Friday, September 30, 2011

Friday Fiction Freebies

Here they are, kids.

The Scottish Fairy Book by Elizabeth Wilson Grierson

I recommend the illustrated version for a more awesome experience.


Surviving the Fog, by Stan Morris

Description from Smashwords: "Have you ever been to camp? What would you do if the adults left “for a few hours” and they had not returned a week later? What if your parents never showed up to take you home? What would you do if you realized that the area below was surrounded by a mysterious brown fog that was dangerous? How would you survive the winter? What would you eat? Warning-sexual situations, cursing, violence"


Dead Reckoning by Ronie Kendig

Really long description from Amazon: “Dead Reckoning is the story of a young woman anxious to abandon the crushing effects of her father’s espionage career only to find herself tangled in the very web of mystery and intrigue that consumed his life. Underwater archeologist Shiloh Blake is consumed with passion for the water and inflamed at the injustices of life, blaming her secret agent father for her mother's death. When her first large-scale dig traps her in the middle of an international nuclear arms clash, she flees for her life and is followed by an unknown man. Who is he? How is he always one step ahead? Reece Jaxon is a former Navy SEAL, who now serves his country as a spy. His mission is threatened by the beguiling Shiloh Blake as he hunts down the sources to a nuclear dead drop in the Arabian Sea. The only way to end this nightmare and prevent a nuclear meltdown is for Shiloh to join forces with Reece. Will Shiloh violate her vow to never become a spy like her father? Will she reconcile with her father? Will her trust issues destroy her chance for love? And will she allow God to help her through this ordeal?”

On Amazon

See you Monday!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Interview: Michele Kallio, author of Betrayal

Author Bio: Michele Kallio is a former teacher/librarian and retired medical office manager. She lives with her physician husband, David, and their ten year old golden retriever, Sara, on the shores of New Brunswick’s Bay of Fundy, in Canada.

What inspires your story?

The search for knowledge. Researching a book, especially one of historical fiction, opens new horizons and inspires new ways of thinking about what we think we know of history. I believe that learning is an everyday experience; that life is the greatest teacher. To share knowledge is my inspiration. I believe that learning should be painless, not a recitation of dates but an understanding of people and their everyday lives.

What genre do you gravitate toward and why?

Definitely factual history and historical fiction. I enjoy reading about almost every time period and place. I believe that the old saying that ‘we must learn from history or we are doomed to repeat it’ is very true. I read history to learn about people and places, to better understand where we came from and where we might be going. Although Tudor history is my favourite, I enjoy almost all aspects of English history. I also enjoy a good mystery where the author keeps me guessing until the very last page.

What are your work habits like?

I would like to write everyday, but sometimes that is not possible. On the other hand it is not unusual for me to write several chapters in one sitting.

What do you consider your best work?

BETRAYAL is the result of 15 years of research, writing and rewriting. Since it is my first published work, other than poetry, I must say it is my best so far.

Do you plot out your novel in advance or write on the fly?

BEYTRAYAL was definitely written on the fly, while the MUSE was whispering incessantly in my ear. I do, however, try to do full biographies of my characters, although they do not always stay in character or behave the way I want them to.

What experience do you want for your readers?

I want them to learn new things, new ways of thinking, painlessly, while engrossed in the story. I want them to say, ‘I didn’t know that’ and dive right back into the story.

Are any of the character traits or settings based on real life?

Yes, I worked as a medical office manager for twenty-five years and I used that setting for my modern day characters. My husband, a physician, also practiced medical hypnosis for years and I have drawn on his experience and practices for my novel. Since my novel is historical fiction I have visited all of the places in the novel to be sure it was geographically correct. Even the fictional settings are based on local geography.

What are your most significant challenges when you write?

Like many beginning authors, I suffered from a lack of belief in my ability to write a good story. Access to research materials was another challenge, although I now own the largest private library of Tudor books in Eastern Canada.

What are you currently working on?

As requested by many readers of BETRAYAL, I am now working on the prequel, or back story, of my modern protagonist’s family and the mystery that surrounds them.

Do you have any advice you would like to give aspiring authors?

Yes, I would like to quote an unknown author whose writings I once found in a magazine for writers:

“Never give up on a dream just because of the length of time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.”

I would also like to say Never let anyone steal your dream, not friends, not family. It is your vision, your dream to write. Don’t let anyone take that away from you.

BETRAYAL is published by iuniverse and available online at:


Amazon UK

Amazon CA

Barnes and Noble


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Excerpt: Broken But Not Dead by Joylene Butler

When Brendell Meshango is terrorized by a deranged masked man for two long days, she thinks it's racially motivated. When he threatens her daughter, she doesn't care how scary he is, she'll use any means to stop him. Or so she thinks.


"Why did your husband leave you?"

I nearly choked. He knew that? How did he know that? "Because… Because I am stupid and ugly?" Damn. I hadn't meant for it to sound like a question. I tensed, hoping I'd manage the pain this time.

"Only I know what you need, Brendell. Eat."

Without argument I obeyed. When my plate was empty, he asked me whether I needed to go and I almost allowed confusion to ruin everything. But survival kicked in. "Yes."
His eyes moved over me, then he nodded and brought me a deep bedpan that I didn't recognize. I stared at it for a second before my thoughts cleared. Propped on one elbow, I hoisted my buttocks up while pushing the dish underneath. He returned to the kitchen nook and lowered his head. I closed my eyes and worked fast. When I finished, he gave me some paper towels, then handed me a plastic bag and a damp cloth. He removed the dish. I wiped my hands quickly, efficiently. I put the paper towels in the bag. He tied my free hand. I barely glimpsed his hand before he applied pressure to the tender hollow of my neck. His grip was powerful. The pain was unbearable. I fought to escape but -- Sweet Jesus. I couldn’t breathe. Choking. My eyes felt as if they were popping out of my head. I tried to scream. ...

* * *

Groggy, my eyelids weighed down by drug-induced sleep, I heard the distant cry of a lone eagle and felt like weeping with him. Was he calling to me? Attempting to say goodbye? Promising me that he’d fly overhead as my daughter spread my ashes across the water? Zoë had been silent when I stated that request.

A movement stirred the hairs on my neck. Shoes scuffed across the red carpet and the darkness transformed into dim light.

"Can I trust you?" he said.

"Oh, yes." I didn’t believe that for a moment.

"How do I know you won't betray me?"

I struggled to find an acceptable response and realized warm blankets covered me. My arms were tied, but my legs were free. What did that mean? "I won’t. I promise."

"Do you have any idea how much it pains me to punish you?" He moved closer, one arm behind his back. "Don't take pleasure in it, Brendell. Thought it would be easy, but it's not."

Did that mean there would be no more pain? Oh, thank you!

"Actually, Brendell, think I could hurt someone who hurt you. Maybe that's how I prove my loyalty. I could be your one and only personal avenger."
His words seemed to bring him peace and he moved closer. He stopped at the end of my bed. "I could make your ex-husband pay for deserting you, Brendell.

"I don’t care about him.” I tried to raise my head.

"Can I trust you, Brendell?"

A tremor passed through me. I groped for the words that would appease him. He went to the nook and dragged back my only stool. He positioned it between the woodstove and the bed and sat.

“Yes, you can trust me.”

"Prove it, Brendell," he whispered, his right arm behind his back.

With his free hand, he smoothed the hair off my cheek. Then he grasped my chin so I couldn’t turn my head. He shifted, slipping his hand out from behind his back and resting it on the bed beside my head. I felt something hard and cold touch my cheek. It moved along my throat ... touching my chin… my lower lip. I smelled ... oiled metal. He tucked his thumb in my mouth and forced my lips apart. Oh dear God! He pressed the barrel of the gun against my teeth … between my teeth. I tasted cold steel.

I tried not to gag. I hoped someone other than Zoë found me.

He withdrew the gun and let go of my chin. The stool squeaked, and he walked to the kitchen window, his arms folded across his chest.

I cried without sound.

He grabbed something from the counter and returned to the side of my bed. I stiffening, expecting the excruciating pressure. But this time I felt a prick on the tender area of my neck while my mind registered on the word syringe..


The book is available at these websites

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Book Trailer Tuesday

Here we are, some nice videos to gnaw on.

Medieval Noir, a series by Jeri Westerson


Ok, this next one is for a nonfiction title, I think, but I love the trailer so much that I am including it today. There is food, so much food. Lol

Unfamiliar Fishes, by Sarah Vowell

I do not love the music in this trailer, but the animation is cute.

Twenties Girl, by Sophie Kinsella

Monday, September 26, 2011

Monday Contents

Book nerdy good times this week! much like every week.

Tuesday: Book Trailer Tuesday

Wednesday: Excerpt - Broken But Not Dead, by Joylene Butler

Thursday: Interview - Michele Kallio, author of Betrayal

Friday: Friday Fiction Freebies

- LR

Friday, September 23, 2011

Friday Fiction Freebies

Welcome to another late edition of Friday Fiction Freebies.

I actually picked this first one because it had ‘unicorn’ in the title. I used to love unicorns when I was a kid. However, if ever pressed to choose a magical breed of horse, I would have to go with Pegasus. They can fly, after all.

Unicorn Bait, by SA Hunter

From Amazon: “Naomi accidentally goes to another planet thanks to a unicorn horn. Unfortunately, the horn doesn't come with her. She doesn't know how to get home, but that's not her biggest problem. That would be her brand new husband, and he's kind of scary. Her only hope is a crazy witch who knows something about catching unicorns. Which would be fine and dandy except, it's the crazy witch who introduced her to her husband. And then RAN OFF. She's going to get her for that.
Unicorn Bait is a fun romp through a magical world filled with adventure, humor, and a little naughtiness.”

Link to the book on Amazon


Eddie’s Shorts, Volume 3, by M. Edward McNally

From Smashwords: “Third volume of Eddie's old shorts, from the era of grunge and flannel. Contents: The 22nd and 24th President of the United States of America - "Grover Cleveland hates my guts." Breaking Up is Hard to Do – ‘The trip went pretty good, at first.’“

On Smashwords


I downloaded this next one for my Kindle. I feel I must read it, but I’m also trying to find time to read Don Quixote (again). AAAAAAGH! Not enough reading time!!!

Also the cover image in the Wikipedia entry for the book is A-Maz-Ing. Seriously. If I were one of those fancy people with a real office, I would get it blown up and framed and then hang it on the wall.

A Princess of Mars, by Edgar Rice Burroughs

From Wikipedia: “A Princess of Mars is a science fiction novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs, the first of his Barsoom series. It is also Burroughs' first novel, predating his famous Tarzan series. Full of swordplay and daring feats, the novel is considered a classic example of 20th century pulp fiction. It is also a seminal instance of the planetary romance, a genre that became highly popular in the decades following its publication. Its early chapters also contain elements of the Western. The story is set on Mars, imagined as a dying planet with a harsh desert environment. This vision of Mars was based on the work of the astronomer Percival Lowell, whose ideas were widely popularized in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.”

On Gutenberg

See you Monday!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Interview: Linda Barton, author of Next Move, You're Dead and Pure Justice

Welcome, Linda!

What inspires your stories?
My husband is the one who thinks up the ideas for my books. I joke and say I'm only the ghost writer in the Barton Writing Team as we call it. What happens is he will have an idea for a book pop into that creative mind of his and if the voices in my head like it, we'll do a brain storming session and if all goes well a book is born. That's how Next Move, You're Dead was conceived. We were on our way to Ft. Irwin in southern California with a load of weapons (back in my truck driving days) when he turned to me and said, "I have a great idea for a book." He knew I had always dreamed of being a writer, so after 6 hours of creating the characters and building the plot while crossing the California desert, Next Move, You're Dead was born. It was the same for our second book Pure Justice...another great idea and some more brain storming. We have a list of books yet to be written, so I'll be busy for quite some time.

What genre do you gravitate toward and why?
So far it's been the thriller genre. I guess the reason is because we both have a dark-side of us screaming to get out. LOL

What are your work habits like?
I'm currently working part time at the local lumber yard, so I write on my days off. I like to work in a quiet room where I can clearly hear the characters tell me their story. I know that may sound crazy, but that's how it works for me. LOL

What do you consider your best work?
It's really too soon to tell, as I enjoyed writing both of our published books. I'm pleased with the response Next Move, You're Dead received from the readers. To know the story kept them guessing up until the very end was very gratifying. As to Pure Justice it has only been available a couple of weeks, but it's already received a few wonderful reviews.

Do you plot out your novels in advance or do you write on the fly?
As I stated earlier, my husband and I will work out the general plot for a story, then I will fill in the rest. Most of my writing is done as you say "on the fly", because when I write it's like I'm watching the story unfold before me. At times I will even catch myself typing with my eyes closed if I'm deep in a scene. I'm not sure if other writers do the same thing, but that's how I get my best results.

What experience do you want for your readers?
I hope they find themselves trapped in the world of the characters in our books until the very last page. I also hope the readers experience every emotion the characters in the story feel and I would like to know they felt the time invested in reading our books wasn't wasted.

Are any of your character traits or settings based on real life?
Oh yes, quite a few. I have used many places I've lived or been to and I've created different characters with traits of people in my life. I think most writers do this as well because it helps to make a character more believable or a scene more credible.

What are your most significant challenges when you write?
Getting myself completely in the world of my story, but once there I'm as they say "off to the races." I used to panic whenever I had a case of writers block, but no longer. I just put the book aside for a while and let the back part of my brain work out the problem. I know that may sound silly, but it works because all of a sudden the solution to my block will pop into my mind and I can continue writing. LOL

What are you currently working on?
I've just started the second installment to Next Move, You're Dead. I've been told by the fans of the book that I'd better get going on it because they are getting impatient to see what happens next. LOL

Do you have any writing advice you would like to share with aspiring authors?
Yes I do...never stop believing in yourself or your ability to tell a good story. Take your time and understand that a well told story will probably have SEVERAL re-writes to get it as perfect as possible. Never be afraid to follow your own path, but also never turn down constructive criticism. Then the most important advise I can give it to ALWAYS have a good copy editor go over your book. I can't tell you the problem areas editor pointed out to me on my first book and because of her, I believe I'm a much better writer. Lastly, don't be in to much of a rush to publish. I made that mistake and it caused me many headaches and extra work to fix the typos that snuck by in the final edit process. It's much better to take the extra time and make sure your book is clean of typos before you publish, than to have them all pointed out to you by the readers and have to go back and correct them. That's no fun and is quite embarrassing.

Next Move, You're Dead

Amazon US

Amazon UK


Pure Justice

Amazon US

Amazon UK


Website address:

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Excerpt: Last Writes, By Sheila Lowe

Claudia's friend Kelly learns that she's an aunt when her estranged half-sister Erin shows up in desperate need of help. Erin and her husband have been living as member of The Temple of Brighter Light in an isolated compound. Now Erin's husband and child have disappeared, leaving behind a cryptic note. Using her skills as a forensic handwriting expert, Claudia gains entry to the compound. She has only days to uncover the truth about Kelly's missing niece before a child's life is written off for good...


The angelic little face gazed past the camera with serious eyes the color of spring violets and a rosebud mouth turned down.

The child in the photograph was a hardly more than a toddler—two, two-and-a-half at most—but there was a grown up wistfulness in the way she rested her chin on her dimpled hand. Studying the picture, Claudia Rose fancied she could see life experience in those eyes, extending far beyond the scant few months the little girl had been on earth. An old soul. She couldn’t help wondering what it was that had captured the child’s attention as she returned the photograph to the child’s mother.

Erin Powers took the photo and replaced it in an envelope, then stuffed it into an inside pocket of the battered leather bag at her feet. More saddlebag than purse, its faded sides bulged with unseen items. Erin’s slender shoulders shook as she choked back a sob. “We’ve always known Kylie was special. As soon as we saw those eyes, we said God has a plan for her. I’ve got to get her back. Please, please tell me you’ll help me find them.”

Claudia watched Kelly Brennan lean over to put an arm around Erin and murmur soothing sounds. They were gathered around a small wrought iron table on the plant-filled patio of Kelly’s condo, but no one was paying attention to the lush colors or the scent of star jasmine filling the sun-warmed air.

It had been only a couple of hours since the half-sister Kelly hadn’t seen in twenty years had showed up at her door, and Kelly wore a slightly stunned expression, as if she were still getting used to the idea. The even greater surprise Erin dropped on her was that Kelly had a niece. And that the child was missing.

Kelly had called Claudia, her closest friend, and asked her to come right over.

“The handwriting is a little disturbing,” Claudia said, her eyes dropping to the sheet of notebook paper in her hand. Kelly had asked her to analyze the handwriting in the note Erin had brought to show her. “I’m glad you asked me to look at it.” She searched for diplomatic words that wouldn’t add to Erin’s distress, but they weren’t easy to find. Red flags sprouted from the brief note.


Below the words, the signature was little more than a scribble which Erin identified as that of her husband, Rodney Powers.


Last Writes is available at


or any bookstore

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Author Audio

Very late evening Author Audio is a three-fer! This is a link to a series of readings by authors presented by Dublin City Public Libraries: Carlo Gébler (author of The Dead Eight), Kevin Barry (author of City of Bohane), and Paul Murray (author of Skippy Dies).

Dublin City Public Libraries

Monday, September 19, 2011

Fresh-Baked Contents

This fantastic week on Journey Reader…

Tuesday: Author Audio – a feature that now has an official name!

Wednesday: Excerpt - Last Writes, by Sheila Lowe

Thursday: Interview – Linda Barton, author of Next Move, You’re Dead and Pure Justice

Friday: Fiction Freebies

Comments, concerns, questions or suggestions? Please feel free to email me any time. I am often friendly.


Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday Fiction Freebies

Happy Friday! Presenting…this week’s freebies.

Realms of the Red Rabbit Book 1, by Laura Eno

A spoiled, rich young woman is catapulted into an alternate universe because of an ancient legend. As she fights to find her way back home, she must adjust her way of thinking or remain trapped in the Realms for eternity. Along the way she learns the meaning of friendship, love and honor while struggling against the dangerous adversaries who are intent on keeping her there.

On Amazon

Dust, by AJ Mullarky

June, 1944: occupied France. With everything he has ever believed called into question, Don Oldfield reflects on the choices, and the tragedies, that brought him here. A story of first love and growing up, set against the backdrop of the Second World War.

On Smashwords

This last one is very cool, especially if you view one of the versions with the illustrations.

The World Turned Upside Down

Description from Wikipedia: “The World Turned Upside Down is an English ballad. It was first published on a broadside in 1643 as a protest against the policies of Parliament relating to the celebration of Christmas. Parliament believed the holiday should be a solemn occasion, and outlawed traditional English Christmas celebrations. There are several versions of the lyrics. It is sung to the tune of another ballad, ‘When the King Enjoys His Own Again’.”

On Gutenberg

See you next week

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Guest Post: Larry Peterson, author of Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes

I have always wanted to be a writer but my journey to get there followed a convoluted path that found me spending 15 years working in the building trades in New York City, having to leave that business because of something called MS, an acronym for an insidious illnes called Multiple Sclerosis, that short circuits your nervous system leaving varied results for different folks, in my case stumbling around like a drunk and then being almost unable to walk at all. That was 30 years ago and, today, after a lot of hard work and prayers, I use no walking aids and get around just like most everyone else.

My wife, Loretta, my three kids and I moved to Florida (doctor's advice) when this was all "going down" and I have been here ever since. Loretta died nine years ago from Melanoma and I married a widow four years ago (a great gal named Marty) who is now undergoing chemotherapy for Lymphoma. I also had prostate cancer and after a radical prostatectomy four and a half years ago, I'm doing great. Seems that cancer is like Al-Queda---always sneaking around and attacking people trying to kill them. Fortunately, due to incredible advances, cancer is not nearly as successful as it use to be although there is still a long way to go before, like Al-Queda, it is irradicated. So---I am a husband, father, grandfather and officially a "senior citizen" and what am I doing now is writing, with one of my genres being children's books. It is my "permanent senior moment". It's ALL GOOD.

Enough of the "me" stuff. Let's get to the book. The title is "Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes". This is my first published children's book and it is about a boy who has slippery feet. No one, not even the smartest doctors around, can figure out why Willie has slippery feet. He just does and that is all there is to it.

Naturally, because of his slippery feet, Willie just slips, slides and spins all over the place. He cannot run because he starts to slide, he cannot climb a tree because his feet slip off the branches and he cannot ride a bicycle because his feet slip from the pedals. Willie hates his slippery feet but what he hates even more are the special shoes that have been made for him that will stop all the slipping and sliding and spinning. Willie thinks that they are the stupidest, ugliest shoes anywhere and he is positive that, if he wears them, everyone will laugh at him. He discovers that sometimes we worry about things about ourselves when actually there was nothing to worry about in the first place.

The message in the book is about accepting "differences" in each other. Many kids think that, in some ways,they are different than other kids; ears are too big, nose is too large, hair does not look right, etc. Often times it can be a self-esteem issue and low self-esteem is one of the reasons some children are succeptible to bullying. The book has an intercative guide that addresses these issues and can be used in a classroom setting.

The book is available in hard cover and e-applications (Kindle, BN, PDF, Google). Tribute Books is the publisher or

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Interview: Nikolai Krimp, author of The Last Mage

Today we have Nikolai Krimp!

Quick Author Bio: “Nikolai Krimp, born September 7, 1948 in Germany. Was raised and educated in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, where he lives presently. His hobbies include reading, music, and cooking.”

What inspires your stories?

I really can’t say, other than that I enjoy reading about Elves and Dwarfs, so I have created a world with a heroin and hope people enjoy my stories as much as I have fun creating them.

What genre do you gravitate toward and why?

My favorite genre is fantasy. I like to temporally leave this world and lose myself in a world that I know doesn’t really exist. Even though it does exist in my mind. I have a group of friends and we get together every two weeks to play a role-playing game. I find it helps me to form new characters whenever the story allows it.

What are your work habits like?

Chaotic. I write when I can and also when I feel like it. Sometimes the words just keep coming and other times it’s like I need to call someone for help. But the thing is that there’s never anyone around to help.

What do you consider your best work?

There isn’t anything that I can think as my best work. Every time I check back, I see something different and I change the idea. It’s very frustrating sometimes especially when I have to change more than just a paragraph. When that happens I delete the new idea and try to incorporate it at another time.

Do you plot out your novels in advance or do you write on the fly?

Yes and no. I usually have a rough outline of what the story should be and then I just start writing. Usually once I get started the story changes as I go along, because of better ideas on how the plot should continue. Most of the time I stick to the story line until the end. Here is where I have fun. I never really know how the book will end. I start off with an idea and by the time I reach the end; I have changed it.

What experience do you want for your readers?

Simple. Just enjoy the read. If readers like the story then I am satisfied.

Are any of your character traits or settings based on real life?

No, but I try to keep the story and the characters as believable as possible. There’s nothing worse when you have a character fighting hundreds of the enemy and killing them all without receiving a scratch. I try to keep it simple and more down to earth. Saying that I have to laugh. How can I write a fantasy story and keep it down to earth? It’s amazing how the mind works. Ha Ha!

What are your most significant challenges when you write?

Staying focused. I get distracted quite a lot when I right. I find my mind always wandering around the next bend and I try to see what is there. Are my characters safe or are they in danger, so checking back to when the last melee occurred helps to keep the story believable. My son gave me a singing stuffed teddy bear with a t-shirt that reads, “Some times my mind wander and some times it leaves me completely.” I got a kick out of that one. There’s truth in that.

What are you currently working on?

Right now I am working on book number three, called “The Shadow Lord”. The first book. “The Dragon’s Mouth” is on sale in e format at Mobipocket. The second one, “The Home Stone”’ is being sent to publishers at this time. I am hoping it will be picked up for publication. And book, number three is still in the works.

Do you have any writing advice you would like to share with aspiring authors?
Keep plugging away. Eventually one will be noticed. After all, look at J K Rowling. She was rejected too until someone saw something in her stories and published them. Do not go after the money for it’s a long way from small to big bucks. The main objective is to get people out there to buy your books and enjoy the stories.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Book Trailer Tuesday

Welcome to Book Trailer Tuesday.

First up, Michele Kallio’s trailer for her book Betrayal. Her Journey Reader interview is scheduled for 10/27, by the way.

Ok, ok, this trailer for Christine Feenhan’s Dark Curse looks a little B movie but there is a cool flying dragon animation and some rocking guitar music.

This final trailer is geekerific to the max. Think Shaun of the Dead meets Fanboys. I desperately hope that someone will make an actual movie of this book.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Monday Contents

Another week, another mix of book-related fun times. Here's what's up.

Tuesday: Book Trailer Tuesday

Wednesday: Interview: Nikolai Krimp, author of The Last Mage

Thursday: Guest Post: Larry Peterson, author of Slippery Willy’s Stupid Ugly Shoes

Friday: Fiction Freebies

Authors, I am officially out of October spots. Journey Reader is booked. However, do not fret. All November spots are currently available.

Thanks for reading!


Friday, September 9, 2011

Friday Fiction Freebies

These Friday Fiction Freebies are all Project Gutenberg books in honor of Michael Hart, the founder of the site who died this week at age 64. Godspeed, Mr. Hart.

Lincoln’s Yarns and Stories: a complete collection of the funny and witty, by Alexander K. McClure

The Second Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling

Myths and Legends of California and the Old Southwest, by Katharine Berry Judson

Thursday, September 8, 2011

(S)mythology by Jeremy Tarr, illustrated by Katy Smail

Today we have some great stuff for the fairytale, (S)mythology!

Charming, poignant and absurdly funny, (S)MYTHOLOGY is a contemporary fairy-tale that whisks you on a wild adventure from the streets of London to the far reaches of the globe from haunted islands to African villages, from the peaks of the Alps to the depths of the Underworld. Twenty-one year old Sophie has spent her entire life in virtual seclusion in a London flat fearful that should she venture out into the world the curse that was placed on her as an infant would turn friends and lovers into stone (marble, to be exact) just by merely looking at her. But when events beyond her control drive her onto the streets of London, she must combat her fears and battle the forces that have kept her hidden away since childhood.

The book is available on

iTunes/iBook App


Barnes and Noble (hardcover and on Nook).

Official book website with more goodies and info

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Excerpt: The Death Contingency by Nancy Lynn Jarvis

Nancy is here with the first chapter of her mystery novel, The Death Contingency.

Book Description:
Murder and mystery come to Santa Cruz and Bonny Doon. A seller disappears before signing the grant deed. He turns up dead; and his nephew, a realtor Regan has known for years, becomes a person of interest in his death. She's convinced the authorities focus is all wrong and sets out to prove it.

Then there's a second death in the neighborhood. When it's ruled accidental, Regan again finds herself at odds with the police. She thinks it's murder and even thinks she knows who the murderer is - but she has to unravel past secrets before anyone will take her seriously. And, the problem is - she doesn't want to be right.

Excerpt Chapter 1

Signs every few yards along the cliff edges warned that they were dangerous and unstable. But he’d had a few beers and needed to relieve himself. If the cliffs were unstable, why hadn’t the signs fallen into the ocean, he sniggered with intoxicated logic? An impish grin crept across his face; he was seventeen, invincible master of the world. He moved to the very edge of the cliff and stood, feet spread, hand tauntingly on a warning sign, head thrown back crowing at the sky as he sent his stream arching into the ocean below.

He was stunned by the suddenness of the fall. He didn’t cry out for help as he plummeted. There was no time. He plunged deep into the ocean. Frigid water slammed his body, contracted his muscles, and forced the air from his lungs. He strained for the surface, battling his emptied lungs that were desperate for oxygen, struggling against the urgent need to take a killing breath. He surfaced with a gasp, gulping air until his lungs hurt less than his skin.

He wasn’t afraid. Just shaken and angry. Sobered. This was the Pacific. The ocean was warm where he came from near San Diego. How could it be so cold here? He was partying just north of Santa Cruz, home base to so many world-class surfers; how could they surf in this water? He shivered violently. His entire body felt like it was being slashed by tiny, sharp razors. Except for the long pants and the tightly zipped sweatshirt that covered him, he half-expected he would see his blood oozing from a thousand cuts.

The plunge left him disoriented. By the time he turned to face the cliffs, he was surprised how far he had drifted out to sea. Not a problem. He was a strong swimmer. He kicked and paddled hard in the direction of the cliffs. But despite his efforts, after a few minutes they seemed farther away, not closer. The music from the party was growing fainter. Not good.

The cliff face was sheer where he dropped into the ocean. He was going to need help getting back to the top. By now, some of his friends should be climbing down with flashlights, calling his name, ready to lend a hand when he got near land. Why didn’t he see lights moving down the cliff face? He rubbed his ears — they must be affected by the cold — he could hardly hear the sounds of the party anymore. And he was getting tired fast. He took as deep a breath as he could manage and called to his friends. No response …

His arms and legs didn’t feel like they belonged to him any longer. They were heavy and stiff — his joints almost old-man arthritic in the cold sea. It took real determination to kick his legs and reach out his arms to paddle.

Maybe taking off his shoes would make swimming easier, less tiring. He stopped his ineffective strokes to reach down and take them off. But his fingers were numb and lacked strength; he couldn’t be certain when he grasped the Velcro tabs on his shoes. A task that should have taken a few seconds stretched into exhausting minutes.Finally one of his shoes popped to the surface behind his head. He didn’t notice it …

At least the water wasn’t as cold anymore. He felt prickles — pinpoints of pain rather than the overwhelming agony of razor-cut cold. As he struggled with his shoes, the sounds of the party faded more and more, growing softer and farther away until he couldn’t hear them at all. The beacon of light given off by the party bonfire on the cliffs had become very faint, more a memory of warmth than luminosity. Perhaps he should have been concerned, but he wasn’t. He was comfortable in the water now. The moon came out from behind a passing cloud and shone brightly. Cool silver light reflected off little lapping waves all around him. The sounds they made were soothing … restful. And he was so tired …

He had no fear of sinking; the salt water buoyed him up. Maybe he’d turn on his back, close his eyes, and just rest for a few minutes, enjoying the warm Pacific and the lapping of the waves before he got back to the hard task of swimming to shore.

Another man was resting momentarily in the ocean, too, well beneath the young partygoer. He hadn’t expected rescue when he went into the sea. He never struggled to return to the surface after his drop into the Pacific. His breathing had been regular and deep. His lungs had filled with water as naturally as they had with the air that would have buoyed his body and kept him afloat in the dense, salty sea. Instead, the weight of the water in his lungs had quickly sent him to the ocean bottom. A school of surfperch swam around him near the marine floor. They were small fish in a vast ocean, but the unified movement of their silvery bodies caused a slight ripple in the dark underwater world. Caught in the flow, the man gave up resting and swam, his arms and legs lacking coordination and purpose, on his random undersea journey.

The novel is available on author’s website

and Amazon

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

author reading: Geraldine Brooks

Here is an audio recording of Pullitzer Prize Winning Author, Geraldine Brooks.

Caleb's Crossing
From Amazon: "In Caleb's Crossing, Brooks offers a compelling answer to the riddle of how--in an era that considered him an intellectually impaired savage--he left the island to compete with the sons of the Puritanical elite. She relates his story through the impassioned voice of the daughter of the island's Calvinist minister, a brilliant young woman who aches for the education her father wastes on her dull brother. Bethia Mayfield meets Caleb at twelve, and their mutual affinity for nature and knowledge evolves into a clandestine, lifelong bond. Bethia's father soon realizes Caleb's genius for letters and prepares him for study at Harvard, while Bethia travels to Cambridge under much less auspicious circumstances."

Monday, September 5, 2011


Good evening and welcome to this week’s contents. We’re switching things up a bit the next few days.

Tuesday: Link to a surprise author reading.

Wednesday: Excerpt, The Death Contingency, by Nancy Lynn Jarvis

Thursday: (S)mythology, by Jeremy Tarr, Book Trailer plus awesome Illustrations by Kay Smale

Friday: Fiction Freebies

I added a bit more information to the Submissions page if anyone wants to check that out.


Friday, September 2, 2011

Friday Fiction Freebies!

The General, by Tim Miller

A short story and a chapter in his blog novel. Also, there are pictures!


Sleep Tight, by Anne Frasier

From Amazon: “Women who dye their hair blonde may think twice before heading to the salon after reading Frasier's (Hush) enthralling thriller about a serial killer who plucks the eyes out of his young blonde victims and grafts rose stems onto their fingers-all in an effort to create the perfect woman.”

On Amazon


Masque of Moonlight and Shadows, by Darragh Metzger

From Smashwords: “Cool jazz reigns in Venice, warming the spring nights and inspiring the dizzying night life of the beautiful people In the autumn of the Jazz Age, every party is a masque, and every mask hides secrets. Dylan's paintings of Tiffany have swept art circles into a frenzy, made her into an icon, a fantasy, a creature of air and dreams as ephemeral as the music drifting through the evening shadows. But beneath the mask of fantasy is another Tiffany.”

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Author Interview: Davis Aujourd'hui

Author Bio:
"Davis Aujourd'hui is the pen name of the author of the Sister Mary Olga Fortitude series. The first book, entitled “The Misadventures of Sister Mary Olga Fortitude,” was just published in October 2008 by Outskirts Press. “Babes in Bucksnort” is the first sequel, soon to be followed by “Have A Heart.”

Davis is a new author, yet he possesses a rich life experience that has enabled him to draw from it in order to create a colorful canvas upon which to paint very human lives. He is a retired social worker, having worked for Adult Protective Services in New York State for nearly twenty years. He developed the characters within his series of books in order to entertain a colleague of his using the gift of humor.

As will be the case of the title character in his third book, Davis is a recovering alcoholic. He also happens to be gay as is the case with several of the endearing and humorous characters within his novels. He can speak from his own experience. He has possessed all of the foibles of his cast of characters, including those naughty, nasty, and nice."

What inspires your stories?

Years ago, when I was a social worker, I developed my characters in order to entertain a colleague of mine. I would leave her voice mails in which I impersonated characters within scenarios that I spontaneously created. She loved it and that inspired me to develop more.

When I retired, I thought to myself that I could write a book about my chain-smoking, bourbon-swilling nun along with the cast of other zany characters. I sat down and wrote The Misadventures of Sister Mary Olga Fortitude in a little over a month.

Since I hadn't run out of ideas, I immediately continued by writing Babes in Bucksnort. From there, I wrote a total of eleven books in the series. I hope to have Have A Heart published within a year.

What genre do you gravitate toward and why?

I write in the humor genre with a slant toward satire that contains a spiritual message. I do this because I love to make people laugh. I also want my readers to come away with inspiration and food for thought. I dedicate all of my books to adult children who deserve a chance to not take life so seriously.

What are your work habits like?

I generally write every day. I write from two to ten hours per day. I let inspiration be my guide and let it flow from there.

What do you consider your best work?

My best works are yet to come, but both Misadventures and Babes have been well-received. I have received an average of 4.5 out of 5 star reviews on

Do you plot out your novels in advance or do you write on the fly?

I let inspiration be my guide. I do not plot out my novels in advance, though I sometimes have certain themes and scenarios I want to develop as I continue to write. I generally allow my intuition develop the tale as I continue to go with the flow. The end results have always been very gratifying.

What experience do you want for your readers?

I want my readers to laugh out loud from beginning to end. I also want them to take a look at themselves as they relate to the characters. In so doing, my readers may discover qualities they wish to develop as they let go of those which do not serve their continued growth.

Are any of your character traits or settings based on real life?

All fiction tends to be based upon the writer's life experience. Such has been the case with me. I have incorporated qualities I have witnessed in others as I have developed my characters. What has been the most fun for me has to create nasty characters based on ornery people I have known in real life.

What are your most significant challenges when you write?

The most significant challenge has been writer's block. When I encounter that, I simply let go of all thoughts. As I do so, inspiration returns to me and I continue to go with the flow.

It is also a challenge to keep track of my many characters and to give them equal attention within my books. As they develop over time, I need to remember what has transpired in previous books. This often means that I need to return to my previous books as a touchstone for further development.

What are you currently working on?

I have just finished a reincarnational romance about a couple who travels through three lifetimes together. I am currently seeking an agent to represent the book to a traditional publisher.

Do you have any writing advice you would like to share with aspiring authors?

Keep writing and perfecting your craft. Keep the faith and never give up.

Babes in Bucksnort is the sequel to the highly praised The Misadventures of Sister Mary Olga Fortitude. Once again the unconventional bourbon-swilling, chain-smoking nun will spin outrageously funny new tales about the residents of Bucksnort, Wisconsin while she tests the will of a reformed prostitute who just happens to be her Reverend Mother.

Unfortunately there is trouble brewing in the Snortlands. The nasty and notorious town busybody, Priscilla Bunhead, goes on a crusade to stamp out what she calls the gay menace. That's when she convinces her millionaire friend, Mildred Mayflower, to give away her fortune in order to bring the Reverend Billy-Bob Blunthead and his Born Again or Burn Forever Disciples for Jesus to town to do the job. It will be an uphill climb for them as the closet doors of many gay people in the Snortlands burst open.

Billy-Bob and his wife, Pinky Poo, will have another battle on their hands when Dimples Dufus, the heiress to the Mayflower fortune, arrives on the scene. They'll also have to reckon with a mysterious woman who channels an entity who challenges the hateful and hypocritical agenda of this spokesman for Jesus.

In between the laughs, Sister Mary Olga continues to dispense nuggets of spiritual wisdom during her classes in Beginner's and Advanced Holiness. Just don't take seats near the flatulent child named Fartley Dinkledorf or his lecherous one-hundred five year-old grandfather, Poopsy. The bottom line is that everyone is welcome in Sister Mary Olga's classes. Join the diverse cast of characters for a joy-ride that will tickle your funny bone until it aches.

Links to purchase books:

The Misadventures of Sister Mary Olga Fortitude

Babes in Bucksnort

Thank you for visiting, Davis! - LR