A Terrible Beauty by V.M. Devine – Author Interview

A Terrible Beauty: the murder at Joyce's Tower by [Devine, V.M.]I recently became aquainted with half of the writing duo of A Terrible Beauty (Valerie Ganzevoort) and was interested in her story and her book, so I invited her and her father to share a bit about both. I think you might find it interesting.

V.M. Devine is the pen name for the writing-collaboration of Valerie Ganzevoort and her father, Michael Mahony.

1.       How did you come to write a novel together?

Valerie’s Response: My Dad had started on the book during a break that he was having from writing a series of theological books. He had always wanted to write a murder mystery and decided to give it a go. I was helping him proof read some of his theological work and so asked to look at the new novel early on in his writing. After a few discussions, he asked if I would like to help him write it and we started to reengineer the book and worked on it from there.

2.       Since you both live in South Africa, why did you chose Dublin, Ireland, as the primary setting for the book?

Mike’s response: The setting came from the place where I grew up. As kids we used to play in the James Joyce Tower in Dublin, Ireland – this was long before it was restored to the formal museum it is today.

The plot and characters were drawn from my own personal journey of life which encompassed living in Ireland, Nigeria, England and South Africa.

 3.       Why did you decide to write a murder mystery?

Valerie’s Response: My Dad has always read Agatha Christie and P.D. James so, for me, growing up and rummaging through the bookshelves for something to read often resulted in my reading them as well. We both enjoy the ‘puzzle-like nature’ of a murder mystery, where the book is not just a story but a mystery to be solved. We have particularly enjoyed hearing from readers who followed certain red herrings in the story or told us of their delight ay having picked up on certain clues which were important in solving the murder. Though, to date, we have not heard from any reader who has successfully guess the murder, so if anyone does guess correctly, we would love to hear about it.

4.       The Penname for the collaboration is V.M Devine, where did this come from?

The V and the M comes from our initials (Valerie and Mike) and the Devine is Mike’s mother’s maiden name, so a surname that felt fitting for both of us.

5.       Have you started writing another book?

Mike’s Response: Yes, I have recently returned from a family visit to Ireland where I visited the scene of our next murder, the Chester Beatty Library. I had arranged to meet with the Operations Manager of the Chester Beatty Library, Derval O’Carroll who was somewhat intrigued by the prospect, eventually even helping me to select the specific location within the library where the murder will now take place!

While in Dublin, I also met with the curator of the Dublin Writers Museum (Robert Nicholson) who is also the curator of the James Joyce Tower & Museum in Sandycove where our current novel, A Terrible Beauty – the murder at Joyce’s Tower, by V. M. Devine, has its setting. The book has since been catalogued into the museum and is on permanent display at the James Joyce Tower for visitors and tourists to flick through at their leisure. This was a great moment for us as the book ‘found its home’ in own setting.

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You can pick up A Terrible Beauty: The Murder at Joyce’s Tower on Amazon. And remember, if you don’t have an ereader or kindle, you can pick up a free app from Amazon to read it on any device.

Michael hails originally from Dublin, Ireland but has spent the greater part of his life in Johannesburg, South Africa. He is a retired IT guy.

Valerie was born in Johannesburg. In between exploring her interest in Children’s Fiction, and writing in collaboration with her dad, she is primarily focussed upon raising her three very young children.

“A Terrible Beauty – the murder at Joyce’s Tower” is V.M. Devine’s first novel.

Rock Paper Scissor Book Author Interview – A Lizzy Ballard Thriller

Matty is an author I know so I wanted to share her latest book with you. I haven’t read it yet myself, but it’s on my list!

What is the underlying theme of Rock Paper Scissors?

The underlying theme of all my books is how a person with an extraordinary ability deals with that ability in the context of the ordinary world. In the Ann Kinnear Suspense Novels, The Sense of Death and The Sense of Reckoning, it’s Ann’s ability to sense spirits, an ability that sets her apart from other people, and causes the end of an important relationship. In Rock Paper Scissors, the first of the Lizzy Ballard Thrillers, it’s Lizzy’s ability to cause strokes in others, an ability that forces her to live in isolation, for the safety of others as well as herself.

Since Rock Paper Scissors is billed as a thriller, I suspect that Lizzy’s ability results in some mayhem!

Yes! The people who are responsible for Lizzy’s ability, and who are scheming to use it to further their own goals, are Gerard Bonnay, the head of a Philadelphia fertility clinic, and his wife and head of research, Louise Mortensen. During the course of the story, they acquire an unexpected ally, and Lizzy’s situation becomes even more perilous.

Does Lizzy have any allies to help her deal with the challenges her ability poses, and with the people who are trying to take advantage of it?

Initially, Lizzy’s primary allies are her parents, Charlotte and Patrick. The novel begins with Lizzy as an infant, and describes some incidents when she is a toddler and young girl to illustrate the dangers of her situation. However, most of the action of the story takes place when Lizzy is a teenager, and is triggered by a trip she wants to take from her home in the Philadelphia suburbs to New York City to see the sights at Christmas-time. At that point, it appears her closest allies are Owen McNally, a neurobiologist and friend of her father, and her family’s housekeeper, Ruby DiMano. But is Ruby really an ally? It’s clear that Ruby’s loyalties are torn, but it’s unclear which way she will ultimately throw her support.

You mentioned that Lizzy lives near Philadelphia—is that the main setting for the story?

As with The Sense of Death and the beginning of The Sense of Reckoning, most of Rock Paper Scissors is set in the Philadelphia area, near my home in Chester County, Pennsylvania. The Ballards initially live in Paoli, Pennsylvania, and as their fortunes decline, they move further out along the Main Line, which is the name given to the towns along the rail line that stretches west from Philadelphia. Lizzy and her mother also spend some time at the family cabin in the Pocono Mountains, a couple of miles to the north of Philadelphia. There’s also a critical meeting that takes place in Longwood Gardens, which is one of my favorite spots in Chester County. Patrick Ballard and Owen McNally work at William Penn University, which is my stand-in for my alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania, and Lizzy hides out for a time in a slightly fictionalized version of the Spruce Lane Lodge and Cottages in Smoketown, Pennsylvania, in Lancaster County.

How do you decide when to use a place’s real name and when to change it?

I change it when I want to reserve the right to adjust factual details to meet the needs of the story. I may also change the name if I may be portraying the place in a negative light. For example, early in the writing of Rock Paper Scissors, I thought the villain might be affiliated with the university, so I didn’t want to refer to it as the University of Pennsylvania. Similarly, I changed the real Philadelphia Inquirer into the Philadelphia Chronicle because I wanted to reserve the right to have one of its reporters engage in some less than ethical reporting.

Even though I’m tweaking the facts to support the story, I feel I’ve still been able to create a consistent world that runs through the books and across the series. For example, Lincoln Abbott, a reporter at the Chronicle who first appeared in The Sense of Death, pens several newspaper articles that appear in Rock Paper Scissors. Also, readers who are familiar with the Ann Kinnear Suspense Novels will be pleased to hear that Detective Joe Booth makes a brief appearance in Rock Paper Scissors.

What are you working on next?

I just started work on Lizzy Ballard Book 2. Book 1 ends in Sedona, Arizona, and my husband and I were just there for our yearly getaway from the Pennsylvania winter. Book 2 will start in Sedona, so I wanted to get started on that while I was still under the influence of the Sedona vibe. I also just finished my first Ann Kinnear short story, which I plan to make available to subscribers of my newsletter.

Where can people connect with you to sign up for your newsletter or to keep track of Ann Kinnear and Lizzy Ballard’s next adventures?

They can sign up for my newsletter at my website, mattydalrymple.com. For more frequent updates, they can connect with me on Facebook or Twitter.

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Matty Dalrymple is the author of the Ann Kinnear Suspense Novels, “The Sense of Death” and “The Sense of Reckoning,” and “Rock Paper Scissors: A Lizzy Ballard Thriller,” which launches in March 2017. She lives with her husband, Wade Walton, and their dogs in Chester County, Pennsylvania, which is the setting for much of the action in “The Sense of Death” and “Rock Paper Scissors.” In the summer, they enjoy vacationing on Mt. Desert Island, Maine, where “The Sense of Reckoning” takes place. Matty also blogs, podcasts, and speaks about independent publishing as The Indy Author.

Matty is a member of International Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and the Brandywine Valley Writers Group.

You can purchase Matty’s book on Amazon.

Published in: on February 17, 2017 at 11:26pm02  Leave a Comment  
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Transition to Murder by Renee James

I am pleased to introduce to you all Renee James, an author I met at aWisconsin Writer’s Association writing retreat I was speaking at last year. Renee and I exchanged books. I read Transition to Murder and I would recommend it, but I’ll let Renee talk about the book and a bit about herself.

Transition to Murder (A Bobbi Logan Crime Novel)

You write in the voice of a transgender woman—what’s your connection to the trans world?
I’m transgender, but not transsexual. I identify as a woman but live in both genders for many, many reasons. Lots of us in the transgender spectrum don’t transition for fear of alienating loved ones, losing careers, or, in the case of male-to-female trans people, losing male privilege.

How are you connected to the heroine, Bobbi Logan?
I developed the Bobbi Logan character after I decided not to transition. As a kind of therapy, I began writing a fictional journal about a trans person who transitioned in her late thirties as I might have done. I did the journal to see what her life would have been like. She had many of my physical and emotional characteristics at the start, but she evolved from there. I got about 50,000 words into the project and realized I had a really interesting character, so I decided to put her in a novel.

Transition to Murder is set in 2003 and Bobbi faced enormous difficulties in her transition. Have things changed since then?
It depends on where you live. In the big cities, especially in the north, it’s like night and day. In 2003, when a transwoman like me walked into a restaurant, conversations would stop, people would gawk, and even the people who accepted me would regard me with knowing smiles. Today, in those same places, no one gives me a second glance, the wait staff treats me like anyone else, and genetic women don’t even blink when we share the Ladies Room. It’s as close to a miracle as I’ve seen in my life.

Unfortunately, it’s not quite as positive when you travel into rural areas or the poor sections of big cities or the states of the old Confederacy, where things remain very touchy for trans people.

What about the bathroom issue?
It’s a non-issue in places like Chicago and New York. I think I’ll wait awhile before I go to North Carolina or Texas, though.

Bobbi encounters conflicts and tensions within the transgender community too. Don’t you tend to support each other?Support was always the mantra when I came out, and in the bad old days, we did band together to have functions where it was safe to be “out.” Support isn’t the same as friendship, though, and it wasn’t especially easy to make friends with other trans people. Most of us didn’t have much in common other than being trans, so conversation didn’t necessarily come easily.

Today, more of us are out on our own because it’s safe and fairly accepted in many places, so our cohesiveness is declining. The other factor is age: young transgender people have a radically different experience than trans people my age had in their formative years. They are more out, more accepted, and better able to transition before they become fully formed in wrong gender. So they tend to be much more passable than many of us older trans people, and maybe a little embarrassed at being compared to us. Add to that the usual tension between generations, and you can see the basis for internal friction.

The other thing is, we’re a lot like any other group in America. The same mix of personalities, politics, religious beliefs, education—everything. And you’ve probably noticed that we American’s have a lot of conflicts and tensions these days.

Why do you write in first person?
The people who mentored me when I came out constantly emphasized how important it was for each one of us to make a contribution to the acceptance of transgender people by the rest of society.

I wanted my Bobbi Logan novels to be my contribution. My idea was to put non-trans readers in in the mind and body of a transsexual woman for a few hours so they could get a sense of who we are and how we experience the world. I thought first-person was the best way to go about it and I think it works.

Transition to Murder is based on an earlier book, Coming Out Can Be Murder, which you self-published. What’s the difference between the two books, and why did you re-publish?
I re-published because I wanted to see what I could learn from a professional publisher and to hopefully sell more books than I did as a self-publisher. I got to work with a good editor, and he convinced me to change the ending of the story. That was the biggest difference between the two versions, and the sequels are based on the Transition to Murder version. (Anyone who read Coming Out Can Be Murder and wants to know the change can contact me through my web site (reneejames.author.com).

Tell me about the sequels to Transition to Murder.
First of all, I don’t like multi-book series based on the same hero or heroine because there’s no character development, just plot. So I’ve spaced my sequels years apart, picking up Bobbi’s life at different stages of her development as a woman and a human being.

Transition to Murder is about her first year of gender transition. A Kind of Justice which came out last October, starts five years later. Bobbi is wildly successful and starting to explore all the possibilities of life, including romance, when the Great Recession knocks her flat and a brilliant police detective starts building a powerful case against her for the ritual murder of a sexual predator.

Seven Suspects will release next October. We pick up Bobbi’s life five years after A Kind of Justice when she’s a little world-weary and maybe a trifle arrogant and suddenly finds out she has a stalker who is getting closer and more violent every day.

What are you working on now?
I’m researching ideas for another Bobbi Logan novel, which gives me a great excuse to visit LGBT strongholds and friends. While that’s going on, I’m also working on a thriller with a completely different cast of characters set in Ontario’s famous canoe wilderness, Quetico Provincial Park.

Thanks for visiting my blog, Renee and I wish you the best in your writing career!

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You can get to Renee’s website from Here.

She is on twitter: @ReneeJAuthor

She is on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/reneejamesauthor

You can purchase Transition to Murder on Amazon.

Published in: on January 29, 2017 at 11:26pm01  Comments (2)  

Author Interview: L.H. Williams and a FREE Book!

I bumped into (so to speak) a new author the other day that has an interesting story to tell. I’m talking about her life story. You’ll have to pick up her/his books to decide if you like the stories she/he writes.
Why all the she/he business? Read below and find out!
Then let me know if you want a FREE, yes I said FREE ecopy of one of their books by telling me in the comments.
Hey and Lou
1. Tell us about yourself.
I’m a retired jack-of-all-trades, having worked as a Marketing Manager, a newspaper reporter, and an administrative assistant. Now I write with my husband, who is an engineer. Heyward and I write together. Our ideas begin with a long walk, or a quiet drink somewhere. Later we compose our individual storylines, which we then join, chapter by chapter. But I am getting ahead of myself. You see, we were childhood sweethearts; we played in the high school orchestra, sang in the choir, went to dances, rode our bikes, skied, and were even taught by the same beloved English teacher. Then we went our separate ways. Heyward studied Engineering and has a successful career. I studied English and went to Brazil for two decades. There were marriages and children; there was happiness and there was loss.
We married in April of 2014. He moved to Florida and bought the condo next door to mine. The first thing we did was make sure that our two offices were set up for all the work we do. Now we are both on our condo board, and we have added two rescue cats to our family – one a tuxedo cat and the other a darling Siamese.
2. When did you start writing and why?
I’ve always loved writing, but I didn’t really get into it until I was in my sixties. [Step back] to 2012 when we reconnected via Facebook. I had been going it alone for a long time, and he was lonely too. He flew 1500 miles to see me, and we fell in love all over again. On the last night of his visit I told him about my desire to finish a book I’d started. A few days later I received his contribution. It was so beautifully written that I pasted it into Saving Dee and it immediately became an integral part of the book. In fact, his love of sailing created a whole new host of characters for all three novels – not to mention a beautifully cared-for sailing vessel he named Chauffeuse.
3. What’s your favorite books and why?
My favorite books are Regency Romance novels, especially the ones that have a touch of humor and a clever heroine.
4. What is your latest book?
My latest book is Lady in Lace. It’s the third book in THE DEE CHRONICLES. The other two are Saving Dee and The Penny Scam.
Saving Dee Cover Art
5. Where can people pick it up?
All three are available on Amazon, in e-book and paperback. [Or leave me a comment telling me you’d like a Free ecopy and I’ll pass it onto Louise and Heyward!]
1. Saving Dee     2. The Penny Scam    3. Lady in Lace
And note: Louise suggests you read the books in order.
6. What’s your favorite color?
I love turquoise, because it reminds me of the ocean.
You can also find Louise and Heyward on Goodreads  and  Facebook
 So let me know in the comments if you would like a free copy of their book(s). They are “young at heart” couple that would love to know what you think of their writing.
Published in: on March 9, 2016 at 11:26pm03  Comments (4)  
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Author Interview with Joshua Robertson

I was introduced to a fellow writer on social media recently, Joshua Robertson, and wanted to introduce you to him and his writing. Joshua considers his book “dark fantasy.” Sounds intriguing, doesn’t it!

AuthorPic1Joshua – tell us about yourself:

I am a Midwestern boy from the country that is currently living in the rugged land of Alaska with my wife and children. Throughout the years, I have done a number of different jobs from projectionist to therapist. Though, no matter what I have done, I have always had a passion for storytelling.

What got you into writing?

I am not sure what exactly set me on the path of writing, but I do remember my older sister writing stories when I was younger. The first story that I remember writing was a horror story at the age of nine. After spending years reading fantastic novels by fantastic authors, I had decided to become a writer by the time I was in late adolescence.

What is your latest book about?

My larger works was published in January, called Melkorka.MelkorkaCover

Amazon Blurb of Melkorka: Kaelandur was forged by the Highborn to slay one of their own, Nedezhda Mager. As their slave, Branimir Baran never thought to question his cruel masters until he is forced to take part in the execution. His actions begin a chain of events that will lead him to confront demons, cannibals, and himself as he is forced to question his own morality and the true meaning of good and evil.

I am extremely excited about this novel and have received some great reviews. Though, my latest story was just released this week. It is a short story that was written in the spirit of Beowulf, called Grimsdalr.grimsdalrcover Amazon Blurb: …a renowned hero travels across the whale-road to defeat a monster that plagues the land of Croune

I have several WIPs (works in progress), including the sequel to Melkorka titled Dyndaer and a standalone novel called Anaerfell.AnaerfellCover In addition, I am working on the second story in the Hawkhurst Saga,(the first one is A Midwinter SellswordMidwinterCover   Gladiators and Thieves.GnTCover

What motivated you to write it?

I have been creating the world for Melkorka for over fifteen years, but it was not until December of 2013 that I completed this story. The story had gone through many revisions over the fourteen year lapse as I improved my writing skill and learned more about the craft of storytelling. The final straw was a dream that I had about a dagger that brought demons back from the dead, and it answered many of the questions I had about the plotline. It was such an engaging dream that I started writing immediately, and finished the book within a month.

Anything else you want to share?

Writing is something that many, many people want to do for a living. It is a very difficult to be recognized in this trade, especially as an independent or small press author. Though, writing is not about publicity, or fame, or becoming rich. Writing is about doing what you love. Even though I may never become insanely wealthy or famous from the tales that I tell, I know that telling stories is something that I will never retire from doing.

How can people find you and your books?

You can find me on all the regular social media outlets, my small press, or on Amazon. The links are listed below beneath my author bio. And please, feel free to message me in any venue to simply chat. I welcome the opportunity to connect and learn from each other. You never know when you might find a lasting friendship.
Joshua began crafting the world for the dark fantasy series, Thrice Nine Legends, in 1999. Melkorka, the first book of the series, was published in 2015. He spends his time enjoying the richness of coffee, family, and friendship. His heritage is primarily Scottish and Slavic and you will find these themes in the stories that he writes.

Amazon, Goodreads, Blog, Facebook, Twitter, Bookstore, Crimson Edge, Tumblr

BUY: Melkorka   BUY: A Midwinter Sellsword   BUY: Grimdalr

Gladiators and Thieves: Coming June 2015
Anaerfell: Coming October 2015
Dyndaer: Coming January 2016

 

 

Murphy’s Troubles by Rex Owens

I recently came across a book that I thought you-all might like to learn a bit more about. cover jpg
I asked Rex to share a bit about his book and about himself. I learned a few things, even after reading the whole book – a few times over. 🙂
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Hey Rex. Welcome to CKBooksblog!
Can you tell us a little about the book you just published? Make it short and sweet, my readers have short attention spans.

The book is about the unique period in Irish history called The Troubles (1968-1998). The political struggle to re-unify Ireland became a terrorist war led by the Provisional IRA.  The story is about how betrayal can be a two edged sword for both evil and good.
What was the most interesting thing you learned while writing this book?
I learned that the Provisional IRA was declared the world’s first terrorist organization by the U.N.  I learned that in Belfast, Ireland the Catholic and Protestant communities are so divided that they built walls in the city to create barriers between communities and those walls are still standing in 2013.
What made you want to write this book? Do you have some personal connection with the IRA?
     I wrote this book to explore how the yoke of history can completely dominate the culture and history of a country.  When I visited Ireland in 2008 the first thing our guide said was:  “Welcome to Ireland, we are two countries, the six counties and the twenty-six counties (i.e. Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland).  That single fact dominates all aspects of living in Ireland even today.  I wanted to write about what it is like to live in a small country so divided.  I believe most of us have experienced betrayal and may have even be betrayers ourselves.  I wanted to write a story that demonstrated that betrayal is not “black and white” but can only be judged within the context of an individual’s life.
Tell us a little about yourself.
     I didn’t begin writing until my late 40’s and began by attending UW-Madison Writer’s Instsitute and then enrolling in a writing class.  My teacher, Laurel Yourke, would give instructions on one specific craft technique and then assign us two pages to write that demonstrated the technique.  In 2000 I began writing the story of Ian Murphy based on newspapers my son brought be from his summer in Ireland.
   In December 2009 I was let go from my manager’s job in a local health care organization.  I decided this was my opportunity to polish my book and seek either an agent or a small publisher.  I wasn’t successful attracting an agent but did sign a contract with a micro publisher in 2011.  That relationship didn’t work out and I decided to independently publish my work in February.  From February through the end of November I had a new cover designed, had a friend complete content editing and used your services for copy editing and proofreading.  I chose Create Space, an Amazon company, for publishing my novel because it was easy to use, transparent and services were reasonably priced.
In the interest of full disclosure, how did you end up on this blog?
     I used your services copy editing services.  You offered to post a blog about MURPHY’S TROUBLES after it was published. 
So where can folks pick up this masterpiece if they are so inclined?
    I must admit that standard distribution to bookstores is a mystery to me.  My book is available at:  www.amazon.com/Murhpy’s-Troubles-Rex-Owens.
   Do you have a website or facebook page or…?
    My website is:  www.rexowens.us.  I don’t use a separate facebook author page.  I can be found on facebook by searching on my name.  I have an amazon author page at:  www.amazon.com/author/rex owens
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Owens 14672 6882 4x6Bio Information for Novelist Rex Owens

1997 attended my first UW Madison Writer’s Institute.  Featured author was Robert Moss who talked about conscious dreaming as a way to explore the writing life.

1999 joined a critique group led by Dr. Laurel Yourke.  Her approach was to discuss a specific writing craft technique then assign up to two pages to demonstrate the technique.  Met twice a month.  I wanted to write science fiction because my favorite author was Ray Bradbury.  I had no talent for science fiction.  Next I decided to write historical fiction and researched Benjamin Franklin.  It was the right genre for me, wrong topic.

My son Tim brought me newspapers from Ireland, read a story of children injured in the Peace Zone in Belfast in 1998, the same year the Peace Accords  passed by referendum in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.  Two characters popped into my mind, Ian Murphy and Timolty Doyle.  I still have one of the first assignments with these characters from November 2000.

Continued to take critique classes for several years and all of my assignments revolved around the Troubles in Ireland.  By 2003 Dr. Yourke suggested I had enough material to consider writing a novel and challenged me to begin.  Her challenge was what got me going.

I continued to attend the Writer’s Institute every year; but life intervened and I put my draft on the shelf until 2007 when I decided writing was going to be a life goal.  My idea was to complete my day job career and envisioned a “retirement” of writing.

In 2008 I took the most in depth and intense course offered by UW Madison for aspiring writers, Writer’s by the Lake, a 5 day course devoted exclusively to novel writing.

In December 2009 I was unexpectedly laid off from my management job with Care Wisconsin.  I saw this event as the universe knocking me up side the head with the message:  it’s time to write.

In 2010 I attended the Weekend with Your Novel course and planned to spend a year getting my novel into shape and starting a freelance career.

Experimented with getting an agent at Writer Institute meetings in 2010 an 2011 but failed to attract an agent.  Based on an article in The Writer Magazine, I decided to pitch my novel directly to small and micro publishers.  I gave myself a one year deadline, to have a book deal by March 2011.

In February 2011, a micro publisher based in California offered me a contract to publish MURPHY’S TROUBLES.  I met my deadline (barely).

That relationship didn’t work out and in February 2013 I terminated the contract.  I talked with my writer friends and decided to independently publish my book.  I used my groups on LinkedIn to ask other writers for their experience with legitimate independent publishers.  Their response overwhelmingly was that Amazon’s Create Space was the most transparent, easiest to use and credible.

Friends offered to help me publish independently.  Jeff Gauger, Owner-Manager of Beans and Cream offered to design a book cover.  Marshall Cook, retired UW Madison Journalism professor offered to edit my manuscript.  With their support I kept going.

I had a mixed, mostly negative, experience with beta readers and asked my friend, Marshall Cook to content edit my manuscript.  Marshall is a former Journalism Professor, Director of the Writer’s Institute and most important a cherished friend.   He recommended I needed two more chapters to make my novel more cohesive.  I spent weeks writing those chapters and having him continue to make suggestions until they were polished.

During this time Jeff developed an incredible book cover.  I sent the cover out to more than 30 friends to review and they were overwhelmed.  By the end of May that part of the book production job was done.

At an event at A Room of One’s Own I met three authors who independently published their work, they gave tips, and were very honest about their experience.  They also provided encouragement.  One of the authors that made a presentation, Christine Keleny, is also a publisher and certified editor.  I hired Christine to both copyedit and proof read my manuscript.  Christine worked very fast and within two weeks I had detailed line editing and proofreading. [Actually, it was just editing]

Finally, I purchased my own ISBN and barcode for the book.  I could have gotten an ISBN from Create Space free, but I wouldn’t own it or have a copyright.  By purchasing my own ISBN the book is copyrighted and the ISBN is uniquely mine.

This final part of the journey has been a very intense nine months.

I have two events in December:

Dec. 14 at Beans n Cream 10:00 am to noon – book signing

(Dec. 16 at Sun Prairie Library  6:30 pm – book reading and signing

Books available for sale at all events, Beans n Cream, and at:  www.amazon.com/Murphy’s-Troubles-Rex-Owens

I’m an active volunteer in our community.  I’m on the Board of Directors of the Sun Prairie Civic Theatre and serve as the Vice-President.  I’m a member the Friends of the Sun Prairie Library Board of Directors and serve as the Publicity Chair.