Lois Winston Guest Blogger

First I’d like to apologize for not being around much. I fell last weekend and fractured a disc in my back. 😦 Needless to say blogging will be inconsistent for a few more weeks.

Having said that, I would like to introduce today’s guest blogger Lois Winston. Her latest book Death by Killer Mop Doll is now available.

Lois Winston is the author of the critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting
Mysteries. The first book in the series, Assault With a Deadly Glue Gun,
received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist and was recently
nominated for a Reader’s Choice Award by the Salt Lake City Library System.
Lois is also an award-winning author of humorous women’s fiction and romantic
suspense, an award-winning designer, and an agent with the Ashley Grayson
Literary Agency. Visit Lois at http://www.loiswinston.com and Anastasia at http://

 What genre do you write in? If you write in more than one genre is it under

different names?

I’ve always written under my own name, no matter the genre. began my career
writing romance. My first published book, Talk Gertie To Me, is humorous
women’s fiction. My second book, Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception,
is a romantic suspense. Then at the suggestion of my agent, I tried writing an
amateur sleuth mystery and found my true calling as an author. My Anastasia
Pollack Crafting Mysteries have received critical acclaim, and I’ll be writing them
for at least the next few years, having just been offered a contract for books #4
and #5 in the series.

Is there something you definitely need around when you write?

Coffee. Coffee. More coffee. Plus the occasional piece of chocolate. Did I
mention coffee?

. Music? TV? Or Silence when you write.

I need to write in total silence. Even soft background music is too distracting
to me because I find myself humming along. No way could I write with the TV
on! I have a friend who can only write while watching TV. She’s published over
25 books and is a bestselling author. I don’t know how she does it. I also can’t
imagine writing at a coffee shop like some people do.

How do you feel about writing contests?

Many authors got their first publishing break as a result of winning or finaling in a
contest. I’m one of them.

There are two different types of contests for unpublished authors, those run by
writing organizations and those run by publishers. The ones run by organizations
usually have entry fees. Too many people become addicted to entering these
contests and wind up spending more on entry fees than they’ll ever receive in
the way of an advance on a first sale. When it comes to contests, you need to
employ common sense.

Set yourself a budget and stick to it. Study each contest to determine whether it’s
a good one for your particular book.

If you’re entering contests in order to get feedback, keep in mind that the people
judging your work may not be the best people to offer you constructive criticism.
You have no way of knowing how knowledgeable or qualified they are. You may
be better served by hiring a freelance editor.

 Do you have a favorite of your characters? Why?

I’m definitely Team Anastasia because she’d kill me if I claimed any other
character as my favorite! Seriously, though, I think she’s my favorite because
we have a lot in common. (Disclaimer: what we don’t have in common is a dead
louse of a spouse. My husband is very much alive and unlike Karl Pollack, he’s a
nice guy who hasn’t gambled away our life’s savings.)

Blurb for Death By Killer Mop Doll, the second book in the critically acclaimed
Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mysteries:

Crafts editor Anastasia Pollack’s stress level maxes out when her well-
intentioned mother meets and seduces TV producer Lou Beaumont. Suddenly,
Anastasia and her fellow American Woman editors find themselves roped into
unpaid gigs for a revamped morning TV show. However, not everyone involved
enjoys the idea of the overhaul, and a disgruntled staffer takes action by trashing
the studio set. When that doesn’t halt production, vandalism escalates to murder,
and a member of the production team is found with one of Anastasia’s knitting
needles plunged through his heart.

The network decides the show must go on, but morning TV turns crime drama
as a blackmail plot is uncovered and another body is found. Because Anastasia
fears the killer might go after her and Mama next, she has no recourse but to
launch her own investigation. Unfortunately, her snooping lands her directly in
the killer’s unforgiving spotlight.



Wednesdays Words Censorship

Wednesday words,today the subject is censorship. I could have written a few paragraphs but why should I? Especially when Mr. Camus says it so well.

 A free press can be good or bad, but, most certainly, without freedom a press will never be anything but bad.  ~Albert Camus

Indie Book Hoopla

Welcome readers to our first Indie Hoopla event. For eight days, Jan 15 – 22, you’ll get introduced to authors every single day who are sharing their worlds and stories for only 99 cents!

Not only will you get awesome reads, but, for each book you purchase, you will be entered for a chance to win a $25.00 Amazon gift card or $10.00 gift card from the Book Depository (international readers).

All you have to do is forward a copy of the receipt(s) for the books purchased to indiehoopla (at) yahoo (dot) com. The winner will be announced on Tuesday, January 24. A master list of all participating authors can be found HERE. Now, let’s get this party started!

Someone is killing the teenagers of South Boston. Detective Allison Wynn and her partner are assigned the case. Working with Orlando Valentine, college professor, psychic and so called vampire expert, they race the clock to find the killer. Before they become the next victims.

After a fire destroys seventeen-year-old Julia’s home and kills her foster parents, she chases the half-demon responsible across the country and back, determined to avenge her family and discover why a host of celestial baddies want her dead. With Julia is enigmatic hottie Cayne, who has his own score to settle with the half-demon, and who might be just as dangerous as the creature he and Julia hunt.
Other Buy Locations


In Chasing Love, Maddy has searched for love and acceptance her entire life. She finds more than she bargains for after picking up a man in a bar while visiting her aunt in Iowa. Warning: EROTIC HORROR. Explicit sex scenes, including anal.
Guilty Pleasures- Zoe and Michael’s marriage is in deep trouble. Michael works late every night and Zoe struggles through endless of hours of loneliness and need. Desperate for attention, she joins a chat room called Tie Me Up and meets the charming, seductive Master D. WARNING: Explicit sex and bondage.

Other Buy Locations

If it’s Friday it must be Avon…

Valentines Day will be here before you know it. Check Campaign 3 in my electronic store. Yes, there is Jewelry, perfumes, cologne, and that sexy little something to wear for that special someone.

While all those are nice and I wouldn’t say no to any of those. (hint hint to my husband:)) My favorite thing in this campaign is the cookie cutter in the shape of lips or the muffin/cake tin with all the little hearts. Perfect for little cakes or even for whoopie pies or cookies, For those of you who like to bake goodies, for the kids to take to school, you to take to work or for desert after dinner with your significant other. Check it out at www.youravon.com/echarton

Jackie James

Today I’d like to introduce Jackie James. Jackie’s first book MASQUERADE an Erotic fantasy romance is available from Keith Publications.   and on Amazon.com

The general public knows her as Josie Dupree, Best Selling Author of Romantic Suspense. What the public doesn’t know is she is an Elite Faerie Warrior, currently undercover to find the leader of a gang of thieves that is stealing antiquities and selling them on the black market. Gaston Marchand, vampire and New Orleans Police Detective, is assigned to get close to Ms. Dupree who is suspected of being part of the gang.
When Josie and Gaston meet at the Annual New Orleans Black and White Ball, sparks fly. Jose doesn’t have time for a quick fling, but is tempted except that Gaston Marchand is a vampire and an immortal enemy.

See an excerpt below, after the interview Enjoy!

Jackie James lives in the Southwest with her cat Sammy.  Besides writing she hikes in the beautiful mountains that surround the valley she lives in. She is a member of the Saguaro Chapter of the RWA.  Masquerade is her first published book. Stay tuned for more stories about Faeries, Vampires, Shifters, Demons and Witches, her favorite subjects.

Q&A with Jackie

   When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

       In 1986 I was parking my car in my parking space and a thought came to me. It was the first germ of an idea for my first book. I have finished the book through the first draft, but between 1986 and 2004 I didn’t do much on it. But I never gave up the idea of the book and it is now the third book of a series I’m working on. When I retired, I knew one of the things I would do would be writing. I currently have 17 projects either finished through the first draft or almost finished. I finally got published in November of 2011. Stop in to Amazon or Wicked Ink Press and look up Jackie James or Masquerade. Enjoy. I’m waiting to hear on a second submission. My plan is to send out 1 book a month until I’m finished which will probably be never because new ideas arrive in my head every day. I’m not a spring chicken so remember, you’re never too old to write and get published.
Elaine-that book has since been accepted by Keith Publications. Jackie may be no spring chicken but I want to be her when I grow up.
 What genre do you write in? If you write in more than one genre is it under different names?
        I write Erotic Paranormal and Romantic Suspense. I’m thinking of writing a Cozy Mystery sometime in the future. For my paranormal, I write under Jackie James. My Romantic Suspense are written under Jackie Jordan.
Is there something you definitely need around when you write?
           I need complete or almost complete silence. While I’m writing, I’m creating and don’t like to be interrupted. That’s not too hard to accomplish because my cat sleeps all day.
   Are you part of a critique group?
           Yes. I have 5 of the most awesome critique partners a writer could ever want. We each have our areas of expertise. You might say we compliment each other. We meet every Sunday morning and it’s one of the highlights of my week. The snacks aren’t too bad either. If you write and don’t belong to a critique group, I recommend you join one as soon as possible. My work wouldn’t be any good without them. You may not click with a group so find another one. For me it’s a necessity. Also join a local RWA Romance Writer’s chapter. There is a wealth of information to be had plus a great networking opportunity. Some of my very best friends here in Tucson are members of the Tucson Saguaro Chapter of RWA.

Plotter or Panster or both?

         I am definitely a panster. An idea comes to me and I sit down, call up my characters and basically let them write the story. Of course, they need my help along the way, but when I’m writing, my characters and I are a team. And then there’s always one of my critique partners or all of them to help when I get stuck. I love to sit down and talk about writing. Some of my best ideas have come from one of those conversations.
Thank you Jackie, I’ve read Masquerade and think it’s wonderful!
Here’s an excerpt

Josie stood at the top of the steps leading down to the ballroom and gazed over the sea of black and white below her. She lifted her head. Vampire. I wonder who he is. She relaxed slightly and slowly walked down the stairs. Several men stopped what they were doing and stared at her.   She was tall for a Faerie. Her eyes were a brilliant blue, and in her see-through dress, her long black curly hair falling to her waist, she knew she looked good.She smiled to herself and made her way to the bar on the side wall of the room. As she walked, she felt the hair on the back of her neck rise and knew the vampire she’d sensed earlier was behind her.

The hand on her shoulder was gentle and a deep sexy voice said, “Good evening, may I have the pleasure of this dance?”
Josie turned slowly. Although she was tall, she had to raise her head before she looked into stunning, emerald green eyes with gold flecks. He was muscular and lean. Wow, I could drown in those eyes.        
Josie hesitated a moment before she spoke. Finally she said, “I would love to dance with you.”

When Gaston put his hand on the small of her back, a jolt of electricity shot down her spine.

Avon I heart Beauty

Avon has a new campaign beginning in C-2 which is currently out. In the C2 book, p4-45 if you make a purchase of $14.99 of beauty products You will receive the make up bag shown here.

There are other fabulous deals as well, including the Anew Ultimate 3 piece skin care collection for $45.00.

Check out my online store at www.youravon.com/echarton

You can have your order delivered to you anywhere in the United States and if you live near me you can order on line and I will deliver.

Check it out.  www.youravon.com/echarton