KINDLE SCOUT PROGRAM

I’m sorry to report, my new novel, CLUTTERED ATTIC SECRETS, did not make the cut in the Kindle Scout program. Thanks to all of you who voted. I will be publlishinng it myself in the next week or so, all going well. Thanks again!

KINDLE SCOUT PROGRAM ENTRY

http://amzn.to/1A7LTZ4
My latest-written novel has been placed in the Kindle Scout program. I put up my information on the program’s website with a cover, description, and the first few chapters, plus author bio. My next step is to ask people to vote for my title. The more votes I get, the better my chances of getting a contract. It will only take a minute or two to hit the “Nominate me” button at the website. Please do, and thanks.

clutteredatticsecrets-08http://amzn.to/1A7LTZ4

REVIEW OF SECRETS OF HONOR BY CAROL KILGORE

 If you like suspense.
If you like interesting characters.
If you like an intriguing plot.
If you like a little romance with your mysteries.
If you like crime in high places—

SecretsofHonor_front_1600x2400_May2I have a book to recommend.

Carol Kilgore’s latest crime fiction with a kiss novel involves beautiful women and beautiful jewelry. It features the President of the United States and his first lady. And a hunk, Dave, for the main character, Kat Marengo to hanker for. Kat and Dave are working for a secret agency with ties to Homeland Security. They are tasked with watching out for suspicious persons at an event the President is attending, and they each have special skills for doing that, Kat in particular.

The stakes are raised when the First Lady secretly places a note in her hand asking Kate to meet her later. When she does, the First Lady tells Kat a friend’s daughter has been kidnapped. That’s when things get dangerous. For the First Lady who is willing to trade herself for the safe return of the girl, and for Dave and Kat who decide to locate the child and bring her home.

Well, of course you’ll have to read the book to find out if Dave and Kat get together. And if they accomplish the First Lady’s mission. The jewelry adds an interesting note, as does Kat’s expertise with disguises.

Grab a copy here either in print or ebook format:

http://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Honor-Carol-Kilgore-ebook/dp/B00NH0QTO6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1419644170&sr=8-1&keywords=secrets+of+honor

You won’t be disappointed.

BAD WRITING COSTS THE WRITER MONEY

Grammarly, the grammar checkers, did a study, which was posted on Huffington Post not too long ago.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/09/05/grammar-infographic_n_5767902.html

Grammarly proofread 400+ freelancer profiles from all eight categories of the Elance platform for grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors. To adjust for quality of work, they only selected freelancers with an average rating of four stars or above. Then they looked at correlation between earnings and number of mistakes. They hope the direction of the data spurs some thought and conversation about the importance of good writing. Their goal is to raise awareness for the importance of good writing. Here’s the chart with their findings:

grammar infographic

Here’s the link to the Grammarly site in case you’d like to check some of your own writing for errors: It couldn’t hurt!

http://www.grammarly.com/grammarcheck

Here’s to good writing!

P. D. JAMES

I woke up to the news today that P.D. James, at age 94, has passed away. I was very sad to read this since she is on my personal list of top ten writers, so unless they pull some older works from a drawer or trunk, I won’t be able to read anything new by her ever again.

What made her stand out for me was that she delved deeply into her characters’ lives, especially their psychological lives. Then there was the mystery, of course, always extremely well plotted. If you haven’t read anything by her, I strongly suggest you do.

Here are some links to learn more about this amazing woman and writer.

Her official webpage (check out the library tab for a list of all her books):

http://www.randomhouse.com/features/pdjames/

The Wikipedia entry:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P._D._James

Her Amazon author page (in case you didn’t realize this, most authors have a separate page on Amazon that lists their books, a bio, and other info about them and their work—yes, including me):

http://www.amazon.com/P.-D.-James/e/B000AP5NPM

Interviews:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/authorinterviews/7894385/PD-James-interview-I-have-lived-a-very-happy-and-fulfilled-life.html

http://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/1627/the-art-of-fiction-no-141-p-d-james

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2012/jul/15/pd-james-author-interview-readers

Fabulous quotes with many pictures of the author:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/danieldalton/9-pd-james-quotes-every-writer-needs-to-read

And sadly, a few obituaries:

http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-30232569

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/nov/27/pd-james

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/nov/27/pd-james

Anyone else have a great link to share? Rest in peace, Phyllis.

A BROKEN LIFE, JUST PUBLISHED!

Out this month, A BROKEN LIFE is now “live.” Click on the cover image anywhere on this site to learn more.This is the second book in the Paula Mitchell, PI, series. Treat yourself to a new mystery novel. And of course, reviews very welcome.

WE HAVE A WINNER!

Happy Friday. And thanks to all of you wonderful people who participated in my poll. Your votes and your comments were wonderful.

And here’s the lucky winner picked by Random.com:

Meg Opperman

 
Meg, please get in touch with me at janchristensen@janchristensen.com about your free copy of BLACKOUT. I’ll need to know what version you would like and how to send it to you.

What I learned: First, all the blurbs were too long. The votes were about evenly divided between 2 and 3, so I’m going to go with my gut, pick the one I think is best, but shorten it. You’ll have to wait for me to get the book out there to see which one I chose. When I do, I’ll announce it at my usual social media spots and on my website so you’ll know. And of course I’ll let Meg know her copy is on its way.

Thanks again, all. You were a huge help!

VISITING THE TIKI HUT TODAY

Today I’m over at Carol Kilgore’s Tike Hut talking about, what else, how to get organized if you’re a writer. Hope everyone will stop by and let me know if my post is at all helpful to you. I will be popping in at the Hut to comment on comments as the week goes by. Oh, and there’s a giveaway of ORGANIZED TO DEATH for the commenters. So get there before Thursday, 10 p.m. to enter!

http://underthetikihut.blogspot.com/2013/07/need-time-on-your-side.html

Free drinks for all! Wear your beach hat; I did! Come on over, the weather’s fine and the water nice and warm.

CONTEST TO WIN MY UPCOMING SUSPENSE NOVEL

Today I need your help. My next book is almost ready to be published. I have written three descriptions and have to choose one for the back cover and to put up everywhere it’s needed. Because this novel, BLACKOUT, has two main characters and switches between their points of view, I wrote one from each viewpoint, and one that includes both.

COVER BY DEREK MURPHY

Please pick the one you like best and “vote” in the comments section of this blog. Cutoff is midnight Wednesday of next week. I will have a drawing for the winner, who will receive a copy of BLACKOUT as soon as it’s published. The winner can choose between a Kindle edition, a PDF file, or a trade paperback, signed copy. Check my blog next Friday to see if you’re the winner and get in touch with me privately about what version you would like and where to deliver it to.

Now for the descriptions:

1. Two VPs:

Who is Alice Strong? Even Alice doesn’t know the answer to that question. Her life seems to have begun as she walked along a dark, lonely road. She got lucky when a nice young man picked her up and delivered her to the home of a woman in Valleyview, California, who takes in lost souls. Alice knew enough to claim she’s eighteen, but for reasons unclear even to her, she won’t admit to anyone that she’s lost her memory.

Betty Cranston, director of nurses, reluctantly hires Alice to work at Merry Hills Nursing Center, only because she needs aides desperately. She’s surprised at how agitated Alice becomes when she finds a dead patient. After all, people die in nursing homes on a regular basis. But Betty doesn’t like the way the resident is posed with her hands folded on her chest, as if laid out for her funeral. When two more are discovered in the same manner, Betty is convinced someone is murdering her patients. She hates the fact she’s begun to suspect certain people, including Alice Strong. With her own mother a resident, Betty’s worries increase and a desperate measure is taken to catch the killer in action.

Bit by bit, Alice remembers pieces of her life before her blackout. As she does, the murderer makes a surprising move that puts Alice and Betty’s mother in jeopardy.  When the final memories tear into her, feelings of helplessness and sorrow become overwhelming. Will Alice have the fortitude to save both Betty’s mother and her own life?

 2.  Betty’s VP

Betty Cranston, director of nurses at Merry Hills Nursing Center, is happy with her job. She does her best to make sure the residents, including her mother, are happy and well cared for. Everything’s going great until, one after another, residents turn up dead, all posed as if laid out for a funeral.

Everyone is a suspect.  It could be the husband of one of the victims, the new girl, Alice, who’s suffering from amnesia, or one of the nurses turned “angel of mercy?” Betty’s unsure of what action to take–the police don’t believe there’s a threat and the nursing home wants to keep things quiet. Terrified for her mother and her own safety, Betty only knows she’s got to get to the bottom of this horror before somebody else dies, maybe even her own mother.

3. Alice’s VP

Who is Alice Strong? Even Alice doesn’t know the answer to that question. Her life seems to have begun as she walked along a dark, lonely road. She got lucky when a nice young man picked her up and delivered her to the home of a woman in Valleyview, California, who takes in lost souls. Alice knows enough to claim she’s eighteen, but for reasons unknown even to her, she won’t admit to anyone that she’s lost her memory. Reluctantly, she accepts a job at the local nursing home, and on the second day, discovers a dead woman. She knows she over-reacts, but can’t help herself. When yet another woman dies soon after, Alice becomes aware that the Director of Nurses, Betty Cranston, believes they are being murdered and that she suspects Alice. Alice begins to wonder if she might be the killer because she’s already lost her memory once. Could she be murdering patients without remembering?

Bit by bit, Alice puts together pieces of her life before her blackout and comes to understand her past. As she does, the murderer makes a surprising move that puts Alice and Betty’s paralyzed mother in jeopardy.  When the final memories tear into her, feelings of helplessness and sorrow become overwhelming. Will Alice have the fortitude to save both Betty’s mother and herself?

Now, please vote for #1, 2 or 3! Thanks for your help with this.