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  • Writer's pictureVeronica Cline Barton

Veronica's #WritersDiary, #Trick or Treat Bloos---Ghosts of #Halloween Past...

The scariest day of the year is almost here---Election Day, oops, I mean #Halloween is this coming weekend! Here at the Rusty Pig aka our front yard pub, we only have memories of Halloweens past this Covid year since trick or treating house-to-house is currently banned. We decided not to put up our outdoor Spooktacular lights and décor this season so as to not tempt any tricksters. This is the first time in my 62 years that Halloween has been cancelled---I think the great pumpkin may be shedding a tear or two...🎃

I thought I'd bring in some pics from Halloweens past to enjoy since this year's celebration has been quarantined. The pics above🔼 are from the Halloween room in the Biltmore Estate in Ashville, N.C. This cavernous room in the basement had murals painted on every wall giving a haunting vibe for the grand, spooky festivities. If only those murals could talk...

I can just imagine the seances and other unworldly sessions held at the Winchester Mystery Mansion in San Jose, CA. 🔼 Personally, I don't think I would want to stay overnight---just my luck I'd take a tumble out of 'the door to no-where'...Eek!

The pic to the left is from the lobby of the Savoy hotel in London from a few Octobers ago. I loved the bright fall colors and lights used. I wonder if they decorated this year?

Since my mind has mentally travelled to the Savoy, I know I'd be sipping a Halloween cocktail at the American Bar if I were there....Yum!

I think the Downton Abbey #CorpseReviver cocktail w/ sweet vermouth, apple brandy and cognac would haunt one for a while!😛🍸

Finally, the pics above🔼 were from a #Halloween 60 years ago (1960 to be exact), my oh my...a #WitchyGirl at 2 & 3/4 y/o (wearing earrings and lipstick no less), some things don't change, LOL!🧙‍♀️

Wishing you and yours a #Spooktacular Quarantine Halloween, Boos, don't forget those #Masks! It's Wednesday, time for #DearDiary:

The Crown for Castlewood Manor KIRKUS REVIEW!

As I mentioned a few weeks ago on the #BOOKEM channel, I submitted the first book in my series for a Kirkus Review. I hemmed and hawed before submitting it--it's kind of daunting to have your book reviewed by this literary giant! I knew I needed to do this though if I want to try and break new ground and attract new readers to my series. I received some expert guidance (thank you southern girl!) to submit book one in my series rather than a later book. I'm so glad I took this advice--it sets the stage for readers not only to read book The Crown for Castlewood Manor, but hopefully start to read the subsequent books.

I received the review last week and am quite pleased! The book reviewer's most controversial statement was that my protagonist was a "bit too perfect..." Honestly, if that is the worst thing about my book, I'll take it! I received two 'million dollar' excerpts to use in my marketing efforts:

"A vibrant manor tale with a striking protagonist..."--KIRKUS REVIEWS

" Fans of TV shows like Downton Abbey will no doubt be drawn in by the “everything old is new again” escapist fantasy of Gemma’s vivid and entertaining adventures in bucolic England."--KIRKUS REVIEWS

To me, it doesn't get much better than that--and I'm off to promote this as much as possible in the upcoming #Holiday book selling season! I'll be participating in two upcoming KIRKUS REVIEWS marketing campaigns and will have The Crown for Castlewood Manor ads featured on Kirkus's website Nov 16-30th and in their 2020 Best of Indie magazine that comes out December 15th.💖👑 #StayTuned

For those of you considering a Kirkus Review, I highly recommend it! You can read my full review here (and comment if you liked The Crown for Castlewood Manor at the bottom of the page--comments very much appreciated!)

Holy #Halloween, Batman! Hearth Fires is just 🎃99 cents🎃 this week!

No tricks here, but what a treat! To pay homage to this spooky week, Bibiana and I decided to have a 99 cent sale for Hearth Fires! You can pick up your eBook copy here🔽

It's a Pride and Prejudice #audiobook variation this week from the writers of Twitter...

Author Kelly Miller, Mr. Darcy's Perfect Match, A Pride and Prejudice Variation, 5 🌟

Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennett's relationship is once again on shaky ground in Author Miller's enchanting Pride and Prejudice variation tale. We're whisked back in time in this romantic take, this time with a twist from Jane Austin's original story, but oh, what better way to reminisce and visit with some beloved characters!

In this clever variation, we see a new set of details emerge that are sure to add to the sometimes misfired communications between Darcy and Lizzy. This time adding fuel to the fires is Darcy's sister, Georgiana, an innocent still embarrassed by an almost scandalous situation with Mr. Wickham the previous summer. She confides family secrets to her new friend, Miss Hester Drake, who gives her advice that could be construed as somewhat questionable. Is she using the friendship with the innocent sister for a more cagey intent?

Emotions and feelings ebb and flow as gossipy undercurrents are unleashed--will the truth emerge before Darcy and Elizabeth's sparks of romance are swept away? This is my second book from Author Miller that reunites us with characters from this classic tale and it does not disappoint! We're given a chance to better know them as they weave through their latest romantic entanglements. Audio book narrator, Stevie Zimmerman, does an excellent reading of Author Miller's story, her narration laced with the excitement and sometimes forlorn moments in the tale. If you're a fan of the original Pride and Prejudice, you will love this one--highly recommended!

Next up in the #reading queue:

Join us later today for a #BOOKEM Witches Brew #Halloween Special!

We're #Zoomin with Dr. Summer Watson this week in full #Halloween attire! #Trick or #Treat, see you soon!

Welcome to my world. Enjoy your #week and #Halloween #weekend friends!

Crowns and Kisses,


P.S. In the mood for a cozy mystery treat this #Halloween? The Crown for Castlewood Manor is where it all began--get your copy here🔽 Gemma and Rikkhe approve! 💖👑

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I'm so happy for you! I left a comment on the Kirkus review. Well-deserved and I hope you celebrate with that Corpse Reviver! I lovelovelove the photos of you and your mom from a long-ago Halloween and I hope this Halloween is happy, too! We'll have trick-or-treaters, but earlier in the evening than usual (because, you know, the virus only comes out after dark).



Love it! Need one of those powerful drinks right about now!

No trick or treat here either. 🎃They are doing drink through trunk or treat. I would love to get smacked in the head by some decent Swiss chocolate as I motor through. Huge congrats on the fabulous ⭐️Kirkus review ⭐️ and happy Halloween!



Travel pictures are a treat! And tiny you is adorable. No trick or treat in our neighborhood either! Am I still allowed to buy candy for me?? Congrats again on the well-deserved review! See you next week!

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