Monday, August 18, 2014

What Happens Next?

The winner of the contest here last week was the only commenter who guessed the correct answer. The topic that I researched but that didn't make the final cut of the novel was How to Disguise a Bomb. The winner:
Lexa Cain
Congratulations, Lexa!

This week I'm being interviewed by Marcy Hatch at Mainewords. I hope you'll stop in and say hi.

While I'm over there, I'm sharing some random photos here.

Everyone who leaves a comment about one of these photos will be entered into a drawing for a $5 Amazon Gift card. I'll announce the winner here next week!

Of course you can comment about anything, but if you talk about one of the photos, you'll be entered in the drawing.

Wasn't that fun!

Now, while you're writing, don't forget the contest on my website for another Amazon Gift Card in the amount of $10 -

And if you'd like to participate in the release of SECRETS OF HONOR, please scroll to the post below for the details and sign-up sheet.

See you at Marcy's!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Research - Truth or Lie

This week I'm over at Clarissa Draper's blog talking about some of the reasons I had so much fun writing Secrets of Honor. And no, I'm not telling you here :)

I'd planned to share some views of Corpus Christi, the setting for the novel, but I'm unable to find that memory card. Sigh.

So ... I decided instead to share a few of the things I researched while writing the story.

Theatrical Makeup
The Art of Sculpture
The Department of Homeland Security
How to Disguise a Bomb
Ankle Holsters
9mm Semi-Automatics
European Capitals
Stage Scaffolding
Diamond Rings

Which of these things is not like the other?

I'm going to steal use Crystal Collier's method of truth or lie. If you're can guess the one topic above that I researched but ended up not using in the story, I'll put your name in a drawing for a $5 Amazon Gift Card.

I'll announce the winner here next Monday!

Speaking of winners and Amazon Gift Cards ... you can enter the contest on my website and be eligible to win a $10 Amazon Gift Card. So go on over there and answer the question. That's all there is to it.

Also...below is a signup for the release of Secrets of Honor. I have mixed feelings about posting this because I know how fed up all of us are with this kind of thing. However, since I haven't yet thought of a better way, I'm falling back on what I know.

I'm trying to think of a foolproof way to split up the first chapter into excerpt pieces for each participant, but I haven't had any luck with that so far. I'm open to ideas, so please share in the comments.

The release date is Monday, September 15. You can post the information anytime from September 15 onward. I'm not picky about that at all. And I thank you very much for participating.

My request is that you make this release thing just a part of your regular post. If you want it to be your total post for the day, that's fine, but totally unnecessary. I'll send you the blurb, links, and other things as soon as I have good buy links.

See you at Clarissa's!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Happy Coast Guard Day!

We are a Coast Guard family, and today is the 224th birthday of the United States Coast Guard. The service has been around since 1790.

So here are the top ten things about the Coast Guard you don't often read or hear about:

10. Most Coast Guard units will have a birthday party today.

  9. Every summer, Grand Haven, Michigan, celebrates the Coast Guard with a weeklong Coast Guard Festival.

  8. Coasties save an average of 10 lives every day. And perform more than 100 other rescues. Every. Single. Day.

  7. As important as saving lives is, it's not the only function performed by the Coast Guard.

  6. The Coast Guard is the only branch of the U.S. Armed Forces that also has law enforcement authority.

  5. And many Coast Guard missions are highly sensitive in nature.

  4. USCG has fewer active duty members than NYPD has officers ... and patrols a LOT more space.

  3. U.S. Coasties perform their duties all around the world.

  2. Coasties aboard the icebreaker USCGC Northwind played the first ever golf tournament in Antarctica.

And the #1 thing about the Coast Guard you don't often read or hear about:

  1. Some cutters and shore units have mascots ... from a legendary dog named Sinbad to a penguin and even a seal!

Happy Birthday, U.S. Coast Guard!

Some of the above facts were gathered here:

This month in my website contest at 
I’m giving away a $10 Amazon gift card to one lucky winner.
Remember, you can answer with one word
or a little story – the choice is yours.


This week only, the Kindle version of my debut novel,
is on sale at Amazon for only $0.99
Get your copy now!

I would appreciate any tweets or Facebook mentions you would like to give. Thanks in advance for any sharing love :)
Here's a version you can copy and paste:

This week only, the Kindle version of Carol Kilgore's In Name Only is on sale at Amazon for only $0.99


This week I'm guest blogging with 
I'm talking a little bit about the Texas Coastal Bend - 
maybe with a photo or two :)

Monday, July 28, 2014

Paradise, with Books and Dogs

My guest today is Mac Wheeler, the author of an astounding number of novels and an awesome photographer. So I'm just going to let him tell you about himself and show you some of his photos.

Cool Stuff First
To celebrate publication of the third book in my New Order Apocalypse series I'm giving away a mobi/epub copy of NOA 1. You can read about it here...if it sounds interesting, drop me a note  (I won't keep your email address, I promise). 

My Photography
I blog my pitcher-taking experiences. As an immodest exhibitionist, I especially love to show off my beautiful pups. A sampling of some of my favorite shots line this post on the right. I hope you'll visit my blog and experience my Florida via my Sunday Safari posts. (Lately with the gorgeous spring we've had, I've spent more time in the park with my pups, so I've been posting more photos.)

My Pups
If you visit my blog you'll see a lot of pictures of my three girls. Molly is slowing down, but she's my dynamo. A 12 year-old Labrador with a failing transmission, she can no longer ride with me on my Goldwing. I miss that I won't see any new photos of her on my bike wearing her red Doggles. Lucy is the Rottweiler. If you know the breed, enough said. She is the most loving, goofiest friend I've ever had. Gracie is a mix. I'd guess mostly Golden, with some combination of Collie, Border Collie, Sheltie, and/or GSD. Talking about Velcro-Dog. I hope you'll visit them.

About Me
I live in beautiful Tampa, Florida, AKA paradise, with my dearest of a whole bunch of years. I'm an active guy, though slowing down since passing the double-nickel. Rotten knees preclude basketball which I dearly miss, but I'm out every day with my pups, jog, hike, and bicycle every opportunity.

The Writer
I'm a full time writer of speculative fiction, fantasy, SF, suspense, and paranormal with a twist. The Wheeler library entails eight series from YA with ogres and trolls, grittier vampire and werewolf noir, and a traditional family saga. Two stand-alone novels are screaming for their own series, with outlines waiting to be fleshed out. If you're a reader, consider dropping by my web page and perusing my titles. Click a cover to read a 30-page excerpt. I hope you'll find something you like.

Carol, thanks again for letting me visit. Be seeing you on Bloglovin. Cheers.

HomeContact …KindleNook

I owe Mac two apologies. One for totally blanking on the date this post was supposed to appear originally. And the second for not being as technically proficient as he is with Blogger and photos. I was unable to make his photo arrays larger without them taking over the entirety of the posting area and running into the sidebar.

So go to his blog and take a peek at the real things - you'll be happy :)

Thank you, Mac, for giving me a second chance.

Thursday is the last day to enter the July contest on my website - - for a chance to win a Kindle copy of SOLOMON'S COMPASS.

When Coast Guard Commander Taylor Campbell returns to Rock Harbor, Texas, to tend to her uncle's estate, she meets a mysterious former Navy SEAL, Jake Solomon, and learns her uncle didn't drown accidentally. His murder was one in a string of murders of a group of Vietnam veterans who called themselves the Compass Points.

Before her uncle died, he sent Taylor a message with the location of his buried treasure. Unearthing it will place her squarely in the killer's crosshairs, but she's determined to fulfill her uncle's last wish.

Jake, sent to protect her and find the killer, has other plans. His mission would be much easier to accomplish if he could forget how good she'd tasted when he kissed her.

Good luck!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Cajun Secrets

This week I'm blogging with my friend Jan Rider Newman at Beyond Acadia. Jan is an authority on Cajun everything.

I tell you that because one of the characters in Secrets of Honor is a Cajun by the name of Remy Girouard. During the editing, Remy caused a little stink, so I asked Jan to step in and referee.

I hope you'll pop over and say hi.

In the meantime, I looked through my old photos and picked a few to share with you.

Bridge - Coast Guard Cutter Taney - Baltimore, Maryland

Historic South Central Texas House - 1800s - Castroville, Texas

Contemporary Texas Island House - Port Aransas, Texas

Our Fur Babies - Backyard, USA

Monday, July 14, 2014

The Electrician's Code

I owe Clarissa Draper a huge apology. My mind has been so totally elsewhere while working on the Secrets of Honor edits that it's affecting other things I do. Like the title of this post.

In both the title and in referring to Clarissa's new book in the second paragraph below, I called the book The Engineer's Code. Clarissa is so gracious that she didn't correct me. I only learned of it today (Wednesday) from a commenter, who I've thanked.

The correct title of Clarissa Draper's new book is The Electrician's Code.


I spent the weekend sprucing up the joint because today we have a special guest taking refuge Under the Tiki Hut from the hot summer sun. She writes awesome and smart code-based mysteries featuring London detectives Theo Blackwell and Sophia Evans. Her first novel, The Sholes Key, was so good - even though I couldn't figure out any of the codes :)

Now Theo and Sophia are back now in the newly released The Electrician's Code.

Are you wondering who this fantastic and brilliant author is? Her name is Clarissa Draper. And here she is.

Carol, thank you for having me. It's such a pleasure to be here. I have enjoyed reading your thrilling mysteries over the past few years. 

Today I want to talk about codes and ciphers.

If you have read my books, you know I love to add a challenge to each one in the form of a code or cipher to solve. Some of my readers like to play along, hoping to solve the messages before the detectives. But, I'm not the first to do this. 

There have been many codes placed in famous stories. Let's look at just five:

(1) Edgar Allen Poe's "The Gold-Bug" - The story involves cryptography with a detailed description of a method for solving a simple substitution cipher using letter frequencies. The cryptogram is:

(2) Sherlock Holmes "The Dancing Men" - Sherlock homes sets to solve a series of notes. The code looks a lot like the photo above.

(3) Agatha Christie's "The Four Suspects" - In this short story, the killer receives instructions by coded message. This story uses a flower code.

(4) Robert Harris's "Enigma" - This story is about a mathematician trying to break the famous German "Enigma" codes. 

(5) Dan Browns' "The Da Vinci Code" - This is one of the most famous code books written. In the book, the main character tries to de-crypt a message found beside a dead body. There is also a note containing a Fibonacci sequence left out of order, as a code.

Based on the code in the story "The Adventure of the Dancing Men" I have created a message. If you can decipher it, I will give you a free E-copy of my book. 

What codes did you find interesting in a novel you've read?

Clarissa Draper lives in Mexico with her family, and can be reached via her blog, or on Twitter at

The Electrician's Code

**Please visit the book's website to view photos of the codes and lots of story extras.**

An elderly man with only one leg is murdered and left in a pool of his own blood outside his house. To add to the mystery, a note found in his pocket says, 'Why Run Backwards You’ll Vomit.' London Detective Chief Inspector Theo Blackwell can’t understand the motive for killing the old man, or the meaning of the cryptic message.

Later, a woman is stabbed on her doorstep. The two seemingly unrelated cases have two things in common: apparently random victims and suspects with alibis.

As DCI Blackwell works on solving the cases, he requests the help of code-breaker Sophia Evans, who is battling a personal and tricky case of her own.

Find her latest book here: 

I just want to say that I can't solve any of these codes either :)
But I already have Clarissa's book on my Kindle
and am really looking forward to reading it.
Get your copy today!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Cover Me ... I'm Going In

This week, I'm guest blogging with Mark Noce at Mark Noce Stories. I hope you'll come visit. I'm chatting about why I have a hard time being serious :)

In the meantime, I'm sharing in Stina Lindblatt's cover reveal for her upcoming novel, LET ME KNOW.

This shouldn't be happening again…
Amber Scott thought her screaming nightmares would end now that her stalker is locked up and awaiting trial. But they return when her slam-dunk case starts to fall apart. Explicit letters she allegedly wrote surface, suggesting she was the mastermind behind her assault, a willing victim.
Amber only feels safe in the arms of her boyfriend Marcus, the one person she can lean on. Until damning evidence from Marcus's past collides with the case and the media circus drags them both down. To protect Amber's reputation, Marcus has only one option: end their relationship. He won't risk further damage to her case, even if it means breaking her heart.
Amber has to find the strength to step into the spotlight and bring awareness to victims' rights before she's convicted in the court of public opinion. And she's really not sure what's worse—that her kidnapper could walk free, or that the seemingly endless attention and speculation will drive Marcus away permanently

See how it all began for Amber and Marcus in Tell Me When.


Born in England, Stina loves to travel, and has lived in England, the US, Canada, and Finland. She spent a semester in graduate school living in central Finland, and a summer during her undergrad degree working in Helsinki. She has a Master’s of Science degree in exercise physiology and has worked with elite athletes. In her free time, Stina is a photographer, mother of three adorable kids, and devoted wife. She currently lives in Calgary, Canada.

And we're back to me again. You can win a free Kindle copy of SOLOMON'S COMPASS at my website. All you have to do is take a couple of minutes to enter the fun contest over there. Here's a quick blurb, so you know what you're getting into :)

When Coast Guard Commander Taylor Campbell returns to Rock Harbor, Texas, to tend to her uncle’s estate, she meets a mysterious former Navy SEAL, Jake Solomon, and learns her uncle didn’t drown accidentally. His murder was one in a string of murders of a group of Vietnam veterans who called themselves the Compass Points.

Before her uncle died, he sent Taylor a message with the location of his buried treasure. Unearthing it will place her squarely in the killer’s crosshairs, but she’s determined to fulfill her uncle’s last wish.

Jake, sent to protect her and find the killer, has other plans. His mission would be much easier to accomplish if he could forget how good she’d tasted when he kissed her.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Tiki Top Ten: What if . . .

July 1 (Tuesday) is Canada Day in Canada, eh?
July 4 (Friday) is Independence Day for those of us in the U.S.
As the U.S. and Canada share long borders, I wondered:

What if we shared the holiday
and held a weeklong celebration?

10. Hot dogs and poutine

  9. Baseball and hockey

  8. We could call it Canmerica

  7. Or Amerada

  6. Would we drizzle maple syrup on our nachos?

  5. Schmoo cake and apple pie

  4. Moosehead and Shiner Bock

  3. Parades every day

  2. Fireworks every night


  1. A greater understanding of our neighbors.

Happy Canada Day!
Happy Fourth of July!

Just a reminder:
MONDAY is the last day to enter the contest for a Kindle book of IN NAME ONLY .
TUESDAY a new monthly contest begins for a new prize.

Check it all out here: