Welcome to my site. I’m so glad you’re here. On these pages you can find out more about me, read guest posts and book reviews, get information on my books and the characters who are my constant companions, and be the first to hear about new my publications, giveaways and guest appearances by subscribing to my list. If you’re interested in guest posting, contact me here.
Guest Post: Benjamin Dancer
I am thrilled to introduce author, teacher, and mentor, Benjamin Dancer who is guest posting this month. His school coordinates with Lighthouse Writers Workshop to bring local authors into the classroom, and he’s donating all April proceeds from his literary thriller PATRIARCH RUN to support that program. Please welcome Benjamin!
How to Compile A Smashing Doc in Scrivener
Here’s the first in a three-part series exploring the relationship between Scrivener and Word and Smashwords—How to compile a Smashing Word Doc in Scrivener.
Like many authors, I use Scrivener to create my books. This powerful word processor has increased my daily word count and helped me put together plot. But it’s taken me a while to learn some of its more powerful features, non-techie that I am, and some of what I’ve learned, I share on my blog. One such post is about the powerful name changer, Project Replace. I use it a lot because I’m always tweaking the names of characters and places. And I have a few posts on how to use the Compile command to create ebooks. One features the mobi version created on Scrivener for Windows, another using Scrivener on a Mac. And yet another talks about how I create an ePub from my Scrivener file. And speaking of Scrivener’s Compile command, I’m working on a post which I hope will simplify compiling a Scrivener file into a Smashwords-friendly MS Word document.
Story Skeleton and Scrivener
StorySkeleton is a brainstorming app for writers with iPhones and iPads. When I found out that it exports to Scrivener, I downloaded it and have been using it on my iPad and iPhone. It’s a GREAT mind-mapping app for writers. Best of all, it exports as a .scriv file which can be opened in Scrivener on a Mac or in Windows. Here’s a post about it.
In addition to my blog, I write two different series—the Serafina Florio historical mysteries and the Fina Fitzgibbons contemporary mysteries. Serafina lived in the late nineteenth century in Sicily, moved to Paris, and finally to Manhattan’s Lower East Side where she died in 1914. Or did she? Her descendant, Fina Fitzgibbons owns a cleaning establishment, Lucy’s, and lives in Brooklyn with her boyfriend, Denny and her cat, Mr. Baggins. She’s also a private investigator, and that’s where her story begins.
Death Of A Sad Face is Free
Serafina’s short mystery, “Death Of A Sad Face” is my gift to readers. It’s free on Apple, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords. For a freebie, it’s doing pretty well on Apple and B&N, maybe because it’s suitable for readers of all ages or maybe because it can be read in one commute. It published about three months ago and has been in the top ten in its category ever since.
Did you know you can browse for free books by category in Apple’s iBooks or iTunes? Just choose a book category, then a sub-category. If you choose historical mysteries, click on “Free” and you’ll find Serafina’s short story as well as a bunch of other free mysteries. BTW, they list the Top Paid and Top Free on the right-hand side of the page. Clicking on the header, “Top Free,” will bring you to a list of the top fifty or so free historical mysteries to choose.
In December Murder On The Rue Cassette published on Amazon. It’s also available on Smashwords, Apple, B&N, and Kobo. It is Serafina’s fourth book and besides getting herself entangled in the web of a dead countess in Paris, a lot of life happens to her and her family—some of it not so good. When you read the book, I hope the streets of Paris in 1874 come alive for you. The book begins with the dazzle of the first Impressionist exhibit on the Rue des Capucines and quickly segues to a body on the Rue Cassette.
And Serafina’s descendant, twenty-two-year old Fina Fitzgibbons found a body in the heart of Brooklyn Heights. It’s Fina’s debut as a private investigator. She lives in Vinegar Hill with her boyfriend, Denny McDuffy. The story, Too Quiet In Brooklyn published in December. You can read more about it here.
A Visit With The Literary Ladies Book Club
Recently I had the honor of speaking to the Literary Ladies Book Club. They read Death Of A Serpent and had LOTS of questions. Good job I re-read the book before the meeting.
What I’m Working On
I’m writing the third book in the Fina Fitzgibbons series, Whiskey’s Gone, and editing the second book, Missing Brandy. Meanwhile, Rosa’s prodding me to write Serafina’s fifth book. And if you’ve met Rosa, you know her jabs are not too gentle. She says there’s a strange smell coming from the fifth floor of their apartment building in the sixteenth arrondissement. Serafina’s in Sicily mourning for her son and won’t return for a while so Rosa’s holding down the fort with that French inspector, Alfonse Valois, and she needs me to get on with the fifth book.
Headshot: ©2014 jill brazel photography