Friday, August 30, 2019

Guest blogger: Judi Getch Brodman

Dark Secrets by [Getch Brodman, Judi]

Please tell us about your latest book.
“Dark Secrets” has just been released by Solstice Publishing and is receiving very good reviews.
As one reader wrote, she was “captivated, riveted, and fascinated by the life changing quest
that Brielle Garnet, the attractive, reserved owner and editor of a woman’s fashion magazine
drew me into.” She added, “I especially enjoyed being transported to and from Boston and
Paris through Brielle’s adventures. I felt as though I was right there with her as she experienced
overwhelming heartache, intense danger and an exceeding turbulent love life.” I don’t think I
could describe “Dark Secrets” any better than that.

What can we expect from you in the future?
Right now, I working on two new books – one is an “Oyster Point Mystery” bringing the
beloved characters from “She’s Not You”, Jack and Jamie, back together solving a very creepy
cold case; the second in progress novel introduces two new characters, Elle and Gabriel, who
become involved in a time travel mystery involving an antique locket. “The Looking Glass
Labyrinth” was so well received that I had to write another time travel mystery; readers loved
that one a lot. Sometimes you just can’t help yourself as an author, certain stories call to you.

How do we find out about you and your books?
You can find me at:
My blog:
My website:
And my Facebook page:
I’m also on Twitter: @judigetch
My books can be found on:
Barnes and Noble: :
8q8?_requestid=1324175 although “Dark Secrets” has not been posted yet.
and Books-A-Million

 How much of your personality and life experiences are in your writing?
I think the more life experiences the writer has, the more authentic their writing will be. You
know how loss feels… family, a love, a pet or a friend. You understand what it’s like to live in
different parts of the world – what the people and places are like – so many of those
experiences find their way into your stories. I had a reader ask me how I wrote the chapter in
“She’s Not You” where Jamie learns that her parents were killed in an automobile accident. He
said it made him cry remembering when his son died. I told him that I wrote about that event
remembering how a young me felt when my father died… quickly of a heart attack. Because of
my heartbreak, I could experience Jamie’s loss, her rage at God and her abandonment deep
inside me. I cried writing it and cry reading it even today. That’s how deep you have to dig as a

In “Dark Secrets”, Brielle, an only child abandoned by her mother, experiences the death of her
beloved canine companion Blackie, at a very young age. It was her first experience with death
as it was mine when I lost my much-loved Blackie. It’s draining to write those scenes, but if
you’re not authentic, readers won’t identify with your character and that’s how you as an
author connect to your readers.

In “The Looking Glass Labyrinth”, the house that’s the centerpiece for the story is based on an
old Wellfleet Captain’s house that I stayed in. It was of the same vintage with servants’
quarters, warm parlors and living rooms with tall windows and large fireplaces, so I could close
my eyes and walk through those rooms as I wrote.

For “Dark Secrets”, I took you back to Paris, land an apartment in Montmartre where I lived.
It’s a city I adore. The scene in the church is authentic… that’s all I say here.

When did you first think about writing and what prompted you to submit your first ms?
 I’ve always written – for my college newspaper, in travel journals as well as for technical
journals in my career, so writing came naturally, or so I thought. Technical writing is “passive;”
creative writing is “active.” Therein lays the very big difference. I began writing fiction years
ago because I felt that I had a creative flow that hadn’t been tapped and had a few stories to
tell, but writing them well, making them interesting and having them come alive was the
challenge, but obviously with study and determination, I overcame that challenge. Not that I’m
still not learning, as a writer you are always reading and learning. And “She’s Not You” was my
first manuscript submitted, then rewrote, resubmitted and rewrote and submitted again. I was
lucky that my first novel was picked up by Solstice Publishing.

Do you have a set schedule for writing or do you just go with the flow?
I write every day… 4-5 hours. Sometimes I’m editing earlier pages and sometimes I’m writing
new pages. I usually have at least two books going at the same time. And I don’t outline my
books; I let my characters take me where they will.

What about your family, do they know not to bother you when you are writing - or are there
constant interruptions?
I have an office so when I’m in there, I’m alone – with my music. I’m also great at blocking out
background noise; college taught me that lesson

What do you do to relax and recharge your batteries?
I used to be a runner but surgery stopped that so I walk a lot… miles and miles. It clears my
head and sometimes that’s when my characters solve any story problems I might have. I
scream and cheer at the kid’s hockey and baseball games. I garden… have done that for many
years. I love to cook for family gatherings and holidays. And of course, I love to travel. But
writing is also very relaxing for me…

Where do your ideas come from?
That’s a tough one – could be a conversation that I overhear, a newspaper article that I read
that peaks my interest, or an idea that comes to me. I do a lot of research so many ideas come
from digging into fixations that I have.

Do you feel humor is important in books and why?
Humor for the sake of humor doesn’t work for me. That said, I like my characters to have a
good sense of humor, like Jamie in “She’s Not You” – she’s cut, bleeding and is about to
blindside her abductor, but she worried about the blood stains on her Carolina Herrera shift
that had cost her two months’ salary. Will they come out? I like the characters to be sassy and
quick witted when appropriate. I like them to laugh and joke with each other. In “Dark Secrets”
Brielle jokes about being a spinster with a load of cats… I like that kind of humor.

What kind of research do you do?
I do tons and tons of research… on the subject, the place, the styles, the times… everything.
Take for example the “Looking Glass Labyrinth”. I take you back to 1804 into a sea captain’s
house in a seaport town on Cape Cod. Rachael’s transported there unexpectedly… what does
she find, see, smell and feel. I’m sure that those reading the book can’t imagine the hours of
research that went into every detail of the house, the dresses, and the men of the times and
yes, even the maids and what they wore and called their mistresses. I scoured articles on what
women studied in those times and how my character became so educated in 1804. I even
researched trading routes to see where Nathaniel, the sea captain, might sail to and what items
his ship would carry to and from destinations. Everything you write should be as correct as you
can make it. I think a reader will stop if there’s an error and say, “What, that can’t be.” And I
don’t want that to happen. I want my reader to be immersed in the story and times.
In “She’s Not You” I have old yellowed letters from two young college students writing back and
forth to each other about the beginnings of WW II. He becomes a pilot over France – she waits
for him, but experiences dreams… tons of research to paint a short picture of these two young
lovers and what they went through.
In “Dark Secrets” we learn about Paris before and after the Germans marched on it; we look at
an apartment that is a time capsule of the 1940s.
As for plots, I scour the Internet and newspapers for stories that ring a bell in my head 

Please tell us about yourself.  
My background is not that of the usual author. I’m an engineer with degrees in Math and
Physics and a Master’s Degree in Computer Engineering. My work has taken me around the
world including the Marshall Islands. I have published many technical papers in journals. I’m
also an editor for Wiley’s technical journal on software process improvement.
But I’ve always loved books and good stories. I wrote when I was in college, but it wasn’t until a
few years ago that I began to write in earnest. I also knew that, like any profession, you didn’t
just sit down and write a best seller; if that were true, there would be a lot of best sellers out
there. So I joined a writers group, took both college creative writing courses and on-line writing
courses and worked hard. I learned how to write well… to dig deep and expose feelings. And
after I took an on-line course from an author whose writing I love, and who challenged me to
write fuller and deeper and in doing so, changed my writing, I was blessed that Solstice
Publishing saw something in my writing and story and published “She’s Not You,” the first
mystery in the Oyster Point Mysteries. The rest is history as they say. “The Looking Glass
Labyrinth” came next and now “Dark Secrets” was just released.

What are some of your favorite things to do?
LOL… write!! I walk, garden, spend time with family and friends. I also love to travel…
anywhere at any time! We are heading off to Hawaii soon.

Who are some of your other favorite authors to read?
I’m not sure I have a favorite book, but I do have favorite authors. I love to go back and read
Dickens and Hemingway, but then love Nora Roberts and John Grisham mysteries. Sometimes I
find an unexpected local author like Eugenia Price whose books I found when visiting Saint
Simons Island; in Ireland, I read Maeve Binchy’s books. I love a taste of the local culture
wherever I am. So I guess that I haven’t found my favorite author yet.

What do you think of critique groups in general?
Absolutely necessary for every writer in my opinion. Good writers groups! I was lucky and
landed in a super group for years and I truly believe that was how my writing improved initially.

Where do you see yourself in five years?
On the Red Carpet or the Best Sellers List??? LOL Somewhere unexpected doing something
fantastic and still writing!!

How many books have you written, how many have been published?
I’ve written and had published one technical book; then two children’s books – the Fiona the
Firefly series; and three novels, “She’s Not You”, “The Looking Glass Labyrinth” and “Dark
Secrets”. So, six books in total.

After you;ve written your book and its been published, do you ever buy it and/or read it?

Interesting question. I’ve read the Fiona series to children. And when I’m invited to speak to
groups, I usually choose passages from the books, so I do go back and reread parts of them. I
think authors have to be careful when going back and rereading their work that they don’t
judge their own writing. I’ve seen authors whip themselves over passages that could have been
written better, etc. But we have to realize that we’ve grown since we wrote the last book. Not
that I don’t do the same thing… I find a passage and think, “How much more powerful it would
have been if I had written… whatever.” I think that’s okay – you are learning from your own
writing and need to recognize that your writing has changed.

Among your own books, have you a favorite book? Favorite hero or heroine?
I have to admit that I fall in love with all my heroes and heroines. But my readers love Jack in
“She’s Not You.” And I do too which is why he’ll be returning with Jamie in the next Oyster
Point Mystery. But that being said, Nathaniel and Rachael are an awesome twosome in “The
Looking Glass Labyrinth.” Then, there is Jacques and Brielle in “Dark Secrets”. I’m sure all
authors hate to come to the end of a story and say goodbye to the characters that they’ve
spent months and months with. But I find that the next characters I create are just as lovable.

What is the most rewarding thing about being a writer?
I think the most rewarding thing is when you hear from readers that they loved your book and
can’t wait for the next one. That’s why I enjoy going to book clubs… feedback is real-time and
you discuss everything. Also when you receive that first copy of your new novel… priceless!!
If you weren't writing, what would you be doing?
Painting. I’m also a professional watercolorist.

What is your greatest desire?
As an author, maybe to have my work recognized? Made into a movie? In my personal life, to
keep traveling, stay healthy and have my family around me ALL the time!. I love to be
productive on all fronts.

Are there any words of encouragement for unpublished writers?
Never stop writing… never stop learning… work hard, learn to take constructive criticism and
use it to become a better writer. WORK hard. Becoming a “good” writer comes after many
years of learning, writing and rejection. But never give up – the best seller might be right
around the next corner!

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Guest Blogger: Franca Pelaccia

A Female Indiana Jones in the Making!
On her dismal 30th birthday, unassuming scholar Mackenzie Braden receives a package from her Aunt Sara, urging her to locate Moses’ rod. The most powerful weapon in history will start global chaos if it lands in the wrong hands. Sara was an agent for the top-secret Vatican Archaeological Service. But she’s dead and the agency inactive. Mackenzie’s only clue is a Moses figurine and except for ex-military pilot Eoin Reilly, her allies are as inept as she is. 

But nothing will stop Mackenzie from fulfilling her mission and making Eoin her birthday present. She sets off for the Middle East where she fends off a dysfunctional family of treasure hunters, a fake Mossad operative, a manic former VAS agent, underground tunnels, terrorists, and rocket launchers. But this is training for Mackenzie’s ultimate clash with her aunt’s and now her greatest foe, a deposed Saudi prince with world domination on his mind.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Ravencrest book One Lucinda's Story

                                               Ravencrest Book One: Lucinda's Story by [Stevens, Lizzy, Miller, Steve]

Lucinda Ravencrest’s whole world was turned upside down when her aunt that she barely knew left an estate to her. There were stipulations to it. She could not sell the estate and she had to take care of the people who lived there was what she was told.

What she found out when she got there was nothing like she was told. Secrets started to come out, and some were downright crazy

Lucinda didn’t know whether to run or to embrace this crazy new life. How was she to handle all of this?

Stop by Twitter and chat with Lizzy @Lizzystevens123