Indie Shine – Abbie Johnson Taylor

Standard

indie-shine

In this edition of Indie Shine, a place for rebirthoflisa to ‘Shine’ the spotlight on indie artists, we welcome author Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Abbie-1

©Abbie Taylor used with permission

Bio:

Abbie Johnson Taylor is the author of a romance novel, two poetry collections, and a memoir. Her fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction appear in The Avocet, Magnets and Ladders, SageScript, and other publications. She has a visual impairment and lives in Sheridan, Wyoming, where for six years, she cared for her late husband, totally blind and partially paralyzed by two strokes.

Q & A

What do you do and Why do you do it? 
I write because, I, like everyone else, have an imagination, and I enjoy putting my thoughts on paper.
Tell us about your most recent work. 
‘My Ideal Partner’ describes how I met, married, and cared for my late husband at home for six years after he suffered two strokes that paralyzed his left side.
Who inspires you?
I’m inspired by many things, places, and events.
What do you consider your “Masterpiece” at this time? 
I don’t call any one work a masterpiece. Almost everything I’ve written is brilliant, in its own way.
What is your motto in life? The Light shines brightest, when the world is at its darkest.
Don’t sweat the small stuff.
Name your wildest dream. The one you can not imagine achieving, but would love for it to come true. 
I would love to be a guest on A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor hosting.
What is your favorite quote? 
“Be well. Do good work, and keep in touch.” Garrison Keillor in The Writer’s Almanac
When it is all said and done, what would you like to be remembered for?
I would like to be known for my stylish prose and poetry and lovely singing voice.
Tell us about your next project and when will it be available to the public? 
I plan to publish a collection of short stories set in Wyoming, my home state. I started working on this last year before My Ideal Partner was published ahead of schedule. Since I haven’t had time to get back to it, I don’t know when it will be available. Meanwhile, you can read many of my poems and short stories on my website.
Where can fans purchase your work?
My books can be purchased from Amazon, Createspace, Smashwords, and other sources. On my website, you’ll find a page for each of my books that contains ordering links.
MyIdealPartnerCreatespaceCover

Social Media

Blog: abbiescorner.com

Website: abbiejohnsontaylor.com

Facebook: Abbies Corner of the World

Amazon Author Page: Abbie Johnson Taylor

Indie Shine – Author L. Loren

Standard
indie-shine
In this edition of Indie Shine, a place for rebirthoflisa to ‘Shine’ the spotlight on indie artists, we welcome author L. Loren!
image2

Bio:

L. Loren is a former call center supervisor currently based in Upstate, SC with her loving and supportive husband. Growing up the youngest of seven in a small town in North Carolina, she embraced her love of reading which helped to develop her imagination. Her desire to write lay dormant for years until she found the courage to look within and her passion could no longer be ignored.

Q & A

What do you do and Why do you do it?
I am the writer of LoveRotica, love stories with an edge of sexy. I write sexy stories because I am compelled to change people’s way of thinking. My main characters are strong, women of color who have the capacity to love and are not afraid to be soft and vulnerable within their relationships.
Tell us about your most recent work.
My latest novel is a sexy adult contemporary fairy tale called Egyptian Nights. The mainPrint character Egypt Wilson is a young woman who was cursed by her other’s dying declaration that she was unworthy of love, labeling her a whore. Her life since then was spent avoiding relationships with men, only using them for one thing.
Then she meets Harper Beckmann who has the ability to see through her mask and heal her heart. He refuses her offer for a one night stand and instead offers her a relationship. Only problem is Egypt doesn’t do relationships. Egypt, aided by her Naughty Fairy Godmother, soon finds that Beckmann may be the one man who can break her curse, should she decide to let him in.
The story is like most fairy tales and ends with a happily ever after, but you’ll have to read it to see just what that is. This is a stand-alone novel – the first in the Triple Threat Series about triplet sisters and their journey to self discovery. I am currently working on Book 2, which will be out this summer and Book 3 is scheduled for a fall release.
Who inspires you? 
I am inspired by many people. As a writer I sit and observe. I keep an eye out for odd ball people who are outside of the realm of what society considers “normal”. I like to root for the underdog and that inspires me.
What do you consider your “Masterpiece” at this time?
I don’t think my masterpiece has been written yet. I am constantly improving as a writer so will there ever be one? I don’t know. I love all of my book babies, but I have a special place in my heart for The Layover, which is my first LoveRotica book.
What is your motto in life?
“Love is my religion”
Name your wildest dream. The one you can not imagine achieving, but would love for it to come true. 
My wildest dream would be turning my books into blockbuster movies staring A-list celebrities and riding that wave of success to lead to owning my own lingerie line.
What is your favorite quote?
My favorite quote is by my favorite poet, Maya Angelou – maya angelou quote
That quote speaks to me each day, reminding me to be humble and see people individually for who they are and treat them as I would like to be treated. Though I never had the privilege of meeting her, her words made me feel proud of who I am and loved!
When it is all said and done, what would you like to be remembered for? 
I would like to be remembered for making people feel loved.
Tell us about your next project and when will it be available to the public?
My next project is Book 2 in the Triple Threat Series, Model Behavior. It is a stand – alone sexy contemporary adult fairy tale all about Kenya Wilson and her journey to discover who she really is. She spent most of her life being the referee between her sisters and as Brian’s girlfriend. She finally starts living for herself and finds that things are not always as they seem and sometimes the people you thought were on your side, are the ones you can’t trust. I am still writing it, but I plan to release it this summer.
Where can fans purchase your work? 
My books are available on Amazon.

Social Media

image4

Author Website/Blog: http://llorenwriter.wordpress.com

Facebook: l.lorenwriter

Twitter: @rebirthoflisa

Instagram: @rebirthoflisa

Pinterest: @rebirthoflisa

Goodreads: lloren

Amazon Author Page: L. Loren

If you are an indie artist, writer, photographer, etc and would like us to shine a light on your work, drop us a line here.

Guest Blog – A. Renee Hunt

Standard

Why I Chose to go Independent!

Book Blogger, Reviewer & Author

Hello! My name’s Alyssa, but I normally go by my pen name, A. Renee Hunt. First, I must say ‘thank you’ to Lisa for having me! I love sharing. and to be asked to share something of my journey is an honor. My story may be similar to yours. If not, I pray you never make the same mistakes I made.

So I have independently published one short story and currently working on a novel. I know, it doesn’t seem like much, but this is major for me. You see, I’d previously published a novel and novella through traditional and what’s now known as vanity publishers, and got no where.  Oh I’m let me elaborate, NO WHERE! They lied to me and manipulated me with so much glitz and glam, they conned $3200 from my pockets. Yes they did- then the product I received was so shotty, I ugly cried. Do you know what that looks like on a sista?

I argued and fought with them though and managed to retrieve my title, but the damage was crucial. Your first impression on the reading world is significant,yet I’d botched it with crap work. The editing was abysmal, the cover wasn’t what I’d originally asked for and they didn’t produce anywhere near thirty-two hundred dollars in work. I also did everything myself: scheduling the book signings, advertising, even my own website generated more traffic than the one they’d created for me!

I was devastated and wanted to crawl beneath a rock. Thankfully I did not. Being a greenhorn is good for one thing: Learning. I read so much, my eyes burned and I needed butt implants from all the phone calls and interviewing people, satiating my hunger for information. I’m kidding about the implants, btw. I have no butt, but I digress…

I did what I thought I’d originally done in research, but I tripled that mug. I refused to repeat my mistakes. I dominated my social media and treated the marketing aspect of my work like a job, (a job I loved) and it paid off! I sold more books as an independent author than as a traditional one, and that’s something to be proud of.

image1

©A. Renee Hunt used with permission

Today, I’m working on my first indie novel, but a lot has changed. My work ethic and gathering of information comes from a professional point of view, and I feel it represents who I really am. My current and past indie works are of a quality, unlike anything I’ve ever written and I feel it’s because I chose to take the reigns. By not allowing someone else to control my story’s destiny, I became the B.O.S.S. I’m proud of both positive and negative reviews. and I’ll never stop working to make my dreams reality.

I hope you, the reader and aspiring author, can do the same. Whether publishing traditionally or not, you have to be in control. Don’t pay someone else for what you can do; don’t allow them to use your name and title without producing proper work, and don’t ever quit!

Best to you and thank you for reading,

Alyssa

A. Renee Hunt

©A. Renee Hunt used with permission

http://www.areneehunt.com

a.reneehunt@aol.com

http://www.facebook.com/AlyssaHunt40

https://twitter.com/AReneeHunt

https://www.instagram.com/bookzbookzbookz/

Book Release Day – Egyptian Nights by L. Loren

Standard

IMG_9318

It’s here! It’s finally here! – June 20th the Release Date of Egyptian Nights by L. Loren!!!

Be sure to get your copy today, while the e-book is on sale for $0.99. The price will increase after release day so don’t miss out. Click Here to buy!

Here’s the skinny on the book:

PrintOnce upon a time there was a beautiful young woman named Egypt, and she loved sex. Cursed by her mother’s dying declaration, she thinks she is unworthy of love. Locking her feelings inside an impenetrable ice block, she hides behind casual sex. Aided by her Naughty Fairy Godmother, she creates a playlist of rules to live by to avoid a broken heart. 

When the ruggedly, sexy businessman, Harper Beckmann enters the restaurant where she is the executive chef, she feels drawn to him in ways she never felt before. When he denies her offer for a casual hook-up and offers to take her on a date instead, she is intrigued. Unable to resist his charms, she allows him to break all of her rules, including kissing on the mouth.

Harper has been playing the field since his fiancée left him for his best friend. A romantic at heart, he longs for the love of a good woman. When he meets Egypt, he knows instantly she is just what he needs to cure his aching heart. If he can break down her walls and get her to admit she loves him too, Beckmann may just be the one to break the curse.  

***WARNING: This book contains explicit sexual content and is not suitable for anyone under the age of 18. May contain triggers for those sensitive about sexual abuse.

 

Indie Shine – Michael Lackey

Standard

indie-shine

In this edition of Indie Shine, a place for rebirthoflisa to “Shine” the spotlight on indie artists, we welcome author Michael Lackey!

Bio:

Michael Lackey1

©Mike Lackey used with permission

A believer in things most found silly, Michael Lackey (1973-) has always been a dreamer. He loved to pretend as a child in the forests of Alabama. Michael would find himself in a land of monsters where he was the only one who could save the world from utter destruction. In his free time, Michael would map out bike courses and fantasize about becoming the next big Hollywood stuntman. With the stunts complete, Michael would raise his sword high and proclaim himself the slayer of the mystical beasts plaguing his land. Like most over imaginative children, real life set in for Michael. Work. Adulthood. Family. He never really grew out of his imagination, but rather suppressed it to the point of monotony. Now in his forties, Michael’s stories and love for fantasy come alive on the pages of The Bad Seed. Join Michael on his fantasy-filled quest to tell the story of the brave Zachery Morely and his adventures on Amundiss. Michael is now signed by The Polyetnic Publishing Company, LLC. Find them at www.thepolyetnic.com

Q&A

What do you do and Why do you do it?
I am a playground builder by day and fantasy/sci-fi author by night. I love taking pen and paper and creating worlds and bringing my stories to life.
Tell us about your most recent work. 
I am currently working on a steampunk inspired novel titled The Key of Knowledge. It is the first in my Keys of Lazarus series. We all know the story of Lazarus from the bible, died and brought back to life four days later by Jesus. Do you know what happened after that? The death angel was inside the body of Lazarus claiming his prize when the breath of life was breathed back into him. A battle ensued for poor Lazarus. Of course, Christ won and kicked out the death angel, but not before a piece of the angel was left inside him.
This piece, this Shadow Gem can grant power over death… immortality. The priests that were there for the family witnessed the Resurrection, and they were worried the people would start to believe in Jesus with Lazarus being a walking example of his power. they set out to have Lazarus killed, get rid of the evidence. This infuriated the death angel, Lazarus was his prize and they had no right to kill him. The angel placed a curse on the five priests and sentenced them to watch over the keys that will unlock the power left behind inside the body of Lazarus.
Flash forward to the year 1854 when Ruina Baxter and her husband were on an archaeologist dig site in Constantinople when they find the body of Lazarus. When Ruina pulled the Shadow Gem from his corpse it granted her the power of immortality and to control the dead. The year is now 2058 and Ruina, who now demands to be called the Countess, is in full control of the world and all its citizens. The only way to stop her is to collect the five keys of Lazarus and make her mortal once more.
Who inspires you? 
J.R.R Tolkien of course, C.S. Lewis and Rick Riordan
What do you consider your “Masterpiece” at this time?optopn1ebook 
My first book, The Bad Seed: Battle for the Heavens
What is your motto in life? 
Work smart, not hard.
Name your wildest dream. The one you can not imagine achieving, but would love for it to come true. 
To retire and be able to write full time.
Michael Lackey QuoteWhat is your favorite quote?
Mine- “The Light shines brightest, when the world is at its darkest.”
When it is all said and done, what would you like to be remembered for? 
My storytelling.
Tell us about your next project and when will it be available to the public?
The Key of Knowledge will be available fall of 2017
Where can fans purchase your work? 
Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, booksamillion.com, audible.com, iTunes, book depository, and a lot of Barnes and Noble local stores

Social Media

IMG_4592

©Mike Lackey used with permission

Instagram: @mikelackey23

Twitter: @supes23

Amazon Author Page: Michael Lackey

Book Review – Renaissance: The Nora White Story by Yecheilyah Ysrayl

Standard

Book and E-Reader- Nora W.

It has been a year of Sundays since I did a book review on this blog, but when this book came along, I couldn’t help myself. It gave me so many feels I couldn’t help myself!

Here are my thoughts:

Nora White is a farm girl from Mississippi who dreams of moving to Harlem and becoming a writer. Her biggest wish is to write alongside the legends of the era like Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston!

Ok, I must stop here! This book was after my heart. I absolutely love both Langston and Zora! In fact the main character of my first book is named for them. I was swooning when the main character not only befriended, but became a contemporary of these icons! Nora was living the life J would have wanted, had I lived in the 1920s.

The book flashed back and forth between Nora’s family back on the farm and Nora living in NY.

Nora meets Zora while she is working her job as a maid/assistant to the grouchy Missharlemwriters.gif Charlotte, who insists on being called Godmother. She is a strange and temperamental woman who gives Nora a hard time. Nora is a bit of a Zora fan girl, but managed to keep her composure long enough to procure an invitation to a party where all of the who’s who of Harlem literary society will be.

Nora is overjoyed to meet them all, but makes it her mission to befriend Langston, who she is crushing hard on. That is until she realizes he is same sex oriented, or so the rumor goes.

The author really did her research, touching on the feud between Zora and Langston over a play written by both, but only Zora was given credit. The way she wove Nora into the middle of the feud was genius. It was reminiscent of Forrest Gump a bit.(That, in my world is a HUGE compliment – I love Forrest Gump)

There is no way I wasn’t going to like this book. Zora, Langston, Harlem, a bit of WEB DuBois and a roommate named Lisa! Wow! It turns out Lisa has an agenda at the end, but because the book ended on a cliffhanger we have to wait to see exactly what that is.

There were some serious shenanigans going on and I suspect there is a little mysteryIMG_9255 hiding just under the surface. I can’t wait to see if my theory is correct. Unfortunately my thirst to solve this mystery will not be satiated until December when book 2 is released.

In the meantime, I have all kinds of scenarios to mill around in my head to keep me busy. This book left me breathless! I want more and I want it now!

meme45

That would be a big fat YES5 Stars*****

Now that I have you excited to read this masterpiece, I have to drop a little bomb. You ready? It will not be available until July. I was fortunate enough to get my hands on a copy as part of EC’s ARC Team.

However, while you wait you can help Yecheilyah spread the word about her book by supporting her Thunderclap campaign. Don’t worry, it doesn’t cost a thing. It just takes a couple of minutes and your approval to share info about this book on your social media. You were going to do that anyway, right? So click here to support her campaign!

 

Cropped YC

©Yecheilyah Ysrayl used with permission

Yecheilyah Ysrayl is an Author, Poet, Blogger and Book Reviewer at Literary Korner Publishing.

web. www.yecheilyahysrayl.com

Couch Convos w/ Lisa W. Tetting – Joslyn Westbrook

Standard

couch convos (1)

Welcome to another episode of Couch Convos! Today we welcome new author Joslyn Westbrook to talk about her book The 52 Week Chronicles! Let’s get started.

Part I

joslyn

©Joslyn Westbrook used with permission

LWT: This being your first novel, what inspired you to start writing?

JW: I’ve always had a desire to write, since grade school. English and Journalism were my majors in college, but “life” took me in a totally different path. It was not until I lost my mom, that I realized life is too short to not live out your dreams, and I began writing as a mere hobby.

LWT: I totally understand that. I lost my mom recently and it is a wake up call. Why did you choose the “Chick Lit” style?

 JW: I was on a business trip several years ago, when I picked up a novel by Sophie Kinsella, called Can You Keep A Secret? It was then that I fell in love with the Chick Lit genre. When I started writing, I felt Chick Lit was such a natural way for me to bring my characters to life.

LWT: What is your favorite “Chick Lit” book? Is it safe to say you’re a fan of Sophie Kinsella?

JW: Anything by Sophie Kinsella would be my favorite in the Chick Lit genre. I am a total fangirl!

LWT: Your main character in your book “The Fifty-Two Week Chronicles”, Penelope is a bona fide foodie. Do you have any experience with food?

JW: Actually I do have a ton of experience with food. For the last twenty years, I have been a Business Consultant to restaurant owners, helping them operate successful restaurants.

LWT: Wow, that sounds like a fun job. I’m sure you run into some interesting people. Who was your muse for Penelope?

JW: The initial inspiration for Penelope was based on the fact that in real life, I would have loved being a Food Critic. I am a crazy foodie and what could be better than combining a love for food and a love for writing?

LWT: If this book was made into a movie, who would play Jonathan? I absolutely adored him.

JW: Without a doubt, Jonathan’s role would be played by Taylor Kinney (with dark hair) from the TV show Chicago Fire. I think he would play the perfect Jonathan Knight.

LWT: Yum! Speaking of yummy, how did you come up with the menu for the pop-up restaurant, and do you have the recipes?

JW: The Pop-up restaurant menu came to life by watching many Food Network shows. I 52 weeks artmade notes of the type of food I envisioned Jonathan to be an expert at and was lucky enough to finalize the menu over the course of a weekend of Food Network binge watching. I do have the recipes and am strongly considering adding them to the back of the novel…or maybe as a novel bonus.

LWT: Do you put a little of yourself in any of your characters?

JW: That’s a great question. I do believe parts of my personality are sprinkled here and there…especially in some of the dialogue.

LWT: I am dying to know if Sebastian will get his own book.

JW: I love Sebastian! He was a fun character to write and many readers want more of him. I am not sure if he will get his very own book, but he is making a return in the next book in the series called A Cupcake and a Gentleman, which is set in San Francisco, CA. I am happy I was able to bring him back as he helps in sister Hannah with her bakery business.

LWT:  Who is your favorite writer?

JW: I have so many favorites and I draw inspiration from all of them: Sophie Kinsella, Susan Mallery, Candace Bushnell, Plum Sykes, Jennifer Crusie, Nora Roberts, Danielle Steel…to name a few.

Part II

cover updated chroniclesLWT:  Who designed your book cover and how did you come up with the concept for it?

JW: Pro_ebookcovers designed the current cover, but that is not the original cover. The original cover was created by a lovely designer from 99Designs. I was prepared to use that cover, until I discovered the girl with the pink hat and instantly saw Penelope. So I had the entire concept redesigned and fell in love with the pink cover (which also matched my brand colors). I still have the rights to the original cover design, so I will use that in a limited edition paperback giveaway very soon.

LWT: We’ll be sure to keep an eye out for the contest. Which social media platforms do you find most beneficial in getting the word out for your book?

JW: Social Media is a great way to reach potential readers and I have found FaceBook and Twitter to be the most effective way to get the word out about The Fifty-Two Week Chronicles.

LWT:  Tell us about your writing process. Do you need complete silence or do you work with music? Do you have a little drink while writing or is smoking your thing? Give us the skinny.

JW: I have a full-time job, and am a wife and a mom. I have to be super creative in how I squeeze in time to write. So my process usually consists of getting up at 4am to write before I have to get my daughter ready for school and myself ready for work. I also wrote all of The Fifty-Two Week Chronicles on my iPhone…using a writing app. This allowed me to write wherever and whenever I had free time, even if it was only 10 mins on line at the grocery store, on a lunch break, while sitting in traffic (lol), or late at night before bed. I do not typically drink, but I think I may have had a glass of wine when I wrote the sexy scenes in the book. 🙂

LWT:  Girl, you wrote that on your iPhone? Dang. Well, what does your writing nook look like? If you could make it into anything you wanted, what would that look like?

JW: I have a loft-style office that I created specifically for writing. It has a cozy fireplace, and is away from any distractions. But, I never use it for writing! If I had the opportunity, I would have a room with my desk facing a huge bay window, overlooking the ocean. That is my dream writer’s nook. Dreams do come true, right?

LWT: Oh yeah. I’m a big believer of dreams. What was your editing process like?

JW: I edit as I write. And I do not move on to the next chapter until I have chosen all of the “right” words. It can take a week for me to complete a single chapter, sometimes. I have two beta-readers who I send a chapter at a time to for feedback or suggested revisions to the storyline. After all of that, I send the completed MS to my editor who takes me through two rounds of edits before it’s sent to a proofreader. I love the editing process!

LWT: I can’t say I look forward to editing, but it is necessary. Please give other indie writers 3 tips/tricks that you learned and used during your first writing experience?

JW: Ooooh! Okay three tips:

1)Write what you love to read because it will come more naturally.

2) Do not get discouraged if your friends / family show little interest in your writing.

3) Join writer’s groups because you’ll find writer’s will become your biggest support system when you need it the most.

LWT: Share one unique thing you’ve done to market your book?

JW: I created three book trailers for “fun”, while suffering through episodes of writer’s block. Those trailers had actually been viewed by so many more than I expected, giving the book a great deal of funky exposure.

 

LWT: Funny, I think that’s how I found your book. Tell the readers the one resource you can’t live without as a writer?

JW: I can not live without my writing app, a thesaurus, and Google (haha).

LWT:  All great choices. Do you use an outline when writing and do you stick to it?

JW: I am in no way the type of a person who outlines. I do mentally plan the ending, but I just write and allow the characters to take me where I need to go. Sometimes they do surprise me. Take Jonathan for instance: I had no idea he rode a Harley until that chapter and I was like…what? A Harley? Um, okay.

LWT:  I love it when a character takes over. Do you belong to any writer’s groups or associations? If so, which ones?

JW: As a matter of fact, I just applied to Romance Writers of America and Alliance of Independent Authors. I’m really excited!

LWT: Will you be participating in any conferences this year? If so, which ones and when?

JW: Unfortunately, this year I am so tied up with my job as a Business Consultant, I will not be able to attend any writer’s conferences. However, I plan to attend at least one next year.

LWT:  I love the graphics on your author website. Who designed them for you?

JW: Thank you! I designed my website and most of the graphics are paid licenses of photos from Shutterstock.

LWT: Get out! We need to talk. What are you currently working on?

JW: I am happy to say I am currently working on the next novel in the series that should be released later this year as well as a short story that will be released in July. Yay!!

 

joslyn2

©Joslyn Westbrook used with permission

Joslyn Westbrook has been creating stories since grade school. Her passion for writing often lead to teachers and college professors reading her stories to the class, showcasing her creativity. Putting her writing on hold, Joslyn pursued a career as a Business Consultant as she raised her children. While she enjoyed working with business owners, she craved what she believed to be her true calling—writing. During her free time, Joslyn began writing her romance novel and series of chick-lit style novels to curb her passion for writing. Her work as a Business Consultant has spawned the concept of several characters featured in her books. Joslyn is a self-proclaimed foodie, enjoys shopping, cooking, binge watching shows and movies on Netflix, and spending time with her husband and children at home in sunny California.

joslyn sig

Twitter: @Joslynauthor