#AuthorSpotlight DiAnn Mills, author of “Fatal Strike”

DiAnn MillsIt’s a pleasure to welcome bestselling author, DiAnn Mills to Nesie’s Place today. DiAnn is an author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She weaves memorable characters with unpredictable plots to create action-packed, suspense-filled novels. DiAnn believes every breath of life is someone’s story, so why not capture those moments and create a thrilling adventure? Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and International Thriller Writers. She is the director of the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference, Mountainside Marketing Retreat, and the Mountainside Novelist Retreat with social media specialist Edie Melson where she continues her passion of helping other writers be successful. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. DiAnn has been termed a coffee snob and roasts her own coffee beans. She’s an avid reader, loves to cook, and believes her grandchildren are the smartest kids in the universe. She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas.


Welcome, DiAnn and thank you for spending a little time with us here on the blog today!

Tell our blog visitors a little something about DiAnn Mills. Let’s start with where are you from?

I’m from Houston, Texas, the home of heat, humidity, horses, hurricanes, and Harleys. And no, I don’t have a Harley. I love cooking, gardening, exercising, and all things healthy. 😀

Are you self-published, traditional, or hybrid?

I’m traditionally published. However, I’ve self-published a few titles when the traditional rights were reverted to me.

How long have you been a writer?

I’ve been a writer since I could form stories in my head. My first book was written in the second grade on a Big Chief notebook with a #2 pencil. But I didn’t have the self-confidence to pursue my dreams until my husband challenged me to write a book. That was 78 books and novellas ago.

78? Wow! How long did it take to write that first book?

About 4 months.

Pantser or Plotter?

Pantster! I’m an organic writer. Everything is rooted in character. I conduct an extensive study of my characters before writing a word. I want to know personality type, strengths, weaknesses, flaws, victories, backstory, motivation, and the list goes on. 😀

What excites you about writing?

The ability to create an adventure story that others may enjoy. If the story is not an adventure for me, then it won’t be for the reader.

What frustrates you most about writing?

Time. Too many ideas and not enough hours.

What is your favorite genre to write or do you only write in one genre?

I write romantic suspense. But I did write a middle-grade fantasy with my granddaughter. And I wrote 2 nonfiction books.

Where do you get the most writing done?

LOL On the treadmill. DiAnn on treadmill I’ll also show you a pic of my desk. DiAnn's desk Do you have pets who “help” or inspire you?

No pets! But my grandkids are always an inspiration.

Totally addicted to social media or could you live without it?

I believe in social media to help establish and maintain a writer’s platform. But the focus is not about me but the audience. If I can help anyone in my audience with what I know or have learned, then I want to do so. Social media is a means to establish relationships not to sell books. I direct the Mountainside Marketing Retreat with Edie Melson to teach other writers how to do social media effectively and efficiently.

What’s the inspiration behind your latest release?

In Fatal Strike, I took my biggest fear—snakes—and created a story about killers who were injecting lethal doses of rattlesnake venom into the hearts of their victims. Then I decided my heroine—an FBI special agent who worked SWAT as a sniper—had a snake phobia. Favorite character?

Nope. I fall in love with all of them!

What’s your next project or release?

Airborne is a 2020 release. Super excited about this story too! An FBI agent boards a plane for Salzburg, Austria for a much-needed vacation and to make decisions about her future. Her husband has asked for a divorce, and he doesn’t know she’s three months pregnant. Two hours into the flight, several people on board begin showing evidence of a deadly virus.

Oh my! Airborne sound like a page-turner!

Many thanks to DiAnn for being here today. Follow her on social media to get updates on her 2020 release, but scroll down right now and read on about her latest release, Fatal Strike.  Check out the excerpt and enter her giveaway!


Fatal Strike cover

Fatal Strike

by DiAnn Mills

on Tour September 1-30, 2019



There’s a killer on the loose in Galveston, targeting law enforcement officials and using a fatal injection of snake venom to take them down. Authorities have reasons to believe the Veneno gang is behind the hits, and FBI Agents Leah Riesel and Jon Colbert team up to track down those responsible. Their best lead is an eyewitness who identifies a young man dumping the third body on a church doorstep. But their suspect has gone into hiding, and those closest to him are reluctant to reveal anything that might help investigators find him.

As Leah and Jon check connections among the victims and dig deeper into motives, they discover appearances may be deceiving. Someone is desperate to keep their secrets hidden, and Leah and Jon must face their greatest fears in order to stop the next fatal strike.

Book Details:

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Published by: Tyndale House Publishers

Publication Date: September 3rd 2019

Number of Pages: 400

ISBN: 1496427106 (ISBN13: 9781496427106)

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound | Goodreads


Read an excerpt:

SPECIAL AGENT LEAH RIESEL scanned the headlines on her phone. A prosecutor from Galveston had been found murdered behind a construction site, the second apparent victim of gang violence in two days. Both deaths were caused by rattlesnake venom injections to the heart. Before she could pull up additional reports on the woman’s untimely death, Leah’s phone rang. “Riesel, hostage situation in Galveston,” the SWAT commander said. “Grab your gear. The chopper takes off in five.” “On it.” She took a last lingering look at the half-eaten blueberry donut and coffee on her cubicle’s desk. Could this have anything to do with the two murders in Galveston? Before most of the city began the workday, Leah boarded a Little Bird helicopter beneath whirling blades and the pressure of a critical operation. Dressed in full camo and shouldering her sniper gear, she inhaled the rising temps. Feverish Houston. With the familiar air transport sounds ushering in memories of past missions, her adrenaline kicked in. A pilot from the tactical helicopter unit lifted the chopper into the air for the twenty-minute ride to Galveston. She recognized him from previous assignments involving aircraft used to deliver SWAT and the elite hostage rescue teams to crisis incidents. This morning her focus eliminated any chitchat. Leah grabbed sound-canceling headphones and contacted the SWAT commander already on the ground. “Riesel here. Special Agent in Charge Thomas briefed me on a home invasion that’s turned violent.” The SAC would be watching the operation at the Crisis Management Operations Center. “Negotiations have gotten us nowhere.” The SWAT commander’s voice rose above the chopper’s blade-snap. “Two unidentified men are holding two women and three children at gunpoint. Galveston PD estimates they’ve been inside the home for at least an hour. Demanding we leave the area after giving them five hundred grand and a gassed-up speedboat. Clock is ticking with forty minutes max. We’ve backed off as far as they know.” Leah swiped through pics taken with telephoto lenses and sent to her phone. Each ski-masked man held a child as a shield. Leah detested the savagery and the horrific emotions the hostages must be feeling. “We’re located on San Luis Pass Road on the western section of the island. Nearest house is five hundred yards away. Owners are in Europe. We’re in contact with the agency managing it.” She didn’t need a key to access the home. The SWAT commander continued. “One of the hostages is the owner of the home, Amanda Barton.” “Is there a Mr. Barton in the picture?” “Divorced. Lives in California.” Unlikely the ex-husband was behind this. “Agent Jon Colbert will be on scene shortly,” the commander said. “He had a deposition early this morning in Texas City and drove on to Galveston. Over the weekend, his SWAT partner had emergency knee surgery. Out for six weeks.” And Leah’s partner had left the city yesterday on vacation. The luck of the draw meant she and Jon would be working together. “I’ll contact you as soon as we land.” Jon Colbert, a sniper who had excellent marksmanship and a stellar reputation, also worked organized crime. But she and Jon had never worked together. The idea of teaming up with an agent she barely knew made her uneasy. If a sniper mission required a partner, she preferred an established relationship where she would know how the person processed information. Shoving aside her doubts, she narrowed her thoughts on what lay ahead. The precarious situation and local law enforcement’s inability to negotiate added up to why she and Jon had been assigned to the case. She grasped her backpack, lighter than usual with only a spotting scope, ammo, water, communication equipment, extra batteries, granola bar, and a handheld radio. Her Glock, as comfortable in her right hand as a toothbrush, found its spot in her back waistband. She touched her H-S Precision heavy tactical rifle. The sooner she got to Galveston, the sooner she could provide intelligence and help neutralize the circumstances. Her priority was seeing the women and children freed from these ruthless men. * * * Jon received a text from Special Agent in Charge Thomas that Leah Riesel had left the Houston FBI office and was en route to Galveston. He’d met her a few times, and they’d qualified together. Attractive woman—dark-brown hair, light-olive skin, New Yorker with the accent to prove it. Her professionalism in the violent crime division wavered between exceptional and extraordinary. A touch of toughness. Jon had heard not to make her mad—she had earned the nickname Panther for a reason. He remembered her stats—number three in the US for distance shots. Good thing he wasn’t easily intimidated. Once the chopper landed, Leah would be transported in an unmarked car to a vacant house more than a quarter of a mile away from the Barton home. No point in making the two men more trigger-happy when they’d warned law enforcement to back off. The SWAT commander spoke through Jon’s radio attached to his collar. “Thermal imaging confirms four adults and three children inside the Barton home. The men claim they’ll kill the children first. We have fifteen minutes.” In Galveston, Jon stopped at Broadway and Sixty-First Street. Tourists persisted in the middle of the thoroughfare, pushing strollers, riding surrey bikes, and enjoying the day. Some were dressed for the beach and others clutched what they needed for their excursion. All hindered his turn. Obstacles in his mission. If they knew the situation not far from them, they’d grab their loved ones and speed home. Each moment delayed his shot and shoved the hostages closer to death. A chilling composure took over his emotional, mental, and physical reactions. The busy street finally cleared. Jon turned west onto Seawall Boulevard and drove on to San Luis Pass. The hostage site was four and a half miles beyond there. Were the two men inside the Barton home wannabes looking to make a name for themselves? Strung out on drugs? Was this a personal vendetta? No matter how this ended—either a surrender or he’d be instructed to take a shot— their moment in history would likely be the lead story on tonight’s news. His phone alerted him to an incoming call. He responded before the first ring ended. “Colbert.” The chopper’s rhythmic whir reverberated through his phone. “Riesel here. Landing in five at Galveston Island State Park. SWAT commander has given me a location on the west side of the Barton home.” “I’ll be on foot by then. Taking a position on the east, beach side.” “I’ll need seven minutes to get into place,” she said. “Okay.” No need to remind her of the ticking clock. He touched End and whipped his truck onto a beach-access road where police officers had instructed residents to shelter in place. He switched off the engine. Grabbing his gear, he bolted down the beach. A Galveston police officer stopped him, and Jon handed him his ID. Seconds later, he moved toward his site. A sultry breeze blew across the water, and he recalculated his shot. Crouching low, he moved past police SWAT standing guard. FBI SWAT held the position Riesel was headed for. They were racing against time, a commodity that stopped for nothing or no one. At any moment, one of the armed men could pull the trigger on those inside the Barton home. Restraint. Control. Tense muscles relaxed. His heartbeat slowed. A clear head laid out the steps before the kill shot. No mistakes. Precision. Accuracy. A chance for the women and children to live another day. Near a sand dune, he tuned out the occasional seagull and the waves rushing against the shore. After wiping the sweat from his hands on his pants, Jon set up his rifle and scope, activated his radio, and spoke to the SWAT commander and Leah Riesel. *** Excerpt from Fatal Strike by DiAnn Mills. Copyright © 2019 by DiAnn Mills. Reproduced with permission from DiAnn Mills. All rights reserved.



DiAnn is very active online and would love to connect with readers on: diannmills.com, Goodreads, BookBub, Twitter, & Facebook


Tour Participants:

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This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for DiAnn Mills. There will be 2 winners each winning one (1) Gift Card (choice of Amazon or B&N). The giveaway begins on September 1, 2019 and runs through October 2, 2019. Void where prohibited.

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#AudioBookBlogTour “The New York Saga, Book 1” by Diana Rubino

Audiobook Series Tour: The New York Saga by Diana Rubino

Author: Diana Rubino

Narrator: Nina Price

Length: 11 hours 19 minutes

Series: The New York Saga, Book 1

Release date: Feb. 6, 2019

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Genre: Historical Romance

It’s 1894 in New York’s Lower East Side. Irish cop Tom McGlory and Italian immigrant Vita Caputo fall in love despite their different upbringings. Vita goes from sweatshop laborer to respected bank clerk to reformer, helping elect a mayor to beat the Tammany machine. While Tom works undercover to help Ted Roosevelt purge police corruption, Vita’s father arranges a marriage between her and a man she despises. When Tom’s cousin is murdered, Vita’s father and brother languish in jail, charged with the crime. Can Vita and Tom’s love survive poverty, hatred, and corruption?



Buy LinksBuy on Amazon

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Toiling over the mind-numbing work, Vita conjured up her favorite daydream: an elegant brownstone with lacy iron gates, bay windows, polished floors, marble fireplaces. No trash flung down air shafts, no shared toilets, no backyard privies…above Fourteenth Street.

Diana Rubino writes about folks through history who shook things up. Her passion for history and travel has taken her to every locale of her books, set in Medieval and Renaissance England, Egypt, the Mediterranean, colonial Virginia, New England, and New York. Her urban fantasy romance, FAKIN’ IT, won a Top Pick award from Romantic Times. She is a member of Romance Writers of America, the Richard III Society, and the Aaron Burr Association. When not writing, she owns CostPro, Inc., an engineering business, with her husband Chris. In her spare time, Diana bicycles, golfs, does yoga, plays her piano, devours books, and lives the dream on her beloved Cape Cod.


Narrator Bio

Nina Price is a Renaissance woman: a conservatory trained musician, a Silicon Valley businesswoman, a radio personality, a licensed acupuncturist and master herbalist, and a voice actor/storyteller. She especially loves books with an element of history in them: historical novels, memoirs, biographies, although she’s narrated books in many genres. Born and raised in New York, the characters and places in the New York Saga are very familiar to her, and dear to her heart. She loves to travel the world and listen to the way people speak English.




Q&A with Author Diana Rubino
  • Tell us about the process of turning your book into an audiobook.
    • My publisher, The Wild Rose Press, auditioned some narrators and sent me samples. When Nina finished narrating it, Wild Rose released it and put it on sale with retailers.
  • Do you believe certain types of writing translate better into audiobook format?
    • Adventure and suspense translate well, as long as the narrator has an animated voice. My books, with characters who have different actors, came out really well, because Nina does great accents and different voice inflections.
  • How closely did you work with your narrator before and during the recording process? Did you give them any pronunciation tips or special insight into the characters?
    • We spoke on the phone a few times, and discussed the characters and their backgrounds. When she had a question about the pronunciation of a word, I either spelled it out phonetically or sent her a video of someone saying the word or phrase.
  • Were there any real life inspirations behind your writing?
    • Yes, FROM HERE TO FOURTEENTH STREET’s heroine Vita is based on my great-grandmother, a businesswoman, wife and mother. She was way ahead of her time. I always have historical events as backdrops for my books. BOOTLEG BROADWAY is set during Prohibition, and THE END OF CAMELOT is centered around the John F. Kennedy assassination.
  • How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for writing?
    • I pace myself, I write 2500 words a day and sometimes more if I’m on a roll. My enthusiasm never wanes, because I’m a huge history buff, I love doing the research, and my passion for it comes out in my stories.
  • Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
    • I listen to audiobooks on long car trips. It’s convenient to listen to books while doing something else, driving, as a passenger in a car, doing chores, etc.
  • Is there a particular part of this story that you feel is more resonating in the audiobook performance than in the book format?
    • The dialogue is very animated and authentic throughout all three books. Nina does great New York and ‘wiseguy’ accents.
  • How did you celebrate after finishing this novel?
    • I always celebrate by recharging my batteries—usually by reading my favorite genres, biographies, mysteries, and paranormal novels.
  • What gets you out of a writing slump? What about a reading slump?
    • I’ve never been a slump; I make sure I reach my 2500-word goal every day, even if it’s not my best output. I can always go back and rewrite.
  • In your opinion, what are the pros and cons of writing a stand-alone novel vs. writing a series?
    • A series allows the reader to get to know the characters and become familiar with them. Stand-alones don’t have that advantage.
  • What bits of advice would you give to aspiring authors?
    • Keep writing. Keep practicing. Most of all, don’t ever give up on your dream. Just having a dream makes you very special. If you get impatient because it’s taking so long, just ask yourself this: Why does 16-year Scotch take 16 years? Some things are worth waiting for.
  • What’s next for you?
    • I’m writing my next biographical novel, about Edith (Mrs. Theodore) Roosevelt.





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#NEW “Extraterrestrial Encounters: A Collection of Sci-Fi Stories” by Kelli A. Wilkins

Extraterrestrial Encounters: A Collection of Sci-Fi Stories

A New Release from Kelli A. Wilkins


 Hi everyone!

I’m pleased to announce the release of my science fiction anthology, Extraterrestrial Encounters: A Collection of Sci-Fi Stories.   Although I’m mainly known for writing sensualcover romances and spooky horror fiction, every so often I like to surprise myself – and readers.

I’ve always been attracted to the unusual, peculiar, and “weird” that exists in the sci-fi and horror genres. I grew up watching Tales from the Dark Side, Amazing Stories, Kolchak: The Night Stalker, The Outer Limits, and of course, The Twilight Zone. So I guess it’s no surprise that when I started writing, I wrote what I loved reading: sci-fi and horror.

Authors are always asked, “Where do you get your ideas?” so when I wrote Extraterrestrial Encounters, I decided to share a peek at my writing process. I’ve included a brief note at the end of each story in the collection, explaining what inspired me to write it, where I got the idea, or general comments about the plot or characters.

I hope you enjoy these stories. Some are humorous, some will make you think, and others might scare you a bit, but they will all take you on a journey into the realm of the unknown for a little while.

Here is the book summary and buy links.

Extraterrestrial Encounters: A Collection of Sci-Fi Stories           

Are you ready to step into the unknown?

In these 18 sci-fi stories, you’ll encounter aliens of all shapes and sizes, curious (and sometimes unlucky) space explorers, and ordinary Earthlings having otherworldly experiences.

Some of the out-of-this-world tales in this short fiction anthology include:

The Hoax – A reporter learns that a creature from another planet is a dangerous thing to fool with

It Grows on You – A strange kind of mold has invaded an office, and it’s the perfect tool for revenge

What Lurks Below – Everyone knows there’s no life on Mars, but nobody thought about what might be lurking under the surface…

The Con – An alien becomes an unlikely ally to a down-on-his-luck petty crook

Space Cowboy – When a second-rate rodeo star is abducted by aliens, he makes the most of the situation

They Just Keep Eating – A Nebraska farmer encounters a menace from space… and it’s hungry

This collection of speculative fiction will stimulate your imagination, unnerve you just a little, and make you wonder… “What if we’re not alone?”


Order it here:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07W5JG1DC

All other platforms: https://books2read.com/u/3JVJ9e

Visit my site: www.KelliWilkins.com to see all of my writings!


Halloween is just around the corner, and these unusual stories are a perfect way to get ready for the season!

I welcome questions and comments from readers. Let me know which story you loved best, which one made you laugh, or why you love reading sci-fi. You can learn more about all of my current titles on my site, sign up for my newsletter, or follow my blog and social media posts for updates on new releases.

Keep watching the stars!

Kelli A. Wilkins



Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 19 romance novels, 5 non-fiction books, and 2 online writing courses. Her romances span many genres and heat levels, and she’s also been known to scare readers with her horror stories.

Kelli released Extraterrestrial Encounters, a collection of 18 sci-fi stories, in August 2019. If you like horror fiction, don’t miss her disturbing novella, Nightmare in the North.

Her latest historical romance, The Viking’s Witch, was released in June 2019. This full-length novel takes place in Celtic Scotland and blends a sensual romance with paranormal elements.

In March 2019, Kelli published Dangerous Indenture, a historical mystery romance set in Colonial Pennsylvania. She released the second half of her flash fiction series, Cupid’s Schemes, in early 2019. These two volumes of lighthearted mini-romances are perfect reads for a quick lunchtime escape or an after-work indulgence.

Kelli released her latest Teachable mini-course, Fiction Basics: Finding Ideas in February 2019. She authored Fiction Writing for Beginners through Teachable in 2018. These courses are perfect for anyone who wants to learn how to write. Visit: https://kelliwilkins.teachable.com/ for more details.

Kelli posts on her Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor.

Visit her website www.KelliWilkins.com or blog http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/ to learn more about all of her writings.