Tag Archive for: romantic suspense

The Story Behind the Story, Part 2

Original Paperback Cover

By Lois Winston 

I began my writing career penning romance and romantic suspense before I segued into mystery. These early novels hold a special place in my heart because two of them were my first published books. They also represented the beginning of what would become a trademark of sorts for my books, whether romance or mystery, and that is my use of actual events as source material for my plots. I thought I’d devote some of my monthly spots on The Stiletto Gang this year telling you how some real-life events influenced my writing.

 

Back in October, I wrote a blog post about how an acquaintance’s not-so-perfect marriage led to my writing career and played a role in the development of Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception, my first novel and second published book. The plot of that book was also influenced by a news story unfolding at the time in a Philadelphia suburb not far from where I lived.

 

On April 29, 1997, Stephanie Rabinowitz, a twenty-nine-year-old wife, part-time attorney, and mother of a one-year-old, was found strangled in her bathtub. Her husband Craig at first claimed someone had broken into their home and murdered Stephanie.

 

The police weren’t buying it. They discovered Craig had massive debts, had cheated friends out of nearly a quarter million dollars, that his career as a latex glove salesman was bogus, and that he was racking up more than two thousand dollars a week at Delilah’s Den, a “gentleman’s club.” He also frequented prostitutes and bought $8500 worth of furniture for one of the Delilah’s Den dancers.

 

Although Stephanie earned only about $33,000 a year for her part-time legal work, the couple had $300,000 worth of mortgages on their home, which was valued at only $230,000 and credit card debt of $100,000.

 

Craig had also taken out a $1.8 million dollar life insurance policy on his wife. Confronted with the staggering evidence against him, Craig Rabinowitz pleaded guilty the day his trial was set to begin.

Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception is not about the Rabinowitz case. In some ways, Karl Pollack, Anastasia’s deceased husband in my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mysteries, has more in common with Craig Rabinowitz than does Phillip Wadsworth, the deceased husband in Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception. However, the Rabinowitz case did get me thinking about…well, love, lies, and deception. But mostly lies and deception, and I ran with it, incorporating some aspects of the case as well as what I knew of the systemic Philadelphia political corruption of the time.

I’m currently writing the eleventh book in my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, and for the first time in one of my novels, I’m incorporating an actual unsolved crime that has fascinated me for more than thirty years. Stay tuned.

~*~

USA Today and Amazon bestselling and award-winning author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick lit, women’s fiction, children’s chapter books, and nonfiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Kirkus Reviews dubbed her critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” In addition, Lois is a former literary agent and an award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry.

 

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How a “Perfect” Marriage Led to a Writing Career

By Lois Winston

Many authors mention in their bios that they always wanted to be a writer. Not me. I wanted to be an astronaut. Thanks to a right brain that quakes at the sight of anything requiring math skills, not to mention a body prone to motion sickness, that dream never came true.

My urge to write came as a result of a dream I had while on a business trip. Eventually, that dream became Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception, a story about secrets and revenge and the steps some people will go to in order to protect the former and achieve the latter. 

 

I’ve always been fascinated by both secrets and revenge. Who among us doesn’t have secrets? Who among us hasn’t harbored revenge fantasies? Is it possible to get through junior high school without a hefty dose of both? I doubt it. 

 

Years ago, I knew a woman who went to great lengths to project the ideal marriage. She constantly bragged about how much her husband loved her and what a perfect marriage they had. Then I learned the secrets behind the lies. She was carrying on an affair that he discovered by tapping his own phone. Mr. and Mrs. Perfect Marriage were anything but. Although Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception isn’t about that marriage, it got me thinking about public persona versus private reality.

 

I’m also fascinated by the way the “common” folk act around celebrities. In Six Degrees of Separation, the playwright John Guare called it “star f****ing,” that annoying, name-dropping habit of those who need to brag about their connection to someone famous, no matter how tenuous the link: They once shared a plane with George Clooney, or they went to the same high school as Brad Pitt, or they played tennis with Pierce Brosnan’s third cousin’s wife’s uncle’s accountant. Of course, they fail to mention that George was sitting in First Class while they were stuck in Coach or Brad graduated a decade after they attended the school. And let’s just forget about Pierce and the accountant. That’s really taking six degrees of separation a bit too far. However, for many people being able to show some connection between themselves and a celebrity makes them more important, if only in their own eyes.

 

So there I was on this business trip, and I suppose I was subconsciously thinking about Mr. and Mrs. Perfect Marriage when I had this dream. Normally, I don’t remember my dreams, but I remembered this one. And what was even spookier was that each night for the next couple of weeks I dreamed another “chapter” of the dream. Eventually, I was dreaming up chapters during the day as well as at night. Finally, I decided that to get the story out of my head, I should write it down. Fast forward a few weeks and I’m the proud author of a 50,000-word romance that spanned 35 years. 

 

Talk about clueless!

 

Of course, I didn’t know I was clueless. I thought I’d just written the greatest romance of all time. But when I pushed my baby out of the nest into the world of publishing, she flew right back with her beak stuffed full of rejection letters. 

 

However, I wasn’t about to be deterred by rejection letters or lack of knowledge. Undaunted, I handed over my VISA card to a friendly salesperson at Barnes & Noble and walked out with an armload of how-to-write-a-novel books. Between the books, joining some writing organizations, and attending writing conferences, I eventually got a clue, and nearly ten years to the day I had that dream, I had my first publishing contract.

 

I never forgot about my first clueless effort, though. I liked the characters I’d created, even if the story needed major surgery. I didn’t think Emma and Logan deserved to spend eternity under the bed with nobody but the dust bunnies and me ever getting to know them. I went back and rewrote that first book, and it became Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception

 

In the book, Logan Crawford is initially attracted to Emma Wadsworth because she doesn’t care who he is. At first, he’s not even sure she recognizes him, and he can’t imagine how that’s possible. After all, he was recently named Sexiest Man Alive by People magazine. Everyone recognizes Logan Crawford, whether he wants them to or not. He’s used to a fawning public, but Emma doesn’t fawn. And that makes her both intriguing and irresistible in Logan’s eyes. 


However, Emma’s the one with all the secrets. And she’s also the target of someone’s revenge. Make that two someones. In the blink of an eye, she goes from being Philadelphia’s most beloved citizen to the city’s most notorious criminal. Think scandal. Think long buried secrets. Think murder. 

There are many paths to publication. Some people are lucky enough to find the straightest, most direct route. For most of us, it takes years of honing our craft before we’re offered the golden ticket, but it’s worth the journey. This month marks the release of Stitch, Bake, Die!, the tenth book in my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery Series and my nineteenth published novel.










USA Today and Amazon bestselling and award-winning author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick lit, women’s fiction, children’s chapter books, and nonfiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Kirkus Reviews dubbed her critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” In addition, Lois is a former literary agent and an award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry.

 

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The Hardest Hit Release!

 by Bethany Maines


The Hardest Hit, book 3 of the Deveraux Legacy Series will be released next Monday! I’m over the moon excited about this.  I’ve been working on this series for three years, and with one book left, I’m ecstatic with the reception the series has received (award-winning audio book, 5 star reviews).  
SIDE NOTE: Preorder and get the preorder sales price of .99 cents – price goes up 24 hours after the release! https://books2read.com/hardest-hit/
However, I’m often hesitant to talk about the ideas that generated the Deveraux Legacy Series because they are distinctly un-romantic and NOT what sells a book. A little over three years ago I started with a simple question – how could romance writers stick with the traditional “alpha male” hero in an era of #metoo? What people get up to between the covers of romance novels isn’t intended to be real life, but at some point I can’t divorce the reality of what a billionaire can do on a private island to young women (Jeffery Epstein) and then engage with that as a romantic fantasy about a woman forced to work as a prostitute and kept as prisoner on an island (a book series that kept popping up in my social media feed).  And the idea that an abusive, emotionally distant man was the hero of anything was very problematic to me. But as someone who reads and enjoys romance novels, I’m supposed to be able to reconcile this. As a feminist, I honestly wasn’t sure I could. 
Which is about when I thought, “Maybe I should stick to straight mysteries.” The bad guys are bad and the good guys solve crime. Sure, there’s plenty of room for moral ambiguity and gray areas and complete characters, but end of the day… The bad guys get caught and the good guys triumph. Morally speaking, I don’t have to feel conflicted about reading or writing those kind of books.  
But I like romance! And I like those tough guys that take charge, make wise-cracks and would go through hell and high-water for their fair-maiden. So how do you take a guy that’s maybe done some questionable things and make him a hero?  It was that question that lead me to write the Deveraux Legacy Series.  Which, rest assured, is not to say that my heroes are sleazebags.  They’re funny, brave, damaged, and well-meaning individuals who are trying the best they can.  And maybe they don’t quite fit into the “dark romance” section of the romance world, but they do fit into the “I can read this and not feel weird” section of the library. So I hope that my readers will also enjoy some “alpha” heroes and their feminist as hell heroines as they battle bad guys and find love and hopefully more than a few laughs.

About the Book: 

Evan Deveraux has faced down his demons, but can he face his own family?

The one thing that kept troubled Wall Street wizard Evan Deveraux from giving into his own depression was the love of his family. But as Evan digs deeper into his family’s past he discovers a secret that shakes his faith in the Deveraux family. Now the only person Evan trusts is the brilliant and adorable Dr. Olivia West. But Evan’s abusive past and dark family history are on a collision course with the present and even as Evan fights to keep Olivia safe from the mercenaries targeting his family, Evan and Olivia find their relationship in cross-hairs of both their families. Evan is going to need the help of all of his cousins to make his happily ever after come true.

Release Date: 10/18/21

Pre-Order Link: https://books2read.com/hardest-hit/

Chapter 1 sneak peek: https://bethanymaines.com/deveraux-chapter-1/

Buy the Series (all vendors): 

https://books2read.com/Lost-Heir (prequel novella)

https://books2read.com/The-Second-Shot (Book 1)

·       https://books2read.com/Cinderella-Secret (Book 2) 

Win a paperback copy:

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/332708-the-hardest-hit
Giveaway closes October 25th!

**

Bethany Maines is the award-winning author of the Carrie Mae MysteriesSan Juan Islands MysteriesShark Santoyo Crime Series, and numerous short stories. When she’s not traveling to exotic lands, or kicking some serious butt with her black belt in karate, she can be found chasing her daughter or glued to the computer working on her next novel. You can also catch up with her on Twitter, FacebookInstagram, and BookBub.

Audio Books

 by Bethany Maines

On my first book, Bulletproof Mascara, the
novel was also spun off into an audio book and (guilty admission) I have never
listened to it. Or rather, I got ten minutes in, freaked out, turned it off and
never went back.  It wasn’t that it was bad. It was more that the voices
in my head had become external, but they weren’t actually my voices.  The process of publishing is, in many ways, about
taking something deeply personal and turning it over into the public domain. And
at the time, I had barely come to terms with my friends, family, and complete
strangers having opinions on my characters. Having the auditory sensation of
hearing them in different voices was completely disconcerting.

However, it’s been a minute since then (I love how that phrase implies
that it really was a short amount of time) and I’m a little more resigned to
the process of sharing my fake people with the world. So I recently took a deep
breath and dipped a toe back into the audio waters.  This time the process
was much better.  Not only did I get to select my voice actor, but I could
add my two-cents on her interpretation. I’m completely in love with this new
version of my novel The Second
Shot
. It’s been so fun to hear the book with her voice. It has also been illuminating to realize when I’ve written something that looks so good on the page, but turns out to be difficult to read out loud.  

The Second Shot is
book one of the Deveraux Legacy series and I can’t wait for my voice actress to
tackle book 2, The Cinderella Secret,
and 3, The Hardest Hit (due out
10.18.21).  Currently the book is under going the Quality Assurance check with Audible and once approved it will hit the virtual store shelves.

Listen to an audio sample and learn more here:
https://bethanymaines.com/the-deveraux-legacy/

Or purchase the print edition here (¢.99!): books2read.com/The-Second-Shot

A drunken mistake in college
cost US Marshal Maxwell Ames the affection of Dominique Deveraux and six years
later, he’s determined to fix the slip-up. But there’s just one tiny
problem—someone wants the Deveraux family dead. 
Dominique Deveraux
never expected Max to reappear in her life, let alone apologize, but as
Dominique investigates the mysterious attacks on her wealthy family Max quickly
becomes far more than her one time college classmate. Now, Max and Dominique
must dodge mercenaries and bullets as they try to make sure that they’re the
only ones who get a second shot.


**

Bethany Maines is the award-winning author of the Carrie Mae Mysteries, San Juan Islands Mysteries, Shark Santoyo Crime Series, and numerous
short stories. When she’s not traveling to exotic lands, or kicking some
serious butt with her black belt in karate, she can be found chasing her
daughter or glued to the computer working on her next novel.
You can also catch up with her on Twitter, FacebookInstagram, and BookBub.

And Now for Something Completely Different…

By Lois Winston 

With only a few breaks, my life since late 2009 has been consumed by Anastasia Pollack, the reluctant amateur sleuth of my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mysteries. That’s when I signed a contract for the first three books in the series, the first of which debuted in 2011. In 2013, the publisher and I couldn’t come to mutually acceptable terms for more Anastasia books and a second series, The Empty Nest Mysteries. I turned down both contracts and decided to indie publish. Ever since, it’s been all-Anastasia, all the time, with one exception.

 

In 2015 I was invited to take part in a new venture from Amazon. Kindle Worlds was a foray into fan fiction where anyone could write novellas that tied into handpicked existing series. To get the project up and running, Amazon invited additional authors, many recommended by the series authors, to create the first novellas. 

 

There were few rules we had to follow in creating these companion novellas. Authors could use as little or as much of the existing series world as they wanted. We could even change the tone of the original books in the series.

 

I was asked to write a novella based on author CJ Lyons’ Shadow Ops Series. CJ writes what she calls “Thrillers with Heart.” I write humorous amateur sleuth/cozy mysteries. No problem. Mom Squad reimagined her domestic thriller series as a humorous caper.

 

The Kindle Worlds program disbanded a few years later. The novella authors were allowed to republish their work as long as they received permission from the series author and all references to the original series were removed or changed.

 

I’m not the fastest writer, and Anastasia tends to keep me busy. I finally got around to updating my novella a few months ago after the release of A Sew Deadly Cruise, the ninth and latest Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery. However, I held off publishing the novella so it wouldn’t compete with the release of that book. 

 

Mom Squad was expanded and rebranded as Moms in Black, a Mom Squad Caper. The book is more tongue-in-cheek humorous romantic suspense than cozy mystery. If the novella does well, I plan to write two more Mom Squad Caper novellas for a 3-novella series.

 

Moms in Black

A Mom Squad Caper

 

When Cassandra Davenport applies for a job at www.savingtheworld.us, she expects to find a ‘green’ charity. Instead, she becomes the newest member of a covert organization run by ex-government officials. Dubbed the Mom Squad, the organization is the brainchild of three former college roommates—attorney general Anthony Granville, ex-FBI agent Gavin Demarco, and tech billionaire Liam Hatch—all of whom have lost loved ones at the hands of terrorists. Financed by Hatch, they work in the shadows and without the constraints of congressional oversight, reporting directly to Granville.

 

Demarco heads up one of the six groups that comprise the new operation. He hires Cassandra as the newest member of his New Jersey based team. In the course of monitoring possible terrorist threats, the Mom Squad discovers a link to Cassandra’s ex-husband. Before she’s fully trained, Cassandra is thrust into a world where her ex may be involved with radicalized terrorists bent on killing as many Americans as possible.


And while they’re saving the world from an imminent attack, what in the world will Cassandra do about all that sexual tension simmering between her and her new boss?


Click here to read an excerpt.

 

Buy Links (pre-order now; available 2/8/21)

Kindle 

Kobo 

Nook 

Apple Books 

Paperback (coming soon)


USA Today and Amazon bestselling and award-winning author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick lit, women’s fiction, children’s chapter books, and nonfiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Kirkus Reviews dubbed her critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” In addition, Lois is a former literary agent and an award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry.

Release Day!

by Bethany Maines

My latest book baby has been released into the wild. The Cinderella Secret, book 2 of The Deveraux Legacy series, is a romantic suspense with plenty of action, feminist flare and a hero and heroine who had to learn to literally take their masks off to find true love. And my darling book baby is already racking up some stellar reviews!

5.0 out of 5 stars Aiden and Ella kick ass together!

Fast paced, super enjoyable romantic thriller. I love these characters!

5.0 out of 5 stars I NEED the next book

I fell in love with these characters while reading the first book. Now I get to come back and fall in love with them all over again. One of the things I liked best about this book was that we got to peel back even more layers of the masks these Deveraux youngsters shield themselves with.

5.0 out of 5 stars  Don’t miss a word!

I am so enjoying this series as the author’s style of writing makes you not want to miss even one word. The humorous and sarcastic interaction between this blended family highlights their closeness.

The Cinderella Secret is book 2 of the Deveraux Legacy series and I have loved every second with my characters.  I’m so excited to see that readers are too! This romantic thriller balances humor, mystery and romance into one action-packed package. 

Want to read now? Buy it here>>https://books2read.com/Cinderella-Secret

Want to learn more about the series?  Read more here>> https://bethanymaines.com/the-deveraux-legacy/

**

Bethany Maines is the award-winning author of the Carrie Mae Mysteries, San Juan Islands Mysteries, Shark Santoyo Crime Series, and numerous
short stories. When she’s not traveling to exotic lands, or kicking some
serious butt with her black belt in karate, she can be found chasing her
daughter or glued to the computer working on her next novel. You can also catch up with her on Twitter, FacebookInstagram, and BookBub.

Gay Yellen: The Fortuneteller’s Prophesy

Ever had and unexplainable, eerily paranormal experience? In honor of Halloween and El Dia de Los Muertos, I offer my spooky, true story.
It began in the other-worldly parlor of a New Orleans psychic, the summer after college. I was making a movie there. As we finished the day’s shoot, the cinematographer invited me and another friend to join him and his wife, Donna, for an unusual get-together.

His mother-in-law had recently died. Deeply grieved, Donna had found a spiritual psychic who promised to put her in contact with her Mom beyond the grave. My friend and I were to provide emotional support during the session.

That evening, we parked in front of an old brick two-story in a poorly lit neighborhood near the French Quarter. We rang the bell. Madame, the psychic, opened the door. Round and elderly, with unnaturally black curls framing her pudgy, wrinkled face and a huge antique cameo at her bosom, she wobbled ahead, leading us into a stuffy parlor.

Blood red walls flickered with candlelight from dozens of votives scattered around the room. An altar-sized crucifix of Jesus, eyes rolled back in ecstasy, hung above the mantel. Statuettes of saints populated almost every flat surface.

The cinematographer and his wife sat on a fraying black satin sofa, holding hands. Heavy burgundy curtains blocked the windows behind them. Madame pointed us to two side chairs and settled herself into a gold brocade wing-back.

She asked Donna if she’d made contact with her mother since their last session. Donna shook her head, teary-eyed. Madame said not to worry, because she had indeed reached Mom, and all was well. Donna simply needed more practice.

Madame instructed us to shut our eyes and concentrate on Donna’s goal. I tried my best to conjure her mother, sitting beside her, whispering in her ear. But after a minute or so, Madame stopped the exercise. Mom hadn’t shown. We all had failed.

Then Madame turned to me. “I am seeing a very strong image over you. Might we pursue it?” Since the woman knew nothing about me, it felt safe to play along. I nodded.

“Are you a writer?” she asked. Was this about Donna, or me? I hesitated. Barely twenty-one, I was focused on an acting career. 

The actress, that summer.


The only things I’d written back then were class assignments, my honors thesis, and a little poetry. I shook my head.

“Hmm,” she muttered. “The image is remarkably clear. Someone is writing, always writing—a story perhaps, or a book. Are you sure you don’t relate to that?”

I shrugged.

Madame shut her eyes. “The image is too strong. Perhaps someone close to you is a writer?”

“No one.”

Madame seemed baffled. She went quiet for a moment. “I also see a dog, a little white dog, running up to you. A beloved pet. The image is very clear.”
The white pup.
Totally wrong. I’d never had a white dog. Besides, if I ever got one, white would be my last choice. I shook my head again.

Madame was a fake, for sure. I never gave the incident a second thought. Until

A decade later, I was playing with the puppy that had unexpectedly entered my life. Out of the blue—as my very white, very beloved pooch ran toward me to return the ball I’d tossed in our regular game of fetch—Madame’s vision popped into my brain, like a crazy mind-meld across the years. Goosebumps. Was this the little dog she’d “seen” years before?

Spookier yet, we fast-forward to today. I don’t know if Donna ever made contact with her mother, but as I write this post, and I work to complete my third book, I can’t escape the memory of that strange night at Madame’s. Because now, I am writing, always writing.

Madame was right. I am a writer.

Have you experienced a spooky event like this?

Gay Yellen is a former magazine editor and the award-winning author of the Samantha Newman Mystery Series, including The Body Business and The Body Next Door (Amazon.) Book #3 in the series is slated for 2021. She’d love to hear from you, here, on Facebook or her website.

Reviews

by Bethany Maines

Ahhhhhh… The soothing feeling of not being in a mad
marketing scramble.  
Being in a post-book release time frame is both relaxing and a little bit of a
let-down.  The majority of sales happen
around the book release week and after that, there’s just general marketing and
gulp, waiting for reviews to come in. Reviews, believe it or not, are quite
hard to come by.  In a world where
literally every service seems to ask for you to thumbs up, rate, review, rave
about, the good old fashioned recommendation of a book has become both more
important and yet, even harder to get.
Readers get intimidated by the process – do I need to write a book report?
Ahhhhhh!!!!
  The answer to that one
is no.  Short reviews are frequently the
best.  For example, here’s the latest
review for The Second Shot
“A drunken mistake in college cost U.S. Marshal Maxwell Ames
the love of Dominique Deveraux and six years later, he’s determined to fix the
slip-up. But there’s just one tiny problem. When I started reading I couldn’t
put it down. Bethany Maines is magnificent and amazing writer. I cannot wait to
read more of her books. Keep up the great work. You should definitely read this
book. Can’t wait for the next book.”
Now obviously any review that calls me an amazing writer is
going to be tops with me, but beyond that, the reviewer did the one thing
that is required in a review – said what she liked. Then she gave it a rating
and moved on with life. No synopsis, spoilers, no over thinking or hard work.  Read the book, reacted, bam, done.
Then readers think
does it really matter if I leave a review?
 
Short answer, yes, it really, really does.  Even on
older books?
  YES!!  There are some marketing options that I can
only get if I have enough reviews or a high enough rating.  Your kind words really matter.  And of course, saying I’m an awesome writer
is the kind of thing that keeps me going when some meanie leaves me a two star
review. (It happens to everyone, we are breathing, we are breathing, and
letting it go…)
So to anyone who has left a book review, even if it wasn’t
for one of my books, I say thank you. 
And if you’d like to give a writer a gift… may I suggest leaving a
review on Amazon, BookBub, or Goodreads.
***

Bethany Maines is the award-winning author of the Carrie Mae Mysteries, San Juan Islands Mysteries, Shark Santoyo Crime Series, and numerous
short stories. When she’s not traveling to exotic lands, or kicking some
serious butt with her black belt in karate, she can be found chasing her
daughter or glued to the computer working on her next novel.
You can also catch up with her on Twitter, FacebookInstagram, and BookBub.

The Second Shot Release Day!

by Bethany Maines
Have you ever seen one of those Looney Tunes characters just
runs around screaming?  That feels like
me today.  I mean, I’m trying to keep it
contained, but… inside I look like this.

My latest novel, The
Second Shot
, is now available to the public and that means that people will
(hopefully) buy it and then (ack!) read it. 
Today is the day that we see if all of my writing, marketing, and
general daydreaming has paid off. I’ll be celebrating the release with on-line
“take-over” parties and giveaways.
GIVEAWAYS:
Enter to win 1 of 10 print copies on Goodreads – giveaway
ends 10/26 – CLICK HERE TO ENTER

Enter to win a $40 Amazon card and a signed copy on Facebook – CLICK HERE TO ENTER
Meet me online and maybe get more free stuff!
October 25: Take-Over of Next Steps PR Facebook Page
October 30: BestStellars BestSellers Release Party (stay
tuned for who’s partying!) 
TRY BEFORE YOU BUY:
The Second Shot is
a thriller/mystery dished up with a heavy side of romance. Think that sounds
like you’re cup of tea, but aren’t quite ready to commit?  Read the first chapter at: bethanymaines.com/the-second-shot-chapter-1 
WHAT ITS ABOUT:
A drunken mistake in college cost US Marshal Maxwell Ames
the affection of Dominique Deveraux and six years later, he’s determined to fix
the slip-up. But there’s just one tiny problem—someone wants the Deveraux
family dead. Dominique Deveraux never expected Max to reappear in her life, let
alone apologize, but as Dominique investigates the mysterious attacks on her
wealthy family Max quickly becomes far more than her one time college
classmate. Now, Max and Dominique must dodge mercenaries and bullets as they try
to make sure that they’re the only ones who get a second shot.

Buy on all platforms: https://books2read.com/The-Second-Shot

The Marketing Paradox

by Bethany Maines

A funny thing happens when you begin marketing book. Suddenly
a project that has been intensely personal becomes public property. And even
worse, once it’s public, the public begin to have opinions about it. (The
nerve!) And as much as an author wants everyone to universally love our
precious baby novel, not everyone is going to. From reading while in a bad
mood, to just not being someone’s cup of tea, not everyone is going to like a
book.


But even if everything does go as smoothly as possible and
someone does love the book, suddenly ownership becomes shared with everyone who
loves it. The story takes up residence in someone else’s head which, for an
author who has had those characters living in her head for months or years, is
intensely strange and disconcerting. With each book I write I start out wanting
to share about it immediately.  It’s like
falling in love.  You’ve met these
wonderful, hilarious, romantic, daring people and you want to tell everyone
about them. But as I move into the marketing stage I find that in some ways I
become more protective of my characters and story. Please love that one even
though I’ve made him annoying.  And don’t
make fun of her – she has hidden depths! Although, yes, go ahead and hate
him.  We all should hate him.


Except that a book needs to be shared to be successful. I
want strangers to talk about it, readers to review it, and friends to share it.
Those things are literally what make a book a success. It is a very strange dichotomy
of wanting to shout as loud as possible while at the same time hoping nobody
looks at me while I’m doing it. So nobody look at me while I say this next
bit…


The Second Shot is coming out in two weeks!!! Please share the news with others.
A drunken mistake in college cost US Marshall Maxwell Ames the love of Dominique Deveraux. Six years later, he’s determined to fix the slip-up, but there’s just one tiny problem: someone wants the Deveraux family dead. Now Max must make sure that the only one getting a second shot at Dominique is him.

Pre-order on all epub platforms (Kindle coming soon!): CLICK HERE

Want a chance to win a free print edition of The Second
Shot? Enter to win at Goodreads!   CLICK HERE to Enter!


Bethany Maines is the award-winning author of the Carrie Mae Mysteries, San Juan Islands Mysteries, Shark Santoyo Crime Series, and numerous
short stories. When she’s not traveling to exotic lands, or kicking some
serious butt with her black belt in karate, she can be found chasing her
daughter or glued to the computer working on her next novel.
You can also catch up with her on Twitter, FacebookInstagram, and BookBub.