Book Review: They Called Him Marvin by Roger Stark

Blurb:

They were just kids, barely not teenagers, madly in love and wanting to be a family, but WW2 got in their way. Three hundred ten days before Pearl Harbor, buck private Dean Sherman innocently went to church with a new friend in Salt Lake City. From that moment, the unsuspecting soldier travelled a remarkable, heroic path, falling in love, graduating from demanding training to become a B29 pilot, conceiving a son and entering the China, Burma and India theater of the WW2. He chronicled his story with letters home to his bride Connie that he met on that fateful Sunday, blind to the fact that fifteen hundred seventy-five days after their meeting, a Japanese swordsman would end his life. His crew, a gaggle of Corporals that dubbed themselves the Corporalies, four officers and a tech Sargent, adventured their way across the globe. Flying the “Aluminum Trail” also called the Hump through the Himalayas, site of the most dangerous flying in the world. Landing in China to refuel and then fly on to places like Manchuria, Rangoon or even the most southern parts of Japan to drop 500 pounders. Each mission had its challenges, minus fifty-degree weather in Mukden, or Japanese fighters firing away at them, a close encounter of the wrong kind, nearly missing a collision with another B29 while flying in clouds, seeing friends downed and lost because of “mechanicals,” the constant threat of running out of fuel and their greatest fear, engine fire. Transferred to the Mariana Islands, he and his crew were shot down over Nagoya, Japan as part of Mission 174, captured and declared war criminals. Connie’s letters reveal life for a brand-new mother whose husband is declared MIA. The agony for both of them; he in a Japanese prison, declared a war criminal, and she just not knowing why his letters stopped coming. Lilliyana Shadowlyn’s review: This was an amazing book. This isn’t a look at war through rose colored glasses, but one that shows the reader what life was like for people from many backgrounds. A soldier, his love left behind on the home front, and those that were considered the enemy at the time. This was an intimate story that doesn’t focus only on the war and pulls the reader in quickly and easily. Historical fiction lovers, those with an interest in war history, and anyone just looking to take a few steps back in time will greatly enjoy reading this. Another reviewer explains: “I am a fan of historical fiction and this story did not disappoint. It was sweet, tragic, personal, and moving. Gradually and almost imperceptibly, the story of two wartime sweethearts begins circling the drain of a tragedy you know is coming. The book begins with the ending, but by the time you get there you have convinced yourself that it can’t possibly be the case. I enjoyed every moment, even the ones that left me in tears. The letters between Connie and Dean provided a fascinating glimpse into wartime life. Reading the experiences of people both at home and abroad was very engaging. I found myself eagerly awaiting the next letter, right along with the young couple! Lastly, the book left me with an overwhelming acknowledgement of the universal trauma and tragedy of war. The Sherman’s are not the only family we meet in the book and the weaving together of several different narratives added a depth to the story that’s hard to put into words. I definitely encourage anyone to read this book, especially if historical novels are not something you typically read. This is a story about people and you won’t want it to end.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Review:

If you love reading stories from the past and those on wars, you will enjoy this story. I love how the letters between Connie and Dean depict the love between them, the losses, yearnings and hard time during war. The letters are the real letters the couple sent to each other during the war. A mix between fictional story and true events based on research, this story hooks readers of the modern world, especially in the post
pandemic time, when we have gone through separation and pain, that can evoke the emotions people would have felt back in World War 2. It also beautifully depicts the challenges soldiers go through in their
daily lives, one that is full of emotional pain and the anxiousness in not knowing what is to come next in life, given the uncertain nature of war. As Connie becomes a mother, her husband goes through a difficult time and the letter exchange between them abruptly stops. This is when the readers are brought into a real emotional roller coaster.

An Interview with Author Anthony Jordan

Hi, I’m Anthony Jordan. As a young child, I enjoyed and played a variety of sports. And as a young adult, I still enjoy sports, and being a coach has been one of the things that brought me joy. I’ve always had a passion for writing, although I didn’t know it would lead me down this current path, especially because I acquired my degree in business management. As a young adult, the challenges I have experienced in recent years have increased my desire to share my experiences to inspire and encourage others. My new novel ‘Remembering You’ was born out of my tremendous grief of losing my fiancé and a desire to bring self-healing. My new direction is to continue writing, doing philanthropy work, traveling the world, and sharing my experiences.

Where are you from?

I am from Central Florida

Why do you write?

To inspire and encourage others to find the tools they need to find themselves again by sharing my life experiences.

What do you write about? 

I’m a new author. So, my debut novel was about trauma, grief from the tragic loss of my fiance, and self-healing. There’s other niches that I’ll be venturing into, but with the way my novel ends I don’t want to reveal anything just yet.

Do you have a specific writing style?

I’m not sure yet. I’ve been told that I have a unique style. For now, I’ll say my writing style is raw.

What are obstacles that come in the way of writing? 

Getting stuck in my own head. I found myself enjoying the brain storm process a little too much.

What’s the most memorable thing asked/said by a reader about your work?

One person told me that they felt all the emotions I poured into my book and recognized how therapeutic it must have been for me.

How long have you been writing?

I’ve been writing poetry since I was in high school. And I’ve always kept a journal, in which I crafted a few book and movie script ideas.

When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?

In 2020, when the pandemic put the entire world on pause.

What is your work schedule like when you are writing?

I find that I am the most productive when everyone in my world is asleep. So, I’ll write from 3 pm EST until 6 or 7 am EST.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

I like to handwrite most of my thoughts before I enter them into my manuscript.

How long does it take to write a book?

It took me 17 months to write my first novel, including the editing process.

Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer?

Read a lot of books and reach out to a few beta readers and editorial review companies in addition to your family and friends for feedback, and always seek the assistance of at least two different editors.

What challenges do you come across when writing/creating your story?

Finding a quiet space and being decisive. It takes me a while to organize my thoughts.

What do you think makes a good story?

One that makes you feel like you’re in the story, but leaves a few details to the imagination.

What does your family think of your writing?

They’re impressed with my ability to hold their attention throughout the story.

Do you see writing as a career?

Yes. Writing has always been a passion of mine. I love the freedom of coming up with an idea and turning into something people will enjoy and can benefit from the content.

Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers?

Take time for yourself to live life to the fullest and thrive, because you’re worth it.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

When ‘Remembering You’ was released. I could finally call myself an author, as my idea was officially a novel.

An Interview with Author I.Y. Maslow 

-Have you always enjoyed writing?

Yes, ever since I was 12 years old. It’s always been my escape from the world. Whenever my parents were fighting or life was too tough, I turned to writing.

-What writings are you most proud of?

My new novel: In The Back Of My Head. Which I published at 18 years old.

How do you write?

People are going to be surprised by this but most of my book was written on my iPhones notes app. I find I’m most creative there, but if I ever get writers block, I pull out good old fashioned pen and paper.

-What else do you do besides write?

I happily assist developmentally disabled adults in their day to day tasks.

-How much sleep do you need to be your best?

Depends, without coffee 10 hours. With coffee 6.

-What’s the most memorable thing said by a reader about your work?

Honestly, everything a reader tells me is memorable, but the single most memorable thing was a reader genuinely telling me my work could rival Stephen King’s.

Author Interview with Catalina Tagarta

Nothing is harder than writing about myself. I’ve been working as an editor since university. I also ” tested out” as a teacher for a very short time, alongside being a journalist, only to realise that although I love working with children, I love writing more and more.

In my 10+ years in journalism and a few years in public relations, I’ve had the idea several times to create a blog, where I could put my thoughts, but this only came to life after I had my second child. That was when I was writing the last pages of the memory book I had started when I delivered my first son. And as more and more people asked me how we were doing in the formula of 4, I thought maybe it would be helpful to leave my notes out for others to see. And that way I’d have access to our memories, too, when I wanted to. That’ s how http://www.tagarta.ro was started, a soul project that is just beginning.

Author Catalina Tagarta:

“If I manage to help even one person with my book, then all my work has not been in vain”

1. Describe yourself in five words!

Five words to describe me? Well: dreamy, generous, sensitive, faithful, diplomatic or conciliatory.

2. What fact about yourself would really surprise people?

For a while I had very low self-esteem, because of some events I went through. It took me a long time to understand that it wasn’t my fault. Not even my child’s illness is, although we mothers tend to blame ourselves when we find out something is wrong with our children. It was necessary to work hard on myself to get rid of the limiting beliefs I had, I invested a lot of time and money in personal development, training and coaching programs, because in turn I want to help mothers who are going through the same challenges that I had to deal with.

3. How do you work through self-doubts and fear?

I thought that’s what you were going to ask. Self-doubts can manifest in many forms. It may have to do with the fact that you haven’t prepared yourself well enough for what you want to do, or that you have had similar experiences in the past that didn’t work out well for you, or that you think about how you might be perceived by others. It helped me to make a list of 100 of the values I hold, and to read it daily, and when I discover something new, to add to it. In addition, my mentor at the time challenged me to write down the limiting beliefs I have in my diary, and next to each one to write down the action that benefits me. For example, under the limiting belief:

“I fear failure – others have succeeded, but I will not”, I write down: “I am human, just like others, so I can succeed just like them. If I don’t try I will never know if I would have succeeded or not”. Mistakes are constructive. The important thing is to act every day in the direction of our dream. Am I afraid? It’s normal to feel that way. But I want to live a constructive fear, which does not panic me, but leads me to act rationally, towards my main goal.

4. What scares you the most? 

That there will be no peace in the world. I have kids… and I want to know they are safe.

5. What makes you happiest?

The gratitude of the people I help in one form or another. And the happiness that I see on my children’s faces when I play with them.

6. Why do you write?

I write out of a desire to help those around me, to add value through the messages and experiences I share that may prove life-saving for a few.

7. Have you always enjoyed writing?

Yes, for all my life. When I was little I loved literature class, I used to write stories on any topic. And later I worked as a journalist. I love doing interviews, but I like more to write from the heart, about my experiences.

8. What motivates you to write?

If I manage to help even one person with my words, or my book, then all my work has not been in vain.

9. What writing are you most proud of?

I am proud of the book “Mom of Two. Parenting tips for raising healthy and confident children – Study case: Erik and gluten-free life at 3”, inspired by our life. I put my heart and soul into the book and I’m sure there are many moms who will relate to the story.

10. What are you most proud of in your personal life?

I am proud of my children. I feel fulfilled, because I waited for them for a long time. I’ll probably write a memoir about that, soon.

11. What books did you love growing up?

Among my favourites were The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, after all, I’m a dreamer, I like to keep my wings spread, to fly. Of course, I also liked the stories about fairies and fairy-tales. At this time I’m studying John C. Maxwell’s books a lot. I’m proud to be a member of the John Maxwell Group for a while.

 12. What do you hope your obituary will say about you?

What a good question! I want people to perceive me as a warm person, who adds value to those around him through his words and actions. After all, we don’t take anything with us into the afterlife. But we will have the satisfaction of having done, or not, a lot of good throughout our lives.

Link to the author’s book on Amazon

13. Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live?

I grew up in a small town and spent my school holidays with my grandmother, being originally from Eastern Europe. What a beautiful childhood I had there! I like to travel a lot, so now I can say I am a little bit of every place I go.

14. How did you develop your writing?

I have simply written, always.

15. What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing? 

I think the hardest part is what you don’t quite master, that part where you don’t have enough experience. In my case it’s marketing. I started studying marketing strategies a while ago, but I don’t want to spend too much time on that, because I want to stay focused on writing. I have a few more titles in mind.

16. Do you find it hard to share your work?

Very hard. And I’m still excited. I’m curious what feedback I’ll get, but, like I said… if my message helps at least one person, I declare myself satisfied. As the John Maxwell Team mentors always suggest: “If someone is out there waiting for your message, go help them! You don’t have the RIGHT to stand by and do nothing to help!”

17. Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you?

Yes. And that’s very helpful.

18. What else do you do, other than write? 

I love cooking, travelling and I’m passionate about photography. As my husband likes to joke: “I turn into a paparazzi when I grab the camera”.

19. What other jobs have you had in your life?

Editor/ journalist and public relations specialist.

20. If you could study any subject at university what would you pick? 

I have finished my university studies and have a Master’s degree in Ethnology and Anthropology, currently studying personal development materials. If I had to go to another university, I would probably choose Psychology. It would help me to address people better.

21. If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?

Wherever my family is. But preferably in a warm country.

22. Tell us about your family?

I’m a committed family person. Married for… a little over 10 years, I have two young boys, spoiled by grandparents, uncle and maternal aunt. My husband is an amazing man, who supports me in everything I do and is a wonderful father.

23. How do you write – laptop, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk?

I usually write on my computer/laptop, but there are days when I also jot down my ideas on my phone or on a piece of paper when I’m on the go, then when I get to the computer I create the story around that idea.

24. How much sleep do you need to be your best?

I need at least 6 hours of sleep. I know the ideal would be 8, but with two young kids and lots of projects… it’s hard to get everything done just during daylight hours. I do my most writing late at night, when it’s completely quiet in the house.

25. Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support?

There are several people, but I wouldn’t want to list and omit anyone. Most of all I am grateful to God… and I thank him daily for all that I have and all that I am.

26. Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you? 

A successful career as a writer, for me, means having my audience resonate with me and my ideas, waiting each time for a new release with the hope that this time too they will have something to learn, or simply relax reading my work.

https://www.facebook.com/catalina.tagarta

27. It is vital to get exposure and target the right readers for your writing, tell us about your marketing campaign?

As a beginning book writer, I don’t have a great marketing strategy in place yet. I’m still working on it. My targets are mothers who feel overwhelmed, mothers with sick children and mothers who want to become a better version of themselves. I resonate with people who are constantly in the process of growing, developing.

28. Tell us about your new book? Why did you write it?

The book started as a game. When my almost 3 year old boy was diagnosed with celiac disease, I was constantly struggling to explain to him WHY he was no longer allowed to eat gluten. So I started making up stories. Every night, I used to tell him about a little boy, Eric, who doesn’t eat gluten. And how he manages to overcome all the challenges. When appropriate, I also introduced his little brother, giving him examples of how Eric managed to handle conflicts with him in a way that no one got hurt and everyone had the most to gain. I started writing the stories, and then I got the idea to put them all together in a book. A book in which I also added valuable medical information, provided by a specialist doctor who is also a patient, so she knows very well what it means to keep such a strict diet. You can find it on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3JSVSfE The title is: “Mom of Two: Parenting tips for raising healthy and confident children – Study case: Erik and gluten-free life at 3 years old”.

29. When you are not writing, how do you like to relax?

I like to meditate.

30. What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

I remember when I had no children and I used to search the forums for any question about fertility, for example. Then, after I had my second baby, I desperately searched through books and the internet for solutions on how to divide myself between my two children, how to meet their needs and connect equally well with both of them… There will always be people looking for such things. It’s inevitable. And through my stories, I hope to shed some light into the lives of these readers. If after reading my book they’re left with at least 2-3 ideas, I declare myself satisfied.

Book Review: IF MUSIC BE The FOOD Of LOVE by Lenny Cavallaro

Immortal Beloved meets Fifty Shades of Grey, Sophie’s Choice, The Godfather, and The Reincarnation of Peter Proud in this spell-binding love story that involves classical music, kinky sex, the Holocaust, the Mafia, the psychic/occult, “soul fractions,” and a 2,000-year-old curse.

For twenty-eight years the Curse has lain dormant, waiting and gathering strength. Soon it will strike one last time, a lethal blow designed to destroy them.

Twenty-eight years earlier, the Curse relied upon a viper to deliver a fatal dosage of poison, but somehow Elena Bianchi survived. Next time the Curse will have far more dangerous weapons at its disposal.

Elena is more astute than the others. The Curse realizes that unlike her predecessors, she can somehow sense its presence and anticipate its movements. Her skills are great, but the Curse now knows where she is most vulnerable.

As the saga begins, Elena and Giovanni move freely between the worlds of classical music and extremely kinky sex. However, only Elena will develop a spiritual awareness of the true history they share.

In this four-part series, the battle lines are drawn. Either Elena will die, or she will put an end to the Curse, once and for all.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

If you are a fan of 50 Shades, you would love reading the work of Cavallaro. A kinky story intertwined with musical saga, and some sci-fi elements, rendering it an unusually great read, leaving the reader feeling refreshed and energized. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for an out-of-the-norm kinky read.

An Interview with Author Robin Brooks

Robin Brooks is a new writer, and author of the gratitude series Attitude of Gratitude: 30 Day Gratitude Journal. An educator at heart, Robin has spent the last several years researching the importance and benefits of gratitude, mindfulness, and happiness. Robin has enjoyed reading self-help books for years and began creating journals and habit trackers three years ago. Robin lives and works in her hometown of Washington, DC, and spends her free time traveling and researching. If you are interested in making gratitude a daily habit, look no further, Robin’s journals are sure to help.

Where are you from?

I am from Washington, DC.

Describe yourself in five words

I am funny, thoughtful, genuine, smart, and kind.

What fact about yourself would really surprise people?

A fact about myself that would surprise people is that I am a homebody. I enjoy relaxing around the house and creating crafts or writing.

What do you write about?

I enjoy writing self-help books. Gratitude and mindfulness are my areas of interest. Both gratitude and mindfulness can have a long-lasting impact on one’s life by improving our emotional health and physical health. 

Why do you write?

I am a new writer. I realized last year after losing my grandmother that I wanted to pursue my passion for writing. I’ve just begun to self-publish books beginning with gratitude journals.

How long does it take to write a book?

It takes me about a week to write a gratitude journal. I like to take time and be thoughtful about the journal content.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

My interesting writing quirk is that I like to appeal to everybody. I have gratitude journals for women, men, and children.

How do you work through self-doubts and fear?

I work through self-doubts and fear by being completely present in the moment.  I do a lot of positive self-talk to combat self-doubts and fear. I’m big on speaking things into existence, so I say a mantra or set an intention for myself.

How do you write – lap top, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk?

I do my best writing on my laptop at a desk.

How much sleep do you need to be your best?

I need about 6 hours to be at my best.

Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you?

I would like to thank my family and friends for their support. No matter what, they are always in my corner and rooting me on. I love them!

Tell us about your new book? Why did you write it?  

My latest book is a gratitude journal for pregnant people. I wrote this journal so pregnant people can take note of the moments that they are most thankful for during their pregnancy. A little something to help them receive a positive mindset for themselves and their baby.

What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

I want people to take away that my journals were designed to be simple and yet thoughtful. They were designed to serve as a self-exploration tool to make you feel more thankful and build a new outlook on life. These journals are perfect for oneself or as gifts.

Book Review by Jas: Brick – by – Brick – Reshape Your Thinking

Be Inspired, Reshape Your Thinking, and See Life From A Different Perspective – Achieve Greater Things and Understand Who You Are as a Person. Rebuild the Foundation of Your Life and Heal From Past Traumas With These 11 Bricks!

Have you always wondered why you are the way you are?

Do you bury past problems in hopes of never seeing them again?

Would you like to heal yourself and rebuild the foundation of your life?

Many people fail to realize that the reason they aren’t able to move forward in life is because they’ve spent so much time ‘digging’ holes to bury away problems and trauma. We believe that by hiding those small problems, we’ll never have to deal with them again.

But, in the end, those minor problems are just amplified and grow larger and larger until they begin to bring you down. 

We must understand that in order to heal, we must face reality.

With Brick-by-Brick, see your life from a different perspective and reshape your thinking. Realize that the more you ‘dig’ and the more you convince yourself you don’t have a problem, you’re going further down.

In this book, you’ll discover:

  • The 11 Bricks to a new life: Learn the 11 essential building blocks for a healthier and happier life.
  • Prepare a new life: Bring more stability to your life and finally live the life you’ve always wanted.
  • A solid foundation: Build a newer and more solid foundation brick-by-brick, one step at a time!
  • Never look back: See your life from a new perspective and never have to dig another hold ever again.
  • Heartfelt guidance: Be guided every step of the way of your journey and know there’s nothing to be afraid of.

Facing your inner demons doesn’t have to be so scary. 

Scroll up, Click on “Buy Now”, and Get Your Copy Now!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I like how, despite the book being a short one, has delivered quite a lot of important pointers in laying out a solid foundation in reshaping the mindset. The two important ones for me are the facts that we need to set boundaries even with family and friends, and avoid listening to the feedback from people who are not looking at the best interest of our lives, and that can be our family members, which is hard to do at many instances.

Another aspect is the importance of councellor or therapists and how they are not similar with friends. I totally agree with this as friends are definitely not the ones to go to when we have issues as they lack the ability to offer us advices from a neutral point of view.

In a nutshell, the 11 bricks laid out here are definitely essential ones that help to reshape our mind.

Book Review by Jas: Finding Sisters

Where does she come from?

Who are her genetic parents?

Who is she?

Does she even want to know?

With almost no information of her genetic heritage, adoptee Rebecca Daniels follows limited clues and uses DNA testing, genealogical research, thoughtful letter writing, and a willingness to make awkward phone calls with strangers to finally find her birth parents.

But along the way, she finds much more.

Two half-sisters.

A slew of cousins on both sides.

A family waiting to be discovered.

With the assistance of a distant cousin in Sweden and several other DNA angels on the internet, Daniels finally comes face to face with her birth mother just months before her passing. Join in on this author’s discovery of family and self in Finding SistersHow One Adoptee Used DNA Testing and Determination to Uncover Family Secrets and Find her Birth Family.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

I truly enjoyed reading “Finding Sister. It is an eye-opening read on how one can trace their ancestry and heritage through the DNA profiling and testing technology that we now have. For many, these tests may be a way to learn about their heritage but for people who have little knowledge on their family background like Rebecca, it goes a long way in helping them to identify where they came from and their
origins. Especially when people were adopted during the time official records may not be easily accessible. Rebecca loved her adoptive parents she was really just curious about her blood relatives.

It was indeed a rollercoaster ride reading this book, as we embark on the journey of discovery with Rebecca who first got connected to her birth mom and managed to meet her before her death. However, identifying her father was even more of a challenge, as births out of wedlock were regarded as shame, and usually the information regarding the fathers were not as easily traceable. However, with more
emails coming in from the companies that conducted the DNA tests, Rebecca managed to trace someone from her father’s family and the puzzle was solved. Rebecca also discovered half sisters and many close and distant cousins during her search journey.

An Interview with Author Brittany Benko

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Brittany is a special needs mother and a law enforcement wife. She manages a poetry blogging website by writing poems for adults and children for the public at no charge and writes for Hubpages. When Brittany is not writing, she enjoys reading, spending time with her family, and walks on the beach. Brittany is currently working on a picture book about children with autism spectrum disorder.

Poetic Poetry.png

Describe yourself in five words. Introverted, creative, motherly, shy, simple

What fact about yourself would really surprise people? 

I have a gene that can cause autism and other disabilities that I passed onto my son (who is autistic).

How do you work through self-doubts and fear? 

This is a challenging one for me. I’ve always struggled with self-confidence. I tell myself to take everything one step at a time.

What scares you the most? 

Being rejected and alone. As a writer, these are silly fears. Rejection is part of the business world.

What makes you happiest? 

Being in the mountains and near the water.

Why do you write?

I enjoy creating stories, and writing helps me to express myself in a positive way with other people. I’m not a big talker, so writing comes naturally.

Have you always enjoyed writing? 

Yes. However, when I was a child, I wanted to persue a career in music.

What motivates you to write? 

My family, experience, and inner creative juices.

What writing are you most proud of? .

My poetry collection, “Poetic Poetry: A Short Collection of Poems”

What are you most proud of in your personal life? 

My immediate family. They help me through everything.

What books did you love growing up? 

I read a lot of self-help spiritual books. I think personal growth is important no matter what career you choose.

What do you hope your obituary will say about you? 

Brittany was a special needs mother and writer who was loved by her friends and family.

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live? 

I grew up in the city (Dallas, TX). I now live near a beach town in South Carolina. I think the simple paced life helps me to slow down and think of possible story ideas. The view of the ocean helps, too.

How did you develop your writing?

I started writing on a poetry blog. I eventually decided to self-publish a poetry collection and start submitting work to online magazines. I’ve even written a children’s picture book, which I plan on submitting to literary agents soon.

What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing? 

Marketing has always been the most time consuming, and having a special needs kid makes it challenging to put effort into that.

What marketing works for you? 

I typically use social media or paid gigs.

Do you find it hard to share your work? 

I used to, but now I find it easy to share my work not that I have somewhat of an audience.

Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you? 

Absolutely! I wouldn’t be where I am today without their support.

What else do you do, other than write? 

I enjoy reading, going to church, and taking walks on the beach.

What other jobs have you had in your life? 

I’ve worked for a day-care center and have been in retail.

If you could study any subject at university what would you pick? 

Creative Writing

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be? 

The North Carolilna Mountains

Tell us about your family? 

My husband is a patrol officer, my daughter is in middle school who takes honors classes, and my son is three who is on the spectrum.

How do you write – lap top, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk? 

Usually my laptop, but sometimes I use our personal computer.

How much sleep do you need to be your best? 

I do best with at least seven hours of sleep. However, my son does not always sleep well. There are many days where I feel like we’re still in the baby stage because of his needs.

Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support? 

My friend, Jeff, who has helped me format my poetry collection.

Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you? 

I’m proud of the small accomplishments I’ve made, but I’m looking forward to seeing if I can get traditionally published.

It is vital to get exposure and target the right readers for your writing, tell us about your marketing campaign? 

Again, marketing isn’t my forte. I feel it’s important to have the right niche so people will be naturally drawn to what I write.

Tell us about your new book? Why did you write it?  

I initially wrote it as a hobby, but the more writers I connected with, the more I realized I could self-publish my work. I wanted to become a part of that community.

If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone dead or alive, who would you ask? 

Jesus and my old friend who passed in a car wreck.

When you are not writing, how do you like to relax? 

On the couch with a good book and a cup of coffee.

What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

I’m hoping the reader will feel everything that I write and take that with them. I also love showing imagery so the reader can visualize the scene I am writing. I enjoy presenting realistic situations and giving the reader a positive outlook.

https://brittanybenko.wixsite.com/booksbybrittany (Author Website)

https://brittanybenko.wixsite.com/poeticpoetry (Poetry Blogging Website)

https://hubpages.com/@brittanybenko (Hubpages)

Live Interview with Author Quinton Douglas Crawford

Quinton Douglas Crawford is a freelance writer, author, teacher and organization leader with over fifteen years of professional experience. He takes part in many local cultural, social justice, environmental, and educational programs in and out of the country. He loves to contribute to the positive formation of a better present and future.

Author Live Chat with Fans
Sunday: Real-Life Inspiring Stories
The Global Situation
19th December 2021 8PM CST on Facebook page (International Book Promotion)

  • Where are you from?

I’m in Northern California (45 minutes east of San Francisco)

  • Why do you write? 

I’m addicted to teaching and like the fact of creating a legacy.

  • What do you write about? 

I write about what I care about

  • Do you have a specific writing style?

Not sure, but I prefer facts over fantasy

  • What are obstacles that come in the way of writing? 

Sometimes a health problem

  • What’s the most memorable thing asked/said by a reader about your work?

“I Love what you did”

  • How long have you been writing?

Since 2000

  •  When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?

On my 40th birthday

  • What is your work schedule like when you are writing?

I may take 1-2 days a week off to finish a chapter.

  • How long does it take to write a book?

Some take a year others take longer.

  • Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer?

Building from a topic that is most dear to you works best for me.

  • What challenges do you come across when writing/creating your story?

Writers’ block can slow anyone down

  • What do you think makes a good story?

Relevance

  • What does your family think of your writing? 

Many have dimly expressed some excitement, but none seem to understand the financial potentials.

  • Do you see writing as a career?

No, I see it as a stress reliever and a possible financial help on the side.

  • Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers?

Yes, but I add that to my interviews.

  • When did you first consider yourself a writer?

When I was in my Bachelors Degree Program and had a long-standing applause for an essay presentation I did on the dangers of the “Disrespect for Nature”.

Author website