Rona Shively must die…

This isn’t a joke. Everything you know about Rona is about to be changed forever. She’s done what she can to stop it, God knows she fought it all the way. But the time has come. If you missed This Side Up, buy it now on Kindle so that you are ready for the latest installment in the Rona Shively series. Coming soon…Now You See Me: The Rona Shively Stories.

Until next time…

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What if it’s really not you?

I’ve been thinking about identity theft lately. Partly because this is the main offense being perpetrated in my latest Rona Shively novel and partly because someone I know recently claimed that their identity was being tampered with. In their case, they were lying to cover up some unsavory behavior. In Rona’s case, however; it’s a bit more entertaining.

Without giving too much away, Rona Shively will soon find herself in the middle of a twisted case of identity theft. Someone wants to make her look bad and they are not above taking advantage of unsuspecting elderly women to do it. When a new client comes to Rona, pointing fingers and asking questions about why she is trying to swindle old ladies out of their savings, Rona has no choice but to dig in and set about finding well, herself.

You’ll never guess in a million years who is behind all of this. Rona faces some difficult losses and ends up in an all out war with her worst adversary to date.

In 2011, be on the lookout for Rona in Now You See Me: The Rona Shively Stories.

This Side Up is now available! Just e-mail to order your copy today! Be sure to write “This Side Up” in the subject line of your e-mail!

Until next time…

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Book Signing Tonight!

I just wanted to post here that I will be at the New Carlisle Public Library in New Carlisle, OH tonight at 6 p.m. to sign copies of my latest book, This Side Up: The Rona Shively Stories. I hope you can make it out to see me this evening!

I’m hard at work on Rona Shively 5! You won’t believe what’s going on with Rona. She’s definitely gotten herself into a situation she won’t easily get out of. Someone is trying to set her up and they’re using her friends and family to do it. It really is complicated, so if you want to know what’s happening, you’ll have to read the book. 🙂 I’ll keep you posted on my progress, but in the meantime you can order your signed copy of This Side Up or any of the other Rona Shively Stories by e-mailing me today! My first ten orders will get a free gift with their purchase!

Until next time…

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To Forgive…divine?

I’ve been doing some thinking about forgiveness lately. My P.I. character, Rona Shively has struggled with issues related to forgiving people. She has been estranged from her mother for years, she recently broke off her relationship with her boyfriend who was also a close friend for many years, and she also has difficulty forgiving herself when she makes a mistake. The underlying problem with Rona is that she sees forgiveness as allowing someone to walk all over you and then just saying, “Okay, just don’t do it again.”

I completely understand having issues around forgiving those who have wronged you. Forgiveness does not translate into allowing someone the opportunity to screw you all over again. It does not mean that you will necessarily give someone the opportunity to hurt you again. Forgiving someone does not necessarily absolve that person of their sins and it doesn’t have to mean that you give them another chance to do anything to you again whether that thing be bad or good.

I can see where forgiveness is important; however, I think many people often mistake the intended outcome of the act (which is to free the forgiving party’s soul to live a life energized by love and peace instead of being burdened by anger and hatred) for their own interpretation of the meaning of forgiveness. In other words, if the person who has hurt you believes that being forgiven gives them a clean slate on which to once again stomp you into then they miss the point. Forgiveness isn’t really meant to make the offending party feel better, though that’s the way it is often taken. In many cases, people mistakedly believe that forgiveness is meant to serve as a “starting over” point when it may actually be a “jumping off” point for moving on to a better situation.

Rona Shively has been dealing for years with the guilt of having not been able to forgive her mother for cheating on her father. When her boyfriend cheats on her, she wants to have nothing more to do with him. As she continues to grow from book to book, her capacity for forgiveness is gaining momentum. She will soon find herself in a situation where forgiveness may be the difference between life and death. I’ll share more about that as I get closer to getting the next book in the series finished. For now, check out This Side Up: The Rona Shively Stories. I’m offering a special right now for anyone who would like to buy two or more Rona Shively Stories! Order two or more of the stories (In the Wash, Under Lock and Key, Keeping the Faith, This Side Up) at the low price of $10 each and shipping is absolutely free! To order this special, e-mail me and put the word “Forgiveness” in the subject line. I’ll be running this special until May 1, 2010.

Until next time…

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Rona’s Vision of Love…

In my last post, I talked about the importance of knowing what you want in a partner. I even threatened to have Rona come up with her own list of qualities she was looking for in a mate. Well, here it is. Rona and I sat down last week and went over some of the things that have been plaguing her relationships all these years. I asked her, (just play along), if she could list all of the traits she would want in a life partner, what would they be? Her answers were as follows:

Rona’s Personal Vision of Love

He would have to like the same television shows I like…and more importantly to hate the same ones I hate.

He would need to be somewhat affectionate, but not smothering.

He would need to understand that my rear end does not need to be swatted simply because it enters his vicinity.

He would need to like most of the same music that I like…and as with television, hate the same music I hate.

He would need to be somewhat adventurous. Note, adventurous has nothing to do with being open to playing a different video game than you’re used to playing. For God’s sake, get off the damned couch.

He would need to be ambitious enough to look for ways to improve himself without my constant prodding.

He would need to be fairly self-sufficient, at least to the degree that I am.

He would need to actually talk and listen when we are trying to have a conversation. It would be nice to feel as though speaking with one another and enjoying it was an option.

He would need to understand that I am not prone to sitting back and relaxing. I like to be busy and I like to be doing something that means something. Oh, and it would be nice if he were somewhat interested in doing something meaningful as well.

He would need to be at least as intelligent as I am. I’m no genius, but I really hate spelling things out for people. It tends to dampen my mood when I have to explain something simple to a grown person.

Lastly, he would need to understand that I am nobody’s mother. Especially not his.

Whew! Well, I’d like to say that Rona is on the right track with this, and I guess, she might be. At least she knows what she wants. In my latest Rona Shively book, This Side Up, Rona is struggling with some serious relationship anxiety. After reading the book, let me know if you think she might be on the right track with her list or if she should just hang it up altogether. You can buy the book at my website or at Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

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Read an excerpt from This Side Up!

From Chapter One…

I slammed the phone down with somewhat unnecessary force; slumping in my chair like a woman who had spent the better part of the day trying to convince herself that she really didn’t need one man while fretting over not being able to get an altogether different man on the phone. Ah, the irony.

As I pondered this, there was a knock at my door. It was most likely the pizza, but I checked the peephole anyway to make sure. I didn’t see anyone there, so I opened the door cautiously. I’d been fooled by this trick before. I peered outside to see if anyone was waiting to club me over the head, but no one was there. That was odd; I could have sworn someone had been at the door. Maybe I was hearing things. I shut the door and went into my kitchen to see if I had anything to drink in the refrigerator. I opened it up and looked inside. One can of Coke and a couple of bottles of beer. I grabbed the Coke and opened it.

As I took a swig, there was another knock at the door. I was pretty sure it was actually a knock this time. I set the can down on the counter and went over to the door. This time, I reached into my purse which was hanging on its hook near the door and grabbed my gun. I held it at the ready as I looked through the peephole again. This time, I saw the pizza delivery guy standing there holding my pizza, grinning like an idiot. What the hell did he have to be so happy about? He was a pizza delivery guy for Christ’s sake.

I opened the door, still holding my gun. The boy’s eyes grew wide as he saw it in my hand.

“Don’t worry,” I said, “it’s not for you.” I smiled reassuringly and handed him a $20 bill to cover the cost of my order. “Keep the change, dear.”

He handed me the pizza and the Coke and then backed away from me without saying a word. I’d tipped him about four bucks, so in addition to not getting shot, I’d say he did pretty well on this order.

Pre-Order your signed copy today at my website!

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This Side Up: The Rona Shively Stories

The newest installment in the Rona Shively series is set to be out on February 4th! I’m giving away free copies to five lucky individuals who subscribe to my blog or to my Rona Shively Newsletter. You can be included in the drawing by going to my website and subscribing or simply becoming a follower here at Benston Blogs. The newsletter is quarterly, so you won’t be bombarded with Rona Shively stuff every day of your life…unless of course, you request it. In that case, I’d be happy to e-mail you with more frequency and tell you to buy my books, read my books, give my books away as gifts….etcetera, etcetera…

This Side Up is another big mess. Rona is trying to make some big decisions and becomes involved in helping a teenager figure out whether or not she was adopted. In the process, Rona learns that there is just no end to the terrible things that people will do to one another when they have no direction in their lives.

Still searching for some sense of her own purpose, Rona tries her best to help this girl figure out what’s going on and why. By the end of this book, Rona is, as always, even more confused than she was to start with.

I’m now accepting pre-orders for This Side Up. Anyone who orders between now and January 31st will get their signed copy for just $12.95. That includes shipping! Check out my book trailer and order your copy of This Side Up at the Rona Shively website!

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