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Magic, sexy Scots, romance & love.

Please join me in welcoming the multi-published, and talented author, Rosanna Leo to my blog as she chats about why she chose the remote Orkney Islands of Scotland for this well-written, paranormal, intriguing, page-turning series. She also shares an excerpt.

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Thanks so much to the wonderful Selena for hosting me once again! It’s always a thrill to be here.

My new release is a paranormal romance, SELKIE’S LURE, Orkney Selkie’s 3, and is set in the remote Orkney Islands of Scotland.

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In this series, one will encounter mythical beings, magic and remorseless villains who want nothing more than to destroy my heroine and her selkie lover. However, these aren’t just paranormal romances. They are my homage to Orkney, a region known for its rugged beauty and hearty people.

A couple of years ago, I had the pleasure of discussing this series on BBC Radio Orkney. The interviewer asked me, “Why Orkney? Why would you set a series of romances here?”

I responded, “Why not?”

Orkney is a mystical place with wonderful folklore and legends. Its history features Norse invasions and Scottish earls. Its mythology is rife with tales of sea creatures and wandering spirits. Its people are proud, with a tradition that sets them apart from other Scots. These strong, seafaring people comprised a bulk of the employees of the Hudson’s Bay Company in Canada because they were so suited to the difficult work.

In other words, this place is interesting and I couldn’t help but set my series there. I hope you fall in love with my selkie hero Edan Kirk and his heroine Amy Woods, but I also hope you fall in love with Orkney.

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SELKIE’S LURE (Orkney Selkies 3)
by Rosanna Leo

Amy Woods, one of TV’s famed Beast Seekers, has come to Orkney, Scotland, to hunt sirens. One of them killed her sister and she has sworn revenge. Most people think she’s crazy for believing in monsters. She knows the truth. But while patrolling one of Orkney’s cold beaches, she runs into a naked selkie man rather than a siren, and he proves to be an alluring distraction.

1Edan Kirk is a selkie, one of an ancient race of seal shape shifters. When he hears of Amy’s intention to hunt sirens, tragic memories overwhelm him. He knows he must get rid of the pesky human. As much as he tries to convince her she’s on a fool’s errand, he can’t resist trying to protect her. After all, he has heard the enticing song of the sirens and he knows its deadly power.

As Amy and Edan engage in a battle of wits and wills, other emotions rush to the fore. Their connection is intense, the sort to come along only once in a lifetime. Edan recognizes her as his mate. However, another woman has set her sights on him as well, one whose powers of seduction are legendary. One whose voice has driven men to madness and devastation.

Can Amy accept Edan as her mate, making her home in the world of the supernatural? And can they save each other from a beast that cannot be destroyed?

Excerpt:

After patrolling the shore for the better part of an hour, Edan began to feel the call of his bed. He might possess more stamina than a human man but it had been a long day. Resolved to catch a couple hours of sleep before morning, he swam toward the shore. Relinquishing his pelt, letting it slide from his body, he stood up straight.

A man appeared before him.

No. A woman.

Because she wore fatigues, he was momentarily confused, but there was no mistaking her buxom figure. She was certainly doing her best to look like an army man, right down to her combat boots.

The lass smiled and aimed a camera phone at him. “Hello, sailor. Did you fall off your boat?”

Fuck. What sort of woman walked on the beach at four in the morning? “Something like that.”

Despite the obvious threat posed by her camera, he couldn’t help noticing she was a beauty. Perhaps not in the Hollywood starlet sense, but her imperfections intrigued him. She’d pulled her chestnut hair back into a tight ponytail. There was an asymmetry to her face that gave an edge to delicate features. Her nose was slightly crooked near the tip and one eyebrow arched higher than the other. Her generous mouth was compressed but it looked capable of wide smiles.

And her scent. It hit him hard and made him see stars, like that time his younger brother Calan lobbed a dictionary at his head. She smelled like strawberries, juicy and ripe from the bush. Interesting, considering she was dressed like Rambo.

His gut turned, as if skewered on a rotisserie. As his innards roiled, he couldn’t help wondering what it would be like to wind her ponytail around his fingers, draw her close and…

“Well?” Her eyebrow quirked even higher.

How much had she seen?

He stepped toward her but when she snapped several photos in quick succession, he stopped moving. “It’s not polite to take photos of a man in his birthday suit.”

“Yes, but you’re not quite a man, are you?”

She’d seen everything, then. He’d simply have to persuade her not to trust her senses. He’d talked himself out of worse scrapes. Edan waved his hand in the direction of his crotch. “I’m all man, lass, as you can see.”

She indulged in a quick glance. Her eyes widened in clear wonder, as if she’d never seen anything quite like him before. “Something more, then.” She nodded toward his pelt. “I’ll take that, please.”

“I don’t think so.” He hedged his bets he could convince her to give up whatever mischief she’d planned. How had he missed her on the beach? Too distracted by the thought of Breena, perhaps. “You’ve seen enough to understand I’m a selkie. If you know that, you know I need this pelt. If you’re looking for a lover, you need to be wily and steal the skin. I won’t just hand it over, unless of course you can prove to me you’d be worth a tussle.”

“I’m not looking for a lover and I don’t want to tussle with you.”

“I’d say that was a shame, you know, if you didn’t look as if you were out to blackmail me.”

Two men, also dressed in camouflage, emerged from behind a sand dune. One of them looked as if his sole hobby was frequenting the gym. Although the other man was smaller in stature, he presented more of a threat and it had everything to do with his professional-looking video camera.

“I’d give her the pelt if I were you,” the bigger man said.

“Who the hell are you people?” Edan demanded as he slowly handed the skin over to the woman.

She took it but didn’t lower her phone. “We’re the Beast Seekers. You’re our first selkie. Smile for the cameras.”

Purchase Links:

Liquid Silver Publishing Kobo |  iTunes  |  Amazon  | B&N | Google Play

Goodreads Link

About Rosanna Leo:

Rosanna Leo is a multi-published, erotic romance author. Several of her books about Greek gods, selkies and shape shifters have been named Top Picks at Night Owl Romance and The Romance Reviews.

From Toronto, Canada, Rosanna occupies a house in the suburbs with her long-suffering husband, their two hungry sons and a tabby cat named Sweetie. When not writing, she can be found haunting dusty library stacks or planning her next star-crossed love affair.

A library employee by day, she is honored to be a member of the league of naughty librarians who also happen to write romance. Rosanna blogs at https://RosannaLeoAuthor.Wordpress.com

Connect with Rosanna:

Amazon Author Page
Instagram
Goodreads
Pinterest
Facebook
Twitter

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How to enjoy Hawaii for 99 cents.

hawaii

That’s right.

I’ve tried magic to get to Hawaii…by twitching my nose a la Bewitched style. Didn’t work.

I tried clicking my heels three times and repeating…”there’s no place like the tropics…there’s no place like the tropics….” Didn’t work.

What did work was to write a novel and send my characters to the islands.

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Now you can lose yourself in the book and escape to Paradise, inhale the saltiness and freshness of ocean’s breeze, hear the palm trees swaying in the warm breeze, bask on a white sand beach, witness spectacular sunsets, and enjoy sinfully exquisite cocktails and culinary fare, and all it takes is a click to your favorite online book retailer and 99 cents.

WAGW-SALE

 

How did other readers enjoy escaping to Hawaii in WHAT A GIRL WANTS?

You can read a few readers thoughts here.

 

Slideshow of book’s aesthetics representing a few scenes.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

A few teasers to enjoy from the book.

 

On Sale for 99 cents for a limited time.

Available at:

Amazon.com
Amazon.ca
Amazon.UK
Barnes & Noble
iTunes
Kobo
Samhain Publishing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking for that special someone?

Only those who possess a wicked sense of humor and a sense of the absurd need apply.

Do you have the following qualifications?

Willing to take field trips (may include stalking) to observe and interview police, hookers, military personnel, farmers, morticians, mobsters, mechanics, Walmart greeters, nuns and prison guards—if you own a pair of night vision goggles even better.

Please note: Some of the above personnel may take exception to inquiring minds and we would therefore venture into Googleland instead. After all, our partnership would be hindered by broken bones or head injuries.

Do you enjoy leisurely lunches, brainstorming ways to dispose of dead bodies, discussing angst, heartbreak, emotional baggage and new and improved ways where a couple could make love? At the same time not feel intimidated or embarrassed if by chance the luncheon conversation is overheard by bystanders?

Deal Breakers:

This is not the partnership for you if:

  1. You won’t share your stash of chocolate.
  2. You suffer indigestion while sharing a bottle of whine with a side order of well done rant.
  3. You take yourself (or a potential partner) too seriously.

If there was such a thing as Match-Critique-Partner.com the above could be an ad for a writer in search of their vocational partner.

For a writer, finding a critique partner could be as daunting as finding a spouse, throw in the requirements that your critique partner must be creative, critical yet compassionate, be as passionate about your work as they are of theirs, be on call twenty-four-seven for a shoulder when bad reviews or rejections come in, be non-judgmental, understand your quirks and accept your swinging lifestyle (I’m talking about mood swings of course).

I’ve been fortunate to partner with two writers; Nancy Lauzon and Denise Agnew. We brainstorm, laugh and cry together on our writing journey.

Although we differ in our outward personalities—Nancy and Denise being the extroverts and me being the shy, demure and very serious one (admittedly, tongue is planted firmly inside cheek)—our differences have strengthened our friendship and working relationship.

Our writing strengths and weaknesses complement each other, helping us to learn from one another with the goal of producing a stronger work of fiction. Our similarities—love of family, books, laughter and chocolate are the added elements that have turned our working relationship into a strong friendship.

The main ingredient when working with a critique partner is to have one-hundred-percent trust in each other and give and take suggestions and opinions with respect for your partner’s work.

There are times when we don’t take each other’s advice, and that’s okay, as with any partnership you’re not always going to agree with everything.

Every writer has their own unique voice and perceives the world differently, and that’s a good thing—vive la difference.

A strong critique partnership embraces those differences and makes them work for the team.

The literary world can be harsh and ruthless and can wreak havoc on your writing confidence at times. A writer not only has to be her harshest critic when looking at her work objectively before submitting, but needs to believe and know that her critique partner has her back and is assured that her partner wouldn’t let her send a manuscript out that isn’t polished enough for submission.

A critique partner is someone who is willing to slay the “I suck at this” dragon when it rears its ugly head.

As with writing, the main thing is to enjoy your partnership and having someone who understands the journey, celebrate each step of the way, even something like finishing a chapter or writing a blog post.

“The desire to write grows with writing.” ~~Desiderius Erasmus

Creativity unleashes the child in the adult.

I recently returned from a week’s writing retreat with my critique partner, Nancy. This is something we’ve done for the past few years, and not only is it a week guaranteed to be filled with laughter, mischief, naps, swimming, walking, and great wining and dining, it is also a time to get deep into creativity mode without distractions.

The obligatory mani/pedi day was enjoyed before heading to the retreat.1A

 

We also took an afternoon to visit the local attractions such as The Collingwood Olive Oil Company. 

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This was nirvana for the foodie in me.

The Olive Oil Connoisseur who hosted our tasting was entertaining and had some great recommendations. We exchanged recipe ideas, and I walked out with three bottles of heavenly scented olive oil, balsamic vinegar, body lotion and lip balm.

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View from the resort’s balcony after a rainfall.

 

Whether your creative passion is writing, painting, music, cooking, daydreaming, sewing, knitting, olive oil tastings, wine tastings or coming up with new ways to play Boggle, it doesn’t matter, as long as when in the zone, you are enjoying it, and it fulfills a goal you’ve always wanted to accomplish.

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Three simple words that pack a powerful, exhilarating punch. Do it professionally, as a hobby, for family and friends only or just for yourself. The key here is to: Follow it. Do it. Enjoy it.

Enjoy a creativity retreat at home if it’s not possible to travel. Disconnect from the online world, from housework (dust bunnies are patient, they can wait to be tended to), make some meals ahead of time (that’s what slow cookers were invented for) stock up on supplies—chocolate, wine, tea, coffee, whatever your pleasure. Fish out the comfy clothes and enjoy a day, a few days or a week of creative endeavors.

 

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On our retreat we wrote most of the day, and at times, when we were on a roll, we would work late into the evening. We brainstormed plots, character traits, and talked about writing.

We also enjoyed other creative outlets when taking a break while listening to music, watching a movie, or catching up on a television program (Big Bang Theory back to back episodes were on), and still utilized this time to create.

Nancy enjoyed knitting (and she’s real good at it). When I knit, everything turns into a scarf, and I don’t have a clue how to follow a pattern.

I do love to color, and for my birthday my son gifted me an adult coloring book, and colored pencils.

One of my completed coloring projects. I'd love to get this on a T-shirt somehow. Something to think about.

One of my completed coloring projects. I’d love to get this on a T-shirt somehow.

 

Along with a wonderful imagination, and the passion to create, creative people tend to have self-doubt which interferes with motivation. Writers spend a lot of time in their own heads, and at times a nagging voice telling them it can be impossible to achieve what they are striving to accomplish. Hashing it out on paper, or with a friend or family member stifles the negativity. It will disappear as quickly as it appeared.

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Be the bad ass creator you were not motivated to be yesterday.

Go Kick a lot of creative butt.

I got this.

YOU got this!

 

 

 

Binge reading. Hauntingly beautiful music. Author with multiple personalities. Psychological Thrillers & more.

Please join me in welcoming, Robert Gregory Brownewriter, and creative director of Braun Haus Media, LLCwhich released the addictive, psychological thrillers—the LINGER Series. 

Robert chats with me about LINGER—a series I HIGHLY recommend—clowns, how he incorporates his musical talent into the series and much more.

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“LINGER is an utterly bone-chilling, compulsive read that will grip you by the throat from the very first page. One of the scariest stories I’ve read in a long, long time. You don’t want to miss this captivating new series!” ~Tess Gerritsen, NYT bestselling author of the “Rizzoli & Isles” series. 

 

1Selena: Congratulations on creating the un-put-down-able LINGER Series. My family almost went hungry, and my work and writing was put on hold as I binged read the series.

What was your inspiration for creating the main characters and villains?

ROBERT: Binge reading is exactly what we’re hoping for.

The main characters came out of a visual that mysteriously blossomed in my mind one day of a young blind boy in a hooded sweatshirt standing in the middle of a living room, staring at the ceiling. I knew he was in a crime scene but I had no idea why he was there or what he was up to. Out of that image I built a scene about a female Major Crimes detective who stumbles across this kid, late at night, and discovers he isn’t alone but is accompanied by a mysterious man who refuses to tell her anything about what they’re doing there, but uses a bit of subterfuge to slip away. At this point the cop knows as much as the reader does and from there it was just a matter of figuring out a workable plot line that fit these characters—and a pretty heinous villain they call the Beast. All indications are that I succeeded, but that’s for the reader to judge.

 

 

1Selena: As a reader of the series, my verdict is that you more than succeeded.

The series deals with “empaths” and other supernatural elements, that felt like they could happen in real life. Have you ever encountered anything unexplainable?

ROBERT: My nearly empty bank account. Sometimes I look at it and wonder, where the heck did all my money go?

Seriously though, I have never in my life encountered anything supernatural, although I know people who say they have. Some people scoff at such things, but there’s so much we don’t know about our existence and the afterlife—if there is one—that I take the attitude that anything is possible.

 

 

 

 

Selena: Since Edward Fallon, the elusive, mysterious and multi-talented author is multi-dimensional and has five different personalities—in five words, describe him.

ROBERT: He has more than five.

Selena: Touche. 🙂  Speaking of multi-talents, you’re also a gifted musician and created the hauntingly beautiful soundtrack for the LINGER Series, how is writing music different from conceiving a series like LINGER?

ROBERT: Music is my true passion. I’ve been a musician since I was nine years old, and have been composing since I was twelve. Music comes more out of emotion than writing does. Yes, I use emotion in my novels. I like characters who are troubled and go on a roller coaster ride before the story is done, but music comes FROM emotion and finds its way to my fingertips. To write and orchestrate the music for Linger, I put myself into various scenarios in the books and let it pour out. Some of the pieces are better than others, but it’s all fun. My problem is that I’m never completely satisfied and am always tweaking a composition. I’m always thinking things like, “That violin could sound better” or “I should have had a lighter touch on that piano.” So I tend to tweak and re-upload the pieces. It can get obsessive.

 

1Selena: I think artists tend to be a lot harder on themselves than their worst critic. The music for the LINGER Series suits the books, and it is an added bonus for the reader to escape into Kate, Chris and Noah’s world and journey with a soundtrack, matching their emotions.

In each book in the series, the characters find themselves in situations they aren’t sure they can get themselves out of. When was the last time you found yourself in a situation that was hard to get out of and what did you do?

ROBERT: My way of getting out of a situation is usually to have a meltdown, but fortunately I can’t think of anything off hand that’s happened within memory. When I was editing the Linger series there were times I wondered if I was going to make the July 1st deadline and get all five books released, but I just knuckled down and went to work and finally got it done. I’m fortunate that the multi-personality author known as Edward Fallon was very cooperative and easy to work with.

Selena: Readers who love well-written, psychological thrillers, with a supernatural twist, intense scenes, vivid imagery and suspenseful plots with well-developed characters are pleased you met the July 1st deadline, and look forward to many more books in the series.

QUICK FIRE QUESTIONS:

1Are you afraid of clowns?

Depends on what his or her intentions are. 

Ever been snowed in?

I’ve barely ever been in snow.

If you could have any accent from anywhere in the world, what would you choose?

Probably British of the Downton Abbey variety. I watch a lot of BBC and ITV shows.

Which Wizard of Oz character do you identify with?

The Cowardly Lion.

Would you keep an old car for sentimental reasons?

I’m not sentimental about cars, although my wife and I do tend to keep our cars for ten years or more before we break down and buy a new one.

 

 

 

ABOUT BRAUN HAUS MEDIA, LLC

Braun Haus Media, LLC is the brainchild of critically acclaimed ITW Thriller Award nominated author and AMPAS Nicholl award winning screenwriter, Robert Gregory Browne. Our mission is to produce “fiction for the rest of us.” Nothing pretentious, just tried and true, skillfully written thrillers, mysteries, paranormal and romance novels, that do exactly what they need to do: entertain the hell out of you.

Our books are available primarily for Kindle, Nook, Kobo and iBooks, but we also make print editions available for those who still prefer paper, which can be found online at your favorite print retailer or in many independent bookstores.

Braun Haus has a number of series to choose from, written by Browne himself and several other authors, with many more to come in the near future.

 

 


 

Christoph Fischer on defying writing genres.

Please join me in welcoming, Christoph Fischer, author of beautifully written novels, filled with layers of lyrical prose, history, family dynamics, real life challenges and love. 

Thank you for sharing a part of your writing journey with us, Christoph for the kind words about my blog and writing. Coming from a talented and established writer as yourself, I am humbled.

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Thanks for inviting me, Selena. I’m grateful to be here on your beautiful blog. It’s wonderful to come to a place that is open to a variety of genres and writers without restriction. It is this openness and genre defying that I want to talk about.

I’m an impulsive writer and work best when I follow the direction which my ‘muse’ or inspiration takes me to. This comes as both, a blessing and a curse. Readers may get to like a certain aspect of my writing and be disappointed when the next book takes a different direction.  Having a label could be very helpful to establish a sound reader base as it offers a reliable and predictable brand.

At the same time, this could turn the writing into something formulaic and repetitive and in extreme cases to a soulless and uninspired affair. I have deliberately avoided labels and niches, mostly because of the impulsiveness of my writing in the hope to keep it genuine, fresh and interesting and hope that readers will like the underlying current and personality of the writer of the stories.

42I wrote my historical novels out of a curiosity and fascination with the chosen times and places. “The Luck of the Weissensteiners” and “Sebastian” covered the World Wars and allowed me to mentally process topics related to my family roots in Czechoslovakia and Austria.

 

 

3“The Black Eagle Inn” let me examine Germany after World War 2.

 

 

 

 

5After that my mind turned to other issues and I worked on contemporary novels that dealt with problems such as Alzheimers’ (“Time To Let Go”) and mental health (“Conditions”).

 

 

 

3I couldn’t help myself. Mechanically doing research and constructing another historical novel after “The Black Eagle Inn” wouldn’t have worked for me at the time.

 

 

 

Since then, I had the ideas for a medical thriller (“The Healer”) and for another historical novel (“In Search of a Revolution”, set in Finland between 1918 and 1950). Both will be released in early 2015.

When I write a new novel, I encounter a similar impulsive pattern. I come up with plans and strategies for my characters, locations and key scenes but the plot will not always yield to my demands. The novel (and the ‘muse) itself will determine pretty much the way the story unfolds on their own terms. I would love to construct a great series with a fool proof formula but sadly, I don’t think I could pull it off (unless it ‘just happened’).  Again, I hope this adds something personal and genuine to the books.

So coming to your blog today is visiting a good friend with a similar outlook, a woman for whom writing seems to be an expression and whose writing comes directly from the heart – a quality shows in all of your work.

The Luck of the Weissensteiners (Three Nations Trilogy Book 1)

4In the sleepy town of Bratislava in 1933 a romantic girl falls for a bookseller from Berlin. Greta Weissensteiner, daughter of a Jewish weaver, slowly settles in with the Winkelmeier clan just as the developments in Germany start to make waves in Europe and re-draws the visible and invisible borders. The political climate in the multifaceted cultural jigsaw puzzle of disintegrating Czechoslovakia becomes more complex and affects relations between the couple and the families. The story follows them through the war with its predictable and also its unexpected turns and events and the equally hard times after.

But this is no ordinary romance; in fact it is not a romance at all, but a powerful, often sad, Holocaust story. What makes The Luck of the Weissensteiners so extraordinary is the chance to consider the many different people who were never in concentration camps, never in the military, yet who nonetheless had their own indelible Holocaust experiences. This is a wide-ranging, historically accurate exploration of the connections between social location, personal integrity and, as the title says, luck.

Trailer 

On Amazon

On Goodreads

On Facebook 

B&N 

Sebastian (Three Nations Trilogy Book 2)

2Sebastian is the story of a young man who has his leg amputated before World War I. When his father is drafted to the war it falls on to him to run the family grocery store in Vienna, to grow into his responsibilities, bear loss and uncertainty and hopefully find love.

Sebastian Schreiber, his extended family, their friends and the store employees experience the ‘golden days’ of pre-war Vienna and the timed of the war and the end of the Monarchy while trying to make a living and to preserve what they hold dear.

Fischer convincingly describes life in Vienna during the war, how it affected the people in an otherwise safe and prosperous location, the beginning of the end for the Monarchy, the arrival of modern thoughts and trends, the Viennese class system and the end of an era.

As in the first part of the trilogy, “The Luck of The Weissensteiners” we are confronted again with themes of identity, Nationality and borders. The step back in time made from Book 1 and the change of location from Slovakia to Austria enables the reader to see the parallels and the differences deliberately out of the sequential order. This helps to see one not as the consequence of the other, but to experience them as the momentary reality as it must have felt for the people at the time.

Trailer

On Amazon

On Goodreads

On Facebook

B&N


The Black Eagle Inn (Three Nations Trilogy Book 3)

3The Black Eagle Inn is an old established Restaurant and Farm business in the sleepy Bavarian countryside outside of Heimkirchen. Childless Anna Hinterberger has fought hard to make it her own and keep it running through WWII. Religion and rivalry divide her family as one of her nephews, Markus has got her heart and another nephew, Lukas got her ear. Her husband Herbert is still missing and for the wider family life in post-war Germany also has some unexpected challenges in store.

Once again Fischer tells a family saga with war in the far background and weaves the political and religious into the personal. Being the third in the Three Nations Trilogy this book offers another perspective on war, its impact on people and the themes of nations and identity.

 

 

Trailer

On Facebook

On Goodreads

On Amazon

Time to Let Go 

5Time to Let Go is a contemporary family drama set in Britain.

Following a traumatic incident at work Stewardess Hanna Korhonen decides to take time off work and leaves her home in London to spend quality time with her elderly parents in rural England. There she finds that neither can she run away from her problems, nor does her family provide the easy getaway place that she has hoped for. Her mother suffers from Alzheimer’s disease and, while being confronted with the consequences of her issues at work, she and her entire family are forced to reassess their lives. The book takes a close look at family dynamics and at human nature in a time of a crisis. Their challenges, individual and shared, take the Korhonens on a journey of self-discovery and redemption.

 

On Facebook

On Goodreads

On Amazon

Conditions

1When Charles and Tony’s mother dies the estranged brothers must struggle to pick up the pieces, particularly so given that one of them is mentally challenged and the other bitter about his place within the family.

The conflict is drawn out over materialistic issues, but there are other underlying problems which go to the heart of what it means to be part of a family which, in one way or another. has cast one aside. Prejudice, misconceptions and the human condition in all forms feature in this contemporary drama revolving around a group of people who attend the subsequent funeral at the British South Coast.

Meet flamboyant gardener Charles, loner Simon, selfless psychic Elaine, narcissistic body-builder Edgar, Martha and her version of unconditional love and many others as they try to deal with the event and its aftermath.

On Facebook

On Amazon

On Goodreads

1ABOUT CHRISTOPH FISCHER

Christoph Fischer was born in Germany, near the Austrian border, as the son of a Sudeten-German father and a Bavarian mother. Not a full local in the eyes and ears of his peers he developed an ambiguous sense of belonging and home in Bavaria. He moved to Hamburg in pursuit of his studies and to lead a life of literary indulgence. After a few years he moved on to the UK where he now lives in a small hamlet, not far from Bath. He and his partner have three Labradoodles to complete their family.

Christoph worked for the British Film Institute, in Libraries, Museums and for an airline. ‘The Luck of The Weissensteiners’ was published in November 2012; ‘Sebastian’ in May 2013 and The Black Eagle Inn in October 2013. In May 2014 he published his first contemporary novel “Time To Let Go” in May. He has written several other novels which are in the later stages of editing and finalisation.

 

Where to connect with Christoph:

Website 

Blog

Goodreads

Amazon

Twitter

Pinterest

Google +

LinkedIn

Facebook

 

The Book Signing Monologues

Re-posting this blog for the new followers and those who have not read this post before. I hope you enjoy it. 🙂

The Year I Popped my Book Signing Cherry

This was it—the print run of my first novel was hot off the press and it was time for some old-fashioned promotion. I headed for a vacation and a book signing in the state that gave us Mickey Mouse, the Golden Girls and hopefully the breaking story on the ten o’clock news of a Canadian author needing assistance for crowd control for the hundreds of romance readers, clamoring to get their own autographed copy of my book.

The latter did actually happen—in my dreams.

During the flight I had envisioned line-ups of avid and excited readers, chants and a harried book store manager in a panic, because we’d run out of books—all 1,000 of them. I had rehearsed my smile, my version of the royal wave and witty answers to the myriad of questions the readers were dying to ask.

Turns out the book store was a literary boutique located near a university and filled with sleek, stylish furniture, complete with a wine bar.

And NO romance section.

After a few anxiety induced minutes, I managed to crush the urge to run away and instead decided to make the most of the situation. I put on my game-face and mentally prepared to pave the way to lure literazzi type readers, Deepak Chopra and Anthony Robbins fans into the romance genre.

I know what you’re thinking—that I was in total denial to the realities of this competitive business. Denial gets a really bad rap by self-help gurus, but personally, I’ve found it helpful at times.

This was definitely one of those times.

I sat at a table near the wine bar and managed to sell four books to one customer—said customer happened to be an acquaintance of mine, but she did buy three extra copies.

Jacked up on a few ounces of confidence (and red wine) I submerged myself into the power of positive thinking and eyed my next challenge—a couple of women perusing the classic literature section, while sipping sinfully expensive bottled water.

I smiled.

They smiled back.

They approached my table. Both of them had a glimmer of excitement, sparkling in their eyes.

Ah ha. I knew it. I know that look. They had all the makings and glow of die-hard romance readers.

That look of high anticipation, salivating for something romantic to read. The feeling they had discovered a new romance author and couldn’t wait to talk to her, and flip through her book, perhaps read the first chapter and then buy a book for themselves and (fantasy still in full force) a few copies for friends and family.

Oh, yes, all the markings of readers, hankering for something to sink their teeth in…

Chocolate.

They had been ogling the gigantic bowl of Godiva sitting on my table.

I pushed the bowl toward them and told them to knock themselves out.

Since then I have armed myself with a more realistic approach to book signings. (I still have that crowd control fantasy going on from time to time, but hey, a gal has to dream, right?)

Fortunately, being better prepared and having learned through that first signing, I’ve had tremendous success in book stores—having done my research and homework, I made sure the stores had a romance section and I still do bring goodies to hand out.

During my later book signing adventures, I’ve met many men who’ve purchased an autographed book, claiming it was for their wives, moms, sisters, aunts—a lot of women out there named Tom, Dick and Harry.

I’ve met the dynamic duo. (not Batman and Robin) Buffy and Muffy who announced with pride that they could write a romance novel in a weekend…giggle giggle, as they sipped their double latte concoctions, flipping through tabloid magazines. I gave them my best smile and wished them luck with their writing and even volunteered to edit it after their weekend of just churning one out, because as we all know it’s just that easy. Of course I also told them, they probably wouldn’t need an editor, I mean writing a book in a weekend must be an amazing talent, and I’m thinking it would be ready for publication. Or so they made it seem when they giggled-talked about it.

One of my favorite encounters was a Masters graduate, (I know this, because that was the first thing out of her mouth after she asked me where the ladies room was located) who perused the cover of my book and said that she would wait until the movie came out, as reading wasn’t  really “her thing.”

At one signing, I overhead a conversation between two women who were browsing the store for a birthday gift. Multi-tattooed woman suggested to her equally tattooed friend: “Why don’t you get your old man a book?”

Response: “Nah, he’s already got a book.”

I also attended Word on The Street one year, an outside event in Toronto, where hundreds of authors line up and sign books. My table was next to another author who complained from the time we arrived 7:00 a.m. until the time we closed shop 6:00 p.m. For every negative comment, I came back with three positive ones and made light of things so she’d hopefully relax and have fun.

No smile. More complaining, grumbling and negativity spewing.

Another author on the other side had brought her dog. She had written a book on dogs, so bringing her beautiful Golden Retriever was a clever prop, in my opinion. The dog was well behaved, but at times, he got restless and would wonder to our area.

I would pet him.

Cranky author next to me said: “Don’t encourage that flea bag mutt, send him back over there.”

I ignored.

Dog lay down near our booth.

Cranky author said, and I quote: “If I had a pair of steel toed boots, I’d kick that bitch back to its owner.”

I smiled at her and said, “If I had a pair of steel toed boots, the puppy wouldn’t be the bitch I’d love to kick back to where she came from.”

Went right over her head of course. It takes all kinds to make this world a diverse and interesting place, so they say. (During yoga I often wonder who “they” are that say these things, but I digress…)

All in all, ninety percent of the people I’ve met at book signings are courteous, pleasant, fun to talk to and have a passion for not only reading, but for the romance genre. The above mentioned characters stand out, because they are the exception.

My favorite encounter at a book signing was when I asked a woman walking by my table, “Do you like romantic comedy?”

Flushed and weighed down with a briefcase and diaper bag she said, “I don’t have time to laugh!”

While chewing the inside of my cheek like a chipmunk on steroids to keep from laughing at her serious expression, I thought to myself, that this stressed out woman could be immortalized in a poster with the caption:

“I am woman. I am invincible. I am pooped!”

What do you think? Could you relate? I know there are days when I certainly could be the poster child for that caption.