Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Name That Book!

The first draft of Thea Campbell #4 is done and taking a nap. I've been doing my best to leave it alone, and perhaps I'd be more successful if I didn't feel something was terribly lacking -- even at this stage. If I just had a title ...

Remember This Name-The-Book Contest?
Hey, I know! I'll hold (another) contest!

The last one was so successful that I believe I'll go down that road again. Here's the rules; 

Read the synopsis below and give me your suggestions for titles -- as many as you'd like, and I don't care if you duplicate someone else's -- either in the comment section of this blog or via email to susan @ susanschreyer dot com. 

That's it.

Everybody wins -- Yay! Like last time. Yay! -- a free e-book, and the person who submits the winning title gets their name in the book's acknowledgments. Think of it as immortality :)

Thea Campbell Mystery #4

A Rhododendron - see why Thea wants to save it?

A slippery slope of unpleasant incidents begin the New Year for Thea Campbell and fiancé Paul Hudson. The last thing they expect to find when digging up a big rhododendron next to their fire-damaged house are human bones. Word gets out and speculation runs rampant in the small town of Snohomish, Washington. Thea's aunt is among those who believe the skeleton belongs to the ghost she claims haunts the home. Others say it's a pirate from long ago killed by his captain and left to guard a buried treasure with his spirit.

Unfortunately, the county forensic team finds it difficult to make any headway in the investigation when the bones vanish almost as soon as they're uncovered.

The New Year's Eve party should take their minds off what will surely delay their home's reconstruction, but generates more commotion than celebration -- and not just between Thea and Paul. No one seems to be able to keep from being drawn into conflicts they'd normally avoid.

The problems don't stop there. Much to Paul's annoyance, the contractor hired to do work on the house seems to have the hots for Thea. Unfortunately, the contractor's leads for upgraded new appliances and fixtures provides seem suspiciously hot as well.
The Kitchen Centre
Wouldn't you be suspicious getting this for cheap, too?

On returning home from the party they find holes have mysteriously appeared in the backyard. No sooner are they repaired than they appear again.

Could the rumors be right? Could the bones really have been cursed?

An annoyed Thea finds herself hosting a séance Paul suggested as a joke, and stumbles onto a scam to feed the silliness of ghosts and buried treasure. There is surely no curse, but why go to so much trouble over a fictional legend? Then someone breaks into Paul and Thea’s temporary apartment and steals an old diary that could have provided clues to the skeleton's identity. Sure, the thief tidied up, but that only verifies, to a furious Thea, the culprit’s identity.

Then there's the issue of those vaguely threatening, digitized-voice phone calls. Thea, although mildly rattled at first, refuses to respond. But instead of being discouraged, the caller becomes more desperate and demanding. Paul, nearly frantic with worry since the messages are for Thea, is determined something be done.

There's no doubt every bizarre and unpleasant event since the discovery of the skeleton is connected. Thea and Paul need to solve the mystery and put all the madness to rest once and for all, but are they headed for a trap that will be their final rest?


  1. I love that you are having a contest, Susan! Congratulations on another book! :)

    My suggested title might be too corny: The Skeleton Curse.

    1. No such thing as too corny for me, Len! Yes, I love Muppet Humor!

  2. How about: Old Bones Gather No Moss~
    Good luck! It sounds grand.

  3. I have two more:
    Skeleton Secrets
    Bones and Secrets

    1. I can see a spreadsheet in my future to keep track. Great suggestions!

  4. Finding the perfect title is even harder than writing the book at times.
    How about Unhallowed Ground

    1. Ooo... Nancy! Very cool!! Thanks!
      I have such a hard time with titles -- probably because I'm too close to it, and all the story threads and themes are equally important. Believe it or not, I know authors who come up with the title first and then work the story out!

    2. Thanks, glad you like it. I've gotten better at the title issue since a write a bi-monthly column for a few local papers. I think it's a good writing exercise for me to have to come up with something catchy for an 800-word story.

    3. I applaud you for being able to write "short." It's difficult to do -- I think there has to be a gene for it :)

  5. Unhallowed Ground does indeed sound good!