Saturday, April 30, 2016



Zazzy means shiny or flashy - stylish... And only one character in Murder & Obsession fits that role. Alice Foxx, Sarah's nemesis and a woman who shows up during Sarah's memorial to make another claim on the unsuspecting Detective.

Murder & Obsession
Her perfume hit Steven’s senses a second before he saw Alice Foxx sashaying toward his table. He couldn’t even remember what he’d been saying as she drew closer and then planted herself between them. Her presence shocked Steven speechless. He had no idea Alice would come to Alaska for Sarah, a woman she hated. Her red dress and black fur coat were a bit pretentious for the event, but not for Alice’s personality.
“Well, if I haven’t located the two men who loved her most, acting civilly. Drowning your sorrows or comparing notes? May I join you? Sorry, Steven, I don’t mean to sound flippant.”
Alice had his complete attention, she smiled, and brushed a stray hair from his face, her touch made him cringe. He searched for the camera shooting the event hoping it missed the moment.
“You look incredible for a man who died in a bear attack.” She took his hand in hers. “I’m sorry about Sarah, and I mean that.”
Alice repositioned her chair closer to Steven and put her hand on his thigh. “From what I understand, you’ve located a few of those responsible. How many are there?”
Steven shrugged. “More than I’ve uncovered.”
Alice whispered in his ear, “I’m here as long as you need me.”

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This is it folks!

The last post of the
2016 A to Z Challenge

Whew! We did it!

Thank You!
Everyone one who posted
everyone who kept it short
everyone whose post was so interesting 
I had to know what happened next!


Thank You!

Especially to all  who commented

Everyone who stayed with the challenge
 despite the dirty laundry
the cold meals
and the un-swept floors!

You are my heroes!

See you for the IWSG on Wednesday!

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Friday, April 29, 2016



Okay, so I cheated for the letter Y and used my own name. Yolanda.

When it came down the 11th hour on Superbowl Sunday, it just made sense. Yes, I was working on my A to Z blogs, even then.

Denver was the team I was rooting for, but only because the Steelers nor the Seahawks made it. (Although, we all know they should have!)

Yolanda - meaning "violet flower" is of Greek and Spanish origin. Popular in the 1970's it's rank has fallen.

Renée - means rebirth. French. Every year the spring flowers bloom! Just like me. :)

What does your name mean? Check here.

Murder & Obsession


They landed at Bishop Air Services at six in the morning and Steven’s attitude immediately changed, especially when Yurij’s red and white Piper Super Cub waited in front of a hangar. In the office at one end of the tarmac, they sought answers. A middle-aged woman, her hair styled in a crew cut, managed the place.
“May I see the flight logs for the plane flown by Yurij Markowski?” Steven asked.
“Why?” Her gaze went from his feet to the top of his head very slowly.
“Because I asked politely.” Steven smiled.
She returned his smile. “Trudy Bishop at your service, Detective.”
“Good to meet you, Ms. Bishop.”
“Have to admire a man who’d fight off two bears.” She put an arm around a young secretary who came out of a small office. “Right, Patty?”
“Right.” Patty cuddled close to Trudy.
“Yurij called an hour ago asking the mechanic to get his plane ready. What’s that crazy Russian done now?”

What does Yurij mean?
(Old Greek) farmer, earthworker 

[ syll. yu-rij, yur-ij ] The name Yurij is pronounced as YUHRIYJH †. Yurij is used chiefly in the Russian language and it is derived from Old Greek origins. Yurij is a variant of the name George (English).

Read All the Amazon Reviews
of Murder & Obsession

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Remember every comment during the A to Z will be an entry to win a 
paperback copy of the trilogy!
(signed if I can send by mail)

Thursday, April 28, 2016



The X factor

The X factor or what is known as a variable in a given situation that could have the most significant impact on the outcome.

Or in the case of my 'murder trilogy' certain clues play a significant part in the story of another book.

The story detailed in Murder & Obsession was hinted at in Murder, Madness & Love, the hints continued in the second book, Memories of Murder, but concluded in this, the third book.

Hints and certain happenings in both of the earlier books come to the forefront during this mystery. And while all three books are a stand-alone story, there were definite details shared early on - these X factors tied all three books together.

Here's a scene, from Murder, Madness & Love  
that demonstrates an X-factor . 

Inside the entry door, she breathed easy, then heard laughter. He was on the other side. The door was heavy and would not come down with just one kick, but solid wood still wasn't strong enough to keep a determined assailant from getting to her.
She should have realized when he'd stopped following her. He'd come straight here—hell, he probably had time to go back to the church and get his car. How did he know? How could he know? She was disappointed in herself, but only for a moment. Think, woman, think.
"I've been waiting for you, sweetheart. Predictable. So damn predictable. I can get in, but you can't get out."
"Then come in and get me." She ran up the steps to the master bedroom. Locking the door, she knew how easy the door would come down. She went into the bathroom. Locked that door too, knowing a fist could take the door off its hinges. Opening the window, she waited. Listening, to make sure he was in the house before she went outside.
She poured a bottle of shampoo on the floor. "See how well you can stand up after you hit this," she whispered.
A loud explosion told her the front door was down, and she scrambled through the window to the first-floor roof.
"Come out; come out, wherever you are!" A loud bang heralded the news that the bedroom door was down.
She quickly, but carefully, made her way across the wood shingles, to a point where she could shimmy down to the porch roof, and to the ground. She heard him kick in the bathroom door and allowed herself a smile when she realized the other sound was him falling on his ass. Curse words filled the air.

She smiled as she ran for safety.                      


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of Murder & Obsession

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paperback copy of the trilogy!
(signed if I can send by mail)

Wednesday, April 27, 2016






Writing a trilogy isn't easy. An understatement for sure, but while I will write several more Detective Quaid novels, these first three books, this trilogy, is my ode to love. All along, I meant to write three separate murder mysteries tied together by a love story. All stand alone books but with a running theme. I almost gave up.

To help get my head back in the game, I read Stephen Kings. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, and it helped to inspired me to continue. On Writing, and the content edit that Barbara Sachs Sloan did for all three books made all the difference. Without her patience and advice, these books might never have been written. 

A good content editor makes ALL THE DIFFERENCE!

But Stephen King's book inspired me to continue!


The scariest moment is always just before you start.” 

“you can, you should, and if you’re brave enough to start, you will.” 

“Description begins in the writer’s imagination, but should finish in the reader’s.” 

“Write with the door closed, rewrite with the door open.” 

“Writing is not life, but I think that sometimes it can be a way back to life.” 

“You cannot hope to sweep someone else away by the force of your writing until it has been done to you.” 

“Bad writing is more than a matter of shit syntax and faulty observation; bad writing usually arises from a stubborn refusal to tell stories about what people actually do― to face the fact, let us say, that murderers sometimes help old ladies cross the street.” 


This is my 'murder trilogy'!

Light is a fleeting moment in the frozen north that is Alaska. Although the light shines brightly during the Summer Solstice, Detective Steven Quaid struggles to hold on to what he holds dear during life's darkest moments, his love for family, and professional achievement.

Will a murderous stalker, a self-proclaimed Lucifer resurrected, or insidious obsession prove more powerful than this dedicated detective? Three separate life-threatening situations. One determined man.


Remember every comment during the A to Z will be an entry to win a 
paperback copy of the trilogy!
(signed if I can send by mail)

Tuesday, April 26, 2016



Villain's are some of the most fun to create and most actors say, the most fun to play. The antagonist or villain in the world of writing has the job of playing the foil to the hero. Today the goal is to create a sympathetic villain, and some authors are so good at it that the villain becomes the favorite character.

The Saint comes to mind as a villain with the heart of gold.

Maybe critic, Roger Ebert, said it best:

"Each film is only as good as its villain. Since the heroes and the gimmicks tend to repeat from film to film, only a great villain can transform a good try into a triumph."

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In Murder & Obsession the villain does just that. He turns a chargeable offense into a cheer-able result. Public opinion almost grants him a pass.

Using this quote as my guide:

“The villains were always ugly in books and movies. Necessarily so, it seemed. Because if they were attractive—if their looks matched their charm and their cunning—they wouldn't only be dangerous.

They would be irresistible.”
  Nenia Campbell, Horrorscape

But the truth is:

“The fact is that we have no way of knowing if the person who we think we are is at the core of our being. Are you a decent girl with the potential to someday become an evil monster, or are you an evil monster that thinks it's a decent girl?"

"Wouldn't I know which one I was?"

"Good God, no. The lies we tell other people are nothing to the lies we tell ourselves.”

  Derek Landy, Death Bringer

Cheers to creating interesting villains!


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of Murder & Obsession

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I'm running out of time!

Remember every comment during the A to Z will be an entry to win a 
paperback copy of the trilogy!
(signed if I can send by mail)

Monday, April 25, 2016



In Alaska and Canada there are guidelines in place for what pilots must carry in their planes. Alaskan Survival Kit Regulation.

If you're a hiker, snowmobiler or just a tourist and traveling into the Alaskan wilderness, even if only for a few miles or a few hours, your life may depend on what you're carrying.

If you're foolish enough to go into the wilderness without a survival kit, you may still save your life.

Water, shelter, and warmth should be your first priorities:
  • Find a dry location and use the vegetation like pine boughs to build yourself a nest.
  • Lipstick or chap stick could help you start a fire. It's petroleum based.
  • A mirror can signal for help.
  • Dental Floss can be used as a fishing line, for cutting food, or even capturing it.
  • Duct Tape is a favorite of mine and one I used in Murder & Obsession. There are numerous uses for Duct Tape! From first aid to creating containers.

This survival kit has everything you might need - no matter what emergency you find yourself in. You should keep one in your car!

  • Gerber® Miniature Multi-tool
  • Needle Nose Pliers
  • Wire Cutters
  • Fine Edge Knife
  • Phillips Screwdriver
  • Small Flat Driver
  • Medium Flat Driver
  • Lanyard Ring
  • Bottle Opener
  • Tweezers
  • Waterproof Bag
  • Miniature Light
  • Hand Saw
  • Signaling Mirror
  • Survival Blanket
  • Fire Starter
  • Waterproof matches
  • Cotton Ball - Fire Tinder
  • Snare Wire
  • Emergency Cord
  • Waxed Thread
  • Fishing Kit
  • Sewing kit
  • Lanyard Whistle
  • Lightweight, ripstop nylon bag with waterproof zipper
  • Land to air rescue instructions
  • Priorities of Survival - Pocket guide contains Bear’s survival essentials
Do you have an unusual survival tip you can share?

Stay safe!


Please add my books to your Goodreads Account.
Murder, Madness & Love
Memories of Murder
Murder & Obsession

Read Christine Rains' Review
of Murder & Obsession

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paperback copy of the trilogy!
(signed if I can send by mail)

Saturday, April 23, 2016



"The Tlingit (pronounced clink it) are an indigenous people of the Pacific Northwest Coast of North America and the Southeast Coast of Alaska. The Tlingit are a matrilineal society, which is the tracing of descent through the female line." In my books, you'll find Steven's mother holds the true power.

As Michael Di Gesu, says in the blurb he wrote for Murder, Madness & Love:

"Detective Steven Quaid waits. His Tlingit Indian features, as though carved from granite, mask his Irish passion..."

During my research it was the true story of a Tlingit warrior's sacrifice during the war in Iraq that influenced my choice for the background of Detective Steven Quaid. But this photograph played a big part too!

Murder & Obsession
Excerpt: (when Steven was sixteen)

“Atian,” Doreen addressed Steven, “do you still want to be a tracker like your uncle?” Doreen had always called Steven “Little Atian” when his uncle lived, and hearing the name as his own lifted his confidence. (Atian (Ah-tee-ahn) is Native American for Steven)
Doreen dished a bowl of stew for him. “You sound so much older this year, Atian. Don’t grow up too fast.”
“Show off,” Gayln uttered with a mouth full of roll. He swallowed and continued, “Steve says stifling, but what he really means is bullies make the city unbearable.”
Steven glared at Gayln.
“When this summer is over, you’ll have no more worries with bullies. I’ll make warriors out of the both of you,” Quinn promised.
Steven smiled and dipped his roll into his stew. Warrior. He rolled the idea around in his head. Warrior sounded like a much better title than half-breed did. His Tlingit mother and Irish father had given him everything a young man could want, but material items did not mean acceptance by either the white population or the native population. School was a strugglenot the classes, but the social interactionthe acceptance of his peers.


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Please add my books to your Goodreads Account.
Murder, Madness & Love
Memories of Murder
Murder & Obsession

And try for a free copy of 
Murder & Obsession on Amazon.
(just click the links)

Please support my Thunderclap!

Remember every comment during the A to Z will be an entry to win a 
paperback copy of the trilogy!
(signed if I can send by mail)