Sunday, October 27, 2013

Blog Tour

Happy Sunday Everyone,
This is going to be short today.  I'll be starting a blog tour tomorrow, October 28th through November 2th at Virtual Book Tour Cafe.  You can get to their blog at this link: and if I did it right you can, also, click on the banner above and get to their site. 
The way the tour works is that for the next five days I'll be at a different blog every day.  You'll go to the Virtual Book Tour Cafe every day to find where I'll be.  lol  Here is the link you need to find all the other links to go to each day.
The Deceived is a day late getting released, but my publisher had difficulting loading it onto Amazon.  It is up now and can be found at this link. 

Saturday, I did an interview at Joyfully Reviewed and it is here if you would like to learn more about me.
Have a safe and fun Halloween on Thursday.  Thanks for reading and have a great week.  I'll see you next week.
Sandra K. Marshall


Sunday, October 20, 2013

More News

Hi Everyone,

The third book in the Riverboat Mysteries, The Deceived, will re-release on Friday, October 25th.  You will be able to find this book on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.  The Deceived is about the youngest daughter you met in the firt story, The Catalyst, and how she redeems herself. I don't have the links yet, but here is a blurb and a excerpt from the book. 

The games they play can lead them to love or ruin. 

Melanie Dubois detests her family’s casino business. The way this addiction destroys people has her on a tear of magnificent proportions. Then again, this young lady has been put through a train wreck of her own design. She distrusts everybody except for the people who are determined to use Melanie as a poster-child for zealots. 

Mike Mercer has spent nearly a year in a deep cover mission for the FBI. The one fly in the ointment of completing his objective to take down a group of dangerous anti-gambling zealots is a fiery-tempered, blonde-haired woman named Melanie DuBois. Worse than that, she’s got a passion brewing just beneath the surface that’s an even deadlier attraction.

 Fighting for your life is never easy when the odds are stacked against you.


Mike Mercer stood to the side watching Melanie Dubois talk to the news media. She was a piece of work, but he had to admit she had a hot body. He sighed crossing his arms over his chest as he leaned against his dark blue sedan, trying to blend in with the crowd. He wasn’t here to seduce her; even though her feistiness appealed to him, making him wonder what kind of lover she’d be. He was here to get her away from these people.

He would have to question her motives in front of the picketers and the media, so if she decided to go with The Opposition Group, Janet Batten and her followers, she wouldn’t be suspected of collusion with him. The confrontation might be fun, but more than likely he was going to get a tongue lashing. His lips curled up at the thought.

Hopefully, his cover hadn’t been discovered. He didn’t need these fanatics knowing he was FBI. A sloppily dressed journalist glanced toward Mike. Here was his opening.

Mike heaved himself away from the fender and strode into the center of the crowd. Once he reached Melanie, he grasped her shoulder, saying, "What the hell are you doing here? This is no place for you."

Mel whirled around, jerking away from his touch. "Just who are you telling me what I can or can not do?"

He grinned down at the spitting feline image of tawny blonde hair swirling around her face. "Well, it sure looks like someone should take control of you," he said. Pausing, his gaze roamed down her body, before he added, "But for your information I’m not telling you how to behave, I’m asking a question." What he needed was an excuse to get her away from this bunch, but there wasn’t one.  

"What I’m doing here is none of your business."

"What is your connection to Melanie Dubois?" the journalist asked, sticking the microphone in front of Mike’s face.

"The only link between us is that I’m on the board of the Odyssey casino." He glanced at Melanie. "There’s no way your family would want you here."

"Why would I care about someone who doesn't love me?"

"I doubt that’s true." What made her think that? Surely, she didn’t believe all the crap her father told her about her mother having an affair and that she was the result of that fling. "Don’t you even want to know what’s happening with your sister?"

"It’s all over the news, how can I miss it?"

Janet moved up beside them, putting her arm protectively around the young girl. "Stop harassing her, or I’ll call the police."

Melanie didn’t know everything that was going on because the FBI told the media only what they wanted them to know. What would the younger woman think if she knew the FBI had used her sister as bait to catch the serial killer terrorizing the area? Her hostility would be nothing compared to what it would be if she learned that detail.

There was nothing he could do right now, Batten would use Melanie for her own ends until the older woman had no further use for her. He glanced behind him, noticing people closing in on him. Even though he saw Dan Travis, the light brown-haired ATF agent, there wouldn’t be any help there. He’d never break his cover either.

Hell, he’d better get out of here.

"You’re a big girl; you can make your own decisions." He gazed into large blue eyes filled with distrust and shaded by long black mascara covered lashes. It saddened him to see her wasting her womanhood on their cause because they weren’t after the same thing she was. She wanted to save people, and they wanted to destroy them. "‚I just hope you don’t regret those decisions later."

 With a nod at the journalist and one more glance at Melanie, he turned and leisurely walked toward his car. He kept an eye on the man with the scar. That guy was a bad ass, and he had a record as long as his arm to prove it. Al Slavery was the dangerous one in the bunch. The others were nothing but drones.
Thanks for reading.  Have a great week and come back next weekend. 

Sandra K. Marshall
Links for The Catalyst:  Amazon, B&N
Link for Addiction: Amazon
Audio Link for A Fool's Fool:  Audio


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Author's Don't Work They Just Write

Many people think writing a book is easy, and they don't consider it a real job.  They think all we have to do is sit in a chair typing our stories on a computer, go out to lunch with our friends, eating bon bon's and just working when we feel like it. 

Some of this may be true, but there is so much more involved in writing books. On one of my Yahoo sites, we have been discussing what people think of us. Writers get irritated by the assumption that there isn't any work involved in writing. 

Often times there's research involved before an author can even start to write.  Unless, you're a panster (someone who writes by the seat of their pants) you have to make an outline or synopsis of your story, so you know where you're going.  You have to have character profiles (descriptions of each character, knowledge of their work, car they drive and their home), and usually that's a beginning. This can be a chore just to do that much. 

I'm a panster because I don't want to get locked in, but I, also, do a general outline of some of the scenes I want in the story.  I always do character profiles because I need to know as much about them as I can at the beginning.  There are times I add more characteristics or back story to these characters as I write.  When this happens I often have to go back to the early part of the story to insert hints relating to the add-ins. 

It depends on the link of the story as to how long it takes to write.  Many authors can produce four or more 200 page books a year, but they work all the time.  I know one author who produces 4 books a year for Harlequin, works full-time and goes to all her kids' sports events. She writes while she's at these events, she writes at the beach, Starbucks and anywhere she can.  Another author just signed a 12 book contract with Harlequin.  She won't have a life for a long time because she'll put one out every two months.

Once an author finishes a book, she submits it to a publisher and waits for it to be accepted.  When it is accepted, she waits for the edits to come to her/him.  Everyone hopes the edits won't be extensive, but if they are they'll be life consuming because you are required to get them back by a certain date.  While the editor is editing your book, you have to give the cover artist a description of your hero/heroine, clothes, come up with a possible blurb, etc. 

Then comes the edits for the author, and she/he will go through this process until the editor is satisfied.  I can expect as many as three edits with my publisher, and then the book is published.  Hooray!  This part of the process of writing a book is enjoyable for me.

Then the not so enjoyable part of the work is next.  To be completely honest this is what I detest.  Promotion is a necessity because when you sign your contract with a publisher it's in your contract that you must promote your book.  If you don't, the publisher can cancel your contract.  If your sales are low, they can cancel your contract.  In that case, you will get the copy rights back to your book and you can do whatever you want with it.  Most go to another publisher, self-publish or rewrite the story completely before doing the first two.

Here's how you promote your book: you can hire a publicist if you're rich, do a blog tour (this can cost unless you just use friends blogs), advertise in magazines (costs), Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and numerous other sites.  It's tiring to do all of this, but it has to be done.  All of this requires coming up with new blogs about your books.  It requires a lot of work, and it seems to never end because with the next book it starts all over again. 

It's a whole different ball game if an author self-publishes.  They have to do the cover art, or hire it done, do formatting for the different sites (Amazon, Barnes and Noble and others), and get their book up on these sites.  Everything is different for each one, and it is work.  I will never do this unless I pay to have it done, and I am critical about the way things are done, so I would need to do it myself.

Many authors suffer burn out because of this process.  I've known many good authors who have quit after their first or second book because of burn out.  But, I know an author in her 80's who is still writing.  Smile!  She doesn't do a lot of promotion, but her work is well known.

I prefer to have a life, and I'm trying to find a balance with my writing and my life.

Thank you for reading, and I hope you come back next weekend.  Have a great week.

Sandra K. Marshall


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Do You Listen to Your Spouse?

Do you tune out your spouse, or half-listen to him/her?  I'll tell my husband about plans I have made for us, and a few days later I'll remind him.  He'll swear I never told him about those plans.  He'll be talking to me as I'm leaving the room, and I'll walk back to him asking, "What was that?"

He says I never listen to him, and I say I didn't hear him because I was running water, he had his back to me while he was talking, or I thought we were done talking and I'd already walked out of the room.  lol  We laugh about this all the time and wonder if we're losing our memory, or is it really the excuses we give. 

It could be age, but I don't think that's the whole answer. All of us live busy lives, and it's hard to slow down and listen to those around us.  We often listen with half an ear while doing something else.  It's easier to listen to a friend that you only see once in awhile than to a spouse you spend day and night with. 

My husband and I love each other, and we tell each other often, but we could spend more time listening to one another.  Smile!

What do you and your spouse do?  I'll be eager to hear comments on this. 

Have a great week, and I'll see you next weekend.

Best always,

Sandra K. Marshall