Category Archives: Cozy Mystery Series

New Year, New Ideas

Standard

Happy New Year! I love setting New Year Resolutions, but here’s my trick to success. I never write them down! That way, by the end of the year, I don’t remember what they were so I don’t remember if I didn’t get where I thought I was going.

In 2016, I do remember one of my goals – to have my new series published by a small press instead of my own imprint, as I do with my Jake & Emma series. That’s when I approached Cozy Cat Press, a publisher I’d had my eye on for a year or more. I’m happy to say that’s one resolution I achieved! The Deadly Art of Deception was released September 30.

In 2017, I hope to release the second book in that series and the (oh my gosh, I can’t believe I’m saying this) the sixth Jake & Emma. I’m also planning to devote more time to my writing since I’ve been writing pretty much whenever I feel the inspiration. That’s nice, but it doesn’t get much writing done! I’ve started writing every day but Sunday and it’s been great. I’ve already written two short stories based on my daily writing prompts.

My second resolution is to start working my way through my “to be read” pile. Do you have books waiting for you? I have them in my e-reader, on my shelf and stacked on the bedside table!

What are your plans for the new year?

Reading it over…for the first time!

Standard
Reading it over…for the first time!

Good morning, everyone.

First of all, let’s talk about the weather. No, seriously… we are having a heatwave in central Canada! I keep advertising my books and telling readers they should stalk up for the fall/winter weather reading. I don’t think anyone is even reading my posts, they are all outside walking around in shorts. Aww, good for them. When the cold does hit us, we will be in shock for the first few weeks and really complaining. Especially here in Canada. That is our national pastime – we may be polite but we are also big time complainers when it comes to the weather. No one is complaining at the moment though.

Were any of you wondering about my subject line? How can you read something over again … for the first time? I discovered that you can. Perhaps some of you have noticed that my Parson’s Cove mystery series is no longer available. There is a reason; I am reading them over again for the first time. In doing so, I have discovered something about myself. I am not the horrible writer that I thought I was. My first book, Slip and Go Die, is actually quite a good read.

I don’t know if other authors are like me but once a book was published, I never went back to read it. I moved on. In the back of my mind, I was afraid I would see too many mistakes and I would see what readers didn’t like about it. By that time, I felt it was too late to do anything about it anyway, so why torture myself. However, once it was unpublished, I could read it with an open mind and make all those changes I was dreading that I would find.

Guess what? There were very few changes that I had to make. I did remove about a hundred commas, semi-colons, and colons, but other than that, I was quite pleased with my writing.

The moral of this story is not to tell writers to republish all their books, it is simply to say, you are probably a better writer than you think you are. Don’t be afraid to go back and reread your old books. It will boost your confidence and give you the incentive to encourage readers to buy your books. Then when you are promoting your work, you will do it like you mean it … and you will mean it!

(On the other hand, you might read it, hate it, and stop writing altogether. That, of course, is a discussion for another day!)

 

https://www.amazon.com/Sharon-Rose/e/B00BL8HTZY/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_ebooks_1

 

Goodbye, Mabel and Sharon Rose

Standard
Goodbye, Mabel and Sharon Rose

Most times it is quite sad saying goodbye. Especially if it is to someone or something we’re going to miss. Some of us like to say, ‘see you later.’ Of course, if we are planning to see them the next day or week, that makes sense. If it is someone we do not expect to see again, it is sad but we have to use the ‘real’ word – goodbye. For example, I was underlining a paragraph in a book on my computer and did not realize that the highlight had spread to every paragraph. While I thought I was deleting the highlights in one paragraph, I was in fact deleting all of them! It was a sad goodbye because it meant starting all over again.

Sadly, now it is time to say ‘so long’ to Mabel Wickles. Mabel is the protagonist in my Parson’s Cove cozy mystery series. I must say that I have enjoyed writing about her adventures. She and Flori Flanders make a great twosome. As the English say, they are as different as chalk and cheese. Flori is married to Jake and has a large family; Mabel is single and has a houseful of cats. Missed by a Hair was the first Parson’s Cove mystery and it was published in 2004. When my contract was up, instead of renewing, Mabel disappeared from the scene. I did not feel my writing did her justice.

After writing two more Mabel books, I decided to look for a publisher again. In 2012, I joined Cozy Cat Press. CCP was brand new to the publishing scene. At that time, there were four authors: Patricia Rockwell(our publisher and author), Diane (one of Patricia’s close friends), Al, and me. I am sure it was a learning process for all of us. This was the first time I had used the internet for publishing and had no idea what I was doing most of the time. Patricia was very patient. During the following four years, I wrote four Parson’s Cove books and came to know and appreciate other CCP authors.

So, you might wonder, why is the Parson’s Cove mystery series disappearing again? Once again, I am looking through my books and realizing I need to make some changes. This time I need to work at it at a slower pace.

Many years ago, I removed another book – it was called Who Needs Enemies?. The main character was Beryl Swallows, an ex-cop and now private investigator. Since then, she has reappeared in Virtual Enemies and now in a new book, Case Closed. not.

My hope is that while I am taking my time with Mabel, I can also work on another Historical Fiction book. As you can see, I have much work ahead of me.

Oh, did I say ‘goodbye to Sharon Rose’ too? That’s right, I will publish all my books from now on using my name Sharon Mierke. The world of books seems quite filled with Sharon Roses so in order for readers not to be confused, I will use my last name – even though most do not know how to pronounce it! For those of you who are curious, it is pronounced Merkee.

Well, I refuse to say ‘goodbye.’ Perhaps, ‘see you later,’ is more appropriate. Best wishes to everyone and happy writing.

BOOKS of the month!

Standard
BOOKS of the month!

Hi Everyone!

Well, autumn is here in full force. There’s a bit of a nip to the air in the morning – unless you live closer to the equator, that is. Where I live, it is COLD in the mornings now. Most of the leaves are starting to turn color except for those that started out slow in the spring. It seems our Ash tree is the last to leaf out in the spring but the last to also lose its leaves in the fall. We do have green all year in our yard because we have cedars and evergreens. I’m sorry to say, we have no palm trees.

Another sign of fall is the crockpot. Out is comes because suddenly you have a yearning for soups and stews. Warm days can bring barbequing but somehow, it isn’t as thrilling as it was during the hot months. Let’s face it, we are tired of hot dogs and hamburgers. Of course, we never tire of steaks but that’s something entirely different. I would barbeque steaks outside if it were thirty below. It’s sad that a couple of pounds of beef now costs about as much as the down payment on a small vehicle.

Oh yes, my subject was BOOKS of the month. Yes, you saw it correctly. ALL the Parson’s Cove Cozy Mysteries are 99 cents for the month of September. After September, you will have to wait a while for them to reappear on Amazon. They are going in for a lube job and overhaul. Meanwhile,  you can become acquainted with Beryl Swallows, my new investigator. She’s not quite as old as Mabel and much better looking. She doesn’t have a friend like Flori but she does have a neighbor named Sam. Book One is called Virtual Enemies and Book Two is Case Closed…not.  It will be available in a few weeks. In it, Beryl delves into her mother’s past. It’s a bit frightening to think that your mother may have committed murder.

Until I talk to you again, as a Canadian, I say, ‘Take care, eh!’

 

 

 

Book of the Month

Standard
Book of the Month

Hi everyone!

Where did August go and why did the temperature change overnight? Suddenly, I’m sleeping longer in the morning and feeling chilled even when it’s still warm outside. That’s what autumn does to a person. For many, this is the best time of year. It isn’t mine but then I tend to be a bit of a killjoy. As each day gets cooler and each leaf flutters to the ground, my mind suddenly fills with pictures of blowing snow and icy roads. Sorry about that!

There is, however, something to look forward to every month of the year – whether it’s 35*Celsius (very hot) or -25*Celsius (very cold) – and that is my Book of the Month!

September’s book on Kindle for 99 cents is calamity@thecarwash.

A marital spat at a car wash turns deadly – and Mabel Wickles, Parson’s Cove’s amateur sleuth, isn’t buying the claim that the victim’s wife bashed him over the head with a brick. However, when the woman confesses to the murder, Mabel decides to investigate the crime herself – along with help from her best friend Flori, her cat Sammy, and a busload of senior citizens.

https://www.amazon.com/Calamity-Carwash-Parsons-Cove-Mystery-ebook/dp/B009372BVW/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8#nav-subnav

Not Great!

Standard
Not Great!

And I know I have your attention because there are so many things in life that are ‘not great.’ For example, it could be the weather. Right now, my husband is in bed with  heat exhaustion. We live in a part of the world where it’s so cold in the winter that by March, you are starting to dream about heat. At that point, you doubt you could ever get warm and you would be thrilled to just sit and sweat. Well, guess what? You get heat for three months and you are longing to get cooled down again. Of course, there are other aspects of the weather that are not great either – like tornadoes and flooding.

I’m thinking of something else though and that’s getting older. Now, I know it’s inescapable so there’s no point in moaning about all our aches and pains. Today, I’m dealing with one depressing truth about aging and that’s your memory. Where the heck does it go?? Friends tell me that I have an amazing memory. And it’s true, I can remember when I was a very small child. Many memories are so fresh, it seems like yesterday and not seventy years ago. So, you ask, what’s your problem, lady?

I’ll tell you my problem: Why can’t I remember things that I did a couple of days ago? Or even yesterday when I told my husband that I’d put his phone in a certain place? Why was it somewhere else where I was sure it wasn’t? Now, you know my problem.

What is bringing all this to my mind? As I started to check some of my past blogs, I noticed something. In May, my book Perplexity on P 1/2 was on for 99 cents. No, that can’t be! It is August’s Book of the Month. Surely, I couldn’t have put the same book on only a few months apart. I do have six Parson’s Cove mysteries so why would I keep repeating one book? I’ll tell you why – I am over seventy and have a lousy memory!

On the other hand, I might be able to get away with a few things. Who can get upset with a senior who sports a blank look on her face when she’s in trouble? I wouldn’t try it with a big tough traffic cop though – you might end up having to forfeit your driver’s license.

So, as far as I can remember, my two books on sale this month for 99 cents are Perplexity on P 1/2 (which I’m sure you remember was for that price in May) and Sarah’s Valley. If you didn’t get them then, you’d better get them now because who knows when I’ll remember to put them on special again!

https://www.amazon.com/Sharon-Rose/e/B00BL8HTZY/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_ebooks_1

August’s books of the Month: #2 in Parson’s Cove Mystery series and Historical Fiction, Sarah’s Valley. Both 99 cents on Kindle!

Standard

Another tough one…

Standard
Another tough one…

Hello everyone! It’s the second Thursday of the month. I’ve had one month to prepare for today’s blog. What am I doing? It will be Thursday in a couple of hours and I’m wondering what on earth I’m going to write.

How do people write a blog every day? Bloggers are amazing people. Their brains must be bursting with ideas. Do those thoughts pile up in their minds overnight and then as soon as their eyes open, they sit down and words coming bubbling forth onto the computer screen? The thing is you can’t write fiction. I could sit down and write fiction every day, no problem. Much different to write down real thoughts and feelings. Who even wants to do that? Not me. Well, maybe once a month is okay.

I have to admit I don’t have time to read very many blogs every day. I do enjoy two of my friends’ blogs though – Julie Seedorf and Blanche Manos. Their blogs are sometimes about books but much of the time they write about deep feelings, family, friends, or tests of faith. I’m always impressed and come away with an emotion – it might be happy, sad, but generally reflective. My hat is off to these two talented writers.

Today was a special day for me. I spent it with my daughter. Of course, that is always special as most mothers understand. However, today was different in that I accompanied my daughter to an appointment at one of our hospitals. It was something that I had to have  when I was her age.At that time, she worked at the hospital so I was relieved that she could come with me. Fortunately, our healthcare system is much more advanced than it was many years ago. Sadly, ultra sound was not available for my mother and she succumbed to uterine cancer many years ago. I was a survivor and my daughter will be carefully monitored. Sometimes the ‘good old days’ were not ‘good’ in many ways.

Soon July will be over. This month’s BOOK OF THE MONTH is Slip and Go Die. My historical fiction, The Widow’s Walk, is also 99 cents for July.

http://www.amazon.com/Sharon-Rose/e/B00BL8HTZY/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_ebooks_1

June is swiftly passing by…

Standard
June is swiftly passing by…

Today was the first day of summer. It’s hard to believe that spring is gone forever for 2016!  This is my favorite time of  year. The trees and lawns are so green it hurts your eyes. Soon, if it’s a hot dry summer, our lawns will turn a dull brown and leaves will begin to drift down from the tree branches. Now, the flowers are in full bloom and the scent of lilacs fill the air. I know no one really feels like reading – they feel more like getting out into the garden and pulling weeds. Or, at least, they know that’s what they should be doing. On the other hand, gazebos make a wonderful place to enjoy the warm air, the flowers’ scents, and the sound of the birds. And, a wonderful place to read.

This is just a reminder that Frozen Identity is still on for 99 cents until July 1st.

If you live in Arizona perhaps this story will cool you off!

https://www.amazon.com/Frozen-Identity-Parsons-Cove-Mystery-ebook/dp/B00JBNPDQI?ie=UTF8&qid=1466458704&ref_=la_B00BL8HTZY_1_3&s=books&sr=1-3

When a frozen corpse is discovered in a fishing shack on a nearby lake, most residents of Parson’s Cove assume the man succumbed to the blistery cold. However, after the body thaws, the coroner discovers that the man––one Victor Fleming––was actually beaten to death. Eye witnesses suggest that town bad boy Jakie Flanders was seen leaving the shack the night of the murder and was overheard threatening Fleming in town earlier. Add this to the fact that Victor Fleming was Jakie’s mother’s first cousin and was demanding money from her––and Jakie’s motives for murder were piling up. Jakie’s mother Flori, a crier if there ever was one, is so devastated when her oldest boy is arrested that she is drained of all her tears, and only her best buddy and local amateur sleuth Mabel Wickles seems to have any faith that Jakie might just be innocent. Putting her detective cap on, Mabel enlists the aid of her young computer expert friend Nathan Horne and her pal the local Sheriff, Reg Smee, in her attempt to clear Jakie and bring her friend Flori some relief. Soon, Mabel discovers a startling fact. The frozen body, whom everyone assumes is Victor Fleming––isn’t. Did Jakie kill the wrong man––if he killed anyone at all? Or is there another reason entirely for this corpse’s frozen identity? Mabel will encounter many more clues before she puts this mystery on ice.

 

The Second Thursday of the Month

Standard
The Second Thursday of the Month

Well, here it is, the day you have all been waiting for – the second Thursday of the month. My day to blog.

What has been happening since the second Thursday of last month? Well, we won’t go into world politics or reality television shows. Or the weather.

Let’s just go into writing…

I must admit that I find it hard to write in warm sunny weather. My mind and eyes wander to the outdoors. I keep thinking about all the work I have to do in the yard and in my garden. The birds fly in front of the window and I watch to see in which tree they’ve built their nest. Rabbits hop across the yard and I can’t help but look to see if they’re going to sneak into my carrot patch.

Besides these distractions, the closer we get to summer, the less organized I am. Not that I was all that organized to begin with. I suddenly feel in vacation mode even when we are not going on vacation. Since we love taking our vacations in winter, this means that it’s pretty much vacation time year round and that gives me a guilty conscience! (and a messy house.)

I definitely feel the need to have a set schedule for writing so that I not only accomplish something but I can say in all honesty that I am a writer. My job is writing.

BUT what if you don’t feel like writing during the time that you’ve set aside? What if your mind is blank and you have no desire whatsoever to put anything down on paper? In fact, you stare at your computer screen and you feel like giving it a good punch? What then?

There are so many cute sayings that writers (at least, I surmise they are writers)  come up with and these quips all sound so wise, profound, and sometimes very witty.

e.g:  “Start small. Write a few words every day.”  “Write what you know.” “If you hit a writer’s block, stop and take a break.” “Have a muse.” “If you are not writing, writing, writing, you should be reading, reading, reading.” “Writers are weird and insane.”

Okay, I made that last one up  myself. I have no idea what motivates writers to write. All I know is that with all my procrastinating, daydreaming, and laziness, I manage to polish off a book at least once a year. It’s true; I will never be the organized writer that I dream to be. I will never sit at a desk with my computer and sheets of white paper with outlines spread neatly in front of me. My incentive for writing will continue to be sheer panic. The story in my head will plague me until I can’t stand it anymore and I will hole up in my bedroom in my pajamas with a mug of coffee on my nightstand and I will write until the insanity is gone!

Don’t forget my BOOK of the MONTH for June is Frozen Identity and it’s 99 cents!

http://www.sharonrosemierke.weebly.com