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A Writer’s Life: A Setting Surprise

These were my thoughts in January, 2023.

With my current thriller manuscript "Claim Denied" in the hands of beta readers, I had time to think about authoring another book: a sequel, a thriller.
Over the previous months, for some unknown reason, small town stories had drawn my attention. I found that I loved cozy mysteries with ironic twists and turns and sweet romances with fun, quirky characters.
My fascination was just enough to force me to dig into to learning how to write my sequel thriller, set in a small town.
First things first: where?
I write stories set in locations I know about. Places I have lived or visited. “Just a Girl” opens in Madeira Island, Portugal, and ends in Spain. “Claim Denied” begins in Minneapolis but is set in Pristina, Kosovo. I knew those places intimately. Thus, I was completely comfortable writing about them. I wanted that again!
But where for this novel?
It took some time, but finally I remembered visiting a lovely tiny village on the Eastern Shore of Virginia quite a few times in early 2000. This was it! My setting!
I bought a ringed tablet of lined paper – my habit when imagining a new book. This was my “book bible” where I would tack all my ideas about character, plot, theme, conflict, the hook, and, of course, setting.
It was imperative that I learn more. So,  I began researching the history of this tiny village on the Eastern Shore of Virginia and came upon a startling surprise!
I dug deeper!

It was clear: I had to write this novel!

Wait for it.... 
Now that I was incredibly motivated, I wanted to get a fast start to capture my ideas in a sequence that made sense. To that end, I joined J. Thorn's 5-day challenge using his "Three Story Method", outlined the entire story, and, as always, uploaded the details in Plottr.
Now, I could access it at any time and get cracking. Well, as soon as "Claim Denied" was published.
In the midst of all this, I recorded a podcast on “In the KNOW!” my podcast show, capturing this heightened emotion and unbridled energy that I just described. And the startling surprise!

It’s 16 minutes long with intro and outgo music by my wonderful and talented friend, Russian violinist  Rafael Javadov, playing "The Amelia Island Sun,” an original jazz fusion composition that he wrote for me. (I still get chills when I think about his wrting this for me! I mean, how many people can say that? It's such an honor.)
An interlude: Let's fast forward to the present for a paragraph! All this work actually did result in "What Lies Beneath the Willow," the sequel thriller set in Selby, a fictional small town on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. And, now, I'm running a special promotion and offering the ebook version for 99 cents, marked down from $9.99 - for a limited time only starting Friday, June 7, 2024, 8:00 AM PDT and ending on Tuesday, June 11, 2024, 11:00 PM PDT. Be sure to mark your calendar and take advantage of this great offer!
 When you access this podcast on iHeartRadio, please consider subscribing for hear more of my informative and entertaining podcasts.
Also, comment below and tell me what you want me to blog or podcast about. Please send this blog to your family and friends. It really helps me reach more people and grow my audience for my editing services. Thank you so much.



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