Poll Results for Look The Other Way Back Text

Thank you to all who answered my poll. Talk about an amazing experience. Not only did people answer the poll, some were kind enough to leave comments to help me improve either version, others sent me personal emails with re-written text.

LOOK THE OTHER WAY is a mystery that takes place in the Bahamas. Compass Cay is one of my favorite islands and is also one of the settings in the novel. Why you ask? How could sharks swimming beside our boat not be dramatic?

Sharks

So the results of the survey.

61% preferred Option B.

39% preferred Option A.

I’ve put the descriptions below in case you want to refer to them. One thing I gathered is that mystery readers prefer option A, and romance readers prefer option B.

Next, I’m going to take all the wonderful feedback and re-write to the text to make the description shorter and tighter.

In case you haven’t heard, Imajin Books has their eBooks on sale this week. If you haven’t read DESCENT or BLAZE, they are only $0.99 until the end of the week.

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OPTION A:

Bobby Hall’s body washes up in the surf on a remote Bahamian island. His death is declared accidental. His grieving wife, Debi, hires Captain Jake Hunter, a former cop fleeing personal trauma, to sail with her on A Dog’s Cat and retrace Bobby’s final weeks at sea.

Shannon Payne is fired from the job she loves. Her engagement ends in disaster, and she no longer trusts her judgment of men. Giving up the life she knows as a reporter, she joins her aunt on A Dog’s Cat. The tranquility of life on a sailboat is what she needs. A tumultuous journey with the handsome captain is what she gets.

As tensions heighten on board, so does the attraction growing between Jake and Shannon. When Shannon learns a shocking truth about her childhood, a truth that might mean Bobby was murdered, the only thing clearer than the crystalline waters of the Bahamian archipelago is that someone is not telling the whole truth and hasn’t for a long time.

OPTION B:

A year after her uncle is lost at sea, Shannon Payne joins her grieving aunt on a journey through the idyllic Bahamian islands. She needs to recover from a devastating breakup with her fiancé. And sailing the turquoise waters, tracing her uncle’s route as a tribute to him, may just repair her heart. But instead of tranquility, she uncovers dark secrets from her past that may destroy any chance she has at happiness.

Captain Jake Hunter joins the duo on the thirty-eight-foot catamaran, A Dog’s Cat. He’s running away from painful memories. He dreams of escaping his life as a cop but finds himself embroiled in an investigation. He’s sworn off women, and now he’s living in close quarters with his boss’s niece, a blue-eyed beauty he can’t resist but should. Could his life get any more turbulent?

Shannon and Jake suppress the attraction they feel for each other, Bobby’s mysterious death hangs over them, and someone out there doesn’t want the truth uncovered.

Thanks for reading…

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Why Did I Ever Watch Jaws?

Is there a movie you wish you’d never seen?

Mine is Jaws. Even though I watched the scary movie a long time ago, the dreaded music sounds off in my head – and you know the music I am talking about – as soon as I swim laps. I like to watch a scary movie, something like Aliens works for me. I know I’ll never have to face an alien the way Sigourney Weaver did – at least I hope I won’t. But sharks? I’m in the ocean most days. I love to swim laps, but I’ve yet to make it through a session without thinking of Jaws.

Below are two dolphins swimming along my favourite beach for laps. A mom swimming with her young one. A lovely sight. An amazing opportunity to swim in the wild with a wild animal.  A big grey creature, but not the kind to be afraid of.

Dolphins at Sand Dollar

My only close up and personal encounter with a shark happened while I was kayaking. Unlucky for me, I got between a shark and its lunch. The annoyed shark bumped the side of my kayak. A good message to tell me to get away from the buffet. All the food was spoken for. Was I scared – yup. Did I go right back to the same spot the next day – yup. Somehow I feel safe in the kayak, but not while I’m swimming.

Someone please turn off the Jaws music so I can swim in peace.

Thanks for reading . . .

Mahi Mahi: Fishing off a Catamaran

Sometimes life offers a bounty.  Mattina is equipped with two stainless steel rod holders, one off each hull, and we love to fish while we’re sailing. Sometimes we catch a Mahi Mahi . . .

Mahi Mahi
Mahi Mahi

Sometimes we catch a shark. The trick is to get the lure back without hurting the shark. This shark snagged a homemade cedar plug, and lucky for us, it popped out of the sharks mouth and we got the lure back. The shark swam happily, or maybe grumpily, away and all was well.

Shark 1

 

And sometimes we don’t catch anything at all, but we still got to sail.

Thanks for reading . . .

Farley’s Friday: A Dog’s BFF or FFL?

Farley here,

Now I’d say I’m not a dog that’s good with words. I do better with hand signals, but I want a new term for BFF.

How can a dog have only one BFF? I have so many friends.

For instance, here’s my pal Tico. He loves to go snorkelling with his human, Dan. He’s a little too adventurous for me. I like to watch from shore.

Dan and Tico

“Don’t you know there are sharks in there?” I bark.

Tico swims farther out.

“What if Dan spears a fish and a shark arrives?” I bark.

Tico must have his ears turned off, because he’s not listening to me.

“TICO,” I howl my loudest.

Farley barking from shore

You can imagine me, barking from shore, my front paws lifting off the ground, water splashing around me. I glance at Kristina, but she just laughs. All she does is laugh when I think I’m being serious and she thinks I look silly.

Finally Tico gets a little too close to Dan, hits the flipper with his nose, startles himself and turns back to the beach.

He’s safe and I can relax.

Now back to my new term. FFL. Friend For Life. That means I can have more than one. Best does imply one, and who can have only one friend?

I’m adding Tico to my FFL list.

Woof Woof.

The Moon, The Tide, The Weather: Workout Schedule

Keeping fit is a challenge, and sometimes nature dictates the schedule. While living in the islands, the moon, tide and weather all tell me when and how I can exercise.

On a full moon, with a high tide, the beach will be soft and make running, let’s say, unpleasant. The sand forces ankles and knees into odd angles.

With  no moon and high tide, the beach might be in better condition, so it’s worth a try.

No moon, low tide is the best time to run. The tide is out, the beach is wide and hard. Running barefoot is fantastic.

Beach running

If I can’t run, I like to swim laps.

Sunny days are best. I like to see what’s in the water around me and cloudy days make that difficult. I’ll admit I might be a little afraid of sharks. I figure if they can see me, they won’t be interested in me. If the water is dark or murky, a shark might mistake me for lunch. Wind and current also affect when I can swim. Too much of either, and it’s not longer fun.

Shark

If I can’t swim laps, I like to kayak.

Wind and current dictate when and where I can go. The height of the tide doesn’t really matter, and I don’t usually kayak at night (although I have and a full moon makes this fun), so the moon doesn’t often come into play.

Kayaking

If I can’t kayak, then I like to do beach yoga.

High tide makes the beach wet, so not a good time. Too much sun and it’s too hot. Clouds are good for this activity.

Beach Yoga

If I can’t do any of these, I sulk. Just kidding. I can always read, write, blog, walk the dog, or hang with friends. The only activity Farley, my soft-coated wheaten terrier, can’t do with me is swim laps. He does an awesome downward dog.

Happy New Year 🙂

Thanks for reading . . .

Swimming with Sharks

Living the cruising lifestyle presents some exciting opportunities. It only takes a little courage to take advantage.

Compass Cay Marina in the Exuma island chain, Bahamas has a school of Nurse sharks that frequent the marina.

The sharks are used to human interaction, although the marina staff does recommend not putting your hand in a shark’s mouth – duh 🙂

My niece had the guts, I had the camera and off we went. She made me go in the water first. “Just in case,” she said. “It’s your duty as my aunt to sacrifice yourself.”

How could I argue? So I went first, nothing ate me and she came in after.

Here’s the proof we swam with sharks – okay I know they’re Nurse sharks and are harmless, but tell that to the adrenaline rushing through my body.

My brave niece and her new friends.
My brave niece and her new friends.

Keeping Fit While Cruising: Swimming Laps

If you’re getting the feeling there are endless ways to keep fit while sailing around the Bahamas, you’re getting the right feeling. This week’s suggestion: Swimming laps.

It’s hard to take a photo of myself swimming laps, so I thought I’d show you the water I swim in.

Water

Things to consider:

The water temperature is around 73 degrees Fahrenheit, which can cool a body down, so I wear wetsuit shorts and a rash guard. I find a full wet suit too restrictive for swimming laps, and the rash guard prevents sunburn.

Since there are sharks in the area, I don’t swim at dawn, dusk or in murky water, and I don’t splash around as if I were a fish in distress.

I don’t wear anything shiny in case a barracuda is sharing my water space.

I either swim with a buddy or have a partner follow me in a kayak to reduce the risk of a dinghy hitting me.

Salt water is hard on the swim goggles, so I bring several pairs to last me the season.

It’s a great way to keep fit if we’re in an area that doesn’t have a beach good for running.

Thanks for reading . . .