Tag Archives: #RRBC

Welcome to Part 2 of “THE MEREST LOSS” Blog Tour! @StevenNeil12 @4WillsPub #RRBC

I’m excited to welcome part 2 of “THE MEREST LOSS” Blog Tour! @StevenNeil12 @4WillsPub #RRBC.

 

Steven Neil header

 

Please join me to meet Steven Neil, the author of THE MEREST LOSS, and let me introduce you to his book.

 

First, let’s get to know Steven Neil and his writing Influences.

1. What has influenced you as a writer?

I am influenced by all the great writers of all the great books I have ever read. To

name just a few: The Remains of the Day, Kazuo Ishiguro; Tess of the D’Urbervilles,

Thomas Hardy; The Catcher in the Rye, J.D.Salinger; Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier;

The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Le Grand Meaulnes, Alain-Fournier. Amongst

contemporary writers Wolf Hall, Hilary Mantel has influenced my writing style the

most.

2. What is the first book you remember reading?

Anna Sewell: Black Beauty

3. What are your favorite books?

I give different answers at different times! All the books in the Palliser series and

Barchester Chronicles series by Anthony Trollope. To my mind he is the greatest of

the great nineteenth century English writers.

4. Who has influenced you as a writer?

All the books and writers I have mentioned and my Open University writing tutor

Judith Allnatt, who I credit with teaching me the craft of writing.

5. Are there any authors you try to emulate?

I haven’t consciously tried to do this, but I’m flattered when reviewers compare The

Merest Loss to a ‘classic nineteenth century’ novel.

6. What genres do you like to read?

I read many genres, but I find I am drawn back to the nineteenth century more and

more. I like a good story well told and I find the pyrotechnics of many contemporary

writers off putting.

7. Is this the same as the genre you write in?

In a way, yes. I write historical fiction set in the Victorian era.

8. What point of view do you like to write from?

I like the immediacy of first-person narration but I am most comfortable with

omniscient third person writing.

9. What tense do you like to write in?

I particularly like to read the present tense and I like to write that way too.

10. What made you write?

My wife inspired me to write, having found a short I wrote many years ago, aged 17.

She encouraged me to enroll in a creative writing course. This turned into an Open

University degree in English Literature, then a Master’s degree in Creative Writing

and eventually led to my debut novel, The Merest Loss.

© Steven Neil

 

Steven Neil

 

Author Bio

Steven has a BSc in Economics from the London School of Economics, a BA in English Literature and Creative Writing from the Open University and an MA in Creative Writing from Oxford Brookes University. He has been a bookmaker’s clerk, bloodstock agent, racehorse breeder and management consultant amongst other professions in his varied career. He is married and lives in rural Northamptonshire, England. The Merest Loss is his debut novel.

 

 

Blurb

A story of love and political intrigue, set against the backdrop of the English hunting shires and the streets of Victorian London and post-revolutionary Paris.

When Harriet Howard becomes Louis Napoleon’s mistress and financial backer and appears at his side in Paris in 1848, it is as if she has emerged from nowhere. How did the English daughter of a Norfolk bootmaker meet the future Emperor? Who is the mysterious Nicholas Sly and what is his hold over Harriet?

Can Harriet meet her obligations and return to her former life and the man she left behind?

What is her involvement with British Government secret services? Can Harriet’s friend, jockey Tom Olliver, help her son Martin solve his own mystery: the identity of his father?’

Genres: Historical Fiction and Victorian Historical Romance

 

Buy links

THE MEREST LOSS is available in paperback and eBook in the UK, US, France, Canada and Australia.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Merest-Loss-Steven-Neil-ebook/dp/B077D9SHB5

https://www.amazon.com/Merest-Loss-Steven-Neil-ebook/dp/B077D9SHB5

https://www.amazon.fr/Merest-Loss-English-Steven-Neil-ebook/dp/B077D9SHB5

https://www.amazon.ca/Merest-Loss-Steven-Neil-ebook/dp/B077D9SHB5

https://www.amazon.com.au/Merest-Loss-Steven-Neil-ebook/dp/B077D9SHB5

 

Follow Steven Neil for information on how to purchase the paperback through an independent bookseller in the UK

Twitter: https://twitter.com/stevenneil12

IAN author page: https://www.independentauthornetwork.com/steven-neil.html

Email: stevenneil1@aol.com

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To follow along with the rest of the tour, please visit the author’s tour page on the 4WillsPublishing site.  If you’d like to book your own blog tour and have your book promoted in similar grand fashion, please click HERE

 

 

 

 

WELCOME TO THE #RRBC 2019 OCTOBER-WEEN BLOCK PARTY Winners

 

Hello and Welcome to the #RRBC 2019 October-ween Block Party. At each stop on the tour, there will be Daily Giveaway Prizes. At the end of the entire tour, there will be Grand Prize Winners!

Here are the prizes at this stop:

1) A $10 Amazon gift card and a copy of my eBook Songs of Heartstrings

Winner: Beem Week  https://beemweeks.wordpress.com

2) A $10 Amazon gift card and a copy of my eBook Songs of Heartstrings

Winner: James J. Cudney IV https://thisismytruthnow.com

3) A $10 Amazon gift card and a copy of my eBook Songs of Heartstrings

Winner: John W. Howell https://johnwhowell.com

There are 3 gifts for 3 Winners!

All you have to do to enter is leaving a comment below.

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Here is the topic of the post today

Why do people write poetry?

The earliest poetry is believed to have been recited or sung, used as a way of remembering oral history, genealogy, and law. Aristotle’s Poetics identified three major genres:

1) The epic poetry is the oldest poetry which is a lengthy narrative poem involving a time beyond living memory of the extraordinary doings of the extraordinary men and women. It described their dealings with the gods or other superhuman forces and gave shape to the moral universe for their descendants.

2) Lyric poetry is a formal poetry which expresses personal emotions or feelings, typically spoken in the first person. The term derives from Ancient Greek literature; the lyric was a musical accompaniment, usually on a stringed instrument known as a lyre.

3) Dramatic poetry or Verse drama is any drama written as verse to be spoken; another possible general term is the poetic drama. For a very long period, the verse drama was the dominant form of drama in Europe. Greek tragedy and Racine’s plays are written in verse, as is almost all of Shakespeare’s drama.

During the 20th-century and 21st-century there are disputes among the traditional forms and structures for poetry and the distinction between poetry and prose. The elements of traditional poetry include prosody, rhythm, meter, metrical patterns and rhyme. The forms of poetry comprise lines, patterns and rhyme. Prose is a natural flow of speech. However, as T. S. Eliot noted, whereas “the distinction between verse and prose is clear, the distinction between poetry and prose is obscure.” Free verse is an open form of poetry. It does not use consistent patterns, rhyme, or any musical pattern. It follows the rhythm of natural speech. Most free verse maintains the poetic convention of the poetic lines. T. S. Eliot wrote, “No verse is free for the man who wants to do a good job.”

My favorite lyrics are from hymns and songs. This is one of the songs with the lyrics based on Psalm 8.

 

 

Most of the poems in my poetry collection are in free verse. I also write in various poem forms. Here are some examples of poem forms included in the book.

 

Light and Dark

 

The end of the tunnel was in sight

Travel on a long journey found not in vain

Energizing my weary body moved toward the light

 

The road taken was not one I had chosen

Unexpected trails and body half frozen

The end of the tunnel was in sight

 

Trotting in darkness with heavy feet

Hope, my only strength to pick up the beat

Energizing my weary body moved toward the light

 

Long hall of darkness with pain in veins

Comforting in the heart stopped me from fainting

The end of the tunnel was in sight

 

Throbbing pain head to toes subsided

Medication and nutrition worked two-sided

Energizing my weary body moved toward the light

 

Six months of cancer treatment had completed

Only follow-up appointments needed repetition

The end of the tunnel was in sight

Energizing my weary body moved toward the light

 

The highly structured Villanelle is a 19-line poem with two repeating rhymes and two refrains. The form is made up of five tercets followed by a quatrain. The first and third lines of the opening tercet are repeated alternately in the last lines of the succeeding stanzas; then in the final stanza, the refrain serves as the poem’s two concluding lines.  

 

WONDER

 

Whispering into my ear

Of passionate words to hear

Needing me in your life

Day after day, night after night

Embracing me against your chest

Reassuring me for worst or best

 

An acrostic poem is a type of poetry where the first, last or other letters in a line spell out a word or phrase. The most common and simple form of an acrostic poem is where the first letters of each line spell out the word or phrase.

 

I appreciate your visit and comment!

 

 

 

 

My Book Review of Letting Go into Perfect Love by Gwen Plano #RWISA #RRBC

My Book Review of Letting Go into Perfect Love by Gwen Plano #RWISA #RRBC

Gwen Plano Letting go

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Blurb:

Inspiring and unforgettable, Letting Go into Perfect Love is a riveting account of a journey through the terror of domestic violence to a faith that transforms all. As a college administrator, Gwendolyn M. Plano lived her professional life in a highly visible and accountable space–but as a wife and mother, behind closed doors, she and her family experienced unpredictable threat. The statistics are staggering–every 9 seconds in the United States, a woman is assaulted or beaten–but to Gwen, this was her secret; it was her shame. When her husband eventually turned his brutality on her son, she knew she could no longer remain silent.

Alternately heart-wrenching and joyful, this is a story of triumph over adversity–one woman’s uplifting account of learning how to forgive the unforgivable, recover her sense of self, bring healing into her family, and honor the journey home. Accompanied by glimpses of celestial beings, Gwen charts a path through sorrow to joy–and ultimately, writes of the one perfect love we all seek.  Continue reading……

 

My Review

In her book Letting Go, Gwen Plano recounted her two abusive marriages in honesty and courage. She married the first husband after he had a mental breakdown. The psychiatrist gave her hope that Bruce could recover. She married him intending to help him and saved him from being admitted. She couldn’t handle his outrage and filed a divorce. She married Ron six months after they met. There were signs of Ron’s disturbed behavior, but Gwen stated that she was in a fantasy world of young love. In the years to come, Ron uprooted the family on minutes of notice and moved across the country and even to Japan. After they came back to the US, he was getting more violent, demeaning and controlling.  He physically abused their young son when the baby was seven months old. When the daughter was sexually abused at age five by clergies and complained about that years later, Ron didn’t want to deal with it and wanted to move on.

During the twenty-five years of abuse, Gwen studied and taught. The workplace was her escape. The busyness kept them going for twenty-five years. At one point, she realized Ron made her feel “small.” In an abusive relationship, women kept the abuse in secret, fear the reporting results in more abuse. These women may fear of not being able to stand on their own feet.

The beginning of her book, Gwen conveyed her Catholic upbringing which demanded her obedience to the church rules and prevented her from divorce. Her family background formed her endurance of hardship without complaint. It was after her seeking spiritual advice and assurance to rid her fear that she filed for a divorce and was set free.

 

My Amazon and Goodreads Ratings

 

 

About the Author

Gwendolyn M. Plano, aka Gwen M. Plano, grew up in Southern California and spent most of her professional life in higher education. She taught and served as an administrator in colleges in Japan, New York, Connecticut, and California. Gwen’s academic background is in theology and counseling. Recently retired, she now lives in the Midwest with her husband and enjoys writing and travel.

Gwen’s first book is an acclaimed memoir. In Letting Go into Perfect Love: Discovering the Extraordinary After Abuse, Gwen bravely recounts a violent marriage and the faith that opened her heart to hope, to trust, and to awe. Alternately heart-wrenching and joyful, Letting Go into Perfect Love is a powerful story of triumph over adversity–one woman’s inspiring account of learning how to forgive the unforgivable, recover her sense of self, open her heart, and honor the journey home.

Gwen’s second book, The Contract between Heaven and Earth, is the first of her thriller series and is co-authored by John W. Howell, published in June 2018. Author Jan Sikes wrote that “The Contract is the perfect blending between the physical and unseen world with unbreakable bonds between human and spirit.”

The Choice: unexpected heroes, the second in her thriller series, was published in June 2019 and continues the story.

 

Other books by Gwen Plano

The Contract: between heaven and earth     The Choice: the unexpected heroes

 

Contact Gwen Plano

Website: http://gwenmplano.com

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Gwendolyn-M.-Plano/e/B00I5TAJ04?ref_=dbs_p_ebk_r00_abau_000000

Twitter: https://twitter.com/gmplano

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

 

 

Welcome to the “GRANDMOTHERS: A FORCE FOR GOOD” Blog Tour! @HealthMN1 @4WillsPub #RRBC #RWISA

It is my pleasure to have Harriet Hodgson on my blog for her Blog Tour. Please join me to give her a warm welcome and check out her new book The Grandma Force. How Grandmothers Are Changing Grandchildren, Families, and Themselves.

This is Blog Tour Day 2

 

2019-HarrietHodgson

Author Bio: 

Harriet Hodgson has been a freelance writer for 38 years, is the author of thousands of print/online articles, and 37 books. Hodgson is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists and the Alliance of Independent Authors. She has appeared on more than 185 radio talk shows, including CBS Radio, and dozens of television stations, including CNN.  A popular speaker, she has given presentations at public health, Alzheimer’s, bereavement, and caregiving conferences. She lives in Rochester, Minnesota with her husband, John. Please visit www.harriethodgson.com for more information about this busy wife, mother, grandmother, caregiver, speaker, and author.

 

Harriet Modgson

 

 

Blurb:

Becoming the grandmother of twins changed Harriet Hodgson and altered her life course. According to Hodgson, we live in a fast-paced, complex time, a time when too many grandchildren are victims of bullying, Internet scams, and sexual abuse. Hodgson believes that grandmothers are needed today more than any other time in history.

“Grandmas can’t be passive,” she declares. “Every grandma has the power to protect and guide her grandchildren and needs to tap this power.”

This narrative weaves Hodgson’s personal story with research findings. It’s packed with ideas for helping grandchildren. Hodgson’s age, child development degree, life experience, teaching experience, witness to history, and extensive research converge to make this an inspiring read. Working individually and together, grandmas are changing the world.

“The Grandma Force is about the power of love and the power of one.” Hodgson says. “One-by-one, grandmas are standing up for grandchildren and creating a hopeful future for them.”

 

Contact Harriet Hodgson:

Website: www.harriethodgson.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/healthmn1

 

Purchase Links:

Amazon paperback: LINK

Amazon eBook: LINK

Barnes and Noble paperback: LINK

Barnes and Noble eBook: LINK

IndieBound paperback: LINK

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My Blogger Friends and Guests, thank you so much for taking the time to support Harriet and her very informative blog tour. We invite you to share your comments with her below!

To follow along with the rest of the tour, please visit the author’s tour page on the 4Wills Publishing site.

If you’d like to book your own blog tour and have your book promoted in similar grand fashion, please click HERE.

Thanks for supporting this author and her work!

 

 

“Spotlight” Author Blog Tour #RRBC Karl Morgan @karljmorgan

I’m excited to host “Spotlight” Author on my blog. Please join me to welcome #RRBC member Karl Morgan. We will learn more about his writing, his life and his book Carl Prescott and the Demon Queen.

 

AUTHOR PIC

Sometimes I wish I was an Outliner and not a Pantser

 

In my darkest thoughts, I see an author who outlines their story even before they start to write. How smug to know where your story is going before you get there. You snicker under your breath when you encounter a pantser like me who is desperately searching for the next idea to keep their story alive. You have to leave the room before you burst into hysterics of laughter as you see the poor, sad pantser shake their head while deleting days or weeks of work. Later, the outliners will gather for a coffee or beer to share their superiority and disdain for the lowly pantser.

I said that was my darkest thoughts, right? Of course, the outliner is nothing like that. We are all on the same road and heading toward the same destination: Popular Authorville. We all live for our characters, stories, and love of words. Each of us is a storyteller first and foremost. I also know that an outline is only a plan. Having spent many, many years in the corporate world, I recognize that plans always require tweaks if not complete overhauls.

In a way, that makes me an outliner too, but just barely. When my fingers first hit the keyboard, I have an idea I believe will make a perfect crescendo finish. Reality sets in after a few pages and that conclusion begins to morph. For example, in my book 2125: Home of the Brave, I expected the bombing of the cannibal stronghold would be the end. Blow up the evil dudes and the hero wins. Yay! I got to that point and said, “Meh. Too easy.” Trust me. It really was not easy. In fact, it was horrifying. Someday, I will tell you about Galloping Goblins. Anyway, I decided my hero, Jack Kennedy (no, not the one you think), needed a more dastardly finale. In the final ending, Jack was slowly being sliced to pieces by the leader of the cannibals. Yada, yada, yada, he survives and wins.

Ultimately, I am thrilled to be a pantser, although I prefer to call it a stream-of-consciousness writer. First, because that is the way my brain works. I also believe my story improves as I go along. New ideas pop in my head, I switch gears, and am off to the races again. Of course, there is a downside. With the story I am writing now, I got totally off-track. That is easy to do when you are dealing with supernatural beings, time travel, and alternate universes. I had to take out my trusty machete and whack off a bunch of text that did not fit where I wanted to go. Currently, I am on a hiatus from that tale while my mind rests and figures out the next steps.

It does not matter what writing style you like. If you like it, that is what counts. We each need to remember something truly amazing about us. We are writers! That is an incredible gift and a rare talent indeed. We are on the same journey, and as members of the Rave Reviews Book Club, we take that trip together. Whether you use a computer, dictation software, tablet, Smith-Corona typewriter, or even a legal pad, you write. We are artists and masters of the written word. Embrace and celebrate that! We will all leave a legacy in print that will survive long after we are gone (except me of course, I plan to live forever…). Today, I celebrate you.

 

 

CARL PRESCOTT AND THE DEMON QUEEN

 

Carl Prescott may have saved the world from the Beast, but the duties of the Invisible Hand never end. The story begins when a medieval castle is discovered hidden beneath the Thorndike Institution. While the professors search for clues, our hero is summoned to Hell to meet the demon Sylvia. She once ruled a satanic kingdom in Eastern Europe from that castle, and will do so again.

There is much more to this beautiful woman than evil intentions. To stop her plan, Carl must first understand why she is so focused on him. To learn the truth, he must face God, Satan, and Death. In this nonstop action-packed adventure, he must stand at the Crossroads of Existence and cross the Rope Bridge to meet his destiny.

If he succeeds, life can return to normal. If not, the galaxy and every soul therein will be devoured by a voracious black hole, which even God will be powerless to stop.

 

Author Bio:

Karl Morgan has a lifelong fascination with stories in the science fiction and fantasy genres, whether it was the Tom Swift novels by Victor Appleton he read as a young boy, or television like Lost in Space and Star Trek, and especially films like Star Wars, Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. All of those tales put the protagonist in terrible situations where the odds are against them and, yet, somehow they prevail. The reader/viewer is always left with a sense that something greater than ourselves is watching over us.

In his new Carl Prescott young adult fantasy series, the journey continues as our hero faces terrible danger and odds to help his friends and family. At the end, he will learn new things that will change his perspective on life.

Karl lives in the San Diego area with his best, four-legged friend, his toy poodle Chachis.

 

Follow Karl online:

Twitter

Facebook

Website

 

Book Review – Flowers and Stone by Jan Sikes #RRBC

Book Review – Flowers and Stone by Jan Sikes #RRBC

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Flowers And Stone by [Sikes, Jan]

 

Blurb

The epic love story begins here!
A hot Texas summer, dim-lit honky-tonk bars, a young naïve fledgling go-go dancer and a wild rebel Texas musician set the stage for this story.
1970 in Abilene, Texas finds young Darlina Flowers trying to figure out how to fit into the world she is most attracted to – the nightlife, live music and go-go dancing. Luke Stone, a veteran Texas Musician believes he’s lost all reason to care about his music career, his health and most especially his heart. A chance meeting with Darlina changes everything. But, is it too late? Has fate already determined the outcome? Join Luke and Darlina on a passion-filled journey up and down Texas roads while Luke and his band entertain crowds along the way.

 

My Recommendation

Flowers and Stone is the first book of the series I read.  This fictional novel is based on the real lives of Jan and Rick Sikes portrayed as Darlina Flowers and Luke Stone. The story quickly revealed that the nineteen-year-old girl Darlina fell in love with the thirty-six-year-old country western singer Luke Stone the first time of meeting him. She soon found out he was married with children and seeing another woman, but it didn’t deter her love for him. Luke had drinking and other problems but fell that Darlina was the best thing happened in his life. Luke was in jail for a crime he didn’t commit, but Jan’s love was deep and strong and knew that he was the man she would love forever.

Jan’s excellent writing takes the readers to the scenes and shows the twists and turns of their journey. I look forward to reading the rest of the series.

My Amazon and Goodreads Ratings 5.0 of 5 Stars

 

Jan Sikes

 

About the Author

Multi-Award winning author, Jan Sikes, began her writing career as a young girl. Her first work was a gospel song. She had an uncle whom she loved dearly, but he was an alcoholic and his drinking caused such family discord that at times, resulted in him being banished from their home. So, she wrote a song about Uncle Luke finding Jesus. That is her first memory of feeling the passion deep down to her toes for writing and for music.

When her husband passed away in 2009, she thought someone would come along and write the story of his unique and inspiring life. She awoke one morning to realize she was the only one who could write it, since she was the only one there with him through it all. So, she took several Creative Writing courses at local community colleges and went to work.

Her books are true stories about the journey of two people moving through adversity in order to grow and learn to become better humans. She believes with all her heart there is something worthy of sharing in these stories. Bits and pieces of wisdom, hard-learned lessons and above and beyond all, love…True love that you read about in fiction stories and yet this is truth. The old saying that truth is stranger than fiction fits these stories.

She also releases a music CD of original songs along with each book that fits the time period of the story. Why? Because the stories revolve and evolve around a passion for music.

Jan has also developed several writing workshops that you can get more information about on her website.

She is widowed, lives in North Texas, volunteers at music festivals, has five incredible grandchildren and serves on the Board of Directors for the Texas Authors Institute of History, The North Texas Book Festival and the Texas Musicians Museum.

 

Contact the Author

Amazon Author page: https://www.amazon.com/Jan-Sikes/e/B00CS9K8DK?ref=dbs_p_ebk_r00_abau_000000

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7095856.Jan_Sikes

Website: http://www.jansikes.com

Blog: http://www.rijanjks.wordpress.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AuthorJanSikes

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/rijanjks

 

 

 

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