Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Rules For Living

  1. Respect others until they don't respect you.
  2. Try and see the other person's side, but not at the expense of your principles.
  3. Look for what's funny.
  4. Eat less; move around more. (Borrowed from Craig Ferguson)
  5. Stop worrying about your dignity. It's overrated.
  6. Write (if you write) what you want to read.
  7. Treat your children--if you have any--like people, because that's what they are.
  8. Treat other people's children like they are other people's children.
  9. Cereal is good. Eat cereal. 
  10. If you're angry, be angry. But try to take some action that will help you to not be angry.
  11. Never read the newspaper on an empty stomach.
  12. Read the newspaper. The internet only gives you the news you ask for. TV news isn't news.
  13. Listen to music. Use headphones when you can.
  14. Take in comedy. Listen, watch, create, but do something with comedy. 
  15. Avoid any movie whose ads say it's "shattering." Who wants to be shattered?
  16. Listen to scientists. If it's about science.
  17. Respect good teachers. Most teachers are good.
  18. Do your laundry at least every 10 days.
  19. Be open to new experiences as long as they don't involve risking your life.
  20. Don't engage in a political argument. No one has ever changed anyone else's mind.
  21. Get a pet or don't get a pet. You know what kind of person you are.
  22. Introduce people to things you love but don't force your views on them.
  23. Never dismiss any medium or genre until you've experienced it.
  24. Respect artists. They are walking on a tightrope naked with Vaseline on their soles.
  25. Pay attention to punctuation and spelling. You look like a dope when you don't.
  26. Vent your frustrations; don't let them build. Find an outlet. A non-violent outlet.
  27. Some people are in fact idiots. But they're still people.
  28. Don't live each day like it's your last. You'll be flat broke tomorrow.
  29. Reading isn't inherently better than TV, movies or theater. All should be enjoyed.
  30. If you're not funny, don't pretend to be. If you're not serious, pretending is possible.
  31. Eat what you want. If you'd like to lose weight, eat less of it.
  32. Never toast a fresh bagel. You can toast a day-old bagel.
  33. Look up from your phone once in a while. 
  34. Don't ever impose your religious beliefs on anyone else no matter what they are.
  35. Quote Bullwinkle as often as possible.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

About the Audiobooks...

Many people (okay, some people) have been asking me why there is no listing on Audible for an audiobook version of THE HOSTESS WITH THE GHOSTESS. And I'm sorry to say that's because there is currently no such version planned for release.

We are working on it, I promise. Audible's criteria for buying audio rights are constantly changing. So when I can tell you something, you can rest assured that I will. All I can say at the moment is that we're very eager to get you the rest of the Guesthouse books (#10 is almost done right now and will appear early next year, I'd guess), the Mysterious Detective books and the Asperger's mysteries on audio as soon as we can.

BIRD, BATH AND BEYOND, the second Agent to the Paws mystery, will appear on Audible when it's published by Minotaur Books later this year.

I wish I had better news to bring you, but Audible felt it best not to continue with the series. If and when they change their minds or we find an alternative, you'll hear it from me.

Monday, January 8, 2018

It's Publication Day!

So here it is: The ninth Haunted Guesthouse mystery, THE HOSTESS WITH THE GHOSTESS (no, I don't know what it means either) is now available at bookstores and online! I couldn't be more excited--okay, maybe I could be a little more excited, but it would take something pretty big--and I'm hoping you feel the same way.

This is the first Haunted Guesthouse novel published by Crooked Lane Books, which also brings you my Mysterious Detective books, and yes, it is a hardcover book. I'll admit, I liked being able to offer you these stories for less than $8, but hardcover makes it feel more book-y, and it does offer larger print for those who appreciate the boost in picas.

But here's the thing, friends: This series, which seems to be the most popular of those I've written, has come to Crooked Lane and I'd like to see it stays there. I don't want to stop writing the Guesthouse books because so many of you have told me you like them. So I'm a little nervous about this release because it's a hardcover book, an unfamiliar format for Alison and her pals.

I'm hoping you'll follow us in the direction we're going. But we won't know for a while. Sales, in a realistic publishing business, drive series. The more books that you buy, the better the chances the series will continue. Yeah, that sounds a little passive aggressive and I apologize for that, but it is true. We need to sell this title so there can be more. Please, tell your friends. Give them as gifts (I know, the holiday season is over, but gifts are always nice). Buy one for yourself. Ask your local library to order THE HOSTESS WITH THE GHOSTESS. I'll appreciate it greatly and I'll keep doing all I can to give you fun, intriguing stories.

In THE HOSTESS WITH THE GHOSTESS, newly-remarried Alison Kerby is settling into what is her new normal: Paul Harrison is out traveling the world, Maxie Malone is still at the guesthouse with her new husband Everett, Alison's daughter Melissa is now a teenager and her second husband Josh is settling into life in a house where he knows there are inhabitants he can't see or hear. That's what passes for normal in a haunted guesthouse on the Jersey Shore.

But things are never calm for long here: Paul's brother Richard, freshly deceased, shows up as a ghost in search of his detective brother. Richard Harrison was a criminal defense attorney involved in the case of a young woman accused of murdering her stepfather. He thinks he was close to proving she didn't do the killing--and that's why he was murdered himself.

Richard wants Paul to investigate the case, but Paul is nowhere to be found and oddly didn't leave a forwarding address. So before Alison can help Richard prove his client is innocent (and against Richard's wishes, to solve his murder) she has to find her friend. Which begs the question: How do you find a ghost when you want to?

All the characters you like will be involved and there are a few new ones I'm hoping you'll enjoy as well. The last thing I want to do is repeat myself, so there might just be a few surprises along the way...

Crooked Lane is very aware of what you liked about the previous Guesthouse books, so the only changes that have been made were made by me, for the sake of a better story and to provide some fun for readers. I'm hoping you'll enjoy THE HOSTESS WITH THE GHOSTESS and comment here to let me know! Feedback is so important to this writer--I like to hear which parts of the story you especially liked (and will pay attention to the parts you didn't) and to hear (or read) your reactions. Feel free to get in touch--I love to hear from you!

In the meantime, I can't thank you guys enough. You've been so supportive of all the books and perhaps the Guesthouse series most of all. You're the reason we've gotten to Book #9. And that touches me in a very real and wonderful way. You're the best. Thanks so much.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Wanna See A Show? Two Years Ago?

Okay so we were cleaning up pretty strenuously the other day and found this in the sofa cushions: It's a ticket for a play that was performed more than two years ago. On the day after my spouse's birthday. It was clearly never used. Nobody here remembers buying the ticket or intending to see the play. But there it was, some 30 months later, in our sofa. I sense a mystery novel coming on...

Monday, December 18, 2017

But Wait, There's MORE! (More Free Books!)

Still want a FREE copy of SPOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL? (Assuming you haven't gotten one before...) It's incredibly easy! Just click here!

Thursday, June 29, 2017


This is NOT a contest.

I have 8 more copies of SPOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL, the latest Haunted Guesthouse Mystery, than I want to have. So I'm giving them away. Even though it's not a contest and you don't have to answer a question or do something silly to "win," there are a few rules:

1. You have to ask nicely, and that doesn't have to be elaborate. (In comments below.)
2. You have to be willing to pay the postage. It's usually between $2 and $3.
3. You have to live in the U.S. (Sorry, everybody else, but this is about postage.)
4. You can't have gotten a free book from me--contest or no contest--in the past year.
5. That's about it.

First 8 people who ask nicely ("please send me a book" is fine) in comments below will get a copy. We'll work out the whole give-me-your-address and the "how do I pay the postage" things later, and NOT in this public forum. Do NOT post your address below.

That's it. If you want a copy of the book and you're willing to pay the postage, you're on.