Friday, September 16, 2016

A Penny For Your Thoughts

Hey out there! Are you thinking of quitting your day job and making money writing the book that will set America on its heels? I have one word for you—DON’T.  Don't quit your day job, that is. By all means, write the book.

Let me tell you what just happened to me. Granted, I don’t have a day job to quit, but on the other hand, the money I make on my books would barely buy a cup of coffee at Starbucks.

All of my books are with Amazon and happily so. Some are in print, some in digital, some in audio, some are in all three forms. Every month I get an email or two from Amazon telling me that on the 29th I’ll be getting my royalties deposited into my bank account. They give me ten days to look forward to that wondrous event. In July I had the whopping sum of $7.30 added to my bank account for digital royalties.

In August I got two separate deposits; the first I assume was from print books and was for the sum of $3.34. Wow, no Starbucks this month. The second royalty was from digital books in the sum of ………………are you ready?  The gargantuan sum of one cent. That’s right, they deposited one penny into my bank account as a royalty payment!

Now I have my thoughts on this, one of which I’ll tell you and the others, well, they’re not quite suitable for tender ears. Since absolutely NO royalties are as low as one cent, I can only conclude that they made a mistake in July and my amount should have been $7.31 and they corrected their error in August by adding the one cent.
Does this mean I’ll say to heck with it and stop writing because it isn’t worth it? Not by a long shot. I don’t write for the money (obviously), I write because I love writing. It makes me happy and, just maybe, it makes other people happy, too. I can make up a world and fill it with the people I want in my world and have them say and do what I tell them. Well, okay, more times than not they tell me what they’re going to do. That’s where the fun comes in—I have no preconceived idea what’s going to happen in my stories, I just let the story go where it wants. At the end, I’m as surprised as you are!

So don’t think writing is going to make you a millionaire, or well-off, or even comfortable, unless your name is John Grisham, Stephen King, or J. K. Rowling, and, trust me, those names are already taken. If you write, write because you have something to say and you love having a chance to say it. 

Quote of the Day:  Live out of your imagination, not your history. Stephen Covey

Monday, August 29, 2016

She's Done it Again

Summer may be almost over, but this lady's writing career is just getting into the swing of things. I'm talking about my guest, Marcia Buompensiero. This is my third interview with this sweet lady (who usually writes murder stories). 

Good afternoon, Marcia. Let's remind my readers where you live.
I live in San Diego with my husband Joe. All my stories have San Diego settings.

Does your current book, Sumerland, differ from your previous books? Why and how?
Sumerland is a departure from my Theo Hunter Mystery Series. Sumerland was inspired by a true story, childhood events, and the oral history handed down from my grandmother who’s past was shrouded in secrets and shadows.  For that reason, Sumerland is written under my real name, not my “Loren Zahn” pseudonym.

Give us a brief synopsis of your book.
What if the “not so” dearly departed could return from the other side of the grave to make amends and right the wrongs they committed during their lives on earth? 
Francis and Marie-Claire Liebersohn have unfinished business—they want someone to set the record straight—eighty years after their deaths.  

Kate Post just inherited the old Liebersohn mansion—her estranged mother's bizarre bequest to the daughter she rarely saw and barely knew. Kate doesn't want the house, nor any reminder of her mother's abandonment. When an odd inscription on a slab of concrete beside a garden pathway haunts her dreams and drives her back to the old place, she decides that a period restoration will make for a quick sale. But Kate's plans and the long-dead Liebersohns' scheme are about to collide. The result will unhinge Kate's world, uncover haunting family secrets, and set her on a mission to undo the wrongs that only she can set aright. 

What prompted you to write it?
Sumerland is a “ghost story” but, first and foremost, it is a family fable. It is an homage to our ancestors and a declaration of hope that future generations may learn from the mistakes of the past—and not repeat them. Everything we are today has its beginnings in the lives of those who came before us. In my own family, my grandmother’s estrangement from her husband (my grandfather) resulted in a family split that lasted for generations. Meeting my cousin Linda for the first time did not occur until most of the players (our grandparents, my father, her mother) had passed away. It would be 90 years after our grandparents’ separation that we would meet. That is the story that became the catalyst for Sumerland.

Linda and I both wonder if Sumerland might really be more fact than fiction. Grandmother Clara was a great storyteller. Her tall tales about growing up in the back woods of Canada were dark and pulsed with characters who were mired in misdeeds and tragedy. I always believed her stories were fiction. Now, I’m not so sure. As a child, it was grandmother’s voice that fueled that my imagination. She is why I write today. 

How long did it take you to write this book?
I’d have to say the story is a culmination of a lifetime of memories. However, I didn’t put pen to paper until early in 2016. Once I was able to connect with the germ of the story, I completed the book in about ten months.

Do you have a favorite line from the book?
The advice from Kate’s mother:  “Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.”

Is it published and, if so, when and by whom?
Sumerland was published by Grey Castle Publishing, my own publishing company.

How can my readers get a copy?
Sumerland is available on

What is your advice to would-be writers?
That’s easy: Don’t give up. Keep at it.

What’s next for you?
I began the third book in the Theo Hunter Mysteries, Fatal Little Lies, earlier this year. I stopped work on it to write Sumerland. I hope to get back to it and complete it by spring 2017.  I'm also in the process of converting my mystery books into audio books for Amazon. That has been an exciting endeavor and I hope to complete that in 2017.

Thank you, Marcia. And all you out there--make sure you get this book and read it. You won't be sorry.

Quote of the Day: I cannot tell why this imagined despair has fallen upon me; the ghost of an ancient legend that will not let me be. Heinrich Heine, Lorelei