A Great Big Thank You

Tracy MacDonald and Fiona

Tracy MacDonald and Fiona

Today is my blogging day on Inkspot., the blog for the authors of Midnight Ink.  And it seems only fitting at the end of my book launch to thank some of the great people who have helped me make it such a success.  Even better–I have never met any of these people in person!

The gifts of yoga live everywhere–even in people who’ve never done a single pose.  Check out some of my favorites at http://midnightwriters.blogspot.com/2015/01/liftoff-success.html

Thanks all!  Next week I’ll be back to my normal yoga blog!

Tracy Weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT and MURDER STRIKES A POSE are available at book sellers everywhere! 

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A Killer Retreat Book Launch Week 2: Wrapping up the Big Push

 

Missi Svoboda Re-enacts the cover photo of A Killer Retreat!

Missi Svoboda Re-enacts the cover photo of A Killer Retreat!

My book launch actually extends well into February, but the first two weeks are the craziest.  Here’s a summary of what happened this week:

Reviews from Mystery Blogs:  Check out the fun reviews from posted by the bloggers below:  If you’ve seen any that I haven’t please let me know!

  • Traci Andrighetti’s Blog “As both a yogini and a dog lover, I particularly appreciated the way that Kate’s yoga practice and Bella (and her medical condition) were incorporated into the plot.”
  • WV Sticher:Tracy Weber provides a page turning read with Killer Retreat, the second book in the Downward Dog Mystery series.
  • Read Your Writes Book Reviews:A Killer Retreat is told in first person, which gives you a great look into Kate’s crazy personality.”
  • Escape with Dollycas into a Good Book:The story has it all, action, drama, humor and romantic tension
  • Libriamorimiei“If you love dogs and cozy mysteries is absolutely a book to read.”

Guest articles and interviews: In addition to this blog, I’m contributing guest articles to other blogs in the upcoming weeks.  The ones below posted in the past week.

  • Radio Interview on My Mama’s Kitchen (Aired Tuesday, January 13) This interview was special because it spoke primarily about yoga and why I love it so much.
  • Kelly P’s BlogYoga for Mystery Readers. Yoga is good for everyone! In this article, I discuss the key benefits of a consistent yoga practice for mystery readers.

More upcoming events: If you’re in the area, come see me!

  • Book signing at Third Place Books,  (Thursday, January 29, 7 – 8 PM)
  • Book signing at Shoreline Costco (Saturday, January 31, 12:30 – 2:30 PM) Shoreline, WA
  • Book signing at Garfield Book Company (Friday, February 6,  6 – 7 PM) Tacoma, WA
  • Book signing at Page 2 Books (Saturday, February 7, 1:30 – 2:30 PM) Burien, WA
  • Book signing at Barnes and Noble (Saturday, February 14, 1:30 – 2:30) Federal Way, WA

Thanks all!

Tracy Weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT and MURDER STRIKES A POSE are available at book sellers everywhere! 

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A Killer Retreat Book Launch Week 1: So far, so great!

 

Fiona had to wait so long for book launch week that she outgrew her shirt!

Fiona had to wait so long for the book launch that she outgrew her shirt!

It’s been a fun and exciting book launch, and we’re just getting started.  Here’s a summary of some of the highlights so far:

Reviews from Mystery Blogs:  Check out the fun reviews from posted by the bloggers below:  If you’ve seen any reviews that I haven’t listed here please let me know!

  • Booklady’s Booknotes:  “A Killer Retreat is a humorous mystery that will give the reader page after page of stress free enjoyment.”
  • Shelley’s BookCase: “This is such a fantastic read. One that will have you reading until the last page.”
  • Mochas, Mysteries, and Meows: “Kate’s dedication to Bella and her serious medical issues are just one reason why I consider this a must-read series. Whether you are a yogi or not you will enjoy spending time with Kate, Bella, and their friends.”
  • Readalot:  ”Lots of mystery, lots of suspects, lot of Yoga, interesting characters and cute animals.”
  • Fresh Fiction: “Ms. Weber mixes up a delightful whodunit that sends the  reader down false trails much like Bella the dog and her search for rabbits….Readers  of  cozy mysteries will enjoy this mystery and look forward to  the next installment.”
  • Cozy up with Kathy A Killer Retreat, is the best sort of book. It’s one that raises awareness of important societal issues, explores the difficulties relationships present, makes us worry about the people and other animals who inhabit its pages, and, while doing all of that, still makes us laugh!”
  • Thoughts In Progress:A Killer Retreat is a charming cozy that provides relaxation and entertainment. This is a tantalizing series with the promise of more capers in the future.”
  • Just One More Paragraph:  “Another great humorous and quirky mystery that is sure to not only to draw you in but entertain you from the first page.”

Interviews: I’m continually surprised by the diversity of questions I get asked by interviewers.  There’s a tiny bit of overlap in the interviews below, but not very darned much.  I’ve highlighted some of the unique questions in each.

  • Mochas, Mysteries, and Meows:  This one is a lot of fun, because I got to write it from Bella’s (The German Shepherd in my series) point of view!
  • Edmonds News: Artfully Edmonds:  This local arts columnist asked some great questions about how to “make it” in the writing business.  Truth be told, I haven’t made it yet.  But if I ever do, it will be because of support from readers like you!
  • Christa Reads and Writes: In this one, you can read about my yoga teacher/sleuth Kate and how she compares to me.  Spoiler Alert!  We have some similarities!
  • Thoughts in Progress:  Learn about my writing process (or lack thereof, if the truth be known).  I’m not exactly known for my organized desktop.
  • Cozy Up with Kathy: This interviewer asked me to talk about my work, of course, but also two other topics in the series I feel passionately about:  EPI (the digestive disease my own dog has) and reactive dogs.
  • Omnimystery News This interviewer  asked lots of fun questions about my life, my characters, and my genre.  My favorite question, however was to complete this sentence… I am a mystery writer and thus I am also… How do you think I answered it?
  • Radio Interview on Conversations Live with Cyrus Web.  Cyrus hosted me on his program last launch and it was a thrill to talk with him again this year about my new book, getting to know my characters and encouraging other writers.

Guest articles: In addition to this writing blog, I’m a contributing author for several other blogs in the upcoming weeks.  The two articles below posted in the past week.

  • Writers and Other Animals:  This is actually an excerpt from the book—a scene in which Kate discovers Suicide Bluff, an area that will later become much more frightening than she could ever imagine.
  • Sequence Wiz Read about finding your passion by sharing yoga in unusual ways.

Upcoming events this week: If you’re in the area, come see me! The party at Whole Life Yoga will feature champagne, killer cake, and lots of door prizes!

Thanks all!  Have a great week and I’ll give you another summary next week!

Tracy Weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT and MURDER STRIKES A POSE are available at book sellers everywhere! 

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Holy Book Launch, Batman!

Reader Missy Schwebach and her dog Heidi

Reader Missy Schwebach and her dog Heidi

It’s here, it’s here, it’s here!  Book launch week for A KILLER RETREAT.  The official launch is this Thursday, January 8, but I have tons of activities scheduled over the next several months.  Today’s article outlines my live book launch events through March.  For the next few weeks on the blog, I’ll post links to some notable interviews and articles, as well as some radio shows!  After that, we’ll be back to all yoga, all the time.  ;-)

Please join me for one, several, or all of the events below!  And please support these booksellers who have gone out of their way to support me!

Signings and Launch parties:

  • Thursday, January 8, 5:00 – 7:00 PM PST. Facebook launch party! Many of my readers aren’t in Seattle, so I’ve decided to host a virtual launch party this year.  I’ll be posting photos of settings in the book, offering excerpts, giving away a prize every 15 minutes, answering reader questions, and accepting virtual hugs.  To join in, Click on this link. Please also share with your friends.  The more the merrier!
  • Saturday, January 10, noon – 1:00Seattle Mystery Bookshop in Seattle, WA.  A low key meet-and-greet event.  But you don’t want to miss the opportunity to check out this Seattle landmark that devotes its shelves completely to mysteries.  Tons of fun!
  • Thursday, January 15, 5:00 – 8:00 PMEdmonds Book Shop in Edmonds, WA.  I loved being part of the Edmonds art walk last year, and this lovely local book store is a community favorite.  I’ll be hosting some drawings for book-related goodies.
  • Saturday, January 17, 2:30 – 4:00 PM.  Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, WA, co-sponsored by the University Bookstore.  This one is going to be a PARTY!  Cake, bubbly, yoga discounts, prizes, and readings.  We’re going to have a blast!
  • Thursday, January 29, 7:00 – 8:00 PM. Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park, WA. I had a great time in this open and inviting venue last year.  I plan to offer a short chair yoga practice to liven things up, a couple of readings, Q&A, and tons of prizes! Not to be missed.
  • Saturday, January 31, 12:30 – 2:30 PM.  Costco in Shoreline.  And you don’t even have to buy the book in bulk!  ;-)   Costco offers great prices and I’m thrilled that they asked me to come and do an event with them.  This will be another low key meet and greet, so feel free to come on by at any time during the event and say hi!
  • Friday, February 6, 6:00 – 7:00 PM Garfield Book Company in Tacoma, WA. This will be my first event at the bookstore at Pacific Lutheran University.  In addition to reading, I’m going to offer a class on yoga for students and other readers.  Please let all of your south end friends know!
  • Saturday, February 7, 1:30 – 2:30 PM.  Page 2 Books in Burien, WA.  Another fun new venue for me, in which I plan to tease the audience with readings, prizes, and maybe a yoga pose or two.
  • Saturday, February 14, 1:30 – 2:30 PM.  Barnes and Noble in Federal Way, WA.  I hope to see some of my old buddies from Weyerhaeuser there! Grab your honey and prepare to have a “killer” of a time!
  • Sunday, March 8, 4 – 5 PM. Village Books in Bellingham.  Bellingham has a large viniyoga following, so I’m totally thrilled to go back there and share my second book. I’m still firming up the plans, but I hope to have a local yoga teacher co teach this with me.
  • Friday through Sunday, March 12 – 15.  Left Coast Crime in Portland, Oregon.  This fun fan convention is offered once a year.  My panels and signings aren’t confirmed yet, but if you plan to attend, please hit me up for a drink!
  • Saturday, March 21, 2 – 3 PM.  Barnes and Noble, in Billings, MT.  What a complete and total hoot to be signing books in my hometown. I’ve invited another mystery author to join me, but I don’t want to jinx it so you’ll have to check with me in a few weeks to see if she can come. Readings, giveaways, and of course signings galore!
  • Saturday, May 9, 2 – 3 PM.  Barnes and Noble, in Bellevue, WA.  East side moms take note!  What could be better than a little “spa day” relaxation with A Killer Retreat!

I have to admit, typing this all out just gave me heart palpitations.  It’s going to be a BUSY few months!  Add to this three radio shows, ten guest articles, and seven interviews scheduled—so far—and I may never sleep again.  Please come see me at one of the events, give me a big hug, and let me draw from your energy.

And always, of course, come see me us at Whole Life Yoga!  Thank you for your support!

Tracy Weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT  and MURDER STRIKES A POSE are available at book sellers everywhere! 

 

 

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Yoga Mysteries, Imperfect Sleuths, and Book Launches!

FullSizeRender

Rene de los Santos waiting patiently for his copy of A Killer Retreat at Whole Life Yoga

Happy holidays, yogis!

Today is my blogging day on Inkspot., the blog for the authors of Midnight Ink.  As the publication date of my second book approaches (January 8!) I took some time to reflect on my beginnings with Viniyoga and how it can help heal wounds that are both physical and mental.  Check it out at  http://midnightwriters.blogspot.com/2014/12/yoga-mysteries-imperfect-sleuths-and.html

rutledge

Rutledge, waiting not so patiently….

I hope you’re having a wonderful holiday season!

Tracy Weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT is available for preorder now. MURDER STRIKES A POSE is available at book sellers everywhere

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Inviting Peace to All Parts of Your Life

This is the final of three blog posts that details practices mentioned in A Killer Retreat.   This poem can either be used as a chant, a daily intention, or a mantra for meditation. May we all find peace this holiday season.  

Bench

Like me, my yoga teacher protagonist Kate Davidson wants to live a meaningful life. She wants to be a good person. Heck, she’d even settle for being downright boring every now and again. But that’s harder than it sounds when you’re the prime suspect in a murder investigation.

You see Kate—like most yoga teachers I know–isn’t perfect. Not even close. But when she publicly threatens to strangle a woman who gets murdered less than an hour later…

Suffice it to say that some days Kate should keep her big mouth shut.

Kate is admittedly shaken by both the murder and the accusation, so she practices yoga to remain calm. One of her go-to practices is a beautiful chant I learned almost twenty years ago. Conveying the tune is difficult without teaching chanting notation, but saying the words or mentally reciting them in meditation should be equally effective.

A Poem for Full-System Peace

Anamaya Shanti—May my body have peace.
Pranamaya Shanti—May my energy system have peace.
Manomaya Shanti—May my mind have peace.
Vijnamamaya Shanti—May my personality have peace.
Anandamaya Shanti—May my spirit have peace.
Shanti, Shanti, Shanti—Peace, peace, peace.

There’s nothing magical about the Sanskrit words; the English translation has just as much power. Try setting this intention every day for the next week or mentally reciting it the next time you feel stressed.

I hope it benefits you as much as it does Kate.

Namaste

Tracy Weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT is available for preorder now. MURDER STRIKES A POSE is available at book sellers everywhere

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Lithium Breathing: The Balancing Breath

This is the second of three blog posts that detail practices mentioned in A Killer Retreat.   This lovely breath practice helps balance energy.  Perfect for the holiday season.  Only three weeks until the official publication date!  Enjoy!

lithium breathing

This simple breath practice is great any time you need to balance your thoughts, energy, or emotions. Kate, the yoga teacher/sleuth in A Killer Retreat calls this practice Lithium Breathing, because like the medication for bipolar disorder, it balances energy whether it is manic or depressed.

This practice is perfect for any time of day, and the beauty about breath work is that you can do it anywhere—at home, on the bus, even in the middle of a meeting at work—and no one will think you’ve gone crazy.  ;-)

Lithium Breathing

  1. Come to a comfortable sitting or lying position.
  2. Notice how you feel before beginning to practice.  Don’t worry if you don’t feel as you think you “should.” Just notice whatever comes to mind and be grateful for the awareness.
  3. Gradually, over 6 breaths, lengthen both your inhale and exhale, noticing the natural pause at the end of each.
  4. Maintain the breath in step 3 for at least 6 breath cycles.  Then, break the inhale portion of your breath into two equal parts, with a natural pause both between parts and at the end of the inhale.
  5. Maintain the breath in step 4 for at least 6 breath cycles.  Then, break both the inhale and exhale portions of your breath into two equal parts, with the same natural pauses in the middle and at the end.
  6. Maintain the breath in step 5  for at least 12 breath cycles.  Do not strain the breath.  If you start to feel strain, decrease the lengths of the breath segments, and then continue with that new length for the rest of the practice.
  7. Once you finish 12 or more complete breaths at step 6,  release the pauses completely and breathe for several breaths.  Then gradually allow the breath to come back to a normal rhythm.
  8. Notice any changes you feel after this practice, without trying to judge them as “good” or bad.

Give it a try and let me know how it works.

Namaste

Tracy Weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT is available for preorder now. MURDER STRIKES A POSE is available at book sellers everywhere

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Finding Contentment in Uncertainty

In honor of the approaching publication of A Killer Retreat on January 8, the next three blog posts will be devoted to yoga teachings and practices mentioned in the book.  Enjoy!

Forest  path

In a few weeks I’ll launch the second book in my series, A Killer Retreat. Of course, the main plot revolves around solving a murder, but my yoga teacher/sleuth Kate is also faced with a choice: should she put the brakes on her relationship with her boyfriend Michael and risk losing him forever, or should she marry him and risk losing herself? Of course, there are many other options, but those are the only two Kate can see, at least at first.

And it terrifies her.

So instead of making the decision, she does what any moderately neurotic person would do when faced with multiple, irreconcilable options: she avoids all of them.

As you might guess, the strategy doesn’t work very well, at least not for long.  In Kate’s own words, “Ignorance is bliss. Until it isn’t.”

Kate’s dilemma isn’t unique. I know from experience that running away from change only works for awhile, and it’s a short while at that. No matter how fast I run, no matter how far I go, my problems go with me. But what if the actual choices we make in life are immaterial? According to The Yoga Sutras, they may be.

The Yoga Sutras promise  that although there are many potential paths in life and at least a gazillion things over which we have no control, everything we experience–good and bad–is fodder for our growth. If that’s true, then every path we take serves us in some way.

So we can take comfort in knowing that there are no absolutes, only opportunities for our development. If you travel your pathway with mindfulness, focus, kindness and compassion, the destination will always be your true self.

The meditation below may help you find santosha—contentment—in the midst of change.

Many Paths, One Destination Meditation

  1. Close your eyes and bring attention to your breath. Focus your mind on the soft, subtle sensation of the breath as it enters and leaves your nostrils.
  2. When you are ready, imagine yourself standing at the intersection of several paths, each of which represents a different choice. There is no right choice; no wrong one, either. Only different roads to the same destination. Even though you can’t see it, contentment lies at the end of every path.
  3. In your mind’s eye, stand at this intersection with your feet planted solidly on the earth. Imagine how you will feel when you unite with contentment at the end of your journey. What will contentment look like? Feel like? Smell like? Sound like? Taste like? Involve all of your senses as vibrantly as possible.
  4. For the next several minutes, mentally and physically practice contentment, so that when you begin walking your chosen path, contentment will accompany you.
  5. Continue this meditation for several minutes or however long feels perfect.

Regardless of the paths we choose, may we all walk them in peace.

Namaste

Tracy Weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT is available for preorder now. MURDER STRIKES A POSE is available at book sellers everywhere

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Heart Felt Thanks

trees

In just over a month, my second yoga and dog-related mystery, A Killer Retreat, will finally be released and out in the world.

Until I became a writer, I ignored the acknowledgements and dedications decorating the first pages of my favorite reads. Now, I know that they represent the many, many connections that make a book possible. Please take a moment and help me acknowledge the people who helped me birth my second written child.

To anyone I may have neglected to mention: my oversight does not make your contribution less important. You have my sincerest appreciation.

Dedication:

To my husband Marc. Without your support, my writing wouldn’t be possible.

Acknowledgements:

I always assumed writing would be a lonely endeavor. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Thank you to the readers who have contacted me to tell me that they’ve enjoyed my work and to the writers who’ve encouraged me to keep persevering. Your support means the world to me.

For A Killer Retreat, I have so many people to thank that I don’t even know where to begin.

My mom Marcia’s enthusiastic support of the series has touched me, and I’m pretty sure she has single-handedly kept the Billings Barnes and Noble in business since my first book was released. My yoga students have attended events, read my work, and given me encouragement even when I’ve struggled. My wonderful agent, Margaret Bail, editors Terri Bischoff and Connie Hill at Midnight Ink, and freelance editor Marta Tanrikulu have all given me invaluable help and feedback.

Special thanks to D.P. Lyle MD, who helped me work out the technical details of the crimes in this book. He is kind, generous with his time, and an invaluable resource to all of us in the crime writing community. Of course if there are any errors in this work, they are completely mine.

My husband, Marc, supports me in all of my crazy endeavors but chooses to work in the background, designing and maintaining my website, creating marketing materials, helping me brainstorm plot points, and putting up with the angst, heartache, joy, frustration, and excitement that are all part of being a writer. Thank you, honey.

Finally, I have to acknowledge my own personal Bella, German shepherd Tasha. You’re getting older, sweetie, so we don’t have as many adventures as we used to, but rest assured that you are woven into the fabric of my stories and branded on my heart. I hope we have many more years together. You will always be my inspiration and the greatest joy of my life.

Tracy weber

          A Killer Retreat

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT is available for preorder now from Whole Life Yoga. MURDER STRIKES A POSE is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble,  and book sellers everywhere! 

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Fiction, Gratitude and Real Change

 

Depositphotos_17589007_m

Today is my blog day at Inkspot, the blog for the authors of Midnight Ink.  In today’s article, I discuss gratitude, “seeing” the homeless, and Real Change.

http://midnightwriters.blogspot.com/2014/11/fiction-gratitude-and-real-change.html

I hope you enjoy it, and that you have a fabulous Thanksgiving weekend.

Namaste

Tracy Weber

Come visit Whole Life Yoga in Seattle, and check out Tracy Weber’s author page for information about the Downward Dog Mysteries series.  A KILLER RETREAT is available for preorder now. MURDER STRIKES A POSE is available at  book sellers everywhere

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