Tag Archives: murder mystery

Songs From Richmond Avenue, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Hi all you mystery lovers, this is Lisa Burton, the robot girl. You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio, and my guest today is a real enigma. He’s calling in today from The Relix Club in Las Vegas, and he’s known only as the Buddhist. “Welcome to the show, Buddhist.”

“My humblest of greetings, Lisa. One brief correction, if I may. I am currently in The Relix Club, true enough, but it’s located in Houston, Texas, where I have resided, on and off, for a number of years. The confusion may be that I have only recently returned from North Las Vegas. I flew west, you see, to make right a wrong done to a friend concerning his vehicle and another party’s rather substantial debt. It’s probably best to leaving it at that, at least in such a public forum. Too many people listening in, if you follow my meaning.”

“I take it this Relix Club you’re in is kind of a seedy place. When you called just now I distinctly heard glass breaking and someone cursing at the top of his lungs. Why did you choose to call in from there?”

“Cursing? Oh yes, Danny. He’s the bartender. It’s how he relieves stress and maintains order. I prefer chanting, myself. Do you want to talk about chanting and meditative states? Maybe chemical relaxants to assist with meditative states?”

“No. I want to talk about why you are calling from that Relix Club dive.”

“Well, it’s kind of my headquarters, so to speak. I do business out of here and am comfortable with the level of discretion provided by its staff and clientele. The dress code is fairly relaxed as well. Shirts and shoes are more of a humble suggestion than a requirement, you see, so long as you happen to be a paying customer. Plus it’s dark here. Easy on the eyes.”

“Now, Buddhist, my bio says you’re sleeping in an old car these days. What happened to drive you to those depths?”

“I must take exception here, Lisa. My current living arrangements have less to do with sinking to depths than they do with rising from the ashes – like a Phoenix, only in Houston. You see, there was a fairly substantial fire at my prior address, the cause of which has yet to be determined. All I can say on the record is that I was not the perpetrator. Anyway, I decided a more minimalistic approach to life was spiritually preferable after that. I like to think of the fire as something of a cosmic blessing, though I could have done without all the depositions.”

“So I understand using your friend’s car as a residence got him into a pickle last year that had something to do with unpaid gambling debts.”

“The car in question is no ordinary vehicle. It’s a classic Mercury Marquis touring car, circa 1976, containing the largest factory engine in commercial automotive history. Needless to say, it provided lots of room to stretch out, making it an obvious choice. Actually, I only slept in it a time or two and in no way took up residence. I can only say the Merc was central to my friend’s difficulties, but you should ask him about that. Wait, I’ll put him… He’s shaking his head, Lisa. Now, he’s leaving without even finishing his beer. I think I’ve only seen him do that once before.

“A thousand pardons, Hoss. Come on back!

“It’s difficult to explain, Lisa. You see he is the press by trade, yet he shuns the press. Kind of a yin and yang relationship with his chosen vocation, don’t you think?

“Understand, Lisa, I am limited as to what I can say out of a sense of loyalty and due to certain pending legal constraints that I unfortunately fall under. I will go on record to say his difficulties were not of his own making but rather due largely to a certain admirable naiveté on his part. That I fell asleep when I did, admittedly complicated matters.

“Danny, when you get a chance, another drink before the band starts making noise.”

“So what’s wrong with a nice band? It might give the old place some character.”

“Character? The Relix’s loaded with both character and characters. The bands, I’m afraid, tend to draw a more conventional segment of the populace than we’ve become accustomed to, so to speak. Less flexible in their sense of right and wrong, less forgiving. They ask for wine lists and make Danny nervous. What if there’s a fight, for example? These people will want cops and ambulances if someone really gets hurt.”

“Okay then, Buddhist. Let’s talk about the body you and your friend, and his date discovered. What kind of leads do the police have so far?”

“That unfortunate turn of events was most definitely none of my doing. Even Michelle was there as a witness to the discovery, and I can tell she never does anything injurious. My belief is the deceased fell into the shrubbery from an upstairs window while home alone. Possibly death by misadventure as the coroners say in such cases. Frankly, the deceased was, in my view, not as mentally sound as you or I. Say, how do you even know I was there when the body was found? Who talked? A thousand pardons, Lisa, but I’m starting to regret agreeing to this interview. I thought we’d be swapping lewd stories like Howard Stern does. Or, or, or, maybe giving away cars to your audience like Oprah. How do you know all of this?”

“Actually, I used to be a cop, and yes I’m recording the show for transcription onto the website.”

“Transcription? — So, Lisa, assuming that is your real name, do you think during the editing process you could by chance, I mean– Look, humblest of apologies but I have a pending commitment I nearly forgot that requires me to cut this short. A thousand apologies.

“Hoss, the Merc. I need to borrow the Merc. It’s of the utmost importance.”

“Buddhist? Are you still there? Buddhist?

“We seem to have lost Buddhist somehow. The good news is there is a book available. It’s called Songs From Richmond Avenue, by Michael Reed. I’ll post the link, and all the other deets on the website after I transcribe everything.

“Don’t forget about those sharing buttons on the website. I’m sure after he thinks about it, Buddhist will appreciate it, and I know Mike Reed will too.

“For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

A Houston Love Story, with Beer and a Couple Dead Folks Thrown In

Songs From Richmond Avenue by Michael Reed offers an off-kilter, satirical take on big-city misfits, the bars they frequent and the occasional, albeit, misguided quest for something better.

For the blurry-eyed denizens of the Relix Club and our narrator, a serially employed journalist with questionable work ethics, whiling away the hours engaged in their two favorite activities – drinking and betting on just about anything – is a pretty good life. That is until he meets pretty Michelle, a woman who he declares has “skin so perfect I doubted she even had pores.”

Could she be his salvation, he wonders. Maybe, but not until after he completes an alcohol- fueled urban odyssey involving Michelle’s Nihilist stripper roommate, a paramilitary Buddhist barfly, a pair of dumber-than-dirt, debt-collecting hoodlums, and the usual ration of Bayou City sweat and torrential rain.

“Bukowski, no doubt, would have found comfort and more than a few laughs in the sideshow of Houston inhabited by the author.”

– Steve Olafson, longtime Houston journalist

“It keeps the reader turning pages while navigating the Bayou City at a breakneck pace…”

– Tom Minder, author of Long Harbor Testament

To order

Print: www.blackrosewriting.com/literary/songsfromrichmondavenue

Kindle: www.amazon.com/Songs-Richmond-Avenue-Michael-Reed-ebook/dp/B01N039ZM7

Michael Reed is an award-winning Texas journalist, which means he has lived in inexpensive apartments and driven paid-for used cars most of his life. Experience as a reporter and editor, along with extensive, though at the time completely unintended research into the many facets of Houston’s dive bar scene, provided him with the requisite background material for this novel. This is the Southern Illinois University graduate’s first novel.

You can also find him in the following locations:

Twitter: @trends_to_reed

Facebook: SongsFromRichmondAve

Instagram: @miker0130

 

Email: songsfromrichmond@gmail.com

 

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The Broken Life

It’s my pleasure today to welcome Jaye Marie to Entertaining Stories. She and her sister have a blog tour going on, and it’s their first one. Please make them feel welcome, and share this post across your social media.

***

Interview with David Snow/Broken Life

 

I have interviewed David Snow before, but usually in my office. This time I am visiting him in the hospital, where he is recovering from the horrendous injuries he sustained in The Broken Life, the third book in my mystery thriller series.

I’m not sure what condition I will find him in, but I believe he is almost ready to be discharged. As my job as editor I have to find out what his plans are for the future. Rumour has it that he will be retiring, but I might have other ideas about that. It would be a shame to lose him now, as he is one of my better characters.

I find him sitting in a chair by the window in his private hospital room, looking amazing and wearing casual clothes and not the pyjamas I was expecting. He looks up as I push open the door, the same boyish grin on his face as he recognises me. The attractive blonde sitting on the bed stands up as I approach.

“I’ll be back later on, David and we can finish making the arrangements…”

I watch as the door swings shut behind her and wonder what kind of arrangements Jane Bates, the duty solicitor for Guildford Police Station could be making with DI David Snow.

“Hello, David. You’re looking much better than I thought you would. They must be taking good care of you in here.”

“Hi Jaye, they have worked wonders, but it’s time I got out of here…”

“That sounds as though you have a plan of some sort. Care to let me in on it?” Was I mistaken, or did I see a flicker of uncertainty cross his face? He would have to talk to me, for I was going nowhere until I knew what he was up to.

“Well…” he paused, checking my face for clues as to the purpose of my visit. “I think I know why you’re here… but I don’t think I will be going back to work just yet… maybe never…”

My heart sank. This was the worst thing he could have said to me, but I had been expecting something of the sort. He must have been dreading telling me, and my face probably reflected my disappointment.

“I am sorry to have to say it… I hope you’re not too unhappy. I never thought I would leave the Force, it has been my life for so long, but I’m not getting any younger…”

“Is there a medical reason for this decision?” I was clutching at straws, and he probably knew it.

He laughed… and the nervousness on his face eased immediately. “No… I have been pronounced fit and good to go. I desperately need a break though, before I begin to think of what happens next. If you have come to put me back to work, I’m afraid you’ll have a bit of a wait.”

He stood up and walked to the window. I had forgotten how pleasant it was to watch him move. No lasting damage to his body that I could see either, he moved like he always did, like an athlete. The thought of never seeing him again was beginning to upset me, so I tried one more question. “You can’t fool me, David. You can’t just stop being a detective, and a good one at that.” Changing the subject, I asked, “Any news from Kate Devereau lately?”

He frowned, and I thought I had possibly touched a nerve.

“She sends postcards sometimes, seems her life really has changed for the better…”

I sensed a reluctance to talk about Kate, so stood up to leave. I knew I wouldn’t get the answers I hoped for today, but I had the feeling I wouldn’t be losing him after all. But before I left, I had one last question. “You will let me know what you decide, won’t you?”

He walked up to me and gently took my hands in his. This close to him I could smell the soap he used laced with his testosterone. My knees reacted instantly, a fluttery weakness that always occurred near my snowman. Kate thinks she invented that nickname for him, but it was me all along.

“I will be in touch, Jaye. Don’t you ever worry about that…”

***

My name is Jaye Marie, the ‘oily rag’ of the partnership http://jenanita01.com and usually, I prefer to stay in the background.

Since we decided to publish our books ourselves, most of my other interests have had to take a back seat, and as I am not half as clever as I want to be, they may well have to leave the country for a while. Well, some of them can but not all. I am an avid Bonsai fan and have a collection that demands my attention in the growing season, or they will die. (It is a bit like having children)

I love books and have read my way through stacks of them, so when my sister needed someone to edit and type up her manuscripts, I was happy to help. Somewhere along the way, I discovered my vocation and my love-hate relationship with the world of computers. But I did learn how to edit and proofread, taking over the job of getting Anita’s books ready for publication. I even had some wonderful compliments from one of the best literary agents in London for my editing of Anita’s first book, Bad Moon, and for the last twenty years since my retirement, that‘s what my life has been like.

Then everyone started talking about ‘Indie’ or self-publishing. I already knew how hard it was to be published in the traditional way, so became very excited at the prospect of being able to do it ourselves. I started our own website and found that I enjoyed talking to people from all over the world and posting our thoughts online. Then I concentrated on publishing Anita’s books. It wasn’t quite as easy as they made it sound, but with my usual stubbornness, I kept at it, learning more and more as I went along.

Somewhere along the way, I started thinking about a story that had been nibbling away in the corner of my mind for months, and before too long, it demanded to be written and then there were two writers in the family!

Links

Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/anitajaydawes

Amazon Author Page: Author.to/JayeLink

Website: http://jenanita01.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jaydawes2/media
Facebook: http://facebook.com/anita.dawes.37
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8638857.Jaye_Marie
UK Amazon Link : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Broken-Life-Jaye-Marie/dp/1326866753
US Amazon Link https://www.amazon.com/Broken-Life-Jaye-Marie/dp/1326866753

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Adventures in La-La Land, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Coming at you with 1.21 jigawatts of power, it’s Lisa Burton Radio, the only show where I interview the characters from the books you love. My special guest today is Moe Fishbein. He lives in LA, and dabbles a little in skip tracing, vehicular repossession, and even the law on rare occasions. “Welcome to the show, Moe.”

“Good to meetcha, Lisa. But please…my friends just call me Fish.”

“Lawyers make bank, and I’ll bet Los Angeles is an interesting market. Why would someone walk away from that kind of career to go solo?”

“You ever heard of a law firm called Uptight, Rigid, Repressed and Lipshitz? Hey, if somebody – or some government agency – is hassling you and you’ve got the bucks, they’ve got the power, the muscle and the connections to make it go annoy somebody else. I was an associate there for almost five years, then I just couldn’t take another day of defending the rich and powerful for committing the indefensible. So, I told the management committee to take their partnership offer letter and use it as a suppository.

“Now I live at the beach, on top of a cliff that overlooks the little cove where they used to park Jim Garner’s trailer when they were shooting Rockford Files. Now, I just dabble. Practice a little law here…a little vehicle repoing and bounty hunting there. Backed up by my two best buds in the world…Einstein, who’s all but dissertation on his Ph.D. in physics. And Kenny, who became my first bail capture, legal client and employee – all on the same freakin’ day.

“What else do you want to know? Lived in L.A. my whole life. Pretty much grew up next door to the Brady Bunch. Did a little time at UCLA and Valley State. Kicked around restaurants as a sous chef for a few years, while I went to night law school. Quickly became the Uptight, Rigid, Repressed and Lipshitz associate voted most likely to royally piss off the Appellate Court. Go ahead, call me a wise-ass. WTF, everybody does. I’m kind of like John McLane from Die Hard…but without the firepower.

“Sure, we work hard. And we’re pretty damn good at getting the job done – without fracturing too many statutes along the way. But, this is L.A. we’re talking about. With a heavy side order of the entertainment industry. Where EVERYBODY packs a hyphen and valet parks on the whacko side of the street. So, we usually don’t have to go looking for trouble. It’s always got our GPS coordinates.”

“Repo and bounty work is kind of dangerous. Seems to me the courtroom is a safer place to earn a living.”

“That’s why I never go out on a job alone… Hey, Sinatra had his Rat Pack, right? Well, I’ve got Einstein and Kenny. And Beast, my head of security. We all keep an eye on each other’s 6. Kenny is fully fluent in ‘Dude’. He stumbled out of the 70’s a few brain cells lighter than when he face-planted in, and is sniper/scout material when it comes to paint ball guns. Einstein is close to his Ph.D. in theoretical physics, and he never met a neutrino he didn’t like. Especially, the ones that hang around the ignition system of your average deadbeat’s car. And Beast? He started out as a pampered little Beverly Hills lap pooch. Now he’s rockin’ a tiny little body full of dredds, day-glo patches of dyed fur, beads…and whole new attitude. He’s my little go-to guy.”

“Where did you boys go?”

“Where, on our little vacation? Hey, where does anybody who can spell the words Harley and Davidson want to spend their vacation?

“I’ll even give you a little hint: picture more than a million Harley owners. Partying HARD in a Black Hills town of only about 8,000. Hey, forget Tomorrowland. Sturgis, South Dakota HAS to be the freakin’ happiest place on Earth. And me, Kenny, Einstein and another bud, are all lickety-splitting our way down the highway to get there. Then we get picked up by a force of nature named Shawna Kretschman, a bad-ass blonde with her own full-race hog. Not to mention a short fuse, some serious fighting skills and an outfit that leaves zippo to the imagination. So, now we’re all headed for Sturgis to link up with more than a million of our best buds and budettes at the town’s annual Motor Cycle Rally.

“Too bad we never got the memo about the real estate developer who wanted all the bikers gone, so he could sell the area as a family-oriented resort town. And how he’d stop at nothing – including murder – to get it. All of a sudden, bikers and locals are dropping all over town. And me, my lady friend, my buds and my big mouth are all in the developer’s crosshairs.

“We’re all on a weird-ass collision course that includes phony cops and bar fights, pepper spray-laced paint balls, a no-holds-barred wrestling match in a ring full of chocolate pudding and getting adopted by the Sioux nation. Even a little manscaping.

“Y’know, like the old rock ‘n roll song says, “girls just wanna have fun”. Shawna says they also wanna have a lavender-tanked hog and bottomless saddlebags packing everything from high fashion to large caliber playthings; thigh-high leather boots to latex-covered toys.”

“Oh I like her. We sound like kindred spirits, only I carry all my stuff in my sidecar.

“You ride?”

“Oh yeah. It’s a modern build of an old Army motorcycle. That’s a sweet Panhead you rode in here.”

“Funny, Lisa. Mine’s a modern build of an old classic, too. Right down to the puddle of engine oil that’s always on my garage floor. And the hardtail frame that sends so much vibration and road shock my way, it’s paying for my proctologist’s vacation home on Maui…

“Yup, I definitely think you and Shawna would get along. Tell you what—let me give her a quick call, and we can all go out for a fictional drink when we’re done. Get to know each other, have a few laughs…maybe insult the Hell out of a wise guy or a city councilman, or something…”

“I’m curious, Fish. How’d the two of you get together?”

“Actually, we met about five years ago, over a not-quite so stolen RV in Twin Falls, Idaho. The owner was more than a year behind on the payments, so the bank sent us there to repo his rig. And Shawna ended up booking us into Twin Falls’ right friendly little jail…and treating us to a complimentary de-lousing and the jail’s Grand Theft Auto suite. When the boys in blue figured out that we had legitimately repoed the RV, they let us go. Then they found the body of the owner stuffed into a large freezer in the belly of the beast, and Shawna got to give us our official welcome and de-lousing again—this time for murder. When all THAT got sorted out, I ended up inviting her down to Malibu for a few days of surf, sun and whatever.

“She showed up on a surprise visit about a month ago, right as we were getting to hit the road for Sturgis, South Dakota, and the biggest biker party in the business. And, we’ve been ‘whatever-ing’ a ton ever since.”

“What do you think, Fish? Was it kismet that brought the two of you together? Fate? Karma?”

Hah! Nah. Probably just a writer with a vivid imagination and a warped sense of humor. But if you tell Shawna, I swear, I’ll deny every word.”

“Fish, you’re fun, and you certainly don’t leave for any dead airspace. Any last thoughts for our listeners today?”

“Hey, thanks for taking the time to hang with me today, Lisa. This has been a ton of fun. Gotta tell you, you’re good people – even for an android. Seriously, thanks.”

“If you want to learn more about Fish and his friends, pick up the Adventures in La-La Land series by Jeff Lee. I’ll post all the pertinents on the website.

“Don’t forget to tip your waitress by using those sharing buttons. I know Jeff and Fish would appreciate it, and they’ll do the same when your character appears on the next Lisa Burton Radio.”

***

Hurricane Kretchman is book number four in the Adventures in La-La Land series, featuring Fish and all his friends.

You can download it directly at this link.

If you’re like many of us and prefer to start at the beginning, you can find all the books at Jeff’s Amazon Author Page.

You can check out Jeff, and follow him, at the following locations:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

 

Jeff Lee Bio:

 

 

Born in New York and raised near San Francisco, I’ve been a copywriter and creative director for some of the country’s most creative ad agencies. Won a lot of silly awards for my creativity and wise-ass sense of humor.

And I’ve been writing in L.A. since before KC even HAD a Sunshine Band.

So, if there’s one thing I know, it’s that, given half a chance, this city can be a never-ending cavalcade of rib-tickling fun — and funny — things, people and approaches to this thrill ride we call life.

 

Like phony televangelists who produce biblical-themed porn for the faithful.

 

Bat-shit crazy showbiz moms.

 

Defrocked talent agents posing as Reality Show producers.

 

The Rose Parade.

 

And on.

 

And on.

 

It never freakin’ ends with this place.

 

There’s always something — or someone — to gape at and giggle over.

 

I tell ya, you’ve just GOT to love this town!

 

It’s the law.

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Ghostly murder on Lisa Burton Radio

Coming at you with one, point twenty-one jigawatts of power, all across the known galaxy and into the spiritual realms, this is Lisa Burton Radio, the only show out there that interviews the characters from the books you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and with me today is Finn McLachlan. He and his friend Cain have been observing some pretty unusual situations lately. “Welcome to the show, Finn.”

“Thanks, Lisa. When they said robot girl, I pictured a female C3PO or R2D2, which you’re so much not. Totally a good thing.”

“Thanks, Finn. My bio says you’re in high school and you have a girlfriend named Lindsey. What can you tell us about her?”

“Somebody crossed their wires, sweetheart. Lindsey is one massively cool girl, but she’s into Cain, my best friend, who’s currently trapped in the web of the reigning mean girl, Erin. I know, high school drama, right? He needs to grow a set and dump her, but the dude’s worried about hurting her feelings. Told him empty shells like her don’t have feelings. Lindsey’s the first girl I’ve met who might be worthy of him.”

“Wow, now that’s a best friend. So what kind of unusual situations have been going on?”

“I think my boy, Cain, is in trouble. Strange things are afoot at the Shannon home – namely in Cain’s bedroom and the attic – the door to the attic is in his room. Doors opening and closing on their own, writing in condensation on a mirror, his cat hissing and growling at things no one can see. And get this – the temperature was 90+ degrees outside, but he could see his breath in an attic with no air conditioning. But only in a certain corner of the room. Kind of creepy, right? I thought maybe Cain was just imagining things – I mean, the guy’s really into horror movies and books, so I thought he’d just had some nightmares you know? Guess I should have known he wasn’t that creative.

“So he got this idea to set up an old camcorder to record what went on in his room while he was sleeping, when a lot of the weird stuff has been happening – maybe get some proof. When he woke up the next morning, the camera was lying on the floor across the room, like someone – or something – had thrown it.”

“Okay, we discuss some weird situations on this show, but that’s pretty far out there.”

“Well, sweetheart, it’s about to get even weirder. We played back that video and saw the attic door open on its own, then the mattress dipped on his bed, like a person had sat on it. After a few seconds, his hair moved away from his face, like someone was running their fingers through it. Really freaky stuff. Next thing you know, clothes start flying off his bed, the camera gets knocked sideways, and the screen goes white, then to static. I worked with the recording, frame by frame, and that’s when we caught our first glimpse of Sarah, the ghost, vengeful banshee, or whatever you want to call her, who’s decided to make herself at home in Cain’s humble abode. After we talked with her – yeah, we actually spoke with a ghost – we kinda got the impression she wasn’t of the Casper variety, if you know what I mean.

“So, it turns out Lindsey’s Aunt Mona owns a metaphysical store down on King Street and she might possess a tad more than the normal five senses and could offer some help. And right now, she’s the only lifeline we’ve got.”

“Well — Maybe Aunt Mona can help exorcise Sarah somehow. Stranger things have happened.”

“Something’s got to happen soon, because we’ve already got a dead body –did I forget to mention that? Considering the guy’s head was nearly separated from his body, I’d say it wasn’t from natural causes.”

“Is there any connection to Sarah?”

“He’s one of three guys Sarah said was responsible for killing her. Cain and I warned the other two, but they think we’re making up all this ghostly vengeance stuff. Sarah seems stronger after murdering the first guy, and I bet she’s got something special planned for the other two. The girl’s got breathtaking anger management issues.”

“This is way off the beaten path. I think you guys should tell the authorities, and find some outside experienced help.”

“Seems like that would have been a logical step, right? Until Sarah threatened Cain’s family – and I consider his mom and sister just as much my family as his. Then there’s the weird way Cain’s been acting…but it’s probably nothing.”

“You can tell us Finn. It’s that kind of show. What’s on your mind?”

“Well…..Cain’s more of a ‘behind the scenes’ kind of guy and stays away from the spotlight, but lately it seems like….maybe he’s not completely Cain. Say there’s a chance, before Sarah got stronger, she needed a little help with her killings to-do list. It could make someone wonder. Someone who doesn’t know him like I do.”

“Oh my God! Have you told him? What are you going to do?”

“I’m thinking something along the lines of ghostly possession intervention. If that’s not a thing, it should be.”

“I think you should tell him, but you need to make sure it’s really him you’re talking to. I don’t know if that means daylight, hallowed ground, or just away from the house, but he needs to know.”

“He may not believe me, but it’s time to lay all the cards on the table. We need to know everything we’re up against and then make a game plan. I’ll give Sarah the fight of her miserable, undead life before I let her hurt Cain or anyone else I care about.”

“Oh I’m so sorry. Too bad you can’t just call in Hellboy or someone to take care of it all. I really feel for you guys, and wish you the best of luck. We’re about out of time. Do you have any final comments for our listeners today?”

“Totally off topic, but how do you feel about younger men? Is the whole dating a human thing frowned upon as a general rule or is that more of just a guideline? I’m single, you know. I’ll give you a call if I live through this.”

“I’m flattered, Cain, but I’m totally into my career right now. I’m sure there are some nice girls in you’re hometown who would appreciate a local hero.

“If you want to find out what happens to Finn, Cain, and Lindsey, pick up the book, Sarah, by Teri Polen. I’ll include all the important deets on the website. Help me keep the lights on around here by using those sharing buttons, I’m sure Finn and Teri would appreciate it, and would do it for you when your character appears on the show.

“If you’d like one of your characters to appear on Lisa Burton Radio, drop me a line. I’m always looking for guests. For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

Book Blurb:

 

Seventeen-year-old horror fan Cain Shannon thought helping a ghost find her killers would be the supernatural adventure of a lifetime. Now, he just hopes to survive long enough to protect his family and friends from her.

A bet between friends goes horribly wrong, resulting in Sarah’s death. When she returns to seek justice against those responsible, Cain agrees to help her. But when he discovers Sarah has been hijacking his body, he realizes she wants retribution instead of justice.

Terrified of what could have happened when he wasn’t in control, Cain commands Sarah to leave his house – but exorcising her isn’t that easy. She retaliates against her murderers in bloody, horrific ways, each death making her stronger, then sets her sights on Cain. With the help of friends, Cain fights to save himself and his loved ones and searches for a way to stop Sarah before she kills again.

 

Purchase Links: Amazon Barnes & Noble Black Rose Writing

Teri Polen reads and watches horror, sci-fi, and fantasy. The Walking Dead, Harry Potter, and anything Marvel-related are likely to cause fangirl delirium. She lives in Bowling Green, KY with her husband, sons, and black cat. Sarah, a YA horror/thriller, is her first novel. Visit her online at www.teripolen.com

Contact Links:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

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The Frank Rozzani Detective Agency, on Lisa Burton Radio

Don’t touch that dial. You’ve found Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you the characters from the books you love to read. This episode is for you amateur detectives, the mystery solving maniacs among you, and those who crave a big puzzle as part of your reading regimen.

I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and with me in the studio today is Frank Rozzani and Clifford Jones the third. “Welcome to the show, fellas.”

“Please call me Jonesy. Clifford is the horrible name my parents gave me. My mom was so embarrassed, she called me Trey for the third.”

“Alright, Jonesy. You two boys team up in a kind of private detective agency. That’s kind of an unusual profession, or is it more of a hobby?”

“Well, for Jonesy, it’s a hobby. For me, it’s turning into a profession although I get paid like it’s a hobby sometimes.”

“Frank’s right. Although, when people come to us to find lost cats and lost wallets, I think we might even need to get a new hobby.”

“I want to get into your background, Frank, if that’s okay. It makes some sense that a police officer could become a PI. Why don’t you just work inside the system? You could be a cop in Jacksonville as easily as New York.”

“I was a policeman. Being forced to take on a case I didn’t want got my wife killed. Being a PI lets me pick my own cases. There are a lot of people in this community that need help that can’t afford a P.I. I’m able to help them out. Someone has to help the underdog.”

“Hmm, underdog, is that what led you to Jonesy?”

“I consider myself more like Shaggy from Scooby Doo instead of being the actual dog.”

“Jonesy is selling himself short. You’re looking at a guy who passed the bar without studying, is a computer genius, surfs and he also does a decent job of playing the drums in my jazz trio.”

“Someone has to drown out your piano playing.”

“Now, Frank, let’s talk about that personal project. People aren’t going to warm up to a character who abandons his children like you did. You probably have to help a lot of underdogs to balance that book.”

“Ouch, Lisa. Way to hit a guy below the belt.”

“It’s okay, Jonesy. Since you brought it up, my kids had to go into witness protection. The witness I protected brought down a significant chunk of the mob with his testimony. I was threatened and I figured if I was going to get out of town, I needed to protect my kids. They offered all three of us witness protection, but I have some unfinished business with the people who murdered my wife.

“I’ll be glad if they come and look for me. I’ll be waiting, but they better hope I don’t find them first. So you see, I help underdogs because no one else will. It’s not related to guilt. It’s just something that needs to be done.”

“When you explain it that way, it’s really more of a sacrifice than abandonment. I’m glad you took the time to explain it. There’s going to come a time when you have to let go of the past to take advantage of the future. I mean, you’re a nice looking man. You’ve got almost a Bradley Cooper thing going on, and a nicer jacket, maybe a decent haircut, and lots of women would be interested in you.”

“Well, he does share his bed with a lovely female. She is a beauty, despite the bad breath. Tell her about Lucy, Frank.”

“Jonesy, you’re in full wise-ass mode today. Lucy is a dog. I’d say she’s my dog, but she just kind of showed up at my trailer the day I moved in. The trailer is my office. I rent it from Sam Monreaux. He’s the proprietor of a local restaurant where Jonesy and I play with our Jazz trio on weekends. He is also the benefactor to a lot of local underdogs and subsidizes a lot of the cases we take on.”

“You still didn’t answer her question about women. What are you, a politician? Answer the question you were asked.”

“I…just. I just need some time. My wife’s death is not something I’ll get over easily. Maybe when I find the bastards responsible I’ll be ready to move on. It’s just not something I want right now.”

“Oh, honey, you’re so broken. Maybe a nice girl can help you out of this dark place. Plenty of women like to fix things for their man. What about that lady detective, what was her name?”

“Yeah, Frank what about Anita?”

“Um, Thanks Jonesy. Anita is like my sister. Besides, let’s just say, we have the same taste in potential partners.”

“Okay, moving on then. Tell us about your latest project.”

“In our latest case, Jonesy and I had to go undercover to investigate the disappearance of twin 10-year-old girls. They were on a cruise with their parents and they just disappeared. Their dad was an ex-Navy Seal and we enlisted his help on this one.”

“Yeah, it’s a good thing he helped us or Frank could have ended up visiting Davy Jones’ locker.”

“No thanks to you, Jonesy. You were off enjoying the fun and sun in Panama when that happened.”

“Fun and sun? Is that what you call it. I felt like I was at a Rambo wannabe convention.”

“Anyway, the case was a tough one, especially going under cover.”

“It wasn’t that bad. We had to blend in with the musicians on the cruise ship. It was kind of fun.”

“Maybe for you. At any rate, this was the fifth in a line of high-profile cases, but this one was special because of the age of the victims and the ruthlessness of the bad guys.”

“Gents, it’s been fun, but we’re about out of time. I sincerely hope you can find those little girls. Any last words for our listeners?”

“Cases like the one we are currently on are becoming a specialty. If despicable people want to victimize defenseless members of my community, they’re going to pay a price. Jonesy and I won’t let it stand. We will come after you and we will catch you. You might want to do yourself a favor and turn yourself it. It will be the easier way out, trust me.”

“Lisa, thanks for having us. All kidding aside, Frank is right. Mess with our people and we will mess with you. Thanks for letting us put the word out.”

“Check out the entire Frank Rozzani Detective Series. I’ll include all the contact data on the website. I’m always looking for guests, so if you’d like to have a character on Lisa Burton Radio, drop me a line.

“Help me keep the lights on around here by using the sharing links on Craig’s blog. I’ll appreciate it, and I’m sure Frank and Jonesy would too. For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

Frankly Speaking (Book 1)

http://getbook.at/FranklySpeaking

 

Let Me Be Frank (Book 2)

http://getbook.at/LetMeBeFrank

 

Frank Incensed (Book 3)

http://getbook.at/FrankIncensed

 

Frankly My Dear (Book 4)

http://getbook.at/FranklyMyDear

 

Frank Immersed (Book 5)

http://mybook.to/FrankImmersed

Follow Don at the following locations:

Web Site:

www.donmassenzio.com

 

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Amazon Author Page

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Galactic Cruise Lines, on Lisa Burton Radio

Hold on to your hats everyone. You've found Lisa Burton Radio, the only show in the universe that interviews the characters from the books you love. I'm your host, Lisa the robot girl, and with me in the studio today is Henri, the Executive Chef on Galactic Cruise Lines' ship the SS Malpais.

What you can't see, is that Henri is an Alturan. He's nearly seven feet tall, and is a cephalopod type lifeform. I'm talking tentacles all over the place, and three eye-stalks. We've been enjoying a cup of Alturan tea before the broadcast, and he's really an interesting person. “Welcome to the show, Henri.”

“Hello, Lisa. It’s good to be here. I hope you enjoyed the Bascula tea I brought. It can cause hallucinations in some species, but not Alturans. I hope it doesn’t affect you adversely.”

“Oh, don't worry about that. I don't think robot girls can get hallucinations. Now, my bio says that one of your best friends is in security for the cruise line, and that he's an Elf. I find that fascinating. How did you two meet?”

“Baudwin Llewellyn isn’t just in security, he’s Galactic Cruise Lines Chief Sleuthhound. He’s a top notch investigator. We’ve been friends for years. I’m not sure I can even remember exactly where we met. I think some friends introduced us when we were all hanging out at a suit fighting match.”

“That sounds fascinating, Henri. What's a suit fighting competition, and do you hold those on the ship too?”

“We haven’t yet hosted a suit fighting competition on the Malpais, but I may suggest that to Kat when I get back to the ship. Suit fighting features two competitors remotely controlling robots that fight each other. It used to be popular mostly with young men in the robotics community, but recently Retired General Marta Aymar, the wife of Prince Lucien of the Ventos Prime elves, made it to the league finals. Since then, the sport has become much more popular and has attracted a lot of young female fans and participants.”

“That's terrible. Those poor robots. You did get the memo that say's I'm a robot didn't you?”

“I don't believe those robots are sentient like you. They are merely remote controlled equipment.”

“Alright, back to the interview. My bio says you met in the Elf Marines, an organization similar to the French Foreign Legion. Are you sure you don't remember?”

“As I said, Chief Llewellyn and I have been friends a long time. Did you have questions about what it’s like to be a chef on a cruise ship?”

“Sorry, Henri. Let me make it up to you with this Nutribar. I picked up the anchovy flavor, I hope it's alright.”

“Thanks Lisa. We Alturans love our nutribars. This is delicious.”

“There, all better. Well if it wasn't the Elf Marines, maybe you met Chief Llewellyn at Zed23, during your spy days.”

“Zed23. Right. Do I look like James Bond to you? I’m a chef not a spy, definitely not a spy. I’m famous for my wombat stew and triple chocolate cake. Those are two of the most popular dishes on the Malpais.”

“That's part of what makes you so interesting. With all your diverse background, you still had the time to work up a five star recipe for wombat stew. I'd think wombats are hard to come by in space.”

“Not really. I can use either Mathusian or Malturan wombats in my stew. I’m not sure which is better. I’m happy to use either. Well truth be told I’m happy cooking. It doesn’t matter what or where.”

“Every boy needs a hobby, and it looks like you found a way to make yours pay the bills. Here, have another Nutribar and tell us about the murders that occurred aboard the Malpais.”

“It is dreadful to think about, isn’t it? Sometimes people die on the ship just because their time has come, but if it was murder then that’s a whole different level of awful. I’m not aware of any incidents like that on the Malpais.”

“You might find this interesting, but I reached out to Baldwin Llewelyn and Ren Listripan, both deeply involved in cruise line security, and they don't seem to know anything about murders on the Malpais either. Somehow, these passengers turned up dead, but that seems to be the only available fact.”

“The Malpais has been hosting these competition cruises this year. They’ve been great fun. We had a ballroom dance one, an acapella singing one, and my favorite the baking competition. We’ve had some excitement during the competitions, but everyone has enjoyed them. Of course, not everyone agrees on who should win in any competition. I certainly had my favorites during the baking, but you know what they say, one species’ dessert is another’s poison.”

“When I spoke with Baudwin Llewellyn he mentioned that you’re cooking all the food for his upcoming wedding. He’s marrying the Malpais’ associate cruise director Kat Mitchell, right?”

“That's right, Lisa. I’m very excited. Both Baudwin and Kat are dear friends and I’m glad to play a role in their bonding.”

“I’ve heard that there will be royalty at the wedding.”

“General Royce Aymar of the EMEF is going to be Baudwin’s best elf for the ceremony and his wife is Queen Losira. It should be a wonderful celebration.”

“It's been an honor having you here, Henri. Let's have another cup of that wonderful tea, and maybe another Nutribar. Any last thoughts for our listeners?”

“Being a chef on a Galactic Cruise Lines ship is exciting. I’ve made good friends on the ship and I enjoy cooking for so many different species.”

“Henri is a recurring character in Jo Carey’s Galactic Cruise Lines series.

“Don't forget to click those sharing links on your way out. I know Henri will appreciate it, and you will too when your character appears on a future Lisa Burton Radio.”

***

Galactic Cruise Lines – This series is basically the Love Boat in space. Set on a galactic cruise line spaceship, this series will follow assistant cruise director Kat Mitchell and other crew members, like Alturan Chef Henri, as they travel the League of Planetary Systems on themed cruises where murder is afoot (or a tentacle, or a paw…) Cruises feature various competitions in the style of Earth reality shows circa 2005.
Category: Space Cozy Mystery

Jo Carey writes faced-paced, character-driven stories in a variety of genres from medical thrillers to space operas and cozy mysteries. Her novels are action-packed tales that often feature strong female leads surrounded by plenty of hunky male heroes. Jo's stories always include healthy doses of humor and romance.

Quote from Jo: “I write what I like to read–stories with happy endings and appealing heroes and heroines.”

Some of Jo's books are set in the League of Planetary Systems, a universe created by Frank and Jo Carey as the setting for many of their books. Each Book in the League can be read as a standalone novel, but if you'd like to read all of the LPS books in order you can find the sequence at

 

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Naked Alliances on Lisa Burton Radio

Coming at you with 1.21 jigawatts of power, you’ve discovered Lisa Burton Radio. The only show where we interview the characters that you love to read about. I’m Lisa Burton, the robot girl, and I’m waiting for my guest Brandi to show up.

She’s out in the meadow, following her cellphone somewhere. I know the old Airstream is in a forest, but come on! I’ll just throw the switch for the loudspeaker. “Hey, Brandi, over here.” That seems to have gotten her attention.

“Damn that’s loud! So sorry I’m late. I play Pokemon Go. There was a Snorlax in my nearby sightings and I was trying to track him. I think I stepped in some yak splat. Ewww, it’s all over my new shoes.”

“Welcome to the show, Brandi. Here’s some paper towels to clean that up.”

“Thank you. Man, this place is hard to find. It’s beautiful up here and so serene, but you’re about as far out as Robin Williams. Brought some fresh Florida produce for Bunny.”

“That’s so nice of you. Would you like to meet him after the show?”

“I would. I adore soft, furry, cuddly animals.”

“Our sponsor today is Naked Alliances, by S. K. Nicholls. Craig and I have both read this book and enjoyed it immensely. When we first meet you, you’ve just rescued a Vietnamese girl, Cara Kieu, and are running from her pursuers. What can you tell us about that?”

“I didn’t know Cara Kieu prior to that night. I just saw a girl in trouble and tried to help her. The fact that men were chasing after us with guns caused us to run into the street. That’s where we literally ran into Richard Noggin, P.I. (aka Dick Head, P.I.) I’m not saying he’s not a gentleman, but when he dumped us off on the corner in front of the Parliament House and raced away, I had my doubts.”

“Google tells me The Parliament House is a gay nightclub. How does one wind up there?”

“It’s more than a gay nightclub, it’s an entire resort complex with hotel suites, swimming pool, seven nightclubs that all have different themes, a full service restaurant and the Footlight Theater. I perform at the theater. We have comedy shows for the general public and grand dance events. I’m a showgirl and love dressing up in glimmering costumes to perform for the crowds. Entertaining is not all that I do well. I was an Explosives Ordinance Disposal Specialist in the U.S. Army for five years, followed by a brief stint as a cop. I learned a great deal in those roles, but had a bad experience as a cop that left me with a morbid fear of guns. After that, I hooked up with my bestie, Gloria, she’s a female impersonator, and we came to Florida. Gloria offered me so much support when I was transitioning from Brandon to Brandi.”

“So you’re in a nice dress, killer heels, and running through the Florida night and cross paths with Richard Noggin, Private Eye. Tell us a little about Richard.”

“Richard is a nice man, chivalrous to a degree, reserved but open-,minded, and a bit of a loner.  He prefers to work alone, or at least he used to. He’s a gambling man, but not the luckiest card in the deck. He’s kinda cute, but we could never be more than friends with his attitude. That night I wanted Richard to take Cara because I had a show to do, but he had to meet with the former mayor about some big important case. Priorities, you know. I was worried about the girl, but I had priorities too. Richard finally came over the next night and took Cara somewhere, but I took matters into my own hands to find out who was after us and went looking in Little Saigon for clues. Honestly, that didn’t turn out too well either. Both Cara and I were abducted. In the end, Richard came for us, but again, he dumped us… at a freakin’ nudist resort! At least nobody was walking around with a concealed weapon there. Richard focused on the cold case murder and sort of left Cara and I to our own devices.”

“Brandi, it looks like we have a call. Do you mind some questions from our listeners?”

“Sure, I’m fine with that.”

“Hello, caller, you’re on the air with Lisa and Brandi.”

“This is Richard. Where the hell are you?”

“I-da-ho.”

“I know you are, so where are you?”

“Smart ass. Idaho, the State where Lisa Burton lives.”

“I sent you to Vegas to check on some leads about my friend Rex and the fact that he was either murdered or committed suicide, and you end up in Idaho chatting on a radio show with a friend. I can’t trust you to get this job done. Maybe you’re not cut out for this kind of work.”

“I did everything you asked me to do in Vegas and then some, with time to spare.”

“Well, get yourself home pronto. We have one dead Seminole and another is missing. I’d like to get to him before the alligators do.”

“I wish I could buy you for what you are worth and sell you for what you think you are worth. Good-bye!”

“Wow, was that your boss?”

“He likes to think he’s my boss. Actually, we’re supposed to be partners, but you know men. They’re like panty hose. Either they run, they cling, or they don’t fit right in the crotch. Richard is having trouble accepting my position. It’s bad enough I used to be man. Richard sees me as a woman, and that’s a good thing, in some ways, but he also has this attitude that I’m somehow supposed to be subservient. There is a rigid idea of what is feminine or masculine and our almost pathological need to classify people by those ideas. It’s well known that the plastic sign of a stick man or stick woman on bathroom doors is like kryptonite to criminals and has kept us safe for 10,000 years.”

“I get it. People find out I’m a robot and they think I’m either; out to take over the world, bound to Asimov’s Laws of robotics like some kind of servant, or a sex toy of some kind. Being a robot is what I am, but it’s not who I am. Know what I mean?”

“Honey, I do. Not only am I transgendered, but I’m biracial. Prejudice is something I’ve dealt with all my life.”

“You know, I was in Florida recently. I knew we had this interview coming up, and I bought you something.”

“You bought something for me? I know you had some trouble gettin’ outta Florida, but I had no idea you were shopping for me. You shoulda called me! I know all those guys down at the station.”

“That old Army messenger bag isn’t getting it done. I found this cool purse and it seems big enough for most of your stuff. Let’s face it, you need a big bag.”

“Geez, thank you. You’re such the fashionista. I’m still working on my fashion sense. This is just awesome, and SWIM, that’s a big brand name in Florida.”

“Let’s walk over to the cabin and see if Bunny wants an organically grown radish.”

“Let’s do. Thank you for having me here today.”

“For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton. Our sponsor today has been The Naked Alliance, by S. K. Nicholls. I’ll load all the important details on the blog.”

***

When a young immigrant woman and an exotic dancer are fleeing men with guns and have no place to hide, Richard Noggin, P.I., can’t turn his back on them, even if helping them makes him a target.

Richard plans to impress an aspiring politician by taking on a big white-collar case with the potential of getting him off the streets and into air-conditioned offices. Instead, he’s handed a cold case and quickly finds himself sucked into a shadowy world of sex, secrets and…murder.

Marked for a bullet and stretched thin by his investigations, he reluctantly teams up with the unlikely, brassy custodian of the young woman on the run. With bodies piling up, they go undercover in a nudist resort, determined to catch the killer and bring down the mastermind of the Alliance before someone else dies.

From the dark corners of Orlando’s Little Saigon, to the sunny exposure of Leisure Lagoon, the Naked Eye juggles to keep his balls in the air.

Endorsements:

“Richard Noggin and his trusty sidekick, expose the bare truth about a ten-year-old murder and get to the bottom of an ugly human trafficking scheme. With tight prose and a cast of unforgettable characters, Naked Alliances doesn’t let up until you’ve seen it all!” ~ Tim Baker, author of Eyewitness Blues.

“Interesting settings, believable characters, and a wonderful plot earn this one five stars from me.” ~ C.S. Boyack, author of Will O’ the Wisp.

“Naked Alliances offers a rollicking good time, a dose of evil, a murder to solve, and characters you want to get to know better. All in a well-written package that begs for more stories to come.” ~ Mark Paxson, author of One Night in Bridgeport

“Gritty, heart pounding and wickedly amusing!” ~ Ionia Froment, Top Amazon Reviewer

Amazon Link: http://tinyurl.com/h5akhd9

Twitter: @sknicholls1

Blog: https://sknicholls.wordpress.com/

S.K. Nicholls’ family owns and operates one of the oldest and largest nudist resorts in the nation located in Central Florida, Cypress Cove. Her experience gives her a deep understanding of the lifestyle choice and how it is extremely different from the sex industry, yet harbors clandestine elements of intrigue and fascination. Social issues are at the forefront of her writing. A former sexual assault nurse examiner, she has a special interest in the subject matter of sex-trafficking.

Accused of being the class clown and a daydreamer as a child, life got complicated and she developed a serious side, but never forgot how important it is to laugh. Heinous crimes are highlighted with humor providing entertainment and creating a light crime read with the Naked Eye Series. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, Florida Writers Association, and Writers of Central Florida…or Thereabouts.

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Geocaching with a side of murder

Regular readers will recognize D. S. Nelson, who’s been here many times before. She’s the author of the Blake Hetherington mysteries, which is a series of cozy mysteries. I’ve read a couple of these, and thoroughly enjoyed them. I think you will too. DS is having coffee with Delilah, one of her characters in this scene.

‘Geocaching is treasure-hunting for the cool.’ Delilah said, scraping the last of her breakfast onto her fork.

We were sitting in the Food Shangri La Cafe. I was nursing a cup of chicory coffee, not sure if I was enjoying it our not. Without caffeine, Delilah’s rapid conversation can be hard to keep up with.

‘And if I’m not a geocacher I’m a muggle, is that right?’ I replied.

‘Right,’ Delilah said eating the last of her Eggs Shangri La and reaching down beside her chair to rummage in her bag.

The eggs did look good. I was about to order some myself but before I could catch Carla Osman’s eye, Delilah pushed a leaflet across the table towards me.

‘Here. This’ll tell you the basics,’ she tapped at it and I looked down at the leaflet: ‘A Guide To Geocaching In Tuesbury’.

 

She tutted at me. ‘You’d think as Blake’s amanuensis you’d know more about this stuff DS!’

‘Blake keeps me pretty busy,’ I was irritated. ‘I’m on my way to the library to get some books out, but you called and wanted to meet for coffee.’

‘No need to get huffy,’ Delilah smirked at me, she knows how to wind me up. ‘This’ll save you some time, then. I better get back over the allotment. I want to check on my strawberries.’

Relinquishing a smile, I replied, ‘See ya later. Thanks for leaflet.’

‘You’re welcome. Thanks for breakfast.’

I rolled my eyes. I was picking up the bill again then.

The wind chimes jangled as Delilah left the cafe, unhooked her Jack Russell, Bertie’s lead from the peg outside and crossed the road to the allotments.

Delilah was great at keeping an investigation going when Blake got cold feet but boy could she be smug.

I took another sip of the bitter coffee, wincing at the taste.

‘Urgg’.

It was an involuntary noise that did not go unnoticed by the cafe proprietor. I busied myself reading the leaflet. There was a lot I still had to learn about geocaching. Delilah’s right, as Blake’s author it was high time I tried geocaching and Tuesbury would be the perfect place for treasure hunting.

To find out more about geocaching in Tuesbury and help the next Blake Hetherington mystery become a reality go to: http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/a-deadly-orientation/

***

Bio: D S Nelson is a writer of murder, mystery and intrigue. She lives in a quixotic village in the South Downs, UK, surrounded by plenty of inspiration for her novels. Her introduction to murder came from Agatha Christie. Her inquisitive Miss Marple of St Mary Mead and very Belgian Poirot with his ‘little grey cells’, captured her imagination from a young age. With a passion for the crime genre, in particular detective fiction, D S Nelson’s writing includes cosy crime novels, novelettes and short stories. She is often inspired by the world around her, nature, history and of course people. She is currently working on the Blake Hetherington mystery series, the first six of which are now available on Kindle with novels in the series also available in paperback.

Amazon author page

Website

Twitter: @WriterDSNelson

Facebook: WriterDSNelson

Instagram: WriterDSNelson

Note from Craig: Delilah Delibes appeared on the very first ever episode of Lisa Burton Radio. Maybe you want to learn even more about her, and the books of D. S. Nelson.

Make sure you follow her links. We are doing a blog swap today I’m talking about the inspiration behind one of my short stories on her blog.

 

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When my brain gets really really tired

I must be tired, I used two horrible modifiers in the title. Even when I'm tired, Lorelei the Muse won't leave me alone. She just keeps pushing. This came to me after my wife started watching the first Transformers movie. I went to the kitchen for a glass of water, and noticed the cover of her People Magazine.

It's the story I could never finish, or publish. It's just an example of what happens inside my tired brain. This is what you get when you take fatigue, add a science fiction adventure movie, an old photograph, and water.

***

I awoke to a low throbbing base sound, and crossed the bedroom to look out the window. It came from the barn out back.

A million stars lit the nighttime sky. Everything looked pretty peaceful. I dropped my old felt hat on my head, then plunked a pair of buckshot rounds into my shotgun before stepping outside.

The barn expanded and contracted in time with the noise. It was as if the barn was breathing, like some kind of wounded animal.

The sound of helicopters overshadowed the noise from the barn. I crossed the yard to find out what was happening.

The trio of helicopters whooshed overhead, and I had to hold my hat down as they started landing in my pasture.

A motorcycle sped down the road toward me. It slid sideways and stopped feet from where I was standing. The rider's platinum blonde ponytail swung forward as she skidded. She wore skin tight black leather from head to toe, with a black leather jacket over the top.

This woman was gorgeous. She stepped across the bike, and walked up to me. “Stand down, Sir.” Reaching inside her jacket, she flashed an I.D. card. “JonBenet Ramsey, Special Operations. We'll take it from here.”

***

It's not socially acceptable. I get that. It's just that my brain rarely ever stops. I suppose having thoughts like this isn't horrible in itself. It certainly isn't as bad as People Magazine plastering her image on their magazine to move copies.

I'm just talking about her. I'm not trying to sell something based upon her. What if she lived, but was taken away? Maybe this is my denial that someone would harm a little kid, but such things really happen.

I checked. She'd be twenty-six now if she had lived. It doesn't seem that long ago.

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Wings of Mayhem, on Lisa Burton Radio

Welcome to another addition of Lisa Burton Radio, the show where I interview the characters from the stories you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl.

In the studio with me today is Shawnee Daniels, a Computer Forensics Specialist at the Revere Police Department. “Welcome to the show, Shawnee.”

“Hey, Lisa. Whassup?”

“I think anything having to do with computers is awesome. What kind of evidence do you collect? Is it financial, private messages, or what?”

“Anything to do with cyber crimes…pictures for the metadata, bank records, all social media information, including private messages, phone numbers, IP addresses, pretty much anything that relates to the crime we’re investigating. We work a lot of fraud cases in my unit.”

“I think that’s fascinating, but our listeners might be more interested in your nightlife. Why don’t you tell us about your secret double life.”

“I can’t stand to see rich assholes ripping off innocent folks, so I use my skills as a cat burglar to recoup the funds. Minus my fee, of course. Wait. This isn’t live, right? Oh, man, if Lieutenant Holt finds out I broke into… So, you’re a robot, eh? How’s that work, exactly?”

“How does what work?”

“Y’know, the whole robot thing you got goin’ on there.”

“Let’s get back to your interview, shall we?”

“I plead the fifth, Your Honor.”

“Huh?”

“If we’re live, there’s no way in hell I’m talkin’. I should’ve never come. Damn you, Nay!”

“Did I say live? I meant—”

“Hang on. Why is that red light on?”

“Oh, that? That’s just…”

“I am two seconds away from hopping over this desk. If I were you, I’d choose my words carefully.”

“Okay, okay, we’re on the air. Relax.”

“Excuse me? I know you didn’t just tell me to relax. Unless, of course, you want that skanky dress up around your neck.”

<Squeerooooooooo. Clunk>

“Now you can just come right through it. Wouldn’t want you to snag that skin-tight black fetish-thing you’re wearing.”

“What the—? You just tore a metal table in half.”

“Yeah, turns out robot girls are pretty strong. Wanna continue the interview?”

“I’m in it now, blondie. You just better watch your tone. I’m not someone you wanna mess with. As it is, you’re wearing my last nerve thin. The only reason I agreed to this damn interview was for Nadine.”

“I’m sorry.”

“Whatever. Let’s just get through this. Next question?”

“Right. So, is this kind of like Robin Hood? Do you spread the goodies around, or fence it and keep the money?”

“Spread it around? Did your writer leave a few screws loose, or what? That’s a surefire way to get caught. Been there, done that, got the scars to prove it. I wouldn’t call myself Robin Hood, either. I mean, c’mon, that guy didn’t have half the skills I do.”

“To be honest, I’d have a hard time parting with nice jewelry myself. You must have some adventures to share with us.”

“You got me there. I am a sucker for a good watch. Never could pass one up.

“Adventures? Umm, yeah, if you call being stalked by a serial killer an “adventure.” Outrunning a pack of hungry Dobies was no picnic, either. I swear, it’s like all the dogs in Bear Clave Estates crave cat for their midnight snack.

“Anyway, Jack Delsin, this dude that’s chasing me now, is one sick pup, lemme tell ya. So, yeah, I might’ve broken into his place. “Might’ve” being the key word there. I’m not admitting to anything. For shits and giggles, let’s say I did.

“He’s got these weird charcoal drawings on his wall. Course, he also has garden gnomes, which might explain his taste in decorating skills. Garden gnomes, is there nothing uglier?”

“You’ve never seen real gnomes.”

“Excuse me? Anyway…the media calls him The Creator. No idea why. Anyone who skins his victims from the neck down, leaving only the face, and spreads open their ribcage to create wings is outta their frickin’ mind. Never mind the black feather that he sticks between two ribs, then poses them in public…at the bus stop, the courthouse, on top of the sign at the entrance to Union Hospital…no place is off-limits. Who does that shit?

“All right, so maybe it wasn’t my best idea to swipe the cool wooden puzzle box from his guest room. But how was I supposed to know it was his trophy box?”

“This sounds kind of like the Blood Eagle torture of the Vikings. Is that what he’s doing?”

“No clue what the Vikings did. Where’d you come up with that one? Nay has me talkin’ to robot girl over here. Fate’s a cruel bitch.”

“My writer gave me all kinds of cool research capability.”

“Good for you. I’m sure he’s so proud.”

“You sound a little…I don’t know…bitter.”

“Bitter? You wanna try that again, robot girl?”

“I’d appreciate it if you’d refer to me by my name.”

“Whatever you say, robot girl. I am gonna kill Nadine when I get home.”

“So, what’s the sitch now?”

“You talkin’ about Skype or the package Delsin left on my front stoop?”

“I don’t know.”

“You don’t know why you’re prying into my personal shit, is that what you’re tellin’ me?”

“It’s just a radio show. Relax.”

“That’s it! Let’s go. Take your best shot.”

“I don’t want to fight you. I’m just trying to interview you.”

“Oh. Right. Can you repeat the question, please?”

“What’s happening now?”

“Y’mean, with Delsin?”

“Sure.”

“Nay doesn’t know this, but he keeps tryin’ to Skype with me. Wait. You said this isn’t live, right?”

“Umm, right.”

“Okay, cool. So, Delsin’s all over me, sending me packages, the Skype calls, the eerie symbols and shit he puts on my computer screen. How much can one person take?

“Scratch that. Preachin’ to the choir here. How could I forget? Nay has me talkin’ to a frickin’ robot.”

“Did you just roll your eyes?”

“What?”

“You rolled your eyes at me.”

“No I didn’t.”

“Do you have something against robots?”

“You’re serious.”

“Yes, very.”

“Look. Before you go all Glenn Close on my ass, you should probably take a breath.”

“Why, I never!”

“I’m sure you haven’t.”

“Ms. Daniels—”

“Ooh. She’s using my last name. I’m so scared.”

“Let’s just continue the interview. The quicker we get this done, the quicker we’ll never have to see each other again.”

“Works for me.”

“Where were we? Ah, yes, the Skype calls. What is Jack Delsin threatening to do?”

“You’re a little slow, aren’tcha? What do you think he’s threatening to do? He’s a serial killer! Honestly, why do I waste my breath? You and Nadine are perfect for each other. Need a best friend? You probably don’t swear either. Course, you can’t be as bad as her. She’ll mangle the English language rather than—perish the thought—utter a phrase that she can’t repeat in front of Sesame Street’s target audience. Lord, give me strength.”

“Let me check my notes. This is one of the strangest interviews I’ve ever conducted.”

“You wrote this shit down?”

“No. I have perfect recall.”

“Well, la-de-da. Aren’t we full of ourselves.”

“So why don’t you just give the box back?”

“Don’t you think I would if I could? I can’t find the damn thing. When I escaped Delsin’s house it must’ve fallen out of my backpack. Oh, man, if I don’t find it soon, God only knows what he’ll do next.”

“Then why not call the cops?”

“You’re kiddin’, right? What part of cat burglar don’t you understand? Sure, I work at the Revere Police Department, but if Lieutenant Holt ever finds out about my after-hour activities, I’ll be cuffed and stuffed in a heartbeat. Besides, Levaughn would— By the way, he’s picking me up after the show. I suggest you keep your paws to yourself, blondie.

“That was another one of Nadine’s schemes…a cat burglar dating a cop. Though, admittedly, he’s sweeter than cotton candy. Yummy with a capital Yum. Still, I don’t know why I let her talk me into these things. Nay keeps hoping he’ll convert me into an upstanding member of society. How many times do I have to tell her—? Aack. No use wasting brain cells on something I can’t control—aka Nadine Couture.”

“Nadine sounds like a pretty special kind of friend.”

“She’s a pain in the ass, but yeah, I’d kill for her. When Ms. Librarian, Martha Stewart Fan Club President—before the scandal, of course—Good Housekeeping’s Cover Model, gets on one of her tangents about lifestyle choices, I tune her out. I’ll tell ya, if anyone spoke to me the way she does, I’d knock their teeth down their throat. She’s cool, though, even if she did rat me out to Levaughn. Vault for my secrets, what a joke. Okay, so maybe I’m still a little pissed. Can you blame me? I specifically told her— Ah, what’s the use?”

“I don’t see an easy solution for this one. I wish you well, Shawnee.”

“Yeah, I gotta bounce, too. Later, robot girl. I mean, Lisa.”

“Our sponsor today has been Wings of Mayhem, by author Sue Coletta.”

***

Note from Craig, I read this book and absolutely loved it. I think you will too.

A SERIAL KILLER STALKS THE STREETS…

Shawnee Daniels – computer forensics specialist/hacker for RPD by day, cat burglar by night – always believed her “fearlessness rules” mantra would keep her on top and out of jail. When she hacks a confiscated hard drive at the Revere P.D., she focuses on a white-collar criminal accused of embezzlement. To teach him a lesson and recoup the funds she breaks into his massive contemporary in Bear Clave Estates. Jack has even more secrets, deadly secrets, secrets worth killing over.

A CAT BURGLAR PICKS THE WRONG HOUSE TO ROB…

Shawnee thinks she made it out clean until a deadly package arrives at her door soon after. He’s found her. As a glowing eagle taunts her Skype screen, Jack tells her she stole his precious trophy box — and he wants it back!

THEIR LIVES COLLIDE…

When her “helpful” best friend convinces her to date charismatic Detective Levaughn Samuels, her two worlds threaten to implode. Ordinarily Shawnee keeps a firm line between her professions, but dating Levaughn might help her get this psycho off her tail.

AND NOW, NO ONE IS SAFE…

In this lightning-fast-paced psychological thriller of secrets and lies, Shawnee juggles being stalked by a serial killer, dating the lead detective on the case, and tap dancing around her librarian best friend.If she doesn’t find the trophy box, the killer’s coming for her. If she doesn’t expose her secrets

Bio: Member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and International Thriller Writers, Sue Coletta is the author of Wings of Mayhem, MARRED, The Rendering, Crime Writer’s Research, and 60 Ways to Murder Your Characters. A multi-published author in numerous anthologies, her forensics articles have appeared in InSinC Quarterly; her flash fiction in OOTG Flash Fiction Offensive and in the highly-anticipated anthology, 100 Voices. In addition to her popular crime resource blog, Sue’s the communications manager for the Serial Killer Project and Forensic Science, and founder of #ACrimeChat on Twitter.

 

 

 

Purchase Links and Social Media:

Wings of Mayhem: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple iTunes, Google Play: http://smarturl.it/WingsofMayhem

Website: www.suecoletta.com — Get The Rendering, a dark flash fiction collection, free when you subscribe to the blog.

Twitter: @SueColetta1

Facebook: www.facebook.com/SueColetta1

 

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