Release Day Interview: With CS Johnson @C_S_Johnson13 #RRBookTours1

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Should I go to College? What About Student Loan Debt?

Genre: Non-Fiction

Publication Date: March 14th, 2019

If you’re a high school student, chances are you’ve been thinking about where you will go to college. Or if you will go to college at all.
I’ve been there. And as a former teacher, I’ve seen thousands of students there, too. So I wrote this book to help you.
This book offers sound advice about deciding whether or not you want to go to college, and, if you decide to go, how you can save time and money along the way.

“This is the book about college I wish I had read when I was younger.” – My 30-year-old self

SHOULD I GO TO COLLEGE? WHAT ABOUT STUDENT LOAN DEBT?
•Describes what college is
•Promotes thoughtful self-reflection
•Outlines your options post-high school
•Offers tragically hilarious truths about teaching
•Reaffirms the code of personal responsibility
•Likens student loans to dragons that need to be slain

ALL PROCEEDS OF THIS BOOK GO TOWARD 
HELPING STUDENTS PAY OFF THEIR 
STUDENT LOAN DEBT.

Hello nice to meet you! Tell us a bit about you where are you from and other than writing what else do you enjoy?

Hi there! Thank you for having me! I always appreciate the time people take in getting to know me.

I am C. S. Johnson, and I write in a variety of genres, mostly fantasy or science fiction. I started writing largely as a way to cope with reality, and I found out that it really helped and I enjoyed it a lot. Since then, I’ve been working to keep at it. There are a lot of other benefits to writing I’ve noticed, and meeting new people and getting to talk about interesting ideas are just some of them.

For my own favorite types of books to read, I enjoy a variety, just as I enjoy writing. I think in a lot of my own books that there are several other books that lend their influence. I do have to laugh, because my favorite books are usually memoirs or biographies, but I write fantasy and speculative fiction.

Who is your favourite author, is there anyone out there that inspires you?

I have a large variety of favorite authors, and I am sure I haven’t read some of them yet. If I had one go-to author, I would pick C. S. Lewis; I have never read anything of his I haven’t loved, needed, or deeply appreciated in some way. As for inspiration, my mother is my first spark among the fires of my heart. She was the one who taught me to read, and she is the one who is still out-reading me every week. I love writing books I know she will enjoy, even if she is not as much of a fantasy reader.

So you’ve published a series, what is the series about?

I’ve published a couple of series now, and I’m working through the last book of one more. The first series I wrote was the Starlight Chronicles; it is my epic superhero fantasy adventure, about an egotistical teenager who, after finding out he is a fallen star with supernatural power, is reluctant to save his city from evil. It’s a very dry, sarcastic sort of series, alternatively cynical and poignant, as my protagonist faces off the trials and tribulations of high school life and growing up. So far, my other series are a little softer in tone and subtler at the satire.

What was it like creating back to back stories that link?

For me, it’s like watching a heartbeat on an EKG; book one sputters some, and then shoots up, fast and hard; book two dips down lower, almost in a needed recovery, before striking back; and then the rest of the series books’ start the entire process over again, offering a persistent rhythm that becomes the heart song of a story.

Kim: 🙂 I love that !! Haha, very good way to describe it.

What has been your most proud moment as an author?

My author career has been marked with a lot of proud moments—I’ve had a Hollywood producer tell me my series is wonderful and she’s rooting for it to be picked up by a studio (Please, Dear God, please, haha!), I’ve had a very famous movie star compare it to Harry Potter and Tolkien, and I’ve had a lot of great readers turn into friends as we’ve gotten to know each other. I have a whole list of people in that group that I’ve designated my “Almost Famous Readers,” since I jokingly say that as an author, I’ll be famous for being almost famous one day. I even had one of them make me an award plaque and send it to me, and I cherish it.

If I had to pick one moment, I’d say it has to be the day when my young son, who does not like to read that much, told me he wanted to write a book. I actually opened a document for him to work on my computer, and he wrote out a small book’s worth of a story. I was absolutely amazed and profoundly proud of him.

Kim: Ohhhhhh my  heart just melted, that is so sweet. I hope he continues. I love it when children get involved, especially boys who are less likely to read. My son thankful has learned to love to read, whether he’ll write is another story as he hates it, then again he’s only five. He would rather do colouring-in.

Was there ever a time you wanted to pick up your laptop, and then launch it out the window with frustration?

Yes. It happens almost every week, like swirly, sporadic clockwork.

Am I the only one who gets hung up on commas? Do they make you go blah! when you’re writing?

I think every author has a punctuation thing they either love or hate. I am a huge semicolon lover; give me a long sentence where it will list detailed, specific things, offering up new insights while solidifying the foundational logic as it rambles on. It is glorious to watch such beauty grow and unfold.

If I have a thing to hate about commas, it is when people use them wrongfully. Uncoincidentally, this usually happens when the comma is actually supposed to be a semicolon.

What three tips would you give any aspiring writer?

Since I have written a lot of books, I do get asked a lot of questions about how to write a better story. I actually wrote a book for them, and it just came out this year. The book is “Good Writing is Like Good Sex: Sort of Sexy Thoughts on Writing” and it’s a quick, provocative overview of what makes a “sexy” book. So to answer this question honestly, I’d say, “Buy my book, read my book, and then try to use what I say in the book.” But I feel like that might be a little too pushy, haha.

Kim: Girl… you just said it 🙂

What are you working on now? What will you release next?

Right now, I am juggling a few projects. I have two books I am working on this month. I mentioned it before, but I am finishing up The Order of the Crystal Daggers, my Cinderella meets Mission: Impossible historical fiction set in 1870s Prague. In this final book of the series, Eleanora, my protagonist, has to rescue a kidnapped prince and save the Emperor from assassination, all while working to repair her relationship with her brother and uncover the hidden truth about her mother’s past. Luckily, she’s got quite a few people to help her, although plenty of them are juggling their own problems and facing the consequences of their own secrets. The series has been so fun and wonderfully received, so I am sad to see it end, but I am also nervous about sending it off with the seriousness and the level of diligence it’s due.

The second novel I am working on my science fantasy story, Till Human Voices Wake Us. It’s toeing the literary fiction line, but it’s about a college student who finds out the hard way that his uncle’s stories about being held hostage by mermaids who don’t believe in humans are all true. It’s a book about questions of reality, insanity, hope, and meaning, and what it means to be human. I am hoping to have it out for summer.

I also have a few short stories I’m working on for publication later this year and early next year.

Does a big ego help or hurt writers?

I think pride is rightfully the most deadly of sins, and partially because it is something that must be closely monitored. Confidence as a writer will help; arrogance will only lead to harm.

If you have a lot of confidence as a writer, I think you also have to have a lot of humility to make it work. I think I am more likely to err on the side of hesitation as a writer just because I know my limitations as a writer very well. My husband works in healthcare and it is my apparently favorite joke ever to tell people he goes into work to save real lives, and I stay home and ruin fake ones.

My stories are icing on a cake, but in order to have the cake, we need people who know how to bake and people who can build things in which those things are baked. I offer stories to entertain, to get people to think, to reframe a perspective. They are part of my heart, but my heart was not made for everyone. Sometimes, it was not made for a particular person right now, either. I was utterly appalled the first time I read 1984 in high school. The second time I read it, after a few more years passed, I loved it. There is very little point in offering someone icing if they are looking for someone to give them bread.

I have had a few people recognize me off the street, and I am more dumbfounded than anything else when they do. I honestly never expect that reaction to change.

Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?

 

I am tremendously thankful to my readers for the time they spend inside one of my books. I know, as a writer, and as a mother, there is so little time in the world when one is attempting to read. When I get a book review, I am always grateful; but I am considerably, and understandably much more happy when I find that the reviewer has either enjoyed my books, or they found my books to be good despite the unmet expectations in my characters, plot, or presentation.

I know there are plenty of talented writers who write books that are more fun, more fantastical, or just more of what is expected than I do. While I do try to make it fun, and keep it fun, I write books that make you smile, make you think, make you laugh. I tell people that I don’t write “Candy bar books,” but I don’t write “full-course meal books,” either. Maybe a good meal replacement bar would be a good analogy for my work, or we can get the icing analogy back out and put it on some carrots (which, thanks to some of my pregnancy moments, I know is better than it sounds.)

Either way, I rejoice with the good reviews, and I call my mom over the bad ones. She knows I have a soft heart, even if I have to hide it from the rest of the world.

What was your hardest scene to write?

I feel bad for admitting this one, but when you’ve had a lot of “last battles,” sometimes it’s hard to just write out the fight scenes and the “save-the-world” moments without feeling repetitive or a case of oncoming “writer-ex-machina,” where convivence and coincidence just collide too much for the writing to be good. As I was finishing up my steampunk book, One Flew Through the Dragon Heart, I told some of my readers I was ready just to nuke everything and be done with it.

I had one of my snarky reader friends tell me that nukes aren’t steampunk-approved, and we had a good laugh about that, and that made it easier to go back and try again.

How long on average does it take you to write a book?

It always depends on the book, but six to eight weeks is my average lately. I have some novellas which are shorter, and seriously, those don’t take nearly as long. I have some longer books which don’t ever seem to take that long at all, but it depends on the size more than anything else. Life interrupts me a lot along the way, too. I am a wife and a stay at home mom with two young kids; I like making my house more of a home, and there are other things I love that require my attentions, and I have been trying to be better about making sure social media especially is more of a back-burner thing of late.

What’s your favourite book and why?

My most consistently favorite book is Till We Have Faces, by C. S. Lewis. I try to read it every year and every time I do, I get something different out of it. It was a book I first read during a tumultuous time in my life, and I have never forgotten the magic of the first readthrough. This past year I read it and felt more drawn than ever to Revidal, the main character Orual’s other sister, and I like books that make great use of their secondary characters like that. The sudden loss of her sister’s favouritism and their unity must have been devastating to her, and her growing loneliness and desperation as Orual took the throne seemed much more relatable to me as an adult.

 

Thank you for joining is this month, I wish the author well with her release, and you can connect with her below!

Goodreads

About the Author

C. S. Johnson is the award-winning, genre-hopping author of several novels, including young adult sci-fi and fantasy adventures such as the Starlight Chronicles, the Once Upon a Princess saga, and the Divine Space Pirates trilogy. With a gift for sarcasm and an apologetic heart, she currently lives in Atlanta with her family. Find out more at http://www.csjohnson.me

CS Johnson | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

New Release: Maiden’s Peak by Kirsty E. Carter+ Giveaway!! (Murder Mystery) @KirstyEcarter @RRBookTours1

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Maiden'sPeak

If you are looking for a good mystery with a hint of the paranormal, you will want to read on! I have an excerpt for you, and a chance to win a copy of the book!

Maiden’s Peak

Expected Publication Date: May 7th, 2019

Genre: Murder Mystery/ Paranormal

Publisher: Between the Lines Publishing

Victor Shelton ran from his family’s legacy of prophetic dreams at seventeen but finds at twenty-eight that he is unable to run from the nightmares that plague him. Haunted by images of his own death each night he follows the fleeting memory of the town limit’s sign in his nightmare to a quaint Colorado town.

Beckoned to a forbidding mountain peak with a past riddled by ghost stories and legends, Victor must figure out who is friend or foe. Can he unravel the secrets of the enigmatic citizens of Carver’s Corner and solve his own murder before it happens?

Perhaps the answers are in the siren song of whatever is calling him to the caves under Maiden’s Peak. The song in the darkness urges him on, but whether it is to his death or to his salvation, Victor can’t say. All he knows is that once before he had not heeded the call of his dreams and someone had died. He can’t let that happen again.

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Excerpt

A solitary scrap of paper was swept from the cold pavement by the updraft. The gust of wind lifted my hair and ghosted a frigid breath across my neck, causing the hairs there to stand on end. I’d come to this small town chasing a dream, but not the kind that beckons a person to great things. No, the dream that had brought me here is the kind that leaves you huddled in a corner, quietly sobbing.

Two months had passed since the nightmares began, and I hadn’t had a decent night’s sleep since. Even as I thought about it, flashes of the nightmare came to the front of my mind, and I quickly veered my thoughts away to keep the images at bay.

Somehow, I thought coming here to Carver’s Corner would make it better. This place was featured in the nightly horror show that my dreams had become. Being here didn’t make the dream come into clarity or logically fall into place. I had never been to this town and probably would not have missed its presence in my life if I hadn’t been beckoned here by the insistent dreams.

My grandmother insisted that we had some cunning folk in our family tree. Cunning folk, in case you’ve been blessed with ignorance, is another name for wise men and women who heal and help others through both natural and magical means.

That might not seem so bad, but at seventeen, I rebelled with every fiber of my being. I wanted so much to be like everyone else. I tried so hard to pretend that I wasn’t plagued most nights by dreams that were seemingly not my own.

Sometimes the dreams came true; sometimes they merely taunted me. The embarrassment of misinterpreting a dream was something one truly had to experience before you could appreciate it. The looks on people’s faces when they had deemed you unbalanced was something you never got used to. The straw that finally broke the proverbial camel’s back came at a party in my junior year of high school. For weeks, I had dreamed of a fire at that party. It was the only reason—other than my then-crush, of course—that I had gone. As it turned out, I’d read the signs wrong, and the dream was more my anxiety than anything else. Needless to say, Betsy Stevens didn’t appreciate me ruining her party by screaming about a fire that never came to be.

A couple weeks after the incident, I left and went to live with my dad, who was on the East Coast—far away from talks of cunning folk and prophetic dreams. The move had worked in many ways. My dreams even stopped for a time, but as with all good things, it did not last.

Pre-Order Now!

 

 

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About the Author

Kristy E Carter

Kristy has been making up her own stories for entertainment for most of her life. Eleven years back she decided that perhaps others would want to walk through the worlds she has created. With over 10+ books in both urban fantasy and cozy mystery, Kristy has allowed readers to venture into realms where magic lives and murder mingles with humor. She currently lives with her family in the Southeastern United States where she helps other authors when she is not writing her own novels as a freelance writer and editor with eleven years of experience. With many projects in the works, there are sure to be more worlds for courageous adventurers to delve into.

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For your chance to win a digital copy of Maiden’s Peak by Kristy E. Carter, click the link below!

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Why women should be celebrated

Word!!

My Worth

samantha-qeja-551289-unsplash

The most admirable characteristic of a woman is her strength. We usually recognise and praise a woman for her beauty, be it her flawless skin, her thick mane or her perfect curves. All these are worth celebrating, but what tops it all, is her “dung beetle” strength.

The dung beetle metaphor is related to the common fact that it is the strongest animal on the planet….in relation to size. This is how I view women, a hidden strong force that many do not see. The things that females experience have been riddled with injustice, inequality and enormous abuse. Who they are and what they are capable of doing has been eroded by “normality”.

My mother is my first candidate of choice when it comes to choosing an ambassador of a woman’s strength. I watched her raise 4 children on her own from the ripe age of 38 after my father…

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New Release A Mother’s Love: The HEART of the Matter (Anthology/Short Stories), by Award Winning & Best-Selling Authors

 From one mother to another, I wish every author the best of luck with this new release! 

 

Thank You

Book Cover.jpgA Mother’s Love: The HEART of the Matter

 

Genre: Anthology/ Short Stories

 

Expected Publication Date: May 14th (Mother’s Day)

 

Where would we be without the LOVE of a Mother? That’s what’s so special about this anthology, it’s all about a Mother’s Love!

An endearing novel about the strength and resiliency of a mother’s love. . . . By loving their children more than themselves, the women in this anthology go to the extreme to protect and safe-guard their children. Oftentimes, at the cost of their own happiness.

These nine authors provide readers with heartening tales of inspiration, forgiveness and sacrifices, all coming from a place of love…A mother’s heart!

St The Scent of a Man: Dr. Julia E. Antoine

Holding On to Love: Solange St. Brice

A Mother’s Miracle: P. A. Smith

A Very British Mother: Lucinda E. Clarke

Dead Witch Talking: T. A. Moorman

The Blue Box: Jan Raymond

One Night of Love: Izzibella Beau

Welcome Home: Erin Eldridge

No Greater Love: Mariyam Hasnainories & Authors:

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45459747-the-heart-of-the-matter?ac=1&from_search=true

Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/4xJPTKVlHdA

About the Author

 

JULIA E. ANTOINE, aka Ju Ephraime, is the author of numerous bestsellers and award-winning novels, including, I Will Follow: to Eternity and Beyond and her highlander historical series, The Campbell Brothers. Dr. Antoine always knew she would be a writer. She started writing short stories for the local radio station in her hometown before she had even graduated high school. These days her time is spent plotting and creating new stories. When she’s not plotting out her next book, she travels extensively researching new locations to color her stories. She lives in the New England area with her wonderful life companion and her favorite pet, her dog, Gus.

Visit her at  www.juliaeantoine.com or www.too-clever.com

Pre-Order in Time for Mother’s Day!

Pre-order links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/HEART-Matter-Mothers-Love-ebook/dp/B07Q47D3HX/

Barnes & Nobel: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-heart-of-the-matter-dr-julia-e-antoine/1131306780?ean=2940161510162

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-heart-of-the-matter-a-mother-s-love

iBook: https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-heart-of-the-matter-a-mothers-love/id1458162045?ls=1

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#suicideawareness The Affair (my real introduction)

I can’t believe this, I stumbled on this blog as I was reading through my ‘reader’ page. The poetry struck me as rather deep so I kept reading, I am far from a poet and love to see the work of others who have that talent. The author has just shared a little about how her words came about she is due to release her work soon. I just want to show a little support as from reading the ‘reasons’ behind her work, her journey really does need to be shared for the benefit of others. I guess it pays to be nosy and click on things you would not ordinarily on WordPress.

I Am Jann Doe

NzOhY1556811933It’s been one week since I started this little poetry blog, and it dawned on me this morning that I’m yet to properly introduce myself. Let’s start with a confession… Jann Doe isn’t my ‘real’ name (clearly). Let’s move forward to another confession… I’m hiding behind this pen name because my poetry reveals a side of me that I’d rather my friends and family didn’t see. Okay, okay, let’s just keep the honesty a rollin’… I had a troublesome childhood and youth in many ways, and yes, I AM considering my early twenties to be a part of my youth. If that’s not youth, then I don’t know what is! Last confession (for today)… An affair that I had over a decade ago recently came back to bite me on the ass.

Let me explain: This man and I were close for many years before we ever…

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#poetry Blocks and Broken

I love stumbling across great blogs, a very uplifting poet here. Lots of interesting things to read, and feel the emotion of.

I Am Jann Doe

Blocks and Broken,

It’s the name of a song.

It’s played by young kids,

And, it’s not very long.

It has a great purpose,

Interval notes it does teach.

You can put together three,

Only when you’ve mastered each.

The same goes for life,

We have three key things.

Our mind, body, and emotions,

Make a harmonious ring.

But first let’s detach,

Clear the clutter from their paths.

Focus on one at a time,

Take a deep breath, make it last.

Only when we’re ready,

Can we play them together.

If we slow, take our time,

A perfected song can play forever.

-Jann Doe

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I’m Not Going Down Easy

Beautiful, she ain’t goin’ down! No way!!

Untangled

You can swarm my dreams
You can mimic those long ago days
by the sound of the wind.

The calendar can read the same date
making me look over my shoulder
in shades of black and white.

Year after Year
you can remind me that I never
received the memo that it’s over.
That I was released from twenty years of tyranny.

Go ahead and remind me that I’m still waiting.
That all the IQ points don’t matter
when it comes to stored fear in the body.

You hold me in a grip of fear for Now? Then? When?
You make me want to crawl out of
this anxiety-ridden body and mind
and watch it crumple on the floor.

Fighting the messages, programming designed
to keep the illness safely tucked in the cells
of my body and mind.
Alert, ready for the next time.

You’ll have your way with me.

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