We now have 28 different titles on this website and two of those come from two awesome authors' debut novels.
I believe they have both broke new ground with their stories...but then again, I'm bias, lol.
Claire Simons with Falling From Grace and Heather Whetstine with Twilight's Last Gleaming. In fact, I'll leave you with two reviews from Twilight's Last Gleaming:
Awesome, thought provoking, it could be tomorrow’s news. Twilight's Last Gleaming by Heather Whetstine, takes you on an emotional thrill-ride as Clare, an ordinary college teenager with a passion for truth in journalism is witness to the best America has to offer and the worst it had become. As I traveled alongside Clare, her compelling story caused me to think, and then I became angry, at what I knew to be the truth. Next I wanted to jump up, raise my right hand and scream, YES.
This Book is a must-read for any person that loves their country. Although it takes place in America, it is a wakeup call for anyone who believes in freedom. I am reluctant to give five-star ratings because I am a realist, but I truly wish I had a sixth star at my disposal for Twilight’s Last Gleaming.
Enjoy this book, as I know you will.
Douglas Nelson (PopATop).
5 Stars *****
The corruption and remake of the structure of America is not a new idea, but the author, writing from the view of a naive youth is the catalyst needed to make one continue reading. Well written, quick pace, very good flow between past and present. It was also hard hitting, depressing and frightening with the knowledge all in the book is possible. Whether or not it could all happen in such a small amount of time is a matter worth thinking about. The only part I found a little hilarious is the belief Texas would be a 'safe' place in such a scenario. If you like diaspora this is definitely a book to read.
By Ey Wade
Disclaimer: I'm the publisher for both of the above books. So yes, I make a smidgen on each sale of these two books, however, I believe these books are awesome and should be picked up and read by everyone! So please patronize these authors and help them to build their writing career. They will be eternally grateful ;)
I asked this special author..."Where do you start?" Then she proceeds to pull her hair out. Just kidding. It's a question some authors are likely asked a lot. So I had to return the favor ;) Anyway, Ms Byrd gave us a fantastic response, so I wanted to share:
Katrina Renee Byrd
Where Do I Start?
I hear this question a lot. It is one question that packs a real punch. When people ask this one questions they are usually asking three things.
1. How do I get my ideas on paper?
2. Where do I find time to write?
3.. Where does the piece of work need to begin?
Where do I start? How do I get my ideas on paper?
“I can think of some great ideas but when I try to write them, there’s nothing there.”
“Honey, there’s something there,” I say as I fluff my boa. “You just have to know how to access it.”
One of the most common mistakes about getting ideas on paper is that we try to edit before we write. We hear the ideas in our head but we work diligently to erase them and we don’t even know it. Here let me show you. Take out a sheet of paper or open your word processor. Write the following:
“sorry” she said but that wasn’t good enough for the teacher. She still said that she’d call her mother That scared Ellen. She walked slowly from her bus stop thinking… When she reached the front steps her mother stood on the porch. “Get into this house right now,” her mother said.
Look at what you’ve just written. Is it punctuated properly? Is it coherent? Is it something you want to share with your English teacher? Of course not but you have gotten the idea on paper. Take a minute to do some editing. Then take a look at my edits.
“Sorry,” Ella said. She stared at Mrs. Johnson, her second grade teacher behind thick glasses. Ella said it again, but sorry wasn’t good enough for Old Lady Johnson.
“I’m calling your mother this afternoon, young lady,” Mrs. Johnson said shaking a finger at Ella then turning her back to Ella and addressing the rest of the class.
Where do I start? Where do I find time to write?
“I am too busy. I just don’t have time to write?
“Busy doing what, honey?” I ask.
That’s the real question. We are all busy but what are we busy doing? If you want to be a writer you must write. I was shocked when I realized this concept. So walking around town advertising myself as a writer is not the same as being a writer? Sadly it is not. Neither is cleaning your house, nursing your boa flouncing career or being at every writers’ group meeting. So when I really embraced this concept I found some fun ways to write small pieces AND get feedback!! Dare I say it out loud? FACEBOOK, blogging, twitter… All of these entities give you the opportunity to come up with creative, short pieces in a short period of time. Another way to jump start your writing life is to carve out small periods of time for your writing. At this point it’s not the number of minutes or hours that you write but rather that you honor the time that you’ve set for yourself. If you say you are going to write from 3:00 pm – 3:02 pm then have your butt in chair, keyboard in hand and sit there for two, uninterrupted minutes of writing.
Where do I start? Where does the piece of work begin?
This question is a bit difficult to answer because so many of us write differently. Some use an outline, some fly by the seat of their pants and some do both. For me, I have come to realize that where I begin writing the story is not necessarily where the reader begins reading it. So when I sit down to begin writing a story I may begin writing “…and they lived happily ever after.” Where as once the story reaches the hands of the reader the first line he sees may be “Once upon a time.”
Some writers write linear and some don’t. Even with an outline I may choose to write chapter five first then go back and write chapter two. I really think the import thing is to know yourself and feel brave enough and free enough to begin writing wherever you’d like.
So to answer the question where do I start? I say, “WRITE!”
As always, if you like what this author has to say in their guest spot, please patronize them by clicking on their book on the sidebar. I make absolutely nothing off your purchase through this site. I'm just glad to have them stop by and hope you get some pleasure from meeting another author.
We all have them.
What are yours?
What do you dream about? What gets your heart racing in the morning? What lights your fire through out the day?
What are your demons? What do you fight and struggle with, within yourself? Things that most people don't know about that you struggle with daily. What makes life challenging for you?
Good writers channel both their dreams and their demons into their writing. Writing is an art, and artists channel their inner selves into their work. Those things we struggle with, we put into words and flesh them out into fictional or non-fictional characters to bring them to life on the page...or screen. We attribute our own characteristics and characteristics of people we know and people we meet into these two-dimensional beings to make them seem three-dimensional. We have to live in the character's world for a while, then add heart and soul to each two-dimensional figure head.
We do this so that...
As a reader, you become completely engulfed in this world that we've presented to you. The goal is that we've reached into you mind, into your heart, into your soul, and touched, fondled, even squeezed and yanked your personal dreams and demons and ripped them out of you and placed them on the page or screen in front of you. We've put them right in front of your eyes and make you stand up and take notice of them. We've brought them to life for you to the extent that you can't deny their existence...if even for a few hours.
And we do this....to please you, the reader.
Yes, we bring your demons and dreams to the forefront of your mind and our demons and dreams to them...to entertain you. To please you. To make you happy.
To give you a break from your own life. And to pull you into our life.
Then we'll let the chain drop that we've yanked you out with and let you fall back to your comfort zone, putting all of your dreams and demons back in their safe place.
But just until you read our next book ;)
Today is my oldest son's 18 birthday, and what am I thinking about? Of course...marketing.
Ok, it's not all bad. I did wish him a happy birthday at midnight last night, and this morning. And likely will again tonight. When he gets home from work.
But, amongst all of this, I'm thinking about marketing.
And the Catch 22 of marketing.
These days the publishing landscape is such that, in order for your books to sell, you have to have them in front of reader's eyes. Well, ok, that hasn't changed from the days of old. If the reader doesn't know your book is there, they won't buy it. That's simple common sense. Or logic, which ever label you prefer.
So, how do we get our books in front of readers?
That's where the Catch 22 comes in.
In order to get mass exposure, you need to be on some best seller list. Well, you can't make it on a best seller list unless you have....exposure. However, once you catch the wave and hit the best seller list, the monster should feed itself for a good while. As long as you have a quality product, that is.
So, don't even think about the best seller list until your cover, blurb, and most of all, story, are right.
Anyway, this Catch 22 issue.
To hit the best seller list, you need mass exposure. But, in order to get that kind of mass exposure, you need to be on the best seller list. So how do all of those books get onto that best seller list? Well, lots of ways, actually. How can you get yours on there, is the question.
The answer is...any way that you can.
Whether you have to run a paid ad in some publication that guarantees thousands of eyes are on it, or you get lucky enough to run a free add in some publication, or you have to bribe 3,000 of your most willing neighbors to download a copy of your book in Kindle format, you do what ever you have to do, to get those downloads going.
Tell friends and family they can throw away the ecopy after they pick it up. You don't care what they do with it, as long as they download it. The key is to get it downloading, so it raises in the ranks and hits the best seller list, so other people that may actually want to read it will SEE it and download it themselves. Remember, just because YOU know it's a work of art, no one else knows that until they read it. And they can't read it till they see it. And they won't see it unless it's visible.
So...what back door method can you come up with to hit your best seller list?
Here you are, minding your own business and next thing you know, a flash of inspiration hits you. An idea. A seed. You've been "seeded" or....inseminated. This is the pleasure point.
Then you feed and nourish the seed, helping it grow. You have to constantly feed it so it doesn't wither away. As you feed it, and it grows, it requires more time and nutrition to fatten up, to flesh out, to form something resembling the finished product. This may last a few months.
Once you've gone through that process, the time is close to polishing your baby for the world to see. You now begin to labor through the important stuff to consider keeping for it's long term life. What will be best to help it prosper for years to come? What will make it as healthy as possible? What will help it get along with others? Or even outperform others? This stage normally needs input from other, more experienced people.
Now it's time to share your new creation with the world. You're nervous and anxious. You're excited and glowing. You're sweating and bloating. And that's all normal. You've spent months getting to this point. Now you're ready to push the final creation out to the world at large. There are likely to be screams of anguish side by side with craving love and support from family and friends. "Will the world like and accept my new creation?" This is one question among many flying through your mind.
You realize you'll have conflicting emotions about your new creation for a lifetime to come. You'll have unending love and pride, alongside disappointment and fear. But, you figure you'll handle those as they come.
Finally, you take that last deep breath, squeeze hard one last time....and push your new creation out to the world. It's time to set it free and let the world love it or hate it as they will. Either way, you'll always love it.
Wow...who knew giving birth to a kid was so similar to giving birth to a book? Ok ladies, you have my permission to now bash me over the head. Just leave the bricks at home when you do so. Thank you.