Monday, July 30, 2012

Summer Fun!

Here are some reader trivia questions for you. If you guess ALL correctly, I'll put your name in a drawing for a free prize!
1-In what Colleen Coble book is Samson introduced? HINT: Publisher is Thomas Nelson
2-What series, and by which author, deals with military PTSD? HINT: Publisher is Barbour
3-Name the debut novel about a sculpturer, Lexie Baltimore, that has a supernatural twist. HINT: Publisher is Barbour
4-Who wrote a sushi series? HINT: Publisher is ZONDERVAN
5-Which co-authors had the first 2 books of their trilogy hit the NYT Bestseller list?

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Saturday Night Special

Each Saturday, I venture out of my "comfort" reading zone of Suspense/thriller/mystery/romantic suspense to bring you a recommendation in a different genre.

Today's Recommendation is: Here's Lily

Friday, July 27, 2012

Website Overhaul

So...I realized I needed to update not only my blog (hey, sound off if you like this new design-or even if you don't) but needed to overhaul my website. I worked and worked for several days to build a new site to match my colors and brand. And I recruited help from my daughter, as pictured above contemplating my design work. FINALLY, it's done.

Go check it out: Robin's NEW website Let me know what you think.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Thursday's Southern Recipe

In honor of my Justice Seekers series, to which I've included some of my family's favorite recipes in the back of the upcoming release To Write a Wrong: A Justice Seekers Novel, releasing in September. But I'll be sharing some with those who are signed up for my newsletter, and I'll be sharing some here every Thursday.

Today's recipe is one of my family's's my grandmother's chocolate pie recipe. Una Brannon Shannon...I miss her dearly!

Una's Chocolate Pie

2 cups sugar
6 Tbsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
4 cups milk
5 egg YOLKS
1 stick butter
2 tsp vanilla
6 Tbsp cocoa

Mix sugar, flour & salt in large pot. Mix well. Whip egg yolks in milk and add. Add butter. Cook on medium heat. When starts to boil, add cocoa. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick and creamy. Pour into pie crust. Either refrigerate to set, or use egg white for meringue in oven.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Robin’s Wednesday’s Recommended Reading

Today's Recommendation is: Mortal by Tosca Lee and Ted Dekker

This is the 2nd book in the trilogy!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Writing Buds

Many of you have asked about the solitary lifestyle of a novelist...but we DO have writing buds who help keep us are some pictures of mine...can you guess who they all are?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Strand of Deception

People have asked me what is my favorite book to date? Well, it's hard, but the last book in the Justice Seekers trilogy, STRAND OF DECEPTION, which releases in February 2013, is my favorite. I think it's my best book yet! When Gina Ford, the daughter of a prominent Tennessee politician, goes missing from the University of Memphis a week after another girl was murdered on the same campus, police call in the FBI. Nick Hagar, married to his job as Special Agent in Charge, is assigned to the case, and when Gina’s body is found, her father demands justice. Maddie Baxter is the forensic expert running DNA tests from the crime scene. When they come back without a match, Nick asks her to do a familial DNA run that yields a shocking result: the prime suspect is Adam Alexander, the very same guy who broke Maddie’s heart when she was in college. But do scientific advancements tell the whole story? Strand of Deception offers romance, suspense, and a lively debate about the impact of DNA testing, for better or worse, on the United States justice system. Show More Show Less

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Saturday Night Special

Each Saturday, I venture out of my "comfort" reading zone of Suspense/thriller/mystery/romantic suspense to bring you a recommendation in a different genre.

Today's Recommendation is: The Beauty Book

Friday, July 20, 2012

Upcoming Release...Can't Wait!

Just can't wait until this releases in September: It's one of my favorite stories. In Angola State Penitentiary, a man is serving time for a crime he didn’t commit. Riley Baxter is an eager reporter desperate for a story to make a name for herself. When she stumbles upon the daughter of the incarcerated man, Riley sees a little too much of herself in the teen, and vows to help prove her father’s innocence. At the same time, Hayden Simpson has his hands full with keeping his little sister in line, worrying about his job as Police Commissioner, and dealing with his past emotional baggage. The last thing he needs is someone blowing the lid off his emotional bucket. But when Riley Baxter storms into his life, struggling to understand why God would let bad things happen to good people, Hayden has no choice but to follow his heart. Now, Riley and Hayden must work together to uncover the truth of the past . . . before someone shuts Riley up for good.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thursday's Southern Recipe

In honor of my Justice Seekers series, to which I've included some of my family's favorite recipes in the back of the upcoming release To Write a Wrong: A Justice Seekers Novel, releasing in September. But I'll be sharing some with those who are signed up for my newsletter, and I'll be sharing some here every Thursday.

Here's another recipe shared by my sister, Cindy Pittman (BB) it's one of mine and hubby's favorites...and that's her in the pic with me and our other sister, Rebecca! :)

BB's Hash Brown Casserole
1 pkg frozen Ore Ida Southern Style Hashbrowns
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 stick butter
2 cups grated pepperjack cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 cup crushed cornflakes
seasonings to taste-salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder

Mix all and mash into ungreased casserole dish. Bake uncovered at 350 for 40 mins-hour. If you'd like, sprinkle some cheese on top for last 15 mins in oven

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Robin’s Wednesday’s Recommended Reading

Today's recommendation is: Forbidden by Tosca Lee and Ted Dekker

This starts the new trilogy...get it, read it! It comes with my highest recommendation!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


So, today I'm at ICRS in Atlanta, GA.....I'll be signing copies of INJUSTICE FOR ALL in two distributor booths today....Send the Light and Anchor. I'll try to upload pictures to my FaceBook later, but in the meantime, here's some shots of ICRS from a couple of years ago I thought I'd share:

Monday, July 16, 2012

Looking For a Read with Bite?

A federal judge lies bleeding on his office floor, betrayed by a most unlikely source—people who helped him bring criminals to justice. Now, why would someone working for the FBI need to disappear after witnessing this crime? When Remington Wyatt sees her godfather’s murder, she recognizes the killers and knows it’s only a matter of time before they come to silence her. She must do the only thing possible to stay alive . . . run. FBI agent Rafe Baxter is serious about his career, and solving a cold case involving a federal judge’s death puts him in line for the promotion he so desires. But the case leads him to the small town of Hopewell, Louisiana, where some secrets seem inextricably hidden deep within the bayou. Injustice for All explores what happens when everything a person believes in is utterly destroyed. Who can you trust? Praise for Injustice for All: "A journey into the heart of suspense and the heart of faith. Robin Caroll scores again with Injustice for All." James Scott Bell, best-selling author Why the author wrote this book: “I sat in on several court cases and was astounded when I discovered the person on the stand was lying. Things aren't always as they seem in trials. I began interviewing bailiffs, FBI agents, and eventually a former US Attorney. I was shocked when I realized the full extent of manipulation. With the right people on their side, guilty parties can literally get away with murder." If you get the book and read it, please contact me and let me know you're thoughts! I LOVE hearing from you!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Saturday Night Special

Each Saturday, I venture out of my "comfort" reading zone of Suspense/thriller/mystery/romantic suspense to bring you a recommendation in a different genre.

Today's Recommendation is: Artemis Fowl & The Arctic Incident

Friday, July 13, 2012

I'm Interviewed....Learn More About Me

Who was your key inspirational force? My parents have always been totally supportive of my, um, creative side. I am very blessed that my husband also “gets” me. Each day, my family inspires me. Who was your mentor? My writing mentor is Colleen Coble. I can honestly say I don’t know where I’d be in this industry without her guidance, friendship, prayers, and love. Are you a member of a writing group or club / or were you? I’m a member of ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers). I’m a huge proponent of being in a good writers’ organization. There are connections and networking pathways you can’t find anywhere else. Did you go to writing conferences / were they helpful? I met my first editor at a conference and my agent, I met through a face-to-face at a conference. I also got to meet my mentor in person! Where did you get your ideas? I grab ideas from everywhere—the news, television, people…I like to play the “what if” game…I’ll see/hear something and think, “What if…” and then a story idea is born. What is the discipline used to sit and write? I’m one of those truly freaky people who if I say I’m going to do something, I do it. Copies of my contracts are taped on my overhead. That’s great motivation! How did you make the time / schedule? I treat my writing just like a regular “job” where I sit in chair for so many hours/words a day. If you got discouraged how did you keep going? Writing can be very discouraging…especially when seeking representation or publication. One day, out of sheer frustration, I prayed a very brave prayer—I told God that if I’d gotten the “call” wrong and He didn’t want me to be an author, then I’d give it up, but if that was the case, I prayed He’d remove the desire to write from me. Ever since then, I’ve just let faith pull me through the discouragement. How much of your writing is autobiographical? None. I’m pretty boring, so I don’t think people would read my story. lol Did you have an agent when your first book was published? Yes. Did you acquire a traditional publisher or self published? Traditional How did you find your publisher if traditional? Writing organizations and writing conferences. I learned about guidelines and craft through ACFW, then did research on the publishing house I wanted to target. I met with an editor from that publishing house at the next writers’ conference. How did you determine what your platform would be? Well, I’m southern and can’t help it, so I went with that. What steps did you take to build your platform? I revamped my website and blog to focus on my southern-ness. I make sure all my books either are set in the south or have southern characters. Do you have a network and if so how did you build it? I have a pretty good following on FaceBook and Twitter, as well as a newsletter group. I just took my time, let people get to know “me” the person, not just me the author. What would you do different? I would have started a LOT earlier in being serious about writing. Is there anything else you would like for our readers to know about you? I’m an avid reader and love to talk with other readers. Look me up on my website or find me on Facebook or Twitter. I love to connect.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Thursday's Southern Recipe

In honor of my Justice Seekers series, to which I've included some of my family's favorite recipes in the back of the upcoming release To Write a Wrong: A Justice Seekers Novel, releasing in September. But I'll be sharing some with those who are signed up for my newsletter, and I'll be sharing some here every Thursday.

Today's recipe is shared by my Aunt Millicent Bridges

Aunt Millie’s Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

3 pounds of chicken breasts and thighs (bone in & skin on)
4 cups roux (see recipe below)
5 cups hot water
4 cups chicken stock
Salt & pepper
2 pounds sausage
1 can Rotel tomatoes
Cooked rice

Boil chicken breasts and thighs until tender.

Place roux (4 cups) into a 6-quart pot. Add hot water, chicken stock, then salt and pepper to taste. Cook for about 1 hour.

Debone chicken and cut into bite-sized pieces. Slice sausage into ½-inch rounds.

Add chicken, sausage, and can of tomatoes to gumbo and cook about 30 more minutes.

Serve over rice.

Microwave Roux
Roux is a mixture of oil and flour that is browned and used in many South Louisiana dishes—especially gumbos.
2/3 cup oil
2/3 cup flour, sifted
4-cup glass measuring cup
2 cups onions, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
4 cloves minced garlic
1/2 cup parsley, chopped
l/2 cup green onion tops, chopped

Mix oil and flour in a 4 cup glass measuring cup. Microwave uncovered on High
for 6-7 minutes. At 6 minutes, stir the roux. It should be light brown at this point.
Microwave another minute, more if needed, to reach a dark brown color. Roux will be extremely hot, so be careful!

Add the onions, celery, and green pepper to the hot roux. Stir and microwave on high for 3 minutes.

Add the minced garlic, parsley, and green onion tops to the roux mixture and microwave on high for 2 minutes. If any oil has risen to the top, pour it off.

Add 1/4 cup hot water to the roux mixture to bring back to the 4 cup mark. Stir well.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Robin’s Wednesday’s Recommended Reading

Today's recommendation is: The Stars Shine Bright

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Start of It All....Bayou Justice

So many of you have inquired about what book of mine was the first published? It's BAYOU JUSTICE, published by Love Inspired, formerly Steeple Hill. I don't know where you can buy it new, but you can get it for your ereader as below: A body in the bayou. Alligator conservationist Coco LeBlanc knew real fear when she found a body in the clutches of her beloved beasts. Fear turned to horror when she saw that it was one of the Trahan clan and he'd been shot in the back. Her ex-boyfriend, Luc Trahan, had dumped Coco two years ago when she refused to give up her family's centuries-old voodoo traditions, and he didn't know about her newfound faith. Now, as they and their families become prime suspects in the grisly crime, they'll have to work together to clear their names before the Cajun killer strikes again. Book Takeaway: Love can conquer all, especially the love of our Heavenly Father Awards: Year Title Description 2008 Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award Nominee 2008 Book of the Year 2nd place, Debut Author Why the author wrote this book: As a born and raised Louisianan, the bayou feels like home to me. I wanted to portray the setting realistically, with all its mystique of Cajun country--including voodoo. Or for your Nook: This book will ALWAYS hold the most special place in my heart. :)

Monday, July 09, 2012

Conferences—Advancing Your Writing Career

As a little girl, I had a dream—to be a writer. Life ensued. I went to college and graduated with a paralegal certificate, then realized I hated the legal industry. I wanted to experience life, so I went to work in the automobile industry. Stayed there, in customer service, for ten years. Let me tell you, THAT was an experience. Every now and then, I’d remember the dream and write a poem. Enter it in a contest, got a couple published. Then I got married and had my first daughter. I had such a busy life, how could I think of my dream? Until the day my little girl and I were reading, and I thought to myself, “I love reading, have always loved reading. I want to be an author, have always wanted to be an author.” I decided to do something this time. I enrolled in a Writer’s Digest fiction course. Completed it, and began work on a manuscript. Life interrupted again. We moved—twice. I had two more children, both girls. But the dream didn’t die. And ten years after I completed my fiction course, I decided to do something again. I bought craft books. Joined writing groups. And learned about writing conferences. Before then, I hadn’t a clue that there were conferences you could attend to take workshops and classes to learn and study. Places you could go and be taught by nationally recognized authors. Events where you could meet with *gasp* editors and agents, face-to-face. Boy, was I hungry for that. I attended some small, local conferences. Learned what a pitch was. Realized I was nowhere ready to pitch to an agent, much less an editor. Honed. Studied. Absorbed. It took me having gone to four conferences before I attended the “big” ones—ACFW National and RWA National. At conferences I’ve: • Met my critique partners face-to-face and our relationship changed from just writing partners to dear friends for life. • Met my mentor in person and realized I loved her just as much as I did on email and telephone. • Met my agent in person for the first time. • Pitched to the editor who ended up contracting my first book—the one I’d pitched to her. • Networked with editors who I just like hanging out with because they’re fun • Been blessed to have taught and encouraged other writers • Realized how much I NEED conferences to feed my writing spirit Want to advance your writing career? GO TO A CONFERENCE. Yes, it takes money to go. Plan ahead. Apply for scholarships. Sale the kids. (Ok, I’m kidding about that.) But the expense is worthwhile—you’re investing in your career. And for me? It’s investing in my mental stability to be around others in this crazy industry.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Saturday Night Special

Each Saturday, I venture out of my "comfort" reading zone of Suspense/thriller/mystery/romantic suspense to bring you a recommendation in a different genre.

Today's Recommendation is: Raising Your Kids To Love the Lord

Friday, July 06, 2012

Thinking of Hiring a Building Contractor?

Then you need to talk to my friend, Layla... Informed by the real-life fallout of the U.S. economy and devastation caused by multiple hurricanes along the southern coast, In the Shadow of Evil tells a modern day story involving the exposure of a building rebound scam. Amidst the layers of unethical practices, supply shortages, and excess murders, a top Louisiana homicide detective loses his heart to a charitable contractor while uncovering a secret about his tragic past. Hmmm...well, maybe you'll just have to READ about Layla... Book Takeaway: I hope that readers will gain insight in that sometimes, things are not always what they seem, but God is always good and always with us. Why the author wrote this book: Since I'm from Louisiana, the hurricanes devastation and rebuilding interested me when a fellow author read me an article about rebuilding scams and shortcuts. I also wanted to show deep relationship dynamics of adult children and their parents...with misunderstandings and implied hurts. Reviews "This dramatic page-turner was a convincing conversion for me to talented suspense writing. The faith-based characters’ angst, attraction, personal battles and community danger = great read." - Delores on March 03, 2011

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Thursday's Southern Recipe

In honor of my Justice Seekers series, to which I've included some of my family's favorite recipes in the back of the upcoming release To Write a Wrong: A Justice Seekers Novel, releasing in September. But I'll be sharing some with those who are signed up for my newsletter, and I'll be sharing some here every Thursday.

This week's recipe is shared by my Aunt Julia Kelly (pictured with her husband, Dan Kelly)...

Aunt Julie’s Red Beans & Rice

(Start with Camellia Beans! It makes a difference.)

1 package dried Camellia Red Beans
2 large white onions, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pounds smoked sausage, sliced
4 pods pressed garlic
1 teaspoon sugar
Tabasco to taste
Salt & pepper to taste
Cooked rice

Sauté chopped onions in olive oil. Add all ingredients to a large pot, cover with water plus 3 inches more. Then bring to a boil. Lower heat to medium and cook covered for about 1-1/2 to 2 hours, checking to be sure fluid never goes dry. Taste a bean every now and then to see if it’s tender.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Robin’s Wednesday’s Recommended Reading

Today's recommendation is: The Soul Saver by Dineen Miller

If you haven't read this book, you don't know what you're missing!

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Writing Contests—The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Overall, writing contests get a bad rap. Oh, when a writer finals, places, or wins, it’s all good. But if they don’t . . . First, there’s the whole deal of score sheets. Really, on a scale of 1-5, you expect someone to put a point system to our works of art? And feedback? If the author is published, how good is the feedback if the book’s published? Can’t exactly change a character arc because the score sheet showed the hero’s journey was a bit too slow. And judges! Who are these unnamed, faceless people? If a writer gets a good score, they’re wonderful, brilliant and insightful, of course. But a bad score? Oh, the judge didn’t “get” the story. Had to be someone unfamiliar with the genre. But I like contests, always have. Unpublished and published. I like feedback. I like score sheets. Call me strange, but I like to know how my story interacts with the reader. A very wise person once told me that your story is just a story until a reader interacts with it. Stuck in my head. I like that—to think that readers are interacting with my story, my characters, my settings. How to cope with bad scores? Don’t. No, I’m serious. If you get a bad score and there’s nothing useful you can use in the feedback, shut it right out of your mind. If you can’t get it out of your head, here’s a thought—praise God that particular judge didn’t feel compelled to go write a review of your book up on Amazon! I’m blessed. I finaled and placed in some amazing contests. I’m in a group of writers who are so talented, I’m awed to be listed with them. Will I ever win? Probably not—hey, were you not paying attention? I said those who finaled with me are awesome! But it’s enough for me just to make the list. Have I NOT finaled in a contest as a published author? You bet. The Edgar Awards. Didn’t even come close. But you know what? I’m proud that I had enough guts to enter. Contests are what they are—subjective because each reader/judge will interact with your story differently. Good, bad, or ugly, I love ’em. I just like to know that readers ARE interacting with my story. That’s enough for me. Here's my novel, FEAR NO EVIL, that was a Carol Award finalist last year: Here's my novel, DELIVER US FROM EVIL, that won a Holt Medallion Award of Merit I hope you'll check them out!

Monday, July 02, 2012

Injustice for All Review

Federal judge, Daniel Tate, lies dying in his home office, betrayed by those who help him bring criminals to justice. The killers think the judge is home alone… Remington Wyatt, the goddaughter of Daniel Tate, was home and recognized the killers. She sets off the alarm for security before she reaches Daniel. Prior to the arrival of the police, she promises to take the contents of his safe as he breathes out his last dying wish. Out of fear for her life, she takes the contents and does the only thing that she knows to do … run! She vows, however, to find justice for his death, as this is personal. FBI agent, Rafe Baxter, is transferred to a different Federal office due to cutbacks in staff. There, he’s assigned to work cold cases. The Daniel Tate murder is the first one assigned. What he finds in the case baffles him, and leads him to the town of Hopewell, Louisiana. He’s also baffled by the whims of women, not knowing how to handle them. Robin Caroll, in Injustice for All, brings on the suspense from the very first page, leaving you terrified for Remington, wondering if the killers see her. I found myself almost holding my breath for her as she attempts to remain hidden. The loving touch of Remington as she holds Daniel before he expires is heart-wrenching, yet tender. I could feel the urgency in his voice as he pleads with her to take the safe contents. Robin’s plot twists keep you glued to the book, as they spin into directions you don’t expect. The first scene is just a teaser to envelop you into the characters and scenarios. Her characters are complex, manipulative, interesting, and sometimes even delightful. The terror and danger of the circumstances keep you wondering how Robin will pull it all together. But pull it together, she did! The suspense is heart-stopping at times, causing your to stop and catch your breath! The romance almost has you laughing at times, as Rafe does not know how to conduct himself. Robin has several themes that reverberate throughout the book: love, fear, trust, forgiveness, faith in God, and surrender. There are lessons for all to learn from. For a great murder/suspense book, be sure to pick up Robin’s current book, Injustice For All. Check out her website listed below for a list of her other suspense-pounding books. This book was provided by Susan Sleeman of The Suspense Zone in exchange for my honest review. No monetary compensation was exchanged