Monday, April 28, 2014

Donnell Bell and Betrayed


Today’s guest is mystery writer Donnell Bell. When I found out her book Betrayed had been selected as May 3rd's Amazon’s Flagship Deal of the Day, I invited her to visit Book Blather. Donnell doesn’t like tooting her own horn, so it was a bit of a tough sell. After reading her post, I see that she’s figured out a way to attribute the honor to the story and characters, not her mad writing skills. She may not want to say it, but I will. This is a huge deal, very well deserved and she’s earned it through endless hours of hard work. Way to go, Donnell. Here’s hoping Betrayed’s special promotion will result in a bunch of new Donnell Bell fans.

What I’ve learned about this big old world 

The moment my first child entered this world, I learned a hard and fast rule.  This world was never about me.  There would always be something more important, and when child number two came along, that law increased exponentially. I raised two great kids, even putting them first when I knew they were bound to leave me.  And all at once, it hit me.  Soon this revolving world would not only be “not about me,” but these two that I had put into this lofty position would graduate high school, go off to college and learn . . . aha, the world’s not just about them.

Anticipating what came next, what did I do?  I pursued my passion for writing.  During my son’s sophomore year in high school, I left my newspaper job and turned to my love of fiction. 

But as soon as I did this I learned something else.  The moment I created characters, the world again became not about me.  It became about some characters that, quite honestly, made my children look altruistic.  I’ve never seen people who demanded such attention.  In The Past Came Hunting, Melanie asked, “Seriously?  You plan to make me jump from a moving semi?”  In Deadly Recall, Eden lamented, “What?  You want me to face Sister Beatrice’s killer?” And in Betrayed, Kinsey complained, “You can’t be serious.  You’re going to force me to be kidnapped by a cartel?”

When I told them to lighten up, they were starring in a suspense, and they’d end up just fine, they reluctantly agreed.  But it was like spoon-feeding a toddler a jar of green beans.  Some authors’ characters may obediently forge into danger.  Mine take on my insecurities and argue with me all the way.
So, why am I telling you all this?  Because on May 3rd, that day truly is “all about me.”  All right, my characters are stamping their feet. They want me to stress it’s not totally about me, rather my book, Betrayed.  On May 3rd, Betrayed will be Amazon’s Flagship Deal of the Day, and deeply discounted for $1.99. 
In Betrayed you’ll meet Irene Turner, Kinsey Masters and Detective Nate Paxton, along with a whole cast of characters that were very fun to write.  They’re hoping you’ll download their story, get acquainted and make it all about them.
Sheesh, even on the Deal of the Day I can’t catch a break.  It’s all about “Betrayed.” A mother, told her baby’s death was a lie, a daughter, rocked by her true identity, a detective, risking his life to protect them both.  All three of them . . . betrayed.
I hope you’ll check out the story, and make my characters . . . and all right . . .me, very happy.  Happy reading!

 Donnell Ann Bell, writes Suspense too Close to Home, better known as what might happen in your neck of the woods. She is the author of three books: The Past Came Hunting, Deadly Recall and her newest release Betrayed, all from Bell Bridge Books.  Her debut and sophomore releases have been e-book best sellers. Betrayed, is a 2014 Carolyn Reader’s Choice award nominee.  She co-owns Crimescenewriters with retired Veteran Police Officer Wally Lind and loves to hear from readers.  Check out her webpage at or find her on Facebook Twitter & Goodreads.


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Great Beginnings

As every writer knows, beginnings are important. We all strive to write a truly intriguing first sentence designed to engage readers and invite them into our stories. After all, these books are our babies, created with blood, sweat, tears and love. We want other people to love them as well.  To celebrate great beginnings, I’ve invited some author friends to send me favorite first lines from their own books.

If you’d like to be in the drawing to win a signed copy of one of my books, please hit the comment button and tell me which first sentence you like best. I’d be grateful if you hit the follow button as well, but it isn’t a requirement for the drawing.

I’ll start with my own favorite first sentence (not part of the contest)
“Pantyhose are a tool of the devil.”
From The Rock and Roll Queen of Bedlam

The authors featured below are all members of Romance Writers of America and are all published authors. I’ve included links to their books. Be sure to check them out for some fabulous reads. 

1.“A long memory made for bad company when a man had too much time on his hands.”
From The Rodeo Man’s Daughter by Barbara White Daille 

2."It was harder than he expected, this business of surrender."
From Conquest of the Heart by Michele Stegman
3."Ruby Hollingsford threw herself out of a moving coach." By Regina Scott
From The Wife Campaign

4.“The Five Horsemen of the Apocalypse rode in, late as usual.” By Mary Connealy
From Calico Canyon.

5.“Whistle shrieking, the train jerked to a stop, the sudden lurch throwing Julie Lawson forward.” ByTerry Blaine
From Colorado Silver, Colorado Gold


6."With a flick of her mermaid tail, Shelly emerged from the deep coastal waters holding the dead body of victim number two." By Debbie Herbert
From Siren’s Secret

7.“Ghosts don’t have sex, do they? Annabelle Ronaldi wasn’t one hundred percent sure of the answer.” By Robin Kaye
From Too Hot to Handle

8.“Uncle Jake, I presume?" Lacey
wasn't doing anything wrong, so why did she feel as though Brad Pitt had just caught her picking her nose?” by Lynn Crandall
From Always and Forever Love