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  • Writer's pictureVeronica Cline Barton

Veronica’s #WritersDiary Time for Some Holiday #InspirationResearch in NYC!

Oh the weather outside is COLD! Yippee! So grateful to have a few days of #InspirationResearch (IR) in the Big Apple for this holiday season. We have walked the streets of NYC sight seeing, people watching (loads of character inspiration here #JustSayin), and enjoying the beautiful Christmas lights that make the city so magical this time of year.

It’s been a lot of fun going to the places where my characters visited in Deadly Receptions. I’m pleased to say we didn’t have any of the, ahem, cozy mystery drama and dastardly deeds that seems to follow Gemma and crew—I’ll take that as a (very) good thing. It’s Wednesday, time for #DearDiary:

DeadlyReceptionsV6 red with black

The folks at Smith Publicity are putting together their recommendations for my marketing efforts in the next few months. I’m very excited about rolling out a formal plan with milestones. Serious work starts next week when I get back—some of the focus areas for me include:

  1. Target market/audience advertising–demographics, media platform outreach

  2. Social media expansion–for me that means Instagram

  3. Book blurbs and elevator pitch–what’s your book about, what makes it unique–short/clear/concise

  4. Synopsis–time to start synopsizing if you plan on querying

  5. Press releases—local news, organizational outreach

  6. Events–Book signings, conventions, blog tour

I’ll give more details in the next post.

Reading Rd

This week I had the pleasure of reading not just 1, not just 2, but 3 offerings from the wonderful writers world of Twitter. I’ve mentally traveled from the dark corners of Paris, to the upscale British countryside of the Hamptons, to the eerie Irish corridors of Corvus Hall….

Author William Gareth Evans, Within the Glass Darkly, 5 STARS

Author William Gareth Evans draws the reader into this lurid tale of vampire lore, sweeping you back in time to the streets of Paris where beastly murders chill everyone’s blood. Revenge, twisted love, and desire drive the dark manipulations of the vampire characters, giving you a perspective of their psyche and transformative powers that was quite revealing and unexpected. I loved the detailed settings in the story, the heartfelt desires and innocence of the victims, and the suspense filled hunt and battle vignettes that keep you glued to the page.

Author Evans weaves a classic horror tale that takes the reader deeper into the history, challenges, and choices that transformed beings into these creatures of the night and the sorrow they bring to the victims and their loved ones. Good versus evil at its chilling best. A page turning, chilling read. Highly recommended!

Author Tina-Marie Miller, Fame and Fortune, 5 STARS

Author Tina-Marie Miller weaves a wonderful cozy mystery tale with the inhabitants of The Hamptons, an upscale area in the British countryside. New business ventures, evolving relationships, celebrity drama, family feuds and the backstories and turmoil’s of childhood (and adulthood) give this story a glimpse of life in the Hamptons that draws the reader in. I loved getting to know the many inhabitants–their hopes, dreams, backgrounds and fears, and the interactions that cause great joy, and despair, as they prepare for the Cotswolds County Majorette of the Year competition.

I enjoyed reading this book immensely and could not put it down! Author Miller does a masterful job weaving this tale intricately back and forth between the families and inhabitants of the Hamptons, pulling at your heart strings one minute and sending chills down your spine the next. Fame and Fortune is the third book in Ms. Miller’s view into Hampton life, and I can’t wait to read the other stories! My heart and interests have been captured by the characters of the Hamptons—a very enjoyable cozy read, indeed.

Author Bibiana Krall, Corvus Hall, 5 STARS

Author Bibiana Krall once again takes the reader on a dark tinged journey to come face to face with a past that won’t be pushed away. As a young woman from a loving family, Mary O’Brien has always had a sense of foreboding and haunting dreams that someone or something was watching her, waiting for her…tap, tap, tap…Fast forward in time as Mary embarks on a trip of a lifetime to her ancestral roots in Ireland, for the Christmas nuptials of her best friend Ashlinn and fiancé Evan, the heir to 17th century mansion, Corvus Hall, and the McCarthy family liquor dynasty.

Mary’s haunting dreams continue, becoming more vivid with her introduction to Nigel, Evan’s adopted brother, who is determined to be with her. As the day of the nuptials approaches, she explores the woods and corridors of Corvus Hall, coming face to face with the past that won’t be forgotten. A chilling tale and page turning read that will haunt you until the very end.

Up next in the reading queue:

Getting in that New York state of mind…

The Empire State Bldg., Bryant Park, Tavern on the Green in Central Park–this city comes to life at night! We’ve really enjoyed seeing the sights, and I think I know someone who is already focusing on some new light purchases…#JustSayin

I hope your week is fabulous–Happy Holidays!

Crowns and Kisses,


P.S. Can’t forget those NYC cocktails—The Bad Apple (gin, apple cider, lemon). Gemma definitely approves 🙂

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