Wednesday, June 27, 2007

More Thoughts on Book Reviews

I had some interesting comments about my post yesterday on the five-star review from a friend who proceeded to point out the errors in format and style she found in my book, The Search for the Million $$$ Ghost, that I'd like to talk about.

Jeni said, "No one LIKES to get a review that has anything even the slightest bit negative in it but I'd rather it be pointed out to me than ignored because by pointing it out, it would make me more inclined to look even closer on the next writings."

Good point, but my point is, if this is a friend, I would appreciate you to point them out to me in private.

To tell you the truth, this was my first review I've ever gotten that pointed out formatting mistakes in any of my books. My first book, Romancing the Soul, was a collection of soul mate stories from many authors, so I really can't claim it as entirely mine, but I have to admit Liz at Zumaya Publications did an excellent job in editing. She sent back revisions, I changed them, she published and released it. I've gotten nothing but positive reviews from everyone. Formatting was fine.

Nikki Leigh says, "A friend reviewed one of my business books which I've learned is full of typos. She even went so far as to say the editors (who she named) had done me a disservice. This is a publisher who does all the editing and they don't show it to me before it goes to press. One of my books from a previous publisher had more problems after they edited that before. I went through again and noted many problems, but they weren't all fixed in the end. However, I have the rights to that book back and will certainly do it differently when its re-released :) ."

Good for you, Nikki. You know, before you send off your book to a publisher, be sure you email the authors of said publisher. If it happens once, it's happened before and may happen again. I never did this because of the time factor. Lesson learned.

Laura Crawford says, "A five-star review is nothing to sneeze at, and the errors are there and they are not going to go away....would you rather hear this news from a friend or a hot shot agent or book critic? The book critic would NOT give you a five-star review, but then again maybe they would? Who's to say? But what kind of friend would this reviewer be if she wasn't HONEST about it? If she said nothing about it, and it came up with another reviewer or book critic, wouldn't you be more upset with that friend if you asked them why they didn't tell you the errors were there? But whether this information will affect your sales or not is hard to predict. And there are some who just read the book for the story, not whether the punctuation or spelling or formatting is correct.By the way, how do your co-authors feel about this and are they willing to approach the publisher and have them corrected?"

Again, I value honesty and I appreciate Sandy being honest. I had a friend who gave it a glowing review and then I had a book critic mention she loved the book, but pointed out that there were a couple of errors. Whose review do I value more? I value them all because they are learning tools, but I think there is a certain way of going about giving someone a review that might make them uncomfortable being as it is in a public place and could hurt book sales. Being an author herself, and a good friend, I just wish I had been approached first. Had she approached me, I would have suggested that honesty is the best thing in the world, but stop and think about it a little first.

I have a friend who self-published and I saw errors in just the first chapter he/she posted online. I value this friend's friendship and would never advertise online that the book was full of errors; but, instead, I would mention to the author privately so that this person can handle it whether he/she could get it fixed with the publisher or what. I wouldn't go behind her back and post anything negative if I valued the friendship.

As far as how my co-authors feel? One of them said, "I'm not going to get upset over this," and that was that. My other co-author says, "It is the story people love and it will not stop them from reading it." I think authors are more critical of books because as they are reading, it's only natural for them to critique as they go whether they realize they are doing it or not.

Kathy Holmes says, "I'm not sure why they mentioned the typos since typos, unfortunately, sometimes appear in even the biggest publishing houses' books. Annoying but true."

I'm not sure either, Kathy, except to bring attention to the publisher's goofs. She has valid points and I hope for now on, publishers will make sure to the best of their ability that the final product is something that will not receive negative remarks. But, like you said, it happens even in the biggest publishing houses, and something that will probably continue to do so until the editor takes time to breathe and concentrates on what they are sending out into the world, and focus on that one book at a time instead of concentrating on how many books they can get out in a certain amount of time to make that almighty buck.

Hopefully, I'm overdramatizing and maybe people who read The Search for the Million $$$ Ghost will find the whole thing has been blown out of proportion. Hopefully, I will, too.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Who's at Fault - the Author or the Publisher?

I debated whether I should make this a public thing, but maybe it will be a lesson I can pass on to others which may shed some light on bad reviews.

I received a five star review on Amazon recently for the ghostie book, The Search for the Million $$$ Ghost, that I co-authored with Heide Kaminski and Pamela Lawniczak. But, my eyes didn't even sink into the fact that it was a five-star review; but instead on the fact that the review mentioned errors within the book. I'm having a hard time dealing with it for several reasons.

One, this review came from a friend who I have supported throughout anything she's done. I've hosted her on my blog for her virtual book tour, I've supported her through her personal issues and I've really enjoyed having her as a friend. I love her posts in my online writing group and would do anything at all for her. I basically would give her my soul if she needed it. But, although she was basically saying she loved the story, she also mentioned many errors within the book itself and came down pretty hard on the book's publisher, Mardi Gras Publishing. Although I hate peachy cream reviews that sounds like the reviewer didn't even read it but wanted to give this person a good review out of friendship, honest reviews from a friend if they are negative are pretty hard to swallow.

The other reason I'm having a problem with this review is that now that it is up at the largest online bookstore, how many people are going to buy it if they have been forewarned of the typos?

I do a lot of investigating into what works in online promotion and even though they say you should take reviews like a grain of salt, there are some people who really pay attention to what's been said by those who have read the book.

The problem I have with all of this raises the question of how far a friend should go as far as giving reviews to their friends. If you cherish the relationship, would you even mention the typos? Hardly. I know I wouldn't. If I read a book and I saw typos and this was a friend, I would email them and ask them for their permission to post this in such a public place. But, that's just me I guess. If I didn't like your book, I just wouldn't give you a review.

But, she's not saying she doesn't like the book; in fact, she said she loved the book if she could get pass the errors which probably caused a problem in taking the book in like she wanted to. So, who's at fault? The author or the publisher? And why is it an issue at who's fault it is in the first place?

It's an issue because for every book that has my name on it, I am responsible for said book. When Heide found the publisher for us, I knew the book wasn't ready. I told her that. But, she said her A-student daughter edited it and it was ready to go. O...kay. So, I'm busy doing lots of other stuff and before I knew it, the book has been sent to the publisher, sent back to us for revisions, and sent back to the publisher again to be released.

It is at that point where if we did not catch anything and the editor didn't catch anything, that's it, Jack. Because I was "so busy," I fucked up, because had I taken a little bit of time to go through it at that point, I wouldn't be writing this today. Sure, there will be bad reviews no matter how edited a book gets, but why risk getting bad reviews because you didn't take a little bit of time to make sure it was in the best shape it could be to avoid reviews like I've gotten today?

Lesson learned.

Maybe I had to learn the hard way, but I'll tell you this much. No matter who the publisher is, you better make sure you go over it with a fine-tooth comb so you don't end up in my shoes.

The book is a good book. It was something that my co-authors and I put a lot of work into. It wasn't just a book; it was a message we wanted to get across. That message is still there. If you can overlook the "typos," it's there.

And this is the very reason why it is very important to make sure your publisher assigns a good editor to it because to some publishers, it's all about making a buck and not stopping and taking the time to make sure the books that go out with their names on it are the best they can be.

Here is a link to the review if you'd like to read it.

Now, I'm off to walk the dogs and do a little thinking.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

We're Going to California

I guess you guys have been wondering what in the heck happened to my travel plans to California. Well, it only took two years to finally be able to do it, but we've finally decided we're going this September.
For one glorious week!

Now, the travel plans begin. We were talking about taking this trip in a rented RV, but when I did the math and added up the mileage they were going to tack onto our bill, plus the fact gas prices aren't nothing to sneeze at, we decided to fly.

I hate flying. Hate, hate, hate it. I only hate it because I don't want to die quite yet.

I flew once. Eighteen years old. Fresh out of high school, my mother figured she's send me down to my aunt's place in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to learn how to model. Listen, guys, you've either got it or your don't. Just because you're stick thin, it doesn't make you the world's best candidate for modeling. There are other things involved like maybe liking to have your picture taken? Must be some kind of neurosis there, but gawd, I hate picture taking.

Well, that didn't work out and my aunt brought me back by bus about a month later.

But, anyway, the flying experience wasn't too bad at the time because I'd never heard of suicide bombers back then of course. But, today, it's a whole different ballgame. I wonder how many people have to stock up on happy pills before they board planes now?

So, we're going by plane whether I like it or not.

Now, we've decided when (the second week of September and that gives me chills in itself) and how (by plane and may the gods be on our side), but now we're trying to decide on where to stay and where to go.

I went to travelocity.com last night and came up with a few hotels to choose from and the one that everyone here wanted was the Ritz in Pasadena. It was a tad more than the others but omg that place looked beautiful. Not sure if that's going to be the one, but you can go here to look at it.

Still talking it over. The main goal of this trip to California is to donate one of my books to the Buena Vista Library and supposedly the LA Times is going to interview me...something about local girl comes back home to donate book to library that used to be her elementary school. So, I really need to be either in Burbank or close to it.

And, of course, we want to do the sightseeing thing and visit old haunts I used to visit as a kid back in the early sixties. I know a lot has changed - I'm prepared for that - but I've got to see Griffith Park, NBC Studios and the street where I actually lived that someone very nicely took pictures of so that I could see what it looked like now. What a trip.

I also want to do the Universal Studio tour, see the Hollywood sign, visit Beverly Hills and see a few movie stars.

And, I've started on a memoir about my life leading up to this trip and then the trip will finish off the book. I've named the book, "If I Could Go Back Home," for now.

So, that's confirmed and just trying to figure out where to stay and what to do. Anyone have any suggestions?


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Friday, June 22, 2007

SPECIAL GUEST: Karen Magill, Author of LET US PLAY

We have another special guest here with us today at Boomer Chick! Karen Magill graces us with her extraordinary presence to talk about her book, Let Us Play, during her virtual book tour!

Boomer Chick: Thank you for stopping by Boomer Chick on your virtual book tour, Karen! Can you start off by telling us what your book is all about?

Karen: Let Us Play is about censorship, in particular music censorship. When three young men are sitting around a college dorm moaning about the injustice of the government banning rock 'n roll music, a movement begins. A movement by the name of LUPO, the Let Us Play Organization.

Their adversary the People Against Rock 'n Roll or PARR assassinates one of the members but years later his daughter ends up leading LUPO and its rebels in their fight. By this time the entire world is beginning to rally against their respective leaders who are oppressing them.

Let Us Play is an exciting thrill ride that takes the reader through the streets of New York City to the Rocky Mountains to Scotland Yard. The reader will bite their nails in anticipation and sigh at the sweetness of first love.

Boomer Chick: Your story is simply fascinating. What compelled you to write it?

Karen: So many things. I come from a family of generations of creative people and fortunately no one ever tried to stamp out my creativity. But that is what censorship does, it makes people less creative, they are afraid to use their imaginations.

We have to have certain advisories and restrictions so that parents can monitor what their children see but other than that, the arts should not be censored. With Let Us Play I took one of the arts, music, and created a scenario of what could happen if it were to be banned. Of course, there would be people fighting to bring it back. Always.

Boomer Chick: What kind of a message are you trying to get across with your book or was this written for pure enjoyment?

Karen: I would hate to say I am trying to pass on a mighty message because I dislike that. First and foremost I want my readers to enjoy the book. If they get anything else out of it then that is up to them. I wrote on one answer that I hoped they would know that -"The authority figures are not always right and sometimes those rebels are. Fight for you believe in but remember that there are always consequences to your actions. Most of all, long live rock 'n roll." -and I do stand by that. Yet if a person reads my book, puts it down and says 'I enjoyed that', then I have done my job.

Boomer Chick: I have to ask...do you like rock and roll? Who are your favorite artists?

Karen: Oh yeah, I like many genres of music but rock is my favorite. Favorites have to be Bon Jovi, Bryan Adams, Def Leppard, Poison to name a few.

Boomer Chick: What's next for Karen Magill? Do you have another book in the works?

Karen: I have to keep promoting Let Us Play and my first, The Bond. I want to do whatever I can with these books including researching how to best to change them into screenplay format. And the next book TJR, Truth, Justice and Rock 'n Roll will feature a different character from Let Us Play and this time leave Kaya more in the background.

Boomer Chick: Thank you so much for stopping by, Karen! I wish you happy sales!

Karen: Thank you very much for having me.

You can visit Karen's website at http://www.karenmagill.com/ or her blog at http://www.letusplaylovestory.blogspot.com/.

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Tuesday, June 19, 2007

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Lynn Voedisch, Author of EXCITED LIGHT

We have a special guest with us today at Boomer Chick! It's Lynn Voedisch and she's the author of Excited Light, a contemporary fantasy about a young boy who while coping with a single, alcoholic mother, talks to angels at night, and they work a miracle when a stranger threatens his mother's life.

I don't know about you, but I love angel stories. Doesn't everyone? I talked to Lynn about angels and her book, Excited Light, and I think you will find the subject fascinating, also.

I give you Lynn Voedisch, author of Excited Light!

Boomer Chick: Welcome to Boomer Chick, Lynn! Would you like to tell us what your book is all about?

Lynn: "Excited Light" is about a 10-year-old boy, Alex, who lives alone in a creepy Victorian mansion with his divorced, alcoholic mom. The father is long gone. The mother, Allegra, often leaves the boy home alone, although not intentionally. She tries to be a good mother, but the disease is taking over. Lonely Alex talks about his troubles to his toy duck, Dudley. One day, Dudley responds and seems to be giving Alex divine messages. Allegra continues spinning out of control, falling into a romance with a nightclubbing cad. Eventually, she's at the brink of death and it's up to Alex and Dudley's divine messengers to work a miracle.

Boomer Chick: It sounds fascinating! I am so into angels and spirit guides and anything related so I’d like to focus on that aspect of your book. Can you tell us why you decided to write on this subject?

Lynn: I had an angel experience of my one (more on that later) and I transferred it to the fictional Alex, who is based on my own son and the conversations we used to have when he was that age. You really start to come into your own at age 10. I remember it as a turning point age when I was young, and it seemed to be a significant age for my son as well. I also had read "Practical Magic" by Alice Hoffman, and the idea of doing a magical realism-style book really appealed to me. Although no one has compared me to Alice Hoffman yet!

Boomer Chick: Do you have any angel experiences to share?

Lynn: I try to downpeddle this only because I usually get The Look when I tell this story. But, in short, I had been very ill, was in the hospital, and I woke up to hear a voice that gave me information to help me get better. I followed the advice and recovered. Since then I have believed in angels, for there is no other explanation for that experience. And, no, I was not just hearing voices! I'm not walking around talking to the thin air. I'm also not religious, just very spiritually minded. There is a big difference.

Boomer Chick: What has been everyone’s response to your book? I bet they are in awe!

Lynn: Well, my family sure was. They knew I was writing fiction, but I have a feeling they were rolling their eyes about it. No one expected an actual book to be finished. I've written two other novels since "Excited Light" was finished and have an agent looking for a traditional publisher. I've had excellent reader response to the book (which you can read on my Web site, www.lynnvoedisch.com), plus good reviews. Those readers who don't believe in angels consider them to be a metaphor for hope--and everyone believes in hope. Many publishers took a pass on "Excited Light" because "the angel fad was over," but I have found that there are many people who are not only interested in angels, but want to read about them. And these are not fluffy little cherubs, but big, powerful messengers of God. But, I reiterate, this is not a religious book. It's probably more New Age than anything else.

Boomer Chick: What do you plan on writing next?

Lynn: Right now I'm working on a fascinating project about a class of women in ancient Egypt who were second only to the Pharaoh in power. It's amazing to think of women who were that strong back then, because we are conditioned to think that women have only made strides forward in recent years. Actually, ancient Egyptian women had the most rights of any civilized people up until the modern era. I didn't want my novel to be purely historical however, so I'm using a device to bring a contemporary story into it. It's a bit complex to explain but easy to understand if you are reading it. I'm only on the first draft, though. My writing group is cheering me on. It's really a daunting project at times.

Boomer Chick: Thank you for coming, Lynn. Can you tell us where we can purchase Excited Light?

Lynn: I'd be delighted to tell you that. You can go to my website at http://www.lynnvoedisch.com/, Amazon.com, or any online store. You also can order it from any Barnes & Noble store. Here's a special plug for those in the Chicago area: it's available at Women & Children First Book Store in the Andersonville neighborhood and at Planet Earth in Evanston. I like to encourage people to visit independent bookstores.

I do want to mention that you can watch Lynn's book trailer at YouTube!

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Monday, June 18, 2007

AUTHOR INTERVIEW - Henri, the Ghostest with the Mostest!

I have a friend who is not only on a virtual book tour, but he claims he had a little bit to do with writing The Search for the Million $$$ Ghost, that you and I know that Heide AW Kaminski, Pamela Lawniczak and I had a little more to do with writing it than he did (but don't tell him or it will completely destroy his moment), but he's here today in a candid one-on-one interrogation - errr - interview at Boomer Chick.

I finally get my chance to ask him questions without him giving me the third degree, so I give you, Henri de Montmorency, the ghostest with the mostest, and co-author of The Search for the Million $$$ Ghost!

Boomer Chick: Thank you for stopping by on your virtual book tour, Henri!

Henri: Yeah, yeah, I hear that. So, what are you going to ask me? I’m in a hurry. Boo is waiting for me at Boo Drop Inn and I don’t want to keep him waiting.

Boomer Chick: Now, Henri, I’ve told you about being rude to your blog hosts. I’m just helping you promote our - errr, your - book, you know.

Henri: Will you just ask me the questions?

Boomer Chick: Are you going to behave?

Henri: Sure, I’ll do anything you like if we can do it in about eight minutes. I’m on a time schedule, you know.

Boomer Chick: I’m picking up a little sarcasm in your voice, Henri. Can you tell me if anything’s bothering you?

Henri: I’m so glad you asked. Finally, we can have a one-on-one!

Boomer Chick: Yes?

Henri: Why isn’t my name on the cover of our book?

Boomer Chick: Listen, Henri, we’ve been down that road before. It was out of my hands.

Henri: So how will people know it’s my book, too?

Boomer Chick: (laughs) Well, Henri, this is how. You’re on a virtual book tour because you are an author and you wrote a book, right? So, tell the people. Tell them what part you had in all this. Tell them what they need to know, Henri. Now’s your chance.

Henri: Well, okay, I will. I’m still a little miffed because people don’t know unless I tell them and it shouldn’t be that way.

Boomer Chick: Okay, here you go. I would like to announce to the world that Henri de Montmorency wrote the book, The Search for the Million $$$ Ghost. Now, Henri, does that make you happy?

Henri: Yeah, right…like anyone ever goes to a blog called Over the Hill Boomer Chick except old geezers. I want the hip chicks to know, you know?

Boomer Chick: Henri, in case you haven’t noticed…I am a hip chick.

Henri: You need glasses, too.

Boomer Chick: I see this was a bad idea. I’ve got one down in the dumps ghost because he thinks no one knows he wrote a book and a deadline with other authors on tour to meet and my guest today has an attitude. I don’t deserve this, Henri.

Henri: Oh, I’m sorry, okay? But will you do me a favor?

Boomer Chick: Anything, Henri.

Henri: Will you tell whoever comes to your blog that ghosts exist and I’m a living example and I wrote the book even though my name isn’t on the cover?

Boomer Chick: Well, Henri, I think you just did. As a matter of fact, once people open the book, your name is right there on the first page.

Henri: It is?

Boomer Chick: Yes, as a matter of fact, I’ll quote for you. “The Search for the Million $$$ Ghost” by Heide AW Kaminski, Pam Lawniczak, Dorothy Thompson, and, of course, Henri.” It’s all there in black and white. Haven’t you even opened the book?

Henri: Uh…well…I thought it was good enough just to be the author. What author reads his own books anyway?

Boomer Chick: And, what else is neat, Henri, is that on the second page, there’s a picture of you in front of the Hawthorne mansion that Randy Custer drew and gave us permission to include it in the book.

Henri: I didn’t know that. That’s really neat, isn’t it? I mean, neither of you have your picture in the book and I do!

Boomer Chick: Now are you happy?

Henri: I’m ecstatic!

Boomer Chick: Now can we get on with the interview?

Henri: Too late for that! I’ve got to go over to Boo Drop Inn and tell Boo!!!

Boomer Chick: Henri? Henri? Well, I guess Henri has no more to say. Check out The Search for the Million $$$ Ghost at Amazon or your local neighborhood bookstore! Thank you, Henri, wherever you are…authors with their heads in the clouds...what can you do...

You can check out Henri on the web at
http://www.henritheghost.blogspot.com/!

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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

101 Internet Talk Radio Shows to Promote Your Books!

I am so happy to announce the release of my new ebook, 101 Internet Radio Shows to Promote Your Books! It's 60 pages of talk radio show links with their descriptions and contact info, plus tips to make your interview a success!

If you'd like to check it out, visit www.pumpupyourbookpromotion.com/radioebook.html.

This ebook took months to put together and, finally, it's done. What I would like to mention is that all of these radio shows are for the lazy author who wants to just do everything out of the comfort of his or her home. I'm that lazy author and that's why I knew there was a need for this and, besides, it's cheap. Grab you a copy if you're on the lookout to be interviewed on radio shows...believe me...it's worth every penny.

On the home front, it's yucky outside. We've had rain for days, and muggy. BF is still alive and kicking, but back to work. Thank goodness. We actually made it a whole week unscathed.

Of course, there are two more weeks of vacation coming up, but I have it all planned.

One of those weeks, the kids and I are going on a mini-vacation. Don't know where, but we're going. And BF gets to sit home with the dogs, poor baby.

Anybody have any suggestions on where to go? I'm on the east coast and don't want to go to far since I have the California trip coming up in September if all goes as planned. I've thought about Williamsburg and doing the Busch Gardens thing, but we do it every year, and like my daughter said, "Can we go somewhere we haven't been before?"

She's got a point there.

So, whatcha think? Where's a good place to go for a couple of days on the east coast?

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Monday, June 11, 2007

TRUST IN THE WIND VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR ' 07!

We have a special guest today at Boomer Chick! Vicki M. Taylor, author of Trust in the Wind, is on a virtual book tour and Boomer Chick gets to ask her lots of questions!

First, let me tell you a little about Vicki.

Vicki is an award-winning author who writes dramatic stories with strong women as her main characters. This is right up my alley! I love stories like that.

Her first novel, Not Without Anna, won 2nd place in the 2003 Florida Writers’ Association’s Royal Palm Literary Awards and was published in January 2004. She won an honorary award for her short story, “And Justice for All” in the Fire to Fly contest from Futures Mysterious Anthology Magazine.

A prolific writer of both novel length and short stories, she brings her characters to life in the real world. Her memberships include the National Association of Women Writers, Short Fiction Mystery Society, Romance Writers Association, and many more. She has had hundreds of articles published in electronic and print publications. She is one of the founders and past President of the Florida Writers Association, Inc. and speaks to local writing groups.

What a treat to have Vicki with us today! So, without further ado...I give you Vicki M. Taylor, author of Trust in the Wind!

Boomer Chick: Thank you for stopping by Boomer Chick on your virtual book tour, Vicki! Can you start off by telling us what your book is all about?

Vicki: Hey, it's great to be here. Trust in the Wind is about a fiercely independent, young teenage mother who only wants to make a good life for her son, Joey, and herself. It tells what happens after she meets a county sheriff who makes a lasting impression on her young son and gets under her skin as well, no matter how hard she tries to fight it.The sheriff has issues of his own; invisible demons that haunt him, and a job with a lot of risk. He too fights the attraction he feels for the small family he befriends, but can't seem to help himself. He's putty in little Joey's hands. The drama increases ten-fold, when little Joey is kidnapped.

Boomer Chick: Your book simply sounds fascinating. What compelled you to write it?

Vicki: The book came to me in a dream. Yes, the entire book. I woke up one morning and grabbed pen and paper and wrote the entire book out in long hand. It was the synopsis for my story. I was anxious to get it all written down before I started forgetting it. You know how it is after you wake up from dreaming, you start forgetting what your dream was about.

Boomer Chick: In your book, the main character, Joanne, starts out as a single mom who becomes quite independent. Do you perhaps see any of yourself in Joanne?

Vicki: No, not really. Joanne had her baby when she was a teenager in high school, having gotten pregnant by the first boy she had sex with. I didn't become "independent" until I reached my thirties. Yeah, it took me a while.

Boomer Chick: Just curious, why did you choose to have Roy a county sheriff? I’m always curious as to why we choose different professions for our characters.

Vicki: That's how the character was presented to me in my dream. And in my dream he looked like Ed Harris, so I created the character after Ed Harris. Roy needed to be in a position to "rescue" Joanne and then have a legitimate reason to maintain contact with her and her son. And, he had to have a job that was extremely risky to make it an issue for Joanne.

Boomer Chick: I understand that your first book, Not Without Anna, won 2'nd place in the 2003 Florida Writers’ Association’s Royal Palm Literary Awards and was published a few months later in 2004. Do you think having the book win an award influenced the publisher in taking you on?

Vicki: The publisher was thrilled that I won the award, even putting the award seal on the back cover of my book. I don't think it made them decide to publish me. It helped with marketing though. Made for a great press release.

Boomer Chick: I gotta ask. You used to be a marine? Did you have aspirations to become an author even back then?

Vicki:Wow, when I was a Marine, I was such a naive kid. Away from home for the first time, right out of high school. I grew up kind of fast. I wasn't thinking about writing back then. Although, I wished I'd kept a journal of all my experiences. Then again, most of them are still in my head. At least the most memorable moments.

Boomer Chick: What’s next on the agenda? Do you have more books coming out?

Vicki: I have a short story coming out in the Summer issue of Mysterical-E. I've been entering a romantic/suspense in some RWA contests. It was a finalist in the Golden Acorn. I think once I get a chance to go back through it and apply the changes suggested by the judges throughout the book, it'll have a good chance at getting published. I'm currently working on a women's fiction manuscript of a 39 year old mother of five who wants to adopt a pregnant 14 year old teenager and the tragic results.

Boomer Chick: Thank you for stopping by, Vicki, and good luck on the rest of your virtual book tour!

Vicki: Thanks, it was great being here. If you or your readers have any other questions, I'd be happy to answer them.


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WATCH THE TRAILER!



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If you'd like to visit Vicki's tour page to see where she's going next, click here!
If you'd like to purchase Trust in the Wind at Amazon, click here!
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Vicki's virtual book tour is brought to you by Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tours. If you are an author and you would like us to set up a virtual book tour for you, click here for more information!

Friday, June 08, 2007

THE ROUX IN THE GUMBO VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR ' 07 TODAY!

The Boomer Chick has a very, very special lady here with us today. It's Kim Robinson, one of the authors I represent on her virtual book tour and not only that, she's the author of the phenomenol book, The Roux in the Gumbo!

The Roux in the Gumbo is an emotional and inspirational look into the lives of a family that opens their door and hearts on every page. Spanning the years between 1800 to 1997, The Roux in the Gumbo’s story is told through one of the main characters before her passing; the remainder is accompanied by the memories of family members and friends. Based in Louisiana, with all its flair and Southern culture, it describes the experiences throughout history, contributing to the shaping of generations. In spite of the obstacles and struggles that life brought their way, these characters persevered with unity, love and laughter, due to a strong familial support system that carries universal appeal.

I give you the lovely and talented...Ms. Kim Robinson...

Boomer Chick: Thank you for stopping by Boomer Chick on your virtual book tour, Kim! Can you start off by telling us what your book is all about?

Kim: The Roux in the Gumbo is my Grandmother and Great grandmother’s life story, but in order to really know them you have to what came before them and what came after. The story covers slavery, child abuse, sexual abuse, KKK, reconstruction, prohibition, ples’sage, prostitution, divorce, cooking, hoodoo, voodoo, spiritual growth and events that were told to me by my family members. The book is 90 percent truth and I say that because if someone gets mad I can say that part isn’t true. LOL

Boomer Chick: I love that. Sort of covers all bases, huh? Your story is simply fascinating. What compelled you to write it?
Kim: I was pregnant with my second son in 1993 living in Texas with my man and my grandmother came from Los Angeles to help me because I was bedridden during the end of pregnancy because I have lymphademia. I would lay on a pull out couch in the den and watch television with her. We were watching Oprah who was talking about her book that was soon to be released and my Grandmother said, “I had more things happen to me than she did, someone needs to write my story.” I had my man set up the computer next to the pull out bed where we sat during the day and we started journaling all of those stories that she had been telling me all my life and a lot that she had not told anyone. When she was headed home after I had the baby, I brought her a tape recorder and when she thought of something she put it on tape and when the tape was full she would mail it to me and I would add every thing in chronological order. Ten months later, I went to Louisiana and stayed with some family and people who knew my great grandmother and family told me their stories about my ancestors. I came back and added all that to the book. I was pregnant with my daughter who is eleven months after my second son and my grandmother came back to help me again and we went over everything that I had added. She confirmed or denied. My grandmother visited every few months and we added information. In 1997 she got very sick and went into a coma during spinal cancer surgery. I flew down with my children and would visit every day. I would sit and read the book to her. My grandmother had seven children who would come by with their kids everyday and as I read they would listen. They started adding their memories and making tapes. One day I was reading to her and though she never came out of her coma, she said my name. Everyone in the family told me that it was a sign and they encouraged me to finish the book for the world not just something for the family to see. She died the next morning and here we are today with The Roux in the Gumbo. I think that every time someone reads this story they are bringing my family back to life.
Boomer Chick: I've got goosebumps! What has your family said about the book?
Kim: They are very proud and happy and sell more books than the stores. This is something that I have done that can be proud of, other than my three children.

Boomer Chick: Was it hard to write a book that was so close to home? I mean, did you felt like it was a cleansing tool? How did you feel after it was completed?
Kim: I finished it after I had come out of rehab and I felt like I had learned so much. I guess that thing about the sins of the fathers is really true because from generation to generation the same traumas occurred; hopefully this book will help to change that. How did I feel, I felt like I had immortalized my family who were very strong people.
Boomer Chick: Tell us about the talks you’ve been doing at the local churches. What was your reaction? What was your husband’s reaction to the way the church people accepted you?
Kim: I felt like my life had come full circle, that every negative that had ever happened to me in my life to was to bring me to this stage helping people know that they did not have to accept abuse and that if they were still standing God had a plan for them. My husband saw me speak at a church for the first time two weeks ago at Greater Mt. Tabor church in Fort Worth (Texas) and he was so proud of me that we didn’t even make it home. We checked into a hotel so that he could be with the woman that he was seeing in a new light. You have to understand that when we got together he pulled me out of “The life,” I was a a madam, call girl, drug dealer and addict when he met me. He didn’t know it but that I is in my next book. He believed in me and kept investing in me, we have two beautiful children and he adopted my son that I had to leave when he was he was three because the law broke in my door and I couldn't leave California for seven years or talk to my child through penitentiary glass for thirty five.
Boomer Chick: Unbelievable. I remember when you first joined my writing group, The Writer's Life, and in your introduction you told us what you had been in your past life, and I remember my eyes got big as saucers and I went, "Did she just say that?" Not too many people have the guts you have to admit all this and for that, I feel honored to know you. Amazing how you came up from the ashes and here you are a published author, ready to tell your story without holding anything back. Tell me, what kind of a message are you trying to get across with your book?
Kim: My book shows the hardships that people dealt with during slavery and reconstruction and the depression, no matter what nationality. I think that people are going to know how important history is to everyone most importantly the upcoming generations who don’t know how many people died in the civil war to make things the way they are today, they would not take education for granted. I speak at schools letting children know that they can write books to help other children deal with the challenges that they have faced.
Boomer Chick: What’s next on the agenda? Do you have more books coming out?
Kim: I have several books coming out. The next is my life story, The Street Life to Housewife trilogy, then we have a series that still has ended after twelve books called G-mama. G-mama is a 68 year old prostitute whose theory is “The penitentiary ain’t nothing but college for criminals.” She gives perpetrators the choice of making up for their sin’s god’s eyes or going to jail. I deal with real life trauma all over the world, drive by shootings, mothers trading their kids for the next fix, and arthritis patients dealing with medicine that has people throwing away their wheel chairs and walkers for jogging and Arthur Murray dance studios only to end up with livers failing because the pharmaceutical companies would rather make money then fess up that their miracle drug is actually death.
Boomer Chick: Where can we purchase The Roux of the Gumbo?

Kim: You can go on my website, www.kim-robinson.com to purchase an autographed copy or go to www.Jadorepublishing.com who is my publisher, agent and publicist and for the ebook www.mardigraspublishing.com.

Boomer Chick: Thank you for coming, Kim, and good luck with the rest of your tour!
Kim: Thank you for the opportunity, I can’t wait to have you on my blog, you Rock!!!!

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