Saturday, February 19, 2011

Upcoming Schedule

It's hard to believe that FRUIT OF ALL EVIL hits the shelves in about a week. I've noticed that it either feels like a publish date will never get here or it's suddenly snuck up on you - there's not a lot of in between. Here are a few things going on in tandem with the release.

I'll be blogging on my publisher's (Penguin) blog the week of February 28. Here's a link. Blog.
I'll have three posts that will talk about how the farmers' market series came to be, and how most of the time I'm more surprised by my characters than I ever thought I'd be.

I also get the the opportunity to post on Lori Caswell's (Dollycas) blog on March 2nd. Here's a link: Lori's Blog.
Lori's blog is a great source of information for mystery lovers. I highly recommend you check it out if you haven't yet.

I'll be signing FRUIT OF ALL EVIL at my local bookstore, The King's English, on Wednesday, March 9th at 7:00 PM. It's a great bookstore.

Thank you all so much for reading my books!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Okay, this turned out more goofy than entertaining, but it felt so anticlamactic to just post winners' names. So, I filmed it!

Congratulations, winners! Thank you, everyone!



Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Thank You!

Drawings for the e-reader and the iPad will be tomorrow, February 16. I'll post the winners late afternoon or early evening.

Thank you all so much for participating in the contest - voting, commenting, pre-ordering the book, or even just stopping by.

See you tomorrow.


Monday, February 14, 2011

Spread the Love - Questions

UPDATE: Five gift certificate winners have been chosen! Thank you!

Answer on my Facebook page - leave a comment under the designated post.

Number your answers 1 - 10. Just write answers. No need to repeat questions.

Ten Questions

1. Who sells onions at Bailey's Farmers' Market?

2. What color are Milton's eyes?

3. What did Shannon use to communicate with her vendors before she had a cell phone?

4. When Milton and Becca are hurrying through the market, which types of artwork does Becca notice?

5. How much money did Cece make with her Internet company? (This is kind of a trick question, but you'll get it.)

6. When Milton and Becca were standing right beside each other, they seemingly took a synchronized step. To which direction?

7. The middle-aged woman didn't win the vote. If she'd made it into the story, what would she have sold?

8. What color and kind were the buttons on the matching coats?

9. What's Officer Alice Dayton's nickname?

10. What is the title of the second book in the Farmers' Market Mystery Series by Paige Shelton?


Contest details.

Today is FRUIT OF ALL EVIL pre-order day!

Send me your confirmation email/receipts dated today: February 14, 2011. You'll be entered to win an iPad. Send to:

Thank you!!!

Questions for the gift certificates and e-reader drawing will be posted TODAY at 10:00 AM PST, 1:00 PM EST.

Remember - answer the questions on my Facebook page. The first five with the correct answers will each win a bookstore gift certificate. In a couple days, those five winners will be put in drawing for an e-reader.

UPDATE - I'm sending confirmation emails back to those entering for the iPad. If you don't get a confirmation email from me, please resend yours.

Again - thank you!


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Chapter Ten - Spread the Love

Contest Details

Chapter Ten

I scooted up on the edge of the folding chair. Milton was trying to remember who he'd loaned his coats to. I hoped he'd come up with at least a few names. And, I really hoped that one would end up being the thief.

I still didn't like Officer Dayton, but at least she'd stopped accusing me. She bit at her bottom lip and sat back in her chair as Milton thought.

"Let's see," Milton said, "Veronica - she sells candles; she borrowed one a couple days ago."

"That's a good start, Mr. O'Brien, but according to Carolyn the last time she saw the pendant was yesterday afternoon. She locked the item in her cash box at about noon, she thinks. Did you loan a coat to anyone since yesterday afternoon?"

Milton shook his head slowly. "I'm certain no one else has worn this coat. I'm certain."

Suddenly, their attention was back on me.

"You picked Ms. Robins up from the airport and brought her directly here, right?" Officer Dayton asked.

"Yes," Milton and I said together.

"Did you ever leave her alone?"

"Only for a few minutes at my stall, long enough for me to help Vinnie unload some tangerines."

"So, long enough for Ms. Robins to find the cash box and steal the pendant."


"Oh, for goodness' sake, I didn't steal anything. I sat in your stall and waited for you to come back. I wouldn't have known about the pendant. I wouldn't have known about the cash box." I sat back in the chair.

"Milton!" Shannon said. "I think you'd better come over here and bring the police."

As we approached the stall, Carolyn did everything she could not to look me in the eye.

"I made a mistake," she said quietly.

"Excuse me?" Officer Dayton said.

"Freddie just called. He's the one who took the pendant. He was here last night, working after closing. He'd taken the pendant out of the cash box - we were recently robbed and he's been concerned about it and wanted it in his possession. I kept telling him he was being silly. Anyway, he was cold - he found one of your coats, Milton. While he was here, he got a call from our insurance agent. The items that were stolen are going to be fully covered. He was so relieved that . . . well, he forgot he had the pendant."

"I thought you said he was looking for it," Milton said.

Carolyn nodded slowly. "He just called me back. He didn't know I would call the police so quickly. He was going to come down and get it out of the coat and bring it to me. He was embarrassed he'd forgotten about it. And, now I'm embarrassed about everything else."

I was so relieved, I couldn't even be angry. I did take the coat off, though. I was plenty warm by that time.

My cell phone buzzed in my pocket - my overalls' pocket. I excused myself and stepped away from the crowd to answer it.

"Sis," I said. "How's everyone?"

"We're fine," Allison said. "How's San Francisco? Is the market amazing? How about the vendors?"

I laughed. "All is well. The market is amazing and the vendors are . . ." I looked at the group and thought about how much they were like Bailey's vendors. They would do whatever they could to protect each other. They'd probably even do whatever they could to make sure a fellow vendor wasn't falsely accused of something. "They remind me of home. I miss you all."

"We miss you, too. And, tomorrow's Valentine's Day. Make sure you spread a little love from all of us."

I laughed again. "I promise. Gotta go, Al. I'll talk to you later."

I put the phone back into my pocket and got to work.


Thank you all for participating in the "Which Way" story! I had a great time with it.

Tomorrow, February 14, isn't only Valentine's Day, it's also the day for the two contests. Don’t forget to send me your February 14th FRUIT OF ALL EVIL pre-order email/receipts. Here's the email: Someone will win an iPad!

Also tomorrow: On this blog (10:00 AM PST, 1:00 PM EST) I'll post ten questions from the above "Which Way" story. The first five to answer the questions correctly on my Facebook page will each win a $20 bookstore gift certificate. I'll put a comment on my page that says something like: Answer questions here. Number your answers 1 through 10. Just give me answers, no need to repeat the questions.

If you have any other questions, send them to me today.

Thank you!!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Chapter Nine - Spread the Love

Contest details

Chapter Nine

"I have no idea," I said. It felt like I'd said it a hundred times. "I have no idea how the pendant got into the coat pocket."

We were sitting on chairs about twenty feet outside the market. The pendant had been returned, and Cece and Carolyn were discussing something while Milton, Gordon and Shannon had their own conversation and took turns peering over at my interrogation.

Officer Alice (Al) Dayton didn't believe me. "Mr. O'Brien said you had your hands in your pockets, Ms. Robins. How in the world did you miss the pendant?"

"Like I said, I put the jam in the pocket. It covered the pendant."

"After you put the pendant in the pocket?" Officer Al said.

"I didn't put the pendant in the pocket. I didn't know it was there. As I have also said over and over again, this isn't my coat. It's Milton's. He let me wear it."

"Are you accusing Mr. O'Brien of stealing the pendant?"


Officer Dayton sighed. If she weren't so irritating, I might have thought she was pretty in a bleached blonde surfer girl way. But all I could think of was how I liked Monson's police officers better than San Francisco's variety.

"Why does your coat match the other gentleman's?" She nodded toward Gordon.

"I don’t know." I was trying not to grit my teeth when I spoke.

"Mr. O'Brien, could you join us, please?" Officer Dayton signaled at Milton.

Milton hurried over.

"Ms. Robins says this is your coat," Officer Dayton said.

"It is," Milton said.

"Is that your coat, too?" She pointed at Gordon.

"It used to be. I gave it to Gordon a while ago."

"Is there any chance the two coats could have been mixed up?

"No - I mean, I don't think so. Well . . . I suppose there might be," Milton said thoughtfully. "I keep a couple in my van and a couple in my stall. The cold can sneak up on you here. I let people borrow them."

Officer Dayton sighed again, but this time I didn't think it was because she thought I was lying. "Can you tell me who borrowed this coat recently?"

Friday, February 11, 2011

Chapter Eight - Spread the Love

Contest details.

Chapter Eight

It seemed to take a supreme effort for the gentleman to close the distance between him and me and Milton. He was old, very old and bent over so much that he was shorter than me. He used a cane that was made of knotty dark wood and wore a cap that gave him small wings of gray hair over his ears. But what I noticed most, though, was his coat. It was exactly like the one I wore, the one Milton had given when he saw me shivering from the cold breeze off the ocean. Our short, black wool coats were identical down to the silver metal buttons.

"Yes, Gordon, we did. Are they here?" Milton said.

"Yes, sir. I stalled 'em. I wasn't sure if we wanted him here or not."

"We do. It's okay, stay here though. I'll grab Shannon's phone and call someone up front to send them through." Milton hurried to his wife's phone.

"And you are?" Gordon said as eyed me suspiciously.

I introduced myself and told him where I was from and what I did.

"Golly, darlin', I do the same thing. Jams and preserves - I'm the best ever."

"I believe you," I said as I laughed.

"Come by my stall and I'll give you a jar and a dare. If you can make 'em as good as I do, I'll come out to South Carolina and take you to dinner."

I smiled. I didn't harbor any illusions that I could make a better jam or preserve than my new friend, but I did okay.

I'd carried a jar of my strawberry preserves into the market with me and stuffed it into a pocket when Milton gave me the coat to wear. The plan had been to give it to Shannon when I met her, but nothing had gone to according to plan so far. I had other jars in my suitcase in Milton's van so I'd have plenty to pass around. It suddenly seemed like the jar in my pocket should go to Gordon.

I reached into the deep pocket. There was something else in the way, but I just grabbed it all and pulled.

The jar was intact, if not dotted with a little pocket lint. But it was the other thing, the thing that was in my way that got my real attention.

The item fell to the ground at my feet. Milton, Carolyn, Cece and Shannon were only a few feet away but in the middle of their own conversation so they didn't see it. But, Gordon did. He bent over even further to inspect it.

"What's that, darlin'?" he said.

I couldn't believe what I was seeing. I blinked twice.

"I think it's a jade pendant," I finally said.

That suddenly got everyone's attention and they hurried over to join Gordon and me.

Looks were exchanged all around; looks of question, looks of suspicion and perhaps even one or two of disgust.

Milton finally said, "Well, I suppose it's a good thing the police are here."

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Chapter Seven - Spread the Love

Click here for contest details.

Chapter Seven

"Cece. Hello," Carolyn said. Her voice shook. If she was anything like me, her knees were shaking too. My heart went out to her even though I hadn't even really met her yet.

"What's going on, Carolyn?" Cece asked. Her amusement over her sly maneuver had disappeared. It was obvious that Carolyn was upset.

"How about a cup of coffee, Cece?" Shannon asked.

"Actually, I'd like to know what's going on," Cece said. "Are you okay, Carolyn?"

Carolyn seemed to melt and fall into the chair behind her. "Oh, Cece, I'm afraid I have some horrible news."

"Go on."

"I'm trying not to panic yet, but at this moment you need to know that I can't find the pendant you bought."

"You? What? How? I don't understand."

Obviously, Cece was in intelligent woman. Her short sentences were the result of shock. She was also rich; from the impression Milton had given me, so rich that $25,000 might not be a huge loss compared to the rest of her fortune. But no matter how much money someone had, I didn't think a $25,000 loss could be looked at lightly by anyone.

"I'm not sure what happened, but I'm trying to figure it out," Carolyn said.

"Oh. I see." Cece looked at Shannon, at Milton, at me and then back to Carolyn. "I suppose you have insurance."

"I think so, but . . ."

"But what?"

They were silent, but Milton directed me backwards a few steps and whispered, "It isn't just the $25,000. It's almost double that - money owed the seller and then money to reimburse Cece. Freddie and Carolyn recently made an insurance claim for some things that were stolen. They could be in insurance trouble."

"This is horrible," I said.

"Milton," a voice said behind us, "you called the police?"

We turned to see . . .

UPDATE - Voting closed. See you tomorrow. Thanks!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Chapter Six - Spread the Love

Contest details

Chapter Six

"Milton, how are you?" Cece asked. She peered around his shoulder at Shannon and Carolyn.

I stepped next to Milton to help hide the scene behind us. Cece glanced at me with a hesitant smile. I didn't do much to block the view, and I was close enough to Milton to make anyone wonder about our relationship. Fortunately, Milton didn't flinch, but seemed to be okay with the maneuver.

"Fine, we're all good around here, Cece. How about you?" Milton said.

"I'm great." She took a step to her right. "I'm here to pick something up from Carolyn."

As though Milton and I had planned it, we moved together and in sync a step to our left. Once again, we were blocking the way. Sort of.

Cece laughed. "Are you new to Cisco?" she asked me as she put her hands in her pockets resigning herself to the fact that we were going to stay in her way.

"I'm visiting from South Carolina. I'm Becca Robins. I work at a farmers' market in Monson."

"Cece Gonzales," she said. She was tall and dark and stunning but not like my sister, Allison. Cece's features weren't fine, but strong and bold. They might not be considered attractive by themselves, but combined they made a gorgeous woman. "I've been to Myrtle Beach and thought it was terrific, but I've never traveled further into the state."

"It's beautiful. We'd love to have you visit again," I said, sounding like a tourist council commercial. I cleared my throat.

Cece nodded and then focused on something to her left. "What's that all about, Milton?"

Again, like we were attached, Milton and I glanced to the area Cece had indicated.

She took the opportunity to scurry around us. By the time we'd figured out what she'd done, she was next the stall's front display table. She looked at me with raised eyebrows and a smile.

I kind of wanted to give her a high five.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Chapter Five - Spread the Love

Click here for contest details.

I've also posted some new contest information after the poll. Be sure to check it out.

Chapter Five

I could only imagine the panic Carolyn felt. Other than my farm, I didn't think I'd ever owned an item that was worth $25,000, let alone lost one. Even my old truck wasn't worth all that much.

"Who is she?" I asked Milton.

"Cece Gonzales. Everyone in San Francisco knows her. She started her own Internet company ten years ago and made barrels of money. She gives lots of it away, but I doubt she'll look at this situation as a worthwhile donation."

"What should we do?" I had the urge stop the woman walking toward us. She was tall, dark and stunning. She carried herself with authority and power, but that protect-other-farmers'-market vendors part of me wanted to trip her to keep her from making it to Carolyn's stall. Maybe they could find the pendant if they only had a few extra minutes. It was unreasonable, of course, to think of such things but I couldn't help it. I wanted to do something.

When Milton stepped forward, I thought he might have the same idea, but he didn't trip anyone.

"Cece, so good to see you," he said.

"Milton . . ." she began

More Contest Details:

February 14: Still the day to pre-order the book to be eligible to win the iPad. Send me your invoice/confirmation email ( I'll probably do the drawing on the 16th so everyone has a couple days to get me their emails. I won't do it sooner than the 16th, but I've received some logistical questions that make me think there might be a chance I'll do it after the 16th. I'll let you know, of course.

February 14: I will also post the ten questions on the 14th. I will post the questions on this blog. The first five who answer the questions correctly ON MY FACEBOOK PAGE will each win a $20 bookstore gift certificate and then one of those winners will win the e-reader. NOTE: I'll do that drawing the same time I do the iPad drawing - on the 16th or shortly thereafter.

Okay, I've been thinking about what time to post the questions and I've decided that they'll go up on this blog 1:00pm EST and 10:00am PST. The great news for me is that the blog is getting a bunch of attention from both coasts (thank you). This seems like a good time to give everyone as fair a chance as possible.

Thank you all!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Chapter Four - Spread the Love

Contest Details here.

Scroll down for Chapters One - Three

Chapter Four

My first real look at the market was a hurried tour up one aisle and down the next. I followed Shannon and Milton as they led the way. Cisco was set up on a bluff that over-looked the ocean. It had switchback-like aisles, with the only official way in or out at the entrance. However, the entire space was wide open, the view of the ocean unobstructed. There were no canvas walls like I was used to, but each vendor's space was an open area, borders being determined by a little extra space or a display table or two.

Though I was enormously curious about the missing item, I couldn't help but look at products as we were rushing by. I saw fresh fruit of all kinds, seafood at almost every turn, vegetables that seemed to have impossibly rich colors and flowers that my friend Abner would recognize but I didn't. The artwork was stunning - paintings, sculptures, jewelry and pottery that begged me to stop.

Finally, we did stop. The items in the small and crowded stall in front of us were colorful and attractive and at first glance seemed to be the sort of mass-produced things that tourists bought for souvenirs. There were plates, thimbles, bells and spoons - all illustrated with Chinese characters.

"Did you call the police, Carolyn?" Shannon said to the woman behind the front table.

"I did, right after I talked to you," Carolyn said. Carolyn was short and blond and kind of reminded me a little of me. "Oh, Shannon, this is just horrible."

"Let's not panic, yet. Tell me what happened."

"I locked the pendant in here." Carolyn put her hand on a metal cash box on the table. "The buyer is supposed to meet me here in a few minutes. I went to get it and it was gone."

"Did you bring the cash box in with you today or was it already here?" Shannon asked.

"I brought it today, but I unlocked it earlier and then got distracted before I opened it. I didn't look inside until a few minutes ago."

"So it could still be back at the store?"

"I called Freddie. He's looking, but I'm sure I put it in here last night."

Milton turned to me. "Carolyn and her husband Freddie run both a souvenir shop and a high end auction house in Chinatown. Freddie's parents came from Shanghai and started the businesses. Carolyn and Freddie have been running the show for about ten years."

"What is she missing?" I asked.

"I'm guessing it's the jade pendant they sold at auction earlier this week. It sold for $25,000. Freddie and Carolyn have been taking turns watching it."

"Whoa. That makes my stomach hurt," I said.

"And, here comes the buyer now." Milton nodded down the aisle.

I turned and watched as . . .

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Chapter Three - Spread the Love

Contest details - here.

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

"Well, you are a little thing, aren't you?" Mrs. O'Brien said as she extended her hand. "It's a pleasure to have you with us for a few days. Has Milton given you the grand tour yet?"

Shannon O'Brien was the first person I'd ever met who could be called big-boned and it not mean anything except that she had big bones. She was a couple inches shorter than Milton but that still probably put her close to six feet tall. She had wide shoulders, wide hips, even a wide chin. Even so, her friendly smile was her most prominent feature.

"It's great to be here," I said, forcing my teeth to stop chattering. I pulled my hand out of the warm coat pocket to shake hers.

"I was just about ready to show her the ropes," Milton said to his wife. "Would you like to join us?"

"Sure. Let's . . ." She was interrupted by the loud buzz of the cell phone attached to her belt. "Excuse me a minute," she said as she moved to an open space on the other side of the aisle and took the call.

"Believe it or not, Shannon only recently switched to a phone from a walkie-talkie. I miss the old-fashioned method. Vendors think it's okay to call her at all hours now. The walkie-talkie never went home with us." Milton winked.

"I think I understand," I said, thinking of all the time Allison spent on the phone."

"Milt, I'm afraid I'll have to pass on the tour. We'll catch up later," Shannon said as she rejoined us. She spoke quickly and her eyebrows were together in either concern or concentration.

"What’s wrong, Shannon?" Milton asked.

"I hate to air Cisco's dirty laundry in front of our guest . . . forgive me, Becca."

"It's fine. What's wrong?" I said.

"It seems that one of our Chinatown vendors is missing something; something very valuable."

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Chapter Two - Spread the Love

First, here the post on the contest and prizes:

And, here's Chapter One

Chapter Two

It was so cold that my teeth were chattering something fierce. When I attempted to say "So, you sell tuna, salmon and halibut?" - I instead said, "S-so, you s-sell t-tuna, s-salmon and h-halibut?"

"Yes, ma'am, striped bass and sturgeon, too, depending on the season," Milton said as he rearranged a bug-eyed dead fish on the display table. "Catch 'em and sell 'em."

Milton O'Brien had picked me up from the airport, greeting me at the baggage carrousel with a heavily callused hand-shake and dark blue eyes framed by deep happy wrinkles. He'd gathered my bag and led the way to his old van, his strides long and quick. I'd had to move my short legs double-time just to keep up.

The ride to Cisco Farmers' Market had been fast and horrifying. San Francisco had lots more traffic than I was used to, and Milton drove as though he wasn't concerned about causing or acquiring dents.

Once we reached Cisco, though, I was immediately grateful that I'd won the contest. I was going to get to spend three glorious days at a market that overlooked the "other" ocean. Sure, it was cold, much colder than I'd expected, but the view was breathtaking and Milton had given me a thick wool coat to wear. I was sure I'd warm up soon.

"Oh. Look alive," Milton said as he peered down the aisle. "Here comes the boss."

"The boss?" I said.

"Yes, the one and only."

I wasn't sure if I heard humor or fear in his voice.

UPDATE: Voting is done for the day. See you tomorrow and thank you!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Chapter One - Spread the Love

First, here's the post with the contest details:
Spread the Love

Chapter One

"And, the winner is . . . " Allison, my fraternal twin sister and Bailey's Farmers' Market manager reached into the box and pulled out a small piece of paper. She unfolded it and smiled. "Becca Robins!"

The buzz started. I couldn't immediately tell if it was a good buzz or a bad buzz. Since I had a homemade jam and preserve stall at Bailey's, Allison and I had discussed whether our sibling status disqualified me for the annual Valentine's Day "Spread the Love" event. We finally decided that chances were so slim that I'd win, it wouldn't hurt to throw my name into the box just to keep the odds even for everyone. The slight difference between slim and none had played to my advantage today.

"Congratulations, Becca," Bo Stafford, the onion man, said. Bo was a big guy who I once thought was sort of gruff, but it turns out maybe he isn't.

"You'll have fun," Linda, my good friend, neighboring market vendor and fruit pie baker extraordinaire said with a genuine smile.

We were under a large tent at Bailey's. Everyone was there. The drawing for the event was a big deal. One Bailey's vendor would travel to another market somewhere in the country and spend time with its vendors, sharing marketing and product ideas. The owners of Bailey's paid for the three day trip and threw in a little extra spending money.

From across the dirt floor, Barry of Barry Good Corn, and Herb and Don, the herb boys smiled and sent congratulatory waves my direction.

Maybe it was okay that I'd won.

"Where will she be going?" Jeanine Baker, the egg lady asked.

Allison had been inspecting the crowd too. I was sure she was just as surprised as I was that I'd won. The look in her dark eyes told me she was pleased with the other vendors' reaction.

"I think Becca will have a great time. She's going to . . . "

UPDATE: Voting closed for the night. Come back tomorrow and thank you!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Spread the Love!

Well, first I have to begin by saying thank you! It's because of my readers that FARM FRESH MURDER landed on the New York Times' Bestseller List, something that was beyond my wildest dreams. You're truly the best!

The second book in the series, FRUIT OF ALL EVIL, publishes one month from today - March 1. Spreading the word about a new book is a challenge, and for me self-promotion is an uncomfortable venture but it is a necessary part of being an author. So, hopefully, I've come up with some things that will make self-promotion less painful for me and more . . . well, prize-filled for you.

However, I will need your help - just a little, though.

Beginning on February 4 and going until February 14, I'll be posting a "Which Way" mystery on this blog featuring Becca, the star of the farmers' market mysteries. At the end of each post, I'll ask readers to vote between two different "ways" the story should go. I've only written the first part. I know sort of how I want it to end - with something that leads to the beginning of FRUIT OF ALL EVIL, but I have no idea what will occur in between. That'll be up to you. So, I will really need your votes, so does Becca. This is your chance to be a part of the mystery writing process.

Also - It would be terrific if you took a moment between now through February 14 to spread the word about FRUIT OF ALL EVIL and the "Which Way" story. A note on your Facebook page, your blog or a Tweet sending friends to this blog would go a long way to helping Becca and her pals land on the New York Times list again.

Did you think I was going to ask for your help without giving you anything in return? Of course not!

First - if you're thinking about buying FRUIT OF ALL EVIL, DON'T! I mean, don't buy it just yet. However, if you pre-order it on February 14, you'll be eligible to win . . . an iPad!

If you pre-order it online on the 14th, and send me a copy of your receipt (the confirmation email you receive), I will put your name in a drawing for an iPad. Okay, to be fair, if you've already pre-ordered it, send me your confirmation email and you'll be entered too -- but purchases between now, February 1, and February 13 won't be entered. I think you can probably figure out what's going on here - we're looking for a day of good rankings on Internet bookstores. This is like one of those contests where you send in an essay and a hundred dollars and you're entered to win house, except that you don't have to write an essay and your investment is only about $7.00. Oh, and you won't win a house, but you will have a good book! Send your confirmation to:

So, what's the point of the "Which Way" story if all you have to do is pre-order the book to be eligible to win the iPad? Good question.

At the end of the story, I'll post ten questions on this blog - questions like, "What kind of fruit was Becca looking at in the first post of the story?" The first five people who get the correct answers and post them on MY FACEBOOK page, will each receive a $20 bookstore gift certificate for the store of each winner's choice. If you don't read the posts, you won't have a chance to win a gift certificate. Friend me on Facebook if you haven't already.

Oh, and one more thing - of the five who win the gift certificates, one of them will win an e-reader. We'll do another drawing. I have the e-reader, but I don't want to sway you as to where to pre-order the book so I won't say which model. It's one of the well-known ones, trust me.

Again, I'm sure you see what's going on. It's so important to spread the word about a new book. I'm just hoping to spread a little love along the way, too. Prizes are good things.

Thank you!!! Thank you!!! Thank you!!!

I'll do the drawing for the iPad on February 16 - this should give everyone a chance to get their February 14 order date confirmations to me. Again, here's the email for those:

I'll post the final episode of the "Which Way" story on February 14 (the pre-order date). I will also post the ten questions. After the first five posts with the correct answers show up on my Facebook page, I'll do a drawing for the e-reader. Don't forget, those first five correct posts win gift certificates.

Also, I'll send confirmation emails to those who are entered to win the iPad contest. I have no control over Facebook. I'll just have to let the posts for the gift certificates/e-reader happen as they happen. If there are any minor tweaks or changes along the way, I'll post the info on the blog.

Make sense? I hope so. Basically, the contest will span ten days, with the big day on February 14, Valentine's Day.

Again, thank you!