Gardenia Garden Club Hosts Author

group photo of club members

Rare Evening Event for Club

Many thanks to Hostess Lisa Pearce and the Gardenia Garden Club of Winter Haven, Florida for inviting me to talk about my books and my writing process. The club held a rare evening meeting for this event!

I was an active member of the club for twelve years and took a hiatus to fulfill my dream of publishing novels. My Gardenia Garden Club sisters have cheered me on throughout this journey.

Author Joni M Fisher earns an achievement coin
Author Joni M Fisher conducting research

Research is the fun part of writing a novel. I have enjoyed learning about weapons, boats, aircraft, police procedures, fraud, self-defense, and more. The ladies asked questions about the process of writing a novel and about the upcoming book in the series.

As I complete the fourth and final book in the Compass Crimes series, the characters have become part of my life. Friends and colleagues have helped me tremendously through encouraging words, slogging through rough drafts, and introducing me to experts in various fields, vocations, and hobbies.

I’ve documented highlights of my research in this blog: Love of Research

Thank you, Gardenia sisters!

author presenting her work

2021 Kindle Book Awards

Your Vote Matters!

Readers vote on the semi-finalists, so please click on the box below! Once there, type West of Famous by Joni M. Fisher to vote for my book.

Sweet Joy! 

What a joy to discover West of Famous is a semi-finalist in the 2021 Kindle Book Awards! Author Kevin G. Chapman sent an email congratulating me when he saw my book listed along with his. So, I celebrate this recognition. I am so proud of one of my darling paperback offspring. Am I tempted to wave a copy while dancing through the neighborhood? Oh, yes.

Mystery/Thriller (Semi-Finalists are in no particular order)

West of Famous by Joni Fisher
In Twilight’s Hush by Laurie Stevens
Just a Happy Camper by Jinx Schwartz
Deadline Rome by Sari Gilbert
Gods in the Ruins by E.R. Burr
Deadly Dance by BV Lawson
The Starlight Club 12 by Joe Corso
Once a Man Indulges by Tony Kelsey
I am Mayhem by Sue Coleta
The Lost Symphony by Gabriel Farago
River Running Backwards by Susan Clayton-Goldner
The Trafficking Murders by Brian O’Hare
Hit and Run by Amy Shojai
Rinn’s Crossing by Russell Heath
The Panama Murders by Pendleton Wallace
Hiding in Plain Sight by Lorhainne Eckhart
The Roach by Rhett C. Bruno
The Quisling Factor by JL Oakley
Lethal Voyage by Kevin G. Chapman
Tears of Fire by Gordon Bickerstaff


Thank you, thank you, Paul and Caryn Frink for all your patience, knowledge, and hospitality for hosting me on your boat and answering thousands of questions. You made the research stage of writing wonderfully fun!

Thank you to everyone who voted! Readers Rock!

Paul and Caryn Frink earn their Loopers gold burgee

International Literacy Day

To celebrate International Literacy Day, take a look at the most translated books of each country. How many have you read?

Have you considered how challenging it is to translate books from one language to another?

Oh, the idioms!

My daughter had an exchange student in her high school who came from France. When my daughter mentioned that I spoke some French, he wanted to meet me. He had a few burning questions he was uncomfortable asking his host family. We met at the bowling alley one evening while the students were teamed up to bowl.

After his turn, he dashed over to the table where I sat and whispered in French that his host family was very kind, but he was tired of eating from a window. Ah, yes. The host family had children in many after-school sports, so fast food was their go-to meal. He said he was a fine cook and wanted to stay home to make dinner, but he didn’t want to offend the hostess. I assured him the hostess would cook if she had the time. He should offer to cook dinners and make a list of the items he needed. The cultural exchange worked both ways.

The other burning question on his mind was that some girls at school said he was hot and others said he was cool. He wanted to know which ones liked him.

Yes, English is a complex language with many connotations for the same word.

May you discover great stories from other cultures and nations in their original language or through brilliant translation. Happy reading! Click below for the list.

The Most Translated Books

 My books are listed below…

Love and Danger Books

Thirty authors of clean crime fiction and inspirational fiction are offering books on sale from now until November 26! If you like danger and love and crime fiction without vulgar language and erotica, here you go. Grab these while you can.

As always, reviews are deeply appreciated by authors, especially those of us who are not yet bestsellers.

Happy Thanksgiving!

The book I’m offering for $1.99 (instead of the usual $5.99) is South of Justice, the first book in my Compass Crimes Series.

After her husband’s arrest, a woman searches for the truth. Her heart says he’s her happily-ever-after. Evidence says he’s a killer.



50 Author Crime Fiction Giveaway

crime series books

Fifty authors of crime fiction have united to give away the first book in their series. You are invited to download all of them or select the ones you like.

Why give away books?

The concept is similar to the one used by drug dealers–give away the first sample and the addict will come back for more. Admit it, you are a reading addict. You’d rather dive into a book than watch television. Readers enjoy using their imaginations.

Readers have to bring something to the reading experience. Readers enjoy seeing the world through new perspectives. Readers thrive on vicariously living dangerously and exploring strange new places.

Welcome to the worlds of 50 crime authors. Let us entertain you.

Please let us know what you think of our creations by posting reviews on social media, Amazon,, BookBub, and wherever else you tell others about what you’ve read.

You will be added to our fan newsletters, to be notified of future giveaways and new releases and you may unsubscribe at any time.

From all of us who labor to bring you exciting stories, thank you!

North of the Killing Hand is the prequel, the first book by story chronology in the Compass Crimes, my crime fiction series. This is my contribution to the giveaway.

Each book features a woman whose life has been overtuned by a crime and the story is what she does to get justice. If you like crime without gore, try this book.

3 Websites that Giveaway Books

Avid readers can easily spend a fortune on print books, Ebooks, and audio books. So what’s a reader to do?

In the publishing industry there’s an open secret that authors need reviews. Even the big name authors of bestsellers count on reviews to sell books.

As a reader, you benefit from this need. Some of these methods and sources simply give books in trade for a review on certain social media or retail sites online. For the serious reviewer, you can earn money in addition to getting advance copies of books by bestselling authors and up-and-coming authors, but first you have to build up a reputation as a reader-reviewer. Here are three sources of FREE books given in the hope and expectation that you will review what you read.


To become a reviewer on, it helps to have a review blog. If you have a long list of reviews you’ve posted on or another book retailer site, then be sure to note this when you sign up. They seek readers who can write coherent reviews that can be used in marketing soon-to-be released books.

Librarians, English teachers, booksellers, educators, journalists, bloggers, and others who recommend books to readers are ideal reviewers for NetGalley.

When you sign up, you choose which genres you prefer to read. You are notified when new titles pop up in your favorite genres and then you select the books you want to read.

Publishers make digital review copies and audio books available for the NetGalley community to discover, request, read, and review.

NetGalley sends out digital or audio books to reader/reviewers with a date when they’d like to have a review back. They also suggest the kind of information they want in the review, like theme and pacing, but no spoilers.

While this site doesn’t pay reviewers, the quality and volume of books available to review is impressive. Free Ebooks and audio books in trade for honest reviews make this a win-win for publishers and reviewers. And who knows? One of your reviews could end up in an advertisement or quoted in the front of a book! Some of my reviews have appeared in the marketing copy of books and as an author, I have used quotes from NetGalley reader-reviewers in my books.


If you live in Cambridge Massachusetts, they are hiring! For those outside Massachusetts, the BookBub community sends notices about free and deeply discounted books by publishers and notable indie authors and small presses.

You can get advance notice of books by genre and by particular authors you enjoy. For example, here’s my author page:

It shows my books, books I’ve reviewed, and authors I follow because I’m an avid reader.

Click here to see how it works: SHOW ME.

You can post reviews on the BookBub site and connect with other reviewers and authors about what they’re reading. This site is very influential in promoting books through their ads which reach thousands of readers by email.

Their popular blog includes “best of” lists and interviews with authors.


This site is like Facebook for readers. You can join online book clubs and reading groups, trade recommendations, vote on “best of genre” books, and post reviews. The real fun is their giveaways of print, audio, and Ebooks. The giveaway is managed lottery-style, so if John Grisham is giving away 10 copies of his new book, there could be hundreds of people putting their names in for them.

For example: From September 5 to 19, Kristin Hannah is gave away 100 print copies of The Four Winds which is being released in February 2021.

It is much easier to get copies of books by new and emerging authors in every genre than the big-name authors.

The print books aren’t as popular this year because of COVID-19, but hopes are the print giveaways will resume.

When you sign up for Goodreads, you can easily search for books you’ve already read and give them some stars and even review them if you want to. Frankly, I use it to keep track of what I’ve read so I don’t buy the same book in a series that I’ve already read. *sigh* Yes, I’ve done that more often than I want to admit.

In Goodreads, you have a newsy feed that shows the books liked, read, and reviewed by people you “friend” and authors you “follow.”

This site doesn’t pay for reviews, so the real draw is that the reviews come from readers of all walks of life.

Here’s one of my reviews: Nutshell by Ian McEwan.

This site also has a reading challenge in which you state how many books you plan to read in the year and it tracks your progress.

I use all three sites. Each one has its own style and community. All offer free books and BookBub also sends notices about discounted books as well. 

And one more source of free books is Once you have an Amazon account, download the Kindle app for free to your smart phone, tablet, and computer. Go to and search for “free classic kindle books” and choose any or all of the 40,000 books listed. Try it and be amazed. You don’t have to spend a fortune to be well-read. Children’s classics are among this list as well.

I was an avid reader long before becoming a published author. Free books? I’m all in! 

Happy reading!