Brrr! Throw A Blanket Over Hawaii On Fire…Not Cozy Enough.


So, the thing is, I love the cozy mystery genre of books. I enjoy them so much that I’ve determined to write a cozy series of my own, The Tom Carroll Mysteries. But, sigh, I have come to the realization that the first in the series, Hawaii On Fire, simply isn’t good enough. The book that I thought was done, needs work, needs to be better.

What is wrong then?

*Most cozies are set in small towns where most of the characters know each other. Tom is visiting Hawaii from the big city of Atlanta.  This is fixable. 

*Tom is a Corporate Private Detective. And so he is not the typical amateur sleuth of a cozy. This is fixable. 

Other than that, I believe I am on the right track with my story. Okay, it’s not that bad when I take the time to write this blog and think about it all. The characters know each other pretty well. I think they are interesting characters. And, I think many of them will be around for the remainder of the series of books.

Therefore, on this fabulous Friday, I will set to work with a positive attitude. I will cut my newbie author self some slack, and simply keep trying.

Happy writing y’all.

Much Love,



Maybe On A Monday … Full Of Hope


If you have a chance to attend a writers conference (or a meeting for whatever your interests are), I highly recommend it. I attended The Atlanta Writers Workshops this weekend. Also, I paid to have my book query letter critiqued. With that critique, I now feel I have the tools I need to successfully pitch my book. Here are a few of the highlights of the day for me:

Publishing Options Today:

*If you don’t know if whether you want to go the tradition route, or self publish your work, start with the traditional publishing route. If that doesn’t work, you can always self publish but, it is harder to switch from self publishing back to traditional publishing. (Of course, there are exceptions to everything.)

*There are pros and cons to both options:

Traditional Publishing

Pros – No upfront costs. Traditional gives you legitimacy in the publishing world.

Cons – Moves slow, it may take up to two years from an offer to see your work actually published.

Self Publishing

Pros – Complete control of your work. Length and genre no longer matter.

Cons – Quality can suffer, You have to pay out to get the book to publication.

Tips For Writing Success:

*Always write the best thing you can. Don’t simply get tired of working on a piece of writing and say, “I’m going to just put it out there.” Make everything the best in can be first.

*Build a writers platform. Not only social media, but perhaps public speaking etc…

*Keep moving forward. Rejection is hard, but you have to get back up and keep swinging.

*Put down the remote. Make more time for writing.


*Don’t use the same word over and over on one page, it can distract the reader.

*Slow down with the opening of your book. Be sure to build your world so that your reader will know what is going on.

*Be sure to read a lot in your genre. This helps you to know what is expected.

So, invest in you. Invest in your dreams. And…dream on!

Much Love,




Sobering Saturday…Out Of My Stomach You Butterflies!


So, today is the day. I am attending my first writers conference. This morning I will be pitching Hawaii On Fire to a local publisher. I haven’t been nervous, but, now I am. What if I forget what I was going to say? What if she hates it from the very start? Yikes! But, I will take a deep breath and do my best. If nothing else, I will learn a lot from this experience. So here goes ya’ll. I will post at lunch with the results.

Live those dreams today!

Much Love,


Maybe On A Monday …Love


I’m worried. I fear we’ve lost the human touch to our human-ness. I’m as guilty as anyone else of having my nose in my smartphone. Social media can be so much fun. But, it can be very addictive. We all know it is true. We can get so caught up in our own bubble of a world, that we forget to care. We loose sight of the fact that there are fellow people, flesh and blood, in the car next to us. We forget that the person in front of us in the long line at the store has a family that loves them.

So, on this Monday, I wish for you all love. I want for you peace and happiness. I want peace, love, and happiness for you wherever you are in the world, and regardless of your skin color or national origin. I know you all are out there. I’ve watched in awe on my admin page as visitors come to my WordPress sight from Spain, Jordan, Morocco, Australia, and many more places on this wonderful planet we call home. I’m humbled and honored that you all would want to read something this simple country girl from Georgia, USA would write. I often think of you all sitting at your own computers dreaming up what you will post to your own blogs. I wish for you joy and success in your endeavors. Yes, social media can be good, it can be bad. I reckon it just requires balance, simply knowing when to put the phone down, walk away from the computer, and just go out and be a human being.

I’m stepping away from my blog for the rest of the week. I am getting prepared to attend a writers conference this weekend. I’ve signed up to meet with a literary agent face-to-face…yikes! If nothing else, I will learn much from the experience. I have a lot to learn. Sometimes I feel so clueless about this whole publishing a book thing. I am going to post to my blog on Saturday from the conference on my lunch break and afterwords.

So, till then, as always, it’s much love from me!


Fabulous On A Friday…I Wanna Be A Paperback Writer!


Feeling a little low yesterday, I pulled up my Beatles album to get a little boost for the day. And what do I hear? Paperback Writer. Given my recent endeavors, the song has new meaning for me. The lyrics are a book query! Let’s see, without too much plagiarism, how can I make the lyrics fit my book?

Dear Sir Or Madam will you read my book? It took me years (literally) to write, will you take a look?


It’s a cozy mystery about a man named Tom. And the Hawaiian Islands play a real big part.


He meets and falls in love with a beautiful Hawaiian woman.


It could be longer if you want it to be. If you pay me a lot, you can have the rights.


It’s a steady job, and I so want to be a paperback writer! (And maybe some hard copy books too.)

Paperback writer.

Fara shaka fara shaka – and so on, and so on. 🙂

So, that’s my silliness for today. Have a great weekend ya’ll!

Much Love,


Soothed On A Sunday …Who was The Real Tom Carroll To Me?

Tom Carroll was my maternal grandfather. The grandfather I unfortunately never knew personally. Yet, the stories my mother told me about him have fueled my imagination from a very young age. Yes, he was an immigrant. He came over from Ireland with his parents who sought a better life, fleeing from  the devestating Irish potato famine.

Grandpa Carroll was fun loving, sometimes to the point of exhausting his youngest daughter. “Let’s go for a walk? Then go get ice cream. Maybe then we could go to the movies…” He loved life and wanted to enjoy it. My favorite story was when he took my mother (she was, I think, about 10 at the time) to New York,and they visited The Statue Of Liberty. He told her they were going to climb to the crown together. He told her to head up the stairs and he would be right behind her. She said it took her about half way up to realize he had tricked her into going up there alone (okay, probably not the greatest parenting move). But, the thing is, he didn’t want her to miss the experience. Maybe he was tired that day. Or, just getting older, and not up to the long hike up to the crown. Yet, he made sure my mom had the experience of a lifetime, one she would never forget.  No, I didn’t know the man, yet I so loved his happy spirit.

I’ve enjoyed telling you about my muse…my dear Grandpa Carroll.

Much Love


Fabulous On A Friday…I Love My City!

The second book in my Tom Carroll series will be set in my hometown (which will be fictional Tom’s hometown too) of Atlanta, Georgia USA. In researching settings for my story, I was helped to remember just what a great place Atlanta is!

Just a few examples:

The Varsity 



Since 1928, The Varsity has been serving up legendary food and atmosphere in our city. Walk up to this counter and you will be greeted with a, “What’ll ya have!” Simply the best.

Ponce City Market

The new kid on the block (although located in the very old Sears and Roebuck building). Ponce City began opening its eclectic group of stores and restaurants in 2014. I had the pleasure of taking a blogging class from Hollis Gillespie at her office located above the retail businesses. They offer valet parking to the bicyclists that come via the Atlanta Beltline (I think that is way cool!)


Peachtree Plaza 

The second tallest all hotel skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere, it stands over Atlanta like a crystal giant. Taking a ride to the top of the building in one of the glass elevators, is a heart pounding experience (at least for me).


In 2008, it was damaged by a tornado.

Of course it has since been repaired.

So, I love my city! Atlanta is my home and has my heart. Why not google your own city…You might find some surprising and fun things to explore this weekend.

Happy Friday!!

Much Love,