Introduce Yourself: Introducing Guest Author Felicia Denise

 

Today I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Felicia Denise. Welcome to The PBS Blog! Let’s get started.

What is your name and where are you from?

Felicia Denise is my real name, and I’m a southern girl by birth—Ole Miss—but grew up in Michigan, got married and started a family in California, moved back to Michigan and now I live in Arizona.

Watch out traveler. Always wanted to visit Cali. Now, you know I have to ask. Since Friday came out, how many times have someone said to you “Bye Felicia?”

LOL! Actually, I’ve probably said it to other people more than it’s been said to me! I also have half a dozen t-shirts, a coffee mug, a keychain and a cap that say, “Bye Felicia!” Both my sons have it as my ringtone. LOL!

Lollll.

How many siblings do you have?

I am one of nine—six girls and three boys. We lost our youngest brother twenty-five years ago to AIDS-related pneumonia at the age of twenty-nine. I don’t believe the eight remaining of us have all been in the same place at the same time since his funeral. There’s always one missing.

Awwue. I am so sorry to hear that. How long have you been married Felicia?  

We’ll celebrate our 34th wedding anniversary in mid-September!

Whoop! Yass. Do you have children?

Yes, three. Our oldest son lives a couple of hours away and works for a major medical corporation; the younger son is a member of the National Guard and works in security, and our daughter is an Army wife who works on base. Notice there was no mention of grandchildren… but I have four grand-dogs!

In the Best Interest of the Child (September 30, 2016)

Amazon US http://bit.ly/BestInt

Amazon UK http://bit.ly/BestIntUK

Amazon CA http://bit.ly/BestIntCA

Amazon AU http://bit.ly/BestIntAU

Goodreads  http://bit.ly/BestIntGR

 

Not grand-dogs loll. I understand that you write, are you employed outside of writing?

No. I had to leave the workforce almost twenty years ago because of chronic illnesses—osteoarthritis and Fibromyalgia.

What was your childhood dream?

To sing with Up with People! LOL! They were a group of young men and women who toured the country regularly…singing in schools, on college campuses, at sporting events, etc. And I loved to sing when I was a kid! My parents’ friends would pay me a quarter to sing at BBQs and picnics LOL! And I sang it all—Aretha Franklin, Freda Payne, Barbra Streisand, Mahalia Jackson—just give me room!

When I was thirteen, a large mass grew over my thyroid and larynx. Fortunately, it was benign. It took a year of surgeries and rehab, but I did go back to singing. Only instead of standing with the girls and singing soprano, I had to stand with the boys and sing bass!

Cool! You gonna have to sing for us one day. So sorry about that mass, glad you everything went well.

You named some artists and I know you be jamming out with us on Throwback Thursdays! So, please tell us more about the kind of music you like.

I love music… end of story! My playlists are so eclectic—60s folk and Motown, 70s funk and disco, 80s Soul, R&B, and boy bands, 90s power females… all mixed in with Classical and Country! The only music that annoys me is gangsta rap and grunge.

Yea, the music today irks my nerves. I don’t even know what to call it but it’s not music. What skill would you like to master?

Playing the piano! Always wanted to learn and even owned a piano at one time. My children were young and involved in every group and club imaginable and there just was never enough time for lessons and practice.

I’d love to learn to play the piano too. Let’s talk about writing, what’s the most difficult thing about being a writer?

Finding your audience.

The most exciting thing?

The emails from readers when they make a real connection with characters and plot. There’s truth even in fiction.

Indeed it is. What is the most thought-provoking book you’ve ever read?

The Bible. Some believe it’s just a book of rules on things you can’t do, but think about it. Nearly every existing trope or genre can be found in the Bible. There’s a lot going on the pages of the Good Book, which is why it takes at least a year to read and comprehend it properly.

Probably the best answer to that question I’ve had here yet. You KNOW I agree. I think people will be surprised at how much information is in the bible. Giants? Bible. Demons? Bible. Righteous and fallen angels?Bible. Black History? Bible. It’s all there.

Felicia, religious?

Religious, no. Spiritual, yes. My maternal grandfather was a Methodist pastor and I was raised in church, but I am not a fan of church doctrine. To me, it’s the underlying problem of ANY religion. Man interjecting his rules and wills where they don’t belong and for non-religious reasons.

I knew we connected for a reason. I gotta share some information with you! Who is your favorite writer?

Two-way tie between Toni Morrison and Jonathon Kellerman. They couldn’t be more different in genre and style, but before I finish the first chapter of any of their books, I’ve crossed into another world.

Family Matters (In the Best Interest of the Child #2) (August 2017)

Goodreads http://bit.ly/FamilyMattersGR

 

Nice. What do you hate most about writing advice?

The subjectivity! Everyone wants you to buy their book or enroll in their class because they have the sure-fire method for becoming a bestselling author and selling truckloads of books. But that just isn’t true. What works for you may not work for me. And it isn’t because I did anything ‘wrong’. An author must put in the time—hit a few and miss a few—to find what works for them… and it doesn’t happen overnight.

Say THAT. What do you love about writing advice?

I love the common-sense advice. It removes all the mystery and double-talk and explains in two or three paragraphs the information you need to know.

Indeed. Now, I met you through the blog so let me ask you, does blogging help you to write?

Actually, for me, it’s the opposite. Writing helps me blog.

I like it. What TV channel doesn’t exist but really should?

JRR Tolkien Network! “All Hobbits, All the time!” I’d never change the station!

What? Lol. Felicia girl you got me rolling.

What TV channel exists but really shouldn’t?

TRUtv…ugh! It was nice when it was CourtTV, now it’s just desperate reality shows and people saying, “Hold my beer and watch this!”

Free, a Novella (May 30, 2017)

Amazon US  http://bit.ly/LindenLane

Amazon UK  http://bit.ly/LindenLaneUK

Amazon CA  http://bit.ly/LindenLaneCA

Amazon AU  http://bit.ly/LindenLaneAU

Goodreads   http://bit.ly/FreeANovella

 

What do you think of the world we live in?

I grew up in the 60s and came of age in the 70s and would give anything to have those days back. They were not perfect times, by any means, but the movement for change was a positive one and shared among the masses. Today, pick any ten people and you could get ten different agendas. Diversity was once our strength, now it’s the focus for oppression. It saddens me to look into the eyes of children and the elderly when they realize how little their lives matter with the changes taking place.

Hmm. Right. In your own words, what is love?

To understand and accept someone into your heart, regardless of their shortcomings or differences, without expecting anything in return.

We enjoyed you lady! Thanks for spending this time with us today. Now, bye Felicia :-).


Author Photo. Felicia Denise

Bio

Writing has been a hobby of Felicia’s since grade school, but other than serving as editor and writing for her high school newspaper, she never publicly shared anything until the early 2000s when she began writing fan fiction. At the urging of a good friend, Felicia took on the challenge of NaNoWriMo in 2015, writing what would become her first published book, In the Best Interest of the Child. It was released in the fall of 2016.

Currently working on several projects, Felicia plans to release book 2 of In the Best Interest of the Child – Family Matters, in summer 2017.

Be Sure to Follow Felicia online!

Links

Author Websitehttps://feliciadenise.com

Blog (Nesie’s Place)https://nesiesplace.wordpress.com

Amazon Author Pagehttps://www.amazon.com/Felicia-Denise/e/B01M03R54B/

Facebook Author Pagehttps://www.facebook.com/authorfeliciadenise

Bookbub Author Page https://www.bookbub.com/authors/felicia-denise

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/FeliciaDenise

Twitterhttps://www.twitter.com/MsFelicia

Instagramhttps://www.instagram.com/fle_d/

Pinteresthttps://www.pinterest.com/fdreevers/

Google+https://plus.google.com/u/0/110467680823101573705

Monthly Newsletterhttp://eepurl.com/cklOKL


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Introduce Yourself: Introducing Guest Author Sarah Zama

Welcome to Introduce Yourself, a new and exciting blog segment of The PBS Blog dedicated to introducing to you new and established authors and their books.

Today I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Sarah Zama. Welcome to The PBS Blog! Let’s get started.

What is your name and where are you from?

I’m Sarah Zama and I’m an Italian from Verona. Well, actually, I’m from Isola della Scala, which is a small town 20km south of Verona. I feel I should acknowledge it, since Isola is where I was born, I grew up and I still live. But honestly, I feel a much stronger affinity with Verona. And I know I should not brag about it, but let me tell you Verona is a beautiful city, with over two thousand years of history, no wonder it’s a World Heritage site. Aside from being Romeo and Juliet’s city, it’s just charming walking by the river, especially at night, or wondering among her narrow mediaeval streets and the plazas, or visiting the castles or one of my very best favorite places, the Roman Arena.

Fine, fine, I’ll just stop before you start thinking someone is paying me to advertise my city!!

I learned my English in Dublin, which I consider my second home. I lived and worked there for over a year, and even if I left almost fifteen years ago, I still visit as often as I can. I love Dublin nearly as much as Verona.

Sarah, you are definitely bragging. I’d love to visit. What was your childhood dream?

This may sound obvious – I mean, lot of kids have the same dream – but I wanted to be an archaeologist. I read a lot about ancient history and about archaeology and archaeologists’ lives. I loved the idea to go hunting for something that used to be alive and breathing and could still be the same if I could unearth it. Archaeological items aren’t dead. If we know their language, they can tell us so many things we’d never know otherwise.

In the end, it didn’t happen. I suppose my passion resided elsewhere. But I think writing, its pretty close. When it is any good, it also tries to unearth the unknown.

I like that. In your own words, what is humility?

It’s knowing that there will always be someone better than you at something. There will always be someone that will know more than you, in one field or another. You’ll always have the possibility to learn from other people, which is our good fortune, because learning and caring is the essence of life.

Nice. What do you wish you knew more about?

Folktales. I’ve been fascinated with folktales since I was a child, then, as an adult, when I learned what folktales truly are, I became even more fascinated. Thinking that some of the folktales we learned as children go back to Prehistory is mind-blowing. Can you imagine how much we can learn from them?

When I first read Tolkien’s On Fairy Stories, one thing he said stuck with me. He said we often wonder about what went lost over the millennia about those stories, things we will never know. And we should instead care about what did come to us though the millennia, because that’s what important to us.

Sarah, are you employed outside of writing?

I’ve been a bookseller for almost fourteen years, a job that I love. The company I work for not only owns the bookshop, but a publishing house too. I learned so many things in the years I’ve work there.

It’s a small independent company based in the university lot in Verona, run by man and wife. And I know it sounds clichéd, but really it is like a family, which – aside from the actual job – is something I really like.

That explains why you’re so well read. I am enjoying *listening* to you. What job do you think you’d be really good at?

Anything visual. I’ve always been a visual person, I used to draw when I was younger (ink was my favorite medium). Now I just don’t have the time to pursue that passion anymore.

Although who knows? Recently, I’ve been attracted to Photoshop. I’d like to learn to use it in an effective way. Maybe, sometime soon.

Indeed. I am striving to learn Photoshop better myself. What takes up too much of your time?

Commuting. Because I live in Isola della Scala but I work in Verona, I have to travel to Verona and back every day, which takes up some three hours of my day.

But I commute by train, which is good. I like travelling by train. I find public transports to be fascinating; you see all kinds of people. I’ll admit… err… that I like people-sighting and eavesdropping, but don’t tell anyone.

And on the train I can read. I do much of my reading on the train to and from work.

Eavesdropping huh? Are you nosy Sarah? Lol

Nosy? I wouldn’t say so. But I think that noticing things and especially details is a storyteller’s secret weapon. So I think that storytellers are naturally inclined to notice things… and of course, to notice them, you first have to watch and listen. 
I suppose this makes us the Confucian creature with the big eyes and ears and the small mouth. LOL!

Give Into the Feeling is Available Now on Smashwords

When did you publish your first book? What was it like?

I published my first book (which is actually a novella, not a novel) last year in March.

I self-published it, which surprised many of my friends because I had always said I wasn’t interested in self-publishing. Trad publishing is still my chief goal for my trilogy (which involves the same characters as Give in to the Feeling, my novella), but I think in the future hybrid writers will be the norm, so knowing both field is very important, I believe.

But this isn’t the reason I finally decided to self-publish.

Two years ago, when I had the first novel of the trilogy ready, I started submitting it to agents. I did two rounds of submissions, and nothing came of it. Agents are always very spare of comments, so I couldn’t really know what exactly was wrong with my samples, but they were of course not good enough. Besides, the first three chapters of the novel had always bothered me. I had in fact rewrote the first chapter at least thirty times, and it was my own fault, because at the very beginning I made a decision that then turned out to be wrong. Unfortunately, although the decision (regarding voice and information giving) was wrong, the inciting incident is right, so I had to rework the first chapter making it as different as possible, keeping it the same.

After the first round of submission turned out so disappointingly, I once again rewrote the first three chapters. It didn’t make much good, though, because, although the agents’ tone changed on the second round, they still turned me down.

So I decided I needed to go a step further and work with an editor, but I knew I couldn’t afford to edit the whole novel. I thought that I could edit a short story, though. If my writing had inherent problems, the editor would catch them in the short story and then I could apply what I learned on the novel.

So I completely rewrote Give in to the Feeling (which was five years old) and gave it to an editor.

It turned out to be a fantastic experience, I learned some very interesting things about my writing and when I had the novella ready I thought: well, why not going all the way through and experiment with publishing and marketing my work as well?

It felt like a waste to have this novella professionally edited and polished and just leave it in a drawer.

So I Self-Published it.

After a year, I’m not sure I have the characteristics to be a successful indie author (I’m a very slow writer, for example, and I don’t write in a definite commercial genre), but this doesn’t mean I’ll leave self-publishing. I do think in the future belongs to the hybrid authors, so I want to pursue this path still, though at my own pace.

But I’m very happy of the experience itself because it was very educational.

Thanks for sharing that experience with us! So, tell us more about the genre you write in and why.

I’ve always been a speculative writer, I think I’ll always be, though the way I express that speculation mind has changed over time.

I’ve been a classic fantasy writer for most of my writing life. I’ve read all the classics of fantasy and I’ve watched fantasy evolve in the early 2000s with great pleasure, though sadly I have to say that lately the genre seems to have taken a step back.

I’ve always been interested in history too (that was my favorite subject at school already) and when I started working in the bookshop I discovered anthropology (such fascinating subject). I think these two subjects in particular moved my interest to more modern settings recently, though – truth be said – I’ve been fascinated with the Deco period since I watched b/w mysteries on TV with my granny as a kid. So it probably doesn’t come as a surprise (it certainly doesn’t surprise me) that I ended up writing fantasy stories in a contemporary setting, particularly the 1920s.

I had been writing my trilogy for a couple of years when I stumbled upon the concept of dieselpunk and I immediately felt an affinity. I got involved with the dieselpunk community and I really feel that is my home, though the kind of dieselpunk I write is so soft and fantasy-oriented that even some dieselpunks don’t consider it such.

But I like to refer to one of the head figures of the community, Larry Amyett Jr. who has a more open concept of the ‘genre’.

Anyway, expect a lot of history and some very significant fantasy element in all of my stories.

Alright now. I love history so I am sure we’ll collaborate on some things in the future. What do you hate most about writing advice? What do you love?

One thing I hate about writing advice is the attitude of some writers towards rules. On the one hand, you’ll have writers that stick to the rules to the point it becomes flat. They won’t accept any creative use of the rules. But writing is creativity. I don’t think it’s wise to try to encage it into stone-written rules. It is also an evolving activity, so rules and conventions that were good yesterday might not be as good today. Many writers who give advice on workshops and forums don’t seem to grasp this and will question you even when you explain why you made an unconventional choice.

On the other hand, I also hate when writers are too slack with rules. I have read time and again writers who say they are not interested in learning the rules of storytelling because if you are a true writer you’re going to break them anyway. Well, personally, I don’t think you have any chance at creatively and meaningfully breaking any rules you don’t know and don’t muster. Rules are there to make storytelling stronger and more coherent, so it’s a writer’s best interest to know them inside out. Only in that case, when you do chose to break one, you’ll do it knowing why you want to break it and what the effect will be. Then it will become meaningful. Otherwise, it’s only a mess.

What I love about writing advice is that, when it is thoughtful, you’ll learn a lot. I’ve been part of an online workshop for seven years­­—The Critique Circle—and I can’t even start to tell you how much I’ve learned from being critiqued as well as from critiquing other people’s work. It’s an extremely educational process.

The first thing I learned is that my work isn’t perfect. No matter how much I work on it, there will always be things other people see and I don’t… until I’m pointed out. Being too protective towards our work makes a great disservice to us, to the story and to our readers.

The second most important thing I learned is asking questions. When we write, everything makes sense to us, both because we instinctively know much more about our story than will ever get on the page and because we know where the story is supposed to go, so we are focused on getting there. But when someone who knows nothing about the story reads it, he/she will have a lot more questions, some of which will be very ‘embarrassing’. Let’s face it, most of the time the answer to the question, ‘Why does this characters do this thing?’ is ‘Because I need him to go from point A to point B’ (that certainly is true in the first draft… at least for me). When you start to have your work critiqued, you’ll learn very fast that readers are a lot more attentive and demanding than you ever thought. They have lots of sensible questions you thought were not worth pursuing, and when you let people critique your work, you’ll learn how to ask yourself those questions before readers do.

And believe me; the story will come off a lot stronger.

I love it. Sarah, what’s the most difficult thing about being a writer? The most exciting thing?

The most difficult thing is to keep believing in yourself and your stories no matter what.

We writers will always have doubts about our writing. We will always be scared that we are not good enough. That’s one big reason why some writers will never let anyone read their stories, let alone critique them. Which is a real shame, because I think storytelling is communication, and there is no meaningful one-way communication. A message (which is what a story is) needs to be given, but also to be received in order to exist. When the message is received, that’s when it comes to life, not when it’s issued.

Problem is, when we let people read our stories, more doubts will arise rather than be quenched. Many people won’t like our story, and often we will never know why. Even when we understand this is natural (and believe me, this is not an instinctive understanding), it will be hard to accept it.

The rejection (I don’t like your story) and the unknown (but I’m not going to tell you why) are very hard to manage, but let me tell you, we’re not going to learn if we won’t practice. We need the help of our readers in order to become better storytellers, but this mean we also need to face rejection and handle it in a positive way.

I won’t hide it, this is hard. We need to muster the ability to tell when a critic is objective and when he isn’t, when it has something to offer and when it doesn’t, which needs a clarity of mind unaffected by feelings. But when we achieve that mastery, we will be on the right way to becoming better writers.

On the other hand, when our story is received enthusiastically… well, I think there are few feelings which are better than this.

Wow. Very informative answer! *Takes notes*. Speaking of writing, does blogging help you to write?

I wouldn’t say it helps me to write, but I will say it helps me to be a writer.

For a great part, blogging is listening, it’s looking for a connection, it’s sharing, and this is a huge help when it comes to learn to accept the reader’s rejection as well as being more critic towards our writing.

Blogging will require to make lots of decisions and you’ll see the result of the decisions you’ve made pretty soon, so that you’ll have the possibility to act on it fast enough to see a result. This is often not possible when writing and publishing a book, and that’s why blogging may help.

When I first started blogging, I did a number of mistakes, both because I didn’t know any better and because I just made the wrong choice. The only solution is to keep learning, not just because there is always something new to learn, but also because blogging – as all things internet – changes very fast. We need to the attentive and flexible.

But sometimes, we just make the wrong choice and we need to be listening in order to realize it. I have a macroscopic example of this.

When I started my blog, I decided that I wouldn’t blog about the 1920s in spite of that being a subject I had researched extensively for my stories. I didn’t feel (I still don’t feel) I’m an expert on the subject. I’ve never done any academic study, I’m just very passionate about it and I like to learn about it. But when one year later I decided to take part in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge, I realized there weren’t many things I could blog about every day, therefore I was kind of forced to write about the 1920s.

It was a success. I was shocked! People actually liked what I was writing and found it interesting and informative. As for me, I understood my mistake and changed gear. 1920s social history is the main focus of my blog now, and blogs about 1920s life are still the most popular with my readers.

So blogging gave me the possibility to make a mistake as well as to see my mistake by trying something different. It has given me the possibility to listen to the readers’ reaction and act upon it. It has also given me the possibility to believe in myself that little bit more, though honestly I should have known better even before. I might not be an expert, but I do know a few things people don’t normally know about the 1920s, and I can definitely give what little I know.

Storytelling is mainly about giving, I believe, and though we cannot give what we don’t have, what we do have, small as it may be… well, why not give it?

There’s a quote from Leonard Peltier’s Autobiography that I love and that I apparently need to remember more often: “We don’t need to be perfect, we need to be useful.”

What a wealth of information you are Sarah! Thanks for spending this time with us today.


Sarah Zama. Used with permission.

Bio.

Sarah Zama was born in Isola della scala (Verona – Italy) where she still lives. She started writing at nine – blame it over her teacher’s effort to turn her students into readers – and in the 1990s she contributed steadily to magazines and independent publishers on both sides of the Atlantic.

After a pause, in early 2010s she went back to writing with a new mindset. The internet allowed her to get in touch with fellow authors around the globe, hone her writing techniques in online workshops and finally find her home in the dieselpunk community.

Since 2010 she’s been working at a trilogy set in Chicago in 1926, historically as accurate as possible but also (as all her stories are) definitely fantasy. She’s currently seeking representation for the first book in the Ghost Trilogy, Ghostly Smell Around.

In 2016, her first book comes out, Give in to the Feeling.

She’s worked for QuiEdit, publisher and bookseller in Verona, for the last ten years.

She also maintain a blog, The Old Shelter, where she regularly blogs about the Roaring Twenties and anything dieselpunk.

CONTACT INFO AND LINKS

Email: oldshelter@yahoo.com
Blog: www.theoldshelter.com
Websitehttp://sarahzama.theoldshelter.com/

SOCIAL MEDIA:

Twitter: www.twitter.com/JazzFeathers
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/jazzfeathers
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jazzfeathers/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/+Theoldshelterdieselpunk
Pinterest: https://it.pinterest.com/jazzfeathers/

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Introduce Yourself – Introducing Guest Author Shaun M Jooste

Welcome to Introduce Yourself, a new and exciting blog segment of The PBS Blog dedicated to introducing to you new and established authors and their books.

Today I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Shaun M Jooste. Welcome to The PBS Blog! Let’s get started.

What is your name and where are you from?

Shaun M Jooste, and I am from Cape Town, South Africa

Alright now. Africa is in the house yall. Shaun, what would your perfect writing / reading room look like?

A large study / library in a large tower overlooking the lake. Cabin in the woods will do fine too.

What job do you think you’d be really good at?

Besides writing novels and games? Screenwriting for movies.

Sadgi: Book 3 of the Celenic Earth Chronicles is Available now on Amazon

 

Ohh. Yess. What was your childhood dream?

Becoming a published author was one, so I guess I can check that one off my list. Becoming a Formula 1 racer was another, and I guess I can check that off my list for a very different reason (too late for that now).

OK. What skill would you like to master?

In an ideal world? Mastering the natural elements like in my epic fantasy series, the Celenic Earth Chronicles.

What skill do you think you’ve mastered?

I still have a long road ahead. Every time I think I’ve mastered something, I realize I’ve only scraped the dust off the top. I think I’m pretty good at storytelling though.

I feel you. In your own words, what is humility?

Knowing your absolute potential and ability, without having to scream it out to the whole wide world and using it only to improve yourself even further.

I like that. Shaun, if you had unlimited funds to build a house that you would live in for the rest of your life, what would the finished house be like?

Like my massive fortress and surrounding walls that I built on Minecraft. Castle on an island – bucket list item.

Not minecraft Lol. What’s your favorite drink?

Coffee to get the creative juices flowing, Sprite or Orange juice on a warm day, Shiraz for when the mood gets going.

What state or country do you never want to go back to?

Sadly, I only know South Africa. I don’t really know if all the other continents really exist.

Lol. What do you love most about living in Africa?

I love South Africa, specifically Cape Town, the most because of our wild diversity, not just in human culture, but also in fauna and flora. I love the landscapes and nature, it is just so wonderful.

Nice. I know you’re into music. What songs have you completely memorized?

Not so much songs as albums…Disturbed, Linkin Park, Evanescence, Bon Jovi, PVRIS, Skillet, Fall Out Boyz. I generally stick to an artist, get all their music and sing them to death.

Visit Shaun on the web at https://celenicearth.wordpress.com/

Does blogging help you to write?

Yes. When I wrote Celenic Earth Chronicles between 2002 and 2009, I was very much alone and isolated. No one knew what I was doing and what was going to be published. I was my own motivation. With Silent Hill: Betrayal in 2016, I started my blog and shared so many details while I developed the story and wrote the novel. It was so encouraging getting positive feedback and encouragement that it still motivates me to this day.

Who is your favorite writer?

I grew up with fantasy. Stephen Donaldson’s Thomas Covenant series, JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, Raymond E Feist’s Riftwar Saga… they were my mentors.

When did you publish your first book? What was that like?

My answer for this is twofold. I had Windfarer first published by a self-publishing company in 2007. It was really exciting to get my work out there, but the trust and fear that the publisher wasn’t conning me was huge.

Then in 2016, I established my own publishing label, Celenic Earth Publications, and republished my fantasy series and published Silent Hill: Betrayal. It was great having all the creative control and putting my own work out like I wanted it.

Congrats on your publishing label! If you could live in a movie, which would it be?

If they adapted my epic fantasy series to film, it would be on Celenic Earth. I created that world, and I dearly want to live in it myself.

For existing movies, I would live in Hogwarts. Not study, live there. Like in one of the towers (see question 10 again. lol)

Cool beans. Shaun, married? How long?

Yes, I’ve been married to Tammy 7 years this August.

Awwue. Hey Tammy! Children?

Yes, I have two wonderful children. Nathan, my six year old son, and Avril, my two year old daughter. They inspire everything I do now.

Double awwue! What do you wish you knew more about?

Effective marketing strategies and promotion of books that actually translates into sales. Real sales.

I heard that. What do you think of the world we live in?

It needs more magic, or divine energy, or something. We are so focused on this industrial and technological ages, we’re losing touch with our souls and the divine. And I’m not talking yoga and meditation. We need to ignite that spiritual spark that lifts us up to… something higher.

Are you religious?

No. I believe in God, and was brought up Catholic until something happened when I was 25 and my eyes started to open up. I’m not fond of religion, or what some religions have done to this world. However, I am close to God in my own way and am very spiritual, and still classify myself as Christian, although no one else ever will. To me, religion and spirituality are very different, the first one being a swear word to me. I believe religion to be the heart of all evil… or rather, the way we as humans use it.

I’m not fond of religion either. Speaking of spiritual matters, what is the most thought provoking book you’ve ever read?

The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield.

What’s the most difficult thing about being a writer? The most exciting thing?

The most difficult – getting my novels out there. The most exciting – getting my novels out there. lol

Lol. I know that’s right. Why is writing important to you?

I tried living without it for 3 years while I was doing my degree. It led to some severe depression when I thought about what I gave up. Clearly I cannot live without it.

What do you love about yourself?

My intellect that comes up with these amazing stories, and my mental endurance and perseverance through everything I have been through. Also, I have heard I have beautiful eyes.

Lol! Alright handsome, watch out now. What don’t you like about yourself?

That I run out of energy way too quickly.

If you had one superpower that could change the world, what would it be? Why?

Again, mastering the elements. Pollution in the air, greenhouse effect, water crises, drought, earthquakes and tsunamis… all gone.

What genre do you write in, why?

I specialize in fantasy and horror, sometimes both at the same time. My epic fantasy novels have hints of horror, and my horror novels always have some fantasy elements in them. I grew up reading and watching fantasy, and I adore horror to the point where very few movies or games really scare me these days. So I immerse myself in those genres further with my writing.

Shaun, it was a pleasure. Thank you for spending this time with us!


Bio.

Shaun is the published author of the epic fantasy trilogy, the Celenic Earth Chronicles, and the horror novel, Silent Hill: Betrayal, which is based on the popular Silent Hill game franchise. He is also the screenwriter of the sci-fi space travelling screenplay, ‘The Space Drifter’, which was recommended by the 2015 Cinequest Screenwriting Festival.

Shaun is busy working on several writing projects, which includes the soon to be released romantic fantasy novel, ‘Dream Whispers’. He was appointed as an official Choice of Games author of text-based games, and expects to release an adventure novel in 2017. Silent Hill: Obversion is also to be expected to be released at the end of 2017, as well as his volume of almost 600 poems written over his adolescent years.

Under his publishing label, Celenic Earth Anthologies, several short story collections by various authors from around the world will be published. The Anthologies currently being edited and developed include ‘CEA Through the Dark’ (horror), ‘CEA No Boundaries’ (Cape Town NaNoWriMo collection), ‘CEA Into the Beyond’ (sci-fi) and CEA Past your Reality (fantasy).

Shaun has also been appointed as an online article writer for game reviews and announcements, namely for Pulse Entertainment U.K. and GameTyrant.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Pulse Entertainment UK Game Reviewer, Interviewer and Announcements: https://thepulseentertainment.co.uk/author/shaunmjooste/
 
GameTyrant Game Reviewer, Interviewer and Announcements: http://gametyrant.com/?author=59003a0f440243b85ba72404

Are you a new (or not so new) author? Looking for more exposure? Learn more about my Introduce Yourself Feature HERE. (Now in need of authors for August. Click on this link and email me your questions.).

Introduce Yourself – Introducing Guest Author Sojourner McConnell

 

Welcome to Introduce Yourself, a new and exciting blog segment of The PBS Blog dedicated to introducing to you new and established authors and their books.

Today I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Sojourner McConnell. Welcome to The PBS Blog! Let’s get started.

What is your name and where are you from?

Sojourner McConnell is my pen name and I am from Alabama, Birmingham to be specific. I now live in Kentucky and visit Alabama every few months.

Cool. My family is originally from Alabama (though I’ve never been). I also love your pen name. Sojourner, what do you think of the world we live in?

All in all, I think it is a pretty wonderful place. It has problems, but as long as free thinking individuals are making decisions, there will be problems. I also see it as a changing and evolving place. A place where people can make a difference with love and peaceful intentions.

What’s the most difficult thing about being a writer? The most exciting thing?

The most difficult thing about writing to me is to focus on just one project at a time. I tend to always be writing or creating. So I have several complete and competing projects going on in my head. That is also what I find so exciting about writing. The stories that dwell in my head can be put on paper and other people can find them as fun or interesting as I do.

That is interesting. I think we writers always have a lot going on! Speaking of writers and writing, does blogging help you to write?

I find that blogging frees up the creative juices and gets them flowing in the mornings. I find that I have something to write about on each of my blogs and still plenty left over to add to my current WIP. Since I write in several different genres, I can focus on one genre on Monday and another different story on Tuesday. Sometimes I spend weeks on the same one before I move to a different manuscript while doing blogs on various subjects at the same time.

Neat. What’s your favorite Historical figure?

I would say, Helen Keller. She was a strong woman that could have spent her life being guided about and no one would have thought less of her for it, instead, she did everything that she put her mind to. She wrote, spoke, taught, and inspired everyone. Not just inspiring those with handicaps that were like hers, but inspired everyone that heard her, read her works, and saw her story. She was still alive when I was a child, and I was and still am so inspired by her.

Wow. Great figure! I love how unlimited her life was. Like you said, she could have lived within the boundaries of her disability but instead she didn’t. What kind of music do you like?

I love music, I love the bumping music heavy with percussion. I love Imagine Dragons and their many drums, I love North River Run with their delightful drummer and I love Indie music in general. I love the humor in songs like Middle Fingers, and sweet sounding love songs. I think I can safely say, I love most all music. I certainly will sing along with most.

Who’s That in the Cat Pajamas is AVAILABLE NOW on Amazon.

Why is writing important to you?

Writing is the one place where I can let me be me. If it comes off as a little bit wonky, it is considered a comedy, if it comes off a little bit mean, it is a thriller. I can be me and it is all okay. I am not just one dimensional and neither is my writing. Some days, I write a children’s story, other days I write on space and science fiction work. Some days, I just write a goofy song that makes me laugh. But with each word and each line, I get another little piece of myself out there. It is good for me to let some of all this busyness (yes busyness not business) in my head go. As my mother used to say, “there is a lot more room our there for your thoughts and stories than in your head, get it out!”

I love how you are thinking outside the box and not tying yourself down to any specific genre. In your own words, what is love?

To me, love is the giving and taking of time, enjoyment, and contentment with another person. Finding someone that you can spend your days sharing your most inane thoughts and dreams with. A feeling of belonging with another person. Love is that emotional connection with another person. Love is wanting the other person to be as fulfilled with you as you are them.

Let’s switch gears a little bit, what is your favorite color?

Usually, it is blue, that dark midnight blue. On some occasions it is pink. That sweet icing pink that goes so well with midnight blue.

Sweet icing pink…I like that. What’s your favorite drink?

This is one question that has a lot of answers.  I love coffee in the morning. It wakes me up and warms me up and it is perfect. Once noon arrives, I am all about the sweet tea. I am from the south and I have obtained quite a fondness for the sweet syrupy tea we are known for. A wonderful day was when I found Milo’s Tea in the grocery store.  Sometimes, I just want a glass of Diet Coke. Many hours, many drinks. Mimosa’s are fun when on vacation!

Thank you Sojourner for spending this time with us. We enjoyed you!


Bio.

Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama. Sojourner McConnell lives in Winchester, Kentucky with one of her daughters and three of her thirteen grandchildren. She has six grandchildren in Alabama and four that live in Michigan. Sojourner’s new book is a children’s chapter book, Who’s That in the Cat Pajamas  released June 2, 2017.

Her next book, Blip, is a sci-fi book with humor and intrigue and is due out by December 2017. The Path of the Child, The Power of Forgiveness, and 31 Days of October are available in paperback and in eBook format on Amazon and other retailers. Sojourner brings a taste of strong personalities with a healthy dose of southern charm to her characters.

As co-founder and part of the organizing team of Mystery Thriller Week, she has become fascinated with writing a mystery of her own. In fact, there might be a little mystery woven into one of the two books she is writing at present.

When not writing, she is busy entertaining her Australian Shepherd, Beau. Unfortunately, Beau tends to get jealous when she spends too much time working on the computer.

Be Sure to Follow Sojourner online:

Blog: The Path of the Writer

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SojournerMcConnell/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8283786.Sojourner_McConnell

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ThePageTurner1

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Sojourner-McConnell/e/B008IQDX4S/ 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/vicki_reads/

Are you a new (or not so new) author? Looking for more exposure? Learn more about my Introduce Yourself Feature HERE. (Email me today to be scheduled for August).

Introduce Yourself: Introducing Guest Author Frank Parker

Welcome to Introduce Yourself, a new and exciting blog segment of The PBS Blog dedicated to introducing to you new and established authors and their books.

Today I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Frank Parker. Welcome to The PBS Blog! Let’s get started.

What is your name and where are you from?

My name is Frank Parker. I was born and grew up in Herefordshire, a small rural county next to the border between England and Wales. I lived for the first decade of my life in a small stone cottage beside a stream with a couple of waterfalls. We were surrounded by traditional hay meadows and grew all our own vegetables in a medium sized garden. My parents were from London originally. They were married shortly after the commencement of World War II. Dad was an airman. Two years after I was born he was killed in action whilst taking part in a bombing raid over Germany. Having only one parent qualified me to attend a boarding school where, from 1952 to ’58, I was educated in the manner of a traditional English Grammar school.

Did you say Herefordshire?? My maiden last name is Hereford!

Are you married Frank?

In September 1963, I married the love of my life. We had met two years before. I still recall the day. It was August bank holiday 1961, the day of the annual village show. I was supposed to meet up with my then girlfriend, enjoy the many activities on offer then go on to the dance in the village hall afterwards. She arrived in the company of two friends. Try as I might I could not separate them. As a gauche 19-year-old, I didn’t know whether to be flattered being accompanied by three young women or disappointed that I could not be alone with the one I wanted to be with. Later she turned up at the dance in the company of another youth and I danced with one of her friends. That was it. Me and the friend were set on a course that sees us still together all these years later.

Beautiful. What’s your favorite food?

I love cooking and eating dishes in the styles of the Indian sub-continent. My preference when dining out has always been Indian. I recall when I lived in South Africa, in 1974, we would spend Sundays around the pool at a nearby hotel which served excellent curries that we washed down with locally produced ale. In 1990 I discovered the ‘Balti’ style of Indian cuisine whilst working in the English Midlands. More recently I watched Rick Stein’s television series in which he toured India discovering the various regional styles. I have his book of the series and regularly produce dishes from it.

Oh OK. So what you saying is we need to be at yo house then huh Frank? 🙂  In your own words, define racism.

Racism, to me, is the mistaken belief that people from the same ethnic origin as yourself are superior to those from all other ethnicities. It is made worse when that belief leads people to behave disrespectfully towards people who do not share their own ethnicity. Being disrespectful towards others is not acceptable in any circumstance, but when it is justified by reference to a perceived difference based on ethnicity, sexuality or physical or mental deformity it is especially deplorable.

Frank, are you a political man?

I have held a strong interest in politics for as long as I can remember. My response to the previous question should make it clear that I follow the Liberal tradition. In the 1980s I put my political beliefs into practice, becoming a local politician in my then home district in the East of England. I also worked in a voluntary capacity on campaigns for the Party. Aside from Party Political activities, I cannot avoid political comment in my writing, especially my blog. I also believe that it behooves us all to involve ourselves in unpaid activities utilizing one’s time, skills and energy wherever there is a need in the local community.

Summer Day by Frank Parker is AVAILABLE now on Amazon.

What genre do you write in, why?

You might gather from the above that the genre in which I am most comfortable is Historical Fiction, often based on the lives of real people. I am especially interested in ordinary people who find themselves in the midst of significant events, how do they respond to the consequences of war, epidemic or famine? It is easy to investigate the causes of such events or to condemn those whose mistaken beliefs lay behind some evil deed. Among the suffering of ordinary people are to be found tales of great heroism at the personal level. That’s what I hope to bring to the fore.

I’m a fan of Historical Fiction myself.  What TV channel exists but really shouldn’t?

I’ll end with a controversial thought about TV channels. I don’t either want to see the demise of any existing channel or the creation of any new channel. What really annoys me is that we have so many channels dedicated specifically to sport and yet sport seems, to me at least, to be taking up an increasing proportion of mainstream television schedules. Let’s leave sport on the sports channels and keep mainstream television free for news, documentaries, drama and the arts.

Who is your favorite writer?

I find it difficult to single out one individual as a favorite writer. There are many authors whose work I have enjoyed in different phases of my life, from Enid Blyton and W.E. Johns in childhood, through Agatha Christie, Robert Heinlein and Ray Bradbury in my youth and early twenties, to great Irish writers like Colm Toibin, Sebastian Barry, John Boyne and Ann Enright today. I like a work of literature to provide a new insight into the human condition, to make me laugh and cry or simply to marvel at the use of language. If only I could manage that in my own work I would be a happy man indeed!

I love literature of the same kind so I definitely feel you. What’s your favorite Historical figure?

I don’t have a favorite historical figure. I find it reprehensible that official histories pay so little attention to the achievements of women, and then only those who exhibit masculine qualities. Warrior women like Boudica or Joan of Ark. Devious, deceitful women like Cleopatra. The truth is that whilst men were attracting fame – or notoriety – by fighting wars or making significant discoveries, it was the women who remained at home and managed the family estate, overseeing everything from planting and harvesting to organizing essential repairs and improvements, thereby ensuring that what the men came back to was frequently in a better condition than when they left. So, my favorite figures from history are those unsung heroines without whom no battle would have been worth winning, no new knowledge worth the knowing.

If you could shadow your favorite artist, who would it be?

When I was in my early teens I came across a book in the school library. It was a big colorful book of the kind that are usually referred to as ‘coffee table books’. It was full of reproductions of famous art works. The particular work that had an enormous impact on me, such that I can still recall it some 60 years later, was titled ‘Burning Giraffe’. It was painted by a Spanish artist named Salvador Dali. In the intervening years, I have seen many documentaries and read many articles about this eccentric gentleman and his fellow surrealists. As someone who has tried, largely unsuccessfully, to paint, I would have loved to have been able to spend a day in the company of Seńor Dali, to discover his techniques, gain insights into the way his mind works and discover how he was able to translate his thoughts into images on canvas, film or sculpture.

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Thank you Frank for spending this time with us! We enjoyed you.


Frank P
Frank Parker

Bio.

At 17, Frank’s plan to become a reporter was scuppered by advisors who insisted he “get a trade”. He became an Engineer. In the 1980s he tried a career change becoming involved in local politics. Articles he wrote at that time appeared in obscure political journals and he contributed business profiles to a regional “Business Link” magazine. These did not pay the bills so he returned to Engineering until retirement in 2006. Since then his short stories and poems have been included in several short print-run anthologies. He has self-published four novels, and two collections of poems and short stories. He is presently researching, and writing about, the famine that afflicted Ireland between 1845- 52.

He lives in the Irish Midlands with the woman he married in 1963.

Be Sure to Follow Frank Online!

Web: https://franklparker.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HerefordAndIrelandHistory/

Twitter: @fparkerswords 

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7834486.Frank_Parker

Are you a new (or not so new) author? Looking for more exposure? Learn more about my Introduce Yourself Feature HERE. (PS. I have space available for August. These spots go fast so jump on it!)

Introduce Yourself – Introducing Guest Writer Dolapo Akitoye

Welcome back to Introduce Yourself, a new and exciting blog segment of The PBS Blog dedicated to introducing to you new and established authors and their books.

Today I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Dolapo Akitoye, our first screenwriter. Welcome to The PBS Blog! Let’s get started.

What is your name and where are you from?

My name is Dolapo Akitoye. A lot of people call me Dolly. I have no worries with anyone trying to call me either. I will answer to both. I am from Nigeria. Born and raised. Specifically, I am from Lagos which makes me Yoruba. Don’t ask me to speak the language though. Lol. I’m not that good at it but I can understand it…mostly. 😃

Yoruba huh? We’re gonna have to chat some more for sure. How many siblings do you have?

I have 3 siblings. Two sisters – an older half-sister and a younger sister-  and a younger brother. I grew up being the first born in my household and only learned about my older sister about seven years ago. So, I still have a big-sister mentality. It’s just in me. I love my siblings. They are all so amazing and so smart. My older sister is a tailor and designer who makes the most amazing clothes. My younger sister studies Mathematics and Computer science and my younger brother is studying Law. They are all very wonderful.

Awwue. You sound like a big sister too. What’s your favorite drink?

If you like Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain. Lol. I love Pina Coladas. I just think that the combination of pineapple and coconut is like heaven in your mouth. I drink Pina Coladas and I know that everything will be okay.

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Dolapo Akitoye

Who is your favorite writer?

I was only going to go with one but that’s not me being honest. This one is a tie for me. There are two writers that just makes me so happy. First is the talented and beautiful Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. When I was in secondary school, her book, Purple Hibiscus was one of the books we had to read for Literature. Typically, even though I love reading, I find it difficult when an authority tells me to read a book. It makes me nervous and under pressure and I never know if I will really enjoy it. This book though was phenomenal and there is something so elegant about the way she writes. There is a subtlety that is so beautiful and I love it. The thing I love the most is that her style of writing almost reminds me of Raymond Carver in that, sometimes you read and you know that something has happened; something has changed; you have changed but you can’t quite figure it out. You have to go back and read it again and understand what is between the lines. She is a wonderful storyteller.

The second person is Dan Brown. I find Dan Brown’s writing really wonderful. His writing opens me up to new thoughts and ideas. I might not always agree with everything but his writing is so good that I don’t even care about that. I have read all his books except one. I have it. I just haven’t had time to read it. His writing makes me feel elevated like I’m in some kind of club that only a few people know about and I really enjoy it.

Nice. I enjoyed Chimamanda’s Ted talk, though I haven’t read any of her books yet. Speaking of writing can you tell us a little bit about this script you’re writing and how you got into screenwriting?

My movie script is about a Nigerian woman who is going through postpartum depression and the way it changes the lives of her and those around her. The reason why I am writing this story is because in my country, Nigeria (which I love), people do not take depression seriously. People do not understand it and so a lot of times, it is ignored. Now, here we have a woman who does the most natural thing in the world – give birth- and she is going through this depression that she finds hard to understand because she does not feel like she has a right to feel that way and she is oblivious to it. Anyway, that is the basis of it.

I have always wanted to write a book but I never really gathered the confidence to do so and I always felt like I wanted to write something original but no ideas ever came to me. Recently, I started having all these stories in my head and I felt I had to write it. Even if, it never gets anywhere, I feel it in my heart to write it and the more I write it, the more confident I feel as a woman and as a writer.

Dolapo Akitoye

Nice. If you could shadow your favorite artist, who would it be?

Bruno Mars for sure. No doubt about that. Bruno Mars is so spectacular. His music, the way he moves, the happiness you feel when you hear him, it is out of this world. He works really hard and he has been doing that since he was impersonating Elvis Presley at the age of four. He has such a creative mind and his songs are poetry. If I could shadow him, I feel like I will learn so much in terms of work ethic and writing and letting the words and the music take you.

So, is Dolly taken?

I am single and I will definitely like to be married. I am one of those people who enjoy companionship. I believe that there is someone for everyone and I will enjoy being with someone for the rest of my life. Life can be hard sometimes and it will be nice to have someone go through it with you and I can’t wait for that someone to find me.

Awuee. Would you like to have children?

I would like to have children. I have always known since I was little that I wanted kids. I believe it is one of life’s beautiful miracles and I want to experience that. I have a lot of love to give and I will love to give that to my children.

A miracle indeed. What’s your favorite movie?

My favorite movie is Forrest Gump. I cry every time I watch that movie. It’s just a story of hope. It gives me the feeling that I can do anything. Even thinking about it right now is making me cry. Lol. I just really love that movie and I try to watch it at least once a year.

You know what’s funny? We had an author here last week who also happens to love Forrest Gump. Are you religious Dolly?

I am trying to be more religious. Growing up, we went to church and Bible club and I was even the Christian Worship perfect in my secondary school and so I always saw myself as religious…until about three years ago when I went through this really bad depression period and I just questioned God a lot. I didn’t understand why I was on earth and going through pain. However, God has just shown me so much compassion and love and when I had an accident last year, I won’t say that I had epiphany but I definitely felt God’s love for me in that moment. So, it’s still baby steps and I am trying to pray and read my Bible every day and get to know God in a way that I haven’t known him before. God is Love and I see that every day of my life.

What do you love about yourself?

I think I’m weird. Lol. But I love it. My mind is such a world of its own. The things I think about, read about, listen to, watch and even the little things that makes me happy in most cases, makes me seem weird to a lot of people but it is what makes me happy. Who wants to be normal anyway?

Thank you Dolly for spending this time with us! We enjoyed you for sure.


Dolapo Akitoye

Bio.

My name is Dolapo Akitoye. I am mostly referred to as Dolly. I am 21 years old and I am a blogger and an aspiring screenwriter. I have a Bachelors degree in Journalism and English Literature and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA). I have been blogging for over four years and it has been an outlet for me. To be honest, I feel as though it has saved my life so many times. I am currently working on my first movie script and I plan to work on much more in the future.

Be Sure to Follow Dolapo Online:

SOCIAL MEDIA HANDLES

Are you a new or established author? Looking for more exposure? Learn more about my Introduce Yourself Feature HERE.

Introduce Yourself: Introducing Guest Author L. Loren

Welcome back to Introduce Yourself, a new and exciting blog segment of The PBS Blog dedicated to introducing to you new and established authors and their books.

Today I’d like to extend a warm welcome to L. Loren. Welcome to The PBS Blog! Let’s get started.

What is your name and where are you from?

Hi! My name is L. Loren and I live in Greenville, SC.

What would your perfect writing / reading room look like?

My perfect reading room would have a huge bay window overlooking a back yard with a willow tree and a lake off in the distance. Oversized, colorful pillows would line the bench where I would relax and read my favorite stories. There would be plush carpet and lots of color on the wall with my favorite quotes adorning them. I would also need a soft blanket and table nearby setup with a china tea set decorated with and dragonflies.

Ohh. Nice! How many siblings do you have?

I have two brothers and four sisters. I am the baby so I am spoiled.

What was your childhood dream?

I had many dreams as a child but one I remember fondly was being a movie director.

I can totally see you directing a film! What skill would you like to master?

I would like to master screenwriting. I still have that movie dream. Lol

In your own words, what is love?

Love is a verb. It is something that can be felt and seen. It is when you care for someone regardless if they return the sentiment. You give your everything to that person just to make them happy, even if it means you must sacrifice. Love is everything! (OK you got me… I’m a hopeless romantic)

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L. Loren: Writer of LoveRotica. Used with permission.

That’s OK. Hopeless romantics need love too! What would be the most amazing adventure to go on?

I have many adventures just waiting to be taken, but the one that comes to mind right now is taking a cross country trip with my husband, visiting each and every NBA Arena. You know the whole VIP treatment; getting behind the scene tours, attending the games and getting to meet players, taking pictures of each arena in a special location.(Every arena has that one special spot).

Speaking of locations, if you had unlimited funds to build a house that you would live in for the rest of your life, what would the finished house be like?

I am too non-committal for this question, but it looked fun. I don’t think I could live in one place for the rest of my life. I do have a dream house that I would like to have in Jamaica. It would be a small cottage with an amazing kitchen, a nice patio out back that overlooked a pool. The back yard would have lots of space for a BBQ grill, fire pit and a cobblestone path that led to the ocean. There would be lots of trees for shade and a place for me to write outside.

Jamaica is nice. What’s your favorite drink?

I love a good Arnold Palmer, but it has to be made right. That’s why I never order it when I go out. I like to make mine at home. Too much lemonade ruins the whole thing.

WanderLyn

What genre do you write in, why?

I write erotica because it intrigues me. I love being able to express my sexuality in a book that allows others to do the same. I can write anything I fantasize about and do anything I ever dreamed up in a book without the consequences of real life. Sex is a part of being human and when people start to accept that, they will stop thinking of it as something to be hidden and done in the dark.

I must say people, if you’re looking for a sexy read, L. Loren’s your girl!

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The Egyptian Nights Series: Coming June 20, 2017

What songs have you completely memorized?

The safer question would be what songs haven’t I memorized. Lol I love music. My poor husband is regulated to listening to my renditions of most songs that come on the radio, especially those from the 70s. I can sing non-stop on the oldies stations.

Yes, oldies are the best. Though I’m picky about which oldies I like lol. Loren, what’s your favorite food?

I love any type of pasta, unless it has seafood in it.

Shut. The Front. Door. I LOVE pasta. What’s your favorite color?

Orange is my favorite color, with purple coming in a close second.

Yess. Purple is beautiful. Who is your favorite writer?

This answer changes with my mood, but right now Maya Angelou!

Can’t argue with that one! If you could shadow your favorite artist, who would it be?

That’s a tough one. I have many artists that I would love to shadow. If I could only choose one, I would say Sylvester Stallone. He is such an interesting man to me.

What kind of music do you like?

My taste in music is eclectic. I will rock out to country as much as I will R&B, pop or rock. I even get into classical and instrumental at times. I have a thing for the blues and I will listen to rap, but I’m old school. Don’t bring that ratchet mess to me. It will get dismissed with a quickness.

Loll! Let’s talk about your writing. When did you publish your first book? What was that like?

My first book was published in 2015 and it was scary as all get out. (Yeah, I’m from the South. Deal with it. Lol).

If you could live in a movie, which would it be? Why?

This question is AWESOME! I live in movies in my head as a writer so there would be many movies. Right at this moment I would be Monica Wright in Love and Basketball. That movie touched my heart. I was her when I was in college, only the dude I was with played baseball. I would have to change the ending though, because dude was a dog. I would much rather have the man I am with now, my hubby.

So it would be more like Love and Baseball (*stops to roll on the floor laughing. Wipes eyes*) Lol. I had to do it.

Who is your best friend?

Doug Tetting is my best friend, lover, protector, giver of dreams and the best comedian on the planet.

How long have you been married?

We’ve been married 16 years, and together 21.

Yaass! I love it. Would you like to have children?

NO! Why? It is not for me.

Whhaaattt????? Nooo Lisa! (*Dabs the corner of right eye*)

What takes up too much of your time?

Social Media, but it is a necessary evil.

I know right. What do you wish you knew more about?

Writing for TV and Movies. That’s why I’m taking a course!

Loren, I think you still have dreams of being a director! Tell us about the course.

I am taking the Master Class- Shonda Rhimes Teaches Writing for Television. So far, the course is amazing. It delves into the inner workings of developing a show for television and all the steps you need to take to make it successful. Shonda Rhimes is the Queen of Thursday Nights and she knows great television. I am enjoying the course because it lets the students into her personal process, which is something you usually don’t have access to.

What’s your favorite Historical figure?

Cleopatra! She was bad ass.

Lol. What are your thoughts on Race?

I think race is something that is used to separate people and cause friction in the world. It is far too important in the world.

I know right. In your own words (not Google’s) define racism.

Racism is an excuse people who have a particular hue of skin, use to make them feel better about themselves, by belittling and demeaning people who are different than them. An unnecessary evil!

What’s your favorite TV Show? Movie?

My favorite TV show is hard to pinpoint. I love Scandal, NCIS, and Underground. I used to love Criminal Minds, but they got rid of Hotch and the show has gone downhill. My fave movies vary between, The Color Purple, An Affair to Remember, Forrest Gump, Love and Basketball and the Rocky movies, including Creed.

I enjoyed Creed myself. What TV channel doesn’t exist but really should?

Women’s Sports Channel!

Let’s talk about books. What is the most thought provoking book you’ve ever read?

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

Yea, that’s a good one. Loren, why is writing important to you?

I can’t live without it. It is a part of me that I must do.

Why is it a must for you?

I must write because I believe it is what I was put on Earth to do. I have a million stories in my head just waiting to be written. I am always coming up with new ideas for stories and I get excited just thinking about them. I see the world through a writer’s eye and always have. It has just taken me longer to gain the courage to write it down for others to enjoy.

What do you love about yourself?

I love that I have an open mind and my willingness to try new things.

If you had one superpower that could change the world, what would it be?

I have the superpower, but I don’t have the ability to infuse it into everyone. It is LOVE! Why? If people focused on love instead of hate, this world would change for the better. I’m not saying I want a utopia where people walk around like mindless drones smiling at the moon. I am simply saying, if people opened their hearts more instead of using hate to lead, things would get better for everyone.

That’s probably the deepest answer I’ve gotten on this interview yet! You’re onto something Loren. Love is a superpower indeed. 

In your own words, what is truth?

Truth is the ability to step outside of yourself and see things for what they are, without any emotional attachment. Emotions cause truth to be skewed and then nobody knows what really happened.

Lol. True.

Coming June 20, 2017

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*WARNING: This book contains explicit sexual content and is not suitable for anyone under the age of 18. Let’s get the children out of the room please.

Egyptian Nights

(Book 1 in The Triple Threat Series)

is available now for pre-order. CLICK HERE

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Once upon a time there was a beautiful young woman named Egypt, and she loved sex. Cursed by her mother’s dying declaration, she thinks she is unworthy of love. Locking her feelings inside an impenetrable ice block, she hides behind casual sex. Aided by her Naughty Fairy Godmother, she creates a playlist of rules to live by to avoid a broken heart.

When the ruggedly, sexy businessman, Harper Beckmann enters the restaurant where she is the executive chef, she feels drawn to him in ways she never felt before. When he denies her offer for a casual hook-up and offers to take her on a date instead, she is intrigued. Unable to resist his charms, she allows him to break all of her rules, including kissing on the mouth.

Harper has been playing the field since his fiancée left him for his best friend. A romantic at heart, he longs for the love of a good woman. When he meets Egypt, he knows instantly she is just what he needs to cure his aching heart. If he can break down her walls and get her to admit she loves him too, Beckmann may just be the one to break the curse.

Thanks so much Loren for spending this time with us. We enjoyed you!


L. Loren. Used with permission.

Bio.

Loren is a former call center supervisor currently based in Greenville, SC with her loving and supportive husband.

Growing up the youngest of seven in a small town in North Carolina, she embraced her love of reading which helped to develop her imagination.

Her desire to write lay dormant for years until she found the courage to look within and her passion could no longer be ignored.

Be sure to follow L. Loren online:

https://llorenwriter.wordpress.com/ 

http://facebook.com/l.lorenwriter

http://goodreads.com/lloren

Twitter: @rebirthoflisa

Pinterest: rebirthoflisa

https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B01MSTKUBI

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