Friday, 30 September 2011

My Guest - Julie Eberhart Painter

Today I have with me Julie Eberhart Painter, a fellow writer with Champagne Books.  Julie has been writing for quite some time now, with a load of books under her name, with her latest, Kill Fee, out October 1 from Champagne Books.

Let’s meet this amazing lady…

TKT:  Okay, so, let’s get straight into it… How many books have you written?  I see that most are mysteries, what got you started into the devious world of murderers and intrigue?

JEP: Thank you for inviting me. I’m not all about murder, but I like intrigue and scandal.

Counting the three books not yet published, I’ve completed nine. We won’t count the ones in the round file. I have a 105,000-word memoir that although written for publication, is meant more for our family. I haven’t tried to sell it lately. That would be ten.

TKT:  Good luck on your memoirs.  Next question, do you draw on life experiences when you go about creating a story?  Or is it just purely made up?

JEP: I always draw on my looo…ong life experience for my stories. I was blessed to be in several people-intensive businesses: Interior Design among the rich and famous and health care among the crotchety and interesting. I also play duplicate bridge against the competitive and nasty. Very broadening. The overall plots are my own but the people are composites from life.

TKT:  Sounds very interesting and diverse.  So, when did the writing bug bite you?

JEP: As a child making up stories was part of my culture. My parents were well read and older. They had a lot of memories to share. My favorite game was, “Tell me what it was like when you were a little boy/girl.”

When I was eight or nine, I started writing about princes and princesses, I never read about them now—unless Tina Brown wrote their story.

TKT:  Sounds like my parents.  I used to enjoy their tales of when they were young.  Right, you asked me this question, so now I only see it fit to ask you.  Do you remember your first rejection letter, and how it made you feel as a writer?

JEP: I was very disappointed. The book was “On the Road to Cassadaga,” a memoir of my decision to become a writer based on a conversation with a psychic over the phone. I’d been making comfort calls for a local hospice. The famous psychic told me a chilling story and invited me to meet her in Cassadaga, FL, a truly spooky place about 30 miles west of us towards Orlando. When I got there, it was so scary I came home and phoned to cancel.

Once Cassadaga was written, I picked the perfect agent. She was the right choice at the time and was nice enough to write and tell me my book wasn’t ready for prime time. She was right about that. I had hoped to resubmit it to her because she was a major player in the industry. Sadly, my judgment was a little off. She was thrown out of the AAR ten years later for creating a false auction on another book she represented.


TKT:  Wow, that terrible about your agent.  Okay, so what’s your perfect writing day?  Do you have a routine, or are you one of those writers that fit it in when you get the chance?

JEP: I could have a routine. My husband is retired, kids gone, etc. I don’t play much bridge now. But if a friend wants to do something or my very limited social life intervenes, I just go. I am always ahead of my deadlines, so I can do that. The perfect day is when I am creating a new story and I push back from the computer and cry, “I didn’t see that coming!”

TKT:  Tell me a little bit about your upcoming release, Kill Fee.

JEP: The cozy mystery begins among a group of seniors playing duplicate bridge. The director, Penny, has taken over running the game for her beloved uncle who is too old to keep up with it anymore. The old folks love Uncle Connie, but resent the delicious morsel, Penny, who has a romantic history. Her day job is that of an environmentalist with the EPA.

Her uncle dies at the table and the old folks think it’s murder. The Keystone Cop-like police are called and Penny becomes a suspect because her uncle has left her $15,000,000 and his environmentally sensitive beachfront property, complete with staff. The new young lawyer, Cole, whom Uncle Connie selected to disburse his estate, takes her under his wing. Naturally they fall in love, although she exercises caution this time around.

Penny has a pet Mynah bird, Bilgewater, the legacy of a former lover. The bird has a reputation for swearing and telling it like it is. Penny calls him the foul-mouthed fowl and her malevolent Mynah. He’s a quick study and not a bad crime fighter either

In Kill Fee, everyone gets play. The old folks are scandalized. The police are annoyed and the environmentalist press is scared into action that takes several crazy twists. It’s a fun read with poignant messages.

TKT:  Sounds exciting!!  Do you read other books outside of your genre?

JEP: I am especially fond of mystery romance, suspense, autobiographies, memoirs and currently anything written about animals such as the books of Sara Gruen. She wrote Water for Elephants, but my current favorite is Riding Lessons. She knows the animals’ body language as well as human family dynamics. Her books combine my interest in anthropology with my love of psychology.

TKT:  If you could have a conversation (or meet) with one of your favourite writers (living or not), who would it be, and why, and what would you ask them?

JEP: I have many favorites from long ago. Wilkie Collins wrote The Woman in White, one of the first English mystery novels. I admire him, but for a sit down, I’d like to talk with Margaret Mitchell. One of my nursing home residents in Atlanta was her personal friend. They were in a weekly two-table bridge game. One day Margaret didn’t show up. The ladies asked, “Wheah’s Mahgret?” The answer was, “She’s writing a book.”  The ladies laughed. And the rest is historical romance: Gone With the Wind.

I wouldn’t necessarily ask her anything about the South, but I’d like to know if she regrets asking to have all her unpublished work destroyed at her death. One story was found in an attic two generations later. She had been 15at the time, writing a long short story for a young man a block away celebrating his 16th birthday. It’s called “Lost Laysen,” and can be purchased in the Margaret Mitchell Museum at her home in Atlanta.

TKT:  That is truly amazing.  My last question.  If you could pick a place, time, year or even century (past, present, or future) what, which, when, and where?

JEP: I was born in 1936. According to my 50-year-old children, I could not have been born at a better time. They are probably right. I certainly would have wanted to be an American.

TKT:  Is there anything else you’d like to add?

JEP: Thank you again for proposing this idea to swap interviews. I highly recommend it. Because we are polar opposites, you young, me more advanced in age, you a writer of sci-fi and fantasy and me a reality writer, the questions and answers have much more substance. I like that. Good luck with your series.

Thanks so much Julie for stopping by and I wish your oodles of sales for your upcoming release.  Don't forget, Kill Fee - out October 1.  Don't you just want to find out about Bilgewater?  I do.

Bio info: Julie Eberhart Painter is the Champagne Books author of Mortal Coil, Tangled Web, and Kill Fee to be released in October.
You can find Julie at her Website at www.books-jepainter.com

Julie’s books are available from champagnebooks.com and popular electronic bookstores. Paperbacks can be purchased from the publisher or lulu.com


Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Mid-Week Resolutions

Wednesdays, like most other days in the week, arrive with such exacting precision.  Sort of like those annoying bills you have to pay.

For me, mid-week usually finds me in dilemmas.  You know, wondering what to do with the 'rest of the week' since the gusto you started the week out with, hasn't really panned out.  Plus, Friday is just around the corner so there are many distractions.

This week, I started out with a moderate level of gusto.  I'd just completed my WIP (Bengaria's War) and sent it off to be beta read (again), and with all good intentions, tried to play catch up with my day job and online stuff that I've sorta neglected.  By the end of the day, I was done, and by Tuesday, I had dragged out my shelved WIP (The Grosjean Chronicles) and started re-reading it.  I felt inspired to continue writing, which I have been doing in short spurts since.

But now it's Wednesday and the motivation to continue writing seems to have left me.  It could be the heat...I know, I keep saying that -- or it could be all the new Fall TV shows that have popped up, leaving me to shelve my usual nighttime plotting sessions as I ogle them.  In any case, I still try to put in at least a couple hours writing time in the afternoons...so, at this rate, by late January (unless I get struck by a bolt of inspiration) I reckon I'll be finished with The Grosjean Chronicles.

For now, it's still Wednesday, and the day is progressing extremely slow.  Maybe I should take a page out of my cat's book and start the week like any other week.  Find a spot, stretch out, and have a power-snooze.

Cheers!

Friday, 23 September 2011

SFF Saturday - Sept 24

Hello everyone!  This is my maiden voyage into the Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday realm.  I hope I do it some justice.


For today's posting, I give you a short snippet from my recently released sequel in the Lancaster trilogy called The Master Key, published by Champagne Books.

Following is a short snippet from the very first chapter.  Enjoy!

“She’ll never make an operative.” Simon propped his arm companionably over John’s shoulder and watched as Josie sheepishly recovered from a stumble.
“She’s my wife, not one of your lot.” John clamped his mouth into a line and rolled his eyes, a habit he seemed to be borrowing lately from Josie. “But you’re right. An operative she will never be. I’m just glad she’s learning to hone her skills at defending herself. Clumsily, but still…”
“There’s that,” Simon agreed with a shrug then suppressed a chuckle. “And now, thankfully, she looks more the part so her cover will stand.”
Though he’d never let on, Simon did like her. She was a bit crass, rude, nosy, and childishly na├»ve, but she’d somehow managed to tame his best friend’s turbulent heart and reawaken his humorous nature. And, she had the uncanny ability to make John swoon like a girl, something that was practically unheard of until she came to live at the Citadel.
“At least now she won’t second-guess her own strength and abilities,” Simon continued.

If you're interested in participating in next week's SFF Saturday, stop by their sign-up blog which is open every Wednesdays.

Cheers!

Thursday, 22 September 2011

A Little Update is in Order

As September draws closer to the end, I once again, find myself blowing out a breath of relief.  As months go, it's been a pretty crappy one with only some mild moments of uncrappy stuff.

Aside from the constant and ever-present heat (what's new in the tropics!), I felt the need to give my current work in progress, Bengaria's War, ANOTHER glean-through -- which I am doing now and nearly coming to the end.  Some things just didn't sit right with me, and some areas need a little more embellishing to 'round off' the tale.  But polishing up your work is never an easy task, nor is the constant distraction of having to market your other books that are out there already.  To top it off, there were other personal stuff going on in my life that took time away from concentrating on the WIP.  Ah, life, such a gloriously distracting thing.

So, as I near the end of the polishing, and the end of the month draws to a close, I'm hoping October will bring a breath of fresh air into my distracted soul.  I know that has been the main issue bogging down my brains and clouding up everything else.  I just hate having unfinished business around me.

In October, I will resume my quest for an agent for Bengaria's War, seek out more reviews for the recently released The Master Key, drag out The Grosjean Chronicles and set about finishing that unfinished tale, and try my best to take a larger dosage of chill pills.

Oh, crap.  And seek out a present for hubby's birthday...

Anyways, join me this Saturday as I venture into the Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday world (giving myself a break from the Six Sentence Sundays).

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - Sept 18

Six Sentence Sunday! Again from the recently released The Master Key.  But, after today, I'll be taking a short break, and then introducing you to the final in the trilogy: The Eternal Knot

Today I introduce you to Michael Ho...


The holographic image of Michael Ho—lifelike and actual size—cast itself into the centre of the room. His neat black hair was slickly combed back against his scalp. His mixed-Asian features were smooth, creamy, and composed in his accustomed pose of faux pleasantness. He looked like an enlightened spiritualist, hands clasped before him like a monk.

If you want to know a little bit more about The Master Key, click up to my Books tab above.

Thanks again to everyone who drops by to read these tasty snippets and leaving wonderful comments.

For anyone interested in participating, click to Six Sentence Sunday, and follow the rules. You can also check out the six sentence reads from the other participants.
Tweet about it too, use the #sixsunday hashtag.

Cheers!

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - Sept 11

Six Sentence Sunday!  And yes, I'm still promoting my latest release The Master Key.

Today we have a sticky situation, where John is trying his best to say the rights things, without getting flayed alive.

“Well,” she looked at him as through he were the biggest moron in the known universe. “Duhh. I mean, yes, but…no. What I mean is, I didn’t ask because you people don’t seem to wear rings anymore. In this century, that is.” 
He replied carefully. “Some still do—traditions die hard. It’s a matter of preference. And rings are bothersome in times of combat. They get in the way…” He sounded too much like a man making excuses so he clamped his mouth shut.


If you want to know a little bit more about The Master Key, click up to my Books tab above.

Thanks again to everyone who drops by to read these tasty snippets and leaving wonderful comments.

For anyone interested in participating, click to Six Sentence Sunday, and follow the rules. You can also check out the six sentence reads from the other participants.
Tweet about it too, use the #sixsunday hashtag.

Cheers!

Friday, 9 September 2011

Tropical Storms and Brain Waves

So, I've been watching the weather lately, as one does when you live in the tropics, and taking note of the numerous tropical storms popping up like measles.  With the convenience of WIFI, and devices like the iPods and Pads, even the trusty Blackberry, I can feed my addiction of checking out the weather.  We'll not get into the other addiction I have, which is 'screen-addiction.'  That's a whole other story!

This year, like the last, we've quickly run through the alphabet with naming the storms and hurricanes.  We're all the way to the Ms with Maria breathing down our neck this very minute.  This time last year, we were closer to the Ps, and ran into Tomas at the end of October.  Ouch!

Anyways, so yeh, that's us in the middle where that angry little knot of red is glowering at us.  We got a precursor of it late last night, with cracking thunder and rain.  The only reason I knew this, was because I thought the AC unit was about to fall on my head.  So, after being rudely awakened by Maria's bellow, my brains weren't quite ready to go back into a coma.  What does it do?  Come up with a strange and quirky story which I ended up dreaming about.

I'm still not quite sure how I want to write this new story...it may very well end up as a short story, which is kinda new to me, since I'm not very good at short stories at all.  As for the genre, it's not going to be SF!!  What, you say?  Yeh, really...I'm thinking more along the lines of fantasy...like paranormal fantasy, maybe?  I took some notes earlier this morning, and had a read through.  You could say it's a sort of fairy tale gone wrong, in a good way, of course.  Then again, as I start writing it, it may just end up better as a storm-induced dream.  I'll know in a few days when I give it a tackle.  Funny, last year, when Tomas blew through and we were out of power for five days, I had a similar brain wave passing through my head.  I must drag out those notes and see what I can do with it.  I'm beginning to think that storms agree with my creative process.

Until then, my weather-addiction is fed hourly, and as I glance out the window, its a blustery and dark view with wind (thankfully) and spurts of fine rain.  I think it's time to stir up a nice cocktail and watch the rains commence...oh, wait, it's only 9am... I suppose I could wait a few more hours...

Cheers!

Monday, 5 September 2011

Another PDF Is Up For Grabs!

Still wanna win a PDF of The Master Key?  Well, since I'm feeling particularly generous, click on over to Miscellaneous Ramblings and scroll down to see the rules.  It's that simple.

The event lasts until September 9, so you have fair chance to win.

Good luck!

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - Sept 4

Six Sentence Sunday time again!  Once more, a short snippet from the newly released The Master Key.

Here we have an interesting situation.  John is intimidating a particularly nasty little individual.

“I don’t believe you could kill him. He’s very strong and skilled,” she persisted. “How did you kill him?”
He waited a beat, watching her. “With my hands. It was personal, you see.”
Involuntarily, she flicked her eyes to his hands. He’d mimicked her by clasping them before him, and could see her beginning to squirm under his close inspection. She unclasped her own hands, placed them at her sides, one fist balled tightly.


If you want to know a little bit more about The Master Key, click up to my Books tab above.

Thanks again to everyone who drops by to read these tasty snippets and leaving wonderful comments.

For anyone interested in participating, click to Six Sentence Sunday, and follow the rules. You can also check out the six sentence reads from the other participants.
Tweet about it too, use the #sixsunday hashtag.

Cheers!

Friday, 2 September 2011

The Writer's Vineyard Mega Contest

So, most of you know that every month I contribute some random words to The Writer's Vineyard blog.  Starting from next week, they'll be celebrating their fourth year, the authors at TWV are holding a Mega contest to give away over twenty of their top rated novels.

From Sept 5 through Nov 28, they will hold a drawing every Monday. The post for each Monday will announce which book is being given for that week, the rules, and who won the prior week. Come join us. Lots of ways to win, and while you're there, scan through our posts. We discuss the good, bad, and ugly of writing and the publishing experience.

And just a side note, my giveaway for a PDF copy of The Master Key, will be up for grabs on Monday November 14th.  Just saying...