Monthly Archives: March 2015

The government has taken notice. Excerpt from Songs for Survival

drink“Thank you for that flattering comment Mr. Best, I was just leaving.”

“Oh please stay for another drink with me. I insist that you do. And please call me Robert.”

“Okay Robert, I guess I could stay for a drink, but not here. It’s too packed and noisy. I know of a better place. It is not too far from here, just a few blocks. We can walk.”

Twenty minutes later they were sitting in a quiet booth in an upscale restaurant sipping a glass of wine when Best clinked her glass and said: “Here’s to your very talented daughter and Vasallus.”

“Talented maybe, but not so popular among some circles.”

“Oh, is that so? I can’t imagine anyone who wouldn’t love your daughter’s talent.”

“It seems that the government has taken notice of the success of Vasallus and the impact they are having on our youth. You’d better be careful Robert, they are taking a close look at the band. They are talking about censorship.”

“That is impossible! The government is a complete band of idiots, I swear. Finally a superstar band that sings about hope and courage and everything good for our young people and the government has a problem with that and yet it lets all the garbage fill the airwaves? Unbelievable.”

**This is an excerpt from the third book in the Superstars Trilogy. Get your copy at Amazon!

You’re different. You’ve changed. Book Excerpt from Songs of Survival

teaAnn struggled to find her voice as she stared at Father O’Sullivan: “Father, you have, I mean, you’re different. You’ve changed.”

He approached her and placed his hands on her arms, clutching them with a firm grip and replied: “Ann, I need to speak with you. I need to speak with all of you.” His eyes were ablaze with an indiscernible light. “Please everyone, let’s sit. We need to talk.”

It was Bethany who spoke next, stepping towards Father O’Sullivan, her face reflecting a look of shock and wonder: “Father, we can go and sit in the living room. May I get you something to drink or eat?”

He nodded at Beth, a smile stretching across his young face: “Tea would be wonderful Bethany. Thank you.”

**This is an excerpt from the third book in the Superstars Trilogy. Get your copy at Amazon!

You cannot go alone. It is too dangerous. Book Excerpt from Songs for Survival

it is too dangerous“I will come with you, Sam. You cannot go alone. It is too dangerous.”

“That is exactly why I will go alone. It is too dangerous for you, Ann. Stay here with Beth and Seb, where it is safe. When I return we will talk about what we will do next. Hopefully, we will have heard from Father O’Sullivan by then.”

Sam, I am going. For reasons I cannot explain, the demon is unable to harm me. I will be safe. Now let’s get going.”

Beth spoke next: “Maybe she’s right, Sam. You can’t go alone into that place. If Patrick can come in our home and almost kill all of us, God forbid what he can do in his own turf.”

He looked at his wife, ran his hand down the side of her face and reassured her: “I know you’re worried about me. Don’t be. I’ll be fine.” Looking at Ann, he continued: “Patrick almost assaulted you Ann, and would have likely killed you. I will not put you back in that situation again.”

**This is an excerpt from the third book in the Superstars Trilogy. Get your copy at Amazon!

Using Famous People in Your Story

Chalkboard

Sometimes it is necessary or appropriate to use the real names of someone famous in your novel for authenticity purposes or for effect. What I would like to know is does an author require authorization from the famous person being used in the story? I understand it to be that as long as the reference to the famous person are in good taste then one does not need to worry about any potential backlash and therefor does not require authorization. Am I wrong? I would like to hear from other authors and what they believe is the correct use of the names of famous people and or the famous person in their story.

St. Patrick’s Day Salute

Ireland

One of my favorite days of the year. It is a day that I can truly celebrate my heritage. Deep in family history and roots in Ireland marked by my recent obtaining of Irish citizenship it is a day all of my family has great fun with. I host a St. Patty’s Day party every year in my home that is great fun. It is my dream to someday spend several months a year in Ireland to find inspiration and solitude to write. Whether you’re Irish or not take some time today to raise your glass and salute those fun loving and hard working Irishman who endured tremendous hardship to carve out new lives for themselves and future generations in North America hundreds of years ago.

May the luck of the Irish be with you always!

Sometimes Simpler is Better

fog
Designing a book cover can be frustrating, difficult and stressful. The natural impulse is to create something dramatic, the perfect eye-catching design that will draw readers to your book. Your graphic designer friends want to create something spectacular for your book cover.

What about something simple or just plain. Did you know that also can draw readers to want to know what is behind such a plain looking cover. The reader must surely be curious what lurks behind the simplicity. They will want to turn the book over and read your blurb. Often a reader scans the bookshelves looking for that eye-popping book cover to catch their interest but often its the most simplest of covers that catch their interest. I originally went with lots of graphics but eventually changed it and went the simple route.

What do you think? Simple or Super? Either way, make sure you have fun with this and not to stress.

Self-Publisher…Are you ready to spend money?

Technicolor

I have self published three books to date and counting. Have I spent money in producing those books? You bet I have…and lots.Think about it. Cover design, editing fees and the bottomless pit called marketing. Yes there are inexpensive do-it-yourself methods that can get you books out there and gain some attention to your books. It is however slow going and you must rely on a tremendous amount of luck to really move it along faster. I made a decision early on that I knew I would have to sacrifice and spend money to get my books out there. Copies to reviewers, advertising, social media efforts, professional editing services, graphic artwork for a professional cover design. Travel to and setup costs for book signings. The list is long but I do it within reason because I believe in my work and know there is a bigger audience waiting to discover it.

Dreaming in technicolor is, however, free.

Glad to see you’re back safe and sound – Book Excerpt from Songs for Survival

glad to see you're back safe and sound“Good morning Avery. Glad to see you’re back safe and sound.”

“Good morning Amber. Listen, I need to ask you something. Last night when I got home I bumped into Chloë. I noticed she was in a really quiet and somber mood. Very unlike her. How has she been this week in the studio? How have the others been?”

“Avery, the kids have not set foot in the studio all week, at least when I’ve been here.”

Alarmed, Avery responded: “What? Are you sure?”

“I’m very sure. Usually when I get in around 8:00 a.m., they are already in the studio, either in full rehearsal or individually rehearsing. I have not seen them all week. I thought maybe Mr. Best had them out of town or something. I don’t believe they were in at all during the night either, as the security system logs get faxed to me every morning as part of their service and no one has punched  a security code into the system all week, except for me, when I arrive in the morning and when I leave at 5:00 p.m.”

“That is very strange. Maybe you’re right and Best had them busy off-sight this week. Okay no problem, I’ll check with them back in the house. I’ll be back later on.”

**This is an excerpt from the third book in the Superstars Trilogy. Get your copy at Amazon!

Edit, Edit, Edit and Edit Some More…Aargh!

Editor

Okay I understand the importance of editing. Every writer gets it. None of us can write a book first draft to the book shelf, right? Okay maybe some of you can. What bothers me is my first editor, credentialy accomplished, edited my first book for a whopping fee. Then a reviewer made some comments on the editing so I freaked and paid another enormous fee to another well accomplished editor. Now through a series of circumstances, another editor is working on it. Yes for an enormous fee. I now think that every set of new eyeballs will have a different opinion and style on editing. When do I put a stop to the prying eyeballs and accept that the work is great?

Are news anchors a thing of the past?

News Anchor

I am a news junkie and I try and watch the news as often as I can. I grew up in the era when Tom Brokaw, Peter Jennings and Diane Sawyer were the very best. On scene reporters or journalists like Sam Donaldson and CNN’s Wolf Blitzer were incredible. To me they will always be the best. Their believability was unmatched. Brian Williams had become my next generation newscaster favorite. That of course all changed with his admission of lying on air. I now wonder if the Williams scandal will change how newscast will be seen in the future. I know my adult kids do not watch traditional newscasts unless something incredible happens in the world. They get their bits of news they are interested in through a news broadcast laced with satire and comedy like Jon Stewart or Stephen Colbert.

I find myself searching to identify with a new up and coming household news deliverer. CNN’s Anderson Cooper is good but he is usually ‘on scene’ delivering news on one specific topic or situation.

I need a re-branded Brian Williams to make a comeback.