Posts

VE Day – 75 years

King George, VE Day

May 8, 1945. During the reign of Britain’s King George VI, the Allies celebrated the defeat of Hitler and the Nazis. This date became recognized as VE Day: Victory in Europe.

Last Friday, May 8th, on the 75th anniversary of VE Day, I received an early morning request from a UK publication. Prince Charles was to read an excerpt from the diary of his grandfather, King George (the one from the movie The King’s Speech!). They wanted to know whether I could provide a handwriting analysis of both Royals for an article that would be published at the same time.

Express UK

I had woken up in the night, sick, and was feeling pretty cruddy by the time I read the email. Still, far be it from me to turn down an opportunity for some free publicity. And it was flattering to be asked. As you may know, I’m from England but have lived in the US for most of my life. I still consider myself a Brit and wanted to participate in the celebration.

The only handwriting the reporter had found of the King’s was his signature, which is not sufficient, even for a quickie analysis–which is all the media really wants. I found a sample on Google Images and another of Prince Charles, whose handwriting I’ve always liked. So, if you would like to see what I had to say about these two very different men, click here to go to the article. I hope you enjoy my comments.

Also, my latest book Proof of Life came out in audiobook format. I have some free Audible codes for it and some others of my Claudia Rose series. Contact me if you’d like one (first come, first served).

If you are interested in learning more about analyzing handwriting, the e-version of my book, Reading Between the Lines: Decoding Handwriting, is free to download until May 13, 2020. Enjoy! www.sheilalowe.com

Kindness Matters

Kindness Matters happens to be the name of a radio show on which I recently appeared as a guest. One of the hosts, Lloyd Brock, is a longtime handwriting analyst, stage hypnotist, and retired Treasury agent. Way back in the 1990s, he contacted me with a questioned document case that he was unable to do because it conflicted with his job.

Since then, Lloyd has had me on his show a couple of times. Here’s a link to the latest discussion: I would have been on video with them, but there were technical difficulties, so we did my part on the phone.

I love the theme of the show. Especially these days, when it’s so easy to be anonymously snarky and mean on various social media platforms, we need to be reminded that kindness matters. I love it when I can re-post stories of random acts of kindness. One I posted today is about a 15-year-old Texas boy who bought a Valentine flower for every girl in his school (172 of them). He had noticed the year before that not everyone got a recognition. This was his beautiful remedy.

Kindness matters in handwriting, too. While there is no “this-means-that” in handwriting, some features point to kindness more than others. For example, some curves balanced with straight lines and a moderate slant. Features that point away from kindness are extremely heavy pressure combined with many angles and sharp strokes, especially when there is also an extreme slant.

Where to learn more

But those are generalities. A handwriting professional always looks at the whole handwriting when making an assessment. Here’s a link to my other website for more information. And here’s a link to the American Handwriting Analysis Foundation. This wonderful nonprofit organization is more than 50 years old. I’m currently the president, so a bit prejudiced. But you won’t find another handwriting analysis organization that offers more free resources to its members.

News

I’m now working on the next Claudia Rose book, Dead Letters. In actual fact, writing this blog post allows me to procrastinate working on a difficult chapter. I’ve also just finished re-editing What She Saw with the help of Betty Almeida’s eagle eye. Readers had pointed out errors (typos and stuff) 🙁 While correcting them I found bits that I wanted to rewrite–like the whole first page. So, hopefully, my excellent publishers, Suspense, will soon have the new version up on Amazon.

And now, no more procrastinating…

Signing at Barnes & Noble

What’s better than an author signing at Barnes & Noble? A group signing with six authors! That’s what happened on October 20, 2018, when fiction and nonfiction authors were hosted by the Ventura store.

Along with James F. GrayMaryann Ridini SpencerMike Kennedy and I signed together at several events this year. We’ve also created a Facebook page called the WritersTable. Watch for notice of our first Facebook Live event, scheduled for January 24, 2019. Time TBA

But I’m getting ahead of myself. We were joined at Barnes & Noble by Crystal Marshall, a young author who wrote a wonderful children’s book about a hairless cat. Holly K. Thrasher’s book deals photographically with her journey through breast cancer, and Spencer Labbe, a young artist and author who has self-published his first fantasy novel.

My books are back at Barnes & Noble

Seeing my books back on the shelves of a major bookstore was a thrill. They are in the catalog, and with this signing, they are back, at least for a while. If readers go in and ask for them, they are likely to be around longer (hint, hint).

Mike’s wife, Andrea, memorialized the event with her mad photography skills as we answered audience questions and described our writing process. Afterwards, we signed books. After all, that’s what we were there for, right?

Book signings used to be more popular when meeting authors was unusual and exciting. Now, it’s easy to download a book and read it anywhere, and visit authors online. Besides, everyone is so busy, it’s not always easy to wedge another event into the schedule. And that’s why Mike, Jim, Maryann and I are doing the aforementioned Facebook Live.

Check back often for details. And if you have a question you would like answered by four experienced authors, we would love to hear from you. Leave a comment or send an email: sheila@sheilalowe.com

Where have I been?

Where have I been since my last blog post a month ago? There’s a good reason for my absence. I’ve been working my butt off to finish my new book, PROOF OF LIFE. Last Sunday night around midnight, I sent the manuscript Suspense, my publisher. Monday, I was brain dead and could barely move. By evening I looked like someone strangled me–stress rash. On Tuesday, I rewrote the last two pages. The big challenge now is to keep my hands off Proof of Life until my editor at Suspense sends comments a few weeks from now.

Today, I’m beginning to feel halfway human. I’ve been answering 70+ emails that piled up while I was elbows-down. Remember the Tribbles on the original Star Trek? Little balls of fur that proliferated astonishingly fast? That’s how emails are. The minute you send one off, ten more arrive. When I’m on a deadline and need to get something done, I have to discipline myself to power down Outlook and pretend it doesn’t exist for a while. That’s so hard to do!!!

Freddy Mercury

Again…where have I been? In the middle of it all, I took an afternoon off to go to the movies. Busy raising 3 kids on my own, I was never aware of Freddie Mercury or Queen. That is, unless they were one of the bands I used to yell at my daughter to “turn that noise down.” Bohemian Rhapsody, whether or not it accurately portrayed the goings on, was really good. It roused my interested in Freddie and I looked for his handwriting.

You probably want to know what it says about him, right? Freddie was 43 at the time of writing. Take into account that it’s lyrics and may be written faster than normal. The writing is highly simplified. Most extra strokes that are taught in school are stripped away, a sign of someone who cuts to the chase, gets right down to basics. He could be extremely impatient.

The extra-wide spaces between words point to his feeling isolated. However, the capital I in the 10th line down makes me smile, as it reminded me of Freddie’s strut. English is the only language (besides Cyrillic) where a single letter represents the personal pronoun I, so that letter is quite significant. It reveals much about how one sees themselves.

One other aspect I’ll point out is in the second line from the bottom. The letter “g” at the end of “living” pulls strongly to the right, symbolic of Freddie’s difficulty with male authority figures (his father, a boss, etc.). He pushed against anyone who tried to tell him what to do.

If handwriting isn’t proof of life, I don’t know what is :-).

There’s lots more, of course, but that’s enough for now.

Written Off

Written Off book 7

Written Off

Written Off is the seventh book in the Forensic Handwriting Suspense series. I’ve written about serial murderers in Advanced Studies in Handwriting Psychology. Some are female, and that intrigued me. Not wanting to write the same old serial killer story, it was more interesting to address what might bring a woman to perpetrate such evil acts. My object was not to excuse her behavior, but to offer some explanation.

One of the characters appears in the next one, too, Proof of Life. Funny how fictional characters let an author know what they want.

Written Off

In the dead of winter, handwriting expert Claudia Rose journeys to Maine. Her task: retrieve a manuscript about convicted female serial killer, Roxanne Becker. The author, Professor Madeleine Maynard, was, herself, brutally murdered. While searching for the manuscript, Claudia uncovers a shocking secret about a group of mentally unstable grad students. Selected for a special project, and dubbed “Maynard’s Maniacs,” she wonders if Madeleine had been conducting research that was at best, unprofessional—and at worst, downright harmful, and potentially dangerous? Could that unorthodox research have turned deadly?

Claudia finds herself swept up in the mystery of Madeleine’s life—and death—and makes it her mission to hunt down Madeleine’s killer. But she soon realizes Madeleine left behind more questions than answers, and no shortage of suspects. The professor’s personal life yields a number of persons who might have wanted her dead—and her academic success and personal fortune clearly made her the envy of fellow faculty members. The University where she worked anticipates being the beneficiary of Madeline’s estate—but that seems in question when a charming stranger, claiming to be Madeleine’s nephew, turns up brandishing a new will.

When the local police chief prevails upon Claudia to travel into town to examine the newly produced, handwritten will, she meets Sage Boles, a man with a mysterious past. Back at Madeleine’s isolated house to escape an impending storm, Claudia becomes trapped in a blizzard. With a killer.

Praise for Written Off

“A simply riveting read from cover to cover. ‘Written Off’ by Sheila Lowe is an impressively entertaining and deftly crafted novel of suspense from a novelist with a complete mastery of the genre and a genuine flair for originality.” —Midwest Book Review

Voted Book of the Month by LASR Readers

The books!

I thought it would be fun to make a little video to show off all of my books, so here it is. And if you would like to visit my Author page on Amazon Central, click here.

Written Off Launch Party

Dozens of friends gathered at Mimi’s Cafe in Ventura on November 14, 2017 to help me celebrate the release of my latest book, Written Off. Food, prizes and lots of fun. As she has for all my other releases, Debbie Mitsch of Mystery Ink drove all the way up from Huntington Beach to sell books at the Written Off launch party.

We had such a great time, I plan on doing it again when my next book, Proof of Life, comes out early in 2019.

Local author and buddy James Francis Gray also had a table with his books.

Sheila Lowe & author James F. Gray

Bookseller, Debbie Mitsch


James is the best-known author in Ventura. He belongs to every networking group there is and he’s the best person to know if you need the word spread about something you are doing. He touts the Latino Expo and has made Tatiana’s Coffee & Tea the most popular independent coffee house in Ventura. Tatiana and Diego display local vendors’ wares there, several of which are authors, including yours truly.

Everyone seemed to be having a great time. I gave anyone who brought a prize a 30-second commercial to talk about anything they wanted to. There were all kinds of prizes. My good friend Tracey Bolton, a phenomenal psychic medium, donated a reading. The person who won really lucked out. Everyone who buys books gets a free ticket for each one they purchase. Then I do a drawing free handwriting analysis.

Since moving to Ventura in 2004 I’ve made some great friends, many of whom became my readers. When I got published, they all came out and supported me. It’s warm feeling to know you belong to a community.

Hillside Book Club Halloween

hillside book club halloween

Amy and Jim Herron as Claudia and her FBI contact

Hillside Bookclub Halloween

Hillside Bookclub at Halloween

At the end of October, 2017, the zany ladies of the Hillside, Ventura, Book Club read What She Saw (a young woman with amnesia. For the second time, my friend Amy Herron invited me to attend their meeting as guest author. They met the night before Halloween and they dressed up as characters from the book. What a thrill to see my characters come to life that way! Almost as good as having it made into a movie (almost).

Irene Mefford (in mermaid green) hosted the event at her home in Ondulondo, a neighborhood in the hills high above Ventura. Imagine the view of the lights at night, the Pacific Ocean during the day. Irene went all-out with fabulous Halloween-themed food. She created claw-shaped meatloaf, witches head apples in cider, Jello shots in huge syringes. As you can imagine, by the time we got around to judging the costumes, everyone was in a great mood.

hillside book club halloween

Winner Teri Casey

Teri Casey dressed as Jessica Mack’s backpack! How’s that for creativity? She won a prize for that great costume.

Tragedy strikes the book club

Tragically, few short weeks later, Irene’s beautiful home became one of a thousand casualties of the Thomas fire, a heartbreaking loss. Other club members in the neighborhood were also evacuated. These terrifying experiences teach us a lot about what is really of greatest value in our lives.

The good news is, the book club continues to meet and I hope to be invited back again some time. How would they dress up for my upcoming book, Proof of Life, which is the sequel to What She Saw.

What She Saw, a young woman with amnesia. Imagine waking up on a train and realizing that you don’t know who you are, where you are going. or where you came from. Furthermore, something tells you that you can’t call the cops.

Book Clubs

If you have a book club and would like a visit, contact me  If your club is too far for me to drive, I’m happy to show up via Zoom or Skype.

Dead Write is book number three

Available in: Paperback, Kindle, Audiobook

Dead WriteDead Write is book number three in the Forensic Handwriting psychological suspense series. For several years, I worked for a high-priced dating service, analyzing handwriting of the members. That’s where I got the idea for this book. Not that there were murders going on in the real-life service, of course (at least, as far as I know…).

In Dead Write, at the behest of an eccentric new client, Claudia Rose flies east to New York. Meanwhile, at home, according to Annabelle Giordano, Claudia’s young friend, Joel Jovanic’s new partner appears to have designs on him. Nothing like wondering what your partner is up to while you are across the country. Can Claudia trust him?

Dead Write

Dating can be dangerous, so clients who can afford the services of eccentric Russian “baroness”, Grusha Olinetsky, are willing to pay the hundred thousand dollar fee she charges for an introduction to their perfect mate. Claudia gets involved when Olinetsky hires her to come to Manhattan and uncover apparent screwups made by her nemesis. The assignment puts her at odds with her romantic partner, Detective Joel Jovanic, who suspects that Grusha herself is trouble. Drawn into the feckless lives of the rich and single, Claudia delves into a twisted world of love and lies fueled by desperation. But desperate enough to kill? Clues in the suspects’ handwriting might help Claudia save Grusha’s already dubious reputation before the names of more victims are scribbled into someone’s little black book.

Here’s what readers say

  • The characters are engaging the story moves at a quick pace. I look forward to the next book in this series. Beatrice
  • This book had me on the edge of my seat through out the book. This author has never disappointed me with this series. Tammy
  • I love how she educates and entertains using her talented skills as a handwriting analyst. This book keeps you guessing right up to the end. Jessie

Dead Write forensic suspense is waiting for you.

New Audiobook

Outside the LinesNew audiobook released!

Outside the Lines is the latest audiobook released in the Forensic Handwriting suspense series. We’ve been working backwards through the series and now, all but Poison Pen, the first book, are available through Audible. You can download this and others free with a trial membership at Audible.com or email sheila@sheilalowe.com. I may have a free code to give you.

Narrator Anna Crowe is a delight to work with. Her voice is like warm syrup. She takes on the challenging British accents that are an important part of this book and brought the story, and Claudia Rose, to life. This is her second narration for my series after Written Off came out earlier this year.

New Cover

Why are two different covers shown here? The fact is, after several years on the market, we thought the book could use a refresh. I conducted on my Facebook page And since much of it occurs in the UK, the Big Ben cover won. It was close, though. Here’s the other choice people voted for (it’s a mockup, so a final product would be sharper: OtL staircase

In Outside the Lines, what should have been a routine afternoon on the witness stand for forensic handwriting expert Claudia Rose turns into a shocking assault that leaves her traumatized. A few weeks later, the getaway trip to the UK intended to help her recover, instead lands her in trouble with the FBI, New Scotland Yard, and her fiancé, LAPD Detective Joel Jovanic. Jovanic’s homicide case has followed Claudia to London where she finds herself unexpectedly allied with the chief suspect.

Audiobooks have become immensely popular as people spend more time in their cars. They are a wonderful way for uber-busy people to listen to a story while they’re busy doing something else. I like to listen while I’m doing eating or doing chores–makes them go faster.