Help Pick My Arson Book Title

Hey, I need your help. I’m getting ready to self-publish my book and need a great title.  Want to Help?

First things first.  How many cliches did you find in the last blog?

Greatest thing since sliced bread–Originated in mid-20th Cent. meaning a useful new invention. Probably came from the armed forces and can be used sarcastically. Rona Jaffe used term in The Fame Game (1969).  Of course there are numerous variations on this term, i.e. hamburger, indoor plumbing, but most common is sliced bread.

Ivory tower–an attitude or situation far from being practical. Originated in the French critic Sainte-Beuve’s description of Alfred de Vigny as living in an ivory tower (1837)= isolated from life’s harsh realities.  Term has been used to describe academics writers, artists or anyone aloof from everyday affairs.

The whole nine yards–The entire distance; whole thing. Source of this term is lost, but several theories exist. From William Safire’s writings-nine yards was the entire amount put onto a bolt of cloth and for an ornate garment the “whole nine yards” was used. A large cement mixer holds 9 yards of cement.

How did you do?

I won’t go into all of the whys and wherefores of you helping me to pick a title for my book, but I would like to receive some comments.

What is worse than a nightmare, which is a dream that when you wake up it disappears; how about a night terror where when you awake, the dream continues. What is my book about?

Imagine waking up to find your bedroom on fire. You’re hopelessly trapped. The flames rush up the wall and eat into your beautiful wallpaper. You can’t scream for help, you can’t get out, and you know this fire was set deliberately to kill you.

Now imagine this has happened before. Not once. Not twice. But too many times to count.

Nights of burning terror consume pregnant KATHY HELLMAN’S world in a quiet Northern California town. The phone rings after midnight, waking her. The arsonist is calling yet again to play a recording of his victim’s screams as they’re burned alive.

The fires come ever closer to Kathy’s beloved Victorian home. First a Queen Anne destroyed on the outskirts of town, then a Gothic Revival two miles away. Her obstetrician’s Italianate style is burned down with his family inside less than a mile away.  Finally her best friend’s bed and breakfast is reduced to ashes only three blocks from her home.

Kathy’s world spinsout of control when her arson investigator husband Jack is suspected of setting these fires. She has no choice but to to clear his name and solve these terrible crimes on her own. When she discovers the arsonist’s true identity, can love and faith save Kathy? Or will she, too, be burned in the night?

For the record, I do have some ideas of my own for this title.  However, I’d like some feedback as to what you might think would be a good one.  Try to make it a two-word title and catchy.

Thanks for helping and keep writing,


Is Social Media what you need?

Good morning everyone!  I had a friend ask me to explain Facebook to her.  Ha! Someone has to explain it to me first!

Speaking of first, lets get the cliches out of the way.

My finger itches to: one is extremely eager to do something. First used by John Stubbs in 1579 The Discoverie of a Gaping Gulf and Shakespeare used in 1601, 2:3 from The Merry Wives of Windsor. Later used in 1853 by Charles Kingsley in Hypatia.

I couldn’t care less: it doesn’t matter one bit. This describes a total indifference. Originated in Great Britain, late 1930s, popular in 1940s, expressing bored indifference, but during WWII, bravado. In 1960s term changed by an American to “I could care less.”

month of Sundays: a very long time. dates from early 19th Cent. probably never meant literally which is a period of 30 Sundays.  First appeared in print in Frederick Marryat’s Newton Forster (1832) and a cliche by time Ogden Nash used in in 1935.

So let me know how many cliches you found?

Social Media includes Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, etc.  I signed up for Facebook as my personal place before I used it for a “Page.” Took a workshop and signed up with Twitter and LinkedIn, but really don’t use them right now. Lots think Facebook is the greatest thing since sliced bread.  Is it that hard to use? No, it was easy to sign up personally and I invited my friends from my emails and I upload my pictures and see what friends are doing. However, now that I want to use it for my books, etc., I signed up with a “Fan Page”. I use it as Julie A. Winrich, Writer.  This page is separate from my personal page.  When people go to my writer page, they do not have access to my personal page, although as Admin., I do. How did I set it up?

I used Frances Caballo and she helped me set up my fan page. I also have her book Social Media Just for Writers. I recommend this book to any writer who wants to know more about not only Facebook, but the other social medias.

Writers can’t afford to sit in their ivory tower and write their books, thinking they’ll magically get noticed.  We need to get out their and promote our work.  Using social media is one way.  Asking the help of others is another.

So if you want to go the whole nine yards with your book or books, I suggest you seek out help if needed and start using the social medias that are out there.  And if you don’t know how, (like me), ask professionals for their assistance and/or read about them, take classes. As soon as I finish Social Media Just for Writers, and fully understand Twitter and LinkedIn, I’ll start using them more.  For now I’m using my Facebook fan page. And when I write on it, it automatically goes into my personal profile page also.

Keep Writing!


Your Write Time

Great, just started writing on my blog and my computer shut down, so have to start over.
I’m back from a sabbatical and having life get in the way.
I know it’s been a month of Sundays since I wrote on this blog and you might not remember that I do this thing in my blog where I embed cliches and you have to find them. Then the next time I tell you what they were. So here are last blog’s cliches:

never a dull moment – something exciting is always happening. Term is usually stated ironically when something dangerous, stressful, or unpleasant is occurring.  Started in 1930s with Royal Navy and crossed the ocean and is now used in civilian situations.

a coon’s age – a long time. It’s an American expression from first half of 19th Century. Based on mistaken idea that racoons (coon’s) are long-lived. The creatures are not, but their fur used in colonial times is sturdy and long-lasting. i.e. see the black dialect in Southern Sketches (1860).

keep my chin up – don’t lose courage. Term replaced British saying: keep your pecker up.(from 1840s) pecker was defined as “courage”.  Didn’t catch on in America because of the slang use here. keep your chin up as been used for a long time- see 1942 The Six Iron Spiders by P. A. Taylor.

So on with my blog.  My finger itches to write, however what is the best time to write?  Well, I’ve discovered that my write time is in the morning.  That’s one of the reasons this blog has not been successful.  I scheduled to write on it in the afternoon’s.  My phone is set up to an alarm to remind me.  Guess what? When the alarm went off, I couldn’t care less and usually ignored it.  I was doing something else – probably napping – and never wrote!
Well, I’m a morning person.  By afternoon, my brain is not as “strong” as it used to be in the morning and ideas don’t flow as well.  I’ve always been a morning person, getting my best writing done in the mornings, cleaning the house in the a.m., and exercising. So why should I schedule anything to work on in the afternoon?  I will change my schedule to remind me to write once a week, at least, on my blog in the morning sometime.  We’ll see how that works.

So, what’s the best time for you to write?  Can you write anytime? Do you do your best work in the evening?  Maybe that’s why you’re not getting your writing in?  Figure out your best time and then sit down and write!
Until next time….Keep Writing!