#Interview & #Extract ~ Miles of Files by Michael J Sahno @MikeSahno #FridayReads #Humour #Thriller

Welcome, Mike. First of all, please introduce yourself and tell us what you like to do when not writing.

I began writing at a very early age, and eventually went on to study English and American literature in the university setting. I got a Master of Arts in English from Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY at the age of 24, and went on to become a full-time professional writer in 2001. When I’m not writing, I love to get into the other areas of the arts: concerts, visual arts, and so on. To to stay healthy, I run and work out. 

What was your inspiration for Miles of Files?

In Miles of Files, a young man find out that his boss is stealing from the company retirement plan, but not in a traditional embezzlement: he’s actually created these fake employee files, to make it look like he’s paying out benefits to former employees. The germ of the story is based loosely on an experience of my own: I once worked for a company that “froze” the company retirement plan for a year, so no one could take funds out or even put funds in. That was an unnerving experience. Continue reading

Q&A with Dan Klefstad #author of Shepherd and the Professor @danklefstad #SundayBlogShare

Welcome, Dan. Good to have you here today. Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m the host and editor of the “Read With Me” book series on NPR station WNIJ (archive: http://northernpublicradio.org/term/wnijreadwithme-book-series). I’ve interviewed dozens of authors, two of whom inspired parts of Shepherd & the Professor. For me, each interview is a master class so I guess it made sense that I’d try to write my own stories.

What is your least favourite part of the writing process?

Starting. Staring at a blank Word .doc, trying to make order out of imaginary chaos. I consider it a victory if I write one sentence that first day. Some days I’ll settle for one word. But if it’s the right word, then I’m off to the races!

If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?

Look up the word “exposition.” Now find a more interesting way to do that. Continue reading

Guest Post by Barbara Venkataraman #author of the Jamie Quinn #Mystery Series #MondayBlogs

I’m very pleased to welcome Barbara Venkataraman to BetweenTheLines today. Over to you, Barbara…

THEN, WHY ARE YOU HERE?

Picture yourself in the stands at a baseball game, not just any baseball game, but the last game of the 2014 World Series–winner takes all. You’ve invested a lot to be here, having spent a small fortune on a ticket (that was very hard to come by) and an entire day of your life driving, parking, and fighting the crowds, all so that you could watch this game. The man sitting next to you, clearly a Giants fan, is decked out in so much orange and black that he could be an advertisement for Halloween. In between cheering for his team, your seatmate observes how quiet you are and asks: “Hey, man, who are you rooting for?”

“Nobody in particular,” you answer.

The man is flabbergasted. “Then, why are you here?” Continue reading

WELSH WEDNESDAYS INTERWITH with Judith Barrow

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12038176_10152946037597132_2632219336957045530_nToday I am pleased to welcome back Judith Barrow, a favourite of mine. Welcome to Welsh Wednesdays and thank you for agreeing to another interview.

Thank you, Christoph. And thank you for inviting me here. I feel we’ve known one another quite a while on-line but it was lovely to actually meet you in person at the Tenby Book Fair.

Very likewise, Judith. First up, please tell us about your connection to Wales.

I was born and brought up in a village at the base of the Pennines but I’ve lived in Pembrokeshire for the last thirty-eight years. We came to Tenby on holiday, fell in love with the county, saw a half-built house in a field and, throwing caution to the wind, bought it.  Best move we ever made even though we eventually moved in on one of the coldest days I can remember in November, to a house…

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Author Spotlight ~ D.C.J. Wardle

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Spotlight on D.C.J.Wardle

 

About the author

D.C.J. WARDLE is the author of humorous novels ‘Trading Vincent Crow’ and ‘Vincent Crow: Export’. In January 2013 he was the author of the month on http://www.lovewriting.co.uk.

wardleHolding post-graduate qualifications in development management as well as community water supply engineering, over the past fifteen years, he has worked in developing countries in Africa and Asia, managing emergency and development programmes.

 

 

 

About the book

Vincent Crow: Export

 

51ySPEnR9LL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_This is the hilarious follow-up to Trading Vincent Crow – in which we were introduced to Vincent, who was determined that he had to trade-up his life every three months for a new and better one. This meant a new job, new girl, new wheels, new pad, new threads – until he reached the top.

In D.C.J. Wardle’s new novel, Vincent Crow: Export, we re-visit Vincent – to see that his unique but ad-hoc approach to self-improvement has inspired him to journey east. He has the chance for a completely new beginning as he throws himself in to the unexplored depths of the Asian business world, with support from his unlikely benefactor, Jonathan Fairchild.

Inevitably, the cascade of disaster that permeates Vince’s haphazard approach to personal advancement means that this new chapter of his life in a foreign country is anything but straightforward. The challenge of starting from scratch in an exotic land, with no initial contacts or appreciation of the culture and customs, could be overwhelming for the most seasoned of entrepreneurs. However, Vince has the added complication of bringing his nan along for the adventure, which may not be one of the most astute decisions that he has ever made…

Excerpt from Vincent Crow: Export

Vince had only ever been to Wales when it came to being ‘abroad’.

When you’re about ten, and you’re comparing far-flung foreign adventures into the unknown with other compatriots of a similar level of life experience, then Wales definitely counts in the ‘abroad’ stakes. No doubt about it. When you’ve reached your twenties, however, and are suffering some backpacker’s tedious monologue of their egotistically mind-broadening ‘year out’, which included six-months discovering themselves spiritually in remote corners of Peru by banging on a drum with some other stoned teenagers, then bringing up Wales isn’t going count as proof of an equal footing. Even if you do have photographic evidence that demonstrates you were there for a whole week at the beach, and it didn’t rain once, the first time that had happened ‘in, like, ever’ (or at least since pre-Cambrian times).

As Vince stepped off the plane at Feiquon’s international airport, he decided that Wales really was a very different kind of abroad to the one he was in now. In retrospect, he now realised that the conversation he’d once had with an arrogant young returnee from Peru at the bar in the Carrot and Jam Kettle, where he defended the notion that a weekend camping in the Mumbles was a comparable adventure to a trek through the Peruvian rainforests, was based on a marginally floored hypothesis.

The wall of Feiquon heat and humidity that engulfed him on the steps of the plane was a shock to the system. He was mopping the sweat from his brow before he’d even descended to the tarmac. The uncomfortable stickiness was almost worse than working in the kitchens at the Carrot and Jam Kettle on a busy Friday night in the summer, stench of chip-fat aside.

Behind him Natalie was liberally applying her new duty-free perfume, and behind her his nan was standing in the oval doorway of the plane with a lighter in one hand and a cigarette in the other. The limited pace at which her aging frame could propel her forward in a straight line meant that the distance from the aeroplane steps to the door of the immigration lounge was definitely at least one fag’s-worth.

Buy the book on Amazon UK and Amazon US

Author Spotlight ~ Ronald Probstein

spotlight-thRFP1Spotlight on Ronald Probstein

Author Profile

from Amazon

One of America’s foremost engineering scientists, Ronald Probstein is Ford Professor of Engineering, Emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His undergraduate training was at New York University’s night school and his graduate work in aeronautical engineering and physics at Princeton. He has played a principal role in some of the most important scientific and technical achievements in the post World War II era, involving spacecraft and ballistic missile reentry physics, hypersonic flight theory, comet astrophysics, desalination, synthetic fuels, and the electrokinetic remediation of soil. For these achievements, he has been honored as a member of the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, International Academy of Astronautics, and awarded an honorary doctorate from Brown University. Author, editor, lecturer, inventor, Professor Probstein has ten critically acclaimed scientific and technical books to his credit. Born in New York City in 1928, he lives in Brookline, Massachusetts with his wife, Irène. He has one son, Sidney, and three grandchildren.

41Hp+Qfrs1L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-v3-big,TopRight,0,-55_SX278_SY278_PIkin4,BottomRight,1,22_AA300_SH20_OU01_About the novel

If you’re going to live outside the law, you’d better be honest. This seeming paradox was the operating principle of Sid Probstein’s life. Guileless and endlessly optimistic, he was known as Honest Sid around his stomping ground of New York’s Broadway. Sid wasn’t a tough guy, or even a bad guy. He just never had the patience for the “straight” life, grinding out a living at some monotonous desk job. He was the quintessential American dreamer, always sure that the good life was just one big score away, a man who never stopped believing in his own good luck, even when the evidence said otherwise. He had all the tools, he was charming, good-looking, quick-witted and decent, but he had an obsession he couldn’t escape. Honest Sid is the story of an American archetype as seen through the eyes of his son, Ronald, who loved him, and who almost lost him. It follows Sid’s adventures in the world of bookies and bettors,  fighters and fixers, players and suckers set against the often romanticized backdrop of Depression era New York. It is also the passionate tale of the great and tempestuous love between Sid and his wife Sally, and of his son Ronald whom he idolized.

Honest Sid may be purchased from Amazon UK
 and Amazon US

Author Interview ~ Jo Bunt

I’m very pleased to welcome Jo Bunt, author of Daughter of the Winds, which is on offer from 14th to 20th February as a Valentine special! So grab one while you can 🙂

a4d5b5614ce30a22d17ad3.L._V368238849_SY470_Jo Bunt was born in Cyprus to British parents. It made sense to her that her first novel should be based there.

Following the family’s return to England Jo went to school in Nottingham, university in Hull and then worked in London as a Recruitment Consultant for PwC for many years. Following a family illness Jo moved to Derbyshire where she now lives with her husband and her twin sons. This has enabled her to focus on her two great loves in life; her family and her writing.

She remembers writing her first ‘novel’ when she was seven but spent her angst-ridden teenage years writing miserable and dark poetry. She mostly writes mainstream fiction but is also working on a series of children’s adventure books, largely guided by her own children. When she is not writing or looking after the children Jo is an avid reader and self-confessed food snob. If she can combine the two she is a very happy lady indeed.

  •  Jo, how old were you when you left Cyprus and do ever feel you’d like to visit again?

I was 5 when I left Cyprus.  We went back as a family a few times over the years for holidays and I took my husband to Cyprus before we had our children.  I have a huge fondness for the country and would love to visit again.

  • Is there a particular book or author that inspired you?

There are so many! I love Victoria Hislop’s books about Greece, especially The Island.  I like to learn something new at the same time as reading a gripping story.  

  • When did you decide to write Daughter of the Winds and how was the whole process for you?

After I had my twins I gave up work in the city.  I thought I could retrain in something – anything – but all I wanted to do was write.  After about a year of research and writing a few lines here and there (and getting nowhere) I went on a writing course at my local library run by local author Martin Davies.  He was wonderful in motivating me.  I came up with a plan at this time and stuck to it.  By the third and final module of his course I had a manuscript.

  • Do you work to an outline or run with the characters?

I always have a pretty good idea of where the story is going but sometimes the characters take me in a different direction.  Characters that were only meant to be bystanders sometimes steal the scene and end up sticking around.

  • What would be your perfect meal and where would you dine?

I love food and there are many contenders for the ‘perfect meal’.  It would almost certainly be seafood, and definitely by the ocean/ sea that it was caught in that day.  There’s not much that can compare to the Shrimp Roti with Bajan pepper sauce and a local beer in Cocomo’s on the west coast of Barbados.  Happy times!

  • That sounds lovely! Finally, do you have anything specific to say to your readers?

Thank you for taking the time to read Daughter of the Winds.  I would write even if nobody read my books but I am so happy to be able to share these characters with you.  Every sale excites me because it means someone else is going to meet Pru and Leni and they get to tell their story all over again.

51PmKho2wyL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX342_SY445_CR,0,0,342,445_SH20_OU02_Synopsis from Amazon

When the Turkish invade Cyprus in 1974 Pru, a young British Army wife, has her life turned upside down. Two weeks later she flees the country with a baby who isn’t hers. Over thirty years later that baby, now a grown woman called Leni, returns to the island of her birth to find out about the chain of events that led her to be brought up as Pru’s child. She discovers the true cost of war, how the hurt still continues through the generations and what being a family really means. In this story of love and loss Leni will lay ghosts to rest in more ways than one.

Daughter of the Winds can be purchased here  also on Amazon US  and you can find out more about Jo here

Many thanks to Jo for agreeing to this interview.