These are a Few of my Favorite Tweets…

Hi there, guys and dolls!  The girls are hard at work developing the third Popbfef1-barbarajeancoast27sbookpy Cove Mystery (the follow-up to STRANGLED BY SILK and DEATH OF A BEAUTY QUEEN) and I must say it’s a doozy — not everyone is who they seem, and that’s all you’ll get from me.

e058f-barbarajeancoast27sbookjpgIn the meantime, they just love to let me tweet away my words of almost wisdom — BJ’s DT’s — which stands for Barbara Jean’s Daily Tweets, for those of you just getting acquainted with them.  Monday through Saturday, I share some tidbits of my haphazard life and perspective, which is not always morally or socially correct.  Oh well, I am after all just an alter ego who tries to have a life!

The tweets started out as just random thoughts and quotes f12da-barbarajeancoast3that reflected the life and times of the 50’s.  The very first one was, “All can be solved with a cocktail, kitten heels and a smile.”  They referenced culture, dating, social perceptions, with a little humor.  There was no real pattern, rhyme or reason.  Then the girls started thinking more about my “real” fictional life.  Who was Barbara Jean?  What did she think?  What was her life?

As it turned out, yours truly is a flirt with an active social life and am somewhat domestically challenged.  I write of my fellow Santa Lucians, but as many girls of my time, the lure of big business caught my attention and I manage to hold down a job in a big office, complete with up and coming junior executives, inefficient upper management, marriage hunting/gold digging secretaries and ambitious social climbers.  I still don’t know exactly what I do there, but it does involve a pink typewriter and I get a pay check, so I’m not complaining.

unnamedThrough this, a pattern of the tweets emerged.  Mondays are about some kind of weekend escapade — “Sometimes it’s a whirlwind romance, and sometimes it’s a tilt-a-whirl…” Tuesdays, a domestic situation — “My life so much nicer now that I have a pool boy. I don’t have a pool, but still…”  Wednesday, adventures in the workplace — “Isn’t the boss cute when he thinks he’s in charge?” Thursdays are escapades in the dating world — “You know it’s time to end the date when he REALLY shows you his etchings.”  Fridays are all about cocktail culture — “No, I don’t have a drinking problem. The glass is empty, I fill it, I drink it. No problem.”  And Saturdays reflect weekend social events, people and places — “Overheard in the powder room – ‘He preferred his pop tarts in the 36-24-36 variety.’”

Of course, there are special times of year and I just love the holidays.  Andrea and Heather are lining up my version of the traditional carols to share with you soon, in the meantime, I’ll leave you with last year’s version of THE TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS, which was broken into twelve days of tweets, naturally.  Please sing along :-)

“On the first day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: A Stool Pigeon on the Lam!

On the second day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Two Bartenders.

On the third day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Three Red Herrings.

On the fourth day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Four Chorus Boys.

On the fifth day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Five Shocking Plot Twists!

On the sixth day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Six Shiny Edsels.

On the seventh day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Seven Strangling Silk Scarves.

On the eighth day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Eight Champagne Cocktails.

On the ninth day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Nine Guilty Suspects.

On the tenth day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Ten Conga Dancers.

On the eleventh day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Eleven Buried Leads.

On the twelfth day of Christmas my Toy Boys gave to me: Twelve Mistletoe Kisses!”

Toodles,

Barbara Jean

Posted in 1950's, 1950's California, 50's Slang, Alter Ego, Authors, Blogs, books, Christmas, cocktails, Commitment, Communication, Conversation, Cozy Mysteries, Cozy Mystery Series, Creativity, Dating, ebooks, Etiquette, Fiction, Fictional Characters, Holidays, Humor, Indie Presses, Inspiration, Mysteries, New Authors, Newly Published, Nostalgia, Parties, Pen Names, Perspective, Publicity, Publishing, Quotes, Readers, Romance, Self Esteem, Socializing, Tweets, Twitter, Uncategorized, Vintage, Vocabulary, Writers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sally Takes 5 with Barbara Jean

Hi there, guys and dolls!  Well, there goes another month.  Time’s just flying, isn’t it?  Christmas is right around the corner, which also means it’s not too early to don a sprig of mistletoe in the front of your pillbox hat.  Just be careful who you walk up to!  Being that it is the end of the month, I have another fun and entertaining chat lined up.  I was so happy to have pulled out Sally Carpenter’s name from my martini pitcher.  She was thrilled to be Miss November — it just felt so right and sassy all at the same time.  Sally has just released the third book in her Sandy Fairfax Teen Idol Series, titled THE CUNNING CRUISE SHIP CAPER, published by Cozy Cat Press.  She’s a terrific author with works as a playwright and contributor to short story anthologies, with plenty of awards and nominations for her talents.  She’s also one smart cookie with Master’s Degrees in both Theology and Theater.  To top that off, she’s also a great person with a terrific sense of fun.  So please settle on in and get to know dear Sally for yourself.

1. So tell me a little about your series and main characters.81MP3YrYXqL._SL1500_

Hi, Barbara Jean, thanks for hosting me today. Since my series protagonist is a recovering alcoholic, I’ll have to pass on the martinis.

The star of my series is 38-year-old Sandy Fairfax, a former teen idol who’s finding that making a comeback can be murder. In the 1970s he recorded 10 gold albums and starred in the hit TV show “Buddy Brave, Boy Sleuth.” But like all teen idols, his career tanked when his show was cancelled after four years and his fans grew up.

Now he’s sworn off the booze, attempting to reconcile with his estranged family, and hoping the industry hasn’t forgotten him. But in the various venues where he works, dead bodies keep popping up and he begins acting like a boy sleuth for real.

Some of the other main characters: Marshall Ellis, Sandy’s long-suffering agent; Bunny McAllister, his biggest fan and president of the Sandy’s Buddies fan club; and his choreographer and love interest, Cinnamon Lovett.

Sandy’s real name is Stanford Ernest Farmington Jr. (he goes by Ernest). His family: his father, orchestra conductor Stanford Farmington Sr.; his mother, Opal; his brother, Warren, a professional organist; and his sister, Celeste, a folk musician and who’s blind.

And his ex wife, Becka, and his two kids, Chip (Stanford F. III) and Robin.

 2. What is your writing process like? Do you thrive on routine or work spontaneously as the whim takes you? 

I wish I were more disciplined. Computer solitaire is the most distracting thing ever invented.

I have a full-time day job, so my writing time is limited to evenings and weekends. I try to work on marketing or the next book on most days—or at least keep up with emails—but I don’t write every single day. I don’t want to fall into the grind of, “it’s seven o’clock on the dot, must sit down and write.” Then it’s just an unpleasant chore. I procrastinate but once I get started I roll along quite well.

Sunday’s my best day for writing, guest blogging and getting things done. I do errands on Saturdays and attend Saturday evening Mass so I can stay home all day Sunday and focus on writing.

3. What exciting moment or moments that made you realize that you were really an “author?”

In 2013 I published my second book along with three short stories, two in anthologies and one story online. Up until then I just felt like a “one-hit wonder.” I thought, “I have more than one story in me!”

In 2014 I published the third book of my mystery series. Many mystery series only last for three books so I felt fortunate that I could keep going with book four.

4. What do you do to spark up your creativity when you feel the well of inspiration is running dry?

The way to keep a well primed is to keep filling it. I have a huge collection of recorded music, books and favorite TV shows and movies. I get many ideas just sitting down and listening to favorite music (yes, I have plenty of teen idol records/CDs).

I often get “sparks” when watching a show. A line of dialogue or a situation will get me thinking. Since I’ve started writing I’ve made an effort to read more, both mysteries and other subject matter. Right now I’m grooving on the “Batman ‘66” books, comics in the style of the Adam West TV show (the only real Batman, IMHO).

My town has both a community live theater and an excellent college drama program. For many years I acted in plays and I still enjoy watching a good production.

Writers need “down time.” I plugged away nonstop on marketing for my first book and ended up exhausted and frustrated. Writers and artists need “play time” (stage productions are called “plays” because the actors are having fun). Artists need to relax, have fun, be entertained. That’s what keeps them refreshed and enthused.

5. Who are some of your favorite authors and how do you feel they have influenced your desire to write?

Rod Serling is tops on my list. I admire his drive (he wrote at an exhaustive pace) and that he could combine a strong moral statement with entertainment. He showed that pop culture such as TV could instruct as well sell advertising.

William Link and Richard Levinson, the co-creators of “Columbo” and many other fine mystery TV shows. I had the pleasure of meeting Link and he was amazed at how much I knew about “Columbo.”

Mildred Wirt Benson, better known as original first Carolyn Keene who wrote the Nancy Drew stories in the evenings after her day job as a newspaper reporter. Also the various authors for the Hardy Boys and Trixie Beldon kid mysteries.

Naturally, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of the world’s greatest consulting detective.

What I learned from them is building strong clues, moving the action quickly, creating quirky characters and writing a PG story that won’t hurt any sensibilities.

Thanks for the discussion, Barbara Jean! Now we gotta hurry or we’ll be late for the Sandy Fairfax concert! Swoon!

Goodness gracious, you’re right, Sally!  I’ll never pass up an opportunity to swoon over a handsome young man.  And friends, give yourself a treat and get to know Sally even better.  Check out her website and blog at http://sandyfairfaxauthor.com and connect with her on Facebook.  Be sure to pick up her latest Sandy Fairfax — THE CUNNING CRUISE SHIP CAPER on Kindle, as well as the others in the series.

Toodles,

Barbara Jean

Posted in Alter Ego, Authors, Blogs, books, California, Characters, Classic Television, Commitment, Communication, Conversation, Cozy Mysteries, Cozy Mystery Series, Creativity, Dialogue, e-publishing, ebooks, Fiction, Fictional Characters, Hollywood, Humor, Indie Presses, Inspiration, Interviews, Mysteries, New Authors, Newly Published, Pen Names, Perspective, Publicity, Publishing, Readers, Reading, Sitcoms, Socializing, Teen Idols, Uncategorized, Writers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How Do, Elise Hepner?

EliseHi there, guys and dolls!  Today’s blog I’d like to introduce to you a new friend of mine, Elise Hepner.  For a self-described shy girl, she’s created a wonderfully expressive world to share with us.  Please join me in welcoming her into the world of Cozy Mysteries.  Her DEADLINES: A WRITTEN TO DEATH MYSTERY has just debuted!  Although Deadlinesshe is new to writing cozies, they’ve always been a pleasure for her to read, so she felt it was time for her to expand her creative wings and flying high with the cozy crowd, as E. Hepner.  As a sneak peek, here’s a little info on the first in the series.

Ainsley Moss never thought she’d become a representative for the dead. But as a newbie obituary writer for the Aurora Fall’s Guardian, she gets a sneak peek at her new profession. Her ex-best friend and rival newspaper worker turns up blue and stiff as a board in the women’s bathroom—after they’ve had a less than civil confrontation.

Ainsley’s in the habit of memorializing the dead, not finding them. But now she’s saddled with a motive for murder—killing to drum up obituaries in order to further her career in a dying newspaper business where everything is going digital.

When another victim meets his maker with a connection to the first victim, Ainsley has to make nice with a hard ass, bombshell Detective who’s dead set on closing the case or risk the calm of their cozy town. Ainsley’s charming, ex-boyfriend turned roommate Gage Sullivan comes to her aid as they throw themselves into deadly research. Every obituary interview brings them that much closer to finding a killer connection. While fighting her new rep as a prime suspect, her matchmaking, Stepford mother is intent on keeping her daughter’s dirty laundry under wraps and her sex addicted wealthy grandparents want to buy her way out of jail. Or at least help her learn how to make a shiv.

None too thrilled with the idea of making friends with a cell mate named Betty the Bruiser, she’ll wade knee deep into a cesspool of the town’s secrets, gossip, and lies. But with a whacky cast of characters hell bent on keeping the peace, no bit of personal information is sacred. They have to find a killer—before Ainsley loses her freedom and her chance to make peace with a fate that scares her more than anything else in life.

Now doesn’t that sound like a fun read?  And Elise is no stranger to writing — she also has an impressive body of work in the erotica genre.  To learn more about this talented lady and her work, do check out her blog at Come Get Cozy, where you can learn all about her transition and growth from one genre to another and find out all about her writing.  Among her great posts, Elise has a recent entry in which she shares her musings on her recent expansion to her creative repertoire (Why I Went From Erotic Romance to Cozy Mystery).  I also recommend you have a gander at her Facebook Author page.  And I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but the winter season seems to be fast approaching most of us.  Our dear Elise has written many ways to warm and curl your toes on those chilly nights ;-).  Follow your curiosity through the above listed links and you’ll be glad you did!

Toodles,

Barbara Jean

Posted in Alter Ego, Authors, Blogs, books, Characters, Commitment, Communication, Conversation, Cozy Mysteries, Cozy Mystery Series, Creativity, Dialogue, e-publishing, ebooks, Fictional Characters, First Novel, Humor, Indie Presses, Inspiration, Interviews, Mysteries, New Authors, Newly Published, Pen Names, Perspective, Publicity, Publishing, Readers, Reading, Romance, Socializing, Uncategorized, Writers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Who Knew I Had So Much to Say?

Hi there, guys and dolls!  Well, this happened before I knew it.  This is blog post number 100!  It’s been over a couple of years, and there’s many favorite posts I’d love to mention.

bfef1-barbarajeancoast27sbookMy very first one was titled ‘You’ve Written a Novel…Gee, That’s Swell, Now What?’ and started with the very beginning of the journey, before queries, rejections and acceptance.  And then it grew.  I got an image and a publishing home, thank you Cozy Cat Press, Patricia Rockwell specifically, for believing in the wonderful world of Santa Lucia and its social set.  It opened up a whole new world of friends and readers.  I’ve loved doing my Take 5 interviews with my fellow authors with more to come.  And I’ve talked about myself and being an alter ego in ‘Which One’s Barbara, Which One’s Jean?’f12da-barbarajeancoast3

Others have be such a fabulous support and have become great friends.  Although I don’t think the post captures them all, ‘Giving Thanks’ makes a good attempt to share how I feel about my people — for those of you not mentioned specifically, please know I am still so very blessed to be include058f-barbarajeancoast27sbookjpged in your world.

The writing life is certainly not static, nor without its challenges.  ‘Sometimes You Just Gotta Laugh’ and ‘Oh, Good, You’re Not Working Today’ talk about that.  ‘Gone Fishin” and ‘Ready, Set Nope — A Hooky Day for You!’ have some great remedies for filling up the tanks and revving  a girl up to take on the world for another round.

Now of course you know your truly is all about the glamor and the fun.  Some of my favorite essays have been about the Poppy Cove Mysteries time setting and a nod to ’50’s culture.  ‘Just Stepping Out for a Quart of Milk…’ and ‘Everything Old is New Again’ were just plain entertaining and a joy to research and write.1950s-party

Thanks again to all of you who have been with me from the beginning and a warm welcome to those we showed up to the party along the way.  I leave you with this and a toast of the bubbly —  ‘Swinging Holiday Partytime’, as it turns out is right around the corner already!

Toodles,

Barbara Jean

Posted in 1950's, 1950's California, 50's Fashions, Alter Ego, Authors, Blogs, books, Characters, Commitment, Communication, Conversation, Cozy Mysteries, Cozy Mystery Series, Creativity, De-stressing, e-publishing, ebooks, Etiquette, fashion, Fiction, Fictional Characters, First Novel, Guest Blogs, Holiday Parties, Humor, Indie Presses, Inspiration, Interviews, Love, Mysteries, New Authors, Newly Published, Nostalgia, Parties, Patience, Pen Names, Perspective, Publicity, Publishing, Readers, Reading, Self Esteem, Socializing, Uncategorized, Unpublished, Vintage, Writers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

What Do You Mean You Don’t Want to be Trussed Up Like a Turkey?

Hi there guys and dolls!  Today’s blog is about clothing, or rather what shall I do in my own world and in my own way.  Now as many of my long term, faithful friends have known, not only do my two creators want to keep telling their Poppy Cove Mysteries (and are quietly but surely developing a couple of additional series to be shared in the future), they’re playing around with clothing and design ideas.dfijo

Now I must say my heyday is the nifty 50’s/swinging 60’s, but my alter egos are also very much at home in the present day.  They love the clothing of my era and that which they describe at Margot and Daphne’s atelier.  Vintage clothing, thrift and antique stores and countless images and family closet raiding provide an endless source of creative dreams and inspiration to keep the Santa Lucians well dressed.

As they are looking more and more at breathing life into the fictional attire, they’re considering what they would like to wear and share.  Vintage garments are very precious and amazing to find, but it’s getting harder and harder to come across them in good condition — they’re a hot commodity and unfortunately time and tide do a number on the fibers, threads and fasteners.  They can be so delicate and precious that we may want to preserve or display carefully rather than subject them to our daily movements and actions.  In addition, the majority of us are shaped and sized quite Spencer_girdles_1_1959differently in this modern age, not only naturally, but in how we choose to shape and mold (or not) our bodies with the various torture devices once known as undergarments — rubber girdles, pulling and prodding for just the right angles exuding from the right places.  Now some smoothing undies and padding exist today, but not quite in the spring loaded slingshot degree of yesteryear.  This changes the modern day dimensions of vintage patterns and the wearability of era garments, hence trussing up ourselves as turkeys, reathdy to sproing out at all directions if we happen to chortle too heartily.

As yours truly grows in my place in the world, I’d love to share the ideas of beautiful clothes from a beautiful time.  What I’d like to have my alter egos learn and accomplish on my behalf is to carry on the quality, craftsmanship and finesse of the garments in the days gone by, wearable in today’s world.  The swish of the silk, the punch of color, the glamor and allure of a well placed neckline and sweep of hem that never lets a girl forget to flirt and wink, all with my joie of my vivre.

Toodles,

Barbara Jean

Posted in 1950's, 1950's California, 50's Fashions, Alter Ego, Authors, Beauty, books, Characters, Commitment, Communication, Conversation, Cozy Mysteries, Cozy Mystery Series, Creativity, e-publishing, ebooks, Etiquette, fashion, Fiction, Fictional Characters, Humor, Indie Presses, Inspiration, Love, Mysteries, New Authors, Newly Published, Nostalgia, Patience, Pen Names, Perspective, Publicity, Publishing, Readers, Reading, Romance, Uncategorized, Vintage, Writers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Where are you Going, Where Have you Been?

bfef1-barbarajeancoast27sbookHi there, guys and dolls!  Well, I’m happy to say that things are moving along with my Poppy Cove Mysteries.  Andrea and Heather are lining up more selling venues and promotional fun and games for both STRANGLED BY SILK and DEATH OF A BEAUTY QUEEN as I type, so I’ll share the news as soon as I have some.

In the meantime058f-barbarajeancoast27sbookjpge, they’ve been working on the third installment, as yet untitled (it’ll come, it will reveal itself as it always does, and when it sticks to the wall, it’s right).  They’ve got a few punny ones, which may work, but time will tell.  They do however know who gets it and why.  They also know it digs up the past of a major character, while other Santa Lucians reflect and react, not only to what they learn about their friends, but also about themselves — how they have conducted their own lives and what they choose for their own futures.

Rest assured, there will still be plenty of fun, fashion and frivolity with our regular Poppy Cove gang, as well as some new faces in the crowd.  Oh yes, and a little murder and mayhem thrown in, just for the intrigue.  The girls (Andrea and Heather, that is) have plans for my girls (Daphne and Margot) and others, too.  They’ve mapped out both futures and experiences that shape and form the character and time of the place and the changing world they lived in, even if they are fictional.  Some Santa Lucians are just beginning to explore their adventures, some are ready to resolve (or even bury) their pasts.

I am so looking forward to sharing my Poppy Cove tales with you one word, one page at a time.

Toodles,

Barbara Jean

Posted in 1950's, 1950's California, 50's Fashions, 50's Slang, Alter Ego, books, California, Characters, Commitment, Communication, Conversation, Cozy Mysteries, Cozy Mystery Series, Creativity, e-publishing, ebooks, fashion, Fiction, Fictional Characters, First Novel, Humor, Indie Presses, Inspiration, Mysteries, New Authors, Newly Published, Nostalgia, Pen Names, Perspective, Publicity, Publishing, Readers, Reading, Uncategorized, Unpublished, Writers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Patricia Takes 5 With Barbara Jean

Hi there, guys and dolls!  Welcome to my latest edition of Take 5.  And what a great one it is!  I have the privilege and honor to share with all of you the musings of one of my favorite writers, who just happens to be such a delightful person as well.  She’s one talented  and busy lady — not only has she penned two fab cozy series as you’ll read below, but also serves as Chief Cat Wrangler, which means she is the owner/editor/founder of Cozy Cat Press, my publishing home of which I just love to rave about. With her whirlwind busy schedule, Patricia still made the time for a cocktail or two as we talked books and mysteries.  Why not join us?

1. So tell me a little about your series and main characters.Murder in the Round

I have two cozy mystery series. The first one is the Pamela Barnes acoustic mystery series. My heroine is a Psychology professor at a small Southern university and an expert in acoustics. In the first book, she discovers the body of a colleague in the department’s computer lab and is able to solve her murder using clues found on an audio recording made of the actual murder. Her assistance to local police on this crime is so helpful, that the local detective calls for her aid again in four more cases (that is, four more books). Pamela’s life mirrors my own as I too was a professor at a small southern university and conducted research on vocal behavior using acoustic technology. These books are: SOUNDS OF MURDER, FM FOR MURDER, VOICE MAIL MURDER, STUMP SPEECH MURDER, and MURDER IN THE ROUND.

My second series is a bPrintit more light-hearted. It is the Essie Cobb Senior Sleuth mystery series and features Essie Cobb, a clever resident of a retirement home, who––with the aid of her three best friends––solves various mysteries and crimes that occur at the Happy Haven Retirement Home. Essie is based on my own mother who spent the last few years of her life in such a home, and actually had a few wild adventures herself. There are four books in this series: BINGOED, PAPOOSED, VALENTINED, and GHOSTED.

 2. What is your writing process like? Do you thrive on routine or work spontaneously as the whim takes you?

I can be very organized and am capable of churning out a book in a month, writing one chapter a day of a 30-chapter novel. I typically use an outline, although these tend to get briefer and briefer with each book, as I get better and better at knowing how my mind functions and how I work. There certainly are times when whimsy takes over and a character will get away from me and go in a direction I had not intended. I know this has happened to other authors too. I will admit that the times this has occurred have proven generally beneficial for my stories.

 3. What exciting moment or moments have made you realize that you were really an “author”?

I guess book signings are some of those moments. Getting to meet someone who has actually read and liked one of my books is a wonderful experience too. I think of my characters as “real people” and it feels wonderful when readers come away with that feeling too. For example, if someone says, “I know someone just like your Essie. You’ll never guess what she did?” That kind of thing.

4. What do you do to spark up your creativity when you feel the well of inspiration is running dry?

That’s a good one. As I haven’t written a cozy mystery in over a year, I guess the well is pretty dry. I am keeping very busy with editing other writers’ books right now, so I really don’t have time to work on my own. I have a few ideas for a new Pamela book but try as I might, I haven’t been able to flush them out. I wanted to do a terrorism-related case for her, using her acoustic skills to uncover a hidden message in a televised terror threat from an upstart terror group. It would be very timely, but I’m having a hard time putting all the pieces together.

5. Who are some of your favorite authors and how do you feel they have influenced your desire to write?

Well, as I write cozy mysteries and publish at Cozy Cat Press, I guess I would be amiss if I didn’t mention how much I’ve been influenced by Lillian Jackson Braun, author of “The Cat Who…” books. I’ve read all (or most) of them. They represent for me, the perfect cozy. And they feature cats! How purrr-fect! :) The crime is always presented in a “clean” sort of way and the hero (Quilleran) figures out the always clever and convoluted plot using his brain power (not his muscle). My fondness for these books may actually be one of the reasons we are “Cozy Cat” Press.

Another author I love who has nothing to do with cats or cozies, is Robert J. Sawyer. He is a contemporary Canadian science fiction author–prize-winning. I’ve read a score of his books and loved most of them. These are not your typical sci-fi novels (which I generally hate) with robots, space ships, and laser gun fights. They are all thought-provoking and involve unusual but real scientific concepts or theories and how these ideas might develop in the future. The endings of his books always amaze me. They are never your typical “romantic” endings, but are ones that require you to put on your thinking cap and imagine how the world might actually change given various premises. I love how Sawyer’s books challenge my thinking while still totally entertaining me.

Thank you so much for sitting down with me to share your writing world.  I’m thrilled to hear you have plans for more.  And friends, be sure to check out Patricia’s books on Amazon and also get acquainted with her through her links.  She’s got a swell site at www.PatriciaRockwellAuthor.com, Tweets at @par2323 and follow her on Facebook.  Also visit the Cozy Cat Press site to see how all us kittens keep her so busy!

Toodles,

Barbara Jean

Posted in Alter Ego, Authors, Blogs, books, Commitment, Communication, Conversation, Cozy Mysteries, Cozy Mystery Series, Creativity, Dialogue, e-publishing, ebooks, fashion, Fiction, Fictional Characters, First Novel, Humor, Indie Presses, Inspiration, Interviews, Mysteries, New Authors, Newly Published, Pen Names, Perspective, Publicity, Publishing, Readers, Reading, Socializing, Uncategorized, Vocabulary, Writers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Spiffy! Swanky! Swell!

Hi there, guys and dolls!  Well, there’s exciting news in the wonderful world of Barbara Jean Coast.  A website has been born.  Must say, it’s been quite entertaining to be building it, and initial reports are listed in the title of this post.  The link is listed below.  Go ahead and take a gander, I’ll just wait here.  Unless you’re one of the intrepid ones, you’ll discover that you can continue reading this blog on the site under Musings…

http://www.barbarajeancoast.com/

It’s basic at the moment, but we have a couple of pages we’re looking forward to developing.  The first is Scoop, where we’ll have all of our news, interviews and events, upcoming, present and past.  The other is Frivolity and we’re gearing up for that one.   It’ll have some fun Poppy Cove and Santa Lucia odds and sodas, but also some sparkle and fun, Barbara Jean style.  So looking forward to our perpetual happy hour, via www.barbarajeancoast.com.

Posted in Alter Ego, Authors, Blogs, books, Commitment, Communication, Conversation, Cozy Mysteries, Cozy Mystery Series, Creativity, e-publishing, Etiquette, Fiction, Fictional Characters, First Novel, Humor, Inspiration, Interviews, Mysteries, New Authors, Newly Published, Pen Names, Publicity, Publishing, Readers, Reading, Uncategorized, Unpublished, Website, Writers, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Ready to Curl Up with a Great Book?

Hi there, guys and dolls!  Well, it seems to be that almost everywhere there is a notable change in the air.  The nesting season has begun!  So find a honey, a nice libation and of course a delightful read to lose a few hours into a cozy world.Clues

CLUES OVER CROISSANTS — That observant and delightful little lady is back again solving more of the mysteries of life at the Honey Hills Retirement Center. Bess Bullock is gaining a reputation for her attention to details and her curious nature. The little sweetheart has requests coming her way from residents and staff to solve their problems! There’s a new chef in the kitchen preparing the best tasting treats the residents have ever eaten including at the morning breakfast table that’s changing the mood. Bess has much to find as she observes the people in her world. There’s another gal with her eye on Chet at the Waltzing Club and Bess is not sure how she feels about that! So make yourself a nice pot of tea and put those tootsies up to enter the cozy, curious world of Bess Bullock as she gets caught up in the little mysteries that life is serving up at The Honey Hills Retirement Home. You are never too young or too old to take an interest. Bravo to Allen B. Boyer for this gentle read that is appropriate for all ages!

Married to MysteriesMARRIED TO MYSTERIES — My favorite little lady from Honey Hills Retirement Center is back and getting ready to walk down the aisle with her sweetheart and dance partner Chet Wooden, does that mean her sleuthing days are over? Bess Bullock and Chet have moved to their own home on the Honey Hills property and they are planning to marry before the summer is over. Bess is trying to be a good fiancee by putting her curiosity aside at least for the time being, but the mysteries of life keep popping up everywhere Bess is looking! What will Chet say and how will Bess reconcile her nature and her desire to settle down with the man she now loves? Well darlings you will just have to read the third installment in Allen B. Boyer’s Bess Bullock Retirement Home series to find out. Be sure to have a glass of bubbly ready for any occasion that might pop-up!Whispers in winter

WHISPERS IN WINTERThat sweet little gal Bess Bullock is back with her spirit and spunk helping her to overcome winter-time blues. With the little mysteries of life continuing to crop up Bess is kept busy! Not only does Bess find out that there is a possible murder that may have taken place in her and her husband Chet’s house, there is a resident who needs her help in finding a possible stalker, and a volunteer stint at the retirement home store has Bess wondering what’s the deal with the ladies who are sitting in the corner and drinking the store’s free coffee?  So many mysteries and Bess once thought winter was a dull and drab time, that is until she allows her curiosity and instincts from her days of being a police officer to kick in! Bess Wooden is one lucky lady whose husband understands her needs and guides her with a loving hand. Christmas will soon arrive and hopefully Bess will wrap-up all the unsolved mysteries and the presents too! A toast to Allen B. Boyer for this neat little package tied up with the most wonderful strings. This little lady eagerly awaits the next book in the Bess Bullock Retirement Home series!

A short note about the author of the next two books, Lyla Fox.  She was a great lady with a warm heart as big as the sun.  She was a much beloved teacher, just embarking on a new career as a published author.  She passed away earlier this year, much too soon.  She had a promising future, with two cozy series started.  Both novels still make great reads as standalone works.

SnoopSNOOPThere’s nothing I love more than snooping around in other people’s business! Getting the scoop on all the dishy gossip in town is my favorite past-time so it was certainly a pleasure to read this delicious and suspenseful cozy by Lyla Fox.  When one of the citizens of Cotter’s Corner is found murdered Samuels Harper Hayes takes it upon herself to find out what really happened.  Gossip, murder and mayhem in a small town setting make you feel as if you have gone to the cinema where you get caught up in the story. I was drawn in by a cast of interesting characters and suspenseful plot twists that kept me turning the pages!  Will Samuels figure out who is behind the sinister events that are going on around town before more innocent people get hurt?  You’ll just have to read “SNOOP” and find out for yourself!  Of course as you may know we lost our dear friend author Lyla Fox just over a month ago and she is sorely missed as more of her stories will be.  Be sure to read this wonderful book which deserves your attention.  BravCinnamon streeto to Lyla Fox!

MURDER ON CINNAMON STREET Are sure you should trust everyone you know?  All yours truly can say is that after you read Lyla Fox’s MURDER ON CINNAMON STREET you might be left wondering if all the people you know are trustworthy or not. I see you eying that neighbor of yours!  Elizabeth Mary Catherine Clary or E as she is affectionately known by her friends is ridden with anxiety and finds herself caught up in a very spooky situation when it appears that someone from her little corner of the world is out to dispose of everyone who is in her circle of friends and acquaintances. Is there a maniac on the loose or a killer with a true cause?  E suffers severe panic attacks and this will leave you wondering if she will be able to face her worst fears and stand up to the murderer or go weak in the knees finding herself in grave danger.  Romance, humor and an intriguing story that kept me on the edge of my seat until the last page was turned.  Lyla may not be here in the physical sense on earth with us anymore, but I am sure she is somewhere out there continuing to spin her tales for anyone who will listen. A toast of the bubbly to dear Lyla and her wonderful stories! 

Toodles,

Barbara Jean

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