Friday, June 27, 2014

Greed Series #1 - Fatal Greed #Excerpt by @JWMefford #SummerOfGreed #Giveaway #Thriller

John W Mefford makes a pit stop on his blog tour to share an excerpt from the first book in his Greed series. Take it away, John. 

Tony paced around the obese body like a vulture circling its wounded prey waiting for the moment to tear apart the meaty carcass. His steps were even, his mind alert.
Blood oozed along Tony’s forearms where the victim’s fingernails had clawed through his skin. The desperate scratches were deep, three to five inches in length, two on one arm and three on the other.
Tony’s massive hands had functioned like steel vice grips. It invigorated him to squeeze relentlessly, well beyond the victim’s last breath.

He spat on the rotund corpse, thinking how this ornery motherfucker dared to rise up and strike him down. The thickheaded asshole didn’t learn his lesson. He didn’t listen to the warning. Cooperate, or pay the price.

Chuck would understand.
Tony had been certain this overweight, self-important black man would give in to their demands. But his ballooned ego got in his way. The zoning commission member had threatened that he would print the email and give it to the authorities.
Obviously, this man didn’t think straight, agreeing to meet Tony in a remote location to work out an acceptable arrangement. Jesus Christ! And the fat fuck brought a gun—to do what, put a bullet in Tony’s chest or through his head? This fucker redefined poor judgment. He must have had a drug problem, in addition to his fetish for skanky porn.
Tony lit a cigarette, one he’d rolled in his apartment. The smoke rose above the rafters into the dark ceiling. His fury grew while staring at the overstuffed cadaver. He wanted to stress the finality of the man’s death, pour gasoline over his body, and light a flame, just in case the victim’s heart had any remaining beats.
The former Marine searched the abandoned warehouse for the necessary props. In the back of the building, behind a pair of dilapidated offices, he located a sturdy crossbeam, maybe seven or eight feet off the dirty concrete floor. Perfect. Tony cleaned up his own mess as usual. Chuck would have to understand.

Behind the façade of every corporate takeover executives pull levers this way and that, squeezing the last profitable nickel out of the deal. But no one knows the true intent of every so-called merger. 

No one knows the secret bonds that exist. 

An Indian technology giant swallows up another private company that has deep roots in North Texas. For one unassuming man the thought of layoffs, of losing his own job to a bunch of arrogant assholes feels like a kick to the jewels. 

Until the day Michael's life changes forever.   

Perverse alliances. An affair of the heart. A grisly murder. A spiraling string of events thrusts Michael into a life-or-death fight to save a tortured soul and hunt down a brutal who lurks closer than he ever imagined. 

Greed knows no boundaries.

Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Suspense, Thriller
Rating – R
More details about the author
Connect with John W. Mefford on Facebook & Twitter

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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

THE REALITY MASTER (Vol.1) by @PMPillon #Excerpt #YA #SciFi


The next day at Mr. Sheridan’s class Joey assured Frank that he felt somewhat better, so he would follow through with a plan they had made in the car on the way back from Big Sur, to go to the skateboard park near Frank’s house and practice tricks. Joey didn’t ride his skateboard around because he preferred his bike; he just wanted to learn competitive tricks at the park so he kept his board at Frank’s house. Both of them had only three weeks of experience since they bought their skateboards new at their local mall. Joey rode his bike to Frank’s after school but as soon as he entered Frank’s room. 

Frank’s mom heard Joey’s voice and called out, “Frankie dear, could you straighten out your room a little bit before you go out?”

“Okay mom, I’ll do it right now, then we gotta go.”

Joey saw that he was stuck hanging around for however long it took for Frank to comply with his mother’s wishes so he wandered down the hall to Freddie’s room where Freddie was sitting at his computer as usual. Freddie’s back was to Joey, so he entered stealthily and pulled up a cloth covering a dry erase board next to the door to peek at what was written or drawn on it. Freddie kept the board covered so his room would look more like a normal kid’s room rather than the habitat of a total academic egghead. Written with a marker were long were long chicken scratch formulas with symbols of all sorts – lots of x’s and y’s along with an alphabet soup of other characters and only one distinct equation:

g = R (π X rpm)2

“Hey, Freddie, what’s up?” Joey asked, turning away from the board towards Freddie. He walked forward and plopped himself down on the bed, which was adjacent to the computer chair where Freddie was sitting.

“Oh yeah, everything is cool. Hey, do you know about the nano world?”

“You mean small, right?”    

“Yeah, super small, subatomic. Our laws of physics don’t apply to that world.”

“You mean like the speed of light, gravity, stuff like that.”

“Right. For all we know, there could be different realities in the nano world, black holes containing other universes – phenomena we can’t even imagine. Some cosmologists even say that there may be trillions of Big Bangs just like the one that started our universe happening every second and creating universes like ours or even exact duplicates of ours.” 

The thought occurred to Joey of showing Freddie the very strange object that was in his back pocket, but he decided it would be premature. Freddie was a genius, so he might know or could maybe figure out what this stone really was. But Joey decided he would show it to him later after examining it himself; he hadn’t really done this in spite of what had already happened with it, just nonchalantly carried it around in his bag or pocket; Joey was nonplussed about the stone, simply hoping no more strange events would occur. 

All of these thoughts came to him in a blink of any eye, quickly enough for him to set them aside for the moment and ask Freddie, “So, what are you going to do about it?”

“Well, I can’t actually do much about it, but scientists are finding out more about it by doing experiments with supercolliders. For instance, in our macro world, everything can only be in one place at one time, but in the nano world a particle can be in two places at the same time. As you can see on my screen, I’m trying to depict a subatomic particle arriving at two places at once, but I’m not good at this 3D software. You know how to do 3D?”

“Not really, but I can make a 3D screen saver.”

“That’s actually pretty good, but not enough for what I’m trying to do. Hey Joey, are you into cosmology? Do you know different adjectives for describing the cosmos or the universe? How about inexorable, which means like, not possible to challenge, and immutable, for unchanging, and what else?“

”How about UnBigWordAble, which means there’s no word that’s big enough to be able to describe it.” 

His celestial companion was waiting for him
Precariously climbing a sea-side cliff near Big Sur, ten-year-old Joey Blake was as yet unaware that near his grasp was an object, so odd, mysterious and alien to earth that it would change his life forever and the lives of countless others in the next few astonishing days. Reaching up as far as he could for a handhold it was just there; it had subconsciously lured him, occupied his mind, and made him find it. It was like he was meant to see and discover this object of unimaginable power … the power to change reality.
Time travel and more
This young adult series of sci-fi fantasy novels begins with The Reality Master and continues through four other exciting and amazing stories about time travel and mysterious alien devices. Joey and the reader will face dangerous shadowy criminal organizations, agents of the NSA, bizarre travelers from other times and even renegade California bikers and scar-faced walking dead.
- Vol 1 The Reality Master
- Vol 2 Threat To The World
- Vol 3 Travel Beyond
- Vol 4 Missions Through Time
- Vol 5 The Return Home
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Science fiction, Fantasy, Young adult
Rating – G
More details about the author
Connect with PM Pillon on Facebook & Twitter

Saturday, June 21, 2014

#BestSeller Status is Not Cleary Defined, Says @ScottMoonWriter #AmWriting #Sci Fi #WriteTip

During the last two years I have read countless books, blogs, Facebook posts, and tweets on the the topic of book marketing. One of the strangest revelations was that being a bestseller is not clearly defined. Growing up with dreams of writing success, I’d always assumed there was one list. Everyone knows about the New York Times Bestseller list. Clearly, if you are on this one, you can justifiably use the distinction in your promotional efforts. Amazon ranks books by sales (total sales and category sales rank) and popularity. (1) (2) Amazon also uses other criteria such as “movers and shakers.” This last metric is based on a spike in sales during a specific time frame.
I was unable to find exactly what makes a New York Times bestseller with mere Google research, though it seems it is not as straight forward as I had assumed. (3) As an independent author, it appears I could set my own criteria for calling my novels bestsellers, but would this be honest, or just a promotional scheme. More importantly, could there be negative repercussions?
The reason I ask this question, is that I see a lot of “bestsellers” I have never heard of and thus rarely consider reading, unless the book description and reviews catch my interest.
This blog post is less to express my thoughts or conclusions on the subject, and more to start a discussion. Should there be a strict criteria for claiming bestseller status? Do readers resent overblown claims of a book’s popularity? And does labeling a book in this manner increase sales?
A related concern is unknown books with extraordinarily high numbers of reviews. I read a book review that brought this up, and the author of the review wondered how the book achieved nine-hundred five star reviews. After reading the book description and a dozen other reviews, I shied away from making a purchase and chose to add it to my wish list instead–with plans to read the sample provided by Amazon before spending time and money on the title.
I had serious reservations about posting this blog, because I don’t want to disparage authors and their promotional efforts. However, both indie and traditionally published authors are serious about the craft of writing and the industry. No one invests hundreds or thousands of hours in a project without self-sacrifice and courage. Like all artists, they take their vocation seriously and would like others to do the same.
I admire all writers, no matter where they are in their journey. I also realize there are a lot of books promising to make people rich quickly in the self-publishing arena. Have you ever bought a “book” only to find it was eight pages long? I have, and I wasn’t happy. Eight pages isn’t a book. It’s not even a pamphlet. People who try this stunt should not call themselves authors.
Most books on book marketing start with the admonition to write the best book possible. No one argues with this advice. For long term success, this is infinitely more valuable than slapping a bestseller label on the cover.
2) Amazon: What Does the Amazon Sales Rank Mean and is It Significant?

Lost Hero

Changed by captivity and torture, hunted by the Reapers of Hellsbreach and wanted by Earth Fleet, Kin Roland hides on a lost planet near an unstable wormhole.

When a distant space battle propels a ravaged Earth Fleet Armada through the same wormhole, a Reaper follows, hunting for the man who burned his home world. Kin fights to save a mysterious native of Crashdown from the Reaper and learns there are worse things in the galaxy than the nightmare hunting him. The end is coming and he is about to pay for a sin that will change the galaxy forever. 


Enemy of Man: Book One in the Chronicles of Kin Roland was written for fans of military science fiction and science fiction adventure. Readers who enjoyed Starship Troopers or Space Marines will appreciate this genre variation. Powered armor only gets a soldier so far. Battlefield experience, guts, and loyal friends make Armageddon fun. 


If you love movies like Aliens, Predator, The Chronicles of Riddick, or Serenity, then you might find the heroes and creatures in Enemy of Man dangerous, determined, and ready to risk it all. It’s all about action and suspense, with a dash of romance—or perhaps flash romance. 

From the Author

Thanks for your interest in my novel, Enemy of Man. I hope you chose to read the book and enjoy every page. 

If you have already read Enemy of Man, how was it? Reviews are appreciated! 

Have a great day and be safe.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Science Fiction
Rating – R
More details about the author
 Connect with Scott Moon on Facebook & Twitter

Friday, June 20, 2014

@JennyHayworth1's "Doubts" from Her #Memoir INSIDE/OUTSIDE #NonFiction #Abuse

Imagine that someone you love dies. You no longer can see them, speak to them, or touch them or have any literal experience with them except within your mind and heart. This is what being disfellowshipped or disassociated from the Jehovah’s Witnesses means to those who are cut off. They are treated as if they are dead to those remaining in it.
When I was an active member of the Jehovah’s Witnesses and believed a hundred percent in it, I had always believed what had been taught to us from the platform by the elders and in The Watchtower magazine (published twice a month by The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society).
I believed that when baptised Jehovah’s Witnesses decided (because they had bad hearts) that they no longer wished to be Jehovah’s Witnesses, they would say to the elders that they no longer wished to be known as Jehovah’s Witnesses. It was a totally voluntary process, I was taught, and it occurred because these people wanted to do things that were condemned by Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Bible and so no longer wanted to continue being known as one. It was a voluntary separation on their part from the organisation even though they would realise it would cause enormous pain for their families.
Since these people knew that by choosing a lifestyle contrary to one Jehovah God wanted them to lead (as set forth by The Watchtower Society), they knew their families would have to cut them off in obedience to the scriptural direction given by the Apostle James on how to treat those who left the fold. This was to treat them as if they were “dog[s] returning to [their] vomit” as the scriptures put it.
The families would not be allowed to speak to them, eat with them, or greet them. In fact they were instructed to treat them as if they were no longer living. If their families did associate with them and didn’t repent for it after being given the opportunity to do so by loving elders who would try to turn their hearts back to obedience to God’s way, they also would be disfellowshipped.
The elders saw disassociation as a choice made by a baptised person even though both—disassociation and disfellowshipping—were treated in exactly the same way. Disfellowshipped ones might have just made a mistake and need to be punished for the behaviour in which they had engaged. So they were often seen as not having badhearts but as having been led astray or needing to be shocked into realising the seriousness of their actions. People could, however, commit any disfellowshipping sins, and if they were expressing enough remorse or contrition they might not be disfellowshipped.
Talks were constantly being given from the platform about all the things one could be disfellowshipped for including fornication, adultery, homosexuality, and any sexual conduct considered “Unclean” or classified as “pornea.” Also idolatry and celebrating worldly holidays (birthdays, Christmas, Easter, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Halloween) were considered disfellowshipping offences, as they were all pagan in origin.
However, when I asked the elders why witnesses like myself could wear white wedding dresses and wedding rings, both of which were pagan in origin, and asked who picked which historical customs were allowed to be practised and which weren’t, they could not give me an adequate answer.
We just had to be obedient to the direction of The Watchtower, and if they changed their understanding because of a “light” from God in the future, we would be told. But in the meantime, we had to be patient, be obedient, and wait.
My major doubts had surfaced while being reprimanded in New Zealand about going to worldly counsellors for my children when they disclosed their sexual abuse. I had not received counselling from anyone, and this had not helped me. I knew deep inside myself that I had to get help for my children other than just what the elders would provide. I didn’t want my beautiful children to experience the extreme guilt and fear I had experienced because of the abuse by Pop and all that flowed from it.
I could not see how elders who were not trained as counsellors in any way, shape, or form and had no formal education on sexual abuse victims and how to counsel or treat them could have been better than trained professionals. Also I could not see how, if someone broke the law of the land by sexually abusing a child, only the elders and not the judicial system should have dealt with him or her. I had scriptures quoted at me at the time saying God appoints elders, so they are his representatives on earth and not some worldly judging system that does not understand the ways of God’s people.
Again I could not see how, if police were not involved, the guilty person’s just saying sorry to the elders would stop it from happening again or to someone else. Who was accountable? If a member of the congregation murdered someone, he or she had to go to the police and to court. Why not those who committed sexual abuse and rape? Why were these lesser crimes? Why did they not warrant criminal inquires?
When in Wellington, New Zealand, and taking the children to see the counsellor, I had been disturbed by what I had seen happening in our own congregation, where Leonard was involved as one of the elders. A young girl disclosed past sexual abuse that had happened to her, committed by a witness male friend who had worked for her father. She had stated he had come into her room and raped her a few years previously, when she had been about thirteen years old. Now that she was sixteen years old, she had disclosed it.
The accused had previously been married and had two daughters. The daughters had disclosed sexual abuse, but they were still young, only five or six years old. The ex-wife had gone to the police and was taking the children to see the same sexual-abuse counsellor I was taking my children to.
She didn’t know me, but I knew her as the two children had been at the meetings with their abuser on access visits up until the disclosures had been made. His ex-wife had been disfellowshipped, and he had remarried, and his new wife was only seventeen years old and pregnant with their first child. He had apparently written a letter of confession to the elders. The police had requested to interview the head elder, known as the Presiding Overseer of the congregation the accused attended. The Presiding Overseer had come to our house to have an urgent meeting with Leonard, who was then the Secretary of the congregation, and the Treasurer. These were the three main elders in each congregation who dealt with these matters.
As the Presiding Overseer was leaving the house, he said the letter had to be destroyed at all costs, as he had spoken to a solicitor and it was up to the prosecution to prove guilt—he did not have to supply evidence that would incriminate the accused. He also spoke about how he believed that the confidentiality of a confession to elders should be considered the same as the Catholic Church did it, and no elder should therefore have been forced to tell a policeman or court what had been disclosed by a member of the flock to him.
He was saying if the letter was found, the brother would most certainly be found guilty (he had pled not guilty in court) and would spend a long time in prison. As he was very repentant and had promised not to do it again, and had responded to the counselling of the elders, they needed to protect their flock.
It sickened me to listen to them talk. I instinctively thought, but what about protecting his children and his unborn child?  What about the children from the congregation who went to his house? The young girl had been counselled by the elders not to say anything to anyone. She came in distress to see me one day after arguing with her witness mother, with whom she had a volatile relationship, and said he had been made to apologise to her, so it was all meant to be okay now.
I knew from my own experience as an elder’s wife and from visiting other elders and their wives that rarely was anything kept as confidential as the congregation was repeatedly told it was. I knew that within a few days, every one of the elders and their wives would know what had been said and discussed, and all who were close to them as friends would be told. There was no confidentiality, in my experience. I didn’t want what had happened to my children and any disclosures I made to be dinner talk around people’s tables. I couldn’t bear for that to happen. So I just knew I had to go outside the congregation.
The most important reason, though, stemmed back to my childhood fear and memories. Hearing the talk given from the platform when I was a child about the scriptures in the Old Testament that said if a woman was raped in the field and didn’t cry out, she was guilty of adultery and was to be stoned to death, frightened me enormously. I had frozen when Pop abused me. I had been unable to move due to fear at times when I was in the bath, in the cupboard, or under the bed. During what had happened on the tennis court, the leadenness in my legs prevented me from moving, and the fear up tight in my throat and chest meant I was unable to scream or make a sound; I had a total inability to fight back as I was immobilised by fear.
I had spoken to Amy and Ben’s counsellor, and she had been quite forthcoming in explaining that children can fight, flight, or freeze. And abusers often picked those they felt would not fight back but would freeze or comply for many varying reasons, but it certainly did not mean the children wished it to happen.
At the time of Benjamin and Amy’s being abused, there was a case getting media coverage involving a woman in the United States, where a man had been found not guilty of rape due to the fact she had made him use a condom in the middle of raping her. Some of the local elders said this showed willingness and compliance. The woman had awoken to find a man on top of her, who she did not know, with a knife held to her throat. She had condoms in her drawer. When she realised he was going to rape her, she begged him to put on a condom as she was so frightened of getting HIV or another venereal disease. He put it on. Then he left afterward. She went to the police, and it had gone all the way through to trial. He was found not guilty because of the condom use. I was outraged.
I thought, here was a woman having enough wits about her to protect herself in any small way she could, even in the process of being violated by a stranger with a knife, and because she didn’t fight him, as she wished to survive, and he complied and wore a condom, it was taken as consensual? I was horrified. Many Jehovah’s Witnesses I associated with agreed with the court finding as it concurred with the biblical teaching we’d had drummed into us.
Another case was also in the media of a woman who did not scream or resist as the man had broken in and had a knife, but she had a young daughter asleep in the bed next to her. So she lay quietly and did what he said, as she was terrified if her daughter woke up she also would be assaulted or otherwise hurt. The man left, and because the woman had not screamed, the issue of consent arose. I argued vehemently with the elders that surviving was the most important thing, and no one in their right mind could think she gave consent when it was a stranger with a knife held to her. They kept parroting the scripture, though, as if they were unable to think outside the box.
Even when discussing this same issue with my friends, Lisa and Matthew, I would get frustrated. Matthew said if someone broke into his house, and his wife didn’t scream, he would wonder why. Lisa replied instantly that of course she would scream. I put to her that if she were so terrified she couldn’t run or make any noise, would that mean she consented? She couldn’t give an answer except to say she would scream, and it wouldn’t happen that she wouldn’t. And then they said God wouldn’t have put that in the Bible if it were not reasonable.
I was upset and angry, to say the least. I could not believe that, as scientific evidence clearly showed, a person has no control over his or her physical reaction to fear. So why would God punish people for that? I repeatedly said to the elders that I didn’t believe in a God that treated people like that, and that The Watchtower’s interpretation of those scriptures must have been wrong.
One day an elder came to the house and lent me a few books and magazines he had in regard to biblical questions I had raised. I read them, but they gave me no new answers that satisfied me—nothing besides what I had already found out through studying the society’s literature myself. I had them for a while and then one day put them in Leonard’s briefcase for him to give to the elder at the next meeting. I rang the elder to let him know Leonard would be giving them back, as I was not attending many meetings at that stage. I felt like I would be a hypocrite if I continued to go door to door, trying to convert people to a faith with some doctrines I no longer accepted. I also was spending my time trying to cope with my marriage issues and my own emotional state.
The elder asked me if I had found the magazines useful, and when I thanked him for giving them to me but stated they had not answered my queries, he enquired if he would see me at the field service group that Saturday. I said no and said that as I no longer went witnessing, I no longer considered myself to be a witness. He went quiet and asked me to repeat that statement. As we were repeatedly told from the platform, if we did not go door to door then we were not witnesses for Jehovah. I again stated to the elder that as it had been months since I had been in field service, I did not consider myself a witness anymore.
The conversation ended pleasantly enough, and I thought no more of it. At the time I didn’t realise this innocent phone conversation, which had taken only two minutes, would alter the course of my whole life.
If I had known, I might have paid more attention.

***Award winning book (finalist) in 2014 Beverley Hills International Book Awards***
Jenny Hayworth grew up within the construct of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, which she describes as a fundamentalist cult-like religion. She devoted her life to it for over thirty years. Then she left it. The church “unfellowshipped” her-rendering her dead to those family and friends still committed to the church.Hayworth is a sexual abuse survivor. The trauma changed her self-perception, emotional development, trust, and every interaction with the world.
Inside/Outside is her exploration of sexual abuse, religious fundamentalism, and recovery. Her childhood circumstances and tragedies forced her to live “inside.” This memoir chronicles her journey from experiencing comfort and emotional satisfaction only within her fantasy world to developing the ability to feel and express real life emotion on the “outside.”
It is a story that begins with tragic multigenerational abuse, within an oppressive society, and ends with hope and rebirth into a life where she experiences real connections and satisfaction with the outside world.
Those who have ever felt trapped by trauma or circumstances will find Inside/Outside a dramatic reassurance that they are not alone in the world, and they have the ability to have a fulfilling life, both inside and out.
Foreward Clarion Review – “What keeps the pages of Hayworth’s life story turning is her honesty, tenacity, and sheer will to survive through an astounding number of setbacks. Inside/Outside proves the resilience of the human spirit and shows that the cycle of abuse can indeed be broken”
Kirkus Review – “A harrowing memoir of one woman’s struggle to cope with sexual abuse and depression while living in – and eventually leaving – the Jehovah’s Witnesses”
Readers Favourite 5 Star Review – “The book is an inspiring story for those who are going through traumatic times…”
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Memoir
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
Connect with Jenny Hayworth on Facebook & Twitter

Sunday, June 15, 2014

SUMMONED by Rainy Kaye @rainyofthedark #Paranormal #BookBlast #AmReading

A familiar voice says my name.
I look up from the papers in my hand and stop short.
Silvia is standing at the hall doorway, twirling her crimped black locks and eying me up and down. She does that a lot. It’s unnerving.
“Daddy sending you on another mission?”
“Yeah. Wanna take this one?” I offer the papers and envelope as I head toward her.
She laughs, but it’s also unnerving. Everything about her is unsettling, ever since we were kids.
She pops her gum. “Afraid not.”
I push past her into the foyer, passing underneath one of the two massive white staircases, and head toward a set of exit doors.
I glance back. She has her head tilted, still running her eyes up and down like she’s grooming me in her head. She probably is.
She smiles. “Don’t waste my inheritance, okay?”
I scoff, repressing the shudder, then let myself out. I expect Silvia to follow, but she remains inside where she belongs.
A white Honda Civic is waiting in the carport, engine idling. Low key. That’s how I roll.
I slide in, drop the file into the passenger seat, and pull out to head toward Phoenix.
Her inheritance. That’s what Silvia calls me.
If Karl thinks of me as his guard dog, then Silvia considers me her puppy.
And she’s just itching to get her hands on me.

Twenty-three year old Dimitri has to do what he is told—literally. Controlled by a paranormal bond, he is forced to use his wits to fulfill unlimited deadly wishes made by multimillionaire Karl Walker.
Dimitri has no idea how his family line became trapped in the genie bond. He just knows resisting has never ended well. When he meets Syd—assertive, sexy, intelligent Syd—he becomes determined to make her his own. Except Karl has ensured Dimitri can’t tell anyone about the bond, and Syd isn’t the type to tolerate secrets.
Then Karl starts sending him away on back-to-back wishes. Unable to balance love and lies, Dimitri sets out to uncover Karl’s ultimate plan and put it to an end. But doing so forces him to confront the one wish he never saw coming—the wish that will destroy him.
Summoned is represented by Rossano Trentin of TZLA.
Author Bio
Rainy Kaye is an aspiring overlord. In the mean time, she blogs at <a href=></a> and writes paranormal novels from her lair somewhere in Phoenix, Arizona. When not plotting world domination, she enjoys getting lost around the globe, studying music so she can sing along with symphonic metal bands, and becoming distracted by Twitter (<a href=>@rainyofthedark</a>).She is represented by Rossano Trentin of TZLA.
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Cover Design: Kris Wagner
Model: Adam Jakubowski
Photographer:  Marcin Rychły
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Friday, June 13, 2014

Ann Benjamin's Thoughts on Writing in 1st Person vs. 3rd @ABenjaminAuthor #AmWriting #WriteTip

As an author, I’ve written in both first person and third person and I feel (hokey as it may sound) the book and your characters will really help guide your decision.  Also, the genre.  For example, if you choose to write in the Young Adult genre, you will find that many of the recently popular books will be predominantly in first person.  It doesn’t mean you can’t write in third person, but it is what many readers are used to.  Having written my first four books in third person, I deliberately chose first person for my additional young adult endeavors.  They began that way and ended that way.  By reading up on books in your intended genre, or by studying novels by favorite authors, note what choices they have made.  Chances are, the decision was intentional.  For example, take Katniss Everdeen in the Hunger Games.  Her first person present tense puts the reader right in the middle of all that goes on.  How different would the book be if we didn’t know what was going on in the protagonist’s head?
For my recently published Room 702, I knew the novel was always going to be third person.  There are simply too many characters to go into ‘I.’  I decided to limit the omniscient perspective of the room by limiting the action the reader could ‘see’ by containing each chapter to just the hotel suite.
Another (unpublished) novel of mine began as third person, but after thirty pages, I realized the manuscript didn’t ‘sound’ right and switched over to start writing in first person and the words and ideas simply flowed better.  Of course, that meant some clean up at the beginning of the book, but the change was worth the investment of time.  A sequel to this book also seemed strange to change voices, so I kept it in first person.  In my own writing, I feel flexible to write in the voice and tone that seems best for the book.  Personally, I don’t feel locked into one voice or another.
So, what’s best for you?  I think it’s important to do your research.  What do you, as a reader, respond better to?  What engages you?  I think if you are going to attack the subject of writing a novel, it’s important to yourself and what motivates you.  Additionally, who is your protagonist?  What is he or she like?  Is there a large supporting cast?  Where does the action take place?  Is the focus on the struggle of one person or many?  What does your reader have to gain from staying with one person ‘on screen’ than seeing the vantage point of multiple storylines?
In addition to looking inward, have you engaged externally with a writing community?  While you might not have access to a critique group, how about a book club?  Most readers would be happy to chat about what they enjoy reading and books that haven’t hit the mark with them.  Additionally, there are many different forums online.  With a simple Google search, you should be able to connect with other writers in your genre.  By sharing a simple version of your story, it would be easy to collect tips.
Finally, it doesn’t hurt to go back to basics.  While there are numerous books on the subject of writing (and which voice to write in), I thoroughly enjoyed Stephen King’s On Writing as well as Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird.  Chuck Wendig also has a lot of fantastic stuff to say.
Whatever you decide – best of luck!

One hotel suite. One year. Many stories. The Winchester Hotel is an active property in Beverly Hills, California. Luxurious and discreet, it is a perfect location for business meetings, weddings, affairs, and other important life events – including the death of an A List celebrity. Told from the omniscient perspective of the room, the reader has a front row seat to the drama that unfolds in the suite. Although each chapter is unique, the characters’ lives intertwine in a way only possible in a major metropolis like Los Angeles.
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Genre - Contemporary
Rating – R
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Saturday, June 7, 2014

Digging: Lifting the Memorable from Within the Unthinkable #Excerpt by Susan M. Rostan #Memoir

Elzbieta could not keep her mind off his handsome face. Standing about five-foot ten, she guessed, he had a strong body and softly angled eyes. Irene, one of the physicians in the doctors’ office, sat smiling as the young nurse described her beau. Irene could see in Elzbieta’s eyes that this was going to be a serious relationship; Elzbieta was in love.

“What did you do last night?” Irene asked, hoping to experience just a little bit of Elzbieta’s excitement.

“We had dinner and took a long walk. He is such a good listener, always making a good analysis of a problem I discuss with him. He has a good mind for business.”

“What kind of business were you discussing?” Irene asked, wondering what Elzbieta was thinking about besides her nursing practice. She was an excellent midwife and Irene didn’t want her to lose focus after all her training. She knew that Elzbieta’s brothers, Adam and Leon, were involved in the family business and worried that Elzbieta’s father Israel might encourage Elzbieta to join them. Israel had been successful in each of his business ventures and now that he was planning to spin off a children’s clothing store for Adam, since now he had a wife to support, Irene was worried that Israel would try to encourage Elzbieta to try her own hand at some venture.

“Papa thinks he can make some money transporting gravel,” Elzbieta began, “but I’m not sure that it is worth the investment in a commercial truck. He talks about how he can make it work and how he can start with a reconditioned truck, nothing too expensive. I am afraid that he is getting distracted from his manufacturing business. He is doing well and I don’t think he should be branching out into something he doesn’t know anything about. He says it’s just taking gravel from here to there and he can do it faster than the usual horse-drawn carts, which means he can make so many more trips in a day.”

“And what does Benjamin think about the plan?” Irene asked, hoping to get a better sense of Benjamin’s thinking.

“He thinks it’s a great idea! He wants to discuss it with Papa.”

“How do you feel about that? Would you want him to go into business with your father?” Irene questioned her dear friend, the woman she had come to love and trust in such a short period of time.

“Well, if Benjamin had a good job, a steady income, we could . . .”

“You could what?” Irene asked, with a little teasing push.

“Papa would say yes if Benjamin asked him for my hand.”

“So that’s what this is all about,” Irene shot back with a chuckle. “The girl’s in love and she’s trying to make it work . . . .make a marriage.” Irene smiled her broad natural grin, the smile that always made Elzbieta feel like a little sister, delighting the woman she adored.

Elzbieta blushed as she smiled back. Growing up with two older brothers left her eager for close girlfriends. In Irene’s smile, she saw herself as someone to be loved, to be taken seriously, someone you could trust, and Elzbieta loved her back. She couldn’t know, in that moment, that they would grow old together in a life far removed from this one.

Have you ever really thought about your ancestors beyond their names and dates of events in their lives? The stories of how they lived their lives can be a source of strength as well as inspiration in your own life.
In this new work of narrative nonfiction, Susan M. Rostan invites us to experience her journey as she seeks to uncover the story of her husband s family, including two courageous but silent survivors of WWII s Warsaw Ghetto: her mother-in-law Elzbieta and Elzbieta s brother, Marian Rosenbloom.
With the passing of Elzbieta, an aging Uncle Marian is the only surviving link to his family s history — the stories of tragic loss and heroic survival — that he and his sister had refused to share with anyone throughout their life. Encouraged by the author and driven by an emerging sense of responsibility to his sister s namesake and future generations, Marian begins a difficult journey into the memories of his childhood in the Warsaw Ghetto and subsequent survival.
As his experiences unfold, he haltingly recalls how he managed to escape the Ghetto and survive, thanks to his courageous rescuers. Out of his remembrances, the author nurtures not only the story of her husband s family history, but finds herself immersed in an insistent desire to honor Marian s rescuers. Through her poignant and compelling narrative, she revives Elzbieta s legacy of hope, caring, and laughter for all of us to share.
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Genre – Creative Nonfiction
Rating – PG-13
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E. Stoops on Writing as an Excellent Form of Therapy #AmWriting #Fictions #SelfPub

It’s often said that writing is like meditation or playing music – it heals the soul. I’m the first to admit that it’s an excellent way to comb through a tangled mind or mentally put to rights something you couldn’t in real life. But writing shouldn’t just be scriptural talk therapy, it is also a creative process and it’s not the issues you put on the page that heals the soul, it’s transforming the negativity into a creative energy that is what actually does the trick. The first two books of the Pretense series were written while friends were in the middle east. I harbored many dark thoughts at the time. Worry, fear, anger and also a sort of maniacal dark joy on the days that they sent up the flag to let us know they were still alive and kicking. You might think that the Pretense series is dark and gloomy because of it, but as all that darkness churned and was spun out into words, I found I had written a funny book about dark themes instead of the serious book I thought would come of my efforts
I think we’ve all read that one book, the one in which it’s pretty obvious that the author is working through their own issues, their own hatreds and prejudices. It’s not a fun experience as a reader (but I’m sure the author feels better!) I think it can be healthy to write that way, but I don’t think it’s a good idea to publish it. Publishing a book like that is like screaming at family members in the middle of Barnes and Noble. That isn’t to say that writing a book is a mill-like process wherein all dark and negative emotions are made light and positive. Outside of the horror genre (which I think is a different kind of catharsis) the real trick is to bring them into balance or put them in perspective. This is why I often find that I give each chapter both an up note and a down note. Even if they don’t balance out in each chapter (and generally, in the beginning of the book, the down notes are huge steps down and the up notes small steps up) over all I like it when a book should has a similar quantity of notes of each kind and ends only slightly out of balance in terms of quality. I always like my heroes to have some sort of victory, but I often salt it. I don’t think it’s realistic for them to get what they want at minimal price.
The one thing that I think is tough about making this process work is getting the mill started so that it can start processing your emotions into a narrative. That’s because it’s not about creating the enemy that your characters will defeat. It’s about dropping the reigns on your fears, angers, sadnesses and letting them run amok in the book and transform themselves into the enemy. I can always tell when I’m reading a book where someone worked hard on creating just the right metaphor – to me it always seems a little stilted.  I used to do the same, but with Pocket, I just let my fears loose in the pages, and they became very subtle, very creepy, and a much better metaphor than I could have created.
They also became bigger. But that was Lucius’s problem, and I more or less liked how he solved it for us both.

In an alternate universe where the twentieth century gave rise to individuals with psychic talents, the Great War ended far differently, and the flow of history led the United States into a losing war with China by the middle of the twenty-first century. The combined submarine navies of Britain, Russia, France, Canada and the United States are holding back an ever more hostile enemy that is intent on winning a war of attrition. A desperate Navy presses antiquated boats into service to supply the main fleet and mans them with the leavings of the Navy’s worst sailors. For Chief Petty Officer Lucius Tagget and his best friend Aaron Fredrickson, it’s their ticket out of naval prison and a chance to clear their names.

What should be an uneventful assignment behind the front lines turns into a nightmare when Aaron is killed in an accident that claims the lives of all the men on his submarine. Terrified of condemning another boat and crew to eternal patrol, the Navy assigns the CPNS Puget Sound a talented seer in hopes of preventing another accident. Instead, that decision changes the entire crew, and ultimately, the entire war.
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Genre - Alternative History
Rating - PG-15
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