Welcome, Randy. Camp is about hospitality so what’s your preference, coffee, tea, cocoa, wine? The camp fridge is like the Starship Enterprise, you speak it, you get it.
It depends on my mood and the time of day. I don’t do coffee but enjoy the rest. Since it’s a little on the cold side today, let’s go with cocoa.
Hot cocoa it is. Tell us have you ever camped, or as I call what I do, Glamp. If you’re not the camping type. Tell us about your favorite adventure or vacation. What made it special to you.
have to admit I’m not much at camping and haven’t camped for years. I married a woman years ago whose idea of getting away is to be waited on, so Hilton here we come. As for a favorite vacation spot, that would probably be the Eastern Shore of Chesapeake Bay in fall. Breathtaking scenery, just enough of the comforts with being too touristy and some of the best seafood anywhere. It’s also where the inspiration for my series was born.
Sounds beautiful. I love the Chesapeake. The sound of water. The smells, yes even the fishy ones. So, Randy, tell us about your latest project and if there are any things on the horizon.
My most recent work is a ghost story/mystery entitled CRIMSON AT CAPE MAY and book number two in my new Haunted Shores Mysteries series. It was released late this summer—in somewhat crimped style thanks to Covid—and has done fairly well thus far, gaining a national award and 5 star reviews from four different national and international reviewers. I’ve been working hard on book number three which will be a Christmas ghost story mystery. Great fun.
Do you have a tagline? Life Motto? The value of our life can be measured by the impact we have on others. Were their lives better because they intersected with yours.
Oh, I love that. How long did it take you from conception to publication?
That’s a little hard to say. The origin book in the series, BLOOD ON THE CHESAPEAKE, which set the parameters for the series, took about three years from concept to release. Because I had some of the parameters established and some research groundwork already laid, this second entry, CRIMSON, took only about eighteen months.
Are there any mentors, authors, or books, other than yours, you would like to give a shout-out to?
Without a doubt, that would be William Kent Krueger, author of the best selling Cork O’Connor series and winner of the Edgar award. Early on in my writing journey, I was fortunate enough to meet him at a writing conference and he gave me much good advice. We connected several times since and he was very supportive of my writing efforts. He even wrote a blurb for the first book in my series. We still stay in touch.
Literary success means different things to different people. What does that look like to you?
Like a lot of other authors, I’d love to see my name on the best selling list, though I’ve come to realize that may be a bridge too far. I think for me literary success is when I’m able to create a work that transports the reader for a few hours and helps them sees their world a little more clearly. When I receive that kind of response or review from my readers, then I feel I’ve succeeded with my pen—okay with my computer.
Life Hacks for Authors. Do you have any tips, tricks, or anything you specialize in that you would share with others. How you have been managing your life and writing with COVID-19.
During this challenging year, I’ve found writing to be a life and sanity saver. In the darkest days of the pandemic—and yes, that may be now—I found, when I could go into my office and sit down and write, everything else disappears, at least for a while. Since my writing is historical, I could get lost in the times brought to life by my writing. At my desk, I was able to jettison the anxiety, fear and uncertainty of the “real” world and live within the pages of my creation. As a bonus, I was also able to get more writing and revising done then at any time in my life.
Good for you. This affects creative muses differently. I'm glad you are able to embrace the situation and make the best of it.
Now for the fun questions
No matter how far you run, you can never really escape a haunted past.
Darrell Henshaw—teacher, coach, and paranormal sensitive—learned this lesson the hard way. With his job gone and few options, he heads for Cape May to coach a summer football camp. The resort town, with gorgeous beaches, rich history and famous Victorian mansions, might just be the getaway he needs. Only, no one told him Cape May is the most haunted seaport on the East Coast. One resident ghost, the Haunted Bride, stalks Darrell, begging for his help.
He can’t refuse.
Joining forces with Cassie, a street-wise teen and another sensitive, he investigates the bride’s death and discovers her murder is connected to a far greater horror. But can Darrell and Cassie expose those behind the crimes before they end up being the killer’s next victims?
What others are saying
“A haunting, yet fast-paced whodunit that captures the reader’s attention from page one. A wonderful book!”—Alexandra Ivy, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author
“Delivers an unpredictable mystery along with a powerful look at people…Completely engaged by the intrigue.”—Long and Short Reviews
“With both elements of mystery and suspense, readers across genres will find this second book about Darrell Henshaw intriguing…I highly recommend it.” ★★★★★--Literary Titan
“It’s a ghost/mystery story filled with suspense and action. The plot is so engrossing it had me hooked from the very first page.” ★★★★★—Nana’s Reviews, Greece
“The well-plotted storyline keeps a steady pace through two-thirds of the book and then gradually ups the ante, adds tension, grit, drops more pieces of the puzzle then explodes.”—V. Williams, Rosepoint Publishing
More about the author
Dr. Randy Overbeck is a veteran educator who has served children as a teacher and school leader. For more than three decades, his educational experiences have included responsibilities ranging from coach and yearbook advisor to principal and superintendent and he’s lived the roles of many of the characters in his stories. An accomplished writer, he has been published in trade journals, professional texts and newspapers as well as in fiction, with his third published novel. As a member of the Mystery Writers of America, Dr. Overbeck is an active member of the literary community, contributing to a writers’ critique group, serving as a mentor to emerging writers and participating in writing conferences such as Sleuthfest, Killer Nashville and the Midwest Writers Workshop. When he’s not writing or researching his next exciting novel or sharing his presentation “Things That Go Bump in the Night,” he’s spending time with his incredible family of wife, three children (and their spouses) and seven wonderful grandchildren.
FB: Author Randy Overbeck
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Hi Roni! I'm so happy to have not only a fellow Wild Rose Press author, but a fellow NJ Romance Writers, and she doesn't live far from me. What can I offer you? Coffee, tea, cocoa, wine? The camp fridge is like the Starship Enterprise, you speak it, you get it.
I love coffee, but had to cut down several years ago LOL. So in the evenings, it’s decaff or a cup of cocoa. On Friday nights it’s always Amaretto—my favorite!
We'll add some Amaretto to the coffee and voila both. Tell us have you ever camped, or as I call what I do, Glamp. If not what about a grand adventure or vacation?
I have never gone camping, and honestly, don’t have a great desire to rough it! I would try it if the conditions weren’t too rough LOL. One of my MOST memorable trips was to Greece. I’d wanted to visit that country since I was a teen, and absolutely loved Greece and the people who lived there. I felt very at home there, too. Later a psychic told me I had had several happy lives there in the past.
I once heard that in Greece flowers we pay for, grow like weeds. I can only imagine the beauty and scents which fill the air. Tell us about your latest project and what’s on the horizon.
“Meet Me at the Inn” is a novella set in the Vermont world of the Deerbourne Inn. At the end of my novella, “Enchanted Vermont Nights” which is also set at the Deerbourne Inn, I felt sorry for the heroine’s cousin Tarren. So I decided to give her a happy ending and wrote this story! Right now I am about halfway through a new novella for The Wild Rose Press’ new cookie series (for next year’s holiday season).
I adore the Deerbourne stories. I'll need to add it to my growing TBR List. Do you have a tagline? Life Motto? Always a happy ending!
Well, that's a great one. I love a HEA. How long did it take you from conception to publication?
For this book, about a year. I did the first version in a couple of months, then spent a month revising. Then, I sent it to my editor.
Are there any mentors, authors, or books you would like to give a shout-out to?
I really enjoyed your book, DV! Among my favorite authors are Heather Graham, Beth Ciotta, Nancy Herkness, Judi Fennell and Peggy Jaeger. I wrote to Phyllis A. Whitney when I was a teenager because I loved her books. I also read her writing books and she actually wrote back and told me to keep working at my own writing, and not to give up.
Roni, thank you! I'm honored to be named with such an illustrious group. Tell us, what does literary success look like to you?
Having my name known my romance readers.
Do you have any tips, tricks, or anything you specialize in that you would share with others. I’m also interested in how you have been managing your life and writing with COVID-19.
Actually, writing about fictional characters’ problems can help escape the reality of Covid and its accompanying stress.
Now the fun questions
Actress Tarren Reilly is still smarting from being dumped by her former boyfriend--whom she stole from her cousin. Reeling from the pain she has caused, she agrees to a fake relationship for publicity reasons.
Country singer Clint Jackson has wanted Tarren since they first met. Together, they visit the Deerbourne Inn for the Thanksgiving holiday, where he plans to suggest they take their phony relationship to the "friends with benefits" level.
Both Tarren and Clint are dealing with personal issues from prior entanglements. As they draw closer, can Tarren and Clint deal with their pasts and turn a pretend relationship into the real deal?
More about Roni
Roni has published 8 romance novels and one novella. Her books have been nominated for the New Jersey Golden Leaf award and the National Readers’ Choice Award. “Marquis in a Minute” won the NJ Golden Leaf award for Best Regency Romance.
Roni is a member of New Jersey Romance Writers (she served as its president in 2016); Romance Writers of America; and the Authors Guild.
Roni lives in northwest New Jersey with her family, including their dog. She is also a realtor at Jersey Success Realty, a company she and her husband own. She served on the board of her local animal shelter, Noah’s Ark, for eight years.
Welcome and thank you for stopping by the campfire. Campfires are about hospitality as well as conversation so what can I offer you? Coffee, tea, cocoa, wine? The camp fridge is like the wishing well. I put stuff in and pull out whatever I like.
I would like a hot cocoa with maybe a kiss of Amaretto. 😊
Oh, yum. That sounds delish. I'll try one too! Tell us have you ever camped, or as I call what I do, Glamp. It's been a while since you've been at my campfire. Tell us about your experiences.
I’ve camped a lot over the years. We hit a lot of KOA’s (camp grounds) growing up while on family vacations. That is probably where I first got my love for camping, and other outdoor activities.
We are KOA people as well. Especially when traveling to a new area. Most times you know what your going to get. If anyone is interested here's a link to their site koa.com/ So, the campfire is all about discussion, will you share with us about your latest projects?
Tangled in Tinsel is my Christmas Romance that is releasing on December 7th this year. Pre-order is available for e-book and print through Amazon, and other avenues. My next story I have in process is actually a follow up to Tangled in Tinsel. My character Dustin Keith was bugging me about telling his story. So his story is scheduled for next Christmas. The working title is Kisses and Lemon Snowflakes. It will be a novella.
I also have an approval to write a novella for the Wylder West series through Wild Rose Press. His Wylder Lass will be in the works soon as well.
Busy, busy, Lady. It never ceases to amaze me how an author creates a character and then that character clammers to be heard. I've heard some great news about the Wylder series. Such an interesting concept. Fans of historical fiction are in for a treat. But back to Tangled In Tinsel, how long did it take you from conception to publication?
I had started writing this story years ago and it didn’t take shape until I changed a few aspects. Tangled in Tinsel wasn’t originally a Christmas story. The story underwent a title change and a season change from Summer to Winter. I believe the story flowed smoother after both of those changes were made.
Many reader don't know that an author, many times, has to tear apart a story, and then reassemble it, sometimes more than once, until it's available to them. Hence the often long process. N. Jade, Are there any mentors, authors, or books you would like to give a shout-out to?
To all of the authors who wrote a Christmas Romance this season. It’s been a tough year. I hope to enjoy the season with a few stories of hope and love. (A diversion for a bit).
It certainly has been. I think it is our calling as writers to help our readers take a step back from what's happening in the world, and give them a well deserved break. Especially in the Romance genre a message of hope and often escape has helped me through some rough times. Can you tell us what literary success looks like to you?
Ha, short and sweet, you nailed it. One of the things we do at campgrounds is help others with ideas and problems. Do you have any Life Hacks for Authors? Tips, tricks, or anything you specialize in that you would share with others. I’m also interested in how you have been managing your life and writing with COVID-19. What a strange year! I never had any loss of work from my day job – who knew I was essential. 😊 Anyway, I think I was able to finish Tangled in Tinsel because it was an escape from the strangeness going on around me.
So writing helps authors and readers to escape for a while. Now the fun questions
Do you have a special object like a piece of jewelry or keepsake of some sort? I have a small doll that was given to me by my grandma. She was a doll collector. She repaired dolls, made wigs and clothes for dolls. She even had a doll she dressed in the Smithsonian at one time. Can you tell us what makes it special to you? It’s special because it came from her. Great memories of walking into her doll room and looking at all of the dolls on display.
What is your favorite mug or teacup if neither T-shirt with graphic or Meme. I have a t-shirt that has seen better days. There is a picture on the back of cowboys walking away in their Wrangler jeans (showcasing their wrangler butts) and it says “Forget the Whales. Save the Cowboys.” (I do care about the whales too, but I mainly bought it for the “Wranglers.”
What’s your favorite cartoon and why? I absolutely adore Winnie the Pooh. He’s just so loveable.
What do you think the headlines will read 40 years from now? 2020, a year not for the faint of heart.
Last book or movie that made you cry? I’ve been watching Hallmark channels Christmas specials – just name one movie that made me cry?????
What's the last thing you really geeked out about? New season of the Mandalorian – so pretty recent. Ha ha
Thank you so much for stopping by the fire and sharing with us. I'm sure we all wish you great success and are looking forward to reading Tangled In Tinsel. But let's dangle a carrot. Can you give us a little teaser?
Tangled in Tinsel
Sugar plum fairies eat your heart out…
Madison Reynolds had visions of a different kind dancing in her head. Home for the holidays in Cedar Bend, Colorado, Madison must focus on helping her bedridden pregnant sister, not fantasize about the one who got away. But how is she supposed to forget about her high school crush when she bumps into him at every turn?
From the moment Ryder Sanders untangled the reindeer antlers from Madison’s hair his Christmas season appeared brighter. The time spent in her company leaves him more smitten. So, why does she still treat him as if he has cooties? They’re not in high school anymore.
Can the two find a forever love? Or will their wishes melt away like icing on a Christmas treat?
I grew up on a farm in Oklahoma with one sister and three brothers. I met my husband while attending college. After college I held various accounting positions and have worked as a legal assistant.
I enjoy reading and have been writing stories since high school. Now that my family is grown, I'm working on writing and getting published.
I am a former member of the Wichita Area Romance Authors and Romance Writers of America.
Find out more about N. Jade Gray at these places