My new year started with a huge celebration!!!! CrossRiver Media accepted my historical mystery novel Obedient unto Death for publication, with a target launch date of December of 2021. (imagine exploding fireworks)

Getting published can happen. I am a first-time author, blogging about this daunting and exciting journey. I thought you might like to keep me company this coming year.

Back story: Obviously, this journey did not start with publication. First, I had to write the book. That began ten years ago. Yep, ten years of work. Ideas swirled in my head, and I jotted down an outline about a murder in ancient Rome during a Christian worship service. My female sleuth had to overcome the barriers of her day to solve the mystery. Could she save an innocent man from execution? The research took up a bulk of time. See my previous blogs that share some of these investigative hurdles, like understanding how Roman’s ate while laying down?

Plotting, character development, dialogue, setting, political and religious events were critical elements in the story. Then it had to be submitted and accepted, an abbreviated summary that leaves out writing classes, critique groups, contest entries, research, publishers, editors, supportive friends, workshops, writer’s conferences, beta readers, etc. But that trek is in the past, for this book, and a topic for a different blog. This year I enter uncharted territory named – (drum roll) publication.

I start with a heartfelt thank you to CrossRiver Media for believing in the story, choosing to publish Obedient unto Death, and shepherding me through the publication process. A process that began Dec. 31, 2020, with my onboarding meeting.

Onboarding - a term I first heard two months ago after I signed my book contract (author-publisher agreement).

“Onboarding is a human resources industry term referring to the process of introducing a newly hired employee into an organization. Also known as organizational socialization, Onboarding is an important part of helping employees understand their new position and job requirements.” (

Job Requirements? Hmmm. I am not so naïve to believe that writing this book was a one and done to getting published. Thanks to those many workshops, classes, and conferences, I had a heads-up that my novel’s completion signaled a job transition - developing a marketing plan. FYI, I do not have a degree in marketing, public relations, or social media. So begins a new year of online workshops, watching marketing podcasts, identifying and following writing blogs, and pleading for help from tech-savvy friends.

What do I have to do to interest readers in Obedient unto Death? What do I post? Where do I post? What are the psychographics of my ultimate reader? Psycho WHAT? A vocabulary word I learned during Onboarding.

Psychographics is the study of people’s attitudes and interests, often studied in conjunction with typical demographic data to build more complete profiles of target markets and audiences.” (

Okay, I have my homework cut out for me. Stay tuned and find out how I am doing.


My February blog researches Roman recipes and preservation tips: To keep meat without salt, cover fresh meat with honey, suspend it in a vessel. Use as needed. In the winter it will keep, but in summer it will last only a few days. P.S. The Romans used creative sauces to hide the flavor of spoiled food.

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