Thursday, October 30, 2014
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
columns, editorials, articles, and fiction. She describes herself as a "storyteller" no matter the genre.
She was born in Michigan and moved to Florida in 1980. Even though she now resides in western Pennsylvania with her husband Robert, she finds the stories of Florida and its people and environment a rich base for her storytelling platform. Florida's quirky and abundant wildlife—both human and animal—supply her fiction with tales almost too weird to be believable.
She writes two blogs, P.C. Zick and Living Lightly. She has published three nonfiction books and six novels.
Her writing contains the elements most dear to her heart, ranging from love to the environment. In her novels, she advances the cause for wildlife conservation and energy conservation. She believes in living lightly upon this earth with love, laughter, and passion.
P.C. Zick, Author and EditorWebsite: www.pczick.com
Despite their ability to withstand such a tortuous practice as poking holes in the body, the Timucuans could not withstand the onslaught of the European invasion and the disease it brought.
Within 200 years of the Spanish explorations into northeast Florida, the last vestige of the Timucuan strain had vanished. Some folks suspect the few remaining by 1763, the year the Spanish turned over Florida to the English, fled the state for Cuba.
When the Spanish asked about this tribe of tattooed natives, another group of Native Americans used the word Timucua, which meant “enemy” to describe the large group of people who spoke the same language but had separate tribes. A tribe of Timucuans lived near St. Augustine in the village of Seloy
The Seloy filled my dreams and imagination as I wrote Native Lands. I’ve always been bothered to think that an entire body of people could simply disappear. So as I wandered the estuaries surrounding St. Augustine last year, the characters of Locka and Mali haunted me until I told their story within the pages of Native Lands.
While mainly set in 2012 in St. Augustine and the Everglades, the story of the Seloy in 1760 is interspersed within the plot to parallel the contemporary struggle to prevent the destruction of natural Florida. It’s a triumphant story, as Locka and Mali lead a small tribe into the Everglades to escape the Spanish and English. In the present day, progeny of the Seloy join others to fight for the survival of their beloved land.
Excerpts from Native Lands
1760, St. Augustine, Florida
Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Monday, October 27, 2014
“Yesterday, if someone would have asked me how the world worked I would have told them we are born, we live out our lives, we grow old, and then eventually we die. I would have said we have only one life and we should make the most of it. I would have insisted magic was not real, it was just an illusion, but now it seemed like everything I was certain about in this life is nothing but an illusion.”
After walking in on his girlfriend cheating on him with one of his close pals, Jesse is filled with resentment, but things turn around in more ways than one, when a mysterious and stunning new student by the name of Sienna Lacey enters his English classroom. From the moment Jesse sets eyes on Sienna he is immediately attracted to her and at a second glance she seems oddly familiar, it’s like a strange case of déjà vu.
During their first night out together, Sienna eventually opens up to him, allowing us to learn the truth about her real identity and long heart wrenching history.
In a bid to change Sienna’s future Jesse is determined to make her face her past, but little does he realize that by unfolding the secrets of her past, he will also be unfolding some secrets of his own.
Saturday, October 25, 2014
Before, during and after college, Taffey became a world traveler, even electing to live in London, England for one semester whilst studying at Elon University. She traveled several times to Paris, France at this time. Taffey also met and encountered celebrities in London, England which served to make her experiences even more special. Added to her world traveler status, she lived in South Korea for a short interval. This experience, including her fascination with various Kung-Fu techniques and martial arts films aided in her ability to create The Mystery Arts in The Mystery Alliance: Evian’s Saga.
She also worked in Marina, CA as an Americorps VISTA for MCHOME (a division of Interim, Inc.) under the Coalition of Homeless Services Providers. During this time, she became acquainted with the various artists of Breakthrough H’ART (a program synonymous with MCHOME) and also with noted Austrian Artist/Painter, Hans Kindel. It was here, under the tutelage of Hans Kindel and Bill Donnelly that she discovered her talent for Abstract/Impressionist Art. This is where the cover (Paradise Underwater) of her E-book originated.
THE MYSTERY ALLIANCE: EVIAN’S SAGA was created initially as a copyrighted action/adventure screenplay, however, Taffey decided to adapt it into an E-book: the first in a series of E-Books actually. She is already in the progress of working on a prequel E-book for this series. THE MYSTERY ALLIANCE: EVIAN’S SAGA is available for sale at www.Smashwords.com and will be distributed via Smashwords to many other retailers including Apple.com, Kobobooks.com, Flipkart.com, Barnes & Noble, and now Oyster, etc. This E-book is also made available for Libraries to obtain.
Taffey lives in Greensboro, GA with her family members and Buster, their canine pal.
You may contact Taffey Tawanna Champion via twitter @TaffeyChampion
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Friday, October 24, 2014
The Eyes of Athena
By Spencer Hawke
IR Verdict: THE EYES OF ATHENA is just what a mystery/espionage novel should be – quick, action-packed and full of intrigue.
Hawke spins his international counter-terrorism tale at a breakneck pace starting with the 1999 shoot down of a U.S. super-secret stealth military jet in Bosnia and a terrorist plot to use the plane’s technology for nefarious purposes. From there, and over the course of the 10 years after the crash, the action shifts to various international terrorist strongholds, with each playing supporting roles trying to stop the terrorists.
When U.S. Special Forces attempt to retrieve the plane and the military technology, they are ambushed and killed. However, paratrooper David Gray luckily survives because Ari Cohen, a member of the Israeli spy agency Mossad (on “loan” to the U.S. intelligence community) is sent in to help the Americans and guides him to safety – forming a life-long friendship. Gray and Cohen are drawn into the conspiracy involving Iran, Russia, the Mob and a web of intrigue involving a more than 200-year-old secret American society sworn to protect America called The Eyes of Athena.
Hawke’s writing excels, especially during the book’s many action sequences. The dialogue in the novel is both crisp and tense but also humorous at times making for a captivating read that should now be mentioned in the same breath as genre masters – Daniel Silva, Brad Thor and Tom Clancy.
THE EYES OF ATHENA is just what a mystery/espionage novel should be – quick, action-packed and full of intrigue.
Thursday, October 23, 2014
Julie – a Kiwi girl, a red headed, freckle faced, plain Jane longed to wear a white wedding dress and see her handsome groom waiting for her and she took her walk up the isle.
She was waiting to find her Mr. Right – then she met and fell for Kishore, a boy from India who had been in New Zealand for two years.
Despite her reservations she decides to go out with him. In doing this, was she going against all that was deemed acceptable?
How would her parents react?
If their relationship blossomed would Kishore’s very traditional Indian family accept an English girl into their family? Can their love survive?
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
22 AUTHORS Donating Their stories to get $$$$$$$$$$$$ for Cancer Research THE one reason that ღ 4covert2overt will be NAUGHTY FOR A GOOD CAUSE ღ T. HAMMOND for SHADES OF PINK ღ For one day only but of course post will remain ღ
She is one of 22 participating this year
SHADES OF PINK
Donate 4 a good cause and get your collection of short stories
The Shades of Pink Anthology is an ebook that gathers 22 short stories and that we offer as a gift to any person who donates in any amount to our fundraiser for research against breast cancer. During the month of October, we'll be posting excerpts, interviews with the authors and characters and blog posts about why we wrote these stories.T. HAMMOND on cancer
My first experience with cancer was when my childhood playmate, Teresa ("That's Teresa without an 'H'," she stressed), was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma. I remembered the scars (we called them zippers) all over her body from biopsy surgeries, and how tired she was. In her name, I began the habit of chopping off my hair every three years to donate to Locks of Love (yeah, my hair grows that quickly!).
There was a time, in early adulthood, when we lost track of each other, but happily, reconciled our friendship as adults and kept in irregular contact through occasional calls and email; mostly due to living three states apart. One day Teresa dropped me an email, mentioning she'd been diagnosed with breast cancer. She's already had her breast removed, but I found her letter's tone upbeat, praising her children's accomplishments rather than focusing on the negative. Sadly, Teresa eventually succumbed to surgery complications after cancer recurred years later. Her passing has left a huge Teresa-shaped hole in my world. even though our contact had been infrequent and casual-- maybe it was a matter of knowing she was somewhere, which made it easy to stretch out the time between calls?
When I sat down to begin my writing career in late 2012, I needed a name for my heroine who was blind, yet courageous and pragmatic. Instantly, I thought of my friend. My character, while different in looks and personality, is modeled after Teresa with her generous smile and laughing eyes, quick mind and extensive vocabulary, and kind, yet dry wit which kept me rolling on the floor laughing when we'd talk on the phone.
Teresa gave so much to the people around her. I'm proud to have been her friend. In tribute, I'm happier to donate my time and talent to the Shades of Pink Anthology in hopes the money raised can help other women like my Teresa, battle this terrible disease.
Detective Gil Westfield is intelligent, protective, and ruggedly handsome. What’s a girl to do when the unattainable, older man of her dreams finally looks her way? If you’re Ash, you blush with shy pleasure and hope to hold his attention.
Color Blind: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/color-blind-t-hammond/1116518426
Color Blind: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/436503
As you may know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Last year, the first Shades of Pink event raised over $10.000 through more than 1300 donations!
For our second year, 22 authors have allied for 1 cause: fundraising for research. Their gift to everyone who makes a donation? A romance anthology (ebook) titled Shades of Pink (volume 2), totaling almost 150.000 words / about 400 pages as a PDF.
The suggested donation is $5. All proceeds go directly to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
For more information about the gift anthology and participating authors, please visit Kallysten’s blog.
- Donate using the button above!
- Your thank you email will contain a link and password where you'll be able to download the anthology in your prefered format (PDF, ePub or mobi/kindle).
- If you have any issue whatsoever downloading your ebook, forward your receipt to firstname.lastname@example.org and mention your favorite format to receive it by return email.
- You can also donate to the charity organization of your choice (with a focus on breast cancer) and email your receipt to Kallysten (email@example.com) to receive your copy of the anthology in either PDF, ePub or mobi (kindle).
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
From The Author
"I love to walk and enjoy nature's beauty, whether at home or on the go. I'm passionate about the beauty in the world around me and enjoy jotting down notes and composing short poems. The coast is one of my favorite places to relax. I'm a nature collector: everything from seashells to birds' nests. When I was teaching, these treasures filled my classroom and provided inspiration for reading, writing and research. It was hands-on fun and excitement and I enjoyed every moment spent learning with, from and about my students. One thing I learned is that many children don't have an adult to read to them or listen to them read and talk about those books. Many of my blog and facebook posts will focus on how we can improve childhood literacy by reading to the children in our families and communities. My own childhood was filled with books and adults who shared and encouraged a love of reading. I've written some poetry and several short stories. I plan to write some adult fiction, including a coming of age story, and write reviews on some of my favorite books. I'll be sharing some of your stories, poems and tips on reading and writing, too. Let's have fun learning, living, sharing and loving language together." Bette A. Stevens
9/24/12 LINDA LOEGEL INTERVIEW excerpts:
Q: What prompted you to write "AMAZING MATILDA: A Monarch's Tale"?
Bette: As a prolific reader, and with some creative writing experiences in my new 'teacher toolbox,' I was hooked right from the start. Meld that love of literature with a desire to inspire students to be all they can be and you've got a brand new children's book writer: me, the author of AMAZING MATILDA: A Monarch's Tale, my second children's book. The teacher me wanted to integrate a story with core curriculum elements. A Monarch would be the perfect main character: as an indicator species and with Monarch habitat (milkweed) rapidly disappearing, it would be a great way for children to learn life science and environmental science concepts, all while enjoying an inspiring story. Monarch research was my first step. I thought the fit would be perfect because the challenges to be met in the natural world parallel the challenges to be met in the lives of the children. And so, I started to write and rewrite and rewrite... All of the tweaking was on the literary side of the story. I wanted it to be used to teach (model) the use of repetition, alliteration, metaphor and simile in writing stories. It was lots of fun and the first year I placed Matilda's story in a storybook format in a binder (no illustrations yet). I read it aloud and my fourth graders wanted to read it during their free time and make their own illustrations. We were raising silkworms in the classroom at the time. I continued to read the story aloud to my students (4th, 5th and 6th graders) over the years. During that time, I continued to make revisions and used those models as a teaching tool as well. As a retired teacher, I've had time this year to create the illustrations (pencil sketches and watercolor). My background in desktop publishing gave me the incentive to check the internet to find out about self-publishing. Voila! After more than a decade: AMAZING MATILDA, is now written, illustrated and published.
Q: What's next for you?
Bette: I recently started a blog and have been writing some poetry and short articles. Also, I have a short story (unpublished) that I want to expand into a YA fiction (coming of age in the 1950s and '60s) novel. When I read the short story to my fellow students in a creative writing class at college, they wanted to hear more. That's my next big project. I've already asked some Web friends if they thought this type of book would have an audience and I'm waiting for some feedback. I've also posted an article on my latest WIP (Work In Progress) on my blog. The working title is "Pure Trash." UPDATE: PURE TRASH, a short story for the Middle-grade/YA/Adult audience was published on August 12, 2013. This story is a pre-quel to the novel I'm working on by the same name.
Q: What is your advice to would be writers?
Bette: NEVER GIVE UP: You can do anything you really want to do if you try long enough and hard enough, especially with help and encouragement from your friends. (The theme of AMAZING MATILDA) The internet is such a great resource for connecting with other writers, readers, marketers, publishers. Join groups that fit into your niche. Then, connect with other writers and find out what they're doing. Read them, follow them, leave comments and ask questions. There is a wonderful world of encouragers on the Web.
Monday, October 20, 2014
Clancy Tucker writes young adult fiction for reluctant readers but has also achieved success as a poet and photographer. He has lived in four countries, speaks three languages, has photography accepted and published in books in the USA (Innocent Dreams, Endless Journeys & A Trip Down Memory Lane), photographic work registered with the International Library of Photography, published in literary magazines and has written more than 90 short stories.
Gunnedah Danson reads the diary from 1910, a time when his great-great-grandfather looked after a large herd of cattle at a time of a most serious drought.
That story is written with excellent attention to detail and it gives great insight into farming and herding of the times and is written with a great narrative and manages to hold the attention easily.
The story of the past consumes Gunnedah but the story is more complex than this. He reads all this while staying at a family cattle station where problems of their own occur.
This is a great and insightful read for all who love history. I found it particularly rewarding because it covers a place and an era I knew little about. The two heroes are both very likeable and their stories are very intriguing.
The book seems aimed at younger readers but has lots for adults like myself. A well rounded and very enjoyable read.”
Review by Christoph Fischer
“Smokey Danson was a legend in his own time. Known as the Gunnedah Hero, Smokey was given the impressive moniker as a young boy while driving a herd of cattle up the long `paddock,' in the early 1900s.
Clancy Tucker deftly tells the tale of the Gunnedah Hero through the eyes of another young boy living in the present day. Gunnedah `Gunnie' Danson is the 14 yr old great great grandson of Smokey Danson. Gunnie has been given a school assignment to write about drought and its effect on farmers and local economy. Returning home from school one day, he is given a gift from his Grandfather. The gift is a manuscript and an envelope, which cannot be opened until Gunnie reads the adventure that his great-great-grandfather had back in 1911 during the Australian drought.
Join Gunnie as reads the story and travels with his great-great-Grandfather up the long paddock with his herd of cattle. You will learn how Smokey managed to survive the wilderness while taking care of the cattle with only the help of three dedicated dogs. Finally, you will learn how Smokey became known as the Gunnedah Hero, and how an envelope from the past, delivered to a young boy in the present, will change the future of the Gunnedah Hero's descendents.
Clancy Tucker weaves a wonderful story that will introduce young boys here in the US to a life lived in Australia at the turn of the last century. Clancy includes a glossary of Aussie terms which many here in the states will not be familiar with, but what fun to be introduced to something so very new and different. This book should not be missed. I highly recommend it.”
Review by J E Rogers USA
“Gunnedah Hero was an enjoyable read, could read the whole book in one sitting as there was a desire to know what happened each day in the life of Gunnie. Shame the story didn't go further, would have like to read more of the great-grandfather's life and also into the current period but I guess that is a sign of a good book, I wanted more.”
Review by VJP