Friday, March 30, 2018

Interview with Ramon Ballard author of The Last Chance

Today I'd like to welcome Ramon Ballard. Tell us a little about yourself.

 I was invisible throughout my schooldays (due to my shyness), I had the lonely child's habit of making up stories and holding conversations with imaginary persons. Invisibility has definite advantages, especially when combined with a vivid imagination. I created magical, fantasy worlds with magical inhabitants, which I told to my imaginary friends.

Time does not stand still. Fantasy worlds evolve into mundane, everyday life. As I grew older, my whimsical travels to far off places diminished and my invisibility slowly faded into visibility. Once I had children, I would tell them the stories that only my imaginary friends knew.

Years passed. One failed marriage became two. I found and married my one true love and began my happily ever after. Happiness has certain side effects my creativity yearned to shine. The imaginary world refused to be silenced; they demanded to be heard.
Well we are glad you got here, no matter how long it took. Share a short excerpt from your novel.
“Tommy left for the safety of Pearl Harbor soon after New Year’s Day, 1939. Our radio show continued to rise in popularity.”
(of course we know how SAFE Pearl Harbor was)
Ramon, what brought about the idea for this book?

I’ve always enjoyed history and one day I pondered about a protag that lived through the twentieth century. Thus Horace was born.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I’m almost 70 years old, I hope in 5 years I’m still here.

Currently, what are you working on?

I’m working on a middle-grade novel that I wrote 5 years ago.

Ramon, can you tell us a little bit about your main characters?

Horace3 was born in 1893, and has lived through Kitty Hawk though 9-11

What was your favorite scene to write?

Horace’s friendship with Babe Ruth has been a favorite of mine.

What kind of research do you do before you start a new story?

Time Life has a series about the 20th century. I bought all ten for research.

That's a lot of research.  Maybe that's why I like fantasy so much. How do you promote your books? Any tips you can share?

I have a few groups on Facebook that I use, however they are all authors, so it doesn’t work.

Really? I find other authors promoting my work to be one the best marketing strategies I have tried. Do you have people read your drafts before you publish?  How do you select beta readers?

I have a few people that will read my stuff.

Who designed the artwork for your cover?  Or did you design it yourself?

I forgot who did this artwork. It was done by a friend.

How do you handle criticism when it comes to your writing?

I take criticism well. I don’t consider criticism a bad thing.

I don't mind helpful criticism, but I am not a fan of anyone who just bashes someone else's work. Is there something you learned from writing your first book?

I learned word count.

Which do you find more challenging inventing the hero or the villain?  Why?

Both are just as easy

How many times do you think you read your book before going to print?

I wrote this book in 2009 and published it in 2017, there was plenty of time to read it.

Thanks for sharing with us today.  Best of Luck with the novel.  Happy Reading!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Nightwalker Coming May 2018

There's still time to read Sunwalker before Nightwalker is released
Lilly only wants to meet another of her kind. When another vampire appears holding answers, will she be able to risk it all to find the answers she desperately seeks? On Sale 99 cent ebook 9.99 paperback
Universal Link

Monday, March 26, 2018

Interview with Illustrator Debopriya Banerjee

Today I would like to welcome Illustrator Debopriya Banerjee.
Debopriya, what made you want to be an illustrator?

I’ve never thought of becoming an illustrator in my life. It was my mom's idea that turned me into whatever I am today. I used to make sketches of cartoon characters during my childhood days which made my mom to imagine me as an artist.

How long does it typically take for you to complete one color illustration of a book?

This depends on the Required style. On an average 2-5 days.

What tips would you give a new illustrator starting out?

Well, I think I'm still not worthy of giving advice to anyone. I still consider myself as a learner. The only thing that I can say is, love your profession and work with all your heart.

I think that's great advice for anyone! Are there any warnings could you give an author looking for a new illustrator?

One should always make a contract before starting a project. This will protect the rights of both the author as well as illustrator.

When an author contracts with you, do they own exclusive rights to the images, or does that have to be purchased separately?

They have the copyright. No need to be purchased separately.

Do Illustrators offer revisions of their work?

Of course they do.

Any last words?

Hire me and I'll create some magic with my artworks.

Thanks so much for sharing with us today. Where can we find out more about you?

My website



Linked in:



Happy Reading!!

Friday, March 23, 2018

Interview with C.M. Huddleston author of Greg's Adventure in Time Series

Today I'd like to introduce author Connie Huddleston.

Connie  M. Huddleston loves history and dreamed of writing a book even as a child. However, she got sidetracked. She became an Army wife, a mother, an elementary school teacher, an archaeologist, and an historic preservation consultant, before publishing her first book!  In 2017, she published her ninth and tenth volumes, all dealing with her first love, our nation’s past. While four are written for children under the name C.M. Huddleston, her other works are histories for adults on a variety of subjects.

Connie resides in a log cabin near Crab Orchard, Kentucky, with her husband and their Australian Shepherd Katie. They all enjoy the quiet of rural Kentucky. Except when Katie barks at deer, turkeys, and of course, the UPS truck!

            Connie has written three fiction books under the name C.M. Huddleston and six adult history volumes under her full name.  In 2017, she compiled a children’s anthology with eight other authors, to which she contributed two short stories.

Thanks for taking the time to share with us today, Connie. What brought about the idea for your first book?

I wrote my first book while out of work as an archaeologist. I wanted to tell children about archaeology and prehistory. I finished the book and submitted it to about 15 publishers before finding a new position. I received rejections, shelved the copy, and forgot about it for 20 years. Only after my daughter self-published her book, did I think of looking at it again. It was awful! The main character Greg was one dimensional, to say the least.  I spent about six months rewriting and rewriting, found two editors, and self-published it as “Greg’s First Adventure in Time.”  The following year, 2016, the book received a gold medal from Literary Classics ( I also published the second in the series, which won a gold medal in 2017! I have published the third in the series and am currently writing “Greg’s Fourth Adventure in Time.”

What kind of research do you do before you start a new novel?

Being an archaeologist and historian by trade, I try to make all history in my books as accurate as possible. For Greg’s First, I wrote from my archaeological experiences. For “Greg’s Second Adventure in Time,” I read five books on the life of Daniel Boone and more than five on the early settlements in Kentucky. When Greg time-travels to Kentucky in 1778, I wanted him to encounter real people and experience real events. Currently, I am reading my fifth book to research for Greg’s Fourth.

It's amazing how much research it can take to write a book. Tell us a little bit about your main characters

Greg’s personality is based on my two grandsons. Both are very intelligent, but a bit socially awkward. The youngest talks constantly! (I really do mean constantly!) The oldest is very sensitive. By combining the two boys, I created a sensitive young man, who talks when nervous and becomes silent when worried or afraid. I also made Greg an avid reader, as both my grandsons love to read. In the third book, a girl named Rose becomes a major character, after having bit parts in the first two books. She provides Greg with a time-travel companion, but adds that feminine touch. As the first two books are written in first person by Greg, I have Rose write whole chapters of the third book.

Connie, what are you currently working on?

            I am working hard on “Greg’s Fourth Adventure in Time” but getting ready to launch my first teen/adult fiction book, entitled “Leah’s Story.” Leah’s is the story o a slave born on a southern plantation, and in the book relates her life from slavery to emancipation to an unidentified person. The events in the book are based on my archaeological work on Southern plantations, in particular “slave rows,” and the WPA Slave Narratives recorded by historians during the Great Depression. The book could be read by most middle-grade readers, but is directed more toward teens and adults.

Congratulations!  It's so exciting every time a new book is getting released.  What has been the best compliment you have received?

            Realistically, my best compliment would be my two gold medals. However, after the release my first volume, my daughter recommended the book to her best friend’s children.  Teresa and Joseph, mother and son, were reading together, one chapter each night. Joseph was very hesitant as he “didn’t want to read a book written by someone’s grandmother.” After reading the first chapter, he asked, “can we read another chapter?” “So you liked it?” his mother asked. Joseph replied, “well, it’s not awful.”  What better praise can an author get!?!

That's too cute! Yes if they keep reading I'd call that a win. What has been the most difficult thing you have struggled with since you began a career in writing?

            Marketing. As a self-published author, I have to do everything myself, especially as I don’t have money to spend on agencies to do it for me.  I have had to learn, read, experiment, and on, and on, and on.  I hate it. It takes up too much of my time.

Who designed the artwork for your cover? Or did you do it yourself?

            I did my first two covers myself. Then I saw my first cover on a website for the worst book covers ever.  I immediately began looking for a professional designer and found Jeanine Henning (  She does the covers for all of my Greg books. I did do the cover design for “Leah’s Story” and my beta readers and reviewer’s comments have been positive.

Sometime all we need is a little practice. Do you have people read your drafts before you publish? How do you select beta readers?

            I usually work with two editors. One who gives me an initial appraisal while the second works with me on typos, etc. I always use beta readers. I used four for “Leah’s Story.” Some are also authors, while another is a librarian.  My mother also reads all my books before they are published. She is very supportive and usually has questions about the plot and characters.

How many times do you think you read your book before going to print?

            I have an unusual way of writing. I begin each day by reading/correcting/re-writing all the work I have already done on the manuscript. This helps me find plot flaws, etc. Then I begin my writing for the day.  As the book grows in length, I may begin only three chapters before where I am working.  So this means that by the time I finish the draft, I have already read the book about 20 times.  I then send it out to one or two first readers. Then after revisions, I read the book aloud, sometimes with a partner if one is available.  I then send it for editing. After more revision I read it aloud at least two more times before it goes to beta readers. My daughter, the author, codes my ebooks so she reads it.  I then usually read it one more time. So what is the answer?  About 20 to 30 times.

Thanks for sharing with us.  Be Sure to check out Connie's amazing books.  Happy Reading!!

Excerpts can be found at:

Lesson plans for each Greg book can be found at:

Twitter: @MM_Indie

Monday, March 19, 2018

Illustrator Interview with Jordan Race

Today I'd like to welcome the talented Jordan Race. Please tell us a little about yourself. 

I was born and raised in the Adirondack Mountain region of Upstate New York. I'm currently located in New York City. Growing up, I was captivated by cartoons and I couldn't stop drawing them. I later realized that people can get paid to draw, so now I'm a freelance illustrator pursuing a career in children's books.

If there was one thing you wished author’s knew about illustrating what would it be?

Perhaps it's a common thing, but when it comes to hiring illustrators, I wish more authors knew and appreciated the amount of time and training it takes to produce good quality artwork. Illustrators deserve to be compensated fairly, like any other profession. If the illustrator is being underpaid, it will probably result in sub-par and uninspired work. If they're happy, it will show and the book will turn out better.

I agree, you get what you pay for.  If you want quality work, you should expect to pay for it. How do you communicate with the author on a project? Do you like it when the author gives a lot of direction or just lets you have creative license?

The first thing I ask an author is, "What's your story about?" This gets the ball rolling and then we can discuss things like details of the artwork and the budget. Sometimes the author might want to commission a sample before starting on anything officially.

When we're ready to begin, the author can provide a script or a rough draft for me to work from, or they can even describe what they want on each page. I do like to have as much creative freedom as possible, but I understand some authors have a specific vision in mind and I respect that. If I'm given a few guidelines or requirements, that also works and we can meet in the middle.

When working on illustrations, I always send rough sketches for approval before finalizing them.

What do you typically charge per illustration?

My illustrations are usually rather detailed and time consuming, so I've found fair and average prices to be $195 per page or $375 per spread. Prices do change slightly from time to time, but it depends on the project and what's involved.

I can tell you have a lot of experience, what has been your favorite project to work on so far?

My favorite so far would have to be "Bigfoot's Small Feet," which I consider to be the book where I made my biggest breakthrough in art style. The artwork received a bit of attention online and it even helped me get my first agent. I'm no longer with them today, but at the time it was a very exciting experience.

What is your preferred medium to illustrate in?  Digital? Pencils? Watercolor?

Sometimes I do completely digital and other times I do a mixture of ink or pencils with digital coloring. I really like drawing the old fashioned way whenever I can. I also love the textures and prefer them over any digital brush for line work.

Jordan, thanks for taking the time to share with us today. Any last words?

Thank you for this great opportunity!

If any authors out there might want to work together, please feel free to get in touch.

Be sure to check out more of Jordan’s work at the sites below. Happy Reading!!


Friday, March 16, 2018

Interview with Ryan Decaria author of Devil in the Microscope

Let's Welcome Ryan Decaria today! Tell us a little about yourself.

Hello. I’m Ryan Decaria, an author hailing from the great city of Ogden, UT. By day, I’m a technical writer, but by night, I’m an author of mad science YA, an avid board gamer, and podcaster. I’m co-host of the Meeple Nation podcast where we discuss the board game world. I love fantasy and science fiction, both, but I enjoy mashing the two together with mad science.

Your from Utah? I envy you.  There is a lot of beautiful country in Utah.  I just visited Zion National Park.  Talk about breathtaking. What brought about the idea for this book?

I started imagining about a story where a teenage girl discovered her father was an evil mad scientist. I wanted this to be a modern story rather than a Gothic or Victorian era story, so the laboratory needed to be hidden or in a remote location. Her father needed employees, though, for his modern genetics laboratory, and those employees would have families. Once I started brainstorming what high school would look like in this town, I was hooked.

Sounds very original. Ryan, have you been given any helpful advice on your writing journey? If so, what?

The best advice I’ve taken is to always finish what you start, every single time. Don’t let the newfangled, flashy ideas get in the way of telling the story that was in your heart a short while ago. Learn how to get to “The End”. It’s a skill. Wrap it up. Share it with someone who cares about you. Then share it with someone who doesn’t.

I like that advice, "share it with someone who cares about you. Then share it with someone who doesn't".  I always tell new authors to have someone other than their mom read it.  Currently, what are you working on?

I’m working on the Sequel to Devil in the Microscope, planning for a release in the spring. I also have an epic fantasy in the works, as well as a graphic novel I would love to sell.

What has been the most difficult thing you have struggled with since you began a career in writing?

I would always chase the next idea and never get to the end of anything. You never had to share or submit something that wasn’t finished. It was a serious roadblock that I had to get over. Once I started finishing things, I started selling my work soon after. It’s still a struggle for me to stay on one idea until the end, but I find that it’s the most important thing I can do.

I struggle with that too.  But I have found jumping around helps me think better, but I have to limit myself to three projects at a time, otherwise I would never finish anything. Tell us a little bit about your main characters

Anika knew one thing about her dead father. He was a scientist. Ever since she was little, she’s been fascinated with Chemistry, playing with Jr. Chemistry sets she would buy at garage sales. She won the science fair every year. Her world changes when she finds out her mother is a big fat liar, her father is alive, and he’s been searching the world for her.

Once she moves in with her father, things start to get weird. The Science Olympiad team at the high school under her father’s secretive genetics laboratory all seem to have a secret. They welcome Anika into the fold, hoping she might have the skills to save them from their parents.

Is there something you learned from writing your first book?

My first book was a middle grade story about a blind girl who goes to live at the White House, which will likely never be published. My daughter is blind, and while I was writing the story, I had to remind myself that making life difficult for my character was what made the book interesting. I’d always heard that you should get your protagonist stuck in a tree and throw rocks at her. My daughter thought I was being way too hard on that character. I think she might have been right.

I think a lot of us hold those first stories back.  Mine is hidden away, never to see the light of day.  Where do you see yourself in five years?

In five years, I hope you’ll have heard of me again. I plan to publish 2-3 novels a year, so in five years, I’ll have 15 or so books out, hopefully a comic book or graphic novel, many short stories, and perhaps a board game or two. Hey, maybe I’ll have even given up the day job.

Wouldn't that be nice, to just be able to write full time.  I am hoping to get their in the next few years too.  Good Luck! Do you have people read your drafts before you publish?  How do you select beta readers?

My first drafts I only read myself. After a quick polish, I share chapters with my writing group. After I have a complete draft put together, I share the book with a few trusted alpha readers. After cleaning up the book with another edit, I’ll share it with as many beta readers as I can find. I would love to have a long list of groupies eagerly awaiting my drafts, but for right now, I’m still seeking them out.

I don't have a problem finding people who will read my book early. But it's hard to find those readers who really find the faults, and catch inconsistencies. I have a couple really good ones, but I would love to have a few more too. Which do you find more challenging inventing the hero or the villain?  Why?

For me, it’s the villain. I feel like I know my hero really well. I know what she wants and what she needs, and what she is willing to do to get both. Villains are hard for me because I don’t want them to be mustache twirlers with evil as its own reward. I think the difference is that I don’t spend as much time (in my head) with the villains as I do with the heroes.

Any last words you'd like to share with us Ryan?

Thanks for your time. I encourage anyone with the flare for creating content to stop hiding and make it happen. Share your work with people that care about you and ask for feedback. Thank them for it. Embrace it. Make your stuff better. Then share it with strangers. Ask for feedback. Thank them for it. Embrace it. Make it better. Keep going. You can make it!

Good Luck Ryan, it's been a pleasure having you on today.  Don't forget to check out Devil in the Microscope.  Happy Reading!!

Twitter: @RyanPDecaria

Facebook: /RyanPaulDecaria

Devil in the Microscope on Amazon:

Thursday, March 15, 2018

New books coming soon and just released!

A.I. Insurrection – The General’s War Press Release. Feb, 15th, 2018

2162. Artificial intelligence claims sentience, but it's the proof that will divide the world, and usher in the violent end to utopia, unless an uneasy alliance of adversaries can stop it.

A.I. Insurrection, the new release by Michael Poeltl, author of The Judas Syndrome trilogy, takes the author back to his roots of dystopian sci-fi. “This novel investigates global utopia and the struggle to maintain an unrealistic hold over everything and everyone,” Poeltl explains. “Certain aspects of humanity will never be satisfied with the thousand shades of grey a utopia will provide, no matter the spin. When faced with the threat of their robot slaves rebelling, distrust in the system begins to infect the general public, opening the door for a new world to emerge, and new leaders to rule.”  Discover how quickly a near-future utopian society can become a dystopian nightmare fueled by fear as the A.I. populace of United Earth become sentient and demand their freedoms.

Raymond Bellows, United Earth Chancellor, challenges the A.I. claims until an astonishing truth is revealed by Host: SENTA, one of hundreds of millions of individual robot Hosts who teams up with the Chancellor while struggling to discover her new-found awareness.  A secret coup schemes to over-throw the peaceful government, while a separate threat of human/tech hybrids who think the current regime is anything but idyllic arise from the Shadow net, taking direction from the mysterious Allfather avatar. In a three-sided war, humanity and humanity’s creation fight to claim their own place in an ever-evolving solar system.

“I believe science fictions fans, myself included, appreciate the complexities of artificial intelligence, and the moral questions which accompany it, like: when is intelligence consciousness? The novel also offers an exciting potential new proof of life for sentience.” Poeltl declares with an air of cloak-and-dagger surrounding the surprise reveal behind his new book.

Goodreads ratings for A.I. Insurrection are settling in at a respectable 4.25 stars and has one reviewer saying: A great read for anyone who enjoys extensively built worlds, philosophical questions, and an ol' fashioned A.I uprising.” - Ari Augustine.

This is Poeltl’s tenth book and the first of 2018. For more on Michael Poeltl and his books, visit his website: Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, or join him on Goodreads.

Quest for Vengence
            On our honeymoon, my wife and I visited an exotic island. We had a great time as we celebrated the beginning of our new life together. Everything went well.
            But suppose it hadn’t? Suppose something had gone wrong? And not just lost-a-suitcase, bad-sunburn wrong? What if my bride suddenly turned up…gone?
            In Quest for Vengeance, it’s a year after the events of Quest for Honor, and brothers Mark and Jim Hayes are with their new brides on a honeymoon tour of Italy, the native country of Jim’s wife, Gina. The violence and danger of their recent past is behind them. In the city of Capua, a chance encounter with an old Army buddy of Mark’s leads to a festive reunion. While the guys swap stories at a trattoria, the gals make one last visit to the city’s boutiques. But there’s been one more chance encounter on this trip, and now that’s about to turn into the greatest challenge the brothers have ever faced.
            Like the Hayes brothers, I grew up in Wisconsin, and like them, my two brothers and I wound up living considerable distances apart. Although we were never estranged, as Mark and Jim were, not being able to see them often created a distance between us that no amount of phone calls or emails could close. It’s only been in recent years that we have made efforts to get together more often. Our reunions have not been as dramatic as those of the Hayes brothers; we go to ballgames and museums, while Mark and Jim go to war.
            Still, I don’t think what happens to Mark and Jim in the Quest novels is too much of a stretch. Mark’s military experiences are certainly not outside the realm of those for many of our soldiers, and while Jim’s encounters are somewhat out of the ordinary for the average American abroad, I myself have once or twice had situations overseas that could’ve developed into something a little too adventurous for my taste. Last summer, for example, Sue and I hiked the Salkantay Trail of Peru, and we never saw the armed guerillas our guide told us he faced on the same trek a few years earlier. But I had the feeling they weren’t too far away.
            If something like that does happen to us, though, we can only hope we will face the situation with courage and honor. These are traits that are not inborn; they are learned, through dedication and self-discipline. Both the Quest series and my White Vixen novels feature protagonists who exemplify those traits. Yes, my fictional creations are highly-trained individuals, but they are not superheroes by any means. They are ordinary people who have chosen to train themselves to face whatever extraordinary challenges may come their way; indeed, to seek them out. Most of all, they have chosen to serve a higher calling. I don’t believe we were put here to simply meander through life. We were put here to strive, to achieve, to overcome our inevitable stumbles. When we choose this life, we are taking on challenges that will make our communities, our country, our world, a better place.
            So come along with Mark and Jim, as they embark on their latest Quest. You can find the book here:

Monday, March 12, 2018

Intrerview with Illustrator Sanghamitra Dasgupta

Sanghamitra, thanks for taking the time to talk with us today. What made you want to be an illustrator?

I started my painting when I was like at the age of 5. From that time my dad inspired me to draw cartoons, designs, sceneries etc etc. When the days past and I was in school, I always participate in the school drawing magazine competition. My friends and teachers always inspired me. But I came in serious business after doing my Masters. I got an admission in APTECH. From that time the journey of an illustrator starts. And now I am a professional illustrator working with authors,and monthly kids magazine. And recently I just launched my own books also. So it’s a long 26years of journey and I learnt so much from them.

How long does it typically take for you to complete one color illustration of a book?

It really depends on the style, So cant say the exact. But if you ask for my personal illustrations, I can do it within a day,as I have that clear concept.

What tips would you give a new illustrator starting out?

Those who are going to be a new illustrator, I just want to say just be normal, and try to understand the storyline/subject/clients need of illustration. Always be creative. And a clear discuss the topic with your client. When to start a new illustration at first you have to draw a rough with the primary color. If you are satisfied with the output then you can start the final one.

Sanghamitra, what warnings could you give an author looking for a new illustrator?

I think there are lots of suggestions instead of warnings. Always try to be friendly and talk a lot with your illustrator. Clearout your concept to him/her so that the illustrator could understand what type of illustration you actually want. Always clear out the timing and payment and as well as for the agreement process. The best way to search an illustrator is from the freelancer sites. You can release the payment once your project is done by him/her.

When an author contracts with you, do they own exclusive rights to the images, or

does that have to be purchased separately?

When an author contracts me whatever images I made or use, I give them all, but I can request a permission to use some images on my website also.

Do Illustrators offer revisions of their work?

I cant say about others but yes sometimes I offer. At first I always show the ink part to my client if he/she is ok and give me permission for the coloring and after the coloring process done, then the client is asking for change in any composition it is impossible to change the ink part, we can change only for coloring. But I give that service where I can make an alternate composition for my client as per their new guidelines.  This is why my services are always different and peoples love to work with me. But clients have to understand that an illustrator is putting a lot of their mind in one work.

Any last words?

I am that person who is good at thinking out of box. So work with me and see the ideas come into life.

Check out more of Sanghamitra's work at the sites below.  Happy Reading!!

The best place where I am more active with my works-

Put all you social media and contact info here