Thursday, March 29, 2012

Interview with authors Danielle Hylton-Outland & April Fifer

Today's guests at Reviews and Interviews are writing duo Danielle Hylton-Outland and April Fifer. They're talking about the first book in their debut series, Flesh and Feathers. And they have several giveaways today and during their tour. Details are after the interview. Read on!

Danielle was raised in Virginia. She grew up having a huge appetite for daydreaming; always wanting to live in the spectacular worlds she created in her mind. She now lives with her husband and dog where she is pursuing a degree in literature. Danielle is a strong animal activist. She is currently co-writing the second book in the Flesh Series, Flesh and Flames.

April grew up in a small town in Virginia, where it was common practice believing that dreams could only be found in stories. At the age of seven, she was diagnosed with dyslexia. She was told that she would struggle through life and would never pick up a book to read for pleasure. Although school was hard, she was able to find her way with the help of two teachers who taught her self-discovery. Ignoring what she was taught growing up, she turned it around and found that your dreams could become stories.

Welcome, April and Danielle. Please tell us about your current release.
Flesh and Feathers is the first book of The Flesh Series. It’s set in downtown LA and has a fast pace storyline. It’s about Azaleigh Carlton, who is very much like you and me. She’s just trying to get by in life with no hiccups along the way. Azaleigh, also known as Az, is her own worst enemy. And we can all relate to that! At the beginning of the book, she meets the man of her dreams, Kale, and instantly becomes consumed by him. But like all great things… yes, we know the answer to this one! Their relationship is tragically ended (or is it?), and Az is left with no recollection of Kale. Strange things start to happen, and everyone around her is not telling. Soon, she becomes close with her new neighbor, Gage, who is extremely HOT. Yum! The two are inseparable, well… that is until Az is nearly killed by someone or something. Secrets are revealed, and the truth is brought to light. And now Az must make a decision that will cost her everything.

What inspired you to write this book?
We had an obsession with a girl falling in love with an angel. Now, at the time, this seemed like “The Plot.” Yeah, great. How clever! This is what we said to each other. Then we realized Az had to have a personality… and a background. And what about this guy she’s in love with? Who is he? This moved on to… what do we know about angels? When it came down to it, and after researching FOR…EVER, we understood we knew absolutely nothing to begin with. The more we learned about these magnificent creatures, the more we loved them. So with every click of the mouse and every sip of coffee during our plotting time, we realized that our inspiration came from learning more. And inspiration came from our own lives as well. Plus we wanted to right about some really sexy men. Who doesn’t?

What exciting story are you working on next?
We are working on about five different books. However, one of our favorite ones we are writing is called, Love, Lies and a Bloke. The story is a short fun read.

Katherine Thomas is a lackluster kind of girl who refuses to bend the rules. Until one day, she loses her job and is forced to reevaluate her life. One trip to Australia changes her world forever. Katherine leaves her hometown of Fleming to find herself. However, she ends up finding love, lies and a bloke.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Danielle: I wish I could say I knew I was going to be a writer when I was four years old or something, but I can’t. I can say that I have always loved story telling. When I was young, the books that were read to me made me light up. Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss, Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, and Stone Soup by Ann Mcgovern were just a few of my favorites. I always appreciated the creativity behind the stories. So now when I am writing, I always try to remember that feeling and incorporate it into my work.

April: This was an on and off passion for me since I was in high school. I was always a busybody, meaning I would bite off more than I could chew. When I was in high school, I worked two jobs, and if you didn’t find me at one of those, you would find me building a house or something. (That was a little over the top, but I did work on lots of home projects.) So it was hard to sit down and apply myself to something I had to commit to fully. It wasn’t until I read a book that pushed me over the edge. I decided I wanted to read something that ended the way I thought it should… and how do you do that? Oh, yeah! Break-out my old hobby of writing and make it what I WANT IT TO! Yay! Happy ending!

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your workday like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
Danielle: I am currently working full-time at a direct-mail company. So you could say I am an estimator by day and a full-time writer by night. Oh, and I'm also a wife and full-time student.

April: I work for the same direct mail company as Danielle! I’m a project manager, and my office is right next to hers. I am the mother of three so parenting, working and writing because a delicate balance. Sleep? Is there such a thing?

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
Danielle: One quirk I have is that I enjoy writing on paper. I know I can easily pull out the laptop, but at times I simply like to use a pen and paper just cause.

April: I’m a freak about formatting as I go! This is bad, bad, bad! Sometimes I can’t remember what I’m writing because my margins don’t line up properly. Wait… are we using 12 point Times New Roman right now? Sigh… this comes from my background unfortunately. For years (and even now), I worked as a Graphic Layout Artist. Basically, if you wanted letterhead or a brochure laid out, I was your girl.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Danielle: Other than wanting to be Rogue from the comic book “The X-Men," I wanted to be a veterinarian. Now, I know this is this most commonly sought out profession for a little girl, but I really did want to be involved with animals. It was and still is one of the biggest loves in my life.

April: I guess the question would be, what didn’t I want to be? I, too, wanted to be a vet, but then I realized you had to go to school… like… forever! At sixteen, that didn’t sound fun. So I changed it up and decided I wanted to be in business. I have no clue what that meant, because I wasn’t sure of what kind of business, I wanted to be in. When it came down to it, I wanted to have a desk and carry a briefcase… I didn’t realize at the time that could have been something so strange as to be Al Capone’s accountant.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
We are working on Flesh and Flames, which is the second book in The Flesh Series. And like the name… things are going to heat up. Tensions get stronger, evil gets scarier, and guys get hotter. This book gives everyone a glimpse of the characters' backgrounds and some things are sure to be a shocker. We love to hear from our readers, so we encourage anyone and everyone to stop by one of our sites and give us a shout.

And here's an excerpt:
“Aren’t you coming in?” I asked. He just stood there, not saying a word.

“Is that a, No?” I asked, not hiding my frustration.

“I have somewhere to be,” he said with that stupid matter-of-fact voice again

That’s all it took. I lost my cool… or something like that. “You know what? I don’t get you. You act like I can’t walk myself home from work because I need protecting. You take me out acting like I’m your girlfriend and the only person you can think about…. Then you come here and… do what you do–you know what I’m talking about. (I was thinking of how to say make me want to have sex with you, but that would have been blunt and pathetic). And now you act like this and like you did last night. You know what? Fine! If that’s how it’s going to be, then leave.” (I am sure that didn’t come out any better.) I followed up by slamming the door in his face.

I laid my back against the door and butted my head against it a few times. Then I thought about how that was the most ridiculous overreaction I had ever seen done by anyone.

My instinct was to look through the peephole to see if he was still there. Sure enough, he was and with the same expression on his face. I calmly opened the door, which made a creaking sound at the slow pace. Staring at the floor, I cleared my throat and began to speak. “I’m sorry. It’s been a long day. I was out of line and… um… I didn’t mean anything I just said… or screamed.”

Readers, the authors are giving away an autographed bookmark and $5 Amazon gift card to one commenter at every stop, and one $15 and one $25 gift certificate to two randomly drawn commenters during the tour.

I encourage you to follow the tour and comment. The more you comment, the better your chances of winning.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Interview with NYT best selling writer Eldon Taylor

NYT best selling author Eldon Taylor is center stage today to talk about his newest book. Let's jump right in.


Eldon Taylor is an award-winning, New York Times best-selling author of more than 300 books, audio, and video programs. He’s the inventor of the patented InnerTalk technology and the founder and president of Progressive Awareness Research. He has been called a “master of the mind” and has appeared as an expert witness on both hypnosis and subliminal communication.

Eldon was a practicing criminalist conducting investigations and lie-detection examinations for many years. He is listed in more than a dozen Who’s Who publications, including Who’s Who of Intellectuals and Who’s Who in Science and Engineering. He is a fellow in the American Psychotherapy Association and an internationally sought-after speaker. His books and audio-video materials have been translated into more than a dozen languages and have sold millions worldwide.

Eldon is the host of the popular radio show Provocative Enlightenment. He has interviewed some of the most interesting people on the planet. His shows are thought-provoking and always fresh in both their perspective and the exchange.

Announcing I Believe, the latest release by New York Times best selling author, Eldon Taylor.

Eldon, why did you write I Believe?
I have spent over thirty years investigating why people self-sabotage or limit themselves, thus experiencing so much less than their highest best! What I have found is the reason rests solely in their beliefs—not their spiritual belief so much as their life beliefs. I found this to be true when I was conducting lie detection tests and discovering criminality, and equally true when I worked with elite athletes, business executives, professionals and lay people alike. The bottom line is this: What you believe always matters! It’s like a web that fastens itself to belief-anchors, causing disheartening mediocrity in place of the glorious success we all seek.

I Believe spells out the power of belief and how it influences everything from our health and longevity to our success with relationships and life. Astounding as it may seem, belief can (and has) defied our so-called laws of science and it has done so over and over again. As ordinary and trite as it may seem, belief nevertheless makes all the difference in success in all walks of life. Knowing how we acquire our beliefs, and which beliefs serve us while others sabotage us, is critical to maximizing our individual potential. I Believe: When What You Believe Matters! was written to empower you with the roadmap to decipher and re-write the programming governing your life.

Excerpt: The Mind-Body Belief System


Research with placebos—nontherapeutic substances are commonly thought of as sugar pills—is also telling when it comes to the role of belief and the function of the mind in matters of wellness. When the faith and expectation of a subject invests in the power of the placebo, amazing things happen. What’s more, the treatment is relative to the condition, so one false pill can treat pain half as well as aspirin and half as well as morphine. Not surprisingly, telling the patient that the same tablet increases discomfort will result in just that.

Placebos don’t have to be pills; they can be creams, injections, or even surgery. Just as interesting, the effect is larger if you increase the dosage size—say a larger capsule or two of them. Further, research shows that a branded item works better than a plain one, one in a shiny box elicits greater results than one in a plain package, a capsule trumps a tablet, with an injection working even better. If you use fancy, expensive-looking, sophisticated equipment, it yields even more dramatic outcomes. The bottom line is that the greater the expectation, the greater the effect. In other words, building a strong belief creates the foundation for the result.2

There are still more revealing facts about placebos that dovetail directly into our human psychology. For example, color is often employed to evaluate mood states, as in the Lüscher Color Test. The validity of this test has been determined to be overall 81 percent in agreement with the Taylor-Johnson Temperament Analysis.3 So how does color correlate with the placebo effect? Well, blue is more effective as a “downer,” and red is the preferred color for an “upper.” Further, as Daniel Keogh and Luke Harris point out in their very informative Internet film, studies have shown that people who take their medication on a regular basis are much less likely to die than those who don’t adhere to their drug regimen, even if they’re only taking placebos. If that’s not enough to convince you of the power of belief, then try this one. Again, the creators of the aforementioned film point out that placebos can also be addictive. In one study, 40 percent of the women who’d taken an inactive medication for five years suffered withdrawal symptoms.4

Remember that by definition, there’s no medical value to a placebo. It’s not what’s in the substance that matters but what we put in it via our belief. Clever researchers can weight our belief by feeding an already expectant psychology with the right color, shape, size, and so forth to further ensure the maximum effect!5 That’s right, a genuine medical result from a nonmedical intervention. It’s clearly our minds that have the power.

The Authority Figure

Several years ago, I conducted research that involved patients diagnosed with cancer. I used a cognitive approach by employing an audio recording (my Innertalk technology) designed to fundamentally influence what the subjects thought to be true, generating a positive outlook and confidence in the body’s ability to heal itself. In other words, the design of the study sought to measure the influence of a change in beliefs on the progression of cancer.

In short, this is what we found: First, every single patient who believed that the mind had a role in wellness, and whose physician believed this as well, was in complete remission (no evidence of cancer). By contrast, every single individual whose doctor reported that the mind had no role in wellness was dead. In a sense, it didn’t matter what the patient thought within this latter group—it all depended upon the medical authority.

Even though this was just a small test group, the results disturbed and puzzled me. That puzzlement changed recently when science learned through the use of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) that “parts of the prefrontal and anterior cingulate cortices, which play key roles in vigilance and skepticism when judging the truth and importance of what people say, were deactivated” in the presence of an authority. While the first study I noticed of this nature was about the clergy, other studies show that this effect includes anyone we think of as an authority.10

Similar to the power of the placebo, it appears that the health-care professional can reverse the positive by informing us that matters are out of our hands, and as with the cancer patients in the study, we’ll just surrender to their preconceptions and die.


It now seems obvious: What we believe predisposes our expectation and behavior. It directly influences our health, sense of well-being, and even the aging process. So what is it that you anticipate? Do you think you’ll “catch” the cold, flu or other “bug” that’s going around? Do you assume you’ll be sick for a certain amount of time? Does it seem that some illnesses are more likely at a specific age, under certain conditions, or simply because of genetics? What would happen if you changed your own beliefs about this? Is it possible that you could become healthier, avoid many of the infections that go around, and recover more quickly when you do become sick? Many people are reporting just this result.

Excerpt: Trying, Losing and Persisting

You never lose unless you quit. Vince Lombardi is often quoted as saying, “The difference between winning and losing is quitting.” There are thousands of stories about people who failed miserably time after time before finally achieving their goals. They succeeded because they never quit.

Knowing your own limitations is different from quitting, which is a mental state. You may see a ballplayer walking off the field, but long before taking this action, his mind set sail through all the possibilities, reasons, and rationalizations for giving up. He may have even rehearsed the event—to try it on, so to speak—before the actual action. So as I said, it’s first a mental action, like my son’s strikeout.

There are people I’ve worked with in the past who persist at quitting. They’re not aware that they’re giving up, per se, any more than my son was aware that he’d surrendered to striking out before the first pitch was thrown.

Becoming aware of this tendency in ourselves is the only way we can end these self-destructive, self-sabotaging patterns. Persisting should be all about allowing our efforts to become better and better. We persevere at practice—reinforcing our improvement instead of mentally rehearsing our failure expectation. As Marilyn vos Savant is credited with saying, “Being defeated is only a temporary condition; giving up is what makes it permanent.”

I believe that inside every human being is a winner. Each and every one of us possesses a unique ability—a talent, if you will—and chief among all of our abilities is the one called “Doing our very best.” I believe that this ability is what makes us champions.

I remember being confused as a young man about such statements as “All men are created equal.” It doesn’t take an Einstein to see how untrue this statement is—or is it? I tell a story on myself in my book Choices and Illusions, in which I made just this inquiry. It seems appropriate here to share what I learned.

Imagine a rocket scientist who, after much work, launches an interstellar voyager. Imagine the pride he feels in the accomplishment. Now imagine a so-called menial laborer. On his hands and knees for endless hours, he scrubs and polishes a floor. He has worked so hard and with so much pride that he has scrubbed his knuckles raw. Now he stands back and beholds his labors. The floor absolutely glistens—every square inch of it. It never looked that good even when it was new. Now . . . which man senses the most pride, the rocket scientist or the floor scrubber?2

Even at a young age, I understood that feeling. The fact is that when you do your utmost, you enjoy the same state of specialness, the same ecstatic feeling, the same sense of purpose and pleasure as anyone else, regardless of the act (launching rockets or scrubbing floors).

I believe there are no real losers because in the end, you cannot escape yourself. You—both here and in the hereafter—will learn to persevere, and in time you’ll turn the act of trying or the pattern of losing into winning because that’s who you ultimately are! You’ll acquire the habit of applying your best to all that you do, and as the rocket scientist–floor scrubber story illustrates, that means you’ll always come out ahead. You were created a winner, and a winner you were meant to be. Believing in yourself makes winning happen, so the only question is what you’re going to do to reinforce a strong, vital faith in yourself—for what you believe always matters!

Always remember the following analogy from Alfred Adler. It’s one of my favorites, and it will help you remember to believe in yourself along the way, even when you feel you’re drowning.

What do you first do when you learn to swim? You make mistakes, do you not? And what happens? You make other mistakes, and when you have made all the mistakes you possibly can without drowning—and some of them many times over—what do you find? That you can swim? Well—life is just the same as learning to swim! Do not be afraid of making mistakes, for there is no other way of learning how to live!3

The only way you lose is by quitting. Failure becomes permanent only when you give up. When you visualize quitting, you’re rehearsing the event. Can you think of examples from your own life when you were so convinced you’d be unsuccessful that you never even tried? Isn’t this often the most basic frustration that people have during a midlife crisis? Do you dare to look again at those dreams you once had and discarded—and to try again, this time with persistence, determination, and tenacity?

For information on the book launch, please visit

Join the launch party for I Believe: When What You Believe Matters!

Hundreds of bonus gifts will be given away to everyone who participates. Plus, enter to win grand prizes worth over $5K from personalities such as Lindsay Wagner (Bionic Woman), James Van Praagh, Bob Doyle, Hay House, InnerTalk, Norman Shealy and Caroline Sutherland. For more information, visit

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Interview with mystery novelist Harlow Coban

Today's guest is mystery author Harlow Coban as she does a virtual book tour for her new mystery, Life in Death.

Harlow is giving away a prize at every tour stop, which may include (but isn't limited to):

Amazon Gift Cards
Book Lover Note Cards
Kindle Cover
Book Tote
Hunger Games Trilogy

So, you'll want to enter a comment and leave you're email address in order for a chance to win something. You can also follow her the tour and comment on other blogs. The more you comment, the better your chances of winning.

Author Harlow Coban was born in Kansas City, MO, but grew up in Denver, CO. She relocated to North Carolina five years ago with her husband, two dogs, and 16-year old twins.

She shares a birthday with the notorious Napoleon Bonaparte. In keeping with his legacy, she is currently working on taking over the world. Harlow’s positive attitude and fresh take on life are her tools and conquest is certain.

She spends her free time writing, dancing, traveling, and defending mailboxes from her 16-year-old twins’ driving.

Her debut novel, Life in Death, is a murder mystery which pulls from real-life situations from her own family history. She felt compelled to share her story with the world while offering a thrilling and entertaining escape for readers.

In keeping with her commitment to improving the lives of children, a portion of the proceeds from the sale of her book will be donated to the Boys and Girls Club in her home state of North Carolina.

Welcome to Reviews and Interviews, Harlan. Please tell us about your current release, Life in Death.
When a girl that social worker Kari Marchant places in foster care is brutally murdered, she’s compelled to learn why. Her quest for the truth pits her against friends and coworkers. As Kari works to solve the horrific plot, more people die. How far should she go to learn the truth—even if it threatens her life?

When homicide detective Rance Nicolet meets Kari, his attraction to her is powerful—and the feeling is mutual. But things between them go terribly wrong when Kari’s old lover is found murdered with a letter from her in his pocket. The evidence against Kari is damning. Rance’s personal and professional lives collide. Does he blindly believe the woman he’s falling in love with or follow the evidence no matter where it leads?

What inspired you to write this book?
I looked into a personal family tragedy and learned a lot about police procedure and the case itself. I felt like I could tell a compelling story using what I learned.

What exciting story are you working on next?
The second book in this series is entitled, Apparition in Death. I’m still working on narrowing down the premise.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
About a three years ago when I started my first novel, which is still unfinished. Life in Death is technically my second novel.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I work for the government by day and write at night.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I do my best writing late night with the TV blaring in the background. Also, some of my best ideas come to me as I’m dozing off to sleep, so I’ll jump up, switch on the light, and jot down what occurred to me. This used to irk my husband to no end, but he’s gotten used to it now.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A flight attendant. I even landed a job interview with United Airlines and was flown to Chicago first class. I wasn’t selected and in hindsight, I’m very thankful. I didn’t have the temperament for that job.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Life is short. Take risks. Challenge yourself. Buy the ticket, take the ride.

Great advice. Thanks for joining my blog, Harlow!

Readers, don't forget about all the giveaways Harlow is offering. Comment for a chance to win something.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Interview with non-fiction/finance writer Nicholas Maze

Today's guest author is Nicholas L. Maze to talk about his financial help book, Exit: How to Leave Debt Forever.

And to help with finances, a lucky commentor has a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card. Comment below, and at any of Nicholas's other tour stops for a chance to win.

Born in Flint, Michigan, Nicholas L. Maze attended Baker College, where he earned his degree in Business Administration with a focus in accounting and marketing. With a knack for advertising and excelling in math, Nicholas seemed destined for a productive career in business. Instead, there would be another gift that would prove to be more dominant and rewarding.

In the summer of 1999, while still in college, Nicholas found a job with a nation-wide security organization. His initial plans were to work his job, until he finished college. But it was his stint with the security organization that would lead to a rebirth of his passion for writing. As a child, being driven by a strong imagination, Nicholas would write stories to pass time. It was during his composition courses in college that Nicholas realized that his gift was still intact. His writing craft received praise from his colleagues and instructors. With substantial amount of free time on the job, Nicholas found himself writing more and more.

He started by writing poetry and composing songs, during his free time on the job. It was at this same time that Nicholas began managing a small rap group, which allowed him to hone his writing skills even more. Nicholas began composing songs for his rap group and him. In 2004, Nicholas began to write his first published work. With ample amount of time and a number of ideas, Nicholas began to write. In order to compose a successful work, Nicholas had to make himself the reader. Nicholas placed himself in the passenger seat and let his imagination go to work.

As Nicholas was completing his book, he renewed his relationship with God and acquired a second job. Two jobs and attending college full-time, forced Nicholas to put his writing on hold. Once Nicholas completed his first degree in marketing, he was able to focus on his unfinished work and complete his book in 2007.

From there, Nicholas began to send out query letters for his book. After no success, Nicholas placed his book on the shelf and returned to school. In 2009, Nicholas received a prophecy on his writing gift and immediately began shopping his book around. “I instantly thought of my finished work and began sending out query letters. Within two months, I received a publishing deal.” Now, Nicholas is fine-tuning himself for a long, successful career as an author. His first love.

Welcome, Nicholas. Please tell us about your current release Exit: How to Leave Debt Forever.
My current release is a non-fiction/finance book. It focuses on eliminating debt and developing true wealth. Unlike the normal financial book that teaches you how to save and invest, this book goes outside the box and teaches about what debt is, what money is, and why the country is going in a downward spiral.

What inspired you to write this book?
I was led to write this book through a prophecy I received, before the release of my first book (White Collar Woman; fiction/romance). As I began to research and gather information, I was alarmed at what I was discovering and I knew that most Americans had no knowledge of this information. The prophecy combined with the alarming information was the inspiration for this book.

What exciting story are you working on next?
When I write, I follow where God wants me to go. As I previously stated, my current book was received through prophecy. My next story actually deals with religion. It will cover a number of issues that exist in churches these days. I know it seems odd to go from romance to finance to religion, but I feel a true writer should be able to compose on any platform.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
In 2004, I began to write my first book. As I continued to write, I began to take the career more seriously and considered myself to be a writer. Although I had been writing since the age of 12, I didn’t take it seriously until years down the road.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
No, I do not write full-time.

I currently hold a stock keeper position, at a medical center. Finding time to write can be difficult, since I am a full-time student as well. I am currently in a creative writing master's program. Being a full-time student and working full-time, I usually find time during breaks on the job or on days I don’t have to work. Sometimes I will write even if I have to work and do schoolwork. If I have some good information to put on paper, I will make time regardless of my schedule.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I guess my interesting writing quirk is not putting everything down on paper, at once. This is something I learned after my first book. Although I may have enough information of 10 pages, I may only write 5 pages. I do this to help prevent writer’s block. By saving something for the next day, I have something to build off and continue writing.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
As a child, I loved anything that was business. Ultimately, I wanted to own a record label. I did pursue it, before I wrote my first book. Due to small financial backing, the label did not go far. Yet, it was still a great experience.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I just want to thank everyone for wanting to learn a little about me. I hope my words, whether in this interview or in my book(s), has provided some sort of inspiration and influence. I ask that everyone seriously consider adding my current release to your library. I believe this literature can help alter the course that our country is currently in.

Thank you for being here today, Nicholas.
Readers, if you're interested in learning more, you can visit Nicholas's other tour stops or visit his website.

Don't forget about your chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card. He'll choose a lucky commentor will be chosen at the end of his tour. So follow, comment, and (hopefully) win!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Live chat/interview with C. Hope Clark.

The Writer's Chatroom presents C. Hope Clark.


Sunday, March 25, 2012

Eastern USA Time.....7-9 PM

Not sure what time that is wherever in the world you are?


The Writers Chatroom at:

Scroll down to the Java box. It may take a moment to load. Type in the name you wish to be known by, and click Sign In. No password needed.

Please note: The chatroom is only open for regularly scheduled chats.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Interview with erotic romance author Jennifer Lynne

Today's guest author is Jennifer Lynne from Australia to tell us a bit about her book Educating Ethan.

Jennifer Lynne is a mum of two who works by day in medical admin and at night writes sensual and erotic romance from her home in Melbourne, Australia. She lives in hope that readers will continue to enjoy her novella-length stories of love and lust!

You can find Jennifer at:
Website/blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Amazon

Welcome, Jennifer! Please tell us about your current book release.
Educating Ethan is a sensual romance novella, and my first release with Breathless Press. It is an older woman/younger man love story, but I wanted to twist the classic cougar tale a little to allow other issues to come to the fore, and in the end I hope that Ida and Ethan's story becomes more about two people falling in love and trying to deal with the emotional baggage that we all bring to a new relationship. Regardless of our age.

Here is the book blurb: Ida Deloraine intends to build herself a new life and a catering career, after a painful divorce. When the much younger Ethan Holt moves in across the street, an innocent flirtation quickly becomes serious when the two realise their age difference is no barrier to all-consuming passion. But Ethan is the exact opposite of what Ida is looking for in a sexual partner. In her eyes he is young and vibrant, with his life and his dreams still ahead of him, whereas hers are all in the past. Can Ethan, who is fighting his own demons in the form of a car accident, failed marriage and forced career change, convince Ida to overcome the past and live for the moment? And just who is educating who in this cougar encounter?

What inspired you to write this book?
I'm a woman in my forties, and in the past couple of years I've read a spate of romances that contain a young heroine and an older man. While most of these have been extremely well-written and enjoyable, I haven't necessarily connected with them on a personal level, and the last two stories I've written have been about a slightly older heroine – first Jeannie and her husband Jake in Platinum Passion (a ménage romance in which a Greek god visits a long-married couple to reignite the passion in their relationship) and now Educating Ethan, in which an older woman has a second chance at happiness with a much younger man.

What exciting story are you working on next?
I'm currently working on Books 2 and 3 in the Gods of Love series that began with Platinum Passion. This series, about the Greek gods of love known as the erotes, is more erotic in tone than Educating Ethan, but I try and balance an emotional connection with the physical one no matter what heat level I write, so the end result is still a romance and not erotica. Book 2 – Aphrodite Calling – is about Himeros (god of sexual desire) and his interactions with a career woman in modern-day Melbourne, Australia. Book 3 is about Anteros (god of requited/unrequited love) and is tentatively titled, Sex Club Secrets.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I've always written, ever since I was little, but it wasn't until I was at university and someone dared me to write a "Mills & Boon" that I began to look at writing more seriously. I took the dare and wrote/submitted my first manuscript. Of course it was rejected, but with very positive feedback about my unique writing voice. I joined the then fledgling organisation Romance Writers of Australia and devoured their newsletter every month, but really just dabbled in writing as a hobby until after my divorce. At that time I was finally in a mindset where I felt it might be possible to reach for my dreams, so I rewrote an erotic romance called Seducing Serena and submitted it to Red Sage. They bought it for their Secrets anthology (Volume 28), and it was when I got that trade paperback copy of Volume 28 in my hand that I finally felt like a "real" writer.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I would love to write full-time, but it is not financially viable at this stage. Up until recently I was a single working mum, so most of my time was spent either in my part-time day job in medical admin, or running my teenage girls around to their various school, part-time work, social and exercise activities. It is exhausting being a parent of teenagers! I also ran an internet costume business on the side, and my writing was mostly done between midnight and 1am. I kid you not! A year ago we moved in with my partner and his son, and these days, even though life seems just as busy, it is much nicer with someone to share the decision-making and driving! The costume business is history now, too, so there is definitely more writing time these days.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I don't know if I have an interesting writing quirk. I just write. Um, well…I know a lot of writers like to listen to music to evoke a particular mood when they write, but I love to hear the ticking of our clock in the kitchen – it is loud and everyone else in the house hates it! – but if I can hear the clock I know the house is most probably empty for a little while, and that means I have some peace and quiet in which to write. I love peace and quiet – it is so rare in a house full of teenagers. Does that count as a quirk? (yes, it does!)

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Well, let's see, at first I wanted to be just like Nadia Comăneci (remember the Romanian gymnast with the perfect 10 score?), then a famous and glamorous tennis player (Chris Evert was at her prime around then!). I graduated to wanting to be a vet, then for a short while in my teens I wanted to be a private secretary so I could marry a millionaire boss like they did in the romance novels I was reading at the time! Impressionable, much? I'm blushing right now! When I finally grew up, I decided I wanted to be either an artist, or a journalist and work in PR. The writing won over the art, and I worked in PR and marketing for many years, before moving into admin and working as an author in my spare time.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I do love to hear from my readers, so please feel free to contact me via my website, or friend me on Facebook or Twitter.

Thank you again for having me here today. All comments on my interview here at Lisa's blog will go in the draw to win a $20 Amazon or Barnes & Noble Gift Card. Winner will be announced at the end of my blog tour on Mar 30th.

If you'd like to follow my tour, next stop will be tomorrow at

Here's a list of all tour dates and blog stops.

Readers, the more you comment, the more chances you have to win!

Thanks for being here today, Jennifer.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Interview with YA fantasy author J.A. Beard

Today, Reviews and Interviews is a stop for J.A. Beard as he tours his YA fantasy novel The Emerald City.

J.A. Beard likes to describe himself as a restless soul married to an equally restless soul. His two children are too young yet to discuss whether or not they are restless souls, but he’s betting on it. He likes to call himself the Pie Master, yet is too cowardly to prove his skills in an actual baking competition. So, really, he’s merely a Potential Pie Master. When he’s not writing, he’s working on finishing off his PhD in microbiology.

Welcome, J.A. Please tell us about your current release, The Emerald City.
When her parents die, teenager Gail Dorjee retreats into an angry, sarcastic shell. She hopes it will ease her pain, but all it gets her is a one-way trip from Kansas to a Seattle boarding school, the elite Osland Academy.

As soon as she arrives, Gail clashes with Diana, the leader of the school's most powerful clique. The Winged make Gail's life hell until she find allies: her airhead roommate; a cowardly fellow victim of the Winged; and, bit by bit, Diana's boyfriend--the seemingly heartless Nick.

Gail soon has bigger problems than Diana. One of her teachers hates her. Glasses shatter and fountains erupt around her. She can't swear no matter how hard she tries. An unseen force is keeping her on campus. And worst of all, she uncovers a plot that will give one person a precious gift at the cost of thousands of lives. Now Gail and her friends must stop the plot--not just to save lives, but to win a brain, the nerve, a heart and a home in this modern urban fantasy take on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

What inspired you to write this book?
The Emerald City came about as a result of a bit of serendipitous inspiration. A couple years back, the Broadway touring production of Wicked rolled into town. Now, for those unfamiliar with it, it's an adaptation of a book by Gregory Maguire. His story is a revisionist retelling of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz from the point of view of the Wicked Witch of the West. Although it adds some details and changes our perceptions of the characters, it's still firmly set in a non-modern place and time.

After watching Wicked, I became inspired. I wanted to write some sort of Oz story, but writing something directly set in Oz didn't really appeal to me. I'd been on a reading streak of YA paranormal/urban fantasies at the time, so the idea of adapting Oz to a more modern YA UF setting seemed like a good plan. The original Dorothy wasn’t twenty-five, after all.

What exciting story are you working on next?
A Woman of Proper Accomplishments, a slightly alternate history Regency (the story is set in 1811 in Bedfordshire, England) paranormal romance. In this world Benjamin Franklin discovered a type of magic called spiritus that allows a rare few people to literally breathe life into objects (thus earning them the nickname of “soul breathers”). The various intellectuals and religious leaders of the day swear up and down that it’s not magic and try to treat it as a science despite obvious defiance of the Laws of Physics. The English weaponize the discovery pretty quickly and use it to crush the American Revolution, but they still have to later face the Napoleonic Wars. This time everybody involved has soldiers of flesh, wood, and stone to fight.

This is all pretty distant from nineteen-year-old Helena Preston. She’s more interested in finding a husband that will accept her “unfeminine” interests in things such as science/natural philosophy. When a handsome and well-off soul breather strolls into town, Helena thinks she’s found the man of her dreams. When she’s attacked by what appears to be a product of soul breathing, she faces the uncomfortable possibility that her new love interest isn’t such a catch after all. Plus, there’s no etiquette book in England that teaches the polite way to ask a gentleman if he sent a magically animated pile of wood to kill you.

I also have some other projects in the works, including the sequel to The Emerald City.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I suppose with the actual publishing of my novel, I now feel like a writer.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
No, I do not currently write full-time. As of yet, my income from writing doesn’t allow that and no rich dukes or princes have stepped up to be my patron. My “day job” involves studying viruses as part of my work to earn my PhD in microbiology. I’m also married and have two children, which take up more than a small amount of time.

I mostly write at night and very early in the morning. I also try to write extensively on the weekends if I’m not in the lab.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I like putting in hidden meanings and allusions into a lot of my work. The Emerald City, given that it is inspired by another book, is filled with things like that. Some are very obvious, such as turning Dorothy Gail into Gail Dorjee. Some are less obvious. The character of Lydia Wray is the Scarecrow analog. Her last name was chosen because there’s a village in England named Wray that has an annual Scarecrow Festival.

In one of my fantasy works-in-progress, the numbers eight and four are rather prominent as the setting is rather East Asian-influenced. Eight is a lucky number in most East Asian country and four is an unlucky number. So, I often associate those numbers with good and bad things respectively in that story.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A computer programmer. I did briefly study the field at university before realizing I was more interested in computers as a tool than actually being the guy to make them work. Despite that, after a few different jobs, I did end up a computer programmer for several years before returning to college to study microbiology.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Thank you all for taking the time to read my interview.

Thanks for stopping by and spending a little time with us, J.A. The insights you list for the 'quirks' question are an extra special treat.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Interview with debut literary novelist Jay Fox

Today's interview guest is debut novelist Jay Fox. He's going to talk about walls, making copies, and caffeine. :)

Jay Fox was born in Birmingham, Michigan in 1983. He graduated from Birmingham Seaholm High School in 2001 and from NYU in 2005. He is a frequent columnist for The Walls is his debut novel.

Jay, welcome to Reviews and Interviews. Please tell us about your debut novel.
The Walls is a literary novel about a young man, the narrator, in search of Coprolalia, a famous and anonymous graffiti artist. Since the artist’s work appears only in dive-bar restrooms in New York City and Brooklyn, a lot of the book takes place in these establishments as the narrator tries to find someone who knows the artist.

Many of the underlying themes in the book, however, deal more with the narrator, a recent college graduate, than the elusive artist. Perhaps the two most important of these concerns nostalgia, and how it very often distorts the past, as well as how the Information Age has flooded us with information, not facts. This flood of data can prove to be disorienting, and a lot of the book deals with the narrator’s desire to find some form of stability. In this regard, it was written as something of a generational statement.

What inspired you to write this book?
Most of my stories come to me in a flash, usually when in the shower. For The Walls, however, it came to me while I was at a bar in Brooklyn (Boat) one night back in the December of 2007. During one of my trips to the restroom, I noticed that the walls were totally covered in these drawings and words that weren’t really poems or slogans or much of anything. I was completely fascinated by them, and I decided to write about this phenomenon that isn't really graffiti, but it's art nonetheless.

What exciting story are you working on next?
I'm working on a new novel that's centered on people's need for certainty in an age of specious authority. For example, I've become very concerned with the way in which pundits and politicians conflate fact and opinion. However, I think this problem goes deeper, and that's going to be the real meat of this novel.

The book is in its initial stages, so I'm being careful not to begin down any roads that may lead to a dead end. Once I get a serious grip on the plot, however, the writing will get a lot easier.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I think I was ten when I first thought of myself as a writer. I would write these ridiculous stories that everyone around me found amusing, even if they were a little light on substance. While I enjoyed coming up with the concepts and letting my imagination go off into weird realms, I found that I really liked the process of writing, the way the paper filled up with characters, the way the language could cascade down the page or slow to a viscous drip. Unfortunately, I didn't have a particularly strong grasp on grammar, so a lot of these rhythmic elements were only in my head.

I first considered myself a good writer around the age of seventeen. I wasn't, of course, but I thought I was. In fact, I'm still not entirely sure where I stand on the matter, though I can say for certain that I've grown as a writer over the past eleven years. At the very least I can write with rhythm.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I wish I wrote full-time! As for now, I spend the hours of nine to one copying documents in various courts in Manhattan. I then take lunch before hopping on the train back to my company's office in Brooklyn, where I scan in and email out all of the documents that I copied during the first half of the day. The good news is that I'm typically out by five.

From five until two in the morning, I do all sorts of things. I'll usually sit on the couch and watch television or read right when I get home. After about half an hour, I'll start writing. This usually lasts about an hour, until seven. At this point, I'll either start cooking, leave for practice with my band, Pistols 40 Paces, or profusely thank my girlfriend for taking care of dinner while I sit at the computer typing away. Once I'm either done with dinner or back from practice, it's right back to the computer. I typically like to get out at least five hundred words a day on any project, though I have been known to write as many as five thousand if I'm sufficiently inspired or caffeinated. Caffeine can make the words spill onto the page faster!

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I can't write while listening to music with English lyrics. Consequently, I end up listening to a lot of jazz pianists, particularly Brad Mehldau and Bill Evans. I also like to listen to Edith Piaf.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be an architect. Actually, I really wanted to build entire cities more than just individual buildings. I think it had a lot to do with my love for Legos, as well as SimCity. This would probably help explain why I like writing novels more than short stories.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I would just like to thank anyone who has picked up The Walls or has taken the time to read this interview.

Here's the direct Amazon link to the book.

It's been a pleasure having you here today, Jay. Happy writing!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Interview with nutrition expert Beth Aldrich

Today we get to chat with certified healthy lifestyle counselor and nutrition expert Beth Aldrich about her book Real Moms Love to Eat.

Beth is going to give away 3 signed print paperbacks at end of tour to 3 randomly drawn commenters, so if you want a chance to win a copy of her book, comment below! 

Beth Aldrich delivers health, nutrition and environmental fundamentals through keynote addresses, lectures and as a media spokesperson. As an expert health and nutrition columnist for,, and, Beth shares her wisdom, experience and knowledge about all things eco and health. From food coaching, and living a balanced life to, the energetics of food and finding your passion, Beth delivers her message in a charismatic yet compassionate way.

She is the founder of For Her Information Media, LLC (FHI) established in 2003, with productions such as the PBS TV series, For Her Information (aired in Turkey, Israel and 60 cities, nationwide), the radio shows, A Balanced Life with Beth Aldrich, and Real Moms Love to Eat with Beth Aldrich, and the online magazine and newsletter, FHI Online. Her company's mission is to be a life guide for conscious-minded women. Beth is also the founder of Restoring Essence Nutrition, LLC and a Certified Holistic Health and Nutritional Counselor through the American Association of Drugless Practitioners (AADP). Beth received her education from Columbia University's Teachers College and The Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City.

Welcome, Beth. Please tell us about your current release.
My book, Real Moms Love to Eat: How to Conduct a Love Affair with Food, Lose Weight and Feel Fabulous, is a healthy lifestyle book that offers ideas, tips, and solutions for busy women to lose weight, gain energy, and look fabulous.

What inspired you to write this book?
In 2007, I was actively working on my PBS TV series, For Her Information when one snowy afternoon in January, I was involved in a serious car accident. While in the hospital, I came to the realization that the long hours and crazy schedule away from my family was not really want I wanted or what was satisfying in my life. After healing, I enrolled in the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where I became certified as a Holistic Health Counselor. I worked from home, only while my kids were in school and I really enjoyed helping other moms find happiness, balance and food they enjoyed.

I decided to write a book about my approach to eating and how women really CAN enjoy the foods THEY love without having the guilt or strict dietary plans to follow. After partnering with author, Eve Adamson, we created the perfect side-kick to any mom’s daily life and the Real Moms Love to Eat plan was born. Based on what the reader loves to eat, the plan offers five simple suggestions each week to propel them to a life of occasional cupcakes and a healthier outlook on life!

What exciting book are you working on next?
I’m still touring for this book, so I am focusing all of my energy on travel, book presentations, and when I’m home I’m 100% MOM.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I studied journalism in college and have always loved to write but after my car accident, I thought I’d better get moving on this bucket list item!

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I write part time and bake cupcakes when I’m not in the kitchen ( I also maintain my blog and write for a variety of other online outlets.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I like to write like I’m talking to you over tea or coffee! Girlfriend to girlfriend!

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
An actress or talk show host…

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
I qualified and ran the Boston Marathon in my own personal best time! I love my sons to pieces and my two dogs are a complete joy!

You certainly have a full life! Glad to have you here today. Have fun with the book tour!

Readers, don't forget to comment if you want a chance to win a signed print copy of Real Moms Love to Eat.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Live chat/interview with author A.C. Croom

The Writer's Chatroom presents historical, western/frontier, and romantic fiction novelist A.C. Croom.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

Eastern USA Time.....7-9 PM

Not sure what time that is wherever in the world you are?


The Writers Chatroom at:

Scroll down to the Java box. It may take a moment to load. Type in the name you wish to be known by, and click Sign In. No password needed.

Please note: The chatroom is only open for regularly scheduled chats.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Interview with debut dark fiction YA novelist Mark Rinker

Today's guest at Reviews and Interviews is Mark R. Rinker. This is the last day of a quick virtual book tour he's doing with Goddess Fish Promotions for his debut YA novel Evil Ambulance.

There's a chance for a commentor to win a $20 Amazon gift card. Details are below.

Born in California, Mark R. Rinker has spent most of his life in eastern Pennsylvania. His short story, “Dog Mask,” was published last year by Dark Gothic Resurrected magazine, and Evil Ambulance is his first novel.

Welcome, Mark. Please tell us about your current release.
Evil Ambulance is the story of an eighteen-year-old kid named Eric who moves into his uncle’s house at the top of a four-mile hill. The hill overlooks Riverwood, a small Pennsylvania town. Over the course of four nights, they are visited by a mysterious ambulance from the past, connected to a brutal murder spree from decades before.

What inspired you to write this book?
I wanted to write a fun, spooky horror novel, the kind of book I’d have loved to read as a teenager, and the kind I still enjoy reading as an adult. I read all kinds of books and will watch movies from any genre, but I have a fondness for horror, and have as long as I can remember. I read YA books when I was ten, twelve years older, maybe a little older, but at the same time I was reading R.L. Stine’s stuff, I was reading Stephen King and Clive Barker, among other adult writers. Over the past few years, I’ve gone back to some of the YA books I enjoyed as a kid, and read some newer series, and that inspired me to consider a novel I’d written, Evil Ambulance, as a YA book. I had a draft finished, but wasn’t happy with it, and once I started thinking of making into a YA novel, I felt more inspired, and the story came together very quickly. That original draft has very little in common with how the book turned out, and that’s for the better.

What exciting story are you working on next?
Between drafts of Evil Ambulance, I started work on a novel (non-YA) called The King of Wolves, about a guy who lost his wife and is losing his religious faith meeting a mentally disturbed young man, who takes up a friendship with him, much (he later finds) to the damage of his own mental health and well-being. It’s not a horror novel, but it is dark and somewhat violent.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’ve enjoyed writing since I was very young, but probably didn’t seriously consider as something I’d like to pursue until high school or college. At school I studied film and video production, and thought I wanted to be a screenwriter. But it’s very difficult to get a screenplay turned into a film, and it became somewhat unsatisfying writing all these scripts that didn’t become anything—because a screenplay isn’t a complete work on its own, it’s just the beginning. Whereas a novel, even if no one publishes it, even if it sits on a shelf, is a finished work. As much as I love film, I love reading at least as much, probably more, and after I realized I probably wasn’t going to pursue screenwriting, I began working on honing my skills as a writer, working on short stories and novels.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I work full-time at a travel company in Pennsylvania. It’s a good company and I like the work. I mostly write in the evenings, while listening to music.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I don’t know that it’s a quirk, but I’m often distracted by my chinchilla, whose two-story cage sits to the left of my computer. I never run story ideas by him, however; he steered me wrong on a couple of occasions.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Like most kids, I wanted to take on a variety of careers at various points in my childhood. For a while I was stuck on becoming a police officer, and before that, an archaeologist—and after that, a marine biologist. It took me a little while to realize the only reasons I wanted to be those things was that I’d seen those types of jobs portrayed in an exciting and fascinating light in various films (Stephen Spielberg was a big influence on my childhood; thus the archaeologist and marine biologist fascinations). After some time I began considering doing something creative instead of potentially dangerous.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
Nothing, except to say thank you for reading the interview, and I hope you’ll check out Evil Ambulance!

Thanks, Mark. Readers, you can see more interviews and other fun stuff with Mark at his earlier tour stops. Remember, he's giving away a $20 Amazon gift card to a lucky commentor. So leave a comment here and at his other blog stops to increase your chances of winning.

Mark can be found on Facebook. His book can be found through the Noble Young Adult site.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Interview with paranormal author Wendy Hales

Today we have debut novelist Wendy S. Hales. She's enjoying her view of the Rocky Mountains while talking about her novel Immortal Becoming. Let's listen in.

Welcome to Reviews and Interviews, Wendy. Please tell us a bit about yourself:
During my hectic life of working and raising children the call of a story in my mind was not always welcome. The niggling character or plot that refused to leave my thoughts until I would sit down a write something … a synopsis, character profile, anything to relieve the creative pressure. With my children grown, and my husband's loving support I dove head first into the depths of my passion and lifelong dream … writing. It was like a floodgate opened in my soul.

I look out at the Rocky Mountains from my window in Utah. I have been blessed with an amazing family and wonderful friends. My husband and I own a small local coffee shop. I enjoy boating golfing, reading, and spending time with my family. 

Please tell us about your debut release.
Immortal Becoming creates a world where there are three other species living in their own communities amongst humanity. One of the species is called Volaticus. The story focuses on the first bloodmating between a full Volaticus Elven named Shane and an Elven/human (Hulven) named Jess. The two sync right from the start … with one huge caveat. Jess has no clue what she is.

What inspired you to write this book?
I’ve written short stories about each of the species over the years. Bringing them together into a novel structure felt like destiny. I had to write this story … and share it. I could no more shut the characters up as stop breathing. They were insistent! I figured writing would be way cheaper than anti-psychotic medications.

What exciting story are you working on next?
Shadow Revealed, The Enlightened Species Book Two is to be release the first week in April. I originally had planned to put it out in May, but the readers of Immortal Becoming want it now.

Shadow Revealed delves deeper into the dark entities of the Elven. The worst of their kind are Morsdente (Killers of other enlightened species). The heroine Umbrae is rescued from a Morsdente after being a blood-slave for over seven decades. She trains as an assassin for five years before she gets to seek her revenge … except she finds Enlil, her bloodmate and a male who has his own reasons for vengeance.

Shadow Revealed has all the fun characters from Immortal Becoming and introduces many more.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I love to write! I guess I've always been a writer no matter what else I did. The craft of writing is relatively new to me. Until a few years ago I just poured whatever I had in my head out onto paper. By never concerning myself with style, voice, structure, I believe it made writing easier for me. Kind of like being eighteen—you know everything—at forty you don’t know shit. I'm a storyteller on a lifelong journey to become a writer.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like?  If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
When I started Immortal Becoming I worked about seventy hours a week. Trust me you can do both if your heart is in it. Now I write full time … I’m poor but happy.

My day consists of loading my system with coffee. I like to be up by 6AM since I get my best writing on new stories done before noon. Then I usually work on details, edits, & the nightmare revisions of the books I’ve finished and am preparing for publication. I social network a little and I try to read something for at least an hour a day. (Usually craft books, manuscripts for my critique partners, blogs, anything fiction, etc.)

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
When I’m deep in a scene, I take on the mood of the character. I call it situational Multiple Personality Disorder.  I also like to write with my eyes closed, which makes my spellchecker go nuts. When I finally open my eyes the words have more red lines than my grandmother has varicose veins.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
My mom tells me I wanted grow up to be a Fire Truck when I was three. Really, I wanted to be a mom. I had my kids young and I always worked, but my life revolved around them. Now they are grown and off on their own lives I can give everything to writing.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
We all wear a million hats, Mom hat, wife hat, work hat, girl’s night out hat, friend hat, and so on. Find your creative hat. Or better yet make it the perfect purse that goes with any hat! Also, don’t take yourself so seriously; going even a single day without having a dumb-ass moment that makes you laugh at yourself is boring. Put yourself out there.

Also, Immortal Becoming is out on paperback and available through my website.

Excerpt from Immortal Becoming:
She reached up and lightly touched his dentes. There was no way she could have known they were an erogenous zone to the Elven. He gave an involuntary, swift intake of breath as her gentle touch generated a tremor that raced through his body.
“Do they hurt?” She withdrew her hand, concern in her voice. Unable to speak, Shane could only give her a slight shake of his head in response. Again she bit her bottom lip, a habit of hers he found endearing. He would give anything to bite her lip for her, if she’d let him. She reached out her hand to his dentes a second time, and he could feel them stretch for her in return. Shane pulled his mouth back from her, running his tongue over the surface of them.
Careful.” He cautioned her telepathically. She swallowed hard but nodded. He leaned his head down slightly and opened his jaw wide to give her access.
She lightly touched the points. “They feel the same as regular teeth to my fingers.” Her expression was full of wonder. Whatever fear he’d seen from her earlier was gone. “They move! I saw a program one time that showed how a snake could pull its prey into it’s body by the fangs. They kind of move like that.”
The dentes muscles are very developed. They control the ability to erupt and retract. We can also lock our jaws.” Like the rest of his body, he could feel the sanguindente muscles trembling with the strain of control he was exercising. When her eyes met his, she must have realized that her effect on him was both agony and ecstasy. She must have felt empowered to know that he was not unaffected by her after all.
Jess leaned until her lips were centimeters from Shane’s. “Can I touch them with my tongue?” The warmth of her breath mingled with his.
He hesitated, his heart already pounding adrenaline into him, stuttered, his mouth watering. His Adam’s apple bounced up and down the way the rest of him wanted to at her proposal. She didn’t wait for his answer. The tip of her tiny pink tongue slipped out to gingerly touch the surface of his dente. Shane groaned loudly, his eyes falling closed, enduring a few of her tentative licks before she withdrew her tongue from him and smiled.
“They aren’t hard like teeth … or soft, either. More like cartilage. Really sharp cartilage.” Shane was still swimming in a sea of oral sensation. “What are they called?”
Sanguindentes. It means ‘blood teeth.’ Or simply dentes.” He could hear the strain in his voice, even telepathically. The female was pushing his limits of control. “We require very little human blood to survive. When we are active, a pint will last us several days. We may require more if we are injured or use excessive amounts of energy. Even then, we never require enough to drain a human. Most now days obtain our sustenance from bagged blood, donated by humans. We use what is considered tainted, or drink what remains after the platelets humans need are removed.”

Thanks for dropping by today, Wendy.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Interview with thriller author Rudy Mazzocchi

Today's guest interviewee is Rudy A. Mazzocchi. He's doing a virtual book tour for his new medical thriller Equity of Evil

Rudy is best known as a medical device and biotechnology entrepreneur, inventor, and angel investor, with a history of starting new technology ventures throughout the U.S. and Europe. He’s been privileged to have the opportunity to see the newest innovations in healthcare and work with some of the most brilliant researchers, scientists and physicians in the industry.

Authoring more than 50 patents, he has helped pioneer new companies involved in cardiology, oncology, orthopedics, neurosurgery and even embryonic stem-cell development. Through these efforts, he has become the recipient of many technology and business awards, including the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in Healthcare and the Businessman of the Year Award.

Combining these experiences and opportunities, with thousands of hours of travel and long evenings in hotel rooms, he found the initiative to start writing a collection of medical thrillers based on true events, the first of which is entitled Equity of Evil.

Welcome, Rudy. Please tell us about your current release.
Equity of Evil is a politically compelling, suspenseful and reality-cutting medical thriller that will challenge the reader’s personal views on capitalism, ethics, and the basic morality of his fellow man. It’s about an entrepreneur-turned-venture capitalist (Roman Citrano), who takes a risk on funding the creation of a new controversial business, one that intends to optimize the most frequently performed procedure in the world — Abortion. But it turns out that the decision to do so wasn’t really his, but something that he was manipulated into doing because of his unspoken past experiences. The new business venture quickly starts to go bad, but before he can make any attempt to repair or shut it down, he’s pulled deeper into an even darker world of deceit, rape, human trafficking, assassination, and the illicit black market for human organ transplants.

It becomes deeply personal as Roman’s sole love interest secretly uses one of his new abortion services to terminate her untimely pregnancy. When she disappears, his frantic search becomes a hellish nightmare that grows worse by the hour. This bold story is based on true events and involves some of the world’s oldest, most emotional and controversial issues.

What inspired you to write this book?
There were a course of events that unfolded in my personal and professional life that started to “read” like science fiction. I found myself asking two fundamental questions; what if, and why not? The story came together easy enough after I reached a point where the “thrillers” I was reading on a weekly or monthly basis were less exciting than the answers I was providing to those two questions. Make sense?

What exciting story are you working on next?
I’m actually considering writing a trilogy and well into my second novel. The first, Equity of Evil, is based on the harvesting of fetal organs that are obtained from abortions then grown like hydroponic vegetables to feed the world’s expanding need for human organs. The second, which I’m currently calling “EQUITY of PAIN”, is a story that will revolve around an existing technology known as “neuroplasticity” — the scientific manipulation and re-wiring of functional areas of the brain. The third manuscript will include the shocking dark world of euthanasia, called “EQUITY of DEATH”. If successful, I hope these will become known as “The EQUITY Series”!

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I’m still waiting to be considered one. Really! I’ll let others decide if I’m a writer or not. For now, I just think I have a few interesting stories to tell based on true events and life experiences. I’ll keep putting them down on paper and building characters around them until someone tells me to stop.

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
No, my day job is being a CEO of an early stage medical technology company, sitting on a few company Boards, and being the best husband and father I can be; (which is the toughest thing I do). My businesses take me all over the U.S., Europe, (and recently) Japan, which provides me dozens of hours each week to work on my manuscripts while on extended flights or in my hotel room after the business day ends. I’m actually writing responses to this interview while in between meetings in Tokyo. I also don’t golf!

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I tend to spend too much time researching and thinking about the names of my characters. However, I find that their name provides me with some insight as to how their character should develop and what they might look like in my own mind. I’ve actually changed the name of a character half way through a story because I wasn’t comfortable with how their image was progressing.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
The simple answer is “an adult”. I couldn’t wait to grown up. In regards to a career, I loved dissecting stuff and had a love for animals, so I always wanted to be a veterinarian. It’s what carried me into my academic career and the fascination with medicine and science.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
The worst part of my day is going to sleep.

Thanks for being here today, Rudy. Your series sounds intriguing.