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Interview with Julie Achterhoff the author of Quantum Earth

Tell us about yourself first.

I am the single mother of five, only one of whom is still living with me. I've loved reading and writing all my life. I've lived in several different places, but mostly grew up in San Francisco in the 60s and 70s. I guess I grew up in an imaginative environment. My mother was married six times, and every time she got married or divorced we'd move to a new place. That was a highly charged atmosphere. I never was able to have a friend for very long, and so my three younger sisters were the next best thing. I was constantly making up plays for us. We did a lot of pretending.

When did you start writing?

I started writing when I was a kid. I remember writing a scary short story for a class in the 7th grade. My teacher came to me the next day and told me it had kept her up all night!

What genres have you written?

Mostly thriller and horror.

Is (title ) your first book?

Quantum Earth is my first full novel.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

It's about a group of metaphysical scientists who are investigating why we're having such devastating natural disasters. They interview those who have passed on through a trance channeler named Noah. He channels a spirit named Jackson who asks the people who have crossed over if they somehow created that reality. The team has a benefactor who has ulterior motives. He wants to keep the predictions of the end of the world in 2012 from happening because he channels a deadly spirit guide of his own who was a top scientist for Hitler. This spirit wants the chance to reincarnate so he can once again wreak havoc on the Earth.
The group gets in touch with those called the Starborn Ones from another planet who want to help. They were part of a group that formed the Earth in the beginning. Up until now they haven't interfered, but the Earth has gone so off course that they feel it necessary to do something to keep it from falling apart. They know that if they don't do something to help that the world will end catastrophically. The main characters, Hawk and Shauna meet with them and get some ideas for their work. There are a lot of adventures that they go through. There's something very special about Shauna that makes her the key piece in the puzzle.

What inspired you to write this book?

I had been reading a lot about several different end of the world prophesies and decided to conjure up a story that included all of that. I wanted to ask and investigate the idea that humans create their own reality. I kick that theme back and forth in my book.

How long did it take you to write it?

It took about 8 months including editing. Then when I found a publisher we did more editing to get it perfected.

Who is the publisher of your book?

All Things That Matter Press.

Where is it on sale?

It can be bought from the publisher's webpage or through amazon.com

Tell us about your other books/work.

I've also written a three-act play called Angel In The House about women writers from three different centuries and what they had to do to break through and become successful. I also wrote a novella called Native Vengeance about a woman who visits a small town that only appears once a year. All the inhabitants are dying to get the heck out, but the only way they can do it is if they find a replacement. If they don't they have to suffer the wrath of a wrathful Manitou that was conjured up by a Native American Shaman years ago because the townspeople slaughtered a small band of Indians nearby. Meg enlists the help of another visitor when she starts to become suspicious of the townspeople, especially the email friend who invited her for the weekend. Right now I've just completed my second novel about a woman who has lucid dreams called Deadly Lucidity. The heroine has had complete control of her dreams until recently when she finds she can't wake up. But her dreams are more real than ever, and they are terrifying. There's a dark, evil man who keeps showing up. She, along with her new friend, a gunslinger, are lead to the Tower where they are told is a place where they can get back to their world. The book is filled with adventure and excitement. I'm in the final editing stages with my publisher for this book. It should be available in a couple of months.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

It was quite difficult to find a publisher in the first place. I must have queried about 100 different agents and publishers. I suppose that's a sign of the times. Once that was settled and the book went into print it became apparent that getting my book into peoples' hands was the hardest part. I'm only with a small press, so that makes it more difficult to commercialize. Amazingly, though, it's steadily climbing up the ladder on amazon. People are really liking it so far.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
Yes.

How?

I did all my querying via the internet. I went to each of the agents' and publishers' websites one by one and followed the different guidelines to send in work. I couldn't have done that through the post. It has also been a great resource for ideas about advertising as well as getting in touch with other writers. LinkedIn has been one of my favorite sites.

What do you advise new writers to do?

I think the best thing is to believe in your own abilities, and to follow through with all the work that needs to be done to get published. Don't even allow yourself the luxury of getting discouraged. Every rejection truly is another step closer to getting published. Also, don't stop once you've gotten your book published. Find as many ways as you can to promote your book. Join websites that support you in what you're doing. There are so many free information sites out there. Never give up!

Thank you!







Interview with Holly Christine, author of The Nine Lives of Clemenza

Tell us about yourself first.

I'm a bit of a dreamer, and have always believed that with the right attitude and work ethic, I can be whatever I choose to be. I majored in English and Philosophy in College. After graduating, and failing to find work as a Novelist or Philosopher, I took up a career in the financial industry. The downside of my paying job is that I work for a large corporation. I'm a number with them. The upside is that I've met so many interesting characters!

When did you start writing?

I was probably about eight when my passion came about. I grew up in the country, so a good imagination made our house the best place to play in the "neighborhood!" A clump of ten trees became a magical forest. My bike was a unicorn. A fallen tree became a ship at sea. My best friend and I would write plays, poetry, and attempt to hire our brothers as stagecrew and other random fill-ins for our creative journeys. Needless to say, the boys didn't share our vision! Our home movies are filled with "Holly's poems" about magical pianos and gumball machines.

What genres have you written?

I'd consider The Nine Lives of Clemenza a spiritual/philosophical novel with a mainstream attitude.

Does that genre exist yet? I'm finishing up Retail Ready, a humorous novel about life in retail.

Is (title ) your first book?

The Nine Lives of Clemenza is the first novel I've published. I have two other novels that I was cleaning up, but set aside because I believed there would be a wider interest in Clemenza.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

The Nine Lives of Clemenza is a story of enlightenment. Clemenza can become whatever she wishes, but must spiritually progress in each life. She becomes air, the Northern Lights, a bald eagle, and learns important life lessons. The book is about leading a meaningful life and exploring the possibility that we control our destiny.

What inspired you to write this book?

Clemenza is my dog, and when she was a puppy, she was a little terror! She would not let me read unless I was surrounded by water in the bathtub! So, I'm soaking in the tub and the sink faucet starts dripping. I thought, "What a terrible life for that droplet of water when your only glimpse of human life is me soaking in the tub!" More interesting concepts came from there. Personally, I was also struggling with two unfortunate deaths. The concept of The Nine Lives of Clemenza made sense of faith and death for me.

How long did it take you to write it?

I spent about four months on the first draft. Cleaning up the prose took another month.

Who is the publisher of your book?

I published using Lulu.com, a print on demand publisher, after a full year of rejection letters from agents and traditional publishers alike. I sat down after a year, read the book as a reader, and enjoyed it! It seemed a shame to waste an inspiring story!

Where is it on sale?

The Nine Lives of Clemenza is available on Amazon.com and Lulu.com as print and download.

Tell us about your other books/work.

Retail Ready, which I hope to clean up by the end of this month, is a novel about the horrors of retail. I've worked in retail for ten years now, so many ideas came from true stories! Like The Nine Lives of Clemenza, Retail Ready has a unique twist that readers will enjoy. The protagonist, Kesey Maverick, sees beyond the corporation that she works for. She develops her own theories about how corporate practices came into place. It's very humorous! The story takes place over one work week and everything, quite literally, starts to crumble.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

When I was graduating from college an English professor asked me what I wanted to "do." My peers were going on to law school, and my advisors expected me to do the same. "I want to write!" I proudly announced, as if the eight year-old Holly had just suddenly emerged. She told me not to tell future employers my dream, like wanting to be a writer was negative, or perhaps too dreamy. Well, I tell everyone because I've always been a miserable liar. Working in retail and having this dream is like working in retail and wanting to become President. My customers ask, "What are you doing here?" because they assume I have no education. My response is always, "I really don't know." I assume that my time in retail has given me the inspiration to write Retail Ready.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

Yes! That's how I found you!

How?

The internet has allowed me to reach people that I never would have reached. One of my first big sales was to a man in the United Kingdom. He wanted five copies: one for him, four for his sister's bookclub. If it weren't for the writing forums and my website, that connection would have never occured!

What do you advise new writers to do?

I think that as writers, we are our own worst critics. I often write a sentence, stare at it, delete it, then click undo. I think it's helpful to read your story to someone, and the thousand writing forums out there allow you to share your work (unfinished or finished) with an unbiased crowd. Read when you are stuck. Read when you aren't. Write everyday. And never quit!

Thank you!



Interview with ILIA, the author of The Bouncing Boy

Tell us about yourself first.

I started writing as a teenager. Once I did, I found that I had an aunt and two uncles that were also writers - they were my first mentors. I didn't go the usual route to college, instead I have had a series of the most incredible mentors starting from an early age up until present time.
I'm a multi-talented artist creating Fine Art paintings, graphic illustrations, designs (web and garden) and literary works.

When did you start writing?

I have been writing since I was 15 years old. At that time my cousin, Donna just got her very own bedroom and dedicated a wall for family and friends to write on. I drew a staircase and wrote a related prose. My Aunt Marie read what I wrote, found me and asked if I knew what I done. Of course, whenever an older person asks a young teenager that kind of question, the first thought is "uh oh! What did I do now?" So, not sure of what I did, I played it safe and said "no". Then my aunt said "You wrote a prose." Well, that was something new to me! I had no idea what a prose was. The old saying, "I'm a poet and didn't know it," definitely applied to me!

What genres have you written?

I have written poetry, prose, short stories, tales, fairy tales, how-to instructions, website content and articles

Is The Bouncing Boy your first book?

No. I have two other books published: Ti Ana and The Giant & A Christmas Fairy Tale.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

The Bouncing Boy is about a young boy who unfortunately is rotund and is mercilessly teased, ridiculed and criticized by both young and old in his small village. The villagers took it too far, made the boy an outcast and sent him to live in the woods to fend for himself. Until one day when a stinking problem in the town occurred - a disease that spreads rapidly. An elder escapes just in time, finds the Bouncing Boy and the duo set out on an adventure to find the cure to save the town.

Many lessons are included in the tale in an entertaining way. It's a tale that has been enjoyed by young and old alike.

What inspired you to write this book?

I had the idea of what I wanted to do but it didn't seem to fall into place for me. It was just a bright bud waiting to blossom. At the time, I had been studying a series of books and lectures titled The Basics by L. Ron Hubbard.
Well, one day I was listening to one of the lectures and Mr. Hubbard spoke about the Aesthetics Formula. To my surprise, as I was studying, the idea for both Ti Ana & The Giant and The Bouncing Boy came to me so fast that I had to stop right there and write it down!

How long did it take you to write it?

The idea was instant but it took about 10 days to write The Bouncing Boy story. I wrote it during any breaks that I had during the day and wrote into the night after my other production was done. Sometimes I would get so involved writing that I would loose track of time. Sometimes I would go to bed thinking about how I was going to solve the next situation that I created, then get up in the morning with the solution.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Create Space

Where is it on sale?

You can find The Bouncing Boy at Amazon, at Target Stores website and on my website Winsome Tales [www.winsometales.com]


Tell us about your other books/work.

The series of Modern Day Fairy Tales began with a desire to write a Christmas Fairy Tale that really captured and expressed the Christmas spirit. With the commercialism of the holiday, it is sometimes easy to loose track of what it's really all about. From the feedback that I received, it seems that I may have accomplished what I set out to do.
Ti Ana and The Giant is a part of the Earth Series that I am working on. It is a series of poetry, articles, paintings, graphic illustrations and tales dedicated to Mother Earth.

Ti Ana lives in a village that used to be called Lush, but it became Mush because of a constant rain that was only over her village. The people were apathetic about the situation, gave up doing anything about it and became superstitious. Ti Ana never gave up and she went on an adventure to find out why it was raining and to do something about it so that her village was once again Lush.
More tales are in the works, as follows:

The Handiwork Clash
Life has gone from bad to worse in this community with conflict and destruction overwhelming the land. No solution was being sought by the unruly crowd, fighting prevailed until a fairy steps in and urges the villagers to turn the destruction and conflicts into a beautiful place to live in a peaceful community.

Bing Singer

World traveler, Bing Singer, thought he had experienced it all until he takes a late summer trip to the northern mountains and finds a village in trouble. Attempts to help the devastated village and its residents only results in Bing being viciously chased away. Trouble is, Bing has to go through the town to get back home. Will he be able to change the village from being unproductive and forlorn to one filled with pride and industriousness?

The Flyghts of Fancie

A slightly pudgy artist named Fancie who lives with a cat decides to include exercise into her daily routine and finds out that her brand new exercise machine is even cooler than she originally imagined. Follow along on the adventures of Fancie and her cat as they change the world. Dreams do come true.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

The critics. Those people that tell me to give up, that I'm not that good, that I should really be doing something else - all for "my own good".

The thing that "saves" me is, I do a thorough survey on any of my works before I put it out for the general public by creating a newsletter with the tales and graphics. I send it to approximately 1500 people before it ever gets to the publishing stage. If I get a good to great response in feedback, I know it is well liked and well received so I then proceed forth with the project.

Doing that has saved me from the sometimes downright nasty comments from critics and keeps me going forward.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

The internet gives solutions and speeds up the actions that could possibly take months or even years without the it.
How?

Research is a good example. Without a computer, a person would have to go the the library and, if info is needed from a particular location - would need to travel there to experience it first hand.

With the internet, a person can scan through many entries to find the data plus communicate to people all over the world - thus get first hand experience.

What do you advise new writers to do?

As a person that has been mentored by several different people, I pay it forward and help creative & talented folks around the world. Thousands of hours of research and testing of services/products in order to help others to achieve their goals in The Arts has been done so another doesn't have to. The website has been online since 1999 [Help 2 Succeed www.help-2-succeed.com]. I'm reachable there and will work one on one with a person to give the boost needed to get where s/he wants to be.

Thank you!

Interview with Barbara Worton, the author of TOO TALL ALICE


Tell us about yourself first.

I have been telling stories since I was a little girl and knew I wanted to be a writer since I was about 12 years old. Right out of college, I went to work in publishing as an editorial assistant and then moved up the ladder. I worked in the UK as a freelancer for a number of publishers. When I came back to the US, I went into advertising, working as a copywriter. I left to freelance in 1991, and writing is still my full-time job. I am married to a wonderful man, Geoff, and we ve been together 31 years.

When did you start writing?

When I was about 12 years old. I did the whole school literary magazine thing and sort of hit my stride in college playwriting, poetry and fiction.

What genres have you written?

I have written poetry, plays, short stories, fiction, and to keep a roof over my head, I do a lot of writing for hire. It s all writing, so that s a good thing, and I am lucky to be able to earn a living doing what I love.

Is TOO TALL ALICE your first book?

No. It is my first children s book, but my second book written under my name. My first book is BEDTIME STORIES: THE SHORT, LONG AND TALL TALES OF A SLEEPWRITER. It is a collection of short stories, pulled from journals of stories that I wrote at night to help myself fall asleep. I ve also done some ghostwriting and have work published in MEMORIES OF JOHN LENNON and a number of magazines.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

Alice is tall, four inches taller than all the other eight-year-old girls in her class. Her mom and dad think she s fine; so do her teacher and doctor, but that does not matter. Alice is worried about being tall. One night, she s up in her bedroom, and she s supposed to be asleep. Her parents and their friends are downstairs. They all think Alice is just fine, but she hears her dad say that she s going to be a beanpole. Alice does not want to be a beanpole, and she gets very upset because she does not really understand what this means. She has a dream, and in that dream, she really sees herself, learns that she s just fine the way she is and that she can be anything she wants to be.

What inspired you to write this book?

I was going through a tough time with my writing lots of deadlines, not many rewards. I was actually thinking about giving up writing. I told my friend Noelle, and she suggested that I write something just for the joy of it. Don t ask me why, but when I thought about writing for the joy of it, the words Alice was tall, not T-Rex or Empire State Building tall popped into my head, and I was off.

How long did it take you to write it?

The first draft of the story came flowing out of me right from that first sentence. Then I went back and did some revising, it took me a lot longer to find an illustrator and to get the book published, but here I am now.

Who is the publisher of your book?

TOO TALL ALICE is published by Great Little Books, LLC, www.greatlittlebooksllc.com.

Where is it on sale?

Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, bookstores and through www.greatlittlebooksllc.com.

Tell us about your other books/work.

My first book was BEDTIME STORIES: THE SHORT, LONG AND TALL TALES OF A SLEEPWRITER. It s a collection of short, short stories very fanciful tales that I wrote to help myself fall asleep at night. BEDTIME STORIES was published in October 2007 and has a lot of fans.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

It s not easy to write. There s the daily challenge of having to put something meaningful down on paper. There is the hope that your words will be published and well received. Then there s the challenge of having to make money!

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
Sure. It helps with research, and the community of online reviewers and bloggers is really breathing new life into publishing. It s making the entire review process much more democratic and energetic. And I love amazon.com. It s great to have that sales outlet. Everyone buys on Amazon.

What do you advise new writers to do?
Find your voice, understand your creative process and write the story you really need to write.
Interview with, Laurie Dean, the author of Baron Thinks Dogs Are People Too!

Tell us about yourself first.

Where shall I begin? As a 51 year old, I suppose its best not to go back too far or we could be here for a very long time! Basically, I am an ordinary human living through extraordinary times. My favorite book that I read as a kid was Harriet The Spy, by Louise Fitzhugh, published in 1964. Harriet loves to eat tomato sandwiches, and I do too! Currently, I enjoy reading New Age books about affirming and manifesting my hearts desires. Visit www.BaronThinks.com to read more about me and view photos.

When did you start writing?

As a young girl, I liked writing simply for practicing my penmanship, and trying out new and different styles to be unique; and I liked to draw, too. I kept a daily diary during high school to journal my personal experiences, and also to chronicle my daydreams. As an adult, I write childrens stories for pleasure.

What genres have you written?

I have written some poetry, but childrens literature is the only genre in which I am published.

Is Baron Thinks Dogs Are People Too! your first book?
Yes.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

Generally speaking, my book is about the enduring values of family, self-responsibility, friendship, and patriotism. Blended within the story line is the new age theme that, as life goes on, energy follows intention. In other words, when we wish for something (intention) we can make it happen by taking action (energy).

Specifically, Baron Thinks Dogs Are People Too! is an illustrated children's story about a family dog who wants nothing more than to have a best friend. Baron is a friendly, high-spirited dog whose exuberance is always getting him in trouble. He's not a bad dog. He's just got a lot of energy. His human family decides to send him to obedience school, where he works very hard on his lessons. The story teaches children the importance of learning to act responsibly, and that one simple, thoughtful gesture can be the beginning of an amazing friendship.

What inspired you to write this book?

The exact moment I decided on making my dream of creating this book come true was when I held my newborn grandson for the first time. I felt an incredible sense of legacy, like a spiritual connection from my ancestors was beaming through me. I wanted to create a book my own grandchildren would revisit again and again. The character of Baron is a composite from my recollections of behaviors and personalities that various dogs from my childhood exhibited. A combination of life experiences and time spent pondering my hearts desire gave rise to my urge, and sense of calling, to publish childrens books.

How long did it take you to write it?

For me, the process of writing childrens stories is like having puffy clouds of ideas floating around in my mind constantly. Then when I focus my awareness with the intention to bring a story to life in the form of a book, its like the puffy clouds form into a funnel cloud that touches down through me.

Word selection and cadence is very important to me, so I start with a draft of the story, and then ponder the words and movement carefully as I rewrite. This book took me about two weeks to write.

Who is the publisher of your book?

This book was self-published by DragonPencil publishing services and Big Ten Books distributor.

Where is it on sale?

It is on sale at www.BaronThinks.com and Amazon.

What charity is your book affiliated with?

Baron Thinks Dogs Are People Too! is also available for purchase to benefit Operation Smile: One Smile. This international organization provides surgery for babies born with a cleft lip or cleft palate. I will donate $1 for each book sold from the One Smile website at http://www.bigtentbooks.com/baronthinksdogsarepeopletoobylauriedean-1.aspx
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Tell us about your other books/work.

Ive written a series of stories about the two imaginary friends I had when I was preschool age. As for Barons future his family may get a cat. Baron thinks cats are cool!

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

So far, I have not had any major challenges in my career as a writer. Nowadays, it’s much easier for a first time author to publish good quality childrens books. Since there are so many wonderful books in circulation, the challenge is to get your book noticed by all of the people who would enjoy reading it!

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

For me, the entire process of having my book published came about through the use of the Internet. It has totally helped me in my writing career.

How?

I found the website of DragonPencil/Big Tent Books publishing services online, and used them for the entire process. Now that my book is in print, I use the Internet for marketing and networking with other professionals in the book publishing industry.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Publishing your first book can be a daunting task, and have a discouraging effect, so make sure to focus on enjoying the process along the way.
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Thank you!

Laurie Dean
February 9, 2009










killion.jpg
Neil Killion

Interview with Neil Killion, the author of Life Cycles

Tell us about yourself first.

I am a 58 year old retired management consultant/psychologist. For many years I ran my own Outplacement Company in Sydney, Australia.

When did you start writing?

I explain in the book that my mission to undertake the project was revealed to me at age 55. I commenced work 18 months later. Previously I had written a 30 page booklet on Career Planning for the Senior Executive Service of the Australian Government. I had also written a number of articles for the press and magazines including Why companies sack their most talented for the Aust. Institute of Management.


What genres have you written?

All my writing has been non-fiction. This is the first time I have written in the Occult genre.


Is Life Cycles your first book?

Yes it is.


Tell us about your book. What is it about?

It is about a whole new and different esoteric discipline designed to analyse your life. It has its own terminology and icons and is meant to stand alongside other well-known approaches like astrology, numerology etc. It is evidence-based with many biographical examples, including Obituary analysis, which constitutes a single-blind& statistical test. Famous examples include Aristotle, Alexander the Great, Hannibal, Julius Caesar, Leonardo Da Vinci, Napoleon, Winston Churchill and Hitler. I also analyse celebrities like Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Elton John and criminals from Al Capone down. I demonstrate how to complete Life Charts and feature Nelson Mandela, Pope John Paul II and Princess Diana. I show people how to do their own Chart and provide examples from my friends and associates. Finally the book itself is an enigma although it is written in a clear and easy to read fashion. Readers will get a new way to cast into the near future. My claim is that it is the most statistically valid of all esoteric theories.

What inspired you to write this book?

Many years of at first casual observation taken during thousands of career case histories made me see a connection with major life change and just a few key years. I however only felt I could complete the book after I started to write and did my analysis of the famous as well as current affairs. All I had to do was read the paper or watch the TV to get examples by the score. So the book is written as a personal journey. If I couldnt get the evidence then I would have had to give up. It is my mission to bring Life Cycles to peoples attention. My website is Life Cycles College (www.LifeCyclesCollege.com ) and is designed to get others joining and submitting their own evidence and learning to do their own Life Charts.

How long did it take you to write it?

Writing was completed in 8 months. Editing took another 8 months.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Author House


Where is it on sale?

Amazon/Target/Author House/many on-line sites (see -neil killion/life cycles) Also Borders/Waterstones London stores.

Tell us about your other books/work?

For many years my other main creative hobby was music. I have received certificates for my Special Event songwriting. See www.myspace.com/neilkillion

Has the internet helped you in your writing career? How?

Yes it has. I do a lot of biographical research and without the internet this would be much more time consuming. I find it invaluable.

What do you advise new writers to do?

If like me you get your book self-published be sure to spend several months in editing as this will be repaid to you when you get your first proof. Not only for grammar and sense of meaning, but a critical analysis of your material and your message. I gained much through rewriting sections and changing my tone.




Interview with Jeff Roberts the author of Little Stories
Tell us about yourself first.

I am a 46 year-old writer living in Kansas City. I am the father of two teen-agers, the lover of one and I have been blessed by the friendship of many.

When did you start writing?

I enrolled in a correspondence degree program at the University of Iowa in 2001. Through that program I took fiction and non-fiction courses in which I began to write. I had a measure of success, some short pieces published in student journals and then when one of my teachers got a job with a small publishing firm in Chicago the first edition of this book came out.

What genres have you written?

I have written fiction, non-fiction and short essays. So far.

Is Little Stories your first book?

Yes, as I mentioned before, this book is really a compilation of short stories I wrote while doing my work at the University of Iowa. I had a first edition published with a small publishing firm in Chicago which I sold locally through Prosperos Book here in Kansas City and gave to my friends as a Christmas Card with best wishes in 2006. Then I wrote five new stories and this 2nd Edition came out in August.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

I think this book is about life. Loves, betrayal, death, birth all the themes that have arisen in my life. Each story is a different vignette of these type of themes and I hope the reader can see a little bit of their life in it too.

What inspired you to write this book?

I have always been a reader. I started writing at Iowa because I thought learning the writing process and getting some of my stuff reviewed/graded would give me a greater insight into thing I have read. After a few publication and feedback I have gotten from readers and reviewers I learned that the dialogue you get with a reader is a very personal and special thing.

How long did it take you to write it?

Really, six of the stories were written over 4 years (their were many that fell by the wayside) at Iowa. I wrote another five stories over six months from the fall of 2007 through the spring of 2008.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Outskirts Press, Inc.
10940 S. Parker Rd - 515
Parker, CO 80134

Where is it on sale?

It is on sale at www.amazon.com; www.barnesandnoble.com, Main St. Books in St. Charles, Missouri and Prosperos Book here in Kansas City.

Tell us about your other books/work.

Sorry, the cupboard is bare now. I am starting on a novel next spring, but until then I have two stories I am working over Christmas, but I have not published any other books.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

Really, finding time to write (with fatherhood, full-time job, distractions like wine and song) and getting over the shyness most of us have with opening up and being honest.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
How?

The internet has been essential. From emailing the galleys to OutskirtPress to submitting stories that have been published in journals, none of that could have been done as quickly or easily without the internet. From the sales and marketing side of publishing it has been invaluable. For example, I have gotten an email from a Canadian reviewer living in Japan who reviewed it. Without Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com I would only able to reach a local Kansas City audience; with the internet you have global access.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Read, write, love, drink, travel and pay close attention to the details in all that.

Thank you!

Interview with: Garasamo Maccagnone - For the Love of St. Nick.


Q: Tell us about yourself.
A: Currently, I live in Shelby Township, Michigan. During the day I work as a crater, a person who builds wooden boxes for shipments being exported to other parts of the world. At night, I work as a soccer coach, teaching players from the ages of eight to eighteen on how to play the worlds game.

Q: When did you start writing?
A: I started in high school. I believe I became inspired after reading, The Great Gatsby. For three years, I studied under a taskmaster named Carol Cross. At the time, she wasnt my favorite instructor but theres no doubt she was the person most responsible for teaching me the craft of writing.

From there, I had the great privilege of working with the poet Lawrence Pike at a community college, the writer Sam Astrachan at Wayne State University, and the poet/writer Stuart Dybeck at Western Michigan University.

My first short story entitled, Sentiments of Blue was lost in a basement flood. Back in the mid 80s, we didnt have files you could save stories on. What a tragedy it is to lose a story and not be able to recite it.

Q: What genres have you written?
A: My first book was a collection of short stories and poetry titled, The Affliction of Dreams. After that, I published a children book called,The Suburban Dragon. That book was geared for the two to eight year old readers. I wrote that book while I lived in Agoura Hills, California, near Malibu in the early 90s. A neighborhood girl who asked me to write a book about her as a princess inspired it. The illustrator, Al Ochsner, was my roommate at Western Michigan University. My third book was a dark and serious work titled, St. John of the Midfield. Up to this point, I believe it to be my finest work. For the Love of St. Nick, is my most recent novella.

Q: Tell us about your book. What is it about?
A: Two boys, who have lost their mother tragically during childbirth, have to leave California with their Navy commander father to live on a base in northern Michigan. The father is loaned to the Airforce for a secret mission. During the time in Michigan, the boys must learn to cope with the northern elements and life on the military base. With the aid of a nanny named Mrs. Pennington, the boys and the commander deal with the many illnesses the younger son Johnny contracts. When the father finally has to leave for his secret mission prior to Christmas, though he promises to return, the boys fear, and have nightmares, about the commander not surviving. At the suggestion of Mrs. Pennington, the boys pray daily to St. Nicholas for their fathers safe return. On Christmas Eve, when it seems the commander would not live up to his promise, and when little Johnny becomes gravely ill, a Christmas miracle occurs when a chance encounter happens.

Q: What inspired you to write the book?

A: Years ago, when I was a volunteer at a local hospital, a mother died giving birth to a young boy. It really broke everybody up on the staff. I recall listening to a doctor explain that the boy would have difficulty in his early years based on the nature of the birth. Years later, while skating in the dark up at Lake Ogemaw during the Christmas season, the story incubated in my mind. It took many years to figure out how to tell it but Im glad I finally got it out of my system.

Q: How long did it take you to write it?
A: I originally wrote the story in the mid 90s. Though I liked my early drafts, something bothered me enough that I did not present it on its own. From there, I continued thinking about it until this year, when I truly was inspired around May.

Q: Who is the publisher of your book?
A: Booksurge publishing. The book is on sale on www.amazon.com, www.borders.com, and www.target.com.

Q: What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

A: There are just not enough opportunities in the publishing world for new and unknown writers. In the old days, unless you had a connection in a publishing house, it was nearly impossible to get somebody to answer your calls.

Q: Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
A: I wouldnt be doing this interview if it werent for the Internet and the development of self-publishing.

Q: What do you advise new writers to do?
A: Do not go public with any work until you fully understand the craft of writing. I studied writing and literature for six years, gained working experience as a copy writer and a free-lance producer in the advertising business and then waited twenty years before publishing my first book.

To create a story that a reader enjoys is a formidable task. Just make sure you are as prepared as possible.


Interview with Gloria Clark, the author of The Little Candy Breathing Dragons

Tell us about yourself first.
When did you start writing?

I was born and raised in Buffalo, NY, home of the blizzard of 77. I graduated from Bennett High School in 1963 and continued my education at Bryant & Stratton Business Institute where I took accounting and secretarial courses. I worked as a Bookkeeper and a Payroll Administrator all of my adult life until I retired in 2000. I was married in 1968 and had two sons who of course kept me pretty busy. Each of my sons had a daughter so I am now the proud grandmother of two little girls, Anai 11 and E'maja 12 years old.

I started writing in the year 2000 when my youngest son Darian was shot and killed as he and friends were leaving a Social Club in our city. I was so completely lost and devastated that I had to release the many emotions I was dealing with so I chose to put my thoughts on paper as a means of therapy in helping me deal with my son's untimely and unnecessary death. From that tragedy, came my first true to life book entitled When Half of Your Heart Dies which depicted in detail the struggles I faced in trying to cope with his murder and still remain faithful through it all while also praying for closure through the capture of my son's killer.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

The Little Candy Breathing Dragons was inspired by my two granddaughters who encourage my creativity. They wanted to write a book together so that's what we did. My oldest granddaughter came up with the name The Candy Dragons which I thought was very cute. I began to think about what dragons did and the only thing I could think of was the fact that they breathe fire. Well that didn't sound appealing to me so since they were candy dragons, I thought let's have them breathe out candy scents. That's how The Little Candy Breathing Dragons were born.

This book is about two little sister dragons (representing my granddaughters of course) who one day take off on an adventure and meet many interesting characters along the way. My youngest granddaughter Anai is a lover of animals so that's why I chose animal characters. Each strange character they meet is helped in one way or another by the little dragons. I wanted to send a message to children that you should be kind to one another and accept all people as they are because we do not all look alike. Nay-Nay has a light complexion with red and white stripes and Maj has a darker complexion spotted with red, yellow blue and green. Also helping others when you can is a good thing to do and will make you a better you.

How long did it take you to write it?

I think it took me about 2 weeks to complete this book. Of course I had to get the approval of my granddaughters.
Who is the publisher of your book?
Where is it on sale?

The Little Candy Breathing Dragons was published in February 2008 by Outskirts Press, Inc.

It can be purchased on any book store on the web. amazon.com, barnes&noble.com,books.com, etc.

Tell us about your other books/work.

My first book When Half of Your Heart Dies was published in 2004 by Publish America and is also available on all on line book stores.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

Writing is a very competitive industry and it is very difficult to get exposure for your work. Many publishers will not consider any submissions without representation from an agent and agents are very selective. I am diligent in trying to promote and market my book and get it out there because I think it conveys a message that all children young and old can benefit from.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
How?

The internet has helped a great deal because there are so many free sites where you can promote your work. Sites such as authorsden.com, authorsnation.com, etc.

What do you advise new writers to do?

My advise to new writers would be to never give up. If writing is your passion then you must pursue it. You will get very discouraged and frustrated at times due to rejection, but let that be the driving force to make you try harder and harder to succeed. My vision is to write a series of books about The Little Candy Breathing Dragons and the good deeds they do and hopefully nothing will discourage me from doing that.

Thank you.




Interview with Dawn Menge, the author of Queen Vernitas Visitors

Tell us about yourself first.


I teach severely handicapped students in an adult center. Our students are 18-22 years old, we teach them functional vocational skills. I have a Masters Degree in Special Education and I am currently working on my PHD in Curriculum and Instruction through Capella University.

I have worked in the Special education field for over thirteen years. Currently we are teaching our students to gain employment in our local business.
I have composed a series of educational books on Queen Vernitas adventures.


When did you start writing?

Four years ago

What genres have you written?

Childrens book

Is Queen Vernitas Visitors your first book?

Yes

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

Queen Vernita lives in the land of Oceaneers. She decides that she wants to have a fiend visit her each month of the year. She invites a new friend in each month. During each month a different activity for each day of the week is described.

My goal for this series is to provide a useful educational took for young children to help them learn math skills based on the months of the year, days of the week, including how many days are in each month. The activities in the book are to expose children and parents to new ideas that promote interaction. The activities should be used as a bridge for further communication and investigation.

What inspired you to write this book?

The book is based on the members of my family. Queen Vernita is my 87 year old grandmother, the other characters in the book include my parents, children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews and childhood friend.

How long did it take you to write it?

I worked on the revisions for a year.

Who is the publisher of your book?

outskirtspress

Where is it on sale?

www.Amazon.com, www.Barnesandnoble.com, www.outskirtspress.com/DawnMenge

Tell us about your other books/work.

Queen Vernita visits the Blue Ice Mountain is in the editing stages. Queen Vernita Meets Sir HeathyBean the Astronomer will be coming out in the Summer.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

The major challenges I have faced in my writing career have been getting started. Having faith in myself to have it published, I had written it four years earlier before I submitted it. Since the book has been published I have received wonderful reviews and encouragement from everyone. I have begun to work on a series of books based on Queen Vernita.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

I have used the internet to complete the research for my book, to research the publisher, to receive reviews and to sell my books. The internet has been a useful tool for me in continuing my pursuit as an author
How?

What do you advise new writers to do?

To always follow their dreams.


Thank you!






Interview with Daniel Martin, the author of Who Lied and Said We Left The Garden of Eden?

Tell us about yourself first.

My name is Daniel Martin, and I'm a proud father of two boys Joshua and Caleb. They are the center and light of my universe. I've worked hard for many years to learn the trade of plumbing and to start my own business, called Danny Boy Plumbing. Our motto is, When Your Pipes are Calling, Call Danny Boy Plumbing. I enjoy teaching the trade to others, and believe that everyone needs a trade to fall back on.

When did you start writing?

I started writing without any real direction about three years ago, without even a rough-draft, which I wouldn't recommend to anyone. I thought heavily about writing this book for several years before I started writing. When I was close to being finished I found that I had erased more than I had written, hoping to end up with a book that would be easy to read for homeless people....hoping to hold their interest and encourage them to take better care of themselves, and too find a new life.

What genres have you written?

So far, this is the only book I've written, but I have ideas for others, possibly a Fiction book next. Whatever I write will have to incite a fire in people to make a difference in our world.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

I split my book up into two parts. Part 1 is about my life and how it spiraled out of control because of the poor choices I had made early on concerning drug abuse. Part 2 of my book focuses on the lessons I've learned that helped me to become a nicer, happier, more confident, and harder working individual.

What inspired you to write this book?

Because of some of the strange dreams and visions that I discuss in the book, I had as a youngster made me feel that after years of suffering and hard life lessons, I might make a difference in the lives of others. This book is simply another attempt to make a difference in our world by encouraging others to do the same. I also wanted to attempt to convince folks that we're all ONE in our world, that we all come from the same Mother Earth, and that we ought to treat her along with each other in a much more sacred manner.

Who is the publisher of your book?

I self-published my book through www.OutskirtsPress.com. Eventually I hope to find the right book agent to help me find a descent contract with a larger publishing firm.

Where is it on sale?

My book "Who Lied and Said We Left the Garden of Eden? Memoirs of a Homeless Man" is available at many online book retailers. I found the best prices seem to be available at Amazon.com.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

The major challenges I faced in writing this book were attempting to keep my plumbing business afloat while not completely neglecting my family, while I obsessed and nearly disappeared for a few years trying to finish something worth releasing to the world.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
How?

Every step of writing this book the Internet has been useful to me, from looking up the correct spelling and use of words...to finding my publisher and marketing my book.

What do you advise new writers to do?

First off, I'd recommend new writers get some sort of training by taking a class at their local community college. I'd especially recommend them using a simple rough-draft to organize their thoughts before they begin writing their book. If they do these things they'll be further ahead of the game than I was on this book. I won't make the same mistakes the next time. But isn't that what life is all about...learning from our mistakes. Mostly though, I'd recommend new writers just start writing, while at the same time, being willing to delete and start over, as many times as it takes until they get it right...until they write something that will incite quality emotions in their readers.

Thank you!

Thank you, Liana.
Interview with Kevin J. Anderson, the author of THE LAST DAYS OF KRYPTON

Tell us about yourself first.

I am an avid, prolific writer who always has several projects in the works. I love writing and telling stories; I also love hiking in my state of Colorado.

When did you start writing?

When I was five years old. I have always wanted to be a writer.

What genres have you written?
Mainly SF, fantasy, and horror, but also some mystery and technothrillers. I have also written comic books.

Is THE LAST DAYS OF KRYPTON your first book?

No, this year will mark the publication of my 100th book. I have had 45 bestsellers and over 20 million copies in print in 29 languages.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

This is the story of the end of Supermans planet Krypton, how it exploded, all the politics and disasters leading up to its destruction, and how one baby survived and found his way to Earth.

What inspired you to write this book?

My love for the great superhero we all know, and the epic story of the end of Krypton that has never been told.

How long did it take you to write it?

9 months

Who is the publisher of your book?

HarperCollins

Where is it on sale?

Wherever fine books are sold.


Tell us about your other books/work.

I have written many popular books in the STAR WARS and X-FILES universes, but I am perhaps best known for my current international bestsellers with Brian Herbert, prequels and sequels to the classic science fiction series DUNE, as well as my own epic science fiction series The Saga of Seven Suns.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

Juggling many projects at once, being run ragged by promotion . . . And finding time to do things other than writing! I never had problems finding inspiration or determination.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
How?

Yes, it has helped me be in direct contact with my fans, through my own websites, my blogs, direct e-mails, MySpace, etc.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Keep writing. Its not easy, compare it to making the cut on a pro sports team. You have to practice and practice, to improve your skills, get better and better, and try out for the big leagues. You still may not make the majors, but you have to try.

Kevin J. Anderson
www.wordfire.com


Interview with Clea and John Adams, the authors of The Dragonfly Secret

Tell us about yourself first. When did you start writing?

A: Clea: I have been writing in various settings my entire life. I got into writing at an early age after winning a couple of writing contests in elementary school. That motivated me to take writing classes. A few years ago, John and I co-wrote a poem about a dragonfly for a non-profit we volunteer for. That collaboration made us realize how well we write together.

John: Thats not to say writing is easy or comes naturally. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication. Carefully crafting a quality story takes perseverance and a willingness to have your work critiqued by a professional editor.

What genres have you written?

A: Clea: Childrens fiction. Ironically, because our books deal with loss, we hear from many adults who tell us they have been helped by our books.

Is The Dragonfly Secret your first book?

A: John: The Dragonfly Secret is the second book in the dragonfly series. The first book is called The Dragonfly Door. It is a story about loss and change for ages 5-9. It follows two insect friends, Lea and Nym, who live underwater in a marsh, and the struggles Nym endures when her friend disappears. The story was written to help children who are coping with a significant loss in their lives. Some children identify with Nym, who grieves the loss of her friend, and find it easier to express their unique feelings about a loss after hearing the story.

The Dragonfly Door was also written to help parents and adults express their views about life and death. Through a vision or dream, Nym learns that Lea has transformed into a beautiful dragonfly and now lives above the marsh. Parents and grandparents sometimes use this as an analogy for life after death.

Teachers like to use The Dragonfly Door to explain the life cycle of the dragonfly, which is included at the back of the book. Some teachers have told us the book is a useful tool for in-class discussions or for journaling about loss and change. Two high schools in Alabama and Wisconsin turned the story into a mini-play to help grieving children in their communities cope with the death of their classmates.

Clea: We have been moved by the families who write to us and share what the book meant to them during difficult times in their lives. We hear from parents, grandparents, teachers, librarians, non-profits, booksellers, funeral directors, etc. The feedback we receive is sometimes quite humbling.

Overall, The Dragonfly Door really has many purposes, though, because John tried to write it in a way that offers adults subtle references to other topics if they need to discuss them, including friendship, patience, acceptance, kindness, diversity, and other life lessons.

While both books are in the dragonfly series, they were written as stand alone books too.

Tell us about your new book. What is it about?

A: Clea: The Dragonfly Secret is about a dragonfly named Lea who lives near a beautiful garden. In the garden, Lea meets a mysterious young boy who asks her for help. In exchange, Lea learns a special secret about the boy and herself. This is really a story about friendship, love, and remembrance. The illustrations are amazing. Once again, we were fortunate to have worked with award-winning artist Barbara L. Gibson who has illustrated over three dozen childrens books. Readers tell us the story pulls at their heartstrings, but it is uplifting at the same time.

John: We often describe the story as part mystery and part surprise because the dragonfly does not discover the secret until the very end. Our hope is that readers will be intrigued by the clues the boy and others provide. We also hope it encourages people to give some thought to natures ability to provide comfort during difficult times. Maybe there is much more to life and what is all around us than what we are able to perceive. The final message of the story, though, is a subtle reminder that memories of a loved one are forever.

What inspired you to write this book?

A: Clea: The idea for the story came to us one day at dinner. That was the easiest part jotting down our initial ideas about the outline for the story and characters. But it took over a year to write The Dragonfly Secret. John and I both tried to work on the manuscript each day. Whenever we hit a stumbling block we found it was helpful to let the story sit for a few days.

How long did it take you to write it?

A: John: From start to finish The Dragonfly Secret has taken two years to produce, including almost one year to illustrate. After we completed our first draft, we hired a freelance editor who used to be the senior editor for one of New York s leading publishers. We went through two or three drafts and critiques with our editor and did not always receive the feedback we were hoping for. But, we are proud of the end product. Anyone writing for publication should try to find a good editor or a strong writer who can critique their work. For The Dragonfly Secret, The Dragonfly Door, and future stories, we always remind ourselves that stories need to stand on their own through time. Once a writer gets into that mindset, then critiques and editing become less personal and actually help the writer build a better story, word by word.


Who is the publisher of your book?

A: Clea: John and I co-founded Feather Rock Books in 2005. We divide the responsibilities of running the company. Our mission is to publish literature for all age groups transforming lifes bumps and bruises into uplifting stories.

John: Part of the motivation in forming the company was that we looked at other publishers and realized it would have been a slow process of finding one that fit our niche and had an interest in our work. Our initial focus has been on life lessons and universal feelings of loss and change.
While I was writing The Dragonfly Door, I had the opportunity to listen to other publishers talk about the publishing business. Clearly, some publishers are focused on other worthwhile genres. However, I attended a meeting where one particular editor spoke before a large group of writers and emphasized the need for silly, fun books for children. She was adamant that there wasnt a need for books that teach children life lessons because children were demanding fun books with characters doing crazy, nonsensical things.

According to this editor, parents have very little to say about what children read, so to be a successful publisher, they only look for books that children will demand. I believe that was the day Feather Rock Books was born. Clea and I believe books about life lessons are important to our future generations.

Where is it on sale?

A: Clea: The books are available online at Amazon, Barnes-and-Noble, Target, as well as other retailers. Our website also offers information on where to buy the book. We do encourage readers to buy the book through their local independent bookstores.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

A: John: Promotion and marketing is the most difficult part of what we do. We want to reach more people and organizations than we have time to in a day. We know our books resonate with children and families, but the issue for us is getting the book exposure on a larger scale.
Clea: Because we dont have a promotion or marketing budget like the large publishing houses, we know we have to rely on word-of-mouth sales. We really have to generate sales and grow revenue book by book.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
How?

A: Clea: The Internet is an incredible resource tool. It has been a way to connect with other writers to share ideas, a research device, and a promotional vehicle.

John: Without the Internet, I do not think we could have accomplished everything we have thus far. That said, some days it feels like we have only scratched the surface on everything we could or should be doing.

What do you advise new writers to do?

A: John: My personal opinion is that a children s story needs to have purpose or address a child s need. One of the biggest challenges, though, is to craft a story that is useful to a broad audience and not just a few. Thats why it is sometimes better to leave some elements of a story open to interpretation. For example, in a critical scene in The Dragonfly Door, I originally stated that Lea came to her friend Nym in a dream. But, my editor pointed out that some children might be told that dreams are nothing more than fantasy and couldnt possibly be real. I thought about her comments and realized if I simply stated that Nym heard Leas voice while she was sleeping, then parents could help interpret the scene as a vision, a dream or something else altogether. Not to get sidetracked, but the bottom line is that writing for children should really be about the love of helping children.

Tell us about books for a cause?

A: Clea: From time to time, Feather Rock Books will work with non-profit organizations in their fundraising efforts; particularly those non-profits who work directly to support children and family needs. The way the program works is we sell books to the non-profit at a discount so that the organization can profit from any sales they generate at an upcoming event.

John: Books for a cause is one way our company wants to support children and families that need our help. For more information, readers can contact either Clea or me at customerservice@featherrockbooks.com.



Interview with BG Stroh, the author of The Dharma King
Tell us about yourself first.

I am a writer, father of two kids, and an entrepreneur whohas started and run two companies. I am also interested in Tibetan Buddhism.

When did you start writing?
I have always enjoyed creative writing, but this is my first novel.

What genres have you written?
Is this your first book?

Yes.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

The Dharma King is the story of an American who finds himself unexpectedly intertwined in the search for the reincarnation of a Tibetan lama. His story is allegorical to the life of Siddhartha, the original Buddha.

What inspired you to write this book?
I was inspired by the lack of awareness in the world, and fundamental lack of accountability that we collectively take, for the Tibetan cause. Specifically, my story launches off the real life kidnapping and disappearance of the Panchen Lama, who was taken away as a small boy and never heard from since.

How long did it take you to write it?

About 3 months to write. The story mostly flowed. It was a much, much longer and less enjoyable process to finalize edits and publish the novel.

Who is the publisher of your book?
iUniverse

Where is it on sale?
Amazon and BN.com

Tell us about your other books/work.
More to come.


What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

Overcoming the fear of starting something new.
Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
It certainly helps research, but can be a distraction when you are trying to get tightly focused and write without distractions.

How?
What do you advise new writers to do?
Just start. And... enjoy the ride.

Thank you!
Interview with Philip Chabot, the author of Operation Blue Light: My
Secret Life among Psychic Spies
Tell us about yourself first.

I retired in 2004 after working most of my life as a computer Programmer for the State of California. My wife died of cancer in 2001, and I have been traveling and generally enjoying my retirement. But I found that
I kept coming back to this manuscript that I had in the garage. I had been working on it every year or two since I started writing it in 1975. I decided it was one of those things I needed to do before I died. So over the last two years I asked Laurie Anne Blanchard to help me work on it and get it ready for publication.

When did you start writing?

One of the chapters in "Operation Blue Light: My Secret Life among
Psychic Spies" tells of my first real job, not counting working for my dad,when I worked for the local paper. It was mostly because of my photography
background that I got that job. But it did force me to write a few
pages about the sports I covered. In Indiana we are very big on Basketball!

So covering the weekly high school basketball games was my first paid Writing job.

What genres have you written?

This memoir is my only effort at telling a really long story. I have
Written about the psychology of psychics, including my blog
http://philipchabot.blogspot.com/ <http://philipchabot.blogspot.com/>
and as I wrote computer programs I also needed to write the manuals and the help text that goes with them.

Is Operation Blue Light: My Secret Life among Psychic Spies your first
book?

I did write a book about the psychology of psychics but it has not been
published yet.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

It has been called a coming of age story because it all happened to me
during the 6 years from my senior year of high school on; but it is a
very special story. It really takes a book to explain it. When I have a
very short time to tell someone about it I say that it is like Close
Encounters of the Third Kind only instead of flying saucers at the end there are
psychic spies.

What inspired you to write this book?

I wrote the book for various reasons. Mostly I felt I owed it to "the
casualties of the cold war's psychic battlefields" as I called them in
the dedication of the book. Then also I have avoided talking about it for
so long that I still find it difficult. So now I can just point you to the
book or the videos and I will not need to tell it. I have gotten to a place
where I don't care how unbelievable people find it. Also it needs to be told
because it is unlike any other. The accuracy and details of my "spoken
telepathy" I had that summer was not like any published experience. So
my story needs to be put on the record. Finally I chose to publish it
because it is just a good story and I believe you will enjoy reading it even if
you are not among 42% that believe in telepathy.

How long did it take you to write it?

Over the last 30 years I have gotten it out of the garage every other
Year or so and worked on it then retyped it then put it back in the garage.
This cycle became easier when I could put it on the computer and I just
needed to convert it to the newest word processor I had. Then lately I worked for
a year with Laurie Anne Blanchard. There were a few chapters that I was
having real trouble with and she helped me get those done.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Cherubim Publishing, here in Sacramento.

Where is it on sale?

It is available from www.amazon.com <http://www.amazon.com> .

Tell us about your other work.

I like to read about the laboratory work that parapsychologists have
Been doing, particularly what they have found out about the psychology of
psychics. I keep learning and passing on what I find in my Blog. I
also find it interesting to hear from readers around the world who have
watched my videos or listened to a pod cast of mine and want to talk about
their experiences. I would like to find some people who were a part of my
story and would now like to come out of the shadows and tell me what this
story was like from their point of view.

What are the major challenges that you have faced with this book?

I suppose I will always be challenged by the problems that come from
This story being so hard to believe. Most readers have been impressed with
My straight forward style and frankness when I told the story but there
Are still those who find it is so different from their lives that they can
Not believe it. For my part it is just because telepathy of this quality
And length is rare that made it necessary for me to tell the story. I have
started to call this ability "Spoken Telepathy" and I suggest that even
though nothing like it has appeared in print I believe it is much more
common than parapsychologist have reported.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
Oh, yes.

How?

First the computer, even a standalone computer, speeds up your work and
helps you to rework your manuscript SO much faster and easier than the
old typewriter days. But specifically the Internet allows you to send
files of manuscripts or photos back and forth across the country or the world
in seconds instead of days. You can get editing and evaluations done so
much faster and easier. And those at the other end also have the advantage
of the computer. You can find out about details that you might have a
question about, so research has been made easier. And submitting to agents and
publishers is faster and easier also;.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Write. That is always the best way to learn anything -- do it.

Thank you!

Thank you, I appreciate the opportunity to share.
Philip Chabot
Phone (916) 203-2602
philip@philipchabot.com

Interview with Bettye Johnson, the author of Awakening the Genie Within: A Journey of Discovery

About the author:

I am living an exciting period of my life and loving it. I don't mind telling people that I am 79 years young and a two-time award winning author. I have lived a rich and full life filled with adversities, love, laughter, and sorrow as I think most people have experienced also. I was born in Texas the year of the stock market crash heralding the Great Depression of the last century. My family was considered poor, however I did not realize how poor we were until I became an adult. When I was seven years old, I picked cotton in the summer for my spending money. WWII brought my family into a period of prosperity although we were not affluent.

After graduating from high school, I attended Texas Women's University for two years and left when my parents were divorced. In 1952, I was living and working in Houston and read a small item in the Houston newspaper about recruitment for clerical workers for the Foreign Service of the U.S. State Department. I applied and three months later offered a job as a code clerk. I had no idea what a code clerk was, but I took the job and learned that I would be trained to encode and decode secret messages. This was the beginning of my uncommon education from a naïve young woman to a world traveler. My first posting was with the embassy in Paris and three years later transferred to the embassy in Tokyo.

While in Tokyo I met and married a career Marine and we had three sons. I was a stay-at-home mom and with their father away for two-thirds of the time, one could say I raised them almost alone. My sons taught me, but that is another story. I returned to work after seventeen years of marriage.

The private sector told me I was too old and my credentials were out-of-date. Therefore, I went to work for a government agency. After twenty-three years of marriage, my husband and I divorced and I began my journey of awakening. This awakening is the basis for my newest book, Awakening the Genie Within.

When did I start writing?

I seem to recall that my writing began when I was the corresponding secretary for numerous clubs and organizations I belonged to during my many moves across the country. My first poem was published in the Orange County, California magazine Dawn. I think this was in 1977 and the title was Is It Only me? This was a poem about my 'poor me' miserable life. A year after my divorce I met and married a wonderful man. After my Mr. Magic retired, we moved to the state of Washington, I began writing stories for my grandchildren.

I attempted a novel and had 200 pages written when one day I went to close it off and the pop-up window came asking if I wanted to save it&#8212;I clicked 'no'. End of the novel and I was disillusioned until 2001 when I began researching information about Mary Magdalene.

Genres: I have written mostly fiction and this latest book is my first non-fiction.

About the book:

Awakening the Genie Within is a partial memoir of my awakening from an unhappy relationship and life. When I was forty, I heard a thought in my head that told me that at age fifty my life would be different. On my 50th birthday, I had my coming-out celebration. I was newly divorced and experiencing new concepts about life. I became something like a sponge soaking up new knowledge. Some I discarded and some I retained. A year later, I met my late husband. I call him Mr. Magic, because he gave me the love and intimacy I had been searching for. He passed this plane in 2000. In this book, I share tools I used to move me from an ignorant woman to an enlightened woman. These are simple tools that anyone can use to enhance their life, and to change from being miserable to becoming self-contained and happy.

In answer to what inspired me to write this book, I would say it was my love for words and writing articles for my blogs and magazines. It came to me to put them together in the form of a book. I had also kept notes from the years since my divorce and it came together in the matter of several months. I use some of the tools every day and I know they work if one uses them with an open mind. Doubt and fear are the killers of dreams and changes.


I am a self-published author and the business name is Living Free Press. Perhaps down the road, I will begin publishing the works of other writers; however, at this time it is solely for me.

The book is available on-line from my website www.magdalenescrolls.com as well as BarnesandNoble.com, Amazon.com, www.Alibris.com, Booksearch.com and www.ramtha.com. Bookstores can order the book &#8211; in fact all of my books from Baker and Taylor and Ingram. My book Secrets of the Magdalene Scrolls has been translated into Italian and German and is for sale in Europe.


About my other books/work:

The Christmas Awakening was actually my first book. It is the story of a woman's awakening to the true meaning of the Christmas tree and the symbols one decorates the tree with. I first published this in 1995 and I printed a revised edition with new drawings in 2006.


Secrets of the Magdalene Scrolls, 2nd Revised Edition &#8211; Independent Publisher Book Awards Winner 2006.

Based on extensive research, this book written in the form of fiction is a story about two American women who fall into a cave in the French Pyrenees Mountains while hiking. In the cave are jars containing ancient scrolls and the two women not wanting the scrolls to be hidden away like other ancient documents have been, team up with an American businessman and a disillusioned French priest to have the scrolls translated revealing they are the journals of Mary Magdalene telling of her childhood, her education, her marriage to Jesus and the birth of their children as well as her life in the Languedoc region of France. The storyline moves from the present day back to the time of Mary Magdalene as the author weaves an absorbing tale containing adversities, action, romance, intrigue and passion while revealing the truth of the relationship of Mary Magdalene with Jesus.


Mary Magdalene, Her Legacy &#8211; Independent Publisher Book Awards Winner 2008

The sequel to Secrets of the Magdalene Scrolls is filled with unexpected plot twists as the two couples who translated unknown scrolls in the previous book are now shocked out of complacency when Ellen has a surprising encounter with a mysterious old-world type of man who disappears as fast as he appears. Leaving her with a portmanteau filled with ancient documents that when translated will shock the world. What is the legacy Mary Magdalene left for the world? This is a dynamic atmospheric story of passion and intrigue with the commitment of four people who choose to translate new documents never before revealed to the world.

The major challenges faced in my career:

The major challenge has been learning the ins and outs of marketing my books. This in itself has been another journey of discovery on how to avoid pitfalls. I chose to self-publish because when I researched the challenges of finding a literary agent I could work with and then wait for the agent to sell my book to a major publishing firm, I didn't want to wait for three years to get my book out to the public, nor did I like the percentage I would likely receive. This is why I chose self-publishing. I have never regretted this choice.

Regarding Internet helping me in my writing career:

Internet has been a godsend. It is a virtual library of research in addition to my vast library of books. I love Internet because when I am stymied for a word, an instant research or to verify, it is at my fingertips. I enjoy blogging, MySpace and other sites.


My advice to other writers:

Follow your inner guidance. Each writer has her or his own style. Develop your own. Join a writing group, but avoid those groups that love to critique heavily. This is your story and do not cast your pearls before the dis-believers. Secure a qualified editor and proofreader. If you are leaning towards having a literary agent, then do it. This is your journey and be willing to face the challenges ahead. Every book is an unknown and it is your gift to the world.

Bettye Johnson
www.magdalenescrolls.com
http://bettye-haveyouevenwondered.blogspot.com (corrected)
http://feminine-point-of-view.blogspot.com
http://secretsofthemagdalenescrolls.blogspot.com

Interview with Nick Kostovic, the author of the book Universe Gods Jewel

Tell us about yourself first.

I was born in city Split, Croatia, on December 6, 1950,where I graduated from high
school. For over thirty year I was involved in research about natural lows and phenomena, which occurs in our environment and Nature all over the World.
The results of my research are:
Biotechnological Energizer - A new invention for bio energetic physical therapy,
Kostovic/Tesla Electric Engine - utilizes eco electric fuel, as replacement for fossil fuels,
I&B Kostovic/Tesla Vacuum Electric Lasers Sheaves - utilize a special form of
irradiation of ice through one form of wireless released electricity,
Antimatter - Non elemental structure of matter - antimatter particles of human soul.
These particles I filmed for the very first time, they can be filmed anytime and anywhere.
I consider this is one of my biggest discoveries.

Without irradiation by the finest type of biological irradiation these particles are invisible
to human eye. Irradiated biological energy attaches itself on the non-elemental walls of
these particles and makes impression on the film so it becomes visible. These particles
are essential to creation of the Universe and to formation of the human soul of the matter.
They are also responsible for the emergence of what we call The Holly Spirit and are
prerequisite in forging out the Universe Gods Jewel, its most precious gift - THE LIFE.

When did you start writing?

I started writing in the year 1997, in Helsingborg, Sweden and finished in the year 2007,
in Los Angeles.

What genres have you written?

Non fiction: Astronomy, Universe, Human Origin, Energy, and Energy Healing.

Is Universe Gods Jewel your first book?

Yes, Universe Gods Jewel is my first book.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

The book Universe Gods Jewel clears up notions about natural laws and phenomena,
which occur as a result of them. One of the key phenomena is the energy that has
exceptional power of creation and sustention of life, and was given to us by God and
Nature.

The chapters in the book Universe 1 and Universe II and the chapter Antimatter-Non Elemental Structure of Matter are based on the evidences. In human creation the basic particles are involved in the form of imaginary dimension of non elementary cells of antimatter, which were occurring before the creation of the universe. They linked to
themselves the non elementary and neutral energy values attracted by vibrations, enabling
their energy values to reach zero point. This is the base for non elementary cells of
antimatter of their zero energy point to be enabled to receive imaginary chemical charges
that give them motion and consequently life.

The chapters in the book The Sun and Suns Ray are based on the evidences, too. The sun was observed through the cycles of exchanging energetic charges from low to high energetic values in the new inner and new outsider position of its highly resistant alloys of the globes and their symmetrically positioned highly resistant crystals of the Bi
Pyramids. It can be observed in the energetic cycles of each eleven years. The structure of elementary energetic field of the suns ray was filmed and observed.

What inspired you to write this book?

My discoveries for over thirty years of research inspired me to write this book.

How long did it take you to write it?
It almost takes ten years.

Who is the publisher of your book?

The publisher of my book is Outskirts Press, Inc. from Denver, Colorado.

Where is it on sale?

Universe Gods Jewel is now available through Ingram, Baker & Taylor, Amazon.com,
barnesandnoble.com, and the online bookstore of Outskirts Press, at
outskirtspress.com/store.php.

Tell us about your other books/work?

My second book will be Universe Gods Jewel I1.

What is the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

My practice in Biotechnological Health Center (in Europe and in USA) where I have
rescued the lives of terminally sick patients - people with diseases such as cancer,
Parkinsons, Alzheimers, multiple sclerosis, diabetes Type I and Type II, heart attack and stroke were the biggest challenges in my career. I achieved it by biological electricity
which I consider as the biggest invention on the end of 20th century.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

The Internet has not helped me in my writing career.

What do you advise new writers to do?

If their genres are non fiction - prove it with evidences.

I am looking for an independent source who is willing to come at my office in LA that I
can demonstrate and prove the biological electricity, as well as antimatter - non elemental
structure of matter. I propose sending the professional photographs from your company to film antimatter- the particles of human soul. Then, the people can discus about their
existence and the origin. Also, I am ready to present Kostovic/Tesla Electric Engine
which utilizes eco electric fuel.

Nick Kostovic
Address: 7137 Shoup Ave # 29
West Hills, CA 91307
Phone: 818-712-0363; 310-612-3250 Fax: 818-703-1431
Web site: www. biotechnologicalhealthcenter.com
E-mail: nick@biotechnologicalhealthcenter.com

Interview with June Ahern, the author of The Skye in June

Tell us about yourself first.

My family immigrated to San Francisco California from Glasgow Scotland
in the 1950s and that is where I continue my practice. Since 1975 I
have had the pleasure of sharing my highly tuned psychic gifts with so
many people throughout the United States and diverse parts of the world.
Presently I focus on my Life Coaching and writing. My first book,
published in 1990, teaches people how to receive the greatest benefits from
a psychic reading. My other writings were articles for periodicals and
a website. I enjoyed being a single mother to son. He and I were also
travel companions having fun exploring many US cities and camping.
Scotland and England were the two countries outside of the U.S. we visited.
We shared the love of adventure even when he became an adult and the
last foreign country we travelled to was Brazil. In 1980 I was introduced
to witchcraft and that interest lead me wanting to study more about
continued the goddess religions and Wicca.

Along with those spiritual interests I am also a Rosicrucian which is
not a religious study but rather a metaphysical scientific one of the
power of the mind. Two years ago I remarried and for our honeymoon we
travelled to Scotland which included visiting the Isle of Skye. I love the
sea and live only a few minutes from it in a town right outside San
Francisco where I board my rescue ex-race horse. Animals are a joy for me
and they seem to like me also.

When did you start writing?

In the eighth grade I won an award for writing an article about Life
in America. It wasnt until the early 1980s when I started to teach
such subjects ESP, the tarot, angels and spiritual communication did I
take up writing again for my students.

What genres have you written?

The only one book previously written was nonfiction how to book called
A Professional Psychic Reading/Alternative Counseling.

Is The Skye in June your first book?
No

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

It is about a rollicking Scottish family who immigrate to San Francisco
for a better life. The plot is a mother daughter mystery but it is so
much more as the girls come to age in the early hippy days. Their
father is a staunch Catholic who won&#8217;t budge from his rigid religious and
parenting views. This mixed with the mothers secret past, one daughters
visions of it and the sisters escapades gives the reader a lot of fast
moving changes. Although it is a fictional plot it is set in an
autobiographical framework.

What inspired you to write this book?

My five sisters and our zany adventures over the years. We ve had an
incredibly fun and exiting life as well some frightening experiences with
my dominant father. We have gotten through the worst of times and
celebrated the best together. We are good girls but that Scottish blood has
given us a bit of wildness in our adventures, I must admit.

How long did it take you to write it?

About three and a half years from the beginning of writing the story
first as a screenplay before developing it into a story upon the
suggestions of author friends.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Booksurge Publishers

Where is it on sale?

For an autographed copy visit my website juneahern.com. Of course it
can be also found on Amazon.

www.juneahern.com
Life Coach
Intuitive Arts Mentor
Author of The Skye in June & A Professional Psychic Reading/Alternative
Counseling




Interview with Olivia Brooks-Scrivanich, the author of Fiscal Pear and Shimmer in the Call of River Whale

Tell us about yourself first.

I love nature, being outdoors, music, great food of course and just life. All cultures fascinate me. Travel has always been at the top of my list as well. I grew up in Lorain, Oh. I am the second of six children born to Wayne and Lois Brooks. My siblings and I went to the same school my father and his brothers and sisters attended. For me, family is first in my life, after God. I have a wonderful husband, Paul, who I met shortly after moving to the Seattle area. We live in Kirkland WA and have a dog, Chance who is also in the book.

When did you start writing?

About 2 years ago during a camping trip to the awesome Oregon Coast.

What genres have you written?

Several genres are encompassed in my writing. Fantasy, fiction and adventure.

Is Fiscal Pear and Shimmer in the Call of River Whale your first book?

Yes. It's the first of 4 (so far) in the series.
Tell us about your book. What is it about?
My first book, tells the story of a cornucopia of odd creatures that combine forces to save a walking, talking pear from the clutches of a ghoulish bakery and her evil henchmen.

Fiscal Pear and Shimmers annual adventure turns frightening when this diabolical bakery and her wicked accomplices try to catch the pear. When Fiscal Pear and Shimmers friend, SOL, disappears in mid-flight while trying to get the duo to the Council of the Wise, they find themselves cornered by Cutter and his gang in the dead of the night in the forest. Terrified and defenseless against such a foe, they have no idea how they will escape this multi-bladed fiend and his gang! Totally unexpected and fantastic phenomena occur that actually save their lives.

What inspired you to write this book?

Toni Morrison, my aunt (she is my mother's sister) was a very strong source of inspiration and encouragement for me to fulfil my desire to write this book. I have always had an extremely active imagination and really had done nothing with it. One day I was watching one of Tyler Perry's interviews at the end of one of his plays on DVD.

Before he became a successful play writer he was working at a job like we all do. Stopping at his home one afternoon, he had the opportunity to turn on the Oprah Winfrey show. He heard her say, "Whatever comes into your mind, write it down...write it all down." That struck me! My mind seems to travel a million miles a minute.

The next day my husband and I were leaving on an annual camping trip to Oregon and the character "River Whale" popped into my mind. It made me laugh because it was so odd. I started to write down things. The first night in the tent, I was awakened by the name "Fiscal Pear", now that really made me laugh...and so it began.

How long did it take you to write it?

Approximately 18 months (www.fiscalpear.net).

Who is the publisher of your book?
Booksurge.

Where is it on sale?

Currently it's available on www.Amazon.com

Tell us about your other books/work.

Fiscal Pear and Shimmer in the Island Property - is about the disappearing whales, River Whale being one of them, and the duo are actively involved in finding out what happened to them and trying to save them. This one take place in the tropics with some unimaginable developments and a bit of the strange of course.

Fiscal Pear and Shimmer in the Sassafras Connection - someone is stealing the sassafras out of the woods, which Sillianne and her family need for their famous homemade rootbeer recipe. Fiscal Pear and Shimmer try to save the business by a stake out to find the culprit and end up in the lair of the villain!

Fiscal Pear and Shimmer in the Den of Dogs...still under construction. :)

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

My thoughts come to me in the middle of the night and actually wake me up. I know I have to write them down as they come or I will loose it. I have a full time job right now, so getting up when the thoughts are fresh is something I've had to force myself to do in the beginning. The second thing is shutting off the writing and getting ready for work.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
Yes.
How?

I had no formal training or schooling to become a writer. I did it all myself.

I found out what I needed to do on the Internet. All the information you need (and don't need) is on the net. Research and sifting as with anything, but trusting my instincts, I knew when I hit on what I was looking for.
What do you advise new writers to do?
1. Shut off the "adult, critical" part of your mind. When those thoughts would come to me, I would actually stop what I was doing, give the "adult, critical" thought my attention and actually close my eyes and literally tell it to "Shut-up" vocally, laugh and go on with what I was doing. Soon there was no interference.

2. Don't tell anyone what you are doing until you are done. This is your dream...you dream it. If you think about it...in our actual dreams we don't consult or ask someone if we should be dreaming this or that...we just dream it. It's that creative part of your mind that is coming out and giving you the ideas for your book.

3 One author I was in contact with wrote me and said "Critics are never remembered for their achievements." That's a very powerful and true statement - remember it.

4 Open the door and let your mind go out and play...just let it play!





Interview with Stephen Hawley Martin, the author of THE TRUTH: What You Must Know Before December 21, 2012


Tell us about yourself first. When did you start writing?

The first piece I recall writing was a short story I wrote in the 8th grade. I got an A+ on it, which surprised the hell out of my teacher because I wasnt exactly a model student. In college I became the Editor-in-Chief of the yearbook, and after college I went into advertising and did a lot of writing in my job. I started my first novel in 1985, which I worked on between 6 and 7:30 every morning for a couple of years. It was published in 1994.

What genres have you written?

I have written four novels (three thrillers and a whodunit), two business management books, a non fiction book about my ancestor, Susannah North Martin, who was hanged in 1692 as a witch in Salem, Mass, called A WITCH IN THE FAMILY. It is classified as a Personal Story and won the Writers Digest Book Award in that category. And I have written four books on in the Body-Mind-Spirit category, which is the one this new book falls into. In all, I have won three Writers Digest Book Awards -- the two other than for the witch book for novels -- and I won a first place for fiction from Independent Press. A WITCH IN THE FAMILY was also a finalist in the USA Book News competition last year, and I won first prize in 2007 for inspirational audio books from USA Book News for a CD called, SUCCESS! Through Auto Hypnosis.

Tell us about THE TRUTH. What is it about?

It is about how and why life works and how it can work for the reader. It's meant to cause a shift in the reader to higher consciousness. You see, there is a tenet of modern science that is incorrect and this book presents scientific evidence that should land it in the ash can where it belongs. The erroneous tenet is that intelligence and awareness came about as a result of evolution -- that through a series of accidents and lucky breaks that defy the odds and the second law of thermal dynamics, humans through natural selection have evolved such complex assemblies such as eyes, kidneys, ears, livers and so forth, and ultimately the most complex assembly of all, a brain -- and it is the brain that creates awareness. The evidence I present shows clearly that scenario is wrong. It shows that mind is the primal stuff of the universe. Consider a sunflower, for example. It has no brain. According to the erroneous tenet, it can have no awareness. But it does have awareness. It turns its face to the sun and it follows the sun across the sky from sunrise to dusk. At first blush this may not seem all that earth shattering, but the ramifications of this truth are enormous, particularly when it comes to how we create our personal and collective realities. That s what the book explores -- the ramifications of primal awareness-intelligence-mind that are most important to you and me and how we live and relate to the world. I truly believe a lot of people who read this book are going to make the shift to higher consciousness because of it.

What inspired you to write this book?

It is a book I felt compelled to write -- what someone who is religious would say they were called to do. I believe it can change the way many of us view the world and in doing so make life a lot better for millions of people. It will cause a person see life as a thrilling adventure he or she is on -- because thats really what life is. This may sound strange. All I can say is once a person reads the book they will understand what I am talking about.

How long did it take you to write it?

In a way I have been writing this book for the past 15 years. It was just piling up in my head getting ready to dump. And it is true I did use or rewrite some material from other body-mind-spirit books I have written that are no longer in print. What happened is that I had a guest on my weekly radio show who had done research that provided the piece of evidence I'd been missing that I needed to make the case I had been wanting to make. Once I had this, I sat down and wrote the book in a couple of weeks. It was like I was driven to get it done. It just poured out.

By the way, if anyone would like to hear my radio show -- it is called THE TRUTH ABOUT LIFE -- they can go to my web site, http://www.shmartin.com, and click on -Listen to Steve on the Radio- in the left hand column.

Who is the publisher of your book?

After I sold my interest in a successful advertising agency, I started a book publishing business called The Oaklea Press, which now has about 40 titles in print. Oaklea publishes my books as well as those by a lot of other authors.

Where is it on sale?

There is a special web site set up, http://www.TheTruthIsRevealed.com, where it can be pre ordered. It will ship about the middle of October, 2008. It can be pre ordered from the Oaklea site, http://www.OakleaPress.com, and of course from Amazon.com. Barnes & Noble will have in it in their stores just after the first of November, which is the official publication date. It will be on a display table at the front of the stores until about the middle of November, then on the Body-Mind-Spirit shelf. My distributor is working on getting the other chains to take it as well, and I imagine a lot of independent books stores will carry it, too. We have been promoting it to them.

Tell us about your other books/work.

My favorite novel is IN MY FATHERS HOUSE, a thriller which won the Writers Digest Book Award as well as First Prize for Fiction from Independent Publisher. I also recommend DEATH IN ADVERTISING, which is a whodunit set in an advertising agency. It also won the Writers Digest Award. I am proud of both these books. I guarantee they will keep you turning pages.

Then there is my weekly radio show. I have a lot of fun doing that and learn a lot from it. Here is a direct link:

http://www.webtalkradio.net/content/view/531/33/

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

When it comes to books, there is just a huge amount of competition. Something like 175,000 books are published each year in English. Maybe its even more than that now. And a lot of people hardly read -- probably have never read a whole book. A book has to be a lot more than just good or even very good to succeed. It needs some way to get noticed, and thats not easy in todays cluttered communications packed environment.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career? How?

It certainly has provided an avenue for distribution that did not 15 years ago when I was getting started.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Write a really good book and find some way to get it in front of a lot of people. Tom Clancy got his break when Ronald Reagan picked up THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER and the wheels of government came to a halt until he finished it. Patricia Cornwells break was when her first book won the Edgar Award. John Grishams came when his second book, THE FIRM, was sold to the movies -- even though a publisher hadnt yet accepted it. Something like that has to happen to get a book and author noticed. The bottom line is you have to have talent and use that talent to write a good book, and you have to have luck going for you as well -- first to get it published and second to get it noticed.

Thank you!





Interview with Sally Lee, the author of The Rabbit and The Snowman

Tell us about yourself first.

There is a lot of information about me on my web site,
www.leepublishing.net. I am a painter as well as an author/illustrator.
I started doing books as an offshoot of my painting. Plus I wanted to
try something new.

When did you start writing?

I have always written but was always a C- student so I didn't put much
stock in it. I am an artist first, writer later. Or maybe I should say,
I enjoy painting and illustrating much more than writing. Writing is
more of a chore. Painting is pure joy for me.

What genres have you written?

Kid's books, two adult novellas (Tunnels, and The Imperfect Daughter)

I this your first book?

No, The Rabbit and The Snowman is my 19th kid's book.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

A rabbit and a snowman become friends and endure the seasons with and
without each other. It is a story about the ebb and flow of friendship.

What inspired you to write this book?

I never really know they just come to the surface.

How long did it take you to write it?

A couple of days.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Booksurge.com

Why did you choose this publisher?

They have published all my books. I like them and they are very supportive.

Where is it on sale?

Amazon.


Tell us about your other books/work.

I write the stories first and then do the illustrations after. They are
two parts that compliment each other. I also do all the layout.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

The biggest hurdle that I have not crossed yet so far is trying to get
them on national bookstore shelves. I hope to win the Caldecott someday.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

Very much. My web site is a big bonus. I also post all my books there
for free except for the covers.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Don't let your book or story collect dust on your coffee table, you have
no excuse anymore with self-publishing companies.

Thank you!

Interview with Craig T. Feigh, the author of Little Bit & Big Byte, A day at the beach


Tell us about yourself first.

I'm an author, entrepreneur, and public speaker who has books in
several different genres:

All My Imperfections, I Inherited From My Mom (Humor) ....about
growing up with imperfections

The Sure Way To Him (Christian Living).....about assurance of heaven

When did you start writing?

I started writing several years ago when I realized I had something to
say about growing up in a flawed world.

I like to add humor to my writing whenever possible, since I am
lighthearted by nature.

I think I will always have something creative to say to the world.


What genres have you written?

Humor (All My Imperfections, I Inherited From My Mom)

Christian Living (The Sure Way To Him)

Children's Picture Books (Little Big & Big Byte)



Is this your first book?

I wrote a book several years ago called: What Do You Say To An
Answering Machine?
It was cute answerine machine messages (70 in all) that I turned into
Greeting Cards, called Phone Greetings.
They never quite took off, but at least I have different answering
machine messages to entertain my callers.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

A Little Bit and Big Byte is the FIRST Children's Picture Book that
uses Computer-related Characters!

They are two computer chips, who come out of the computer and take the
reader on an adventure (with their family and friends) into Cyberville.

There is fun to be had and lessons to be learned in Cyberville.
All the characters are computer-related. The parents (The Romies) are
Nettie and CD. The dog is the pointer, Click. The cat is Browser
(looking like a USB card).

The sister is Joy (thin as a stick). The friends are Webster (looking
like a dictionary) and Kay Board (sleek as the key board). The
villains are Vi and Russ.

What inspired you to write this book?

I was searching for Children's picture book (with a computer theme) for
my son a few years ago and I found NONE at the local book-store. I was
dumbfounded that there was no Children's picture books geared toward
computer literate children, so the light-bulb went off in my brain and
Little Bit & Big Byte were created.

How long did it take you to write it?

It only took me about two hours to write it, but it was tweaked for
about two months with my illustrator, to make sure all the characters
and pictures were just right.

Who is the publisher of your book?

The publisher is LifeVest Publishing out of Centennial, Colorado (a
suburb of Denver)

Where is it on sale?

Little Bit & Big Byte can be purchased through the publisher (LifeVest)

or on line at Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, Borders, and several other on

line booksellers. I always recommend Amazon.com since they ship for free if you purchase
over $25.


Tell us about your other books/work.

I'm currently in the process of completing (with my illustrator,
Patrick Carlson) my next book in the Little Bit & Big Byte series
called: Little Bit & Big Byte, Go Green.

All My Imperfections, I Inherieted From My Mom is a compilation of
short stories about my life (some true, some fictitious) growing up as a
flawed human. I talk about hair lose, acne, ugly feet, braces, white
skin (that needs a tan), learning how to swim and trying out for the
school play.....to name a few. It's a fun, humorous book in the likes
of Erma Bombeck.

The Sure Way To Him is an easy to read, overview of the Christian faith
from a laymans point of view. It uses the acronym S.U.R.E. and
T.O.H.I.M to help the reader remember and put into practice God-given
principles that help assure us of eternal life and successful living here and now. I say that "it's the most important thing we can do in our life."

I have been getting great reviews on ALL of my books.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

Really, I'm just getting started in my writing career. I think the
major challenge for me, at this point, is lack of name recognition and
industry acceptance. I think this will come over time, as my books
continue to sell and I continue to receive excellent reviews.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

Yes, in the fact that it allows me to market my book to the world and
helps me focus on an international audience when I write.

What do you advise new writers to do?

I would advise them to have a creative idea (with a niche market if
possible) and write it in a manner that is unique to the personality of
the author.

If you have something worthwhile to say to the world....say it!

Do you have a website?

Yes, you can get an overview on all my books (with a link to purchase)
at:

www.craigfeigh.com


Thank you!

Interview with Georgia Weithe, the author of Shining Moments: Finding Hope in Facing Death.

Tell us about yourself first.

When did you start writing?
I started writing when I decided to leave teaching and began working as an independent educational consultant. I had many opinions I wanted to express on the educational system and how to educate children, and then I branched out into interviews with educators and finally I began writing a book.

What genres have you written?

So far exclusively non-fiction.



Is this your first book?

Shining Moments: Finding Help in Facing Death is my first book.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

Shining Moments is about my experience in helping my Dad on his end-of-life journey, and the journey I found myself on when facing the reality of death for the first time in my life. I was very frightened and wanted someone to give me a map showing me everything I should do to help him, as well as give me directions for how to overcome my fears. I discovered very few people would talk to me about death, so I was on my own.

The book gives an intimate glimpse into my experiences with my Dad in the final days of his life and how I was able to support him and help him let go. Of course everyones experience is going to be different, but anyone who is going to find themselves in the company of someone who is dying may find it reassuring to read about someone elses experience. To my surprise, the experience was the opposite of depressing. It was uplifting and spiritually charged. I never expected that facing death would be one of the shining moments of my life, but it was.

We spend our entire lives running from the one thing we fear the most. As with any other fear, when we turn and face it, it shrinks. I discovered that death has many things to teach us about living, and I came to think of it as a teacher and a friend. I feel the story shines a positive light and death and helps us accept its presence in our lives.

What inspired you to write this book?

In the course of my Dad&#8217;s illness, I kept a journal. I realized that what I had written was exactly the kind of information I had needed but was unable to obtain from others. So I wrote the book that I had needed, but could not find. By sharing my experiences and the insights gained through them, Im hoping I can provide others with a tool for facing death with courage and hope.

How long did it take you to write it?

Believe it or not, it took me ten years to write. But not because I was procrastinating; it was because I was juggling two other careers in addition to having a family.

Who is the publisher of your book?

I have formed a publishing company called Reflections Press to publish the book.

Where is it on sale?

It can be purchased on my website, www.shiningmoments.net, or from Amazon.com.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tell us about your other books/work.

My next book is just in the dreaming stages. It will be a compilation of some of my writing about teaching, with the theme of awakening gentleness in children.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

I have never been one to take the easy road, and travel where everyone else is going. It seems I am always going in a different direction and I have to forge my own path. Even the topic I have chosen to write about in my first book. Its not everyones favorite subject, but I feel it is so important that we acknowledge that life, as we know it, does not go on forever. When we do, everything takes on a new importance and beauty.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
Definitely.

How?
It has been useful every step of the way. When there is something I need to know about any aspect of writing, publishing or marketing, I can find the answers on the Internet.

Also, the publicity possibilities are fabulous. News of the book can reach people all over the world, on websites like yours, for examples. It is an amazing resource.

What do you advise new writers to do?

The best advice I can give is to write what you know; what is in your heart that wants to be expressed. Anyone can come up with a good idea, research it and write about it. But if you write about something that really matters to you, and bring your own unique gifts and talents to your project, you will have something to offer that nobody else can duplicate. If you speak from a deep place within you, it will touch a deep place in others.
Interview with Alexandra Tesluk, the author of The Ashes of Innocence, A Memoir.

Tell us about yourself first.

I am a wife, mother and grandmother of 3. I have lived most of my life in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. When I first immigrated to Canada with my mother and sister from war torn Hannover, Germany in 1948, I lived in Thunder Bay, Ontario. At the age of 16, I moved to Toronto which became my home.

I have worked all of my life in the office environment. My last position was with the Provincial Government for over 20 years. I enjoy people contact and interaction with my colleagues. I left the business world 7 years ago and spend my time reading, enjoying the gifts of my grandchildren and spending time with mother nature at our family cottage. I also enjoy the companionship and love of my two beautiful felines.

I have spent many years researching my family tree and found it exciting to see it grow from virtually an unknown background only to discover many aunts, uncles, cousins etc. I am fascinated with their history as their history is part of who I am and I have grounded my roots on my mother&#8217;s side of the family.

Throughout the years I have travelled to beautiful places in Costa Rica, Mexico, the Carribean and of course Europe. I fell in love with Paris, the City of Love and Light and would not hesitate to go back in a heartbeat! Another quaint city of Olkusz, Poland holds many beautiful memories for me.


When did you start writing?

I started to journal when I was in my early 30&#8217;s. I always felt a need to write and express myself, however my career in the business world and the responsibilities of being a single parent did not allow that gift to grow.

What genres have you previously written?
None.

Is The Ashes of Innocence your first book?
Yes.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

The Ashes of Innocence is a true story based on my life. As a Ukrainian-born woman, I endured various unspeakable nightmares of the human condition. It is my story of survival; the longing for love and protection; verbal, physical, mental and sexual abuse; a fatherless childhood and so much more. I share my painful path into adulthood and my ultimate victory over the challenges that I was presented with.

It is a story of my passion to find my father. I felt a complete emptiness and displacement growing up without him in my life. As I entered my teens and discovered that he may very well be alive, I felt renewed hope that perhaps there may be new family or siblings whom I so desperately wanted to meet and have in my life. It would have given me a feeling of completeness to know that I belonged somewhere. My longing for my father was great and my love for the man that I really didn&#8217;t know was intuitive and strong.

My story is a cross-continental journey in human growth and wisdom. It combines accurate historical facts with authentic descriptions of Ukrainian, European and Canadian life. It is also a record of the devastating effects of WWII on the lives of countless displaced persons (DPs) across Europe and the world. From my neglected childhood, I constantly battled to blossom into the woman that I knew lived inside of my shell of fear.

It is a story that can be shared with fathers, grandfathers, daughters and sons who will be touched by the steps I took to memorialize and honor my father. I returned to my roots and planted a maple tree and laid a plaque at the former Camp Lyssenko, the last place where my father and I were together. It will also touch the hearts and souls of mothers, sisters, brothers, aunts and uncles and many more! This memoir was written to serve as a living testament of my love for the father that I never met but have always searched for.

My memoir is a book of healing and inspiration. So many today suffer profound detriment from the issues I address so boldly &#8211; so openly in its pages. We need stories of victory like The Ashes of Innocence. We need to realize that others too can triumph. From victims of failed marriages to broken homes, to the survivors of suicide, addiction and violence, my story is a guide for those afflicted. It is no ordinary book. The reader will value it greatly for all of the lessons taught so eloquently within.

What inspired you to write this book?

The labels and stigma of being a "DP" (displaced person) throughout my childhood was a traumatic start in growing up. The absence of my father in my life played a big role in having this memoir come together. I often thought how different my life would have been if he had been in my life to guide me with a father's love. The two photographs that I had of him confirmed that he did exist and gave me the strength and determination to approach numerous institutions looking for answers. I was going to leave no stone unturned!

When I looked at the overall picture of my life, I felt many would benefit from my experience. Not only the loss of my father but the loss of my daughter to adoption when I was still only a teenager myself. And the gift of hope to those women who have travelled the same road as I did, to search for their children and that positive reunions do happen!

How long did it take you to write it?

It took me over 6 years to write my book. It was always in my heart but so difficult to put on paper. I struggled with the thoughts of writing the book for a long time. I was not only exposing my soul to the world that I felt nervous about, but did I really want to share those dreadfully deep scars that were so very personal and hidden for such a long time? As I was writing, I was also healing and found the gift of forgiveness. I also worked with an editor to help me fine tune my grammatical errors.

Who is the publisher of your book?

My memoir is self published. I have chosen Volumes Publishing in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada to print and distribute my book.


Where is it on sale?
It can be bought at www.volumesdirect.com or they can be reached by telephone at 1-888-571-2665.
The book is also available online at Amazon.com and Chapters.ca. I am in the process of promoting and marketing my book to appear in bookstores in Canada and the United States and hopefully Europe.

Tell us about your other books/work.

I have made a commitment to earmark a percentage of my royalties to the website www.wewerechildren.org
My profile will be presented with the hope that viewers will recognize our family and help in identifying my father. I am thrilled that my story will be one of the first to be featured once the website is up and running. It will be similar to the website Missing Identity where many children who survived the Holocaust are still searching for information regarding their past.

I am being very optimistic that my memoir will help uncover the mystery surrounding my father, Andreas and that I will be able to write a sequel to &#8220;Ashes&#8221;. I have been asked by many who have read my memoir, if I plan to add to the book. Of course my answer is &#8216;yes&#8217;!!

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your writing?

I was challenged in the fact that "did the market need another personal story and memoir such as Ashes"? My answer was &#8216;yes&#8217;. Dysfunction on some level exists in 85-95% of all families. In addition, in the United States, the rate of victimization as a result of child abuse is 12.3%. In Canada, the figure is only slightly lower. Of these children, 80% grow up to be diagnosed with at least one psychiatric disorder. Many of these people then marry abusive spouses. During the 1960&#8217;s and for many years before and after, there were no shelters for women and their children. There was simply no place to go, so many women remained in their abusive relationships, whether this was at home with their parents or with their husbands/spouses. Of course, these abusive relationships were never discussed due to feelings of shame and guilt which caused total silence on the part of the victim.

One can never hear too many personal life stories from others. They offer validation, inspiration, and the knowledge that we are not alone in our troubles and sorrows.

My family and friends knew so little about my growing up. I wanted to spare them the horrific details of my childhood and said very little about it. However, writing my memoir was a release of those secrets and scars and brought me peace. It also brought me closer to my children. Love and happiness can reach us even through the fog that abuse leaves behind.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
Yes.
How?

It opened up the world of publishing and showed me many avenues that were available in having my book published.
It was a valuable tool in researching WWII and helped me understand what mankind had to endure to finally experience peace.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Follow that dream and make it a reality. You may feel your story ~~ whether fiction or non-fiction ~~ may not capture the reading audience you are writing for. Believe in yourself! You have nothing to lose and one can only grow with the experience as it presents itself. It is a road that I would travel again and again.

Interview with (Sally H Taylor), the author of (The Magic in You!
and The Most Valuable Treasure)

Tell us about yourself first.
When did you start writing?

I have been creating since grade school. I feel I have learned a lot in life from making mistakes and having to live with the consequences of my decisions.
I hope my childrens books will become somewhat of a moral compass for
others, both children and adults.

What genres have you written?

Childrens


Is (The Magic in You ) your first book?

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

The book is about a little misplaced flower who grows up on the wrong side of the road. She is teased because she is difference from the other flowers. Then a goat comes by and eats on of her petals. Then a car runs over her leaf leaving her wounded and damaged.
As the book progresses she learns that she possesses the power with in
her to either remain a victim of her circumstances or rise above them.

What inspired you to write this book?

As an adult I went through an abusive marriage and a divorce. During my healing process I started to journal-not about my abusive husbands issues, but my own issues. During which time I learned along about forgiveness. I learned that forgiveness is just a state of mind reflected through an attitude and an attitude is a choice. When we
choose to forgive we choose to release ourselves from the bondage of anger and
resentment. If we ignore these negative feelings for too long they are
destined to turn into a grudge. A grudge requires a lot of negative energy about
things we can not change. In the end all it accomplishes is that it gives our
offender power over us. A choice to forgive does not mean we endorse the damage
done to us. However, learning to respond in a more constructive manner becomes,
for us, the difference between knowledge and wisdom.

How long did it take you to write it?

A little over a year to finish the
book and the illustrations.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Outskirts Press

Where is it on sale?

Amazon.com and B&N. com

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tell us about your other books/work.

My second book is "The Most Valuable Treasure", when discusses the subject of helping others and friendship.

I have also illustrated another book for another author called "Kelsie and her
Special Gifts".

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

Time to market with a full-time job.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

Yes.

How?

There is quite a bit of free marketing avenues available on-line.

What do you advise new writers to do?

As a childrens writer I would advise them to say as much as they can in as few words as possible, and have lots of colorful illustrations that help tell the story.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thank you!



Interview with Jeremy McGuire the author of O Shaughnessey: A Boy and His Leprechaun

Tell us about yourself first.

After 20 odd years as an actor, on and off, mostly off, , and having picked up along the way a Masters of Fine Arts in Theatre, I returned to my first love, which is writing and drawing. I began as a playwright, and then branched off into narrative fiction.
I currently live in Chicago, Illinois, USA, with my wife and daughter, two cats and a dog.

When did you start writing?

I dont think I remember beginning; it is something I have always done as far back as I can recall. I did begin to consider it a worthwhile occupation in the 1970â&#8364;&#8482;s and got more serious about it. That, as it turned out, was a mistake. I have since learned that serious writers produce pretentious bunk (I have some experience with that) so I returned to a more of a sense of play.

What genres have you written?

Drama

Childrens Literature
Television
Journalism
Some poetry, but not a lot and not all that good.


Is O Shaughnessey your first book?

Yes. As I said before, I have been writing mostly plays, and that may be why the dialogue in a story comes most easily to me. It is only recently that I have considered publishing my fiction. But, there is a great deal of fear regarding publishing, and having heard many horror stories about first time authors, I conducted an extensive search for the best means, finally settling on POD publishing as a route that offered me the most satisfactory way of making and distributing a book.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

I had just finished writing and producing a childrens television program for a local Public Television station, and was casting about for another project. I do believe in actively searching for material rather than waiting for inspiration. I remembered a character I had invented in High School where I was known not only as the guy who drew cartoons for the newspaper, but also as the kid with a personal leprechaun named O Shaughnessey. (I wonder that I didnt get beaten up.)
One night after putting my children to sleep, I thought, I wonder what they would do if they woke up tomorrow and O Shaughnessey was sitting on their beds.
The story began there.
The book is about a seven year old boy who discovers, with the aid of a leprechaun that has attached itself to him, a real sense of his own power.
Bobby Mahoneys parents are divorcing and his world is crumbling. He feels powerless over the most important events in his life. At about this time, O Shaughnessey shows up. With the aid of the leprechaun, and often against his opposition, the child comes to realize that his fate is not fixed and that he can question the way things are and alter his destiny with the power of his imagination and will. He is not in control of what happens to him, but he is responsible for how he reacts.

What inspired you to write this book?

Most importantly, the experience I had reading The Velveteen Rabbit to my daughter. To me, that is the standard by which childrens literature is judged. It is my opinion that there should be more books like it, so I set out to write one.
O Shaughnessey is not an attempt to copy the earlier work; indeed, there can be only one. It is an attempt to write one in the same vein, a book that is an exciting adventure and at the same time an uplifting lesson in love, courage, self-sacrifice and individual power.
How close I came to that standard, I will leave it to others to determine.
I was also inspired by some events in my own history. It took some time and many false starts before I settled on the main conflict of a small boy dealing with the loss of his father. My own parents were divorced at a time when that was not so common as it is today. It was perhaps only natural that I should write about it. So, the story is absolutely true, every word of it.
Okay, except for the leprechauns, the flying hat, the ban-shees and the death coach. Other than that, it is all true.
Mostly.

How long did it take you to write it?

Once I got the voice of the storyteller, it was written in about a week. Before that, it was an excruciatingly long time. Before the story started to write itself, I had to discover who it was who was telling the story. It wasnt me. When I discovered the Shenache, the Irish Storyteller, all I had to do was listen to him and write down what he said.
The illustrations took longer. I had to teach myself to draw in pan and ink, a most unforgiving medium, but, it had to be done. I could think of no better way to illustrate the story than with black and white pen drawings based on those of the Victorian Era. To me, John Tenniel and Sydney Patchet are gods.
I aspire.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Outskirts Press. When I was looking for a way of making a book, and I do think in terms of book-making instead of merely writing, I happened upon Outskirts, which was in partnership in several ventures with Writers Market. That decided it for me. I knew the company would be reputable because Writers Market would not align itself with a publisher that didnt treat writers well.

Where is it on sale?

Amazon.com
Barnes&Noble.com
Ingram Baker and Taylor (retail)

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tell us about your other books/work.

My plays are:
From All Things Evil 14th Century France during the Inquisition
Sister Octogenarians keep their dead sister on the couch for 5 years
A Fertile Field White Supremacy and Xenophobia in the American Midwest
Hegemon (In progress) Pontius Pilate tries to govern a country where his presence is an Insult. (Modern day?)
Other fiction:
O Shaughnessey:
The Faerie Circle (In progress) Bobby Mahoneys 12-year old daughter discovers her own Gift of the Sight.
From All Things Evil A drama-novella based on the play.


What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

White paper.
Or a blank screen these days.
It takes a tremendous amount of discipline to face the horror of the blank page and write anyway, and every day, often with no thought as to the final result. The question is always, Can I do it again, how long before I dry up?
There is also the problem of publishing in a manner that takes control over the final product away from the author, who should have the most control.


Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
How?

Oh yes, I sometimes think that I have been waiting for the technology all my life. There is a purity in POD publishing that appeals to my democratic nature. I am perfectly willing to allow the public to decide the merits of my work rather than a committee of suits who are mostly looking to bring out the next Harry Potter.
William Goldman once said of Hollywood producers. Nobody knows anything. That is to say, no one knows what will be a success or not, so they incline toward what has most recently succeeded. Well, if nobody knows anything, I may as well trust myself and the reading public.

What do you advise new writers to do?

First and foremost, do not write only what you know. You may start there, but dont stay there. Academics are wrong in that regard. The advice to write what you know limits you to what you know. One must stretch the imagination. Every story begins with a what if? not a This is. A writer must free him or her self from the bonds of what is known.
Secondly, trust yourself. Get advice when needed, but do not be bound to it, even if it is from someone with a lot of impressive letters behind his name. Remember: Nobody knows anything.
Thirdly: Never sell all of your rights. Conan Doyle sold A Study in Scarlet for five pounds and never made another penny. However, he did not sell the rights to the characters and so got very rich off of Holmes and Watson. So, no matter how desperate you are, do not sell all the rights.
Fourth: Have a day job. Very few writers get rich or even make a living from writing fiction. We write because we must, not to make money (although none of us objects to that prospect). A good day job also allows you to publish if you dont want to hand your work over to those who really dont know anything.
If I seem to be harsh about mainstream publishers, I dont mean to be. I would not seriously object to being published that way, but on my own terms. First time authors rarely get to set their own terms.
Interview with Geoff Hunter the author of Breaking a Sunbeam

Tell us about yourself first.

I am married with two grown up children, one loves mountaineering and the outdoor life, and the other, a medical research sister has immigrated with her family to Canada.

I have spent most of my working life in the IT industry, managing mid-range systems and PC networks in commercial organizations in the UK.

Other than writing I enjoy music of all kinds, especially jazz. Many years ago I played saxophone in a number of dance bands - before disco!

I used to be a great DIY enthusiast but after a 5 year project completely renovating a Victorian school house in Wiltshire I decided not to replace my worn out tools and settled on more leisurely pursuits such as reading surfing the web.

A few years ago we moved to France and spent many happy days enjoying the wine and fantastic scenery. However we finally found our inadequate command of the French language was limiting our horizons so we returned to the UK and settled in Wales (no, we cannot speak Welsh either!).

When did you start writing?

My interest in writing grew slowly over the years and finally took off when I became self-employed doing consultancy work in 1998. I have always enjoyed reading good adventure stores from such authors as Alistair MacLean, Dean Koontz, and especially Wilbur Smith, plus many science fiction authors. My first book took just 6 months of evening work. I am now retired and writing full time.

What genres have you written?

My first book combined my interest in history and science fiction which I self published in 2001 as The Golden Thread under a pen name of Neil Farrago (now rewritten as Visions of Conquest under my own name).

The following year I wrote another historical adventure set in medieval England, following the Norman Conquest in 1066, titled The Silver Sun.

While in France I decided to try my hand at a modern thriller which became Breaking a Sunbeam.

Hence I have fallen under the mantle of a genre-hopping author!

Is Breaking a Sunbeam your first book?

No, it is my third.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

Breaking a Sunbeam started with the thought &#8211; how far will a man go to protect the woman he loves? I saw it as a love story - to see how the relationship between a man (Jake) and his wife (Kay) can be stretched and how a certain degree of infidelity can be tolerated without breaking the 'absolute' of true love. In order to test the hero&#8217;s commitment I had to invent some really violent scenes where Kay is kidnapped and Jake forced to assist with a series of acts of retribution by a gang lead by a beautiful woman - Juel.

During a frenetic shoot-out Jake saves Juel&#8217;s life. This triggers a change in their relationship which slowly develops to the point where Juel realises she has finally met a man she could love and Jake desperately wants to help her break the psychological chains holding her to her tortured past. Maybe in another time and place they could have been lovers but Jake holds onto his love for his wife and is determined to do whatever it takes to free her (even if that means sleeping with Juel!).

The book can be read as a straight action thriller or as a love story, or just a tangled mixture of both!

What inspired you to write this book?

This is difficult to answer. I have personally never seen an act of violence - traffic accident, mugging, burglary, drunken brawl, etc. Perhaps at the back of my mind I wondered how I would react if faced with a real life-threatening situation.

How long did it take you to write it?

I wrote the book over a period of about two years, working on and off to start and then speeding up towards the finish.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Trafford Publishing. A publish on demand company based in Victoria, Canada.

Where is it on sale?

At most of the major book shops, Waterstones, Smiths, in UK and Barnes & Noble, Borders, in USA but primarily on the web at Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk, (where discounted prices are offered by a number sellers) also Google books (they have a good search-inside feature). In fact any bookshop in the world can order from Trafford.com

Tell us about your other books/work.

The Silver Sun is an action-packed historical adventure set in England during the final days of the reign of William the Conqueror. This is also a double layered story where beneath the action scenes a family drama unfolds as man fights to protect his son and daughter who he thought died with their mother many years ago.

Visions of Conquest is a unique (I think) blend of action set in medieval times with a science fiction twist - a space ship of a cruel warrior race crash-lands into a medieval castle. The warriors struggle to survive without their high-tech weapons against a group of young knights who on the farthest frontier of their kingdom must protect their love-ones from a maelstrom of death and destruction.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

Probably the must difficult and frustrating was the challenge of getting the books published.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
Definitely.

How?

In the search for a publisher. That&#8217;s how I found Trafford Publishing.

What do you advise new writers to do?

This is almost impossible to answer but I guess in one word - persevere. Never give up and believe in yourself. Also, do not forget to get your manuscript edited by a third party &#8211; you will never spot your own errors!
Written Interview from Sue Patton Thoele (The Mindful Woman) for Liana Metal's website


Tell us about yourself first.

Probably the best place to find out a bit about me is to go to my website-- www.suepattonthoele.com I am a retired psychotherapist, group leader and Hospice chaplain. I'm married to a great man and have four adult children. I've done quite a bit of public speaking, seminar leading and semi-professional acting. Now, I'm happily living a quieter, simpler life.

When did you start writing?

I was forty-five when the Muse grabbed me by the ears and would not let go until I totally committed to writing my first book entitled The Courage To Be Yourself. We self-published that book and were lucky enough to have it picked up by a publisher about a year after its original pub date.

Is The Mindful Woman your first book?

No. It is my eleventh book. The title and sub-title; The Mindful Woman: Gentle Practices for Restoring Calm, Finding Balance & Opening Your Heart are pretty self-explanatory. I've always found that writing about a topic was a great way to deepen my understanding of it. And I wanted to understand and practice mindfulness in a more profound way. The Mindful Woman turned out to be the most joyous and glitch-free writing experience I've ever had. I can't help but believe that was at least partially true because I was steeped in the concept of awareness and mindfulness every step of the way.

From concept to finished creation The Mindful Woman took me a little over a year and a half. It is published by New Harbinger Press and they are a joy to work with! It is on sale at bookstores, amazon.com, directly from New Harbinger, and really anywhere that sells books, except supermarkets... but we're working on that market also.

Tell us about your other books.

My first, The Courage To Be Yourself was written for women who needed to overcome emotional dependence (or co-dependence) and live their own unique lives. It's still selling very well. I have done several meditation books with two-page blurbs that give you ideas and inspirations on how to be happier and healthier emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually. I wrote a marriage book entitled Heart Centered Marriage and a book about holding on to hope after 9/11. It is called Growing Hope. One title that has a special place in my heart is The Courage To Be a Stepmom: Finding Your Place Without Losing Yourself. From personal experience, I know how hard step-mothering can be, so it warms my heart to hear from stepmoms who have been helped by my book.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Go for it! If you feel strongly about a topic and have the urge to write about it, please honor that soul-call and pursue your dream! I never expected to be a writer, but am so incredibly thankful that I was literally compelled to write the first book.


Interview with Kurt Kamm, the author of One Foot In The Black

Tell us about yourself first.

I am a retired Wall Street executive and spent five years as a masters (55 -60) bicycle racer. I moved to Malibu 5 years ago. The first thing you realize about Malibu, after its beauty, is the fire danger. Every year Malibu has fires. Every 10 years, Malibu has devastating fires. In October and November 2007, we had two terrible fires, which destroyed 60 homes. The October fire was driven by 80 m ph winds. It literally burned to my front door. My closest neighbor lost his house and a church nearby was destroyed. I saved my house as a result of the things about firefighting, which I learned while writing my book.

When did you start writing?

I began writing when I moved to Malibu, although I have always wanted to be a writer,
One Foot in the Black is my first book. I am currently half way through a second book about arson, called Red Flag Warning.

What inspired you to write this book?

Malibu is full of fire stations and fire camps. Camp 13, a female inmate camp trains women to work on wildland fires. Camp 8, is a helitak camp, where crews train to fight fires using modified Blackhawk helicopters. One day when I was riding my bike home, I passed Pepperdine University and saw an LA County Fire helicopter on the lawn, with several firefighters standing around it. I wondered what their lives were like and thought I would write a book about it.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

I was fortunate to have access to all the fire stations, camps and training academies of LA County as well as CalFire (CA state fire agency). My book tells the story of a boy from Michigan who is forced out of his home by an abusive father. He comes to California and becomes a firefighter. His role model and mentor is killed in a wildfire burnover. He struggles to cope with his father's influence on his life and the loss of his mentor.

While the book is complete fiction, it is based on real situations and people involved in firefighting in California

What does the title mean?

One foot in the black is a wildland firefighter's phrase. It refers to a position on the fireline, which is next to an area already burned ("the black"). It is at once the most dangerous place, usually close to the flames, and the safest place, near a zone into which escape is possible. It is a metaphor for the life of my character, who faces the dangers of firefighting, and is seeking safety and comfort from his fire crew.

How long did it take you to write it?

Almost 3 years

Who is the publisher of your book?

Lulu.com

Where is it on sale?

It can be purchased on line at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. It is also for sale on the website of the Wildland Firefighter Foundation, which receives all profits from books it sells. (http://wffoundation.org)

Tell us about your other books/work.

I am halfway through a novel about a serial arsonist in LA County. It has several interesting characters including a priest who claims arson is the Devil's work and that arsonists need exorcism.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your writing career?

Because my education is in economics, I had no specific training in writing. I have taken many classes, but still had to reinvent the wheel and learn everything. I did not have any fellow writers or professors to help me.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

The Internet is incredible. My novel ranges across the US. Each time I needed information, I got it off the Internet. I have a scene at the Chicago bus station. I've never been there, but found pictures of it on the Internet.

The Internet is also a powerful marketing tool. I can reach millions of potential readers.

What do you advise new writers to do?

Write about something which interests you and will give you pleasure. Let the process carry you away. The journey is the best part and you may be amazed at what you produce.

Thanks!
Interview with Henry Melton, the author of Emperor Dad

Tell us about yourself first.

I was born Christmas 1949. So every time I have to tell someone my age, I take the current year and subtract 50. It's usually correct, but it's not often I think about my age. Life comes in stages, and the latest started back in 2001 when I left my software job and began writing full time. My wife and I bought an RV and began spending more time on the road than we did at home. Mary Ann Melton is an award-winning nature photographer and we plot our travels across the country based on my science fiction cons and her National Wildlife Refuges. I'm often the driver for her photographic excursions. She hauls out the cameras and sneaks up on nature. I plop my laptop on the steering wheel and work on my stories. Back in 2007 we packed light, and spent a month in southern Africa where she captured the wildlife and scenery and I taught writing classes at the George Benson Christian College at Namwiamga Mission in Zambia.

When did you start writing?

I've been writing since high school, but I can remember fantastic tales I told to my gradeschool friends. My first sale was while I was in college and I've written a number of short stories for the magazines over the decades I was gainfully employed and raising the kids.

What genres have you written?

Most things that appear on the laptop screen are science fiction stories, although I've dabbled in straight adventure and an occasional fantasy. In the past few years a story often starts in the ordinary and abruptly drops into the unusual.
----------------------------------------------------
Is Emperor Dad your first book?

First book? No. Back in the early 80's, I wrote a word-processor (I told you I was into software) and wrote a book describing the design philosophy and all the secret tips and techniques. Unfortunately it was for the TRS-80 right before the IBM-PC took over the world and made the effort obsolete.
But if you mean is Emperor Dad my first published novel? Then yes.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

Emperor Dad is a young adult science fiction adventure. High school football player James discovers that his father has invented teleportation and is running a very dangerous game to get the world prepared for its effects on civilization. Of course, James hacks his father's computer and acquires the teleporation access for himself. Only when the world's security forces fight back does everything get very dangerous and falls to James to save the day.

What inspired you to write this book?

Honestly, it was the failure of my decades old technical career that inspired me to indentify James's father as a laid-off scientist with a boss that prized deadly dull documentation over innovation. There's a passage where he looks at a list of great ideas rejected unread by his boss. He thinks, "I'd love to show them what one good innovation is worth!" That was the germ of the book. But when a back yard inventor comes up with teleportation, and the whole world would suffer if he didn't handle his responsibilites correctly -- that determined much of the plot.

How long did it take you to write it?

Probably about six months. I wrote two books a year for several years straight, although I've only done one in 2007.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Wire Rim Books. And who, you ask, is behind this forward-looking enterprise. It's some guy named Henry Melton. I can't think of anyone who has more faith in my works. It's a pleasure working with him.

Where is it on sale?

I'll sell you a copy. Emperor Dad is currently available from most of the on-line bookstores, or it can be ordered directly from Wire Rim Books. www.wirerimbooks.com. It is printed through Lightningsource and is available through Ingram.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tell us about your other books/work.

My most recently released book is Roswell or Bust, another YA science fiction adventure. In it, Joe works for his family owned motel until he meets a cute mute girl and finds himself holding a universal translator and running from the Men in Black. They begin a 2000 mile road trip through the Southwest, collecting the most interesting Guests he'd every encountered.

There are a number of other books due out that form a "Small Towns, Big Ideas" series. In these, high school aged heroes in the here-and-now encounter one of the classic science fiction themes like teleporation, alien encouters, time travel, nanotech robots, etc.
Eventually I'd like to re-publish an anthology of my earlier short fiction, many published in Analog and other anthologies. Certainly, I'd like Catacomb, my most famous short story to be permanently in print.
I have other novels in the wings. I'm not likely to run short of material any time soon.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

I'm too timid for words, in public. I speculate that I began writing to compensate for being unable to hold my own in a random conversation. But exclusive of my personal shortcomings, I find that my style has fallen between the cracks of what the major publishers are looking for. I labored for decades pushing the standard submissions through the standard doorways, and "not matching our current publishing needs". Emperor Dad had collected a long string of rejections by editors and agents before I decided to publish it myself. It received the 2008 Darrell Award for best novel just last month.

Nothing forces you to push the comfort envelope and try new things like an abundance of gray hair. Starting my own publishing company was very uncomfortable. I was taught by some of the best names in the field, sitting in all those "how to be published" panels at science fiction conventions, and doing this was unthinkable by the standards of previous decades.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
How?

The answer is in flux. Certainly people read my blog and visit my website, but whether that has sold more books is up for debate. But has it helped me personally? Yes, definitely.

I was at a round banquet table at the Darrell Awards and Dan Gambler, the publisher of Meadowhawk Press looked at me and said, in effect, "You don't talk much, do you?" It's true. Conversation swirls around me and although I may have something pertinent to say, the topic has moved on long after I've formulated the right sentence to use. I write because I can't talk. And that's certainly as true for blogs and email interviews as it is for novels and short stories. I've been blogging for more years than the term has been in existence, and it's very helpful, enabling me to express opinions and share experiences. Backspace and edit doesn't work well verbally.

What do you advise new writers to do?

The whole series of lessons I gave to the students in Zambia was focussed on finding your authorial voice. It's elusive and hard to define, but absolutely necessary. You write until your true self learns to talk. Only then will people, who have learned to tune out all kinds of facades, stop to listen to you. We have so much access here, and those students, with no internet access and one mailing address for a thousand students, have so little. But the same lessons apply. You can check my Resources for Writers page at http://www.henrymelton.com/0/WriterResources.html for some materials I used.

The short answer is to write and then write some more. It will come.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Thank you!


Henry Melton -- hmelton@mac.com -- http://HenryMelton.com -- http://henrymelton.blogspot.com/
Where in the world is Henry Melton? --> http://ical.mac.com/hmelton/Events
Buy my books! http://WireRimBooks.com
Phil. 4:8

Interview with Jonathan Harrison, the author of We Are All One: A call to spiritual uprising.


Tell us about yourself first.

I am a healer, sound therapist and consciousness guide and founded The Dubon Centre of Healing and Awareness www.dubon.org in Gascony, France with my wife Wendy and fellow truth seeker Sharon Jeffries.


When did you start writing?

Writing as such was never something that I seriously undertook until 'WE ARE ALL ONE' came about through fate in 2007, although throughout my life I have always had the creative urge.

What genres have you written?

I only write inspirational / spiritual. I wish I could write other styles, but I believe we all have a niche or area that we can best express. For those interested in a deeper nonduality, I started a personal blog: www.themysticway.blogspot.com which is of interest to those reading Advaita and associated philosophies.

Is (WE ARE ALL ONE ) your first book?

Yes, but I have written a lot of articles and blogs since the book - I've got the bug!

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

The book is about making it clear to readers that we are a body - mind - spirit being and helping people to recognise that by consciously evolving themselves, the world can change for the better.

By incorporating what I call spatial consciousness into our lives we can look towards creating a safer, cleaner and more hospitable world for our children and our children's children in the decades to come.

We need to act NOW in evolving a planetary consciousness - a new framework that undertakes wide ranging changes in society in order for this to happen. The spiritual awakening in the world today has a reason - we each need to look at ourselves truthfully to see what part we can play to help that come to fruition.

What inspired you to write this book?

I had an enlightening near death experience and then wrote the book in six days that followed. It was a case of something that needed to be said from deep within my soul. I didn't choose to write a book - it just happened. That same frequency of conciousness is in all men and women world over - we need to recognise what we are capable of becoming in order to realise that which we already have within us, our spiritual abilities and qualities.

How long did it take you to write it?

The book took me six days, I was in a heightened state and just recognised the need to write. The most time ((as all writers know) was spent gently editing and rereading and rereading ....


Where is it on sale?

'WE ARE ALL ONE: A call to spiritual uprising' is readily available from Amazon.com
There is also a book website: www.we-are-all-one.net if you would like to know more.

Tell us about your other books/work.

At the moment I am regularly appearing as a guest on a lot of North American radio shows. The whole Eckhart Tolle / Oprah partnership that is huge in the US at the moment has made people take a greater interest in similar works and this has helped tremendously with exposure.

I am continuing with my work at the Dubon Centre and we have a series of workshops coming up based on the book content, as we have had interest from all over the world as regards the book.
I find it beautiful that the book is a healing, unifying source.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

The internet offers an incredible amount of help and information on all subjects, and all just at your fingertips - I think this is one of the reasons that writing books, articles and blogs is becoming globally feasible.

What do you advise new writers to do?

In terms of spirituality and associated material I would say;

1. Be true to yourself.
2. Write about what you believe in - write from the heart.
3. Ignore the fads & trends - write from the truth of your being.
4. In this way you will express in a way that is creative, powerful and positive for yourself and others. You will receive back because you gave from your true self.

Health, harmony and prosperity to you all,

And many thanks Liana,


Jonathan.
-------------------
Thank you!



Interview with (Shizue Tomoda), the author of (Sachiko)



Tell us about yourself first.



I am a Japanese woman born after WWII. By the time I entered school, our education system promoted, in principle, equality between boys and girls, but I found many teachers, who had been educated mostly before the war, still very old-fashioned, upholding traditional values concerning how boys and girls were expected to behave. My parents were the same way, so I found the social milieu in which I was being raised rather stifling. For this reason I often challenged the adults around me, creating frictions between us, and perhaps due to this reason I was very eager to grow up quickly, become independent and leave home as soon as possible. In fact, I ended up leaving home by going to the United States at the age of 16. During my stay there for about 10 years, I managed to complete high school education and earned 3 degrees (BS, MS and MA) from state universities in Wisconsin, Connecticut and Arizona. I then returned to Japan, where I taught for five years, during which I also followed university courses in international labour law and labour economics as well. At the age of 33 I was offered a post in an international organization in Geneva, collecting and compiling information from member States concerning various employment issues. I also undertook missions to many countries throughout the world to promote international labour standards. During my 25-year career in the international civil service, I was also posted in Indonesia and Sri Lanka for three years each, to work on specific employment-related development issues in these countries. I am now retired and currently live in a small French town called Ferny-Voltaire, a few minutes away from Geneva, with two lovely cats I adopted from the animal shelters in my area.





When did you start taking interest in writing?



In elementary school, I enjoyed writing short compositions on any topics given by the teacher, but in my teens I started expressing my feelings (e.g. frustration, disappointment, doubts, etc.) in diaries. Although I did not keep writing regularly, I learned that expressing my feelings in words was a good way to maintain my sanity, an effective psychotherapy, so to speak, and I have used this method for all these years to keep my emotional balance. However, I did not write seriously till much later in life as I was always busy with my work. Now that I am retired and have more time, I plan to devote more time to writing.





Is (Sachiko) your first book?



I had had a few employment-related research books/reports published before, but Sachiko was my first book of creative writing.







What is the genre of your book? What is it about?



It may be classified under &#8220;Love-Romance&#8221; because nearly half of the book is devoted to the heroine Sachiko&#8217;s tumultuous relationship with Konrad, a German boyfriend she meets in school in the United States. However, I mainly intended to present Sachiko&#8217;s personal and spiritual growth from childhood to adulthood through hardship, disappointments, failures and difficult personal relationships she encounters in life, through which she becomes strong as an individual and as a woman.



The story tells how a teenager Sachiko escapes in mid 1960s the stifling Japanese society and her traditional-minded parents to reach the United States, which appears to her to offer so much hope and a clear direction in life. However, America is in the midst of social turmoil with the civil rights movement and the war in Vietnam intensifying. American traditional values are being re-examined and in the process socio-political and generational divisions in the society become more pronounced. Sachiko meets many helpful people, but is also disappointed and deeply hurt by some with socio-political views which are diametrically opposed to hers. This is also a story of Sachiko who continuously searches her own &#8220;self&#8221; and tries to be true to herself no matter how high the cost.



Sachiko then meets Konrad and falls madly in love with him, but their relationship spirals downwards after his return to Germany. Still believing in a love she knows deep in her heart is lost, she goes to see him in Germany. Though ultimately tragic, the story reveals the sentimental places of memory and an inner faith in destiny.





What inspired you to write this book?



As I mentioned earlier, I used to write down my feelings, particularly when I felt disappointed, depressed, hurt, confused, lost, etc. I had therefore accumulated such notes and one day I suddenly started writing a story. I did not know how it would end, but let my thoughts flow freely onto the paper through my right hand.





How long did it take you to write it?



It is difficult to say how much time I have spent writing it. Actually, the book had partially been written in 1970s, but I could not find a publisher. Because I was too busy in my work, I put away the manuscript somewhere and almost forgot about it. In late 1980s, however, I took it out again and started re-writing it completely, but again I could not keep working at it due to my workload and my transfer at that time from Geneva to Jakarta (which required a lot of effort on my part to adjust to an entirely new work environment). I completed the rewriting of the book in early 1990s and finally had it published in 1994 in the UK, but unfortunately the publisher went bankrupt soon thereafter and thus the book never had the opportunity to reach possible readers. Some friends wanted to buy it, but could not obtain copies. In view of this situation and now that books can be published and republished and can easily be placed on the Internet for global market, I decided last year to have Sachiko revised a little and republished with a slightly modified cover.



Who is the publisher of your book?



It is called Booksurge, a print-on-demand publisher and a subsidiary of Amazon.



Where is it on sale?



The book can be ordered on the Internet at www.booksurge.com or www.amazon.com. It can also be ordered through any retail shop.



Tell us about your other books/work.



The other book I have published, also through Booksurge, is entitled: Taro and Tomi: My feline son and daughter. Beautifully illustrated, this book is a collection of short, heart-warming chapters, each of which reads as a short, distinct essay depicting the process of how the author (myself) and her two adopted cats became a loving family. Delightful and endearing, unconditional love is celebrated and reciprocated with unlimited tenderness and trust.



What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?



Are you referring to my career in the international civil service or the writing career I have tried to establish? If it concerns the former, the hardest part has been to know how to reconcile within me the gap between the ideals/principles we in the service are expected to live up to and the reality of questionable personal conducts we witness around us while performing our duties. If it concerns the latter, the major challenge has been that due to my employment situation and workload I have not been able to devote sufficient time to steady writing. Hope this situation will change, now that I am retired from the international civil service.



Has the Internet helped you in your writing career? How?





When I worked on Sachiko in the past, there was no Internet, but now the book has been re-published and placed on the Internet. Since the information on the book is easily accessible to anyone on line, I am somewhat optimistic that the Internet would be helpful in the future in helping me establish my writing career.



What do you advise new writers to do?



I am not sure what advice I can give to new writers because I have not yet been successful as a writer. However, my motto is to keep working on whatever I believe in or I enjoy doing, regardless of the outcome. I often do not have any control over the outcome of my work, so whatever the outcome may be, I will have no regrets as long as I know that I have done my best. This is also applicable to writing, I believe.



Thank you!







Interview with Doug Farrell, the author of Glamour Job: A Fairy-tale for Grown-ups


Tell us about yourself first.

Though I've been writing on and off for years, I am getting a late start in life as a novelist. I've had many creative outlets over the years. I've been a professional actor since 1978 when I joined AFTRA, (the American Federation of Radio and Television Artists). I then went on to join the two other major acting unions, Actor's Equity and the Screen Actor's Guild. I've played Jesus in "Jesus Christ Superstar", I was murdered on "Unsolved Mysteries" and I was a zombie in the original version of "Dawn of the Dead." Another creative outlet for me is my work as an illustrator and cartoonist. My art has adorned the pages and covers of magazines and I'm working on a collection of 3D comics. Agnès Giard asked me if she could include some of my illustrations in her book "Le Sexe Bizarre". By-the-way, I designed the cover and did the illustrations for my novel, too. I also enjoy writing music.

On a personal note, I've had so many strange, paranormal things happen to me that I've been forced to believe that I must have an affinity for the supernatural and the off-beat. For me, the paranormal is normal. Seeing ghosts, and fairies isn't uncommon. Luckily my wife and children have similar gifts so I don't feel like a crazy person. They see the same things that I do.

My family is the most important thing for me. My wife is my best friend, (I proposed the night we met in NYC, we eloped 10 days later and we've been together for over 21 years.) My three children are great people and very bright -- their ages are 16,14, and 11. We are huge fans of Japanese Anime and Dorama (drama). Every week we enjoy watching "fansubs" of them as a family -- fansubs are downloaded Japanese programs which have been translated and subtitled by fans. American television has a few programs that we really enjoy, but overall there is much more heart and intelligence in the Japanese shows. Right now we are looking forward to the last episode of the "Nodame Canabile" special, about a young conductor and his orchestra friends as they try to break into the world of professional musicians. Fun stuff.

We are health-nuts and try to help the environment with our choices. I have a hybrid gas/electric car and an electric motorcycle. We eat a mostly vegetarian diet and even our adopted pets enjoy vegetarian meals. It seems to agree with them and may even be prolonging the life span of our Siamese cat, Katchina who is over twenty years old and still going strong.



When did you start writing?

I started writing in middle school.



What genres have you written?

Satire, comedy, science fiction, fantasy, horror and a musical theater piece called "Desperately Dense." I've also written a pilot script for a children's television series called "The Elf Prince" which I sold to a producer in Los Angeles a few years ago. I was the lead comedy writer for a radio show on WBAI in New York City, called "Nearly Normal."

Is Glamour Job your first book?

Yes. It is the first of a three book series called the "Lunarcentric Trilogy".



Tell us about your book. What is it about?

My book is an urban fantasy about the forces we allow to control our lives. It is filled with lots of social commentary and humor. Glamour Job is my way of pointing out some of the absurdities of Western Civilization by using an updated fairy-tale structure. At times I feel like Jonathon Swift in the 21st century. I use metaphor and satire to make fun of how manipulative and messed-up our culture is -- where the surface appearance is given more importance than the underlying essence. Most of us go through the day without questioning our choices. I would prefer if people were more conscious and less on auto-pilot. The narrator of Glamour Job is Laurie Morgan, a print model who starts out ruled by the whims of society, is robbed of her possessions, her career and her identity, and ends up finally knowing what really matters.



What inspired you to write this book?

In college 30 years ago I did a pen and ink illustration of two characters from Glamour Job, Hawley and Barbette. I knew that the drawing would be part of a neat story someday.


How long did it take you to write it?

I wrote the first chapter in January of 1996. I finished the first draft in 2000 after work-shopping the manuscript with Rosemary Daniel's Zona Rosa writer's group. I put off the last three chapters for a long time since they had to tie everything up in a satisfying way and yet leave room for the adventures of the sequels. I knew it was finally time and I spent a long weekend in my home office, hammering it out with tears pouring down my face at times. The next day at my day job I found myself meeting the eyes at eye level of co-workers who used to be less tall than me. The intense birth process for Glamour Job had made me shorter! (If this trend continues I may feel at home in Munchkin Land by the time I finish the last book of the trilogy.) I've done many minor rewrites since then and finished the final draft for the first edition last October. It was ready to go to press in September, but watching Ueno Juri, the Japanese actress who plays Nodame in Nodame Cantabile inspired me to add a character of "Echo" into the book. I didn't know Echo was missing from the story until I saw Nodame.



Who is the publisher of your book?

BookSurge Publishing, in Charleston, South Carolina.




Where is it on sale?

Online worldwide at Amazon.com, Abe Books, ALibris.com and on the shelves in bookstores.



Tell us about your other books/work.

The next book in the trilogy, "Cernunnos Rising" follows Laurie Morgan's soulmate, Nick into the distant past where he struggles to get back to the present and Laurie. We are introduced to the corrupt Time Corps "gods", time tourists, and find out more about the dragonfolk.

The last book of the trilogy "Underwhere" picks up where Glamour Job leaves off. Laurie, trying to elude police and the vengeful goblins goes to the underground realms. There Laurie finds out about the other 'gifts' she got from the dragon, and learns she is more brave than she ever knew.



What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

Making time to write.



Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

Yes. I use the Internet for historical research and marketing for my work all the time.


How?

How? Well, first you will need a computer or an Internet-friendly device. Some may be able to connect to the Internet with their minds but I've never been one of them. There is a wealth of information available 24/7 on the web. All joking aside, I actually do use the web quite a bit. For instance, I was corresponding with novelist Ashok Banker via email about some music I wrote after reading some of his Ramayana books. He loved the music and was the one who ultimately suggested BookSurge Publishing to me.



What do you advise new writers to do?

Write from the heart. Be passionate about the subject matter. If you aren't in love with your topic it will most likely be an exercise in mechanical fulfillment. Make time to write!



Thank you!




 

 

Interview with Anne Black Gray, the author of Laughing Sickness, A Medical Mystery

 

 

Tell us about yourself first.

 

I grew up in semi-rural West Virginia, studied physics at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, then migrated to Southern California for a career in aerospace engineering.  After retiring from aerospace, I began a second career in fiction writing.  Soon after that my daughter came down with a serious, debilitating illness.  Through her experience and those of others like her, I learned of the plights of victims of rare, hard-to-diagnose diseases.  The needs of these patients became the inspiration for Laughing Sickness.  I live in Los Angeles with my husband and two cats, tend a backyard garden haphazardly and play tennis avidly.

 

 

When did you start writing?

 

    

I wrote engineering technical reports and journal articles for thirty years, meanwhile managing to sneak in a few fiction writing classes.  In 1991 I took early retirement from engineering and began writing novels and occasional short stories in earnest.  Laughing Sickness is my first published novel and I have completed and will soon be ready to market a novel The Devil's Son about the Hatfield/McCoy feud.

 

 

What genres have you written?

 

For years I wrote so many non fiction reports and articles, that I have fully satisfied any ambitions I had in that area.  Now I write fiction and have completed Laughing Sickness, which is a medical mystery, and The Devil's Son, which is a historical novel.  I have also written a few short stories that have won prizes, most of the stories being tall tales (West Virginia style) about the amazing exploits of retired people.

 

 

Tell us about your book.  What is it about?

 

In a broad way my book is about how one might try to keep one's life together and overcome adversity when a great strength becomes simultaneously a great weakness.

 

More specifically, my book is about Jessica Shephard, a young woman who is living the Southern California dream.  She is young, healthy, has great friends and family, a promising career and always knows how to get a laugh.  Then, without warning, she begins to suffer from mysterious episodes of total and partial paralysis.  Ironically for her, an aspect of her illness is that she collapses when she laughs, a symptom of a real, though rare and not well known, illness.

 

    

Soon she's bouncing from doctor to doctor, none of whom can fathom what's wrong with her despite a barrage of medical tests.  Some imply she's malingering or "it's all in her head."

Her illness profoundly changes her relationship with her boyfriend, Fernando, a young doctor who joins in the hunt for a diagnosis; her anxious mother and stepfather; her friends and co-workers.  Although their efforts in her behalf are well-intentioned, those close to her  are sometimes a hindrance to her struggle to remain independent---to work, drive  and to care for herself.  Her lifestyle and job are in jeopardy, and her very life is threatened.  Gradually, she learns how involved her precious laughter is in her disease.

 

 

What is unique about this book?

 

I believe it is the only novel written from the point of view of a patient with a rare disease that builds its suspense around the patient's efforts to get diagnosed and treated while trying to hold her life together.  It is also the only novel I know of about someone who has an illness with the bizarre symptom that the person becomes temporarily paralyzed when laughing.

 

 

What inspired you to write this book?

 

When my daughter became ill, I saw first-hand the difficulties she had in getting doctors to keep pursuing a diagnosis for her rare disease.  There were also many difficulties in public places.  People were too ready to call for medical help, often paramedics, rather than giving her credit for being able to handle lunch in a cafeteria or sitting in a meeting if she was badly slumped in a wheelchair, and especially when she was unable to speak, though fully conscious.  Through others she and I met in support groups, I learned how employers, who know patients with disabilities are protected by The Americans with Disabilities Act, try to edge out people with disabilities because of their own discomfort or fear of taking a  risk.  I heard about and saw wheelchair-bound patients being ignored by store clerks, restaurant waitresses, networking groups of employees standing (while one of their number sat, unnoticed and left out, in a wheelchair) around the coffee pot, people in a street crosswalk unaware that as they stood and talked they were blocking someone in a wheelchair, and so on.  I heard patients despair of getting medical help as doctors ran medical tests and, when they failed to find anything, either suggested the patient look for another specialist, they couldn't say what specialty, or imply that since they had no evidence for a physical illness the patient's problem must be mental.  There were still more issues, like the strife between the adult patient and parents who may begin treating the adult child as though he or she were young again and under their supervision.  I became emotionally involved in the plights of those with disabling illnesses and want to improve their lot by giving them a voice in my writings.

 

 

How long did it take you to write it?

 

It took about 7 years, partly because I was helping a disabled daughter obtain the care she needed and helping her keep her life going.

 

 

Who is the publisher of your book?

 

Bridgeway Books

 

 

Where is it on sale?

 

On my website, anneblackgray.com, where signed copies can be purchased.  The book can also be bought on amazon.com or bn.com, and it can be ordered by or bought from both chain and independent bookstores.

 

 

Has the internet helped you in your writing career?  How?

 

I don't know what I'd do without the internet.  On the internet I can research any subject I want, medical or otherwise, instantly, right in my home.  I can look up questions of grammar or writing style.  I learned there about how copyright laws apply when I quote outside sources.  When I decided I was ready to market the book, I was able to find out about and order books on literary agents and publishers.

 

 

What do you advise new writers to do?

 

Take writing courses where both the teacher and class read and critique your work.  Join a writers' group where your work is critiqued and you learn of other people's problems and strengths.  Above all, write, write, write as much as you can.

 

Interview with Joan Solomon, the author of Spirits in the Garden

 

Tell us about yourself first. 

I have had successful careers, consulting, business – and most recently as an artist/photographer/writer. My art came to me spontaneously - during a corporate meeting, I was mindlessly doodling and wishing that my creative talents could serve a higher purpose. As I doodled, the Nature Spirits just started appearing on my notepad. I was fascinated with these images and my journey of creative discovery began as I continued to draw. A friend hung one of my pieces in her shop and it sold the same day. Since that time, over 20 years ago, I have been putting hands to paper and canvas and drawing and painting Spirits of Nature as they appeared to me in the natural world. The paintings can be seen on my art website www.joansolomon.com

I feel very connected to nature and we especially need to be aware of nature and her dire needs at this time.

 

When did you start writing?

I have always written in some form. Even as a child I would journal and write stories.

 

Is Spirits in the Garden your first book?

Spirits in the Garden is my first photography book to take its full form into the world. I have also written a children’s parable called Have You Seen Sherman that talks about the cycle of life.  It is not in print now, but may be reprinted as I still get requests for it when children need to deal with loss in their life.

 

Tell us about your book.  What is it about?

I believe Spirits in the Garden is the first ever book of  unretouched photographs of the Spirit of Nature and the wonderful wisdom that nature gives us on how to save our planet. Some would call it a coffee table book, some have called it a work of art, but the word I most often hear describing it is “fascinating!” Spirits in the Garden is all about taking a closer look at nature, relaxing into the presence of the beauty around us and being inspired to listen to what nature is telling us. For many people, the feature of the book is the photographs - close up portraits of flowers and plants revealing a wonderful, vibrant, hidden life. Yet there is also the journey of discovery within the book – from the realization of what one can find in one’s own garden, the lore and wisdom of the plants, to the many uses of the plants. Remedies and recipes are included, too. Spirits in the Garden appeals to many different people – Nature lovers, photographers, those with and interest in alternative medicine or helping the our environment, fairy lovers, and gardeners, to name a few – as well as  anyone – both children and adults – who simply want to browse, explore and enjoy.

 

What inspired you to write this book?

I have always felt connected to nature and the spirit of nature. This is reflected in my art. I was quietly reflecting in my garden one day and was drawn to a particular violet flower  I took a photograph of this tiny flower with whom I felt such a strong rapport and  that photo revealed the "Wild Violet Gnome" that appears on the cover of my book Spirits in the Garden. After that first photo, I began to notice and photograph the Nature Spirits everywhere – in city parks, woodlands, backyards, gardens….and as I began to study more about them, I realized that their presence came with a message and as I listened and looked and learned, the book began to take form.

 

How long did it take you to write it?

 It took five years of photographing and over 50,000 photographs and then writing to create Spirits in the Garden.

 


What is your message to readers? (what do you want to get the readers know/learn via this book?)

I would like this book to open awareness in a profound way to the presence of Intelligent Life in Nature. And that with this new awareness people are encouraged to start viewing Nature with more consideration and respect and start taking care of our Earth, the home we share with the plant and animal kingdoms.

 

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

How?  

It is wonderful for research and connecting with others.

 

What do you advise new writers to do?

 My 93 year old mother had a placard on her fridge from Winston Churchill -

“Never, never, never, never, never, never give up!”

You can, however, listen for inner guidance and change your mind!

 

 

 Thank you!

Interview with Douglas E. Richards, author of The Prometheus Project – Trapped and The Prometheus Project – Captured

 

Tell us about yourself first. 

 

I was raised in Cincinnati, Ohio.  I currently live in San Diego, California with my wife Kelly and two children, Ryan, 13, and Regan 11 (I named the main characters in my books Ryan and Regan after my children).   I have a master’s degree in molecular biology, also known as genetic engineering, and an MBA, and I’ve been a biotechnology executive in California for many years.  I am a frequent contributor of science pieces to National Geographic KIDS magazine, which has a readership of five million.

 

Tell us about your books.  What are they about?

 

The books follow the adventures of Ryan and Regan Resnick, the children of two accomplished scientists.  In the first Prometheus Project book, Trapped, the children have just moved to the backwoods of Pennsylvania and are certain they will have the most boring summer of all time.  But when they puzzle out secret passwords and overcome laser-beam alarm systems, barbed-wire fences and security guards, they learn that their parents are part of the Prometheus Project — a top-secret team investigating a hidden alien city.  With their mother’s life is in jeopardy, they must face unimaginable dangers and fight against impossible odds to save her. 

 

In the second book, Captured, the kids have been made members of the Prometheus Project because of the valuable contributions they made to the team during their first adventure.  When the city is captured by a team of mercenaries and their ruthless leader, an alien with unknown capabilities and diabolical plans, the adult members of the Prometheus team are taken hostage, and the children become the team’s only hope. With the future of the world at stake, Ryan and Regan must do the impossible: outwit the brilliant alien and his well-trained force, free the prisoners, and thwart an unstoppable invasion. 

 

I don’t think it is giving anything away to reveal that they come through with flying colors and save the day.

 

 

What inspired you to write these books?

 

I loved science fiction as a kid, and the fascinating science often contained in the best science fiction books eventually led me to pursue a career in science.  As my kids became older, I was looking for a middle grade/young adult science fiction adventure series that could inspire them but I really couldn’t find one.  So I decided to write my own. 

 

So your goal was to stimulate children’s interest in science and technology?

 

Yes, but not as an end to itself.  My primary goal was to write gripping novels with non-stop action that would propel readers headlong into them.  The books are very fast paced and every chapter ends in a cliffhanger.  I wanted the kids to be glued to the page and have great difficulty putting the books down.

 

This being said, I picked the setting of a vast alien city, full of advanced science and technology, because I knew it would be a fertile springboard to explore any number of scientific topics.  But I made sure the science grew organically from the plot.  In other words, I wanted the science to serve the plot and adventure, not the other way around.  If the books didn’t have great appeal to kids, no matter how much factual science I put in, no one would ever read them.

 

What kind of feedback have you gotten on the books?  Do you feel that you achieved your goals?

 

Yes, beyond my wildest dreams.  When you write a book, you have no idea if people will love it or loathe it.  This is especially true when writing for kids.  But the feedback I have received from kids, parents and educators alike has really blown me away.  I was really surprised to find that adults seem to enjoy the books a lot as well.  The books have now been read in dozens of classrooms and a number of kids have told me they are among their all-time favorites.  I can’t even describe how gratifying this has been.  I was even invited to speak at an assembly at my son’s school, which was very cool. 

 

As I mentioned, my first goal was to write a book kids couldn’t put down, and the feedback I’ve received suggests this is the case.  Trapped was “highly recommended” by Kirkus and called, “perfect for middle grades” by Teaching Pre K-8 Magazine.  But most importantly to me, a kids panel of reviewers for Odyssey Magazine praised Trapped as “a thriller you that you won’t put down until you’ve reached the last page.” 

 

With respect to Captured, Catherine Hughes, Senior Editor for NG KIDS, called it “a page-turner that kids — and their parents — will love reading.  TeensReadToo.com gave Captured five stars and called it, “Fast paced adventure” that is “great fun” and “very well written,” while ForeWord Magazine wrote that the book is “fast paced and full of action,” and that “adventure, suspense and science make for a potent combination.”

 

My second goal was to stimulate thinking about science.  To this end, Trapped received very positive reviews from the California Science Teachers Association and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.  Captured also now appears on Missouri State University’s list of “Best New Books to Engage Students in Math and Science.”  Recently, the California Department of Education added Trapped to its list of “Recommended Literature for Science and Math.” Finally, ForeWord magazine, in its review of Captured, concluded, “At a time when Americans want more students to become interested in science, the books in this series will likely encourage their interest in a non-threatening way.”

Why is the team named The Prometheus Project?

 

Prometheus was a Titan of Greek mythology who stole fire from the Gods and gave it to mankind.  And while fire was the single biggest advance in proto-human civilization, if misused it can be unbelievably dangerous (as someone who had to be evacuated recently as wildfires raged throughout San Diego a month or so ago, I can attest to this myself).  The team named itself the Prometheus Project as a reminder to be extremely careful with the alien technology they were studying, and that they were “playing with fire”. 

 

Where are these books on sale?

 

Both books are available to readers at Amazon.com.  They can also be ordered through Barnes&Noble and Borders bookstores.  They are sold to libraries and bookstores through the distribution channels of Ingram and Baker & Taylor.

 

 

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

 

Immensely.  I don’t know what I would do without it.  I use it as a dictionary, for help with grammar questions, and as a treasure trove of information.  The Internet is, without doubt, one of the greatest advances in human history.  I speak about this when I’m at schools.  I tell students that in my day, if I wanted to know the date of Einstein’s birth, I would have to go to a library, use the card catalog, find a book, and leaf through it until I found the date.  Now we can get this information in 2 seconds online.  Suppose I wanted to know 50 recipes that use broccoli.  How long would this have taken me as a kid?  The answer: forever.   There would be no way to get this information, no matter what I did.  Now I search for “broccoli recipes” online and in seconds I have lists of hundreds.  The Internet truly is a miracle.

 

The computer is unbelievably important to a writer as well.  When I was a kid using a typewriter, if you made one mistake you had to start over.  You couldn’t decide that a paragraph would be better in a different place and then cut and paste it there.  And my spelling is horrible, so without spellcheck I’d have to look up every other word.  I can say with absolute certainty that I wouldn’t be a writer without the computer, and I suspect neither would many of today’s writers.  I really admire writers who were able to put together a polished work with a pencil and paper or using a typewriter.  These people really had talent. 

 

Do you have any advice for new writers?

 

Yes.  Keep at it and don’t get discouraged by rejection.  Madeleine L'Engle passed away recently, and I was struck by stories that have come out about how A Wrinkle in Time was rejected by every major house before finally being published by a publisher L'Engle met through a contact at a tea party.  He liked the book but warned her that it would have very limited appeal.  Limited appeal, indeed!  The initial Harry Potter manuscript was rejected by a number of houses as well.  I could go on forever with stories of famous works that were initially rejected by everyone, but you get the point. 

 

On another note, I am always amazed that after I’ve read and improved my manuscript dozens of times, I can still find ways to improve it further.  So I would also advise new authors to revise, revise, revise, improve, improve, improve until you feel sure you will vomit if you read even a single word of the manuscript ever again.  By the time I submit a manuscript to a publisher, I honestly despise every word because I have read it so many times. As Michael Crichton once said,

 

“Books aren’t written — they’re rewritten.  Including your own. It is one of the hardest things to accept, especially after the seventh rewrite hasn't quite done it.”  

 

What are you working on now?

 

I’m working on an adult thriller and another kid’s thriller not set in the Prometheus Project universe.  I hope to write additional Prometheus Project books in the future as well.  

 

 

Interview with Earnie Larsen the author of The Healer’s Way

 

 Tell us about yourself first.  When did you start writing?  What genres have you written?

I am 68 years old. I was ordained a catholic priest in 1965. I was in the “priesthood system” for 21 years.  I found the 12 step fellowship in 1966 and it has been a pillar of my spiritual house ever since.  I was married in 1979.  My first grandchild was born 16 years ago, I now have 6 grandchildren.  A new and deeper understanding of the meaning of God came into my life with the grandchildren.  Grandkids are God’s gift to old age.  When I am not working or on the road somewhere my wife Paula and I spend a lot of time watching the kids play hockey. All of my published books have been in the spirituality/recovery/mental health genre.

 Is this your first book? Tell us about your book.  What is it about?

 My first book was in 1966.  I didn’t plan to write a book but I was working at an inner city high school at the time.  Our text book was written mostly for white suburban kids.  It had little to do with the world neighborhood we lived in so I wrote what I thought would be some classes I’d try with my kids for the next year.  The order of priest’s I belonged to happen to also have a publishing house.  They made a book out of the notes and it became GOOD OLD PLASTIC JESUS.  I guess the timing was right – they sold over a quarter million of the book.   

Tell us about your other books. 

My newest book (the 65th) is called THE HEALERS WAY.  The book says that all human problems have spiritual solutions – that is love.  It’s about the fact that nothing heals in inner wound but experiencing people who can stand before us and mirror back to us an image of someone who is worthy to be loved, who has dignity and is given a chance to “join in the banquet.” More than anything the book is told through stories of actual people who discovered the amazing truth that “I am good enough.”  

Originally I wrote the book as a kind of spiritual last will for my grandkids, and who knows, maybe their grandkids.  It dawned on me one day that we all go to such lengths to make a will for the distribution of our material stuff after we pass on.  But our most important possession is the wisdom we have gained along our journey of life.  I wanted to leave a document behind me of “this is what I learned.  This is what life taught me.”  After sitting around for about 15 years some inner voice said, “turn it in and see what happens.”  THE HEALERS WAY is what happened.

 For many years I have kept a “God file.”  That is every day I write on my computer where I have seen God, or goodness or “the miracle” (of someone finding themselves). THE HEALERS WAY is mostly stories I downloaded from my God File.  Actually putting the book together took me 6 months I guess.

Who is the publisher of your book?

 Conari press is the publisher. The book is available through Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.  Any book store can order it.

All of my books are about different stages and aspects of healing.  Spiritual healing that is.  I have always worked a great deal with addicts and their families.  No one heals without some kind of connection with a God-figure – and then opening our hearts to a loving community.  Loving isn’t hard.  It’s accepting that we are loved that is the real task.  Once we are hurt the old lies from that wound keep us from finding our way home.  The process of  getting hurt – getting called – getting up – and keep going offers enough “space” and material for a thousand life times of books.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

I guess the major challenge I face in writing is disciplining myself to make the time to do it.  There is always so much going on!  That’s where keeping the God File helps.  Sometimes it is just one story, one thing I saw or better yet, made happen.  But it keeps me trying to express what I see.  The biggest challenge there  is that I have such small talent to express what is so much greater than my ability to portray.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

How?

The internet has made it easier (more convenient) for me to keep practicing.  It sure makes editing easier!  Imagine, when I started out electric typewriters were cutting edge technology.

What do you advise new writers to do?

 For new writers – WRITE.  Practice, practice, practice.

 

 

 

 

Interview with Helga Schroder, the author of Sacred Wisdom

 

Tell us about yourself first. 

For as long as I can remember, my life was guided by dreams. I was a highly intuitive and sensitive child and as such, the real world felt too loud and abrasive. So I lived in my imagination and my inner world was my sanctuary. I could feel people’s emotions and read their energy fields and know them on an inner level more than I could ever explain.

 

Born and raised in a small German town, I grew up speaking several languages and enjoyed mingling with people from different backgrounds. European travels began at age three and with it came exposure to a variety of languages, people and places. Different cultures fascinated me. I became a translator and after moving to California began working in the corporate legal field.

 

When did you start writing?

I loved to paint as a child and it was my way of writing before I could spell words. I wrote in a journal during my school years and my father loved to write poetry, so I gained an appreciation for expressing emotions in the written word early in life. I wrote stories for family members and friends, putting their own qualities into my characters and they loved it. My first novel was written for young teens but never published.

 

What genres have you written?]

So far a young teen novel, short stories, articles, and inspirational.

 

Is Sacred Wisdom your first book?

It is my first published book, yes.

 

Tell us about your book.  What is it about?

Sacred Wisdom is an inspiring journey of the mind and soul. It reflects a young man’s journey to fulfill a promise to help the earth, the elderly and the children – much different from his personal goal of becoming successful in his career. He has no conscious recollection of ever having made this promise but it becomes clear that there is no way out. The book pinpoints his inner struggles, his nightmares, and transformation. The book’s characters include a Brazilian padre, a Tibetan lama, and the Novemvirat. It touches on divine law, inner peace and the joy of true love.

 

What inspired you to write this book?

Several years ago, I had a stirring dream. I woke up in the middle of the night and roamed the house. When I returned to bed, the dream continued. That’s when it caught my attention. In the semi-darkness, I went in and out of the dream state taking notes. When I awoke in the morning, I realized I had written 18 pages. That dream became the basis of Sacred Wisdom.

 

How long did it take you to write it?

It took me approximately two years.

 

Who is the publisher of your book? 

The book was published by Suka Press, a small independent publisher.

 

Where is it on sale?

It can be bought in independent bookstores throughout the U.S. and of course on Amazon.

 

Tell us about your other books/work.

I am currently working on a book on meditation and stress management which will contain simple and easy guidelines for everyday living. It will be a short factual book.  After that, I will focus on my next novel which I have actually started. It will be on immigration. Being an immigrant, I have many personal experiences to convey, but of course I will invent different characters and a fun plot.

 

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

The greatest challenge in my writing career has been the marketing aspect. Becoming known as a new writer is not easy but I feel that if the work is good, it will happen in time.

 

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

How?

It most certainly has. Google search engines are fantastic in helping with research and any topic one would like to know about. Access is quick, easy and up-to-date, compared to going to a public or university library, having to order research papers, or researching volumes of books and journals. And of course, due to the internet, my book has its own website with summary, media kit and excerpts that are accessible all over the world at www.sukapress.com.

 

What do you advise new writers to do?

This is a very broad question as there are so many different genres. Very generally speaking, I would say write what is in your heart, follow your intuition and trust your instincts. Advice I have received in the past is to make a detailed outline and this may be helpful to some but it is not how my mind works. I write intuitively, based on feelings, in a slightly meditative state of mind. That is when my creativity flows. I believe each writer finds their own style. My advice is: Follow your heart.

 

Thank you!

 

 

 

Interview with Kevin Davis, the author of Shep: ‘Loyalty Beyond All Bounds‘

Tell us about yourself first.

I live in Iowa City, Iowa. I’ve done a lot of traveling, hitchhiking and I studied in China. It helps to get different perspectives.

When did you start writing?

I started writing in 2003, after I won a Pet Star program on Animal Planet. My Breeder Donald Marshall, in whom I dedicated the book to told me that he knew someone in Hollywood and that he could send him my material if I would like. So I did and got a call a few months later. “Hi, I’m David Brokaw” of the “The Brokaw Company” his father is Norman Brokaw who was the CEO for William Morris. Donald didn’t even tell me who he was. David said, “You don’t need an agent, you’re a producer, you know this stuff!” . He had me read ‘Story,‘ by Robert McKee, in which I highly recommend. McKee says that people in the business can tell if someone can write, they just don’t have the time to develop it. I was told by Donald’s wife Bev, that David was to busy to get his third dog from them. He spent his valuable time with me, so I guess he thought it was worth it. In the back of my mind I always knew that I could write. I was fortunate to have someone validate it.

What genres have you written?

I’ve written drama, spiritual and a biography. My work with hospice has influenced what I write about.

Is (Shep: ‘Loyalty Beyond All Bounds‘) your first book?

Shep’s my first book. I have it written out as a trilogy. I’ve been writing screenplay’s and I was getting real good reaction from people who would read it. So I put it into a book.

Tell us about your book. What is it about?

Shep’s about a stray shepherds dog who meets with a man without hope. After they meet John’s bad luck takes a complete turn. He learns all about herding sheep, falls in love and builds a house. Just when his life is complete, tragedy strikes.

It’s a story of God’s love and forgiveness. This saga weaves in a family of Irish Immigrants, the Fitzpatrick’s and their culture of working sheep. It takes place before the Taylor Act, where there was a free range war going on between the cowboys and the sheepherders.

It has the classic idea of pulling for the literal underdog who’s on the right side defeating the over dog who’s on the wrong side which is a strong American mythology. This is the type of story where true legends are made.

It’s a tearjerker, with a redemptive ending that reaffirms one’s belief. The classic Irish account, where life’s tragic struggle brings meaning. Shep’s a tale that will hold the test of time, because of it’s universal themes of good triumphing over evil.  

What inspired you to write this book?

My Border Collie Kena, she’s been an amazing animal. When she did the T.V. show, Mario Lopez compared her soccer talent to David Beckham. She’s fifteen now. I’ve been fortunate to have such a fine companion.

How long did it take you to write it?

I started writing it in 2003. It’s a continual process writing, getting the material tight.

Who is the publisher of your book?

Holy Fire Publishing.

Where is it on sale?

Just got a letter from Barnes and Noble, they bought some to put on the shelves. Barnes and Noble.com, Amazon.com and Borders.com. Hopefully Borders will put be putting it on the shelves.

Tell us about your other books/work.

Right now I’m busy writing Shep back into a screenplay, the director of Paramount Pictures’ Literary Affairs department read the book She compared it to Lassie, Old Yeller and The Incredible Long Journey Home. I want to finish it before the Writers Guild strike.

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

The biggest challenge is getting your work read by the right people. People are usually too busy to read someone who’s new. You have to have something strong enough to get their attention.

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

Greatly.

How?

The internet is so easy to use while working on the book. Sending it to the publisher and working with the material.

It’s also great for the promotion your work. Sending out News Releases, so editors can see what you have and if they’re interested in reviewing the material. I have a few more book reviews, that I’m waiting for. A couple that will provide exposure to millions of people. I’ve had a few post my book on web sites and blogs. One on the front page of Canada Free Press.com, a real large website. Great exposure for a first time author.  

What do you advise new writers to do?

Write, write and write more. The more I go through my material, the more it speaks to me. What I love about writing, it’s like diving into the ocean. You go deeper and deeper into the story and the layers expose themselves to you. I love getting lost in it. Write about what your passionate about. Know the ending! It’s much easier to frame out story.

All the books I’ve read on writing, they say it’s a gift. To me it seems like something that comes natural to me. When I write the first draft, which is mostly subconscious dribble. I love it, it just flows out like a stream of consciousness. It’s usually in no shape to share with anyone. But it makes sense to me.

I think to run or work out hard, balances out all the head stuff writing produces. Learn how to take criticism, if it’s from someone that knows what they’re doing. If it doesn’t fit, reject it. You know your work better than anyone else. You can tell by the response that you get from people that read it. How it’s touched people. I had a 99 year old woman, Margaret tell me that she stayed up past midnight to finish Shep. It makes me happy to know that my work can grab someone like that. If it’s good, get it produced so that the world can see it. It may take years, but it will be worth it.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thank you Kevin!

 

Interview with Brenda Youngerman, the author of  Public Lies

 

Tell us about yourself first. 

 

I am a single parent who has been raising children for the past fourteen years alone. They are now old enough not to 'need' me any longer. I have always had a creative side that I poured into them - now I pour it all over the paper.

 

When did you start writing?

 

I have always kept journals - so I would have to say since I was a little girl.

 

What genres have you written?

 

Poetry, romance, fiction.

 

Is Public Lies your first book?

 

 No, I have also written Private Scars.

 

Tell us about your book.  What is it about?

 

Public Lies is all about what happens when a person discovers they are in a disastorous marriage that is not only damaging to themself, but to their children as well. It tells the story of a mother who decides to disappear in order to save herself and her children only to find that within three years she has to face the monster - for her children. It shows how far a man is willing to go to seek revenge and how far a mother is willing to go to save what she holds dear. It delves into relationships - healthy and unhealthy and the human condition.

 

What inspired you to write this book?

 

I was in an unhealthy marriage - although I did not disappear with my children. Many thoughts go through a person's mind. I thought it would be beneficial to play out some of the scenarios of 'what if' someone took that plunge. Domestic abuse is a far reaching subject that is not discussed is public forums often enough. It is much deeper than physical - it is emotional, psychological and sexual. It leaves scars for years. Children are often the silent victims. I wrote this book to shine a light on that.

 

How long did it take you to write it?

 

Six months.

 

Who is the publisher of your book? 

 

Outskirts Press

 

Where is it on sale?

 

Amazon.com, BN.com, Target.com, and my website: www.brendayoungerman.com

 

Tell us about your other books/work.

 

My first novel, Private Scars also delves into domestic abuse. It tells the story of a middle class woman who loses everything for her prince charming. She thinks what she has is an ordinary life - because she doesn't know any better. We often don't discuss what goes on behind closed doors. The reality in our society is that girls grow up dreaming about the white flowing gown and the party and are very often ill-equipped for life after the party is over.

 

What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?

 

 Finding an agent and/or major publishing house to work with.

 

Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?

 

Not really

 

What do you advise new writers to do?

 

Never give up on what you believe.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thank you Brenda!

  

 

Read interviews with writers at my main site at

http://lianametal.tripod.com

or at

http://liamet.tripod.com

 

 

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