It’s Read an Ebook Week!

5. GetInto - Read an Ebook Week

I admit I fought it with every ounce of my being. I love the smell, the feel, of a real book with real pages – the older, the better.

But…
Over the last couple years, I’ve discovered the simplicity of purchasing ebooks, especially with Kindle right on my iPhone, and though it goes against my gut, I have to admit, I haven’t bought a real book in about five years.

All that being said, it’s Read an Ebook Week at Smashwords!!

If you’re not familiar with Smashwords, they are a major distributor of ebooks for indie authors. They distribute to Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Sony, Kobo, iTunes, etc., so when you purchase an ebook directly from them, you can download it in any format you choose. Yes! When you buy an ebook from Smashwords, you have your choice of formats. You can download it to your Kindle, your Nook, your Sony E-Reader, and even as a PDF for your tablet or your desktop. Well, it doesn’t get much better than that.

Oh, wait! It does get better!!

This week, March 3-9, Smashwords is hosting Read an Ebook Week, and there are tons and tons of books on sale, and some are even free.

If you haven’t read Lori Crane books or have been putting off purchasing the next in one of the series, this week is the time! Lori Crane books are ALL 50% off this week at Smashwords. https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/LoriCrane

If you’re confused about which books to buy or where to start, here is the bibliography.

The Okatibbee Creek Series: (Three books that do not need to be read in order.)
Okatibbee Creek – A woman who has lost nearly everything during the Civil War finds a way to rebuild her shattered life.
An Orphan’s Heart – Set in the late 1800s, a young woman travels the South to find her place in the world.
Elly Hays – Set in the early 1800s, a young mother finds herself in a war with a Creek Indian warrior. He doesn’t have much to lose, but she has everything to lose.

The Stuckey’s Bridge Trilogy: (Three books that should be read in order. No cliffhangers.)
The Legend of Stuckey’s Bridge – A late 1800s serial killer you can’t help but love.
Stuckey’s Legacy: The Legend Continues – A character from the first book tries to live in the world of the rich. Turns out he’s a better killer than his predecessor.
Stuckey’s Gold: The Curse of Lake Juzan – The origin and completion of the Stuckey curse with characters from the first two books. This is the end. Or is it?

The Culpepper Saga: (Four books that should be read in order. No cliffhangers.)
I, John Culpepper – John Culpeper sets out to find himself in this 1600s coming-of-age tale.
John Culpepper the Merchant – England is in Civil War, and John Culpepper finds himself on the wrong side. He must escape before his entire family is beheaded.
John Culpepper, Esquire – John Culpepper sets up a new life in the American Colonies, which is not without its struggles, and a major tragedy puts him in the position of family patriarch, trying to hold his family together on two continents.
Culpepper’s Rebellion – John Culpepper finds himself in the middle of two colonial rebellions: Bacon’s rebellion in Virginia and Culpepper’s rebellion in North Carolina. The latter is headed by his own son, who will surely pay the ultimate price for his sins against the crown, unless John can save him.

Other Books:
Savannah’s Bluebird – A tragic love story that transcends the boundaries of this world.
Witch Dance – A family weekend getaway turns into a nightmare for a young family and pulls them into a vortex of tragedy and witchcraft.

Hop over to Smashwords and take advantage of this awesome sale!

https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/LoriCrane

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Stuckey’s Bridge on the Travel Channel

maxresdefaultThe Travel Channel has a show called Most Terrifying Places in America. They’ve been on for a couple seasons now, and they’ve finally gotten around to the most terrifying place I know of – Stuckey’s Bridge.

 

 

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I was born in Meridian, Mississippi, near the bridge, and heard the creepy legend of the man locals refer to as Ole Man Stuckey my whole life.

Legend has it he was a member of the notorious Dalton Gang, but he was so evil, he was kicked out. He found his way to Lauderdale County, Mississippi where he opened an inn on the Chunky River.

At that time, the river was used to transport goods and produce down to the gulf. Ole Man Stuckey was known to pace the old bridge every evening at dusk, waving his lantern, and offering travelers a warm meal and a soft bed.

In 1901, the Virginia Bridge and Iron Company began rebuilding the 50-year-old wooden bridge. During the project, they discovered bodies buried on the banks.

The townsfolk were suspicious about the creepy man who ran the inn and rounded up a posse to go find him. The mob took him down to the bridge, tied a noose around his neck, and hung him from the new iron rails of the bridge.

His body dangled over the river for five days. When the sheriff cut him down, he splashed into the river below.

Strangely enough, the ghosts around Stuckey’s Bridge today don’t seem to be the victims. The ghost seems to be Ole Man Stuckey, himself. Unexplained lights are witnessed. Footsteps on the bridge and loud splashes into the water below are heard. An apparition of a man walking across the bridge, waving a lantern, is occasionally seen.

28277124_10156046534958326_2362995188662457275_nWe taped the episode for the show last week, and in typical Stuckey-style, there were a few strange occurrences while we were there. A couple phones when crazy for a few minutes. A drone used to take footage of the river and the bridge crashed. We all heard it splash into the water, but when we ran onto the bridge to look over the railing for it, we saw it up in a tree. I wonder what the splash was…

I’ve written three books about the legend (available at Amazon, click here). That’s why they asked me to participate in the show. It was fun to go back home for the day, and I loved being out there again. It’s a cool place and it was a beautiful spring day! I’m very grateful my part of the show was wrapped up before nightfall.

 

 

Here’s my cousin dressed up to play the part of Ole Man Stuckey! This picture was taken long after I skedaddled out of there by Stuckey Bridge Canoe and Kayak

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Sweet Dreams…

Saturday Snippet – STUCKEY’S LEGACY

unnamedWhile writing The Legend of Stuckey’s Bridge, the main character came across a young boy. The boy ended up being nearly as creepy as the main character, and I received tons of emails asking me to elaborate on the boy’s life. No one is that creepy without having some sort of lurid past. So, I penned Stuckey’s Legacy. The boy’s name is Levi, and he is a dark character. Creepy doesn’t quite describe him…

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The starlit night was perfect for a romantic walk, and it would have been pleasurable to stroll the streets for a while in the balmy night air, but Levi had more immediate plans for his escort. He marched her to the nearest hotel and checked in under the name Thomas Stuckey.

“I thought your name was Joe.” The girl giggled as she entwined her arms in his.

“It is Joe, but I don’t want to put that on the hotel register.”

They kissed as they staggered up the stairs, laughing all the way up to their room on the top floor of the three-story hotel.

Following their lovemaking session, Grace lay in Levi’s arms and listened to him tell her all about the fancy people he was going to be friends with on Jekyll Island, about Cornelius Bliss’s death, and about the New Year’s Eve Gala tickets he’d found when he broke onto Mr. Pulitzer’s yacht.

She rolled over onto her stomach, crossed her arms across his bare chest, and looked at his face. Her blonde ringlets danced across her face and he softly pushed them from her temple.

“You’re really quite pretty, you know that?”

She blushed. “Then why don’t you take me with you?”

“Oh, that’s out of the question, dear. I’m going to meet wealthy society people, and I don’t think you’ll fit in.”

“Well, what makes you think you’ll fit in?” she teased.

“Don’t you think I’m one of them?” Levi frowned.

“Mister, I grew up in the Charleston Orphan House. I know a poor orphan when I see one.”

“Well, I never lived at the Charleston Orphan House, but it’s true I’m an orphan.”

She looked at him like a lovesick schoolgirl and waited for him to elaborate.

“I was orphaned years ago. My father was a drunk. He killed my mother right in front of me when I was eight years old.”

Grace gasped.

Levi continued. “He strangled her after he caught her fooling around with a man from up the road. He murdered both of them in a fit of drunken rage.” Levi looked away from her and stared at the ceiling.

“I’m sorry. You probably loved her very much, huh?”

“I don’t know. I thought I did for a long time, but my father pounded into my head that my mother was not worthy of my love. She was a whore.”

Grace grinned. “Well, I’m a whore. It’s not all bad.”

He looked at her with surprise. He didn’t think of her like that, but it was true. “I guess you are, aren’t you?”

“What happened to your father?”

“I killed him,” Levi said flatly and looked back at the ceiling.

After a few uncomfortable seconds, Grace giggled. “No, really, what happened to your father?”

He looked her in the eye. “I killed him.” He paused to watch her expression and was satisfied with the look of fear in her eyes.

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Stuckey’s Legacy is available at Amazon.

Halloween Creepiness

Here’s a creepy blog about the Legend of Stuckey’s Bridge by Lowry Wilson at Old South Images…click HERE if you dare.

The three-book trilogy is available exclusively on Kindle at Amazon. Happy Halloween and sweet dreams!

Stuckey's cover_webstuckey Gold Cover smallunnamedstuckey Trilogy_ smal

 

Books – 3 to be exact

Just in time for my favorite holiday – Halloween

I put together my three creepy books into one trilogy.

Stuckey’s Bridge, Stuckey’s Legacy, and Stuckey’s Gold are now available as

The Complete Stuckey’s Bridge Trilogy

Release date is October 1, 2014, but you can pre-order at Amazon if you CLICK HERE!!

Available exclusively on Kindle at Amazon

stuckey Trilogy_ smal “The Legend of Stuckey’s Bridge”
Legend has it, he was so evil, he was even thrown out of the notorious Dalton Gang. Years later, he opened an inn near the river, and on foggy nights, boatmen witnessed him pacing back and forth across the bridge, waving his lantern, offering travelers a hot meal and a soft bed. Those unfortunate enough to take him up on the hospitality were often never seen again. In 1901, the Virginia Bridge and Iron Company began rebuilding a fifty-year-old Mississippi Bridge. In the middle of the project, they began discovering bodies buried on the banks of the river. Would Old Man Stuckey get away with murder?

“Stuckey’s Legacy: The Legend Continues”
The end of Stuckey’s story left only a legacy – one of murder, treachery, and an intense game of cat and mouse. Young Levi left Mississippi with a wealth of gold, but he found his time in the world of the social elite ending quite differently than it had begun. Was she only after his money? Occasionally, it seemed to him Penny Juzan only wanted him dead. Or maybe it was the other way around.

“Stuckey’s Gold: The Curse of Lake Juzan”
With the gold finally in the hands of the Juzan family, will Penelope Juzan break the seventy-year-old curse, or will she suffer the same tragic fate as her forefathers? In the final installment of the trilogy, we may find the victims in the original tales were merely bit players in a story that is far darker and more sinister than one could imagine.

The Backstory of the STUCKEY’S BRIDGE TRILOGY

Here’s a little background on the Stuckey’s Bridge Trilogy.

stuckey's bridge from VA Iron and Bridge Co on wikiMy childhood: I grew up in Meridian, Mississippi and heard the legend of Stuckey’s Bridge my whole life. It actually began in a book about the area written in the 1970s. The local paper, The Meridian Star, picked up on the legend from the book and the story spread like wildfire. The bridge instantly became THE place to party on the weekends, searching for ghosts and frightening girls into cuddling closer. (If you want to go there: head south out of Meridian on Interstate 59. Turn right at exit 142, then a quick left onto Meehan-Savoy Road. Travel 2.2 miles until you see a dirt road on your left. That is Stucky Bridge Road. The bridge will be about two miles down the dirt road. It is now closed, so you’ll have to turn around to leave. After you read the following legend, you may not want to go.)

The legend goes: In the late 1800s, a former member of the Dalton Gang came to Lauderdale County, Mississippi to find his fortune. He opened an inn near the Chunky River and stood on the old wooden bridge at night, flagging down merchants with his lantern, offering them a warm bed and a hot meal. Supposedly, he murdered his victims in their sleep and buried their bodies on the banks of the river. In 1901, the Virginia Bridge and Iron Company began rebuilding the old bridge and the bodies were discovered. The innkeeper, Old Man Stuckey as he is known to the locals, was hung by a posse from the iron rails of the new bridge.

Stuckey's cover_webIf you know me, you know I couldn’t stop searching until I figured out who this Old Man Stuckey really was…that became the first book in the Stuckey’s Bridge Trilogy, THE LEGEND OF STUCKEY’S BRIDGE. (Check out the book trailer…creepy!)

unnamedWhile writing the story, I didn’t want Old Man Stuckey to be alone all the time, so I had him run across a young boy named Levi. In the story, young Levi took on a creepiness all his own, and I received tons of emails and messages asking what Levi’s past was. As usual with my overactive imagination, I was more interested in his future than his past, so I wrote STUCKEY’S LEGACY: THE LEGEND CONTINUES. At the end of that book, Levi “got his” and the story focused on the young woman he met during the story, Penelope Juzan.

Back to my childhood: There was a second legend around the area where I grew up. Supposedly there was an inn on Lake Juzan in the 1840s where an innkeeper murdered his guests for wealth, much like Old Man Stuckey. The man’s name was Pierre Juzan, and he dumped the bodies in the lake with the help of his Indian sidekick. Toward the end of the legend, one of them killed the other for the wealth of gold they had confiscated.

Side note: There were also a couple different accounts of trunks of confederate gold disappearing as they traveled through the area during the Civil War.

I thought all these stories had a similar thread, and I wondered if I could separate them.

stuckey Gold Cover smallBack to the trilogy: I came to the conclusion that these legends were indeed different stories, but thought they were probably connected in some way. Those crazy ideas in my head became the third book in the trilogy, STUCKEY’S GOLD: THE CURSE OF LAKE JUZAN. 

These tales tickled me pink while writing them, and I hope you enjoy them too!

stuckey Trilogy_ smal

 

 

 

 

 

Update: October 1st release of – The Complete Stuckey’s Bridge Trilogy  available exclusively on Kindle at Amazon. Click HERE!

Lori Crane Books at Amazon

Saturday Snippet – Stuckey’s Legacy

This snippet is from the second in the Stuckey’s Bridge Trilogy, STUCKEY’S LEGACY. Last week, I posted a snippet from the first book. You can see it HERE. Next Saturday, I’ll post a snippet from the coming book, STUCKEY’S GOLD. It is scheduled for release on August 25th!

unnamedSTUCKEY’S LEGACY: THE LEGEND CONTINUES

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Levi was so elated at his good fortune, he knew he wouldn’t be able to sleep, so he stopped off at the King Street Pub near the old Charleston Orphan House. He wandered into the musty-smelling place, with its plank floor and wood tables, and ordered a whiskey at the bar. Ragtime music filled the room from a piano player in the corner, and the air was foggy with cigar smoke. He always thought he’d like to partake in the habit but he just couldn’t stand the smell. He pulled the silver lighter from his pocket and flipped the top open and closed over and over without pushing the ignition button. He gazed around the room. The place was quite lively for a Monday night. A handful of men sat at the other end of the bar and a few played cards around a large table in the center of the room.

“Where are all the women?” he asked the barkeep.

“Not much business for them here on a Monday, but I can send for some ladies if you’d like.” The husky man wiped down the bar top with a dirty cloth and then shoved it back into his stained apron. “You’ll have to make it worth their time, though, if you know what I mean.”

Levi grinned. “I can certainly do that. I’m having a celebration of sorts tonight. It’d be nice to have some company.”

“Louis!” the barkeep called over his shoulder.

Levi downed his drink as a dirty, young boy dressed in knickers, with long curls sticking out of his sailor hat, appeared from around the corner. The barkeep told him to run down to Miss Mabel’s place and ask her to send over a couple ladies. The boy nodded and ran back the same way he had come.

The man turned to Levi. “They’ll be here shortly. Miss Mabel runs a tight ship.”

The word ship made Levi smile. He flipped the lighter open and closed again.

“Why don’t you get in on a couple hands of poker and a good cigar while you wait,” the barkeep said, gesturing toward the game.

“No, I’m not much of a card player and not really in the mood for a cigar. I’ll just have a refill and wait for the ladies.” Levi pushed his empty glass toward the barkeep, who refilled it and sloshed it back toward Levi.

Levi downed the whiskey and listened to the piano player for a few minutes. When the man started playing “Camptown Races,” Levi started humming along. “Doo dah, doo dah, camptown racetrack’s five miles long, oh…”

His singing was interrupted by the jingle of the brass bells on the front door. He spun around and saw two women enter. They glanced at the barkeep, who nodded toward Levi. One of the women was a thin brunette, wearing a light green dress that gave her body more of an hourglass shape than she probably had. The other was a blonde, wearing a loose-fitting blue dress that sloppily drooped off one shoulder. She caught Levi’s eye and dramatically pulled the neckline back up to its proper spot, raising her chin as if she were royalty and he a mere peasant. He smiled at her pompousness.

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Lori Crane Books at Amazon

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