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All posts for the month May, 2014

Speaking English and Using the Correct Word

Published May 23, 2014 by paulandpaulasbooks

With plugin, and text-speak, our language skills are deteriorating into short-speak. While American English ‘cleaned’ out some of the ‘extra’ vowels, someone along the way decided was an unnecessary cumbersome usage, we are taking it back to infancy level, going from stilted to blurbistic babbling.

english-department-welcome Are Americans becoming lazier with each passing generation when it comes to understanding the correct context of words and when they should (or should not) be used?

Does the language from the “olden days” sound pretentious in today’s relaxed society (such as “whom” vs “who”?)  To this day, I continue to say “To whom it may concern…” when starting a letter and no particular person is addressed.

Between my personal and professional life, it is safe to say I read quite a bit and talk to a lot of people. Lately I’ve noticed an increase in the improper use of English words as many are very close in pronunciation and/or spelling, yet have different meanings.

What’s really astonishing is some of the people who flub on the word they have elected to use are regarded as highly educated people or journalists who have studied English in-depth for their career.

On the other hand…

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Steve Freeman Impromptu Interview

Published May 21, 2014 by paulandpaulasbooks

Steve Freeman has consented to be my third impromptu interview,  and the links are to our Facebook pages – If you want to be friends,or follow, please click on the name.  We’d be glad to have you aboard.Steve Freeman med cruise pix

After several times of not being able to connect, we had an enjoyable talk ~

Steve Freeman

Hi Paula – is this a good time to chat?

Paula Shene

We could give it a shot.

Steve Freeman

Okay – super.

Paula Shene

I will try to ignore all my other lights blinking – if I should go dark and you’re waiting for an answer – it just means I jumped up to deal with something and will be back.

Steve Freeman

Okay

Paula Shene

So how is number three in the series coming?

Steve Freeman

I just published it a few weeks ago. ***insert cheer***

Paula Shene

Wow, wow, wow

Steve Freeman

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JM5BZEO

T Wave (The Blackwell Files)Steve Freeman T_Wave_Book_Cover

http://www.amazon.com

The Stokely Medical Group has a secret… When FBI Forensic Accountant Mallory Wilson is called to investigate the potential theft of narcotics from a local medical group, the routine case takes a sinister turn as she and boyfriend Alton Blackwell uncover a series of questionable patient deaths. Alto…

I’m pretty happy about that, of course.

Paula Shene

You heard my question on the link even before I could ask.

Well, yes, I can understand you being happy with a new release-

 

I still need to get your second. Do you have your books in kindle?

Steve Freeman

Yes – all of them.

Here is book #2:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HUYU8F6

Ruthless (The Blackwell Files)Ruthless by Steven F. Freedman

http://www.amazon.com

A disabled ex-Army officer turned world-class cryptographer…a beautiful FBI agent…and a ruthless murderer on the loose in Atlanta. A heartless killer ambushes and guns down ex-mobster Jay Mancini. Days later, the killer disposes of Mancini’s live-in girlfriend in cold blood. Desperate …

Paula Shene

Fantastic! I love my paperbacks, but my holding them is not okay. I will get this one today. I have to pace my purse, but I just opened it so, you will be or that is, Ruthless will be, the first on the docket to be bought along with T-Wave.

Steve Freeman

Awesome – I hope you will enjoy it!

Paula Shene

I shall, if your loveable characters are in this one, or if not, equally as loveable new characters.

Steve Freeman

It’s a series, so the new books have some of the main characters as “Nefarious.”

Paula Shene

Great, it is time to get reacquainted.

Steve Freeman

Ha-ha. I didn’t feel the story of Alton and Mallory was over with “Nefarious.”

Paula Shene

I felt it had only begun. I am always happy to come in on a beginning of a series – and when I can connect with the characters, I’m hooked into getting the rest.

Steve Freeman

I’m glad you’re anticipating their return.

Paula Shene

My biggest problem is that I have either a hard time waiting for the new one to come out or do not have the money when it comes out. A dilemma for me, the reader, not so much for the writer.

Steve Freeman

That’s the good thing about eBooks. They’re almost always less expensive.

I’ve appreciated that as a reader.

Paula Shene

I’ve gotten in my kindle big time not so much for that reason, but with my limited ability to hold any weight, the Kindle is great.

I had a dead spot for two years in my reading zone – my house

Steve Freeman

I’m glad that has worked out.

Paula Shene

Me, too, – I love it –

I wanted to ask about your books in as much as the background

Steve Freeman

Sorry? I didn’t quite follow the question.

Paula Shene

Is it purely fictional or do you draw on your experiences

Steve Freeman

Good question. The story line is fictional, but I do draw fairly heavily from my life experiences. Like Alton, I was a member of the Army’s Signal Corps and I work for a high-tech firm (although not in a cryptographic capacity).

I also had a mildly injured leg, but nothing nearly as drastic as Alton.

I think referencing something real in my writing, be it a personality trait, location, etc., confers a level of authenticity that readers notice.

Paula Shene

I had felt the authenticity of the scenes and thought the same.

Steve Freeman

I’m glad to hear that. I work hard to portray it that way.

I think if you stick to what you are doing, it will not be hard. Your flow appears easy and believable. That is what I enjoy. I think I told you that I am not really into ‘war zone’ stories, but I got so caught up in your characters, it was hard to put the kindle off.

Steve Freeman

You know, I’ve had a lot of people say they don’t really like war stories but enjoyed “Nefarious.”

I think that’s because at its heart, “Nefarious” is really more of a mystery and a love story. It just happens to be set in a military setting for the first half of the book.

Paula Shene

True – it is the characters that sell the story and the more the reader can relate to, the more the reader hangs around for more.

Steve Freeman

Setting also helps. I try to write most of the stories in areas with which I’m familiar.

Paula Shene

To me, that makes perfect sense – I know I tend to do things backwards, that is, act first, then check, -could be deadly in some situations, but, the fictional kind , not so bad. I write what I know and now know, that is one of the points in writing courses.

Your empathy comes through.

Steve Freeman

I’ve never had a formal writing course, so I’m glad to hear I’m using a proven technique.

Paula Shene

That is even better. When I wrote the first children’s story, I was writing it for my youngest granddaughter, so publishing was not a thought until her friends, kids, obviously, and in the range I wrote for, and adult friends and relatives read and urged publishing. At that point I got some books on children’s lit and how to write and found out I did it!  I do think it shows in books, and the books that I read and like, have that quality.

Steve Freeman

Indeed.

Paula Shene

Are you into full time writing now or torn between writing and an outside job?

Steve Freeman

Oh, I still have my day job, which I actually really enjoy, so I don’t feel compelled to give it up. Writing is my second job. In my heart, I still think of writing as a hobby, because I like it a lot, but I invest a lot more time into it than a typical hobby would require.

My day job is why these FB chats are a little tricky for me to work out.

Paula Shene

I was thinking you were free because you are getting the books out there with good timing. One of my friends told me, a book every few months is good, one a month better – I can’t do that even with being in the house all day.

An impromptu chat is just that – I am just asking questions as they pop into my mind – if you have anything you want me to know, just put it out there.

Steve Freeman

As a self-published author, I don’t know how I’d come close to one book a month. I still have to review my first draft with beta readers, my critique group, etc. That takes time.

Okay – fair enough.

Paula Shene

That is what I said to her and totally agree

Steve Freeman

I’m really happy to crack out the books as quickly as I have, to be honest.

Paula Shene

You’re doing great

Steve Freeman

Thanks

Paula Shene

Time wise and storyline wise

Steve Freeman

I’ve mostly finished my fourth book, “Havoc.”

Paula Shene

Hahahhahha….

Steve Freeman

I need another round of edits, then proofing.

I hope it will be out in August or September.

Paula Shene

I need to read faster!

Steve Freeman

And I’m really pleased with the cover my graphic designer made.

Paula Shene

That is good to know – do you want to share who your designer is?

Steve Freeman

I have pretty solid ideas for the next three books. I just don’t have time to write them all down.

Sure, I can share. Let me look up her link…

Paula Shene

Our readers are always looking for designers that are good.

That is, the readers that are authors

Steve Freeman

Laura at LLPix Photography and Design. http://www.llpix.com/customcovers.html

Custom Covers

http://www.llpix.com

Laura Wright LaRoche, Author and Photographer, owner of http://www.llpix.com website. Book Cover designer, Book Trailer Creator, Photography, Books. Author of Black Woods Series, Broken Soul, Two Sisters: prattle tales of playful girls. ” In a world of words, anything is possible. ” – Laura Wright LaRoche

Steve Freeman

She is great to work with and produces a fine product.

Want to see the “Havoc” cover?

Paula Shene

Thank you, yes! Did she do all of your covers?

Steve Freeman

No, she only produced “Havoc.” (I only discovered Laura recently.) “Havoc” is a special story, and I wanted a special cover.Steve Freeman HAVOC.94153852_std

 

Paula Shene

Your T wave reminds me of Creighton and this one, Havoc, of Steve Berry.

 

Steve Freeman

haha – cool

I can definitely see the Creighton reference.

Paula Shene

I thought of The Amber Room

Steve Freeman

I don’t know that work, but I’ll take your word for it!

Paula Shene

I know, it does not correlate, but in my mind it did.

Steve Freeman

You know, I only started writing about 1.5 years ago. This has been a fun ride so far.

Paula Shene

I am into a lot of genres, but a suspense with a happy or at least wiggle room ending, then I’m hooked.

Steve Freeman

I think you’ll like my other books, then.

The end to “Nefarious” was happy, I think.

Paula Shene

You are quite prolific for only a year and a half career

Yes, the ending to Nefarious was happy.

 

***********Spoiler Alert – next few answers**********

Steve Freeman

Of course, I had to torture readers at the end by hinting maybe the ending wouldn’t be so nice.

But it makes the happy ending even more satisfying, at least for me.

Paula Shene

oh dear

Steve Freeman

yes?

Paula Shene

I think that having a questionable ending coming is fine, but our world is so fraught with too much reality, that having a positive outcome is welcome

*******ALERT – THIS ANSWER HOLDS HEAVY SPOILERS –*******

Steve Freeman

I hope so. That’s how I’ve geared all my books.

In “Nefarious,” I first hinted that Mallory had died…then I suggested Scott was her boyfriend… before I revealed that she was alive and free to love Alton.

It also sets up the next few books quite nicely, too.

Paula Shene

Good – you’ve got me for a fan, for what that is worth.

Steve Freeman

That’s great. I appreciate it!

Paula Shene

I know, you are still trying to pry a review out of me

Steve Freeman

Ha-ha – yes, that’s true.

Paula Shene

It will come as we get this interview up and running.

I, believe it or not, am getting better at doing formal reviews – but I do get back to the authors if I’ve run into them online.

I only give 5 star reviews because I do not read everything I start, so finishing is the key.

Steve Freeman

Okay –

So I take it you finished “Nefarious,” then… or I just gave away the ending.

Paula Shene

No, I finished it. In fact, I did not like the ending on the pdf and took the book and looked and you had switched a couple of paragraphs and I *sighed* and said, much better!

Steve Freeman

You liked the hardcopy better?

Paula Shene

Yes, I did.

Steve Freeman

That’s good to know. Maybe I should switch the PDF to align with the hard copy. I hadn’t thought about it for a while, to be honest.

Paula Shene

Many of us do not rely on reviews, but read the free inside to get the gist.

Steve Freeman

Yes, I do that a lot, too.

Paula Shene

And we promote one another

Steve Freeman

But reviews can get folks to the point of looking inside your book, at times.

Paula Shene

I will do a review, but now I will tie it in with your interview with me.

Steve Freeman

Awesome!

So did I provide the information you were hoping to acquire?

Oh…want my author website address?

Paula Shene

Yes – you told me the background and when I like books I usually find the author is in fact putting his life into his art. Any links you want me to use put in.

Steve Freeman

Sounds good–thanks! Here’s my website:

www.SteveFreemanWriter.com

Steve Freeman – Writer – Home

www.SteveFreemanWriter.com

The Blackwell Files: A Series”The Blackwell Files” chronicles the exploits of Alton Blackwell, ex-Army captain and telecommunications expert, and Mallory Wilson, former Army lieutenant and FBI agent. Together they risk their lives tackling intractable mysteries….

Paula Shene

I’m glad our lives collided – always nice to meet another type A personality!

Steve Freeman

Ha – yep! You hear that too, huh?

Paula Shene

yup

Steve Freeman

Well, thanks for your time!

Paula Shene

Actually, I’ve been called a bulldozer

Steve Freeman

hahah

Paula Shene

Take care.  I’m glad we finally connected to actually talk about you, your method, and your books.

Steve Freeman

Okay – thanks again!

 

Mr. Steven F. Freeman, as he is listed on Amazon, is an author which with you want to get in on the ground floor. His fourth novel, Havoc is to be released August or September 2014 which gives you enough time to read his first Nefarious,

Nefarious by Steven F Freeman

My review of Nefarious at Paul and Paula’s Place

You READ – but do you leave REVIEWS?

Published May 14, 2014 by paulandpaulasbooks

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

66d5ad99b798ba6027bffa79777b0979

If not, why not?

I don’t have time

The author probably spent a heck of a lot more time writing the story than you took to read it, no matter how slow you think you are, so why not take a few minutes to record your feelings about it.

I can’t write long fancy reviews like those I see on book review blogs

You don’t have to, Amazon, for example, only ask you to use a minimum of 25 non repeating words.

I can’t express myself very well

No-one is asking you to produce a literary masterpiece, start off with things you liked, didn’t like or a mix of both about the book, e.g.,

I liked this book because –

it reminded me of –

it made me think about –

it made me so scared I couldn’t sleep for –

it made me feel homesick for –

it made…

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The Booktrap Starter Kit

Published May 7, 2014 by paulandpaulasbooks


I recently joined The Booktrap which, for now,  has limited author seating room.  There are authors from around the world coming together to  build a base to socialize, blog, and advertise.  Needed are writers who want to advertise, but also the ones who are willing to pull their weight in being part of a team.

 

The cost is time and a passion to succeed.  If you are interested in joining, apply to The Booktrap HQ group

 

I have been utilizing one of Facebook’s easy click in asking friends over to like The Booktrap page https://www.facebook.com/thebooktrap  and in only a couple of times of asking, almost a hundred people have come over.   I appreciate your support and when I expected only a ten percent average response, I was pleasantly surprised with an inverted equation of a 90 percent turnout.   Since I’ve asked you over to my other pages as well and the turnout has been high there too, I would say this is a fairly good tool in sharing ourselves.

 

For my friends whom have not yet been asked, I’m on my way to you.  Facebook does not present my friends to ask in an alphabetical listing as they did several years ago,but it does keep track of those who have responded.

 

Catherine Lenderi, one of our administrators and resident editor, has our Booktrap Twitter  https://twitter.com/The_Booktrap   well in hand. Please feel free to follow us

 

Springtime bullies special illustrated edition

 

Catherine did up one of my books for Twitter that is near and dear to my heart.  The Peacock Writers   recently released, to an audience of pre-adolescents,  tips how not to be bullied and how not to be a bully.  It is presented in stories that children find entertaining as well as informative, in the Children’s Charity Collection entitled, Springtime Bullies, for sale on Amazon and other online sites.

 

 

See Catherine’s site http://catsedits.weebly.com/ for tips on usage and grammar.

Also, Catherine has been readying Our group The Booktrap  on Goodreads. Come join us!

The goal of The Booktrap is to help our authors and affiliates in marketing their writing, with the understanding that each one of us is important in the chain, and each of our links make a stronger bond.