This week, Books Make Me Happy blog and a handful of UF/PNR authors are celebrating stories set in sunny Florida. The authors showcased have offered excerpts, written cool blog posts, and are all participating in a blog hop GRAND PRIZE giveaway full of books and other goodies. Be sure to click on the header above to see the complete list of participating sites. Check out each day’s excerpt and the Featured Author’s site for fun posts and chances to win!!
Today is MY turn to be featured!! You can find my excerpt on Books Make Me Happy HERE.
Be sure to check at the bottom of today’s post for the rafflecopter entry form for the Grand Prize!

I have a new completed book! It just finished edits (mine) and I’m waiting on beta reader feedback, so I should be submitting it within the next week or so. Which is a roundabout way of saying I don’t know when it will be available. It is, however, the first book I’ve written set in Florida, and once I started toying with the concept, I realized I couldn’t set it anywhere else. It’s a paranormal romance with a hint of cozy mystery, called North on Drummond.

I’m originally from Toronto, and moved to Florida about seven years ago. Now, I live in California, but those few years in Florida gave me a better feel and appreciation for the area as setting. Here’s the tentative blurb:

Sandy Bottom Bay, Florida – Come for the Haunts, Stay for the Beaches!

Drew Drummond might call himself a psychic tarot reader, but he doesn’t believe in the supernatural. The business was left to him by his grandmother, and seemed the best way to rise above the chronic criminal behavior of the Drummond family. Despite his efforts, few of the townspeople consider him a good romantic match. Being gay only makes finding love more difficult.

When Cliff Garcia, Drew’s teenaged crush, moves back to town and joins the police force, Drew doesn’t think he has a chance. After all, the skeptical cop considers Drew’s profession on par with professional con man, and Cliff had spent his entire school career feuding with Drew’s volatile brothers. Despite the obstacles, Drew and Cliff begin a fiery relationship.

Just when Drew starts to believe they might have a chance, he suffers a head injury and begins having visions of the future. If Drew tells Cliff the truth, he’ll lose the man he’s falling for, but keeping his new ability a secret is no longer an option. If he can’t convince Cliff he’s for real, a murderer will walk free.

So, why set this in Florida? Although Sandy Bottom Bay is partly inspired by Salem, two other communities in Florida were the primary inspiration: Cassadaga & Gibsonton.

Cassadaga is known for it’s large number of psychics and mediums. Gibsonton is a community where carnival and circus performers lived during the winter. With those two somewhat unusual communities for inspiration, it was easy to extrapolate to Sandy Bottom Bay, a place that wanted to be as popular a tourist destination, but didn’t quite make the cut. They do get their fair share of paranormal groupies during Haunt Fest, though, and North on Drummond takes place in the week or so leading up to Haunt Fest.

In addition, the swampland and the alligators and the hot, humid weather in Florida gave me the ability to add a rather unique flavor to the setting. Florida is also the source of a number of odd news stories that the hubby and I dubbed “Florida weirdness”, and Sandy Bottom Bay definitely has its share of eccentrics. It fit right in, in my opinion.

If I was going to have a haunted town, with townspeople who celebrate the hauntings, it had to be Florida. Nothing else made sense.

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