My Exclusive Interview with Debut Author – Holly Michael

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Welcome to my interview and Introduction of author Holly Michael to the reading public. I’ve known Holly for over two years now and she holds a special place in my heart. We met on IWW (Internet Writers Workshop) where we critted each others work and offered suggestions on making them better. Despite our polar opposite views of subjects and themes ( her books hail from the good side of the universe, mine from its darkest depths) we both courageously helped each other improve as writers and grow as friends. Holly’s debut novel – Crooked Lines – had a very long birth process but it’s one I’ve been waiting a year to see published. Here’s her Author Bio from Amazon ~~~~~

Crooked Lines (2012 ABNA Quarter-finalist) is Holly Michael’s debut novel. She’s been published in various magazines, newspapers, and in Guideposts books. She and her husband, Bishop Leo Michael, regularly travel from their home in Missouri to India. She has a lovely daughter, Betsy, and two sons. Holly enjoys watching football when her sons are playing–Jake (NFL) and Nick (Rajin’ Cajuns).

She blogs @ http://www.writingstraight.com and http://www.indiascrown.com

Coming Soon: Goodness of America: Ten Years After Tsunami. A sample of America’s goodness when tragedy struck in other parts of the world. Reminiscing on the impact of help on the lives of the orphans, then and now, Holly Michael revisits South India.
I’ll Be Seeing You: (ACFW GENESIS 2014 Semi-finalist) In Wyoming’s Wind River Valley, Charlie Willow faces a future more unsettling than the one he imagined upon realizing he was dead. The plan, written into his will, ought to fix his children, but an angel asks for a little more help.

Devotional: Holly Michael and her son, Jake Byrne, an NFL player with type one diabetes, are writing a devotional contracted with Harvest House Publishers.

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Now, lets get to the interview and, after that, please check out her novel and her personal links. If you don’t know her, friend her. She’s a wonderful person to know.

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Hi Holly! Pull up a chair, relax, and tell us about your first novel and what gave you the idea to write it?

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Hello, John. It’s great to be here. Well, Crooked Lines was inspired by accounts of my husband and his priest friends who came of age in a religious order in India in the mid-1980s. As young seminarians, they went through some amazing experiences—serving in the slums of India, meeting Mother Theresa, rescuing youth out of radical communist situations, encountering lepers, and working in orphanages. Some of their stories were also hilarious and had me ROFL-ing! Like when they organized a Community Day in the religious order, setting up a bar and serving drinks dressed as nuns. The story gets even more scandalous, but you have to read the book to find out more. Of course, I fictionalized the stories (some less than others), but I wanted to give a glimpse of how life was in this time and place in India. Sagai is the main character from India. And knowing that while not all people have the same cultural or similar experiences, we are all people with similar hearts, emotions, and feelings. So, I used a character—Rebecca—from the United States who is dealing guilt and grief over the tragic death of her sister. Rebecca is running from God. Sagai is running to God, yet somehow they come of age and grow into adults traveling along similar pathways, while being united through a mutual mentor, Father Michael.

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What’s the best and worst thing about being a Christian author?

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The best is probably being in close contact with The Almighty Boss while writing and feeling comforted knowing that He loves us and His guiding help is there. The worst: God isn’t very popular in the world today, so while there is a Christian market, there is also a big population of readers who won’t read your stuff. I prefer to cross the lines between the secular market and the Christian market so you’re not just “preaching to the choir,” with the messages in my books.

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Your husband is now an Anglican Bishop. How does he help you during the writing process?

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He’s just an overall helpful, kind, and supportive husband who would do anything for me. He’s read every chapter of Crooked Lines and made sure it accurately reflects the life of a young seminarian, priest, living in a religious order in India. While I’ve visited India, I’ve not lived there during that era and experienced what he has, so there would be no Crooked Lines without him.

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What’s been the toughest thing you’ve faced in dealing with writing and/or publishing a novel?

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Learning all the ropes of publishing and marketing. The writing process is time-consuming, but then you have to write the synopsis, blurb, then consider where you’re going next. Traditionally published or Indie? I tried the traditional route for years after Crooked Lines was an ABNA Quarterfinalist. Got an agent, got some exciting rejection letters from big publishing houses, got close, but never could get a sale. Did rewrites, got a new agent, (this time a Christian agent), then did that round of Christian publishers only to find out that the novel doesn’t really fit into any particular publishing market. Finally got tired of waiting for a publisher and decided to self-publish.

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If given the money to do so, what country/city would you love to visit and spend to your heart’s content…and why?

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I’m really blessed that my husband loves to travel and ends up traveling a lot as a bishop. Those seminary friends of his live all over the world, so we have friends everywhere who invite us to visit. We’ve gone to India (of course), to England, Scotland, and all around the United States. Most of the time the domestic travel is church related, but we still enjoy going places and meeting people. If I could go anywhere, just for fun, I’d love to go back to the Isle of Iona, in Scotland. Such a peaceful, lovely place.

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Unfortunately, there’s an adult entertainer out there using your name. What was your reaction when you first learned this fact?

Well…hmmm….yeah…there’s that. I do share my name with a porn star. But I hold onto hope that maybe a porn addict surfing the web will find Holly Michael, the Christian Author, and turn from their wicked ways.

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Why don’t you tell us about a certain member of the San Diego Chargers you really, really love?

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Well, I have a favorite one who is a real cutie! He’s my son! Jake Byrne #81. He’s also a type one diabetic, so I’m quite proud of how far he’s come. And the cool thing is that we have a nonfiction book contract with a major publisher—a devotional. So, that’s also been fun working on that with him. We don’t have a publication date yet, but should get that soon. We are just finishing it.

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Lastly, what’s in the works for your next release and how far away is it from publication?

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I have another book, I’ll Be Seeing You, Christian Fiction, a family drama about a pastor who’s walking an unholy tightrope over spiritual places, his sister who’s not on good terms with God and confused younger brother. They come home after their father’s car accident and must make difficult choices about their dad’s life. I’m going to Indie publish I’ll Be Seeing You, probably in November. I like to show that Christian Fiction isn’t always about bonnet-wearing Amish. And it’s not at all preachy. There are so many genres in Christian Fiction, and some is really thrilling—good and evil, angels and demons.

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Thank you Holly for a lively and enlightening conversation.

Now, check out her novel, support an Indie author, and get a solid, emotional, and ultimately uplifting book for your collection.

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crooked Lines CROOKED LINES

SYNOPSIS — On the shores of Lake Michigan, Rebecca Meyer seeks escape. Guilt-ridden over her little sister’s death, she sets her heart on India, a symbol of peace.
Across the ocean in South India, Sagai Raj leaves his tranquil hill station home and impoverished family to answer a higher calling. Pushing through diverse cultural and religious milieus, he labors toward his goals, while wrong turns and bad choices block Rebecca from hers.
Traveling similar paths and bridged across oceans through a priest, the two desire peace and their divine destiny. But vows and blind obedience at all costs must be weighed…And buried memories, unearthed.
Crooked Lines, a beautifully crafted debut novel, threads the lives of two determined souls from different continents and cultures. Compelling characters struggle with spirituality through despair and deceptions in search of truth.

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BUY LINK —- http://www.amazon.com/Crooked-Lines-Holly-Michael-ebook/dp/B00LZXDTLS/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1406660844&sr=1-1&keywords=holly+michaels

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MY REVIEW

By J.D.Tucker  Format:Kindle Edition
Holly Michael’s Crooked Lines is a novel that defies a set genre. At it’s soul, it’s a religious drama that’s not preachy. At it’s heart, it’s a romance that doesn’t involve two people on earth, but rather their relationship with God.

The two main characters – Sagai and Rebecca – are from different countries, cultures, and mindsets. Sagai is studying to become a priest in a country where violence and hatred surrounds and discourages his faith in a deity that seems to ignore him when he most needs the help. Rebecca is a confused, abused woman dealing with family issues, an abusive husband, and a lack of faith in God.

The chapters alternate between the two, illustrates their ordeals, celebrates their small victories, until their crooked lines finally meet. In the synopsis it tells how Sagai is running to God and Rebecca is running away from religion. Ms. Michael’s words will occasionally bring tears to your eyes, make you clench your hand in frustration, and ultimately lift your spirit by the time you turn the final page.

This isn’t a cookie-cutter novel. It will test your views on religion, lust, faith, and love. Isn’t that what a book should do? 5-Stars.

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LINKS ~~~~

Blog Tour Stop with The Well House Author – M.S. Matassa

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The Well House is the first novel by Michael S. Matassa, an attorney and Municipal Court Judge in Arvada, Colorado. He discovered the well house in the late summer of 1994, standing by a field of corn on a small farm just south of Brighton Colorado, where it still stands today. Mr. Matassa studied at Regis College in Denver and the University of Colorado School of law. He has also written several short stories, a screenplay and is presently working on a sequel to The Well House and a ghost story called, The Baby Carriage. He writes under the pen name of M. S. Matassa.

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Check out the Synopsis, Book Trailer, Rafflecopter, and Reviews for this fascinating book below.

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book THE WELL HOUSE

SYNOPSIS —  The Well House: A Man’s Incredible Journey To Save His Pregnant Wife From the Ultimate Evil

The dream is back and Ben Carson is terrified. His pregnant wife, Anne, is locked in a coma and Ben is the only person who can save her but he has no idea how to accomplish this. His dreams contain clues but they make no sense. Ben can’t figure what a small white well house and black flying creatures have to do with Anne. Then he meets a mysterious woman named Thelma Grippe. What he learns from Thelma shakes him to the core, but gives him the knowledge to free Anne from the force keeping her in the coma. Once he locates the well house, Ben finds a passage to another dimension, where he searches for Anne. After a long, arduous journey, Ben faces the ultimate evil that holds Anne captive. The Well House is an exciting, unique and thoughtful story of a man’s fight against unbelievable odds to save his wife. Part drama, part fantasy and part parable, The Well House is a multi-layered tale that takes you on an amazing journey, from the mountains above Boulder Colorado to the depths of the dark zone.

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BUY LINK —   http://www.amazon.com/Well-House-M-S-Matassa-ebook/dp/B00IWXQ498/ref=la_B00IVRLO9U_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1406578368&sr=1-1

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BOOK TRAILER — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aq1__Rv6O1

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RAFFLECOPTER — http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/NjMxN2FkOWE2Yzc4MmMzMzM5ZGU3YzlmODgyYjEyOjY=/

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RANDOM REVIEWS

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Intriguing book! April 26, 2014
By Ann Randall   Format:Paperback
The well house is a superbly written book. It covers many areas. Some fantasy, subtle religion, good versus evil, romance and the love of family. I feel this author wrote this book from the heart from a lot of life experiences. If you pay attention to what you are reading and think a little about it you will understand what I am feeling. I love a book that make me feel like I am actually there and I can visualize all of the events and scenery. In any event this is a good read and I highly recommend it.
FIVE STARS
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This book will chill you to the bone!, May 19, 2014
This review is from: The Well House (Kindle Edition)
This is the first book by this author and it is some ride into fantasy! It definitely deals with good and evil in a way that will chill you to the bone! I finished this in one day-not even my cat Baby could get me to put it down and believe me she tried!
This book is definitely the stuff nightmares are made of. 5 STARS from me with the hopes I never find the Well House! I am looking forward to his next book–a ghost story.
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LINKS ~~~~~

A Conversation with Autistic Author – Jonathan Mitchell

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I’ve known Jonathan for over two years now after first meeting him the the Internet Writers Workshop. Along the way, I’ve learned so many things about autism and the great divide between the doctors and scientists who want to control and possibly eliminate the condition in future generations. Jonathan has written a very good novel that outshines more than a few authors without his assorted dilemmas. I encourage everyone who has an autistic friend or relative to join his blog, like him on Facebook, and buy his book – The Mu Rhythm Bluff.

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Now, on with the interview~~~~

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Hi Jonathan. Thanks for dropping by. Have a seat and get ready for my first question. You’re an autistic man who’s written a novel about a poker-playing autistic man given a new lease on life with an experimental procedure. How close does your main protagonist, Drake Dumas resemble you?

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Thanks for interviewing me, John. As far as Drake Dumas goes, he’s quite a bit like me. Except I’ve always attempted to control my gambling and I’ve never gambled money I couldn’t afford to lose. I went to one GA meeting to check it out, but not as a regular attendee.

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I know you’re a big movie fan. What’s the last three movies you’ve seen that you would recommend to a friend or acquaintance?

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Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was a good one I just saw. A Clockwork Orange and The French Connection were very good, but those were from my younger days.

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You’re a huge proponent of the anti-neurodiversity opinion toward Autism. Can you tell us why you believe this way over the many physicians and psychologists who endorse it?

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I believe autism is a brain disease that is in need of a cure for people, and their parents who want it. It’s not an alternative way of brain wiring. Most members of the neurodiversity movement have autism that’s very mild and I don’t think they understand the problems that most people on the lower end of the spectrum face.

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Do you prefer gambling in a real live casino, or an online one?

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I like live action and being able to interact in person with the other players. Besides, since I wrote “The Mu Rhythm Bluff” the federal government has enacted legislation, outlawing online poker. I think there was something where the states could legalize it, like in Nevada and Delaware and maybe one other state, but it is now illegal in California and most other parts of the U.S., but the online poker sites still operate in other countries. There is a push to re-legalize it, and I suspect sometime in the next few years online poker will be legal again.

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Can you tell my audience the two biggest misconceptions when it comes to autistic people?

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That we have all these gifts and superior abilities that compensate for the handicaps. Another one is that most of us are unemotional and have no sense of humor. I pride myself on my sense of humor and I think I’ve attempted to show it in “The Mu Rhythm Bluff” or did the best I could.

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You’ve lived in California, mostly in L.A., all your life. If you could move to any location on earth, where would it be?

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Wherever there’s a 10:1 ratio of females to males who like my type of guy.

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Besides you, I’ve known several autistic people over my lifetime. Are there different groupings and what percentage could be called functioning members of society?

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Yes, many different groups and probably 40% are able to interact successfully with friends or co-workers. You might not have heard the cliché “If you’ve met one autistic you’ve met one autistic”, but it seems to ring true from my experience.

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Can you describe yourself in three separate one word answers?

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Kind, Humorous, and Creative.

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Thanks for dropping by, Jonathan. 

Now, go ahead and check out his debut novel and be sure to follow his blog. His posts are quite interesting.

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mu ryhthm THE MU-RHYTHM BLUFF

SYNOPSIS — Some people are lucky at cards. Others are lucky at love. Drake Dumas is autistic and neither. He’s a 49-year-old virgin who loves to play poker and usually loses. He finds out about an experiment involving brain wave training and a revolutionary technique called Transcranial magnetic stimulation in order to help mitigate his autism. Though it does not seem to help his autism, right after the treatment he finds himself a genius at poker, consistently winning and able to read other players due to charged up “mirror neurons”, brain cells that intuit the actions and intentions of others, found to be deficient in autistic people. His luck also changes with women. However, whenever he seems to connect sexually with a woman, he loses his poker abilities. There does seem some truth in the old saying lucky at cards, unlucky at love for Drake. However, can having good poker skills entail danger for Drake. He encounters a beguiling journalist, interested in his talents, but can her knowledge and interest in Drake be threatening?

Drake must find a way to keep his poker abilities intact. He faces all of these challenges. In the process he will learn something about his autism, his attitudes toward it and love.

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BUY LINK —  http://www.amazon.com/Mu-Rhythm-Bluff-Jonathan-Mitchell-ebook/dp/B00BQN84GM/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1406323062&sr=1-1&keywords=mu-rhythm+bluff

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My Review ~~~

Texas Hold ‘Em – Autistic Style This review is from: The Mu Rhythm Bluff (Kindle Edition)

I was given an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Drake Dumas is a functioning autistic man with two dreams in his life – to have sex and to win the World Series of Poker. Like his love life, Drake failed at poker until he finds a scientist who manages to reshape his mu rhythms in a way that makes him excel at poker. The reader follows Drake through the high and lows of his life as a professional and a lover, good and bad. After his success catches the curiosity of a seedy gangster, Drake finds himself in circumstances that force him to rethink his non-violent tendencies in order to stay alive.

On a personal note, the author of the novel is similar to Drake Dumas. Mr. Mitchell is a highly functioning autistic who has shaped a novel that has its faults, but is still better than many books being self-published by mentally unchallenged individuals. Saying that, this is a novel that will hold your interest, is cohesive, and takes you into the life of an autistic man with his prose and characters. Four Stars.

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LINKS ~~~~~~

 

 

An Authors Best Friend – Reviewer Tracy Graczykowski

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Tracy is one half of the Facebook team – TNT Reviews. They do reviews, author spotlights, and other neat things for writers. If you’re looking for some help in those departments,  look ’em up.

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Now, let’s get to Tracy’s Interview~~~~~

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Hi Tracy. Have a seat, relax and tell us about your review business. What you do for the authors who look you up?

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We love to review all genres. I see so many blogs out there that focus on romance of all kinds, so I’m really trying to include all genres on our blog. It’s not always easy to do. I love to get the word out and talk about the wonderful books available and to help new authors get some exposure. I also love to ask our followers for their opinions on books I’ve heard about and what they’re currently reading. We were doing a ton of tours and cover reveals and are starting to go back to the basics of reviewing and spotlighting authors. I think a lot of blogs have started posting constantly throughout the day about different books. I’m trying to focus on no more than 2 books/authors a day. It’s also hard to take on more than 2 a day because I do work full-time outside the house.

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What was the last book you read for pleasure, instead of knowing you’d be writing a review on it afterward?

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Viper Moon by Lee Roland. I’d heard about it on Facebook and got it from the library. Had to read it before its due date.

Not counting library books, Destroyed by Onyx (A Dance with Destiny) (Volume 4) by Jennifer Ensley. I actually read it for a second time to get some names for a review I had to write, but it’s a series that I love and would read without reviewing.

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What’s the lowest star value you’ve given to an anonymous book (published or not) and why?

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The lowest rating I’ve given a book is 2-stars. Usually I only give a low rating if I don’t like the writing style or if it’s hard for me to follow the story. I’ve only had one or two books that I had to put down and never finished due to the writing style.

Our policy: We don’t post reviews below a 3 Bomb on our website.  If we read anything that we are unable to give a 3 Bomb or higher, we discuss it with the author in private. We will still post those reviews on Goodreads, Amazon, B&N, etc.

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You would rather —- attend a book signing / interview your favorite author on a local TV show / or get a day of beauty at a massage spa and forget about your troubles for a few hours?

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Definitely the day of beauty. I’d love to escape for a little bit.

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Have you ever thought about writing a novel yourself and, if so, what’s stopping you?

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I have thought about writing. The only thing holding me back is that I’ve read so many books that I have no original ideas. I’d probably end up writing something and find out it’s from a book I’ve already read. Okay, I know I’d end up writing something that’s already been written.

Describe yourself in three separate words?

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Smart, Bitchy, Reader.

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In your opinion, the hardest thing about being a book reviewer is_____?

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Finding something original to say about a book. I’ve found that lately all the books tend to be the same. Especially in the romance genre. Boy meets girl. Boy denies feelings for girl and sleeps around (that’s one thing I really hate). Boy finally gives in to feelings and they live happily ever after. I always say I’d love to read a book where the “man whore” changes his ways after finding his soul mate but not before giving her something (You know. They can’t all be STD free.)

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Your married name is Graczykowski. When you first met your husband and found out that was his last name, what was your reaction?

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We met in high school originally. I didn’t really think anything about it. When we first actually started dating, hmm, I still don’t think I really thought too much about it other than learning how to spell it. I went from a 4 letter last name to 12 letters.

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Thanks for your time, Tracy. She’s the only person who’s reviewed all of my novels and I’m proud to say they’ve all been five star reviews. Be sure to check out the links below and click on over to TNT Reviews – an author’s best friend.

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LINKS~~~~~~

http://tntreviews.weebly.com/

https://www.facebook.com/tntreviews1

https://twitter.com/TnTReviews1

http://www.pinterest.com/tracyg0207/tnt-reviews/

https://plus.google.com/106047892506596828543/

https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/27025470-tnt-reviews

 

Blog Takeover by Brandon Lee Godbee

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Brandon is the writer of Angel Omega: Imprisonment. He’s currently in a Blog Tour sponsored by Ashley’s Addictive Promotions and is definitely an Up-N-Coming Author. Here’s his Bio ~~~~

Brandon Godbee resides in Houston, Texas with his family. After graduating from high school, Brandon’s creative spirit and love of singing drove him to major in music. Angel Omega: Imprisonment is Brandon’s first work in writing and he is currently working on Angel Omega: Shattered Soul the next installment in the series.

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angel omega ANGEL OMEGA: IMPRISONMENT

SYNOPSIS — After struggling for several long months, Jason and Sarah Wyatt are expecting a healthy baby boy. How could they have known that the young child growing in Sarah’s womb is the banished soul of the youngest archangel of heaven? His crime is so unspeakable that it seems unreal. The archangel Gabriel has sworn to watch over him, for he alone knows the truth about why the archangel Omega would defy his eldest brother, Michael, and bring the Antichrist before God. Could one act of kindness save the darkest of souls?

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BUY LINK —- http://www.amazon.com/Angel-Omega-Imprisonment-Brandon-Godbee-ebook/dp/B00D99MEG2/ref=la_B00J6ZM3R8_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405627512&sr=1-1

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REVIEWS —–

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Platypire Review  5 -STARS March 19, 2014 By J. Hooligan

Format:Kindle Edition — I was given this book in exchange for an honest review by the author.

I would like to start out by saying this isn’t your typical “good versus evil” story. There is not black and white here, it is all sorts of gray – and I loved that. It made the characters more real and easier to relate.

Brandon’s writing style is not typical of what is commonly seen, and so it was a little odd trying to get into the book. Not because it was bad, or hard to read, it was just different and I needed to get used to it before I could really enjoy it.

There was one point where I kinda forgot to sleep and my husband woke up and had to steal my kindle, so I couldn’t finish it that night. It was horrible! How could he let me go to bed not knowing what happened next?!

There are parts of the book that could do with some tweaks in editing. It wasn’t anything that pulled me out of reading, but there were a few occasions where I noticed things were a little awkward.

All and all, I know Angel Omega will be a story that sticks with me. It was original, which is something I highly value. I cannot wait for the next book, and he needs go hurry up and finish it.

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An amazing, vivid, complex story December 19, 2013

Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Wow. Where to start with this book?? I was asked to read this book in exchange for an honest review. The story in this book is pretty complicated. It is easy to get lost and overwhelmed by the characters and how much is going on. However, it isn’t a book that you feel like you can’t finish because it’s so complex. It makes you want to read more. You can’t help but be drawn in by the characters and the situations that arise. The Angels are so awesome in this book and I love all of the history and intertwining that Brandon does with them. I think my favorite angel is Gabriel. He is the older brother you want that takes care of you and mentors you. Or the doting uncle that you can talk to about any subject.

I feel sorry for Damien as he is a misunderstood creature. His father, Lucifer, hates him because he has a soul. How is that Damien’s fault? But, he doesn’t care. He beats him anyway. But Gabriel wants to bring Damien home to heaven where he belongs. The other angels aren’t so sure if he belongs there. Or if Lucifer is just using him to get into heaven so he can take over. Omega becomes friends with Damien but Michael banished Omega into a human child to live as a mortal.

Like I said, this story is complex. There are epic battles, love stories, tragedy, triumph and a very large cliffhanger. If you don’t like vivid imagery, relatable characters, stories about angels/demons/God/heaven/hell, then DO NOT get this book. I have not read the bible. I do not know many stories about heaven and hell, but I love Brandon’s version of both. I can not wait to get the next installment. And I am looking forward to it’s complexity because I for one enjoyed it in this book.

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An Interview with Rising Star – Author Nat Russo

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I’ve known Nat for as long as I’ve been Twittering (Tweeting…whatever) and he’s quite an interesting character. As well as doling out great tips on Twitter, we share of the same interests in music and movies. I regret not getting around to read his first book, but it is in my rapidly dwindling TBR file.  Here’s his author bio from Amazon ~~~~~~

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Nat Russo was born in New York, raised in Arizona, and has lived just about everywhere in-between. He’s gone from pizza maker, to radio DJ, to Catholic seminarian (in a Benedictine monastery, of all places), to police officer, to software engineer. His career has taken him from central Texas to central Germany, where he worked as a defense contractor for Northrop Grumman. He’s spent most of his adult life developing software, playing video games, running a Cub Scout den, gaining/losing/gaining/losing weight, and listening to every kind of music under the sun.

Along the way he managed to earn a degree in Philosophy and a black belt in Tang Soo Do.

He currently makes his home in central Texas with his wife, teenage son, and mischievous beagle.

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Read on to learn more about this fascinating man and, from what I’ve read, an outstanding author.

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Hello, Nat. Take a seat in the Rokoko armchair and tell us about your current book and the approach you’ve taken to marketing it?

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My latest book, Necromancer Awakening, launched on April 8th of this year. I played around with direct marketing/advertising for some time and found it actually harmed sales more than helped. Since then, I’ve gone back to my roots, so to speak. I believe that writers should be content providers first and foremost. Instead of directly marketing my book, I market my content (blog articles) by sharing links on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. Once people become engaged with my content, they often take the next step of seeking out my fiction, which they can find easily from my blog.

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I’ve noticed you do quite a bit to support your fellow authors. Do you have one (or two) that would be called your dream street team of sorts?

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I do. I’ve been very fortunate to meet some wonderful writers on Twitter, many of whom are bestselling authors in their own right. I’m currently doing some cross-promotional work with Nicholas Rossis, author of the #1 bestselling epic fantasy series “Pearseus”. I think this works for us because we’re each fans of each other’s work. It’s so much easier to support and promote a writer you believe in.

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Tell us what genre you’re published in and which one would never be an option for you to write in?

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I’m a speculative fiction author at heart, and right now I’m published under Fantasy (primarily “Dark Fantasy” and “Metaphysical & Visionary Fantasy” on the Amazon lists). My writing tends to be a commentary on various social realities and problems, and I’ve found speculative fiction to be a wonderful vehicle to address these issues. I doubt I’d ever write erotica. In fact, I tend to avoid explicitly sexual situations in my books, because those elements are rarely of any importance to the stories I write.

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Have you ever drastically changed a novel from it’s original outline or direction (if you’re a pantster) and what happened to cause it?

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I have. The original draft of Necromancer Awakening included a prologue that set the stage for the events to come. As brilliant (I thought) as the prologue was, it completely weakened the story. In subsequent revisions I killed the prologue, combined several characters into one, and also rewrote an entire plot line from a completely different character’s perspective. I must have completely rewritten chapter 1 three or more times before settling on the version that I published. The interesting thing is that each of those changes was the result of beta-reader feedback. I simply couldn’t see the problems myself until they were pointed out to me.

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Do you have a favorite charity and why is it important to you?

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I currently support the Beagle Freedom Project (http://www.beaglefreedomproject.org/). Many people are unaware of how much testing is done on dogs to perfect chemical formulas in products we use every day. People are even less aware of what percentage of those dogs are Beagles. Beagles are known to be very non-aggressive and trusting, and so they rarely put up a struggle for the testers. The Beagle Freedom Project uses its resources to make laboratories offer the dogs up for adoption when their testing is complete. Typically, these dogs are killed when the laboratory is finished with them, because the companies involved don’t want to go to the expense of finding homes for them. Beagle Freedom Projects steps in, takes the dogs, and goes through the process of finding homes for them.

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Mr. Russo, you were a DJ in a past life. Not reincarnation, just several years ago. 🙂 What 5 songs would be on your ultimate play-list?

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This one’s tricky. There aren’t enough spaces for all of the awesome Genesis tunes in my collection.

  1. Firth of Fifth – Genesis

  2. Supper’s Ready – Genesis

  3. Cinema Show – Genesis

  4. Burning Rope – Genesis

  5. Spirit of Radio – Rush

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Do you have a fellow author who’s been like a mentor to you and, if so, tell us about them?

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I speak a lot about Raymond E. Feist, a Fantasy author whose work I started reading when I was 12 years old. We became online friends back in the mid-‘90s, and he’s always very quick to answer any questions that I have. But I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Joan Reginaldo. My writing has improved dramatically over the last two years since we started working together. She started out as one of my beta readers for Necromancer Awakening, but it didn’t take long at all for her to become my mentor, editor, and friend. I owe her a huge debt of gratitude for taking the time to coach me over the last couple of years.

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If you wrote a book about your life, what would the genre be and would it be in the first person?

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My life has been a cross between Forrest Gump and a spaghetti western. I’ve never worked on a shrimp boat, but my career has definitely thrown me in with the good, the bad, and the ugly.

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Thanks for the wonderful interview, Nat.  Let’s take a look at his first book – Necromancer Awakening.

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necromancer NECROMANCER AWAKENING

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SYNOPSIS — “Knowledge in the absence of wisdom is a dangerous thing.”

Texas archaeology student Nicolas Murray has an ironic fear of the dead. A latent power connecting him to an ancient order of Necromancers floods his mind with impossible images of battle among hive-mind predators and philosopher fishmen. When a funeral service leaves him shaken and questioning his sanity, the insidious power strands him in a land where the sky kills and earthquakes level cities. A land where the undead serve the living, and Necromancers summon warriors from ancient graves to fight in a war that spans life and afterlife.

If Nicolas masters the Three Laws of Necromancy, he can use them to get home. But as he learns to raise and purify the dead—a process that makes him relive entire lifetimes in the span of a moment—the very power that could bring him home may also prevent his return. For the supreme religious leader, the Archmage Kagan, has outlawed Necromancy, and its practitioners risk torture and execution.

As warring nations hunt Necromancers to extinction, countless dead in limbo await a purification that may never come.

Nicolas’ power could be his way home…

Or it could save a world that wants him dead.

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BUY LINK — http://www.amazon.com/Necromancer-Awakening-Book-Mukhtaar-Chronicles-ebook/dp/B00JLVOU0U/ref=la_B00JLWXXEI_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405541172&sr=1-1

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RANDOM REVIEW

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I liked it, chances are you will too April 9, 2014

By Nathan   Format:Paperback
If you like character driven fantasy, this book is for you. From the first chapter, I immediately felt a connection to Nicholas, the main character, and felt like I was with him throughout his journey into this strange, new land. Nat Russo has a vivid imagination, and his scenes come alive in this story. At times it felt like I was watching a movie, although something tells me any movie based on this book would have to have a pretty big budget! I also enjoyed the humorous dialog, which managed to keep the story lighthearted, especially for a fantasy novel who’s entire premise centers around the art of necromancy. I was almost disappointed when I finished it, because I felt like we only got a small glimpse into this world that he’s created.
Do yourself a favor and pick up a copy – I highly recommend this book!
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LINKS~~~~~
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An Interview with Childrens Author – Kim Page

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kim page

Today’s interview is with Kim Page of the Page Puppies Series. I’ve known Kim for over a year and she’s a wonderful woman, writer, and friend. Her two books, both aimed at pre-school and the younger YA market, are fancifully written and include a plethora of colorful pictures inside them.  Here’s her short but sweet biography~~~

Kimmy Page was born and raised in Maine. Now living in Florida with her wonderful husband and four beautiful fur babies, she loves to recite funny stories about the many antics and adventures of her family. She is proud of her family and enjoys spending time with them and doing everything in her power to make sure they are happy and healthy.

Okay, let’s go to the interview, shall we?

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HI Kim! Thanks for coming by today. First, why don’t you tell us how the Page Puppy Series started and what gave you the impetus to start writing children’s books?

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Hey, John what a surprise this was!! I’m beyond honored that you want to interview me and the puppies were delighted when I told them that you were interviewing us! Well, I started writing almost by accident. While chatting on the phone with an author friend of mine she was talking about her children (of the 2 legged persuasion) I thought I would be funny and started telling stories about my children (of the 4 legged persuasion). She suddenly said ‘Wait, you told me you didn’t have children. Are you talking about your dogs? Between giggles, I confirmed her suspicions. She told me I should write a book about my dogs. After thinking about it for a while, and talking to a couple of my other author friends who agreed that I should, they talked me right into it. Thanks to their inspiration, here we are six months later. Two books out and two to go!

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You do quite a lot to help your favorite authors on Facebook. Besides me, name three you’d like to see become more popular than they already are?

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That’s easy…Barbie Shannon, and not just because she is a wonderful person and a very good friend. But because she’s an extraordinarily talented writer and deserves to be recognized in children’s and adult genres!

Cindy J. Smith would be my second choice. Before I read her poetry I have to admit that I wasn’t what you’d call a fan of poetry. She has opened my eyes to the feelings and emotions that poems can bring to the surface. She is wonderfully talented and doesn’t realize just how extraordinary she truly is!

OK, its not fair you took yourself out of the equation, knowing how I’m a huge fan of your work and you too deserve huge kudos. That being said I could put several here but I’m going to say I’m a Ditter Kellen fan. She is extremely talented writer and I love her books.

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Thanks for your comments about me, Kim. I really appreciate them. Now, back to the interview. Which one of your dogs will be featured next and how have the other two – Prissy and Yogi – taken to their celebrity status?

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Maxwell (Max) Page is next. He is a Yorkshire Silky Terrier and so very sweet. Everyone will fall in love with him…just like we have.

As far as the other two and their celebrity status…they haven’t noticed any difference really. I’ve tried to keep them from the lime light because the last thing Prissy’s ego needs is the Paparazzi chasing us down or camping out on our front lawn!!! Hahaha.

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Do you think authors of children’s books get no respect by more serious ones, and if so, why?

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Actually I haven’t experienced that myself. The response I’ve gotten from ‘adult’ book writers has been wonderful and very supportive. Even from those I don’t know personally.

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You would rather —- have a book signing / have an interview on a local TV show / get a day of beauty at a massage spa and forget about your troubles for a few hours?

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Hahaha… Well, it embarrasses me to have attention drawn to myself in that way, although I’ve been known to be the comedian in a group setting with friends. That being said who wouldn’t want to be pampered for a day with a massage and such….Aaaahhh, sounds great to me.

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Have you ever read a book that drew you out of your comfort zone and, if so why?

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I have actually, to the point that I couldn’t finish because I kept crying and the more I read the more I literally felt pain in my heart so half way through the second of a three book series I stopped. A bio…the author telling of his horrific childhood filled with physical, sexual and mental abuse at the hands of the people who are supposed to love him unconditionally and protect him from harm.

I grew up with very loving and protective family which is why I have such a strong reaction to the abuse of any kind.

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You’ve moved from Maine to Florida. What was the biggest cultural difference between the two?

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Besides the difference in weather? I guess I miss the visual of all four seasons. I absolutely do not miss the extreme cold and snow! I have to laugh when the southerners pick on me about my Maine accent with their distinct southern drawl to which half the time I find myself saying, “Excuse me?” Hahaha.

When I first moved here I had a few people ask me if northerners were as rude as their reputation, I laughed, having no idea we had that reputation!! Where did that come from? (Editor’s note — It’s been ingrained in us since the Civil War days. )

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That’s it for the conversation. If you have small – tween children, or you’re a dog lover, you’ll have no excuses in adding Kim’s two books to your collection.

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yogi Yogi  Page Puppies Book 1

SYNOPSIS — Yogi is adopted into the Page family and immediately becomes a treasured member. He takes you on a journey through his life full of laughter, love and promise.

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BUY LINK — http://www.amazon.com/Yogi-Page-Puppies-Book-1-ebook/dp/B00HYEUUXM/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405363111&sr=1-1

(Also available in Paperback)

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MY REVIEW ON AMAZON

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A Sweet Book for Children and Pet Lovers May 18, 2014

By J.D.Tucker  Format:Kindle Edition
A Review of Yogi (The Page Puppies) by Kimmy Harris.

This is a heart-warming book for kids fourteen and under, or any dog lover out there. It deals with two dogs who have grown up with each other until one passes away. To cheer up the depressed survivor, the family adopts Yogi. Then the book switches back and forth from funny anecdotes from the family concerning the two dogs and gives the reader a POV from Yogi’s point of view. There are also cute pictures scattered throughout the book. It’s fun to read and teaches a lesson about shelter dogs. I give it Five Woofs.

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PrissyPrissy Page Puppies Bk 2
SYNOPSIS —  Prissy is confused and hurt by her families sudden decision that she be placed in a new home. It didn’t take long for Prissy to find out that her new family was just what she needed. Her Momma and Daddy never calls her ugly, only tells her she is the Princess. Prissy could learn to live with that. Prissy shows love and teaches acceptance…with a huge dose of humor for fun.
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RANDOM REVIEW
beautiful story told from Prissy the dog’s perspective April 30, 2014

By Cynthia J. Smith  Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Another enchanting tale of a puppy who finds her forever home! Kimmy seems to have channeled the thoughts of this little girl right into her pen! Great read for young ones! Love how Prissy fits right in to her “Princess” shoes! Sorry about Oscar’s passing and Momma’s illness. Yogi, Prissy and Max are very lucky to have such a loving home! Can’t wait for Max’s story!
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LINKS ~~~~~
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E-mail address: kimmy903@yahoo.com

Twitter: Kimberl60605613

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kim.h.page?fref=ts

 

My Interview With the Multi-Talented Christoph Fischer

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I’ve known Christoph for almost a year now but haven’t interacted with him as much as I should have. We met when he gave my novel Divisive a 5-Star rating. I’ve found him to be a personable man with a seemingly inexhaustible amount of energy to not only write, but also read and review enough books to be in the upper echelons of Amazon Reviewers. If you haven’t made his acquaintance, please do. He’s very active on Twitter, ASMSG, and Facebook.  Here’s his Amazon Bio ~~~~

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Christoph Fischer was born in Germany as the son of a Sudeten-German father and a Bavarian mother.  Not a full local in the eyes and ears of his peers he developed an ambiguous sense of belonging and home in Bavaria. He moved to Hamburg in pursuit of his studies and to lead a life of literary indulgence. After a few years he moved on to the UK where he now lives in a small hamlet, not far from Bath. He and his partner have three Labradoodles to complete their family.

Christoph has worked for the British Film Institute, in Libraries, Museums and for an airline. His first novel, ‘The Luck of The Weissensteiners’ was published in November 2012; ‘Sebastian’ in May 2013 and The Black Eagle Inn in October 2013. ‘Time to Let Go’ is his most recent novel. Mr Fischer also had several other novels which are in the later stages of editing and finalization.

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Now that you know a smidgen about the man, let’s get to the interview~~~

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Hello, Christoph. Pull up a chair, get comfy, and tell us about your current book. Does it differ much from your previous novels?

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Hi, John. Thank you very much for the invite.
‘Time To Let Go’ is my first contemporary novel and it deals with the issue of Alzheimer’s disease. Whereas before I used to write historical fiction about WW1 and WW2 with an ensemble cast, this is a close-up look at only a few characters. This book is more personal and focuses on emotions instead of pure facts.

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I’ve noticed you do quite a bit to support your fellow authors, especially on Twitter. How long was Twitter out before you embraced it, and what’s the most frustrating aspect of it to you?

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I understand that Twitter was set up in 2006, I didn’t join until 2013 and even then only very reluctantly. I was encouraged by other authors to keep going. In July 2013 I broke the 2000 barrier of followers and from then onwards it took off. I can link my activity on Twitter directly to my sales, so it is a necessary evil. Personally, I find it almost too fast as a medium for information. I wish I had more time to look through the many posts on there, I feel I am missing too much.

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While stalking you on Facebook to gather some ammunition for questions, I discovered we have something in common. We both love the 1980 musical Xanadu. What’s two more of your favorite musicals and which one would you take to a deserted island to watch over and over again?

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‘Chess’ and ‘Chicago’ and since only one is available on DVD, I will take Chicago with me. Evita is my runner up.

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Your first book to gain some attention was The Luck of the Weissensteiners. Give us a little knowledge about the book and how emotional was it for you to write it?

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‘The Luck of the Weissensteiners’ tells the story of a Jewish family in Slovakia between 1933 and 1946. Slovakia has an interesting history since it became independent because of its alliance with Hitler. Yet, they tried to deal with the Jews differently. They were not run-of-the-mill collaborators just as the Weissensteiners in my book are not typical Jews.
My family has roots in Slovakia and the original reason for all the research I did for the book was to find out more about my own family background. At times it was emotional because I wrote the characters as if they were my family, although their real story was quite different to that of the creations in the novel.

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Do you have a favorite charity and why is it important to you?

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I like the Red Cross because it seems to go into any area of conflict and does important humanitarian work. People on all sides of the fences deserve help and the Red Cross seems to be delivering that work.
Also, as a passionate dog owner, I do support a No-Kill-Animal Shelter in California. http://www.santapaulaarc.org/

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How would your significant other describe you in three words?

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Kind, sensitive, annoying.

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You have several adorable pictures of possibly spoiled-rotten pooches on your Facebook page. 🙂 Tell us about them?

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I have three labradoodles. The blond one, Molly, is ten years old and is excitable, wild and somehow more my partner’s dog than mine. Greta, the dark brown shaggy one, is gentle, grumpy and definitely my dog. Wilma is four and really only cares about chasing tennis balls.

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If you wrote a book about yourself in a thinly-disguised novel, what would the genre be and would it be in the first person?

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I hope it would be a melodramatic travel guide Sci-Fi comedy in the tradition of Monty Python, Woody Allen and the Coen Brothers. Definitely in the first person, something like ‘The long sufferings of woodland hermit Berthold on Beetle Juice.’

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Thank you for an enjoyable interview, Christoph. I hope my followers will check out your three historical-Fiction novels and your current release ‘Time To Let Go’ as soon as they’ve finished reading this. I’m halfway through ‘The Luck of the Weissensteiners’ and I’m loving it.

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Luck 1

THE LUCK OF THE WEISSENSTEINERS

BOOK 1 OF THE THREE NATIONS TRILOGY

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SYNOPSIS — In the sleepy town of Bratislava in 1933 a romantic girl falls for a bookseller from Berlin. Greta Weissensteiner, daughter of a Jewish weaver, slowly settles into life with the Winkelmeier clan. The political climate and slow disintegration of the multi-cultural society in Czechoslovakia becomes more complex and affects relations between the couple and their families.
The story follows their lot through the war with its torment, destruction and its unpredictability – and the equally hard times after.

From the moment that Greta Weissensteiner enters the bookstore where Wilhelm Winkelmeier works, and entrances him with her good looks and serious ways, I was hooked. But this is no ordinary romance; in tact it is not a romance at all, but a powerful, often sad, Holocaust story. What makes The Luck of the Weissensteiners so extraordinary is the chance Christoph Fischer gives his readers to consider the many different people who were never in concentration camps, never in the military, yet who nonetheless had their own indelible Holocaust experiences. Set in the fascinating area of Bratislava, this is a wide-ranging, historically accurate exploration of the connections between social location, personal integrity and, as the title says, luck. I cared about every one of this novel’s characters and continued to think about them long after I’d finished reading.

— Andrea Steiner, University of California Santa Cruz

The Luck of the Weissensteiners is an epic saga set in wartime Eastern Europe. It follows the lives of two families – one Jewish, one Catholic – and their entwined survival amidst the backdrop of the second world war; first the fascist then the communist invasion and occupation of Slovakia, and the horror of the consequences of war. The reader is transported to a world of deception, fear, distrust and betrayal, alongside enduring love and family drama. Weissensteiners is a magnificent tale of human survival.

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BUY LINK — http://www.amazon.com/Luck-Weissensteiners-Three-Nations-Trilogy-ebook/dp/B00AFQC4QC/ref=la_B00CLO9VMQ_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405104603&sr=1-1

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TRAILER — http://studio.stupeflix.com/v/OtmyZh4Dmc/

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RANDOM REVIEW

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FIVE-STARS A moving and passionate story!, June 20, 2014

This book was a masterpiece. There are so many reasons to why I say that, I don’t even know where to begin. But I’ll try! The amount of research that the author must have done to paint such a vivid picture of Eastern Europe in the 1930s-40s is mind boggling. To make the telling of historical events so interesting that it doesn’t bore you, is remarkable. The characters come alive in the pages, with each one evoking a different response at different points of the book. From young love to despair, from jealousy to acceptance and understanding, it’s a roller coaster ride of emotions. Hate them, love them, but they become a part of you.
Stories of the Holocaust always evoke strong emotions in me, and The Luck of the Weissensteiners did something that few books do. It moved me to tears. Christoph Fischer brings out the tragedy that was, something that can never be wiped away, through the eyes and emotions of his characters and it overwhelms you. Thank you for a wonderful experience! It is a moving and passionate story!
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SEBASTIAN    BOOK 2 OF THE THREE NATIONS TRILOGY
sebastian 2
SYNOPSIS — Sebastian is the story of a young man who, due to an unfortunate accident, has his leg amputated shortly before World War I. When his father is drafted to the war it falls to him to run the family grocery store in Vienna, to grow into his responsibilities, bear loss and uncertainty, and hopefully find love.

Sebastian Schreiber, his extended family, their friends and the store employees experience the ‘golden days’ of pre-war Vienna, the time of war and the end of the Monarchy, while trying to make a living and to preserve what they hold dear.

Fischer brilliantly describes life in Vienna during the war years; how it affected the people in an otherwise safe and prosperous location, the beginning of the end for the monarchic system , the arrival of modern thoughts and trends, the Viennese class system and the end of an era.

As in the first book of the trilogy, “The Luck of The Weissensteiners” we are confronted again with themes of identity, nationality and borders. The step back in time from Book 1 and the change of location from Slovakia to Austria enables the reader to see the parallels and the differences deliberately out of sequential order, so as not to see one as the consequence of the other, but to experience them as the reality it must have felt like for people at the time.

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TRAILER —

http://studio.stupeflix.com/v/95jvSpHf5a/

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RANDOM REVIEW

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FIVE STARS  Superb historical fiction! August 21, 2013

By B. L. Rocque  Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The first sentence of SEBASTIAN stirred my curiosity, and like Alice, I found myself in another time and place. Transported to a hospital room in pre-WWI Vienna, I felt the gravity of the situation. Was this doctor really going to amputate part of Sebastian’s leg? Carried along from page to page, I worried alongside his mother, Vera, and wondered why his father, Franz, was not there.

As the novel unfolds and expands, we experience everyday life in this era. Vienna, in the years just before the Great War, was in a sort of golden age bubble — a bubble that was about to burst. The trajectory of Sebastian’s life will change, as will the lives of the other characters we meet, all tied in one way or another to the family’s grocery store, a gathering place of many ethnicities.

The author, Christophe Fischer, is a very talented writer. His first book, THE LUCK OF THE WEISSENSTEINERS, was a fabulous read, too. I think the writing in SEBASTIAN is even more graceful and the history so smoothly integrated. Oh, how deftly the author laces the metaphorical shoe that Sebastian will no longer wear. Everyone is missing a shoe of one kind or another. Sebastian’s journey is everyone’s journey.

Who will love this novel? Anyone who values good storytelling, a well researched setting, and a cast of fascinating characters — each with their own challenges. The novel holds our attention, so rapt we are in how people adapt, well or not, to changing landscapes in their lives, their decisions often based on their perceptions, accurate or not. SEBASTIAN is superb historical fiction. Highly recommended.

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3 THE BLACK EAGLE INN
BOOK 3 OF THE THREE NATIONS TRILOGY
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SYNOPSIS —

How does a Nation recover from its collective shame, how does it rebuild itself into a modern state and deal with its horrendous past and the difficult path ahead? Restructuring of the political landscape & the influence of religion are strong themes in this historical family saga & post war drama set in Germany 1940 – 1976.

The Black Eagle Inn is an old established restaurant and part of a family farm business in the sleepy Bavarian countryside outside of Heimkirchen. Childless Anna Stockmann has fought hard to make it her own and keep it running through WWII. The family is divided by rivalry between family members since her own youth but at the heart of this story one of Anna’s nephews, Markus, owns her heart and another nephew, Lukas, owns her ear, while her husband Herbert is still missing-in-action.
Religion dictates life in Heimkirchen’s enclosed Catholic community that was almost unaffected by the fighting in the war. Anna’s brother Hans-Ulrich is involved in the church as well as in post war party politics. He finds that the new generation, his own off spring, are not functioning as well as the older one would like. Bitter conflicts arise in the new forming Germany and the family members all need to decide how to respond to the challenges ahead.
This is war fiction without immediate war, it is literary history about Germany after the Nazi rule with gay, racial, religious and feminist themes, describing the way one family experiences the forward move of a shamed Nation.
Fischer tells a great family saga with war in the far background and weaves the political and religious into the personal with belated or indirect impact of war on people.

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RANDOM REVIEW
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FIVE STARS — Beautiful Book! October 22, 2013

By KTK   Format:Kindle Edition
Ah. The Black Eagle Inn really is the most beautiful book I’ve read in a long time. The third of The Three Nations Trilogy (and I can highly recommend the other two in the series, The Luck of the Weissensteiners and Sebstian) it is written just as engagingly, with wonderful characters, fabulous story, and a unique perspective.

The Black Eagle Inn is set in Bavaria, at the end of World War II, and deals with a country that has been brought to its knees. How refreshing to read a different take on it all! And how well done the theme of redemption throughout the country and its citizens as a new way of being has to come into play for both country and populace to move on.

Christoph Fischer is an excellent writer, and he chose to tell this marvellous story through the medium of a family saga (and boy, is he good at that). So we are introduced to the matriarch, Anna, and her relations, and her wealth – the inn itself, together with restaurant and large farm.

Money, family, religion, politics, sexuality, forbidden love, scheming, plotting, hate and scandals engulf Anna, and all of these are mirrored in what is happening within the country too, a very clever thing to do for those readers (myself included) who wouldn’t previously have known what life was like in Germany at the time.

But it is not heavy-going, quite the opposite, as you are caught up in what is happening to the family – the book is quite the page-turner.

And the redemption that I mentioned at the start of the review, of which the author has written so eloquently? Well, if you are willing to change, things will change around you and you can embrace those new things; if you don’t, you are sure to be left behind. And I don’t think there’s much more you can say to make a case for humanity than that.  An excellent read.

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TIME TO LET GO time 4
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SYNOPSIS —  Time to Let Go is a contemporary family drama set in Britain.

Following a traumatic incident at work Stewardess Hanna Korhonen decides to take time off work and leaves her home in London to spend quality time with her elderly parents in rural England. There she finds that neither can she run away from her problems, nor does her family provide the easy getaway place that she has hoped for. Her mother suffers from Alzheimers’ disease and, while being confronted with the consequences of her issues at work, she and her entire family are forced to reassess their lives.

The book takes a close look at family dynamics and at human nature in a time of a crisis. Their challenges, individual and shared, take the Korhonens on a journey of self-discovery and redemption.

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RANDOM REVIEW
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FIVE STARS   A tragic story May 12, 2014

By Murielle Cyr   Format:Kindle Edition
Christoph Fischer’s newest novel, Time to Let Go, is a tragic story, which ends not with a violent death, but with the slow and deteriorating journey of a loved one’s battle with Alzheimer’s disease. The once vibrant and intelligent Biddy is reduced to being treated like a young child by her husband Walter, who although well intentioned, rages at how powerless he is to control the ravages of her disease: “Dammit! Why can’t she remember?”
The story revolves around an emotionally dysfunctional family. Walter’s controlling and demanding attitude has alienated his three children and he finds himself alone to deal with his ailing wife. The eldest son, Henrik, as rigid and judgemental as the father, focuses solely on boosting his successful career, and only contacts his elderly parents when his business allows curt phone calls and cameo appearances to put them in line. Hanna, the only child to retain any emotion attachment, has succeeded in escaping her father’s overbearing attitude with a busy career with the airlines. The youngest son has given up completely on his father’s and brother’s criticism by embracing an altruistic approach to life: he chooses to spend his time with people who need his help rather than wasting it on a family who refuses it.
This is a well-crafted story with believable characters that keeps the readers enthralled on a highly emotional and intellectual level—definitely a must read.
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LINKS ~~~
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The Luck of the Weissensteiners (Three Nations Trilogy Book 1)

On Goodreads: http://bit.ly/12Rnup8

On Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1bua395

B&N http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-luck-of-the-weissensteiners-christoph-fischer/1113932211?ean=9781481130332

Sebastian (Three Nations Trilogy Book 2)

On Goodreads: http://ow.ly/pthHZ

On Facebook: http://ow.ly/pthNy

B&N http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/sebastian-mr-christoph-fischer/1115243053?ean=9781484156001

The Black Eagle Inn (Three Nations Trilogy Book 3)

On Facebook: http://ow.ly/pAX3y

On Goodreads: http://ow.ly/pAX8G

Time To Let Go:

On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Time-To-Let-Go/257989361049799?ref=hl

On Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21947533-time-to-let-go

Website: http://www.christophfischerbooks.com/

Blog: http://writerchristophfischer.wordpress.com/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6590171.Christoph_Fischer

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Christoph-Fischer/e/B00CLO9VMQ/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Christoph-Fischer/e/B00CLO9VMQ/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1400301014&sr=1-2

http://www.amazon.de/Christoph-Fischer/e/B00CLO9VMQ/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1400301014&sr=1-2

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CFFBooks

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/christophffisch/

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/106213860775307052243

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=241333846

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/WriterChristophFischer?ref=hl

All Facebook links:

http://www.facebook.com/WriterChristophFischer?ref=hl

http://www.facebook.com/TheLuckOfTheWeissensteiners?ref=hl

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sebastian/489427467776001?ref=hl

http://www.facebook.com/TheBlackEagleInn?ref=hl

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Time-To-Let-Go/257989361049799?ref=hl

Blog Stop and Interview with the Writer of Invicta Salvation – Piper Kay

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piper  Today, my guest is a bestselling author in LGBT Erotica and Romance. As well as being a talented writer, Piper Kay is also a honey-sweet individual and an excellent interview. Here’s her Amazon Bio:

Piper Kay is a homegrown country girl straight from the outskirts of Houston, Texas, USA. She is a #1 International Best Selling author of LGBT Erotica, and an International Bestselling author of LGBT Erotica romance, gay romance, specifically in the male/male (m/m) erotica genre, and LGBT drama. Piper is bringing her passion of storytelling straight to the pages, most times served with a super-sized sprinkle of sexy, a slice of sarcasm and a carafe of crazy.

Read on to get inside the mind of Piper as I assail her with my usual blend of strange and thought-provoking questions.

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Hi Piper. Thanks for stopping by on your busy blog tour hosted by Ashley’s Addictive Book Promotions. Now, you’re one of the leading writers of M/M Romance and Erotica Novels. Did you identify it as an underused niche market when you first started to write, or does it stem from personal or cultural reasons?

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When I first decided to write, I arrived blind and clueless. I didn’t have any idea about writing, how to learn about it, or that there were so many different genres even available. So, as for identifying M/M with it as an underused niche market? That wasn’t a path I crossed, since I didn’t realize it even existed. I’d never even been a much of a reader until about five years before I started writing. Up until that point, I’d never been able to retain the information, which was frustrating. I could read a paragraph and not be able to tell you one thing it said. I still have no clue why.

As far as culturally, it had nothing to do with what I was writing one way or another.

Personally, I had only known, a handful of guys who were gay when growing up. So I only have one personal experience to go off of. My daughter’s best friend. One day he came over and I knew something was up, he was too edgy and nervous. I could tell he had a mental war going on in his head about something. I was the go to mom for a lot of kids, because I never tried to snow them and I definitely never sugar coated anything. He burst out in tears and pulled up a chair next to me. I gave him a big hug and said “spill it.” That’s the day he came out. I think we talked all afternoon, then he spent the night, so my daughter, him and I sat at the kitchen table and talked most of the night too. For me, it doesn’t get much more personal than that. When I decided to write, I joined a writers group on Facebook, and one of the ladies happened to write M/M. They explained all the initial writing styles – M/M, F/F, M/F/M, and F/F/M – to me. They’d all told me that I wrote with a masculine tone to it. Just what a female wants to hear. They said it was a little harsh, a lot raw, and extremely blunt. One day the mm author dared me to try writing a short story and write it from a man’s POV, to make it a HFN (happy for now) mm story. I took that dare and was on a mission to at least give it a shot. That’s where Twisted Cherry came from. She asked me to let her submit it for me, so I did. I’d known her and the other three ladies for about a year then. It published in November of 2012.

(Editors Note — For anyone lost by the acronyms, M/M is Gay, F/F is Lesbian, and the last two – M/F/M and F/F/M are threesomes.)

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Have you encountered hostile people or received unfair reviews because of the content of your work?

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Only if I leave a cliff hanger. LOL  Honestly, no. Not very often at all. Those kinds of situations come up, but they’re extremely rare and never been much of an issue.

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That’s great to hear. So, as far as musical interests go, what genre do you favor the most?

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I love it all except country. I can’t stand depressing music. I refuse to get emotional behind a song that makes you want to cry in your beer type of songs where your girl just left, took the old truck, and the dog ran away too. If I had to pick a favorite right this very minute, I’d go with R&B/Hip-hop because it is what is playing in my ears right now. Song called “Show Me” by Trey Songz. It’s one of those things that changes non-stop because I write with music blasting. By tonight, it may be heavy metal, but by morning spin off to dubstep, hard rock, gangsta rock or rap/hip-hop. I’ve been listening to a lot of the R&B/hip-hop, like Kid Ink, Trey, Wiz Khalifa, but I slam in some Godsmack and Static X too.

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Very eclectic tastes. Do you have any plans to branch out into a more mainstream direction in the future?

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No, I actually think M/M will soon become one of the mainstream reads. I love writing in this genre, and can’t really see myself changing anything. I would like to do a paranormal M/M story one day, but I still have more to learn about the paranormal part of it.

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Many of my protagonists are women and I get so many questions asking/telling how I can/can’t write from a female perspective. Since men are relatively simple creatures compared to the opposite sex, do you think it’s easier to write/think like a man?

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Ummm…oh my, what a question. No, absolutely not easier, and you men are not simple at all. Guys come equipped with that whole secret handbook thing going on, and a construction workers license. LOL   You’re all experts at building up those walls. Let it become an emotional situation and BAM… that wall is up and done with the paint drying, while the woman is still in mid-conversation wondering what the heck just happened. It’s pretty difficult to sort it out and it gets pretty tough sometimes.

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Why do you think there’s still a stigma attached to homosexuality where celebrities and ordinary men are continuing to stay in the closet despite our enlightened attitudes toward the LGBT community?

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I think it stems from the same reasons it always has. FEAR, and that goes for both sides of the coin. My opinion only. Fear of being rejected, fear of being discriminated against, and fear of losing control, power, or a social status. Fear of the unknown, the unfamiliar.

.Who wants to be judged or slapped with a label, or have a finger pointing at them? No one wants to lose their family or friends. They certainly don’t want to lose their social status in things because of who they love. Who looks forward to the next bully out to make a point? In the past ten years the attitudes toward the LGBT community have come so far. It’s huge and it’s a wonderful thing, but it isn’t able to come up with a cure for the homophobic, or any of the other stigmas attached to being gay. Even so, it’s much better than in the past, but it still has a long way to go.

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Most Erotica have certain titles that seem to lend themselves to the genre – Hot Studs, A Woman’s Passion, I Want It Extra Dirty, et al.  How did you come up with the title of Invicta Salvation, and do you consider it a stronger or more mainstream work?

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At 2:00 a.m., it was a name I think I saw on the cable guide, right after I finished Payce’s Passion. I still don’t have a clue if I read it correctly or not, but it caught my attention. I love the way it sounded. To me, it screamed united, togetherness. It was a strong word but I’m not sure what others think about it. I wasn’t aware of the real definition, so I went to find out and it was perfect. Invicta means undefeatable, unconquered unbeatable, and unstoppable. That is what I wanted to have the main characters of book one, Kaiden and Holt, to be like. I’m a pantster writer so I never know exactly what is going to happen until it actually does, but I get an idea and go with it. Through the series they’ll face different things that come up, and hopefully work through those things.

Salvation is what they found in each other. They save each other, rescue one another from harm, and make a breakthrough. When they meet, they’re young and have come up on their anniversary, fifteen years. They’re unstoppable, can’t be beat. When the two of them work together, they are undefeatable as a team up to this point. Without each other, I don’t know if they could survive things. Book three, titled Retribution, will go into some really major, very deep things with everyone, the whole cast of characters. Holt and Kade, along with Mickey and Toryn of Sanctuary, and the characters Stone and Brice, have situations hitting them left and right without time to breathe, and that part of the story all starts playing out, in depth. It’ll be interesting as I don’t know either, but it’ll be fast paced. Book three not out until next year, but before the end of this year, there will be a special super short that leads more into it.

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That’s a fascinating admission, Piper. Okay, here’s my final question for you and it’s a doozy. Do you think there’s a double standard when it comes to Hollywood and the public’s general perception of Homosexuality compared to Lesbianism?

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I think it’s a double standard everywhere and that’s really something to be ashamed about. If two women are spotted together, the whole country doesn’t shut down once it reaches the nightly news, because it’s never reported. When it comes to Lesbianism, some men, not all, are standing there practically clapping and cheering them on. Not only is lesbianism given a big high five, it comes with a pep squad. Not one person has a problem. It’s okay to talk about it, encourage it, and accept it. No one I know objects to public displays of affection between two women. My personal belief is that it’s fine with me. There’s no difference than a straight man and a women being together. Within reason, you follow all of the normal respects that anyone else does.

That applies to everyone, except a gay man.

Let two men even look at each other, much less touch, hold hands, put an arm around another and watch what happens. The lynch mob pops out of nowhere to chase them down. They’ve already held the court proceedings, been found guilty of caring, and the execution is being planned in the center of town in the courtyard square. It’s about that ridiculous. So what? The reality is that the police are called by some ‘concerned citizen’, and nearby men decide to protect the women folk, and toss off gloves, ready to throw down at this kind of thing, and you would have thought that children around the world are damaged for life.

Is a horrible double standard, and guess who causes it? Another man most of the time, or some uppity snot who hasn’t been laid in a year who decides to throw a hissy fit because all the good looking men are taken, by a man. Two men being together have as much right, as a man and a woman, or a woman and a woman. What’s the damn difference and whose business is it anyway? I can tell you one thing, in my opinion, and I hate that I even have to add that part to it, but these are my thoughts.

Two gay men together, have more passion and desire than a man and a woman, or a woman and woman. The crap they have to take in the first place is bad enough, the stares, dirty looks, threats, bullies, etc. He has to deal with the exterior stuff, but also deal with the internal things going on. Everything he has ever been taught in his life is in question. He’s not allowed to react, except in anger, because men don’t get emotional. He definitely can’t talk about it, because that’s something a girl would do. Geez forbid if he cried, the world might tilt off its axis. Now if a man is willing to go through that kind of crap in order to be with another man, well, he just outranked everyone on the “I’ll do anything for love” scale in my opinion. So why not leave him alone.

You would think the average man who feels this way, would be glad, more women to choose from, but not the case. Most times when a person is bothered by someone else, it’s because something in that person triggered something in themselves.

Here’s an example:

Okay, pretend you’re a man. If you were in a bar, restaurant, or whatever, and a man was sitting at the bar alone and the whole place was empty when you walked in, you’d probably sit across the room, just so no one thought anything, right?

So you’re having a beer, when a dude at the bar turns around to look out the window. No big deal right? You don’t have any preconceived notions drawn about him, he’s just a guy at a bar. You’re calm, not threatened, and everything is good in life. It’s all gravy. Dude goes to blink (or fill it in with anything you like. Maybe he licks his lip, rubs his chin, taps his foot, runs a hand through his hair…I’ll go with blink) So, he starts to blink, which most people do very fast, not something a person even notices much, but for some reason, he kind of does it slower than normal. Maybe something is in his eye, maybe not, you don’t know, but it sort of bothered you. Remember you are still a man here.

Okay, you get a chill down your spine for no reason, something is getting to you. Well, window dude didn’t do a thing, so you try to shake it off and look away. No clue what that was about, but as you start thinking, your heart starts to race a little bit, not much but you can tell. You become a little more uneasy with “whatever” it is. You’re agitated, and look back to him just as he blinks again. Then you remember.

Ten years ago when you were in college, you and a bunch of guys were hanging out, when Randy came walking down the stairs. You looked over to see who it was, but then you locked eyes. He blinked really slow, it was a little bit on the sultry side, but it gave you a funny feeling, maybe you liked it just a little bit, it was kind of sexy in a messed up way. You got up and walked out.

So, now you’re thinking about it, go in the man’s head now. That one time, the only time in my entire life that I thought a man even came close to looking decent, maybe a little bit sexy, and it probably wasn’t what I really felt anyway. I can’t remember, too long ago. Well, that whatever it was never happened again, no one knows about it. Hell I’m a happily married man, with kids, and a family. Why am I even thinking about that right now anyway? Doesn’t have a thing to with me, or anything I have going on now. Nope, just scanned the brain, nothing ever again like that, not in my life. God, it’s getting hot in here, I need to loosen my tie so I can breathe. Focus and shove it out of your mind and quit playing head games on yourself. Stupid anyway. If dude would have stayed on his damn bar-stool in the first place, this thought wouldn’t even be happening. And who the hell does he think he is anyway? Idiot. Not sure why people have to go doing stuff to mess with me anyway.

YOU had turned the thing with Randy ten years ago, into a negative thing for you, negative thought, whatever. That man had a behavior that associates to your own personal feelings and now you’re so pissed off, you ready to go kick his ass behind him looking out a window. Now how did he do that? The man who’s angry now, totally turned it all around to that man somehow messing with him. Never happened, remember he was calm, relaxed, and not threatened a bit. Now he wants to hurt the bar guy.

Maybe the people that have so much against a gay man, have something entirely different going on altogether. When you can let a perfect stranger amp you up enough that you’re ready to scrap with them, chances are you saw yourself in him or one of his behaviors.

Spot it, you got it, that’s what they say. Sounds pretty accurate to me.

I do think that the celebrities coming out are setting a pattern in motion, that’s a good one. Maybe with a little time, and a lot less hate, everyone can do what they want with their own body. Wouldn’t that be something?

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That it would, Piper. Thank you for a wonderful interview. I wish you all the success and happiness you can handle in your life.

Now, read on to discover some of her books and personal links to check out.

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invicta

INVICTA SALVATION (Invicta Series Book One)

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SYNOPSIS — As Kaiden McKenzie and Holt Mitchell prepare to celebrate their fifteenth anniversary, and the grand opening of their new club, Invicta, they take a look back on how their lives together began.
When Holt wakes up to an outraged father, he finds himself suddenly homeless and hungry. With the help and caring of a certain bad guy, Holt finds life isn’t quite so bad as it seems. All he needed was the right man to guide him along.
Kade has spent his life running from anyone and everyone who tries to get close, but when he meets up with Holt, he suddenly finds himself wishing for something more. Who knew he was someone’s knight in shining tattoos…

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BUY LINK — http://www.amazon.com/Invicta-Salvation-Book-1-ebook/dp/B00KLDRU5O/ref=la_B00AF9Z718_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1404845036&sr=1-4   (HEY, IT’S ONLY 99 CENTS!!!!)

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RANDOM REVIEW

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FIVE STARS — Piper Kay Is The Master of M/M Romance

May 27, 2014 By Monique Lomino

Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The story of Kaiden and Holton is not only the steamiest m/m romance I’ve ever read but it also has great depth.They each have a past that is heartbreaking but in finding each other a connection forms that is almost instantaneous and together the healing process begins. Every time Piper Kay writes a book I deem it my favorite, that is until her next one comes out and that one quickly becomes my favorite. I have watched Piper become a master of m/m romance. Frankly before Piper Kay I had never read m/m before because I was just not interested in it .Well I’m here to tell you that she took me by the hand and led me into her world and I’m not leaving any time soon. Brava Piper!! I can’t wait for the next book in this series!!
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invicta 2
INVICTA SANCTUARY (INVICTA SERIES BOOK TWO)
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THIS BOOK WILL BE RELEASED ON 7/13
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SYNOPSIS —

What is your sanctuary? For Mickey, he never needed one, he was his own. Until now. In a situation spinning out of control, Mickey is forced to make a move and he’s not sure how to handle it. He’s an intelligent, self-reliant man who never depended on anyone for anything, but now he is alone for the first time in his life, scared. By accident, he ends up at Invicta, the hottest new male go-go dance club in town. Owners, Kade and Holt, know the behavior all too well, but Mickey’s trust factor is leveling out on zero, until he spots Toryn. Sometimes sanctuary can be found in the strangest of places.

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BUY LINK (When Available) —

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22466840-invicta

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Pyce's Passion

PAYCE’S PASSION (The Passion Series Book Two)
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SYNOPSIS — It’s been seven years since Payce started his new life, and it was finally starting to feel comfortable…almost. But when his past catches up to him, Payce has to decide if he’s going to deal with the things he left behind, or if he’s going to keep running.
When his friends, Damien and Dax need help, Payce is forced to confront the one person who knows him better than himself, Braxton and the one who made him lose everything he held dear, Aaron. Seeing them both could change everything for Payce, and when past passions reignite, who will get burned in the end?
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RANDOM REVIEW
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FIVE STARS — Need a little dose of hot men? Then you won’t want to pass this one up. May 8, 2014

By The Color of Ink  Format:Kindle Edition
Starting off with a little update on Damien and Dax from Perfect Passion was a great way to start this book. But even better is how the main character, Payce, is introduced. A sexy scene that tantalizes the senses and sucks you in to get more of him and what makes him tick. When Damien asks for Payce’s help with a now dangerous situation with his ex, Aaron, he doesn’t bat an eye and its all business. It doesn’t hurt that he and Aaron has a past and he knows how to find him. It may take a little time, but he will get the job done for his friend. However, all work and no play aren’t in the cards for Payce.

Payce may not be the relationship kind of man, but he is all man. When he is face to face with Braxton again while looking for Aaron he is second guessing himself and his resolve. The heat and emotions start to turn up between them. He always knew where Braxton was, but he couldn’t bring himself to face him. He didn’t want to hurt him all over again. Did he do the right thing by leaving things the way he did with Braxton or was he being selfish and just saving himself?

I love the characters in this series. Both books have some hot scenes and likable characters. The story flows and moves right along from one book to the next. I love how each book is a complete story with the choice to snag a glimpse at the next book. Hey, at least you get a warning before you read the few pages and are left waiting for the next in the series. My “oh so favorite word” slurp made its presence known, however this time around I barely noticed.

This is definitely an 18+ read. Although it could be a stand-alone, I highly recommended starting with the first book in the series. Need a little dose of hot men? Then you won’t want to pass this one up. Thanks for a great read Piper Kay. Payce’s passion gets a well-deserved 4.5 stars. I can’t wait for the next book in the series. It sounds like a fun one.

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LINKS ~~~~~~~
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Amazon author link: http://amazon.com/author/piperkay

FB: https://www.facebook.com/piper.kay.1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PiperKayAuthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6613775.Piper_Kay

Authograph: https://www.authorgraph.com/authors/PiperKayAuthor

Google: https://google.com/+PiperKay

Blog: http://piperkay.blogspot.com

BOOK LINKS: FOR MAIN FEATURE:

INVICTA-Salvation Book One of INVICTA SERIES

Amazon: http://smarturl.it/InvictaSalvations

i-tunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/x/id885647639

Nook: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/invicta-piperkay/1119684259?ean=2940045982450

Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/442215

BOOK TRAILER: Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/xBG15unzj-Y

INVICTA-Sanctuary Book 2https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22466840-invicta

Releases one week from now, on the 13th of July and ONLY available through The Naughty Box 2 by Hot Ink Press. Entire set is 9 authors, 99 cents.

Online release party on the 13th also:

The Naughty Box 2 release party:https://www.facebook.com/events/1433918336868918/

AMAZON Links to all books (don’t have to share though)

INVICTA bk 1 http://smarturl.it/InvictaSalvations

INVICTA bk 2 https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22466840-invicta

A Perfect Passion http://smarturl.it/APerfectPassionk

Payce’s Passion http://smarturl.it/Payce

Eight Second Cowboy http://smarturl.it/EightSecondCowboy

Twisted Cherry http://smarturl.it/TwistedCherry

The Naughty Box http://smarturl.it/NaughtyBox

 

A Blog First for JTMD — A Fan’s Interview with John Tucker

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Today’s interview is being conducted a little differently. It comes from a reader/fan who wanted “more” than my simple bio offered.

Here’s my bio from Amazon ~~~~

A life-long Georgia native, John D. Tucker has burned through three wives, raised two sons, and has persevered despite being brought up in a wonderfully dysfunctional family.

He is a multi-genre author with psychological thrillers (DIVISIVE, THE FIFTH GAME, AND SPLITS IN THE SKIN), a Romantic Dramedy Series called BEMUSED AND BEDEVILED (TERPSICHORE IN LOVE, THE MARK OF CAIN, and THE SEVENTH SEAL), a young adult Mystery (THE LITTLE GIRL YOU KISS GOODNIGHT), an Adult Contemporary novel (ROMANCING THE FOX) and the Erotica sizzler (TWELVE DOORS TO ECSTASY).

He plans to release five more books over the course of the 2014 – the final chapter in the Rask Trilogy – THE EIGHTH FAMILY, a Hostage Drama called THE WISDOM OF LUNATICS, a Contemporary Romance – eTERNALMATES, the second book in the Steph Linder Trilogy – THE LITTLE GIRL WHO CRIED AT MIDNIGHT, and the sequel to Romancing the Fox — CHASING THE FOX.

He is also a proud member of IWW (The Internet Writers Workshop) which he highly recommends to aspiring authors.

So here goes…I turn this blog over to Lori Ann Smith.

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Hello, John, how are you? Let’s get to this… So you’re a writer now, all genres, but you were previously in restaurant management; has anything from that profession crossed over into your writing?

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Hello, Lori. Nice place you got here. 🙂  Well, other than give me fodder for the book I’ll eventually write about my experiences in the pizza industry, not a damn thing. There’s something soul-sucking about working in the public sector in a fast-food/management job. You see the worst side of customers at times, get no respect from the higher-ups, and watch as nepotism and favoritism gets people the choice jobs in the best areas.

But, on the flip side, you also see people working together most of the time, a few customers acknowledge your existence, and every Thanksgiving and Christmas off. And as far as getting snow days off (especially in Georgia) — fuhgettaboutit.

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I’m sure this has been asked before, but do you prefer one genre over another and why?

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In reading, I’m drawn to and love to read horror and Historical Fiction. When I write, I prefer fast-moving psychological thrillers and, over the last year, Erotica. Nothing gets a reader’s pulse racing better than those two genres and, if done right, will give them nightmares and fantasies for years to come.

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You have recently become somewhat of an advocate for Indie writers, starting this blog, teaming up with other authors and groups to promote new books and authors … have you seen improvements in your sales or followers for yourself or the authors you have helped promote?

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All Indie Authors will support each other to a point. Through blogs, events, Facebook groups, and posts on Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, etc etc. Some will go the extra distance for everyone who asks, others will circle the wagons and only promote their friends and relatives. I’ve seen my own sales steadily climb over the last year – from 3-5 a month to 12-15 – thanks to a core unit of followers who think I’m a decent writer. As far as helping others sell book through my efforts, I hope I’ve managed to put a little coin in the coffers of my associates and peers.

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DivisiveThe Fifth Game

Some of the characters you have written about are very dark, disturbed people (Dennis Rask of Divisive and Moses Bailey of Splits in the Skin), while others are very light – (Euterpe/Butterfly of the Bemused and Bedeviled series and Steph Linder of The Little Girl You Kiss Goodnight). Are any of your characters inspired by people in your past or present circle?

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Some of my secondary characters are friends and relatives with different names to protect the innocent and the guilty. The main characters (Protagonists and Antagonists) have certain things in common with me as far as physical appearance, demeanor, and personality. John McKenzie of Romancing the Fox is me, excluding the confidence and situations. Dennis Rask of Divisive and The Fifth Game is my Mr. Hyde (my evil alter-ego) and is nothing like me. Thad Linder of The Little Girl You Kiss Goodnight is me in a way. He’s irritating at times and likes to start trouble. (We call that being ‘pickified’ in the Deep South.)

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TILlgkg

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As you’re writing each book, do you see the book in movie form running through your head and do you see any established actors in specific roles?

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Yes, as I’m writing I treat every chapter like an episode of a television series and every scene break like a cut to a commercial. Most television series will touch of the lives of all it’s characters over the course of the 42 minutes it’s allotted. I try to do that with my literary denizens and feature different POV’s rather than remain on one or two over the course of the novel. Like most hour-long television shows, my chapters will end with an exciting moment or a cliffhanger designed to keep them turning to the next chapter. As a result, my writing style has brought comparisons to a machine gun or an out of control roller-coaster blowing words past the reader. I’m not going to spend five paragraphs describing the location’s scenery or a character’s outfit. If I spend two sentences on those items, it usually has something to do with the storyline.

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I have been a beta reader for a couple of your books now and, through your process, I’ve watched some characters go in very different directions than I thought they would. Can you explain your writing decisions if your character changes from what you’ve outlined? Do you write different endings based on your beta readers’ responses?

I mainly use beta readers for three things – finding glaring errors, character inconsistencies, and the overall readability of the book. In my erotica novel Twelve Doors to Ecstasy I found my betas wanted to know what the main villain thought about my heroine’s escape from his evil clutches. So, I added a long scene to show his thoughts and point the reader into the direction I want to take the sequel. As a result, the last chapter now has a happy ending and a sense of a very real danger soon to take place. In my soon-to-be-released – The Wisdom of Lunatics – I heeded my beta readers pleas to make the main heroine less of a bitch and temper her profanity at the beginning. I wanted Maritza Van Lyle to be a fearless woman at the end of her mental rope and overdid it it a bit. Now she’s a little more timorous at first, but she’s still feisty enough to show her I-don’t-give-a-damn attitude.

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Romancing the FoxThe Mark of Cain

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If one of your female characters came to life, who would you want it to be and would you pursue a relationship with her?

As I thought about this question I discovered most of the characters I would be attracted to died during the novel. I’ll always have a soft spot in my heart (and pants) for Jenna Fox in Romancing the Fox, Smitty Sprayberry of Splits in the Skin, Kim Laurence of The Little Girl You Kiss Goodnight, and Tryst Sanyon of Twelve Doors to Ecstasy. Nothing against those four women but the one I’d like to see come off the pages and into my life is Calliope – one of the nine Muses in my Bemused and Bedeviled Series. In the first book – Terpsichore in Love – she’s a ferocious mega-bitch with a chip on her shoulders. Over the course of the next two books – The Mark of Cain and The Seventh Seal – she slowly changes into a semi-sweet, caring eternal thanks to the slowly growing attentions of Dan Gordon (the series’ hero.)

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Splits in the Skin 2The Seventh Seal

With regards to your newest release, Twelve Doors to Ecstasy, of the doors that your heroine, Tryst chose, which room would YOU want to go through (assuming the occupants inside were the female version) and why?

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Hmmmm, the two rooms that immediately come to mind include a great massage with a happy ending, or a threesome with two gorgeous women. I would also love to be a voyeur in the S&M room and the Play-Acting suites. So, I may be too predictable, but the threesome sounds great.

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12 doors

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One more question about “Twelve Doors to Ecstasy.” Tryst gets paid to take her journey of sexual self discovery while Mr. Anders watches her. Do you think this woman is a character that will empower your women readers, or might it be seen as one man’s efforts to turn one woman into his personal voyeurism prostitute?

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For Tryst, it does start out as a way to get the teaching she needs about sex and intimacy, and a lot of money for her troubles. By the end, she realizes she’s much richer for the interactions she had with everyone and accepts the money from Anders almost as a ‘so what.’ It was hard for me to paint this woman (Tryst) as a decent, innocent-type character and less of a slut, even though she has sex with over twelve different men and women over the novel’s journey. From my 23 reviews no one’s directly mentioned her promiscuous behavior as a detriment, so I think I toed the line the best I could.

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I know from reading your blog interviews you always ask the interviewee about their current WIP, so I’m also going to ask you about it too. Currently, what are you working on?

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I have a few projects going on at once, as usual, but the ones I’m spending the most time on lately are a contemporary romance called eTernalMates, and a erotic drama titled Vergene Revenge,Twisted. After those are finished, I’ll be working on sequels to Romancing the Fox, The Little Girl You Kiss Goodnight, and Divisive. They will be Chasing the Fox, The Little Girl Who Cried at Midnight, and The Eighth Family: Rask’s Masterpiece.

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Ok, my favorite interviewer is James Lipton (Inside the Actor’s Studio) because he ends each interview with a list of questions from Bernard Pivot, host of France TV’s Apostrophes. I would love to ask you all ten questions; however, I fear I would be pushing the limits of you and your followers’ patience. Therefore, I will only ask three as part of this question.

What is your favorite curse word?

What profession, other than your own, would you like to attempt?

If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

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Sadly enough, my favorite curse word is the ‘F’ word. It can be used as a noun, pronoun, proper Noun, adjective, verb, and a fucking gerund for all I know. 🙂

The profession I would love to attempt would be acting.

If I arrived at the pearly gates, I have no doubts God would use my favorite word, followed by an exclamation mark and a question mark.

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I know you said eight questions but can I have one more please? (And that was not it). Tell me one thing on your bucket list that you would like to complete when you become a globally famous author?

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I’ve never been much for traveling (homebody) but I’ve love to take a few months to see Ireland/Scotland/Russia, Brazil, and the Netherlands. After that, I’d return to Georgia to stay with my young Russian bride until I died.

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Thank you, John for sitting down with me and letting me pick your brain. As you’ve inspired me to work more on my own writing (something like three different WIPs), perhaps one day you’ll be interviewing me here on your blog…

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I’m sure I will, Lori.  Good luck with your writing. I’m proud to count you as one of my biggest fans.

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LINKS

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Facebook Author Page —-http://www.facebook.com/hutt1234

Amazon Author Page — http://www.amazon.com/John-Tucker/e/B005GQUH3I/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

Twitter — @Hutt1234John

Blog — https://johntuckermustlive.wordpress.com

http://ebonyandivorysbookharmony.blogspot.com/2014/06/interview-with-john-tucker.html

http://thetroubledoyster.blogspot.com/2014/06/meet-dennis-rask-star-of-rask-trilogy.html

http://centerstagejrd.wordpress.com/2014/06/04/interview-with-john-tucker/

http://www.lindaleewilliams.com/lindaleewilliams/Blog/Entries/2014/2/9_A_warm_welcome_toJohn_TuckerGetting_to_know_you…Interview.html