Saturday, May 26, 2012

Pump Up Your Book Announces The Samsara Chronicles Blog Tour - Win a FREE KINDLE FIRE!

The Samsara Chronicles Blog TourJoin Diana Kemp and Gabriella Bradley as they tour the blogosphere June 1 – August 31 2012 on their first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your BookDiana and Gabriella will be promoting their series, The Samsara Chronicles (Devine Destinies), and have agreed to give away not only a Kindle Fire but also a $50 Gift Certificate to the person who comments the most on their 3 month blog tour. There’s also an incentive for blog hosts, too! The blogger who receives the most amount of comments will also win a $50 Gift Certificate. If you don’t have a Paypal account and would like to receive your gift certificate from Amazon, that can be arranged, too.  

About Diana Kemp 
  Toronto native Diana Kemp is a multiple award-winning screenwriter and author with one hundred and thirty film festivals and screenwriting competition awards/placings to her credit. She is the co-writer of an NRL (Naval Research Lab) documentary (http://www.nrl.navy.mil/media/videos/nrl-extended-video) produced by David Bellino of Second Wind Films. Graduating with honors from Cal State Long Beach, she began a writing career at the age of seven that culminated in a diversely prolific collection of science fiction, horror and fantasy short stories, numerous short and feature screenplays and three science fiction novels, two of which include The Samsara Chronicles co authored with Gabriella Bradley. In addition to serving as Executive Producer and Producer on a variety of projects with Michael Gianfriddo, her credits include Blink Black Ops (http://pro.imdb.com/title/tt2083939/) and her 3-D science fiction show, Trapezoid, (http://pro.imdb.com/title/tt2160425/), which is in pre-production. . Diana founded Shadowland Productions and Edge Media with producing partner Michael Gianfriddo and holds positions as CEO and Chairman in addition to serving as an executive for Dominant Entertainment. She oversees all development, production and management for each company. She is represented by industry veteran Sherry Robb of the Robb Entertainment Group. 

About Gabriella Bradley
 Gabriella Bradley lives amidst rugged mountains. She more than often has a grizzly in her backyard searching for food. Other critters that visit on a regular basis are cougars, coyotes, squirrels, raccoons. She has been a writer all of her life, though only ventured into erotic works in 2003. The Samsara Chronicles was born through psychic channeling. Many of the scenes in these books were inspired by David—possibly a writer during his life, a guide from beyond that visited Gabby. During the course of his visits, he told her to involve Diana. Gabby’s hobbies include hiking, gardening, swimming, sewing, embroidery. Favorite movies are old timers like Gone with the Wind, Spartacus etc. Favorite music is Abba. Besides all that, she owns and directs a busy company and its staff.

About The Samsara Chronicles
The Samsara Chronicles is a continuing series of futuristic/fantasy books which include Eos, Nadir, Covenant, Itineras, Tempest, Maestrom, Exodus, Nirvana, Netherworld, Bloodline, Entity, Kindred, Nexus, and Equilibrium.

To find out how you can participate in this gigantic tour or find out how you can win a Kindle Fire for your very own, visit http://www.pumpupyourbook.com/2012/05/11/pump-up-your-book-presents-the-samsara-chronicles-virtual-book-publicity-tour-2012/.  

Pump Up Your Book is an innovative public relations agency specializing in virtual book tours and online media marketing for authors. You can visit our website at www.pumpupyourbook.com.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Book Spotlight: Super Luke Faces His Bully by Dr. Jackie C. Cogswell


Super Luke Faces His Bully is a fun loving adventure spoken straight from the heart of a super-sweet eight-year-old bully victim, Luke Giggleheart. The Word of God is used as a lens to examine some of the issues that can make a person act like either a bully or a victim. During this adventure, Luke, our tender-hearted bully victim, learns about fear, being courageous and getting adults to help, while praying for his enemies.

Read an excerpt!

Getting back to growing pains, my most humongous pain was when Bulldog Jones, the fifth grade bully, decided to be my bully. His real name is Harry, but because he is so mean, kids just call him Bulldog. For some reason, Bulldog didn’t like me. I’m not really sure why. My best friend, Mario Martinez, told me that Bulldog doesn’t need a reason to be mean, his hobby is being MEAN!

Mario once got so scared of Bulldog that he developed a red, itchy rash on his face and arms! Bulldog was so mean that he laughed as Mario scratched his arms over and over like a dog with a fresh case of fleas!

Read the reviews!

"I cannot recommend this book highly enough."
--My Devotional Thoughts

"I give this book and the author 2 thumbs up and would give more if I had them."
--4 the Love of Books

"Bullying is certainly a very real problem that many kids have to face today, so it’s great to see a book written from a Biblical perspective that’s intended to assist those who are dealing with the toxic effects of bullying."
--Home School Book Review





Dr. Jackie Chirco Cogswell is a family physician, wife, mother, former school teacher, and author of a series of Christian children’s novels, the Giggleheart Adventure Series. As a Christian mother, the issue of bullying became personal to her when her son was bullied at school. Through the many struggles her son had with bullies, Dr. Jackie learned from firsthand experience how to tackle bullying from a Biblical perspective. “Super Luke Faces His Bully” was inspired by her son’s personal struggle and the good Lord Who equips us for every battle and gives us strength.”

Visit her online at http://giggleheart.com/ to learn more or to order your copy of Super Luke Faces  His Bully.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Interview with William Bertram MacFarland, author of 'Back Channel: The Kennedy Years'

William Bertram MacFarland – Bertie Mac -never sought – or even imagined – a role as a Special Assistant to President John F. Kennedy. Even less did he imagine continuing in the role of Special Assistant to the President in eight subsequent administrations. His degrees from Duke University were in Mathematics and Physics (Quantum Mechanics) but fate and the U.S. government extinguished any hope of a career in those fields.

Eager for adventure and travel, immediately after graduation from university he entered the intelligence arm of the government, did extensive military training, became a U.S. Army Ranger, trained in Special Operations, hand to hand combat techniques, did rigorous advanced parachute training, and went through intensive training in Russian language and culture at the language school in Monterrey, California.

Subsequently assigned as a “diplomatic courier” to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, he was callously betrayed by his own government – the government of the United States of America – and turned over to the Soviet Union where he was brutally tortured in Lubyanka Prison at KGB Headquarters in Moscow. He was rescued near the point of death in a clandestine operation carried out by two high ranking Soviet Generals and was entrusted by them with information which became vital to the peaceful resolution of the Cuban Missile Crisis. His unique value to both sides was his profound distrust of both governments.

He slowly came to be a friend and confidant of President Kennedy in his (unsought) role as Special Assistant to the President and he tried in vain (and disgust) to resign his position when President Kennedy was assassinated but President Johnson would not accept it. The knowledge and “back channel” contacts that he had accumulated – and continued to accumulate as his career progressed – made him uniquely valuable to a long succession of U.S. Presidents. His 50 year access to the highest levels of nine Administrations and the highly classified materials that they generated make him uniquely qualified to relate these riveting and spellbinding memoirs. His reputation as being totally incorruptible is not necessarily a good thing in the halls of power and the only thing that has saved him from assassination by officials in his own government is a vast collection of documents accumulated over the entirety of his career which resides in a safe deposit box in a western European country – the key to which is held by a well known law firm in that country. Should he die under suspicious circumstances, those documents will be released to the public – at a horrific cost to hundreds of individuals and indeed, to the nation as a whole.

He describes himself as “a patriot, a soldier, a spy, and an assassin.” The description does not do him full justice. He was involved in intergovernmental intrigues at the highest levels and as a superbly trained and conditioned special operative he was an amalgam of James Bond, Jason Bourne and Jack Ryan. He is surely one of the American “cousins” described by John Le CarrĂ©. Bertie never sought glory or recognition for his contributions. He did what he did purely from love of country. He is a true American hero – who will forever remain anonymous and in the shadows.

His story can be found in his latest book, Back Channel: The Kennedy Years.

You can visit his impressive website at www.bertiemac.com.


Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life, Bertie.  Can you tell us how long you’ve been writing and how your journey led to writing your latest book, BACK CHANNEL: The Kennedy Years?

It was in the summer of 2010 that I started to seriously consider writing the memoirs of my life as Special Assistant to President John F. Kennedy.  It was a hard decision to make.  First of all, I’d never written a book before and I wasn’t really sure how to go about it.  Secondly, I realized that it would involve the wrenching out of a lot of memories that I had ‘safely’ sealed off for nearly 50 years.  Lastly, I risked treading on some very powerful toes.  I decided to go ahead with it anyway because the story is so compelling. 

Q: How did you choose your title and was it your first choice?

I believe that I actually coined the term ‘back channel’ in a conversation I had with President Kennedy in mid-1962.  We were discussing the establishment of a direct but ‘informal’ (and therefore totally deniable) method of communicating with Chairman Khrushchev concerning the looming crisis arising from Khrushchev’s plans to install nuclear-tipped missiles in Cuba.

Q: We all know that publishers can’t do all of the publicity and that some lies on the author.  What has your publisher done so far to publicize the book and what have you done?

Given the fact that my book is self-published, your two-part question devolves into a one-part response.  The first thing I did was to create a website www.BertieMac.com and to establish YouTube, Facebook and Twitter accounts (links to all the accounts can be found on my website).  Next, I established a list of reputable publicists and interviewed each of them – then chose the one I liked the best.

Q: Open to a random page in your book.  Can you tell us what is happening?

Heavens, yes!  It’s my life!

Q: Do you plan subsequent books?

Indeed.  As we speak, I’m working hard on the second book which will cover most, if not all, of the Johnson years.

Q: What is the one thing you learned about your book AFTER it was published?

How very hard it is to get your book noticed.  There are thousands of new books published every year and it’s not easy to direct significant attention to your own.

Q: What is your most favorite time of the day or night to write?

From about 5:00 in the morning until 3 - 4 in the afternoon.

Q: What is usually better – the book or the movie?

I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed a movie more than I did the book it was based on.

Q:  You’re about to write your next book.  What did you learn from your previous book to help you write your next book?

I don’t think I can point to any single thing.  I find the whole writing experience to be a very humbling one.  I know that every genre of literature presents its own challenges – if you are writing a scholarly research book, it is daunting work to assemble all your facts (which have to be meticulously checked and cross-checked) into a coherent, meaningful and rational narrative.  Novelists must credibly bring their characters to life and weave them into a carefully created, fascinating, complex and believable story.

Writers of memoirs must ensure that their recorded memories are reasonably conformal to recorded history but are generally given a good deal more latitude in that respect than is demanded of a journalist or a historian.  Memoirs are a record of what you remember after all and unless it is absolutely critical, if you recall someone’s name as being George when it was really Henry or get a date or a time slightly wrong, such minutiae are typically shrugged off.  With that kind of latitude and as the story and the characters and the facts already exist, writing memoirs ought to be a breeze – right?

If you are going to write your memoirs, you better make sure you have a really high pain threshold.  You’re going to have to dig out things you hoped you’d never have to think about again - much less write about in excruciating detail – and you are going to have to do it day after day.  If you’re going to be credible, there’s no hiding – you’re going to have to put it all out there - in public – warts and all your other flaws.  Revealing that you personally have been responsible for the deaths of a number of innocent people, for example, engenders the kind of pain and hurt that goes to your innermost core.  That’s what I’ve learned, anyway.

Q: Finally, what’s your best tip you can give to writers who want to be published?

Even though success (whatever ‘success’ means to you) may ultimately elude you, ‘it’s better to have tried and failed than to never to have tried at all.’  Get off your rear and go for it.
  
Q: Thank you for your interview, Bertie.  Do you have any final words?

A word to the vacillating would-be author:  If not now, when?




Saturday, May 19, 2012

Pump Up Your Book Announces eXtasy Books and Devine Destinies Virtual Blog Tour - Win Free Kindle Fire!

eXtasy Blog TourJoin eXtasy Books and Devine Destinies as they tour the blogosphere June 1 – August 31 2012 on their first virtual publisher tour with Pump Up Your Book!  

eXtasy Books and Devine Destinies have agreed to give away not only a Kindle Fire but also a $50 Gift Certificate to the person who comments the most on their 3 month blog tour. There's also an incentive for blog hosts, too! The blogger who receives the most amount of comments will also win a $50 Gift Certificate. If you don’t have a Paypal account and would like to receive your gift certificate from Amazon, that can be arranged, too.  

About Tina Haveman  

Tina Haveman is the founder and CEO of eXtasy Books and Devine Destinies. Tina was born in Europe, left there at age eight, then traveled to several countries with her parents, to finally settle in Australia for many years. She immigrated to Canada in 1973 where she has lived since. After raising a family of five as a single mother, she finally found time to concentrate on her writing. In 2000 she started her own publishing house with a partner but became too busy with eXtasy and Devine to continue her involvement and withdrew to focus entirely on eXtasy and Devine. Tina devotes all her time to her publishing house and authors and is grateful for the success her company is experiencing. “After many years of struggling to keep my head above water while raising five children on my own, I have much to be thankful for,” said Tina. “While the company affords me a comfortable living now and I have quite a staff aboard, I thoroughly enjoy what I do and won’t stop until someone up above tells me it’s time.”  

About eXtasy Books

eXtasy Books first opened its doors December 2002 with a small website that was soon revamped into a more business like site. Within a matter of months, eXtasy outgrew that website and had to build another site to accommodate its growing catalog. Since then, the site has been revamped a number of times. Our imprint, Devine Destinies, started in 2008 to accommodate mainstream, YA, inspirational and children’s books. We publish a wide variety of stories ranging from short stories to full books, pricing kept reasonable to accommodate our readers. Prices range from 1.59 to 5.99. We have an attractive reward program in place. Receive 5 dollars on first sign up for an account that can be applied if you spend 20 or more dollars. For every purchase you receive 10% of your total in rewards. These rewards can be saved or you can use them when you come back to buy more books. We’re always looking for new ways to make our site a great shopping experience. Come and visit us at http://www.extasybooks.com and/or http://www.devinedestinies.com.

To find out how you can participate in this gigantic tour, visit http://www.pumpupyourbook.com/2012/04/17/pump-up-your-book-presents-extasy-books-virtual-publisher-tour-2012-kindle-fire-giveaway/.  

Pump Up Your Book is an innovative public relations agency specializing in virtual book tours and online media marketing for authors. You can visit our website at www.pumpupyourbook.com.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Launching Today: Allergies, and Awesome You

Launching Today: Allergies, and Awesome You

Do you have a child with allergies? Can you imagine life allergy free?
The AmazingAllergist will show you how!
Allergies, and Awesome You: Believe You Can Get There Too!
This book, through a life story of an allergic child, will empower you and your children.
Allergies, and Awesome You” is a part of the AmazingAllergist’s Awesome Series that empowers allergic children to live and lead great lives, allergy-free. It is a by-product of the author’s extensive medical knowledge, vast experiences as an allergy specialist, and the desire to make a difference, one allergic child at a time.
About the Author
Atul N. Shah, MD, FACAAI, FAAAAI, is a celebrated author of this AmazingAllergist book series, founder of www.AmazingAllergist.com, and the medical director of www.Center4AsthmaAllergy.com. He is a board certified allergist who has earned an honor of fellowships in both the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology and the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.
He has personally treated more than 20,000 patients, made a significant impact on more than 100,000 lives as an allergist so far, and earned the nickname “AmazingAllergist” from his patients and peers. His work is rewarded daily with numerous compliments of smiling patients and their families. He has been recognized with various awards, including the America’s Top Physicians’ Award, the Patients’ Choice Award, and the Most Compassionate Physicians’ Award. He believes that every allergic child and individual has a potential to live a great life, allergy-free. His desire to empower allergic individuals translated into this series of books.
Meet the Author

Join our online community
Twitter - https://twitter.com/LifeAllergyFree
~ ~ ~ WIN A FREE KINDLE FIRE! ~ ~ ~
Pump Up Your Book Tour and the AmazingAllergist are giving away a FREE KINDLE FIRE! Fill out the Rafflecopter form below to win! This giveaway is only open to U.S. and Canada citizens. Deadline is June 1 and announced on June 2. If you are the winner, contact Dorothy Thompson at thewriterslife (at) gmail.com or Tracee Gleichner at tgleichner (at) gmail.com. You have 48 hours to reply. If we do not hear from you in 48 hours, another winner will be selected. Thanks and good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Interview with Donna Fletcher Crow, author of 'A Darkly Hidden Truth'

Donna Fletcher Crow is the author of 38 books, mostly novels dealing with British history. The award-winning Glastonbury, an Arthurian grail search epic covering 15 centuries of English history, is her best-known work. Donna and her husband live in Boise, Idaho. They have 4 adult children and 11 grandchildren. She is an enthusiastic gardener. Her newest release is A Darkly Hidden Truth, book 2 in her clerical mystery series The Monastery Murders. She also writes the Lord Danvers series of Victorian true-crime novels and the romantic suspense series The Elizabeth & Richard Mysteries. To read more about these books and to see book videos for A Darkly Hidden Truth and for A Very Private Grave, Monastery Murders 1, as well as pictures from Donna’s garden and research trips go to: www.DonnaFletcherCrow.com

A Darkly Hidden TruthABOUT A DARKLY HIDDEN TRUTH

Felicity can’t possibly help Father Antony find the valuable missing icon. She’s off to become a nun. Then her impossible mother turns up unexpectedly. And a good friend turns up murdered... Breathtaking chase scenes, mystical worship services, dashes through remote waterlogged landscapes keep the pages turning. Felicity learns the wisdom of holy women from today and ages past and Antony explores the arcane rites of the Knights Hospitaller. But what good will any of that do them if Felicity can’t save Antony’s life?

BOOK TRAILER


Watch at YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L512Cy6F_6E!


Thank you for this interview, Donna.  Can you tell us a little about yourself and how long you've been writing?

I have written all my life, but I’ve been published since 1984— which now seems like most of my life. My passion is for British history which figures in almost all of my novels in some form.  The award-winning Glastonbury, an Arthurian grail search epic covering 15 centuries of English history, is my best-known work. My husband and I live in Boise, Idaho.  We have 4 adult children and 11 grandchildren, and I’m an enthusiastic gardener. A Darkly Hidden Truth, The Monastery Murders 2, is my latest release.


Can you tell us briefly what your book is about?

Felicity Howard is a thoroughly modern American woman who, rather rashly— as she does most things— has gone off to study theology in a monastery in Yorkshire. Because she and her church history lecturer Antony solved the murder of Father Dominic in A Very Private Grave, book 1 in the series, Father Anselm has now asked them to find a valuable missing icon. But Felicity can’t possibly help. She’s off to become a nun. Then her impossible mother turns up unexpectedly. And a good friend turns up murdered. . .

In the midst of breathtaking chase scenes, mystical worship services and dashes through remote waterlogged landscapes Felicity learns the wisdom of holy women from today and ages past and Antony explores the arcane rites of the Knights Hospitaller. But what good will any of that do them if Felicity can’t save Antony’s life?


Why did you choose your particular genre?

It was largely a matter of writing what I love to read— advice I often give to beginning writers. I love the clerical mysteries of P. D. James, Susan Howatch, Kate Charles, Ellis Peters, Julia Spencer-Fleming. Then our daughter went off to study theology in a monastery in Yorkshire and I knew I had the setting for my new series.

Where do you write?  Do you have a favorite place?

Oh, I love my office: shelves of my favorite books, artifacts from research trips, framed covers of some of my own books, pictures of my children and grandchildren, a Fletcher plaid banner for a curtain, Celtic knotwork border around the ceiling. . . My whole life around me and I’m at home.

What was your greatest challenge writing this book?

My goal as a writer is always to give my readers a “you are there” experience. I want them to feel they are traipsing through the English countryside or clambering over a ruined abbey right beside Felicity. Since much of A Darkly Hidden Truth is set in the very soggy Norfolk Broads and I live in the Idaho desert I had to work extra hard and make several research trips to be sure I got the atmosphere right. Fortunately, my editor, who lives in Oxford, is very familiar with the Broads because she and her husband sail there every summer, so I had excellent backup.

Are you a disciplined writer?

Oh, discipline is a lovely word. But to tell the truth, I’m afraid compulsive would be more accurate. I love telling stories and spending hours every day adventuring in England with my characters. Fortunately, I have a husband and friends who pull me away and get some balance in my life.

Are you published by a traditional house, small press or are you self-published?

I have worked with more than a dozen traditional publishers over the course of my career and I’ve always been blessed to have excellent editors who have taught me so much. The Monastery Murders are published by Monarch Books in Oxford, England and distributed in North America by Kregel Books. You can’t get much more traditional than an Oxford publisher.

Was it the right choice for you?

I can’t praise Monarch enough for the excellent support they give me. A Darkly Hidden Truth is dedicated to my wonderful editor Jan Greenough. And I should also thank my agent Janet Benrey who put us together. I was looking for a new agent for this series and found Janet online. It wasn’t until we spoke on the telephone that I realized she is English, so she really “gets” this series.


How are you promoting your book thus far?

One of the things that is so great about Monarch is that, unlike most publishers today, they do give me promotional support, primarily through their American distributor. They make book videos, purchase advertising, sponsor a blog tour, mail books for reviews, send out press releases. Even with all of that, though I felt I wanted to do more beyond the usual Twitter, Facebook and my own blog, so I’m excited to be working with Dorothy at Pump Up Your Book for a broader-based professional book tour.

How is that going for you?

Ah, ask me again at the end of May. I’m having a great time doing interviews and sending out blog articles and books for review. It will take awhile to know how much impact we make, though. The good news is that my editor has said Monarch is moving ahead to contract for An Unholy Communion, book 3 in the series, so that’s a good sign.

Do you have another job besides writing?

Does feeding my husband and visiting my grandchildren scattered to the four corners of the North American continent count?

Have you ever gotten an inspirational book-related moment at work and had to go run and write and it down?

My first novel Brandley’s Search, reprinted as Where Love Begins, came to me that way— in the middle of the night, walking down the aisle in the grocery store, while driving so that I had to pull to the side and write. It was like being pregnant. I wish all my books would come like that.

If you could give one book promotion tip to new authors, what would that be?

Keep at it!

What's next for you?

I am currently editing my epic Glastonbury, A Novel of the Holy Grail, for ebook— quite an undertaking since it is 820 pages. Glastonbury has been in print for 20 years, so I’m thrilled to have it coming out in this new format.  Then on to book 3 in The Monastery Murders.

Thank you for this interview, Donna.  Can you tell us where we can find you on the web?

Thank you, It’s been a delightful visit. Please go to www.DonnaFletcherCrow.com to see the videos of my Monastery Murders, photos from my research trips and a tour of my rose garden.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Interview with T. Laresca, author of 'I Want to Help'

Tom Laresca lives in New York with his wife and three children. Currently working as a foreign stock trader, he attended college at St. John's University. Laresca enjoys playing sports and weightlifting. I Want to Help: My Story About Cancer, Depression and God is his first book. You can visit his website at http://iwanttohelp1225.com.

I Want to HelpABOUT I WANT TO HELP: MY STORY ABOUT CANCER, DEPRESSION AND GOD

Tom Laresca lived an average life in a quiet American town: a good job as a stock trader, a wife, a family, a beautiful home. Then in 2001, his life changed. While living in Boca Raton, Florida, Laresca explains, “I was wrongly arrested and abused by the police. I had been an athlete in high school and college, and had never been in trouble with the law before or since in my professional career as a stock trader. I was put into intensive care, due mainly to being maced for thirty minutes while being pinned down, handcuffed and hogtied. These events all happened in front of my own home in an exclusive gated community.” Following the assault, Laresca says his main focus was to get the charges against him dropped. “For years, I spent time and money on lawyers to make this happen. The police wanted me to sign a pre-trial intervention (PTI) document, which would make the charges go away but with me assuming part of the guilt. But I didn’t want to do that; I wanted them to admit what they did. I spent years fighting the PTI. Even though the charges finally went away, I never found out what happened, and the police were never questioned or investigated. This all took lots of time and money, and I had to miss work.” During this period, Laresca was diagnosed with cancer in three parts of his body and faced the grim possibility that he might only have three months to live. After his treatment and recovery, he then fought a battle with depression. “Something told me to write about it.” he says. “I wrote the book in one night, sent it out to publishers, and went with the first publisher who answered.” The book, I WANT TO HELP: MY STORY ABOUT CANCER, DEPRESSION, AND GOD, is a tiny book which, as Laresca says, “is written with the sole purpose of helping others overcome any struggles they may be going through. Not that everyone will go through something as severe as I did, but I believe that most people at some time are struggling with something.” “The book begins with me learning I had been diagnosed with cancer in three parts of my body. I recount what it felt like to receive the news from my doctor, coupled with the grim possibility that I may have three months to live. I talk about my hospital stay, my fight to stay healthy, both physically and mentally, but most of all spiritually. “Next, I tell of going through chemotherapy treatments and on to recovery, only to be brought down by what I can only say was crippling depression. I go on to thank God for getting me through all this. Because the truth is that God brought me through it all, and He is waiting to help you with anything you are going through.” Laresca remembers that as a child, he read Norman Vincent Peale’s The Power of Positive Thinking. “There were two things that stuck with me: ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,’ and ‘If God is for us, who can be against us?’ Those helped me through everything, and I use this [philosophy] every day.” At twenty pages, I WANT TO HELP: MY STORY ABOUT CANCER, DEPRESSION, AND GOD is so short, Laresca says, because he worked long hours, had three kids, and not a lot of time. Still, he adds, people who have read it tell him that it’s helped them in some way, and that he’s heard that grownups have given the book to their children. These days, Tom Laresca is much more relaxed, especially now that he’s written the book. “If reading it can help just one person,” he says, “I’ll be happy.”

Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life, Thomas.  Can you tell us how long you’ve been writing and how your journey led to writing your latest book, I Want to Help?

This is my first book; it began one night when I sat down to write about what I went through when I battled cancer. I believe what I learned going through it cab benefit others. After waking up from what was supposed to be a routine surgery, I was faced with having cancer in three parts of my body. After the first week of chemotherapy the doctor told me my white blood cells were dangerously low and I could not receive the other three weeks of chemo that was necessary. That was when the doctor told me my worst case scenario was three months. Faced with the grim possibility of death, I turned to pray and the Bible for my strength. After recovering from cancer I talk about the terrible hopeless state of depression I fell into. I describe how awful it was, and how I was able to get through it also with God’s help. The last part of the book I feel is the most important part of my journey which led me to write this book. It deals with death. I experienced death at the hands of the Florida police, right in front of my own home. I have taken a lie detector test and have 3,500 dollars worth of intensive care bills from that night. I tell what death was like and how God once again got me through it all.

Q: How did you choose your title and was it your first choice?

I chose my title because it is my sole purpose of writing this book: to help others.

Q: We all know that publishers can’t do all of the publicity and that some lies on the author.  What has your publisher done so far to publicize the book and what have you done?

My publicist Charles Barrett has done a great job of getting me radio interviews and finding forums such as yours. He has also been able to have my book reviewed favorably I might add from some top book review companies.

Q: Open to a random page in your book.  Can you tell us what is happening?

I am talking about how God has helped me in my life become a better person and that I am by far not a finished product. I feel that due to God’s word I am better now than I was five years ago and hopefully in five years I will be better than I am now.

Q: Do you plan subsequent books?

I am really not sure I really do wish I included other things I went through in my life that may also have been helpful to others. However I believe this book will accomplish what I intended it to so we will see.

Q: What is the one thing you learned about your book AFTER it was published?

I learned that parents enjoyed reading my book and they gave it to their children afterwards and kids have also read it and given it to their parents. I’ve had people come to me after reading it and talk about the struggles they are going through and how it has helped them in some way. So I guess in a way my book is accomplishing what I set out to do help others.

Q: What is your most favorite time of the day or night to write?

My favorite time to write is late at night after all is done in my day I get alone then I read from the Bible and pray. That clears my mind and gives me inspiration.

Q: What is usually better – the book or the movie?

I believe a book is better; a book can actually take you inside and make you feel as though you are right there.

Q:  You’re about to write your next book.  What did you learn from your previous book to help you write your next book?

It’s a lot more work than I planned I need to spend more time and expand a bit.

Q: Finally, what’s your best tip you can give to writers who want to be published?

If you feel you have something important to share and are being led to do it go for it. Be true to yourself write from your heart and believe in what you are doing.
  
Q: Thank you for your interview, Thomas.  Do you have any final words?

Yes thank you for taking the time to listen and I hope you get my book and one day you tell me it help you in some ways. God Bless you all. My book is about three significant experiences in my life which I believe through my pain and suffering will help others. The truth is that God helped me in those times and he is there waiting to help you. The first part of my book deals with the devastation of finding out I had cancer in three parts of my body and was told at one point my worst case scenario was three months. Through surgery, and months of chemotherapy Prayer and reading the Bible kept me strong. After beating cancer I was then faced with what I considered as tough a battle with a severe state of depression. It was so bad I didn’t think I could go on but I managed to get through that also with the help of God. The final part of the book deals with death. This was also my inspiration to write this book so people can know the truth about death. As bizarre as it sounds I experienced death at the hands of the Florida police, right in front of my own home. When I was mistakenly taken for an armed burglar (I have never been in trouble with the police before that day or after in my fifty years alive). I was in intensive care that night fighting for my life I have also taken a lie detector test to help prove what I say is true. I believe this book can help people who may be going through sickness, emotional problems actually any problem if they can also turn to God. I try to tell how I did it in each case so others can learn of a loving caring God who is waiting to help and heal.






Sunday, May 06, 2012

Looking for blog hosts for huge Kindle Fire Giveaway!

I am looking for bloggers who would like to participate in huge Kindle Fire Giveaway sponsored by Pump Up Your Book and eXtasy Books.

We are looking for blog hosts to post a pre-made blog post about the company and the Kindle Fire Giveaway (a simple cut and paste). This tour runs from June 1 - August 31. Incentives include becoming eligible to win the Kindle Fire, getting more follows to either your Twitter or Facebook account (or some other way) and winning $50 GC for the most comments for the duration of the tour.

For more information, visit http://www.pumpupyourbook.com/2012/04/17/pump-up-your-book-presents-extasy-books-virtual-publisher-tour-2012-kindle-fire-giveaway/ or email Dorothy at thewriterslife(at)gmail.com if you are interested in participating.

Only blogs that have been up for a minimum of 3 months, have 60 or more blog posts and update frequently, please.

Thank you!