Bots — The Future in Communication?

You've probably already used chat bots even if you don't realize it. Facebook's Messenger is a chat bot so if you've used that you've dipped your toes into those waters. It's a fun idea. You can chat in real time with people you know only online, it costs nothing and protects everybody's privacy. Facebook used to be like that. But changes in Facebook which limit everybody's view of their followers and friends are actually inspiring a new direction for people like me, who make a living selling stuff and who need to get the word out to our connections when we have something to sell.

Bots.

Bots are cool for a few reasons:

1. You can subscribe to them without giving away any personal information like an email. So, if you're one of those people who's fed up with getting dozens of emails from news lists every day, being subscribed to bots doesn't feed that beast.

2. You can stay up to date with Facebook connections you might not otherwise see in your feed because Facebook is limiting them and you. For example, if you want to know when I have a new book coming out in your favorite series, you can subscribe to my bot on Facebook and I'll send you a Direct Message when I have a new release or any other fun news, such as appearances, sneak previews, contests and more!

3. Bots are easy, fun and interactive. I currently have a couple of bots that allow you to “chat” with two of my favorite characters. Joss from my Yesterday's Mysteries and Flo from my Silver Hills Cozy mysteries. This type of bot offers information you want in a fun and entertaining way.

Bots, I believe, are the wave of the future for online communications. I think the potential is exciting and, as more and more people use the technology, I think we'll see it grow and change to become even more useful.

Want to give my bot a try? Click the link below to Subscribe to my Welcome bot and enjoy!

xx

Sam

 

 

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Why Humor is Important in Mysteries…

Read and Comment to win – There will be a New Winner Every Month!

Funny cozy mysteries aren't for everyone. I get that. It's unfortunate, in my humble opinion, that some people can't let go and let themselves have fun with a story, but I've seen enough reviews from disgusted readers who find this type of mystery “silly” and “stupid” to know that not everyone can do it. That's okay. May the force be with them. I prefer to embrace humor in my mysteries because, though it may seem gratuitous and silly to some, it's really a very important component of the mystery.

Why? I'll explain.

The interrelationship between tension and humor is well known. This is why some of our favorite action films/books use strategic dollops of humor throughout the story to give the watcher a short breather…a chance to de-tense for a moment before the next big action sequence. Without these breathers there would be action fatigue. Too much of anything, no matter how good, is still too much. #:0) Humor gives us that release and ups the endorphins so that the next dose of action hits us right in the gut, taking us on a powerful ride that will stay with us long after the viewing/reading experience.

Humor also serves as a diversion in a mystery. A good writer can create just enough chaos within a story to obscure something that might give the mystery away too soon. You might be thinking that the writer could just omit the telltale clue. But that wouldn't be honest. If the mystery author is being fair to the reader, she needs to provide all the information in the story to enable the reader to figure out “who dun it”.  Rabid mystery readers expect and strive to solve that mystery before the big reveal. It's a source of pride for them to see past the chaos and glom onto the specific details that, if put together in just the right way, tell them who the villain is. A mystery writer who denies them this through trickery will pay a price with the true mystery lover.

And finally, humor is good for the soul. You've heard the old adage, the best humor is based in truth. That's absolutely true. When I created a series about older women who live in a senior and singles residence, I knew that many of my readers (and I) would relate to these women because they're us. Getting older can be scary. The idea of being put into a specific place for our own good is terrifying. But what if I could take the sting out of that idea by using what I've experienced (with parents) in real life and turning it into something not only palatable but fun? What if I could make these characters so relate-able…so likable…that the reader is not only happy to get to know them, but actually wants to embrace their situation too? Sound impossible? Maybe for some it is. But for the overwhelming majority of my readers, it's very possible because we want to believe we can still be viable and entertaining when we're in our seventies or eighties. We want to believe we can still solve mysteries and save lives, no matter how old we are. We want to believe we can not only like our new residence if we go to one, but love it! And thrive there with lots of friends. And we can believe it. Because it's all about your attitude. Life is as fun and happy as you make it. That's why humor in series like Silver Hills is so vitally important. And why so many readers love to read it!

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What do you think about humor in mysteries? Do you have a problem embracing it? Or is it something you really enjoy? I'd love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Comment below for a chance to win a book or goodie box from me. There will be one new winner every month!

ttys

Sam

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Come to Silver Hills. Where petting a cat can be a death sentence and yoga is all about survival.

Silver Hills Senior and Singles Residence isn’t exactly a boring place. Home to a death predicting cat named Tolstoy, a night manager who may or may not suck blood and float above the floor, a cook with mad voodoo and pie baking powers, and a trio of nosy sleuths who are determined to get to the bottom of the corpse in the library (maybe literally)…some might say things couldn’t get any weirder.

Some would be wrong.

iBookstore: https://geo.itunes.apple.com/us/book/dose-vidanya/id1102484761?mt=11

Amazon.com: http://samcheever.com/blog/dosevidanyaamus

Amazon.ca: https://www.amazon.ca/Dose-Vidanya-Silver-Hills-Mysteries-ebook/dp/B01CYDCIK0

Amazon.uk: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dose-Vidanya-Silver-Hills-Mysteries-ebook/dp/B01CYDCIK0

Amazon.com.au: http://www.amazon.com.au/Dose-Vidanya-Silver-Hills-Mysteries-ebook/dp/B01CYDCIK0

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dose-vidanya-sam-cheever/1123515169?ean=2940157659424

Kobo Books: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/dose-vidanya

GooglePlay: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Sam_Cheever_Dose_Vidanya_Humorous_Cozy_Mystery_wit?id=IaJGDAAAQBAJ

Paperback: http://samcheever.com/blog/DVprint

 

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Have you Ever Been Haunted? I Have…

A New Winner Every Month!

Okay, my ghost was possibly a unique type of spirit. We dubbed him the Electrical Ghost. But for all the silliness that name implies, this ghost was very real and very spooky.
We'd moved into a new home in Derry, New Hampshire. The house was at the end of a country street, on a Cul de Sac. A perfect place to raise our two girls, who were very young at that point. My husband had just taken a new job and he traveled a lot. We weren't close to family at that stage in our lives so it was pretty much just me and my two babies.

I didn't really mind being alone. The girls kept me busy and we had lots of fun together. But when the weirdness started happening, it was definitely less fun!

First of all, we had a cat named Cheerio. Cheerio didn't like the new house. At. All. In fact, she hid almost all the time. It wasn't until we moved a few years later that I realized how abnormal her behavior had been. I always figured she was just hiding from the kids. And who could blame her! LOL

If I'd been paying attention at that point I might have seen the other stuff coming. But I was a young, exhausted mother and didn't have a clue.

Until the smoke alarms started going off at Midnight. Several nights in a row. Of course my husband was gone when this happened.

Then the doorbell started to ring and there was nobody there. One time my husband (yeah, he was there for this one) was on the phone with the contractor trying to explain the problems when the doorbell started going off. After a few minutes the contractor asked my husband if he was going to get the door. Hubby waited a beat and then told the man that was one of the reasons we were calling. There was nobody there.

Then half the plugs and lights in the kitchen went out. They were all on the same switch…impossible… And of course the garage door opener would randomly decide not to work.

We finally asked the contractor if he'd built the house on a burial ground or something. Maybe an electrician was murdered and buried there before the house was built. ROFL!

We never found out what was causing all the weirdness, but when we moved again a couple of years later, Cheerio came out of hiding. She was a perfectly normal cat from that point on.

They always say animals are sensitive to this type of thing. I guess that old wives tale is true!

Monthly Contest

Have you ever been haunted? Have you ever had something happen to you that you couldn't explain? Comment below to tell me about it. Or if there's nothing, tell me that too! I'll randomly pick one winner every month who'll get his/her choice of a book from my list.

***DON'T FORGET TO LEAVE YOUR EMAIL SO I CAN NOTIFY YOU IF YOU WIN***

Good luck!

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Do  you love paranormal mysteries? If so, you might want to read my Yesterday's Paranormal Mystery series. Book 1 is only $0.99 for a limited time!

Here's the Series Link on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B078N6RCFY

Or, visit the book page on my site: http://samcheever.com/series.html#yesterdaysmysteries

Posted in Contest, Cozy Mystery, Games and Contests, Horror, Mystery, New Release, Paranormal Mystery | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments