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The Curse of Grungy Gully releases today!

My dear friend KC Sprayberry has a wonderful new book which appropriately releases today! For full details, check out her blog at outofcontrolcharacters.blogspot.com, and check out my tweets @CynthiaLey2!

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A visit from Jim Baugh, Solstice author and avid outdoorsman

Solstice author and avid outdoorsman Jim Baugh stopped by to tell us about his books HOOKED & AFTERMATH.

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CL: Thank you for visiting, and congratulations on your latest release! When did that happen?

JB: “AFTERMATH” was just released by Solstice Publishing with a paperback release party held Oct. 10th.

CL: What other books/stories have you written?

JB: “AFTERMATH” is a triennial memoir that is the sequel to my first novel, a fictionalized autobiography called HOOKED. HOOKED was published three years ago and “AFTERMATH” is the rather bizarre story of what happened during the next three years after the release of HOOKED. One can’t really pack more life changing events in a triennial memoir than in AFTERMATH. There is also some sort of…large revelations that happen in the book. As a result, the pages are packed with a lot of humor.

CL: Do you publish in e-book, print, or both?

JB: HOOKED Second Edition is available in print and ebook as well as AFTERMATH. If you purchase HOOKED Second Edition, AFTERMATH comes free with the purchase. It for the most part is two books in one. Whether you get the print or ebook version of HOOKED second edition, you will get both books.

Also HOOKED has been re-edited with never seen before pictures throughout the novel, this even includes the DC Nympho.

CL: Where can readers find your books?

JB: Amazon and Barnes and Noble; however we try to steer folks to Amazon. They just do a great job, fast delivery, never once a problem. Also there are a lot of reviews on Amazon for our books and an author’s page.

CL: Do you write in a particular genre or genres? What grabs you about
this genre?

JB: Most everything so far is based on autobiographical content. That is what I like to read as well, mostly non-fiction, autobiographies, etc.

CL: What do you think are the biggest challenges for the type of writing
you do?

JB: Well, the big challenge was emotionally just getting through the subject matter I am writing about. When I started the HOOKED project, I knew I would have to bare all, just put everything out there and go for broke. This on the front end was not a problem; however once I got into writing the story, I found it was incredibly difficult to write about various events that happened during my life. These events don’t just happen once–when you are writing you have to re-live it all over and over and over again. That was the hard part. Many times when writing I would have to leave the room to take a break, come back and type out maybe one more sentence, run back out of the room and clear my head again. It truly was that challenging to write. But in the end, if you’re not passionate and your writing does not move you, don’t expect it to move anyone else either.

AFTERMATH was the exact same process. Sometimes I would have to take many breaks to just complete a paragraph. I mean really, when you’re dealing with issues such as foreclosure, celibacy, death, marriage, financial ruin and gain, and of course… God—well, these are things that are not that easy to write about. I was also living AFTERMATH as I was writing it. Now THAT was a strange experience. Because of the extreme subject matter in AFTERMATH, it truly made for some very humorous situations. I think I laughed harder reading AFTERMATH than I did even HOOKED, and that was one extremely hilarious book.

CL: Sounds interesting! What inspires you?

JB: God, Jazz, Nature, and my wife Donna. That and a good cast iron skillet.

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CL: What do you think is the hardest thing about being published? Are there things you know now that you wish you’d known about earlier in this journey?

JB: Probably just balancing everything. Writing takes time, lots of it. Let’s face it for most writers your first books probably are not paying the bills regardless of how great your reviews are. So in my case, producing the outdoors show, production and all aspects of those industries I have to keep on top of in order to have food on the table. However I know that if I don’t write, then the future of writing is not going to happen. So it is a juggling act. Right now I need to finish the HOOKED screenplay that is based on both books HOOKED and AFTERMATH. As much as I would like to do this, right now producing comes first. That means filming Jim Baugh Outdoors, selling sponsorship advertising, editing, etc., etc., and all of this takes a lot of time.

CL: It’s tough when there are so many demands on your everyday life. What advice would you give aspiring writers? How do you get through it?

JB: Hemingway said it best. “Writing, nothing to it. Just sit at the typewriter and bleed.” I don’t think I have ever heard a better description than that. I will say it again, if you’re not deeply passionate about your writing, it is going to show on the pages. The “Voice” that some authors have is due to the passion they bleed on the pages. Whether it’s humor or drama, fiction or non, the writer has to convey something from their soul. If they can’t do that, then it’s a boring bland read regardless of the subject matter.

I believe that good or great writing is a sacrifice. You have to give up something of yourself to make it really happen. Nothing is free, and awesome writing costs the author something, it always does.

CL: Very true. How did you get started writing?

JB: Never did I want to write a book. I never even thought about it. I did want to write a screenplay but I kept having difficulties in finally penning down the story because I was WAY too focused on scene setting, direction, and soundtrack. I had the entire soundtrack for the screenplay for HOOKED written on piano. But the story, I just could not do it. So I called a friend of mine in New York, playwright David Johnston, for advice. He said just to get it down on paper, it did not matter if it was a screenplay or a book. So, since I wrote magazine columns for over 20 years I thought writing HOOKED in book form may be a good idea. So I tried it, and wrote the book in 12 days. Then another 4 1\2 months to edit and polish the story.

CL: Sounds like the story wanted out! Anything else you’d like to tell our readers?

JB: Yes, if you like AFTERMATH or HOOKED or both, please do leave a review on Amazon. That is always greatly appreciated. Also, if everyone could spread a little more Grace around this world would be such a better place. Try it folks!

CL: How can readers contact you?

JB: We are on social media, facebook, etc. both as Jim Baugh and Jim Baugh Outdoors TV and we also have a HOOKED page on facebook and a HOOKED web site. The main page that links to everything is jimbaugh.wordpress.com my email is jimbaugh25@verizon.net

I really appreciate you taking the time to feature my new book AFTERMATH and look forward to talking with you again soon.

Godspeed.

CL: Thank you, Jim, and we wish you all success!


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Meet Solstice author Mya O’Malley!

FullSizeRender-5Mya O’Malley- Contemporary Romance Author

Thanks for joining me tonight, Mya! I hear this is your first book with Solstice–welcome!

So tell us, what is your latest book/books about to be released?
Release date?
I currently have a contemporary romance/women’s fiction book, Where There is Love, published by Solstice Publishing, due for e book release on October 11, 2014. It is, however, available now for purchase in paperback. I also have a holiday paranormal romance with Astraea Press titled, If You Believe, due for release on November 25, 2014. Lastly, I have another contemporary romance novel due to be released with TouchPoint Press at the end of January.

Can you give us a teaser?
I’d love to! Here goes, a teaser from Where There is Love. This story is about a young teacher who struggles with her past. Will she decide to open her heart to love or repeat the same mistakes?

I would have done anything for that girl. Anything. I have dreamed of Mia, I have waited for Mia. I have loved Mia.
I can’t trust Mia.
I can’t get my hopes up again, only to be crushed by her. I couldn’t stand it.
She doesn’t allow herself to be happy. What has happened in her life to cause her to reject the people who love her, who care for her?
I remember the first time I ever laid eyes one her. The way she bumped into me, how embarrassed she was. I swear to this day that she is the most beautiful creature I’ve laid eyes on. Her slim build, dark hair and striking eyes. And that smile, that smile still warms my heart…
I’m happy with Danielle, she’s smart and she’s beautiful. Yeah, I’m going to give this a chance, I would be a fool not to.
But…I think…she’s not Mia.
My heart can’t take Mia.

She has the power to hurt me, and I can’t survive that again.

What other books/stories have you written?
I have a book titled, At First Sight which was released this past August by Astraea Press. It’s a fun story about the adventures of dating in the modern world. My main character Annie wants to believe that love at first sight truly does exist.

Do you publish in e-book, print, or both?
Right now I have At First Sight available in e-book format and Where There is Love available in paperback and e-book format.

Where can readers find your books?
Readers can find my books on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. My title, At First Sight is also available on Kobo, Smashwords and iTunes.

Do you write in a particular genre or genres? What grabs you about this genre/these genres?
I write mostly in the genre of contemporary romance. I suppose this is because I’m a romantic at heart. I have always loved reading in this genre and I love romantic movies.
I have also recently finished writing a Middle grade/Young Adult book. This one was tons of fun to write- it’s a story about a young teen, Miranda. Miranda believes that the grass is always greener elsewhere until she experiences an underwater world filled with mermaids, intrigue, a bit of romance and heartache.

What do you think are the biggest challenges for the type of writing you do?
I would have to say that carving out time in my busy schedule would be the biggest challenge. I’m a special education teacher, so I’m lucky to have some good chunks of time off like during the summer to concentrate on my writing.

What inspires you?
Life around me inspires me. My daughter inspires me to be a positive role model and reach for my dreams.

What do you think is the hardest thing about being published?
I love the fact that I’m a published author. I have experienced so much joy from sharing my stories with others and getting their feedback. I would have to say that receiving rejections during the submission process is pretty difficult for an author. If you feel passionate about your writing, you’ll keep at it, it’s all part of the process. Developing a thick skin and accepting constructive criticism is a must in this profession. The positive thing is that the feedback truly does help you become a better writer.

Are there things you know now that you wish you’d known about earlier in this journey?
I feel that it’s a great experience for authors to learn about the process of writing, editing and marketing through a solid support system. I’m lucky enough to work with some really great, helpful authors who enjoy helping new authors learn the ropes. I would advise new authors to join author groups on social media, participate in their publisher’s events and help out fellow authors. It really is a small world, it’s so important to be kind, professional and respectful to others.

What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Never give up on your dream, and reach out to others if you have questions about editing, marketing, whatever. If you truly love writing, there’s nothing quite like the feeling of having your book out there for others to enjoy.

How did you get started writing?
I started creating stories from a young age. As a child, I would write poetry and stories for my grandmother. I created many short stories revolving around a mermaid.

Anything else you’d like to tell our readers?
If writing is your passion, then go for it. There’s nothing like seeing your book up for sale on major retail sites or holding that very first copy of your book in your hands. If you have a story to tell, get out there and share it!

How can readers contact you? (blog, social media, author-only e-mail?)

*Website: Mya O’Malley-Website

http://www.myaomalley.com

*Facebook: facebook.com/myaomalley

*Twitter: http://twitter.com/@MyaOMalley

Blog- myaomalley.blogspot.com

Pinterest- Mya O’Malley- http://www.pinterest.com/myaomalley

Tumblr- myamalley.tumblr.com

*email- mya@myaomalley.com

Tags- #contemporary romance, #new release #romance #clean romance #chiclit #women’s fiction

Amazon Author Page- amazon.com/author/myaomalley

Here are the links to my two book trailers.
At First Sight- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ZRae8EcCko

Where There is Love-

Awesome! Good luck with everything! 😀


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Some marketing basics for Emerging Authors

Welcome to Books and Blondes

One of the most frustrating parts of being an emerging author is learning how to market.  Even more frustrating is learning how to do so without the funds needed to execute a business or marketing plan.  Many authors put their own money into creating promotion campaigns and procuring the items needed to conduct a marketing blitz.  Advertising, merchandising and promotions are categories which require money and, in many cases, the author simply doesn’t have the funds.

So what is a writer to do?

Melissa Miller, CEO and Founder of Solstice Publishing, has seen many authors succeed on a super-tight budget.  She pointed out many things which emerging authors can do to get their name out there, and it all comes down to one word:  branding.

“The main thing is branding your name,” says Miller.  “I would focus your blog a lot on branding your name as an author. A lot of…

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Welcome Solstice Author Bernard Foong!

Bernard, thank you for sharing the exciting news of your seven volume memoir! We’re sharing the cover of the first volume. Readers are cautioned that these books contain some adult material.

• Where can readers find your books?
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_7?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=a%20harem%20boy%27s%20saga&sprefix=a+harem%2Cstripbooks%2C283
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_2_7?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=a+harem+boy%27s+saga&sprefix=a+harem%2Cstripbooks%2C429

• Do you write in a particular genre or genres? What grabs you about this genre/these genres?
I’m writing my seven books memoirs/biography: A Harem Boy’s Saga; a memoir by Young.
I’ve finished the first 3 volumes;
A Harem Boy’s Saga – I – Initiation; a memoir by Young
A Harem Boy’s Saga – II – Unbridled; a memoir by Young
A Harem Boy’s Saga – III– Debauchery; a memoir by Young.
I’m currently working on A Harem Boy’s Saga – IV – Metanoia; a memoir by Young.

• What do you think are the biggest challenges for the type of writing you do?

Remembrance of things past. Luckily I’ve an abundance of photographs, diaries, journals to spur me to remember what transpired during those early years of my Middle Eastern harem experiences.
Although, I’ve taken creative liberties when it comes to the individual dialogues spoken by the various characters in my autobiography. I remember the gist of what transpired.
I’ve also changed the names and places to protect the identities of those involve in the secret society and the unique school and Arab Households I was in service at.

• What inspires you?

This provocative story is about a young man (me) who was initiated into a clandestine sexual society. He was spirited to the Middle East, from his UK boarding school. He attended the Bahriji School (Oasis,) in The United Arab Emirates in preparation for serving in Harems for the wealthy and elite.

It is also a love story between the young man and his ‘Valet’ who served as his chaperone and mentor during the boy’s Harem service.

Author’s note:
I had a privileged and unique upbringing in Malaysia. Following in my brothers’ footsteps, I was sent to an exclusive boarding school in England. It is there that I was inducted into a clandestine organization, E.R.O.S. The Enlightened Royal Oracle Society. For four years, unbeknownst to my family, I was willingly and happily part of a Harem.

My story has been kept under wraps for close to 45 years. The correct moment has arrived for me to make known my unique education.

These are some of the goals I hope to achieve through
A Harem Boy Saga:
• Provide Tolerance to Sissy Boys by understanding parents/peers and the community.
Anderson Cooper 360 documentary on the devastating treatment of effeminate boys influence me to tell my story.

• Bullying can be Avoided through Big Brother/Big Sister volunteer programs in school or outside school system. Older students acting as mentors to younger students.

• Gay Adolescent Tolerance – parents/child/siblings relationship issues.
Support/mentorship program to all parties involved to foster understanding and acceptance of Gay kids.

• Provide an Alternative Educational System;
Understanding Big Brother/adolescent mentorship programs in schools, BB as protector to keep younger kids from being bullied.

• Human Relationship Building Program;
Between parents/teachers and young students on sexual topics/issues, especially when adolescent are just discovering their sexuality. They can be guided on a healthy and honest sexual journey instead of “don’t ask, don’t tell” hide it behind the closet policy.

• What do you think is the hardest thing about being published? Are there things you know now that you wish you’d known about earlier in this journey?

The first two books in A Harem Boy’s Saga series were self-published. The easy part is the writing but when it comes to marketing books, it’s an entirely different ball game.

I’m lucky to my literary agent, Emerantia Antonia Parnall-Gilbert (Gilbert Literary Agency) after almost 6 months of non-stop searching for a publisher and agent.

I’m lucky to have Solstice Publishing interested in my autobiography to publish the entire 7 book series. It was Emerantia who hooked me with Solstice Publishing.

• What advice would you give aspiring writers?

Stay focus. My modus operandi: the 3Ps: Perseverance, Persistence & Patience.

Be diligent about setting a time frame/goal to finish your manuscript. I need complete silence when I write – which is 8 – 10 hours daily.

• How did you get started writing?

I believe my geographical location (being in spiritual and beautiful Maui, Hawaii) inspired me to pen my seven book series.

Now that I’m semi-retired from my once very active fashion lifestyle, it is time for me to reflect upon my unique early experiences and to inform the world what my positive experiences in the Middle Eastern harems were like.

I believe my early experiences shaped my adult life to who I am today.

• Anything else you’ll like to tell our readers?

Historical accuracy is an important factor to consider when writing memoirs/autobiographies and biographies.

Help promote other writers whenever you can because they in turn will assist to promote you. By helping others, you help yourself and learn more about yourself and others.

• How can readers contact you? (blog, social media, author-only e-mail?)

Website: http://www.aharemboysaga.com

Amazon Author Central: amazon.com/author/amemoirbyyoung

Blog: http://bernardfoong.typepad.com/in_the_harem

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bfoong1

Twitter @aharemboysaga

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/haremboysaga/a-harem-boys-saga/ (contains adult materials).

Cowbird: http://cowbird.com/bernard/stories/

Tumblr: https://www.tumblr.com/blog/trisf2013 (contains adult materials).

YouTube:
http:http///youtu.be/F0Lv80yhhq0

We wish you all success, both as a writer and in increasing awareness of these issues!


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Short stories for the Hallowe’en season

Solstice recently published my little collection, Creeps & Creepers: Three Eerie Tales.

As it says in the blurb: “Grabby floors, grabby dates, grabby places. All with very different motives.

Some teasers to tantalize.

From: BENEFITS

Back in the day, there were a lot more problem places around here. That’s what happens when you build over a  shady part of town. I put a stop to that nonsense. I’ll tell you, when that development of Forest Glade was finally finished and folks moved in, my phone was ringing so much I had to turn it to vibrate just to get some sleep. One house in particular.

From: RINSE, REPEAT

6 AM. Selene awoke to another grey day. The glory days of autumn were definitely over. Now the earth and sky merged together in the November fog, There was no telling where one set one’s foot, once outside.

At least she had gone to sleep wearing her fuzzy bathrobe. That helped with the comfort level. The tie had come loose. She retrieved it and wrapped her robe closed, snugging the tie around her waist. Much better, she thought.

From: SHE WHO COMMANDS

The first time she asked him to come over, he found the house, just barely. There was no yard to speak of. What grass there was had been overrun by weeds. What was once a handsome hedgerow lining the property had gone to seed, and now parts of it threatened to consume the house itself. The old tree in the front yard overhung the front door. He was reminded of a big cat in mid-pounce.

It made him really uncomfortable. Don’t be an idiot–it’s just a tree. Even if it felt predatory.

C.Ley

Like all my books, Creeps & Creepers: Three Eerie Tales is available on http://www.amazon.com for 99 cents, e-book only. Hope you enjoy!