Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery, Interview

Interview, Blog Tour, and Giveaway of A Deadly Edition, the new Blue Ridge Library Mystery, by Victoria Gilbert

Today, I’m interviewing author Victoria Gilbert from the Piedmont Triad region of North Carolina about her new Blue Ridge Library Mystery release, A Deadly Edition.

Welcome to Ruff Drafts, Victoria. Please tell us how long have you been published and what titles and/or series you’ve published and with which publisher? Have you self-published any titles? Please give details.

My first published book (2014) was CROWN OF ICE, a fairytale retelling of H. C. Andersen’s The Snow Queen. It was originally trad. published, but for various reasons I pulled all my rights from that publisher and republished that title, as well as its companion title, SCEPTER OF FIRE – a “mash-up” retelling of Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling and The Steadfast Tin Soldier – as books one and two in the Mirror of Immortality Series. Those books were both independently published in the spring of 2017 with my author co-op, Snowy Wings Publishing.

I also wrote a YA scifi novel that was trad. published in 2016. However, I also had to pull my rights to that book and it’s now out-of-print. I have no plans to republish that particular book.

My first mystery was A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS. It was published in December 2017 by Crooked Lane Books, and is the start of the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series. Since that time, Crooked Lane has published more books in that series – SHELVED UNDER MURDER (2018), PAST DUE FOR MURDER (2019), and BOUND FOR MURDER (2020). The fifth book, A DEADLY EDITION, publishing today, December 8,  2020 by Crooked Lane  is the book being celebrated during this tour.

The first book in my new series, the Booklover’s B&B series, BOOKED FOR DEATH, was published by Crooked Lane in August 2020.

Very nice. As a librarian as well as an author who writes a cozy mystery series involving a librarian, I hope to read some of your Blue Ridge Library mysteries.

Please tell us more about your books — if you write a series, any upcoming releases or your current work-in-progress. If you have an upcoming release, please specify the release date.

Book two in the Booklover’s B&B series, RESERVED FOR MURDER, will be released in June 2021. It is already available for preorder.

There will also be at least two more books in the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series. Book six will be published in Dec. 2021 and book seven in Dec. 2022.

I’ve also recently signed a contract with Crooked Lane Books for a more traditional mystery series – the Hunter and Clewe Mysteries. Book one in that series will be published in spring 2023 and book two in spring 2024.

Sounds like you are very busy. It’s great that you’ve got your next few years’ writing planned.

Describe your goals as a writer. What do you hope to achieve in the next few years? What are you planning to do to reach these goals?

I am pretty booked up with contracts over the next few years! I will be working on my two original cozy series as well as the new traditional mystery series.

I plan to write at least two books a year. (I’m actually turning in three books in 2021!) I also hope to enhance my promotional efforts, attend pertinent conferences and conventions (when we can travel again), and continually improve my craft.

Impressive goals.

What type of reader are you hoping to attract?  Who do you believe would be most interested in reading your books?

As a very eclectic reader myself, I would be happy to attract anyone who enjoys reading.

As far as who might be most interested in my two current series, I would say anyone who likes cozy or light mysteries, anyone interested in a small-town settings and interesting and diverse characters, anyone who enjoys some (clean) romance in their books, and anyone who likes historical mysteries mixed in with contemporary crime-solving.

You should have a wide audience.

What advice would you give other authors or those still trying to get published?

I encourage authors to explore new paths to publication if they find the traditional publishing world isn’t interested in books they’ve written and love. Although my SF/F books don’t match the market for trad. publishing today, I’ve found publishing them independently (with my author co-op) a great alternative to leaving them languishing “on the shelf.”

Also, experiment and try new things, especially if you are feeling “stuck” or unfulfilled with where you are now. I started out in one genre, and while I did get published, I discovered that my real strengths as a writer lay elsewhere.

That’s very good advice. Although I have my cozy series and have written several standalone mysteries, I also write other genres and have written short stories, poetry, non-fiction articles, and will be releasing my first non-fiction cat book soon.

What particular challenges and struggles did you face before first becoming published?

Despite starting later in life, my path to publication wasn’t as difficult as some. I actually signed with an agent and got a publishing deal after only a year of querying. To be honest, I faced more challenges AFTER being first published than before. I really don’t wish to go into details about those problems, but I will say that all my experiences have taught me a great deal about the publishing business, which I think is always beneficial.

That’s interesting. I’ve been querying agents off and on for a few years. I currently publish with two Indie publishers but have also found more problems after I was published. I wouldn’t call them problems so much as challenges.

Do you belong to any writing groups? Which ones?

I am a member of Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America. I am also involved in my local Sisters in Crime chapter, Murder We Write.

I’m also a member of Sisters in Crime, but there’s no local chapter in my area, unfortunately. I’ve also been considering joining Mystery Writers of America.

What are your hobbies and interests besides writing?

I love reading, of course! I also enjoy gardening, traveling, drawing and painting, listening to music, attending theatre and dance performances, and watching films and TV, especially British and other non-U.S. shows.

That’s a good variety of hobbies and pastimes.

What do you like most and least about being an author? What is your toughest challenge?

What I like most is the creative process and bringing my characters to life. I also enjoy developing plots and honing my words into something that can make me feel proud. (Even though my writing is never perfect and I am still learning). In addition, I love hearing from readers who have enjoyed my books, and discussing writing and books with other readers.

My toughest challenge is promotion. I am not a natural salesperson, so dealing with the marketing aspect of the business is much more of a challenge for me than the creative side.

I feel exactly the same way about creativity and reader recognition as the most fulfilling parts of being an author as well as marketing/promoting being the most demanding and difficult parts.

What do you like about writing cozy mysteries?

As someone who is not fond of reading books that include graphic violence, language, or sex, I enjoy writing in a genre that doesn’t include those things. I also enjoy being able to focus on characters and everyday life while still being able to include action and adventure.

I feel that way, too.

Can you share a short excerpt from your latest title or upcoming release?

From A DEADLY EDITION, Book Five in the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series:

“This is starting to remind me of one of those French farces— people coming and going from all directions.” Richard’s fingers curled around mine.

Looking over the area as if to make sure no one was watching, Scott also used the back door to enter the house.

“It is peculiar,” I said, “but I’m sure there’s some reasonable explanation.”

A loud crash silenced Richard’s response.

“Sounds like it came from that direction,” he said, dropping my hand to sprint down the path.

I followed, running to match his longer strides. The path curved off to the right, ending at a wooden garden shed.

Richard paused, grabbing the edge of the half-open door. “Hold on,” he said as I reached him. “We should be careful. It could be some sort of wild animal, and if we back it into a corner, it could turn violent.”

“But it also could be hurt,” I said, pulling the door wider to peer inside the shed. “Can’t see much.”

There’s something on the floor.” Richard pointed toward a large, shadowy object sprawled across the center of the small room.

I backed away. “Not a bear, I hope.”

“It’s not moving. Maybe just some tarps that tipped off that top shelf.” Richard grabbed a rake that was propped next to the door.

As he crept closer to the shadowy object, holding the rake like a weapon, I stepped in behind him and moved to the side to allow light to spill in through the door.

It was a tarp—a cracked blue tarp dusted with mold. But it was draped over something else. Richard tentatively reached out and flipped up an edge of the thick plastic covering.

I gasped as an expensive leather shoe was revealed.

We both rushed forward to fling back the rest of the tarp. Then stood in silence, holding hands, as we stared down at the body of Oscar Selvaggio.

Enticing excerpt. Thanks for sharing.

Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know about you or your books?

While I do write series, and there is character development and plot progression over the course of each series, I never write cliff-hangers! If someone wants to read my books out of order, they should be able to enjoy them.

Also, I’m happy to engage with readers on social media or via my website contact form and would also love to talk to them if we meet at any conferences, signings, or related events. So readers – don’t hesitate to connect with me!

I don’t like writing (or reading) cliffhangers, and I consider that all the books of my Cobble Cove mysteries can be read as standalones, although readers might enjoy the character developments by reading them in order. As for engaging with readers (and also other writers), that’s always a pleasure.

Please list your social media links, website, blog, etc. 

Social Media Links:

Website/blog: http://victoriagilbertmysteries.com/

Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaGilbertMysteryAuthor/ 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/victoriagilbertauthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VGilbertauthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/VictoriaGilbert

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/kindle-dbs/entity/author/B071ZQZN1P?

BUY LINKS: 

A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/a-murder-for-the-books/

SHELVED UNDER MURDER: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/shelved-under-murder/

PAST DUE FOR MURDER: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/past-due-for-murder/

BOUND FOR MURDER: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/612101/bound-for-murder-by-victoria-gilbert/

A DEADLY EDITION: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/647523/a-deadly-edition-by-victoria-gilbert/9781643854762/

BOOKED FOR DEATH:

https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/622813/booked-for-death-by-victoria-gilbert/

RESERVED FOR MURDER (preorder):

https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/659504/reserved-for-murder-by-victoria-gilbert/

Thanks so much, Victoria. I’m including your blog tour and giveaway below. Best wishes on your new release and all your upcoming publications.


A Deadly Edition: A Blue Ridge Library Mystery
by Victoria Gilbert

About A Deadly Edition


A Deadly Edition: A Blue Ridge Library Mystery
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books (December 8, 2020)
Hardcover: 368 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1643854762
Kindle ASIN: B085N3KN7L

‘Til death do us part” could be closer than the bride realizes in Victoria Gilbert’s tantalizing fifth Blue Ridge Library mystery.”

The pursuit to acquire a rare illustrated book turns deadly, and on the eve of her upcoming wedding, library director Amy Webber is drawn into a web of treachery and betrayal that could derail her happy day–and maybe just claim her life.

Planning a wedding can be murder–sometimes literally. At a party celebrating their upcoming nuptials, Taylorsford, Virginia library director Amy Webber and her fiancé Richard Muir discover the body of art dealer Oscar Selvaggio–a bitter rival of their host, Kurt Kendrick.

Both had been in a heated battle to purchase a rare illustrated volume created by William Morris’s Kelmscott Press, so suspicion immediately falls upon Kurt. Amy knows that Kurt has a closet-full of skeletons from his past–but she can’t believe he’s guilty of murder.

Amidst an avalanche of wedding preparations, Amy begins an investigation with the help of her aunt Lydia Talbot and the new mayor of Taylorsford, Sunshine “Sunny” Fields. Much to Lydia’s dismay, her boyfriend, art expert Hugh Chen, becomes convinced of Kurt’s guilt and launches an investigation of his own. As the case hits painfully close to home, the stakes become impossibly high–and the danger all too real.

About Victoria Gilbert

Raised in a historic small town near the Blue Ridge Mountains, Victoria Gilbert turned her early obsession with books into a dual career as an author and librarian.

Victoria writes the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series, the Booklover’s B&B series, and the upcoming Hunter and Clewe traditional mystery series for Crooked Lane Books. She has also published fantasy with Snowy Wings Publishing.

A member of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime, Victoria is represented by Frances Black at Literary Counsel. She lives near Winston-Salem, NC with her husband, son, and some very spoiled cats.

Author Links

Website (includes blog): http://victoriagilbertmysteries.com/

FB author page: https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaGilbertMysteryAuthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VGilbertauthor

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Victoria-Gilbert/e/B071ZQZN1P

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/victoriagilbertauthor/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16912697.Victoria_Gilbert

Purchase Links – AmazonB&NKoboIndieBound

Blue Ridge Library Mystery series:

A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/a-murder-for-the-books/

SHELVED UNDER MURDER: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/shelved-under-murder/

PAST DUE FOR MURDER: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/past-due-for-murder/

BOUND FOR MURDER: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/612101/bound-for-murder-by-victoria-gilbert/

A DEADLY EDITION: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/647523/a-deadly-edition-by-victoria-gilbert/9781643854762/

Booklover’s B&B series:

BOOKED FOR DEATH: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/622813/booked-for-death-by-victoria-gilbert/

RESERVED FOR MURDER (preorder): https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/659504/reserved-for-murder-by-victoria-gilbert/

a Rafflecopter giveaway

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

December 6 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

December 6 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

December 6 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – SPOTLIGHT

December 7 – The Book Diva’s Reads – SPOTLIGHT

December 7 – CelticLady Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 7 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

December 8 – Dee-Scoveries – SPOTLIGHT

December 8 – Ruff Drafts – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

December 8 – The Bookwyrm’s Hoard – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW

December 9 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW

December 9 – Jane Reads – GUEST POST

December 9 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

December 10 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

December 10 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT

December 10 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

December 11 – Thoughts in Progress – SPOTLIGHT

December 11 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW

December 11 – Cassidy’s Bookshelves – SPOTLIGHT

December 12 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW

December 12 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 12 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 13 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

December 13 – Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic – SPOTLIGHT

December 13 – I Read What You Write – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Author Spotlight, Blog Tour, Cozy Mysteries, New Releases

Author Spotlight: Victoria Gilbert, Author of Booked To Death, A Booklover’s B & B Mystery

It’s my pleasure to welcome author Victoria Gilbert from the Piedmont Triad area of North Carolina, a rural area outside the cities of Winston-Salem, Greensboro, and High Point.

Welcome, Victoria. How long have you been published? What titles and/or series have you published and with which publisher? Have you self-published any titles? Please give details.

My first published book (2014) was CROWN OF ICE, a fairytale retelling of H. C. Andersen’s The Snow Queen. It was originally traditionally published, but for various reasons I pulled all my rights from that publisher and republished that title, as well as its companion title, SCEPTER OF FIRE – a “mash-up” retelling of Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling and The Steadfast Tin Soldier – as books one and two in the Mirror of Immortality Series. Those books were both independently published in the spring of 2017 with my author co-op, Snowy Wings Publishing.

I also wrote a YA scifi novel that was traditionally published in 2016, but that book is another where I pulled my rights. It’s now out-of-print, and I currently have no plans to republish it.

My first mystery novel was A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS. It was published in December 2017 by Crooked Lane Books, and is the start of the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series. Since that time, Crooked Lane has published more books in that series – SHELVED UNDER MURDER (2018), PAST DUE FOR MURDER (2019), and BOUND FOR MURDER (2020). A fifth book, A DEADLY EDITION, will be published by Crooked Lane on Dec. 8, 2020.

The first book in my new cozy mystery series, the Booklover’s B&B series, is BOOKED FOR DEATH, which was released by Crooked Lane Books on June 9th.

You have quite an interesting publishing background.

Tell us a little bit about your books — if you write a series, any upcoming releases or your current work-in-progress. If you have an upcoming release, please specify the release date.

The fifth book in the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series is A DEADLY EDITION, which will be published by Crooked Lane Books on Dec. 8th of this year.  It is already available for preorder.

I have recently signed a contract for books six and seven in the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series, so I’ll be working on those books later this year and into 2021.

Currently, I’m working on book two in the Booklover’s B&B series, RESERVED FOR MURDER, which will be released in late spring of 2021.

Very nice. They all sound like great books.

Describe your goals as a writer. What do you hope to achieve in the next few years? What are you planning to do to reach these goals?

I simply want to keep writing and publishing as long as I can. As I already mentioned, over the next few years I plan to continue my current two series. I also intend to write a few books in the general fiction/women’s fiction genre and see if my agent and I can find a home for those books as well.

Those sound like excellent goals. Best of luck achieving them. It’s so important for writers to set goals. I’ve just made up my own plan for starting a new series and writing/finishing other book projects in the next two years.

What type of reader are you hoping to attract?  Who do you believe would be most interested in reading your books?

As I am a very eclectic reader myself, I would be happy to attract anyone who enjoys reading.

As far as who might be most interested in my two current series, I would say anyone who likes cozy or light mysteries, anyone interested in a small-town settings and interesting and diverse characters, anyone who enjoys some (clean) romance in their books, and anyone who likes historical mysteries mixed in with contemporary crime-solving.

Sounds like you have a wide target audience.

What advice would you give other authors or those still trying to get published?

Experiment and try new things, especially if you are feeling “stuck” or unfulfilled with where you are now. I started out in one genre, and while I did get published, I discovered that my real strengths as a writer lay elsewhere. Experimenting with writing mysteries, a genre I always loved but wasn’t certain I could write successfully, opened up a new world to me. I learned that my style and interests fit the mystery genre – something I would never have known if I hadn’t attempted to write in a new and different genre.

I would also say to explore new paths to publication if you find that the traditional publishing world isn’t interested in books that you’ve written and love. Although my SF/F books don’t match the market for traditional publishing today, I still believe in them and have found that publishing them independently (with my author co-op) is a great alternative to leaving them languishing “on the shelf.”

Excellent advice. I haven’t yet landed an agent or a large publisher, but I’ve been publishing with two Indie publishers and have also considered self publishing in the future, although I’m still querying to agents and submitting to my current publishers. I agree completely that writers need to experiment with genres and styles as well as different publishing options.

What particular challenges and struggles did you face before first becoming published?

Despite starting later in life, my path to publication wasn’t as difficult as some. I actually signed with an agent and got a publishing deal after only a year of querying. To be honest, I faced more challenges AFTER being first published than before. I really don’t wish to go into details about those problems, but I will say that all my experiences have taught me a great deal about the publishing business, which I think is always beneficial.

There’s so much to learn about publishing, and writers have to experience most of it firsthand.

Do you belong to any writing groups? Which ones?

I am a member of Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers, and Mystery Writers of America. I am also involved in my local Sisters in Crime chapter, Murder We Write.

I’m also a member of Sisters in Crime and International Thriller Writers. I’ve considered joining Mystery Writers of America, also.

What are your hobbies and interests besides writing?

Of course I love reading! I also enjoy gardening, walking, traveling, drawing and painting, listening to music, attending theatre and dance performances, and watching films and some TV shows.

A nice and varied set of hobbies.

What do you like most and least about being an author? What is your toughest challenge?

What I like most is the creative process and bringing my characters to life. I also enjoy developing plots and honing my words into something that can make me feel proud. (Even though my writing is never perfect and I am still learning). In addition, I love hearing from readers who have enjoyed my books, and discussing writing and books with other readers.

My toughest challenge is promotion. I am not a natural salesperson so dealing with the marketing aspect of the business is much more of a challenge for me than the creative side.

Those are my favorite and least parts of the publishing process, and I believe most authors feel the same about the challenges of marketing and promotion.

What do you like about writing cozy mysteries?

As someone who is not fond of reading books that include graphic violence, language, or sex, I enjoy writing in a genre that doesn’t include those things. I also enjoy being able to focus on characters and everyday life while still being able to include action and adventure. In addition, cozies are fun – something I think we need more of in this world.

I feel the same way.

Can you share a short excerpt from your latest title or upcoming release?

From BOOKED FOR DEATH, Book One in the Booklover’s B&B series:

Scott leaned back in his chair. “A costume party? Sounds like fun, but I have another engagement. Of course, to be honest, I’m not really a part of the Tey celebration, so I guess I can be forgiven for my absence.”

“Yes, you’re excused, but no one else.” I kept my tone light. I never wanted to force my guests to participate in an activity. Their payment for the event, which ran from Saturday to Saturday after a Friday evening check-in, included the dinner party, but if they wished to skip it, that was their choice. “We do have some local people attending the party, so there are plenty of participants even if you can’t come, Scott. Although you are welcome, of course.”

“I, for one, wouldn’t miss it for the world,” Lincoln said. “I have the perfect costume, which I certainly don’t want to waste.”

“Let me guess,” I said. “Richard the Third?”

“Oh no.” A slow smile spread over Lincoln’s face. “That’s much too expected. No, I plan to represent his eventual adversary, Henry the Seventh.”

“Siding with the opposition—the House of Tudor against the House of York?” Scott stood up and tossed his napkin onto the linen tablecloth. 

Lincoln sat back in his chair. “The Tudors won.”

“But even that line didn’t last,” Scott observed. “Still, your choice is unique, so good for you.”

Jennifer tapped her chin with one finger. “According to Tey, Henry was the villain who killed the young princes.”

Lincoln shrugged. “Who knows the truth of that story? Tey had her opinions, but nothing has ever been proven.”

“At any rate, I hope you’ll all have a good time tonight, virtually traveling back in time just as Tey’s Detective Grant did,” I said, as Alicia appeared with fresh eggs and other items and plopped them down in front of Lincoln and Jennifer.

“Full English breakfast,” she said. “Enjoy.”

Lincoln lifted his fork. “Thank you. Now, once more into the breach…”

I turned aside, swallowing a remark about the inappropriateness of his quote. Because, as far as I knew, no one was at war, or in any danger of death.

Of course, as later events soon proved, I was quite wrong in this assumption.

Great excerpt. Thanks for sharing.

Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know about you or your books?

I want them to know that I am happy to engage with readers on social media or via my website contact form and would also love to talk to them if we meet at any conferences, signings, or related events. So readers – don’t hesitate to connect with me!

Also, while I do write series, and there is character development and plot progression over the course of the series, I never write cliff-hangers! If someone wants to read my books out of order, they should still be able to enjoy them.

Finally, my mystery books are all available in audio book format as well as hardback and eBook.

Great! Thanks so much for the interview, and I will share your current blog tour and giveaway. Best wishes on your new series.

Booked for Death: A Book Lover’s B&B Mystery
by Victoria Gilbert

About Booked for Death


Booked for Death: A Book Lover’s B&B Mystery
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books (August 11, 2020)
Hardcover: 320 pages
ISBN-10: 1643853074
ISBN-13: 978-1643853079
Digital ASIN: B07XX7PHTV

From the critically acclaimed author of SIBA Okra Pick A Murder for the Books, Victoria Gilbert embarks with a new series for perfect for fans of Kate Carlisle and Juliet Blackwell.

A book lover’s B&B in an idyllic waterfront village becomes the scene of a grisly murder–and a ruthless battle between treachery and the truth.

Nestled in the historic waterfront town of Beaufort, North Carolina, Chapters Bed-and-Breakfast is a reader’s paradise. Built in 1770, the newly renovated inn hosts a roster of special events celebrating books, genres, and authors. It’s the perfect literary retreat–until a rare book dealer turns up dead in the carriage house during a celebration of Golden Age mystery author Josephine Tey.

The victim’s daughter points the finger at forty-two-year-old widow and former schoolteacher Charlotte Reed, who inherited the B&B from her great-aunt Isabella. Charlotte is shocked to discover that the book dealer suspected Isabella of being a thief who founded Chapters on her ill-gotten gains. Charlotte has successfully learned the B&B business in a year, but nothing has prepared her to handle a death on the premises.

Armed with intelligence and courage and assisted by her vibrant older neighbor, a visiting author, and members of a local book club, Charlotte is determined to prove her innocence and to clear her great-aunt’s name. But the murderer is still at large, and equally determined to silence anyone who might discover the truth behind the book dealer’s death. Now, Charlotte must outwit an unknown killer–or end up writing her own final chapter.

About Virginia Gilbert

Victoria Gilbert, raised in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains, turned her early obsession with reading into a dual career as an author and librarian. Victoria has worked as a reference librarian, research librarian, and library director. When not writing or reading, she likes to spend her time watching films, gardening, or traveling. She is a member of Sisters in Crime and International Thriller Writers and lives in North Carolina. This is her fourth Blue Ridge Library mystery.

Author Links:

Website/blog: http://victoriagilbertmysteries.com/

Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaGilbertMysteryAuthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VGilbertauthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/VictoriaGilbert

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/victoriagilbertauthor/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4J0jvZ-D0NVF9Qv7H2ua8Q

BUY LINKS: 

Amazon B&N Kobo Indie Bound

A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/a-murder-for-the-books/

SHELVED UNDER MURDER: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/shelved-under-murder/

PAST DUE FOR MURDER: http://www.crookedlanebooks.com/titles/past-due-for-murder/

BOUND FOR MURDER: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/612101/bound-for-murder-by-victoria-gilbert/

A DEADLY EDITION (preorder): https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/647523/a-deadly-edition-by-victoria-gilbert/9781643854762/

BOOKED FOR DEATH: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/622813/booked-for-death-by-victoria-gilbert/

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

June 8 – The Bookwyrm’s Hoard – REVIEW

June 8 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

June 8 – The Ninja Librarian – REVIEW

June 9 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

June 9 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT

June 10 – MJB Reviewers – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 10 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT

June 10 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW

June 11 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW

June 11 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

June 12 – Book Club Librarian – REVIEW

June 12 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 13 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

June 13 – The Book Diva’s Reads – GUEST POST

June 14 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW

June 14 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW

June 15 – eBook Addicts – REVIEW

June 15 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

June 15 – Brianne’s Book Reviews – REVIEW

June 16 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

June 16 – Moonlight Rendezvous– REVIEW

June 16 – Jane Reads – GUEST POST

June 17 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW

June 17 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW

June 18 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW

June 18 – Ruff Drafts – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 19 – That’s What She’s Reading – REVIEW

June 19 – Sapphyria’s Books – REVIEW

June 20 – Socrates Book Reviews – REVIEW

June 20 – Brooke Blogs – REVIEW

June 21 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW

June 21 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST

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Posted in Author Spotlight, Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery

Author Interview of Victoria Gilbert, Author of Shelved Under Murder, A Blue Ridge Library Mystery

I’m pleased to have author Victoria Gilbert from North Carolina here to speak about her writing and new release, Shelved Under Murder, that is on blog tour with Escape with Dollycas into a Good Book.

Welcome, Victoria. Please tell us how long you’ve been published and what titles and/or series you write.

My first book, CROWN OF ICE, written as Vicki L. Weavil, was published in Sept. 2014. It is a fantasy – actually a fairytale retelling of H. C. Andersen’s The Snow Queen. I republished that title, as well as its companion title, SCEPTER OF FIRE – a “mash-up” retelling of Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling and The Steadfast Tin Soldier – as books one and two in the Mirror of Immortality Series in the spring of 2017 with my self-publishing co-op, Snowy Wings Publishing.

I also had a YA scifi – FACSIMILE, written as Vicki L. Weavil — that was published in 2016, but that book is currently out-of-print.

My first mystery, which was written as Victoria Gilbert, is A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS. It was published in December 2017 by Crooked Lane Books.

Very nice. It’s great that you’re experienced writing different genres.

Tell us a little bit about your books — if you write a series, any upcoming releases or your current work-in-progress. If you have an upcoming release, please specify the release date.

The Blue Ridge Library Mystery series is a three-book series. (It may include additional books, but I’m waiting to hear about that).

Book One, A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS, was published in hardback and eBook by Crooked Lane Books on December 12, 2017. The audiobook version from Tantor Media released in April, and the paperback edition was published by Crooked Lane on June 12th.

Book Two, SHELVED UNDER MURDER, was published in hardback and eBook by Crooked Lane – along with the audiobook from Tantor – on July 10th. The paperback edition will release in Jan. 2019.

Book Three, PAST DUE FOR MURDER, will be published in hardback and eBook by Crooked Lane in Feb. 2019, along with its accompanying audiobook from Tantor. There will also be a paperback edition that will be published later.

These sound like great books. As a librarian and also an author of a series featuring a librarian, I think I’d enjoy reading these.

Describe your goals as a writer. What do you hope to achieve in the next few years? What are you planning to do to reach these goals?

I simply want to keep writing until the day I die. Hopefully that will include publication of all the books I write! Over the next few years I hope to develop, write, and publish additional cozy and/or light mysteries, as well as to continue my current series (if my publisher requests more books). To accomplish that goal, I plan to write at least two books a year, work on enhancing my promotional efforts, attend pertinent conferences and conventions, and keep improving my craft.

Those are great goals. I’d love to meet you at a conference one day.

What type of reader are you hoping to attract?  Who do you believe would be most interested in reading your books?

As I am a very eclectic reader myself, I would be happy to attract anyone who enjoys reading.

As far as who might be most interested in my books, I would say anyone who likes cozy or light mysteries, anyone interested in a small-town setting in a mystery, anyone who enjoys some (clean) romance in their books, and anyone who likes historical mysteries mixed in with contemporary crime-solving.

Now I’m sure I’d be interested in your books.

What advice would you give other authors or those still trying to get published?

Experiment and try new things, especially if you are feeling “stuck” or unfulfilled with where you are now. I started out in one genre, and while I did get published in that genre, I discovered that my real strengths as a writer lay elsewhere. Experimenting with writing mysteries, a genre I always loved but wasn’t certain I could write successfully, opened up a new world to me. I learned that my style and interests fit the mystery genre – something I would never have known if I hadn’t attempted to write in a new and different genre.

That’s a great tip.

What particular challenges and struggles did you face before first becoming published?

To be honest, I faced more challenges AFTER being first published than before. I really don’t wish to go into details about that, but I will say that all my experiences have taught me a great deal about the publishing business, which I think is always beneficial.

I feel the same. You learn so much after you publish. It’s like on-the-job training compared to going to school.

Do you belong to any writing groups? Which ones?

I am a member of Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers, and Mystery Writers of America. I am also involved in my local Sisters in Crime chapter, Murder We Write.

You belong to most of my own groups except for Mystery Writers of America and the Murder We Write chapter of Sisters in Crime. I joined the Guppie chapter because I don’t have an agent or large publisher yet. I may look into the Murder We Write chapter, too, if I’m eligible to be a member.

What are your hobbies and interests besides writing?

I love reading, of course. I also enjoy gardening, walking, traveling, drawing and painting, listening to music, attending theatre and dance performances, and watching films.

You have a nice variety of interests that I’m sure also help you with your writing.

What do you like most and least about being an author? What is your toughest challenge?

What I like most is the creative process and bringing my characters to life. I also enjoy developing plots and honing my words into something that can make me feel proud. (Even though my writing is never perfect and I am still learning). In addition, I love hearing from readers who have enjoyed my books.

My toughest challenge, and what I like least, is promotion. I am not a natural salesperson so dealing with the marketing aspects of the business are much more of a challenge for me than the creative side.

I think most writers feel the same. I know I do.

What do you like about writing cozy mysteries?

As someone who is not fond of reading books that include graphic violence, language, or sex, I enjoy writing in a genre that doesn’t include those things. I also enjoy being able to focus on characters and everyday life while still being able to include action and adventure. In addition, cozies are fun – something I think we need more of in this world.

I totally agree. As a librarian, even though I need to order books that contain the elements you mentioned, I steer away from them for my own reading because I find they detract from the plot.

Can you share a short excerpt from your latest title or upcoming release?

From: SHELVED UNDER MURDER by Victoria Gilbert:

The rest of the body was revealed as we stepped around the table. Crumpled on her side, with her knees drawn up in a defensive posture, was a middle-aged woman. Her eyes were closed and her thin face partially veiled by locks of curly dark hair. I gripped Richard’s fingers tighter. As my mind attempted to process the scene, I noticed that the fingertips of the artist’s other hand brushed a palette knife that glistened as if it had been soaked in the oil and wiped clean.

The woman lay there so quietly, it was as if she were merely napping. For a moment I could imagine her grasping the knife and rising to her feet to resume work on the canvas sitting on the easel. But the crimson stains blossoming like roses against her white painter’s smock told another story.

Rachel LeBlanc would not finish her latest work. In fact, she would never complete a painting again.

Intriguing excerpt. Thank you.

Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know about you or your books?

I would like them to know that I am happy to engage with readers on social media or via my website contact form and would also love to talk to them if we meet at any conferences, signings, or related events. So readers – don’t hesitate to connect with me!

I’m adding your social media links below to help readers find you and also the rafflecopter link to your blog tour. Thanks again for the interview, and I wish you the best of luck on your new release and future books and series.

Website/blog: http://victoriagilbertmysteries.com/

Facebook author page:  https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaGilbertMysteryAuthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VGilbertauthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/VictoriaGilbert

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/victoriagilbertauthor/

Rafflecopter: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/02887792739/?widget_template=56d5f80dbc544fb30fda66f0