Coffee & Chat, Life, Writing Updates

Coffee & Chat #13 – Catching Up

Happy Monday,

Today is number thirteen for our Coffee &  Chats. This seems like a good time to catch up because it’s been awhile. I’ve been busy writing and preparing for the launch of THE UNINVITED CORPSE I just didn’t have any words left to write blog posts. It happens sometimes.

I have my coffee so let’s start catching up. First up, is my debut novel’s release. It’s coming real soon. March 27th!!! I remember when I got the offer and 2018 seemed soooo far away. Lately it’s been feeling like Boom! There it is! Like…tomorrow! I’m doing my best to to hyperventilate every day when I think about the release or how much work needs to be done. I’m trying to remain calm and carry on. So far, it’s working. But it’s really hard not to freak out over something you’ve dreamed about for so long. Seriously, getting published is sooo hard to do. But I did it. And I have to remind myself that if I expend all my energy freaking out about the release and everything that’s involved I’ll miss out on the enjoyment of the event.

A part of the release will be a blog tour. The blog tour involves reviews, interviews and guest posts. So over the next week or so I’ll be completing those interviews and wrapping up writing the guest posts. I’ll be posting on social media where you can find me during the blog tour. I’m looking forward to visiting with as many people as possible on the tour. Advanced Reader Copies of the book have been sent out and reviews are now starting to be posted online. Reading reviews is hard to do and as much as I’m beyond thrilled with the reviews so far, I know that somewhere along the way to release day there will be one or two (I pray no more) negative reviews. Maybe I should start planning how I’ll handle those reviews. Many authors I know rely heavily on chocolate.

Meanwhile, I’ve been writing the first draft of book three in the Food Blogger Mystery series. The draft is complete and I’ve set it aside to work on the outline of another book.

There’s one more thing I’d like to share before I wrap this post up. I’m not sure if you heard that I sold a new series to my publisher. MURDER WEARS A LITTLE BLACK DRESS, book one in the Resale Boutique Mystery Series releases in January 2019. Out-of-work fashionista Kelly Quinn inherits her granny’s old and tired consignment shop. An attempt to turn the shop around is foiled when a dress in the shop on consignment is connected to a murder. I had so much fun writing the book and I can’t wait to begin book two, which is the book I’m currently outlining.

It’s so fun catching up with you. Thanks for dropping by today!


Kitchen Snapshots, Writing Updates

Kitchen Snapshots

Happy Friday! I’ve had an uber-productive week. The outline for book 3 of the Food Blogger mystery series was finished and set aside until next week to polish it up (right now it’s a heaping 26 pages of messiness but it tells the story), I began the outline for book 2 of the Resale Boutique mystery series (I now know who the killer is and who the suspects are, so it’s a start) and I’ve wrapped up a few promotion tasks for the release of The Uninvited Corpse. I also debuted as a monthly contributor to the awesome group blog, Writers Who Kill. Didn’t see the post? Click here and you’ll be taken right to it. I wrote about my journey from food blogger to author and later in the month I’ll expand on that post here with some more details (no word count limit here).

Since I got all caught up on my work, I decided to spend some time in the kitchen working on a cookie recipe for The Hidden Corpse (out April 2019).Here’s a pic of the finished product (sorry, no details, I know, not fair but I have to save a few things for the release). My house did smell heavenly from the lemony fragrance of these adorable and utterly delicious cookies. Turns out they’re like potato chips – you just can’t have one and that’s why I packed up containers quickly and delivered them to my neighbors.

Earlier in the week I made a big pot of Butternut Squash soup and I have been enjoying it since for lunch or dinner, I even froze a couple of containers. Since I’m the only one here to loves this soup, I cut the recipe in half and if you’d like to try the soup you’ll find the recipe here.

Today I’m diving into the chapters of Murder Wears a Little Black Dress that I just got back from my critique partner. In just a few weeks I’ll be turning the manuscript into my editor. It’s kinda sad, I love this book and I’m going to miss working on it. Oh, well, there’s always the next adventure for Kelly, right?

Have a great Friday!



Writer Wednesday

Happy Wednesday! It’s a snowy day here in Connecticut and that means some time this afternoon I’ll be outside spending some quality time with my snowblower, ah…the joys of working from home. Until I have to venture out, I’m staying put inside with my coffee. When I first came into my study this morning after breakfast I reviewed my to-do list for the day which I have to say isn’t bad. I made the decision last week to switch out my planner after making the decision to switch out my planner. Can someone say indecisive?

It’s a very, very long story but I’m back to using my Erin Condren planner and life is so much better now because of it. I’ve learned to not schedule my day as if I had 48 hours. Yeah, I was over-scheduling myself for weeks and that’s not a good thing for me. What’s on tap for today is writing a few blog posts, completing a form for my upcoming blog tour in March and continuing with an online class I purchased over the weekend. I’ve finished the outline for book 3 in the Food Blogger Mystery series and I’m going to let it set for a couple of days before diving back in and polishing it up. The 26 page document will go to my editor and then I’ll begin writing the book (between you and me, I’ll probably start writing the book sometime next week).

I also scheduled some time to begin brainstorming the 2nd book in the Resale Boutique Mystery series. Book 1, Murder Wears a Little Black Dress, is still with my critique partner. The final edits are about half done with that book so as soon as I get the last chapters back from Ellie, I’ll dive into those pages and finish prepping the manuscript for me editor.

Being in this phase of writing, which is all about the creation of the plot is kind of odd. It’s hard to quanitify the work I’m doing, somedays I plot out more of the story than others but I’ve learned now after 3 books that this is necessary time spent and not to beat myself up if I end my workday early because in the coming months of actually writing the book I’ll be putting in longer days. Besides, this is a very creative period of the writing process and I know it sounds corny, but the creativity needs to be nurtured and protected.

Well, the snow is still falling outside so I better get going on my day so I’ll have the time later clear the snow.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!





January Reads

We’ve had a whole lot of weather here in Connecticut – frigid cold, snow, rain and record warmth. We’ve gone from below zero temps right up to 50 degrees that included two days of rain and fog and ice. That old saying about New England weather, “wait an hour” has never been more true.

I rarely need an excuse to curl up with a good book but I think this month I have a few good reasons. 🙂 Making time to read for pleasure has been a top priority since the new year. Looking back at December I didn’t get much reading done between finishing the second draft of Murder Wears a Little Black Dress and doing a final read of The Hidden Corpse, both had a deadline of December 31st (note for future self – don’t ever do that again) and all the Christmas stuff that needed to be done. Yeah, I think there was a little burnout by January 1st.

In hopes of not repeating last month, I’ve carved out time in the evening to read a book rather than check my iPad for Facebook and Instagram updates or see if I’ve gotten a new email. Step away from the electronic devices, Deb. So far, it’s been going well and I’m sleeping better too! Win-win, I think. Okay, so what’s on my reading list this month? I felt like more supense rather than cozy or romance. Luckily, I had a few books on my shelves that fit the bill.


The Woman In Cabin Ten by Ruth Ware

I haven’t read her first book, In a Dark, Dark Wood, butit’s on my to-buy list. I read a sample on The Woman in Cabin Ten on my iBooks app and knew I had to buy the book and while browsing in a local bookshop there it was! The opening of the book immediately drew me in and I’m curious to see how the story unfolds as Lo Blacklock embarks on an assignment of a lifetime that turns out to be a nightmare.

Even If It Kills Her by Kate White

The Baily Weggins series is one of my favorite series and I was so excited when I learned Kate White was writing another one after writing a few stand-alone titles. I devoured the book in a matter of days and loved the twist at the end. I’ve read there’s another Bailey Weggins book is coming soon. Can’t wait!

Where All The Dead Lie by J.T. Ellison

The book description sounded so interesting for this book that I just had to buy it. A mystery set in a castle in the Scottish Highlands. Done! Had to have the book and I’m so looking forward to diving into it.

There you have it, my choices for this month. What are you reading this month?