Wednesday, August 16, 2017

PROMO Blitz: Holy by @AbbieKrupnick #excerpt #horror #darkfantasy

Horror /contemporary dark fantasy
Date Published: April 15, 2017
Publisher: Darkwater Syndicate, Inc.

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Gus Stevens has the worst of both worlds. By night, he resides in the Dream World, a place steeped in magic and exotic dangers. By day, a giant snow-lizard stalks him in the Real World, looking to make Gus its next meal. In order to regain control of his life, young Gus must undergo a psychoanalytic exorcism. But this comes with a high price—he must break away from everything he has ever thought was real. Author Abbie Krupnick blends the magical and the mundane in this avant-garde dark fantasy where nothing is as it seems.


The high-pitched scream of a predatory bird echoed from the direction of the Valley. The eagle was approaching at break-neck speed, a maroon streak under the stars. Then it braked and circled lazily overhead a few times before alighting opposite Gus, talons gripping the edge. Gus heard the volcano groan, its anger filling him. The mountain shuddered, its sides growing warm. He slipped out of his cocoon of heat, felt naked without it in front of the bird.
“Hello,” the Magician said, examining him with green eyes. “Why don’t you come down and we’ll talk about things in the grove.”
Gus wondered how much he had overheard.
The mountain was heating up by the second. In a few minutes the smooth stone would scald his feet. A pale orange glow flashed briefly at the bottom of the vent, then colored to yellows and reds too fast, too soon.
“Whenever you’re ready,” Language whispered.
“Don’t listen to him, Gus,” the Magician said. So the Magician could hear, too. What an unsurprising comfort that was.
“Boy, in a few moments, I’m going to flood the whole World with molten rock. Make your choice quickly, because this is the only chance you’ll get.”
“Gus Stevens, you get down from the volcano this instant!” the Magician ordered sternly. Gus couldn’t help snickering at that.
“What are you going to choose, a lifetime of pain here, pretending you’re happy when you can’t even talk about your sham of happiness?”
“I’ll give you a nice, relaxed ride down to the grove. Your Mothers will make your favorite foods. I’ll even make Spear Mother take off her helmet for you.” The last offer disgusted him.
“Gus, he’s a monster.”
“This renegade spirit is crazy.”
“He’s whoring out Spear Mother.”
“I would do no such thing. I’m simply explaining to my son—”
“Boy, friend, vessel, host, house, my stronghold, listen to me: Which do you want? The misery this poor excuse for a Person offers you or freedom?”
I don’t know! I don’t know! I don’t know! I don’t know!
“Easy, Gus, easy,” the Magician murmured. Gus shot him a poisonous look, took several deep breaths while staring at the rising column of magma. A despairing question anchored him.
I’m going to suffer whether or not I’m free, right? he asked the rock illuminated like a burning mineshaft. The magma rose higher. The Dream World will go under and I’ll be the same?
The magma’s rise halted as Language stopped to think.
“Well,” it replied. “You’ll have me.”
What difference will that make?
“Do you promise not to be angry if I tell you?”
“The truth is, I don’t know,” it said, and the magma resumed its journey upwards. It had to be less than seventy feet away. Sixty-five. Sixty. It stopped again. “I don’t know what the Waking World is like except through what I’ve overheard you say.”
So how do you know you’re important there? You don’t even know if it exists.
“I don’t. But I trust Mathis. You do, too, don’t you?”
Dumbstruck, Gus replied, I guess.
“And he told you the mountain would explain everything?”
Yes. He didn’t tell me that the mountain was possessed by a crazy spirit calling itself Language incarnate.
“Exactly, Gus! Well done!” the Magician wheedled, “Don’t trust it. Trust ME. I’ll give you all the knowledge you’ve ever wanted from me if you return to the grove.”
The magma hadn’t started to rise again but its heat was baking his face.
Please, Language begged, now inside his head. Please.
You don’t care what happens to me. So what if I kill myself, right? You lose your chains. I’m still screwed.
I’ll be trapped in your soul again, but YOU will be free to use me. Which is how it should be.
Then you’re exchanging one prison for another.
If you were in my place, you’d be right, but the rules are different for me. Please, Gus. Let me go.
He had nothing to say to it.
Please, Gus. Please. PLEASE.
It was hysterical, its voice rising higher and higher with the magma. His ears were ringing again.
PLEASE. PLEASE. Let me go. Let me go. Let me go. LET ME GO.
Its hysteria was getting to him. He couldn’t stop his own tears from leaking.
Please, Gus. Please let me out. LET ME OUT! LET ME OUT! LET ME OUT!
It was screaming bloody murder. He covered his ears as though this would muffle the sound inside his head. He was ready to smash the sound out of his skull on the vent but Language stopped him with a whimpering, Please.
“Please please please please please!” the Magician mocked, voice muffled. He kept chanting “please please please” as he cleaned his feathers. Gus tuned him out, waited until the bird had finished so he could see the hate on Gus’s face. Long-hidden vows to repay the suffering his mentor had caused him boiled to the surface. He chewed them all into a simple order to Language.

About the Author

Abbie Krupnick lives in Summit, New Jersey. When she’s not writing, she trains Brazilian jiu-jitsu and makes explosive quantities of visual art.

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PROMO Blitz: The Man in the Forest by @mwarriner2 #excerpt #paranormal #horror

Paranormal Horror
Date Published: May 31, 2017
Publisher: Darkwater Syndicate, Inc.

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Vincent, a musical prodigy, is caught up in a concert rivalry with a former student. He travels to Romania to settle the score, but what he discovers is the horrific true story behind the song his protégé wrote, “The Man in the Forest.” Supernatural phenomena and horrific sights abound, but the locals are tight-lipped about the mysterious goings-on. Can Vincent and his group upstage their rival, or will they fall prey to the curse of the man in the forest?


Behind him, in the hallway leading to the front door, he heard a light pattering of footsteps. He looked over his shoulder. The footsteps stopped, but he couldn’t see anyone in the doorway. Out of the corner of his eye he detected movement in the hall, but turned in time only to catch a shadow scurry away.
It had been a small shadow—a child perhaps? But what would children be doing so far out in the forest without their parents, and this late at night?
Vincent chased after the shadow, but when he got to the hall, nothing was there. Just then he heard something behind him. He quickly turned and caught a glimpse of what looked like the ventriloquist’s dummy—what was his name? Johnny Nelson—skipping to the stairs and out of sight. Vincent’s eyes grew wide.
Vincent ran through the living room to the stairs. He froze upon hearing a childlike laugh and looked up. The puppet stood at the balcony with its face in between the rails, leering at him. It looked exactly like the one in the painting.
First taking a breath to steady himself, Vincent climbed the stairs, the doll watching him all the while with tiny, creaking movements of its wooden eyes.
All at once the lights in the cabin went out, blanketing the house in shadow. He heard the pattering of small feet run down the second story hall. Vincent halted midway up the stairs and listened… nothing.
Then the lights blinked back on. Vincent ascended the rest of the stairs to the second story balcony. Johnny Nelson was gone without a trace.
Further down the hall, Vincent noticed the door to Mary’s bedroom was ajar. The lights inside her bedroom flickered as though the electrical wiring had gone bad. He went to the door and pushed it open.
It was dark when he stepped inside, the light mounted in the fan providing only sporadic bursts of light. He reached up and flicked the light bulb, and it steadied. As he lowered his gaze, he caught sight of Johnny Nelson in the reflection in the mirror atop the dresser. Before Vincent could even react, there was a muffled pop and crunching of glass. He dove to the floor as shards of the light bulb in the fan rained down around him. “Vince!” Mary shrieked. “Are you okay?”
He looked over his shoulder from the ground. Mary and Tyler stood in the doorway.
Vincent got to his feet, but didn’t answer right away. The mirror in the dresser was little more than an empty frame with a wood backing, its glass having burst all over the dresser’s surface and the floor. On the backing, in red letters that looked too much like blood for Vincent’s liking, was written: “Johnny Wants To Play!”

About the Author

Born and raised in Central Florida, Michael Warriner pursued an early interest in learning music and creating characters in hand-drawn comic books. He began his career working simultaneously in the mental health industry and as a character performer at his local theme park. It was while pursuing his degree in Psychology that he began writing stories “just to kill time.” Before long, he had written two manuscripts. This developing interest in telling stories was further driven by his fascination with amateur filmmaking. By day, Michael now applies his education and training to assist clients diagnosed with mental illness. By night, he writes novels, and in his free time he composes music. He draws upon these varied interests to create unique characters and thrust them into memorable stories.

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Thursday, August 10, 2017

Blog Tour: Wish I Were Here by Erin Lavan with my #review

Contemporary Fiction
Date Published: 5/15/2017

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Savannah Waters never expected to ride through the Alps on the back of her rugged doctor’s Harley in pursuit of her stolen nude self-portrait, when her world was turned upside down. After sinking to rock bottom following her ex-boyfriend’s drug overdose, Savannah is dragged to jail, a nauseating intervention, and AA meetings. Finally, she is introduced to an intriguing psychiatrist who sees her as more than a patient. A trip to Europe with the gorgeous Jake would be a dream come true – were it not for the wacky gang of wealthy weirdos they’re traveling with. Europe is invigorating, the food and wine delectable and the company stimulating to say the least – but how can Savannah get closer to her dream Doc while they’re surrounded by so many people who need his curative touch? To top it all, her deeply personal (and very nude) artwork lies in wait on Isle de Brêhat, tantalizingly close to the end of her European odyssey… From the feisty pen of debut author Erin Lavan, WISH I WERE HERE is an irresistible modern-day romance that will put a smile on your face and leave you hungry for a taste of adventure.


Light and Fun, Erin Lavan's novel Wish I Were Here will have readers captivated by her characters. 

The characters are real and very well developed, they make it easy for you as the reader to be drawn into. 

This novel was very easy to follow. There was something wonderful about how simple it was. I didn't have to overthink things. There was plenty of comic relief in it to lighten any of the deeper moments.

I never felt confused and that is a great testament when you are introducing readers to new characters and issues.

About the Author

Erin Lavan is currently based out of Miami Beach, and the owner of her own Restaurant PR Firm. She has been an associate publisher of DiningOut Magazine, Certified Sommelier, Restaurant Consultant, Published Writer, and Foodie in her 15 years in Miami. "Wish I Were Here" is hardly her first soirée with professional writing, but it is her first published personal novel.

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Friday, July 28, 2017

Blog Tour: Grond: The Raven High by Yuri Hamaganov #review

Young Adult Sci-Fi
Date Published: February 28, 2017

In the year 2086, Earth is exhausted. The seas have been emptied, the bedrock and soil stripped of their resources, and the superheated atmosphere churns with terrible storms. Those who can afford to do so live in the limbo of virtual reality, and the billions who suffer in poverty have no work, no clean water, and no security from the chaos.

The only hope for those trapped on a dying Earth are the Changed—the seven bioengineered post-humans who work in their separate manufacturing facilities orbiting high above the planet. Raised from birth for their work and fully matured at ten years old, their genius provides the nanomaterials that have begun to cleanse Earth of the pollutants that have wiped out almost the entire ecosphere.

But for Olga Voronov, youngest of the Changed, the isolation and endless toil are not the greatest of her challenges. Down on Earth there are those who resent and fear her talents—and would prefer that humanity not be given the second chance that only she could make possible …


I truly enjoyed this Dystopian world. I'm not going to lie, it took me a bit to get into this one and I was a bit confused about where the author was going with the story in the beginning, but once it started to unfold, I was in. 

Olga was both naive and strong. I think she grew into herself during the course of the novel.

I liked the flow of the novel overall once it got moving. 

About the Author

Yuri Hamaganov lives in Moscow. He created the GROND series as a present for himself when he was twelve years old. This was the story he had always dreamed of exploring, and when he realized that nobody had written it for him, he set out to do it himself.

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Blog Tour: The Toilet Papers by @theWRITEengle #interview #giveaway

Short story collection (horror, humor, & historical)
Date Published: 7/23/2017
Publisher: JME Books

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Have you ever noticed that reading a book on the toilet takes forever? Wouldn’t it be nice to have stories suited to your specific potty needs? This collection of short stories ranges from 50 words to more than 50 pages, separated in categories labeled to fit your bathroom needs: NUMBER ONE, NUMBER TWO, and FARFROMPOOPIN. The idea is to give you, the reader, a great deal of material to read, tailored and categorized to the needs of your intestines and bladder. So go ahead, get comfortable, pull out your Squatty Potty® and enjoy some fantasy, science fiction, horror, adventure, and humor from the comfort of your own throne…the john…the latrine…your office…the bathroom, whatever you want to call it. Just be sure to wash your hands once you’re done. 


Is There a Message in Your Novel That You Want Readers to Grasp?
Thank you so much for having me on your blog and helping to promote my book release tour. Since The Toilet Papers is a short story collection, I guess there’s no “message” weaved into it except that it’s a sampling of my writing style, tone, and stories or concepts that I find interesting. Basically, if it’s slanted toward the supernatural or has a historical element, I’m probably into it.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I find it challenging to write, as weird as that sounds. Once I get started, I crank out words and never hit writer’s block (I don’t believe it exists). But the act of sitting down and making the time to write is a chore to me. I know I have to write 1,000 words 5 days a week, but I can find so much other stuff to do in my house or with my family before I sit down to do my job.

How many books have you written and which is your favorite?
I’ve published 7 of my own books, 1 for a client, and have 3 manuscripts with my agent. My favorite is always whatever I’m working on now, which would be Exposure, a dark YA horror where a boy is trapped in a town that won’t let him go. My favorite story I’ve written is The Dredge. It’s a novella that was awarded Honorable Mentions in the Writer’s of the Future competition and one that I plan to expand into a novel one day.

If You had the chance to cast your main character from Hollywood today, who would you pick and why?
For Exposure, Ross Lynch a few years ago is the boy I imagine playing Ashton Graymore. I think he’s adorable and I love his smile, which are the attributes I see when Ashton is falling in love with Malin Rose. Ross has a great relaxed way about him and seems like the kind of guy that isn’t afraid to be wrong, question himself, or stick his neck out for a friend. That’s pretty much Ashton.

When did you begin writing?
I started writing really bad Shel Silverstein copycat poetry when I was seven. In fourth grade, I won an award for a poem, taking first place in my whole elementary school. That poem placed first in the state and became my very first fiction writing credit as an adult, published by a magazine. In sixth grade, I wrote a story from the perspective of Christopher Columbus’s first mate, and my teacher noted on the top that I should save the story for publication. I still have that story and her note because it was the first moment in my life when I realized that anyone could publish a book. Up until then, I thought you had to be born into it, like a princess or Hollywood starlet. That pretty much put the bug in me.

How long did it take to complete your first book?
From start to finish, Clifton Chase and the Arrow of Light took a year, but I’d say the writing part was about 4 months.

Did you have an author who inspired you to become a writer?
 As a little girl, I read Alice in Wonderland and for the briefest moment, I left my bedroom and was walking in the story. I remember gasping when I realized this had happened, kind of like when you’re in a dream and you suddenly realize it’s a dream, and then I was back in my bedroom. I thought that was the coolest thing I’d ever experienced and decided at seven I wanted to create that same experience for others.

What is your favorite part of the writing process?
My absolute favorite part of the writing process is connecting story threads. As my book’s first reader, I get to discover things about the story world, characters, and plot that no one else ever will. For example, in Dreadlands: Wolf Moon, the boy and this girl are fighting a werewolf, who runs off. The girl mentions the boy’s sister, and he rushes back to camp where he’d left her. As he pulls back the curtain of hanging vines to reveal her hiding place, she is gone. I remember setting down my pencil, putting my hands on my head, and saying, “Oh, my God! Where is she? Who took her?” I had no idea and it was one of the coolest moments in my writing process to date.

Describe your latest book in 4 words.
Horror, humor, historical shorts.

Can you share a little bit about your current work or what is in the future for your writing?
Absolutely! My latest series is Exposure, a story of a boy who is trapped in a town that won’t let him go till he solves a string of clues on a mystery roll of film. It’s kind of like what Alice in Wonderland might be like if Stephen King wrote it for a young adult audience. I am in love with this book! I’ve written the second in the series, something I’ve never done before so it was quite challenging, and will begin working on book three once I’ve edited book two. My agent, Sartiza Hernandez, is shopping it with publisher right now, so FINGERS CROSSED! All of my books have pinterest pages with pictures of settings from each story and the actors I imagine portraying my main characters
The other awesome project I’m working on is called Wick Bookstm. These are handmade candles that capture a specific scent of a drink from each of my books. The idea is to burn the candle while reading the book and experience the entire story. They are so cool and have been well-received.

Thank you so much for having me on your blog and allowing me to share my books and what I do with your followers. I really appreciate the opportunity.

About the Author

Jaimie Engle was once sucked into a storybook, where she decided she would become an author. She has modeled, managed a hip-hop band, and run a body shop. She loves coffee, trivia, cosplay, and podcasting on ORIGINS, where myth and science meet ( Basically, if it's slanted toward the supernatural or nerdy, she's into it! She lives in Florida with her awesome husband, hilarious children, and the world's best dog. She also happens to have the world’s best literary agent, Saritza Hernandez. Become a fan at Follow on social media @theWRITEengle and pick up books at

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Rafflecopter: July 6 – Aug 6 ($30 Starbucks GC; Toilet Papers ebook) 

Goodreads Giveaway: July 1 – July 22 (3 paperbacks)

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Thursday, July 27, 2017

Blog Tour: Surviving the Fatherland by @aoppenlander #interview #giveaway

Historical Fiction
Date Published: March 15, 2017

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***An IWIC Hall of Fame Novel*** 

***Winner 2017 National Indie Excellence Award***

"This book needs to join the ranks of the classic survivor stories of WWII such as "Diary of Anne Frank" and "Man's Search for Meaning". It is truly that amazing!" InD'taleMagazine

"This family saga is wonderfully written and, aside from the emotional ramifications, very easy to read. I stayed up too late a couple of nights reading it...I highly recommend this book!" Long and Short Reviews

Spanning thirteen years from 1940 to 1953 and set against the epic panorama of WWII, author Annette Oppenlander's SURVIVING THE FATHERLAND is a sweeping saga of family, love, and betrayal that illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the children's war.

SURVIVING THE FATHERLAND tells the true and heart-wrenching stories of Lilly and Günter struggling with the terror-filled reality of life in the Third Reich, each embarking on their own dangerous path toward survival, freedom, and ultimately each other. Based on the author's own family and anchored in historical facts, this story celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the strength of war children. 

When her father goes off to war, seven-year-old Lilly is left with an unkind mother who favors her brother and chooses to ignore the lecherous pedophile next door. A few blocks away, twelve-year-old Günter also looses his father to the draft and quickly takes charge of supplementing his family's ever-dwindling rations by any means necessary.

As the war escalates and bombs begin to rain, Lilly and Günter's lives spiral out of control. Every day is a fight for survival. On a quest for firewood, Lilly encounters a dying soldier and steals her father's last suit to help the man escape. Barely sixteen, Günter ignores his draft call and embarks as a fugitive on a harrowing 47-day ordeal--always just one step away from execution.

When at last the war ends, Günter grapples with his brother's severe PTSD and the fact that none of his classmates survived. Welcoming denazification, Lilly takes a desperate step to rid herself once and for all of her disgusting neighbor's grip. When Lilly and Günter meet in 1949, their love affair is like any other. Or so it seems. But old wounds and secrets have a way of rising to the surface once more.


Is There a Message in Your Novel That You Want Readers to Grasp?
I want people to understand what life was like for ordinary people and especially children during that time. That generation of war children just took the abuse and after the war ended, everyone was in a hurry to move on. Nobody gave those kids a second thought. And so they sucked it in, grew up and created lives as best they could. In later years they were still accused of being Nazis because they happened to live at that time. In addition to the war theme, Lilly’s personal struggle with the betrayal of her father and boyfriend show us how complicated love and family relationships can be. Nothing is cut and dry, black or white.

I hope I can shed additional light on this horrific time in human history. I want to make it clear that not all Germans living during the Third Reich were Nazis. Not every person was evil. I also want readers to see some parallels to today’s history in the U.S. This is not a political statement, but humans should be able and willing to learn from mistakes made in the past. Right now I’m not so sure this is happening. I also want people to know more about the way life was lived in civilian Germany during and after the war. You can read on Wikipedia that after the war ended, the Allied Forces provided rations amounting to 1,200-1,500 daily calories per person per day. And that was supposedly a low amount to prevent an uprising. That is completely false. Germany’s infrastructure was so broken, there was hardly anything. Sure, they received ration cards with words like flour, sugar, meat and bread printed on them. But the stores remained empty another three years until the currency reform in June 1948.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

How many books have you written and which is your favorite?
Surviving the Fatherland is my fifth published novel. It was also my first full-length manuscript, but it took 15 years to complete. The ‘Escape from the Past’ trilogy is a time-travel action/adventure set in medieval Germany and the Wild West. All three books are based on actual characters and events. The fourth novel, A Different Truth, is a historical mystery set during the height of the Vietnam War. It examines the theme of war versus peace movement in the world of a boys’ military boarding school.
Surviving the Fatherland is probably my favorite because it took so much energy and emotion and it’s based on my family. I think it’s an important book with a timeless message.

If You had the chance to cast your main character from Hollywood today, who would you pick and why?
I’m having a hard time with this question mainly because I don’t know who many of the upcoming young actors/actresses are. For ‘Surviving the Fatherland’ you’d have to use child actors, then maybe teens and a twenty-something couple. A lot would depend on the screenplay and what is left out of the story. Screenplays are typically a 100 pages, one page per minute. My novel is 360 pages, so there’d be a lot of cutting.
There, I circumvented your question and made it into something else.

When did you begin writing?
I started writing children’s stories in the 90s. We lived in the woods and I came up with a hedgehog going on adventures in the forest. Of course, I didn’t know anything about writing or publishing and so these first projects went nowhere. In 2002, I interviewed my parents about their experience in WWII as German war children and from it sprouted the first short stories. I began writing a lot, attended conferences, classes and critique groups. I read and read. Still, it took until 2015 to have quality publishable work.

How long did it take to complete your first book?
‘Surviving the Fatherland’ is my first full-length book and took 15 years to complete. In the meantime I wrote four other novels, but I always returned to Fatherland because it wouldn’t leave me alone. It kept nagging and demanding to be finished. Even as late as last year, I didn’t think I’d get it done. I must have gone through dozens of rewrites, restructures, changes of timelines, POV and tense changes. I also changed the title many times.

Did you have an author who inspired you to become a writer?
 Not really. I was always an avid reader, even as a child. And I remember thinking when I was younger that I’d never be able to write a book with all these characters, plots, arcs etc. Well, at the time I wasn’t able to. But when I started with a children’s book in the 1990s, I noticed how much I loved the creative process, developing characters and making them come alive on the page. It took a lot longer, studying craft, workshops and seminars, writers groups and lots of “butt in chair” time to get good at it.

What is your favorite part of the writing process?
After a first draft I go back to see what I created. Reading that first draft and seeing how my characters have become ‘real’ people is extremely satisfying. Of course, that’s also when the serious work of revision begins. But it’s a great feeling to see a completed manuscript. The second time this happens is when the manuscript is ready for publication and a beautiful new story is born.

Describe your latest book in 4 words.
How children survived WWII

Can you share a little bit about your current work or what is in the future for your writing?
I’m currently researching WWII from the German soldiers’ perspective because I want to write a story about my grandfather, Wilhelm. I’m getting in touch with the German military government to see if any records exist of my grandfather. This way I could place him exactly in the right unit. If I find what I’m looking for, I’ll write a novel about Wilhelm in the war and his nine years as a POW in Russia.
I recently finished ‘Broken Journey, a story set during the American Civil War. It is about a boy’s choice to protect his best friend, a slave, from a brutal attack which forces both on separate journeys: one escapes into war, the other is sold into slavery. Told from alternating viewpoints, one black and one white, the story examines the power of hope and friendship, and the endurance of the human spirit to find a way home. I’m hoping to get ‘Broken Journey’ published later this year.

About the Author

Annette Oppenlander is an award-winning writer, literary coach and educator. As a bestselling historical novelist, Oppenlander is known for her authentic characters and stories based on true events, coming alive in well-researched settings. Having lived in Germany the first half of her life and the second half in various parts in the U.S., Oppenlander inspires readers by illuminating story questions as relevant today as they were in the past. Oppenlander’s bestselling true WWII story, Surviving the Fatherland, was elected to IWIC’s Hall of Fame and won the 2017 National Indie Excellence Award. Her historical time-travel trilogy, Escape from the Past, takes readers to the German Middle Ages and the Wild West. Uniquely, Oppenlander weaves actual historical figures and events into her plots, giving readers a flavor of true history while enjoying a good story. Oppenlander shares her knowledge through writing workshops at colleges, libraries and schools. She also offers vivid presentations and author visits. The mother of fraternal twins and a son, she lives with her husband and old mutt, Mocha, in Bloomington, Ind.

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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Blog Tour: Nowhere is Home Since You Left from Madeleine Zeldin with my #interview

Death, Grief, Bereavement
Date Published: 1-6-2017
Publisher: Cygnet Publications, Cygnet Media Group Inc.

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When her beloved soul friend husband, Gerald, passed away a few years ago, and her friends and sons moved to distant cities, she found herself alone for the first time in her life.

Gerald, a professional artist, had his studio in their home. Their home was always filled with family life, art, music, joy and playfulness in the garden.
After his passing, the silence was loud. The joy was gone — her paradise — a lost paradise.

She had two choices, either to fall apart or to get on with life.  She chose the latter and traveled to find a home, a community — however - nowhere was home - since he left.
In writing Nowhere Is Home … Since You Left, Madeleine Zeldin shares her insights, emotions, and true life experiences as she journeys solo throughout the years following the sorrowful death of her soul mate, internationally renowned artist, Gerald Zeldin. She presents years of storytelling based on travel journals she wrote while traveling to countries such as Mexico, Philippines, Ecuador, France, Spain, and California, U.S.A.  Zeldin also reveals the intensity of the pain and sorrow experienced in her grief, along with the fulfillment, satisfaction and logistics of international travel. In her travels she volunteered in the medical field and gave help where help was needed. She brings inspiration to those of her generation, the 60’s, who find themselves alone.

Through her evocative tales of adventure, Zeldin reveals this life-changing knowledge to the world!

But ultimately where is Home?


    Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

I would like readers, especially of my generation, the baby boomers, 
to realize there is life after big loss ... to bring inspiration to those who
find themselves alone and feeling lost.  Through my evocative tales of 
adventure, I reveal life-changing knowledge to my readers.

     Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

      Since this story is my journey, I find the memories that creep in
                         sometimes freeze me in my tracks.  

       How many books have you written and which is your favourite?

I have written three books for publication. They are all my favourite 
for their own messages. My first, Our Last Dance ... A Love Story,
was extremely important in the process of making many much needed
changes in our medical system.
 Nowhere Is Home ... Since You Left, is instrumental in 
inspiring those of my generation to realize there is life after loss.
Along with tales of great adventure, it gives practical advice, not only 
for travel, but for life in general.
My children's book ... Fiona, The Fat, Fluffy Feline, hopefully 
will help children through their grief, of whatever kind.

     If you had a chance to cast your main character from Hollywood today,
                             who would you pick and why?

 Since this is my journey, I think I would have to play myself. I don't know 
 of any actor who could be me.  However, I am open to suggestions.
The actor would have to be of my generation.

                          When did you begin writing?

I began my writing for publication in 2010 after my beloved, late husband, my soul friend, Gerry, passed away. However, I feel there was never really a beginning to my real writing. As far back as I can remember, I was telling stories, which often amused people.  I guess I consider myself a 'story-teller' rather than a writer.  As an artist, I often write 'sketches' of my experiences ... in free-form style.
My first published book, Our Last Dance ... A Love Story, written in 2010, 
was inspired by my late husband's desire 'to have his story told ... so that others may be helped'.  It is a portrait of our soul friend relationship ... along with insight into our medical journey of battling cancer for 7 years.

                    How long did it take you to write your first book?

It took me the first year after Gerry's death ... one of the most difficult tasks
I have ever performed.   Reliving his pain and death and our journey
of this big battle ... battling cancer ... was emotional torture.  Some say writing 
is therapeutic ... I did not find that ... however, I knew it had to be done, for Gerry's sake.  I could never have done it without the emotional support of my sons.

           Did you have an author who inspired you to become a writer?

No author inspired me to become a writer ... I was always a story teller ...
but my late husband's wish inspired me to write our story.
However, Isabel Allende is one of my favourite authors ... I love her books that 
are full of historical events and yet personal experiences at the same time ...
containing both myth and realism.

             What is your favourite part of the writing process?

Firstly, the telling of the stories ... is my favourite part of the 'writing' process,
along with just sitting down to my writing pad or computer to see my fingers 
just start writing.  I don't know where it comes from.

                         Describe your latest book in 4 words.

         I consider my latest book, Nowhere Is Home ... Since You Left.
       A salad of emotions  ...  OR  ...  love, hope, courage, adventure ...
                                ...  whichever you like best ...

         Can you share a little bit about your current work ... or what is in 
                              the future for your writing?

              The future of my work ... is in the hands of the gods!
      And whatever happens, I feel confident that it will be for the best.

About the Author

Professionally, Ms. Zeldin has been engaged in nursing and teaching. She has successfully advocated for changes in the medical field, along with homebirth and Midwifery. In her travels to out of the way places, she has been a keen observer of people and distant cultures, often writing a 'sketch' of her experience.

Madeleine is an advocate of advocacy.

Madeleine believes we can all make a difference.

Throughout her adult life she has successfully advocated for change. When she felt change was needed, she rallied. She lobbied. She started a group or joined a group.

In the late '70's, when her town council was considering tearing down old heritage properties in the name of 'Progress', she helped start a group of interested citizens in order to save these heritage properties. 'Progress' was stopped and many heritage buildings were saved due to the group's diligence.

Again in the early '80's, Madeleine herself changed local hospital policy to allow midwives to accompany couples in the birthing room, after the hospital refused to allow her midwife to enter.

She belonged to a group of informed parents who advocated for changes in the policies for vaccinations.

Madeleine volunteered at the local Health Center and advocated for improved health care for refugees. Improvements were made.

She successfully advocated for her soul-friend, late husband Gerald's medical care throughout their six year battle with cancer. Many important changes were implemented in our medical system due to her persistence.

Madeleine has been ahead of her time in her generation. She had many professions throughout her life including social worker, teacher, registered nurse. She also joined a group of midwives and again successfully advocated for choices in childbirth.

However, she considers her most important achievement as being a mother and grandmother. She has instilled in her family a sense of love and empathy and has taught them to love the earth and its people.

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