Interview With Jon Koons

Sat down with Author Jon Koons to talk about writing and his new book: Willoughby’s Time & Space App.  jonphoto
1. How long have you been writing?
Forever. I wrote stories and song lyrics when I was ten. Got more into it around the college years, and had my first story published in a legit anthology about a decade later in 1994. The story, THE ADVENTURE OF THE MISSING COUNTESS, a Sherlock Holmes pastiche, first appeared in The Game Is Afoot: Parodies, Pastiches, and Ponderings of Sherlock Holmes— edited by Marvin Kaye. Oddly, since then that story has been reproduced in another anthology, in a magazine, and has been turned into a stage play, and incorporated into two others.
2.What got you started in writing?
Just a way to be creative, I suppose. Found out that I didn’t suck at it, and kept going. One of my short story collections is called: A FEW STORIES THAT WERE TRAPPED INSIDE MY HEAD And Just Had To Get Out.
3. What main genre do you write in and have you written in other genres?
I have written in every genre, even non-fiction and editorial, however I gravitate towards humorous science fiction and fantasy.
4. What publishing route have you used and/or what publishing company have you used?
My two previous children’s picture books, A CONFUSED HANUKKAH and ARTHUR AND GUEN, were published by Dutton Children’s Books, a division of Penguin, one of the largest publishers in the world. The industry has changed drastically since then, so my current novel was published by a hybrid online publisher who essentially prints and distributes through Amazon. I am not, as many people do, trying to become the world’s best selling online author. I have published the current novel (and will the upcoming sequel) primarily to get some notice and good reviews, then to pitch the series to a traditional publisher.
5. What inspired you to write this book? Is it the 1st or in a set of books?
Actually wrote the initial version of book decades ago. Probably just for fun. Was asked to rewrite it as a YA by an editor who subsequently didn’t buy it. (sigh) Dug it out last year and completely rewrote it, stem to stern, to accommodate new technology, current YA sensibilities and modes of speech. This is the first in a trilogy, although if it is picked up and sells well, it will likely become a trilogy of 6 (like Hitchhiker’s guide To The Galaxy, to which my book has been compared). Who knows? Maybe I’ll end  up with forty novels, like Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series (to which my book has also been compared).
6. What marketing routes have you used to promote your book?
Freebees, contests, social media, email blasts. All the normal stuff that everyone does these days.
7. Is writing your main career or do you have other jobs?
Although I would like it to be one day, I write along side being an actor, singer, director and multi-talent variety performer. That means I do virtually all of the variety and circus skills out there. Magic, juggling, stilt walking, fire eating, etc. Plus graphic design and pretty much everything in the fine and performing arts.
8. How do you start off writing? Do you research, brain storm, or just set the title and go from there?
Just have an idea, sit down at the keyboard and see where it takes me. Research is done along the way as needed. I create a mental, sometimes written, outline and then let the story write itself. I rarely plot out specifics unless I’m doing a serious murder mystery or such, and then only sometimes. I do like to listen to my characters and see where they want to go.
9. Who inspires you to write and do they help with ideas for the book?
Life inspires me to write. Everyone I see or talk to helps with ideas.
10. If you could write one last book what would it be about?
About 70,000 words.
11. What advice would you give a new author?
I would give the same advice I give to wannabe actors: There are only two kinds of people who write— The kind who have to write because it’s in their blood and they can’t do anything else; and the kind who don’t write. Run with it, stick to it, and revise, revise, revise!
12. If you had to tell a new author something to watch out for in writing, what would it be?
Be grateful for any and all comments, criticism and advice that you can get— then sort it out for yourself and write what and how you feel. Take good advice from those you respect. Don’t sweat the rest. Also, rules of writing, just like painting or acting or whatnot, are for people who don’t write. They are made to be broken, as long as you understand them first. I, for example, punctuate the way I want to, and have a whole introduction in the book I’m currently writing as to how and why.
13. How do you respond to bad reviews or if you havent ever had one, tell me how you would respond if you got one?
If I can respond to a bad review, which is usually not possible (and of which I have had very few), I try to find out the specific reasons behind the review, and what I might be able to do to use them as suggestions to become a better writer (actor, artist, etc.). That being said, reviews these days are largely by people just to make themselves feel important, and have little to actually do with your work. Mostly codswallop, so I feel free to ignore most of them and stumble on. [I recently got a review of the audiobook in which someone says that a character’s speech is too old fashioned, and people don’t talk like that anymore— obviously missing the fact that the character was born in the mid 1800’s, and left planet Earth by about the 1920’s. Speaks too old fashioned indeed. These are the reviews, from people who don’t even pay attention to what the book is about, that I completely discount.]
14. Do you have anyone to read your book and give you advice on it before it is published?
Always. Always have some trusted family and friends (my wife, son, author friends, etc.) to give you their opines before going to print.
15. Pretend this is a job interview, Tell me about yourself as an person and/or author?

This is best handled by the bio on my author website:

Jon Koons is an author who resides in New Jersey, U.S.A. But please don’t hold that against him. He has written everything from children’s picture books to short stories to scripts and novels. His work can be found as print books, ebooks, audiobooks, in anthologies such as Cool Sports Dad; The Game is Afoot: Parodies, Pastiches and Ponderings of Sherlock Holmes; The Big Book of Sherlock Holmes Stories; as well as in periodicals like Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine (are you sensing a theme here?), Weird Tales Magazine, The Jewish Standard (of all places), and lining bird cages across the country. As a frequent contributor of short fiction and book reviews to Weird Tales Magazine he was eventually made an Associate Editor, meaning he gets to correct other authors’ punctuation and spelling. Although Jon writes in just about every genre, his focus is on science fiction and fantasy that is humorous. At least to him.
Also known as a performer under his nom de plume (which obviously means ‘name with feathers’) of The JestMaster, Jon does ridiculous things like magic, ventriloquism, walking on stilts, eating fire and riding a Penny Farthing bicycle; for which he has garnered acclaim, awards, second degree burns and cracked ribs. As an actor Jon has appeared on Broadway (in a show that closed after only a couple of weeks—but it wasn’t his fault, he swears), on TV, in commercials and in such classic films as Revenge of the Nerds 3: The Next Generation. He also produces and narrates audiobooks, saving him the expense of having someone else do it.
After twiddling around with writing all that other stuff seemingly forever, now at an age over half a century old (advanced, yes, but not too crusty, because as you know fifty is the new forty-nine) he has finally become a published novelist. His fondest desire as an author is that after you have read all the Douglas Adams, Terry Pratchett and Christopher Moore novels you can get ahold of, that you give his novels a shot. Admittedly there is only one at the moment, but as long as people keep buying it there will be plenty more to come.
In his dubious spare time, Jon hangs out in his big old house with mice in the walls and in serious need of repair, with his wife Mikki, who is a talented woodwind player and the love of his life; his miraculous son Merlin Ryan, a chip off the old block—heaven help him; their ferret Grig; and an ever changing cast of characters, both real and imaginary.
facebook.com @trappedstories

book blurb
Two Human Teens. One Intergalactic Resort. An Alien Pageant Under Attack. Time to Party!
When a trip to the mall goes from weird to WTF?, high school students Brad and Stephanie find themselves transported to the oddest and most wonderful place in the universe. Or some universe at least. It’s like Club Med, but more like Club Mashup, filled with a cadre of strange and unusual aliens.
With memberships to the only Intergalactic, Pan-Dimensional, Crosstime Resort in the cosmos, our heroes must foil a plot by dastardly villains bent on its conquest. What can two human teens do about it? Throw a party, of course! Along with the very first Intergalactic Beauty (?) Pageant.
Can they get contestants from countless cockeyed worlds to join their pageant, best the baddies, and save the planet?
Willoughby’s Time & Space App is the first exciting book in a series of over-the-top YA sci-fi novels. If you’re into daring teens, incredible alien worlds, and intergalactic escapades, you’ll love Jon Koons’ hilarious tale.
Buy Willoughby’s Time & Space App and embark on this wacky, out-of-this-world adventure today!
link to Amazon or other buy link.
EBOOK, PRINT AND AUDIOBOOK:
AUDIOBOOK:

Interview with Author DeAndrea Byrd

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Thought you might find this interesting!  Sat down with Author DeAndrea Byrd about her writing career and what book she wanted you to check out.  Here is the interview:
1. How long have you been writing?
I have secretly been writing all my life, via poems, notebooks, short stories etc. I was inspired at a young age by my mom and grandmother. The were both writers.
2.What got you started in writing?
What got me serious about writing professionally, was other people’s need for information. 
3. What main genre do you write in and have you written in other genres?
My specialties include “How To” books, workbooks and journals for entrepreneurs
4. What publishing route have you used and/or what publishing company have you used?
I took the self publishing route via Amazon Createspace (now KDP Kindle publishing)
5. What inspired you to write this book? Is it the 1st or in a set of books?
I noticed I was being asked the same question over and over ” How do you plan those big sold out events DeAndrea? How did you get vendors and sponsors at your event? I decided to put all my knowledge, research and experience into a book. 
6. What marketing routes have you used to promote your book?
I have mainly used social media as my biggest marketing strategy. I also use vendor events, speaking engagements and old school flyer tactics
7. Is writing your main career or do you have other jobs?
Writing is not my main career yet, but I do consider myself an infoprenuer.
8. How do you start off writing? Do you research, brain storm, or just set the title and go from there?
Brainstorming is my first go-to-action. I use journals and Google Docs to brain dump option. Because I have such a creative mind, its important that I get my ideas out right away. I refer back to my journals and docs as needed.
Then I go back and outline my thoughts, develop at least 3-5 title ideas, and commit to a writing schedule.
9. Who inspires you to write and do they help with ideas for the book?
I am inspired my life, earth, my family and experiences to write. Life is my school and inspiration.
10. If you could write one last book what would it be about?
If it was my last day on earth and I could write 1 last book, I would totally write my memoirs. They would all be short stories mixed with letters to myself.
11. What advice would you give a new author?
Listen to yourself, Breathe and just do it. The world needs you.
12. If you had to tell a new author something to watch out for in writing, what would it be?
Do not let fear, grammatically errors and other people’s opinions make you procrastinate
13. How do you respond to bad reviews or if you havent ever had one, tell me how you would respond if you got one? Bad reviews get no response from me. They are just not my target audience and that’s ok. I would use every review to make my work better.
14. Do you have anyone to read your book and give you advice on it before it is published?
Yes. I also do a test “FREEBIE” and give the book out via digital download to get feedback.
15. Pretend this is a job interview, Tell me about yourself as an person and/or author?
DeAndrea, the daughter, sister, mother, wife, author, business owner, aka super women. Helping others and teaching are my super powers. DeAndrea Byrd is a seasoned business coach and consultant. As a self-taught entrepreneur, she has launched multiple successful businesses both online and in a traditional brick-and-mortar setting and has a passion for helping other entrepreneurs automate their business, create a workflow strategy, and increase their profits by creating digital products. 
Book Cover(1).jpg
 
Website: www.deandreabyrd.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/deandreabyrd

Facebook: https:www.Facebook.com/bookdeandreabyrd

Link to purchase book: http://bit.ly/theevetflip
Link to all books: http://bit.ly/authordeandrea

Captain Honey Bear – Kids Book

Captain Honey Bear is a cute kids book, short story, about a bear who has to serve a sentence for stealing honey from a bee’s nest.  It teaches kids good morals including having compassion and forgiveness for others. It is inspiring and uplifting story for the young at heart. Please check out this book by Tracy Kauffman on Amazon.  It is available on Kindle Ebook and in Print. Buy Here:

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Tracy Kauffman is a kids and young adult author who writes fictional books for enjoyment, while trying to teach that good morals go a long way.  Visit her author profile here.

8 Steps to Business Success

Businesswoman working in office

There are a few things that are a definite step toward success. Whether you are a small business just getting started or a larger corporation, these basic steps will lead you to a successful business.

1. Personal branding is a must for the new entrepreneur.  People need to know what your company or business is all about. Personal branding could be a logo design, trademark, a set of business guidelines, website or place where others come to learn about you.

2. Stay active.  Seems pretty easy and self-explanatory but most often businesses give up before they become successful.  They work hard for the first few months but give up due to lack of resources, time, energy and faith.  Authors need to write some every day in order to accomplish their goals.

3. Research and Take Rapid Action. What this means is that you can do some research about your product.  Find out what sells, who the buyer is, what a good price for your product and then take immediate action. Whatever you need to do to accomplish your end goal is what you need to do.  Don’t wait for someone else to help you, don’t wait for the economy to get better, take swift action now.

4. Market and Advertise your business.  Whatever product or service your business provides, you need to have a marketing plan in place.  Look at a business plan and write down certain marketing actions that will help you promote your business and then follow them.

5. Stay motivated.  Nothing kills a business more than lack of determination. Don’t give up so easily.  Every business will have stumbling blocks in the way. Your job is to find a way around those.

6. Continue to Expand- Most companies are continually adding new products and services.  Just like any business, a writer must continue to put out books in order to stay successful.

7. Set a Budget- Establishing a set amount of money for marketing should be in your budget.  Write down how much you need for each expense, such as: Overhead, office expense, utilities, travel, food, supplies, etc…

8. Engage the Customer- Any business needs to interact with their customers, either by face to face interaction or through emails or online support. A writer might set up speaking engagements, book signings or attend book seminars.

Need a Writing Coach?  http://writingcoach.wix.com/fullspeedahead

The Camouflaged Cross- Book 1: Just Run by Cal Wilson

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Have you ever wondered what the true Biblical End Times will look like? Where society has totally broken down and evil forces are at work, both worldwide and locally, to take control of what is left?

Nuclear bombs smuggled into shipping containers have blown up several American port cities. Riots have broken out among the hungry survivors. Train tracks have been sabotaged to cause derailments, municipal water supplies have been poisoned, ground-to-air missiles have been smuggled into the country to shoot down passenger airplanes, crop-dusters have been used to spread disease in crowded cities, and electrical sub-stations have been attacked to shut down the electrical grid and make sure that anyone left alive is in the dark. In the face of all this death and destruction, most of the survivors foolishly try and prepare for a return to normalcy.

Several Christian prepper families have converged upon an agreed-upon retreat location to try and survive what is clearly a final break-down of society, just as was predicted in the Bible. Join Jesse, his wife Mary, their daughter Melissa, and their prepper friends from church who have, after years of prepping and stockpiling supplies, are forced to go to their retreat location in hopes of fighting and surviving all of the multiple threats to come.

Buy link: http://amzn.com/B00XXBQPJI    (Free today through Saturday)

Excerpt: 

The American president, who had been widely distrusted by the Christian community, was attending a conference in Jerusalem, to celebrate the mid-point of his much-heralded seven-year, universal peace treaty. Most other world leaders also attended. This treaty had succeeded in keeping world peace as never before. Even skeptics had been impressed with the peace kept by this treaty, engineered by the American president.
The location of this conference, believed to be the location of Solomon’s Temple from biblical times, was chosen to emphasize the historical significance of the occasion.

However, during the conference, nuclear bombs concealed inside shipping containers exploded simultaneously at several American east-coast port cities. For those who survived the nuclear bombs, full-scale rioting ensued, making the cities involved a vast wasteland of death and destruction. Fearing the same attacks, other port cities that had not been attacked halted all shipping operations, resulting in shortages of essential supplies and food. People in those cities also rioted.
All the rioters in American port cities not only demanded a resumption of the shipments of food, but they also resented the fact that any semblance of privacy they had had was gone, ostensibly in order to protect against terrorist attacks like what just happened. Rational observers of the situation agreed that this was one of the few times when the frustrations of rioters, if not the actions, actually made sense. Government snooping of phone calls, e-mails, texts, computer hard-drives, credit card and online purchases, and all other aspects of life in America had produced no noticeable increase in security, as had been promised. Facial recognition cameras had even been set up in city centers, recording the identities and travelling of drivers and pedestrians through the cities. Yet, this end of privacy had still not halted the attacks.

Soon after the nuclear explosions in the American port cities, terrorist sleeper cells inside the United States began operations in which they attacked electrical substations – those unprotected junctions of electrical power lines where the voltage in the lines is regulated for further movement into a nearby city – with machine guns in an attempt to cut off the power grid and all communications. At first, the nationwide coordinated attacks on power substations, dubbed “Metcalfing” after the location of the 2013 dry run, had scattered success. Nevertheless, several major American cities still had power.

Southern Attraction- Young Adult Romance Book

Southern Attraction Coverart (2)

After tornadoes blast through Alabama in April of 2011; I wrote this book in memory of those that lost their homes or even their lives.  After seeing the tornado destruction and losing power for over a week, and seeing many lives changed that day, I wanted people to remember what happened not only to the state of Alabama but throughout the south.
Southern Attraction is a young adult romance book about a girl who loses her parents and is forced to live with a country-fied redneck uncle from Alabama. There she has to rediscover who she really is.  She goes from the snooty beauty queen cheerleader to part of the southern charm.  She has to choose between two young men that she likes.

Heather has everything she ever wanted; money, clothes, friends, popularity and parents that adored her. Until one terrible day, she loses it all. She is uprooted from a place she loves to a small town in Alabama with a uncle she doesn’t know. The small town of Huckleburg was nothing like Manhattan. Country rednecks owned the town and no one accepted Yankees from New York. Heather didn’t think things could get worse until a tornado comes and blast through the small town. Heather has to lose herself to rediscover what life is all about. She meets two guys that she can’t decide between who she really wants. Join Heather as she discovers that there is more to life than money and fame. Will Heather ever fit in and find true love or will she remain an outsider living in the south.

Excerpt

“Uncle Mick, something is wrong with my television. Can you fix it?” she yelled through the walls to Mick. Within seconds she heard an alarm sounding. “What in the —-”, she said. Her bedroom door came flinging open and Mick ran inside. “Heather, there’s a tornado warning going on. We got to head to the storm pit!” he exclaimed.

“What?” Heather questioned. “I said come on,” Mick said as he grabbed her arm and pulled her behind him. Heather didn’t know what to think. She had never been in a place where tornadoes ever doomed the city, so she just followed Mick’s lead..

As Mick opened the front door, Heather was stunned to see the sky so dark. It had only been a few minutes that she drove into the driveway with a clear sky. Now suddenly a dark cloud hovered overhead. Heather and Mick ran toward the back of the house. Heather started to worry when she saw a cement looking building carved into the ground. Mick grabbed the door handle and pulled it.

“Get inside quick or we are going to be blown away!” he exclaimed. Heather could hear a roaring sound like a strong wind approaching them. She turned to look at the sky when she saw a funnel shaped cloud in the distance. Suddenly, fear came over her and she didn’t know what to say or do. Mick pushed her inside, and he pulled the door closed. Then he latched the door closed. “What are we going to do?” she cried.

“Don’t worry, we are safe in here. I’ve been through several of these storms in the past and everything will be fine,” Mick said, trying to console her. Mick tried to act calm for Heather’s sake but deep down he was terrified. He was worried that the tornado was going to blow the door off the storm pit, and they were going to be sucked out into the twister. He had been fortunate in the past to escape a tornado’s fury, when it ravaged his neighbor’s farm and left his untouched. He wasn’t convinced that this time, he would be as lucky.

Mick’s words of encouragement did nothing to calm Heather’s nerves. She was more scared than she ever had been before. She didn’t know what to expect or what to think about the idea of a tornado approaching. That is something that she never had to experience living in Manhattan.

An extreme fear came over her and she was in shock. Yes, her parents’ passing had traumatized her, but she never felt this type of terror and doom before in her life. She was afraid that this could end her life and Mick’s and she wasn’t ready to leave this world yet. She felt her life was just beginning. She hadn’t lived the life that she always wanted to live. Mick could see the panic in Heather’s eyes and by the expression on her face. Mick heard Heather mumbling something that he couldn’t make out. Then he saw her close her eyes as if she were praying. She cried as she asked God to forgive her and to protect her and Mick from the storm. Heather wasn’t a religious girl but she believed in a higher power. She believed in God as a creator of all things. She knew that now was the best time to make her peace with God, because she didn’t know if she would make it to live another day.

Then suddenly without warning they both heard loud noises coming from outside. Heather heard a crash like something had been hit by a fast moving train. Then she head a hard thud and some clattering and crashing sounds. Her body could feel vibrations through the ground and the walls.

“Lord, I don’t want to die, please help us God,” she cried. Trying to keep his emotions to himself, Mick reached out to hug Heather. She held her uncle tightly hoping that the storm would soon be over.

The vibrations from the ground grew stronger while the deafening booming sounds got louder and louder. Then all of the sudden, there was a complete silence. The storm had only lasted a few minutes, but it felt like an eternity to Heather. After everything became quiet, Heather fell to her knees and began to sob.

“Heather it’s over, don’t worry,” Mick said. Mick was concerned and worried what kind of terror was going on inside of her head. He could see her distress, but he didn’t know what to do, except hold her until she stopped crying. He was hoping that he could regain his own composure in the process.

“Everything will be alright, I promise,” he consoled.

After sitting on the concrete floor for several minutes, Heather finally quit shaking. After seeing Heather come back to herself, Mick leaped up off the concrete floor and went to open the door to the outside. The sky began to lighten and he walked outside to look around. Heather slowly got up on her feet and crept outside. She was taken back at the sight she saw before her eyes. A pile of rubble sat where the house once stood. All she could see was a dirty field full of debris. Their furniture and possessions looked like garbage, scattered acrosss the ground.“Are you okay,” Mick asked.“Yes, I’ll be fine,” Heather replied. After climbing over a pile of of wood Mick said, “Look, your car is over there and there is my truck. Maybe they are driveable.”  “I guess things could be worse. At least we weren’t injured,” Mick said as he surveyed the area. “How can you say that? You lost everything in that terrible storm. Don’t you care that we are both now homeless?” Heather asked with frustration. “I know you are upset, but we’ll figure something out.”Heather couldn’t understand why Mick was so calm and unemotional. He has lost his mind or something, she thought.

Mick walked over to his truck and tried to crank it. The truck started up without a hitch. “Come on Heather, let’s go see if someone might need our help.” Heather was still a little shaken up and confused when she followed Mick to his truck and climbed inside. Mick started to drive down the gravel road leading away from his farm when they observed a horrendous sight. They both were astounded at what they saw before their eyes. They looked around as Mick drove and they saw piles of debris scattered along the road and fields. They noticed the path of destruction was over several miles and only a few homes were left untouched.

“It is weird but it looks like the tornado picked its targets,” Heather said. “I see what you mean. Some houses are left and others are completely gone. It even cleared out all the trees,”Mick replied. Mick pulled over to the side of the road by a mound of rubble. He jumped out of the truck and ran over to where a house once stood. “Is there anyone in there?” he yelled.

Please help us!” Noises came from underneath the wood fragments. Mick ran to the debris and started pulling off planks of wood and garbage. “Come help me!” Mick exclaimed as he motioned for Heather. Heather quickly hurried to help Mick pull off the jagged and sharp boards from the heap of rubble. “Be careful, these have nails in them,” Mick instructed.Finally, Mick could see an older couple peering out from underneath the wreckage. He dug faster but carefully trying not to injure them. At last, an elderly man and woman climbed out from underneath. “Thank you! Thank God, you came. We don’t know how long we would have been under there,” the man said. Heather could see how glad the man and woman were that they were rescued. Suddenly Heather felt good that she was able to help the couple. After checking for injuries, Mick told the couple that they were going to look for other people who needed help. They waved goodbye as they quickly drove down the rode. So many people were out examining the area looking for survivors and anyone that was trapped.

Heather saw steel power lines snapped in two. Cars and trucks were turned upside down on their axles. Huge trees were uprooted and pulled up from the ground with the roots lying on top of the ground. Cement slabs were robbed of the houses that once stood on their surfaces. Shreds of cloth that once resembled clothing lay on the ground. Pieces of twisted tin were wrapped around trees that still stood amongst the wreckage.

Buy Link:  http://amzn.to/1E6gmZz

Author website: http://writingcoach.wix.com/fullspeedahead

Facebook pages: https://www.facebook.com/TracyKauffmanFictionAuthor

&  https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Writing-Coach/345272592347682?ref=tn_tnmn
My Literary Directory website: http://literary.yolasite.com

 

The Top 20 Literary Sites on the Web

topsites

These are the top 20 literary websites of authors and readers on the web.  From books to reviews — from authors to agents, these sites are for anyone interested in literature.

1. Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/
Goodreads is a literary site owned by Amazon. They carry all titles and genres with links directing back to major bookstores. Go to them to read or write reviews and discover what your friends are reading.

2. Literary Directory: http://literary.yolasite.com
Literary Directory is a directory of great books and literature, and where authors can come to get help with their book manuscript. Publishers now have the place to search out new authors, great books, or literature. Book lovers can come and search books or write reviews of their favorite books.

3. World Lit Café: http://www.worldliterarycafe.com/
Where readers and authors can connect in one place. They offer author forum to discuss books or to ask for reviews. They have Twitter tweet teams that help with marketing books.

4. Poets and Writers: http://www.pw.org/
One of the largest literary sites serving creative writers in one place.

5. The Millions: http://www.themillions.com/
An online magazine covering books, arts, essays and culture.

6. The Los Angeles Review of Books: http://lareviewofbooks.org/
The Los Angeles Review of Books has a wide selection of book reviews, interviews and essays to choose from.

7. Bookriot: http://bookriot.com/
Bookriot is a literary site dedicated to the idea that writing about books and reading.

8. The American Reader: http://theamericanreader.com/
The American Reader is a monthly journal of literature and criticism.

9. Shelfari: http://www.shelfari.com/
This literary site is owned by Amazon. It is a community of readers sharing their favorite books.

10. Manicreaders: http://www.manicreaders.com/
Manireaders is a literary site for authors, publishers, readers and reviewers to feel at home.

11. Full Stop: http://www.full-stop.net/
A site full of reviews, interviews and marginalia with a thorough discussion of literature and literary culture.

12. Library Thing: http://www.librarything.com/
A online catalog of amazing books with a community of 1,700,000 book lovers.

13. Hilowbrow: http://hilobrow.com/
Hilobrow is a literature site with a collection of good reads and long forgotten literature.

14. The Public Domain Review: http://publicdomainreview.org/
This site showcases the most interesting and unusual out-of-copyright works available online. Books from classic works of literature to abandoned drafts.

15. Book Browse: http://www.bookbrowse.com/
BookBrowse is an online magazine for booklovers and authors. Read some great reviews, blurps, author interviews, and much more.

16. Figment: http://figment.com/
Figment is a community where authors and readers can connect with other people who love to read, and discover new stories.

17. Spangaloo: http://spangaloo.com/
An online literary sites of Ebooks in all genres where readers can download Ebooks for free.

18. Author Database: http://authorsdb.com/
A free database of authors, including social media and book listings.

19. Ebooklister: http://www.ebooklister.net/
EBL is a great free service providing links to free and bargain books online.

20. Writers Net: http://www.writers.net/
A literary resource full of information for finding publishers, writers, editors and agents.

Written by Tracy Kauffman
Tracykauffman.com

These views are entirely my own views and are in no respect formed from any independent study.

Looking Forward to the New Year

 

happynewyear

I would like to wish each and everyone a Happy and Safe New Year. The New Year season represents a time to look forward toward big and better things to come. Last year came with some up’s and down’s but I hope to look forward, forgetting those things behind and pressing toward the mark of the high calling in God. See, I have decided to focus this next year on my Heavenly Father and not on worldly possessions or myself. I do not want to make any New Year resolutions but to say this. I will try to witness more, read the Bible more and praise my God in Heaven more this year.

To truly honor God, I want to thank him for all the blessings he has bestowed upon me and my family. He has guided me toward starting a new Christian blog located here. http://godlywitnesses.wordpress.com/. I have had a few followers already and the blog seems to be going in the right direction. Topics include: Fasting, Grace, Trusting in God, Heaven, Jesus, and many others. I hope this blog will help others come to Christ.

Another blessing is my new publishing company. I am starting slow by financing myself. I strive to look for decent books that would encourage, inspire or edify others. I will not compromise my values and publish anything that I consider ungodly. There are too many books that are influencing our country in a negative way. Submissions are currently closed but will restart soon!

Anomaly by Michael Gilwood

Michael Gilwood (1)

Michael Gilwood is the Pen name for Stephen Woodward. Michael’s writing career began at the age of nine; writing children’s columns in the local Kentish newspaper. At seventeen, he started to write short stories and poems. After reading hundreds of books, he blamed his nearness to writing to the overly imaginative works of Verne, not because it was his first, it was he who could deliver his then childish mind, making him wonder how someone could vividly paint an invisible image inside his head. He was fascinated by the power of literature. Since then he enjoyed writing, enjoying the pleasure it brought to others. He found it a way to escape from the real world, inserting himself within his own. His other works include: DOK. Both books are available on Amazon.

Science Fiction Novel- Anomaly Synopsis:Anomaly

When two-hundred year old human remains are found on one of Neptune’s moons, Earth’s history falls into chaos. The momentous discovery points planet earth towards a solar system a thousand light years away. Twenty years later, Captain Philip Wakefield and his team, onboard the starship Excelsior, reaches the solar system of Mintaka and continues the investigation. But they are not the only thing evolving in the galaxy. Something frightening has them in its sights. Their discovery of the very cradle of humankind becomes a struggle for interstellar survival. This science fiction book is sure to excite your senses and imagination of the world of space.

weltron-urban_regular                                                                         Exerpt

“My name is Philip. This is Alana and Ramaan. We are scientists. We have come here to gather information about this planet, its life-forms and cultures, its riches and composition and then we will move on to the next planet in this system we call Phot. We come from Earth, the third planet of a G7 star in the centauri region.”

“We know why you have come. Here, you’ll need a flask of Amostalina for your woman.” Shar gave them a small phial of white liquid for Lexia and smiled.

“Almost twenty-thousand of your years ago, we lived in peace in your solar system on the planet you call Mars. Everything was perfect. Everything was as it should have been until the war between the Gorinos, or the dark ones and us, began. At the same time, a terrible disease struck Mars. It drifted quietly and almost destroyed us. As a result, we separated and fled to different parts of the galaxy to escape the impending doom that encircled us. We have our Platnios outside to warn us of intruders. It was them who told us of your arrival.”

“Those plant creatures, you call them Platnios?” Philip’s confidence suddenly came back with a rush. He felt at ease. Shar sensed it, and smiled again.

“They are territorial; if you don’t provoke them, they won’t hurt you.” Ramaan felt an urge to roll up his sleeve and show Shar his arm.

“They are genetically made to serve and obey us?” He moved forward and gave them a book written in their language. Philip was sure his gift would help Lexia with her translations. Ramaan meanwhile was taking photographs of interest and sending the results to Sentrywatcher.

“How is it that you are familiar with the English Language?” asked Philip.

“It is our second language and the mother tongue of our descendants. Come, I will show you and your crew our hangar and what we are doing here.”

Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/Anomaly-Michael-Gilwood/dp/098918823X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1387471047&sr=8-1&keywords=michael+gilwood

Website: http://stevewoodenpoets.wix.com/books
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Michael-Gilwood/461276787313105

Does Our Success Depend on Others

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Does our success and happiness depend on others? Think about this question carefully. Some might say yes because if people aren’t interested in buying our product then we fail. Some say no because you are only as successful as you choose to be.

Really there are two ways to look at this. You might say success is happiness and living a fulfilled life. Others say success depends on how well their business is going and by how much money they have in the bank.

Now let me ask the question again. Does our success depend on others? Do you still have to think about the question or have you made an observation already? I am going to talk about success with businesses verus success with contentment.

In Erik Erikson’s theory of psychosocial development, a person develops a sense of pride in their accomplishments in the fourth stage called: Industry Versus Inferiority. Social interaction is key and important in this time of development. Children will become more and more capable of performing increasingly complex tasks. As a result of this, they strive to master new skills. After completing one task they are able to move on. When they are encouraged by parents and teachers they develop a feeling of competence and belief in their skills. They feel acceptance by others and helps them build self esteem. Without self esteem it is more difficult for an individual to become successful. Those who receive little or no encouragement feel incapable and doubt their ability. Each individual needs to be able to deal with new social and academic demands. If they are doubtful of their abilities they cannot master any new task. Often they might trying for fear of failure. They might think it is easier to give up than to complete their objective.

Now some view success as having contentment in one’s life. The same theory applies. When a child is negatively influenced by others it affects their self esteem. Some might rise above negative thoughts of others but some dwell on it for years. I am not a Psychiatrist but have observed people in different scenerios in life. Many dwell on past experiences and they are usually negative experiences. Some say if, “If I was treated better growin up, I….” The fact is that people care about what others think of them. One can choose to live life to the fullest and forget those past experiences or one can dwell on it and never succeed.

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Sources

I would like to thank the following sources for allowing me to post photos, related text and helpful information on this blog. Sources: Google.com Bing.com Biblegateway.com Merriam Webster dictionary Ask.com Wikipedia.org About.com Pinterest.com
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