This time of year, it’s hard to resist a good book

Timothy Pike, editor-in-chief
A Letter from the Editor

What would you like this month, Books & Buzz readers? Trick? Or treat?

Fortunately, you won’t have to choose, because we’ve got plenty of both in this issue!

It’s around this time of year that you might find yourself craving an exciting book to curl up with. Well, you’re in luck! Check out our Hot Off the Press section at ChapterBuzz, where you’ll find this month’s selection of published books that you can read in their entirety, including the award-winning Apparent Power by Dacia M Arnold.

As for treats, we’ve got all sorts of goodies for you:

First, do you dream when you sleep? This is the question that award-winning author JP McLean, who is also a certified scuba diver and avid gardener, asks readers. Jo-Anne then explains how her dreams have inspired the stories she writes. “Some nights my dreams are jumbled nonsense,” she says, “an endless parade of oddball events that goes on for what feels like the entire night.” Yet those dreams have given rise to entire series of books, including Secret Sky, about a secret society of people who can fly.

Next, author and professional speaker Mark Leslie treats us to a healthy dose of humor in his article about how the pandemic caused him to pivot from his usual horror genre to the humor space—creating a body of work that includes a suite of song parody videos to keep you laughing. So why, then, did this writer of all things macabre—including a post-apocalyptic–themed short story—suddenly find he couldn’t write a single word as a near-apocalyptic plague swept across the globe? When you hear the reason, you’ll understand. Come for the article, stay for the links to his hilarious videos.

Finally, can watching TV help you beat writer’s block? Bestselling mystery and romance author Stephanie LaVigne says yes, and explains exactly how as one of her five best tips on getting through a writing dry spell. She lays out the easy steps you can take to visualize your story, goes into detail about the best ways to dictate your chapters, and as a bonus, wraps up with a list of thought-provoking questions to ponder if you find yourself stuck and not sure how to move forward with your manuscript. Her advice is sure to get you out of a jam.

Whew! That’s a lot of treats. But what about the tricks?

Maybe I’ll leave those to Jennifer Anne Gordon, this month’s award-winning cover author, who used to be a magician’s assistant. Don’t worry, she never had to deal with being sawed in half on stage—and you’ll read why in our wide-ranging interview with this accomplished writer. Jennifer, who also co-hosts the top-rated podcast Vox Vomitus, talks about one of her greatest creative losses in the pandemic era, reveals what kept her from writing her first novel, and explains how she overcame a bad case of writer’s block.

As the weather cools off—at least in this part of the world—and orange leaves flutter in the crisp air, get cozy in your go-to oversized hoodie, grab a mug of your favorite pumpkin-themed beverage, and enjoy this month’s issue of Books & Buzz Magazine.

Happy reading,

Timothy Pike
Editor-in-chief, Books & Buzz Magazine

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