Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Last post of 2014!

As I actively work on the research and writing involved in the sequel to Risking Exposure, I'm also trying to keep up this blog, my website, marketing, presentations - oh, and a job and family and a house and LIFE!
So please excuse me if I've been off-schedule on posting here.

Today, I took some time to add a slide show to my website. It features photos Katie and I shot during the research trip to Munich. Each slide is captioned with either bits of history or personal thoughts. So check it out!

Hopefully I'll get back to Germany again. I'd like to check out specifics on the locations I'm using in the sequel, in person. Then I can share more pictures with all of you!

Best wishes for 2015. 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Louis Zamperini and Laura Hillenbrand - two unbelievable true stories

No doubt you've heard of Unbroken, the true story of an amazing man named Louis Zamperini. Based on the novel by Laura Hillenbrand, it was turned into a screenplay by the Coen brothers. Angelina Jolie directed and produced the film version, due for release this week.

It's safe to say that your average American never heard of Louis Zamperini before Laura Hillenbrand's novel, and now the History Channel has shared a list of eight things you may not know about him.
Nearly as incredible as Louis' never-say-die spirit is Laura's own, as seen in this interview for the Today Show.  Because of her own severe chronic fatigue syndrome and the limitations in activity it brings, she reports living vicariously through the vitality of her characters.

Which do you find more inspiring - Louis' will to stay alive despite enormous odds which accumulated one atop another, or Laura's will to get out of bed each day and use what little strength she had to chip at the huge undertaking of researching, organizing, and writing another bestseller?

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Indies and staff picks

A few weeks back, Michael and I visited Lititz, PA. While there, we did what we usually do in a new town - find a great Indie bookstore and browse. Lititz has Aaron's, which boasts an interesting mix of genres for a variety of literary tastes and age groups.
I'm not one for formulaic novels, you know the disease-that-attacks-and-threatens-happiness, the obvious love triangle, that sort of thing. So over many years of indie bookstore trips, I've learned to look for the titles marked "Staff Pick." I've typically found those books and novels to be original and somewhat out-of-the-mainstream, aka, exactly what I like.
That's how I found Ocean for my granddaughter. It's a Photicular book showing fish and other sea creatures which actually move as the pages turn. Didn't see it in my local BAM, that's for sure. And for my own reading, the Staff Picks signs pointed out We Were Liars by E. Lockhart. It's one of those stories which twists on itself, Gone Girl style. I wouldn't have picked it up based on the title or the cover art. But I certainly picked it up and read the jacket blurb based on the Staff Pick recommendation.
Finding that little sign is like a book recommendation from a friend, one who deals in stories and books day in and day out. They know what they're talking about. Over the years, their recommendations have seldom failed me.