Tag Archives: indie authors

Look Who’s Standing in the #RRBC Spotlight for June!

Greetings and welcome to The Indie SpotToday I have the incredible honor and pleasure of hosting Nonnie Jules, the president and founder of Rave Reviews Book Club and RWISA, on my blog. June is board member appreciation month at RRBC, and this month finds our leader standing in the spotlight. And so, I give to you Nonnie Jules.

CHAPTER 1

“OPEN, SHUT” by Nonnie Jules

***

February 12, 2001

The weather is horrible out, so I’m not sure why it makes sense that we go to school today, but, Mom is insistent.  More-so because Lola just got home from the hospital a few days ago, and she’s anxious to get back to school.  Of course, if she wants to go, we all have to go.  Bobby and I want to be upset with Lola, but, we can’t; she’s our favorite.

“Have a great day today, Kiddos.”  Dad rustles by, mussing up Bobby’s hair.

I smile.  It’s forced, but, it’s the right thing to do.

“You do the same, Dad,” Lola chimes in.  Now, her smile is genuine.  It should be, though – she’s the only one happy about going to school today.

“Hurry and finish your breakfast, kids.  You don’t want to be late.”  This is Mom’s Monday through Friday spiel, and like a desperate call center agent, she delivers it without fail.

“I don’t mind being late at all,” I respond. I’m being honest.

Moving at full speed, mom comes to a screeching halt in front of me and I swear her hands are moving towards my throat.

“You are the most pugnacious ten-year-old child in the world!”  The dishcloth being twisted in her hands, looks eerily like a noose being prepared to outfit a certain ten-year-old neck.

I’ve no idea what that word means but coming from my mom – and directed at me – it can’t be good.

“Thanks!” I offer in my most chipper voice, followed by a wicked smile.  We’ve been taught to respond this way even when people say mean things to us, but, of course, I’m just trying to get at Mom for making me walk to school on such an ugly, rainy day.

“Darcy Lynn…not today!”  Mom’s tone quickly changes and although I’m only ten, I’m smart enough to realize, that is my cue to take my smart-alecky pants off.  Done.

The usual neighborhood school walkers are already ahead of us.  Lola rushes out the door as if there is a fiery blaze chasing after her, while Bobby and I stroll behind at the pace of two dead men walking.  The school bus is our normal mode of transportation, but, because Lola has been cooped up in a stuffy hospital room for weeks, amid the mild rain and the grey sky, she’s still excited about walking today. Bobby and I are her designated ‘attendants.’

Approaching the corner of our street at 6th and Waco, the blaring music from the blue sedan could be heard from miles away.  I see it rounding the corner with increasing speed, swerving from lane to lane.  As if in slow motion, I turn to see Lola step off the curb, at the exact moment the car reaches the stop sign where we are to cross the street.  In those few seconds that felt like an eternity, my heart, hurled up into my throat – rests and stifles my screams…and, my tears, commingling with the light falling rain, blinds me from all that happens after.

BIO:

Nonnie Jules, Founder & President of the RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB (#RRBC), partner in 4WillsPublishing Author Services and wrangler of a very busy family, is often referred to as an enigma.  Nonnie prefers to take that label up a notch as she does with everything in her life.  “An enigma wrapped in a brain,” is the label that fits her best.  That brain is what keeps all the moving parts of the ever-fluid RRBC in constant motion.  Managing these successful entities along with her home life, keeps her busy from dawn until dusk…literally.

Nonnie has authored several books in various categories such as SELF-HELP, NOVELS, POETRY and SHORT STORY.  She refuses to be placed in a box as a writer of only one genre of literature.  She feels that she can skillfully cover it all.

One of her desires is to become a best-selling author – not because all of her family and friends purchases her books, but, because her books are so good, everyone can’t help but spread the word about them.

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What’s in A Name?

Naming characters might not seem like a major aspect to writing fiction, but it’s one of the most important pieces of the writing puzzle.

Names, when well thought out, convey elements of that character’s personality, region of birth, ethnicity. A memorable name will also stay with your readers—even after they’ve finished reading your book. Names like Han Solo and Luke Skywalker are much more memorable than, say, Dave Johnson and Bill Smith. Over the course of many books and several movies, we have a firm image of Han and Luke. Just hearing those names takes us on a journey into the future, into the deepest reaches of space. Bill and Dave, though part of a famous story, would not be easily recognizable in the name-dropping game of story fandom.

At times, I’ll come up with a name before I even have the story. There’s a personality within the name that just might have a tale that needs telling. I’ve been known to keep lists of names I think merit investigation. This is how a current work-in-progress began. This short story sprang from the idea of a guy named Elvis, who happens to look nothing at all like the King of Rock and Roll. He’s a man who specializes in finding people who don’t want to be found.

I try to choose uncommon names for my characters. Names I’ve used include:

Tanyon Thibbedeaux

Teagon Barton

Nola Patterson (Named after New Orleans, Louisiana)

Addison (Addie) Markley

Lottie Kane

Frank Rydekker

Sullum Cass

DeShay the piano player

Nester

Jobie Pritchett (Named after Job from the Bible)

Richie Tockett

Tristan Chalmers

Officer Tenneman

Chance Zamler

Charlie Woodlick

Avis Atwater

Ricky Kulkrick

Darcy Minzer

Miss Biddlewine

Shasta Cummings

Jessa Leaner

Just speaking certain names aloud will lead our thoughts directly to the story from which they come. Scout and Jem Finch. Atticus Finch. Captain Ahab. Holden Caulfield. Scarlett O’Hara. Harry Potter. Jay Gatsby. Hester Prynne. Nurse Ratched. Delores “Lolita” Haze. Big Brother. Piggy. Names carry weight. Names remind us just how good a story can be.

I’ve written a few short stories where a main character is nameless. This works in certain situations. The point in writing is to have fun with what you are creating. This lends itself to choosing names as well. How do you come up with your character names?

 

2018 #RRBC WC&BE SPONSORS BLOG HOP! – D. L. Finn

Today on The Indie Spot, I am proud to support 2018 Rave Reviews Book Club Writers’ Conference & Book Expo sponsor and RWISA author D. L. Finn! 

No Fairy Tale by D. L. Finn!

You are invited into D.L. Finn’s life, written through a princess’s viewpoint. While it’s usually assumed in fairy tales that the princess is beloved by all, this is one princess who doesn’t feel loved. She dreams of a moment when her father will walk through the castle door, sweep her up in his arms and proclaim how much he misses her. That never happens. Instead, she is introduced to a new step family. Just like in the fairy tales, this is where the story takes a dark twist; where addiction, abuse and adolescence thrive together in retched misery. From her lowest point as a hopeless fourteen-year-old girl who gives up all hope– comes a spark of faith. This is where she begins her quest for a happy ending.

Although the princess ends her very real fairy tale, D.L. Finn steps in and shares her thoughts, poetry and photographs. This entire narrative is the author’s reality from childhood through adulthood. She maintains the privacy of those involved while hanging on to her truth.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my profile of this great read! If you did, head on over to Amazon and pick up your copy today!

FOLLOW D. L. FINN ON TWITTER

FIND D. L. FINN AT RWISA

MEET D. L. FINN ON FACEBOOK

FOLLOW THE BLOG HOP TOUR

2018 #RRBC WC&BE SPONSORS BLOG HOP! – Mary Adler

Today on The Indie Spot, I am proud to support 2018 Rave Reviews Book Club Writers’ Conference & Book Expo sponsor and RWISA author Mary Adler! 

Shadowed By Death by Mary Adler!

San Francisco, 1944. Sophia Nirenska, a Polish resistance fighter who survived the Warsaw ghetto uprising, finds safety in California until someone tries to kill her. She insists political enemies want to silence her, but homicide detective Oliver Wright, on medical leave from the Marines, believes the motive is more personal. He and his German shepherd, Harley, try to protect Sophia, but she insists on doing things her own way—a dangerous decision.

Oliver guards Sophia as they travel from an Italian cafe in Richmond to communist chicken farmers in Petaluma where her impetuous actions put them both in mortal danger.

When Oliver rescues a girl and her dog who are running for their lives, he discovers the dark secret at the heart of the threat to Sophia, a secret with its roots in Poland. When he does, he is forced to choose between enforcing the law as he knows it and jeopardizing Sophia or accepting a rougher kind of justice.

Shadowed by Death accurately portrays the fears and troubles of the communities of northern California as they bear the burdens of World War II and celebrate the gift of finding family among strangers.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my profile of this great read! If you did, head on over to Amazon and pick up your copy today!

Follow Mary Adler on Twitter

Find Mary Adler at RWISA

Meet Mary Adler on Facebook

Follow the Blog Hop Tour

2018 #RRBC WC&BE SPONSORS BLOG HOP! – RHANI D’CHAE

Today on The Indie Spot, I am proud to support 2018 Rave Reviews Book Club Writers’ Conference & Book Expo sponsor and RWISA author Rhani D’Chae!

Shadow of the Drill by Rhani D’Chae!

A brutal experience transforms an unproven young tough into a ruthless killing machine.
For fifteen years he waited, building his body into an unstoppable weapon so that vengeance would be had through the strength of his will and the power of his hands.

On the bloodstained streets of a northwestern city, the enforcer known as the Drill stalks his prey. Judge, Jury, and Executioner; he seeks out those who target the weak, condemning them to the kind of justice that has made him a legend.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my profile of this great read! If you did, head on over to Amazon and pick up your copy today!

Follow Rhani D’Chae on Twitter

Find Rhani D’Chae at RWISA

Meet Rhani D’Chae on Facebook

Follow the Blog Hop Tour

2018 #RRBC WC&BE SPONSORS BLOG HOP! – NONNIE JULES

Today on The Indie Spot, I am proud to support 2018 Rave Reviews Book Club Writers’ Conference & Book Expo sponsor and RWISA author Nonnie Jules! 

. . .If Only There Was Music by Nonnie Jules!


This is a book of poetry for and about forbidden love. These poems are sexy, sensuous and hot, but most of all, they are poems of love… and the feelings they arouse in you are unbelievable! They “feel” like love songs and you will “feel” like singing, but they are only spoken words coming from your mouth, without music. If you aren’t in love before you begin reading this book, you will go seeking a love afterwards.

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed my profile of this great read! If you did, head on over to Amazon and pick up your copy today!

Follow Nonnie Jules on Twitter

Find Nonnie Jules at RWISA

Meet Nonnie Jules on Facebook

Welcome to “FINDING BILLY BATTLES TRILOGY” Blog Tour! @JHawker69 @4WillsPub #RRBC #RWISA

Today, I have the honor and pleasure of hosting author, fellow Blog Talk Radio host, RRBC member, and friend Ronald E. Yates here on The Indie Spot. Please give a warm welcome to Ron by leaving a comment below and sharing his post.

Take it away, Ron. . .

Finding Billy Battles
Excerpt from the Prologue

My first meeting with William Fitzroy Raglan Battles was on a warm June afternoon in 1958. We sat on the veranda of a red-brick dormitory building on the grounds of the Wadsworth old soldiers’ home in Leavenworth, Kansas. Battles was really old, and the truth be known, he kind of frightened me, though I didn’t let on that he did. I was only twelve at the time, and I didn’t even want to be there.
Chances are you have never heard of William Fitzroy Raglan Battles, and there is no reason why you should have. I know I hadn’t—until that humid afternoon in the waning days of the Eisenhower era. Today, I often wonder how I could not have known about Battles, how a life as full and audacious as his could have gone unnoticed for so many generations. God, how I wish I could have known him better. But his life—as was no doubt the case with that of millions of other anonymous participants in history—was simply lost, crushed underfoot in the unrelenting stride of time.
Of course, there was no way I could know at the time that this meeting would trigger a series of events that would lead me on an extraordinary journey into the past and change my life in ways I could never imagine. When I look back on that first meeting, I wonder why I was so fearful. William Fitzroy Raglan Battles was not a particularly menacing man. But there was a definite hardness to him—the kind of stern, leathery countenance that you get from taking, and perhaps giving, too much punishment over a lifetime. I particularly recall his eyes. They were the color of pale slate, and almost as hard.
Maybe that was what frightened me—those eyes and the way they cut into you.
It was my grandmother who had insisted that I meet the man with those flinty gray eyes and that gristly exterior. One day she simply announced that we were going to drive to Leavenworth, to meet her father—my great-grandfather. That winter, my father had suffered a fatal heart attack, and my mother thought it would be a good idea if I spent the summer with my cousins on their farm near Troy, Kansas. Most of the time, I roamed the hills by myself, riding horses and occasionally helping out with the chores. I wasn’t thrilled about spending an hour in the car with my grandmother driving the forty-five miles to Leavenworth. First, she drove really slowly; and second, I didn’t even know I had a great-grandfather.
Nobody, including my grandmother, had ever really spoken about him—at least not in my presence. Why this was the case I was to learn much later when I was older and could “understand such things,” as my grandmother put it.
The only explanation for this visit that I was able to extract at the time from my grandmother was that she wanted me to go with her because the home was commemorating the sixtieth anniversary of the outbreak of the Spanish-American War, and my great-grandfather and several thousand other Kansans had played a significant role in it.
Big deal. The Spanish-American War. Who cares? I thought as my grandmother maneuvered her pastel-blue 1957 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham south down State Highway 7 through the undulating farmland of northeast Kansas and into Leavenworth. The Spanish-American War was ancient history. And besides, being around so many old people made me nervous. Death had taken on a new meaning for me. It was no longer some abstract event that happened to others. I had seen and felt its uncompromising manifestation when the emergency crew carried my father from our home several months before. And now I would be in the presence of someone who could die at any time.
Those were the kinds of self-indulgent thoughts that pranced through my adolescent brain that day. Today I know a lot more about my great-grandfather. The biggest regret of my life is that I was too young and too obtuse to understand what kind of human history database my great-grandfather was. I would only learn that many years later when, as a journalism student at the University of Kansas, I began to appreciate the value of personal narratives from people who could speak firsthand about events I could only read about.
That’s the way it is when we become absorbed with history. We discover that the events and people of antiquity are not ghosts, or simply lifeless words on a page, or fading sepia images. They have an essence we can touch and hear and even speak to if only we have the right medium—someone who has experienced the past with passion and perceptiveness and has the keen senses with which to make it come alive to those who, until that moment, could only fantasize about it.
In this case, that medium was a rare individual who lived during what might have been the most tumultuous years in American history. Luckily, my grandmother, intractable and single-minded as she was, made sure that I would not forget this event or my great-grandfather.

Ronald E. Yates is an award winning author of historical fiction and action/adventure novels, including the popular and highly-acclaimed Finding Billy Battles trilogy. His extraordinarily accurate books have captivated fans around the world who applaud his ability to blend fact and fiction.

 

Ron is a former foreign correspondent for the Chicago Tribune and Professor Emeritus of Journalism at the University of Illinois where he was also the Dean of the College of Media. His award-winning book, “The Improbable Journeys of Billy Battles,” is the second in his Finding Billy Battles trilogy of novels and was published in June 2016. The first book in the trilogy, “Finding Billy Battles,” was published in 2014. Book #3 of the trilogy (The Lost Years of Billy Battles) was published in June 2018.

 

As a professional journalist, Ron lived and worked in Japan, Southeast Asia, and both Central and South America where he covered several history-making events including the fall of South Vietnam and Cambodia; the Tiananmen Square massacre in Beijing; and wars and revolutions in Afghanistan, the Philippines, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Guatemala, among other places. His work resulted in multiple journalism awards, including three Pulitzer nominations and awards from the Society of Professional Journalists and the Inter-American Press Association, to name a few.

 

BOOK PURCHASE LINKS:

AMAZON: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KHDVZI/-/e/B00KQAYMA8/

TRILOGY LINK: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07DNDWHH6/ref=series_rw_dp_sw

BARNES & NOBLE: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/finding%20billy%20battles/_/N-8q8

MY WEBSITE & BLOG:  https://ronaldyatesbooks.com/

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/ronaldyatesbooks/

TWITTER: https://twitter.com/jhawker69

PINTEREST: https://www.pinterest.com/bookmarketingglobalnetwork/author-ronald-e-yates-books/

LINKEDIN: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ronyates/

To follow along with the rest of the tour, please visit the author’s tour page on
the 4WillsPublishing site.  If you’d like to book your own blog tour and have your book
promoted in similar grand fashion, please click HERE.  
Lastly, Ron is a member of the best book club ever – RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB {#RRBC}! If
you’re looking for amazing support as an author, or if you simply love books, JOIN US! We’d
love to have you!
Thanks for supporting this author and his work!