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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Paper, Scissors, Death Delivered to My Door Today

The first copies of my new book came today by Fed Ex.

Do you remember the scene in Back to the Future? The dad opens a box and pulls out copies of the book he's written. Well, it's exactly like that. The box (in this case a padded bag) arrives at your door, and you open it with trembling hands.

In my case, you show your dogs what you've done. They were mightily impressed. They're big fans.

Then I called my dear friend Olivia, and I suggested we move our lunch to my husband's store, the Steinway Piano Gallery of St. Louis. I ran by Schnucks (a grocery store, yep, I spelled it right) and bought us salads and a bottle of champagne. When I got to David's store, he gathered all his employees, and he toasted my success.

It was pretty nifty. The folks in the store have helped in all sorts of ways. Gerry Malzone has helped with graphics. Pat Sonnett has helped with mailings. Others have simply been kind enough to ask about my progress.

Then I drove over to the Veterinary Group of Chesterfield to get more dog food, and I couldn't resist bringing along the book, because I thank lots of people there, too.

I read a rant by Robert Randisi about authors whose acknowledgements go on for too long. Maybe Robert doesn't have as many people to thank because he's been at this a long time.

But I sure do.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Promote, Promote, Promote

Okay, we're a month and a half out from my book launch. So how do I fill my days?

Promoting. Sigh. No writing on my most recent work-in-progress unfortunately. Job #1 is selling the heck out of Paper, Scissors, Death before it hits the bookshelves.

Every day I have chores, jobs to do, and emails to answer. Right now I'm working on these projects:

1. A mailing to independent mystery booksellers complete with a special folder for Book Club members. I address my remarks to "Book Club Organizer" and include my excerpt booklet for her to peruse, plus a customized bookmark. There's also a letter to the bookseller with info to help them sell my book--what authors I compare to, info about the coupon, and so on.

2. A letter to go to scrapbook stores, independent ones. My Midnight Ink publicist will put it in a packet and mail it out.

3. My Virtual Blog Tour. I'm filling in the spreadsheet. I have 17 dates in September already. Now I need to finish out the open spots and write the individual posts for each blog

4. My Virtual Tour in the U.K. I'm working with two websites. My book won't be there until November, but we're already thinking up ideas. One website is the hottest UK scrapbooking site. They're planning a mystery weekend in my honor. That should be tons of fun.

5. My latest issue of my ezine. That went to the web guy yesterday. Because my list has more than 4,500 names on it, he has to send it out in shifts so we don't get caught in the spam blocker. the ezine is chock full of freebies and even a contest. To sign up, sign in at my website. Or email me at and put "I want to get your ezine" in the subject line.

6. Details of upcoming events. I log these into That's a great resource. Check it out. Go there and put my name in. You'll see where I'm appearing this fall.

7. Publicity here in St. Louis. The pretty mermaid is an example. She was created as part of an invitation for The World Aquarium and then auctioned off for charity. I'm busily working with various members of the media. I write a thrice-yearly column for the weekly shopper, and I need to work on my next one.

Did I mention I need to make some upgrades on my scrapbooking website?

I must admit, I'm happy doing this. This month I've started to get emails randomly from people who've heard about the book and are excited. That tells me something is working. I'm getting the word out.

I hope the movie is right. I'm building it. I hope they come!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Krkus Review of Paper, Scissors, Death

When her husband is murdered, the only things that keep Kiki Lowenstein sane are scrapbooking, her daughter Anya and, of course, her unauthorized investigation. The Lowenstein marriage was far from ideal. Kiki had suspected her husband was unfaithful. But still her world crumbles when he is found naked and dead in a hotel room and handsome St. Louis County Police Detective Chad Detweiler suspects Kiki of murder. Her wealthy mother-in-law, who's never liked her, refuses to pay anything but Anya's private-school fees when Kiki is forced to sell everything to cover her husband's debts to his business partner. So Kiki, the queen of scrapbooking, takes a full-time job to support Anya and their Great Dane at Time in a Bottle, the store where she buys her supplies. Things go further downhill when Kiki's little rental home is robbed and her mother-in-law uses the alleged danger as an excuse to try to take custody of Anya. Her only comfort is that Detweiler has come to believe in her innocence, even though she is briefly suspected of killing her husband's longtime mistress. Kiki must overcome years of low self-esteem if she's to survive her traumatic experience and unmask the murderer.Kiki's debut, a well-turned cozy with loads of scrapbooking tips, will drive many a like-minded reader to indignation on her behalf.

Publication Date: 9/1/2008 0:00:00
Publisher: Midnight Ink/Llewellyn
Stage: Adult
ISBN: 978-0-7387-1250-5
Author: Slan, Joanna Campbell