Thursday, May 23, 2019

HARASSMENT MAKES A PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER

Harassment occurs in the work environment. However, it’s often hard to define. 
 
In the psychological #thriller SHE DIDN”T KNOW HER PLACE, Dana Richardson can’t figure out why her new bosses and colleagues at a state #university are so hostile towards her. All the threats are much more than bad management techniques.

Soon, she suspects staff in the university’s #environmental test #lab are falsifying data to help industrial #polluters meet federal and state standards. Her predecessor died in a freak accident after she began to investigate several labs in the university for embezzlement of funds. 

Finally, Dana realizes she must defy the president of the university and risk being fired or face eventually criminal charges for covering for scientific misconduct and fraud in the in the university.

Despite all the #harassment, Dana does get support and maybe romance from an unlikely source. 

Anyone who has been harassed at work will have empathy for Dana; anyone who has not will learn what it feels like to be unsure of the facts. This novel will also give readers an ideas of dilemmas faced by #scientists.

HURRY & BUY: #SALE Kindle marked down form $3.99 to $0.99 until May 25 at: http://www.amzn.com/1979733112

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Does the book title resonates with readers?

#Book titles are important sales tools. Most editors agree on the following statements. 1) #Titles should give a hint about the protagonist, the setting, the theme or the plot of the book. 2) Short titles are best. 3) Titles should catch the reader’s attention. 4) These rules are meant to be broken.

The net result is most writers spend hour ruminating over the title of their next novel. I’m no different. I always name a novel when I start working on a project. Then I rename it at least twice as I write and edit the novel. How about you? Maybe you’ll find my process of titling my adventure novel IGNORE THE PAIN useful or amusing.

I started out with the title Why Does It Hurt So Much? because I wanted the novel to address how individuals differ in their responses to physical and emotional pain. But that title was too long. I’d learned from my experience publicizing another novel Murder: A New Way to Lose Weight that long titles even if they’re funny are hard to fit the title on the spine of the book or in twitters. 

That title also gave no hint to the inner strength of my heroine — Sara Almquist, an epidemiologist and world traveler. Sara is a tough cookie. She knows being a public health consultant in Bolivia, where over 6% of the children before five years of age, won’t be a picnic when she accepts the assignment. The title also didn’t fit a suspense story with lots of action. Sara is chased through the Witches’ Market of La Paz and fights to avoid a trap in the silver mines of Potosí as she helps to capture the drug czar Mazzone, who used to be her neighbor in New Mexico. 

The next title I chose was Dull the Pain. It was short, established pain as recurring theme in the novel, and hinted the heroine was tough. Amazon listed no other book with that title. 

I include tidbits of science in all of my novels and really strive to get the facts correct. Thus, I had Sara learn that laborers in the silver mines of Potosí carry little food or water into the mines. In order to endure the pain caused by thirst, hunger, and heavy exertion at a high altitude (13,000 feet), they chew coca leaves. The active ingredients in coca leaves and its derivative cocaine are not analgesics; they do not dull pain. They are stimulants and help users ignore pain. 

I changed the title from Dull the Pain to IGNORE THE PAIN. 

Now after all my explanations on the title, do you want to read IGNORE THE PAIN? Or would you give it another name?

Why don’t you enter the ebook #GIVEAWAY for a chance win IGNORE THE PAIN at: https://www.amazon.com/ga/p/367493f0856741b2

Sunday, March 24, 2019

TRAVEL TO BOLIVIA BY ARMCHAIR

Tired of winter? Is it time to plan a vacation? Bolivia is fascinating #travel destination with a vibrant #indigenous culture and a turbulent past. Its presidential palace is called the “burned palace” for reason. 

I loved visiting the #Witches’ Market and climbing to the roof of Iglesia de San Franciso in #La Paz (the capital) but the city’s altitude is almost 12,000 feet. I also found it interesting that bags for #coca tea were on the tables of many restaurants along with bags of black and green tea. 

Thus, many Americans may decide an actual trip to Bolivia is too strenuous and dangerous. They may decide they’d rather visit Bolivia with no risks by reading IGNORE THE PAIN.  

In this thriller, a woman scientist couldn't say no when invited to join a public health mission to assess children's health in #Bolivia. Soon someone from her past is chasing her through the Witches' Market of La Paz and on to the silver mines of Potosí. Worst still, she fears her new colleagues, especially the sexy one, are controlled by the coca industry of Bolivia.

Why don’t you visit Bolivia with my woman scientist? You’ll see great sites and learn about the indigenous culture in a way that most casual tourists miss. New #book at: https://www.amazon.com//dp/096002850.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

VACCINATIONS: FACTS & FICTION

Vaccinations are controversial. However, there is no debate scientifically that #vaccines have saved millions of lives.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimated that routine childhood immunizations averted 732,000 premature deaths from vaccine-preventable illnesses among children born in the U.S. during 1994–2013. (Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report [April 25, 2014] Vol 63, No. 16)
This estimate doesn’t consider the lives saved by #vaccinations for flu, hepatitis, etc. in adults or the effect of vaccinations internationally.

There are four main reasons that vaccinations are controversial. One is their development is a complex, expensive process taking sometimes ten to fifteen years. Two, viruses are constantly mutating (changing)and hence causing the need for new or altered viruses. Three, any vaccine can cause side effects. Most are minor (a sore arm, headache, a low-grade fever) and go away in a few day. Serious side effects (a severe allergic reaction) are rare (probably less than 1 in a million) but clinic staff are trained to deal with them. Four, many do not like the way scientists and medical personnel couch their answers with so many “ifs” and “buts.”

Thus, The Flu Is Coming is not only a thriller but also an example of the how a flu vaccine could be developed. It's really two mysteries combined. Will a woman epidemiologist be able to find clues that will help stop the spread of a new, deadly flu virus? And will police be able to maintain of a quarantine of a community exposed to this flu virus after the epidemiologist learns too many secrets about the criminal activities of several residents in the community?

Prescription. Learn more about vaccines and their development. If you don’t like dry, technical jargon, read The Flu Is Coming. You’ll learn a bit and get to enjoy an action-packed thriller. Paper back & Kindle versions at: https://www.amazon.com/Flu-Coming-Science-Traveler/dp/0578423251

Blurb: In The Flu Is Coming, a new type of flu — the Philippine flu — kills nearly half of the residents in an upscale, gated community in less than a week. A quarantine makes those who survive virtual prisoners in their homes.The Centers for Disease Control recruit Sara Almquist, a resident of the community, to apply her skills as an epidemiologist to find ways to limit the spread of the epidemic. As she pries into her neighbors’ lives, she finds promising scientific clues but unfortunately learns too much about several of them.

Friday, February 8, 2019

SALE: RIDDLED WITH CLUES for $0.99

The Kindle version of RIDDLED WITH CLUES is on sale for $0.99 from February 13 to February 20. Here's more about this mystery/thriller set in Albuquerque.

February is the month with Lincoln’s and Washington’s birthdays. A time to remember American history, even the wars and conflicts.

Do you have friends or relatives who served in Vietnam? Maybe you served. Generally, I find many veterans are reticent to talk about their experiences. Thus, I was surprised and pleased when one friend after reading one of my novel asked if I’d like to see his notes from being a medic in the secret war in Laos in the 1960s. 

The notes were fascinating but I write modern thrillers. I turned his notes into clues for a mystery/thriller, RIDDLED WITH CLUES, set at the VA Center in Albuquerque. My friend liked the results. Other veterans said I reflected their impressions of the Vietnam War. Maybe you will too. 

For those too young to remember that conflict, maybe you’ll learn a bit of history. In any case, I think you’ll find the clues are a good way to open a fast-moving modrn thriller.

Here’s a short blurb: A woman is attacked repeatedly after she listens to the strange tale of an undercover drug agent and gets puzzling riddled clues from a homeless veteran in Albuquerque. 
Learn more about the book at: http://www.jlgreger.com.



Saturday, December 22, 2018

Christmas Is Almost Here!

You’re probably in a rush of baking, shopping, and either traveling to homes of relatives or getting your home ready for company. Breathe deeply.  Do something for yourself. Order a book that will take you away from the holiday hubbub. If you order it now, you’ll have it as you clean up (or procrastinate from cleaning up) after the first onslaught of the holidays.

Here’s your escape plan: The Flu Is Coming.

In The Flu Is Coming, a new type of flu — the Philippine flu — kills nearly half of the residents in an upscale, gated community near Albuquerque in less than a week. Those who survive become virtual prisoners in their homes when a quarantine is imposed.

The Centers of Disease Control recruits Sara Almquist, a resident of the community and a scientist, to apply her skills as an epidemiologist to find ways to limit the spread of the epidemic. As she pries into her neighbors’ lives, she finds promising scientific clues. Unfortunately, she also learns too much about several of them and violence ensues when several try to escape the quarantine.

Available in print and ebook at:

Try to relax and have a happy holiday!

If you doubt you’ll have time to read a medical thriller, try short stories (4 -10 pages each). The characters in Other People’s Mothers may remind you of your relatives or make you appreciate your more. 

Available in print and ebook at: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1544895011 





Wednesday, November 14, 2018

BOOKS MAKE GREAT HOLIDAY GIFTS

Books are easy to wrap and ship. They aren't perishable or fattening. You don't need to guess at sizes. Why not give books as gifts during this holiday season?

GOT A DIETER ON YOUR SHOPPING LIST?
She can enjoy a mystery and guess whether an ambitious young doctor or old-timers with buried secrets killed the "diet doctor" in Murder...A Way to Lose Weight. And she'll learn about recent scientific research linking body weight and gut bacteria.
Kindle & paperback at: http://amzn.com/1978377282.
1st prize in the 2016 Public Safety Writers’ Association contest and finalist for a 2016 NM/Arizona Book Award.




WHAT ABOUT THE  HARD-TO-SHOP-FOR GUY?
He can race to solve the mystery faster than police in Riddled with Clues as he interprets riddled messages from homeless veterans. He also will learn a bit of history. The scenes in Laos during the Vietnam War are based on the memories of a New Mexico veteran who was a medic. 
Kindle & paperback at:http://www.amzn.com/1938436237.
Finalist for a 2017 NM/Arizona Book Award.

WHAT ABOUT THOSE WHO LOVE CONSPIRACY THEORIES?
They'll want to know whether a woman was killed to hide the secrets of polluters and an environmental test lab in She Didn’t Know Her Place?
Kindle &  paperback at: http://www.amzn.com/1979733112






WHAT ABOUT THOSE WITH LITTLE TIME TO READ?
May be they'll enjoy short (4-10 pages) stories at bedtime and gain an better appreciation of their parents and grandparents. 
Kindle & paperback at: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1537743813

While you're shopping for everyone else, why not get one or two books for yourself?