04 July, 2020

#BookReview :: Blanche Among the Talented Tenth (Blanche White #2) by Barbara Neely



About the Book:
Check out the Book on Amazon
The second, ground-breaking mystery featuring African-American maid and amateur sleuth Blanche White by Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity Award winning Author Barbara Neely

When Blanche White moved north to Boston, she believed it would be a better place to raise her kids, especially after she got them into an elite private school. But now her children are becoming elitist and judgmental, acquiring more attitude than education. So when she and her kids are invited to Amber Cove, an exclusive resort in Maine for wealthy blacks, Blanche jumps at the chance to see how the other half lives and maybe stop her kids turning into people she doesn’t want to know. When one of the guests kills himself, and another is electrocuted in her bathtub, Blanche becomes an accidental detective once again, using her sharp wit and keen social insight to peel back some disturbing color and class distinctions within the black community that may have driven someone to murder.

~

When Blanche white is invited to spend the summer with an elitist bunch of people at Amber Cove, she decides to take up on it and see the kind of crowd her kids (her niece and nephew she is raising) are rubbing shoulders with at the private school she has them attending. She is expecting to meet the rich and the who's who of the African American community so that she can understand the changes in her kids. What she doesn't expect is to put on her detective hat. But that is what happens when a body turns up and everyone at the resort has a reason to want to see the victim dead. And, Blanche is left to work out the motives and the opportunity of the people she is supposed to be vacationing with.

I quite enjoyed this book mostly because of the protagonist. Blanche White is a loveable character. She is expert at befriending people and putting them at ease - a characteristic that came in handy in this book. People feel comfortable talking to her as they would to their best friend or to an agony aunt. Her ability to gather information, and sizing up people complements her natural ability to befriend people. She is smart and sassy too. She is open and frank in her discussions with the kids. What else do you need when you have a protagonist like this working out the details of the case? The book also touches upon the issues of  race and the matter of privilege in a way that is not so subtle or ignorable at all. Readers are bound to take notice in the way the wide set of characters are set up to bring out the points - sometimes with their presence, actions and dialogues, and sometimes with their absence. I particularly enjoyed that aspect of the book as it points out the problems without being preachy and giving the readers a chance to think upon it.

As for the plot itself, the stage setting and the character development has bene done quite well. The mystery was quite easy for someone like me… But that didn't take away from the reading experience at all. Well-paced narrative helps drive across the social aspect along with the mystery in the book.

Entertaining, Not a dull moment. Perfect for cozy mystery lovers who are open to getting something extra.




03 July, 2020

#Interview with Gabriel Nombo, #Author of The Tenant's Wrath - @HarvestingB


About the Book: 
Check out the Book on Amazon
THE TENANT'S WRATH (previously published as Outrageous Humans On Exoplanet) is a novel that has been written according to the author’s experience in living as a tenant. The author had tenanted in nine local houses from 2005 to 2010 before he shifted into his building in 2010. While he was living in this building, he published part of his book in January 2012. This work had only 112 pages, and it included only 500 printed copies.

He employed it to extract data from other tenants as he walked with his book in the streets. The author continued to tenant after he moved from his house in 2015. At the time of publishing this book, he has an experience of fourteen tenancies in local houses. There are nightmare tenants and troublesome house owners in some tenancies. How is this report presented?. Through appreciating efforts that are done in space technology and exoplanetology.

Technology has drastically developed nowadays and keeps on advancing rapidly. This has not left behind exoplanetology and space technology(let's appreciate how curiosity rover was positioned on mars). Presently, we can live outside our customized planet for several months. Due to it, we know the biological impact of lacking the Earth's gravitational force. For instance, cardiovascular behavior of the human body when it's in a weightless environment.

The laboratory that has been built outside the world by exceptionally committed scientists, International Space Station (ISS), is another justification of technology improvement. With the strength of current technologies, humans can get physically to 'ISS' building through the support of space shuttles, as it was the case of Atlantis and Soyuz in 2010. Also, as it was the case of SoyuzTMA-14M spacecraft in September 2014, and several voyages that have been done recently. Now, this is only the 21st century, what about 1100 years later?. Let’s imagine technology advancement in the 33rd century!. A reader may generate possible answers to it.

The report on how landlords and tenants live together is assumed to be written in 34th Century. One century after the first signal indicating aliens' presence is detected. A fictitious reporter from the Earth, writes it after he voyaged to aliens' planet. In nature, this exoplanet has very angry aliens.

In the 34th century, when earthlings start to interact with aliens, some aliens take advantage of interplanetary mobility by harnessing wisdom from earth's very wise ancestors(In the book, words of ancestors are written in bold). These are like Henry Ford (1863 -1947), John Lennon (1940-1980), Bertrand Russel(1872-1970),David O.McKay(1873-1970), Sarah Josepha Hale(1788-1879), Johann von Goethe(1749-1832), Abraham Lincoln(1809-1865), Benjamin Disraeli(1804-1881),Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882),Mischel(1968), and many others. How do they employ our ancestors to benefit their wrathful nature?. The reporter has everything.

The reporter does thorough research on aliens' culture, including their science, daily life, food style, theology, landlord-tenant relationship, education system, and others. Then, he writes a report which he forwards it to his fellow earthlings. It takes only a month for the emailed report to reach the planet Earth.

Interview with Gabriel Nombo


When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller?

It was in 2010 when I started to think of documenting a story that was in my mind. An ambition to write it down arrived after I shifted into my house. The house was so small, and it was not entirely completed. However, I finalized its construction when I was already living in it. After its full completion, I got an idea of telling others what forced me to have that house. I realized that narrating it individually to every friend might be time-consuming, so I concluded to write it in the form of a novel.

What inspires you to write?

I witnessed dispute between tenants and landlords  in several houses that I once tenanted. Most of  them originated from landlords who violated terms in their contracts and others who did not even issue contracts to their tenants.  So, I thought a need to publicize it because tenancy is a vital stage to most of us. I believe, these challenges   can be settled when the entire society is aware of them.

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?

I was tenanting in a certain house in Mwanza-Tanzania when I got several challenges. While I was living in the same tenancy, I was lucky to attend sermons of a certain preacher who preached on anger and the benefits of anger.  So, I tried to implement his theory by converting my challenges into something beneficial. I got an idea to build a house. I  shifted into my small house and later on, it turned into THE TENANT’S WRATH.

MY EMERGENCY HOUSE THAT I BUILT AFTER FACING CHALLENGES IN THAT TENANCY

Are there some stories tucked away in some drawer that was written before and never saw the light of the day?

For me, there are no stories of that nature.

Tell us about your writing process.

My writing process refers to the already published story. Thus, I usually write after I remember a certain event.  When I remember no more, I end up with what I have remembered. So, I add something to my story after I have remembered it and find that it has something to make people learn or be entertained.

What is your favorite scene in the book? Why?

Fomati region, where Setifokasi had moved after getting employment. It is where most of the events occurred and encouraged the author to write a book. For instance,  the ninth house could have a separate book.

Did any of your characters inherit some of your own quirks?

To some extent, Setifokasi could behave similarly to the author but I tried to differentiate him from the author to have the flow it possesses.

What is your most interesting writing quirk?

A tendency to write when something makes me curious to write. I don’t write when there is no internal force that drives me to write. I may end the story and stay for several months even a year(years) without touching it.

Do you read? Who are your favourite authors and how have they influenced your writing style?

Yes, I do read. My favorite authors are Shaaban Robert and Irene Ndauka. I like the way Shaaban Robert presented his book ‘Kusadikika’(To be believed). It made me travel in a strange environment. I like tourism through books. Irene Ndauka has written several books in Kiswahili. The way she explains events in her books has motivated me to desire explaining like her.

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, till date?

I’m not sure which one is the best. I think all of them are the best to me but, self- publishing is dealing with both writing and marketing.   This is dominating my mind. I like writing and I detest marketing.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?

Writing without fearing whether people will read it or not. If a writer enjoys his/her story, then at least someone somewhere else may also enjoy it.

What would be the Dream Cast for you book if it was to be turned into a movie?

Let me refer to famous actors in my country as I am familiar with them. Several actors may qualify for it, for instance;   Vincent Kigosi would be the best fit for Setifokasi’s position.

If you were to be stranded on the famous deserted island, what three things would you carry?

Hmm, I would take a bottle of drinking water, some food, and a mobile phone.

How do you spend your free time? Do you have a favorite place to go and unwind?

I spend my free time on a leisure walk. I sometimes enjoy using it to read digital books or playing video games.

Can you share with us something off your bucket list?

To share my views and opinions with the world, at least through two novels that are research-oriented.

Tell us three fun facts about yourself.

I tenanted, I built a small house due to tenancy, and I wrote a novel.

What do you have in store next for your readers?

I desire  to have  a book that details a peculiar difference between computers and humans.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?

Anger is not always bad. It depends on how a victim reacts to it. I would also like to share  a FREE COPY OF THE BOOK(PART ONE).


About the Author:
Author's Goodreads Page
I have been living as a tenant in several local houses in Tanzania. I faced several challenges while dwelling together with my local landlords/landladies in the same building: sharing courtyard, bathroom, veranda, toilet, electricity, water utility, etc. I started tenanting in Ruvuma region after finishing my secondary education(form six or advanced certificate of secondary education) in March 2005. I then acquired a job; teaching in four secondary schools as a part-time teacher of physics, mathematics, and geography.
I had tenanted in two local houses in this region before moving to  Dar es salaam, to attend college education where I got some notable challenges, especially during admission. I took an advanced diploma in information technology(IT) in November 2005. I tenanted in four(4) local houses while I was at the college. I completed my course in July 2008.
In July 2008, I went to my sister at Mtoni-Kidatu(Zanzibar). I didn’t tenant there but, my sister lived with a tenant.
I shifted from Zanzibar to Mwanza in  October 2008.  I tenanted in three(3) local houses in this region, from October  2008  to June 2010. And, I lived in my hut from June 2010 to July 2015.
In July  2015, I went back to Dar es salaam  to serve for my employer at the same time taking master in information security. I completed it in 2018. From 2015 to present, I have already tenanted in five(5) local houses. No local house left me without a challenge as there are troublesome landlords and nightmare tenants.

Gabriel on the Web:
Facebook * Twitter * Instagram * YouTube * Free eBook

02 July, 2020

#Interview with @Author_PJParker, #Author of Origin of the Vampyre #HistoricalFiction



About the Book:
Check out the Book on Amazon

Timeless. Beautiful. Dangerous.


1816 — the Year Without a Summer — resulted in two of literature’s most feared and beloved creations.

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.

Doctor Polidori’s Vampyre.

American biographer, Rachel Walton, attained international recognition for her Shelley bio, unearthing the horrific events which jolted Frankenstein and his wretch into existence in the peaceful lakeside village of Montreux, Switzerland. What she hadn’t expected during her study was to fall in love with a man of gigantic structure, of uncommon beauty, of intriguing origin.

The Polidori biography is her latest commission. Traveling to London, England she is hosted by Polidori’s descendent, Aubrey, determined to uncover the reason for the doctor’s spiraling depression and untimely demise after the publication of his tale of horror. Hoping he had found some kind of happiness, perhaps love, before his death.

Personal letters and documents secured in his Soho family home reveal a rapidly evolving terror in the mist-shrouded alleys, grand townhomes and ballrooms of Georgian London as Polidori assists the Bow Street Runners in investigating a series of murders. Leading to the revelation of a creature thought to exist only within the pages of Polidori’s novel.

Despite her own experiences, Rachel was not prepared for the distortion of fiction, reality and time as she exhumes a mystery shrouded and buried beneath the sod for over two-hundred years. Nor could she have foreseen the consequence of an unexpected companionship with her seductive and beautiful host.


Interview with P.J. Parker


When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller?

I have always loved writing, mostly as an escape from the vagaries of a normal life, but also because I wanted to read a particular story but couldn’t find it in book stores.

What inspires you to write?

Different reasons for different book.
I wrote Roxelana & Suleyman in 2000-2001 as I was intrigued by the Ottoman culture and though I could find many non-fiction books detailing life in Istanbul (the center of the Universe) and within the Sultan’s Harem, I could find no romanticized sagas that utilized all the excitement and passion I had accumulated in my research. The story demanded to be written. Though fictional in its scope the saga of Roxelana & Suleyman is based on extensive research into the intriguing world within the gilded cage. Its publication proved polarizing. Most readers take it for what it is—a dramatic romantic saga spanning decades which celebrates the diversity of the Ottoman culture and the happenings within the famed Topkapi Palace. It has been lauded internationally and is the subject of multiple published academic papers.
Whereas my debut novel was planned down to the exact summer Suleyman was able to grow a moustache, or Roxelana first heard the croaking frogs of Edirne, my follow up novel, Fire on the Water: A Companion to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, was driven purely by imagination, allowing the characters to show me the way, to lead me into horrors and romance I had never expected. I didn’t even know Mary Shelley would be in the novel until the first chapter was completed and she unexpectedly showed herself to my thoughts and “pen” which was scrawling words faster than I was able to conceive them. That world evolved into the Companion Series, expanding on the summer of 1816 and history’s most famous tourists (Percy and Mary Shelley, Lord Byron and his “physician” Doctor Polidori) who created two of literature’s most loved creatures of horror. The series finale Origin of the Vampyre: A Companion to Doctor Polidori’s The Vampyre was published in late 2019.
In truth Fire on the Water was also an escape from the insane research I had underway for the historic fiction America Tuwaqachi: The Saga of an American Family. I was intent on researching and following a single-family line from man’s first emergence into the fourth world, Tuwaqachi, eighteen thousand years ago and documenting their adventure, passion, horror and success as they evolved, becoming the great Nations of the mountains, plains, lakes and forests of America. Following them through the merging of the four colors and the impact on them during the creation of the United States of America right up until the cloudless blue sky of September 11, 2001.

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?

I’m throwing myself into the 21st century for my next novel. In the same vein as the Companion Series I’m allowing the story to write itself. It is very bloody and very sexy with a protagonist who in someone else’s work would be the antagonist. The bad guys are always more fun to write, especially when they are coupled with an unexpectedly kick-ass **** (vetted) who doesn’t need the **** (vetted) to dispose of the dead bodied.

Tell us about your writing process.

I edit as I write. It drives me crazy and I wish I wouldn’t do it but I haven’t yet found a way to beat it out of myself. I’m a bit of a control freak and find it hard to move on from any sentence until I know it is right for my “way of thinking” at any given time. Of course, my editor turns it all on its head when she takes over as she is the grammatically prudent one. Perhaps I will learn as this current work evolves.
               

What is your favorite scene in the book? Why?

An impossible request. I love short, tight chapters. Only five scenes have been put down at the moment with each building upon and contradicting the previous. This book could literally go anywhere and I am very excited by that. I am already in love with my characters and they have only just started to reveal their potential. And plans…

Did any of your characters inherit some of your own quirks?

I guess, in a way, each of my characters are a little bit of who I am, or think I am, or would like to be. I have lived or been to many of the same locations as they. I’ve sat on the cool, rough stone floor of the dungeon in Chateau de Chillon contemplating my escape through the barred portal out to the open lake; walked the streets of Mayfair and Soho returning time and again to the front door of 38 Great Pulteney Street; traversed the sunken cisterns of Istanbul to gaze into the eyes of the Medusa; walked the trails above the finger lakes of New York State, honored to know that I followed in the shadow of the brave Haudenosaunee and the Iroquois Confederacy that inspired… “We, the People…”

What is your most interesting writing quirk?

I am not unknown to sit for many, many hours straight, my thoughts completely submerged within the words “appearing” on the screen of my lap-top, any concept of time and the outside world totally foreign to me.

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, till date?

Somehow, I stumbled upon Joanna Penn and her podcast, The Creative Penn. Many interesting interviews, sage words and giggles from Bath, England. No doubt, famous Bath resident, Mary Shelley would have approved.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?

Read. A lot. Don’t listen to someone else’s “Rules of Writing”.

What do you have in store next for your readers?

I am trusting they will fall in love with a passionate, warm-blooded killer. One they can depend on to see them through to an end that will satisfy them both.
             

Is there anything else you’d like to share with your readers?

My novels are available globally in book and e-book form.
More importantly they are available electronically to all libraries internationally.


About the Author:
Author's Amazon Page
P.J. Parker. Australian/American author. With a Bachelor of Science Architecture Degree, P.J. Parker has traveled and lived extensively around the world—intrigued by cultures of historic interest and buildings of architectural significance. An avid reader and researcher, P.J.’s writing is undertaken with a passionate and exacting degree of attention to detail.

P.J.'s debut novel ROXELANA AND SULEYMAN was followed up by the internationally acclaimed FIRE ON THE WATER: A COMPANION TO MARY SHELLEY'S FRANKENSTEIN. 2017 saw the release of AMERICA TUWAQACHI: THE SAGA OF AN AMERICAN FAMILY, a grand saga which follows a single family line through 18,000 years of North American history. ORIGIN OF THE VAMPYRE, the sequel to FIRE ON THE WATER was released in October 2019.

P.J. currently lives and writes in the USA.

Contact the Author:


Giveaway:

1 Amazon Gift Card worth 1000/- INR 
1 Paperback Copy of Monsters of the Midway 1969 by Jeffrey Rasley 
1 eBook of The Loyalist's Wife (The Loyalist Trilogy #1) by Elaine Cougler 
1 eBook of The Raided Heart (Historic Hearts, #1) by Jennifer C. Wilson 

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01 July, 2020

#Spotlight :: The Vessels by Anna M. Elias - @partnersincr1me

The Vessels by Anna M. Elias Banner

 The Vessels

by Anna M. Elias

on Tour July 1 - August 31, 2020

Synopsis:

The Vessels by Anna M Elias

What if you could help those who’ve passed on get a second chance—but at the risk of your own life?


Four broken strangers volunteer to become the first humans in North America to join the international VESSELS program. Their bodies will host the Spirits who seek to right past wrongs and earn a chance at Elysium. Disguised inside a homeless shelter in Reno, the program is facilitated by a retired Army officer, a former ER Doctor, and a tech-savvy teen who tracks the Spirits merged with their Vessels through an ancient ritual on the Anaho Indian Reservation. The Vessels only have seven days to succeed—and to survive. But when the vengeful spirit of a serial killer enters one of them, they learn not all Spirits are here for redemption.



Book Details:

Genre: Supernatural Thriller
Published by: Vesuvian Books
Publication Date: July 14, 2020
Number of Pages: 326
ISBN: 1944109080 (ISBN13: 9781944109080)
Purchase Links: Amazon Goodreads

Read an excerpt:

Though the wide mirror made the tiny room feel big, it had the opposite effect on Tal. She splashed water on her face. Her reflection seemed to shrink in the big glass, making her feel like a single speck of humanity on a vast planet in an endless universe. A lone Vessel housing the infinity of Spirit.
She splashed more water and blinked. A more present and focused woman blinked back—one who wasn’t much different than the woman who had been uprooted from her old life in Pittsburgh. But she had accepted an insane job as a ghost host and had been branded with her very first tattoo. Her badge and gun were gone, and the concept of “protect and serve” now meant something else entirely.
Tal grabbed one of the soft white towels and dried her face. The cloth smelled fresh and clean, like air-dried linen—it was homey, comforting
She caught her own gaze in the mirror one more time. That frightened, hopeless woman from the pawnshop window two weeks ago was gone. A more confident person replaced her—equally uncertain but willing and ready to face a new and unpredictable future. Perhaps her change was more like the grown-up happy child after all, and less like the dried up pool full of leaves and dirt.
A sudden pain stabbed her left ankle, and the skin around her new tattoo seemed to—move. Tal sat on the bed, yanked up her pant leg and crossed her left foot over her right knee.
While most of the iridescent vines shimmered normally, a small cluster at the center of her inside leg were twisting together into a small circular mark at her ankle. They pulled in the hidden SObY letters, elongating and absorbing them to form a kind of Celtic or Romanesque knot made of iridescent vines.
Her flesh burned slightly as the center of the twisting knot opened and a tiny image took shape. The figure was more primitive and cryptic, like a totem carving or cave painting, but it definitely had wings. One last vine connected and the twisting stopped. So did the pain.
Tal inhaled sharply. She held her breath, steeled her nerve, and touched the mark. Though the texture looked different, and though the mark was round against the straight, interconnected tendrils of the tattoo that circled her leg, the skin felt the same on both. Tal exhaled and closed her eyes, unable to discern where one ended and the other began. When she opened her eyes again, she caught the symbol’s shrouded image for a fleeting moment before it finished. What she’d thought was a primitive knot or ancient medallion of vines turned out to be—a nest. At its center, the angel figure had become an enigmatic, nearly invisible dove clutching a vine in its beak like an olive branch. The mark twisted closed, hiding the nest and bird inside. Goosebumps tore up and down Tal’s skin.
She shifted to the nearby desk and fired up her computer. Her trembling fingers flew over the keyboard as she researched images of doves, dove symbolism, the “Serve Others” expression, and any other ideas the tattoo inspired. Her search turned up a host of disparate sites—from the dove above Jesus at his baptism, to white birds being released at weddings and funerals, to recipes on preparing tasty squab. Nothing reflected this tattoo or its particular elements.
“This is crazy,” she mumbled, working her shoulders to unstick the tension. “That many Vessels in the world, spanning decades, and not a single image or hit?”
***
Excerpt from The Vessels by Anna M. Elias. Copyright 2020 by Anna M. Elias. Reproduced with permission from Vesuvian Books. All rights reserved.



Author Bio:

Anna M. Elias
Anna Elias is a screenwriter who began her career as Don Johnson’s assistant on Miami Vice. She’s worked on feature films such as Nell, The Rainmaker, The Client, 12 Monkeys, A Time to Kill, and Practical Magic. She has written and co-written spec films, TV scripts, and award-winning shorts. Anna’s passion for justice translates to her work. This was especially true on the set of John Grisham’s A Time to Kill. Canton, Mississippi had just suffered great racial hardship and division in a Mayoral race. With Anna’s encouragement, the movie crew made extra efforts to befriend, buy from, and work with the townspeople, and it served to break down walls of inequality and injustice that had divided the town for decades. The impact was so positive that Dan Rather traveled there to tape a 2-part special for 48 Hours.

Catch Up With Anna M. Elias On:
AnnaMElias.com, Instagram, Twitter, & Facebook!




Tour Participants:

Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!






Enter To Win!!:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Anna M. Elias and Vesuvian Books. There will be 2 winners. One winner will receive an Amazon.com Gift Card and One winner will win THE VESSELS by Anna M. Elias (print). The giveaway begins on July 1, 2020 and runs through September 2, 2020. Open to U.S. addresses only. Void where prohibited.
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30 June, 2020

#Interview with Amanda L. Webster, #Author of DIY High


About the Author:



Amanda L. Webster grew up in Effingham County, Illinois, U.S.A. where she spent much of her childhood writing stories and running through the woods enacting those stories in her head. She has a master’s degree in creative writing from Mount Mary University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Mandy works full-time at a state university and teaches writing courses at a local community college. She now lives in central Illinois with her dog, two sons, and two cats. She occasionally has free time, and that is when she writes.







Interview with Amanda L. Webster


When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller? 

I’ve been writing since I was a kid. I don’t remember a specific time when I realized it. It’s just something I seem to have been born with.

What inspires you to write?

I’m often inspired by the themes that seem to run through my own personal life and the lives of those I care for. My novels are an echo of real life with an occasional dash of magic stirred in.

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?

I have a few “current” stories. My most recent novel, DIY High, was partly inspired by the problems I’ve seen in the educational system in the U.S. I also wanted to tell the story of a teenager growing up in a small town in the Midwest who faces a lot of current issues like the opioid epidemic and domestic violence. I don’t think a lot of “regular” Americans have an understanding of how hard it can be to try to succeed in school while struggling with these very difficult issues in real life. My next novel, Demons of the Night, which is scheduled to release in late summer, came to me in a dream. It was one of those nightmares that you wake up from with your heart pounding. Being a writer, my first thought upon waking was, “What a great story idea!”

What is your favorite scene in the book? Why?

There’s a scene in DIY High where Gabby and her mom go to a food pantry at a local megachurch to get groceries. It’s a really humiliating experience for them, and the church members who run the food pantry somehow manage to display their contempt for the food pantry’s patrons all while pretending to be good Christians who go out of their way to help the less fortunate. I hope scenes like this in my novel will make the privileged among us examine their own biases so they may work harder to treat others as they would like to be treated.

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, to date?

Outline your novels. I used to be what is often referred to in the writing community as a “pantser,” or someone who writes “by the seat of their pants” with no real plan. I did that for quite a while without ever being able to actually finish writing a novel. Then I took a novel writing class with a professor who forced us to outline our novels. Once I was forced to think about my story’s structure and figure out where it was going, I was finally able to finish writing a complete novel. It gets easier each time, and now I would never try to write another novel without an outline.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into
writing?

Sit down and write. The more you write, the better you get. Also, read books on writing and take creative writing classes whenever you can. Learn about story structure and learn to outline your stories or you will never be able to finish anything.

How do you spend your free time? Do you have a favorite place to go and unwind?

I read a lot and do a bit of crochet art. I also love gardening. My garden and back deck are my go-to places to unwind.

What do you have in store next for your readers?

As I mentioned previously, my next novel, Demons of the Night, is scheduled to release later this year. I am also working on a manuscript for an additional novel after that, which will be titled, If You Didn’t See It Coming. This newest story is a work of literary fiction that explores the issue of domestic violence. It was inspired by the murder of my cousin last year by her ex-husband, and I hope that it will provide some insight to readers on the societal structures that keep women trapped in abusive relationships and often lead to their deaths.


About the Book:
Check out the Book on Amazon
When Gabby’s single mother loses her job because of her addiction to prescription pain medication, her family’s tenuous situation soon becomes perilous. Gabby must step up to help pay the bills and look after her younger siblings, but once school starts, her part-time waitressing job just isn’t enough. Her mom won’t let her drop out of school to work at the truckstop full-time, but she does finally allow her to leave her traditional high school behind to become a homeschool student.

As Gabby’s mom sinks deeper into addiction and disengages from her family, Gabby realizes she is going to have to homeschool herself if she is to have any hope of finishing high school and going to college someday. Then, Gabby’s coworker Jodi, herself a high school dropout, complicates matters by asking to study with Gabby so she can finally finish high school too. Another high school dropout soon joins Gabby’s study group, and before she knows it, Gabby is running her own Do-It-Yourself high school – DIY High – out of her local small-town library.

Gabby finds herself in a position to help a lot of people, but will she be able to help herself? Will she get to go away to college like she’s always dreamed, or will it fall to her to stay at home with her younger siblings forever and be a mother to them in the absence of their actual mom?



29 June, 2020

#Interview with @danielnewwyn, #Author of The Colour of Your Voice #SocialAwareness



*** Special Feature - June 2020***

Quick Recap:
1st June - Introducing Daniel Newwyn
22nd June -  Tips I Use For Writing


About the Book:
Check out the Book on Amazon
What happens when a call girl and a death row prisoner fall in love?

Violet Pham can see sounds. The brown chirps of the sparrows dance with the colors of their feathers. The green blobs from her mother weave into her squeaky berates.

She believes she was born to become a painter but after being labeled as a burden by everyone around her, she questions that belief. The colors around the sounds become a curse rather than a gift. With her future unsettled and her family mired in debt, there is only one solution: run away from everything.

That’s when she meets Turner Nguyen. He’s everything she wishes she could be—an iron will and a flint heart. There’s only one thing wrong with him. He’s at the center of gang wars, uses his fists to collect debts, and makes his money off the addiction of others.

Soon, the sound of his words paints Violet’s world with the ugly shade of disaster. Where will they go from here?

'The Color of Your Voice' is a tragic, depressing love story that speaks to the lows of human experience. It deals with themes of self-esteem, desperation, and salvation. If this is your cup of tea, then this book is for you.



Interview with Daniel Newwyn


What inspires you to write?

It’s mostly my desire to turn my feelings into words. Although I don’t have too many problems with verbal conversations, but I always preferred writing things down. I feel like too many things get lost in usual conversations, and I want to tell stories in its fullest.

What are you working on at the moment?

I’m working on a Literary Fiction named Melanchoid. Check out its tentative synopsis here:

When your dreams and your heart have been shattered, how far will you go to regain your pride?
L is supposed to be a genius—she learned AutoCAD by the age of 12, then earned a scholarship into the most prestigious architectural university in the City. However, her life spirals out of control after she fails to land an architectural job. After L gets into a huge fight with her boyfriend that spells the death of their relationship, she decides that she can't stay in the City any longer. Without a second thought, she packs up and leaves to embark on an aimless venture.
When L reaches a coastal village so remote it doesn't even have a name on the map, she collapses on the sands. On the verge of dying from a heat stroke, she's saved by a bizarre old man named G, whose passion is to sit and pray in front of a Moon God for hours. The man has a special knack, though—he's the best fisherman L has ever seen. G offers herself a second chance to become someone worthy, a chance to become the master of the old man's craft.
As L struggles to adjust to her new life, she befriends X, a happy-go-lucky teenage girl with the chirpiest sense of adventure. Together, they find the answer to the trickiest mysteries the Ocean has to offer. However, there's one question that L has yet to solve—
Her purpose in life.
As her inner desire to return to the City beckons, L faces a difficult decision. Will she leave the life she once had for good, or will she desist her love for the Ocean?

Please share three interesting facts about the characters in your book.

I’ll pick one fact for each character in my three books.

Violet Pham in “The Color of Your Voice” has synesthesia, meaning she perceive an additional sense along with the noises. For Violet, noises always go along with colors.
The ring that X gives L near the end of “Melanchoid” is actually given to X by her grandmother before she passed. X’s grandmother had told her to give it only to the person that would forever steal X’s heart.
Alexei Vronsky in “The Last Woman on Earth” had a mind that works so fast, in his ‘enhanced human’ mode, he can calculate the speed of gunshot in a millisecond.

If you could pick any famous author to review your book who would you pick and why?

I’d pick Tom Rob Smith. I have always admired his talent for writing thrillers since I read his book “Child 44”. And I would love to hear what he has to say about my War novel which takes place in Russia.

Name three things that you believe are important to character development?

Motive. A character needs to have a motive, either realistic, absurd, or plain silly. But character that chases their motive is a character that moves forward.
Conflict. Now it’s nice that the character has a motive, but they will have to face adversities to get there. The conflict can be grand, like saving the world kind of grand, or it can be simple like parting with their favorite dog. Whatever it is, the character needs to make a difficult decision to get out of that situation.
Backstory. This is what happened before Chapter 1, but isn’t necessary told early on. It can decide what shapes the character as they are today.

Do you ever experience writer’s block? If so what helps you to get over it?

Yes. I think every writer has experienced this at some point. I usually just pause that project for a while and turn to something else, whether it be another project, other hobbies, work, or simply enjoying myself. I make sure to only come back to address the writer’s block when the words in the document look so alien they seem to no longer be my own. It works.

What part of the writing process do you enjoy the most?

Editing. I think most writers dread this part, but I find much joy in reading my work again, picking up small errors, and reworking sections I am not satisfied with. Another re-edited draft is another boost to my confidence as a writer. I must have edited “The Color of Your Voice” at least a hundred times, no joke!

Do you know the ending of your books before you finish writing them?

Oftentimes, yes. Sometimes, no. Like for “The Color of Your Voice”, I had a vision at the very start. The story couldn’t have ended differently for me.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?

Rewrite. Rewrite. Rewrite. Good writing is rewriting. No matter how good you think your first draft is, it most likely sucks. Come back to your first draft in a few weeks and you’ll see what I mean.


About the Author:
Author's Amazon Page



Daniel Newwyn is an aspiring writer, a professional eSports gamer, and a translator. His works in Romance, Sci-fi, Thriller, and Humor have won a number of online awards, and are listed among the promising Undiscovered Writers of Wattpad. As of current, he is the chief content producer of insightful eSport contents such as Hearthstone Rankstar Wild Report. Daniel earned his Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Sydney, and is on his way to complete his PhD in Psychology.


Daniel on the Web:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram




Giveaway:

3 eBooks of The Color of Your Voice. Open Internationally.

27 June, 2020

#Spotlight :: A Medium's 4th of July by @chariss_walker #CozyMystery #Thrillers


About the Book:
Check Out the Book on Amazon

Becky Tibbs has decided to take a vacation.


For the first time in six years.
For the first time since she became a medium with the vocation of helping ghosts with their unfinished business, whatever it may be.
And, for the first time since taking over the ownership of her late parents' antique store in the River Arts District.
Becky Tibbs is closing the store and taking a much-needed and well-deserved break that has nothing to do with ghosts and everything to do with being in love.
At Patrick's insistence, the two of them are going on a camping trip in Pisgah National Forest with Bobby and Hillary. There will be bathing in the river, cooking over campfires, sleeping in tents, and hiking the trails.
Neither Patrick nor Becky has considered that ghosts can find her anywhere.
If you're wondering what kind of ghost trouble Becky can get into, you won't be disappointed. Find out now!


Pre-Order the Book NOW!


About the Author:
Author's Amazon Page

Multi-award-winning author, Chariss K. Walker, M.Msc., Reiki Master/Teacher, writes both fiction and nonfiction books with a metaphysical and spiritual component. Those who search for meaning and the supernatural in themselves will enjoy her books whether readers of fiction or nonfiction.
Her fiction expresses a visionary/metaphysical message that illustrates growth in a character's consciousness while utilizing a paranormal aspect. Her nonfiction books share insight, hope, and inspiration.
Although Chariss writes some dark-fiction books about insanely dark topics that are not suitable for faint-hearted readers, there is always an essential question of the abstract nature that gives a reader increased awareness and perception. She also writes cozy mysteries and inspirational women's studies fiction.
All of her books are sold worldwide in eBook, paperback, and many are in large print. Click the "follow" button to find out when new books are released.


Chariss on the Web:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram

Giveaway:


25 June, 2020

#GuestPost :: Writing Gay Romances: 4 FAQs (Part 2) by @KWilkinsauthor


Writing Gay Romances: 4 FAQ (Part 2)

By Author Kelli A. Wilkins


Hi everyone,

My name is Kelli A. Wilkins and I write romances in every genre and heat level from mild to super-spicy. When people learn that I write gay romances they usually ask a lot of questions about “why” or “how” I write them.

To celebrate Pride month, I’m sharing four FAQ about writing m/m romances. (In the first part of this blog, I shared four different questions from readers and authors.)


#1: You’ve written three contemporary gay romances (A Secret Match, Four Days with Jack, and Killer in Wolf’s Clothing), which one is your favorite and why?

I love all of my romances, in all genres, but my favorite gay romance is A Secret Match. I love the setting (professional wrestling) and the characters, especially the hero, Everett. He’s a bit of a wiseass and has a crazy sense of humor, but he uses those as a defense to mask his pain. Right from the start of the book Ev is given an ultimatum: come out and be honest about who he really is, or risk losing his longtime lover, Josh.

I also love the book because of the way I wrote it. It’s not told in a traditional manner. Ev is on the road and apart from Josh for almost half the book, and we experience his relationship with Josh through flashbacks and voicemail messages. We see and feel Ev’s isolation and conflicting emotions. We also see Josh getting advice from his friends regarding his “secret” boyfriend. I won’t give away more than that, but the book is an emotional roller coaster ride blended with steamy love scenes and an inside look at the world of professional wrestling.


#2: Most of your straight romances have historical settings. Do you see yourself writing a historical gay romance? Could a gay romance “work” in a historical setting?

Certainly! A gay romance could work in almost any historical setting. Granted, depending on where and when the story is set, the male characters might have to keep their relationship a secret, or at least be surrounded by other characters who are open minded about a same-sex romance.

Several of my straight historical romances have included gay or bisexual characters, or the characters have explored same-sex fantasies. For example, when I wrote Midsummer Night’s Delights, I didn’t know that Julian or his wife had same-sex fantasies until I started writing. (Characters sometimes like to surprise us writers!) I trusted my instincts and wrote the story that was in my head. (That book has plenty of m/m and ménage scenes, and I wrote two sequels that are even hotter, Midwinter Night’s Delights and Ultimate Night’s Delights.)

Two of my other historical romances, A Most Unfortunate Prince and Redemption from a Dark Past also feature very important gay characters. So, as you can see, I’ve already incorporated m/m romance into historical settings. As of right now, I don’t have plans to write a full-length gay historical romance, but you never know when inspiration will strike!


#3: What are some basic elements that go into writing a good gay romance? Are they harder to write than a straight romance?

Let’s go back to English class for a minute. All good books (regardless of genre) need to have the same basic elements: a believable plot, interesting fleshed-out characters the readers can root for (with histories and backstories), sensory details that pull the reader into the story, and good dialogue. These elements go into every romance (and horror story) I write, whether it’s an erotic historical/fantasy, straight paranormal, or gay contemporary. Once you get the basics down, you can write just about anything; mysteries, suspense, spy novels, and even children’s books.

Writing a gay romance is really no different than writing a romance in any other genre, but some people get hung up on the idea of writing intimate love scenes, not understanding how the characters should act, or getting the story right—but that could happen when you’re writing any book, in any genre. My advice is: Just write the story. Let the characters tell you what happens and start typing.


#4: Are you going to write more gay romances? What’s in the works for you?

Yes, I’m currently working on the outline for a new contemporary gay romance. The story will take place over a summer holiday weekend and deal with issues of self-acceptance, recovery, and coming to terms with your past. As of now, I think it’ll be a mild, heat level 1 story. But I never know how things will turn out until I start writing! The book will probably come out in early 2021. Of course, if I get great ideas for other gay romances (historical or contemporary), I’ll write those too!
I hope you enjoyed this FAQ blog. If you missed Part 1, you can catch up on the blog section of my site: https://www.kelliwilkins.com/blog

Here’s the book summary for A Secret Match. I bet you’ll fall in love with the characters as much as I have. And if you want more of Ev, check out his character interview on my blog: https://www.kelliwilkins.com/post/celebrate-pride-month-with-a-chat-with-everett-from-a-secret-match

Enjoy & Happy Reading!
Kelli A. Wilkins



A SECRET MATCH
Everett Kinkade is a world-famous professional wrestler and the sexy heartthrob of millions of adoring female fans. But Ev has a secret he doesn’t dare share with anyone. He’s gay.
After years of being Ev’s secret lover, Josh is tired of hiding in the shadows and wants Ev to openly acknowledge their relationship. Coming out is the last thing Ev wants and fears it will ruin his career.
One night in a moment of truth, Everett outs himself on live TV. There’s no going back, and his announcement sparks a firestorm of problems—both personally and professionally. He’s forced to come to grips with who he really is while facing down a manipulative boss and a tag-team out to destroy him.
Torn between living a lie and losing the man he loves, Ev has risked everything… can he find a balance between his career and his heart?

Order A Secret Match here:
All other platforms: https://books2read.com/u/md6rZb


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 20 romance novels, 6 non-fiction books, and 2 online writing courses. Her romances span many genres and heat levels, and she’s also been known to scare readers with her horror stories.
In January 2020, Kelli published Love, Lies & Redemption, a western romance set in 1877 Nebraska. This novel blends a sensual love story with mystery and danger.

She released Romance Every Weekend: 104 Fun Ways to Express Your Love, a non-fiction guide to romance in 2019. The book features 104 fun and easy ways you can express your love to that special someone in your life. Perfect for men or women, it focuses on tender, everyday gestures that let your partner know how much you love him or her.
Kelli published Extraterrestrial Encounters, a collection of 18 sci-fi stories, in 2019. If you like horror fiction, don’t miss her disturbing novella, Nightmare in the North.
Kelli has authored two online writing courses: Fiction Basics: Finding Ideas and Fiction Writing for Beginners. These courses are perfect for anyone who wants to learn how to write. Visit: https://kelliwilkins.teachable.com/ for more details.
Not just an author, Kelli is also an amateur photographer. Visit her pages on Shutterstock https://www.shutterstock.com/g/kelli+wilkins and iStock https://www.istockphoto.com/portfolio/kelliwilkins to view her photos.
Kelli posts on her main Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKelliWilkins and she created a Facebook page for her Gay Romances: https://www.facebook.com/GayRomancesbyKelliAWilkins/
Follow her on Twitter: www.Twitter.com/KWilkinsauthor and visit her website/blog www.KelliWilkins.com to learn more about all of her writings.


23 June, 2020

#Interview with @indywrites, #Author of We Women Wonder




About the Author:
Author's Amazon Page

Inderpreet writes for her love of writing, edits manuscripts and reads endlessly.

A sprinkling of fiction, a dash of books, and a bit of opinion add to the eclectic mix that is Eloquent Articulation, her blog.

Editing, writing, and blogging about books keep her busy whenever she gets a breather from mothering her 'too tricky to handle son'.


Inderpreet on the Web:
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram * Pinterest




Interview with Inderpreet Kaur Uppal 


When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller?

Inderpreet: I have been writing for as long as I can remember. I used to enjoy writing the paragraphs for my English exam the most. A new random topic that always got my creative juices flowing. After working for my school and college magazines, I knew that I would be telling stories

What inspires you to write?

The simple truth that if I don’t share the stories within me it is akin to murdering the tales that need to be told.
Maya Angelou said it best, “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?

We Women Wonder started as a series of posts for the A to Z Challenge for blogging

Are there some stories tucked away in some drawer that was written before and never saw the light of the day?

Yes, there are many stories tucked away in the folders and files even old registers from college days. I do hope that many of these will see the light of day soon.

Tell us about your writing process.

I have a very erratic schedule. I write when I manage to squeeze in time after my editing schedule for the day is met. In recent times, the pandemic has upset my schedule but I am taking baby steps to publish my full-length novel, Diya Desire before Diwali this year. It is a sequel to my first book, a short fiction called Generously Yours, taking Diya’s story further with a HEA.

What is your most interesting writing quirk?

I have this quirk that I have to correct a spelling no matter how fast I am writing or even if I am in a torrent of words. I will backspace or right click and edit the word. It could be me being a Virgo as well as an editor tick for me. If I don’t fix the tiny error it will push me off my writing rhythm even though every one says that a free write is the best get the creative juices flowing. I will lose my chain of thought and get fixated on the error so I correct as I write. And the flow of writing continues.

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, till date?

The advice is to read and write daily, to keep writing even if it is five lines a day. Practice makes perfect and works for all aspects of our life including writing. The more we read, better we will be in expressing ourselves.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?

As an editor and author the best advice I can offer is to write in your own voice. Whether your writing is simple, plain or full of flourishes; be true to who you are. If you copy or follow a trend it will show through in your writing and bring it down. Plus no one can copy consistently forever. 😉

How do you spend your free time? Do you have a favorite place to go and unwind?

I like to spend my free time watching some series or a movie at home. My favorite place to go is a café and I unwind while I read and relax with a hot mug of coffee and something savory. Reading is the most relaxing activity for me, it’s probably the reason I chose editing as my profession since I love doing book critiques and I get to read new and diverse stories and support writers to finetune their work.

Tell us three fun facts about yourself.

1. I like to sew and embroider as a pastime but I suck at art and drawing.
2. I was stopped from studying English Literature to study economics in my second year of college. I did my Masters in HR but now life has come full circle with me buried in books. Back to my first love.
3. I love food but hate to cook. I enjoy different foods and cuisines and enjoy travel since it gives me access to different gastronomical delights.


About the Book:
Check out the Book on Amazon

WE WOMEN WONDER: Dreams, Desires, Struggles, & Triumphs


We Women Wonder is a book about the story of every woman, you might find your reflection too.
Thoughts, quotes and determination can make a woman stronger, a survivor but she is a winner regardless.
"When a woman becomes her own best friend, life is easier."
– Diane Von Furstenberg.
A journey into what keeps us women ticking.
What annoys the hell out of us?
What are we women really about?
How does the world see us?
Is the world changing for us or are we just dreaming?
What is our success and what it means to a woman?
We Women Wonder, I often do, don’t you?