Posted in A Stone's Throw, Between a Rock and a Hard Place, Contest

Win a $90 Gift Card and Read Some Great Holiday Books

holiday-blitz-768x289The two books in my Cobble Cove mysteries, A Stone’s Throw and Between a Rock and a Hard Place, are part of Book Enthusiast Promotions Holiday Blitz that features a $90 gift card giveaway in addition to wonderful holiday reads. Both my cozy mystery books take place near holidays.

stonesthrowamazonA Stone’s Throw, with a sweet romance and a page-turning, twisty mystery takes place in November and includes a Thanksgiving scene at the quaint Cobble Inn.

Between a Rock and a Hard Place features the Cobble Cove Christmas Faire as well as a few scenes in New York City during the holidays, several new characters, and three crimes to be solved. between-a-rockhard-place-001

More information on my books and how to enter the giveaway are included here: http://bit.ly/2fv3aLS

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Between a Rock and a Hard Place, Books

Cobble Cove Mystery #2 Coming Soon . . .

betweenarockandahardplacesolsticecoverBETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE is the sequel to A STONE’S THROW, the first Cobble Cove mystery. Although this book can be read as a standalone, some readers may prefer to read the first book for more background on the characters. If you like cozy mysteries that take place in a small town with quirky characters and several twists, you should enjoy both books. Between a Rock and a Hard Place will be released by Solstice Publishing this fall.

Warning: If you haven’t read A STONE’S THROW, the following preview to its sequel may contain spoilers.

Librarian Alicia McKinney has put the past behind her…

Two years ago, Alicia discovered both a terrible truth and lasting love with John McKinney in the small town of Cobble Cove, New York. Now a busy mother of twin babies and co-author of a mystery series, Alicia couldn’t be happier.

brhp-teaser-2Alicia’s contentment and safety are challenged…

Walking home alone from the library, Alicia senses someone following her, and on more than one occasion, she believes she is being watched. Does she have a stalker? When the local gift shop is burglarized, the troubling event causes unrest among Alicia and the residents of the quiet town.

John and Alicia receive an offer they can’t refuse…

When John’s sister offers to babysit while she and John take a much-needed vacation in New York City, Alicia is reluctant to leave her children because of the disturbances in Cobble Cove. John assures her the town is safe in the hands of Sheriff-elect Ramsay. Although Alicia’s experience with and dislike of the former Long Island detective don’t alleviate her concern, she and John take their trip.

Alicia faces her worst nightmare…

Secluded CabinThe McKinneys’ vacation is cut short when they learn their babies have been kidnapped and John’s sister shot. Alicia and John’s situation puts them between a rock and a hard place when the main suspect is found dead before the ransom is paid. In order to save their children, the McKinneys race against the clock to solve a mystery more puzzling than those found in their own books. Can they do it before time runs out?

stonesthrowamazonIf you haven’t read the first Cobble Cove mystery, you can find it on any of these sites (Note: A STONE’S THROW will soon by on Kindle Unlimited and no longer available as an ebook on any other site than Amazon.com. The paperback will still be available from all sellers.)

Amazon U.S.: http://amzn.to/1MjaJgN

Amazon Australia: http://bit.ly/1Sdh82D

Amazon Canada: http://amzn.to/1SdheHi

Amazon U.K.: http://amzn.to/1QutXBW

Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1nQPyv4

Kobo: http://bit.ly/1KGYHep

Also available on iTunes and Ingram

 

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Between a Rock and a Hard Place, blog challenge, Books

#LifeBooksWriting Blog Challenge: Profile of My Character

betweenarockandahardplacesolsticecover
Cover Image of BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE, releasing this fall.

While this blog post topic is a week late for the challenge because I was on vacation and very busy when I returned, I still wanted to write it to introduce one of my newest characters in my mystery BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE, the sequel to A STONE’S THROW.  I am busy working on edits for this book and hope it’s out in October or November.

Warning: If you haven’t read A STONE’S THROW yet, you might want to skip this post because it contains a spoiler from the ending.

kimpic
What Kim Pierce, college journalism major from the upcoming BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE, Cobble Cove Mystery #2, might look like

While many characters from A STONE’S THROW are still included in its sequel, there are also quite a few new characters as Cobble Cove expands. Two of the newer characters introduced in BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE are college students, Kim Pierce and Andy Phillips. The two young people are journalism interns who work for John at the Cobble Cove Courier. Kim also babysits for John and Alicia’s twins. I am profiling her for this challenge.

Kim is the second oldest in a large family. She wears her brown hair in a ponytail and dresses casually in sweaters and jeans. She and Andy, who work together on the newspaper, are dating. Their relationship becomes tested in the book when he is suspected and later accused of some of the crimes that take place in Cobble Cove during the holiday season. When Kim witnesses an event that touches John and Alicia, her older brother Carter comforts her in Andy’s place.

Here is an unedited scene from BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE, Cobble Cove Mystery #2 starring Kim:

The babysitter appeared at the nursery door. She was dressed in tight-fitting jeans, a pale fuzzy blue sweater that accented her light blue eyes. Her brown hair was tied back in a ponytail.

“Sorry that took so long,” she said not even out of breath having run up the stairs. Alicia envied the girl’s 20-year old body.

“Not to worry. I know how long doctors take. Sheila sent me home because she thinks I need more rest, but I feel fine. John was around earlier, but he’s gone to do some chores. Since you’re here, maybe I’ll take him up on his suggestion to go Christmas shopping or do something in town.”

Kim smiled. “Of course. You deserve to have time to yourself. I can watch the twins until four and then I have to get ready for my evening class.”

“I should be back way before then. How are your classes going this semester?”

Kim walked over to the cribs and looked down at the babies who were starting to fall asleep. In a low voice, she replied. “They’re good. Lots of work, but I enjoy it.”

“How much longer do you need to go before you earn your degree?”

Kim was by Carol’s crib, and she smiled as the baby opened her eyes again and regarded her with a gurgle. She reached down and tickled her.

“So sweet. Your babies are adorable, Alicia. One day, I hope to have cuties like these. But I want to start my career first. If I can afford the classes next year, I’ll be able to finish the following spring.”

Alicia knew college costs were high. “Are you taking out any loans?” When Alicia was at Long Island University, she’d earned some scholarships but she’d also borrowed money in her last year at library school. Luckily, she was able to pay her loan off shortly after she married her first husband.

“I’m not sure that’s a wise thing to do,” Kim said walking over to Johnny and watching as he followed his sister in waking up.

“I hate to have to pay back all that money with interest. I know I won’t earn much in the field I’m entering, especially in the beginning, and I can’t expect my parents to help much since I have three sisters and a brother at home.”

Alicia knew that both Kim and John’s other assistant, Andy, were from lower middle-class families. Kim came from a large family compared to today’s households and, although Andy only had a younger brother, his dad had died in a car accident a few years ago. His mother was struggling to make ends meet. She felt for the young people who were just starting out and was glad that John was paying them for their work on the paper and that she could offer Kim additional money for babysitting.

Buy links for A STONE’S THROW:

Amazon U.S.: KINDLE: http://amzn.to/1MjaJgN

Amazon Australia: http://bit.ly/1Sdh82D

Amazon Canada: http://amzn.to/1SdheHi

Amazon U.K.: http://amzn.to/1QutXBW

Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1nQPyv4

Kobo: http://bit.ly/1KGYHep

Also available on iTunes and Ingram

Connect with me on:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/debbie.delouise.author/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Deblibrarian

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2750133.Debbie_De_Louise

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Debbie-De-Louise/e/B0144ZGXPW/

Website/Blog/Newsletter Sign-Up: https://debbiedelouise.wordpress.com

blogchallengegraphicupdatedI’m very excited to participate in the blog challenge Sophia Valentine of Lifestyle and Literature created (see graphic for topics and dates if you have a blog and would like to participate. If you’re a reader, I’m sure you’ll enjoy learning about some of the great participating authors).

 

 

 

 

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Freebies and Special Offers

99-cent Weekend Sale Starts Today, August 19th, for A Stone’s Throw

stonesthrow99centsMy mystery romance, A Stone’s Throw, is on sale today and throughout the weekend for 99 cents. The sequel, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” is coming soon, so grab the first book now.

Widowed librarian Alicia Fairmont needs answers…

After her husband is killed in a hit and run accident, Alicia travels upstate to his hometown of Cobble Cove, New York, hoping to locate his estranged family and shed light on his mysterious past. Anticipating staying only a weekend, her visit is extended when she accepts a job at the town’s library.

Secrets stretch decades into the past…

Assisted by handsome newspaper publisher and aspiring novelist, John McKinney, Alicia discovers a connection between her absent in-laws and a secret John’s father has kept for over sixty years. But her investigation is interrupted when she receives word her house has burned and arson is suspected, sending her rushing back to Long Island, accompanied by John.

Back in Cobble Cove, cryptic clues are uncovered…

When Alicia returns, she finds a strange diary, confiscated letters, and a digital audio device containing a recording made the day her husband was killed. Anonymous notes warn Alicia to leave town, but she can’t turn her back on the mystery—or her attraction to John.

As the pieces begin to fall into place, evidence points to John’s involvement in her husband’s accident. The past and present threaten to collide, and Alicia confronts her fears…

Has she fallen in love with her husband’s killer?

1

Amazon U.S.: KINDLE: http://amzn.to/1MjaJgN
Amazon Australia: http://bit.ly/1Sdh82D
Amazon Canada: http://amzn.to/1SdheHi
Amazon U.K.: http://amzn.to/1QutXBW
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1nQPyv4
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1KGYHep
Also available on iTunes and Ingram

 

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Authors, blog challenge, Books, Limitless Publishing

#LifeBooksWriting Blog Challenge: About My Recent Book

stonesthrowamazonI’m very excited to participate in the blog challenge Sophia Valentine of Lifestyle and Literature created (see graphics at the bottom of this post for topics and dates if you have a blog and would like to participate. If you’re a reader, I’m sure you’ll enjoy learning about some of the great participating authors).

This week, I will be talking about my recent book., “A Stone’s Throw.” that was published in November 2015 by Limitless Publishing. I am working on the sequel, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” (2nd in the Cobble Cove Mysteries) series that will be released soon.

Below is the blurb, an excerpt, the book trailer, and some reviews of “A Stone’s Throw.” I am also including the purchase links for the book along with my social media links and Amazon and Goodreads Author Pages as well as my website/blog and newsletter sign-up link.

Widowed librarian Alicia Fairmont needs answers…

After her husband is killed in a hit and run accident, Alicia travels upstate to his hometown of Cobble Cove, New York, hoping to locate his estranged family and shed light on his mysterious past. Anticipating staying only a weekend, her visit is extended when she accepts a job at the town’s library.

Secrets stretch decades into the past…

Assisted by handsome newspaper publisher and aspiring novelist, John McKinney, Alicia discovers a connection between her absent in-laws and a secret John’s father has kept for over sixty years. But her investigation is interrupted when she receives word her house has burned and arson is suspected, sending her rushing back to Long Island, accompanied by John.

Back in Cobble Cove, cryptic clues are uncovered…

When Alicia returns, she finds a strange diary, confiscated letters, and a digital audio device containing a recording made the day her husband was killed. Anonymous notes warn Alicia to leave town, but she can’t turn her back on the mystery—or her attraction to John.

As the pieces begin to fall into place, evidence points to John’s involvement in her husband’s accident. The past and present threaten to collide, and Alicia confronts her fears…

Has she fallen in love with her husband’s killer?

Watch the Trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bTL6s3a9Y1s

1

EXCERPT

“Who is the other visitor?” Alicia was curious about the sleeping guest.

“Oh, John,” Dora chuckled. “He’s not a visitor. He lives up the road, but he stays here occasionally. I think it’s just to keep me company, but he says the atmosphere inspires his writing. He also does some chores for me.”

“He’s an author?”

Dora chose a cinnamon bun and spread some butter on it. “He’s actually our town’s newspaper publisher. He also keeps the town’s records, but he’s working on a book, too. He stays busy. I guess it helps him recover.”

This was interesting. If this guy John kept the town records, maybe he could track down Pete’s sister and mother. But what was he recovering from? Alicia was hesitant to ask. Maybe the man was in rehab for alcohol or drug addiction, or perhaps he had cancer or been in an accident.

“Talking about me again, Dora?” They hadn’t even heard him in the doorway. The man who stood there did not look drunk, sick, or injured. He was tall, even taller than Pete which would probably make him about six feet. He was thin but muscular, and he didn’t look like he spent a lot of time working at a computer. His hair was dark and thick with only a few strands of gray. He was clean shaven with deep blue eyes she noticed immediately.

“Ah, good morning, John. You’ve awoken before the rooster crows.” Dora got up. “I have some cleaning to do upstairs. Why don’t you come and meet your fellow guest, Alicia?”

John bent forward as if to bow. “Pleased to meet you, ma’am.” He  extended his hand. “John McKinney at your service.”

McKinney? “Are you a related to Mr. McKinney at the library?”

John smiled as Dora made her exit, muffin in hand. He sat in the chair she left. “He’s my dad.”

Kiev, Ukraine - October 17, 2012 - A logotype collection of well-known social media brand's printed on paper. Include Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Google Plus, Instagram, Vimeo, Flickr, Myspace, Tumblr, Livejournal, Foursquare and more other logos.

Connect with me on:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/debbie.delouise.author/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Deblibrarian

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2750133.Debbie_De_Louise

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Debbie-De-Louise/e/B0144ZGXPW/

Website/Blog/Newsletter Sign-Up: https://debbiedelouise.wordpress.com

Buy links for A STONE’S THROW:

Amazon U.S.: KINDLE: http://amzn.to/1MjaJgN

Amazon Australia: http://bit.ly/1Sdh82D

Amazon Canada: http://amzn.to/1SdheHi

Amazon U.K.: http://amzn.to/1QutXBW

Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1nQPyv4

Kobo: http://bit.ly/1KGYHep

Also available on iTunes and Ingram

blogchallengegraphicupdated

 

 

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Authors, blog challenge, Books

#LifeBooksWriting Blog Challenge: My Five-Year Plan

blogchallengegraphicupdatedI’m very excited to participate in the blog challenge Sophia Valentine of Lifestyle and Literature created (see graphic for topics and dates if you have a blog and would like to participate. If you’re a reader, I’m sure you’ll enjoy learning about some of the great participating authors).

This week’s post is about where I’d like to be in five years. Although this can apply to many life areas, I’m going to concentrate on my writing right now. Since a “picture’s worth a thousand words,” here is my view of what I would like to see happen with my books in five years. I’ve only shown one possible headline, but I hope to have at least five more books published by 2021.newspaper3How do I plan to make this happen? I’ll continue writing, of course. Currently, my mystery tentatively titled, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place” has been contracted with Solstice Publishing. It is the sequel to “A Stone’s Throw” published last November.  I am also working on a completely new standalone I consider a psychological thriller. I’m hoping to submit it to an agent and/or publisher some time this fall.

Besides writing, I need to promote my books. I plan to continue advertising on social media but, more importantly, connecting with my followers. My five-year plan includes  making additional professional and reader contacts; increasing subscribers to my author newsletter; sending press releases to the media; and appearing at libraries, bookstores, author signings, and writing conferences. Maybe in five years I’ll be able to clone myself, so I can manage to do all this.  If not, I will try to prioritize my time as best as I can.

If I don’t achieve my goal in five years or sooner, I will still be happy if I’ve reached a good number of people who enjoy my books. I don’t intend to compete with anyone but myself or change my writing to please what I perceive the public wants. That doesn’t mean I won’t try to emulate some of my favorite authors or seek advice from fellow writers and readers. It simply means I will strive to improve my writing with each book and develop my own individual style.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Authors, blog challenge, Books, Cat Writer's Association, Cloudy Rainbow, Limitless Publishing

#LifeBooksWriting Blog Challenge: My Publishing Journey

blogchallengegraphicupdatedI’m very excited to participate in the blog challenge Sophia Valentine of Lifestyle and Literature created (see graphic for topics and dates if you have a blog and would like to participate. If you’re a reader, I’m sure you’ll enjoy learning about some of the great participating authors).

debbiehicksvilleThis week, I will be talking about my publishing journey where, how, and why I started on this path, how far I’ve come so far, and where I hope to be in the future.

lobaughawardI’ve always loved reading and writing. When I was young, I would drive my family crazing making up and relating stories before I even knew how to write. In college, I majored in English and became a Features Editor on the student newspaper at Long Island Unversity/C.W. Post Campus. I received a special award for my writing on the paper, The Lawrence C. Lobaugh, Jr. award in journalism. When I decided to become a librarian and enrolled in the Palmer School of Library and Information Science also at Post, I volunteered to edit and publish the graduate school newsletter, Annotations.

debbieaward1After college, I wrote articles for cat magazines and published a short story in a mystery anthology called Cat Crimes Through Time. I also joined the Cat Writer’s Association and am still an active member today. In fact, I just won their Glamour Puss Award sponsored by the Hartz Mountain Corporation for my article, “Brush your cat for Bonding Beauty, and Better Health.” I received a beautiful plaque for this award and a check from Hartz.

cloudyrainbowAfter my beloved cat Floppy died, I self-published a novel, Cloudy Rainbow, and made him a character in it. My daughter was young at this time, and I stopped writing for some years following the publication of Cloudy Rainbow, but I started back up again after taking some Gale Online Writing and Publishing Courses that my library offers free to library card holders. I began submitting articles and stories to various publications and was published in my local paper and Catster.com, an online cat magazine.

stonesthrowamazonIt was at this time, that I also began writing my mystery, A Stone’s Throw, that was published in November 2015 by Limitless Publishing after their managing editor liked my tweet on a twitter event called Pit2Pub and the publisher offered me a contract after reviewing my manuscript. I had found out about this event as I became further involved in social media to help promote my work. Here is a link to my interview with Kristin Kristin D. Van Risseghem, the organizer of this event. http://bit.ly/1Yxazt8

Once I became traditionally published, I learned much more about the publishing business. The amount of time and effort that authors put into marketing and promoting their books was an eye-opener. By networking and interacting online with other authors, I discovered what happened after your book is published. I found out about book blogs, blog tours, Facebook and Twitter parties and events, newsletters, mailing lists, book talks, author signings and conferences, and much  more. It was overwhelming at first, and I’m still finding it hard to balance the time between writing, marketing, and working a full-time job as well as spending time with my family.

Currently, I am working on the sequel (possible 2nd in the Cobble Cove Mysteries) series and am very close to announcing some great news about it. I also have a completed manuscript for a psychological thriller that I’m hoping to submit to an agent for a chance at having my work considered with a larger publisher.

Below are some interviews and articles about me that include further details about my publishing journey. I have also included my social media links and website where you can sign up for my author newsletter that features a monthly contest and updates on my writing and books.

Interview for Lifestyle & Literature Blog

Interview for Jane Hunt Writer Blog

The Braille Club Interview

Interview with Natalina Reis on her blog, Never Too Late

Local Author Releases Second Novel

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/debbie.delouise.author/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Deblibrarian

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2750133.Debbie_De_Louise

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Debbie-De-Louise/e/B0144ZGXPW/

Website/Blog/Newsletter Sign-Up: https://debbiedelouise.com

 

 

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Cloudy Rainbow, Monday Blog, Writing

Have you been to your High School or College Reunion Recently?

debbiegraduation
I graduated from the Palmer School of Library and Information Science at C.W. Post/Long Island University in 1989 with a Masters in Library and Information Science and a Bachelors in English.

I came up with the idea for this post after I was asked to submit some memories of my time on Long Island University’s C.W. Post College newspaper, the Pioneer, for an article their current advisor, Carolyn Schurr Levin is writing. It was a pleasure to speak to Ms. Levin who is helping arrange a 60th anniversary for the student paper. While collecting my thoughts for this project, I felt it would be helpful to write a blog post about the process of recalling events from over 30 years ago and why some of you might also want to reminisce about your own school days and even plan a reunion with fellow classmates or club members.

I was involved on the Pioneer from 1983 until I graduated C.W. Post in 1989. I came to Post as a slightly “older” student who returned to college after working a year as a secretary. I enrolled part-time as an English major to test the waters before I made the full-time commitment.

Debbiepioneeroffice
I was hired as secretary by Adam Pardonek in 1983 and later became Features Editor.

One of the first things I did was to seek a way to familiarize myself with and participate in campus activities. I remember that September day when I walked down the second-floor corridor of Hillwood Commons to the activity wing where the newspaper office was located. Adam Pardonek, the Editor-in-Chief at that time, spoke to me in his office about my interests in working for the student paper. I explained my situation as a new student who had prior experience as a secretary and also enjoyed writing. He suggested that my skills could be put to good use on the Pioneer. Many of the writers and editors could use help in having their stories typed. There was also an opening for a Features writer on that year’s paper. I accepted both positions.
My part-time job as a secretary was approved by the administration, and I was paid a small wage. The workload sometimes became intense, especially close to deadlines. At that time, I used WordPerfect to input the stories into a computer.

productionroom2editedfinal
Editors in the 1980’s laid out the student paper by hand and then brought it to a printer to be printed. (Left to right: Editor-in-Chief Tim Votapka works with Sports Editor, Mike Gannon, in the Production Room laying out the week’s Pioneer.)
debbiepioneerparty2
The Pioneer staff members were like a family and, besides production night dinners, we celebrated other special occasions and staff member birthdays.

Unlike today’s technology, the paper’s layout was done in-house in a production room and brought to a printer for copying. My memories of Production night dinners on Wednesdays are still clear after all these years. The advertising manager had an agreement with the local Fireside restaurant where the editors could have dinner each week in exchange for advertising copy in the paper. We all looked forward to these meals. Thinking back about eating with the editors as we discussed our stories, I can still taste the fried mozzarella sticks and recall the comradery and some of the jokes that were told. We also celebrated birthdays and special occasions of staff members.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

lobaughaward
I received the Lawrence C. Lobaugh, Jr. Memorial Award in 1984 for my work as Features Editor on the Pioneer. The award was given in memory of a Pioneer editor who died in his Sophomore year at Post.

I still have my desk plaque that reads “Debbie Smiloff” and fond memories of my time on the Pioneer. I also received a special award for my feature writing my first year on the paper, the Lawrence C. Lobaugh, jr. Memorial Award in Journalism. Along with a plaque that is displayed in the Great Hall, I was given an engraved medal. I was the last Pioneer person to receive this award because the donor passed away that year. The award had been given in memory of his son who had served on the Pioneer and died much too young. It was quite an honor to receive this award, and I have treasured the medal for 32 years.

cloudyrainbow stonesthrowamazon

 

 

 

 

I saw many editor-in-chiefs come and go after Adam who graduated that year. I remained staff secretary but also advanced to Features editor with my own group of writers. Through my interviews for feature articles, I also met professors, students, and school administrators. The experience I gained from working on the paper led me to publish articles in magazines and, after I married, a few books, as well. My first published novel, Cloudy Rainbow, actually features some chapters that take place at the Pioneer. My current book, A Stone’s Throw, includes a librarian, like myself, who is a Post graduate from the Palmer School. One of the book’s settings is Brookville where C.W. Post is located.

debbiemikefestival
Mike Gannon, the Sports Editor I worked with for several years on the Pioneer, surprised me recently by attending one of my local book signings.

Many people say that college is the best years of one’s life. I agree. Even though classes can be tough and there are many additional stresses as one faces impending adulthood, the opportunity for friendships and extracurricular experiences such as those I gained from the Pioneer, can’t be duplicated. I look back on those days and the person I once was and realize how much my participation at the paper made a difference in my life. I am also happy that, as the Internet and social media has developed ways of staying in touch, that I’ve been able to reconnect with some of my fellow Pioneer friends. Over the summer, I did a book signing at the Levittown Library and was pleasantly surprised when Mike Gannon, a previous Sports Editor on the Pioneer, dropped by. He saw my Facebook post about the event and wanted to surprise me. It was the highlight of my day. I hadn’t seen Mike since he attended a Pioneer reunion during Homecoming in 2000, 16 years ago.

debbiescan11
Pioneer alums gathered at Homecoming 2000 during a Pioneer Reunion in the News Office. (Sitting L to R: Mike Gannon, Adam Pardonek). (Standing: L to R: Marianne Kolbasuk McGee, Bob McGee, Tim Votapka, Mela Gerbasi Stevens, Cheryl Turi Coutts, and Debbie Smiloff De Louise)

I believe the bond formed among Pioneer people remains strong despite time and distance because of the special experiences we shared on the paper. Not all the times were happy or fun, but we were all in them together. We worked to create a product that served the entire campus body. We were proud of our individual achievements but also realized it was a team effort. I imagine that those who belonged to other campus clubs, sports teams, or sororities/fraternities feel a similar bond.

As I complete my notes for Ms. Levin, I’ve formed a Facebook group for previous Pioneer staff to keep in touch. I’ve also scanned some old photos from those days. As people grow older, they realize the importance of preserving these memories. There are also more opportunities to locate old friends and schoolmates today.

debbiescan18 (1)I know some people avoid reunions for fear that don’t look as attractive as they did in their twenties or because they’ve put on weight or simply because they are uncomfortable in social situations. However, as people age, they realize that these are not the important things to care about. Since college, I’ve had many changes in my life. I’ve married, had a daughter, lost my father, mother-in-law, and a close friend. No one knows how long he or she will be around, in good health, and with clear memories. My father had Alzheimers and my 89-year old mother has poor short-term memory. While it’s important to consider the future and live in the present, it’s also nice to look back and find your past and the people who were in it. Homecomings, reunions, and social media are great ways to do this.

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Books

Cover Reveal: Chasing What’s Already Gone by Michael Ross

mrosscover1Coming July 26 from @limitlessbooks – CHASING WHAT’S ALREADY GONE by @mikerosswriter

‘There is a void inside my heart where she should be.’

\\\\\ COVER REVEAL /////
CHASING WHAT’S ALREADY GONE by Michael Ross
Second Chances Series, Book #1
Release Date: July 26, 2016
Publisher: Limitless Publishing: 
Cover Designer: Wicked by Design:https://www.facebook.com/WickedByDesignRobinHarper

mrosscover2 - Copy\\\\\ SYNOPSIS /////
Danny Pearson is cruising through life on the edge of contentment—even in his marriage…

His wife seems distant, yet perfectly happy. They work on different schedules and pass like ships in the night. But that’s how marriage is after so many years, right?

When Danny meets a mysterious girl, his idea of the meaning of love shatters at his feet…

She’s not extraordinary, but somehow she’s so much more than just another girl. When he catches her gaze, he knows deep in his gut that she’s the one—the love of his life. But being a decent guy, he holds his feelings in check, and there is no ulterior motive when he shares a coffee with her. As she leaves, she gives him a business card. That’s all there is to it.

Her name is Ella. And after that, she is nothing more than a fond memory.

Danny puts Ella out of his mind and moves on with his life—until his world falls apart…When his wife confesses to having an affair and demands a divorce, his life is thrown into chaos. It’s a challenge adjusting to the single life, but it’s not impossible. As time passes, he continues to reminisce of his brief encounter with the woman he’s sure was his chance at true happiness.

How far is Danny willing to go in the pursuit of love? How far would you when, in all probability, you are only…
Chasing what’s already gone?

\\\\\ Meet the author: MICHAEL ROSS ///// 
It was a strange and twisting road that led to the publication of my first novel. From my humble beginnings, as an office clerk, to ownership of a multi million dollar business I always maintained my love for literature.

Born and raised in Bristol, England. I spent most of my life in business, my companies turning over in the region of $500 million. The majority of that time marketing cars, eventually owning the largest Saab specialist in the world, before a bitter divorce forced me rethink my priorities. Particularly between 2003 and 2005 when I had to accept that I was no longer a millionaire but literally penniless. I avoided bankruptcy by the skin of my teeth and slowly rebuilt my life

This led me to the life changing decision to leave the bustling city and move to live halfway up a mountain in the Welsh valleys. At the same time I started a part time six year English Literature course at Bristol University, and attended creative writing classes at Cardiff University. I left school at sixteen and this was my first taste of further education and an immense challenge.

I eventually adjusted my thinking to the academic life, and on 30 June 2015 had confirmation of my 2.1(Hons) degree from Bristol University. At the same time I also won the prestigious Hopkins Prize for my essay on Virginia Woolf and the unsaid within her text. Now the university courses are finished it will, with any luck, gives me plenty of extra time that I can devote to my fiction writing.

Thanks to the university experiences, my interest in English literature has flourished over recent years. Hopefully I have evolved as a writer from my earlier work in short stories (over ninety of them.) Although interestingly my first three novels have all been developed from a long forgotten short story.

Life is, once again, very good, and I live very happily halfway up a mountain, in the Welsh Valleys, with my wonderful partner Mari, and our rescue dog Wolfie.

Limitless Publishing: http://www.limitlesspublishing.net/authors/michael-ross/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/michaelross.writer
Website: https://mikerosswriter.wordpress.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/mikerosswriter

 

 

 

 

Posted in A Stone's Throw, Contest, Newsletter

Have you Entered My $25 Summer Photo Contest?

photocontest1A photo contest I announced in my newsletter is running through July 31st. To enter, submit a photo of yourself, a friend, or even a pet with a copy of my book, A Stone’s Throw, by midnight EST on July 31st. The photo can feature a paperback or ebook copy on your Kindle or other eReader. The most creative photo will win a $25 gift card and be announced in my August 1st newsletter. The photo can either be emailed to debbiewriter@yahoo.com or posted to my author Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/debbie.delouise.author/

By participating, you agree to allow your photo to be posted on social media sites and acknowledge that Facebook and Mailchimp are not responsible for this contest. Only subscribers to my Ruff Drafts newsletter (separate from this blog) are eligible to win. To subscribe, fill out the pop-up form at https://debbiedelouise.wordpress.com and confirm the email you receive. If you have any problems or prefer me to subscribe you, please send me your email address and request to be subscribed.

Love Always Anthology Cover (1)There are many benefits to subscribing to the newsletter besides being eligible to enter the photo contest. By being a subscriber, you will be updated on my book news with exclusive excerpts and other content, receive notices about my appearance schedule and other book news. I also run monthly contests only open to subscribers. A new prize that will be offered in the future is an anthology with stories by myself and 15 other authors. This book, Love, Always, features my historical romance, The Seashell and the Stone. It’s a departure from my mysteries, but I think you will enjoy the tale of a sweet current-day romance with a touch of the supernatural. It is set both in current-day and 19th-century Victorian Cape May. DeLouise Teaser

seashellstoneedited

Below are some contest photos that have already been submitted. Can you beat these great shots?

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Widowed librarian Alicia Fairmont needs answers…

After her husband is killed in a hit and run accident, Alicia travels upstate to his hometown of Cobble Cove, New York, hoping to locate his estranged family and shed light on his mysterious past. Anticipating staying only a weekend, her visit is extended when she accepts a job at the town’s library.

Secrets stretch decades into the past…

Assisted by handsome newspaper publisher and aspiring novelist, John McKinney, Alicia discovers a connection between her absent in-laws and a secret John’s father has kept for over sixty years. But her investigation is interrupted when she receives word her house has burned and arson is suspected, sending her rushing back to Long Island, accompanied by John.

Back in Cobble Cove, cryptic clues are uncovered…

When Alicia returns, she finds a strange diary, confiscated letters, and a digital audio device containing a recording made the day her husband was killed. Anonymous notes warn Alicia to leave town, but she can’t turn her back on the mystery—or her attraction to John.

As the pieces begin to fall into place, evidence points to John’s involvement in her husband’s accident. The past and present threaten to collide, and Alicia confronts her fears…

Has she fallen in love with her husband’s killer?

PURCHASE LINKS:

Amazon U.S.: http://amzn.to/1MjaJgN
Amazon Australia: http://bit.ly/1Sdh82D
Amazon Canada: http://amzn.to/1SdheHi
Amazon U.K.: http://amzn.to/1QutXBW
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1nQPyv4
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1KGYHep
Also available on iTunes and Ingram