Tag Archives | Daryl Wood Gerber

Conversations Over Coffee: Daryl Wood Gerber

When it comes to Cozy Mysteries, I have to admit that author Daryl Wood Gerber writes some of my favorite series: The Cheese Shop Mysteries, The French Bistro Series, and the Cookbook Nook Series. (She’s also a great suspense writer, too, with two standalone suspense books!) In her latest foray into the mystery world, Daryl is returning to her Cookbook Nook Series with heroine Jenna Hart. The series is set in a bookstore after my own heart: dedicated to cookbooks, food, and foodie type tomes.

Her sixth book in the series, Pressing the Issue, revolves around a Renaissance Faire, and all the businesses, Ren Faire vendors, and friends new and old are gathered together to make it an enjoyable experience for guests – and a positive business experience for the shops. Just as things seem to be looking great for the wedding of her Best Friend, Bailey’s wedding – a local winery has been chosen as the venue! – Jenna and Bailey discover the owner of the vineyard – and official King of the Faire – has been murdered.

Scattered with twists, red herrings, and delightful recipes, Pressing the Issue leans into relationships, shared experiences, and Jenna’s insatiable desire for the truth. Can Jenna solve the murder without becoming a victim herself?

Daryl took a few moments to catch up with us here at Modern Creative Life to talk about books, writing, and more!

We call this series Conversations Over Coffee because it’s the things I’d ask you if we were sitting across the table from each other over a casual cup of coffee….. so, let’s set the stage: where would you suggest we meet near your current home….and what is your go-to beverage and/or snack were we to meet?

There’s a really nice café called, kid you not, The Nook. Yes, it’s almost the same name as featured in my series (Nook Café). It’s not far from me. I love their omelets, and they make really good lattes. What would you have?

Your next book, Pressing the Issue, is a return to your Cookbook Nook Series after almost two years. How do you re-immerse yourself into the world of Jenna and her friends after taking a break from working with that series?

It was only 19 months, but who’s counting? I was sad that my previous publisher let the series slide, but I made peace with it. Then my fans started clamoring for another book, so I decided to shop this particular story around and landed with Beyond the Page publishing.

As to your question…it’s amazing how getting into the world of a previous cast of characters comes naturally to me.

I liken it to visiting high school friends. You have lots to talk about and you remember everything about them. I have a cheat sheet so I can remember names, family members, and such. Plus I have an outline of the previous book so I read that to refresh my mind about where with I “left off.” Since I was hoping that my initial publisher would pick up this book, the storyline had been roaming through my head for quite a while, and I’d already done a lot of research about the Renaissance Festival.

You write some suspense as well as several cozy and culinary mystery series. How do you decide “what’s next” and which idea deserves your attention?

Good question. Lately I’ve been a bit flummoxed trying to decide. I’ve got a lot of ideas in my head! Will I choose the right one to pursue?

Writing a book takes six months to a year of my life when I include the preparation, outlining, research, writing, and editing (not to mention selling, PR, etc.). I hope I don’t make the wrong decision.

Here’s the dilemma: should I write the next French Bistro Mystery? No. Seeing as I don’t know whether my publisher for the French Bistro Mysteries will pick up the series yet, I’ll table that idea until they alert me.

I have a completed suspense that is being shopped. I’m waiting to hear answers in that regard. If that gets picked up, I’m sure I’ll have to do rewrites at the request of the publisher. In the meantime, I want to write a new suspense. I’ve written a two-page outline and I like it a lot. I wrote a chapter and like the voice.

But how can I start that when my publisher for the Cookbook Nook Mysteries asked if I could write a Christmas-themed book (#7) that will come out this December? I said yes, so—wham—just like that, I have made my decision.  Until June, that’s what I’m focusing on. Then I’ll go back to being flummoxed.

Many of your books – like your Cookbook Nook and French Bistro series – feature lots of delicious food. Why do you think folks love reading about what the characters are cooking and eating? And how do you honor that in both the writing (and the inclusion of recipes in each book)?

Readers have an appetite for good stories, but they also have an appetite to feel the mood and the setting, the angst and the joy. Describing how food looks and tastes as well as describing the preparation of some foods helps readers immerse themselves in the moment. I think the same is true for a reader who enjoys a book that involves knitting or sailing or climbing Mount Everest. If the author has done her homework, the reader will savor the story.

As for the recipes I include in each of my books, I take time to prepare them, taste-test them, and photograph them. Now, mind you, I’m not a professional chef—I worked as a caterer and behind the scenes in a couple of restaurants—so I don’t expect chef-like quality in all that I do, but I strive to do the best I can.

For Pressing the Issue, I attended a Renaissance Fair and took note of all the foods being offered. Then I researched those foods and tried my hand at making a number them, including Cornish pasties and shepherd’s pie. One of my favorites turned out to be Hawker’s Mush, a pancake-style goodie made with spinach, onions, and wild rice and served with a hollandaise sauce. Yum!

What do you know now that you wish you knew at 40 in regard to writing?

Oh, man, am I over 40? Ha! Yes! I wish I’d known how hard it would be to do all the PR required to sell a book.

I wish I’d known that outlining would help me. I only started that about seven years ago when I secured my first series.

I wish I’d known about networking and how important it was to have friends in the business. Luckily, I have a bunch of writing friends now who keep me on track, but to have encouraging writing friends way back when would have helped me over a number of “not good enough” crises.

What I did know and still know is that finding success requires hard work and perseverance. I won an award in high school for “most persevering.” I’m not sure I knew then that I would have to earn that award over and over in my lifetime.

What I also know is that having a furry companion to console me through the rough times is vital. Thank you, Sparky

About the Author: Daryl Wood Gerber

Agatha Award-winning Daryl Wood Gerber writes the brand new French Bistro Mysteries as well as the nationally bestselling Cookbook Nook Mysteries. As Avery Aames, she pens the popular Cheese Shop Mysteries.

Pressing the Issue, the sixth Cookbook Nook Mystery, comes out on February 20th.

A Soufflé of Suspicion the second French Bistro Mystery, comes out in July 2018.

Daryl also writes stand-alone suspense: Day of Secrets and Girl on the Run. Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote.” She loves to cook, and she has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky who keeps her in line!

Connect with Daryl (and her alter ego Avery): Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Daryl on Twitter | Avery on Twitter

Changing It Up to Keep It Fresh by Daryl Wood Gerber

Some days I like to write mystery; other days I like to write suspense. Aren’t they the same, you ask? No. Not at all. My cozy mysteries are much different than my stand-alone suspense novels in tone and theme as well as tempo.

For me, changing it up keeps my writing fresh. However, if I find I’m uninspired by what I’m writing, I move on to another project. On certain days, I’ll write the first page of something brand new to see if I can find the voice.  On other days, I might write a two-page short story or a blog or an article. Or I’ll do a live chat on Facebook looking for inspiration from my fans.

Writing is like exercise. If you do the same exercise every day, your body gets used to the movements and it doesn’t tone. Walk, walk, walk. Boring. Walk, ride, swim, golf, yoga, pilates, run on the beach. Now that sounds like more “fun.”

Oh, sure, when I’m near a deadline, I can press myself to stick with only one project. I will read it and tweak. Read it again and tweak some more. Check for all the words that I’ve repeated—I have a list of over 100 words to search for. Tweak some more. Read it again—aloud. If it’s ready, turn it in.

But when I’m in the muddy middle—the part of a book where I hope the reader will turn the pages fast—I find I can get bogged down. So I pace. I exercise. I bake. I sing. If those activities don’t energize me, I write something else. As a last resort, I slam doors (not too loudly; don’t want to scare my dog Sparky).

When I come back to my material with fresh eyes and enthusiasm for the project, I feel invigorated and ready to rock and roll…or write.

Do you ever feel you need a jumpstart or a change of pace?

About the Author: Daryl Wood Gerber

Agatha Award-winning Daryl Wood Gerber writes the brand new French Bistro Mysteries as well as the nationally bestselling Cookbook Nook Mysteries.  As Avery Aames, she pens the popular Cheese Shop Mysteries.

A Deadly Êclair, the first French Bistro Mystery, comes out November 2017.

Daryl also writes stand-alone suspense: Day of Secrets and Girl on the Run. Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote.” She loves to cook, and she has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky who keeps her in line!

Connect with Daryl (and her alter ego Avery):  FacebookInstagram | Pinterest  Daryl on TwitterAvery on Twitter

Conversations Over Coffee: Pre-Orders, Reviews, & More by Daryl Wood Gerber

I asked a few of my author friends to answer a couple of questions about publishing. Hopefully their answers will enlighten those of you who are, or aspire to be, authors. I think you’ll see a trend.

The authors who participated include (Editor’s Note: Links go to each author’s website) :

Why are pre-orders important? 

Jenn: Probably, there is a very specific answer that I’m unaware of, but I think they’re important because publishers track your sales and all pre-orders get counted up the week that the book goes on sale. Big numbers mean your publisher will pay attention and your books will get better placement, bigger print runs, more publicity – basically you’ll stay employed!

Kaye: Because they are sales, and sales mean income. If you’re with a large publisher, they can help to push your visibility for them.

Lucy aka Roberta: Pre-orders demonstrate to the publisher that the book will have an audience, and that is a good thing, as they are more likely to get behind it with their own publicity.

Hannah: I like to say that pre-ordering your book is akin to the importance of sales taken at the box office for the opening weekend of a Hollywood movie. Pre-ordering a book creates buzz and hopefully shows the publisher that readers are eager to buy your book i.e. is the print run big enough for the demand? The other thing, too, is that if the publisher believes your new book is going to be popular, they will want more in the series.

Krista: Most authors dream of making bestseller lists, and pre-orders can give you the boost you need. Pre-orders count as sales during the release week when a book usually has the most sales. Add pre-sales and first week sales together, and that week is your best chance of selling enough books to make a bestseller list. In addition, pre-orders tell bookstores how a book might sell. If there are a lot of pre-orders, it signals an interest in the book to bookstores and book chains. They may even increase the number of books they order to accommodate the interest in the book. And when bookstores increase their orders, it can even kick your book into a second printing, which will make the author and the publisher very happy. It doesn’t stop there. If you have a lot of pre-orders and a second printing is necessary, your publisher will take note and it can have an impact on how your publisher treats your next book.

Some retailers will use a book to draw customers by lowering the price. I see this a lot with Walmart. Retailers have bots that search online prices so they can match or beat them. I’m only guessing, but if your book is getting a lot of pre-orders, it will be a more attractive book to discount, which means more sales.

Daryl: I can’t state it better than what my pals have stated. I believe pre-orders help bookstores know what is hot and what is not. They are all “sales” in the long-run, so they help those first week’s numbers, but the buzz in the industry comes from pre-sales.

Why are reviews important? 

Kaye: Because many readers rely on reviews. This is more important if your books are not in bookstores since browsers can’t pick up the novel and leaf through it.

Lucy aka Roberta: Reviews help potential readers and librarians and bookstores decide to give the book a try!

Hannah: To be honest, I have mixed feelings about reviews.  Five star reviews (especially on Amazon) do something exciting with the algorithms meaning that your book pops up as a must-read. Starred reviews in Kirkus, Publishers Weekly and Library Journal are highly coveted. But others … well … so much depends on the source.

Jenn: This I have to answer as a librarian. Bottom line: reviews tell readers whether they’ll like the book or not. Even a bad review will get me to buy. For example, if the reviewer hates something – quirky characters or a small town setting – that I love, their review will likely make me buy the book. Also, the more reviews a book gets, the more attention people will pay to it. Win-win.

Krista: I do a lot of shopping online (don’t we all?). And I put a lot of weight on reviews. This isn’t rocket science. If I’m interested in a dress and everyone has given it one star, I’m going to think there’s something wrong with the fit or the fabric. When I order cat food, I look for five-star reviews. Everyone knows how finicky cats are. If everyone’s cats like it, maybe my picky puss will, too. Of course, everything is subjective. I may love a book that someone else dislikes. I think it’s trickier to rely on reviews of books because tastes in books vary widely. Having said the obvious, I’ll now go into the rocket science part of the importance of reviews. Amazon sells more books than anyone. Their algorithms are not a mystery. There are plenty of articles about them and most mention that the number of reviews impact ranking. I’m told (and my experience seems to be consistent with this), that the more reviews a book has, the more advertising the book gets from Amazon. I assume the number of stars plays a role here.

Daryl: I think reviews help readers know what is good and what isn’t. I think some reviewers can be petty, but savvy readers can discern that. My big belief regarding reviews is that the publisher is excited to see what readers are saying about a book – it helps them get excited about a book, especially a new series. In addition, I agree with Krista, that the algorithm that works on many of the online sites, due to reviews, really drives up how that site will promote the book. You know those little suggestions that, for example, Amazon comes up with when you buy a book and you see “people who ordered this book might like this book”  (and then you see a string of mini book covers)? I believe reviews drive those types of marketing tools.

What’s your next project?

Kaye: The Vintage Sweets cozy series set in Fredericksburg TX, from Lyrical Press, 2018

Jenn:  Currently, I’m working on the 9th Library Lover’s Mystery, A FINE DAY FOR MURDER, coming Nov 2018!  DEATH IN THE STACKS comes out this November. And my romance, BARKING UP THE WRONG TREE, is just out.

Krista: I have three projects in progress. For dog and cat lovers, NOT A CREATURE WAS PURRING will be released in November. COLOR ME MURDER, the first book in my new Pen & Ink Mystery series comes out in February. And you can color the cover! Finally, the Domestic Divas will be back in June with THE DIVA COOKS UP A STORM.

Lucy aka Roberta: Next project is the eighth book in the Key West Food Critic mystery series featuring Hayley Snow, 2018.

Hannah: I’m excited about a new series that is set in the Isles of Scilly off the Cornish mainland (Poldark fans will know where this is). I’m also thrilled that the Vicky Hill Mysteries (four books) will be re-released in the USA  by Hatchette in 2018.

Daryl: Next up for me is the first in the French Bistro Mysteries, A Deadly Éclair, which debuts November 7.  In 2018, I will have two new books coming out. The second in the French Bistro Mysteries, Soufflé of Suspicion (July) and the sixth in the Cookbook Nook Mysteries, Pressing the Issue (May).

Wishing you all good writing and great reviews!

About the Author: Daryl Wood Gerber

Agatha Award-winning Daryl Wood Gerber writes the brand new French Bistro Mysteries as well as the nationally bestselling Cookbook Nook Mysteries. As Avery Aames, she pens the popular Cheese Shop Mysteries.

A Deadly Êclair, the first French Bistro Mystery, comes out November 2017.

Daryl also writes stand-alone suspense: Day of Secrets and Girl on the Run. Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote.” She loves to cook, and she has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky who keeps her in line!

Connect with Daryl (and her alter ego Avery): Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Daryl on Twitter | Avery on Twitter

Studio Tour: Daryl Wood Gerber

What is an office? Is it a physical place or a location in one’s mind?

I have an official office in my home and—surprise!—I often write in it. It’s a confined space and keeps me focused. I post things on the walls above my computer that help keep me in the story—maps or notes. It looks a bit chaotic, but it’s not. I know where everything is.

I also have a kitchen office where I do most of the “business” side of my career. Emails, text messages, research, mailings, etc.  I have lists upon lists of to-do chores. I’m not going to share that photo with you. It’s just too messy to behold! Here’s a peek at my book covers, though:

I have an office “outside” in my backyard. I visit when I need to drink in fresh air, admire nature, and listen to my inner thoughts. Occasionally I type!

Roses are in bloom right now. I adore roses! When we lived in Charlotte, NC  (we moved a lot for my husband’s career and finally resettled in Los Angeles, where we first met), I had dozens of roses. They took so much tending that I wasn’t able to write as much. Nowadays just a few bushes seems to satisfy my hunger for tending and tweaking.

There are times when I have an “unofficial” office at Starbuck’s. I go there after I drop my adorable goldendoole Sparky at the groomer’s because the traffic is so clogged (so early in the morning) that I take an hour to simply write while the rest of the world moves past me.

I get some great ideas for characters at Starbuck’s. I also eavesdrop on conversations sometimes, just to hear rhythms of dialogue. I like a decaf café latte. One sugar. I usually bring something sweet that I’ve baked so it’s a real treat time!  [I’m a “foodie” mystery writer; I have to bake!]

Sparky likes to join me in the official office, so he has his “office” pillow and camps out there. He knows the exact moment I’m heading there—when I pour a cup of coffee and grab my computer and a treat for him. Off he runs. So cute! So smart!

Right outside the office is a little nook filled with pretty flowers. When we bought our house in Los Angeles, there was one ugly palm tree in the nook. Yuk!  It took a while, but we were able to create a truly meditative little space. I love to open the door and listen to the birds chirping and the wind chimes tinkling.

What I find difficult when I enter the office is all the other stuff that I have to “do.”

Yes, I’m supposed to write, but oftentimes I’m preparing for a release and I have release party gifts on my couch. I donate baskets to a few charities, too, so I have those baskets “in progress.” Plus I do regular giveaways on my Facebook Author page and on Mystery Lovers Kitchen, where I blog with other foodie-loving mystery authors. Argh.

Looking at the pile of goodies is enough to keep me from ever feeling creative, but PR happens to be part and parcel of selling books. So I remind myself to breathe.

What truly centers me when I enter the official office are all the photos of family on the walls. Everyone in my family has been so supportive of my career. I don’t know what I would do without them. I’m very blessed.

Savor the mystery!

About the Author: Daryl Wood Gerber

Agatha Award-winning and nationally bestselling author DARYL WOOD GERBER ventures into the world of suspense again with her second stand-alone novel, DAY OF SECRETS. Daryl writes the bestselling Cookbook Nook Mysteries and will soon debut the new French Bistro Mysteries. As Avery Aames, she pens the bestselling Cheese Shop Mysteries.

Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote.” She loves to read and cook, and she has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky who keeps her in line!

Connect with Daryl (and her alter ego Avery):  FacebookInstagram | Pinterest  Daryl on TwitterAvery on Twitter

Nourishment by Daryl Wood Gerber

What do we need as people for nourishment? Food.

What do we need as authors for nourishment? Inspiration.

What do we need as fans for nourishment? Good stories.

Life is great; reading makes it better!

These are the three reasons I like writing the Cookbook Nook Mysteries.

The first: they’re about food, so I find myself writing about food, thinking about food, coveting food, and taste-testing recipes.

The latter happens to be the most fun. If my recipes don’t work for me, I won’t share them with my readers. As I pick a theme for my next book and pour over cookbooks searching for ideas for recipes, I find myself nourished at a whole other level.

The second: whenever I do research for my Cookbook Nook mysteries, I find so much inspiration.

Why? Because I gave Jenna’s father, Cary, a fun quirk. He loves memorizing quotes so he can turn to words of inspiration when in need.  He shares this love with Jenna and her pals. As I look for pithy quotes, I find I’m inspired. I’ve printed out many and have posted some around my workspace.

“The primary sign of a well-ordered mind is a man’s ability to remain in one place and linger in his own company.”
–Seneca

[This sign hangs in Cary’s hardware shop.]

“Courage is not the absence of despair; it is, rather, the capacity to move ahead in spite of despair.”
Rollo May

[Shared when Jenna had to move forward with her life.]

“Youth is a wonderful thing. What a crime to waste it on children.”
–George Bernard Shaw

[This one made me laugh!]

The third: Like you, I’m a reader, too. I love a good story. Because of that, I try my best as an author to give you, my fan, a good story!

This means that whenever I’m writing, I try to think like a fan. What would I like to read? Yes, I write about murder because I love a puzzle. But I also write about family. I think that’s why my readers like my books. I delve into these complex relationships. Family matters to my protagonists. Also I explore the depths of friendship because my protagonists have so many “extended” family members.

“People need dreams; there’s as much nourishment in them as food. ”
–Dorothy Gilman

“The nourishment of our souls comes from the smiles of others. ”
Steve Maraboli

“Food brings people together on many different levels. It’s nourishment of the soul and body; it’s truly love. ”
–Giada De Laurentiis

Nourishment. We need it. We crave it. We love it.

My dear readers, may reading good books fill your souls. May reading about food inspire you to cook and/or fill your tummies with tasty treats. Savor the mystery!

So…what nourishes you?

About the Author: Daryl Wood Gerber

DarylWoodGerberbioAgatha Award-winning and bestselling author DARYL WOOD GERBER ventures into the world of suspense with her debut novel, GIRL ON THE RUN.

Daryl also writes the Cookbook Nook Mysteries, and as Avery Aames, she pens the Cheese Shop Mysteries. Her latest Cookbook Nook Mystery: Grilling the Subject publishes August 2, 2016.

Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote”. She has also jumped out of a perfectly good airplane and hitchhiked around Ireland by herself. She loves to read and has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky. Visit Daryl at www.darylwoodgerber.com.

What’s Next? by Daryl Wood Gerber

Lake Tahoe - Setting of Daryl Wood Gerber's Book Girl on the Run

What’s next? What came first? Let’s see. I wrote as a girl. I wrote as a teen. I had teachers that told me not to and that I wasn’t any good, and sadly, I listened. I put aside my writing and became an actress. Luckily, I was pretty good and I worked a lot. I made a decent living. However, along the way, I realized in order to become a star, I needed projects, and the best way to do that was to write one for myself.

Typical me, I got right on it. I took classes. We read each other’s screenplays out loud. I learned. I studied. I wrote "Sparky"romantic comedies as well as thrillers. I was lucky enough to sell a show for which I created the format on television. But I couldn’t entice an agent to love my work and put me on the fast track.

Soon after, I moved out of state for my husband’s career. I couldn’t very well take a meeting (Hollywood speak for have lunch and chat about a project) from 3,000 miles away, so what did I do? I gave up screenwriting and decided I could still write…novels. But which genre? I loved mysteries. I loved thrillers. I wasn’t into rom-com. I decided upon suspense as well as mystery, and I started taking more classes. I joined Sisters in Crime and joined critique groups. I learned a ton!!! Then I submitted to agents. Over and over!! I was the rejection queen in my Sisters in Crime online group, the Guppies.

Finally I landed a contract to write the Cheese Shop Mysteries and that sealed my fate. I became known as a cozy mystery author. I followed that series with the Cookbook Nook Mysteries and narrowed my fate even more. I am currently known as a culinary cozy mystery author. I know cheese; I know cookbooks; I happen to be a cook. Presto!

Daryl Wood Gerber's BookshelvesNow don’t get me wrong, I love what I do. I love my fans. I have a great career.

So why self-publish a suspense novel like GIRL ON THE RUN? Because I want to see if I can.

You see, I still love writing suspense. Love it! And I wondered if my stories would resonate with my fans. I have a pretty darned good fan base! Not to mention, I still have eight suspense/thriller manuscripts on my shelves (or in my computer), and I’m wondering whether there is a future for them.

So far, thanks to my early-reader fans (beta readers) I’m finding that Girl on the Run is resonating. They are delighted with the story. The reviews they have posted on Goodreads (they can’t post on Amazon until the book releases) have been enthusiastic to the max and extremely heartwarming for me.

Does this mean I’ll throw over traditional publishing? No! I really like being published by a reputable publisher. I love working with Berkley Prime Crime. They have been very good to me.

However, when I asked my agent to market Girl on the Run, which had a different title at the time, my publisher and a few other publishers weren’t interested for a couple of reasons.

One: It wasn’t as tightly written as it is now. I rewrote it after the publishers rejected it. I took their notes to heart, and I was brutal to my baby. I cut out 40 pages and a few unnecessary points of view. The result is a tighter read with a faster pace.

Two: I wasn’t a known suspense author. Publishers really don’t like to switch an author’s brand midstream. They want to buy the known commodity. So do fans. I am a cozy mystery author. Period. There will be plenty of my fans that won’t want to read Girl on the Run based on that alone. Sigh.

Caveat to my devoted cozy mystery readers: Girl on the Run does not have any bad language, there is no explicit sex, and most of the crime happens off the page. The story is about Chessa, on the run, in search of the truth. It’s not a cozy but it’s not spooky, scary, or gross, and no children or animals were harmed during the making of this book! There are no recipes included.

So, therefore, as a suspense author, I am starting over.

Lake Tahoe - Setting of "Girl on the Run" by Daryl Wood Gerber

I’m looking for a new audience or trying to expand my current audience. What is my brand? I’m not sure. Maybe it’s: I’m a California girl! I will set all of my thrillers somewhere in California. And I’m a thrill-seeker. I have jumped out of a perfectly good airplane and hitchhiked around Ireland by myself. Definitely not cozy.

But let’s address the initial question: what’s next?

I have a few cozy mystery proposals with publishers right now. We’ll see if they want to sign new contracts. I have to admit I have enjoyed the process of self-publishing. It has been a blast!

And, as I mentioned, I do have more suspense novels written, but I will need to rewrite them, and I will have to be DWG girl on the run ebookeven more brutal than I was with GIRL ON THE RUN. So there is possibly another one to eight self-published suspense novels on the horizon. One a year? We’ll see.

FYI, my virtual assistant has been invaluable in this project! I could not have done it without her. I would have been pulling my hair out. She has taught me the ins and outs of social media and self-publishing. Everyone deserves her as a mentor!

Also coming up: GRILLING THE SUBJECT, the 5th in my Cookbook Nook Mystery series debuts August. I’m writing the 6th in the series, although I don’t have a contract for that yet. If I don’t get one, because who knows what will happen in this volatile publishing world, I’ll self-publish it.

My motto has become “One day at a time, one step at a time.”

Life has changed drastically for me over this past year. I intend to pay attention to what life has to offer, whether in my writing or in my personal life and family life, and I intend to to drink it in: One sip at a time.

Savor the mystery.

About the Author: Daryl Wood Gerber

DarylWoodGerberbioAgatha Award-winning and bestselling author DARYL WOOD GERBER ventures into the world of suspense with her debut novel, GIRL ON THE RUN. Daryl also writes the Cookbook Nook Mysteries, and as Avery Aames, she pens the Cheese Shop Mysteries.

Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote”. She has also jumped out of a perfectly good airplane and hitchhiked around Ireland by herself. She loves to read and has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky. Visit Daryl at www.darylwoodgerber.com.

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