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Tell us about The Book Of Lost Souls:[Click to purchase from Smashwords]When teen witch Ivy MacTavish changes a lizard into her date for a Halloween dance, everything turns to chaos. And when no one is powerful enough to transform him back except Ivy, it sparks the rumor: Like father, like daughter. Ivy has heard it all before - that her father, who left when she was seven – was involved with the darkest of magic.
Making the rumors worse, someone uses an evil spell book to bring back two of history's most nefarious killers. Ivy's got a simple plan to set things right: find the real dark spell caster, steal the book, and reverse the spell. No problem! But she’ll have to deal with something more dangerous than murderous spirits that want her and her friends dead: the school’s resident bad boy and hotter-than-brimstone demon, Nick Marcelli. Nick’s offering Ivy more than his help with recovering the missing book – he’s offering her a way to ditch her scaly reputation as a lizard-lover. Demons are about as hard to handle as black magic, and as Ivy soon discovers, it’s going to take more than a lot of luck and a little charm if she wants to survive long enough to clear her status as a dark witch, get a warm-blooded boyfriend, and have her former date back to eating meal worms before the week’s end.
The Book of Lost Souls is available on Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords for $1.99
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A Bit of Info About Michelle:
Michelle has always loved storytelling. When she was a child, her favorite stories were of monsters and things that lurked in the dark. Telling stories often frightened her classmates and got her into a lot of trouble with her teachers. They had no sense of humor.
As an adult, Michelle traded her love of writing for the corporate life where she was an IT professional. Today, she's doing what she loves best - writing and storytelling.
Michelle grew up in Chicago, but currently lives in NE Georgia with her husband and their two dogs. She loves scary books, funny movies, sports cars, chocolate, dogs, and changes of season.
A Brief Chat With Michelle:
Toni Morrison once said, “If there’s a book you want to read that hasn’t been written yet, you must write it.”
I think those were the words that inspired me to write The Book of Lost Souls. It wasn’t that there aren’t plenty of great young adult urban fantasy books out there – there’s just not a lot of them that are more lighthearted, more humorous.
So, I sat down and wrote. The manuscript took eight months to finish, and three more to revise and polish. When I felt it was ready, I sent The Book of Lost Souls out to quite a few agents. The book got a lot of interest, but no takers. I did have a some very close calls, and ended up revising for three top agents. One seemed more interested than the rest. But, by the time I turned in my revisions a couple months later, another client came up with a teen witch story and that was that.
During this time, I wrote another young adult book. After polishing it, I queried it, too. Finding it difficult to query two books at once, and since I was finding fewer agents to send my first book to, I reluctantly retired The Book of Lost Souls.
Meanwhile, I’d been reading author J.A. Konrath’s blog and started to think about self-publishing. The stigma wasn’t what it once was. I read about the success of so many authors, some of which ended up with agents and publishing deals. I loved The Book of Lost Souls and the characters in it. What did I have to lose? The book was just sitting around, collecting bit-rot on my hard drive. So, in mid March, I decided to give Indie publishing a try.
Now, people I don’t know are buying and reading my book and I couldn’t be happier!
Currently, I’m revising and editing a second novel in a different young adult series, and I’m working on a third book – a stand alone novel.
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Tell us about Of Good and Evil:[Click to purchase from Barnes & Noble]Trained as a Green Beret but born with unique, almost paranormal abilities, Ron Sheffield carries with him guilt for being the lone survivor of his squad during a mission. Which mission puts into his possession documents the government wishes he'd never seen and tries to kill him for.
He meets Amber Ash while recovering from a severe beating and gunshot wounds, compliments of the Mafia. It is soon discovered Ash has the same special powers as he and together they hunt down evil for the sake of good.
But one evil...one major threat against the United States may be just the incident that Sheffield and Ash cannot survive, which means the deaths of millions of others as well. Will Sheffield be able to stop the terrorists and keep Ash and many other innocent people alive?
An absolute must read! It's not your typical fight between good and evil and the suspense will grab hold of you and keep you turning the pages.
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Tell us about yourself Gerald:
I was born in Flint, Michigan. After receiving my MA and PhD in psychology from Michigan State University, I moved to Atlanta, Georgia, there joining the practice of another psychologist. A year later I set up my own private practice as a Consulting Psychologist, my professional services including marriage counseling, psychotherapy, testing evaluations and diagnosis, and industrial consultation.While in practice I wrote the published non-fiction book, THE SILENT MISERY---WHY MARRIAGES FAIL. During my 18 years in private practice, I also wrote the published novels, THE CORRUPTORS, THE DEATH DISCIPLE, and THE LAST COMING.
Easing out of private practice, I eventually moved to Gainesville, Georgia and into writing full-time, at first concentrating on screenplays and ghost-writing, producing two published ghost-written, non-fiction books. Then I wrote OF GOOD AND EVIL, and I am presently finishing its sequel, A TIME OF RECKONING.
An Interview with Gerald Griffin:
When did you first know you wanted to write a book?
When I first did it, in the 9th grade.I was reading about King Author and the Knights of the Round Table. I decided then that I wanted to write a similar adventure book, so I did, chapters and all, entitled, Sir Griffin And The Fair Princess Velva (Velva a girl in the class I had a crush on). My teacher found out about the book and read it chapter by chapter to the class. Naturally, it was never published, but it gave me the writing bug I could never overcome.
How many novels have you published?
What genre do you write in?
Usually suspense thrillers with a touch of paranormal.
Tell us a little about your latest novel (OF GOOD AND EVIL)?
Well, overall, I'd say it's a spellbinding and spectacular story of nobility and humanity in the battle of spirit versus tyranny.. A page-turner action thriller with absorbing characters, it spits out fire like a Gatling gun. Crisp, clean and clear, the novel is a hard-charging tale of a Green Beret, Ron Sheffield, discharged from service for going "crazy," and from there the fireworks begin, Falling in love, Ron and his beloved, Amber Ash, are pushed into spine-tingling ventures, among them: being sought out for death by an unsavory government cell because of secret documents Ron possesses; battles with the Mafia and terrorists; conflicts with a powerful secret society holding the key to their survival; discovering plans of the 9/11 terrorist attacks beforehand, but their warnings ignored; Ron having no choice but to become a special hit man for the Mafia to save his sanity; and Ron facing an impossible confrontation with a covert Khalid Sheikh Mohammed terrorist cell at the moment it is about to bring off the nuclear obliteration of a major American city. The reader is engrossed in humanity, villains, hate, love, and sorrow, all intermixed as one enticing conflict keeping the reader on edge.
Which of your characters do you most relate with?
Ron Sheffield and Amber Ash, both unwitting victims of unwanted mental anguish, but together able to overcome this, where neither could overcome it alone.
Where did the inspiration for this book come from?
War veterans suffering from combat trauma who were unable to adjust to normal society after discharge from service because of the persistence of this trauma.
Is there a message in your novel you wish for the reader to grasp?
Don't be near ground zero during a nuclear blast, or be on the other end of a bullet. Aside from that, love and friendship triumph, but you better keep looking over your shoulder, and become savvy of the world about you.
If you could use only Five words to persuade us to read your book, what would they be?
Spellbinding, action, surprise, love, nobility
What do you find are the biggest obstacles to overcome when writing a novel?
Maintaining your passion, discipline, and dedication on a consistent basis; combined with doing the RIGHT research.
For writers who have not completed their first novel, what would you give them?
Don't become distracted. Write every day while not letting your passion, discipline, and dedication slip, They are what will carry you through.
What famous writer would you compare yourself to and why?
For me, it's difficult to narrow it down to one. Herman Wouk, Kurt Vonnegut, and Wilbur Smith come to mind because they all write fantastic stories --- what every writer should strive to do.
If you were a superhero what would your name be?
The Lord of Action. Most superheroes are involved with action.
Have you ever thought of a great opening chapter and a devilish closing chapter but just couldn't work out how to get from one to the other?
No, That's not how it works. If you have a devilish closing chapter then you've already finished the book; and once you finish a devilish chapter, it can alter what makes a great opening chapter.
What kind of routine do you keep when writing?
I set a time length each day for my writing. Then once I begin, I write through until I finish, forcing chores and eating in between, sometimes skipping them when the writing becomes all encompassing.
What current projects are you working on?
I'm just finishing up A TIME OF RECKONING, sequel to OF GOOD AND EVIL.
Can you share any of it with us?
Well, it's another spine-tingling, action-packed suspense thriller --- with periods of comic relief from two disgruntled FBI agents disgraced in the previous novel, as well as comic relief from a sick, one-sided impossible love relationship amidst tragedy --- where secret cells of Al Qaeda terrorists in the U.S. are bent on annihilating 24 American cities simultaneously in suicide missions, pursuing a plan impossible to stop.
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Tell us about The Old Mermaid's Tale:[Click for Kathleen's blog]In 1960 when Clair Wagner's friends are showing off their new bikinis at the local swimming hole and planning weddings, Clair is plotting her escape from her rural farm-community life. She is headed for college on the shores of Lake Erie with plans for the future and dreams of a "handsome sailor with the constellations of the Northern Seas in his eyes." Into her life comes Pio, a beautiful Italian fisherman, who longs for a life of adventure on the Great Lakes under the aurora borealis. Clair soon meets Gary, the dashing son of a wealthy shipping magnate, who introduces her to Canal Street on the waterfront where she encounters The Old Mermaid Inn, a tavern that, as Gary tells her, " deserves its reputation."
But The Old Mermaid Inn, with its giant painting of a seductive mermaid, is home to some fascinating people including Tessie, the owner and original mermaid, and the intriguing Baptiste, a Breton mariner injured in a shipwreck, who earns his living as a musician.
With Pio, Clair discovers passion, with Gary she gains entry into the world of the commercial waterfront, and with Baptiste she discovers all-consuming love. But as her relationship with Baptiste grows she discovers he is far more complex and mysterious than she could imagine. He has secrets and his secrets will alter her life forever.
Set against the backdrop of Great Lakes shipping legends and lore, The Old Mermaid's Tale is in part a coming-of-age story, in part a history of a transformative time in America, and throughout a love story of grand proportions that pays homage to the importance of story-telling in our lives.
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Tell us about yourself Kathleen:
I am the author of a collection of short stories "My Last Romance and other passions" and two novels, "The Old Mermaid's Tale" and "Each Angel Burns". I have also written "Fry Bacon, Add Onions: The Valentine Family & Friends Cookbook - five generations of good eating", a memoir/cookbook of memories and 400 recipes from a Pennsylvania Dutch childhood, and "The Mermaid Shawl & other Beauties: Shawls, Cocoons and Wraps", a collection of my own lace knitting designs. Some of my short stories are available in e-format from HeartThrobBooks.com and additional knitting patterns from KnitYourTailOff.com. I currently lives in Gloucester, Massachusetts, America's oldest seaport, and I am writing another novel, "Depraved Heart" and another knitting book, "Siren Shawls, Seaman's Scarves and Stories". More information on my work can be found on my website.
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A brief chat with Kathleen:Finding A Niche That Fits
I don't ever remember not writing. When I was in high school I wrote a perfectly awful novel about a big family (much like my own) that I burned a few years later (thank goodness). In college I was the editor of my campus literary magazine and I wrote a lot of pretty bad poetry filled with metaphores based on mythology as I understood it at the time.
Over the years of my working life I had several jobs thay involved writing case reports, promotional copy, technical manuals, whatever was necessary for the job. I published some magazine articles, mostly on handcrafts, knitting and quilting. However it wasn't until I moved to Gloucester, Massachusetts and became involved with a few arts organizations that I started taking writing seriously. I authored a book for the North Shore Arts Association on the Artistic Families of the North Shore and then a companion article for American Artist Magazine. I began writing more articles about art and alo wrote a few cime stories that were published in crime anthologies.
When I wrote my first novel, The Old Mermaid's Tale, I wasn't sure what to call it. It was romantic but did not fit the popular romance formula. It was steeped in the folklore and maritime stories of the Great lakes shipwrecks but did not really qualify as a historical novel. So I called it contemporary fiction which is sort of a catchall term for novels that don't really fit anywhere.
My second novel, Each Angel Burns, was even more perplexing. There is a beautiful love story in it but the lovers are in their early fifties -- too old for genre romance. There is also a mysterious component to it but it is not the focus of the story so it is not a classic mystery. So it, too, became contemporary fiction.
Now I'm working on a third novel that contains a love story, some mystery, and one of the main characters is a professional football player so it includes sports. Hard to classify as well.
But all three of my books center around the arts. In The Old Mermaid's Tale we have a musician and a folklorist. In Each Angel Burns there is a sculptor and a wood-worker and my third novel revolves around an art historian hired to catalog a fabulous art collection.
So what kind of novels do I write? Well, romantic, mysterious books about artists. There ought to be a category for that -- I suspect it is called contemporary fiction.
Tell us about the concept behind The Red Cross of Gold series:The legends of the Templar Knights aka Poor Knights of Solomon's Temple have fascinated me for at least thirty years. I have read a veritable library of books concerning their history (fact, legend and tradition, as well as, conspiracy theories). Because I have been writing since my early twenties, dabbling in fan fiction, sci-fi stories and fantasy, I thought why not put all my vast accumulation of Templar trivia to work and write a novel about them. I was originally thinking of writing an epic historical fiction about the adventures of a particularly unruly, irreverent Templar Knight from Scotland, one of my favorite countries since I fancy that my ancestors through my father's bloodline actually originated in Scotland.
I read a number of books about life during the middle ages, historical accounts of the Crusades and the Templar role in them and numerous works on the Holy Roman Catholic Empire of that time. All of this was very interesting, but writing a historical novel takes more patience than I had at the time.
In my early forties, I went through a particularly trying time in my personal life and discovered that I had a number of personal demons I needed to purge if I ever hoped to find some modicum of happiness in my 'old age'. I took a transfer to a different part of Texas (which for those who don't know can be like moving to another country). I left the deep woods of East Texas and moved to the more arid central area where there are more goats than people and civilization operated about twenty years behind times. The grocery stores still belonged to people with names and their floors were made of wood and they faced the town square. The jail was a small building sitting on the corner of the Courthouse square.
While sitting in my tiny dwelling alone, night after night, I took up my Brother typewriter and began to write my first novel in the Assassin Chronicles. I envisioned all of my best and worst demons in the characters as the story unfolded on the paper. By the time I finished the book, I felt much better about life in general and seemed to have recovered my perspective. I began to look for a publisher or an agent who might be interested in publishing the book, but as in all my earlier attempts at getting published, I got nowhere fast.
But just because I couldn't get published traditionally, I did not lose the desire to write. I kept going back to the story.
I transferred back to my hometown area within a year and took up the typewriter again. I wrote the second work partially on the typewriter and then purchased my first computer. The ease of using a word processor was nothing short of miraculous. I soon had a number of books written expanding on the tale, adding in mysterious conspiracy theory components, mythological creatures and beasts, gods and goddesses, angels and more demons. All of this became much easier as I learned to 'surf the web' in search of new and interesting topics to write about.
As I was writing and wondering how in the world I was going to get published, apparently a lot of other writers were wondering the same thing. Soon, self-publishing websites were popping up everywhere on the web. I paid over $800 to have my book published in paperback the first time and was thrilled beyond measure to hold it in my hands. Of course, it never went anywhere unless I bought it and gave it away. Soon, some very clever people realized that computers might actually be here to stay and realized that there was a need for electronic books. One thing led to another and the Amazon Kindle popped up on Oprah Winfrey's show one day. A friend of mine who used to be an avid Oprah watcher told me about the Kindle and the rest of the story is evident in the number of books now published absolutely free for Kindle, and for paperbacks via Createspace and other e-publishers since then. I can say that I owe my current state of somewhat modest success to my friend and Oprah Winfrey (I just realized that my word program actually recognizes her name, but does not recognize Createspace! Ha!) Now if I could only get Oprah to read and recommend my works on her website…
Well, I'm very happy with my publishing so far. Promoting is the problem.
Promoting can be fun or it can be drudgery, depending on the severity of the hair day going on. I love writing, I love promoting, tweeting, Face-booking, forum-ing, blogging, etc., but there just isn't enough time in the day to do everything I want to do.
If you choose to read the series, I would love to hear from you. Send questions and comments to BrendanCarroll7@gmail.com anytime. A writer loves nothing more than conversing with readers.
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Tell us about yourself Brenden:
I was born and raised in the Piney Woods of East Texas. I played outside when "Leave It To Beaver" played on the TV. I rode stickhorses, wore cowboy hats and capguns and played "Cowboys and Indians", learned to shoot marbles in the dirt, played with little green army men, climbed trees, got stung by numerous bees and wasps, fell in holes, crashed my bike, rode the neighbors' pony and got chased by bulls across the fields. I graduated 13th in my class in highschool because I thought it would be uncool to actually study. I joined the Navy, served 5+ years on active and inactive duty and worked with Navy pilots learning to fly jet fighters. Had a lot of fun and then used my benefits to go to college.
I received a degree in geography/geology with a secondary teaching certificate after starting out in Environmental Science with the idea of becoming a Civil Engineer. Never materialized.
Family required that I go to work and earn a living. I went to work for the State of Texas in the Corrections field and spent 23 years working there after bombing out as a school teacher after one year. Egad, teaching is much too political for me. It was not the students who ran me away from teaching, but my co-workers and administrators. I've had a rather pleasant life with few real tragedies as yet. I believe that the United States is one of the best places in the world to be born and that Texas is certainly the best state to live in and I thank God everyday that I am free to pursue my own dreams.
Thank you for reading and may you always find joy in everything you do and beauty in everything you see.
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Tell us about The Eternal Struggle:
[Click for James' website]
When your life ends...the adventure begins! Niccolo Bontecelli and Seamus O'Malley thought their afterlife would simply be a peaceful journey to Heaven. Little did they suspect their path would lead through Hell! Satan, seeking a final victory in his eternal struggle with Goodness, strives to gain dominion over both the spiritual realm of Limbo and Earth. Hitler and Stalin are released from Hell with orders to bring havoc to Limbo and manipulate the upcoming U.S. Presidential election. Niccolo and Seamus battle evil with the aid of Abraham Lincoln, Stephen Biko and other historic figures. Can they save Limbo, Earth, and their own souls, or will Satan's soldiers achieve their malicious goals?
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Tell us about yourself James:
I am a history/psychology teacher by day and writer by what ever time of day I can sneak some writing in. This isn't always easy with papers to grade, lessons to plan and family (wife and four children) to share time with, but writing finds a way. I earned a doctorate studying a concept of spiritual education, a philosophic position that takes very seriously the existence of a spiritual dimension of human life if, not attended to, can cause disillionment and worse. The Eternal Struggle combines elements of this view as well as the influences of my teaching matter.