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Entries in suspense (5)


Four More Weeks!


Good day family, friends, and writerly colleagues!  I promised a launch date for my new suspense novel, Dark Pretense, and I am delivering!

Save the date!  Tuesday, May 28th, 2013.

I am so excited to announce this book launch!  Dark Pretense has been almost two years in the making, began during the NaNoWriMo writing competition in 2011.  It was put on the back burner for a long time, mostly due to other commitments and not being able to clone my twisted imagination…or my typing fingers. 

Oh that I could….

I’m bursting with pride. I’m exhausted. I am desperately in need of a manicure. I’m giddy. I’m grumpy (my very patient partner insisted I throw this one in).  I’m humble.  And did I say I am proud?  Cause I am.

But most of all, I am satisfied. If you write, you know what I am talking about.  I have been through writer’s block, which is code for “total brain disconnect.”  I have been through writer’s fright, which is code for “I’m scared to death someone will find a typo.”  I have been through writer’s high, which is code for “drinking through the pain and memory lapses”. 

But I digress…

Yes, I’ve been through that, too.  Digression just about did me in, but I made it through. I am a rock.

So, folks, please do me the honor of helping me celebrate this amazing journey.  

More details to come.  Which is code for “I’m gonna bug the shit out of you people and you’ll get fucking sick of seeing my name on your blog roll, face book, twitter, and/or email.  Also code for “Writer’s desperation”.  But you’ll still love me because that’s the kind of wonderful friends/family/readers I have.

So in the spirit of whatever I can still muster after this  I give you….


Until the launch of Dark Pretense

Be there or you’ll miss out on the prizes, cheap wine, canned cheese, pigs-in-a-blanket, and virtual huckleberry pie.  You’ll also miss out on the topless cocktail waitress and waiter (still taking applications for these positions), and really bad jokes (my personal favorite part of a book launch).

Trust me. You don’t wanna miss this, people. 

Can I be frank? 

This is big.

This is a thing.

And this is me, shamelessly plugging my face off.

Ya’ll come, ya hear?

Click HERE to see Party Details




 ADDENDUM:  Launch date has been changed to Thursday, June 13th from 4 to 7 pm PST.


On the awesomeness of Tuesday and new book cover art

Nothing special really happens on a Tuesday.  Let’s face it; Monday steals any thunder Tuesday may muster by being loaded with the tasks and responsibilities of a new week.  Then there is Wednesday, which is commonly referred to as ‘Hump Day’. One can dream, right?  Hump Day totally trumps Tuesday.  Thursday holds the anticipation of the upcoming weekend, thus leaving Tuesday bland and colorless. And I don’t even have to mention Friday because we all know Friday kicks ass! Both Saturday and Sunday are more noteworthy than Tuesday for obvious reasons. Duh, the weekend. ‘Nuff said.

Don’t you feel sorry for Tuesday now?

Well I’m about to change all of that!  As of today, which is Tuesday (unless you read this late Monday night, then just play along) there’s a new Book Cover in town!

Yes, folks, take a gander at the cover for my upcoming novel, Dark Pretense! Ain’t she a beauty?


However, as much as I may enjoy the limelight (and I do, immensely!)  I cannot take credit for this beautiful photo and cover art.  This is the expert crafting of my son, Glenn.  I had a vision (no pills or weed, just a real bonafide vision) of the kind of cover that would enhance my story and draw readers in.  Glenn took that vision and morphed it into something of which this Mom/author is mighty proud!

Thank you son! Once again, you have me bursting with pride and love. I am truly blessed.

That being said, my  son has done such an amazing job, I have already branded him as my own personal book cover graphic artist/photographer extraordinaire.  Yes, I said it.  He’s a rock star.

Glenn has become quite the accomplished photographer in a very short time. When he takes on a project, he goes full-on until he masters whatever mission he pursues.   If you’d like to see his beautiful photos on display, kindly visit his Flickr account at  Show him some love.  He is most deserving!

And now, about my new book…here’s a synopsis, a tease, if you will…

Katy has a secret, one she’s kept her entire life, and one she will go to any lengths to protect.  Louisa is drawn to Katy and her secret, and determined to uncover her past. As Katy’s life unravels, more clues are revealed, and Louisa realizes Katy’s potential to be of danger to anyone who crosses her path. A cat and mouse game of deadly proportions ensues as Louisa struggles to stay one step ahead of Katy in order to protect herself and others. Will Louisa succeed in uncovering the dark side of Katy, or will she meet her own untimely demise before completing her self-appointed mission?


Stay tuned!  Launch date for

Dark Pretense

will be announced soon!



Dark Pretense finally a reality

The excitement is building. My nerves are on edge. Self-doubt is still lurking, but the big bad bitch called procrastination finally mounted her broom and flew the coop.

I finally finished my new book

All hail Queen Theresa!  The waters have indeed parted. The sun is out. Hell finally froze over. And I got off my lazy ass and made it all happen.


I started this journey during 2011’s NaNoWriMo, when I wrote the very first draft.  The working title at the time was The Secret.  Since that time, the story has had three different endings, been abandoned on numerous occasions for different projects, and caused its author a lot of sleepless nights and a fortune in cheap wine.

To say I’m proud of this book would be a huge understatement.

So now the fun starts. I haven’t settled on an exact online launch date yet, but it will be somewhere between the middle and last week of May.  Details to follow very soon, I promise.

My son and I are working on the cover art together, and should have something to share with the world within a couple weeks.   That is when it’s gonna get real for me -- when I can show you the book cover.

I am giddy. I am shaking with delight. I am beside myself with glee.  That Pollyanna bitch ain’t got anything on me!  I’m grinning from ear to ear.

So what’s my book about?  Three hints today.  More to follow in upcoming posts:

  • It’s about a woman with a secret.
  • It’s about a woman living with a secret her entire life.
  • It’s about a woman protecting her secret.


So that’s my big announcement today.  The book is finished, but there is much more to be done before I can begin pimping my wares on Amazon.

I am feeling the same butterflies I felt last year when Sara’s Sleep was about to be launched.

It’s like a really good drug.

Can’t get enough. This journey is so worth the effort. This feeling is so worth the journey.

I hope you’ll hang with me while I get my new fix on. It is my mission, my passion, and my pleasure to bring my new baby into the world.

I have Goosebumps.  For real.





What was I thinking?

The more fiction I write and expose to others, the more I hear statements like, “How did you ever think that up?” and “What would make you write something like that?”  In my mind, this was code for “Are you as big of a lunatic as your characters?”  or “Are YOU one of your characters?”  or “Have you gone off your medication again?”   After which come the deep, curious stares and the strained compliments.

All of this makes me giddy.  If I get these reactions, I have indeed done my job.

As a fiction writer, I must face the inevitable fact that people I know are going to question my reasons/motives for my stories.  They may not question my sanity or intelligence, but only because they are targeting a much more interesting part of me.  My “perceived” dark side. 

It has yet to be proven that everyone has a dark side, but I’m willing to bet hungry fiction readers are much more prone to darkness than the author of any book they peruse.  After all, we fiction readers all love a good scandal, don’t we?  We all enjoy that unknowing “cliff”.  What’s going to happen next?  Will the bad forces win out in the end, or will our heroine prevail?  Curious minds want to know.  That’s why we read fiction novels. We escape into someone else’s hell, adventure, or bliss.  This makes our lives more colorful.  This fulfills something in us.

That being said, when we actually know the author of said fiction, our minds can’t quite fully accept their work as pure fiction.  It’s only natural to question.  For example, shortly after Sara’s Sleep was published, I met an old colleague for lunch. She had purchased my book and wanted me to sign it for her.  I was quite honored to do this, as I hadn’t signed many books prior to our meeting.  It was all very new for me. 

When we sat down, she immediately took my book out of her purse and laid it on the table between us. She put her hand on it, as if it were about to fly away, and looked into my eyes.  In a low voice, she said, “Now tell me all about the writing of this book.  What inspired you? Were any of your characters based on persons in your past?  Have you had those types of nightmares? …”  The questions went on and on.  I felt as if I were hooked up to a lie detector or electric chair that would start smoking any minute.  I felt compelled to answer each question, although it really was none of her damned business.

It was a surreal experience, and one that I’ve been through several times since.  I’m okay though.  Since this began happening, I have done some research and found this to be quite normal.  If I want to be a fiction writer, it comes with the territory.

All of this has been in the back of my mind as I finish my new book.  It is a dark suspense novel with a sinister villain and a determined heroine.   It is not a novel for children.  It is not a novel for people who only enjoy a light romance with a happy ending.  It is complex and dark and full of unexpected twists and turns.  It is not horrific or graphic, however, and any sexual content is not of an offensive nature.  

With the help of my son, I have settled on an official name for my new book.  It is A Dark Pretense.  It will be coming out in a couple months if things continue to progress.

For the people I know personally, this book will bring up many questions, I am certain.  I understand that and am ready for the deluge.  I will just be happy that you will take the time to read my work.   Please do try to understand, however, that it is purely fiction.  I write fiction because I have a vivid imagination and enjoy the process immensely.  I don’t write about myself or anyone I know in my fiction.  It would not be fiction if I did so.    Of course, the jury is still out as to whether or not I’m a lunatic.  Sometimes even I question that.  

When I am writing fiction, I am doing what I love.  I am so fortunate to have found something that fulfills me and completes my life.  Not everyone can say they’ve found such a gift, and I count my blessings every day.

And now if you will please excuse me, I still have six episodes of Downton Abbey to watch before tonight’s Season 3 opener.  I’m in love with this series and completely immersed in every detail.  If you haven’t had the pleasure of watching Downton Abbey, I highly recommend it!

Ok, off I go!  Have a lovely day my friends!




Sneak peek

Everyone loves a sneak peek, right?  I know I do. 

For example, I'd love to have a sneak peek at the next movie in the Hunger Games trilogy.  I was like that with every Harry Potter book....and movie, as well.

So what's my point?  Well, I've been writing and talking about my new book for months now, making deadline promises. And then breaking deadline promises.

I no longer make deadline promises. 

I only promise that my book will be coming out as soon as I feel it is ready. 

For now, however, I thought it would be enticing to provide a chapter or two now and then, for your perusal and (hopefully) to arouse your curiosity.

So please check out Chapter 3 below and let me know if it makes you want to read more.....or just puts you to sleep.

To set the stage, Louisa has just begun a job at Landsville Retirement Village, and is intrigued by its most mysterious resident, Katy, who has an attitude and a lot to hide.


Chapter 3 of The Pretense (working title)

Louisa checked in for her 3:30 to midnight shift a few minutes early, and went to the kitchen for some coffee. She didn’t care much for the food at Landsville Retirement Village, but the coffee was something special. She couldn’t put a finger on what blend they must have been using, but made a mental note to ask the kitchen manager. As she looked around the dining room for the manager, she noticed Katy sitting in the far corner, with her head propped up on one arm. She was sound asleep. 

Louisa walked over and gently tapped her on the shoulder, which startled her awake. “What? What do you want? I’m having my tea and minding my own business,” snapped Katy. 

“I just thought maybe you might need some help to your room or something. You seem tired, Katy,”  offered Louisa.

“Tell me something. Why is it you always want to help me somewhere? Have I asked for your help? Do I look like I need your help? If I do need your help, you’ll know it, trust me. Now please, leave me in peace.” With that, Katy got up and headed down the hall to her room. Louisa decided today might not be the day for socializing with Ms. Katy.

The kitchen manager came through and Louisa walked over to ask her about the coffee. “Oh, it’s a special blend of three of the cheapest brands they sell at Sam’s Club. I’ll give you a little sample to take home and write out the recipe,” she said. Louisa thought this woman might be one of the most enthusiastic kitchen employees she’d ever met. 

“Thank you so much, Miss?”

“The name’s Shirley. Shirley Jones. Not the actress. Wish I had a dollar for every time someone thought I meant the Shirley Jones. Hell, I’m much better looking!” Shirley let out a hearty laugh that befit the three hundred plus pounds she carried around. 

“Nice to meet you, Shirley! And thank you for the coffee. I don’t know how it is so good, but it is,” said Louisa, as she started to leave the dining room. 

“Louisa, were you just talking with Katy?  She’s a strange old bird, that one. I’d watch out for her if I were you. She’s got them evil eyes. And she talks to herself. I mean, she talks to herself all the time. And she doesn’t care who’s watching either. That’s just too weird for my blood.” Shirley seemed a little too concerned with Katy’s affairs, thought Louisa.

“That’s interesting, Shirley, because I find her to be delightful. I’m sure we will be great friends soon,”  lied Louisa, but she wasn’t about to get involved in office gossip this early on. She’d only been working there a few days and she needed her job.

Louisa left the dining room and headed down the hall, past the TV room and clinic, and into the west wing of the complex, where Katy’s room was located.  As she walked by her room, she noticed the door was closed, but she heard considerable noise coming from inside the room. It sounded like Katy had thrown something against the wall and was yelling. She started to knock on the door to ask if there was a problem, but then hesitated as she remembered Katy’s scolding earlier. As she started to walk away, she heard Katy’s voice and paused to listen. Katy was no longer yelling, but chatting away in a cheerful tone, and appeared to be having a conversation with someone, although Louisa heard no other voices.  Katy’s chatter paused several times, as if she were waiting on an answer. The chatter went on for a few minutes, and Louisa was paralyzed at the door, enthralled with the mysterious conversation on the other side. 

Suddenly, another staff assistant walked by, and voiced her hellos to Louisa in a rather loud manner. The conversation immediately stopped in Katy’s room. Louisa quickly matched stride with the assistant, and made her exit down the hall. Louisa was determined to learn Katy’s story.


That's it for now.  Want more?