Choosing Names

As I begin writing the next book in my Everyday Goddess series, I’ve decided to introduce some potential new inductees to the women’s sacred circle. (Just in case I don’t want the series to end.)

Every name I’ve chosen to this point has come from some mythical legend. Minerva, is the Roman equivalent of Athena, Gwenhwyfar, is a Celtic warrior goddess, Cerridwen, Irish queen of the underworld, Inanna, Sumerian goddess of love, fertility and sensuality. Lilith comes from Jewish mythology. Rhea is the Titaness daughter of the earth goddess Gaia, and mother of the Olympians. Old Irish myth brings us Brigid, ruler of higher dimensions. Hina is a Polynesian goddess, who represents the powerful female force. Miko is the Japanese goddess of protection. I’ve tried to represent a variety of cultures, pull from a broad spectrum of ancient myths that still echo from the past. I have also attempted to tie the myth to the chosen profession of my characters. Minnie is a judge, Lil is a fierce advocate for women and children, Rhea feeds the community, Ina is a gardener, Cerridwen is a forensic anthropologist who deals with the dead. Gwen is ex-army, Brigid a tale weaver, Hina an empath and horsewoman. (My original eight everyday goddesses.)

Yesterday I spent a few hours playing with names, meanings and professions and think I’ve developed four new characters who will find their way into Eden.

Eve Milan is Ina’s mid-wife. Eve is mother goddess, giver of life. Milan means kind, loving, gracious. (Gardens of Eden)

Jord Sheafson is a carpenter who’s hoping to become part of Derek’s staff. She renovates Ina’s house and helps decorate the nursery. Jord is from Old Norse mythology and the mother of Thor. Sheafson is the last name of a great warrior in Beowulf, an Anglo-Saxon epic adventure.

Qadesh Bishara is Zain’s mother, professor of women’s studies and Jungian psychologist. Qadesh is the fertility goddess of the late Bronze Age. (Remains to be Seen)

Selene Sass is a Homicide detective who works with Niall Graeme. Selene is the Greek moon goddess, sometimes identified with Artemis, goddess of the hunt. She’ll see some action working a cold case in The Girl from Nowhere.

Naming characters is an important first step to a believable story. The name has to fit who it represents, something only the author knows for sure. Gwen’s last name is Cronun, a play on Cronus, the King of the Titans. Iraklidis, Simon’s last name is associated with Heracles. Sheafson means warrior. Milan means loving and with grace. The hero of The Girl from Nowhere is named Gabriel. Appropriate because he’s a reporter and Gabriel is a well-known messenger.

If you’ve been reading the series, you might not have noticed the significance of each name chosen, and that’s the way I like it. I love hidden messages and add a bit of mystery whenever I get the chance. I have fun checking root meanings, name derivatives, translations, definitions, all while making sure that most of the names have different first initials to keep it from getting confused. It gets harder with each additional cast member you bring in. I’ve got a few letters left to work with for the series and have two male names to come up for my most recent female additions. (Two are already in place)

I’ll be working on them later today.

Where do I go from here?

I’ve written a few series over the last few years and have had my fair share of marketing woes. How do you get someone interested enough to pick up your book?

Social media? Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, blogs? Word of mouth? Reviews?

I asked a friend to help me write a new bio. She keeps telling me she toots my horn better than I do, and she’s probably right. Anyway, she sent me a short blurb and I thought it read more like a person who enjoyed my work, than a bio, so I asked if I could use it as what my formatter, Joan, calls “praise.” Joan then asked if I could get a few more, maybe another author. (She said they like getting their name in print) I thought, um, from where? I might follow other authors but I don’t hang with them and I’m not sure there are any out there who’ve read my work. Should I be reaching out, asking those authors who I follow, to read and review? Should I get those Beta readers I’ve written about before? Questions that need answering but not today.

The one venue that seems to be working is a site called BookFunnel.

I’ve joined a couple of promotions offered through them and I’m thrilled to say, there have been quite a few readers who have downloaded the books enrolled. One was for a sports romance and one for music. I’ve also submitted my Magic Bean Cafe, in a general category but it generated very few.

I’ve just enrolled in another sports category so League of Her Own will be available through them starting October 1st. If you haven’t read it, give it a try. Enrique is shortstop for my Greenliner team and he’s getting some practice staying on his toes when Fiona Barrows walks into his life.

Sports romances seem quite popular right now.

So the question is, should I be writing more stories about athletes? I’ve done a baseball series, The Greenliners, and had originally planned on writing six rather than the four that are out. The folders are still sitting on my desk, and I do have the intention of going back to them but my Everyday Goddess series was burning to get out there.

I put out a post earlier this week asking what sport captures your attention? Baseball, soccer, football, hockey, basketball…I did get a couple of suggestions. Seems baseball and soccer were the preferred. I’ve included a men’s amateur soccer league in the Goddess series and I’ve been watching you tube videos as part of the research. I have to admit, the guys are great athletes, with muscles flexing and straining, and it’s a compelling game to watch. So soccer might be the way to go….

One of these days, I’m going to learn how to do a book give away. Then I can offer any book of choice for, let’s say a review. If anyone is willing to write one before I master that, I’d appreciate it. Just send it to

Create a wonderful day for yourself.


What’s wrong with this?

There have been authors who have told me it’s all about the cover. Couples sell the best. It’s been proven by analytics. Although according to a new poll, it’s all about the male torso. The M-A-L-E torso. It’s the six-pack abs, the bare arms, the wide shoulders. I shake my head knowing it’s true, but still not willing to go that route.

My covers don’t scream romance, but maybe that’s because I want them to be more than that. Of course, that means I won’t generate the sales that some others do

When people ask me what I write, my first response is contemporary women’s lit. Yes, it has some romance thrown into the mix, what doesn’t today? Even detective or murder genres include a sex scene here and there. I’m driven to write about life experiences, how we change, how we grow. There’s always a female and male lead, flaws, strengths, wounds, connection, and there’s always a happily ever after ending.

Unfortunately, I won’t rack up sales because my covers don’t scream hot bod.

I’ll either have to live with that, or change my outlook. I’ve been thinking about changing the covers of my first series. Maybe I’ll experiment. Cold Sweat would be a good one to start with.

Would you buy a book with this dude on it?

I’ll be interested in hearing your opinions.

Fall is here

The weather has made a turn for the comfortable, but then I love the fall, especially in New England. Crisp nights, sunny and dry days… great for walking the dog, or just sitting outside in the fresh air.

Today I want to mention a great new promo I’m part of . When I got the email telling me about it, I got excited. Not only because I knew I had a book or two I could promote, but I love knowing that there are other authors out there writing about strong women.

So many romances are written around the male lead’s occupation. I’ve seen plenty of meme’s on whether readers prefer the men to be military, police, firefighters, athlete, construction worker. The role of warrior always seemed to be placed in his hands. But really? Woman can fit that role quite as well, if not better.

As a wise woman warrior once, said, “Throw me to the wolves and I will return leading the pack.”

I’ll be checking out the books available, and hope that you do, as well.

Here’s the link.

Wishing you wonderful week… and a good read.

It’s been a while

Good morning everyone:.

I’ve been remiss with my blogs over the last month or two but I have been super busy, getting a new book out, Tipping the Scales, joining several promotions to add to my subscriber list, and writing the next book in my Everyday Goddesses series, Remains to be Seen.

In between all this, I’ve been cleaning up some of my earlier series, all while reading, reading, reading.

There’s nothing better than becoming engrossed in a great book and I’ve found several that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed, some written by my favorite authors, Susan Mallery, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Jill Shalvis.

I’ve also been immersing myself in some great TV series, binging I guess you could say, in order to get some background on medical examiners, part of my research for Remains. Rizzoli and Aisles, all seven seasons, was the latest. Set in Boston, it hit all the right notes. I also watched every season of a French series, called Balthazar. It was different, and the lead was quirky. I loved the way he dressed and I decided to have Zain, the male character in the latest book, dress the same way, in button down shirts, and fitted vests. Zain doesn’t talk to the dead like Balthazar. I gave Niall, the male lead in Can‘t Be Tamed, that honor.

For Remains I’ve dived into archeology and anthropology, two subjects that have held my interest for years. I can remember sitting in a doctors office and picking up Archeology, a magazine dedicated to the field and flipping through and scanning every article. I subscribed immediately and have dozens of issues. It’s been fun going back during my research phases and incorporating some of the information into the storyline.

That’s part of my passion in writing, digging into material I want to know more about. It’s almost as good as digging for bones, artifacts, fossils. I guess I’m an archeologist in a whole new way….