Posts Tagged ‘mystery fiction’

Some authors and writers are not the best self promoters. We are at times the quiet types, deep thinking introverts who have a hard time with small talk. But put us in a room alone in front of a computer or leave us in the mountains or on a secluded beach with paper and a pen, and magic happens. We can become the most obnoxious, outgoing, lovable characters ever written.

Oh, the joy and mystery of being a writer…

Telling people you meet, that you are an author is usually not enough to get them to run out and buy your book. On the contrary, the more common response is a variation of, “You’re a writer? Oh… you should write my life story! You wouldn’t believe everything I’ve been through! It’d make a great book… or movie!”
Not wanting to sound entirely uninterested, I usually respond with, “Why don’t you write it?”

If you have a story to tell, tell it… then promote it.

Part of the challenge of self promoting is going back and forth using the right side of your brain to the left, going from being lost in your story to suddenly doing business and promoting your work. Sometimes we need help.

I’ve just started doing more internet-type marketing and it is a very good fit for me. I’ve joined Facebook and Twitter. I’ve started blogging and sending out newsletters to my readers. And I’ve updated my website with my book trailers. Since I’ve made this shift, I’ve noticed much more activity, more book sales and a lot more readers responding to my work. I am so thankful for my dedicated readers and their comments—they are the inspiration to my new marketing strategy.

The key is to find what works for you. By trial and error, I have found it best to pick the top five most enjoyable ways to promote, and then go for it. If you are outgoing and good at sales, do book signings and speaking events. If you love to give interviews, get your press kit together and call up the media. If you have the money and you want help, hire somebody to help you. But find out what part of promotion you love and get it done. Whatever feels right to you is going to work for you.

List your top five most enjoyable ways to promote… then promote!

Becky Due, like the main characters of her novels, spent many years running from herself, looking for love, crying a little and laughing a lot along the journey of finding herself. Through writing, Due found her passion. She is the author of several books and is currently working on her next novel.
Happily married she and Scott live in Colorado, Florida and Alberta, Canada with their two “kids” Buddy the Cat and Shorty the Pug.

Becky has been a guest on national radio programs and has been the subject of numerous newspaper and national magazine articles for empowering women through her novels. She has served as a guest speaker at Women’s Resource Centers, Shelters, Colleges and High Schools within the United States. Becky has had extensive training at Victim Services, worked the 24-Hour Sexual Assault Crisis-Line and was a Victim’s Advocate where she offered one-on-one assistance and support to rape victims. In 2007, Becky started, Women Going Forward, the first national women’s telephone support group, which ran for almost two years. After receiving much recognition for her novels, Becky’s focus turned back to her writing and empowering women through her novels.

Becky’s latest book is a supsense novel titled Returning Injury: A Suspense Chelebrating Women’s Strength. You can visit her website at www.beckydue.com.

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Available on Amazon

If you like mystery novels with rich plots that dig into the past, then you’ll enjoy Silenced Cry by Marta Stephens.

During a routine pick-up for questioning, Detective Sam Harper loses his partner and friend, Gillies. Harper is confused and distraught by the event, which happens under suspicious circumstances. Soon afterwards he’s called to solve a murder case like none he’s been involved before: the homicide of an infant. In a rundown building that’s about to be demolished, trapped behind a wall, they find the skeletal remains of an newborn baby. To make matters worse, the murder seems to have taken place not recently but over a decade ago, making the investigation a lot harder.

As Detective Harper begins to investigate, a line of suspects slowly emerges. The detective must moved back in time in order to uncover the terrible events which let to the infant’s demise. Soon he’s pulled into a vortex of drugs, corruption, rape and murder as other members of the police force become suspects. At the same time, someone wants the case close and the building demolished as soon as possible, someone who doesn’t want Harper opening the door to the past.

Who murdered the infant? Is the murder only a small part of a much larger set of crimes which have been kept secret all these years? Is Harper ready to face the truth and come to terms with the results of his own investigation?

Silenced Cry is deftly crafted and an impressive first novel. The pace moves steadily without being too quick nor too slow, allowing the reader to savor each stage of the investigation. The dialogue is sharp and natural and the prose focuses on the action without letting unnecessary details and description get in the way. The police procedurals read realistically, giving the impression that the author either knows well about the subject or did a fair amount of research. For me, this was not a thriller that read at a fast pace, but a ‘gourmet’ mystery that I enjoyed at every stage of the story. Sam Harper is a likable character, but I would say that this is a plot-driven novel more than a character-driven one. Our detective protagonist is sympathetic, but there were times when, for me, he got lost in the midst of the plot. I feel he would have stood out more given stronger, more sharply defined characteristics or quirks. This is an observation more than a criticism, as it didn’t lessen by desire to keep on reading. The secondary characters are quite realistic as well, especially some of the suspects–though I don’t dare say more for fear of giving away spoilers.

Marta Stephens is a mystery author to watch out for. I will be soon reviewing the second book in the series, The Devil Can Wait, and I have to say I’m very much looking forward to it. If you enjoy an intelligently crafted detective story, I recommend you give this one a try.

I should point out that Detective Sam Harper has his own character blog a Sam Harper Crime Scene.

–Mayra Calvani

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