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Sunday, September 24

Serious Themes in Cozy Mysteries

By Lesley A. Diehl, @LesleyDiehl

Part of the How They Do It series


Lesley is a country gal through and through, from her childhood on a dairy farm in Illinois to college in a cornfield in Iowa, Lesley creates sassy, snoopy protagonists who embrace chasing killers in country settings. Lesley writes several series: the Big Lake Murder mysteries and the Eve Appel mysteries both set in rural Florida; the Laura Murphy mysteries located on a lake in upstate New York; and short stories featuring a few of Lesley’s unique relatives from back on the farm (Aunt Nozzie and the Grandmothers). She is inspired by an odd set of literary muses: a ghost named Fred and a coyote as yet unnamed.

Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads |

Take it away Lesley...

Saturday, September 23

Real Life Diagnostics: Is This MG Opening Clear Enough to Make You Read On?

Critique By Janice Hardy, @Janice_Hardy

Real Life Diagnostics is a weekly column that studies a snippet of a work in progress for specific issues. Readers are encouraged to send in work with questions, and I diagnose it on the site. It’s part critique, part example, and designed to help the submitter as well as anyone else having a similar problem.

If you're interested in submitting to Real Life Diagnostics, please check out these guidelines.

Submissions currently in the queue: Five


Please Note: As of today, RLD slots are booked through October 28.

This week’s questions:

Is this clear enough for someone to want to read further, is there enough ‘show’.

Market/Genre: Middle Grade

On to the diagnosis…

Friday, September 22

8 Tips on Writing a Series

By Julie Moffett, @JMoffettAuthor

Part of the How They Do It Series


Julie Moffett is a bestselling author and writes in the genres of mystery, historical romance and paranormal romance. She has won numerous awards, including the 2014 Mystery & Mayhem Award for Best YA/New Adult Mystery, the prestigious 2014 HOLT Award for Best Novel with Romantic Elements, a HOLT Merit Award for Best Novel by a Virginia Author (twice!), the 2016 Award of Excellence, a PRISM Award for Best Romantic Time-Travel AND Best of the Best Paranormal Books of 2002, and the 2011 EPIC Award for Best Action/Adventure Novel. She has also garnered additional nominations for the Bookseller's Best Award, Daphne du Maurier Award and the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence. Her book A Double-Edged Blade was an Amazon #1 Best-Selling Novel.

Julie has a B.A. in Political Science and Russian Language from Colorado College, a M.A. in International Affairs from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and an M.Ed from Liberty University. She has worked as a proposal writer, journalist, teacher, librarian and researcher. Julie speaks Russian and Polish and has two sons.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads |

Take it away Julie...

Thursday, September 21

A Survey on Facebook Advertising

By Janice Hardy, @Janice_Hardy

Hi all!


Michael Alvear is doing a survey on Facebook adverting, and is looking for indue authors willing to answer a few quick questions (just six). If you have time, please pop on over.

You can answer the survey in one of three ways:

His website (there are other author-related surveys there as well you might be interested in).

Directly to the Survey Monkey site.

Right here, so you don't have to move.

Create your survey with SurveyMonkey

Safeguarding Your Livelihood

By Jana Oliver, @crazyauthorgirl

Part of the Indie Authors Series


It seems this fall has been one of considerable personal challenges, not only for indie authors but just about everyone in the U.S. (and elsewhere). If you live in the Pacific Northwest or the Southwest, you’re fighting fires. If you’re in the Caribbean, Texas, Florida and Gulf States, you’ve got multiple hurricanes to contend with. In short, it’s been a nasty time for a lot of people.

Though my situation is nothing like those mentioned above—a self-imposed house sale and a move out of the country—there are similarities in the preparation required to keep my business on track. Because no matter how creative we are, it all comes down to keeping our work safe.

Wednesday, September 20

Stuck in the Middle

By Ray Flynt, @RayFlynt

Part of the How They Do It series


Ray Flynt just finished writing YARD GOAT, #7 in his Brad Frame mystery series (railroad aficionados may recognize the title reference). Publication date will be soon. He has also written KISSES OF AN ENEMY and COLD OATH, standalone suspense novels. A native of Pennsylvania, Ray authored and performs a one-man play based on the life of Ben Franklin. He is a member of Mystery Writers of America, active with their Florida Chapter, and a life member of the Florida Writers Association. Ray retired from a diverse career in criminal justice, education, the arts, and human services.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads |

Take it away Ray...