Friday, November 19, 2021

Happy Thanksgiving!

This Week's Newsletter
Ashleigh's YA Reads           Ashleigh's Romance Reads          Ashleigh's Whodunits

This week's newsletter contains the following features:
(Feel free to skip ahead to what you want to read)

What's new with Ashleigh?

Thanksgiving has always been a very special time for me, filled with many traditions. When I was young, my brother and I would watch the Macy's parade in awe, marveling at the floats and admiring the dancers. My favorite was always the Rockettes, as I dreamed of becoming one some day. After the parade, we would get dressed in our fancy clothes and go to my grandparents' house for our traditional seven-course meal. I was sixteen years old before I realized that not everyone celebrated the holiday with as much food as my family.

Since my holiday tradition was so important to me, I decided to include it in Hartfield Chronicles. You can read more about it in Episode 59.

This week marks the one-year anniversary of One Night In Sedona. As you may know, I wrote this novella as part Inkfort Press's inaugural publishing derby. After being assigned the cover, I had 10 weeks to write, beta, edit, and publish the book. It was my first venture into the cozy mystery genre and I fell in love.

In my last newsletter, I promised that I would tell you more about this year's NaNo project. After the success of One Night In Sedona, my cozy mystery novella, I decided to try a cozy mystery series. Thanks to some reader input, I found a unique main character that they determined was lacking in the genre. I also discovered a setting that has been underutilized, as I have yet to find it used for a cozy series.

Although I loved the first story in my book, I didn't feel I had a great relationship with my main character. I knew I would need to write a second book to really get to know her. So, I decided to dedicate this month to learning about my main character. And, I must say, in writing this second book, I feel I understand her a little better. Here is what I've learned.

Emma is in her late-twenties and the director of marketing and public relations at the place where these murders keep happening. She is addicted to lattes, though she will settle for coffee or diet soda if necessary. In her free time, she enjoys playing basketball and is a decent artist, although she is better at animation than realism.

However, despite becoming better acquainted with my main character, I could still use some help. I love nicknames, but I haven't found Emma's yet. I especially want one for her boyfriend. She calls him Sherlock, but he doesn't know what to call her. Her best friends usually just call her "Em" or "Emma", though she and her bff will call each other "Sweetie". (I'm open to suggestions on that one, too.)

So, I'm asking for some input. Feel free to email me or leave comments on my blog. Do you have any suggestions on some cute nicknames for my main character?

You can still monitor my NaNo progress on my website. I try to update the information daily. Good luck to everyone else who is participating. We're in the home stretch. We can do it!

Hartfield Chronicles

Hartford Chronicles Melinda and Pat are both happy to celebrate Thanksgiving with their families. But when rumors of Pat and another girl appear in the celebrity gossip columns, his relationship with Melinda is tested.

Hartfield Chronicles follows the lives of Melinda, Pat, and their friends as they navigate their way through boarding school life. Each episode features two stories, one from Melinda's point of view and one from Pat's, along with an excerpt from Melinda's writing journal. New episodes are published every ​Friday.

Here's what you've missed

  • Episode 59: Celebrate Thanksgiving with Melinda and Pat and their families
  • Episode 60: Melinda babysits her neighbors

Reviews from Ashleigh's Bookshelf

Dahlia's Backstage Pass
For Young Adult readers

Dahlia's Backstage Pass

Ethan Cobalt

Dahlia has her entire life planned. In a few weeks, she and her on-again/off-again boyfriend will go to college. She will become a nurse, he a doctor. Together, they'll volunteer for Doctors Without Borders and see the world. Most importantly, she'll be able to leave the trailer park she calls home. But when an old friend calls out of the blue, Dahlia realizes she can't turn down his offer to work with his band. Suddenly, her world is turned upside-down and she must question everything from her career goals to her relationship.
      Murder at the Abbey
For Mystery readers

Murder at the Abbey

Frances Evesham

When human bones are discovered in the river, Libby and the rest of the historical society are excited to learn they most likely belonged to a 16th century monk from the nearby abbey. They organize on overnight ghost hunt, which results in the attack of a friend. Now, Libby and Max must try to identify the culprit before someone else is injured.
check out my review
check out my review

Free Books

Saving Vengeance

Saving Vengeance

An exciting & romantic Forest Tales series prequel

He wants to save her life, but she wants revenge at any cost.

Forced to choose between loyalty to the king and what is right, Gavin spares an innocent woman’s life, only to discover that saving her won’t be as easy as he thought.

All Laurel wants is revenge on the man who murdered her sister, even if that means sacrificing herself in the process. When a masquerade ball provides the perfect opportunity for her plan, will she succeed?

Or will the price of vengeance be too high?

Fleeing with Lust

Fleeing with Lust

Seductive, Surprises!

Work Drinks! What's there to worry about?

Victoria is stuck at another work party when she comes across Isabel. Isabel steals her heart with a smile. Victoria can’t help but kiss her back when Isabel plants one on her, even though she has a husband. But before the kiss can move any further the two pull apart, Victoria immediately panics before Isabel convinces her it’s all okay. Influenced by Isabel’s smile, Victoria says yet to meet Melech, her husband. A drink and a drugging later, the three of them land in bed together. Victoria can no longer control her desires for Isabel, due to the Molly. The night quickly goes south. The next morning, frantic to satiate her desires for Victoria, Isabel gets into bed with Melech but is thankfully interrupted by Victoria. Melech is torn away from the two by work and Victoria takes the opportunity to tell Isabel the truth about her husband. Within minutes the two women decide to do anything and everything to get away from Melech. But will he catch up to them in their lust filled love?

Death in the afternoon


How far would you go to save a life?

An Undercover Detective Saves Others
But She Needs to be Saved too

Homicide detective Ava Locke is good at what she does. But more importantly, she’s committed. An insomniac with a dark, yet blurry past, she works tirelessly to make the world a little bit better. But little does she know that everything is about to change.

When Ava’s Chief calls upon her and her partner Carl to take on an urgent case, Ava must go undercover to try and solve it. But she soon finds that there is more to the case than she had ever thought, and it begins to bring up some harrowing memories she was happier to forget...

As a dangerous and unstable man kidnaps girls from all over the city, Ava and Carl are in a race against time, not only to save the lives of the missing girls, but of Ava herself.

Want more free books? Check out these giveaways!

YA & NA November Fever Romantic Sentiments

Other Books on Sale

The Genie's Gift

The Genie's Gift

A Fantasy Adventure for ages 9+

The Genie’s Gift is a lighthearted action novel set in the Middle East of the 15th century. It draws on the fantastic creatures and culture of The Arabian Nights.

Thirteen-year-old Anise, shy and timid, dreads marrying the man her father chooses for her. Her aunt tells her about the Genie Shakayak, the giver of the Gift of Sweet Speech. He lives high atop Mount Quaf, many weeks’ journey across a barren desert. The way is barred by a dozen dangers and trials. But those few who cross the desert and defeat the guardians of the mountain receive their reward. From that day forward, their words drip like honey from their lips, charming all who hear them, and no one can deny them anything they ask.

Anise is determined to find the genie and ask for the gift, so she can control her own future. But the way is barred by a series of challenges, both ordinary and magical. Anise can’t even speak in front of strangers. How will she get past a deadly ghoul, a sorceress who turns people to stone, and mysterious sea monsters? Will she ever reach the top of Mount Quaf—and if she does, can she convince the Genie to give her the gift?

Where Weavers Daire

Where Weavers Daire

Stuk on the Hollow Book 1

Ten years after the last war, Melinda Scott discovers something in deep space and is dragged back into a world her family was banished from. Now with Necromancers to her left, Liches to her right and humanity in the middle it’s up to her to figure out why someone is trying to kill her. Where Weavers Daire is the first book in a new rip-roaring space opera series in the same vein as Babylon 5, Firefly, Farscape and Star Wars!

Creeper in the Sleeper

Creeper in the Sleeper

A Paranormal Women's Fiction Cozy Mystery

Who wants to play hide and shriek?

Lindsey finally convinces her best friend to go glamping, but their getaway sours when they find (then lose) a dead body on the first day of their trip!

Though her clairvoyant powers arouse suspicion, a nosy park ranger is the least of Lindsey's problems. As bodies keep dropping - and disappearing - she faces an impossible challenge. How do you stop a killer who's already dead?

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