Tag Archives: Rosemary McCracken

E-book sales inconsistent

Sharon A. Crawford's latest in the Beyond series

Sharon A. Crawford’s latest in the Beyond series

The stats are in. E-book sales are down, at least for traditional trade publishers. Yet some authors are beating the odds. What exactly is happening here? Weren’t e-books supposed to be the new book sales venue, the one readers gravitated towards?

First, a few statistics.

From Publisher’s Weekly:

“One reason for the 2014 decline in revenue and earnings was also a drop in digital sales. E-books accounted for 23.2% of S&S sales last year, down from 24.4% in 2013. Total digital revenue, which includes downloadable audio, generated 26.4% of revenue, down from 27.1% in 2013.” (See


Publishing pundits are blaming the decline partly on self-published books (the other is lack of block-buster books published). So… what about Indie published books? As self-publishing becomes more acceptable is this really hard to comprehend? And traditional book publishers only publish so many books each year – a lot has to do with their funds. In Canada, some rely on government grants.

Having said that, some small trade publishers such as my own Blue Denim Press, and Imajin Books in Western Canada, still manage to keep publishing (and we hope they continue to do so). Some of that is by going outside the usual trade publishing box. Both keep their “print run” down by going the Print on Demand route. My e-book sales were also down too the past year. But from what I can see from my royalty and royalty statement, and what I sell on my own at readings, etc., the print copies of my mystery fiction books are up slightly from the previous year. I don’t know if this is partly because I now have two books published with Blue Denim Press. What I do know is for the first time Blue Denim Press published a new book (complete with launch and all the promotion with that) this spring – not mine, but an anthology, Hill Spirits II. Blue Denim Press have been in business since 2011. See for more info.

And why am I mentioning Imajin, another small Canadian trade publisher? Because one of their mystery fiction authors, Rosemary McCracken, was their top-selling e-book author for May 2015 for her mystery novel Safe Harbor. See Rosemary’s blog, Moving Target at

As Rosemary states, Safe Harbor was published three years ago.

That should tell us something.

A few of those somethings are both author and publisher have to get out there (online and in person) to promote their books – a lot. And try new things. Both publishers and authors have to be flexible. The publishing industry is going through many changes. As some pundits have pointed out, the publishing industry is where the music industry was a few years ago.

And we know how Indie music has helped musicians – many we would not have heard of otherwise. And we music appreciators would have missed out on some excellent music.

Maybe the larger trade publishers need to take note, be more flexible, and go along for the ride.

We cannot go back.

My toonie’s worth anyway.

What do you think? Comments please.


Sharon A. Crawford

Sharon A. Crawford is the author of the Beyond book series. More info at and – my publisher – you can also purchase e-books – both Kindle and Kobo from Blue Denim Press. Click on the Beyond Blood Book cover at the top of this post.


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Behind the scenes of author presentations

Sharon A. Crawford's latest in the Beyond series

Sharon A. Crawford’s latest in the Beyond series

Authors don’t suddenly appear at libraries, cafes, pubs and other venues to read. There is work involved, especially with the organizers. And when you have two different events on consecutive evenings, it can get shall we say busy?

Especially when Mr. Murphy (that rascal from Murphy’s Law) gets into the act.

I help organize crime readings/presentations for Crime Writers of Canada. Most of these are in libraries but some occur in cafes and pubs. This week there are two, one this evening and one tomorrow evening. I’ll list them at the end.

First, way back before the reading time, I have to contact the library branch or café or pub. Sometimes I email; sometimes I phone and sometimes it is in person. Whichever way, there is always follow-ups re details between the venue and myself and of course, lining up authors. Then some to and froing by email to authors, to the venue, re publicity – who does what – and actually doing it. Being somewhat old school (well, in age) I like to print some flyers and the like, but I also do a lot of social media, e-newsletters, etc.

I also have to organize the presentation setup. Sometimes I get lazy and just introduce the authors and have them talk about their books and writing, read a bit, and then answer questions from the audience. Other times I organize an interview or panel setups (with some reading and q and a). The latter two are the way of this week’s two presentations. Fortunately, my cohort in crime, Rosemary McCracken is helping with the interview setup for tomorrow’s presentation. (More below).

However, sometimes when things seem to be going along well, Mr. Murphy appears.

For example, an unexpected rental fee for microphone equilpment at a café or pub. Or bad weather – blizzards or heavy rainfalls (the later has happened and the event was cancelled – which meant contacting authors and the library. This one started as an email, then phone conversation between one of the other authors reading and myself. We decided it would be best to cancel – if the library agreed. Fortunately, I got the librarian on the phone and she cancelled the event. The other author I had to email because I didn’t have his phone number. And he was from just east of Toronto. Fortunately, he had the sense to phone the library to find out.)

This weather for this evening’s event is for dry warm weather – so far. Tomorrow’s? More showers, maybe some scattered thunderstorms. Keeping toes crossed here that all goes well including the event. And that means not just the authors able to make it okay but people to see and hear us.

Only time will tell. But it can get nerve-wracking. My point? When you go to see and hear authors read, remember that there is work involved in putting these events together.

And the two events this week where some of us Crime Writers of Canada authors are appearing.

Tonight, June 11 at the Bloor/Gladstone library branch, 1101 Bloor St, West, in Toronto from 6. 30 p.m. to 8 p.m. I’m moderating a panel featuring Rosemary McCracken, Steve Shrott and Steve Burrows.

Tomorrow, June 12, at the Red Rocket Coffeehouse, 1364 Danforth Ave., Toronto, from 7.30 p.m. to 9.30 p.m. Rosemary McCracken and I share the interviewing duties and authors will also read a bit and answer questions. Also featuring Karen Blake-Hall, Steve Shrott, Linda Cahill, Robert Hoshowsky, the latter a true crime author.

And of course we authors are bringing copies of our books, hopefully to sell some.

See Rosemary’s blog post on Moving Target today for some more details.

And if you are in the area, drop in at one of the locations for an evening of crime – between the book covers.



Sharon A. Crawford

Sharon A. Crawford is the author of the Beyond book series. More info at and – my publisher – you can also purchase e-books – both Kindle and Kobo from Blue Denim Press. Click on the Beyond Blood Book cover at the top of this post.


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Accidental Book Marketing

Sharon A. Crawford's latest in the Beyond series

Sharon A. Crawford’s latest in the Beyond series

Last weekend one of my stops at the annual Toronto Doors Open was the MZTV Museum of Television & Archive in the Zoomer radio complex.

So what does all this have to do with book marketing? Especially as it wasn’t even in the actual radio studio.

It was the accidental run-ins with someone I know and someone I don’t (but quickly did). I looked up from the exhibit and saw a familiar face from my gardening club. We looked at each other and started talking. She asked how I was and what I was doing. And so I said I write mystery books and have two in the Beyond series out now. I might have mentioned then about doing readings with other Crime Writers of Canada authors or maybe that came later.

Immediately she launched into a possible speaking engagement for me – not with the gardening club, although one story in Beyond the Tripping Point is set in a garden centre. My gardening friend also sometimes goes to a local Toronto Heritage Club, which meets once a week and is looking for speakers. It may be a bit of a stretch for mystery writing with novels set just north of Toronto (I did tell her where they were set) but there are possibilities for heritage to connect with mystery and maybe even my Beyond series. One is the location (which is fictitious but based on what’s there – I used to live there), so might be able to do a comparison fiction and reality heritage of the area. There is also the topic of the history of mystery fiction set in Toronto and written by Toronto authors, which could lead into my Beyond books. At her request, I gave her my business card which has photos of the two Beyond books on one side with the publisher’s name, and the flip side my headshot, contact info and my mission statement for all my writing and editing – “We make words sparkle.”

And with speaking engagements comes the possibility of selling books.

The other one was a chance encounter outside the Zoomer Complex with a lady who asked me if I knew who was in the photo in the window. Although I could name only two people, we started talking. She seemed fascinated and very respectful to be talking to a writer – something we writers often forget as we take our writing as second nature. We talked about mystery writing, my books, the radio personalities and shows on 96.3 classical radio and the tour we had both been on inside there. We continued our conversation on the bus. She is interested in buying my book at a bookstore and possibly going to one of the library readings I’m doing with CWC in June and July. I gave her my business card and we said the usual “nice to meet you” when I had to get off the bus at the subway station.

So, sometimes by keeping your mind open and attuned to marketing your books, but not pushing it, opportunities can pop up in unusual and unexpected places.

And for some excellent author etiquette for book promotion, read my friend and colleague Rosemary McCracken’s post on her blog Moving Target

Meantime, I’m preparing for those future readings and presentations. Check my website under Beyond Blood for my upcoming gigs.



Sharon A. Crawford

Sharon A. Crawford is the author of the Beyond book series. More info at and – my publisher – you can also purchase e-books – both Kindle and Kobo from Blue Denim Press. Click on the Beyond Blood Book cover at the top of this post.


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Tales from the book promo trenches Part 2

Sharon reads from her Beyond book series

Sharon reads from her Beyond book series

The book promo for Beyond Blood continues. This time the promo took on somewhat different formats.


Wednesday, November 26 I was the guest speaker at the East End Writers’ Group. Disclaimer: it is my own group but because we meet in a library branch (S. Walter Stewart in Toronto) in their large auditorium, we can schedule guest speakers for the first part and after the break do our usual writing critique of members’ works-in-progress.

I talked about how I transition from short stories to novels and vice-versa with series characters. As my situation of writing/publishing is backwards in time, i.e. not chronological, that makes it more complicated. Beyond the Tripping Point, the short story collection was published in fall 2012 but the four linked stories with the fraternal twin PIs Dana Bowman and Bast Overture, occur in 1999. Beyond Blood is the pre-quel novel set in eight frantic days in August 1998.

My dirty little secret is an older version of Beyond Blood had been written 12 or so years ago. Of course, it had to be completely rewritten. But some of the plotline and character development was already there – something I had to keep in mind when writing the BTTP short stories. It was a constant back and forth as was this presentation last week because I also had q and a with the audience. We even worked humour into the discussion. I ended by doing a short reading from Beyond Blood.

No, didn’t sell any books there – at least in print. But maybe a few people bought e-books on line. Also, when I thought of it, some of the people there had come to my book launch and had already bought a book. Still a good evening.

Saturday, November 29 my books were part of the Toronto Heliconian Literary Group table at the Toronto Heliconian Club’s first (in this incarnation) art and gift sale. In fact, I organized our table. Like sometimes happens with the first of anything, attendance wasn’t great. But I did sell three copies of Beyond Blood and had some good chats with the other member authors. Afterwards, three of us went to the nearby Hemmingway’s Pub for some wine, an early supper and more chatting.

And I bought a mask from one of the artist vendors at the club sale. I collect masks.

But I am now wiped out from all this physical book promo, organization and also client work. I will be taking some time off soon this month to reconnect with family and friends, to attend some Christmas parties and to do some more writing/rewriting of the next novel in the Beyond series. And I will focus more on social media promo for Beyond Blood. And getting more sleep.

But this blog will continue on its weekly (Thursday) basis. However, for the next two weeks I’m letting my two PI characters – Dana Bowman and Bast Overture – do the posting.

Meantime, you can go to my publisher’s website to order e-pub and Kindle copies of Beyond Blood and Beyond the Tripping Point. Also check out my interview with Tom Taylor on cable TV. I talk about writing novels, short stories and some of the characters in Beyond the Tripping Point. Go to and scroll down on the right until you get to  Watch Sharon A. Crawford and Beyond the Tripping Point on Rogers Cable TV

And I will be going to the book launch of World Enough and Crime Anthology featuring stories by Rosemary McCracken, Rosemary Aubert, Melodie Campbell, Donna Carrick and many more this Saturday, Dec. 6 from 2 p.m. to 3.15 p.m. at Sleuth of Baker St., 907 Millwood Avenue in Toronto. Check out Sleuth at Beyond Blood is also available there to order online.



Sharon A. Crawford

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press. Click for link to purchase e-copies

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press. Click for link to purchase e-copies


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Book Launch Beyond Blood Musings

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press

This country’s crazy in terms of fame and what people think it means. They expect a writer to be something between a Hollywood starlet and the village idiot.

  • Kent Haruf

Beyond Blood and Dead Wrong received a big send-off last Sunday October 19 at our mutual book launch at Paintbox Bistro in Toronto, Canada. It was a lot of work – for my publisher Blue Denim Press to set it all up and for my author colleague Klaus Jakelski and I to invite (and persuade) people to show up. The two guest authors reading – Rosemary McCracken (author of the Pat Tierney mysteries and Nate Hendley (true crime author who writes about the baddies and Stephen Truscott also were a draw. See the Blue Denim Press website for photos.

But there are stories behind a book launch – the before, during and after and maybe some lessons to be learned, especially as this was my second book launch.

Not everyone invited will come. I emailed out around 200 invitations but didn’t expect that many to attend – they would have been out on the street if they had. One thing that bugged me at my first launch two years ago and again this go-round is people not letting you know if they can attend or not, but more so if they say they are coming and then don’t show up – unless they have emailed at the last minute that they can’t because of whatever. The last is acceptable. Things happen.

The upside is people invited showing up unexpectedly.

This time round none of my cousins could make it, but my son, Martin and his girlfriend, Juni (bless them) did. I was thrilled when they walked in and Martin handed me a big bouquet of flowers. I was determined to keep it close and when I left it at the restaurant where we ate after the launch, I got off the bus (one stop after boarding) and raced back to the restaurant to collect it. If I hadn’t have done that I would be so upset. How did I miss grabbing it? I guess my mind and hands couldn’t take in more than a big shoulder bag, purse and doggie bag of leftover dinner. I also had stood the bouquet up on the wall behind where I sat to keep it safe. Safe from whom? Me?

I had also tried to get plenty of sleep the nights before so I could avoid being in a daze like the previous book launch. The enough sleep part didn’t work out but no daze. My wits were in place and I made a point of moving around, jumping up from where I was sitting to talk to everyone who came to the launch.

The readings went well, although I stumbled up the stairs and Sarah the publisher had to grab me. Note: I was not drunk. Hadn’t had anything stronger than water to drink. But my very short intro to Beyond Blood and the short excerpt I read went very well. One of my writing colleagues says I read like audio. True, I channel my characters as I read and got the chance to do that at the end of the launch presentations when Klaus and I did a short humorous skit where my main character PI Dana Bowman interviews his main character Dr. Peter Martins. Klaus was lucky as he could appear in his dress suit. I had to alter my appearance. I have long brown-grey hair and wear glasses. Dana has short black hair and doesn’t wear glasses. At least we are both short in height.

I pulled my hair into a ponytail and shoved it under a cap. The glasses went and I buttoned up my sweater and made it look like a sweat shirt – one of Dana’s wardrobe items. I kept my black slacks and black shoes but carried that big shoulder bag mentioned earlier and a sketch pad. Dana sketches while interviewing people. I can’t draw to save my life.

But I could see without the glasses and didn’t trip going up or down the stage stairs this time.

Afterwards the spontaneous dinner arrangements got a little hectic. Paintbox Bistro was closing for the day, so we decided on a Thai restaurant nearby. Shane and Sarah from Blue Denim Press were packing up everything and going to drive to meet us there. Another couple of friends, Sheila and Rod drove. My friend Bob, Martin, Juni and I walked there.

The restaurant was closed on Sundays. We made another choice. But couldn’t text Shane or Sarah to let them know because I didn’t bring their cell phone numbers with me. So the frantic activity began with Martin rushing back to Paintbox and texting Juni back that it was closed and no one was there. Meantime Sheila and Rob had arrived. So when Martin returned we devised a plan. Sheila and Rob would drive to the other restaurant; Bob wanted to walk, and Martin, Juni and I would wait outside the closed restaurant for Shane and Sarah. We waited and waited. Then Juni and I walked to the new restaurant and Martin waited.

Bob, Sheila and Rob were seated in the restaurant when we arrived. A couple of minutes later the other three walked in.

Really, my organization skills are better than this. They have to be because the book launch is only a part of promoting your book.

And more on that in future posts. Meantime click on my book cover above – it will lead you to my publisher Blue Denim Press’s website. Scroll down and you can see where Beyond Blood is currently available, including at

And check my website – click on Beyond Blood. I constantly update the gigs etc. on that page.


Sharon A. Crawford


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Come to Sharon A Crawford’s Book Launch Sunday Oct.19

Sharon A Crawford author of the short story collection Beyond Blood published by Blue Denim Press

Sharon A Crawford author of Beyond Blood published by Blue Denim Press

Fiction is about stuff that’s screwed up.
– Nancy Kress


Dana is scurrying around The Attic Agency Office when Bast walks into the room.

Bast: What are you doing?

Dana: Getting ready for the big launch.

Bast: Our agency opening reception. I thought all was…

Dana: No, no, not that. Sharon A. Crawford’s book launch. You know the author who created us?

Bast: Of course. That is coming up already?

Dana: Yes, this Sunday. October 19. We have to get the word out Bast about her book Beyond Blood.

Bast: You mean before our agency opening?

Dana: Yes, and Sharon’s book launch has to happen first so that Beyond Blood can happen.

Bast: You mean our actual launch, the kidn…

Dana: Sh. Bast, don’t give it all away. People have to come to the book launch and buy a copy of Beyond Blood to find out what happens.

Bast: Right. And we should also mention what else is happening at the Book Launch.

Dana: Yes. The book launch is also for another first time mystery novelist, Klaus Jakelski’s book Dead Wrong. It’s a medical mystery.

Bast: Yes. And Klaus is a medical doctor in Sudbury, Ontario.

Dana: And Sharon, like you is a former journalist, although she covered health as well as some crime stories.

Bast: Sharon is also short like you. In fact, she has a couple of inches on you.

Dana: Bast. Leave my height out of it.

Bast (chuckling): Okay, if you wish.

Dana: What I wish is to find that poster that Blue Denim Press, Sharon’s and Klaus’s publisher, had printed. Have you seen it?

Bast: Yes, right here on my desk.

Dana and Bast grab the poster, hold it up and together announce:

Blue Murder with Blue Denim Press:

Join in the murderous mayhem at the launch of two debut mystery novels:

Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford

Dead Wrong by Klaus Jakelski

More mayhem provided by guest readers Rosemary McCracken and Nate Hendley

Launch presented by Blue Denim Press.

Mayhem provided by all.

Location:     Paintbox Bistro

555 Dundas Street East (at Parliament St.) Toronto (parking inside building), Ontario

Time and Date: 3 p.m., Sunday, October 19, 2014

Bring a guest or two if you wish.

There is an entrance cost of $15. per person. That entitles you to a copy of a Blue Denim Press book-. Your guest(s) can choose another book published by Blue Denim Press. No charge for children 16 and under.

See you there.


Dana Bowman

Bast Overture


Sharon A. Crawford

And check out Sharon A. Crawford’s Facebook author page

Linked In profile

Sharon A. Crawford’s website and click on Beyond Blood for all the details of Sharon’s gigs.

And visit Sharon’s publisher Blue Denim Press at to see that poster.


Cover of Dead Wrong by Klaus Jakelski, published by Blue Denim Press

Cover of Dead Wrong by Klaus Jakelski, published by Blue Denim Press

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press


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Beyond Blood shows up in print


Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press

To write what is worth publishing, to find honest people to publish it, and get sensible people to read it, are the three great difficulties in being an author.

~ Charles Caleb Colton


My publisher just delivered my print copy of Beyond Blood and it is bloody good – lots of red on the cover, better than the icon here.

Beyond Blood had a long journey from inception to print. The original story was first conceived in the late 1990s. I researched, wrote, rewrote, rewrote (many times),

Think again, Sharon A.

Sure, one publisher asked for the full manuscript and read it – but rejected it. So did several other publishers who looked at only one to three chapters.

Into the drawer. Hide it on my computer.

Until my short story collection Beyond the Tripping Point was published by Blue Denim Press in fall 2012. Just before that the editor at BDP, Shane and I were talking about a series and I mentioned the closet novel. He was interested in looking at it.

So the big rewrite began. I started working from a printed copy because that is easiest for me to grasp the whole story and scribble notes. Not that I looked at them all when doing the rewrites. Something about putting it down on paper ingrained the changes in my mind. And when I rewrote, the ideas expanded.

I thought it was ready for Blue Denim Press. Not quite. But they were willing for me to have another go. So I did with Shane’s suggestions and fine-tuned it some more. Then I sent it back.

Not quite yet – but they were accepting it. I just needed to do some more rewriting. So, with Shane’s suggestions (and some more ideas of my own that they spawned), I got back to work rewriting. Even hired a freelance editor to proofread it and the author who wrote the back page review even took it upon herself to comment in a few places. So more changes were made.

After a bit more to-ing and fro-ing of questions and comments between Shane and I the bloody manuscript was ready. And I’m not swearing – remember, the novel’s title is Beyond Blood. And that was my original title.

It’s taken 17 years, but Beyond Blood has come to fruition.

So all you “closet” novelists, keep writing and rewriting. Keep persisting. Get feedback.

Don’t give up.

For a peak at what Beyond Blood is about – go to Check out the flyer for information on the book launch October 19 – and if you are in the southern Ontario Canada area, come to the book launch.

And stay tuned – the fraternal twin PIs from the Beyond books – Dana Bowman and Bast Overture will be back here starting in next week’s post.

The book at the top of this blog post links to Amazon. Click on Sharon A Crawford for my profile.

For those of us with Kobo’s, here is that link for the e-pub version. And check out my updated web page at and click on Beyond Blood. Still more updates on my reading gigs to be added as I get them.



Sharon A. Crawford


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Book launch of Beyond Blood has two guest authors reading

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press

Cover of Beyond Blood by Sharon A. Crawford, published by Blue Denim Press

Publicity can be terrible. But only if you don’t have any.

  • Jane Russell.

This just in.

Nate Hendley who writes true crime books and Rosemary McCracken who writes mystery novels are guest readers at my book launch October 19.

They will certainly add variety to the two of us from Blue Denim launching our books. Lots of murder and mayhem (in the books, not in the Paintbox Bistro, Toronto launch location). Let’s see:

Nate Hendley has written several books about the baddies such as the The Black Donnellys: The Outrageous Tale of Canada’s Deadliest Feud, American Gangsters: Then and Now, The Mafia: A Guide to an American Subculture and Crystal Death. His current book focuses on something different – a miscarriage of justice – Steven Truscott: Decades of Injustice (Five Rivers Publishing, 2012). Nate is also a Toronto, Ontario-based freelance journalist and the Ontario VP for Crime Writers of Canada. I have been helping him line up public readings for CWC authors in Ontario. Find out more about Nate and his books at And check out his crime blog at

Rosemary McCracken, another Crime Writers of Canada member writes a mystery series about financial planner Pat Tierney and if you think that sounds dull, think again. Pat seems to get herself embroiled in financial mayhem and murder, and usually some family member is involved somehow. So far the series books are: Safe Harbor (Imagin Books, 2012), and Black Water (Imagin Books, 2013). Pat Tierney also appeared in Rosemary’s short story “The Sweetheart Scamster” in the short story anthology Mesdames of Mayhem Thirteen (2013). Check out Rosemary’s website at for more book information and her Moving Target blog at Rosemary and I did blog tours and my blog post there is at

Nate, Rosemary and I have also made several appearances together and done readings with these CWC presentations. The three of us may be touring together later this year or early next year for more readings. Stay tuned.

And of course, the two of us with books being published by Blue Denim Press

Dead Wrong by Klaus Jakelski – a medical murder mystery. And yes, Klaus is a medical doctor with a family practice in Sudbury, Ontario, but his book takes place in Boston, Massachusetts and Toronto, Ontario. His book is available in e-copy at

And my book, Beyond Blood, with the infamous fraternal twins Dana Bowman and Bast Overture, a mystery taking place during eight days in August 1998 in fictitious Thurston, Ontario, just north of Toronto.

Meantime, yours truly is still frantically doing pre-book launch promo. Not going as fast as I had hoped. It doesn’t help that both my email/website server went down for a day during maintenance and yesterday my modem-router went off the ISP grid for a bit but only on the hard-wired connection on my desktop computer. The wireless was fine and my laptop was connected. Glitches fixed thanks to good techies at the other end(s). But it steals from your time.

I’m blaming that on why I haven’t updated my website page for Beyond Blood. Some of the updates are off-line but when I had the time to load it – that’s when the website server was off. More info will be up on my website www.samcraw on the Beyond Blood page in the next few days.

Check out the details on my book and my colleague Klaus Jakelski’s book at

The book at the top of this blog post links to and for those of us with Kobo’s, here is that link for the e-pub version. And when I (finally) get my amazon profile and web page updated I’ll give you the links to them.

Print versions of Beyond Blood and Dead Wrong are coming out soon.

Watch for Dana and Bast. They will be returning here in these blog posts soon. And I promise, Bast will not go missing this time, but somebody else might.



Sharon A. Crawford


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Guest blogger interviews her protagonist

Rosemary McCracken author of Safe Harbor and Black Water mystery novels

Rosemary McCracken author of Safe Harbor and Black Water mystery novels

Rosemary McCracken has written two mystery novels (so far) – Safe Harbor and Black Water – featuring financial advisor Pat Tierney. Please welcome guest blogger Rosemary McCracken as she interviews this financial expert whose life is anything but usually dull.

Pat, how do you feel about being the main character of a book?

When you decided to make me the central character of Safe Harbor, the first book in her mystery series, I was puzzled. I’m just an ordinary, forty something woman. Widow, mother of two girls, business woman.Nothing special. But you thought people would be interested in me and my adventures.

And, to my amazement, they were. “I can’t wait for the next Pat Tierney installment,” one reader posted on Amazon. “I look forward to seeing what trouble Pat Tierney gets herself into next,” another reader said.

So I’m back—this time in Black Water.


Why did you become a financial advisor?

My late husband, Michael, was a financial advisor with a large investment firm, and his enthusiasm for his work was contagious. I took courses, got my accreditation and then joined Michael at the branch he ran.

I love helping my clients get their financial houses in order. It’s important work and I take it very seriously.


How did you get yourself involved in a murder investigation—again?

When it comes to my family, I’m a big softie. When Black Water opened, my relationship with my eldest child, Tracy, was stretched to the limits. I had to set it right. So when she asked me to help locate her sweetheart, Jamie, I had no choice in the matter. I headed out to cottage country north of Toronto where an elderly man had been killed in a suspicious fire. And Jamie was the prime suspect.


Did the events ofBlack Watermake youa better person?

Definitely. I’ve learned to get to know people before I judge them. I wasn’t at all happy when Tracy introduced me to Jamie—because Jamie is a woman. You see, I had no inkling of my daughter’s sexual orientation. I’d always considered myself a champion of diversity—racial, religious and sexual. But it’s easy to be open-minded until your own kid comes out.

In short, I botched it big time. After I met Jamie, I threw myself into my work, hoping Tracy would get over her infatuation. I made no effort to get to know Jamie.

But when Tracy asked me to help when Jamie went missing, I realized how important Jamie was to her. She wasn’t just friend. Jamie was the special person in my daughter’s life. Her partner.

I also realized that Tracy had been keeping things from me for a long time. I love my daughters and I don’t want them to keep secrets from me. I decided that I’d get to know Jamie, and if she was the one for Tracy, I’d stand by her choice.

The more I learned about Jamie, the more I liked her. She’s an exceptional young lawyer who secured a landmark judgment on behalf of an elderly woman who lost her savings when a financial advisor put them into high-risk investments. Jamie has talent, energy and integrity. And best of all, she’s devoted to Tracy.


What was the most challenging situation you found yourself in in Black Water?

That’s a difficult question to answer. I met up with some truly dreadful people in this book, and a couple of times I really thought it was game over for me. But I’d have to say the biggest challenge was driving a huge snowmobile named Molly across a series of frozen lakes in cottage country. I’d never operated a snowmobile before, and the lakes weren’t as frozen as they should have been. At one point, I had to resort to snowmobile skipping. Have you ever heard of snowmobile skipping? It’s driving a snowmobile across a stretch of open water by approaching it at a very high speed. It’s pretty scary. If you don’t make it over that icy water, you sink like a stone.


What’s your greatest failing?

I’m a worrier. I worry about everything, which makes bad situations twice as bad. I worry about them beforehand, and then I have to live through them.


Can we look forward to reading about you again?

I know that you have  two more books mapped out for me. Looks like I’ll be getting into trouble for some time to come.

Book cover for Black Water

Book cover for Black Water

BLACK WATER: synopsis 

When Pat Tierney’s daughter, Tracy, asks her to help find Tracy’s partner, Jamie Collins, their mother-daughter relationship is stretched to the limits. Pat heads out to cottage country where an elderly man, who killed Jamie’s sister in an impaired driving accident years ago, has perished in a suspicious fire. Unfortunately, Jamie is the prime suspect.

Pat takes charge at the new branch her investment firm has opened in the seemingly idyllic community where Jamie grew up, and her search for Tracy’s missing sweetheart takes her through a maze of fraud, drugs, bikers and murder.

Once again, Pat proves that her family can always count on her.

 Rosemary McCracken has worked on newspapers across Canada as a reporter, arts reviewer, editorial writer and editor. She is now a Toronto-based fiction writer and freelance journalist. Her first mystery novel, Safe Harbor, was shortlisted for Britain’s Crime Writers’ Association’s Debut Dagger in 2010 and published by Imajin Books in 2012. You can buy it here.

Black Water, the second book in the Pat Tierney series, has just been released at the special introductory price of .99! You can buy it here.

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