Guest Author Interview – Pamela Samuels Young

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Title: Abuse of Discretion (Dre Thomas Series Book 3)

Genre: Mystery/Thriller/Suspense

Synopsis: A Kid’s Curiosity…A Parent’s Nightmare

Graylin Alexander is a model fourteen-year-old. When his adolescent curiosity gets the best of him, Graylin finds himself embroiled in a sexting scandal that threatens to ruin his life. Jenny Ungerman, the attorney hired to defend Graylin, is smart, confident and committed. She isn’t thrilled, however, when ex-prosecutor Angela Evans joins Graylin’s defense team. The two women instantly butt heads. Can they put aside their differences long enough to ensure Graylin gets justice?

Unbeknownst to Angela, her boyfriend Dre is wrestling with his own drama. Someone from his past wants him dead. For Dre, his response is simple—kill or be killed.

Pamela Samuels Young, Author

CH: Today’s Guest Author is Pamela Samuels Young. She is an award-winning author of eight mystery novels. Welcome to my blog, Pamela.

CH: Can you sum up your book in 20 words or less?

PSY: When a teen’s adolescent curiosity gets the best of him, he finds himself embroiled in a sexting scandal that threatens to ruin his life.

CH: A kid’s curiosity about sexting by middle schoolers, how did you come up with the premise for this book?

PSY: I was stunned when I learned that children were being prosecuted for distributing child pornography as a result of sexting. I immediately knew this was a topic I wanted to address in a legal thriller.

CH: Why did you decide to write this book about the juvenile criminal justice system?

PSY: I was surprised to learn about the differences between the adult and juvenile criminal justice systems. For example, I had no idea that police could show up at a school and question a kid without parental consent. I doubt most parents know that either. There was a lot I wanted to communicate.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your legal writing style?

PSY: I’m a former TV news writer, so my writing style is very fast-paced. Not a lot of flowery writing, but strong plots and engaging characters.

CH: I realize you’re an attorney, but did you have to do a lot of research on the juvenile system for this book? 

PSY: Yes! The juvenile system is very different from the adult system. There are no jury trials in the juvenile system and the goal is rehabilitation, not punishment, at least that’s the intent. I had a lot to learn.

CH: Where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots or do stories come to you as a whole concept?

PSY: Whenever I learn something that’s shocking to me, I assume it will be just as shocking to others. My books typically start with a social issue—teen sexting, child sex trafficking, discrimination in the workplace—and take off from there.

CH: Who was your favorite character to write?

PSY: Graylin. He was a fighter who stuck to his guns even when his attorneys and father tried to convince him otherwise.

CH: Which character was hardest to write?

 PSY: In the beginning, Graylin’s attorney Jenny Ungerman was the hardest to write. But as the book progressed, I got a handle on her personality and really liked the relationship that developed between her and Angela Evans.

CH: When you wrote the first book in the series, did you realize it would be a series then? Which book in the series was hardest to write?

PSY: I had no plan to write a series when I wrote the first book. I decided to make it a series after people kept asking me what the characters would do next. I don’t think any of the books were harder to write than the others. I can say that Anybody’s Daughter was the easiest to write because I was so passionate about the topic of child sex trafficking that the book just flowed.

CH: Will there be other books in this series?

PSY: Yes. I have lots of other social issues I want to address, including elder abuse and domestic violence among teens.

CH: Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

PSY: I want parents to understand that they need to know what their kids are doing on social media. I want kids to understand that the consequences of sexting can be devastating. Hopefully, if both kids and parents are educated about this tragedy, they can avoid becoming entangled in the juvenile justice system.

CH: What type of feedback are you receiving from readers?

PSY: So far, the first few reviews on Amazon have been five stars and everyone is shocked to learn that children are actually facing pornography charges, as a result of sexting.

CH: What can we expect from you next—more series or a stand alone?

PSY: I’m working on a stand-alone book that’s currently entitled The Perfect Lawyer. It’s about a dynamic young female attorney who’s struggling with bipolar disorder. As a society, I don’t think we deal very well with mental illness. I want to shine a light on the condition and hopefully educate people about it.

CH: How to Find Pamela Samuels Young:

CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

PSY: All my books are available in print, eBook and audiobook format everywhere books are sold.

CH: Any closing remarks?

PSY: Never give up on your dream. I experienced a lot of rejection from traditional publishers early in my writing career. My third book, Murder on the Down Low was rejected by nine publishing houses, which forced me to self-publish. I’m now a successful indie author. When I was approached by two publishers who previously rejected my books, I could only smile. In the words of Tyler Perry, “We don’t have to wait for someone to green light our projects. We can create our own intersections.”  Cheryl, thanks so much for featuring me!

CH: Thank you so much, Pamela Samuels Young, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Pamela Samuels Young and Cheryl Holloway.

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On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Guest Author Interview – Rachel Howzell Hall

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Title: City of Saviors (Lou Norton Series Book 4)

Genre: African American Mystery/Thriller/Suspense

Synopsis: Los Angeles Homicide Detective Elouise Norton encounters her toughest case yet in City of Saviors, the fourth installment in the critically acclaimed mystery series from author Rachel Howzell Hall.

After a long Labor Day weekend, seventy-three-year-old Eugene Washington is found dead in his Leimert Park home. At first blush, his death seems unremarkable―heatwave combined with food poisoning from a holiday barbecue. But something in the way Washington died doesn’t make sense. LAPD (Los Angeles Police Department) Homicide Detective Elouise ‘Lou’ Norton is called to investigate the death and learns that the only family Washington had was the 6,000-member congregation of Blessed Mission Ministries, led by Bishop Solomon Tate.

But something wicked is lurking among the congregants of this church.

Lou’s partner, Detective Colin Taggert, thinks her focus on the congregation comes from her distrust of organized religion. But Lou is convinced that the murderer is sitting in one of those red velvet pews―and that Bishop Tate may be protecting the wolf in the flock. Lou must force the truth into the light and confront her own demons in order to save another soul before it’s too late.

Rachel Howzell Hall, Author

CH: Today’s Guest Author is Rachel Howzell Hall. She is a writer of things and an observer of life. Welcome to my blog, Rachel.

CH: Can you sum up your new book in 20 words or less?

RHH: Detective Lou Norton investigates the death of a man found in his hoarded house. Looks like an easy case—nope.

CH: How did you come up with the premise for this series?

RHH: I loved reading mysteries—especially Los Angeles stories. But only Paula L. Wood had written a series with a Black woman detective in LA. I wanted to see more of that, especially since I grew up in the Crenshaw District. You don’t get to see it much in novels or on TV, but it’s a place rich with history, complications—good and bad. So, I created a character that is part me, and part friends of mine. A woman connected to the community, but sometimes an outsider. I wanted to create a series that celebrated women, black women who thrive—and die—in the City of Angels.

CH: Since Eugene Washington is found dead and has no family other than his church, was it hard creating believable situations and issues or did you take them from real life and elaborate?

RHH: Unfortunately, with crime stories, you don’t have to make up much except for the name and the events sequencing. When creating this story, I thought about churches that take advantage of their congregants, so-called spiritual leaders, who juice these believers for all they have, which may not be much, and they buy Bentleys and airplanes. I thought of neighborhoods that have gentrified and the elderly still living in those homes, who can no longer afford property taxes, and so, the houses fall into disrepair. I thought of those hot days in LA, in those old and broken homes with no air conditioner, and how the old folks in those hot houses succumb to the heat. Then, I combined all that with an interesting way to murder someone. You know how crime writers do…J

CH: Since you have created L.A. Homicide tough Detective Elouise (Lou) Norton, can you describe your writing style for this mystery/thriller series? 

RHH: I’ve been described as ‘noir’—my stories fall on the gritty side, both in language and in subject matter. There are no crime-solving cats in my stories. Stylistically, I’ve been compared to Raymond Chandler. The rhythm of my sentences is hard combined with humorous. There are no fussy sentences or word gymnastics in the pages of my books. I’m interested in telling readers a story, not showing off my ten-cent words.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your writing style?

RHH: What’s different and exciting? I think my setting in Los Angeles that isn’t Hollywood or Beverly Hills. My depiction of the life of regular people caught in awful situations. Lou is strong, but she’s vulnerable. She makes mistakes. She has a mouth, but she shows restraint. She’s ‘us.’ And in City of Saviors, she’s having a hard time being physically weak—again, just like us, sometimes.

CH: Where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots or do stories come to you as a whole concept?

RHH: I prefer ideas, especially ideas or situations that bother me or scare me. Ideas that I don’t understand and so, I will write about them to better understand them. I have to be passionate enough about whatever that idea is, if I’m to write 80,000 words about it. But I do keep an Evernote file of weird stories that can help fill out that idea. For City of Saviors, I’d been reading a lot about Jim Jones and Peoples Temple. I’d been struggling with the gentrification of my neighborhood, happy that my house is worth more, but also knowing that I couldn’t afford to buy my house now, if I wanted.

CH: Why did you decide to write this book to end the series?

RHH: Because faith and weakness are two goal posts in my own life. When I started the series, I’d personally been overcoming my own health issues. While I’m stronger now, I was weaker then. Lou starts out strong in the series, and so, she’s weaker in some ways with City of Saviors. She’s always been my counter. I wanted to also leave this open-ended in some ways, so that she can return invigorated, the phoenix, ready to avenge for the folks in her neighborhood.

CH: Did you have to do any special research to write this book?

RHH: Yes! Hoarding and post-traumatic stress disorder were two issues I had to research. I knew about them, but I needed to know the ‘why.’

CH: Who was your favorite character to write?

RHH: Of course, Lou—I absolutely love that woman. In each book, I had the opportunity to fill her out, to discover what she believes, to hear what she’d say. In City of Saviors, I also loved writing about the three prophetesses and Bernice. They’re funny. They’re easily dismissed, until much of what they’ve said is true.

CH: Which character was hardest to write?

RHH: I would say…Colin—a white male. Although, their viewpoint is most represented in much of everything we see and hear, to get into his head and have it ring true was the hardest.

CH: When you wrote the first book in the series, did you realize it would be a series then?

RHH: I didn’t—of course, I had hopes that it would be. But just one had been my original prayer. The stories struck a nerve—with my publisher and with readers—and even other writers. I’m thrilled I had a chance to share Lou’s journey through the four.

CH: Since this is the final book in the series, which book was hardest to write?

RHH: City of Saviors was the hardest to write—I knew I had to wrap it up some, but leave open the chance of returning. Also, as I wrote, I was changing jobs (I still work full-time), so my writing schedule also shifted.

CH: Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

RHH: I want readers to see that there are dedicated and compassionate civil servants and cops out there. I want them to give writers of color an opportunity to share their stories, and that ultimately, we all want life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I want readers to see that there are stories everywhere.

CH: Who are some of your mystery/thriller/suspense writing influences?

RHH: I love Raymond Chandler’s works, as well as Dennis Lehane (voice and place are so important to me, and these two writers are IT in that). I also count Agatha Christie and James Patterson, as influences.

CH: What has been the most exciting thing to happen on your publishing journey?

RHH: A few things—meeting readers that are thrilled to meet someone like Lou. Also, having the opportunity to co-author The Good Sister: A BookShot (Bookshots) with James Patterson.

CH: How to Find Rachel Howzell Hall:

CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

RHH: My stories are in bookstores around the country, as well as Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

CH: Any closing remarks?

RHH: Thanks so much for the opportunity to talk about my stories!

CH: Thank you so much, Rachel Howzell Hall, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Rachel Howzell Hall and Cheryl Holloway.

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On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Bad Girl Blues…This Evening at 6 pm at Henry Wise Performing Arts Center

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Scene from Bad Girl Blues play.

What: Bad Girl Blues Stage Play

When: Saturday, November 11, 2017 

Time: 6:00 pm (Doors Open at 5:00)

Where: Dr. Henry Wise, Jr. Performing Arts Center, 12650 Brooke Lane, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772

Tickets: $30 At the Door

Dr. Henry A. Wise Performing Arts Center

The Cast at Rehearsal.

Cheryl Holloway Celebrates Veterans Day 2017

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Veterans Day Celebrates the Service of All U.S. Military Veterans

“…We honor those who honored our country with its highest form of service:  You who once wore the uniform of our Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, or Coast Guard.  We owe you our thanks.  We owe you our respect.  And we owe you our freedom.”

                                                    ~Barack Obama, 44th U. S. President

If you know me, then you know that I am from a military family (several generations), and that I support the military all year long.  I am a firm believer…“Supporting Veterans Shouldn’t Only Happen on Veterans Day.”

Be reminded of the sacrifices military men and women in our country make and that for a combat veteran, the fight doesn’t end when the war does.

I think it’s critical that we’re giving back to our veterans. And remember that they need our help and recognition all year long, not just on Veterans Day.

So, there is no better way to appreciate veterans than to give back. If you can’t give back to them personally, give to an organization that supports veterans. Some organizations that help military vets and military families are Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled American Veterans, The American Legion, Vietnam Vets of America and Wounded Warriors. A new organization seems to appear with each new generation of military vets. So, I’m asking that you do your best to support at least one organization.

Thanks Vets

On this Veterans Day I ask, “What have you been doing to support our troops?”

God Bless our men and women in service—their dedication will never be forgotten.                                                                   ~Cheryl Holloway

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Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet and Cheryl Holloway.

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Don’t Keep this Blog a Secret…Tell Your Friends about it!

Readers and followers, please share this post with your friends.

Subscribe to my blog because I share great books with wonderful readers all over the globe!

   

On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Questions? Comments? Interviews? Contact :

AuthorCherylHolloway@gmail.com or Cheryl@CherylHolloway.net

Guest Author Interview – Alan Geik

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Title: Glenfiddich Inn

Genre: Historical Fiction

Synopsis: It’s America in 1915— The still distant Great War in Europe creates unexpected opportunities for the Morrison and Townsend families in Boston, while, at the same time, they watch with dread as the ferocious conflict reaches across the ocean. William Morrison’s boss, the bank president, Joe Finnerty, is also a relentless con man. Whether, it’s elaborate stock frauds, war profiteering or just dipping into a widow’s trust account—Finnerty’s ever-cheery amorality, both captivates and repels William. William’s wife, Margaret is also captivated—but for her it is with wireless voice transmissions. It’s called “radio,” and while she is certain it will soon transmit a voice, even music, for as much, as several miles, she is dismayed by its use on the battlefields of Europe. Margaret’s sportswriter brother, Byron Townsend, covers the Boston Red Sox and its simpleton teenage sensation, Babe Ruth. He believes the World War will be the defining event of his generation and he intends to go to the front lines as a journalist. Byron’s wife, Helen, shares Margaret’s passion for radio. They form a strong bond in their quest for independence—a bond that will be severely tested by love affairs and patriotism. But after a German torpedo sinks the ocean liner, the RMS Lusitania, no one’s life will ever be the same again.

Alan Geik, Author

CH: Today’s Guest Author is Alan Geik. Alan has been a radio host, music producer, and now, a writer. Welcome to my blog, Alan.

CH: Please tell us in one sentence, why we should read this historical book about World War I.

AG: The WWI era is so rich with extraordinarily transformative events— the automobile, silent movies, and radio were all developed then— any one of them would be a vibrant scene set for a novel.

CH: There are several themes in this book, how did you come up with the premise for the book?

AG: I was lucky in that the fictional characters were immersed in the dramatic events of the era—almost, as if they gravitated toward them. The premise evolved quickly, but shifted and changed as I moved forward.

As just one example—Henry Ford’s Model T began mass-production for the first time right before the war began in Europe in 1914. It allowed people, for the first time in history, to travel great distances in a motorized vehicle—no horses. It was an extraordinary change in the way people connected with each other.

Or imagine when someone saw for the first time a silent movie being projected onto a big screen or even onto a barn wall. These early viewers were changed forever as the magic of moving pictures took hold here and all around the world.

CH: Where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots or do stories come to you as a whole concept?

AG: As this is my first novel, I can’t speak too much about where my ideas usually come from. I probably would not have begun writing, if there were not two events that would greatly change America

One of those events occurred just as the first cannons were fired in Europe in August 1914—an awkward, naïve teenager arrived in Boston to join the Boston Red Sox. George Herman Ruth, and because of his size and gullibility was given the name “Babe” Ruth, and he was, for the decades that followed, to deeply imprint America’s social fabric in many ways.

Another event that profoundly changed the way we humans interacted was the development of communications technology. A few years before Glenfiddich Inn begins, wireless Morse code was installed on trans-ocean liners—and so, as fate would have it, distress signals were sent out when the Titanic struck an iceberg. Nearby ships came to the rescue and, as a result, we are still telling the tales of the survivors, instead of just another tragedy being relegated to “lost at sea.”

After wireless Morse Code, the next frontier for electrical engineers was “wireless audio transmissions,” its enthusiasts called it simply “radio.” One of the audio laboratories in America was at Tufts College, just outside of Boston. Two of the female fictional characters, Helen and her sister-in-law Margaret, are captivated by the possibility that perhaps one day a news program, or even a musical performance, could be transmitted a few miles on a cold New England winter’s night into a desolate farmhouse living room.

These are just two of the transformative events of the era. As a radio host for twenty-five years in Los Angeles, I am keenly aware of the unique intimacy of radio—it is in the listeners’ ear at the beach, in the bedroom, and while jogging. Surely, less so, now than for most of the previous century, but it was for many decades the technology that so greatly impacted the world

CH: Why did you decide to write this historical book?

 AG: As I was researching this era for an HBO project, fictional characters emerged from some of the historical signposts, such as the sinking of the Lusitania or the comical search by the U.S. Army for Pancho Villa in the barren hills of Northern Mexico—I felt compelled to follow the growing cast of fictional characters through their journey.

Perhaps the most interesting surprise was how much the characters pushed and pulled me in directions other than that which I had envisioned. I would have never thought that possible, even though I was aware of novelists describing this experience.

CH: Did you have to do any special research to write this book?

 AG: Actually, Cheryl, this question brought a big smile to my face. The truth is that almost every paragraph had points that needed to be researched for accuracy, and during that research new plot and character doors opened. Just a few examples occurred in the prologue—William Morrison, a main character of the story, is in a hotel overlooking Pier 54, the pier from which the Lusitania has set out on its fateful trans-Atlantic voyage in May, 1915.

A bellboy knocks on the door with a hat in his hand. William Morrison had given it to him several years earlier and now the bellboy wanted to return it. What kind of hat would William have worn, given his social class and the season of the year?

William has binoculars in his hand. What kind of binoculars would he have had then? The binoculars became a far more important item in the story, than I had initially intended.

The internet makes this kind of research and fact checking relatively easy. Google was my best companion during the writing—that, and of course, a thesaurus. The New York Historical Society and The Library of Congress were great sources for historical photos, some of which I used for the cover art and publicity. I also owe a thank you to the help desk at the New York Public Library.

I can only imagine the enormous amount of time and energy expended by earlier generations of historical novelists in libraries hunting down the minutest detail, now available on the internet with just a click.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your writing style?

 AG: My experience, as a film editor at Paramount Pictures, proved to be an invaluable, and unexpected, asset. I had a sense of how much detail, and how wide the brushstrokes needed to be.

Writing this kind of novel, with so much historical scene set, there is always the need to constantly monitor how much is enough. Leaving reams of film figuratively on the editing room floor was similar to the process of “killing your children” in writing, i.e.. losing large and small passages because, no matter how “brilliant” they may seem to the author, they didn’t serve the flow of the novel.

CH: Where do you get inspiration for your historical characters?

 AG: As a surprising by-product of my research and the arc of the story, I first met some of the historical characters, while writing. They entered the narrative quite effortlessly, as my fictional characters gravitated toward them.

One historical character was Lee DeForest, who in the early part of the 20th century developed the Audion tube—a simple tube that allowed for all three functions necessary for the development of radio. But also, DeForest had many character traits that were fascinating to me and attracted the fictional characters to him in unexpected ways.

Another generally unknown historical character is Dr. Robert Welch. He was the pioneer in public health services in America. Before him there was little interest in this now widely accepted branch of medicine. It was long understood that in many, if not most, wars far more fatalities occurred from the spread of disease, than from actual combat.

Dr. Welch, a man of both resolution and quirkiness, sent teams out to quantify how disease affected the foot soldiers at the Western Front, as the war progressed. Little did he, or the world, ever expect that the most lethal breakout of a worldwide pandemic was about to occur with extraordinary speed. But I prefer to not be a spoiler of my own novel.

CH: Who was your favorite character to write?

 AG: Oh, Joe Finnnerty for sure. Joe is a fictional character—the youngest bank president in Boston. The most charmingly self-aggrandizing and amoral of people—he is as delighted to lift a few bucks from a widow and orphan’s trust fund, as he is to engineer a sizable stock fraud.

I never intended to devote as much space to him in the novel, as he ultimately required or demanded. The other characters viewed him with disdain—especially the Townsends, the publishing family of a progressive, well-respected, and fictional Boston newspaper. They had a front row seat to some of his many maneuvers. Surprising to me, and an outcome I never planned, Joe Finnerty does an awesome, life saving turn for William Morrison, a main character of Glenfiddich Inn.

CH: Which character was hardest to write?

 AG: George Creel is another real-life historical figure—as were the two I just mentioned earlier, Lee DeForest and Dr. Welch. Creel also had an enormous effect on America of the early 20th Century.

When we first encounter George Creel, he is a crusading journalist, who had received considerable publicity for his book that exposed the horrors of child labor. Half way through our story he becomes publicity director for Woodrow Wilson’s presidential re-election campaign in 1916. Soon after the inauguration, despite Wilson’s attempts to keep America out of the ferocious war in Europe, he finds himself with no other choice, but to enter the conflict.

Creel is given the daunting task of cobbling out a unified support for America’s entry into the war. That meant the mounting of an intense propaganda campaign.

Creel goes from an admirable exposer of social abuses to a contemptible bureaucrat. His interactions with the Townsends, the progressive newspaper family once his friends, turn bitter and confrontational.

It was hard for me not to inject my own contempt for him, as the story unfolded.

CH: Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

AG: There was no intention of a message, when I started writing Glenfiddich Inn. It could have logically become an anti-war novel—after all, never before in history were the battlefield fatalities so staggering.

And, it was so cynically waged! Almost all of the generals for every country came from a privileged class—part of their class superiority was revealed, when they intentionally never went to the front lines because, they claimed, seeing the staggering toll in human life would cloud their judgment.

However, the real message, and one extremely relevant, in today’s political world was the beginning of the relentless need for the government to sway public opinion.

I mentioned George Creel’s role in this effort. Immediately after America entered the Great War (as it was called at the time), Creel formed the Committee for Public Information (the CPI). They sent thousands of volunteers to street corners, concert halls, and movie theaters with simple talking points, as to why America was in the war. Many of these points were as deceitful, as were the ones we heard decades later, regarding Vietnam and, even later, to support the invasion of Iraq.

The CPI laid the groundwork for government censorship and heavy-handed manipulation of public opinion. I was completely unaware of this aspect of WWI, when I began writing the story.

CH: This book has been out for a couple of years, so what type of feedback are you receiving from readers?

AG: When the novel was first released, I gave copies to close friends and associates. I told them that reading it was in no way compulsory for our relationship to survive and, further, I would never ask them about it.

Keeping a distance from the potential reader, I think, proved to be a good strategy, as on more than a few occasions someone would contact me months later and tell me that they read Glenfiddich Inn. They would discuss minute details or large passages that indicated the considerable attention they gave to the story.

Similarly, many of the reviews posted on blogs or on Amazon or Goodreads provided interesting comments. I had never had a work of mine evaluated so publicly, by people I didn’t know—that was, and remains, a new adventure, even in the cases, where the story did not resonate completely with the reader.

CH:Who are some of your writing influences?

AG: Gore Vidal and Kurt Vonnegut are two writers, who have always interested me. Both, have a unique cynicism and sense of irony—told in completely different voices.

Gore Vidal adds a lush overlay to his historical narrative into which he inserts fictional characters. His detailed observations are insightful, and often amusing. I reread his Burr and Lincoln several times each—I doubt any history books could bring either period into sharper focus.

Kurt Vonnegut, for me, occupies a distinct end of the writing spectrum—he brings a concise; yet, penetrating voice to his characters and their flaws. Slaughter House Five is as vibrant an anti-war polemic as we will find; yet, filled with an amusingly ironic overlay.

CH: What can we expect next from you?

 AG: I started a novel based on my own family. It’s a family of the 30s through the 80s, involved in criminal activity—labor racketeering, police corruption, mail and tax fraud, and Murder Inc. alumni. It’s titled Uncle Charley Killed Dutch Schultz. I think I love the title, more than I do the enormous work that will be involved to pull it off. Sadly, many of the keener observers of the family dysfunction are no longer with us to recount the crimes in the exquisite detail they warrant.

There is also a tug at me to take the characters of Glenfiddich Inn into the roaring 1920s of Boston and New York—an era worthy of journeying through and letting the characters find their way through the story, as they did in Glenfiddich Inn.

CH: What has been the most exciting thing to happen on your publishing journey?

 AG: Sharing readers’ passion for historical novels and indulging ourselves in another time period. I often receive messages from readers speculating about some aspect of Glenfiddich Inn or about the era in which it is set.

Also, and quite unexpected, are the personal recollections of the era from people, who have attended book readings, especially, at several senior citizens’ centers. At the end of the Q&A, I ask, “do you have any recollections of your family’s involvement in the World War One era?” the responses are often poignant and sometimes harrowing.

CH: Can you give my audience your website address?

 AG: I have been using my Glenfiddich Inn Facebook page, which I find more interactive than a website (listed below). Hopefully some of your readers can visit the page.

CH: How to Find Alan Geik:

 CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

 AG: Amazon, kindle, and ibooks.

CH: Any closing remarks?

AG: Yes, Cheryl. I can’t thank you enough for giving me this opportunity to share some aspects of my novel with your audience.

CH: Thank you so much, Alan Geik, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Alan Geik and Cheryl Holloway.

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Readers and followers, please share this post with your friends.

Subscribe to my blog because I share great books with wonderful readers all over the globe!

   

On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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You Can’t Afford to Miss…Bad Girl Blues!

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The O’Jays Concert

Get your tickets before this theatrical event is sold out! https://www.eventbrite.com/e/bad-girl-blues-tickets-37782568680?aff=es2

Guest Author Interview – Janet Maile

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Title: Second Genesis

Genre: Sci-Fi

Synopsis: Gerald is frozen in the 20th century and wakes 2,000 years later to find himself a prisoner in a strange and violent world. He escapes, only to discover that the outside world is a far more horrific place than he could ever have imagined. He must find a way to work with the strange and distant Hagan, to save the world from the worst environmental disaster the planet has ever known.

Janet Maile, Author

International Author on Cheryl Holloway’s Blog

CH: Today’s Guest Author is International Author, Janet Maile.  She’s been writing since she was a child; however, this is her debut novel. Welcome to my blog, Janet.

CH: Can you sum up your book in 20 words or less?

JM: Environmental disaster. Solution goes wrong. Many disasters and struggles. Problem solved.

CH: How did you come up with the premise for this science fiction book? 

JM: I started writing it in 1986 and was inspired by three things:  climate change, cryonics (the freezing of dead bodies) and the setting up of the Norwegian Seed Bank. I thought—what if someone was frozen and awakened in 2,000 years.  What would it be like?

CH: Was it hard creating believable situations and issues or did you take them from real life and elaborate?

JM: I don’t really create the situations in that sense. I allow things to develop in their own way, but my writing is influenced by certain feelings and emotions:  a sense of isolation, the way people treat those they regard as different and how we have lost our sense of being connected—to each other, to nature, to the universe and beyond.

CH: Can you describe your writing style for this Sci-fi novel?

JM: I aim to make my books accessible to all. A lot of the action takes place through dialogue. I don’t go in for long descriptive passages.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your writing style?

JM: Some of the ideas behind the story are deep and profound, but the book is an easy read. It is entertaining and makes you think.

CH: Where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots or do stories come to you as a whole concept?

JM: I do not have a standard formula, or any formula. I start off with one idea, such as being frozen and awakened in the future, and the book develops from there. My ideas come from being concerned about what we are doing to the planet and the extinction of species—for example, in 1986 when I started writing, the European Tree Frog became extinct.

CH: Did you have to do any special research to write this book?

JM: Yes, a great deal. Examples: what is the latest DNA research, what are the symptoms of radiation sickness, what does Art Deco furniture look like, which creatures are lethal to humans and which plants grow in Cheddar Gorge?

CH: Who was your favorite character to write?

JM: I enjoyed creating them all.

CH: This is the first book in the series, did you realize it would be a series when you wrote it?

JM: No.  It took me 30 years to complete the book, during which time I never thought about a second one. Once I had completed the book and found a publisher, I started thinking about what I would write next, and realised there was more of the story to tell.

CH: You’ve written two books in this series, which book was hardest to write?

JM: The first one.  I had had articles and short stories published, but found writing a book a daunting enterprise. I didn’t know how to go about writing a novel: how to develop the plot and the characters, or how to keep the reader hooked. There were other things that hampered my progress. Back in the 1980s, I was using a typewriter, so additions, deletions and moving paragraphs around was not simple. When the word processor was invented, my creativity began to flow. Also, there was no internet back then, so to do my research, I had to go to the library, or write to an organization.

CH: The first book in the series was released on September 4th and you released the next book on September 5th. Was there a reason for back-to-back release dates?

JM: Second Genesis was published at the beginning of January by an American publisher, who did not honor the terms of the contract, when it came to promoting the book, so I took my rights back and designed a new cover. I had finished Final Illusion by then and once my son had finished editing it, it made sense to put both books up on the internet.

CH: This book received the Readers’ Favorite Review. What type of overall feedback are you receiving about the book?

JM: Good.  Everyone who has read it, has enjoyed it and said that it is easy to read. My sister couldn’t put the book down and read it in six hours.

CH: What has been the most exciting thing to happen on your publishing journey?

JM: After thirty years, seeing Second Genesis finally in print.

CH: Thirty years is definitely a long time to wait. What can we expect next from you?

JM: The Pretzel Affair, a romance inspired by meeting my soulmate late in life, is available as an eBook from Amazon and Smashwords.

The Druid’s Cup is currently being edited by my son and will be published in October. It is a mystery with a difference. It was a lot of fun to write. Many of the scenes are set in Glastonbury, Somerset, home of the famous music festival. The book includes many of the traditions and myths that surround the area, such as the thorn tree that flowers twice and is rumoured to have grown from the staff of Jesus’ uncle, Joseph of Aramathea.

Saving Grace is currently with a publisher and will be published in December.  It is a romance set against the gritty horror of World War II. It was inspired by my mother’s memories of that time. She was invited to join the local cycle club by the man who collected the insurance money each week and it was there that she met my father.

Moving On, the story of my difficult childhood experiences and the effect they had on my adult life, can be downloaded as a free pdf document from my website.

I have started a blog, Therapies That Work, and welcome stories from people who have found a therapy that works from them.

CH: How to Find Janet Maile:  

CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

JM: It can be bought as an eBook or paperback from Amazon.

CH: Any closing remarks?

JM: I welcome hearing from my readers. The contact details are on the website. Thanks very much, Cheryl.

CH: Thank you so much, Janet Maile, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Janet Maile and Cheryl Holloway.

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Don’t Keep this Blog a Secret…Tell Your Friends about it!

Readers and followers, please share this post with your friends.

Subscribe to my blog because I share great books with wonderful readers all over the globe!

   

On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Questions? Comments? Interviews? Contact :

AuthorCherylHolloway@gmail.com or Cheryl@CherylHolloway.net

Guest Author Interview – Diane Rapp

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Title: High Seas Mystery Game Book: Three Party Games for up to 57 Players

Genre: Board Games/Travel Games

Synopsis: Mystery dinner parties usually require guests to learn parts and risk getting embarrassed by their own bad acting. The worst might happen to a host if a guest assigned an important part simply does not show up. This book offers three different process-of-elimination games designed to be played by 2–4 players, 4–8 players, or a party of 41 to 57 players. The solution is different each time any of the games are played. Game pieces, game boards, and instructions are included for buyers to copy and print for use at their own party. Have more fun at your next fund-raiser, group pot-luck dinner, or simply play the games with friends and family at home.

Diane Rapp, Author

CH: Today’s Guest Author is Diane Rapp.  Diane writes murder/mystery thriller novels. Welcome, to my blog, Diane.

CH: Can you sum up your new book in 20 words or less? 

DR: A game book for 4 to 57 players and a different solution each time. Game pieces, boards, and instructions are included.

CH: I love mystery dinner parties! How did you come up with the premise for this mystery game book?

DR: I was asked to design a dinner party game for a fund-raiser group of sixty.  When I did all the work for one game, I decided to design two more games for smaller parties.  It was a fun break from writing.

CH: Since the solution is different any time each of the games are played, was it hard creating believable situations and issues for the players?

DR: No, since I modeled the games after my own mystery trilogy. The hard part was designing game boards that were different. The large party uses lanyards to reveal clues marked on a game sheet. The smaller parties needed fun boards to move pieces around.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your game writing style?

DR: This game book gives readers of my novels a fun way to create new endings for each book. They are played with pieces that are shuffled and the answers hidden until a player makes a guess about the solution. It’s like a clue game that involves my mystery novels.

CH: Where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots to make the game fun and interesting?

DR: Each game in the book is in a different format, but all three involve narrowing down the clues until a solution is discovered. So, each time you play, the answer is different.

CH: Did you have to do any special research to write this game book?

DR: No, the research was already done when I wrote the mystery novels. The clues came from those characters, weapons, places, etc.

CH: This game book can be used for a variety of events, such as a fund-raiser, a group pot-luck dinner, or simply with family and friends. How did you decide to make the game so versatile?

DR: Since I had three mystery novels set at sea, it made sense to design three different types of games for the books. The large fund-raiser party was the hardest, because I had to find lots of clues to use during the party. The others were game boards and needed to be for smaller groups.

CH: How did you come up with the inspiration for so many characters?

DR: I started with the characters in the books and added more for the games.  There are hundreds of people who sail on a ship. My clues are all based on the stories in my books.

CH: Who was your favorite character to write?

DR: Kayla was my favorite. She’s modelled after my own daughter, so I could literally see her in my mind.

CH: Which character was hardest to write?

DR: Julia Sanders in the Murder for Glacier Blue was supposed to be Kayla’s mother. Therefore, I was writing a character, who was modelled after ME. That is very hard for me, so I asked my daughter to give me an actress to use for the character. She picked Julianne Moore, so that made it easier.

CH: What type of overall feedback are you receiving about the game?

DR: My family loves playing the games, and the people who participated in the fund-raiser really enjoyed themselves.

CH: You are an author of murder mystery thrillers, the High Seas Mystery Series. Is the game book connected to the book series?

DR: Yes, I designed each game after the characters and clues in one of the books.

CH: Can you give us a brief synopsis of the book series?

DR: This romantic mystery series is set on passenger cruise ships traveling to different parts of the world. Readers experience exotic locations as they travel with personnel, who work on the ships. Get behind-the-scenes glimpses into cruise-ship life and get to know an engaging cast of recurring characters. Remember places you’ve been, or preview new destinations to travel, as you read the series.

CH: Who are some of your mystery writing influences?

DR: Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle spurred my love of mysteries, but I have read so many different authors now. I love reading and absorb everything.

CH: What has been the most exciting thing to happen on your publishing journey?

DR: Meeting other authors on social media. I really believe I’ve developed a strong group of friends and supporters, who I’ve never met face-to-face. What a different world than the one I grew up in.

CH: What can we expect next from you?

DR: I am getting ready to launch a new mystery novel set on the seas.  It’s a spin-off of the original High Seas Mystery series and will feature a psychic and ex-Interpol agent that readers got to know in Murder On A Ghost Ship. They are protecting winners of a DNA contest, who are being targeted by terrorists. The story reaches back to 1978 when the Jonestown Massacre in Guyana hit the headlines. Does the stalker want revenge or justice?

CH: Can you give my audience your website address?

DR: Of course!  Readers can go to my website (listed below), or I can be followed on twitter: @DianeRapp and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/quicksilvernovels.

CH: How to Find Diane Rapp:

CH: For my audience, where are your game and books sold?

DR: Although, I do sell an eBook version on Amazon, it’s hard to print the game pieces from an eBook. Therefore, I offer eBook readers one game PDF download with a verified purchase. The full-print edition can be purchased on Amazon. I believe it is also sold through other online marketing sites.

CH: Any closing remarks?

DR: Anyone who likes to play board games will enjoy these games. If you need to host a larger party for a pot luck or fund-raiser, the third game is the best! I hope readers get interested enough in the characters and stories to purchase the whole High Seas Mystery Series. Thanks, Cheryl.

CH: Thank you so much, Diane Rapp, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Diane Rapp and Cheryl Holloway.

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Don’t Keep this Blog a Secret…Tell Your Friends about it!

Readers and followers, please share this post with your friends.

Subscribe to my blog because I share great books with wonderful readers all over the globe!

   

On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Questions? Comments? Interviews? Contact :

AuthorCherylHolloway@gmail.com or Cheryl@CherylHolloway.net

Cheryl Holloway Wishes Everyone A Happy Halloween!

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Happy Halloween

No tricks here, just some fun facts and short stories about Halloween

My fond Halloween memories with my girls when they were little was picking out their Halloween costumes, going out to trick-or-treat in the neighborhood, and watching “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown’ on television.

Here is a quick Halloween Quiz for you to read while munching on your favorite Halloween candy.

  1. When was the first Halloween greeting card made?
  2. Jack-o’-Lanterns were thought to have originated in what country?
  3. What was a popular Halloween candy? (It was the first penny candy to be individually wrapped for sale.)
  4. Are pumpkins any other color than orange?
  5. What do people typically “bob” for at Halloween parties?

Here’s a short Halloween Story to read.

A Haunted House © Cheryl Holloway

A chill engulfed my body the moment I entered the haunted house. Looking around the room, I felt bathed in darkness, as my thoughts began to drench me in fear. I saw a broken mirror and I looked in it, only to notice no image looking back at me. I could smell a burning candle and when I got close to it, I saw footprints on the ceiling. I reached out my hand to touch the candle, when suddenly a black cat jumped on me and I heard screaming. I don’t know if the screams were coming from me or someone else, but I ran for the door. My heart was beating faster and faster as I was trying to open the heavy, wooden front door, then someone touched me and said, “Happy Halloween.”

The End

Quiz Answers:

  1. Early 1900’s
  2. Ireland
  3. Tootsie rolls
  4. Yes, blue, green and white.
  5. Apples

Just a little Halloween Fun to make you smile while you are getting ready for NaNoWriMo.

Happy Halloween to all of my blog readers and fans.

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Don’t Keep this Blog a Secret…Tell Your Friends about it!

Readers and followers, please share this post with your friends.

Subscribe to my blog because I share great books with wonderful readers all over the globe!

   

On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Questions? Comments? Interviews? Contact :

AuthorCherylHolloway@gmail.com or Cheryl@CherylHolloway.net

Cheryl Holloway Suggests How to Improve Your Work In Progress

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What should you do to improve your Work In Progress (WIP) after you’ve written the first draft?

Many writers would argue that the hardest part of writing is the first draft, while other writers say it is developing that work in progress. I agree with the later. With NaNoWriMo coming in a few hours, by the end of November you will have completed your first draft of 50,000 words.  And many new or beginning writers want to know what’s next?

Well, here is my suggestion. Try to find new ways to express yourself and your writing. 

So, here are three action steps—they’re not easy, but they are doable:

  1. Have Action Steps for yourself, as the writer

Read and re-read your draft

Then, brainstorm some ideas to make it a better story/novel

  1. Have Action Steps for improving your work

Address a particular aspect of the WIP, such as imagining a love scene; re-imagining the plot; creating enough conflict to keep the reader turning the pages; creating those love/hate characters; creating emotional scenes where readers laugh or cry; and/or creating dialogue that reels readers right into the book.

  1. Have Action Steps for your second draft

Invite feedback from others, such as writer friends, beta-readers and personal friends 

Let me know if these suggestions help you in writing your second draft.

If you like this blog post, share it with your friends  🙂

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Don’t Keep this Blog a Secret…Tell Your Friends about it!

Readers and followers, please share this post with your friends.

Subscribe to my blog because I share great books with wonderful readers all over the globe!

   

On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Questions? Comments? Interviews? Contact :

AuthorCherylHolloway@gmail.com or Cheryl@CherylHolloway.net

Cougar Tales: Jamaican Love by Cheryl Holloway…Get Your Copy Today!

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“Have You Read A Good Book by Cheryl Holloway?”

Jamaican Love

Joi meets a Chef in New York City that is interested in dating her. Joi is not ready to be in a new relationship with anyone, especially a long-distance relationship—he lives on the East Coast and she lives on the West Coast. But Spencer doesn’t give up easily. They go their separate ways. Fate brings them together again while on vacation.

Can Spencer sweep Joi off her feet with Jamaican love?

Note: This is Book 3 of 3 in the Cougar Tales series, but can be read as a standalone novella and can be read without needing to buy subsequent books.

If you like this blog post, share it with your friends. 🙂

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Don’t Keep this Blog a Secret…Tell Your Friends about it!

Readers and followers, please share this post with your friends.

Subscribe to my blog because I share great books with wonderful readers all over the globe!

   

On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Questions? Comments? Interviews? Contact :

AuthorCherylHolloway@gmail.com or Cheryl@CherylHolloway.net

 

Guest Author Interview – Louise Blackwick

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Title: Vivian Amberville: The Weaver of Odds

Genre: Teen/Young Adult/Dystopian Fantasy

Synopsis: Vivian Amberville is philosophical fantasy book series about a girl whose thoughts can control and reshape reality.

The main protagonist, Vivian is an orphaned child who uncovers her imagination can influence certain events, and even twist reality into impossible shapes – a mind-over-matter ability called “Weaving”

But Vivian’s powers prove hazardous to keeping the universal balance. Beyond the fabric of reality, she finds herself in the custody of the original Weavers, thrown head-first into the most dangerous competition the multiverse has ever known: The Weaver Trials.

Louise Blackwick, Author

International Author on Cheryl Holloway’s Blog

CH: Today’s Guest is International Author, Louise Blackwick. Louise says that she is a next generation fiction writer. Welcome to my blog, Louise.

CH: Can you sum up your new book in 20 words or less?

LB: Vivian Amberville – The Weaver of Odds is a philosophical fantasy about a girl whose thoughts can control and reshape reality.

CH: How did you come up with the premise for this philosophical fantasy book?

LB: I have always been a great believer in the power of imagination; that given enough effort, any great idea can be shaped into a waking reality. We wouldn’t have as much as a bridge in this world without a mind to imagine it. We have built and continue to build this world on the premise: thoughts become things.

Vivian’s story merely extrapolates on that idea. She is a 13-year old, who discovers she can reshape reality in her image. This fantasy book, thus becomes my way of telling the reader: we are responsible for the ideas we breed, and we are responsible for the world we create.

CH: Was it hard creating believable situations and issues or did you take them from real life and elaborate?

LB: My personal experience and real life played an important part in the book’s development. My anxiety disorder became Vivian’s, and as I conquered it, she did too. Vivian’s world—much like our own—is plagued by the same struggles we face: war, disease, poverty, hatemongering, injustice, and indifference. These parallels have helped me develop a living-breeding fictional world, as real as our own.

CH: Can you describe your writing style for this dystopian fiction novel?

LB: I mixed classic British humour and social satire with a simple narrative structure. Descriptions are short, but memorable, dialogues are lifelike, and I struggle to make any bit of narration, as immersive as possible. Language-wise, it’s very approachable. I wanted this to be a book everyone can enjoy, particularly younger audiences. As a dystopia, I wanted kids to know how a society should NOT be. Naturally, adults savour the book for its deeper, more philosophical traits. I do enjoy writing in layers.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your epic fantasy writing style?

LB: The story is set in two dystopian worlds: one is a futuristic Great Britain ruled by disease and poverty; another is a fantasy realm where people can imagine things true. The book is essentially a double dystopia, with two different universes that, despite their differences, correspond to one another. Since Vivian can walk both worlds, it is exciting to see the two worlds collide.

CH: Where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots or do stories come to you as a whole concept?

LB: My ideas come from imagination. As for the plots, I cannot really say I follow a standard formula, but screenplay writing is a great influencer. I like to play with camera angles, and strive to make my fictional environments as interactive as possible. Pacing, lighting and angles play just as big a role as theme-building and characterization. I always assume my readers have picked up my book because they expect entertainment, and I deliver that entertainment by ‘projecting’ a movie into their mind.

CH: Did you have to do any special research to write this book?

LB: Can’t really recall any research, but I did use a skill. Not many people know this, but I have a degree in Norse linguistics. I found myself developing not just one, but 3 distinct fictional languages (and their dialects), fully-equipped with grammar, phonetics, semantics. It took me years, but alas! I had so much fun doing it! I’m sure my former linguistics professor feels proud my degree didn’t completely go to waste.

CH: Who was your favorite character to write?

LB: By far, Kaap (aka The-Hole-in-the-Wall) was the most difficult. He is a sentient shape-shifting non-human character—that’s a mouthful!—who follows Vivian on her journey. I’ve been told he is so realistic, readers expect him to spring up from the page. Kaap is a walking metaphor of everything Vivian is, and my absolute favourite!

CH: Which character was hardest to write?

LB: A character called Lady Saah, the Artisan. She has one of the most painful inner struggles in the Vivian Amberville series. A certain villain called ‘Ashlar’ was also difficult to write, as villains often are in such stories. Stories are only as strong as your weakest villain, I always say. There is a quote in the book that I believe resumes this quite well: As the Weaver, so is the Thread.

CH: Since this book is about Vivian’s power to reshape events, is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

LB: I’d say quite a few messages, yet the most pivotal one would have to be this: your circumstances don’t define your life. No matter how terrible your circumstances, how dreadful your situation, you remain the creator of your own life; the master of your circumstances. A true Weaver of Odds. Your circumstances don’t define your life—your actions do.

CH: What type of overall feedback are you receiving from readers?

LB: My Publisher recently told me the book has created quite the fanbase. I personally received thousands of messages from readers who felt inspired by Vivian’s journey; people whose appetite for reading was rekindled by the story; people who believe I offered something original and refreshing. I heard many readers are discussing the book’s deeper layers on literature forums. Since this is only the first book in a series of five, I guess only time will tell how this could develop.

CH: Who are some of your fantasy writing influences?

LB: Definitely Lewis Carroll’s quirky Through the Looking Glass is Vivian Amberville’s greatest influencer. I owe my dreamlike narrative style to the surrealist, André Breton, and the absurdist, Kafka. Edgar Allan Poe is again, a big influence, more strongly seen in the novel’s darker scenes. As for the philosophical aspects of the book, J.J. Rousseau, F. Nietzsche and S. Kierkegaard are my pillars.

CH: What has been the most exciting thing to happen on your publishing journey, so far?

LB: At one point, the book got so known, many of my neighbours had read it. Funny part is, I write under a pen-name, so they didn’t know it was me. I can never forget the look on their faces when they found out!

CH: What can we expect next from you? More books in this series?

LB: The Book of Chaos—Vivian’s sequel—is coming in 2018. In the meantime, I’m working on a humorous sci-fi novel entitled, God is a Robot. Set in a world where the humans are long extinct, 4 unlikely robots will embark on a journey to answer the question: Why have the humans created us?

CH: Can you tell me a little about your website?

LB: Absolutely! I’m continuously working on expanding the trivia page, thus visitors can expect new content every so often.

CH:  How to Find Louise Blackwick:

CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

LB: Vivian’s official website is our main selling point. Visitors can purchase both the eBook and the paperback from: https://www.vivianamberville.com/the-book. They can also preview the book on the same address. Smaller selling points are Amazon and Kobo.

CH: Any closing remarks?

LB: Cheryl, Thank you so dearly for this interview! I applaud your amazing initiative and look forward to reading more author interviews on your page!

CH: Thank you so much, Louise Blackwick, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Louise Blackwick and Cheryl Holloway.

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Guest Author Interview – Lesley Hayes

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Title: The Other Twin

Genre: Teen/Young Adult/Contemporary Fiction

Synopsis: Since early childhood, Verity has been haunted by the dream of meeting her twin soul. Is such a thing even possible? She thinks she might have found him in Ned, but is he all that he seems? No one and nothing in this novel is as straightforward as it first appears, including Verity. Sometimes, it takes other people to help us discover who we truly are, and the lengths we will go to when pushed. A compelling psychological mystery with the notion of true love at its heart, The Other Twin explores the noxious legacy of suspicion, hatred, revenge, and duplicity—and asks of the reader: just who can you trust?

Lesley Hayes, Author

International Author on Cheryl Holloway’s Blog

CH: Today’s Guest is International Author, Lesley Hayes.  Lesley has noticed as she writes that she has grown wiser in her treatment of her characters.  Welcome to my blog, Lesley.

CH: Please tell us in one sentence, why we should read this psychological mystery about love.

LH: Anyone who has ever wondered whether there is such a thing as a soulmate or a twin flame will be beguiled by the story and learn a lot about obsession in the process.

CH: How did you come up with the premise for this book?

LH: I have always been fascinated by twins, and by the notion that although apparently similar, there are also significant differences in their personalities. I’m not the first writer who has elaborated the narrative of ‘good twin’, ‘bad twin’, but I also wanted to explore our need to trust the people we love, and to pose the question: ‘But how can you really be sure when someone is telling you the whole truth?’ …Especially, when your future with that person hinges on the answer.

CH: Was it hard creating believable situations and issues or did you take them from real life and elaborate?

LH: Oh, that would be telling! All writers plunder ruthlessly their own life experience and steal narratives from situations and people they have met. It’s inevitable that in every book I write, there will be elements reminiscent of aspects of life I have lived or heard about. But I also have a fertile imagination and easily move into exploring the territory of ‘What ifs?’

CH: Since you are trying to define love, can you describe your writing style for this mystery/thriller?

LH: I’m told by readers that I have a unique and recognizable voice, whether I’m writing in the first or third person. For this novel, I chose to write the story in the third person, but from Verity’s perspective, so that the reader was kept in the dark as much as she was about what might be going on ‘behind the scenes.’ Writing in the third person gives me the freedom to delve into the history of the main characters, which inevitably brings increasing insight into their hidden motivations.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your writing style?

LH: I always write with a deep interest in the psychological makeup of my characters. Creating an expanding picture of them on the inside and revealing what makes them tick, brings a particular satisfaction to the reader. I’ve been told that people find themselves identifying with the characters, relating to them and their emotions and often feeling as though the story is telling them something new about themselves.

CH: Where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots or do stories come to you as a whole concept?

LH: I definitely don’t have a formula, which is why all of my novels are so different. Stories come to me; I don’t go looking for them. They arrive almost fully formed in my mind, and then I just have to get on with the hard work of writing them! The structure, dialogue and characterization are all equally as important as the plot itself.

CH: Did you have to do any special research to write this book?

LH: Only in a few technical details regarding private aircraft, and the procedure in Oxford airport.

CH: Who was your favorite character to write? Which character was hardest to write?

LH: Ah, that’s impossible to answer. I feel at the end of writing a novel as though I know every character so well, and they each have something special about them. I get so involved in the inner life of my characters that they are all equally enjoyable to write—even the ones who are intentionally dislikeable.

CH: Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

LH: That love is challenging, and trust is fragile, and the wounds of childhood go very deep and have a long memory…so be warned, dear reader, you can never be sure that what you see on the surface is even close to the truth of who a person is.

CH: What type of feedback are you receiving from readers?

LH: Five stars all the way as far as the reviews go, which is very affirming. One of the reviewers wrote of The Other Twin: “It has particular emphasis on what has hurt and belittled so many of us in childhood and how that affects the way we interact with others as adults: especially the lies, the half-truths, the yearnings and the disappointments, the rivalries and jealousies that so affect our behaviour towards, and opinion of, others. It is about caring and needing, and living with suffering, about trying and failing to please and to win approval, about trust and betrayal: the endless, manoeuvring maze of human interactions through which we all do our best to find our way.” That review really summed up what I had hoped to achieve.

CH: Who are some of your mystery/thriller/suspense writing influences?

LH: I don’t think any other writers have actually influenced my writing—not consciously, anyway.

CH: What has been the most exciting thing to happen on your publishing journey?

LH: If I go way back to the beginning, the first short story I had published in a magazine when I was seventeen, and was almost immediately head-hunted by an agent! That was many years ago, and a lot of water has passed under a number of bridges since then. This time around, taking what felt like the breathtakingly daring step of self-publishing my first book on kindle, followed by the first review…that amazing moment when I realised I actually had a following!

CH: What can we expect next from you?

LH: I have two more collections of short stories currently in the pipeline, hopefully to be published before Christmas. I’ve also recently completed my sixth novel, and am endeavouring to find an agent as I’d like this one to be published by the more traditional route. If I can’t get the support of an agent you’ll be seeing that one on kindle and in paperback via Amazon by the end of the year. No spoilers, though. I won’t even divulge the title!

CH: How to Find Lesley Hayes:

CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

LH: On Amazon. If you go to my Author page there you’ll find links to The Other Twin and all my other books. There is also a universal link that should reach an Amazon near you anywhere in the world.

CH: Any closing remarks?

LH: Cheryl, I appreciate the opportunity you’ve given me to talk about my work. I’m not great at self publicity as I much prefer writing. When people who read my books ask me to tell them something about myself I usually say: ‘Read between the lines of my books. That’s where you’ll find me.’ Although, I do give quite a lot else away on my website.

CH: Thank you so much, Lesley Hayes, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Lesley Hayes and Cheryl Holloway.

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On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Cheryl Holloway Celebrates Indie Author Day, October 14th

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Celebrate Indie Author Day on October 14th

The public is encouraged to attend and meet dozens of local indie authors, poets, and graphic novelists, and to discover new talent. Authors in your area  will be selling their books at various sites for readers to pick up their next favorite book.

As an Indie Author, I understand how difficult it can be to promote the great books that independent authors write and work so hard to share with the rest of the world.  So on today, find an indie author in your area and support them. Some will be at libraries and others will be at book events, but here is just another way for ‘indies’ to get the recognition we deserve at local libraries and events.

Ted Olczak, “A book without an audience is like not having a book at all.”

Join me today in Supporting Indie Author Day!

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On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Guest Author Interview – Shyla Colt

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Title: Twist of Fate (Kings of Chaos Book 6)

Genre: Romantic/Multi-Cultural/Interracial

Synopsis: Shayne Spencer wasn’t the man of my dreams.

A twist of fate placed us in the confines of my family’s food truck. The attraction between us was a force of nature we couldn’t ignore. The bonds we formed made me believe in forever, and gave me the courage to break free from the chains of tradition.

Then fate took another turn, and I learned Shayne wasn’t who he said he was. Now, I’m forced to question everything I thought I knew.

I went on a mission for the Kings of Chaos looking for, redemption and reconciliation with my hate-filled past. What I found was the greatest treasure I never knew I was seeking, Xia Foley. I should never have gotten involved with the brown-skinned woman. My hands are stained with the dirt I’ve done and the choices I made.

Will my past as the reformed son of a racist traitor ruin my chance at creating a future worth living?

Shyla Colt, Author

CH: Today’s Guest Author is Shyla Colt. Three of her favorite writing areas are strong females, pop culture, and alternate routes to happy ever after. Welcome to my blog, Shyla.

CH: Can you sum up your book in 20 words or less?

SC: Two lost souls, find more than themselves when fate places them together. They discover a love worth fighting for.

CH:  A twist of fate…how did you come up with the premise for this book?

SC: I love reality tv, where people compete. I was watching Master Chef with my family, and this story hit me.

CH: Why did you decide to write this book?

SC: I wanted to do something fun, with the competition in the book, and I wanted to write a coming of age story for an older woman. Sometimes it takes more time to figure things out, and become the adults we want to be.

CH: Was it hard creating believable situations and issues or did you take them from real life and elaborate?

SC: I don’t believe so.  I think we’ve all been cast into roles that don’t suit us at one time, and we stay for one reason or another.

It takes courage to break free, take risks, and in some cases go against our family. As someone who has a job in the creative field, I understood that feeling well. People don’t always understand what you do, or why you do it.

I also related to the theme of racism and the change that can come from understanding, and knowledge, because I’ve seen that happen, and I wanted to tell that story.

CH: Where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots or do stories come to you as a whole concept?

SC: My ideas come from all over the place. I might see a movie, or a tv show. It could be sparked by a place I saw on a road trip.

I’m a character-driven writer, so often the character comes to me and tells me their story, or something happens that triggers me developing a character to match it.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your writing style?

SC: I’m not sure how to answer this. I’m a pretty unique person, and I think my perspective, and the things I write about can be unique, i.e., the food truck business in this story.

CH: Did you have to do a lot of research to write this book?

SC: I did a decent amount, to get the food truck business and contests correct. Because I once lived near the areas I wrote about. I didn’t have to invest as much time on the setting, as I usually do.

CH: Who was your favorite character to write?

SC: Oh wow, I think Xia. I loved her unique style, determination, and drive. I admired her.

CH: Which character was hardest to write?

SC: Hmmm. I think Xia’s father. I didn’t like some of the things he did, but I had to stay true to him as a character.

CH: When you wrote the first book in the series, did you realize it would be a series then? Which book in the series was hardest to write?

SC: I did know it would be a series. I really enjoy world building, so I was excited. Wow, the hardest one to write…maybe For the Love of Dixie, because of the very sensitive subject matter.

CH: Will there be other books in this series?

SC: Yes, there will be a few more.

CH: Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

SC: Love is for everyone and tragedy, or hard times don’t last forever.

CH: What type of feedback are you receiving from readers?

SC: I get the good, the bad, and the honest. (Shyla laughs) I’m blessed to have readers who take the time to tell me what they enjoyed, didn’t enjoy, and would like to see more. I appreciate them so much.

CH: What can we expect from you next—more series or a stand alone?

SC: A mixture of both. I try to keep things varied.

CH: How to Find Shyla Colt:

CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

SC: Amazon

CH: Any closing remarks?

SC:  Cheryl, Thank you for having me. It’s been a lot of fun.

CH: Thank you so much, Shyla Colt, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Shyla Colt and Cheryl Holloway.

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Subscribe to my blog because I share great books with wonderful readers all over the globe!

   

On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Columbus Day Is Being Refocused to Indigenous People’s Day

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Columbus Day Is Being Refocused to Indigenous People’s Day

According to the New York Post, there is a growing list of places that have already replaced Columbus Day—first recognized as a Federal holiday in 1937—with Indigenous People’s Day,

Indigenous People’s Day celebrates indigenous natives who lived on the North American continent long before European explorers set foot here.

It has been reported and critics argue that devoting a day to Columbus is not only misleading, but celebrates a violent history of colonialism, enslavement and discrimination.

It makes sense to refocus the holiday, because there are many Native American tribes in North America.

To all of you, I wish you have a Happy Indigenous People’s Day.Signature Logo

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On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Guest Author Interview – Toki Smith

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Title: Them Inside Me

Genre: African-American Mystery/Thriller/Suspense

Synopsis: Several women come together to support each other while trying to find healthy ways to deal with the traumas each has faced. But during the course of their 8 week support group, betrayal, self-doubt and even murder begins to threaten their path to becoming survivors. “Them Inside Me” is a look at sexual assault and the long-term consequences.

Toki Smith, Author

CH: Today’s Guest Author is Toki Smith. She is a passionate writer who takes real situations and creates an inspiring novel. Welcome to my blog, Toki.

CH: Please tell us in one sentence, why we should read your book.

 TS: My book is, not only a murder mystery, but also elements of my own journey as a sexual assault victim.

CH: This book is about a support group of women dealing with traumas. Why did you decide to write this book?

TS: I haven’t read books about “real” characters in a trauma support group.  Many books have the standard few characters that are so one dimensional, it will falsely leave you thinking all victims present have the same cookie cutter behaviors.  I wanted to show, from a personal experience, what it was like for me in a support group.

CH: Was it hard creating believable situations and issues?

TS: It was hard to express my life situations in a way that drove the fictionalized elements of the story.  I wanted to be true to my history, while not making this a biography, per se.  I haven’t known pimps and prostitutes, so I drew on some of those 1970’s TV shows for inspiration!

CH: Overall, where do your ideas come from? Do you have a standard formula for plots or do stories come to you as a whole concept?

TS: My first book, The Plan, featured an assassin and I wanted to tell a story about how that person became a killer and a human being without regard for others.  During my journey, I’ve wondered why I became a law-abiding citizen and not a hard, hostile and unforgiving person.  So, I got to explore the dangerous side through my writing.

CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your writing style?

TS: The feedback has been universal—the characters speak like people they know.  I tried to use an honest voice, as I think the character would want to express their truth.

CH: Did you have to do any special research to write this book?

TS: Yes, I set my story in a fictional town in West Virginia, but my son, who is a West Virginia University student, made me a map of the downtown area, so I could use it for the story.  Otherwise, I relied on my clinical skills, I’m a clinical social worker (mental health therapist) and a survivor of rape and incest.

CH: Who was your favorite character to write?

TS: My favorite character to write was Yvette!  She was a ‘tell-it-like-it is’ girl and I wish I could be more like her and not care about the consequences.

CH: Which character was hardest to write?

TS: Penny for sure…she was a professional dealing with the long-standing consequences of being raped by a cousin.  Reliving my own rape to write her storyline was very painful.

CH: Tell us a little about your first book and whether you will decide to make your second book a series?

TS:  My first book, The Plan, introduced us to an assassin, but it’s definitely a stand-alone book.  I’m not sure if Them Inside Me will be a series.  Although, I have gotten feedback that certain characters should have their own books.

CH: Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

TS: Yes, a few take-aways would be:

  • Don’t assume you know how the victim feels;
  • Some families do make it back from trauma;
  • Don’t assume every victim is the same;
  • Suicide may not be an option to you, but respect that victims may see it as a very real option; or
  • There is help out there…keep living till you find it.

CH: What type of feedback are you receiving from readers?

TS: Sexual assault victims have reached out to me with thanks for giving them a voice.  One lady’s mother committed suicide years ago and she wanted to thank me for giving her some idea of what her mother may have been dealing with.

The Center for Abused Persons asked me to be their guest speaker (Victim’s Vigil) and from there, the Charles County Commissioners invited me to speak at a town hall meeting about childhood sexual abuse.

Lastly, one of my first therapists wrote that she was proud of me and my book was “on par with the mysteries I read.”

CH: Who are some of your writing influences?

TS: Janet Evanovich and James Patterson.

CH: What has been the most exciting thing to happen on your publishing journey?

TS: Meeting other victims and having them tell me I got it right!

CH: What can we expect next from you?

TS: I would really like to write a story where Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford get back together!  I can’t believe The Way We Were has been left for so long with their characters still apart!

CH: How to Find Toki Smith:

CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

TS: My above website and Amazon; also found at Southern Maryland libraries!

CH: Any closing remarks?

TS: Thanks Cheryl for offering your platform to support other writers.

CH: Yes, I pay it forward to other authors as much as I can. Thank you so much, Toki Smith, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Toki Smith and Cheryl Holloway.

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On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Cheryl Holloway Participates in Walk to End Alzheimer’s

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“SHADES OF MEMORIES OF DINWIDDIE, VIRGINIA”

Cheryl Holloway joined the Dinwiddie, VA Community in Stepping to raise awareness and funds for Dementia/Alzheimer’s care, support and research on September 30, 2017.

Author, Cheryl Holloway, setting up vendor table to sell books.

The first three ladies to buy my book were Doris, Mary and Felicia. Thanks ladies for getting the day started!

Author, Georgette Littlejohn, setting up her books also.

It was a fun day for all participants! Wish we could have gotten more pictures to share.

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On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Six Things You Need to Make Your Book a Best Seller by Cheryl Holloway

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Six Things You Need to Make Your Book a Best Seller

These techniques will work on any kind of book: fiction: romance, mystery, sci-fi, urban fantasy, thriller, etc.; or non-fiction: business or literary work. Any writer can implement these techniques no matter where you are in your writing process, from the first draft to the polished final draft.

  1. A Well-written Book
  2. A Positive Attitude
  3. Inspiration
  4. Motivation
  5. Determination
  6. Target Audience

A Well-written Book – Tell a wonderful story to make readers love you (Fiction). Provide useful information that readers can use (Non-fiction).

Hint: Pull on their emotions—make them laugh or make them cry.

A Positive Attitude – Do not underestimate the power of positive thinking when it comes to your writing. Learn and know your craft by building and enhancing your skills and developing your resources. As a writer, you must build and maintain a positive attitude. Don’t worry about rejections or negative feedback.

Hint: Everyone is not going to like your book.

Inspiration (definition) – the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative (such as writing). Find your inspiration and let it lead you on to better writing. It will also lead you from being a writer to being an author. What inspires most people is “an ordinary person who has done an extraordinary thing.”

Hint: Whether your inspiration is someone or something; big or small; let it lead you on to better writing.

Motivation – According to Writer’s Digest magazine, “Writing takes commitment, self-discipline, and desire.” My passion for writing is my motivation. What’s yours?

Hint: Find a quote about writing and put it near your PC or laptop where you can always glance at it.

My Two Favorite Quotes: 1) I live in my own little world. But it’s okay…they know me here! 2) If there is a book you want to read but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it. Toni Morrison

Determination (definition) – a firmness of purpose; resoluteness. As a writer with a mission, you need an unflinching determination. You have goals and deadlines to meet—go for it.

Hint: Don’t give up! No matter what.

Target Audience – The Bible is the only book that is for everyone (and some people will question that). Know who should read your book: What type of people? (Christians, entrepreneurs, etc.) What type of groups? (shoppers, smokers, children, baby boomers, young adults, etc.) What other books do they read? (romance, sci-fi, urban, etc.) Know their demographics: age, income, education, race, gender, marital status, and/or occupation

Hint: Learn as much about your target audience as possible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am determined to make one of my books a best seller. I promote my books each and every day. It’s only a matter of time for me…how about you?

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On this blog, I “Pay it Forward” to other authors by spotlighting them with a Guest Author Interview. I only ask that they too “Pay It Forward” to any other author.                                              ~ Cheryl Holloway

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Guest Author Interview – Jeanna L. Pryor

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Title: Every Penny Counts: Become A Middle-Income Millionaire

 Genre: Personal Finance/Money Management

 Synopsis: Are you fed up of living paycheck to paycheck? Every Penny Counts shows you how to become debt free and build wealth using the money you make. Middle-income workers make hundreds of thousands of dollars during their working lifetime, but struggle to live day-to-day and retire at near-poverty levels. You don’t have to! You can live the American dream using your take home pay. You don’t have to be rich to become rich. You can live in comfort, buy a home, pay for college, take vacations, and stop robbing Peter to pay Paul. Follow the techniques and principals outlined in Every Penny Counts to begin a chain reaction of financial success.

Jeanna L. Pryor, Author and Financial Coach

CH: Today’s Guest Author is Jeanna L. Pryor. She is a Financial Coach and helps people to become middle-income millionaires. Welcome to my blog, Jeanna.

CH: Please tell us in sentence, why we should read your book.

JLP: Many struggle with getting the most with the money they make, this book tells you how.

CH: Why did you decide to write this book?

 JLP: I began writing the book in 1982 when I began teaching and assisting individuals with their finances, in 2009, I finally put all of my notes together and wrote the book over a two-week period.

CH: Why is it important for middle-income people to have financial freedom?

JLP: It’s important for everyone to achieve financial independence.  The difference between financial freedom and independence is independence is a level of financial security that only the individual can determine.  Freedom is rarely achieved, because laws and needs change.

CH: What is generational wealth? Why is it important to our generation?

JLP: Generational wealth is created when a financial inheritance of assets (money, property, stocks, etc.) are left from one generation to the other.  These assets continue to increase in value and are used as leverage to achieve more wealth.  It’s important because it catapults each generation financially forward to achieve a legacy, create jobs, and more assets.  Great examples of generational wealth are the Hiltons, Kennedy’s, Walton’s, and Rockefeller’s etc..

CH: What is a fiduciary? Are you a fiduciary?

JLP: A fiduciary is a financial advisor that is under law to place their client’s interests above their own when providing financial advice.  This is important because while they could benefit financially and make more money providing a recommendation, if the recommendation is not in the clients’ best interest, they cannot make the recommendation.  Yes, I am a fiduciary.  But more importantly, without the legal requirement to do so, as a person of integrity and moral character, I would not make a recommendation that is not in the best interest of my client.

CH: What type of services does a financial planner provide?

JLP: It depends on their license and competence.  The services could include, financial planning for retirement, college, etc., investment executions, banking, and insurance.

CH: Do you offer sample financial plans?

JLP: Yes

CH: What are ‘penny’ stocks?

JLP: Penny stock is stock that cost less than $5 per share.

CH: Is there a special investment approach that middle income families should use?

JLP: No.  Each investment approach is unique to the individual, their financial goals, the funds they have available to achieve the goal and how much risk they feel comfortable taking. There is no one-size fits all.

CH: Should people use eTrade?

JLP: Self-trade and eTrade platforms are great for individuals that are willing to do their own research and investing.  I recommend self-traders consult with a fee-based financial advisor at least annually to get a comprehensive check-up on how they are progressing with their financial goals.  Making trades is only one component of financial planning and goal setting.

CH: Is financial planning a one-on-one process or do you work with a team of advisors?

JLP: The consultation should be a one-on-one or family process to ensure the individual’s needs are met.  The consultation to create the best financial platform should be a team process.  By this I mean, tax, accountants, banking, legal, etc., experts work with the financial advisor to create the best solution for their client.

CH: What are some of the most important financial resources ordinary people need?

JLP: Like the previous answer, the resources are experts in finance, law, banking, taxes, and accounting for starters.  Each considers the implication each of their expertise can be used to help their client achieve their financial goals.

CH: Realistically, can a middle income person become a millionaire?

JLP: Absolutely.  Most middle-income persons will make over a million dollars during their working lifetime.  The key is having strategies to keep and grow most of what they make.  That’s where their expert financial team can help.

CH: What type of feedback are you receiving from readers of your book?

JLP: Most are surprised at the budget strategy I teach in the book.  Those that have employed it have eliminated their debt in less than three years.  They also share how they became more aware of where they were spending money and how to redirect those funds to achieve the goals they wanted.

CH: How to Find Jeanna L. Pryor:

CH: For my audience, where is your book sold?

JLP: Amazon is the best place to find it.

CH: Any closing remarks?

JLP: Ms. Holloway, thanks for this opportunity to share my thoughts on Every Penny Counts.  The principals taught in the book have been used with great success, since 1982 with my clients and students.  Try them for yourself.

CH: Thank you so much, Jeanna L. Pryor, for taking time out of your very busy writing schedule to join me and my blog followers.  It has been a real pleasure discussing your book with my audience.  And readers, if you’re like me and would enjoy this book.  I suggest you pick up a copy at your earliest convenience. 

Note: Photos/Clip art are compliments of the Internet, Jeanna L. Pryor and Cheryl Holloway.

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