Tag Archives: GIVEAWAY

#Halloween Month! A Month of Scary!

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#October is #Halloween Month, All-Hallows Month! I will celebrate by making it A Month Of Scary!

October 1: I will discuss the meaning of Halloween on my blog and post Chapter 1 of Artemis’ Warriors, Book 1, The Vampire War. In addition, this will be one of the FEW times that my email friends will receive more than one notification per week from me. On October 1, I will send the first two chapters of my upcoming thriller–Attack!

October 8: Five Books that scared me. On this day, I will share five books that truly disturbed me. Not all horror is paranormal.

Oct 15: Five Scary Things that Made Me Write. Many things motivate an author. On this day, I will share five of those occurrences.

Oct 22: Five Scary Things I Wrote About. Though I do not write horror books, there are several subjects that are tackled in my novels that are truly scary.

Oct 29: A Scary/Paranormal Short Story. Then, there are those incidents that no one can explain…. It’s not always wise to walk around alone, after dark!

Great October Reads:
Dead Men and Cats, a novella
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On October 1, 35 copies of Dead Men and Cats will be given away! Stay tuned to my BLOG for the latest on how to grab your #FREE #Ebook!

Looking forward to seeing you! Oooooooo!

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4 IMPORTANT LESSONS

Three days ago, last Saturday, I participated in Cross Creek Alpaca Rescue’s Holiday Bazaar. I planned to dash off a quick blog post about the experience as soon as I could access my computer at home. After some thought, I decided I wanted to take time to think about the bazaar and to write something real about the experience. Today I sat down at my computer and wrote.

As a local author, I had rented vendor space and a table from Cross Creek Alpaca Rescue for their Holiday Bazaar on Saturday, October 25th. Since my wife, Deva, and I didn’t want to make the long trip from Darrington, Washington to Tenino, Washington on the day of the bazaar, we stayed overnight at the Motel 6 in Tumwater that allowed pets. Nothing fancy, but the young lady at the front desk was friendly and the room clean.

Our older German Shepherd dog, Katrina, has been afflicted with Sundowner’s–a symptom of dementia–for some months now which is why she couldn’t be boarded like our other three GSDs. The change in routine and being so near the freeway, kept her awake and anxious most of the night; Deva graciously took care of the dog while I slept. Pixie and Mindy slept well, except when Katrina’s panting woke them.

Saturday dawned with scattered clouds. After feeding the dogs, Deva and I loaded Mindy, Pixie and Katrina into the backseat of the truck and headed to Tenino for the CCR Holiday Bazaar. On the way, we looked for a restaurant for breakfast. Nothing turned up until we hit Tenino and found Scotty’s ‘50’s style diner. Holiday bazaar 007 The coffee was hot and plentiful, the water glasses stayed full and the food tasted great. Replete we made the last couple of miles to Cross Creek.

Weeks earlier, we had been involved in an alpaca rescue operation initiated by my 76-year-old sister, Lois. loisDeva had found CCR and Shari Bond and Jackie Glover had trailered to the rescue of 48 alpacas whose 84-year-old owner had died. Now, as we drove in we spied one of the alpacas, Leonardo, in the front paddock. The older male had been so starved down and loaded with parasites by the time Lois became involved in their care, that there had been talk of having to put him down. Shari and Jackie had worked a miracle. The poor old guy was walking without stiffness or pain; had put on a few pounds and seemed quite content. The four elderly female alpacas, Lady Jane among them, had settled into their forever home with CCR. They looked so content standing in the field with the other “girls”.

We parked and unloaded books and flyers. I set up my table–situated between Detricks’ Farm and Chicken Coop display of delicious and unique jams, jellies and pickles, Holiday bazaar 012and a table of beautiful handmade jewelry–while Deva made sure our dogs were comfortable.

A little later on, four spinners arrived, set up and began a spinning demonstration turning alpaca fiber into yarn. Holiday bazaar 015The wonderful smell of citrus and apples and cinnamon drifted through the building from the cider set to warming on the back table.

Throughout the day, people wandered in and meandered from table to table. I met and chatted with many readers. We talked about different authors, the different styles of writing and books we loved.

Dorothy Royce, a 90-year-old from California, visited with me for quite a while. What an interesting woman! When I learned she’d had a recent birthday, I autographed and gave her a copy of Sketch of a Murder, Book 1, of my Special Crimes Team series. Since she’d never had a Kindle, I fired mine up and showed her how to make the text bigger and some of the other features. The device was so lightweight that she had no problem holding it–she sometimes had trouble holding larger books while she read–and the built-in stand of my Kindle cover delighted her.

All day long, folks came by and talked for a while, tossed their name and addresses in the Giveaway jar for a chance to win my latest mystery, Run or Die, and purchased books.     Holiday bazaar 023  (Tracy Redmon and Aya)

Holiday bazaar 009  (Christine Rose and Aya)

About halfway through the day, Deva brought out our Papillons, Mindy and Pixie, who immediately became people-magnets, charming everyone who glanced their way.

It was nearly closing time for the bazaar when Diane Vasarkovy stopped to chat. We talked murder mysteries for a while then we segued into talking about her own writing project: the story of Wolf Haven International. Here is part of the introduction to the work-in-progress:  “We think it’s important to show how ordinary people, with a passion, even without knowledge or resources, can make a tremendous difference in the world.  Magic can happen to people who follow their inner knowing…..Canis Lupus (the wolf) and other wild canines are in crisis in North American wild lands. In competition for habitat with human encroachment, they are unfortunately still seen as vermin by resource hungry people who can’t see the larger picture of our total eco-system. We now have proof that wolves change eco-systems for the better….”

Diane left with the first two books of the Special Crimes Team series, and I was left with a deep respect for her project.

At the end of the day, we packed up the remaining books and flyers and put the dogs back in the truck. A light rain fell as we left CCR. For the next few days, I thought about what I had learned during the bazaar.

  1. I learned that readers are delighted to share ideas about the books they read and love; and it gave me new perspectives on books that I’d read.

  2. I learned that connecting with readers recharged my “creative batteries” and renewed my determination to write the very best books possible; to honor the unwritten contract between reader and author: to write an entertaining story.

  3. I learned how very interesting these readers are; how many are involved in important projects such as alpaca rescue and writing the history of Wolf Haven, International.

  4. I learned, once again, how honored I am that readers invite me into their homes, into their lives. When readers open my novels and enter the fictional worlds that I create, they give me the most precious thing they have: their time.

I have designated November as my Attitude of Gratitude Month to My Readers. Sketch of a Murder, Book 1, Special Crimes Team, EBOOK is FREE on AMAZON from NOVEMBER 1 through NOVEMBER 5.

Grab your free ebook copy of Sketch of a Murder. Go to: http://www.amazon.com/Sketch-Murder-Special-Crimes-Team-ebook/dp/B00KU6AIPQ

Or use the Short link: amzn.to/1tBgqhx

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For my listeners, the first ten fans who agree to write reviews on Amazon and Audible will receive a FREE download of the audiobook Sketch of a Murder DURING the month of NOVEMBER. Get your coupon code now! Email Aya at ayawalksfar@gmail.com In the subject line write “Will review audiobook for free download”

ALL of my books are available as print books. http://www.amazon.com/author/ayawalksfar

Want special offers, announcements, and freebies? Sign up for my monthly newsletter. Go to http://ayawalksfar.com  I will not sell, share, rent, give, or bargain your email address. I respect your privacy and I deeply appreciate the trust you are giving to me. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Don’t miss the latest posts. CLICK and FOLLOW Aya’s blog. http://ayawalksfar.com

 

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AWARD WINNING #AUTHOR: KELLY MILLER

Today I have the privilege of interviewing award-winning author, Kelly Miller. We’ll discuss her newest book, Deadly Fantasies, but we’ll touch on a few other subjects as well.

Q: What is your #mystery novel, “Deadly Fantasies,” about?

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A: A ringing phone at 1:17 AM is never a good thing, but Homicide Detective Kate Springer doesn’t have the luxury of ignoring the call. On the other end of the line, a confessor admits to murdering her husband. Dr. Nina Grace needs help, and Kate knows it’s time to repay a debt. No matter the consequences, Kate must fight to keep the investigation from focusing solely on her friend.

Jonathan Grace controls the people in his life like he does his business—with a chokehold. His insatiable appetite for living life on the edge leads him to a club where he’s encouraged to act out his darkest desires. But what happens when one man’s fantasy becomes another person’s nightmare?

Did Dr. Nina Grace kill her husband or did Jonathan’s secret life lead to his death? Detective Springer believes that no matter what her friend admitted, she couldn’t be capable of the horrific torture and murder of her husband. But will Kate’s blind loyalty be her downfall?

Q: Do you have any other books published?

A: Yes. “Deadly Fantasies” is actually the second book in the Detective Kate Springer Series. The first book, “Dead Like Me,” was all about the protagonist. It’s her story and in it, the reader finds out what makes Kate tick, why she makes the decisions she does. In this second book, “Deadly Fantasies,” I wanted to develop the secondary characters and explore Kate’s relationship with them. But even though the two books build off each other, it’s not necessary to have read the first novel, to enjoy the second.

Q: Can you give us an insight into your main character?

A: Homicide Detective Kate Springer is a flawed woman. When you first meet her, you may not like her—she seems a bit cold and bristly. It’s just her way of keeping everyone at arm’s length. She’s lived too much life in her thirty-eight years and she struggles with issues of trying to control the people and the circumstances in her life. Yet once you get deeper into the story you realize she’s trying to become a better person. She knows her faults and she wants to overcome them. But just like all of us, she makes mistakes on the path to becoming the woman she wants to be.

Q: How would you describe your writing style?

A: I’m the “Law & Order: SVU” of books. My stories deal with dark adult themes, but they would still only get a NC-17 rating.

Q. Why did you decide to write in the genre of mystery/crime fiction?

A. You’ve heard the saying, “I didn’t pick the genre, it picked me.” For me, this is true. Before I started my writing career, I was a voracious reader. I still love to read, but now my schedule is so full it’s difficult to find time to finish reading a book. At the bookstore, I’ll pick up a variety of genres. My favorites are mysteries, suspense, thriller, and paranormal novels. The way my voice comes through in a book perfectly matches the crime fiction genre. So for now, I’m sticking with what works.

Q. What advice would you give to writers trying to get a book published?

A. Enter your novel into writing competitions. When my novel kept getting rejected, I entered the manuscript into the Florida Writers Association RPLA competition. I won second place in the Best Mystery category. In addition to winning the award, I got back invaluable information from three judges who’d critiqued my work, pointing out the weak areas. It was an inexpensive way to get feedback on my work.

Something else happened after I won the award. I finally got the attention of agents and publishers. I changed my query letter, adding the information about the award I won and each submission was met with positive feedback. I got past the first stage with the agents and publishers, each requesting the first three chapters of my book. Eventually, I signed with Black Rose Writing. Another option to keep in mind is that many small independent publishers offer their own writing competitions. Prizes sometimes include a publishing contract.

Q: What was one of the most surprising things you learned when first started out in the business?

A: I always thought, “If you write it, they will come.” That’s a laughable thought now, but I really thought if I wrote a great book, I’d easily hook an agent. But I started querying when the economy was sour, and I couldn’t get a bite. The same thought goes for readers. Just because I published a book, doesn’t mean everyone wants to read it. It takes a lot of work to get attention in such a crowded marketplace.

Q: Do you enjoy watching movies or TV shows?

A: When I’m not reading during my downtime, I’m watching television. I have to admit, I’m a reality TV junkie. In fact, when I was trying to sell my first book to an agent/publisher I created a comical animated movie on what a reality show based on writers would look like. You can check it out on Youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZM4FRGTMogw. In my wild imagination, I envisioned the video going viral and eventually getting an agent out of the whole deal. Did I mention I’m a dreamer! Anyway, I’m a real sucker for all the reality shows where the average Joe gets a shot at making his dream come true. I love Project Runway, Top Chef, Face Off, and The Voice to name just a few. It’s amazing I ever find time to write!

Q: What should readers walk away from your books knowing? How should they feel?

A: I write mysteries with a sexual element. And not the 50 Shades of Grey kind. I shine a light on sexual taboo topics like in the case of Dead Like Me, childhood sexual abuse. But not in a preachy way. In the first book in the series, readers see one example of a girl who’s lived through horrible childhood trauma and the path she took because of it. I also want to make sure my readers get a satisfying ending. You know the type of story where you exhale. Readers have invested days, sometimes weeks into reading my book. They’ve immersed themselves in my characters, they’ve followed them through thick and thin, and when that final resolution happens, I want readers to close the book, hug it to their chest, and exhale. As a reader and author, it can’t get much better than that.

Bio for Kelly Miller

Kelly Miller lives in Tampa, Florida where her novel is set. She’s married, has three children, and a black Labrador named Gracie. Kelly is a proud member of the Florida Writers Association.

Deadly Fantasies is the second book in the Detective Kate Springer series. The first book, Dead Like Me, won second place in the best mystery category of the 2011 FWA Royal Palm Literary Awards competition. It was also named a semi-finalist in the mystery category of The Kindle Book Review’s 2013 Best Indie Books Awards competition.

REVIEW OF DEADLY FANTASIES

Detective Kate Springer is back! And this time, she has to save her friend, Dr. Nina Grace.

What do you do when the phone rings at one in the morning? If you’re Detective Kate Springer you answer it. And what do you do when your friend is on the line confessing to murdering her husband?  Kate never hesitates: she plunges into a dark world to find the real killer before Dr. Grace winds up in prison.

The thing I like about Kate is her loyalty; misguided perhaps, but always there. It is her strongest asset and her greatest liability as she races into situations most of us would turn away from.

Author Kelly Miller weaves the past and the present together, creating a tangled web for her characters. In this second book, Ms. Miller deepens some of the supporting characters from Dead Like Me, Book 1 of the Springer Series. Not only do we get a different perspective on Dr. Grace, but we see another side to Detective Patrick Jessup, Mr. Quiet himself. To tell the truth, I was a bit shocked at how he acted this time, but when I understood why, well…I had to forgive the guy.

One of the things I enjoy about Ms. Miller’s work is the way she uses the past events to illuminate the actions of her characters in the present. It is part of what makes her characters real: the stress of personal issues tangles with the need to follow the facts and trips Kate up, time and time again. Still, she isn’t a quitter.

A good, solid story.

Buying Links

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Deadly-Fantasies-Detective-Kate-Springer-ebook/dp/B00HNDRYP6/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1388949073&sr=1-5&keywords=kelly+miller

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/kelly-miller?store=allproducts&keyword=kelly+miller

Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/393871

Social Media Links

Author Website: www.kellymillerauthor.com

Author Blog: http://apps.kellymillerauthor.com/blog

Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Kelly-Miller/218746298149725

Twitter: @MillerMystery  https://twitter.com/MillerMystery

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/KellyMillerMysteries

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/ksmill7/

Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=298040958&trk=nav_responsive_tab_profile_pic

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/104212278637740810813/posts

Rafflecopter

This rafflecopter is a giveaway to one person for two signed paperback copies of each title in the Detective Kate Springer series, “Dead Like Me” and “Deadly Fantasies.”

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/b193cf0/

I hope you enjoyed reading about Author Kelly Miller as much as I enjoyed speaking with her. Would LOVE TO HEAR YOUR COMMENTS!

For more author interviews, as well as the latest about my upcoming novel, Street Harvest, JUST CLICK AND FOLLOW my blog.

You can also visit with me on my Facebook pages:   http://www.facebook.com/AyaWalksfarAuthor    and  http://www.facebook.com/ayawalksfar     On my profile page, I post a short book review on Fridays of what I’ve read that week.  I love hearing about what my facebook friends and visitors read so be sure to stop by on Fridays and POST IN THE REVIEW THREAD about the books you love.

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#RAFFLECOPTER #GIVEAWAY WINNERS ANNOUNCED!

I am SO EXCITED! Our #Rafflecopter #Giveaway #Winners are:

Sandy Bartles of Georgia: Congratulations, Sandy! Sandy won an autographed paperback copy of Good Intentions by Aya Walksfar

Good Intentions Final cover

Renita McKinney of Texas: Congratulations, Renita! Renita won an autographed paperback copy of Sketch of a Murder by Aya Walksfar

Sketch of a Murder Final cover

Jeselle Grace of New York: Congratulations, Jeselle! Jeselle won an autographed paperback copy of Dead Men and Cats by Aya Walksfar

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THANK ALL OF YOU FOR PARTICIPATING IN “A Perfect Day” Rafflecopter!  To enhance your reading pleasure, please visit my blog where you can read character interviews, book reviews and so much more!

To get ALL the latest, FOLLOW my blog. It’s EASY! Just click on the Follow button.

Be sure to watch for the latest news on Book 2 of the Special Crimes Team series. Sergeant Slowater thought this last case was tough, but she ain’t seen nothing yet!

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