Sunday, July 15, 2012

Please go to my new site

I am combining my website and blog into one.  Come on over!


 http://www.lynetteendicott.com/

Friday, July 13, 2012

Read aloud to your dog? Emerging readers do!


The first dog I ever owned was after I was 50, so I was a complete dog novice, but when I saw Ollie in the cage at Petsmart he was looking right at me and clearly was more connected to people than other animals.


I hadn't gone in to get a dog. I needed cat food. But I came home with a dog, all the same. And I never looked back.

This people pleasing trait led me to go in to my local hospital when they put out a plea to members who had dogs to become therapy dogs. Turns out there are multiple therapy dog programs in the world. Because the hospital used Therapy Dogs International, we did,too.

Now Ollie loves people in general, but has always had an affinity for children specifically. He stands about 15 inches high and at 20 pounds is big enough to be safe with uncoordinated toddlers, small enough to cuddle. When I met another member who was getting volunteers to go to local libraries I was intrigued. My first graduate work was in elementary education, and in my work with people with disabilities I have seen lots of ideas around motivating people to read. The basic fact is, to learn to read you have to READ.

In this program Ollie sits or lays next to a child while they read a book out loud to him. I keep my mouth shut and encourage parents to not interrupt what is happening between the child and the dog. No corrections! The child often self-corrects because s/he wants Ollie to understand the book.

In this loving, no judgment opportunity to read books out loud, the children improve their fluency, learn to decipher the book from picture and word clues, and go way beyond sounding out words alone. And they LOVE to read because they love my dog.

My dog was on the front page of the paper a few weeks ago. Well, his photo was in the banner teaser for the front page of spotlight section, anyway. Here is are links to that great photo and another featuring my boy, both by Bee photographer Mark Crosse.

The wonderful article that accompanied the photos is by Rick Bentley, and is found at http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/06/22/v-textonly/2884415/therapy-dogs-help-foster-kids.html

As a result of my love for my dog and this kind of volunteer work, I have written therapy dogs into my third book, Return of Joy, scheduled for release in October from Desert Breeze Publishing under my writing name, Lynette Endicott.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

How smart IS that cat?


I love my pets. I didn't really have pets until in my 50s, when my daughter asked why we let her father decide whether or not we had animals in our lives. We adopted two cats almost immediately. Those two , Sprite and Dr. Pepper, show up in my first book, More Than A Job. The black and white cat is Pepper. Slainte' (pronounced slawn' cha) was an abandoned, injured adolescent when I found her outdoors at a local  bakery shop. She was hungry and thirsty and the forecast for that day was over 110 degrees. They said to me, "Oh, don't give her food or water. We want her to go away." I made the mistake of picking her up, found the place where her leg was torn, and knew if I put her down there she would die that day. She was thin, pitiful, and yet let me pick her up. I didn't have a box or anything so I took her to my car. She ran around in the car a couple of times but got over her panic in seconds and laid next to me on the seat. I carried her into an animal hospital.  It is expensive to rescue a cat on your own. The shelter doesn't charge full price for the medical care. Slainte' needed to be spayed, had to have some of the dead tissue around her torn leg removed and then the leg sutured, needed de-wormed, and antibiotics to address the infection in her leg. I had just been laid off so had no regular income. What was I thinking?

But as soon as I picked her up I was committed. And she has definitely been worth it. Once she acclimated to the other cats, life settled in and we learned that we had added a very spunky, snuggly cat. She is the model for Dr. Al's cat in Animal Instinct. While my little calico has never saved my life or revealed ancestral secrets, she is a very positive part of my life. When we added a dog - Ollie - she and he vied for the top position in the house by sitting back on their haunches and boxing of all things. Today, though, they curl up together on the bed or on the pet bed in my office.
When my daughter and her husband added a beagle/basset puppy, she let Molly know who was boss, and is the only animal that Molly doesn't attempt to tromp.

Amimal Instinct will be available August 21.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

How do two writers work together?

Tami Dee and I are pleased to showcase the cover for the first book in our Time After Time Saga, a series of six books that follow (erratically) the lives of the women of the Heartmark, those who have been marked by an enemy determined to pursue them through time and destroy their happiness.

How did we come to write together? Good question, since we have only met twice in person, and not for long either time. I met Tami in an on-line critique group and because we really enjoyed each others' stories we stayed in touch. Tami was the one who reached out to me a year ago and asked, "Have you ever submitted those books I read?" and urged me to contact her editor. My three contracts and counting with Desert Breeze Publishing are a result of that contact.

Tami has published a time travel series, so when the first thoughts that became this set of books began percolating in my head I dropped her a note, asked her thoughts and in the email back and forth that followed, the ideas for a series came tumbling out.

I know that working with another author keeps me writing and keeps me accountable. We share each work as it unfolds, so although one writer takes the lead, both are involved in crafting the story line and in connecting the book to the others that are coming in the next couple of years.

So join us in celebrating our first cover for this series. The book will be released August 21.

www.lynetteendicott.com                           http://www.tamidee.com/
www.twitter.com/LynetteEndicott             https://twitter.com/authortamidee
www.facebook.com/authorlynetteendicott  https://www.facebook.com/tami.dee.7

Buy link at Desert Breeze Publishing: http://stores.desertbreezepublishing.com/-strse-332/Time-After-Time-Book/Detail.bok

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Read this and you will want more! The Up Side of Down


Excerpt
The heat from the midday Texas sun seeped through my dark gray sweats, my standard uniform of late, bringing my body temperature to the boiling point. 
After trying the door of the Lexus, I realized I'd locked the keys inside. The alarm system was armed, the cats had returned to their roosting place, and something strange was wrong with my eyes. They'd begun to sting and water leaked from them. 

Tears? Oh no, no, no, no, no. 

It had been almost two days since I'd shed a tear over my pitiful situation, and I was not about to start that up again now. 

I began walking as fast as I could down the gravel road leading to the water tower, where the local high school kids used graffiti to proclaim their date with freedom. I'd reached the half-way mark, when I heard the noise of a vehicle quickly approaching behind me. From the sound of its engine, I guessed it was at least the three-quarter-ton variety. 

Too late, I realized I was standing in the middle of the road close to a sharp, ninety-degree corner fittingly dubbed 'Dead Man's Curve'. I managed to vault for the ditch just as the truck's driver spotted me. To his credit, he gave it all he had in an effort to avoid hitting me. Unfortunately, this landed his vehicle in the opposite ditch. 

It took us both a minute to come to terms with our situation. We'd both been lucky that there wasn't a crash and no one was hurt. My pride was a little bruised, but I'd survive that. 

I watched as the man in the truck got out and looked around in a daze. "Are you all right?" he asked, as he crossed the road to my ditch. 

"I'm fine. Sorry about the near miss. It doesn't look as if anything's hurt, though. You should be able to drive right out of that ditch." I glanced at the huge black four-by-four truck he drove. Not that uncommon for this part of Texas where everything was larger, including the vehicles we drove. 

He ignored my observation. "Did you have car trouble down the road?" I could feel him looking me over. By this point, I was perspiring like crazy. My face was shiny with sweat, and he was staring at my hair. My hand went up to it automatically. For the life of me, I couldn't remember if I'd brushed it today or not. Or for that matter, this week. 

"I'm fine. Thank you for stopping." I turned to continue going wherever I was going before the run-in, when he stopped me. 

"Wait. Can I take you somewhere?" He looked around the deserted area in confusion. "Do you live around here?" Now there was the sixty-four-thousand-dollar question I'd been avoiding since I'd arrived in Down two weeks earlier. 

"Um, sort of." I could tell my answer only served to pique his curiosity. Maybe he was imagining me as the neighborhood burglar, or the town's only homeless woman. 

He reached for his wallet before awkwardly asking, "Do you need some money?" 

Shocked by his assumption, I was unable to do more than stare back at him with my mouth agape. Do I look that desperate? I thought about how embarrassed poor Thelma, the champion of the less fortunate, would be if she could see the pity in this man's eyes. 

"Here." He shoved some money into my hand and headed back toward the Black Beast. "Get yourself something to eat and maybe a change of clothes." 

He easily maneuvered his truck out of the ditch and waved politely as he drove away. I glanced down at the money in my hand in shock. He'd shoved a hundred dollar bill into it. 

Learn more about Mary at www.maryeason.com, check in with Mary on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/mary.eason.338  and buy today at 

Review: Mary Eason's The Up Side of Down


Blurb: Laney Winters is living the life she thought she’d always wanted—perfect home, wealthy husband and a successful, if somewhat mediocre, romance writing career. At forty-one, Laney discovers she’s expecting her first child and can’t wait to rush home and surprise her husband with the great news. Her husband, Tom, has a surprise of his own waiting for her. She walks in on him with his much younger secretary. He wants a divorce and wants Laney out of his house. Having signed a prenuptial agreement, she has little choice other than her oft-imagined revenge scenarios.

My reviewMary Eason turned the light of humor, warmth and values onto the subject of divorce through her heroine, who returns to her small hometown and eccentric aunts pregnant and on her way to single. The characters are well-drawn and interesting, and I couldn't put the book down. The Up Side of Down will take you through the tears, frustration, anger and craziness of the life of Laney, an author whose success is put on hold while her life falls apart and then, with the love and support of her wacky family and the caring warmth of more than one friend, begins to come back together again. You will love this book! 

Mary Eason grew up in a small Texas town famous for, well not much of anything, really.Being the baby of the family and quite a bit younger than her brothers and sisters, mary had plenty of time to entertain herself. Making up stories seem to come natural to her.

As a pre-teen, Mary discovered romance novels and knew instinctively that was what she wanted to do with her over-active imagination. She wrote her first novel as a teen, (it's tucked away somewhere never to see the light of day), but never really pursued her writing career seriously until a few years later, when she wrote her first romantic comedy and was hooked.

Today, Mary still lives in Texas, and still writes about romance. In fact, she can't think of anything else she'd rather do.

Check out all Mary's books: http://www.maryeason.com/
Follow her on twitter https://twitter.com/maryeason


Friday, July 6, 2012

Check out more of Anne Patrick's great books!



Single mother, Jenny Holloway, has her hands full running a 1200-acre ranch, and keeping her daredevil son out of the emergency room. So when her foreman suggests she hire on his son Gil Montgomery, who just got home from the war, Jenny jumps at the opportunity of having another skilled cowboy around. 

Gil was used to taking orders, even from women. What he wasn't prepared for was the feelings this little firecracker of a woman triggered in him. Jenny is a lot like the bronco she's rescued and is now trying to break. The unexpected death of her husband has left her jaded and afraid to risk her heart getting broken again. Somehow, he has to gain her trust and prove that he isn't going anywhere. 


Fire Investigator Sadie McGregor has been called to her hometown of Emerald Point, Missouri to investigate a suspicious fire which claimed the life of a local college student. By appearance the fire looks like the girl was just careless. What Sadie and Sheriff Quinn Harrington discover will not only affect those close to them, but will rock the entire community of Emerald Point and put Sadie's life on the line. 

Sadie's life isn't the only thing at stake. Struggling with the guilt of having been responsible for the fire that killed her family, when she was only seven, Sadie doesn't feel she's worthy of God's love and forgiveness. Will Quinn be able to prove otherwise before it's too late? 


District Judge Katie McKinley takes her career very seriously. No one knows that better than her old childhood friend and first love, Graham Bishop. Her ruling cost him his family’s ranch. So it’s no surprise when an attempt is made on her life that the sheriff turns his suspicions to Graham. 

Katie feels horrible knowing what her ruling cost her old friend, and knows his outburst in her courtroom gave the sheriff every right to suspect him. But the Graham Bishop she grew up with would never harm her. Even when all the evidence points to him she refuses to believe it. Could she be wrong? Download today: http://stores.desertbreezepublishing.com/-strse-119/Anne-Patrick-Sabotage/Detail.bok

Anne Patrick
What is Anne Patrick (Dame Tourmaline) up to now? Find out at JewelsoftheQuill.com. Join us for monthly book giveaways and our July Anniversary Giveaway Galore!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Always looking for Animal Lovers to Interview!


Do animals fit into your stories? 
Yes, in several of my books.  For instance, the first three books in my Wounded Heroes Series have dogs in them. In Kill Shot, Zinger, a German Shepherd, plays a big part. He was given to Kory after she left the army by her best friend and former teammate. 

In Trespasses, Mackayla's yellow lab is named Tag because as a puppy he used to play tag with her daughter.  Book three has Mozart a red chow, belonging to my heroine Trudy.
So how do animals impact your life and your writing?
Keisha and Sailor.jpgMy animals (2 cats and a German Shepherd named Zoe) have inspired a few scenes in my books. They have wonderful personalities. One of the cutest things Zoe does is when our kitten, Keisha, gets into something Zoe will look at me like 'Do you not see what she's doing?'  Now if Keisha is doing something wrong where Zoe can reach her, Zoe will go and nudge Keisha away with her paw or nose. Zoe is the queen of the house and both cats pretty much know it.  
Where and when do you write? 
I write evenings and weekends in my office, but usually not at my desk. I'm most creative in my rocking chair.
Where do your story ideas come from? Life. Stories are all around us. In newspapers, conversations, even photographs. My book, A Familiar Evil was inspired by the female model on the cover.  I came across her photo while searching for models for another cover and I wondered what would cause the haunted look on her face. That was all it took to entice my muse.
Anne Patrick
What is Karen Woods (Dame Coral) up to? Find out at JewelsoftheQuill.com. Join us for monthly book giveaways! 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Patriotism from Kill Shot, Wounded Heroes Series by Anne Patrick


Kory in Kill Shot, book #1 in my Wounded Heroes series.
 
"I don't like talking about the war, Sean. Because when I do it brings up memories I want to forget. Today I convinced myself that in order to forget I have to first process them -- that's what I'm trying to do. But I want you to know I am proud of my service. I'm glad I was able to take part in something much bigger than me. I just wish I didn't have to, you know what I mean?"


Also read Book Two in the Wounded Heros Series, Trespasses. Buy now at http://stores.desertbreezepublishing.com/-strse-293/Wounded-Heroes-Book-Two-cln-/Detail.bok

You can read them today if you download for the 4th of July!

Anne Patrick
What is Anne Patrick (Dame Tourmaline) up to now? Find out at JewelsoftheQuill.com. Join us for monthly book giveaways and our July Anniversary Giveaway Galore!


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Check out new Release from Anne Patrick



Kasey Montgomery has returned to her hometown of Fire Creek Montana after the apparent suicide of her cousin. Within days of Beth's funeral, Kasey begins to find inconsistencies in her death. The local sheriff is quick to dismiss the allegations as figments of a writer's imagination. Kasey is determined to prove otherwise. Does the bronzed skinned stranger from Beth's funeral hold the answers?

Local park ranger, Jimmy Little Raven suspects foul play too. Beth was engaged to his best friend who died months earlier from a mysterious accident.  Risking his heart and his job, he teams up with the famous mystery writer to find the answers to both deaths. 

Download eBook NOW at:
http://stores.desertbreezepublishing.com/-strse-315/K.T.-Randall-Book-One-cln-/Detail.bok  You can also purchase at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and most online bookstores.


EXCERPT

Kasey rounded the corner onto the street where she’d left her car. She stopped dead in her tracks at the sight of Jimmy Little Raven leaning against the hood of the Firebird, his arms folded across his chest.

It took several seconds to recover from her initial shock before she walked over to her car. "What are you doing here?"

"Never mind that. What were you doing in Woodward’s office?" he demanded.

She avoided his glare, as her mind raced to come up with a logical explanation. Lying was out of the question, not that it'd do any good anyway. He had no doubt seen her through the window, explaining the noise she heard.

"Do you realize how much trouble you could get into if anyone was to find out you broke into his office?"

"No one’s going to find out... unless you rat on me. Besides, I didn’t break in, I had a key."

"You what!"

Before she could answer, her breath was yanked violently from her lungs as he lifted her up and dove, with her in his arms, onto the hood of the Firebird. The sounds of crunching metal, breaking glass and squealing tires followed. The earth seemed to rumble beneath her as their bodies rolled together onto the hard cement below.

Anne Patrick
What is Karen Woods (Dame Coral) up to? Find out at JewelsoftheQuill.com. Join us for monthly book giveaways! 


Monday, July 2, 2012

How I doubled sales of my book in the last period

I am a novice as promoting my work. As a newly published author (More Than A Job came out in March) I am still learning the ropes. My first check as an author was both exciting - Hey I can get paid to do this! And deflating - All that work for this little return?

So I started paying attention to what other authors were doing. Here is a short list of ways I am promoting them and me:

  1. I post to this blog at least five days a week, and feature other authors who (hopefully) bring their readers to my blog, and I can showcase them to my readers.
  2. I make the blog visual, and as often as they will share personal pictures, personal. Since I have a lot of pet lovers among my readers, (I find posts about pets get a higher hit rate) pet pics are welcome here. This isn't just about selling my books - it is also about developing a group of friends who read them. I want to connect and animals are a great way to do that.
  3. I tweet the blog posts 2 or 3 times a day. Finding a hook - something catchy, controversial or racy -- always brings more lookers to the blog. As do cute animals and the word Christian.
  4. I ask my guests to post that they are visiting on their social media - lists, twitter, Facebook, etc.
  5. My tweets are automatically posted to Lynette Endicott's Facebook page, and then I like from my my real name and the author page hosted by that name, so they show up to all my people.
  6. At least once a week I post something about my writing journey to my real name on Linked In with a link to my blog or website.
  7. I "like" other authors, read their posts, retweet, share and otherwise promote the interesting things they are saying.
  8. I visit other blogs to be interviewed there.
  9. I explore other venues. Right now Klout and Pinterest are possibilities that I'm tracking.
  10. I watch the numbers. When there is a spike in blog visits or website visits I check to see why.
In all of these, I have several strategies:
  • Set up an account in my author name that is separate from my real life and focuses on writing.
  • Get the word out to as many people as I can to like, join, follow. Continually ask readers to act to follow the cause.
  • Support other writers, and they will support me and sometimes even become my readers.
  • LIMIT the time spent on all this. I set a goal of finishing within an hour a day.
  • Keep up with the latest through subscriptions (usually in digest form) regarding marketing on the internet, social media, 
Result? Well, my second check was more than twice as much as my first, so the good news is that I'm getting better at this. Since the next book, Animal Instinct with Tami Dee, is out August 21 I want my skills to be up to the task.

Tami, by the way, has an author ap on Android, iPad, iPhone etc. Download it and check out her books and this new ADDITIONAL way to market!


Saturday, June 30, 2012

What do you think?


  • Tell me what you like or don't like about the new format and colors on this blog. 
  • JOIN as a follower. It is painless, I promise! 
  • Leave a comment on any blog that catches your eye. There is even a list of older ones on the right below.  

Thanks!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Blurb and Excerpt from The Attache' by David Bond

Tell us about The Attache', your first book with Desert Breeze Publishing. What is it about?

Zack Brenner is blinded after a mortar attack by insurgents in Iraq. The image of a woman with penetrating eyes he saw in an email before he lost his sight is seared into his memory. He returns home to a failing family business, begins to learn independent living skills, and can’t help fall in love with the woman from the email. 


Jessie Weaver narrowly escaped the North Tower on 9/11 after a brief encounter with a handsome visitor who left an attaché behind. She is determined to find him again, and her only hope is to work for the man’s family business, now owned and managed by his blinded brother Zach. Jessie faces a test of loyalty as she questions her devotion to a wandering stranger, versus her growing compassion for Zach. 



Seeking to accomplish something, Zach sets out to climb his beloved mountain. A long buried family secret emerges, and a madman threatens the lives of Zack and the woman he loves. The Attaché is a story about overcoming obstacles, acceptance, and developing trust. 



Is there truth in the words found in Scripture? “With man this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible.”
Thanks for sharing a family photo. As my readers know, I am always interested in dog stories. Does yours have one?

People do wonder about her name. She is Lacey to everyone but me. I call her Missy. She doesn't seem to mind.

Well, she is a beautiful beagle. Will you share an excerpt from The Attache'?

Zach pushed away from the table. She figured he was getting the phone, but he trailed his hand along the edge of the table until he arrived where she sat. He reached out tentatively then pulled his hand back. "Can you... um, stand up?" 

He wore an odd look. She placed the last of the granola bar on the table and pushed her chair out. "Okay. What's this about?" 

He reached again, and she realized he wanted to hold her hand. Slivers of sunlight filtered in through the kitchen window, and a shiver traveled up her spine. 

"I might have waited for a better time, whatever that is, but I'm not going to. Jessie? I want to tell you something... I need to tell you something, and I'm not sure how you'll take this. I'm not sure how to say it either." 

His grip was firm, his hands slightly damp. Zach hid his nervousness well. His eyes were wide though, so wide she wondered how it was possible they were sightless. Whatever he wanted to tell her, Zach was paying a price. She instinctively gave his hands a reassuring squeeze. 

"I'll be all right. You don't need to worry. I'll be with Suzy for a couple days, and then I think I'll go back to Lancaster for a little while. So, Zach..." 

"Lancaster? Home?" 

"Well, yeah. What else?" 

He shook his head, trying to smile. "You can't think of any other options?" 

"Not at the moment. No." 

"Is this because you think there's no job?" 

"I don't have a job. How could I?" 

"I don't know. No one's fired you, as far as I know." 

"There's nothing for me to do. No business. You don't have to fire me, I'll just quit." 

Jessie tugged her hands away. She heard the words, flying out of her mouth laced with poison. She was under attack, emotions and logic warring for dominance, something inside her clinging to a desperate memory. For the past three years, one thing, one man, had given her a reason to dream. Joel understood life, knew the meaning of love between a man and a woman. He was slipping away, his memory a gray mist in the awakening dawn. 

If she stayed here, instead of seeing Joel, she would precipitate his demise. Joel would be gone forever. It was ludicrous to hope he would show up. How often did he come here? Almost never. She had to leave, had to flee for her sake, and Joel's sake. If not, Zach would block the way forever. 

Zach's hands reached for her, but she was out of reach. "Jessie. Listen. What I need to tell you is this. I love you. I. Love. You. But the thing is, I know how you might take that, and I understand. But I couldn't have gone much longer without saying how I feel." 

"Don't say that. Just don't say that. Zach, you remember the time I talked about Joel? Remember? There was this connection thing? I didn't tell you the whole story." She clasped and unclasped her fingers. "You see, he left his attaché, I told you that, but inside it, there was this... this manuscript. A romance story he was writing. Over the years, I've read it and re-read it. It isn't finished, but there was something in his writing, something that reached out to me and held on. You're laughing. Stop. Stop laughing..." 

Jessie was finished with this. Joel had gotten more defense than he deserved at the moment. She needed him in the flesh, not in her dreams. Even a few more minutes in this house would threaten his emergence into her reality, bringing about her own betrayal. 


Thanks! And one more time, remind us of your newest release and where to buy both books:




The most recent release is A Time To Build, Here is the blurb and link: A Time for Everything Book One: A Time to Build   Thirteen years is a long time. But not long enough for Brian Marshall to forget the face of the woman who stepped inside his office one July morning. Has the one mistake he made in his life finally come back to exact its toll?






Tuesday, June 26, 2012

OK, you're blind - so how do you write, edit and promote??

David, I know you mentioned that you are blind, and that the hero in your previous books was blind as well. What is is like to be a writer who is blind?

For a blind author, clicking and dragging are just two of the terms not likely to be used. A couple things you might hear are, “…my screen reader stopped…help!,” or, “…what do you mean it’s underlined?”

Fortunately, most of the time, those of us who are blind authors are able to flow along pretty smoothly because we’re using a word processing program like Word. The uninitiated observer might be amazed how fast some blind authors can type, fingers flying and the sometimes tinny response of the synthetic speech output indiscernible. I’ve demonstrated my setup to many people over the years, and the most amazing part to them is often making sense of the little robotic voice! I can assure you, it’s quite easy to listen to this computer generated voice, it just takes a little time, and the desire to get the job done.

So how do you type on a keyboard? Have you ever had any typing lessons? I have. And the first thing I was told is, "…no good typist looks at the keyboard." It’s all about teaching your fingers to become familiar with the keyboard and to focus on what you are typing.

And trust me, if you are one of those who hunts and pecks, it’s time to find a blindfold and force yourself to get to know your keyboard a little better!

How about browsing the Internet? Is that problematic? Since the web is an essential component because of research, limited accessibility and other fancy web sites with pop-up boxes and floating banners are a real pain! Most people (sighted) look at any given screen, locate the place on the screen of interest, and click or scroll there and take care of business. It’s not so easy for us. It’s often a technical problem, where pop-ups and moving banners or bars make our screen reader act sporadically or lock up. If a web site doesn’t cause these kind of problems, we often do just fine. In some cases, maybe even better. This is because of the built-in search feature our screen reader’s use, enabling us to search for and land on a word or phrase of interest.

Then there is that huge new area for anyone promoting their books - social media. How accessible is that with your screen reader? The biggest nightmare in our present time revolves around social media sites. Facebook is accessible to a point, using the mobile version, but for the most part, the layout of the site which usually includes images and photos and limited textual content makes these kinds of sites very difficult to use. A new one, Pinterest, is enjoying a surge in popularity among writers, but it is almost entirely inaccessible to blind people since it is largely all about photos and images. Since all authors need to spend time performing self-promotion, which means making use of social media sites, we are at a distinct disadvantage in this realm.

It sounds like you've got technology and can do most of the things sighted authors do, though. All things considered, a blind author is almost on a level playing field with their sighted counterparts. Because there are myriads of promotional paths to follow, hopefully, avoiding the ones which are inaccessible will not prove to be fatal. Deep down, I hold onto two basic thoughts: First, God is overseeing my writing, and this includes promotion. Second, a good story will find an audience. So, my main focus is to pay more attention to the latter point, and let God worry about the former!

~~ Available now! -- A Time To Build --  and The Attache' From Desert Breeze Publishing ~~

(Note from Lynette: David informed me that this blog was not accessible in the current template. I had someone who specializes in accessibility build my website but I had not taken as much care with the blog. You may see me switching between templates for the next few days while David gives me feedback on accessibility.)


Monday, June 25, 2012

Can he build on the greatest mistake of his life?

Author David Bond has just released his second book with Desert Breeze Publishing. Dave, tell us about A Time To Build. Brian Marshall lives a quiet, serious life. At age thirty-three, he’s content and reasonably prosperous. When a new client steps inside his office one July morning, and he recognizes her strikingly beautiful face, his thoughts are thrown back in time thirteen years, to a time when he committed perhaps the greatest mistake of his life.

Hallie Grover has come a long way in thirteen years. When she left central Pennsylvania as a dispirited seventeen-year old to live with her divorced mother in California, she couldn’t have imagined the path her life was to take. Will she be able to handle her new life, owning and managing a small café in McCane, Pennsylvania? And will she be able to rebuild a relationship with her sister, and a thirteen-year old girl she’s never had the chance to know?

Brian fears Hallie will one day remember him. Hallie blossoms, but is she ready to embrace a relationship she wasn’t expecting?

Ooo - I like how that sounds. Tell us a little about yourself.
Like most writers, I love to read. As an appreciative reader, I've always been amazed at a well written book. Losing my eyesight at age 33 (in 1988) I had no idea I would one day discover writing to be an enjoyable career. I'm innately artistic, and writing is now a great outlet for my artistic creativity.
My debut novel is about a man who loses his eyesight. I resisted writing about a blind character, but eventually knew it was the right thing to do. I have always enjoyed romance fiction, as long as the characters were believable, and the story had depth. I hope my stories will come across as believable, yet also convey something important about life. Since I write inspirational fiction, God plays a role in how my characters work through their conflicts and struggles.
I'm married, and we have a teenage son. We live near Lancaster, Pennsylvania. I have always enjoyed the outdoors, including the mountains and wilderness of central and northern Pennsylvania. In my books, readers will catch glimpses of the things I cherish, and hopefully come away possessing a greater understanding or appreciation for some of the important things in life.

Leave David a comment about the important things in life to YOU.

Buy his book: http://stores.desertbreezepublishing.com/-strse-308/A-Time-to-Build/Detail.bok

Visit David:
http://authordavidbond.com/

https://www.facebook.com/authordavidbond

Sunday, June 24, 2012

How Jordan Bollinger's characters Run the Show

Where do you write? Describe your writing space. Anything that helps in the background?
When I lived in Connecticut, I wrote at a computer desk in the dining room with the Hartford Oldies station on.  Then I got a laptop, and could write wherever I wanted to - living room, patio-anywhere. Now I'm writing in the living room for the most part. I'm still pretty mobile, but with the bright Arizona sun and temperatures that have already been in the triple digits, the living room is the place for me. And, yes - there's usually caffeine involved as well as pet ruckus going on. I also need television on in the background, but sometimes it's turned down low so I can hear a book.

Do you have a schedule (daily or book-long) for writing or do you just go with the flow?

I actually blogged about this a few weeks ago. Our muses are fickle things, that appear on their own schedule; so I guess I 'go with the flow'.

What is your writing routine once you start a book?

I spend a lot of time thinking about things--just before I fall asleep and lying in bed when I first wake up. I also spend time sitting at the deep end of the pool, staring into the water and contemplating things. So, my routine is to plan out plotlines or dialogue and then write them down after email. 

Where do you start when writing? Research, plotting, outline, or...?

Characters-without a doubt, because they're going to provide a story.

How about the people and/or animals you share space with. Do they know not to bother you when you are writing, or are there constant interruptions?

I live alone.  Well, I live with two wire haired fox terriers and a chiwinnie.  And, no--they don't know they should leave me alone.  Luckily, they're pretty much slugs-unless I make the mistake of saying something like 'car', 'leash' or 'outside'. My gentleman friend might pout if I tell him I have to work, but I try and get him to research things - mainly weapons and/or history.  Sometimes, he's even produced something informative and useful.
What do family members think of your writing? Do you ever ask him/her/them for advice? Editing? My family (which is my mom and her 'live-in' (and she turned eighty-four last week--so see, we're never too old for romance) are very supportive.  What surprised, and greatly disappointed me, was how my really close, friends (of thirty years or more) kind of ignored it. OR, which was even worse, they gave me a kind of 'that's nice, honey' look.
What kind of research do you do?
Oh, all kinds. When I first got the computer and started taking classes - back in the olden days, when a 1GB hard-drive would last you forever - they were a lot less people on the internet; and you could get to some surprising places (CIA, FBI, and MI-5 & MI-6--but just for job applications, no sensitive stuff!)  Now, technology has left me in the dust, and I'm lucky if I can find my own Facebook page.  Still, googling is a lot easier than searching library shelves.  I have started an antebellum romance, and I've researched Creole style houses to the point of making precise sketches of the front exterior and floor plans.  I have, however, promised myself I will not do sketches of the furniture arrangements. Although, I have assigned paper dolls to characters and am contemplating their wardrobes.
Are you a member of any author group and how does that help your writing?
I have been in some author groups, and I can't deny I learned at lot from the other members. I just am finding time to participate difficult now.
What do you think of critique groups in general?
They can be very helpful.  Often, someone will have a way of explaining something that makes it just 'click' for you.  And you can learn more from reviewing they you might expect.  Also, sometimes you see things that are wrong in other writing, and forced to acknowledge that you are guilty of that too.  That said, they can also be a hindrance.  You can't please everyone and having a dozen people evaluate your first chapter can get you in this endless loop of revising Chapter One and never make it to Chapter Two.
Which comes first, the story, the characters or the setting?
Characters! Characters! Characters! They will tell their own story, and the settings will come with the story.
What is the hardest/easiest part of writing for you?
I find writing dialogue pretty easy. Then, because I find settings often not important, sometimes hitting that happy balance of enough setting - without getting insane about it more difficult.
Are you in control of your characters or do they control you?
First time around, the characters.  I let them do whatever they want.  The thing is, if I've allowed them to 'form' correctly, they'll only do things that are 'right' for them.
Have you experienced writer's block? If so, how did you work through it?
Absolutely, but luckily not very often.  The best way I've found to get through it is to ask someone to request a bit of research for them, or write an article for a newsletter or something--anything!  Once you have something else you need to finish before you can return to your writing, you can't wait to get back to it.
What do you enjoy most about writing?
I would have to say 'living' in my own little fantasy world(s).  It's good to be crazy!
What is the single most important part of writing to you?
Crafting a well-written, satisfying story - for me. 
Any words of encouragement for unpublished writers.

To paraphrase Dora from 'Finding Nemo', "just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming".  File the rejection letters or emails (And really, isn't it better to often get almost instant disappointment because of the internet?), have yourself a good old-fashioned cry (or whatever) and send out another query.