Monday, February 23, 2009


It came as a surprise. During the voting period and even after it closed, the tally showed A DESPERADO FOR CHRISTMAS in second place. But guess what? When I went to check today, it won first place! Check it out at:

I am ecstatic. The readers like my brand of writing, they like girls with guns and kick butt heroines. A DESPERADO FOR CHRISTMAS is my latest release, a border patrol agent story. Learn more about this award-winning book at:

And you can get it from:

A Desperado for Christmas small

Vijaya Schartz
Award-winning Girls with Guns and Romance with a Kick

Monday, February 9, 2009

Review for BOBBY'S DINER

Contemporary Women's Fiction
e-book - 50,000 words
Buy it from:
or from:
To end the week dedicated to author Susan Wingate, here is my review of BOBBY'S DINER, a novel including girls with guns, by Susan Wingate.

From the cover, you wouldn’t think this is a funny, touching, action novel, but it is. When these two stubborn women and former enemies are thrown together by the death of Bobby, the man they both loved and fought over in the past, you expect fireworks. But as both inherit Bobby’s Diner, forced to manage it together, they must curb their temper and face reality. The violent deeds of a ruthless developer bent on acquiring the valuable property brings them closer in the fight against him. Eventually, they learn to appreciate each other and develop an unlikely bond.

The prose is breathtaking at times "It was early spring then and the cacti were putting on a show that would embarrass the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, gorgeous." and I loved the imagery. "...stubborn as a mule in a blizzard..." The first person narrative and unconventional writing style work beautifully as we bond with Georgie and discover her past. Through this fresh voice, we also get to know Vanessa, Bobby's ex and her former rival.

Action, danger, lively dialogue, plenty of humor, a profound sense of human nature and believable character development make this novel well worth reading. I love a book that makes me turn the pages (if you can say that about e-books), and this one kept me awake into the wee hours.

I highly recommend this read. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry. You won’t regret it.
Visit Susan Wingate at:
Vijaya Schartz
Girls with Guns, Romance with a Kick

Friday, February 6, 2009

Guest author Susan Wingate - Book excerpt

Since this blog is dedicated to Girls with Guns, among other things, here is an excerpt of Bobby's Diner involving girls and, of course, guns, in this case at the shooting range. Girls are not born shooting guns. They have to learn sometime.
Bobby's Diner
By Susan Wingate
Available now in ebook.
Published By: Write Words, Inc
ISBN # 978-1-59431-636-4
Word Count: 50,000
EpubPrice: $2.80 to $5.50 depending on formats
Find it at:
Shooters begin. The firing monitor called out the instruction over the loudspeaker. Vanessa picked up the gun and reassembled it, loaded it, and handed it to me. Within seconds gunfire cracked and exploded all around us. Single steady shots. Quick and repeating shots. I jumped. It seemed second-nature to her the way she managed it. But, I pressed my arms firmly by my side.

“Take it! Just listen to me. I’ll talk you through it. Stand like I showed you.” She shoved the gun toward me and I took it reluctantly. She glared at me to begin.

“Now hold it gently like an egg, okay?” She handed the gun over to me and my heart started to pound like a bongo, my hands were shaking and sweaty.

“I don’t know about this, Van.” I turned to the target out in the field and with my right foot in front of my left and my arms steady out but not locked stiff, I took the stance.

“Good. Good. Now, loosen your grip. You’re not trying to strangle it.”

I looked at her with squinted eyes and when I did the gun went off. I screamed. It nearly blew me off my feet. A carbon-smoky smell filled the air and some of the gun powder kicked out into my face and eyes. They began to water instantly.

“Holy, shit!” I rubbed my eyes with my shoulders, the right one first, then the left.

“Pay attention to what you’re doing! This isn’t a Barbie Doll.”
Panic coursed over me in a hot wave. I looked at Vanessa with wide-eyes.

“You have mascara all over your face.” She smiled because I think she could tell I was about ready to cry. “Be serious and keep focused on the gun, not me.” Her words softened. “Don’t feel intimidated, I’m trying to teach you—not intimidate you, okay. You’re holding a weapon, Georgie. Always, but always, keep that in mind. Let me show you.” She took the gun from me,
stood firm, twisted her head to line up with the sight, closed her non-aiming eye, and squeezed the trigger, BAM! She squeezed again. BAM! “See? Like that. Now you try.”

“I don’t want to.”

“Quit your sniveling and take it.” She said it like a drill sergeant and I responded like a private first-class. “Okay, now, once again, take your stance, that’s right. Hold it up. Higher, Georgie, you’re aiming at the ground. That’s better. Can you see the sight? Is it lined up with the target? Okay, now slowly and controlled, squeeze the trigger.”

The moment of firing was one of the most frightening yet exhilarating feelings I’ve ever
experienced. I hit the target. “I did it!”

“Why, yes you did. I’ll be damned. Okay, you have two more rounds. Empty that fucker.”

I took the stance and aimed a little quicker this time and pulled the trigger, BAM. And, again, BAM. I looked to see if I’d hit the target. Only one more hole from me. I missed either the first or second shot. I wasn’t sure.

“You hit the second one perfectly.” Vanessa was an old pro at this I could tell.

“That spray feels really weird.”

“The gunpowder? Yeah. You get used to it though. Let’s reload and shoot some more, what d’ ya say?”


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

A week with Susan Wingate, author

Award-winning and bestselling novelist, Susan Wingate, is also a poet and playwright. She received her undergraduate degree from Arizona State University in 1994. Since then, she has written three novels and one collection.
Her second novel, Bobby’s Diner, will be released in February 2009 (Cambridge Books).
Her novels, short stories, poetry, articles and plays consistently receive awards and acclaim. Susan is a featured writer for the Arizona Author’s Association newsletter and a contributing writer for several other magazines.
Since 2006, Susan has kept busy teaching writing classes at Skagit College – San Juan Center, at writing conferences and at her studio. She offers a monthly teleconference to writers entitled, “Blasting the Market.” In 2007, after the publication of her mystery novel, Of the Law, Susan traveled extensively around the states of Washington, Oregon, California and Arizona giving lectures and workshops on writing and crafting novels. As well, Susan has one collection of short stories, poems and essays entitled, Ravings of a Mad Gentlewoman. Ravings exemplifies her talent for storytelling in several different formats.
She is an active member of the writing community – locally and nationally. Currently, she organizes a series of reading events for the library. These events spotlight local, regional, national and international writers. Her monthly online newsletter called, “Sincerely, Susan” has an avid readership.
For hobbies, Susan enjoys reading, painting, photography, playing with her animals and talking with her husband. Presently, she lives in Washington State where she writes full time.
Visit her website at:

Monday, February 2, 2009

Presenting a friend author - Susan Wingate

BOBBY'S DINER... ... is a story of a woman trying to find herself in a town where nobody wants her. Georgette Carlisle, twenty-five when she saunters into the rustic town of Sunnydale, Arizona, snags husband, Bobby, away from another woman, Vanessa Carlisle. After he dies - fifteen years later when the story begins - he leaves his restaurant called Bobby's Diner to both women. But, that's not the only problem. Bobby's Diner, situated on an attractive highway corridor property, is slated as the next boutique tourist site and sits smack in way of Zach Pinzer's dreams and future with Chariot International Incorporated, a large developer headquartered in Phoenix. Even after Zach arranges to destroy their property and fatally wounds their beloved busboy and gardener, he nearly kills Roberta, Vanessa's daughter. Georgette and Vanessa hold fast to the only thing they have, each other, and they fight. Georgette's story tells a tale of life, love, death, grief, pain, loneliness, and redemption. And, she finds her true family with the most unexpected people.

Bobby's Diner gets RAVE REVIEWS:

A Review by Joyce Anthony"Bobby's Diner. When I read the title, I had the idea this would be another one of those books describing the everyday details of small-town America. Truthfully, I thought I'd find the book rather boring. I was completely wrong!
Susan Wingate has created a unique situation with this novel, bringing together two unlikely women--an ex-wife and the woman who stole her husband--and placing them in a situation where they have to deal with each other on a daily basis. As the new co-owners of Bobby's Diner, these women must learn to work together or give up--and both are too stubborn to give up. Adding in a scalawa[g] bent on taking over the diner, and the situation gets even more intense.
Moments of humor mix with deep emotions in this book. Susan Wingate shows an understanding of human nature well beyond what is normally seen in a novel. She has a mastery of dialogue that I find refreshing--I felt as though I was right there, listening. It isn't often I find dialogue so true-to-life. Between her mastery of dialogue and understanding of human nature, Susan Wingate held me captive with this book.
Can these women come to terms with past hurts? Can they work together to save Bobby's Diner from dying? Is it possible for these women to understand that there was a reason they both earned the love of the same man? You will have to read Bobby's Diner to find out.
Give yourself several hours to read this book. You will find yourself saying "Just one more chapter" over and over again. It is one of those rare books you won't want to put down. I look forward to reading more of Ms. Wingate's work." - Joyce Anthony (author of "Storm" and blog mistress of Books & Authors blog)

A Review by RD Larson
Bobby's Diner by Susan Wingate is a wonderful and funny tale of an ex-wife and a widow as they try to manage the Diner that Bobby had owned. When he died they both inherited it and now must make a go of it. Heart-warming and realistically funny this charming story will warm and full-fill the reader. I highly recommend it. - RD Larson (author of Evil Angel

A Review by Coffee Times Romance gives "Bobby's Diner" a 4-cup review - An Outstanding Great Read!

Danielle with Coffee Times Romances has this to say about "Bobby's Diner": "A breathtaking story that will fill you with joy and laughter, Bobby's Diner is a great read for any book lover."