Friday, April 29, 2016

Thursday, April 28, 2016

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY book signing!

I'm at Simple Treasures in Farmington!

Last day!

READY?

If you haven't picked up one of my books yet, now is the time to do so. I will also have a new book to sign, HEAVEN 24/7 - LIVING IN THE LIGHT.


Entrance fee is only $1 and there are hundreds of  craft booths to take a look at!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

FRIDAY FLICKS: Heaven 24/7 by yours truly

Have you taken a peek at Heaven 24/7 yet?

No?

You should!

Get some inspiration. Change your life.

Get it at Amazon!

I will be at the Simple Treasures Boutique through Saturday!

Heaven 24/7 What's it all about? If you've ever wondered, "Is it possible to live more spiritually minded. . . even in the midst of day-to-day earth life?" If you've ever worried about what others really think of you. . . or about being perfect NOW. If you've wanted to forgive someone. . . but couldn't. If you've tried hard to see how to get past the scars in your life. . . but haven't. If you feel as if you live in fear. . . and wonder where God is. If you have a hard time letting go of sin. . . sharing who you are. . . knowing what you really want out of life. . . and having the courage to do it. It may just be your time to view heaven 24/7. Are you ready?



Monday, April 25, 2016

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Nancy M. Rollins

Tell me about yourself. What got you started in Writing?

When growing up, I seem to be a bit of a dreamer.  As I look back, I never minded telling tall tales or writing, although I was a slow reader and a terrible speller. I was blessed with a wild imagination, and utilized this creative side in the essays or stories I wrote. 

During those early school years, my bubbly personality sent me fluttering around others like an insect with wings.  Foolishly, I became a high school dropout at sixteen, and had to pursue my education later in life. 

With time comes maturity. My one and current marriage came two years after leaving school. We raised three children, which now have children of their own. As a family we have traveled more than most, before coming to Florida to live.

On the professional side, my work has leaned towards children or in the medical field. I obtained a GED, and went on to take both vocational and some college courses.  In recent years, my interest in writing returned and I began to dabble in poems and stories.  Amateur illustration, graphic design and photography were additional hobbies that followed.







How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?
           
A strict writing schedule may work best for some, but as long as I can make time to jot down a few ideas each day, I am happy.  Instead of block hours, my routine is working around whatever I have scheduled on the home front. 
            
Often I can be found on the computer past midnight. Other times, I may work the entire morning and afternoon. Writing a few minutes or hours each day will strengthen an inspiring author’s growth in his craft. I believe we all must find what works best individually.  It is surprising how quickly minutes can turn into hours when doing what we enjoy.

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a laptop or some other method of getting your words down?             

Creating a relaxing atmosphere is the first step before writing. Unless you are extremely good at tuning out noise, the television can become a big detraction if left on. I usually turn on some of my favorite music and write in a place that I won’t be disturbed. 

An idea for a story can emerge anywhere or during any given moment. Having a pen and notebook nearby is important for not losing phases or thoughts. Don’t ask how many times I didn’t write down a word and forgot it later on.

When it comes to creating a story, the first draft is usually on a standard piece of paper. I make lots of changes and prefer to look it over before it is typed on the desk computer. My laptop also comes in handy. It may be used as a back up for my working computer files, or other projects. One of these is a deluxe word search for kids.

What’s your favorite part about writing? What’s your least favorite part about writing?

What pulls me in most about writing is the versatility. A writer can travel anywhere or transform into any character. The story line may be true; it may be pure science fiction. A writer has the freedom to change topics, settings, or plots in the unpublished book.

If I was to pick the least favorite part of writing it would be the research. Even with a fictional book, a certain amount of truth statements or locations are usually included to make the story realistic. I am currently working on educational books. Although they are written for children, they require some research.  

How did you come up with your book idea? How long did it take you to write your book?

It’s All About the Chirp, Snap and Quack is actually a spin off from another idea. One of my hobbies is photography and the other graphic design.  I had been designing mugs. One day while watching my grandchildren at the park, I began to snap wildlife photos. Before too long, my wildlife collection grew with each returning trip for more.
           
As I examined the photographs, cute little phases crossed my mind. I downloaded the pictures onto files I made on my computer. I wrote sayings under the ones I could imagine on a mug or t-shirt. One day after several more new photos, I came up with the idea to put them into a book. It’s All About the Chirp, Snap and Quack was that book. Now I have future plans for two similar ones.   

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?

In my opinion, marketing is more difficult than putting together the book. Not having much previous success, I hired a publishing coach to point me in the right direction. With her assistance, she designed a blog, author page, book trailer, bookmarks, and submitted It’s All About the Chirp, Snap and Quack in my name. She advertised my book on her sites, and created contests and blogs where authors could submit their book covers and ads.

GET THE BOOK AT AMAZON!

Next step was to join groups and try to get my book noticed. My book is posted on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedln, Google +, and author pages. Each day it is best to try to move forward. I post poems on Scriggler, leave comments on blogs I find interesting, and have joined several writing groups. Many allow authors to post their books for free.

Here are some tips: Create a contact list. Emailing places or calling local bookstores may lead to some success. Book reviews and book signings are extremely important when trying to get your book known. I have a book signing scheduled at a local library and another at B&N. With both I will be one of a group of local authors. Scouting around for places to do guest appearances or leave books does take work.

To touch once again on creating a contact list, I made a book ad. This advertisement is slowly being sent to libraries and independent bookstores in and out of state. To make each one personal, I address the heading to the business in which the email is intended.

One last thing I do for marketing is place ads on Facebook. I feel a sponsor advertisement will receive more views on the weekend. I have considered other marketing sites like Amazon and others on Twitter.   

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out?

Christmas at the Claus House ~ Saving Clara Deer was released four and a half months before It’s All About the Chirp, Snap and Quack. The book is for Santa lovers, and the efforts to save a sick deer. I do not have any other published books out as yet.
            
It is my intention to release other books. I have several manuscripts either finished or in varies stages of completion. Most manuscripts are in need of illustrations. My current focus is on a deluxe word search for children, which will be a 200 page workbook and a second wildlife book.     
Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it.

I actually have a few. Some manuscripts were stored on a shelf after being rejected by traditional publishers. Usually, I moved on to the next project rather quickly. One big mistake I made was to submit work before it was proof read or edited. That’s a certain no-no with any inspiring writer. Often another person will spot mistakes the author has missed. We as writers can be too close to our work.
            
The manuscript deepest on the back burner is an unfinished novel. The story is about a dog a boy receives for his birthday, when all he wanted was a new bike. Did I mention the child is also afraid of dogs? This children’s book was put away at its halfway point because of other projects. It’s almost time to pick it back up.

What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to publish but doesn’t believe he/she has enough talent?

Don’t give up on your dream! For some, words seem to fall into place and seeing their work published in a magazine or book comes easily. For others like me, it turns more into a struggle. With the number of submissions, the odds are against even a seasoned writer. It takes a writer with thick skin and sheer willpower to succeed.
            
Writing skills develop with practice. Read similar work to gain further insight and never shy away from asking questions. Join a writing group and share. Reading one’s work to others, even for five minutes, can generate great feedback on how to improve a manuscript. Many towns or libraries have their own writing groups that meet monthly or once a week.
            
A story is in each one of us. It takes perseverance and luck to achieve our goals. An inspiring writer should not give up. When the work is finally in print, it will feel like magic. All the hours, the research, and the lack of sleep will be forgotten, as ideas for a new book begins.

***
Thank you, Nancy!

Learn more about Nancy by clicking the following links:


CreateSpace     





Friday, April 22, 2016

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Bette and Wayne Price

Today I've invited two writers - a husband and wife team - to join me in my question and answer author interview. I hope you enjoy!

Tell me a about yourself. What got you started in writing?



Our writing is a true testimony of God’s reality even though it sometimes sounds like fiction. Bette and I have been in a close marriage for 51 years. We have worked together much of that time. In fact, the strength of our relationship forms the foundation of our books.  In our writing, we needed to have a way to separate our voices and individual experiences while talking about parallel events. Both she and I have much to say. The format of our book shows the two vantage points with Wayne’s words printed in plain type while Bette’s are printed in italics. This style works for the majority of our readers.

We could have written two books, one by Bette and one by Wayne. All they would have been is two life stories of ups and downs. By contrast, God Moment shows these stories, but it also includes the tenuous and exciting personal interactions so necessary for an enjoyable reading experience. This interview is written in the ‘dual, first-person’ technique that developed—Bette is speaking next.





I love the Lord so much I want to share that love with others. I worked managing low income housing in a rural town. After fourteen years I was forced to give that position up due to health problems. Over the course of those years I had occasional opportunities to encourage people by relating some of the things the Lord has done for me. I miss not being able to personally share some of our tumultuous but miraculous life events. Finding a way to share with others, like these wonderful people, prompted us to write a book about those miracles.

After
listening to a Christian television talk show about authorship, we were further inspired to write. Now, having our story in paperback and Kindle makes sharing easy. While the project was in its early stages, we found such an appreciation of, and wonder at, the awesomeness of God in our lives. The words just flowed from those realizations—the process has been enlightening and satisfying!   

How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?

I used to be a morning person but now I find myself taking forever to get into gear. We enjoy a relaxed morning of talking and drinking home-made mocha's. I am willing to work in the early afternoon. Because Wayne has developed into a morning (really an all-day) person we needed a workable compromise.

Our workday usually starts at 11 in the morning and ends around five or so. We try to write something Monday thru Saturday but normal day-to-day duties and errands take up a large amount of time for us. We gratefully write approximately 30 hours a week since we are both retired.

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or some other method of getting your words down?

We write together and at the same time. The desk, PC, and two monitors work for us. Since Bette cannot sit at a desk for long periods, she sometimes shares her ideas and dictates paragraphs from a living room chair. The desk is nearby at one end of the room so this works out fine. 

I count myself blessed being able to share my heart in this manner. I formerly worked at a computer typing much of my days, however, Wayne is now the better typist of the two of us. He tends to edit and even format while typing. All of this helps us put words on the page.

What's your favorite part about writing? Your least favorite part about writing?

Writing is exhilarating and refreshing for me! I love it! Most days I find myself waiting somewhat impatiently to get to the desk and start working. The day usually ends long before I am ready to stop—that’s my least favorite part.  

My husband loves to work, however, I find writing to be a challenge.  I enjoy talking about what the Lord has done, but I have never been able to share my feelings easily. Writing God Moment has challenged me to be more transparent and open. This was the hardest part for me. True life sounds like a wonderful genre but it sometimes requires me to remember difficult situations and often hidden feelings. However, I find as I remember the positive blessings I have received I am more articulate and now truly enjoy the writing process.

How did you come up with your book idea? How long did it take you to write your book?

Life as we have lived it has resulted in many miraculous interventions by God. Many years of sharing life with each other and remembering these awesome events has convinced us we have something important to share. Namely, that God is real and He can actually change things in normal life.

Of course, with this being our first book, we started writing without thought of a thesis or outline, you know, re-inventing the wheel. In the beginning we started by speaking into a tape recorder—literal tapes, old technology! As we became comfortable with just putting words directly onto a PC keyboard, we matured into the twenty first century.

The added step of transcription made it take far too long for us to produce this book. Unfortunately that’s how we started. The good news is that talking out loud onto a tape revealed a spontaneity that is now in our writing. With editing, cover design, formatting, and other publishing duties, we spent three years on and off to make it right.   

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?

Marketing has a steep learning curve. Getting nearly a thousand free books out to our readers was easy. Paid sales are naturally slower. Our attempts so far include using Christian Facebook groups and several commercial marketing sites. In addition, we conducted a radio interview and a personal appearance. We look forward to utilizing writer groups, a web site, and so much more of all the ways to market books. And of course blog visibility is needed with this being our first entry into that potential, thanks to you Kathryn!

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out?

We are excited about our next book, ‘Pure God.’ We are hopeful it will be out this fall. It’s fun starting from the beginning again and actually writing rather than doing all the other author things.

Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it.

To me, back burner things always seem to be on the front. Bette’s illnesses are the biggest projects we are working on besides writing. We have already seen many divine healings for her. Receiving more is a major focus of book two.

What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to publish but doesn’t believe he/she has enough talent?

The best advice we ever received about becoming a good writer is to start writing and then keep on writing.


There are many paths to becoming published. We did it on our own. However,  if you do try it yourself, be prepared to learn many new disciplines. You may prefer getting help. Either way keep going, do not stop, enjoy!

Learn more about Bette and Wayne Price:

***

Our question of you is: What is your focus for marketing your new book, Heaven 24/7? It sounds fabulous!





It is - fabulous! My friend and I got together to share our life experiences. It has been a great journey! Perhaps the best way I can show you how helpful and life changing it will be for readers is to have them listen to the book trailer. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Need a Bit of Heaven?

Just a Glimpse...

Kathryn

It's too bad we can't live in heaven 24/7.
But what if we could tap into heaven whenever we wanted to, grab a handful of blue sky, reach for a rainbow, scatter the feelings of love born there whenever we needed it or wanted it?
What if a girl could fly? Where would she travel first?
What if a hippo could talk? And we actually learned something from him?
What if a dragon could not only fly, but sing? Would we listen?
What if we could reach heaven 24/7?
Right now, in this very second, as you read that very last line, did you think to yourself, "How can I truly reach heaven while I'm still planted firmly on this earth?"
How truly?

Celeste

I have felt, even known that the concept of living Heaven 24/7 is a reality, though living this kind of life is often unrecognized in my daily, busy, hustle and bustle life.
Stuck, yep, I’ve been stuck many a time. I’ve thought, “Why am I having such a miserable experience?” I have thought the proverbial, “Why me?” on many occasions. Yet, I have learned the beauty of this:
What if each moment is shaped, sculpted per se, given by heavenly design just for me? Just for me to…look at it…make a choice…hear or see something vital, critical, or beautiful…be inspired…be chastened…be in the right place to serve someone or be an instrument to answer their plea or prayer? What if?
What if this very moment is given to look to heaven, for heaven is always waiting for me to embrace it. Am I paying attention?  When I reach for Heaven, Heaven always reaches back. Am I keeping myself connected to what already is tangibly here on this earth and available to me…Heaven? Hummmm…

Want to learn more?

Take a look at: 

Amazon!

Monday, April 18, 2016

CHARACTER INTERVIEW: Skye Southerland from Buckhead Dead

Tell me a little about yourself (where you live, who you are, what you look like, what you hope to achieve, etc.)

Hmmm, where to start? My name is Skye Southerland and I’m an interior decorator. I’m in my 50’s, about 5’5” and weigh around… well you know I can’t tell you that. My hair is super short and spiked (you’ll need to read about what happened to my shoulder length hair in my book Buckhead Dead) and I’m married to Mitch Southerland who is a high end antique dealer. We live in Buckhead, Atlanta, GA. I drive a Highlander, Toyota that I use to carry all of my equipment for my decorating business. I tend to be judgmental, but I’ve learned with the help of my friend, Honey Truelove and her cousin who is an exotic dancer (turning her life around) teaches me that you cannot always judge someone from appearances or even their uniqueness. 
2.      
      What do you like to do in your spare time?

I used to like to read, go for long walks with Mitch and just chill. But lately there has been no time for resting. My friend Honey and I were suspects in a murder case and since it looked like the law enforcement wasn’t in a hurry to find anyone else we began detecting ourselves. Now, it seems that, Ginger has gone and got herself mixed up in a nasty murder in Decatur, Georgia.

Get the Book at Amazon

3.   What is your favorite color and why?

I love green. If you will notice in spring time there are many, many shades of green. I love working with the different shades.
4.       
      What is your favorite food? Why is it your favorite?

Oh, my! That’s a hard one since I love food. I guess I’d have to say fried chicken. What true Southerner doesn’t like chicken?

What would you say is your biggest quirk?

Well, let me tell you about one of Honey’s instead. LOL Honey has to have her Merle Norman Romance Red lipstick with her at all times. This is her signature lipstick and she wouldn’t be caught dead without it. Uh oh, that probably isn’t a good thing to say if you are a character in a murder mystery.

5.  What is it about your antagonist that irks you the most, and why? Share a line in the book where this irk is manifested. 

      Well, I have just got to get this off my chest. My mother-in-law, Charlotte Southerland (Miss Charlotte she insists I call her) has come to stay with us for a couple of weeks while her home is being rewired. She just flat out doesn’t like me. No one is ever going to be good enough for her Mitch. She likes living in the past wearing dresses, hose, high heels daily and if going out she wears gloves and a hat. She is so stiff I’m afraid a good wind would blow her over. Anyway, I’m determined one way or the other to form a good relationship with her. I’ve been praying about it. So far she hasn’t gotten the message, but I’m not giving up!

What or who means the most to you in your life? What, if anything, would you do to keep him/her/it in your life? 

This is a no brainer. My husband, Mitch, is the most important person in my life. He loves me just like I am. He forgives me constantly and builds me up when I am down. He is my staunch supporter and I hope I am the same for him. I would hope that I treat him in such a manner that he knows he is loved!

What one thing would you like readers to know about you that may not be spelled out in the book in which you inhabit? 

I’m not the hard-hearted person that I might appear to be. Or at least I’m working on it. I don’t like snooty and I don’t want to come across as snooty so I’m working on that. Also, the fact that I was unable to have children has caused me more sadness than anyone will ever know. 

If you could tell your writer (creator) anything about yourself that might turn the direction of the plot, what would it be? 

Please Deborah, don’t make me go through any more learning experiences. However, you could send me and Honey back to the CaribbeanJ

***

A Question for Me:

Ask me any question. I've always wanted to know what a character thinks about writers like myself. I'll answer the question at the end of this interview.

Okay, just for fun. My creator sits around and writes in her pajama’s drinking coffee. This doesn’t seem like a very hard job to me. Anyway, do you ever sit around in your pajama’s writing? Just wondered if Deborah was the only one.

Actually I don't write in my pajamas. I have found that I work harder and better if I get dressed for the day (like a regular job). But all writers are different, so if your creator does well in her pajamas, then perhaps she needs to continue to write in them. Being a writer is a tough job, even though it may seem cushy. Trust me.

***

Thank you so much!  Kathryn, thank you for having me. It’s not very often that we are considered for interviews even though without us there would be no book. And thank you, Deborah, without your creative mind and hard work Honey, Ginger and I would have to be stuck in the same place all the time. We love the adventures you send us on!

Learn more about Skye and her author at: 


Friday, April 15, 2016

FRIDAY FLICKS: The TimeDrifter Series by Lauren Lynch


Get the Book at Amazon!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

HEAVEN 24/7 - Living in the Light

Need a little Heaven in your life?



It's arrived!
April 2016

Monday, April 11, 2016

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Deborah Malone

Tell me about yourself. What got you started in writing?

I love in North Georgia (this my Georgia titles). I have two grown girls Leah and Niki. I live with my husband, Travis, and our dachshund mix, Pepe. 

Now, what got me started writing? This is a good question. I always say I came out of the womb reading! I’ve loved to read since I can remember. I also remember being so happy when it was time to go to our elementary school library. I can still smell the library and associate that smell with books. (It could have been mold or dust, but I loved it!). When I was 45 I went back to college to get my degree (in Human Services) and took a class in creative writing. This class sparked a fire in me for the love of writing. I began to write short stories and poems. I didn’t do anything serious, but in 2001 my boyfriend (now husband) and I went to a historic restaurant. The building was beautiful. I suggested someone should write this for “Georgia Backroads,” magazine. He said “Why don’t you?” So I did. And to my pleasant surprise it was accepted. I’ve been writing for them since then. I started on my first novel in 2002, but life got in the way and it wasn’t published until 2011. Since then I’ve had four more books published with a goal to write one a year. 


How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?


I think/write best in the afternoon. I don’t write every day, but the more often you write the easier it is. You are in the flow and know what your characters are doing. If you wait too long between writing times, then you have to refresh your memory by reading over what you’ve written. You really have to make yourself sit down in that chair and write. It takes a lot of discipline.

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or some other method of getting your words down?

I used to write on the couch with my laptop. Lately I’ve been going into the study so it will be a quiet atmosphere with nothing to distract me. I’ve found this works better for me. I love my laptop!

What's your favorite part about writing? Your least favorite part about writing?

Oh my – I guess my favorite thing about writing is “the end.” Just kidding! The best part for me is to see it coming together. Usually about halfway through everything seems to fall into place and I see where I want the plot to go.  The least favorite part by far is making myself sit down to write. It is so hard to get started on that new book (when you are staring at a blank page and know you have to fill up a book with 50,000 or more words) or begin a new chapter.

How did you come up with your book idea? How long did it take you to write your book?

I’ve always loved mysteries and especially cozy mysteries. So I think I just naturally began writing cozies. My main character in the Trixie Montgomery series is a magazine journalist for a Georgia magazine like me. That’s kind of how I got started. It took several years for my first book because many things were happening in my life and I was still learning. Now I can write on in about six months.

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?

Wow, *I could write a book on this. LOL I love marketing and teach marketing classes at writer conferences. I will sell books where I can. I speak at libraries, conferences, book clubs, women’s conferences and sell my books at art festivals, literary festivals, in gift/book shops, independent books stores, any store that is interested in carrying them. These are just a few marketing areas.

(From Kathryn: I actually wrote a book on marketing! Every year I update it to include the best links and information on marketing for that year)

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out?

Get the Book at Amazon
My latest book came out in November 2015, “Buckhead Dead.” This is my second cozy mystery series. It is the Skye Southerland Cozy Mystery series. All my books have real settings so if you know the area you’d recognize the roads, buildings, restaurants, etc. I’m working on the second book of the series, “Decatur Dead.”

Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it.

I have all kinds of ideas running through my head. I’ve started on a few that I’ve had to put by the wayside for one reason or another. I’d love to write a book on marketing, but there are already a lot of those out there. I’d also like to write a romantic suspense. But, so far they are just ideas.

What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to publish but doesn't believe he/she has enough talent?

I think all writer’s go through this some time or another. Especially before we become published/established. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve become discouraged and said I wasn’t going to ever write again. My husband just laughs when he hears that now. LOL Don’t give up!!! The writer that perseveres is the writer that gets published.

Thank you for having me!

***

Thank you, Deborah!

Learn more about Deborah:

www.deborah-malone.com