Author Rosemary McCracken Talks Location

Today, Tuesday June 7, is the FINAL day Raven Lake is available for the special promo price of 99 cents!


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Location! Location! Location!

Thank you, Kristina, for hosting me here today. When I think of your Stone Mountain mysteries, their spectacular setting pops into my mind—a ski resort high in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. So I thought it would appropriate to share some of my thoughts about setting with your followers.

Setting is the backdrop against which characters act out the events of the story. But it’s impossible to powerfully capture a setting by objective description alone. Today’s readers will just skim over paragraphs of exposition. It is through the eyes and heart of a character that a place comes alive. How does the character feel about this place where she lives or is visiting? That, and a few vivid details, can create your story’s backdrop.

Historical novels—set in Tudor England, ancient Egypt and Rome, the American Old West—seem ideally suited to display setting. Their authors have researched the visual backdrops: the buildings, the clothing, the modes of transportation. But they also need to create a sense of the times on the page through dialogue and their characters’ body language and manners.

Settings are either real or fictitious. If your character finds herself in Paris, you have a real setting and your readers probably know enough about Paris to form a mental picture of the city. But you’ll need to make sure you have your facts straight. You may want to save up for a trip to Paris to find out how long it takes to ride the Métro from Champs Élysées to Port-Royal. (And at tax time, you can claim the trip as an expense against earnings from your writing.)

For stories such as Alice in Wonderland and Lord of the Rings, their authors had to create fictional settings, which takes a lot of work. They had to map out their fictional landscapes carefully in order to present them clearly to their readers.

Safe Harbor, my first Pat Tierney novel, is set in Toronto, where I currently live. I used neighborhoods that I know well, but I fictionalized some things such as the name of a Toronto newspaper, the Toronto World. In his review in the real Toronto Star, Jack Batten wrote that Safe Harbor has “an exact feel for the Toronto locales.”

I set Black Water, the second mystery in the series, and Raven Lake, the third that has just been released, in Ontario cottage country north of Toronto. The setting is inspired by the Haliburton Highlands, lake country on the Canadian Shield north of Toronto that I know and love, but I’ve fictionalized it. I call it the Glencoe Highlands, and I’ve created a town called Braeloch, which incorporates some aspects of the two real towns in the area, Minden and Haliburton Village. I needed to create special places in Braeloch and in the surrounding countryside for my plots that don’t exist in the actual area.

I’ve included a disclaimer in both novels that says they are “set in an imaginary part of Ontario cottage country that bears a strong resemblance to the real Haliburton Highlands. None of the Haliburton Highlands’ residents appear in this book.”

In the planning process before I start writing, I draw up a list of the key settings that I know will appear in the novel—and others may crop up as they are needed. Pat Tierney’s home or where she is based in that story will always be an important location. The wider geography of the area is also featured in Black Water and Raven Lake. In the first, Pat drives over the township’s frozen lakes in a snowmobile. In the second, she explores the same chain of lakes in a kayak.

There are times when setting seems to participate in the story. Places in a novel may have a special—maybe even a magical—significance. The diner where the protagonist and her friends hung out when they were teenagers. The stone quarry where they swam in the summer. In Raven Lake, Pat’s kayak takes her to places she would have difficulty reaching without it, and her trips over the lakes help her unwind and think about the puzzles she’s trying to solve.

Setting can be effective when it goes against readers’ expectations. Ray Bradbury uses a carnival setting for terror in Something Wicked This Way Comes. In Stephen King’s The Mist, people are trapped in a supermarket when a fog filled with nightmare creatures surrounds the store. In Raven Lake, a murder takes place during a Canada Day fireworks show.

But beware of going overboard with setting. You may have spent hours on research, but you don’t need to use everything you dig up. A rich, detailed setting can overwhelm the story. The setting should always be positioned behind characters and events.

WHO IS Rosemary McCracken?


Rosemary McCracken has worked on newspapers across Canada as a reporter, arts reviewer, editorial writer and editor. She is now a Toronto-based fiction writer and financial journalist. Her first Pat Tierney mystery, Safe Harbor, was shortlisted for Britain’s Crime Writers’ Association’s Debut Dagger in 2010 and published by Imajin Books in 2012. It was followed by Black Water in 2013. “The Sweetheart Scamster,” a Pat Tierney mystery in the anthology Thirteen, was a finalist for a Derringer Award in 2014. Rosemary’s third Pat Tierney mystery, Raven Lake, has just been released! Jack Batten, the Toronto Star’s crime fiction reviewer, calls Pat “a hugely attractive sleuth figure.”

Follow Rosemary on her blog, Moving Target at, on Facebook at and on Twitter @RCMcCracken. Visit Rosemary’s website at

Here are links for the books mentioned in the blurb above. The first three are universal links for Amazon, so whoever clicks on them will reach the Amazon in his/her own country.. Thirteen’s is a link to

Safe Harbor:

Black Water:

Raven Lake:



Mega thanks!




Reblog: Love mystery, romance & thrillers? Get 4 great books for free!


Reblogged from Donna Galanti:

This week my publisher, Imajin Books, has put four great books up for free on Kindle, including A HUMAN ELEMENT! Like mystery, romance and thrills? Then check them all out and load up on reading! ENDS TODAY.


PLUS, for a limited time somewhere in each of these books is a hidden “Easter Egg,” a link to 3 FREE novellas by 3 bestselling authors. Happy reading and hunting!


If you haven’t had a chance to read A HUMAN ELEMENT grab this now while you can…..

Too read the rest… DONNA GALANTI

If You Need Mystery, Romance or Horror: The Choice is Yours for Free eBooks

Imajin Books presents: A GIFT TO READERS. With more gifts inside the books.

FOUR books here, and three more novellas inside the book. All you have to do is read one book to get three novellas free.



You can find the books on Amazon at:





Happy reading to all!


Romance, Horror, Mystery Novels All Free

Yup. You read that correctly. Four free eBooks and three genres. But not for long.

Each of these books comes with a special surprise. Somewhere in each of the books is a hidden “Easter Egg,” a bold text link to 3 FREE Qwickie novellas by 3 bestselling authors. This is a time limited offer, so happy reading and hunting!

Don’t delay. Start reading a book published by Imajin Books today or you might miss out on both deals. Just click on the books covers to get your copy.

But first, thank you, thank you, thank you for all the shares yesterday. That just makes me feel loved, and speaking of love…

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 4.34.30 PMPerhaps you need some LOVE in your life?

Try DEEP BLUE by Kathleen Duhamel because love is the most addicting drug of all…

Barely-not-starving” Denver artist and cancer survivor Claire Martin has almost given up finding an older man with a youthful spirit when she meets charismatic New York soul singer Robert Silver of the legendary band Deep Blue. She soon learns that hero worship can be dangerous, especially when the object of her desire comes with a disturbing past.


Feel like being FRIGHTENED?

Experience A HUMAN ELEMENT by Donna Galanti because evil comes in many forms…

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 4.40.30 PMOne by one, Laura Armstrong’s friends and adoptive family members are being murdered, and despite her unique healing powers, she can do nothing to stop it. The savage killer haunts her dreams, tormenting her with the promise that she is next. Determined to find the killer, she follows her visions to the site of a crashed meteorite in her hometown. There, she meets Ben Fieldstone, who seeks answers about his parents’ death the night the meteorite struck. In a race to stop a madman, they unravel a frightening secret that binds them together. But the killer’s desire to destroy Laura face-to-face leads to a showdown that puts Laura and Ben’s emotional relationship and Laura’s pure spirit to the test. With the killer closing in, Laura discovers her destiny is linked to his, and she has two choices—redeem him or kill him.

Is an ADRENALINE RUSH what you require?

Join me on the icy slopes of DESCENT because jealousy, secrets and betrayal are enough to drive even a sane to murder…

Featured Image -- 57878When Kalin Thompson is promoted to Director of Security at Stone Mountain Resort, she soon becomes entangled in the high-profile murder investigation of an up-and-coming Olympic-caliber skier. There are more suspects with motives than there are gates on the super-G course, and danger mounts with every turn.

Kalin’s boss orders her to investigate. Her boyfriend wants her to stay safe and let the cops do their job. Torn between loyalty to friends and professional duty, Kalin must look within her isolated community to unearth the killer’s identity.


Do you know what you would do to PROECT YOUR FAMILY?

Find out in SAFE HARBOR  by Rosemary McCracken because family is everything…

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 5.24.36 PMFinancial advisor Pat Tierney’s world is shattered when a visitor to her office tells her that Pat’s late husband is the father of a seven-year-old boy. Stunned by the revelation of her husband’s affair, Pat is even more shocked when the woman bolts from the office, leaving young Tommy behind.

When Tommy’s mother is murdered, police tell Pat that the boy may be the killer’s next target. In a desperate race to protect Tommy, Pat searches for the truth and uncovers a deadly scheme involving illegal immigrants, trafficking in human body parts and money laundering.

And Pat discovers that she’ll do just about anything to keep her family safe.

Descent’s Launch: Seven Sleeps To Go

DescentCoverI’m nervous. I’m excited. I’m flattered.

Check out the authors who are donating eBooks as prizes for DESCENT’s online launch party on July 25th, 2015.

Melodie Campbell donating THE ARTFUL GODDAUGHTER (A Gina Gallo Mystery) and A PURSE TO DIE FOR

Jessie Giles Christiansen donating PELICAN BAY (The Captain Shelby Trilogy Book 1)

Michael James Conn donating THE RIGHT TURN

Kat Flannery donating LAKOTA HONOR (Branded Trilogy Book 1) and BLOOD CURSE (Branded Trilogy Book 2) – 2 copies of each!

Debra Purdy Kong donating OPPOSITE OF DARK (Casey Holland Mystery #1)


Susan J McLeod donating  SOUL AND SHADOW (A Lilly Evans Mystery)

Rosemary McCracken donating SAFE HARBOR (A Pat Tierney Mystery)

Cheryl Kaye Tardif donating Devine Intervention (Devine Trilogy Book 1) and E.Y.E of the Scorpion (E.Y.E Spy Mystery Book 1)

That’s nine authors and fourteen books. If you don’t want to wait for DESCENT’s launch to read one of these fabulous authors, click on the title of their book and you’ll be taken right to Amazon.

When is the party? July 25th, 3-6 PM EST

Where? Click here to sign up.

I’d love to chat with you online on the 25th, so come on by and sign up. Maybe you’ll be the lucky winner of one of these books.

One big happy thank you and shout out to the participating authors!

Thanks for reading…

Announcing Mystery Mondays

Promoting Reading – Promoting Authors

It is my pleasure to announce I will be hosting a series called Mystery Mondays.  Authors from many genres who write with a hint of mystery will tell you about their books, answer your questions about writing and share their thoughts with you. Every Monday, you’ll be introduced to another author and maybe discover someone you’re not familiar with.

The opening line-up of Mystery Mondays authors:

Character Driven THRILLERS: Luke Murphy, July 20th

Psychological HORROR and YA THRILLERS: Michael Conn, July 27th

Adventurous Women SLEUTHS: Catherine Astolfo, August 3rd

THRILLERS for Adult and Children: Donna Galanti, August 10th

A Formidable Calgary DETECTIVE: Garry Ryan, August 17th.

Dangerous Amateur SLEUTH: Debra Purdy Kong, August 24th

MYSTERIES with a Hugely Successful Sleuth: Rosemary McCracken, August 31st

Mystery, History and Romantic SUSPENSE: Alison Bruce, Sept 7th

Screwball COMEDY Capers: Melodie Campbell, Sept 14th

Amateur SLEUTH with an Edge: Judy Penz Sheluk, September 21st

Exciting Police THRILLERS: Brenda Chapman, Sept 28th

Gritty and Psychological THRILLERS: Barbara Fradkin, Oct 5th

Sassy yet Vulnerable SLEUTH: Phyllis Smallman, Oct 19th

International best-selling author Cheryl Kaye Tardif will be posting…the mystery is on what date. She’s booked. We have her. So stay tuned to find out.

Click on the blue-green-ish highlighted author names above and you’ll be taken to their page to find out more about them, or even better, order their books and experience a fantastic read.

If you’d like to be hosted on Mystery Mondays, come back here next Wednesday and I’ll tell you how.

Thanks for reading… And please share to help spread the word.


Who are the mystery authors donating books to DESCENT’s Facebook launch party?

This is all part of the publishing cycle – host a launch party. To energize the party and make it exciting for virtual visitors, I asked other authors to donate one or two of their novels as prizes.

So not to keep you in suspense, in alphabetical order, the contributors are…

But what books will they donate? That’s a mystery to be solved on another blog. Stay tuned…

When is the Facebook launch party? July 25th, 3-6 PM EST. You are invited and most welcome to join us to help celebrate. Come and win a book from one of the amazing authors!

DESCENT is now available for pre-order in eBook format. The paperback will follow shortly.

If you haven’t read my blog before, I’ve signed on with Imajin Books and will blog about my publishing adventure. I’ll share what I learn and hope it helps someone out there get their novel published.

Please feel free to share this post and help me get the word out.

Thanks for reading…