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January Justice by Athol Dickson Book Blast & $25 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway

Reeling from his wife’s unsolved murder, Malcolm Cutter is just going through the motions as a chauffeur and bodyguard for Hollywood’s rich and famous. Then a pair of Guatemalan tough guys offer him a job. It’s an open question whether they’re patriotic revolutionaries or vicious terrorists. Either way, Cutter doesn’t much care until he gets a bomb through his window, a gangland beating on the streets of L.A., and three bullets in the chest. Now there’s another murder on Cutter’s Mind. His own.

Link to purchase: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AGAW6EC

Athol Dickson’s mystery, suspense, and literary novels have won three Christy Awards and an Audie Award. Suspense fans who enjoyed Athol’s They Shall See God will love his latest novel, January Justice, the first installment in a new mystery series called The Malcolm Cutter Memoirs. The second and third novels in the series, Free Fall in February, and A March Murder, are coming in 2013.

Critics have favorably compared Athol’s work to such diverse authors as Octavia Butler (Publisher’s Weekly), Hermann Hesse (The New York Journal of Books) and Flannery O’Connor (The New York Times). Athol lives with his wife in southern California.

Website: http://www.malcolmcutter.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AtholDickson

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Athol-Dickson/416622918355206

Pump Up Your Book and Athol Dickson are teaming up to give you a chance to win a fabulous prize!

Here’s how it works:

Each person will enter this giveaway by liking, following, subscribing and tweeting about this giveaway through the Rafflecopter form placed on blogs throughout the tour. This promotion will run from March 18 – Mar 22. The winner will be chosen randomly by Rafflecopter, contacted by email, and announced on March 25, 2013. Visit each blog stop below to gain more entries as the Rafflecopter widget will be placed on each blog for the duration of the tour. Good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If the Rafflecopter form doesn’t load, please visit the JANUARY JUSTICE TOUR PAGE to enter the giveaway: http://www.pumpupyourbook.com/2013/02/27/pump-up-your-book-presents-athol-dicksons-january-justice-book-blast-%E2%80%93-win-25-amazon-gift-card/

JANUARY JUSTICE BOOK BLAST SCHEDULE
Monday, March 18th
Tuesday, March 19th
Wednesday, March 20th
Thursday, March 21st
Friday, March 22nd

Character Interview: Michael Ryan from Morrie Richfield’s Fantasy ‘Mr. Breeze’ { #blogtour } + WIN #KINDLEFIRE

We’re thrilled to have here today Michael Ryan from Morrie Richfield’s new fantasy, Mr. Breeze. Michael Ryan is a 54 year old photo journalist living in Washington DC.

It is a pleasure to have Michael Ryan with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so for this interview, Michael.  Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

I think Morrie did a good job and I hope he does just as well with the sequel Revelation the return of Mr. Breeze

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

Well I would like to think I am not as narcissistic as I am portrayed but maybe that will change in the sequel

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

My stubborn search for the truth.

Worse trait?

The fact that I do not care who I hurt trying to find it.

If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part if your book was made into a movie, who would that be?

  Mel Gibson, Bruce Willis, though I’m better looking.

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Yes her name is Julie

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

As soon as I met Zack!

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

Well I think I’ll pass on that one, I’ll stay me.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

It made me think and it made want MORE!

What words of wisdom would you give your author if s/he decided to write another book with you in it?

I already have and he listened, you are going to love the sequel.

Thank you for this interview, Michael.  Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

If I have anything to say about it, YES!

Morrie Richfield lives in Pennsylvania with his two sons, his dogs and his cat. He is working on his next novel, and he still dreams that someday the world will be a better place for all of us to live.

His latest book is the inspirational novel, Mr. Breeze.

Visit his website at www.mrbreezethenovel.com.

MR. BREEZE (the title is inspired by a song by the rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd) follows the increasingly amazing experiences of freelance photojournalist Michael Ryan as he hears of stories about a man named Zack, who can seemingly perform inhuman feats that could be called miraculous. Ryan eventually meets Zack and becomes, at Zack’s insistence, Zack’s messenger. Along the way, a dog named Rover, who also possesses otherworldly powers, joins Zack and Ryan in their adventures, which include a remarkable visit to the Centers for Disease Control, in Atlanta, in search of a cure for AIDS.

The secret of who Zack is and why he has chosen Ryan to tell his story to the world forms the surprising and moving climax to the book.

And there is a MR. BREEZE sequel in the works, Richfield notes. The working title is REVELATION:  THE RETURN OF MR. BREEZE. “The second book is about how we take that message (from the first book) and what we do with it.”

In the meantime, Richfield hopes that readers of MR. BREEZE find the storytelling compelling. I also would like them to be entertained and to want to tell others about it. If they come away wanting to be a better human being, that would be a huge plus.”

PUMP UP YOUR BOOK & MORRIE RICHFIELD ARE GIVING AWAY A KINDLE FIRE HD!  CLICK BANNER BELOW TO FILL OUT THE RAFFLECOPTER FORM.  BE SURE TO CHECK HIS STOPS AND ENTER DAILY.  MORE CHANCES FOR YOU TO WIN!

Character Interview: Divena from Kay Marshall Strom’s global fiction The Love of Divena

We’re thrilled to have here today Divena from Kay Marshall Strom’s new global fiction, The Love of Divena.  Divena is a 15-year-old struggling to survive in a poor village in South India.

It is a pleasure to have her with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so much for this interview, Divena.  Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

I do not want anyone to think I willingly left my ammama—my grandmother.  I would have stayed with her and never left her side, but she would not allow it.  I loved her with all my heart, but she loved me even more.  I want everyone to know I did not want to go.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

I cannot answer such a question.  You must understand, no one in all my life ever asked my opinion on anything.  What those greater than me say must be so.  And everyone is greater than me.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

I can love because I am loved.  My ammama was the first person to ever care about me.  And my Sundar—oh, how he loved me!  But what I did not know was that it was really God all the time.  Not any of our million Hindu gods who threaten and punish us. No, it was the Jesus God.  He loved me first, and he loves me most.

Worst trait?

I am willful and do not obey.  And I allow myself to be too easily tempted.  My appa—my father—who I know so well. . . I almost believed the tricky things he said to me.  That would have been the end of everything.

If you could choose someone in the television or movie industry to play your part if your book was made into a movie, who would that be (and you can’t say yourself!)?

I have never seen television or a movie. But I did see pictures of a beautiful Bollywood star named Bipasha Basu.  She is high caste, of course, so she must never know I dared compare myself to her.  But maybe if she got enough money, she would agree to play my part.

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Oh… What a question to ask!  But I do.  Yes.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

When my grandmother was so sick and my appa was trying to catch me to sell me.  I thought I had no person on the earth looking out for me.  I did not think I would live to see another day.  And because of things I had done, I was certain I would come back in the next life as a miserable cockroach.  A miserable female cockroach!

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

I would not want to be my papa.  Father had no one to love him, and he did not know how to love anyone.  He never heard of the Jesus God because he would not listen to anyone but himself.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

Oh, it is too wonderful.  Too wonderful!  I still cannot believe that anyone would do something so fine for me.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if she decided to write another book with you in it?

Do not be too hard on us.  Not even the Brahmans or the landowners.  Please remember: it is the way we do things.  It is all we know.

Thank you for this interview, Divena.  Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

I do not think so.  I will go to the big city and blend in with the crowds of people. No one will know me, but I will finally be someone.

Kay Marshall Strom is the author of forty published books.  Her writing credits also include numerous magazine articles, short stories, curriculum, stories for children, two prize-winning screenplays, and booklets for writers.  Kay speaks at seminars, retreats, and special events throughout the country.  She and her husband Dan Kline love to travel, and more and more Kay’s writing and speaking take her around the word.

Her latest book is the Christian historical fiction, The Love of Divena.

To find out more about Kay, or for contact information, check her website at www.kaystrom.com.

Visit Kay at Twitter: http://twitter.com/kaysblab

Like Kay at Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=251622274091&id=738699091#!/profile.php?id=738699091

Pick up your copy of The Love of Divena at Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/The-Love-Divena-Blessings-India/dp/1426709102/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1348760002&sr=8-1&keywords=the+love+of+divena

Pick up your copy of The Love of Divena at the publisher’s website: http://abingdonpress.com/forms/ProductDetail.aspx?pid=7312

In this final book of the Blessings in India trilogy, Divena struggles against an entire culture to proclaim a faith close to her heart while rocking the world of two families.

India 1990. In the final book of the Blessings of India series, Shridula, old and stooped at fifty-nine, makes her painful way to pay homage to the elephant god Ganesh, lord of success and destroyer of evils and obstacles. “Why are we Hindus instead of Christians?” her seventeen-year-old granddaughter Divena asked.

“Because we are Indian,” said Shridula.

So begins a spiritual journey for Divena as she struggles against an entire culture to proclaim a faith close to her heart while rocking the world of two families.

Character Interview: Amy Benson from Ray East & Sam D’s ‘Voluspa’

We’re thrilled to have here today Amy Benson from Ray East and Sam D’s new YA fantasy romance, Voluspa: A Magical World. Amy is a 15-year-old empath from New York.

It is a pleasure to have her with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so for this interview, Amy. Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

I think my character has been portrayed fairly well. However there is this small thing that I’d like to clarify. In the book I am portrayed as someone with an aversion to shopping. In truth I love shopping and hanging out in the mall.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

I think the author did a good job of capturing all the nuances of my character. My insecurities, moments of self-doubt, my needs to find affection and all my other traits have been accurately presented.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

I would say my perseverance. Life has always thrown me a few hard curves but I never give up. My friends tell me that I am just plain stubborn.

Worse trait?

I am very emotional. I think and feel very strongly.

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Yes. His name is Drake Mc Grizzle and he is the most amazing boyfriend a girl could ever wish for.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

I didn’t really get nervous about the outcome of the book because I had faith in my authors.  To be honest, I have to admit that there is one part in the book, where I start feeling an attraction of sorts for a very disagreeable boy. That had me worried. Besides I was so engrossed in Drake, I found it hard to genuinely understand my attraction for another boy.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

I would hate to be Lord Vali. He has no redeeming quality and is just plain evil.He is cruel, greedy, ambitious, blood thirsty and completely merciless. In short, he is despicable. But I also think he is pitiable. His evilness stems from the turns and twists his life has taken – to some extent he is a product of difficult circumstances as well as possessing a natural proclivity towards violence.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

I think the ending of the book is pretty great. If you have connected with the young lovers i.e. me and Drake then the ending is going to fill you with anticipation. You’ll be eager to know what happens next.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if s/he decided to write another book with you in it?

I would just ask the author to keep in mind all the things that have changed about me in the past several months. I am no longer the same person that I was when I first arrived in Voluspa. My trials and triumphs have caused me t change. I am so much stronger as a person; more confident. Also finding Drake, falling in love with him has changed me. Now I am at peace with the person I am.

Thank you for this interview, Amy.  Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

Absolutely! The adventure is nowhere near done. I want my happily ever after with Drake.

Ray East and Sam D has moved to Voluspa and live in the Forest of Skotos with their 5 year old daughter and a pet Typhon.  They visit Earth with the help of an Empath from time to time. Ray East did her masters in Phsychology from Univeristy of Sussex and has worked as a counselor for adolescents. Sam D used to teach at a SPJC before he moved to Voluspa.

Their latest book is Voluspa: A Magical World.

To get your copy of VOLUSPA: A MAGICAL WORLD by Sam D & Ray East at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/VOLUSPA-A-Magical-World-Sam-D/dp/0985681608/ref=pd_rhf_ee_p_t_1

To get your e-copy of VOLUSPA: A MAGICAL WORLD by Sam D & Ray East for your Kindle at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Voluspa-A-Magical-World-ebook/dp/B008BCZBTE/ref=tmm_kin_title_0

Order your copy of VOLUSPA: A MAGICAL WORLD by Sam D. & Ray East at B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/voluspa-a-magical-world-sam-d/1111523622?ean=2940014770675

To learn more about Sam D and Ray East, visit their website: www.magicalworldofvoluspa.com

Visit Sam D & Ray East on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/voluspa

Like Sam D & Ray East on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/worldofvoluspa

Follow Sam D & Ray East at Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15592516-voluspa

Centuries ago, war between aliens and humans almost destroyed the world. To prevent such a war from happening again, a mighty ruler then formed a secret society of nine powerful humans and aliens called the Bramhas. These Bramhas each wrote a book imparting ancient wisdom and knowledge. The possession of these books could bring about untold power and success. The nine books were hidden but the desire to possess those books, still cause men to fight wars and turn against each other. One such war was fought in the realm of Voluspa decades back; the consequences of that war still resonate in this magical land. Two young lovers get caught in this tussle and it changes their destinies forever.

Amy’s humdrum life takes a complete 180’ turn with the death of her stepfather. She goes to live with her grandmother – her only living relative, though she hasn’t seen her in the last five years. Among her mother’s childhood memorabilia, she finds a book ‘Legends of Voluspa’ that captures her imagination. She becomes so engrossed in the book that she starts dreaming  about the places in the book till one night she finds herself inexplicably transported to the new world – Voluspa, as described in the book. Here she meets Drake, who unknown to her is a shape shifter.  Chemistry cackles between the two from the very first and as they discover that they share a lot in common, a tenuous bond forms between the two. ‘I’ll keep you safe’ vows Drake and he remains true to his word as he befriends her and saves her from various troubles that befall her over the next couple of months.

In Voluspa, Amy discovers a new way of life. It’s a magical world inhabited by primarily four clans – Empaths, Morphus, Mendens and the Pulchrous. The Empaths have the power of mind, the Morphus are the shape shifters, Mendens are the healers while the Pulchrous possess physical perfection and strength. With the help of an old family friend, Amy takes her rightful place in the Empath clan. This marks a new chapter in Amy’s life. She realizes her own powers and subsequently starts going to a school to enhance the same. With Drake by her side, she makes some wonderful friends. However, her life is not all smooth sailing; trouble comes when she learns the truth about her biological parents. She realizes that her very existence is against Voluspan law which forbids the union between individuals belonging to two different clans. History threatens to repeat itself as she realizes that her predicament was not that different from what her mother had faced, decades back. She is totally in love with Drake, who belongs to the Morphus clan.

The enchanting world of Voluspa is far from Utopic; it has barely recovered from a devastating war fought twenty years back when the peace of the land is once again threatened by Gangrels, the evil army of aliens.  The two young lovers soon realize that besides contending with forbidden love, they have to deal with other impediments. Ancient enmities, a past war, a much coveted book, all conspire against the two lovers. Gangrels reappear in Voluspa and Drake falls in the clutches of one such evil being who would stop at nothing to realize his fiendish ambitions. Amy and her friends cross realms, face enemies, deal with challenges, solve riddles and brave possible destruction, as they set off on an adventure to rescue Drake.  The ‘Force of Sutra’ clashes with the ‘Elemental Force’ of the Gangrels as Amy and her friends are faced with an indomitable enemy. They use strategic warfare, pit adversaries among themselves and use every last drop of strength, skill and courage as they take on warriors far more ruthless and skilled than themselves.

As Amy embarks upon a quest to save Drake, her love for him is tested at every turn but she never wavers from her objective. Braving imminent death she manages to reach Drake – only to find a changed person. Gone is the man she is in love with, instead a dangerous stranger stood in his place. This Drake was teetering at the edge between becoming completely evil and retaining his own soul. He almost harms Amy but stops himself at the very last minute. His love for Amy proves to be stronger than the evil entity threatening to overpower him.  However when chips are down, Drake comes through. He sets aside his personal well-being in order to save Amy, one last time. Drake is perhaps lost forever but hope dies last – Amy is determined to get back Drake, no matter what the cost.

 

IF YOU’D LIKE TO WIN A  FREE KINDLE FIRE HD, LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW TELLING US IF YOU’D LIKE TO LIVE IN VOLUSPA, THEN CLICK HERE TO ENTER THE KINDLE FIRE HD GIVEAWAY!

Character Interview: Susie Speider from Susan Wingates new YA fiction ‘Spider Brains’

We’re thrilled to have here today Susie Speider from Susan Wingate’s new YA fiction, Spider Brains. Susie is a high school junior and Editor of the Ronkonkoma High School Newspaper.

It is a pleasure to have her with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so for this interview, Susie.  Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

I’d like to set the record straight! That woman who wrote this book clearly has never had any children of her own. I am not a nerd. I’m just uber-smart and then she goes and labels me as a nerd? Not. Gah.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

Again, that woman must have forgotten her youth because if she had she would remember, um, duh, that fifteen year old girls don’t like their mothers around them very much and, like, I’m trying to avoid mine at all possible costs. She didn’t include that intel, did she? No.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

My intelligence. My quick to remark and I happen to have eye-rolling down.

Worse trait?

Pfft. Right.

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Oh. Gag. Well, not really. Sort of but not LOVE. I mean, hurl. Matt is NOT my boyfriend. Although, I know he wants to be. We’ll see.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

Well, if you remember (gah!), I turn into a spider. I mean. That’s pretty intense, don’t you think?

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

Seriously? Are you kidding? Ms. Morlson. The gag-meister-numero-uno. If God told me I had to be one of two things–Morlson or a snail, I’d strap a shell to my back so fast it would make your head swim.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

What are you talking about? That woman told me this story wouldn’t end. Did she lie to me AGAIN!? Incredible. She said SPIDER BRAINS was just the first. That she had a whole series about me. I can’t believe the story ended already. I mean, there’s more to tell, ya know? I know our last meeting was something to do with going to the prom but that’s not the real ending. Gah. I tell you. Life is just full of disappointments, isn’t it.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if s/he decided to write another book with you in it?

Well, obviously we’ll be talking soon. A real meeting of the mind (snort) that will be. She needs to listen better. Take better notes and try, try, try not to nod off and make her visits to la-la land all the time.

Thank you for this interview, Suie.  Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

You can bet your sweet spider web you will. And, thank YOU for this very enlightening interview. Without it, I’d be flailing in the wind. You’re the best.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Most recently, Susan Wingate’s novels, SPIDER BRAINS and DROWNING each reached Amazon Bestseller status in 2012. DROWNING won the 2011 Forward National Literature Award for Drama. She would love for you to read her books. You can find them all under the tab on this site labeled “Books”. SUSAN has written eleven novels, two short story collections, a few plays, one screenplay and tons of poems. Her latest 2011 novel DROWNING  (contemporary women’s fiction), won 1st place in the 2011 Forward National Literature Award and also won a finalist award for the category of Women’s Fiction/Chick Lit in the 2011 International Book Awards. A vibrant public speaker, Susan offers inspiring, motivational talks about the craft of writing, publishing and marketing, and how to survive this extremely volatile (e-)Publishing industry. She presents these lectures for private groups and at writing conferences, libraries and bookstores around the country.

To get your copy of SPIDER BRAINS by Susan Wingate:http://www.amazon.com/Spider-Brains-Love-Story-ebook/dp/B007KDAS0C/ref=la_B003CMMERK_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1339336080&sr=1-6

To view all books by Susan Wingate: http://www.amazon.com/Susan-Wingate/e/B003CMMERK/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

To learn more about Susan, go to her website: http://www.susanwingate.com

Visit Susan Wingate on Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/susanwingate

Like Susan Wingate on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/susanwingate.author

Follow Susan Wingate on Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/susanwingate/susan-wingate-s-books/

ABOUT THE BOOK:

If one were to bake the story SPIDER BRAINS into a cake, they should sprinkle in Charlotte’s Web, toss in one Jellicle Cat, then stir in a little Spiderman—but as a girl and not in that goofy latex outfit! A tale of hope, transformation, transition and inspiration.

After her father’s death last year and, now, in the throes of a gnarly teacher’s whim as she thinks ahead to college (or really just dreams of getting into college), a small black arachnid bites fifteen-year-old Susie Speider on the finger. The bite sends her nights into fantastical dreams about taking revenge on a teacher who, ultimately, holds her college aspirations in the palm of her cold calloused hand. But, after Susie figures out the dreams are real, she ups the ante by visiting the teacher regularly… as the spider! And, oh, by the way! Who is that boy spider munching on flies, hiding over there in the corner? A story of loss and forgiveness, tolerance and kindness, Susie Speider deals with the death of her father while Matt Ryder–the new neighbor boy–has just lost his mother. Ultimately, SPIDER BRAINS poses some important questions about how to treat Attention-Deficit-Disorder.

Interview with eXtasy Author ‘Ever the Same’ Amy Romine

Amy Romine has always wanted to be one of the good guys. From playing ‘Charlie’s Angels’ in the backyard of her Allentown, PA home as a child, to the pages of her most recent series, The Soul Mate Chronicles, Amy has always dreamt of adventure and romance. Her need to make characters truly deserve
their happiness takes us on many a twisted journey. From serial killers to demons, Amy holds nothing back in the name of true enduring love.
A wife, mother of three, full-time corporate employee and now the author of
two compellingly addictive series and finishing a third, her entrance onto the stage of romantic suspense has been an enthralling adventure all its own. Amy started writing in high school but didn’t take the professional plunge until three years ago when a little voice told her she was meant to be doing something more…

Since her premier release of Serenity Lost in October 2010 with Extasy Books,
Amy has become the Prime Time Editor for BellaOnline, and regular contributing author to the Amazon Subscription Blog, ‘Red Lipstick Journals’. Amy is also an active eBook Author supporter lending her voice to encouraging new and indie eBook authors in striding toward their visions. Her own goal is to be a self sustaining author by 2014.

Amy currently resides in Arlington, Texas with her husband, and three children.

You can visit her online at www.amyromine.com.

Q: Welcome to Beyond the Books, Amy.  Can we start out by telling us whether you are published for the first time or are you multi-published?

I am a multi-published author with Extasy Books.

Q: When you were published for the first time, which route did you go – mainstream, small press, vanity published or self-published and why or how did you choose this route?

I guess you could say small press, Extasy gave me my shot and I took it. Ten books later we have a great relationship.

Q: How long did it take you to get published once you signed the contract?

Honestly, it happened really fast. I signed with Extasy August 2010 and my premier release hit the web October of the same year.

Q: How did it make you feel to become published for the first time and how did you celebrate?

I was thrilled, so excited to see my name on the cover of a book. It was surreal, my best friend and I screamed and jumped up and down. I don’t think we knew what else to do. LOL!

Q: What was the first thing you did as for as promotion when you were published for the first time?

I went out and pounded the digital pavement begging for reviews, banner exchanges and guest blog spots. It was the most difficult thing I have ever done in my entire life. I knew the only one who could sell my book was me, and I was damned determined!

Q: Since you’ve been published, how have you grown as a writer and now a published author?

I have learned so much from the other authors, publishers, and readers I have encountered since the beginning of my journey. Every journey, every novel is about evolution and growth. I have grown not only as a writer but as a person.

Q: What has surprised or amazed you about the publishing industry as a whole? 

The biggest surprise has been how engaging, helpful and supportive the whole community is. We are all in the same position, fighting for our dreams. Sometimes that brings out the worst in people but not the people I have met, they are all wonderful.

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about being a published author?  

Being able to say I am a published author…just kidding. But seriously, the most rewarding thing is the ability to help other authors through the struggles of being a writer. The journey is difficult and I like to pay it forward.

Q: Any final words for writers who dream of being published one day?

I found this a few years ago and I live by it, stick to these rules and you will be just fine.

  • Be gutsy enough to stand up to those who stand in your way.
  • Be big enough to admit your mistakes.
  • Be vulnerable and say, “I don’t know”
  • Be humble enough to surround yourself with people smarter and more capable than you.
  • Be open and flexible enough to adjust to ever-changing circumstances.
  • Ignore those calling for a quick fix or a cut corner.
  • Go with your gut, the instinct that feels right and knows best.
  • Do what’s right, because it is the right thing to do.

Top 5 Ways to Kill by Author Duane Harden

Duane Harden just doesn’t teach you theory but rather you learn through his very own life hands-on experiences that come along with building a strong portfolio of successful businesses, including residential and commercial real estate, a restaurant, a music company, and many more. He began with no financial education, but he was determined and inspired. Today he leads a Cash Flow Club where he mentors entrepreneurs on how to start and grow their business so they, too, can become financially free.

His latest book is 5 Easy Steps to Financial Freedom: Do What You Love & Get Rich Doing It.

Visit Duane Harden’s website at http://www.duaneharden.com/.

To enter $10,000 Prize Giveaway:https://www.facebook.com/5EasyStepsToFinancialFreedom/app_208195102528120

To get your paperback copy of  5 EASY STEPS TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM by Duane Harden at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Easy-Steps-Financial-Freedom-Doing/dp/0984822704/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1335047035&sr=8-1?books0df4-20

To get your ebook copy of 5 EASY STEPS TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM by Duane Harden for your Kindle:

To purchase a copy of 5 EASY STEPS TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM by Duane Harden at Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/5-easy-steps-to-financial-freedom-duane-harden/1110871992?ean=9780984822706

Pick up your copy of 5 EASY STEPS TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM by Duane Harden on iTunes:http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/5-easy-steps-to-financial/id519796307?mt=11

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Top 5 Ways To Kill!

You and your friends have become experts at committing murder

Ideas take on a life of their own and you’ve come up with some really great ones especially on how to make money and get out of debt.  However, you and your accomplices are so use to committing murder you don’t realize when you’re doing it.  As soon as an idea starts to take shape in your mind like an embryo in it’s mother’s womb, you use your ninja style tactics to kill it rather than putting your talents to better use.

Here are the top 5 ways you’ve been trained as a “lethal weapon”:

#5 – Other peoples failures.  When I was opening my restaurant, I asked a fellow restaurateur who had just filed bankruptcy if I could take her out to lunch to discuss her experience.  She replied “of course” as long as I was willing to pay her a consultant fee.  Obviously, she thought I considered her an expert at opening and running a restaurant so much so that I would pay her for her advice.  I was only interested in learning what not to do.  Needless to say, that lunch date never happened as her response totally let me know why she was out of business.   I then thought about other people in my network who were restaurant owners.  When I asked them about their experience the biggest piece of advice they could give me was “don’t go into the restaurant business”.  Just because they were not successful in running their business doesn’t mean that I would suffer the same fate.  If I had listened to them I would have never opened.  Take advice from mentors who have been successful in the business you want to open as well as listen to mentors who have failed miserably so you can learn from their mistakes.

#4 – Co-workers.  You’re co-workers are probably just as miserable at their job as you are.  They don’t see a way out and how dare you think you can come up with the answer to creating a better life.  So remember this when you’re sharing your idea with them around the office water cooler.  Don’t let your enthusiasm wither way with their negative comments after you’ve shared with them how you’re going to escape from Alcatraz.  Their reactions are coming from the fact that you’re getting out and leaving them behind. Let their bad advice go in one ear and out the other.

#3 – Friends.  Who needs enemies when you have friends like these?  Seriously, the friends who don’t support you in your ideas are still your friends.  It’s just that they love you so much they don’t want to see you get hurt.  Let them know that you really do appreciate their concern and just want a listening ear.  They don’t have to understand what it is you want to do. Just be there for you. When I first started in real estate investing, I had some friends who were skeptical when I would say I was buying a house with 100% financing.  They just didn’t understand the concept.  I then realized that I had friends who were great for hanging out with and partying and another set of friends whom I could have intellectual conversations with or discuss business ideas.  They were all great friends I just had to figure out which bucket they fit into and tailor my conversations accordingly.

#2 – Family – I lead a Rich Dad, Poor Dad Cash Flow Club in Manhattan.  I often hear members say that their family doesn’t support them in their ideas.  That’s because they’ve seen you try so many before and failed.  It’s not that they don’t support you but rather react like your friends do.  They love you so much they don’t want to see you hurt again.  Just remember when responding to their reactions that most successful people are successful because they’ve gotten pretty good at failing.

#1 – You – You are your #1 Killer of ideas.  You allow your negative thoughts as well as those of others persuade you that your idea just won’t work.  You quit before you can ever get started. The moment you realize that all things are possible you’ll stop committing murder and letting your ideas come alive.

In my book “5 Easy Steps To Financial Freedom: Do What You Love & Get Rich Doing It” I teach you how to identify your idea killers by taking you through my “crabs in a pot” exercise.  I also show you ways to turn every negative into a positive so instead of being stopped you are propelled to pursue your dreams.  Stop killing ideas as you’ve been doing it long enough.  It’s time to learn to live.

Character Interview: Amelia Ryan from Greg Messel’s new mystery romance novel ‘Last of the Seals’

We’re thrilled to have here today Amelia Ryan from Greg Messel’s new mystery/romance novel, Last of the Seals. Amelia is a 25-year-old TWA stewardess from San Fransisco, California. It is a pleasure to have her with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so much for this interview, Amelia.  Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

I do like the story in “Last of the Seals.” It’s a fair depiction of how I met the love of my life, Sam Slater. I like how the book also touches on my long time passion for adventure and flying. In 1958, being a TWA stewardess was one of the only ways for a woman to have a glamorous job where she could see the world.  I had to put up with some grabby guys and older businessmen on my flights flirting with me, but the benefits far outweighed the challenges.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

I think he accurately portrays my personality. He knows that I love flying and Elvis and Sam–not necessarily in that order.  I didn’t realize how much I talk about Elvis and his music. I guess I do. It’s a little embarrassing to see that in the book.  One thing that makes me uncomfortable in the book is all of the detail about the things I do with Sam. I mean, we aren’t lovers yet but we are pretty passionate with one another. I am doing things with Sam that I’ve never done with any other guy. I have a key to Sam’s apartment and I like to come to his place on Saturday mornings. I crawl in bed with him…I’m fully clothed of course…and kiss him good morning and it gets pretty intense. It’s a nice way to start the day. Then I make him a nice breakfast. But what if my mother reads this book? She has no idea about all the things I do with Sam. My mother is still under the impression that I’m a good Catholic girl.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

Hmm, I think loyalty. Despite all of the passengers, pilots and other guys who hit on me when I’m traveling as a stewardess, I’m always true to Sam. He’s the only guy I want.  The pilots call me the “ice queen” behind my back. They say that they can’t get to first base with me. I told Sam about what they say. He was glad to hear that I have that reputation.

Worse trait?

Sometimes I can be awfully bossy and cranky with Sam when I get back from my long week of flying across the country. Sam says it’s because I’m tired but he’s being nice. I think I’m too hard on Sam sometimes and he’s always so good to me.

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Oh, yes. I met Sam Slater in the fall of 1957. I had just got home from a flight to Chicago and was wearing my stewardess uniform which always seems to attract attention. Two disgusting drunk guys started roughing me up and wanting me to kiss them. Sam came out of nowhere and rescued me. We’ve been together ever since.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

There were gangsters after us who threatened to kill me and Sam. I became very worried when we were hiding out in a motel room out of town, hoping the mobsters wouldn’t find us.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

I don’t think I would want to be anyone else. I love being Sam’s girlfriend, living in San Francisco and being a stewardess.  Some of the other people in this book have some serious problems.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

I’m very happy with how the first book ends. Sam and I have fallen deeply in love but there is more trouble for us ahead in the next book. Sam kept me safe from harm in “Last of the Seals” but it wasn’t easy.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if he decided to write another book with you in it?

He is writing another book about me and Sam. There are more adventures ahead of us including a creepy kidnapper who becomes obsessed with me. Sam and I are now secretly engaged. My family knows. They love Sam and my mother, who was afraid I was going to be an old maid, is happy that I’m getting married. However, I have to keep my engagement and pending marriage a secret from TWA. They will force me to resign if I become engaged or married. I’m torn. I love my job and I love flying but I love Sam. I guess I love flying because…well, I guess you know  I was named after Amelia Earhart.  When I have to choose I will choose Sam of course.  I hope the author keeps Sam safe from harm. I worry about him so much when I’m out of town on flights, leaving Sam alone in San Francisco.

Thank you for this interview, Amelia.  Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

Oh yes. There are several books planned about my life with Sam.  I hope I’m ready for the things that are ahead of us. I do love a good mystery and I love helping Sam on his cases.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

The year is 1957 in San Francisco. Sam Slater is a lifetime minor league baseball player for the San Francisco Seals. The Seals have just one more season left as San Francisco is about to become a major league city. The Giants are coming to town in 1958 and the Seals will be displaced. Sam has come to the end of his baseball career and is going to join the private detective agency of his best friend. When his friend is brutally murdered, Sam must go it alone and try to find out why. Along the way he is swept off of his feet by a beautiful Elvis-obsessed TWA stewardess named Amelia Ryan. Sam and Amelia try to unravel the mystery together. Sam’s best friend, Jimmy inadvertently saw something he shouldn’t have. Sam and Amelia have pictures in their possession that have crime families in San Francisco and Chicago very worried. Then a young woman Sam has been searching for is found dead on the beach. Suddenly, Sam and Amelia find themselves in danger. On dark and foggy San Francisco nights, trouble is lurking just around the next corner.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Greg Messel has written four novels and three unpublished memoirs. He published his premiere novel “Sunbreaks” in 2009, followed by “Expiation” in 2010 and “The Illusion of Certainty” in 2011. “Last of the Seals” is the first in a series of mysteries which are set in 1957 San Francisco. The second book in the series “Deadly Plunge’ will be published around Christmas of 2012. Greg grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and has had a newspaper career as a columnist, sportswriter and news editor. He won a Wyoming Press Association Award as a columnist while working for a daily newspaper in Wyoming. Greg also spent many years in the corporate world as a Financial Manager. He now devotes his energies to writing at his home in Edmonds, Washington on the Puget Sound just north of Seattle, where he lives with his wife, Carol.

Character Interview: Susie Speider from ‘Spider Brains’ by Susan Wingate

We’re thrilled to have here today Susie Speider from Susan Wingate’s new YA fiction, Spider Brains: A Love Story. Susie is a 15-year-old junior and editor of the Ronkonkoma High School in Ronkonkoma, N.Y. It is a pleasure to have her with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so for this interview, Susie.  Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

I’d like to set the record straight! That woman who wrote this book clearly has never had any children of her own. I am not a nerd. I’m just uber-smart and then she goes and labels me as a nerd? Not. Gah.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

Again, that woman must have forgotten her youth because if she had she would remember, um, duh, that fifteen year old girls don’t like their mothers around them very much and, like, I’m trying to avoid mine at all possible costs. She didn’t include that intel, did she? No.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

My intelligence. My quick to remark and I happen to have eye-rolling down.

Worse trait?

Pfft. Right.

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Oh. Gag. Well, not really. Sort of but not LOVE. I mean, hurl. Matt is NOT my boyfriend. Although, I know he wants to be. We’ll see.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

Well, if you remember (gah!), I turn into a spider. I mean. That’s pretty intense, don’t you think?

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

Seriously? Are you kidding? Ms. Morlson. The gag-meister-numero-uno. If God told me I had to be one of two things–Morlson or a snail, I’d strap a shell to my back so fast it would make your head swim.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

What are you talking about? That woman told me this story wouldn’t end. Did she lie to me AGAIN!? Incredible. She said SPIDER BRAINS was just the first. That she had a whole series about me. I can’t believe the story ended already. I mean, there’s more to tell, ya know? I know our last meeting was something to do with going to the prom but that’s not the real ending. Gah. I tell you. Life is just full of disappointments, isn’t it.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if s/he decided to write another book with you in it?

Well, obviously we’ll be talking soon. A real meeting of the mind (snort) that will be. She needs to listen better. Take better notes and try, try, try not to nod off and make her visits to la-la land all the time.

Thank you for this interview, Susie.  Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

You can bet your sweet spider web you will. And, thank YOU for this very enlightening interview. Without it, I’d be flailing in the wind. You’re the best.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

If one were to bake the story SPIDER BRAINS into a cake, they should sprinkle in Charlotte’s Web, toss in one Jellicle Cat, then stir in a little Spiderman—but as a girl and not in that goofy latex outfit! A tale of hope, transformation, transition and inspiration.

After her father’s death last year and, now, in the throes of a gnarly teacher’s whim as she thinks ahead to college (or really just dreams of getting into college), a small black arachnid bites fifteen-year-old Susie Speider on the finger. The bite sends her nights into fantastical dreams about taking revenge on a teacher who, ultimately, holds her college aspirations in the palm of her cold calloused hand. But, after Susie figures out the dreams are real, she ups the ante by visiting the teacher regularly… as the spider! And, oh, by the way! Who is that boy spider munching on flies, hiding over there in the corner? A story of loss and forgiveness, tolerance and kindness, Susie Speider deals with the death of her father while Matt Ryder–the new neighbor boy–has just lost his mother. Ultimately, SPIDER BRAINS poses some important questions about how to treat Attention-Deficit-Disorder.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Most recently, Susan Wingate’s novels, SPIDER BRAINS and DROWNING each reached Amazon Bestseller status in 2012. DROWNING won the 2011 Forward National Literature Award for Drama. She would love for you to read her books. You can find them all under the tab on this site labeled “Books”. SUSAN has written eleven novels, two short story collections, a few plays, one screenplay and tons of poems. Her latest 2011 novel DROWNING  (contemporary women’s fiction), won 1st place in the 2011 Forward National Literature Award and also won a finalist award for the category of Women’s Fiction/Chick Lit in the 2011 International Book Awards. A vibrant public speaker, Susan offers inspiring, motivational talks about the craft of writing, publishing and marketing, and how to survive this extremely volatile (e-)Publishing industry. She presents these lectures for private groups and at writing conferences, libraries and bookstores around the country.

To get your copy of SPIDER BRAINS by Susan Wingate:http://www.amazon.com/Spider-Brains-Love-Story-ebook/dp/B007KDAS0C/ref=la_B003CMMERK_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1339336080&sr=1-6

To view all books by Susan Wingate: http://www.amazon.com/Susan-Wingate/e/B003CMMERK/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

To learn more about Susan, go to her website: http://www.susanwingate.com

Visit Susan Wingate on Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/susanwingate

Like Susan Wingate on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/susanwingate.author

Follow Susan Wingate on Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/susanwingate/susan-wingate-s-books/

Character Interview: Rachel Lyons from ‘Severed Threads’ by Kaylin McFarren

We’re thrilled to have here today Rachel Lyons from Kaylin McFarren’s new romantic suspense novel, Severed Threads. Rachel is consultant for the Warren Nash Foundation from San Palo, California. It is a pleasure to have her with us today at Beyond the Books!

Thank you so for this interview, Rachel. Now that the book has been written, do you feel you were fairly portrayed or would you like to set anything straight with your readers?

For some readers, I might seem crass, bitter and unstable, but I assure you I’m a much happier, stable and self-assured person than I used to be.

Do you feel the author did a good job colorizing your personality?  If not, how would you like to have been portrayed differently?

For the most part, I would have to say yes. Although I’m not as foolish and cold-hearted as I might have come across.

What do you believe is your strongest trait?

My ability to stay focused on a difficult task as well as my willingness to do anything to protect a member of my family.

Worse trait?

I guess I would have to say trust issues, which I honestly believe are justified, and how hard it is sometimes to open my heart and give love away freely.

Do you have a love interest in the book?

Yes. Chase Cohen an ex-lover who abandoned me when I needed him most and returned to San Palo four years later for personal reasons.

At what point of the book did you start getting nervous about the way it was going to turn out?

When all of Chase’s secrets were revealed, I wasn’t sure how I would react. But I don’t want to give too much away.

If you could trade places with one of the other characters in the book, which character would you really not want to be and why?

Most definitely Selena Pollero. As readers will find out, she has her own hidden agenda.

How do you feel about the ending of the book without giving too much away?

I’m actually rather pleased with how all the loose ends come together, although some readers might disagree.

What words of wisdom would you give your author if she decided to write another book with you in it?

I would love to go to exotic fun places, but make sure I’m protected against villains this time.

Thank you for this interview, Rachel.  Will we be seeing more of you in the future?

Definitely. In fact, I’ll be a major character in two forth-coming books!! J

About the Book:

Believing herself responsible for her father’s fatal diving accident, Rachel Lyons has withdrawn from the world and assumed a safe position at a foundation office. When called upon by a museum director to assist her former love interest with the recovery of a cursed relic from a sunken Chinese merchant ship, she has no intention of cooperating – until her brother is kidnapped by a drug-dealing gangster. In order to save him and gain control over her own life, Rachel must not only overcome her greatest fears, but also relive the circumstances that lead to her father’s death.

About the Author:

As many people know, Kaylin McFarren wasn’t born with a pen in hand like so many of her talented fellow authors. However, she has been involved with business and personal writing projects for many years. Her careers have taken her in all directions, ranging from fashion modeling and interior design to office manager and art gallery director. Yet her love of reading and interest in creative writing has remained ever present. As a result of her tapping into her imagination and utilizing her own life experiences, she has earned more than a dozen literary awards. Her first novel, Flaherty’s Crossing was a 2008 finalist in the prestigious RWA® Golden Heart contest and her second book, Severed Threads, has already garnered two first place awards.

Kaylin is a member of RWA, Rose City Romance Writers, and Willamette Writers. She received her AA in Literature at Highline Community College, which originally sparked her passion for writing. In her free time, she also enjoys giving back to the community through participation and support of various educational organizations in the Pacific Northwest, and is currently the president of the Soulful Giving Foundation – a non-profit she and her husband formed to fund expanded research, and the care and treatment of cancer patients and their families.

Her latest book is a romantic suspense titled Severed Threads.

You can visit Kaylin online at www.KaylinMcFarren.com.

Twitter: www.twitter.com/4kaylin

Facebook: www.facebook.com/kaylin.mcfarren

Blog: http://kaylinmcfarren.wordpress.com/

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