Broken Pieces

Jack Canon's American Destiny

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

Saturday, May 31, 2014

The phone rang and as I lifted the receiver I checked the phone’s digital display identifying the caller as Marian. “Hi,” I said, in a cheerful welcome, hoping to beat Marian to an introduction. “Sue? It’s Marian,” he responded, seemingly playing out the script he had prepared as he dialed the phone.

“How are you? How is everyone?” I replied, hoping to hear only good news.

“We’re all fine. Listen, Sue, we would like to stop by this weekend, if it’s OK with you and Bobby.”
“I know we’re free on Sunday, how about brunch?” I suggested.

“Sunday is good for us. I’ll be coming with the boys, if that’s OK with you.” “The boys” were Marian’s sons Marc and Ira. Marian’s wife Carol had difficulty sitting in the car for long trips, making her visits infrequent.

“Great,” I answered, trying to ease the discomfort I heard in Marian’s short, fact-filled sentences. He was always afraid of imposing but of course we would welcome his sons. The fact that he was living four hours north of my home on Long Island made “downstate” visits rare. I planned the menu before the receiver hit its cradle. We would have the usual: bagels, lox, and cream cheese. I made a mental note to remember bialys, fresh fruit, and a sugarless pie for Marian’s restricted diet.

Thus one sun-drenched afternoon — years after the Cold Spring Harbor sail with Eliane and just months after Ella’s digging focused my genealogical research — Bobby and I sat on our patio having brunch with Marian. In anticipation of the visit I envisioned segueing our conversation yet again into the past, if only for the names of relatives long gone. Little did I know how far Marian had come in his willingness to talk, at last.

Turning to Marian and his forty-something sons — Marc and Ira (named for Marian’s twin Menache and father Israel) — I remember enthusiastically describing how I was trying to create a family tree. The sons would find exploring their ancestry an interesting enterprise, I believed.

As I read my list of the approximate names of Marian’s family, noting where I had blanks alongside relationships, Marian seemed more distracted than usual. I noticed Marc and Ira giving each other secret signs and Bobby closing his eyes, probably fearing I had initiated a painful family exchange. Hoping to engage Marian and assure the others that I needed only names, not painful stories, I mentioned my discovery that my mother-in-law’s name was actually Estera Rachel, and not Elzbieta, or Elsa, as Marian called her. Marian, whose eyes lifted to meet mine, smiled. “That’s correct,” he acknowledged in his soft deep voice. “Elzbieta was not a Jewish name. Elsa took that name; she didn’t use her given name.”

Marian, sitting at the head of the table and dressed, as usual, in a pressed shirt, khakis, and sports jacket, could provide only a few of the names I needed. He could not remember his grandmother’s first name, although he did remember her last name — she was “Grandma Wilde.” He was limited by what he remembered and what, as a child, he had actually known. Nonetheless, through this simple task Marian began the difficult job of selecting memories to share. As he began speaking his family I envisioned him transporting the delicate roots of his family’s tree to a time and place that was safe for all of us to witness.




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.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Creative Nonfiction
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
Connect with Susan M. Rostan through Facebook & Twitter

Chance Collision (Crossing Forces) #Excerpt by @CASzarek #Romance #Suspense #GoodReads

Thursday, May 29, 2014

She tried to convince her heartbeat to slow. Pete’s expression softened and her face warmed. Swallowing back a gulp, Nikki forced words out of her mouth. “It’s okay.”
Their gazes locked and she was swept into him. Intensity and fire were in his eyes. A zing of awareness sparked between them and Nikki moved closer. Felt the heat coming off his body. But then Pete stepped back and squared his shoulders. Looked down at his dark cowboy boots. Shifted on his feet like a teenager caught doing something wrong.
What the hell?
He cleared his throat and finally met her eyes again. “Thanks for making dinner.” His tone was natural. As if the moment they’d just shared didn’t signify.
“What’s wrong with you?” Nikki blurted.
Pete stared, shoving his hands in his jeans pockets. He bunched up his broad shoulders and opened his mouth then closed it.
“Well?” She dried her hands with a dish towel then tossed it on the counter behind her. Propped her hands on her hips and stared right back. Dared him to be honest with her.
“What are you talking about?” His voice cracked.
Nikki narrowed her eyes, irritation flaring. “You’re hot and cold. Frankly, it’s driving me crazy.” There. She’d said it. Now what?
Her heart thundered in her ears as she waited for her detective to speak.
He didn’t.
Pete took a step forward. She didn’t move away.
Nikki looked up into his handsome face. His cheeks were ruddy and his eyes carried the same intensity he’d regarded her with only moments before.
A groan tore from his lips then she was against the hard wall of his chest. Her breath was forced out as her breasts flattened into his pecs and he wrapped his arms around her.
Her hip hit the edge of the sink as Pete’s mouth came down on hers, but Nikki didn’t care. He was kissing her again, and it was heaven. She snaked her arms around his neck and pushed closer, opening her mouth as he slanted his for a deeper kiss.
Proof that Pete wanted her—at least physically—pressed into her belly, so she rocked into him and kissed him harder.
In a tangle of lips and limbs, they stumbled into the living room without breaking the seal of their mouths. They landed on the couch.
Pete’s weight on top of her stole her breath all over again, but she didn’t care. She kept kissing him, winding her tongue around his as he cupped her breasts through her favourite printed T-shirt. Her nipples peaked and she arched into him, needing more. The warmth of his big hands seeped through the cotton material, but it wasn’t enough.
Nikki wanted his hands on her bare flesh. Wanted his lips on her. Needed him to suck her into his hot mouth. Everywhere.
She moaned his name when finally he yanked the front of her shirt up and brushed her belly. Wiggling to help him free the rest of it from her jeans, her thigh rubbed the erection straining against his own denim.
Pete groaned. “Darlin’…”
Nikki closed her eyes and sighed. The endearment was a caress that slid across her skin. Making her as hot as his hands.
Her sex throbbed and he hadn’t even touched her there yet.
“Touch me, Pete.” The whisper sounded desperate to her ears, but her detective didn’t make her wait.
Air hit her at all angles as he pushed her shirt up, exposing her bra and her hips when he tugged her zipper down and pushed the denim out of the way. Without preamble, he shoved his hand into her pants, pushing into her panties. But he leant down at the same time, popping one breast out of the frilly pink lace cup. He fondled her hard nipple with nimble fingers before enclosing it with his hot mouth and teasing with his tongue.

Crossing Forces series:

Small Town Texas doesn’t always mean small time crime.
Welcome to Antioch, population fifty thousand.
With a police department full of detectives and officers who are good at what they do, throw in the occasional FBI agent, and the bad guy doesn’t have a shot, no matter how big the crime.
They work together and fight together. Relationships will be forged and changed along the twists and turns.
When fate intervenes, love and happiness can be found in unlikely places.

Crossing Forces by C.A. Szarek

This is book two in the Crossing Forces series
Vowing to protect her had nothing to do with feelings.
Detective Pete Crane catches a new shooting case and considers it business-as-usual. But when the lead witness is the Chief of Police’s fiery assistant, he never anticipated she’d challenge him—personally and professionally. Especially while under his protection.
Little do they know, the shooting she and her grandmother witnessed was anything but random.
Thrown together, their attraction sizzles, even though she’s squarely in the no-fly zone. She makes him break every rule in his little black book.
Nikki Harper has been attracted to Pete since they met two years ago. Witnessing a brutal shooting throws her into a stigma that’s always been her greatest fear—a victim. She has no choice but to accept his protective custody and let him help save her and her beloved grandmother.
Can Pete protect his witness and solve the case, while fighting the intense heat with Nikki?
Buy Now @ Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Totally Bound | ARe | Sony | Kobo | Barnes&Noble
Genre – Romantic Suspense
Rating – R
More details about the author
Connect with C.A. Szarek on Facebook & Twitter

Scott Moon on Sacrifice, Courage & Best-Seller Status @ScottMoonWriter #BookMarketing #SciFi

Wednesday, May 28, 2014


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? http://ezinearticles.com/?Amazon:-What-Does-the-Amazon-Sales-Rank-Mean-and-is-It-Significant?&id=166716

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. 

Books

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. 

Movies

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
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 Connect with Scott Moon on Facebook & Twitter

@RJ_Blain Says Your Writing Style is Important to Your Craft #AmWriting #WriteTip #Fantasy

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Finding your voice or style is an important part of the writing craft. But, what most people often don’t realize is that this voice or style is almost always in a state of flux. Your voice is something directly tied with how you communicate and present words. It changes as you improve and strengthen your writing. It develops along with your skills.
Your voice or style changing is not a bad thing. It’s a natural sign of progression. So, don’t sweat it when someone tells you that your voice or style will probably change, or makes recommendations on how to improve it. Any time you change how you write, your voice or style changes as a result. This isn’t a bad thing. Embrace improvement, and don’t sweat it when your voice changes. Let it grow with you.
That said, if you are the type of writer who likes writing stories in different perspectives, be it third person or first person, you need to be especially aware of your voice and style and how it changes depending on the POV type you are working with.
Most authors have significantly different writing styles when working in first or third person.
The First Person Perspective 
First person is considered to be the most intimate of perspectives. Throughout a first-person novel, readers go on a direct journey with the POV character. Voice and style of first person stories should change with each novel; it needs to match the personality of the character being written about. So, if an author has one style with a character from a series, their style will likely change if they write in first person with a character from a different series.
While the basic way the author uses words may not change significantly, there will be a lot of nuances specific to the character they are writing about. I think this is something important for readers and writers to recognize.
And, this is where the distinction between voice and style can be truly made. Voice is tied to the character. Style is tied to how the writer ties words together to make sentences. Voice should change – it should fluctuate with the characters. Voice is how the characters speak.
Style is how the author writes, within the constraints of the character’s voice.
The Third Person Perspective 
To stick some sticks through the spokes, first person and third person aren’t that much different in terms of style and voice choices. In a way, third person can be a little more forgiving in terms of character voice in a specific novel. However, it is less forgiving in terms of style. I think a common perception is that there is a certain amount of flexibility when writing in first person because the writing should be a direct reflection of the POV character.
In third person, this reflection is often less. Third person characters are often considered to be held more at arm’s length compared to the personal nature of first person.
That said, I think there is a lot of room for third person characters to have their own voice while the author still applies their general style to their novel.
Understanding and Identifying your Style
Before you can truly develop a character’s voice, which is essentially a variation of your style suited to match a specific individual in your story, you need to understand style. In order to understand your style, you need to understand language.
Grammar, spelling, and punctuation are the basics of a writing style. Dialect, regional quirks, and writing and reading background significantly impact your writing style.
If you want to learn how to improve your style, study the language you write in. Understand it and the people who speak it. Once you do this, look at what makes you unique compared to other authors.
Mistakes aren’t a style. They’re mistakes. The rule about breaking the rules when writing only applies once you know the rules and you’re doing them intentionally, not due to ignorance or lack of education. Only then can you turn purposeful ‘mistakes’ into a style – but at that point, they’re not really mistakes, are they?

When Allison is asked to play Cinderella-turned-FianceĆ© at a Halloween ball, the last thing she expected was to be accused of murder on the same night. She has to find the killer or she’ll be put to death for the crimes she didn’t commit. To make matters worse, the victims are all werewolves. 

On the short list of potential victims, Allison has to act fast, or the killer will have one more body to add to his little black book of corpses. 

There’s only one problem: One of the deaths has struck too close to home, and Allison’s desire for self-preservation may transform into a quest for vengeance…
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre - Urban, Paranormal Fantasy
Rating – PG
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Anna Klay Discusses Work Areas & Comfort Zones @AnnaKlayBooks #Fiction #AmWriting

Friday, May 23, 2014

I created this cover in a rough form on a white board before I had it professionally drawn with the intention of conveying the emotion of the work.
Book cover designs should not only have enough creativity and originality to attract the eyes of a potential reader, which a cover must do with a slight glance, but the design also offers a hint to potential readers the genre, the style, the tone and content.  With Broken Wing, the cover was designed with the intention of portraying a dark story, edgy and somewhat turbulent.  And the symbolism within the story is introduced through aspects of the cover.
Every aspect of the cover from the colors to the fonts to the central image should be there for a reason.   And the cover should also be aesthetically pleasing to the eye.  After all, the cover is a representation of your work, and represents the writer to the reader.
Is the story a turbulent one with twists and turns?  Broken Wing is, and that is also represented through the shattered font style.  And this story takes place in a small town named Pettington located in the middle of nowhere which is illustrated in the landscape, but the theme of the story, abuse and how it affects us all, is not isolated to the small town in this novel, but instead it is a story we all know too well, and that is communicated by the barbwire fence that runs off the cover page.
There is much more to Broken Wing including the symbolism and the motif that the readers will discover and form their personal ideas upon, and I do not want to spoil that here.  But I will say that a writer owes it to their readers to present an image that can offer a realistic glimpse of the contents and leave an impression that will allow the reader to make a good decision about the material. And if the writer has spent the time to polish his or her work, he or she owes it to themselves as well as the reader to show that through the cover.

The Tarot predicts the journey as Ray Long comes to the town of Pettington hoping to leave his rage behind and begin a new life. And when he meets Skye Roosevelt, he begins to believe he can recreate himself and find his future in Pettington. But Pettington is no ordinary town with a metaphysical store that tells its future, a whore house that keeps it financially secure, and secrets long buried just beneath its surface. And soon Ray Long begins to spiral down into the pit of violence he has always known. 

He begins to hear the Devil whisper in his ear, and he soon discovers his old self is more soothing to him than the new life he’s created. And when he tries to murder two of Pettington’s own, Skye Roosevelt must search deep within herself for her own self identity in order to protect her son as Ray Long battles the past in order to separate the passion from the pain. Broken Wing is a story about an abuser who was a victim of abuse as a child. This is a story about his family relations, the need for love, the devastation of rejection, and the merry-go-round that keeps turning. And this story is about self-identity, a self-identity the character believes defines him, dark and rigid, until he is pushed to the extreme, only then can he step out and stand naked with this identity at his feet as he lays claim to the past that molded him and the passion that fills his heart.
Buy Now @ Amazon & Smashwords
Genre - Literary
Rating – PG-13
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Four Seasons from Claudette Melanson's RISING TIDE @Bella623 #BookClub #Paranormal

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Caelyn – Winter
Caelyn is full of winter.  But though she may have an aloof chill about her, she still wants to offer her daughter warmth and comfort, like a cup of hot cocoa or a fire in the hearth.  She is crystal beauty, but keeps everyone, sometimes even her own daughter, at arm’s length, never allowing anyone too close.  As strong as an arctic wind, she carries the weight of many responsibilities, but her emotional shell is ever-ready to crack—like the ice at the thaw–at the wrong word or suggestion, reminding her of the love she’s lost.  Maura, at times, wants to break out of the ice, but Caelyn wishes to keep her safe, attempting to protect her from the same mistakes she made, when she was Maura’s age.  She is very anxious about her daughter’s relationship with Ron and wants nothing more than to protect her from the fake friends lie in wait to wound Maura, just as she begins to emerge from the winter respite she and Caelyn have taken from the outside world.
Maura –Spring 
Maura and Caelyn are both stuck in their own kind of winter, tucked away inside, just waiting for the right conditions to make them blossom.  They are closed off, emotionally, sheltering themselves against outside elements.  But, in Rising Tide, Maura is more like Spring, as she seems ready to break out of her antisocial slumber and experience the world.  She wants to try out love and the friendships she’s wished for her whole life, while Caelyn wants to keep her under that protective layer of ice, away from the harsh realities of life.  But Maura is changing in so many ways.  She’s growing out of the weak, shy girl she’s always been into more of a take-charge, independent woman.  And like spring, something new emerges within her every day.  Both emotionally and physically, she gives birth to changes continuously, as she transforms into the creature waiting inside, of which she isn’t yet aware.
Shane—Summer
Shane is warmth without cessation.  He never holds anything back and is sometimes very in-your-face.  Like summer, he sets people in motion, calling them to action.  He is the most gung-ho when the band he and Ron are a part of, books their first gig, displaying nothing but optimism.  At the amusement park, Shane drags everyone to the roller coasters, daring them to break free, just as the summer sun calls people outside to try new things after a long, cold winter.  Even though he may come across sometimes as too intense—like a relentlessly hot summer day—like the summer sun, he is a source of brightness and warmth in the lives of everyone who knows him.
Ron—Fall
Fall is the official end of the year.  Ron is there as the official end of Maura’s time in the town she’s grown up in.  Autumn is also regarded as a time of bounty and harvest.  Ron has a huge heart and is ready to give love, understanding and assistance without end.  He is mild, like fall temperatures—non-judgmental in his relationships with others, especially Maura—and as easygoing as the gently falling leaves.  Like the trees, in all their colorful splendor this time of year, he is also pleasing to the eye with his long, dark hair and deep hazel eyes.  Fall is considered the precursor to winter, and Ron is about to usher in a cold, lonely, barren time for Maura, as she must start a new life without him physically by her side.  And some of his actions in the latter part of the novel, definitely bring a chill to Maura’s heart.

CHOSEN AS ONE OF 400 FOR THE SECOND ROUND OF THE AMAZON BREAKTHROUGH NOVEL AWARD FOR 2014!!!
ARE YOU A FAN OF VAMPIRE ROMANCE?
Rising Tide will sink it’s teeth into you, keeping you awake into the wee hours of the night
Maura’s life just can’t get any worse…or can it?
Isolated and sheltered by her lonely mother, Maura’s never been the best at making friends. Unusually pale with a disease-like aversion to the sun, she seems to drive her classmates away, but why?
Even her own father deserted her, and her mother, before Maura was born. Bizarre physical changes her mother seems hell bent on ignoring, drive Maura to fear for her own life. And her luck just seems to get worse.
Life is about to become even more bewildering when her mother’s abrupt…and unexplained…decision to move a country away sets off a chain of events that will change Maura forever. A cruel prank turned deadly, the discovery of love and friendship….and its loss, as well as a web of her own mother’s lies, become obstacles in Maura’s desperate search for a truth she was never prepared to uncover.
Featured on one of the most popular health blogs on the internet as a giveaway!
Be sure to check out the blog on Maria Mind Body Health to win a free copy today! Go to Mariamindbodyhealth.com and check out the blog Chicken “Wild Rice” Soup for your chance to win!
Offered as a giveaway on Goodreads!
Head over to Goodreads for a chance to score a free copy today!
Featured on Litpick.com
Offer a review of Rising Tide on Litpick.com
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – YA Paranormal Romance
Rating – PG
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Quick Chat with Phil Davidson on Life & DREAMER @davidsonnovels #AmReading #Drama #Fiction


1.           A day in the life of Phil Davidson:
As a lawyer, my days are filled with reading and writing; reading cases, writing briefs, pleadings and letters and other documents.  When I’m not reading or writing, I am meeting with clients or potential clients, taking depositions or appearing in Court.  My days are long and in many instances frustrating because I’ve learned that justice and the law are not always the same.
2.           What inspired you to write Dreamer?
I wrote dreamer based on my own experiences in Vietnam and wanting to tell a story about warriors and how they think and act.  Once I had these things in mind I realized that, like a lot of soldiers, I felt overwhelming grief and shame at having survived. So how did that come to be?  The only explanation to me was that God had spared me.  I then made up my mind to tell a story about how God could offer redemption to warriors.
  1. What do you want people to know about Dreamer?
I want people to know that Dreamer is a book worth reading.  It made Amazon’s Best Sellers List. It is packed with action and filled with redemption.  What individual that has fallen would not love the opportunity to rise again and overcome the challenges that have faced them.  Dreamer is the story of the fallen who got back up.  It is for mature audiences.  Everyone will not like the book because it is very realistic.  But if you can handle the worst elements in life and hold on, you will be highly entertained and love the ending.  It’s a great book.
4.           Why are mentors important?
I have never had a mentor to aid me in writing.  But I have had mentors in other areas, college and the army.  A mentor is someone that you believe in and that believes in you – and lets you know that.  He is a person that attempts to “show you the way” in a specific endeavor, to “clear the path” so to speak.  But I believe for a novice in any endeavor, a mentor can be valuable.
5.           Inside the mind of an author:
I think that fiction authors all have one common thought process: they want to create something that doesn’t exist.  And in doing this they attempt to make the story as interesting as possible and the characters believable and someone the reader can connect with.
6.           How can writing be a form of therapy?
Any psychologist will tell you that talking about a subject that is bothering someone is good therapy.  “Getting it out”.  Soldiers who suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder have repressed horrifying thoughts, and in order to deal with those thoughts a good therapist will attempt to have them talk and bring the harmful thoughts to the surface where they can be dealt with.  It goes the same for writing.  Lots of writers use the written word to express their strong feelings about subjects found in war, death and love.
___________________________
Phil Davidson is a practicing attorney in Nashville, TN and author of the book Dreamer a number 1 Amazon Best Selling Book. Dreamer is a novel about redemption and the power of God to restore the fallen. It is available on Amazon.com. This book has been written to inspire everyone and especially those with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder that there is a place for recovery in the arms of God.

The fiery relationship between Captain David Eliott and beautiful lover and wife Sonny creates a drama that will cross continents. She is the light of his world and suddenly disappears under the worst circumstances, which causes David to again become the man that he swore to forget. This military drama is full of intrigue and redemption.

Phil Davidson’s book Dreamer is dedicated to preserving the bond of brotherhood that military members commit to, shows the power of faith in overcoming life’s most adverse situations, shows the strength of families working through challenges, and the healing from trauma that occurs by becoming bold enough to face the enemies of your past.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre - Military Fiction
Rating – PG-18
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Connect with Phillip Davidson through Twitter

Seranfyll (Rebranded Cover) by Christina Daley @cdaleywrite #Fantasy #MiddleGrade

Friday, May 16, 2014


Seranfyll Excerpt #2

Rain didn’t talk to anyone for the rest of the day. Snevil discouraged it, and he threatened to whip them often. He never actually did it, but no one wanted to try his patience. As the market day drew to an end, the slave trader only managed to sell a couple of boys and one girl. Winter was coming, after all, and the harvest season was over. No one wanted to feed extra slaves through the cold days ahead. They would buy more in the spring, when it was time to start planting again. But right after the harvest, like now, it was always the slowest time for slave traders. The little man grumbled and ordered his men to start loading the slaves into his cart.
Oh my dear, now did you hear of Clumsy Captain Cotton? He sailed a knot in Haley’s Loch before he hit the bottom!
Everyone stopped and looked around curiously for the source of the boisterous singing. Rain strained to see what was making all the noise, and she wrinkled her brow when only one man strolled into the town square. He was a young man and richly dressed with an extravagant white cloak about his shoulders and a wide-brimmed hat with a very tall feather in the side of it. A dazzling sword hung from his belt, looking more like jewelry than weaponry. The splendid mare he rode upon was the color of new fallen snow, and her gold bridle glittered in the sunlight.
Upon return, he took the stern of the Lady Kipper,” he sang on. “Her motley crew that day did rue Ol’ Cotton as their skipper!
Rain stared at him. Not only did he sing so badly and loudly, he also rode backwards on his horse! Waving a glass bottle around in his unsteady hand, he sang at the tip top of his lungs, though Rain couldn’t understand they rest of his words since they starting slipping into one another.
The townspeople laughed and pointed at him.
“Who is that? What a silly fellow,” someone said.
“Why that’s Lord Domrey Seranfyll!” another replied. “Have you ever seen anyone so ridiculous?”
“Well, he can certainly afford to be ridiculous. He’s only the richest man in the province now.”
“I knew he was strange. But I’ve never seen him drunk before!”
“You haven’t? I’ve never seen him sober.”
Lord Domrey obliviously continued his slippery and senseless song as his horse sidled up next to Snevil’s cart. The mare snorted and rolled its eyes, making Rain look twice.
The rider turned in her direction and hiccoughed. “Ay? Who are you?” he asked.
Rain said nothing. She wasn’t sure how to respond, or even if she should.
He leaned towards her, squinting. The alcohol from his foul breath nearly knocked her over. “You are organic, aren’t you? Or am I talking to a statue again?”
Snevil ran to the horse’s other side. “Beggin’ yer pardon, young Master. But let me introduce meeself. I am Snevil, yer humble servant.”
Lord Domrey looked down at the slave trader. “Snevil?” he repeated, followed by a hiccough. “That’s a funny name. It sounds like you’re a sick and serious fellow.”
Snevil snickered. “I’m about to close up for today, m’ Lord. But if you happen to see any lass or lad servant here that you’d like to purchase, I’ll be happy to stay open a little longer.”
“Servants?” Lord Domrey repeated. He swung his leg around and slipped from the horse, his boot heels landing on the ground with a clomp! “I don’t want servants. I want guests! Don’t you know that today is my birthday?” He jabbed an unsteady finger into Snevil’s weak little chest four times with his last four words.
“And many happy returns, m’ Lord,” the slave trader said. “As a birthday present, I’ll give you a discount.”
Lord Domrey swept around to the back of the cart. He pointed the same unsteady finger at each of the slaves as he counted, which he bungled twice. After the third time, he said, “My good Snevil. Am I correct when I say that you have ten children for sale?”
“Right you are, sir. A sharp young man, m’ Lord is. Wise beyond his years.”
Lord Domrey grinned at the compliment. He raised the bottle to his lips, but when he discovered it empty, he tossed it aside. “Right then. I’ll take the lot.”
Rain gasped, and others started to whisper. Who’d ever heard of someone buying ten slaves all at once?
(Ages 10+) Rain has never chosen her own name. Nor has she met a polite apple tree, been caught in a house’s security spell, or ridden a horse . . . winged or not. What she does know is that, after having been a slave for all thirteen years of her common life, she’s free and has nowhere to go. 

That all changes when she’s taken in by the peculiar Domrey Seranfyll, who was drunk when he purchased Rain’s freedom and doesn’t remember doing so. Some say he’s part devil and spent time overseas learning the dark arts—not the sorts of things one hopes for in a housemate. And the longer Rain keeps company with Lord Seranfyll, the more magic and mayhem she gets tangled into, all the while discovering that being free can be far more exciting, and dangerous, than she ever imagined. 

(~ 85,000 words or roughly equal to 330 print pages) 
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Genre - Middle Grade Fantasy
Rating – PG
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Survival of the Fittest by Robin Hawdon #Historical #Fiction #GoodReads

Thursday, May 15, 2014

The questions are always with us. Does God really exist? Are science and religion incompatible bedfellows? Charles Darwin shook philosophy to its foundations with his theory of evolution, yet strangely, he himself refrained from commenting in depth about the religious implications for fear of adding to the furor.
But suppose that he did in fact write down his conclusions as a secret addendum to his seminal work, Origin of Species. And suppose his beloved wife, Emma, who kept her own secret journal, was the only other person to know of this hidden postscript.
The novel Survival of the Fittest is the modern day story of the search for these two hugely significant works. An eccentric and endearing London antiquarian book dealer is hired by an equally eccentric American billionaire to track down the documents for his world famous collection of original manuscripts.
The complex investigation ranges across England, from historic towns and stately piles to prisons and Darwin homes, and involves a series of encounters ranging from the criminal to the romantic and the revelatory. Along the way, it explores the spiritual struggle within the extraordinary Darwin household, and the effects of that same struggle on the creators of the atom bomb and on modern terrorists.
Do we want to know the answer, or will it stir up a hornet’s nest?
This dramatic investigation of man’s spiritual dilemma occupies the spaces between authors Dan Brown and Richard Dawkins.
About the Author:
Robin Hawdon is one of Britain’s most prolific playwrights. His plays have been seen in over forty countries. At any one moment there may be over a dozen productions running across the USA, Europe, and elsewhere. This is his third novel.
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Genre – Detective, philosophy, religion, historical
Rating – G
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@ ShelleyDavidow on Her New Book 'Lights Over Emerald Creek' #YA #SciFi #GoodReads

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

How do you write – lap top, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk?
I write on my laptop or in my journal. I don’t have a private writer’s attic. I do things in the midst of life, in the gaps between supper and my late-night snack, in the afternoon while waiting for the washing to dry and I often write instead of watching TV, checking Facebook or taking a nap.

Where do you get support from? Do you have friends in the industry?
My biggest support is my husband, dearest friend and sharpest critic, Paul Williams (www.paul-a-williams.com). I trust his deep sense of what works and what doesn’t, and I return the favour whenever he asks.

How much sleep do you need to be your best?
I need 8 hours. I often don’t get more than 6 : (

Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you?
Success to me would mean I could live off my writing and teach simply because I love it. I’m not quite there yet!

Tell us about your new book? What’s it about and why did you write it?
Lights Over Emerald Creek is a speculative fiction novel for young adults. Lucy Wright, sixteen and a paraplegic after a recent car accident that took her mother's life, lives in Queensland on a 10,000 acre farm with her father. When Lucy investigates strange lights over the creek at the bottom of the property, she discovers a mystery that links the lights to the science of cymatics to Scotland’s ancient Rosslyn Chapel. The book was inspired by some real people, notably a paraplegic pilot and a young cellist, as well as some unexplained real-life events like the phenomena of the Hessdalen Lights in Norway, and the hexagonal storm on Saturn. I wrote the book because I thought one of the most exciting things one can do with unexplained phenomena, is NOT to try to explain them, but to create the story that might be…the story that inspires and pushes the reader to exciting places.

When you are not writing, how do you like to relax?
I relax by walking on the beach, or jogging or climbing or swimming. Being out in nature is the most rejuvenating thing for me.

Do you have any tips on how writers can relax?
Writing is such a heady and lonely thing to do. I think being active and being with people you love is the best way to relax.

How often do you write? And when do you write?
I write whenever I can, as often as I can. Sometimes that’s every day, and sometimes weeks go by and I don’t write. When I have a deadline, I work every spare moment. When I finish a book, I try to take a break before embarking on a new project.

Do you have an organized process or tips for writing well? Do you have a writing schedule?
I believe to write well, you have to do it a lot. How that happens is unique to each individual, but like any skill, many thousands of words have to be written before a few emerge as gems. To write well, do it often.

Sometimes it’s so hard to keep at it - What keeps you going?
If I stop writing, or don’t write for a while, eventually a story or a character just ‘arrives’ and demands to be written. I can’t NOT write, so I guess that keeps me going.

Have you met any people in the industry who have really helped you?
I had a wonderful writers group in Oregon when I lived there, made up of some very prolific authors whom I deeply respected. They taught me how to pare things down to what was essential, and how to work slowly and carefully. We worked on poetry and that helped me become a better fiction writer.

LightsOverEmeraldCreek

Lucy Wright, sixteen and a paraplegic after a recent car accident that took her mother's life, lives in Queensland on a 10,000 acre farm with her father. When Lucy investigates strange lights over the creek at the bottom of the property, she discovers a mystery that links the lights to the science of cymatics and Scotland’s ancient Rosslyn Chapel.

But beyond the chapel is an even larger mystery. One that links the music the chapel contains to Norway’s mysterious Hessdalen lights, and beyond that to Saturn and to the stars. Lucy’s discoveries catapult her into a parallel universe connected to our own by means of resonance and sound, where a newly emerging world trembles on the edge of disaster. As realities divide, her mission in this new world is revealed and she finds herself part of a love story that will span the galaxy.

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Genre - Young Adult SF
Rating - PG
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