Readers: from time to time, we do a group post where we update you on what we’re working on, our recent publications, upcoming publications, and other news relating to our writing.
Kate Flora: I’ve been pretty bogged down lately, as regular readers know, bouncing back and forth between Unleashed Love, the romantic short story that decided to turn itself into a novel, and Death Sends A Message, the eleventh Thea Kozak mystery, where I am struggling to find ways for Thea to sleuth while she’s at home with a newborn. I am thrilled that my story, “Best Served Cold,” will appear in the Bloodroot anthology from Crimespell Books in November, along with stories by Brenda Buchanan, Vaughn Hardacker, and alum Bruce Coffin. Meanwhile, we’re seeing a return to Zoom and a few in-person library and bookstore events, which are fun after so long in isolation. For anyone interested, here’s a video of a panel from the Freethinkers Corner bookstore. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpPh0VXnRQ7Surx42m7WzgQ
Kaitlyn Dunnett/Kathy Lynn Emerson: Now that both my cozy series (as Kaitlyn) have been dropped by Kensington and they didn’t buy my proposal for a new series, I figure I’m semi-retired and can work on whatever I darn well please. At the moment I have three things going (all slowly–still can’t write for long because of the carpal tunnel situation). For project one, I took the rejected proposal to create a series around Valentine Veilleux, traveling calendar photographer, who appeared in one book in each of my Kensington series, and turned the proposed book one into a short story and a novella. The plan is to put those together with two other Valentine Veilleux short stories already written and create an e-book original. For more on that, see tomorrow’s post. The second project is an updated version of my Agatha-award-winning How to Write Killer Historical Mysteries. The publisher, a small press, is going out of business and returning my rights, so as soon as the old version is taken down online, I want to put up a (slightly) revised new edition. Most of the text will be the same, but the advice on selling and promoting needed an overhaul. Boy have things changed in the years since 2008! The third project is creating omnibus e-book editions of all the novels and short stories in my Face Down series (w/a Kathy). Three volumes, I think. The thing is, I have to reread every word and make some minor corrections, as well as do new formatting, so this is going to be a long-term project.
John Clark: Earlier this year I had a Yogi Berra epiphany: I could wake up dead at any moment. That, coupled with an admission of how little of what I’ve written has been published got me moving. Since that realization, I’ve written a new YA book, Don’t Say It, which is historical fiction with magical realism elements set in 1969. It’s waiting for a first edit. When that was done, I gave myself permission to binge read during July, then completed and did an edit on Hardscrabble Kids an anthology of stories about Maine teens facing hardships. Most of the stories have magical realism/urban fantasy themes. I hope to get it published next. I’m currently working on editing Hither we go the second in my Wizard of Simonton Pond series. There are three more requiring an edit in order to complete that series. In addition, I have an adult thriller, Afternoon Break and five more YA urban fantasy novels waiting for some serious attention. I guess you could say I’ll not suffer from boredom in the next couple years.
Maggie Robinson: Farewell Blues came out on September 14, and if you click the link you can read the first chapter! Its reception has been pretty much all I could hope for, with one Goodreads reviewer saying, “I love this book, I love this series, I love how it’s a cozy mystery that breaks all conventions of cozy mysteries and it’s so much better for doing so! Dang! I just love it!” I love you back, Angela, LOL. And this from Booklist: “This frothy, lighthearted romp of a mystery…leads to an old-fashioned happily-ever-after finale that will satisfy both mystery and romance fans.”
I’ve been hopping around the Internet with guest posts and giveaways, and will be at the Word Wenches tomorrow with an interview by the fabled and fabulous Mary Jo Putney. Woman’s World named it a best book of the week in their September 27 issue, so my husband bought up every copy at the grocery store. I can now wallpaper a room. 😉
I’m working on the second book of a new cozy mystery series, also set in the 1920s. It’s been slow-going, but at least it’s going. Maybe I need a cup of tea to stimulate me!