Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Melissa Foster stops by Penny's Tales

I am honored to have Melissa Foster on Penny’s Tales.  I have done a little bit of homework on you Melissa and I know you have three best sellers out.  Megan’s Way, Chasing Amanda, and Come Back to Me.

Thank you! I’ve actually just released TRACES OF KARA and it has already hit the bestsellers list in the UK for Mystery (pretty exciting!).

Wow, Melissa - that is fabulous!  Not only are you a best selling author but you have a multitude of success behind your name.  World Literary Café, Fostering Success, and the social and support network for women, The Women’s Nest.

The questions I would like to throw at you today are mainly about marketing.  Let me set a scenario first.  We have Mary Jo Blow who has written a perfectly edited, best seller.  It is seriously the next Great American Novel.  The thing is – who the heck is Mary Jo Blow? 

Sooooo, you and Mary Jo are having a burger and fries. Chances are you will have to pay for the lunch because she is making no money on her wonderful book, and at this point can’t afford to pay for marketing help.  She does have a website, a blog and has joined Twitter, Facebook and other social networks.  She’s had guests on her blog and has been invited to present her book on other author’s blogs.

While author blogs are great for spreading the word, she should be spending more time on blogs that cater to her audience, and not necessarily on book related blogs, but on blogs, for example, that deal with the themes in her books. 

 My first question is…drum roll…. What is she doing wrong?  What is the number one thing she should be doing to get her name and her story out there?

Well, let’s see. First, you mentioned that she’s written a bestseller. Do you mean that she thinks she’s written one? Assuming she does, and that she’s not selling many books, I can’t really critique anyone’s efforts without knowing what they’ve done in detail, but I can give you an idea of what it takes to launch a bestseller.

·        Start with a breakout novel. The best damned novel you can write, as you mentioned, professionally edited, covered, etc.
·        Determine your audience (age, likes, dislikes, where they hangout online and offline)
·        Determine your advertising budget in terms of time and money
·        Create a marketing plan that includes targeting your niche audience. That means, if you are marketing to young adults, target all marketing efforts toward that group and where they spend their time.

What would be numbers two and three.  Please feel free to throw in four, five, and six also! LOL

Do you think it makes a difference (success-wise) if an author writes short stories, novellas, or novels?

I think authors can succeed no matter what they write. Finding your audience is what makes all the difference.

Can you give us a quick rundown on your trip down publishing lane with your very first book?  Did you sell it to a publisher?  Did you ever get discouraged over rejections?

I could wallpaper my house with rejection letters. I began publishing in 2009, when we were in the throws of the recession, and I had just completed Megan’s Way, which is not an easy read. Megan’s Way deal with a very heavy topic; a single mother’s recurring cancer. Agents provided great feedback and interest, but followed it up with either that they couldn’t sell sad stories in that market or that they’d tried to sell a similar piece. After a few months I decided to get it out to readers and see if it found a market on its own. I’m glad I did. Megan’s Way is doing very well.

My second book received an offer from a small press 24 hours after submitting, and since then I have had rights for audiobooks for all three of my released, and foreign rights sold, and my agent is currently submitting one of my manuscripts to traditional publishers.

Now that you have this enormous following, will you always go the self-pub route?

I will always self-publish, but I am testing the traditional waters now, as mentioned above. I would love to experience both sides of the fence.

What does a day in your life look like?  With all the irons you have in the fire, how much time do you actually spend writing?

To many people, my days would seem incredibly boring, but to me, they’re glorious. After getting my kids off to school, I write from 9-2:15. I take breaks to chat on social media and handle work-related issues and correspondence for the World Literary Café and Fostering Success. I also run several private writer’s groups where I answer questions on an ongoing basis.

I typically work after the kids are settled at home until about 5:30, and then pick up again with email and computer work while we’re hanging out as a family in the evenings.

Writing and marketing is not for wimps and Melissa you have obviously figured out how to master both.  I want to thank you so much for stopping by.  Your advice and expertise is a tremendous help to so many others and myself.  Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Now, please give us the low down on your books and where you and they can be found!

Thanks, Penny. Marketing is not for wimps. It’s a very difficult part of being an author, but for me, a chatterbox who loves a challenge, it adds a fun dimension to my days.

"What sets Melissa Foster apart are her compelling characters who you care about... desperately. This  is psychological suspense at its most chilling. I dare you to read the first chapter and not be hooked."    International bestseller, M.J. Rose

Melissa Foster is the award-winning author of three International bestselling novels. Her books have been recommended by USA Today's book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the Women’s Nest, a social and support community for women, the World Literary Café. When she's not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on  Fostering Success. Melissa has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.

My books can be found on Amazon.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Ronda Caudill stop by Penny's Tales


The Choice (A Nobleman Novel)

Blurb: Nila and Blake’s journey of love and challenges continue in The Choice. Nila is face with many choices, one of which is the choice of mortality or immortality. She makes surprising new friends and discovers secrets about an old one. More is revealed to Nila about Blake’s past. Their love will be tested with the challenges they are met with and the secrets that are revealed.

About Ronda Caudill: Ronda was born and raised in Virginia. Writing has always been a passion of hers. She earned  Ph.D. in Education from Capella University. The two writers who inspire her the most are Edgar Allan Poe and H.P. Lovecraft.  Discovering Edgar Allan Poe when she was eleven years old opened up an entirely new world to her. A world that she has shared with her daughters. She is blessed with a wonderful husband and two beautiful daughters who both inspire and support her.

You can contact Ronda at the following places:

What does 2013 hold for you as an author?

          I am anticipating that 2013 will be a very productive year for me as a writer. Obviously it has started with a bang with the release of The Choice.

I have written a novel about Jack the Ripper, with a twist (titled Forbidden Fruit). My editor currently has this novel. It is geared more toward an adult audience. The main character is Lucinda Belle. Her mother put into the service of a wealthy family because she could no longer care for Lucinda. Lucinda is eventually thrust into a world very unfamiliar to her when she meets a prominent doctor in London named Dr. Alleister Wellington. Anticipation date of release is spring 2013.

I am currently working on a fantasy novel geared toward the age group of 12+, titled The Glasshouse Children of Ravenshire. These children have different abilities that aid them when they go off their adventures. This novel intertwines the everyday lives of the Glasshouse Children with mystical creatures that they encounter. It is the first of a series of at least five novels. There are five children each one has to have at least one special adventure. This will be a wonderful series for the entire family.  Anticipation date of release for this one is summer 2013.

Of course there has to be another Nobleman Novel at least written in 2013. However, I am not certain if the release will be in 2013 or early 2014. I hope to have it out sometime this year J The past two novels have had Nila concentrating on her Celtic heritage. However, in this one Nila will be focusing on her Native American heritage. After all her grandfather was a shaman.

I have several starts for other novels. I am hoping to finish at least one of them as well. I have lofty goals for this year. I just hope my mojo holds out J  

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Julie Eberhart stops by Penny's Tales

Bio: A writer born outside the box…Julie Eberhart Painter, author of Paranormal romance, about Tahiti

There is no box for me, or Laura, my contemporary heroine in Daughters of the Sea, released January 25. This not lonely but only child was born to be a writer. No cardboard sides or top and bottom to my environmental wilderness contained me. No transportation to transport me during gas rationing. Having to create my own reality contributed to my unusual twist on life. Outside the box is where I'm most comfortable as an adult.

Call it creativity or a learned skill, writers have basic sources for their talents and passion to write. To harness the desire and learn to bring that story to life is the requisite.

My what if turned into “What if a true daughter of the sea, Laura, were haunted, possessed, or perhaps a reincarnation of Princess Kura, birth child of the Tahitian navigator who read the waves, not the stars.

Daughters of the Sea, is told in parallel time and called paranormal Romance. Delusion, magic, or plausible haunting? The readers will decide.

Laura, descended from the Tahitian princess Kura, explores her heritage to find answers to her unusual past. Why did her birth father, the last Polynesian navigator, insist she be raised by her American family? What secret threatens her through her Tahitian bloodlines?
Ian, an English journalist, falls for the lovely Laura the first day she arrives on Tahiti. During her quest, he’s by her side when dejá vu overtakes her. They are plunged into 1769; Captain Cook’s first landing date on the islands.
Chased by the demons of her ancestor’s and fearing for her sanity, Laura and Ian work together to resolve the inequities in her past

Excerpted legend:
Daughters of the Sea's legend of the coconut as told over dinner by contemporary hero, Ian Christopher, to contemporary heroine, Laura Cates.

“Oh, you know, the old love conquers all stories.” Ian hunched closer.  “One legend told of how the coconut palm came to be. Are you sure you want to hear it? It’s fantasy.”
            “I love fantasy.”
            “It seems long ago when the island was bare of tall trees an eel from the sea fell in love with the Goddess of Earth. They met each day on the shore, to make love. Soon they came to realize they were not suited. She couldn’t live in the sea and he couldn’t survive on land. 
            “One day, as a show of his love, he climbed all the way to the top of her mountain. He was dying and asked her to cut off his head and plant it. ‘From my head will grow a tall tree reaching toward heaven. The tree will bear fruit. Inside the fruit will be a sweet liquid to remind you of the sweet kisses we have shared. The face of the fruit will be my face. Then I will be with you always.’”



Contact Julie:
Twitter: @JulieEPainter
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com (Search) Julie Eberhart Painter
Linked-In: http://www.linkedin.com/search/fpsearch?type=people&keywords=Julie+Eberhart+Painter&pplSearchOrigin=GLHD&pageKey=member-home&search=Search

As Maggie, Julie reviews books for Coffee Time Romance and More, and is a regular blogger on http://thewritersvineyard.com/ , and feature writer for http://cocktailsmagazine.wix.com/fictionandgossip#!issue-14  an online slick. Her flash fiction appears under http://bewilderingstories.com/bios/painter_bio.htm

Julies Web site: www.books-jepainter.com 

I want to thank Julie for stopping by and giving us all a sneak peek of her new book, but I want you all to know that Julie is giving a copy of Daughters of the Sea to one lucky person who leaves a comment!  

Thanks for visiting and don't forget to comment!!!!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Best selling author Mysty McPartland Answers Some Marketing Questions On Penny's Tales

I am so pleased to have Mysty McPartland visiting with me today.  Mysty is a best selling author of  MANY romance stories.  I checked out your website www.mystymcparland.webstarts.com and WOW, what a site it is.  Bling and sparkles everywhere.  Really one of the best sites I’ve seen. 

Thank you it’s a free website and I just hunted around and put it together myself. I wanted something everyone could enjoy and have some fun while they checked it out.

Okay, Mysty.  Let me get started with some questions.

I would like to thank you it’s a pleasure to be asked to be interviewed.

How many books have you written Mysty and are they all romance?

At the moment I have twenty novels published and yes they are all romance stories. I am a sucker for romance and have a very romantic husband. Though he keeps telling me to write something different I have to many stories going around in my head that it’s already too full for any other thoughts.

Are your stories contracted with a publisher or have you self-published any of them?

I am very lucky all of my novels have been accepted and published by publishers.

What would you say your number one and two marketing strategies are for your success?

I leave a lot of business cards and bookmarks at various businesses and since I travel a lot hand them out to everyone I meet. I have my husband and children do the same. It is a great strategy and it seems to work for me.

Which social networks work for you and which don’t?

I have a fanpage on facebook, use twitter and linkedin when I have a new release out. I also have two websites.

Author -  www.mystymcpartland.com 
Facebook Fan Page -  www.facebook.com/mystymcpartland

Do you, or have you, ever paid for marketing services and if so, were you happy with the results?

No, but have had offers which I have thought about but decided that at the moment I’m doing okay.

Do you use book giveaways, bookmarks, postcards, etc?

I am working on my fourth manuscript of The Mathews Men and when I finish intend to have a contest to give away all four of the series. I do give bookmarks away to anyone I meet and I have all my children do the same.

How much time in a day, or a week, do you spend on promotion? 

When I have a new release out I spend an hour everyday promoting it then probably once a week for a month. After that I occasionally advertise one of my novels on the social networks.
Mysty, I really appreciate you sharing some of the secrets of your success.  Now of course the most important question.  Where can we find you and your wonderful books?

Well if you are ever in Penang Malaysia drop on by beautiful, exotic location but make sure it is soon sadly after three and a half years will be leaving to places unknown at the middle of the year. I do go home to Perth Western Australia every few months to see my children. My books though can be found at
SolsticePublishing…Bookstrand…Fictionwise….Amazon…Smashword…Goodreads…Maniac Reader…Barnes and Noble…Kobo Books and many other sites as well.

Thanks again, Mysty for stopping by and folks let me encourage you to stop by Mysty’s website – Most Impressive!  Here is just one of the many wonderful covers that adorn Mysty's books.

I would like to add

To all authors or budding authors I would just like to say never give up on your dreams. As the old saying goes dream, believe, create, success. To all those who have read or will read my novels I thank you. I consider myself very lucky because I can devote so much time to something I love so much, my writing. I know many can’t and can only take a few hours out of every day to work on their manuscript but just remember your dedication will be worth it in the end.

As for advertising yourself yes I believe it is worth it, but there is also overkill. Hitting people with it every day or hourly can turn potential readers off. Have business cards and book marks made and hand them out to everyone you come in contact with. Ask to leave them in shops, have family members hand them out as well. My husband travels the world and gives them out at airports, hotels and to anyone he meets. However, I know people will take the approach that works best for them and I wish everyone the best of luck.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Troy Seate stops by Penny's Tales


Today, Natter and Review would like to welcome my friend, author J. Troy Seate. Troy and I have worked on several projects for MuseItUp Publishing and I must say we have always had a great time. Here is a biography of Troy outlining some of his career.
J. T. has written everything from humour to the erotic to the macabre, and is especially keen on stories that transcend genre pigeonholing. “Although I enjoy writing in all genres, it’s the mysterious and the macabre that seem to influence the funny monkey in my brain the most. More recently, I’ve turned that monkey toward the paranormal and historical suspense/romance.” In addition to his novels and novellas, his short stories and memoirs appear in numerous magazines, newspapers, anthologies and webzines.
N&R: Hi Troy. Welcome to Natter and Review. Can you share a little about your early life with our readers. Where did you grow up and go to school? Did you have any other earlier careers?
JTS: I was born in Hollywood, California, but grew up in Ft. Worth, Texas where I began my fling in a number of artistic endeavors. I’ve been a guitarist in a band, sold artwork and freelanced for various photo publications. After graduating from TexasChristianUniversity, a lifetime love of travel began. Combining that desire with a passion for photography, I sold photos to travel companies and sports magazines. All of these endeavors were fun, but I made a living working for the State of Colorado as an investigator and a part-time tour guide. But writing is my current passion. I published my first piece in 2005 and haven’t looked back, except for story ideas, of course. I currently ply my trade at the base of the Rocky Mountains in Golden, Colorado with the dream of enjoying the rest of my life traveling and writing.
N&R: Did you always want to be a writer?
JTS: No. Serious writing first occurred to me following three years of living in a small, out of the way town. After my position was abolished and I returned to the big city, people used to say, “You’re always talking about how strange that place was. You should write about it.” Many years later, The Swann Trilogy was born.
N&R: What kind of writing did you do early on?
JTS: As stated in my bio, it’s the mysterious and the macabre that seem to influence me the most although sweet memoirs and redemptive tales come along now and then to maintain a balance. I mimic some of Stephen King, Dean Koontz and Thomas Harris in my style. I believe people who like to incorporate sex, violence, murder and mayhem in their reads, will like my stories, but there is always redemption in the end of one kind or another, has to be.
N&R: What led you to the world of the paranormal?
JTS: For me, it’s a natural extension of passionate storytelling. What’s more challenging and threatening than the unseen, the mystical if you will. I would guess that most of the over 200 pieces I’ve had published have at least a hint of the paranormal in them.
N&R: Have you had any personal ‘paranormal’ experiences?
JTS: Nothing concrete, but it doesn’t slow down my fascination with the accounts told to me by others, some of which have shown up in my fiction.
N&R: In Something About Sara—the paranormal novella on which I did the content edits for Muse—your lead character goes from pretty much a non-believer to a full-tilt one by the end of the story, plus there are many twists and turns within the plot that keep the reader on the edge of their seat. Where did this story come from? Did anything specific catalyst this tale of suspense and murder?
JTS: I would be fibbing if I didn’t say this story is somewhat autobiographical. My stories usually tell themselves. That is, I don’t know where they are going to wind up when I begin. In longer pieces such as this, I never have a working plot, the characters lead me. Sometimes, it feels like they are channeling through me onto the computer resulting in all those twists and turns. I don’t know how else to explain the experience, but perhaps that is a paranormal event in and of itself.        
N&R: You’re not alone in that. I know quite a few authors who say the same thing. What percentage of your stories, would you say, lean toward the supernatural?
JTS: 90% as you will see, should you read my next two novellas and short story from MuseItUp coming in 2013.
N&R: You have written many short stories, as well as novellas and novels, which would you say is your favorite genre?
JTS: You know the answer to that one by now.
N&R: Hah hah. Yes, and so…what is most appealing to you about the short story?
JTS: I often like to read something I can finish in one sitting. I began to write short stories between the novels and later the novellas. Now I predominately write them for the same reason I read them. Stephen King once suggested that in the literary world, his writing was the equivalent of a Big Mac and fries. If that is so, my efforts could be the equivalent of a Good Times drive-thru. But I like what I like, especially if the trip through the drive-thru is brief.
N&R: Makes sense to me. I, too, like the short quick intensive few minutes highlighting specific events in life. In Connor House, which comes out from Muse in January of 2013, you step back in time to the post Civil War period in the United States, to recount a very tragic, yet equally ‘ghostly’ story. What kinds of challenges do writing historical pieces present?
JTS: Fortunately, I have a good editor to keep me on track with historical details. The Civil War era is especially interesting to me, so much so that my next novella titled A Resting Place goes back to the very end of the conflict with another cast of spooky characters.
N&R: Yes, you’re lucky you have such a good editor. LOL Have you written many other works against a historical background?
JTS: My Swann Saga trilogy of novels covers a family’s triumphs and tragedies over a 30-year span of history. I enjoy using the Victorian era and the pulp fiction ‘40’s and ‘50’s in many of my shorter works.   
N&R: Should we look forward to more glimpses into the past from you?
JTS: Yes. In addition to the aforementioned A Resting Place, there will be a story called Secret Desires on MuseItUp this February. It is part of The Unlocked Door series. Also, a Victorian who-done-it can currently be found under Fiction on the Over My Dead Body website. It’s a freebee if you care to take a peek. More of my shorts will be coming out on that website as well.
N&R: Please share a little from the novella, Something About Sara.

JTS: Something About Sara, released in October of 2012, is an erotic romance/thriller about paranormal love and hate. In this haunting, yet intimate mystery, the protagonist relates his tale of a man trying desperately to hold onto something that could destroy his sanity, cost him his life and yes, even his soul. Passion, loss, the supernatural, murder and mayhem all form parts of the puzzle. It could be likened to a contemporary version of Robert Nathan’s 1939 bestselling novella, Portrait of Jennie. The bottom line: Something About Sara will appeal to those who like their imperfect romances mixed with the unknown.
N&R: Can we have a little excerpt from it please?
JTS: “In the beginning, I only saw little things from the corner of my eye—a glimpse of something here or there, slight movement in an adjoining room. Upon investigation, everything appeared untouched. Normal.
Later, my sanctuary lost its subtlety. Inanimate objects brazenly found new homes around the house. I would’ve bet my ass either progressing age or—God forbid—
Alzheimer’s, was the culprit. Could I be sliding into senility like a dinosaur into a tar pit?  What a kick in the butt if my mind turned to cottage cheese so soon after my loss.
My name is Sam Collier. I have a grown son and a dead wife. Is there no sadder transfer than desire given over to pity? I watched Connie wither and die. I was at her bedside when her eyelids closed for the last time and remember how alone I felt as her casket was lowered into the ground.
My son, Tyler, was off at the state university, and I spent many nights touching Connie’s place in bed, wondering how people manage to watch those they care for fade from their lives.”
N&R: That’s a nice little piece from the very beginning of the book. Makes me want to read it again. OK, please tell our readers a little about the story Connor House.

JTS: Inhabited by both the living and the dead, Connor House, to be released in January of 2013, is a place where ghosts as well as humans stalk the night. This tale of the paranormal is set in Washington, D.C. and Northern Virginia ten years following the Civil War. Passion, loss, murder and mayhem all form parts of the puzzle that surround the Connors. In this historical setting, the Connors deal with their triumphs and tragedies while being influenced by powers beyond their understanding as the nation continues to recover and rebuild. Into Madeline Connor’s life befalls the tragedy of losing a daughter by suicide. The event proves to be the linchpin for many deaths to follow including the untimely demise of two husbands. As the heroine tries desperately to hold on to her sanity, while unraveling the house’s mysteries, she finds comfort in her two sons and her sister who help Madeline bear the burden of loss. There are many questions to be answered inside the walls of Connor House, and although the house outlives its residents, it is not until the wrecking ball takes it down that the final secret is revealed. 
N&R: How about a tiny taste from Connor House to whet the appetites of our readers and leave them wanting more.
JTS: “Madeline hadn’t believed life’s prospects could be more dismal than during the war with the constant parade of soldiers and equipment going south, and a fraction of that number returning on foot or in wagons like broken dolls, with the Angel of Death along for the ride. Some were wounded, some diseased, their once shiny buttons tarnished and dirty with little left of the rebellion, only hollow victories and inconsolable regrets.
The entire Connor family had survived—until now. Madeline’s eldest had chosen to take her own life. This was not how things were supposed to be, but there was no power on earth that could rewrite history. Would that she could close her eyes and spin the world back before the war, to undo the tapestry woven fifteen years earlier, and give mankind another chance to embrace the concept of the words President Lincoln spoke during his second presidential inauguration, “With malice towards none, with charity toward all…” In this new reality, Madeline would have talked to her daughter each day and night, and yes, each morning when she awoke, to chase away any demon that might be festering within Mary’s mind. Too late now. Oh God, too late.”
N&R: Wow. Very nice. Troy, are there any other works from your portfolio which you would like to tell us about?
JTS: I am most proud of my three novels which constitute The Swann Saga Trilogy.

Steve and Maria Swann are about to discover that real life is more frightening than their nightmares. Within the mountain peaks and woods that surround their new home, an evil lurks, and waits for the time to strike.
This non-stop mystery takes place in the idyllic setting of the AltinomaValley, where a bizarre and horrifying string of violent tragedies reveal a nightmarish plot. As people disappear, the Swanns not only must confront forces that would destroy them, but also their own consciences.
Enter this world of impenetrable danger where the truth carries a high price: slavery and death.

The Swann Saga, Book 2 Tears for the Departed by J. Troy Seate
Renee Swann’s innocence was shattered in the AltinomaValley, but she and her family survived. She believes she’s endured the most horrific circumstances imaginable, but she’s wrong. Now, nine years later, with a busy life and a good job in New York, Renee feels a growing uneasiness as the horrors of her past give way to a chilling new nightmare…and there’s nowhere to hide. Can she survive , once more, the horror that took root long ago, or will this ultimate exploitation and degradation destroy her?

The Swann Saga, Book 3, And The Heavens Wept by J. Troy Seate
The AltinomaValley has been the catalyst of the Swann family’s destruction for nearly twenty years. As new terrors face the family’s surviving members, someone must journey back to the place where the legacy of deceit and horror began—where the haunted dead have a way of seeking retribution from their graves and where those who want more blood wait to strike.
Follow the triumphs and tragedies of the Swann family in these three novels available at www.mélange-books.com.
N&R: Just to let the readers know, there are excerpts from the books posted on the Mélange site. What are your goals for your writing?  And do you feel you are on the path to achieving those goals?
JTS: The ongoing goal is to share my thoughts—rambling as they may be—with others. When someone ‘reads you’, you are sharing part of your soul with them. As long as I enjoy the process and the outcome, I’ll keep on truckin’.   
N&R: Do you have any advice for young or new writers?
JTS: I fought through a bout with cancer while I was writing and am living proof that it is never too late to start something new. If I can learn the skill of writing late in life and get published, I believe anyone can, if they have the dedication and determination to believe in their ideas and follow through. The best thing I did was to join a non-threatening local critique group. A number of opinions can be a great guide as long as you stay true to your vision. 
N&R: What can we look forward to from you on the near and far horizon?
JTS: Perhaps a few more stories with a globe-hopping slant, since traveling is my second favorite thing.
N&R: Well, thank you so much for dropping by today, Troy. It’s been fun talking with you. Please keep us up to date on your work and we hope we can look forward to future visits.
JTS: There is nothing I’d rather talk about than writing, so anytime.
N&R: The work of J. Troy Seate can be found at the following links.
 www.melange-books.com, and www.whispershome.com in addition to this website and my personal website, www.vlmurray.ca  See more on www.troyseateauthor.webs.com or at amazon.com.  And also online with MuseItUp Publishing at http://museituppublishing.com/
You can follow Troy on his author page above, on amazon under Troy Seate, Jay Seate, or J. Troy Seate. On Facebook at Jay Troy Seate, or contact him directly at troyseate@hotmail.com.
Troy also has a new blog.  Follow it at  supernaturalsnackbar.wordpress.com

Wow, Troy - your books sound fabulous and those covers are awesome!  Thank you so much for stopping Penny's Tales

FREEBIES for all ages

At What Price (women's contemporary fiction) is free for the weedend.  February 9 & 10

Katherine Gardner is awakened at 6:30 in the morning by a strange woman, claiming to have Rio, her granddaughter. Katherine hasn't seen Rio in four years, since her daughter, strung out on drugs, ripped the little girl from her arms, promising she would never see her again. Panic sets in as the woman says the police will be called if arrangements aren't made, immediately, for Rio to be picked up. Apparently nothing has changed with her daughter, but now Rio's life is affected. Katherine had to do something before it's too late.

Katherine is fifty-nine years old and all alone after the death of her husband, three years earlier. Her life takes a dramatic turn when she steps up to take care of her granddaughter. Rio is a scared little girl whose life is filled with uncertainty and fear.

In her grandmother, Rio finds a safe haven and an unconditional love that she had never known in her six short years and Katherine finds a love to fill the void that had been absent for way too long. Life for the two of them falls into a trusting relationship until the daughter, who deserted Rio, resurfaces with other ideas.

At what lengths will a grandmother go to save the ones she loves? Will Katherine be able to save Rio or will the little girl's world be ripped apart once again?

A Float Down the Canal (MG/tween story for the girls in your lives) is free through March 7  This is a short, feel good story that has you cheering for the under dog!   Use the coupon code  SH69H

Twelve-year old Pam Simpson gets dumped on when her mother is called into work. She must cancel her plans for the mall to babysit her younger brother and his friend and take them to the public pool.  To make matters worse her cousin, Candy, is also coming over for the day.  She doesn’t even like Candy!

Much to Candy’s dismay, transportation to the pool is on inner tubes, floating down the canal.  One thing leads to another and it is Pam who, once again, must save the day.

When things couldn’t seem worse, the day takes a drastic turn for the better and it is Candy, and the float down the canal, that makes this the best day of Pam’s life!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Michael Thal Comes A Calling

Novelist Tells About Forthcoming Book
What better way to create buzz about a book than to let the world know about it through a blog. I want to thank Penny Estelle for guest hosting me today to share the forthcoming publication of Koolura and The Mystery at Camp Saddleback by Solstice Publishing. This middle grade novel is the sequel to The Legend of Koolura, available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and a few other sites.  Now to answer a few of Penny’s questions:

Penny: Where did you get the idea for Koolura and The Mystery at Camp Saddleback? After I wrote The Legend of Koolura, I visited my daughter, Koren, at her college in Santa Barbara. We spent the day at a beautiful lake nearby. I thought Lake Cachuma would be the perfect backdrop for a story about Koolura spending her summer at a sleep-away camp.

 Penny: What is the genre of your book?Koolura and the Mystery at Camp Saddleback is a middle school novel. It is a fantasy about a girl with remarkable psychic powers. At camp she wakes up after a restless night sleep weak and disoriented. She soon realizes that her amazing abilities have all disappeared.

Penny: What actress would you have play Koolura? I think Ariel Winter who played Alex Dunphy in “Modern Family” would be the perfect Koolura. She has the kind of sweet face that I envision for my character.

Penny: Provide a one-sentence synopsis of your book. Koolura, a girl with amazing psychic powers, attends a summer sleep-away camp in the mountains outside of Santa Barbara only to discover that her powers have evaporated and crude boys are making devilish pranks against her cabin.

Penny: How long did it take you to write your first draft of your manuscript? Since I started working on it after I retired from teaching, it took less than a year to write the first draft.

Penny: What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? I guess the closest one I can think of is Gilda Joyce, Psychic Investigator. It is one of a series of mystery stories by Jennifer Allison about a girl who loses her father. She’s determined to sharpen her psychic skills to communicate with him and other ghosts she encounters during her investigations.

Penny:Who or what inspired you to write this book? When my oldest daughter was in sixth grade she was a reluctant reader. I asked her, “If I wrote a book about a very cool sixth grader, would you read it? Channie agreed and I wrote The Legend of Koolura. When Koren and I visited Lake Cachuma I got the idea for a sequel. Currently, I’m working on the third installment, Koolura and the Mayans.

Penny: What else about the book might pique the reader’s interests? Koolura meets a very attractive CIT, she learns American Sign Language from a deaf camper, and a jealous camp hand tries to do her harm.

Michael L. Thal, an accomplished freelancer, is the author of The Legend of Kooluraand Goodbye Tchaikovsky. He has written and published overeighty articles for magazines and newspapers including Highlights for Children, The Los Angeles Times, and San Diego Family Magazine. You can learn more about him and his books at www.michaelthal.com.

Michael - thanks so much for stopping by Penny's Tales!  

Folks, I haven't read The Mystery at Camp Saddleback, but I have read the Legend of Koolura and it's a fabulous book for both, kids and adults!  You won't be sorry with this one!