Best Book Settings?

I’ve been enjoying this beautiful Spring weather and reflecting on the setting for my work in progress. My current paranormal/dystopian Young Adult book takes place in different parts of Virginia as well as on an island in the Atlantic (if that sounds cryptic, it was meant to {smile} the setting is an integral part of the plot— and I’m more than ready to be completely done with this one so I can share it… but until then, it seems I’m relegated to crypticism) .

Expert Witness was set in sundrenched Florida. The beach scenes were even relaxing to write (well some of them anyway…lol). I’ve posted some of my favorite pictures from Panama City Beach, Florida where the second half of the book took place. I often search for stories to read that are situated in these types of slower-paced beach locales. I’ll admit it. I like to live vicariously through the characters in these remote sandy stretches and pretend I’m breathing in the salty air right there with them.

What types of book settings do you prefer? Books set in large, bustling cities? Futuristic space communities? Historical moments? Dystopian ruins? Tropical getaways?

Expert Witness: Amazon Best Seller in Psychological Fiction and Psychological Thrillers

Expert Witness was featured by several book bloggers and book-related websites in the past week. As word got out, it climbed in Amazon's rankings, and ended up on the bestseller list for both Psychological Fiction and Psychological Thrillers (though, it's truly a romance, with all of the angst wrapped around the characters' developing relationship). Whoop! I think I may have literally done a few cartwheels. And, once again, I am so grateful for your support, because it's the readers and book supporters who have made this happen. <3 

A Romantic Suspense with a Psychological Twist

With a background in psychology and a forensic psychologist as the protagonist in my romantic suspense novel, Expert Witness, I couldn’t resist combining my passion for creative writing with the study of human behavior. Insights I’ve gained through practice materialized in different places throughout the novel.  I thought it’d be fun to do a post with some of these observations, humorous interludes and other psych references listed together. Throughout the book, there are more passages that could also be used in this article, but I made sure to leave out any that could potentially be spoilers. So here goes! Excerpts are below:

“Sometimes, it’s those times that don’t happen often that we think about the most.” ~ Chase


"Jordan, look at me," he said, taking her hand. "You’re not being a coward. Truth be known, you’re handling this situation better than a lot of the people I've dealt with. But it’s okay to be scared. It doesn't make you a weak person if you admit that." ~ Chase


“Hindsight is always twenty-twenty. You can’t live life asking the what-if questions all the time or you’ll find that, somehow, you missed out on the ‘what truly is’ parts.” ~ Mike


Sometimes, learning to be less busy is more difficult than people think. Myself included. You’d think, being a psychologist, I’d practice what I preach, but just because you know what the right thing is to do doesn’t mean you always do it.” ~ Jordan


“I liken it to trying to drive in the rain with the windshield fogged up. Get rid of the fog, and driving becomes easier and a heck of a lot less stressful.” ~ Jordan


"Oh, you're the model therapist. I do something you don’t like and I'm no longer your best friend. What ever happened to unconditional positive regard?" ~ Mike

"All right. You win. You know I have a soft spot for Carl Rogers." ~ Jordan


“You know what this type of intervention you’re suggesting is called? It’s called flooding. By exposing me to my admittedly unrealistic fear, it’s supposed to help me see that nothing bad will happen." ~ Jordan

Writing On

Now that Expert Witness is out, I've been able to dedicate more time to writing again. (Yeah! The fun part...most of the time:) I am currently working on a dystopian, paranormal YA. This novel is different from my previous romantic suspense and, thus far, the change in perspective, approach and content has been enjoyable to write. I’m hoping to have the first draft completed before May if everything else in my life cooperates. I’ll post updates on my progress. Hopefully, this will keep me on schedule, as I’ll want to have some new updates to share ; ). 

For everyone who has purchased the Kindle or paperback edition of Expert Witness, thank you. I really hope you enjoyed Jordan and Chase’s story and maybe even laughed a few times in the midst of it all. For those who have written reviews or rated the book, another huge thank you. I appreciate the time you took to share your opinions and spread the word about my book. I’m so grateful to my readers. These past few months, I’ve been on this winding, bumpy, anxiety-provoking, thrilling ride that shows no signs of becoming predictable any time soon­– and I feel blessed for every minute of it. Thank you for sharing in the experience. 

Newly Released!

I'm excited to announce that Expert Witness is now available for Kindle! To view on Amazon

*The print version will be out later this week as well. 

Below is a trailer for the book and a more detailed synopsis. 


While working as a forensic psychologist, Jordan Clayton has made enemies. Providing expert   testimony in court put her in that position. Except, now, someone wants her dead, and the bigger problem is she has no idea who. Fortunately, her colleagues have a solution. Unfortunately, it involves hiring a bodyguard to protect her until the perpetrator is caught. But he is nothing like she expected. Though she feels physically safer in his presence, emotionally, she feels more at risk than ever before.

 Chase Armstrong has worked as a protection specialist since he left law enforcement. He makes it a point to not ever mix business with pleasure. In his line of work, the two can be a deadly combination. It’s a rule he never breaks—never even bends. Except, now, his latest assignment is challenging his resolve. Rather than the subtle change in routine he was seeking, protecting her is something else entirely. She has him not only exercising every bit of self-control he possesses, but reconsidering his entire perspective on life as well. 

Happy Reading! 


I am happy to provide an update on the upcoming release of my new romantic suspense novel, Expert Witness. I just received the news that Expert Witness was passed over by the Kindle Scout team. In retrospect, I can’t say I have any regrets. I was entered into a playing field with some very talented authors, many of whom had numerous previous publications, and learned quite a bit during the campaign.

And now, on to the important information :) Expert Witness will be undergoing some additional formatting next week. When this step is complete, it will be published on Amazon for purchase. I am hoping to have it out in less than two weeks and, preferably, around one. Not long at all for those of you who have been waiting!

Lastly, I’d like to thank each and every one of you who took the time to read the excerpt from Expert Witness, who suggested it to friends and coworkers and who shared it through social media. I am definitely feeling the love and can’t describe how very grateful I am for the support and encouragement.

More updates to follow as the publication date draws near!

Final Day!

My stomach flips every time I view those two orange words (“last day”) in the bottom left corner of my campaign panel. Has it really been thirty days? The weeks have flown by. I will learn if my novel is chosen for publication by the Kindle Scout team in approximately two weeks or less!

In the meantime, I’ve been reflecting on the process (a hazard of years spent practicing in the mental health and how much I have gained through my participation in the program. The relationships I’ve developed with other authors and readers have been the greatest reward. Every time someone asks me when or where they can read the remainder of Expert Witness (an excerpt from the first couple of chapters is published on the KS website), I can’t believe how fortunate I am to be in this position. Writing has been a lifelong dream of mine. Having the opportunity to participate in the KS program and to reach readers who are interested in my work has made this dream a reality. I couldn’t be more grateful for each moment.

Whether I’m selected or not, Expert Witness will be published. For those of you who are waiting for the remaining chapters—it won’t be too much longer! Jordan and Chase have earned a place in my heart and I hope they will find a place in yours as well. 

Nominate Expert Witness on Amazon's Kindle Scout

*Today is the last day to nominate on Kindle Scout for a chance to receive a free copy of Expert Witness if it is selected for publication by Amazon's Kindle Press. 

Expert Witness & Kindle Scout Campaign

Several days into the Kindle Scout campaign and what a wild ride it has been! I've gotten to know many other fellow author nominees and everyone is very supportive of one another. Thankfully, Expert Witness has been on the Hot and Trending list, which is Scout's list for those books that are nominated more frequently. The Scout program supplies data each morning around 5:15am that summarizes how many hours the novel has been hot and trending (both the day before and the total number of hours) as well as the number of page views. Seventeen new books arrived a few days after the campaign for Expert Witness began, so it is a packed house. 

To nominate EXPERT WITNESS go to: Kindle Scout

For every book you nominate that gets selected, a free copy is provided once the book has been officially published. A great way to stock up your kindle library for free!

Expert Witness is now on Kindle Scout!

I'm excited to announce that Expert Witness is now up for nomination as part of Amazon's Kindle Scout program! 

Click on the link, sign in with your Amazon account information, and select nominate to vote for it: Kindle Scout 

If Expert Witness is selected for publication as part of the Kindle Scout program, then all readers who nominated it will be sent a free copy when it is officially published. 


The Final Stages, Take Two!

Wow. These past two months have been a whirlwind. I gave myself a tight time-frame for revisions, and they are finally complete. Two rigorous rounds of editing are (insert huge sigh of relief here) behind me and my novel has surely benefited (though my brain and body may be a little worse for the wear, considering I took up residence in front of my computer for those I feel like Expert Witness has been sent through a polishing machine and shines brighter as a consequence.  

What's next? I've decided to enter my novel into the Kindle Scout program. Kindle Scout is Amazon's crowd-sourced publishing program for never-before-published novels. Readers are provided with an excerpt from the novels entered and then have the opportunity to vote for the ones they would like to see published. If the nominated book is chosen, the reader will receive a free copy of the book. I've been enjoying the perks of this program for some time and have discovered great new authors this way. 

So, while the idea of hosting a campaign for my novel is a bit overwhelming, I'm excited about the prospect of introducing Expert Witness to the Kindle Scout program.