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365 Challenge: Day 336 – Shadow (Author Alert: Misty Mount)

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Shadow: (a) a dark area or shape produced by a body coming between rays of light and a surface, or (b) 365 Daily Challenge word for today’s author alert — Misty Mount

If you are new to the ThisIsMyTruthNow blog, the 365 Daily Challenge, or the Author Alert segment, check out the About Site section from the main menu. Below are some key things to know about this author, but at the end of this post, you’ll see the permanent page I’ve added to my blog. You can return to check out more on who she is, what she’s writing and how to buy her future work. I am pleased to present the very talented Misty Mount. You’ll find out more if you read one of her published books, which I just completed last week. You can check out my review here

***

The Shadow Girl by Misty Mount

SG Digital CoverGenre: YA/ Fantasy/ Coming of Age

Publication Date: December 28, 2017

Synopsis:

Blackness. Nothingness. It was in the shape of a giant, hazy shadow, enveloping me, swallowing me, and digesting me into the unknown. It was my biggest fear and my ultimate fate.

Shy, thirteen-year-old Zylia has always known she was different. Most teenagers feel unnoticed and unseen, but for Zylia, it’s something much worse. She’s disappearing from this world and doesn’t know how to stop it. At times, she’s not sure she wants to. Until she stumbles across a family mystery surrounding the disappearance of her great-aunt Angelica years earlier. During her quest to unravel the mystery, Zylia discovers she’s able to cross the boundary and enter the “in between” world. Now, it’s up to Zylia to save herself before she’s trapped “in between” forever.

Add to Goodreads20180205_100553

Excerpt #1

I did my best to fight and claw my way back to the life I once knew, but panic had taken over and colors were swirling and fading all around me. It was all turning into a great cloud of blackness, just like the one I had seen in my dream. The looming cloud of nothingness I had feared for so long was finally grabbing me, wiping my world dark and blank.

The darkness was thick and intense, an inky void that stretched to eternity in every direction. Eventually my panic burnt itself out and I simply stayed there in the dark, feeling as if someone had drained my adrenal glands. I was no longer responding to the dark with fear, but acceptance. In fact, curiosity was beginning to take over.

The longer I let myself stare into it, the less dark it appeared. After some time, I realized that it was all different shades of murky black and foggy gray overlapping and undulating, just out of focus. I blinked mentally and suddenly she was there, standing above me with concern etched in sooty-colored lines on her monochromatic face.”

Now Available

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords

About the Author

Misty Mount.jpg

Misty Mount has written since age five and was first published at fourteen. By day she’s a caregiver, wife, and mother to a young son but during the quiet hours of night she becomes a novelist. She resides in Wichita, Kansas.

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Giveaway: 1 print and 2 digital copies of The Shadow Girl by Misty Mount

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*Print copy is available to North American residents only.

***

A Special Share from Author Misty Mount About Zylia

“If you’ve ever felt like you don’t belong, or suffered internal isolation in the company of others . . . you don’t have to be alone. You might be a little like me. 

Even if you feel out of place and overlooked, or if your existence feels like one great anachronism . . . then you might have compassion for my misery.

But if people begin to stare right through you and one day your reflection has faded or blinked out . . . then you should be afraid. If you share my burden you’re in danger.
My name is Zylia and I’m disappearing.” 

 The Shadow Girl Blog Tour

TheShadowGirl Tour Banner.jpg

Schedule

February 12thReads & Reels (Feature Promo) http://www.readsandreels.com

Fantastico Sui Libri (Interview)  https://fantasticandosuilibri.blogspot.it

Book Reviews by Shalini (Excerpt) www.bookreviewsbyshalini.wordpress.com

IMAGEEKINGGINGER (Review) https://geekingginger.wordpress.com

Didi Oviatt (Review) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com

February 13thReading Minds Blog (Review & Interview) http://readingminds.blog/

The Starving Bookworm (Review) http://thestarvingbookworm.wordpress.com

Sinfully Wicked Reviews (Review) https://sinfullywickedbookreviews.wordpress.com

The Repeat Mom (Review)  http://Thethreepeatmom.blogspot.com

February 14thTouch My Spine Book Reviews (Review) http://www.touchmyspinebookreviews.com

Darque Dreamer Reads (Review) darquedreamerreads@gmail.com

February 15thBook Dragon Girl (Review) http://www.bookdragongirl.com

J Bronder Book Reviews (Review) http://jbronderbookreviews.wordpress.com/

Tranquil Dreams (Review) https://klling.wordpress.com

February 16thPort Jericho (Review) http://www.aislynndmerricksson.com

This is My Truth Now (Review) https://thisismytruthnow.com

Midwestern Ladies Who Lit (Review) http://mwladieswholit.wordpress.com/

Girl Masked (Review) http://girlmasked.wordpress.com

Love Books Group (Review) http://lovebooksgroup.blog/

Where Dragons Reside (Review) https://kernerangelina.live

Tour organized by:

R&R Book Tours Button

R&R Book Tours


To see more about Misty Mount on ThisIsMyTruthNow, check out her dedicated author page where future content and books will added as (s)he publishes them and I review them. Thanks for stopping by this edition of the Author Alert.


About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon @ http://mybook.to/WGS. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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365 Challenge: Day 332 – Rumours

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Rumours: title of a book written by a good friend currently in need of a few beta readers

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As an author, I totally know how important it is to find a solid group of beta readers who can provide feedback on your work. I’ve been lucky enough to connect with a few in the last year, and one of them is Claire, blogger extraordinaire… but Claire is also a writer and published author. She completed a novel last year that I beta read a few times (she packs a lot of emotion, lust and power into her work), and it’s now with an editor and being shopped through various literary agencies and publishers. She’s completed a draft of a second novel that is a sorta spin-off of the first in the use of a few common characters. I haven’t read it yet because I’ve been focused on my own work, but I plan to read it sometime in the next 2 to 5 weeks. Claire mentioned that she was looking to add a few more folks to the early-read team. I thought it might be fun to beta read it at the same time as someone else I chat with on the blog… so that’s the point of today’s post. Rumour has it she’s got another winner… and I like spelling this the British way! I feel like sharing (with her permission of course) this next beta read… who’s interested?  Details below… feel free to private message me if you wanna know more about how this process works. Or you can message Claire directly through the site link below. We can line up our schedules and partner on providing feedback and input. Who’s with us?

*** Message from Claire @ BrizzleLass Books, Author ***

I have finished draft one and am just tidying a few bits and pieces up so that the book is ready to be read. It will be sent out by Friday 16 February at the latest and I would like responses by 30 March giving 6 weeks to complete the readthrough and feedback.

As this is the first draft I’m not looking for detailed analysis of grammatical issues. This is about the story and characters. I need to know:

  • Does the story flow?
  • Are there areas where it feels clunky? That something is missing? That something within the story doesn’t make sense? Etc
  • Are the characters believable?
  • What emotions do the characters pull from you? You don’t have to like them but they should affect you
  • Does the dialogue work? Is there too much, not enough, is it in the right places? And does it work with the narrative?

Hopefully this gives you an idea what I am looking for. So a bit about Rumours.

It is an Adult Contemporary Romance…there are some hot steamy sex scenes, so please don’t take this gig if this is something that may offend you!

This Bio is a rough draft and hasn’t been finalised in any way but I wanted to give you a taste of what the book is about…

Mark is a professional cellist, he’s also a semi-professional player. He has never settled with any girl for any length of time, but since his best friend found the love of his life, he’s realised there is something missing in his life. Wedding Photographer, Blair had her heart ripped from her chest just weeks before her wedding when she found out her fiancé hadn’t just cheated on her but had a family with the other woman. She has avoided relationships for the years since, terrified of losing her heart and feeling that betrayal again. When the two are introduced by a mutual friend sparks fly, but can two people with such broken pasts build any kind of future together?

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon @ http://mybook.to/WGS. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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365 Challenge: Day 329 – Truth (Author Alert: K. L. Loveley)

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Truth: (a) being in accord with fact or reality, candor and honesty, or (b) 365 Daily Challenge word for today’s author alert — K. L. Loveley

K-L-Loveley 2000px

 

If you are new to the ThisIsMyTruthNow blog, the 365 Daily Challenge, or the Author Alert segment, check out the About Site section from the main menu. Below are some key things to know about this author, but at the end of this post, you’ll see the permanent page I’ve added to my blog. You can return to check out more on who (s)he is, what she’s writing and how to buy her future work. I am pleased to present the very talented K. L. Loveley. You’ll find out more if you read one of his/her published books, which I completed a last year and absolutely loved. You can check out my review here

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Hi, Jay and everyone who is following, This Is My Truth Now. Thank you Jay for inviting me to feature on your amazing website, I feel both privileged and honoured. Allow me to introduce myself, before I get carried away with my relentless passion for writing. See what I did there? Thank you Didi Oviatt for drawing my attention to this powerful adjective. Relentless. My name is Katie and I write under the pen name of K.L.Loveley.

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My daily challenge word is, TRUTH. Sorry Jay for taking your blog’s noun and making it my own. Actually, it is a credit to you, that I now choose this word for my challenge. Truth: Being in accord with fact or reality. Candour and honesty. When I think of this word it puts me in mind of something pure. If I may quote Geoffrey Chaucer
from, The Canterbury Tales:

‘Truth is the highest thing that man may keep.’

You will be justified in thinking, why has Katie chosen the word truth, when she has already, quite clearly stated, that there is no truth in her name. A pen name is a façade, there can be no truth in such a falseness. So, how about, I start my introduction by allowing you to understand why I chose this pen name. When my first novel, Alice, was accepted for publication, I was still employed by the British NHS (National Health Service), as a Practice Nurse in a local general practice. Prior to this, I had worked for over twenty-years in a large hospital on the outskirts of my town. Although I write fiction, much of my work is based on my observations and experiences throughout my life and this includes my working life.

In order to prevent any conflict of interest in terms of my work, I decided that a pen name would be more appropriate. Around the time that I completed my first draft of Alice, I was researching my ancestors on the Ancestry.com website and came across the first names of some of my female ancestors. Oddly enough, I felt a strange connection with the name Katie and also an old family surname of Loveley. I was so drawn to these two names that I convinced myself that they would bring me good luck. Which indeed, they have. Both of these names were from my maternal side of the family, so just to balance things out and to pay respect to my paternal grandmother Lily, I introduced Lily as my middle name. For me, it is a way of keeping their memory alive. However, despite the fact that I have now retired from the NHS, based on my retirement age I might add. The truth of my real name is not important, for I will continue to write under my pen name. It is the name that I have established, an ancestral name that I am proud of.

What inspired me to become a writer?

I guess that you will be wondering about this question. The simple answer, is that I believe that writing is in my blood. It is coded in my DNA. I have always felt driven to write. While my friends were busy playing make-believe, I was playing my own make- believe games of being a librarian or a teacher. I wrote in my diary every day. I wrote to my penfriends and most important of all, I wrote short stories and poems. As a child, I spent most of my pocket money on books, pencils and stationary. I loved reading and couldn’t get enough of Enid Blyton and her famous five. My choice of books grew with me and so did my style of writing. Life for most of us, dictates the necessity to work and earn a wage. I realised that despite my love of writing, it was most unlikely that I could earn a living from this and it would have been foolish to even consider it.

Fortunately, I did have another passion and that was my interest in Human Biology and Physiology. This interest was the reason that I began my nursing career. I still am fascinated with all aspects of medicine. I studied for a degree in Biology which enhanced my nursing career, enabling me to understand the disease process in greater detail. It was my understanding of medicine that enabled me to write about some of the subjects that I have covered in both of my novels. There is a truth in medicine in terms of it being fact, it is the science of treating illness. It is about finding the truth about the origin of a given illness.

My second novel, Love, Secrets, and Absolution focuses on what can happen if a truth is held back. This coming of age story raises awareness of children’s mental health issues. It is a bittersweet story that covers topical references and current issues. Deceit, betrayal, teenage angst, love and addiction are all weaved into the emotional lives of the characters within the story. The protagonist, Alfie, struggles with the truth and as a consequence he faces many challenges in his young life. This is a story about life and the relationship of a son and a mother. Set in Nottinghamshire, England throughout the eighties and nineties the story incorporates aspects of social history, including the miners’ strike when Margaret Thatcher was the Prime- minister.

Jay wrote a brilliant review of Love, Secrets, and Absolution for which I am most grateful. I hope that his review encourages you to purchase a copy of my family drama novel too, if so, I look forward to reading your feedback. Thank you.

K.L.Loveley

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BIO

Katie is a dedicated wife, mother, and grandmother. She was born in the early 1950’s, in a small village in Nottinghamshire, England where she still lives. Having worked as a nurse for forty-six years, she recently retired and is now a full-time author. She currently has two books published and is currently writing her third novel, titled Union Blues. In addition to writing fiction, she also writes poetry, her collection of poetry Chameleon Days is due to be published later this year. She posts regular blogs to her website and speaks locally at book clubs and other events. Katie enjoys a variety of pastimes, including reading, cycling, swimming, sewing, gardening, and going to the theatre and cinema. Along with her husband she is a member of the National Trust and enjoys visiting places of interests, which she regularly writes about in her blog posts. They also own a narrowboat and enjoy sailing around the inland British Waterways.

 

W:  www.klloveley.com

F:  www.facebook.com/klloveley

T:  twitter.com/k_l_loveley

G:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16289732.K_L_Loveley

L:  https://uk.linkedin.com/in/k-l-loveley-439296136

 

To see more about K. L. Loveley on ThisIsMyTruthNow, check out her dedicated author page where future content and books will added as (s)he publishes them and I review them. Thanks for stopping by this edition of the Author Alert.


 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon @ http://mybook.to/WGS. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

365 Challenge: Day 326 – Segments

Posted on

Segments: each of the parts into which something is or may be divided

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I’ve chosen the word ‘segment’ for today’s 365 Daily Challenge as I consider a next blogging step. Today’s post is all about the mind of a writer while editing his/her book. It’s for two primary reasons: (1) I’m editing my second novel, Father Figure, and (2) I’m organizing a new segment for my blog all about writing. As I think through the process, I wanted to accomplish two things with this post: (1) an update on Father Figure, and (2) input from anyone interested in a writer’s segment on my blog.

Father Figure

  • I’ve read all the beta feedback and made a list of 32 suggestions to consider as part of the editing process. I agree with most of them, but there are a few that I need to ponder before deciding how to proceed. It was a very successful process.
  • My new target is February 15th to send to the editor and publisher for final review and feedback. I am confident I will achieve it as my head seems to be working properly again.
  • I might need and want to change the title based on a few things. I also have absolutely no thought about the cover on this one yet. Thoughts?

Writing & Editing Process

  • Once the drafts are written and authors have finished a large piece of editing and proofreading, it actually gets harder to finalize. As I read through it I keep telling myself to focus on voice or perspective, consistency or repetition, emotional depth and showing/telling… it can’t all be achieved with one read through, but you need to find the right rhythm. How do others work?
  • I’ve got some ideas for weekly writer’s segments and wanted to know if anyone would care to listen/read/guest post…
    • Ways to give you characters personality
    • Balance of describing settings to give your readers just enough
    • Choosing your point of view & perspective
    • When and where to elicit emotions without overdoing it
    • Repetition and consistency: solutions for keeping track

 

I look forward to everyone’s feedback today! Thanks.

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon @ http://mybook.to/WGS. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

365 Challenge: Day 322 – Compassion (Author Alert: Mary Deal)

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Compassion: (a) sympathy and concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others, or (b) 365 Daily Challenge word for today’s author alert — Mary Deal

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If you are new to the ThisIsMyTruthNow blog, the 365 Daily Challenge, or the Author Alert segment, check out the About Site section from the main menu. Below are some key things to know about this author, but at the end of this post, you’ll see the permanent page I’ve added to my blog. You can return to check out more on who she is, what she’s writing and how to buy her future work.

I am pleased to present the very talented Mary Deal. Mary and I met about 3 months through our publisher. I had wanted to read a few of her books, but couldn’t decide where to start. Down to the Needle, a mystery and thriller novel, seemed like the best intro to her work, so I took it on last week. You can check out my review here and read all about her in this week’s spotlight.

———-

Hello everyone! I’m Mary Deal, dropping an Author Alert here on Jay’s blog, This is My Truth Now, and am grateful for the opportunity. This is a lot coming from a person whose nickname used to be Greta because I can easily be a writing recluse. Yet, I must get out and experience things in order to write my stories, and I do love to clandestinely people watch!

How many times have you seen an event or an occurrence that touched your heart and left you wanting to help, but you couldn’t? That feeling you had is called compassion. We don’t always have ways to express those feelings, can’t always help others in certain situations. Mostly, we just recognize our feelings and then go on with our lives. In those instances, when we can help another person or do something to set a situation right, we have acted out of compassion. Admittedly, most of the time we feel this emotion, we can do nothing but silently wish the other person or persons well, or that the situation right itself.

Writers in particular have the ability to address nearly every situation of unexpressed compassion simply by attributing their feelings and emotions to their characters in different stories.

In a mystery, the hero or heroine will do something to right a wrong. They do this out of compassion for a situation or to help others.

In a romance novel, what brings two would-be lovers together is compassion, albeit it with a serving of compromise, but even that is compassion.

In a SciFi or fantasy story, there is always someone to save the planet and its people or save the day.

One exception is that in a thriller or crime story, the killer or perpetrator may kill believing that they are saving their victim for one reason or another. It is a form of compassion through a perverted mentality.

All good things are done out of compassion. It doesn’t matter in which genre we create our stories. Compassion is what will endear readers to our characters and bring the readers to our next book.

In my suspense novel, Down to the Needle, compassion is shown throughout the story. There was no other way the characters could carry on. Compassion was the motivating factor. This is the logline that tells what the story is about:

Abi’s heart condition could claim her life before she finds her abducted daughter who just may be the innocent young woman facing lethal injection.

Now tell me, did you feel an emotion for Abi’s plight? For the innocent inmate’s plight? Did you wish to see that everything would come out right? What you felt was compassion.

The seed for this story came about when I read a newspaper article about a man who was put to death by lethal injection though he was not proven guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt, as normally required by law. I read about Sister Prejean, a nun who counseled inmates on Death Row, and who saw a few of them to their end. I experienced a whole load of feelings for these people. Specifically, I wondered how the family of the not-totally-proven-guilty man was affected? I felt their heartache. What I felt was compassion.

From this information, I was able to create my story about a woman who has searched for more than two decades for her abducted child. She finds a young woman who would be her grown daughter’s age, languishing on death row mere months from lethal injection. Vague connections between Abi and the young woman cause Abi to investigate. Abi’s compassion for her daughter forces her to investigate even the skimpiest of clues.

Abi also feels great compassion for the young woman who just may be innocent of the crime she’s accused of committing. The inmate might be her daughter. Even if not, Abi believes she is innocent and feels the need to help get her cleared. Abi’s character is full of compassion. Her love interest, Joe, feels great compassion for Abi’s plight and sticks by her side, through he happens upon a former love interest, gets side tracked in his own feelings of compassion, needing to help her get off the street.

Do you see where I’m going with this? The feelings writers give their characters comes mostly out of compassion. It’s an emotion readers must feel from the story, differently from each character, but it must be there in each character, depending on their importance in the story. Goodness abounds, and we writers have a way of sharing it with the world. We do not have to keep it inside ourselves. We cannot help everyone, but our stories will shed light into others’ lives.

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Buy Down to the Needle

VIDEO TRAILER FOR DOWN TO THE NEEDLE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mafyzcSjObs

***

This is a 100 word flash fiction story I wrote that is a perfect example of compassion.

Homeless, Not Heartless

A homeless man, acting like a wounded lion expelled from the pride, foraged in a dumpster behind a restaurant. He looked like he hadn’t eaten in a year.

“Gotta eat, gotta eat,” he kept muttering.

He piled up remnants of discarded burgers on a piece of cardboard. He sampled one patty then laid it down.

“Good, that’s fresh,” he said.

He found some chicken bones and other leavings.

The man seemed excited and sat down and neatly arranged all the food, as if preparing to feast. Instead, he whistled, short and shrill, and his dog came running for its meal.

***

AUTHOR BIO

Mary Deal is an Amazon best-selling and award-winning author of suspense/thrillers, a short story collection, a writers’ reference manual, and psychological self-help. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee, Artist and Photographer, and former newspaper columnist and magazine editor. She is currently writing the third story in her Sara Mason Mystery Series, as well as a long romance novel, which is a new genre for her. Other books coming soon will include her first poetry book and a second collection of more of her short stories.

She has traveled a great deal and has a lifetime of diverse experiences, all of which remain in memory as fodder for her fiction. A native of California’s Sacramento River Delta, where some of her stories are set, she has also lived in England, the Caribbean, Hawaii, and now resides in Scottsdale, Arizona. She is also an oil painter and photographer. Her art is used to create gorgeous personal and household products from her online galleries.

Find Her Online

Her Website

Amazon Author Page

Barnes & Noble

FaceBook

Twitter

Linked In

Google+

Goodreads

Cold Coffee Cafe

BookTown

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{Author Alert: Not only is she an author, but she’s an artist; visit all the links!}

Mary Deal Fine Art

Island Image Gallery

Mary Deal Fine Art & Photography (Facebook)

Local Me

 

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My short stories show people dealing with emotion and compassion in diverse situations. Humor, nonsense, fright, disgust, disappointment, silliness, wonderment, reality, heartache. It’s all here in 30 stories that may leave you a little Off Center in the Attic from a mind that may be a little Off Center in the Attic.

{Author Alert: You must take a chance on this FREE offer below!}

Off Center in the Attic will be free on Amazon from February 3, 2018 through February 7, 2018. http://mybook.to/OffCenter

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To see more about Mary Deal on ThisIsMyTruthNow, check out her dedicated author page where future content and books will added as she publishes them and I review them. Thanks for stopping by this edition of the Author Alert.

To see more about Mary Deal on ThisIsMyTruthNow, check out her dedicated author page where future content and books will added as she publishes them and I review them. Thanks for stopping by this edition of the Author Alert.


 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon @ http://mybook.to/WGS. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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Book Review: The Resurrection of Joan Ashby by Cherise Wolas

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Why This Book 
The publisher of The Resurrection of Joan Ashby, written in 2017 by Cherise Wolas, emailed me late last year to see if I’d be interested in reading the novel. I accepted the challenge and put it on my TBR, agreeing to read within the next few months. As I was cleaning out my TBR, I noticed this was still sitting in my queue, hence it became one of my first reads in 2018.

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Plot, Characters & Setting 
Joan Ashby as a young girl wanted to be a writer. She wrote all the time, publishing her first book by 23 to rave reviews. She even had a list of things to do, which included never to fall in love or have a family. Writing was all she ever wanted until she met a man, fell in love, married and had a child. Then a second. Even though she and her husband had agreed – no children! The book chronicles her life from about 23 to 53, covering the growth and maturity of herself and her two children, including the ups and downs of her relationship with the husband. Set in various cities between the US and India, Joan raises her family, writes and travels, all trying to find herself and be the best woman she can be. She meets many influential women who help organize her life and path, deals with devastating actions from each of her family members, and learns how to deal with something always stepping in the way of her success. It’s literary fiction — a true novel that will make you think about personal choices, giving up things for others and understanding when it’s okay to be selfish.

Approach & Style 
I read a physical copy of this ~550 page book over the course of 4 days, a majority of it on two 2-hour train rides near NYC where I live. There are ~50 chapters, each between 10 and 15 pages long, telling the story in third person POV. This is not your typical novel in that it only follows around the main characters; instead, it is two different books within one novel. Approximately 2/3 of the novel, ~ 350 pages, are the story of Joan Ashby’s life, but the other ~200 pages are short stories or sections of various novels that the author Joan Ashby has written throughout her career; these stories provide deeper layers into her thoughts and relationships, as she often tells the story of her own life through other characters. To be honest, while some of the stories were helpful, having ~200 pages of this book dedicated to that style was way too much. I found myself skimming those sections all too often, understanding I might have missed a few key points of the overall novel, but happier to focus on one drama at a time!

Strengths 
The story is simple, yet full of complexity and intensity. Joan’s approach to life, her internal thoughts and what she actually says and does, vary distinctly and vastly. This is the greatest strength of the novel — a woman readers will identify with, but also get angry with. Choices are presented in a light and casual manner, yet all the ramifications are immense.

Her sons are painted with a beautiful set of images and words. They are real, but they feel so far away. You want to hug them one moment, then cover their heads with a pillow case and smother them the next. BTW… it’s an expression — I’m not advocating this as a method to handle people you don’t particularly like at any given moment. And for the sake of irony, I’m writing this as if I were thinking exactly like Joan. It is my life/review to do what I will. LOL

On a more serious note, it’s spectacular when it’s spectacular, which is at least 50% of the book. The story pulls you in. The characters are diverse and basic, yet charming and frustrating. It’s a fine balance, and Wolas impeccably draws a wide array of issues and reactions that keep you thinking and page-turning to guess what Joan may say or do next. Just reading about Joan’s daily routine was vivid and exciting, even when it was merely running errands around town.

Concerns 
As mentioned earlier, the stories within the story were just too plentiful. A few were touching and provided some much needed balance to the overall narrative of Joan’s life story. Some went on for twenty pages and truly felt like a roadblock to a successful read of the book. Perhaps as a separate collection of shorts, I might have enjoyed them more. Instead, I found myself eager to get back to the main plot, feeling a bit overwhelmed, and in need of a red pen to edit!

I struggled a bit in the beginning with Joan’s attitude towards a few things in her life. She eagerly tells us how and why she treats her two sons differently, but everything else about her is balanced and fair. She chose to keep the pregnancies, despite not wanting children. She never seemed like someone who would treat them differently, but it was a key aspect of the novel, so I suspended a bit of disbelief and kept on moving… in the end, it’s important to the overall perspective of her behavior, but I think it needed another round of analysis on why Joan behaved the way she did in certain circumstances. Too little left out in some areas, too much included in others.

Summary & Next Steps 
Undoubtedly, Wolas is an amazing writer. Some of the passages were lyrical, intense and magnificent. I could never write like she does, I vividly recall thinking at a few moments. If Wolas can produce a novel like that, without all the additional superfluous or extraneous, I’ll be the first in line to buy it. But if it’s another like this, I would TBR it, but not rush for it. I would like to meet her — she seems quite brilliant, but in need of a push in more defined direction. I’m not saying I’d be the one to push her… just curious to see how she thinks in person on the fly, as opposed to a cultivated piece of writing. All-in-all, I’m glad I read this book and I really enjoyed large portions of it. If you can accept the things I noted as concerns, you’ll find some wonderful beauty in her writing style and choice of focus and perspective.

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, can be purchased on Amazon. I write A LOT. I read A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge – words and humor. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.
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365 Challenge: Day 317 – Journal (LIST: Objects I adore)

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Journal: books I’ve been writing in for 30 years

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Sundays are LIST days and today is no different. For this group of five Sundays, I chose objects I adore or that have some huge importance to me. We’re in our fourth week, and I’ve gone with journal because of how many I’ve collected and used over the years. Ever since I was about 6 or 7 years old, I’ve written in journals. I have over 40 at this point, mostly stored in boxes or bottoms of cabinets. I pulled out a few that were easy to access, to share some of the covers or initial pages. You’ll see various dates, mostly from the 1990s in this batch.

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A few are focused on poetry…

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Some you can actually see the beginnings of Watching Glass Shatter last year.

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Below is one of the first adult ones when I graduated from high school.

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Each person who gave me the journal (as I don’t ever buy my own — I want them to be special and attributed to someone who supported me over the years) has a short note on the cover page, thanking them. I cherish these, often flipping through them to see what I was thinking at any given moment in time. Some days it was revealing a secret crush. Other days it was a line I thought too beautiful to forget.

I have moved more towards electronic in the last few years, but I still keep journals to write in script or cursive — whatever my hand and mind choose at that point in time. Someday… perhaps I can combine them together as the ‘best of’ and publish a new book of ‘early thoughts!’

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Sunday posts, the end of each week, have become a theme on This-Is-My-Truth-Now, often organized by groups of five (5) focused on interesting things about my life. I’m continuing the trend of the seventh day, ending the week on Sunday, as a list (we know I love them) that provides more in depth knowledge about me. Past weeks included:

  • Weeks 1 – 5: Primary ethnicity groups and nationalities
  • Weeks 6 – 10: A to Z Favorites
  • Weeks 11 – 15: Colors with an important meaning
  • Weeks 16 – 20: Cities I’ve lived
  • Weeks 21 – 25: Jobs I’ve held
  • Weeks 26 – 30: Top 10 entertainment options
  • Week 31: How to follow or contact me across all social media platforms
  • Week 32: How to help an artist with promotion
  • Week 33 – 37: Favorite Book Genres
  • Week 38 – 42: Holidays
  • Week 43 – 47: Objects I adore
  • Week 48 – 52: TBD

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin