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Monday, April 24, 2017

Interview with author Robert Eggleton




Rarity from the Hollow: A Tragic, Comedic, and Satiric Science Fiction Adventure that Supports the Prevention of Child Maltreatment


1. What really inspired you to write your book, to force you from taking an idea or experience and conveying it into a book?
Thanks, Brian, for inviting me to tell your readers a little about myself and my debut novel, Rarity from the Hollow. I’m a retired children’s psychotherapist with over forty years in the field of children’s advocacy. Most of my writing has been nonfiction: nationally distributed social service models for serving youth in the community as opposed to sending them off to giant institutions; research on foster care drift with children bouncing from one home to the next without ever establishing permanency; dozens of investigative reports published by the West Virginia Supreme Court on systemic issues affecting child welfare; statistical reports on the occurrence and correlates of child abuse and delinquency…. These documents are now archived by the West Virginia Division of Culture and History.

Over the years, I’ve been exposed to or directly involved in hundreds of situations involving traumatized kids – experiences that tugged at my heart strings, hard. In 2002, I went to work at our local mental health center. It was a day program for kids with serious mental health concerns, many having been maltreated, some sexually abused. Part of my job was to facilitate group therapy sessions. It was the type of job that I brought home after work, and the first job that I’d held since college that production of written work was not part of my job description. The need to write started churning inside me. I’d dabbled in fiction and poetry as a young man, having won the eighth grade short story competition and a few poems had been published, including one in our state’s Annual College Student Anthology, so I started writing fiction again. Initially, my reemergence into fiction writing was in pursuit of psychological relief from work stress rather than to produce anything meaningful for others to read.  

One day in 2006, I met a skinny little girl during a group therapy session. Instead of merely disclosing the horrors of her maltreatment by one of the meanest daddies on Earth, she also spoke of her hopes and dreams for the future. My protagonist was born that day, Lacy Dawn: an empowered victim who confronts the evils of the universe. I started writing fiction after work, sometimes late into the evenings. It was exhausting, but when I felt so discouraged with the condition of the book marketplace that I was about to give up, I found another source of inspiration. I decided to donate half of author proceeds to the prevention of child maltreatment. After identifying a worthwhile recipient,  http://www.childhswv.org/, this inspiration continues to sustain my drive to write fiction.

2. What is it about and whom do you believe is your targeted reader?
In a nutshell, Rarity from the Hollow is a story of victimization to empowerment filled with tragedy, comedy, and satire. A most unlikely savior of the universe organizes a team of zany characters to address an imminent threat to the universe. Due to its social commentary and political allegory, not because of sexual or violent content, the target audience is adults who are not prudish, faint-of-heart, or easily offended. 

3. What do you hope will be the everlasting thoughts for readers who finish your book? What should remain with them long after putting it down?
My hope is that readers of Rarity from the Hollow will be sensitized to the huge social problem of increasing child maltreatment in the world and its potential impact on civilization. There is nothing preachy in the story. It was written for enjoyment as a strategy to provide food for thought to last a long time, as opposed to a tragedy that one wants to push out-of-mind as quickly as possible. Its political allegory does not advocate for one position or any other, pure parody of both extreme capitalism and democratic socialism based on my understanding of positions held by Donald Trump back when he was on The Apprentice, and those held by Bernie Sanders. Some readers of my novel may question the logic of President Trump’s proposed budgets cuts of domestic spending, as will affect child welfare services, while others may not. But, I hope that all readers of my novel will at least give serious consideration to the impact regardless of their politics. Further, I hope that readers of my novel will consider making charitable contributions to programs that prevent child maltreatment among other worthwhile causes when they are in a position to make personal donations.    

4. What advice or words of wisdom do you have for fellow writers?
As a novice to the fiction marketplace with only a debut novel and a few published stories, I’m no expert. I have noticed that a lot of debut novelists seem to put everything, perhaps to a fault, into their creations, and soon seem to fade into the sunset. My best advice to fellow writers would be to look at the long haul. It is not likely that one will be discovered like Elvis singing on the porch stoop of an apartment in a low-income neighborhood. Do not bet the family farm that you will be discovered as an author just because you are a great writer who has produced a remarkable piece. Be patient with ongoing persistence. Keep writing and submitting with conservative expectations and investments. 

5. What trends in the book world do you see and where do you think the book publishing industry is heading?
Again as a novice, I see the book world and industry heading toward increasing standardization. Despite the advent of self-publishing which was expected to open-wide the doors of free speech and creativity, our culture seems to repeating the same themes over and over again. Beat Poet Ferlinghetti warned about the impact of the conglomeration of publishers. In my opinion, his warning was prophetic. I hope that I’m wrong. I don’t know if it’s true, but I’ve read that Big Five publishers spend tens of thousands of dollars promoting a single title. I’m not highly well-read in the most popular Young Adult and Romance genres, but of the several that I have read, they feel cookie-cutter. Like everybody else, I receive email spam. The other day, I received an advert for a software program that, essentially, writes your book for you after you plug in details, like character names, etc. Indie authors who strive to produce avant-garde works, even though publication is more possible at a lower cost today than ever before, face stiff competition. Due to their proliferation, books are now the cheapest form of entertainment available – many for free or 99¢. Competition by other forms of entertainment, enhanced by technology, such as special effects in movies and video games, seems to have reduced readerships. Perhaps related, action-based plots in genre fiction seem to be dominating more literary techniques. In the field of science fiction, which I love, for the last couple of years an organization named the Sad Puppies have protested in favor of pulp fiction at the Hugo Award ceremonies. Again, these are my observations as a novice author, mostly a reader and lover of books.    

6. What great challenges did you have in writing your book?
The only major challenge that I experienced with the actual writing of Rarity from the Hollow was when cutting great scenes that just didn’t fit the story. I struggled with debate over either cutting them or revising the story to make the scenes fit because they were so good. My challenge has been with promotions after the book was finished. It is a traditional small press publication. This was great because I’ve never had to spend any money on anything to get it published, but small presses have next to no advertising budget. I’ve spent much more time promoting my debut novel than it took to write it.

7. If people can only buy one book this month, why should it be yours?
As the author, I recommend that prospective readers buy Rarity from the Hollow because it is a fun read with meaningful content that is enough food for thought to last a long time. Early tragedy in the story feeds and amplifies subsequent comedy and satire. This means that readers will get a bigger bang for their time spent reading than if they had selected a book quickly forgotten after the last page. 

About the author:
Robert Eggleton has served as a children's advocate in an impoverished state for over forty years. Locally, he is best known for his nonfiction about children’s programs and issues, much of which was published by the West Virginia Supreme Court where he worked from1982 through 1997. Today, he is a retired children's psychotherapist from the mental health center in Charleston, West Virginia, where he specialized in helping victims cope with and overcome maltreatment and other mental health concerns. Rarity from the Hollow is his debut novel. Its release followed publication of three short Lacy Dawn Adventures in magazines.  Rarity from the Hollow

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2017©. Born and raised in Brooklyn, now resides in Westchester. Named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs

A Timeline Of The History of Printing



YEAR             EVENT

3100 BC          Cuneiform, one of the earliest known writing systems was developed in Sumer (modern day Iraq). Wedge-shaped marks were made on clay tablets by a blunt stylus cut from a reed.

3000                Papyrus plant, paper-like material used as a writing surface in Egypt.  Ink from lamp-black made in China.

500                  Amate, a beaten paper-like material, made in Pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. Parchment, a material made from processed animal skin, used as a writing surface in Pergamon (Anatolian Greece, Asia Minor, now Turkey).

100                  Paper invented in China by monks. Codex book form emerges in the Roman Empire. Coptic binding in Egypt.

200                  Woodblock printing in China.

868                  The oldest dated printed text known:  The Diamond Sutra, a Chinese translation of a Buddhist text now preserved in the British Library.

932                  Chinese printers adapt Wood-block printing to mass produce classical books.

1041                Movable type invented in China.

1282                Watermarks first used in Italian-made paper.

1309                Paper first used in England.

1377                World’s oldest extant book printed with movable metal type Baekun Hwasang Chorok Buljo Jikji Simche Yojeol published in Cheungju Korea, now at the Bibliotheque Nationale.

1438-44           Adjustable type mold developed by Johannes Guttenberg in Mainz (Germany)

1454                First dated European document:  a papal indulgence attributed to Gutenberg.

1455                Gutenberg’s Bible completed by his creditor Johann Fust and his own workman Peter Schoeffer.

1462                Fust and Schoeffer first to use a printer’s mark.

1539                Juan Pablos (Giovanni Paoli) became the first printer in North America (Mexico City).

1563                Printing in France forbidden without royal permission under penalty of death.

1584                The University Press at Cambridge begins operation, and has done so continuously since.  It lays claim to being both the world’s oldest university press in and the oldest printing and publishing house.

1600                Spain outlaws papermaking in its New World colonies.

1611                Publication of the first edition of the King James Bible.

1655                The London Gazette, first regularly published English newspaper.

1690                Papermaking in America (Philadelphia).

1710                Statue of Anne regulates copyright in Great Britain.

1731                Poor Richard’s Almanac, published by Benjamin Franklin in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

1735                Publisher John Peter Zenger acquitted of libel in colonial New York City, setting the legal standard.

1755                A Dictionary of the English Language by Samuel Johnson.

1768                Encyclopedia Britannica is published.

1775                Common Sense by Thomas Paine is released.

1810                Composition ink rollers developed in London to replace ink balls.  The History of Printing in America by Isaiah Thomas.

1825                Typographia ty Thomas Curson Hansard is published.  Louis John Pouchée, a London type founder, produces ornamented types now regarded among the best of their kind.

1830                Paperback books appear in England and Ireland.

1839                Practical photography developed.

1851                Paper made from wood pulp.

1866                American Printer.  A Manual of Typography by Thomas MacKellar is published.

1875                Mimeograph invented by Thomas Edison.

1884                Grolier Club, a bibliophilic organization, founded in New York

1886                Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works.  Historic Printing Types by Theodore Low Devinne.

1892                Biliographical Society (of London) founded.

1904                The Bibliographical Society of America established.

1905                The Society of Printers established in Boston.

1919                The Newberry Library establishes the John M. Wing Foundation on the History of Printing.
1927                Society of Typographic Arts founded in Chicago.

1937                The American Imprint Inventory begins under Douglas C. McMurtrie a Depression-era section the Historical Records Survey to identify and catalogue US imprints produced before 1800 (1890 west of the Mississippi). Suspended in 1942.

1943                Papermaking:  The History and Technique of an Ancient Craft by Dard Hunter is published.

1946                Bookbinding, Its Background and Technique by Edith Diehl is published.

1955                Printing for Pleasure by John Ryder, it popularized the amateur and fine press movement after World War II.

1957                Association Typographique Internationale (A TypI).

1964                Printing Historical Society founded in London.

1971                Project Gutenberg, oldest digital library of public domain books launched.

1974                American Printing History Association founded.  The Center for Book Arts founded in New York, the first not-for-profit organization of its kind in the United States.

1983                Desktop publishing appears.

1985                Minnesota Center for Book Arts opens in Minneapolis.

1991                World Wide Web is launched.

1995                Amazon.com founded.

1996                Fine Press Book Association founded.

1999                Blogger online self-publishing app launches.

2001                Wikipedia, a free, online collaborative encyclopedia, is launched.

2004                Facebook social network launched.

2006                Twitter social networking service launched.  It allows users to send and read 140-character messages called “tweets.”

2007                Kindle e-reader developed by Amazon.com.

2008                College Book Art Association is formed, professionalizing book art education, supporting academic book artists and students, setting standards, and promoting the field.

2009                Nook e-reader developed by Barnes & Noble.

2010                Apple iPad tablet introduced.

2012                London Centre for Book Arts opens.

Note: Excerpted from The Printing History Association 


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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2017©. Born and raised in Brooklyn, now resides in Westchester. Named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Interview with author Paula Priamos



Inside V: A Novel


1. What really inspired you to write your book, to force you from taking an idea or experience and conveying it into a book?  I started with a strong female Greek protagonist and went from there.  I saw a woman who is about to not only lose her husband who goes missing shortly before he is about to turn himself in to serve a prison sentence for a heinous crime he swears he did not commit, but the home that they share that is part of the collateral for his bond.  Her conflicts drove me on to complete the novel in under ten months.

2. What is it about and whom do you believe is your targeted reader? I think Inside V is a perfect read for both men and women who enjoy a thought provoking, leanly written psychological thriller.  Some writers gear their books towards one specific gender, but I did not do that with this book. 

3. What do you hope will be the everlasting thoughts for readers who finish your book? What should remain with them long after putting it down? I hope the narrative is as unpredictable to read as it was for me to write.  While working on the novel I told a friend I was rooting for a certain character and she laughed, telling me I was insane.  I should know the outcome to my own story.  But I was so committed to the characters that I myself didn’t know what would happen until I let the narrative play out in my head and it did, like a movie reel, until I wrote it down in longhand on paper and then revised as I input it on the computer.

4. What advice or words of wisdom do you have for fellow writers? Be open to suggestions but mindful of your own writing style.  There are people in the literary world who might give you advice and forget why they gave it to you in the first place.  I know of one unfortunate writer who changed the entire concept of his book for a literary agent only to have her reject it after he was finished.  I’ve learned, as a writer, you sometimes have to go with your own gut instinct.

5. What trends in the book world do you see and where do you think the book publishing industry is heading? People have been saying publishing is a dying industry for years, but I just don’t believe that.  I teach English and creative writing at a Cal State university and I see young people in their early twenties get excited about the books I choose for them to read.  I also encounter plenty of people who read my books.  It’s been the prevailing thought that self-publishing was going to take over the marketplace.  That simply hasn’t happened, at least not in my estimation.  All it’s done is crowded up online book buying sites.  I’d much rather have the backing of a well-known publishing house than go it alone, practically anonymous because there are so many self-published authors out there.

6. What great challenges did you have in writing your book?
It sounds ridiculous, but I had no real challenges while writing this book other than the fact I struggled to find the time, as most writers do, to actually write. 

7. If people can only buy one book this month, why should it be yours?
It’s a quick page turner with some drastic insights about relationships between men and women and how far one woman will go to find the man she loves.   A reader can easily get through Inside V during a long plane ride or a lazy weekend. 

Her writing has appeared in The Los Angeles Times Magazine, The New York Times Magazine, ZYZZYVA, Crimewave Magazine in the UK, The Washington Post Magazine, and The San Francisco Chronicle, among others. She is the author of the memoir The Shyster’s Daughter and teaches English and creative writing at CSU San Bernardino. Visit her at paulapriamos.com.

"A lean, searing, and psychologically astute thriller with a surprising twist and an unforgettable heroine."
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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2017©. Born and raised in Brooklyn, now resides in Westchester. Named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blog


Interview with Author Cathy Fyock



Cathy just published Blog 2 Book:  Repurposing Content to Discover the Book You’ve Already Written.  She was interviewed by Book Marketing Buzz Blog below:

1.      Cathy, what’s your book about?
My book, Blog2Book, is about how to discover the book you’ve already written! If you’ve been writing weekly blog posts for a year or more you likely have all the content you need for your first or next book. Or, if you’d like to begin a weekly blog and at the end of one year have the content for a book, then this book is for you!

2.      What inspired you to write it?
I attended the National Speakers Association convention this past summer, and within 24 hours at least four people came to me to discuss how they might turn the content of their blog posts into a book. I realized then that while many people intuitively know they have the content for a book when they’ve written a blog, it isn’t always evident how to do it. This book not only tells you how to do it, but it shows you. I’ve basically repurposed my past blog posts and parts of On Your Mark, then added some new content to create Blog2Book.

3.      You penned seven prior books. What draws you to writing?
It’s funny, but I really don’t enjoy the process of writing; I do love the benefits of having written! I know that a nonfiction book about my area of expertise can be an incredible business development tool for my speaking, coaching, and consulting practice.

My first five books were on human resource topics, since my first business—Innovative Management Concepts—was a human resources consulting firm. But since 2014, in conjunction with my new book coaching business, my books are focused on positioning me as The Business Book Strategist.

4.      What advice do you have for writers?
Just do it! I believe it is easy for writers—especially thought-leaders and professionals—to overthink their writing. My best advice is to WRITE! Develop a daily writing practice and keep at it. One of my favorite writing exercises I use with my group coaching clients is the writing sprint. I find an interesting photograph (courtesy of my friend and photographer Daniel Light) and ask writers to consider how the image interfaces with their topic. Set the timer. Don’t think; don’t edit. Just write.

5.      Where do you see book publishing heading?
Books will always be with us because they contain our stories—be they fiction or nonfiction. Stories are the way we educate, share insights, entertain and amuse, and create community. I expect books publishing to take on many forms and formats—electronic, paper, and audio, and perhaps more we haven’t even thought of.

6.      Just how does one turn blogs into books?
In order for a blog post to be book-worthy, it must pass several tests:
1.      Is the post current/relevant/evergreen?
2.      Does it reflect my current thinking on this topic?
3.      Does the book’s thesis fit with my current business strategy?
4.      Does the post fit with the overarching thesis?
5.      Is the post redundant?

This list of questions will allow the author to determine if the post fits in the book.

Perhaps one of the most important steps in creating a blog2book is in developing the overarching theme/thesis, and ensuring that each post is supportive of that thesis. By developing this in advance, one can repurpose many posts into book content.

7.      Why should authors blog?
There are so many reasons that blogging is good for authors! It keeps authors in a regular writing habit. It challenges authors to stay current and relevant regarding their topic/thesis. It helps develop new content for subsequent books or intellectual property. It keeps the author visible. It creates connection with the author’s tribe.

8.      What kind of planning is needed to ensure one’s blog posts are book worthy?
There are two kinds of blog posts: bricks and feathers. Bricks on the foundational principles of your topic and help the reader understand the issues at a deep level. Feathers are the fluff. While blog posts can be of both types, book content will likely be more bricks than feathers to provide value to the reader.

9.      Why do you say today’s author is a tribal leader?
Today’s nonfiction author needs to be a tribal leader if the goal is to establish thought-leadership. I love Seth Godin’s book, Tribes, in which he defines the essence of tribal leadership: connecting regularly with your tribe, providing for two-way communication, and engaging the hearts and the minds of readers.

10.  Why would someone turn a book into a blog?
I believe in repurposing your work. Maybe it’s because writing isn’t particularly easy or enjoyable for me that I want to squeeze every drop of benefit from the writing I generate. So, if I create new content for my coaching clients, I consider if this is content for a blog post (of course it is!) or for my next book. And conversely, when I write a new book, if I haven’t used the content in a blog post, then why not put that content to work? Again, I believe everything we write can and should be repurposed.

Cathy is a business book strategist who works with thought leaders and professionals who want to write a book as a business development strategy.  For more information, consult with her at www.CathyFyock.com.

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2017©. Born and raised in Brooklyn, now resides in Westchester. Named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs