Friday, July 18, 2014

WEEKLY ROUND-UP FOR JULY 17, 2014

Welcome to the Weekly Round-Up everyone! Thank you for dropping in. Oak Tree Press has lots of news in our corral today. Be sure to check out our website, www.ShopOTPbooks.com, for a complete list of all the great books we have available. But now, for your reading pleasure, our authors have news, book signings, events, reviews, blogs and more to share with you as we head into the Round-Up…

It’s time for the yearly Oak Tree Press writing contests! We have many categories to choose from: Dark Oak Mystery, Wild Oaks Western, Mystic Oaks Paranormal, Timeless Love Romance and Police Blotter. Novels must be 60,000 – 80,000 words, submitted electronically in a rich text, double spaced format, entry fee of $25.00 and submissions must be received by September 1, 2014. Grand prize in each genre is publication in paper and ebook formats! For complete information (including prizes, contract highlights, distribution and promo info) please visit www.oaktreebooks.com


The PSWA, Public Safety Writers Association conference, was held last weekend in Las Vegas and I have a few winners to announce! I hope to have a complete list for next weeks Round-Up.  

ILENE SCHNEIDER won 1st place for her short story "Miami Snow" and her flash fiction "Perfect" was also a 1st place winner! Congratulations!OTP proudly remembers last year ILENE’s “Unleavened Dead” won 1st place for best mystery novel. 

SHARON ARTHUR MOORE was awarded 2nd place for “The Bloody Knife” in unpublished short stories and Mission Impastable,” her OTP culinary mystery, won 3rd place in the category of published novels. Way to go!



KEN OXMAN debuted his thriller "Reluctant Assassin" last night at the New Canaan Library. This book has it all: historical fiction, action, adventure and will be liked by everyone from baby boomers to WWII fans. It is my pick for the Featured Book of the Week.

U.S. Navy Lieutenant Nathan Blake has a special skill, he’s really good at killing people up close. That’s his job and he’s not proud of it, but his country needs him - it’s December 1941, America is at war and new to the business.

Blake wants out, wants to be a sea-going officer and execute his skills from a distance like most fighting men, but his covert navy department won’t let him – he’s too damn good at what he does. He will never give up on his goal to be a fighting sailor but while he’s sent on a dangerous journey across half the world en route to Singapore to stop an enemy agent seriously damaging the Allied war effort, he adds a private quest, the toughest of all – to find again the one person he had managed to love and who is now somewhere in Singapore.  His dilemma - should he first search to save his love or should he complete his mission? He must move fast on his decision, everyone in Singapore is in imminent danger, the country is about to capitulate to the rampaging Japanese.


JOHN WILLS ebook “Dancer” is scheduled to be FREE on July 24 thru 28, 2014 on amazon.com. Be sure to save the date to get your copy of this novella in our Cop Tales line.

"Dancer" is the story of a young woman’s journey into the dark world of the adult entertainment business. She quickly learns things are not always what they seem, and soon wishes she had never heard of the club know as “After Hours.”



PATRICK LINDER’s novel “Ghost Writer” is a finalist in two different mystery categories for the 2014 Readers’ Favorite Awards. The winners will be announced on September 1, 2014 in Miami. Good luck PATRICK!


Seattle Detective Marcus Brace is falling apart, both professionally and personally. But a brutal murder and a phone call from family long-forgotten force Marcus to face everything he’s been running from. When the killer begins targeting those around him, Marcus has no choice but to consider how sins from the past echo, like ghost music, to haunt those in the present. Finding help from new detective Ashlynn Rivers, Marcus is on a race to find not just a killer but also pieces of a family mystery that no one wants to acknowledge. 


EILEEN OBSER has accepted the honor of being a part of Author’s Night at the East Hampton Library in East Hampton, NY on August 9th. This is the 10th annual fundraiser for the library. The evening begins with the Authors Reception under the tent at the Library. Guests will enjoy fabulous cocktail fare and wine, meet their favorite authors, buy their books and have them inscribed. There will be 100 authors in attendance. Following the Authors Reception, guests will attend dinner parties at fabulous East Hampton estates. Each dinner party will host one or two authors who will have the opportunity to speak about their books during the dinner festivities. Dinner ticket prices range from $225.00 to $2,500.00 per person. 100% of the dinner ticket price and the book sales will be a donation to the East Hampton Library. There is a special website showcasing all the authors involved and their books.
The website is: http://www.authorsnight.org/


BILLY BEASLEY received a great review for “The River Hideaway” on amazon.

As a media specialist/librarian for over twenty years, I have read literally thousands of books across all genres and I must say that The River Hideaway is a winner. The book kept me engaged from the first page to the last. In fact, I read it in one day it was that good! The story is filled with well developed characters and superbly described settings. This book engages you emotionally and will have you laughing and crying. The River Hideaway is hard to categorize in that it is a blend of family drama, romance, history, and mystery/suspense. In short, it is one great read! Beasley has written a winner with his first novel. I look forward to more from this author.
Jayne Malach

ROBERT WIEBEZAHL, author of “The Dead Don’t Forget” has had his mystery short story “Judge and Jury” republished in Kings River Life. This was ROBERT’s first ever published story back in 2003. It is so good that they printed it again! Read it here:






CAROL ALEXANDER, author of "The Big Squeal" needs your opinion! She is contemplating between the top and bottom images above for a T-shirt promotion. Which do you like?
In other MISS LIBERTY news: "The Big Squeal" is heading to Russia to the famous Moscow Library. So now, among her other credits, MISS LIBERTY is international!


UPCOMING EVENTS


EILEEN OBSER will be giving an encore appearance reading “Only You” at the Kramoris Gallery in Sag Harbor at 3:00 on Sunday afternoon, July 20th. There will be wine and refreshments, music and art - the latest art opening is on Saturday. EILEEN tells me that Romany is a great hostess, and her eclectic gallery is a joy. This should be a great event! 






THONIE HEVRON will read from her new release “Intent to Hold,” during a bookstore event at Copperfield's Books in Santa Rosa, CA on July 29 from 7:00 – 8:00.  "Hot Summer Nights" features 4 weeks of readings that include Love and Poetry, Short Stories and Children's/YA during July. THONIE will be one of four Fiction readers at the free event which is co-produced with Copperfield's Books and Redwood Writers.






CAROLYN NEITHAMMER, author of the newly released “The Piano Player” is ready to start promoting! She is heading for the Northwest Coast and will be at the Northwest Book Fair in Portland on July 26. There will also be a Tucson launch on August 26. CAROLYN has also made a trip to Tombstone to set up a possible launch there on Labor Day, she will be having a signing in Prescott, AZ, on September 6 and is also planning something public with a Tucson bookstore in October. Wow! She will be busy!





VIRGIL ALEXANDER, author of “Saints & Sinners” has some upcoming events and signings:
On July 19 he will be at the Pickle Barrel Trading Post, Globe, Arizona, Noon-3:00 pm
On August 2 he has an interview at KATO Radio, Thatcher, Arizona, 7:30 am
Also on August 2, he will be at the Eastern Arizona Historical Museum, Pima, Arizona, 10:00 am




ANN HOWLEY, author of “Confessions of a Do-Gooder Gone Bad” will be celebrating the release of her book on August 1 at the Hard Rock Café at Station Square in Pittsburgh. Join her for cake and cheers! ANN will also be busy with the following events:
August 6 - Panelist at Meet the Author Event at Barnes & Noble, Robinson, PA 6:30pm
August 16 - Book Launch Party at Millrace Village, Northville, MI 5:30pm
August 23 - Book Signing at Next Chapter Bookstore and Bistro, Northville, MI 11:30am
September 6 - Book Launch Celebration at Metamorphosis Center, McMurray, PA 5:00pm


TEKLA MILLER along with ALYCE BONURA, the star of her book “Mother Rabbit” will be presenting and signing the book on August 12 at 6:30 pm at Maria’s Bookshop, 960 Main Avenue, Durango, CO (970-247-1438). Stop in to meet these lovely ladies and get a signed copy of this unique memoir about a Playboy Bunny Mother.





BLOG CORRAL

MICHAEL MATSON, author of “The Dancing Boy” is in the middle of a blog tour. Below is his schedule:

July 18 - Kathleen Anderson - Jersey Girl Book Reviews

http://jerseygirlbookreviews.blogspot.com/


July 28 - Victoria Brinius - Deal Sharing Aunt
www.dealsharingaunt.blogspot.com


July 31 - Misty Rayburn - The Top Shelf
http://www.the-top-shelf.com


AMY BENNETT, author of “End of the Road” and “No Lifeguard on Duty” invites you to check in on her Back Deck Blog blitz. She has numerous OTP authors lined up and could add more! http://amymbennettbooks.blogspot.com/

Friday, July 18—Ilene Schneider
Wednesday, July 23—James R. Callan
Friday, July 25—Carolyn Niethammer
Wednesday, July 30—Janet Greger
Friday, August 1—Thonie Hevron
Wednesday, August 6—Nicholas Checker



SHARON ARTHUR MOORE, author of “Mission Impastable” has reviewed the first book in Sylvia Selfman’s Senior Snoops mystery series, “Murder She Typed.” See the review here: http://writeonsisters.com/book-reviews/what-were-reading-mysteries/

“The Mystery of Mysteries, Part I” begins SHARON’s series on the elements of mystery writing and how to write them at http://writeonsisters.com/writing-craft/the-mystery-of-mysteries-part-i/





LORNA COLLINS, author of “Ghost Writer” has been nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. Sounds like a great honor! Learn all about it on her blog.
http://lornacollins-author.blogspot.com/









That wraps up the Round-Up for this week. I hope everyone enjoys the Weekly Round-Up as much as I enjoy posting it for you. 
As always, if you have something you would like to submit to the Round-Up, send me an email at otpoffice@aol.com
Big or small, old or new. I would like to keep our corral full of news! Comments, questions or suggestions are welcome too.

Have a great weekend, everyone.~ Suzi
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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Greeting from the Pianoman

                                 OTP Authors Blog Entry
Hello OTP authors. Let me introduce myself. I was supposed to do this January 19th, but some strange gremlin in my computer won’t let me. Sooo, Suzi is by-passing my grumpy gremlin for me. I have made a living as a musician/entertainer for 52 years. My music has taken me to 66 countries and 49 states. I played in hotels, resorts, night clubs, and on cruise ships. In my travels I have met literally thousands of people.
Now, at age 71, I am starting a new career as a writer. My first private investigator novel, Jack of Harts-A Spaghetti & Rice Mystery, will be launched May 6th 2014. If you live in OH. anywhere near Dayton, the book launch party/jazz jam session will be at Gilly’s night club from 7 pm. – 10 pm. Come listen to and/or play great jazz, and pick up a signed copy of my book.

I want to be a novelist when I grow up. Also, please visit my website www.aleme.com and blog pianoman264.wordpress.com. Michael Eldridge (all of my friends and the girls at OTP call me Mikey)

Friday, July 11, 2014

WEEKLY ROUND-UP FOR JULY 11, 2014

Welcome to the Weekly Round-Up everyone! Thank you for dropping in. Oak Tree Press has lots of news in our corral today. Be sure to check out our website, www.ShopOTPbooks.com, for a complete list of all the great books we have available. But now, for your reading pleasure, our authors have news, book signings, events, reviews, blogs and more to share with you as we head into the Round-Up…


It’s time for the yearly Oak Tree Press writing contests! We have many categories to choose from: Dark Oak Mystery, Wild Oaks Western, Mystic Oaks Paranormal, Timeless Love Romance and Police Blotter. Novels must be 60,000 – 80,000 words, submitted electronically in a rich text, double spaced format, entry fee of $25.00 and submissions must be received by September 1, 2014. Grand prize in each genre is publication in paper and ebook formats! For complete information (including prizes, contract highlights, distribution and promo info) please visit www.oaktreebooks.com. 


_________________________________________________

The PSWA, Public Safety Writers Association, conference is in full swing July 10 - 14 at the Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV. Numerous OTP authors are attending and also speaking on panels. This is the first year that MARILYN MEREDITH will not be program Chairperson and she is threatening to relax and enjoy the conference instead! MARILYN OLSEN is President and will represent Oak Tree Press in BILLIE JOHNSON’s absence. BILLIE is terribly upset that she will not be able to attend this year, she has never missed the PSWA but she must follow doctor’s orders. MICHAEL BLACK has been selected as this years Chair. More information about the PSWA can be found at www.policewriter.com

"Felons, Flames and Ambulance Rides" is a collection of stories by several authors (many OTP!) about America's Public Safety Heroes. I choose it as the Featured Book of the Week.

In 1995, New York State Police Captain Roger Fulton had an idea...The result was the Police Writers Club that included both officers and writers and offered an annual conference and writing competition. Five years later, the club’s members published CopTales 2000, an anthology that included the works of contest winners and other submissions. 
In 2007, the club changed its name to the Public Safety Writers Association (PSWA), and is now a national organization providing an annual conference, a writing competition.   
Felons, Flames & Ambulance Rides: Stories by and about America’s Public Safety Heroes contains the works of members of PSWA.

Oak Tree Press is releasing three titles at the conference.

“By Force or Fear” by Thonie Hevron

The shocking end to a hostage situation brings a courageous Sheriff’s Deputy to the attention of an powerful young judge. His obsession grows as she pursues a violent killer in the Sonoma wine country. After losing almost everyone close to her, she finds out the judge’s offer of security isn’t as magnificent as he presented. As she closes in on the murderer, the judge’s own trap snaps shut, nearly killing her and her partner.




“Intent to Hold” by Thonie Hevron

Sonoma County Sheriffs’ Detectives Nick Reyes and Meredith Ryan travel to Mexico to rescue his kidnapped brother-in-law. Along the way, they battle corrupt cops, natural disasters, and even family to save his wife’s brother. 






“An Ocean in the Desert” by Joseph Haggerty

Two private investigators, one a former Las Vegas cop and the other a former Army Ranger, specialize in finding runaway or missing children.  If they find the child is involved with a sexual predator they discreetly offer the child's family an additional service that guarantees the child will not return to the predator.  Their investigations take them to the strip joints and pornography outlets of Las Vegas, gay escort services in the Nation's Capital and the prostitution streets of Atlanta, New Orleans, Atlantic City and Phoenix.
As they fulfill their contracts and bring relief to these tormented families, the police in New Orleans and Las Vegas start putting together the puzzle pieces. Using other forgotten victims of society the police are able to identify our garbage disposers. They start to close in on them when sometime happens that changes everything.


VIRGIL ALEXANDER will be speaking on a panel on July 13 at 10:00 am discussing "Writing a Series."

ILENE SCHNEIDER will be a panelist on two occasions.
Friday, July 11 at 2:30 pm: "What are setting and dialogue and how should you use them?"
Sunday, July 13 at 10:15 am "The aspects to be considered when writing a series."
________________________________________________

ILENE SCHNEIDER, author of “Unleavened Dead” and “Chanukah Guilt” has earned bragging rights this week. On the DorothyL listserv, there's been a thread about what people want to know before reading a new author. One participant posted:

"The first thing I look for in a book is a well-told story with believable characters. That said, I discovered ILENE SCHNEIDER's mysteries because they were about a rabbi and I am a clergyperson myself. I started reading Elizabeth Moon's works because we were in the Marine Corps at approximately the same time/era -- in both cases, however, I keep reading because the books are excellent."


KEN OXMAN, author of the upcoming “The Reluctant Assassin” has made headlines again. And what a headline... Oxman, No Stranger to Danger! A very interesting article in the New Canaan News tells of KEN's time as an officer cadet in the British Merchant Navy. Learn more about KEN, in addition to him being an actor, director, teacher, voice and public speaking coach and who also served as a broadcaster for BBC local radio at this link: 




UPCOMING EVENTS

THONIE HEVRON will read from her upcoming book, “Intent to Hold,” during a bookstore event at Copperfield's Books in Santa Rosa, CA on July 29 from 7:00 – 8:00.  "Hot Summer Nights" features 4 weeks of readings that include Love and Poetry, Short Stories and Children's/YA during July. THONIE will be one of four Fiction readers at the free event which is co-produced with Copperfield's Books and Redwood Writers.






CAROLYN NEITHAMMER, author of the newly released “The Piano Player” is ready to start promoting! She is heading for the Northwest Coast and will be at the Northwest Book Fair in Portland on July 26. There will also be a Tucson launch on August 26. CAROLYN has also made a trip to Tombstone to set up a possible launch there on Labor Day, she will be having a signing in Prescott, AZ, on September 6 and is also planning something public with a Tucson bookstore in October. Wow! She will be busy!





VIRGIL ALEXANDER, author of “Saints & Sinners” has some upcoming events and signings:
On July 19 he will be at the Pickle Barrel Trading Post, Globe, Arizona, Noon-3:00 pm.
On August 2 he has an interview at KATO Radio, Thatcher, Arizona, 7:30 am.
Also on August 2, he will be at the Eastern Arizona Historical Museum, Pima, Arizona, 10:00 am.





ANN HOWLEY, author of “Confessions of a Do-Gooder Gone Bad” will be celebrating the release of her book on August 1 at the Hard Rock Café at Station Square in Pittsburgh. Cake and cheers to come! 

ANN will also be busy with the following events:
August 6 - Panelist at Meet the Author Event at Barnes & Noble, Robinson, PA 6:30pm
August 16 - Book Launch Party at Millrace Village, Northville, MI 5:30pm
August 23 - Book Signing at Next Chapter Bookstore and Bistro, Northville, MI 11:30am
September 6 - Book Launch Celebration at Metamorphosis Center, McMurray, PA 5:00pm

TEKLA DENNISON MILLER along with ALYCE BONURA, the star of her book “Mother Rabbit” will be presenting and signing the book on August 12 at 6:30 pm at Maria’s Bookshop, 960 Main Avenue, Durango, CO (970-247-1438). 
Stop in to meet these lovely ladies and get a signed copy of this unique memoir about a Playboy Bunny Mother.





BLOG CORRAL


MARILYN LEVINSON, author of “Murder a la Christie” has interviewed her fellow Sister in Crime, Teresa Inge, on her blog. Please visit and leave a comment at:  http://www.marilynlevinson.com/blog/









LORNA COLLINS, author of “Ghost Writerwants to help you learn how to use Facebook effectively. Last week she covered how to build a profile and this week she is covering Pages and Groups.








MICHAEL MATSON, author of “The Dancing Boy” is in the middle of a blog tour. Below is his schedule:

July 17 - Mareena McGirr - Emeraldfire's Bookmark   http://rubyandthetwins.blogspot.com

July 18 - Kathleen Anderson - Jersey Girl Book Reviews
http://jerseygirlbookreviews.blogspot.com/

July 28 - Victoria Brinius - Deal Sharing Aunt
www.dealsharingaunt.blogspot.com

July 31 - Misty Rayburn - The Top Shelf
http://www.the-top-shelf.com



AMY BENNETT, author of “End of the Road” and “No Lifeguard on Duty” invites you to check in on her Back Deck Blog blitz. She has numerous OTP authors lined up and could add more! 

Friday, July 11—Lorna Collins
Monday, July14—Amy M. Bennett
Wednesday, July 16—Walter Luce
Friday, July 18—Ilene Schneider
Wednesday, July 23—James R. Callan
Friday, July 25—Carolyn Niethammer
Wednesday, July 30—Janet Greger
Friday, August 1—Thonie Hevron
Wednesday, August 6—Nicholas Checker


That wraps up the Round-Up for this week. I hope everyone enjoys the Weekly Round-Up as much as I enjoy posting it for you. 
As always, if you have something you would like to submit to the Round-Up, send me an email at otpoffice@aol.com
Big or small, old or new. I would like to keep our corral full of news!
Comments, questions or suggestions are welcome too.

Have a great weekend, everyone.~ Suzi



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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The Art of Pitching

The Pitch.

Make your pitch.

Pitch your novel.

Whatever the expression, it’s harder to do than one would think. If you’ve ever been asked for a quick capsule summary—er, sorry, pitch—of your novel, you’ll likely agree.

Unless you’re prepared for just such an eventuality.

Joseph Finder (author of “Suspicion,” among others) has written one of the better and instructive articles on the subject. While his pitch is more the screenplay variety, I think the idea lends itself to novels as well.


As Finder writes: “Why should novelists care about the art of the pitch in Hollywood? Because being able to pitch a movie, or a TV show, is the same skill as being able to come up with the ‘hook,’ the ‘what-if,’ the premise of that novel….”

I thought of the two mysteries I’ve written and how I pitch them; or at least, how I explain or sum them up. It’s not that either is all that involved or complicated.

Nonetheless, squeezing the plot into a 10-15 second pitch has never been easy for me.

Oh, I can do it. In Media Blitz—someone is going around Boston killing members of the media.

OK. Not bad.

For The Zyratron Affair—several killings erupt around the stealing of Zyratron, a rare figurine from 1960s horror movies, for which collectors are getting $12,000 and more.

Yet without overcomplicating things, I find that I still want to say more that that in my pitch.

Do I get cynical and gimmicky? "In Media Blitz, someone is going around Boston killing members of the media. Then Elvis turns up alive, lecturing at Harvard."

Hardly.

So I guess it’s KISS time: keep it simple, stupid.

In pitch mode, I guess that’ll have to do.

Any ideas, authors? If so, keep them brief. Obviously….