Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Why I took the self, out of self-publishing: A guest post by Anthony Renfro

Linzé: You might have seen Anthony's book featured earlier in the month on the Broomstick (click here). In the meantime the author decided to approach a small publisher instead of sticking to self-publishing. Here is why...

I gave it a lot of thought, and then just a bit more. I came to the conclusion that two heads are better than one. The book “Ghostly Visitations and Southern Destinations” wasn’t doing all that great on its own. It also wasn’t being marketed all that well by me either, so I decided to hand over the keys to a small publisher. Granted, he won’t just take over and I can go about my day writing with happy ease. No, that won’t happen with this deal. I still have to do the same grunt work as before, still have to figure out how to market myself in a very busy writing field, and I still have to labor to find sales. However, he also has to do the same since he signed me. That means both of us are now trying to find a way to make “The Tale of the Golden Pirate” a best seller on Amazon – that’s the new title to this book in case you were a bit confused. It made more sense in my head for a book that wasn’t doing all that well to put another person on it. Maybe, together, we can get this book out to more people than I could ever dream about. That’s why I took the self out of publisher, and for once let someone else help me out.

About Anthony:
I was born in Bristol, Tennessee, in 1972 and grew up in a little town in the Appalachian Mountains called Abingdon, Virginia. In those small town days I fell in love with many things, among them reading. Reading was a way to escape from a town whose borders always seemed to be too tight. I discovered my love of writing in college, under the influence of various Stephen King novels. The first time I read a novel by him, I knew I would need to write for the rest of my life. 
You can find me at many spots on the web, but if you really need to find my center in the social media storm it would be at my blog, There you will find one other passion of mine, poetry. 
Let me now take your hand on a journey into dark places. I promise that you will be scared, and you may even be terrified, but in the end you might just find you liked the ride.

Book Links (you can use any of these):
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Monday, 24 November 2014

Featured Book: The Meaning of Life According to the Mosquito by Debora Broadhead

Prince George is a young adult mosquito who refuses his crown and the responsibility it holds. A bit of a dreamer, George walks away from his coronation, leaves his pre-arranged marriage, and searches for the true meaning of life. With his two squires by his side, George’s timing couldn’t have been worse. The dragonfly gang is threatening to attack his kingdom, and George is their only hope. When George has toured the world in search of answers, he is finally ready to return home. However, he finds that everything he loves has crumbled. Life bites! Now, Prince George struggles to pick up the pieces of his shattered life. Will the prince ever forgive himself, and resume his destiny?

Buy links:     Amazon  B&N    Publisher  

Reviewed By Michelle Stanley for Readers’ Favorite

“What is the Meaning of Life?” That’s the question to which Prince George wants to find the answer in The Meaning of Life, According to the Mosquito by Debora Broadhead. Prince George, heir to the throne of the Great Swampland, is nervous about his coronation ceremony. He doesn’t feel he’s worthy to rule the mosquito kingdom alongside his father, the King. He’s also not ready for the arranged marriage to Princess Anaya. George refuses the throne, yearning to explore the world to discover the meaning of life. He sets off on his quest with guards, Flick and Smack. While the Prince is touring exciting mosquito cultures, the Dragonfly Gang attacks the kingdom. George returns to find the Great Swamplands in devastation and feels remorse. He ponders his future in the Great Swampland, while comparing it to the ones on his quest.

The Meaning of Life, According to the Mosquito by Debora Broadhead is very entertaining. This is one of the most original stories I have ever read. Although the characters are insects and the setting is mainly swampland, it is so realistic. The author created a story that makes me feel she is describing humans instead of insects. There is never a dull moment as Debora Broadhead writes creatively. The descriptive plot contained a mixture of humour and sadness which the characters displayed naturally. Young adults can relate to George, who wants to find himself before taking on serious responsibilities. This is a book children and adults will enjoy.

About the Author
When I was younger, I loved to write poetry. After winning a contest, I was interviewed by a small weekly newspaper, and as a result was offered a job. The deadlines, and pressure got to me, and I lost my desire to write. I laid down my pen and went another direction in my life. I focused on raising my children and I put my dream on hold.
Twenty years later the desire to write came flooding back. I decided to give it one more try. This time I wrote a fantasy novel. I hit a home run on my first attempt to get it published. It's called : The Meaning of Life According to the Mosquito. 
I couldn't be happier. I love writing, it releases something deep inside of me. It is my passion. I've been married for 30 years and have two lovely adult children. My daughter takes after me and loves to write, maybe one day soon she'll be following in her mother's footsteps. I live in beautiful British Columbia Canada and when I am not writing, or teaching, I enjoy participating in equine events, kayaking, reading, hiking, and just recently, I've taken up sailing.

Newspaper articles about author

Friday, 21 November 2014

Featured Book: Echoes of Immortality by KC McDonald

Jenna Sims is a culinary student with a secret. While perfecting a homework recipe, she consults an old worn book that belonged to her great-great grandmother and unwittingly cooks up a spell for immortality. Jenna's secret, unbeknownst to her, is that her ancestry comes from a coven of witches. A down-on-his-luck cosmetics company marketing representative finds out about the spell and sets out to steal the book for the recipe, which he thinks would be a hit for the company and allow a reversal of fortune for himself. A period of self-discovery and a short learning curve is unleashed as Jenna strives to protect the family secrets and keep evil from stealing the spell book containing enough power to change the world.

Buy Links   Amazon (Kindle)   Paperback

Jenna Sims on Immortality:    “I don’t think being immortal sounds all that great. Don’t you think that not having to worry about death would steal the joy from living? I mean, life is stretching to achieve goals, and exploring new things, and struggling to overcome obstacles. Life is not just breathing in and out every day. I think immortality would make all these things that add up to our lives hollow and meaningless.”
Story behind the story
I set out to write a novel at the end of 2011, after writing a couple of short stories. For me, idea generation comes from asking myself what if questions. For example: What if the Hindenburg had been made of marshmallows? Or: What if cats had thumbs? Echoes of Immortality was borne from the question: What if a culinary arts student accidentally cooked an immortality potion? I thought this idea had more merit than the previous two examples, so more questions were asked. How would this character be able to do such a thing? What would be the consequences of this discovery? Once those questions were answered, many more were asked and soon a plot began to develop.
Once the plot became a bit less murky, I began outlining the story (yes, I am a reformed plotter). I outlined the entire story and began writing in December of 2011. About 25K words into the story, I realized it was predictable and would likely not be very satisfying for the reader. So, into the round file with the outline and the transformation from plotter to pantser. Once I made that change, the characters really came to life and began doing things on their own, surprising even me at times.

About me

I retired from the U.S. Army in 2008, after a 23-year career. It was then that I inventoried my skill set to figure out what I was good at and really enjoyed doing.
I worked at two other jobs after retirement, but was laid off at the end of 2011.  riting had always come easy to me and I enjoyed it, but serious writing was always on the ‘someday’ list. Someday came at the end of 2011 and beginning of 2012 when I figured out that writing is what I wanted to do. I started Echoes of Immortality in December 2011, and published it on September 25th, 2014. I also wrote a 100-page screenplay during Script Frenzy in April 2012, titled Echoes of Enchantment, which is the back-story for Echoes of Immortality, and will eventually be the second book in the series. Another day job found me in the spring of 2012, but I am plugging along and eventually plan to shed the daily grind in favor of the glamorous life of a full-time writer.

Connect with Kevin online

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Featured Book: Satin Murder by Bonnie Glee

Sallee Anderson is a wealthy, somewhat naive, socialite living in the Seattle area in the late 1950s, who suddenly finds herself a forty-year old widow, the beneficiary of a multi-million dollar shipping company, and the prime suspect in her almost ex-husband Seth Anderson’s murder.  How could she be so neglectful as to misplace the .25 she bought after their separation? How could she not be aware that someone was constantly following her? One thing her gifted discernment did tell her was that her overly caring brother, suddenly by her side, had ulterior motives.
While trying so hard to stay out of the limelight she is suddenly confronted at a dinner party with someone who could reveal her tiny little secret. She couldn’t suddenly faint because that very person would be at her side in a flash, and the social section in the local Seattle Times would have a hey-day.
She relies heavily on two alias, Nell her best friend and Max the shipping business lawyer. Both rush to her side with motives of their own.

The story weaves through trials with her family, friends, even her loyal housekeeper, and her never tiring, recently acquired personal investigator/lawyer, Ryan.

BUY LINKS    Amazon

"Ladies don't just let a gun rattle around in the bottom of their purse." She took the beige bag, unzipped it, and dropped the contents on the bedspread. She gasped, as Officer Riley and Mr. Davis stared in silence. In place of the gun, there lay a mostly flat brownish-black rock.
It's the 1950s in Seattle and socialite Sallee Anderson is at the height of her popularity, but her beauty, intelligence, and savviness won't stop her from being implicated in the cold murder of her husband, who was found dead in his office with a single bullet to the head. What's more, Sallee's pistol is missing. Lawyer Ryan is now hot on the case trying to unravel the mystery, but will he make it in time to save Sallee from jail and disgrace?
Disgrace is not all that threatens Sallee's happiness. With suspicious family and friends surrounding her, Sallee doesn't know who to trust, especially not with this kind of secret.
What is Sallee's secret? 

About the Author
Bonnie Glee is a freelance writer who enjoys membership in the League of Utah Writers, the Utah State Poetry Society with previous leadership positions in both. Her publications include a short story Pigtails in the Cache Valley Magazine; poetry in Utah Sings: Volumes Seven and Eleven and other publications; essays in the Healing Ministry, Not Everybody Can Cry, Wasatch Woman, Life After Motherhood; and human interest articles printed in the Logan Herald Journal, Kirk Peterson: Paradise’s Professional Jockey and The Pied-Piper Marsha Anderson and the Gingerbread Kids. In 2012 she won Honorable Mention for her poem ‘Where is Comfort’ sponsored by Whitmore Library. June 2014 found her short story, Dust of the Evening, printed in the anthology, Romantic Hero’s, by Safkhet Publishing, now out on September 1, 2014 will be the release date of her first novel, Satin Murder by Safkhet Publishing, e-Book on and paperback on CreateSpace. 
Second book, Token Woman due to be released by Mirror Publishing, spring of 2015.
She lives in Cottonwood Heights, Utah with her husband Joe, is the mother of five children and two chosen children, 20 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Connect with Bonnie online

Monday, 17 November 2014

Featured Book: My Girl by John W. Howell

San Francisco lawyer John J. Cannon who is burned out on lawyer work decides to take a leave of absence from the firm to start a fishing charter business. He returns to a small fishing village on the Texas coast, buys a boat he names MY GRL and is unaware the boat has been targeted by a terrorist group to be used to destroy a symbol of America's greatness. John's first inkling of a problem is when he wakes in the hospital and learns he was found unconscious next to the body of the attractive young woman who sold him the boat in the first place. John is the only one who is aware of the terrorist plan and stands alone between them and the success of their mission.

Buy Links   Amazon    B&N    Kobo   iBooks

Background to the Book
I always wanted to write. I tried to write a book while I was working and once it was finished, I printed it off so that I could edit it while traveling. It was a weighty tome and unfortunately it stunk. Today it is useful holding the laundry room door open. I decided to wait until I could devote myself full-time to writing. My last child graduated from college in December of 2011 and I retired in April 2012
Since that time, I have been writing non-stop and have published the fiction thriller titled My GRL. 
The inspiration for the story came as my sister and I were touring the aircraft carrier Lexington.  Our dad was a naval aviator and served on the Lexington. She is now berthed in Corpus Christi near my home on Mustang Island. Upon touring the massive vessel, we made our way to the flight deck.  Thinking as we stood on the impressive deck that this boat had no protection from anyone who would want to destroy her. This thought led me to develop a plan to first of all develop a logical plan to destroy the Lexington. The next task was to work out an equally logical plan to prevent such destruction. The story naturally flowed from there but with a number of twists and turns..
Once finished, I began to query agents to see if I could find representation. Of the few that answered my query all said my story wasn’t in the scope of what they were working on. I then did some research of publishers who would accept un-agented work and start the query process again. The first query found a favorable response at Martin Sister’s Publishing and we signed a contract in March of 2013. It took until December for the paper edition to be published and the kindle version in January of 2014. The sequel has been sent to the publisher and is awaiting a publish date. The final book of the trilogy is about half way finished and should be complete by December.

About the Author
John's main interests are reading and writing. He turned to writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive career in business. John writes thriller fiction novels and has a number of short stories published in various on-line magazines. One of his short stories has been recognized by Writers Digest in the Popular Fiction Writing contest. His novel, My GRL published by Martin Sisters Publishing and is the first of three exciting adventures of the book's central character John J. Cannon.
John lives on Mustang Island in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of south Texas with his wife and their spoiled rescue pets.

Connect with John online: