk

An interview with author, Raymond Bolton

In “Conversations LIVE” with podcaster, Cyrus Webb

Guest blog for author Jessica Subject

Guest blog for author Lisette Brodey

Reblog by Stephen Moran

I chat with a full cast on Live from the Morgue

I’m interviewed by Naida on The Bookworm

Stranger at Sunset book blast via Masquerade Tours

I am interviewed by Maria Savva on Goodreads

Guest blog with author, Casey Sheridan

Guest blog with author, Ingrid Hall

Author Spotlight with Reading Renee

Review of Stranger at Sunset by Reading Renee

Author Spotlight with The Pen and Muse

Review of Stranger at Sunset on Literary Litter

Review of Stranger at Sunset on The Minding Spot

I’m interviewed by author, Bill Kirton, part 1 & part 2

I’m interviewed by Loren Kleinman of Huff Post Books

Stranger at Sunset is part of new releases in Crime Fiction Lover

I’m interviewed by OmniMystery News

Review of Stranger at Sunset by 6 Feet Under Books

Review of Stranger at Sunset by The Young Folks

I’m interviewed by author Dahlia Donovan

Stranger at Sunset is in the spotlight for Celtic Lady Reviews

Review of Stranger at Sunset by author, Jo Armstrong via Ingrid Hall

Review of Stranger at Sunset by Minding Spot

I’m interviewed by R.B. Wood for The Word Count Podcast 

Review of Stranger at Sunset on Long and Short Reviews

I’m interviewed by author D.A. Bale

I’m interviewed by Casey Ryan for the Cutting Room Floor Podcast

Review of Stranger at Sunset by Book Babe

Review of Stranger at Sunset by English Bibliophile

Review of Stranger at Sunset on 2 sites by Ski-Wee’s Book Corner (1) & (2)

I’m interviewed by Book Goodies

Review of Stranger at Sunset by Crime Fiction Lover

The Lottery featured on Karen Einsel’s blog

The Lottery featured on Stephen Moran’s blog

Reblog by C.P. Bialois

I’m interviewed by The Indie View

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“Ah, but I was so much older then,

I’m younger than that now.”

–Bob Dylan

The following people have continued to share my books across their social networks and support me. They are a diverse group of: authors; bloggers; reviewers; designers; marketers; filmmakers; podcasters; artists; and of course—readers. 

In no particular order, I present some of the best people to have in your social network. I’ve linked them, so visit them and say “hi.” :)

Lisette Brodey
William Kendall
Karen Einsel
J.B. Graphics
Christoph Fischer
Billy Ray Chitwood
John Dolan
Larry Enright
Victoria Dougherty
Tim Dittmer
Rick Enriquez
Bill Kirton
Rob Schreck
Darcia Helle
R.B. Wood
Sessha Batto
Lydia Aswolf
Joe Hefferon
Maria Savva
Wyatt McIntyre
Carolyn Arnold
John Anstie
Steven M. Grant
Loren Kleinman
Christoph Paul
Alex Greenwood
Justin Bog
Annetta Ribken
Patti Larsen
Carol Romanella
Laurie Smith
Rob “Sharky” Pruneda
Efrain Nadal De Choudens
Casey Ryan
Cyrus Webb
Dannie C. Hill
Savannah Chase
Nicole Chardenet
Robert Chazz Chute
Rachel Thompson
Pavarti K. Tyler
The Bloody Munchkin
Sue Nador
Britt Skrabanek
Angus Vieira
BadRedhead Media
Sid Kali
Badass Marketing
Dom Portalla
Scott Leisk
2Life
Ken Flott
Wally Lane
Doreen Cox
Crime Fiction Lover
Michael Grimes
Lance Smith
Maxwell Cynn
Diantha Jones
Tony McManus
Marcella Selbach
Dean Harkness
Metal Queen Management
Michael Gabriel
Suzanna Burke
Karin Jacobson
Nanci Rathbun

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Filed under Important Announcements, Musical Mondays, Stranger at Sunset