cj Sez: …A guest post written from
the perspective of Anastasia Pollack, the protagonist character in Lois
Winston’s novel GUILTY AS FRAMED. Read on, folks. This is going to be
This Jersey Girl is Here to Stay
By Anastasia Pollack
My author Lois Winston recently relocated from New Jersey to
Tennessee to be closer to family. Lois was born and bred in the Garden State
and except for a stint in Philadelphia and its suburbs, has lived in New Jersey
her entire life. Until now.
When Lois created
me, she created another Jersey Girl, maybe because she never had a daughter of
her own, only sons. And although Lois had the temerity to make me a reluctant
amateur sleuth instead of one of the heroines in her romance novels, for which
I’ve never forgiven her, I’m glad she chose New Jersey for the setting of the Anastasia
Pollack Crafting Mysteries.
When you grow up in
New Jersey, you develop Jersey ‘tude. You have to in order to deal with all the
insensitive comments from the rest of the country. We’re the butt of many a
late-night comedian’s joke—even those who happen to live here. I have no idea why.
I’ve been to most of the other forty-nine states in the U.S., and in my
opinion, many of them fall far short of New Jersey.
we’re nothing but strip malls. To them I say, come visit Westfield or
Haddonfield or Princeton or Summit or Chatham…I could go on and on. We have
dozens and dozens of quaint towns, many of which have been used as settings in
movies and TV shows. And no matter where you live in New Jersey, within a
relatively short time you can be in the mountains or down the shore. (Yes, we
call it down the shore. Other people go to the beach or the seaside but not
those of us from the Garden State.) Plus, if you live in the northern half of
the state, as I do, you’re a short train or car ride from Manhattan. Theaters
and museums galore!
Jersey has culture, sports, and cow pastures.
Horse farms and high-rises. We’re home to the famous and the infamous. We
probably have more authors per capita living in New Jersey than any other
We even legally own
the Statue of Liberty, but try telling that to New York. However, since they
usurped our national landmark, we took their beloved football teams. That’s
right, folks, for those of you who live in other parts of the country, both the
New York Giants and the New York Jets play in New Jersey.
we’ve had to put up with so much negative press and razzing for so long, those
of us from New Jersey have had to develop a tough hide. We’re also known for
our sense of humor, which runs more toward snark than Minnesota Nice.
I’ve had to channel
my inner Jersey Strong to cope with what Lois has dumped on me—kidnappings,
Mafia loan sharks, a communist mother-in-law, and more dead bodies than I can
count at this point. I cope with it all by channeling my Jersey ‘tude and sense
But right now, I’m
getting a bit nervous about whether Lois will allow me to continue living in
New Jersey or if she’ll force me to move to Middle Tennessee. She tells me you
can take the girl out of New Jersey, but you can’t take New Jersey out of the
girl. That sounds ominous. I’m hoping she’s only toying with me. But if she
isn’t, I just may go on strike and give her a whopping case of Writer’s Block.
We fictional characters do have some tricks up our sleeves.
cj Sez: Thanks, Anastasia. New Jersey owns the Statue of Liberty? Wow. (That's my learn-something-new today.) A whole lot of good information
there. Please take a minute or two and introduce us to your creator and
multi-genre author, Lois Winston.
USAToday and Amazon bestselling and award-winning
author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick lit,
women’s fiction, children’s chapter books, and nonfiction under her own name
and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Kirkus Reviews dubbed her critically acclaimed
Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, “North Jersey’s more mature answer
to Stephanie Plum.” In addition, Lois is a former literary agent and an
award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source
material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts
industry. Learn more about Lois and her books at her website www.loiswinston.com where you can also
sign up for her newsletter and follow her on various social media sites.
And, of course, we need to introduce Anastasia’s latest mystery, Guilty as Framed, An Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery, Book 11
When an elderly man shows up at the home of reluctant
amateur sleuth Anastasia Pollack, she’s drawn into the unsolved mystery of the
greatest art heist in history.
Boston mob boss Cormac Murphy has recently been released
from prison. He doesn’t believe Anastasia’s assertion that the man he’s looking
for doesn’t live at her address and attempts to muscle his way into her home.
His efforts are thwarted by Anastasia’s fiancé Zack Barnes.
A week later, a stolen SUV containing a dead body appears in
Anastasia’s driveway. Anastasia believes Murphy is sending her a message. It’s
only the first in a series of alarming incidents, including a mugging, a
break-in, another murder, and the discovery of a cache of jewelry and an
etching from the largest museum burglary in history.
But will Anastasia solve the mystery behind these shocking
events before she falls victim to a couple of desperate thugs who will stop at
nothing to get what they want?
cj Sez: That’s it for
today’s post. Thank you so much, Lois Winston and Anastasia Pollack, for stopping by and sharing those fascinating facts about New Jersey.
Authors, if you’ve got a new book (or an old one that needs a bit of a boost) you,
too, are invited to do a guest post. You can answer a questionnaire or create your own
post. FYI, up front: This site is a definite PG-13. For details, contact
You-all guys keep on
keeping on, and I’ll try to do the same. Prayers going up for your health and
safety this year.
P.S. The Haunted
Bookshop has signed paperback copies of my books in stock. TO ORDER my author-graphed
books or any book of your choice on-line from an indie bookstore, contact The
Haunted Bookshop here: https://www.thehauntedbookshopmobile.com/contact-us
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CJ, thanks so much for featuring Anastasia on the Lyrical Pens blog today. And between you, me, and your readers, she doesn't have to worry. She's staying put in NJ--at least for now ;-)ReplyDelete
cj Sez: We are so happy you came by. And I bet Anastasia's fans are ecstatic to learn that Anastasia is staying put in NJ. Best wishes for great sales and reviews.ReplyDelete