WordPress.com is excited to announce our newest offering: a course just for beginning bloggers where you’ll learn everything you need to know about blogging from the most trusted experts in the industry. We have helped millions of blogs get up and running, we know what works, and we want you to to know everything we know. This course provides all the fundamental skills and inspiration you need to get your blog started, an interactive community forum, and content updated annually.
I “quipped” the quote “A REAL writer knows when to hit the delete key.” when I started my blog years ago, and now I have merchandise that helps spread the word!
As a blogger, I can WRITE and WRITE and WRITE…but not everyone wants to READ and READ and READ! So, I learned (the hard way) to write down all my thoughts THEN hit the delete key to get my point down to the fewest words possible.
The same goes with video! I might film an hour our footage then CUT it down to less than 30 minutes. Editing is a challenge, but well worth the final results.
So, check out my merchandise and help spread the word!
I listened to the audiobook on #hoopla available from my local library #lincolnparishlibrary but you can find it on #audible.
This book was “suggested” by Hoopla based on the other books I have read and I always like to take a look at what it recommended. The description was intriguing so I checked it out.
Unfortunately, I only got to listen to a couple of chapters at first and I had to go back because I fell asleep…not because of the book, but because I enjoy listening to books to help me fall asleep because I have severe tinnitus and fibromyalgia listening to distracts me from the pain and annoying ringing in my ears!
But this is a GREAT book and I wanted to listen to it when I was AWAKE!
WOW! This is truly a gripping story. The book is written in a style that really worked for the characters and it is well deserving of the awards it received and more!
The topic was extremely rough but “hearing” it through the voices of the characters really pulled me into the story.
I was hooked!
This is one of those BINGE listening audiobooks that I enjoyed over a weekend. I am one of those (apparently few) people who can listen to audiobooks while doing something else and still be capable of doing both. I enjoy listening to audiobooks while traveling and I have even listened during my 15 minute commute to work. I especially like listening to audiobooks when walking, relaxing with my iPad games of solitaire, puzzles, mahjong, or dominoes.
BUT…I feel that listening to THE BREAK on audiobook benefitted me personally over reading it because the narrator, Michaela Washburn, and her amazing talent gave voice inflections and intonations to the character that I might not have “read” and I was more absorbed by the realism she brought to this incredible story. She (Katerena Vermette with her writing) created characters distinctive enough with their voices that it was easy to follow along.
After reading this book, I checked out another book review (something I rarely do) on YouTube and found NATIVE BOOK WARRIOR ‘s book discussion (spoilers) and book review (non-spoiler) and I encourage my readers to check out her channel! She describes the story so eloquently that I pale by comparison! So please check out Kim’s videos and give them a like!
I am only 1/32 Cherokee Indian and it is sad how quickly Indigenous blood is diluted through the generations and the features more prominent in my Grandmother have softened into almost nonexistence in my sons.
I recommend this book to book clubs because it is definitely one you will want to discuss with others!
I am excited to announce that I have just started my YouTube channel: The Delete Key!
I call it “The Delete Key” like my blog, because “A real writer knows when to hit the delete key.”
I have had so much fun this past year growing my channel, A Happy Hoarder, that I thought I’d add a new channel to show share my joy of writing, reading, and watching movies with GREAT stories!
In 2013, I went through the challenging publishing process of my first book, The Kitchen Dance.
I thought I knew what I was doing then. I mean I read books on writing, but more important…I READ BOOKS period!
You see, I am a reader!
Or I should say, “Listener” because I have always preferred to listen to audiobooks over page turning because I’m like a Raccoon and love to keep my hands busy doing something else besides turning pages…like playing solitaire, mahjong, or games on my iPad but mostly because I am an artist and I enjoy listening to a good book while creating my art.
Now, I have written a LOT of books, screenplays, plays, and stories and I have many more ideas jotted down for future projects…but I have only published one book. And it wasn’t a great experience…at all.
How does this make ME a writer you ask?
Because I know when to hit the delete key!
In other words, I know how important editing is to the process and if YOU are a writer, then you know what I mean.
Because pouring all your thoughts out on paper is one thing. But creating something someone else would want to read is another.
Since publishing The Kitchen Dance, I have read SOOOOO many books on writing and attended enough group meetings, seminars, workshops, and conventions that HAD I been taking college courses instead…I would have at least a master’s degree. AND THEN…you’d believe I knew what I was talking about!
I just know that at first, writing was very organic for me.
I knew what I liked to read so I wrote what I liked. Then I once started studying “How to Write” that pretty much killed my will to publish. BUT I STILL LOVE TO WRITE!
SO, what I really feel that I need is a mentor. Not some fancy pants published author who charges a nominal fee for their advice.
I wanted someone who not only knew about the process of writing, the challenges of publishing, and MOST important…WHAT do people really want to read?
Since I couldn’t find that someone (or afford that someone), I thought I’d just create a new channel where liked minded people can communicate about what MAKES a good story.
Therefore, I will be covering BOOKS I’ve read or am reading, MOVIES, PLAYS, and what I have learned or am still learning about writing.
And I’d really love for you to be a part of it!
So please join me, and leave a comment, even if you don’t agree with everything I say, AFTER ALL that is how a writer creates “friction” in a story.
AND remember “A real writer knows when to hit the delete key.”
Hey! You’ve made it to the last day of 7! One more time, I would like to thank my esteemed host for sharing some blog space today.
I hope to interest you story-likers in trying my first book in way too many years, this my only collection of short fiction: Comes this Time to Float: 19 Short Stories by Stephen Geez.
You could add another “by Stephen Geez” to that, as I put the moniker in the subtitle, too. I’d be forcing it to find a theme, except maybe that all my stories try to look at something I think is important, but told in a decorative sort of way. Written here and there among novels over two decades, they show a variety of genres and styles, as I get restless. Now they’re tucked between jacketed hard covers and softs, or in e-however-you-likes.
Today I’m going to link you to my blog to see if your comment randomly earned you a free book. There you will also find a link to an audio version of the story sampled below and posted in full online. If you’ve been impressed by any of these tales, check out my widely varying novels and collection of memoir essays. Find any blogs you miss on the Events page at 4WillsPublishing.com, link below. Be sure to follow our hosts’ blogs and discover their writing, maybe post a thank-you-too.
And you, I thank, too.
A Geez Author Blurb
Stephen Geez grew up in the Detroit suburbs during the American-auto domination. He earned his undergraduate and master’s degrees at the University of Michigan—Ann Arbor. He retired from scripting/producing television and composing/producing television music, then expanded his small literary management firm into indie-publisher and multi-media company Fresh Ink Group. Now he works from a deck overlooking the lake in north Alabama, helping other writers share their compelling narratives with the world.
The Book Blurb
Prepare to think as you explore these wildly disparate literary short stories by author, composer, and producer Stephen Geez. Avoiding any single genre, this collection showcases Geez’s storytelling from southern gothic to contemporary drama to coming-of-age, humor, sci-fi, and fantasy—all finessed to say something about who we are and what we seek. Some of these have been passed around enough to need a shot of penicillin, others so virgin they have never known the seductive gaze of a reader’s eyes. So when life’s currents get to pulling too hard, don’t fight it, just open the book and discover nineteen new ways of going with the flow, because NOW more than ever Comes this Time to Float.
The Promo Video
Today’s Sample: “Veneer”
In the end, bad weather turned out to be what pierced the veneer.
Two uniforms pounded on the door, demanding entry and using her name like they had a right. She remained frozen, barely breathing, her stroke-addled leg throbbing, finger twitching on the trigger of Daddy’s rifle.
Bam bam bam! “Mizzus Heidway!” came the door-muffled call of Sheriff Dander, his voice a rumble under that drone of wicked downpour shotgunning the tin roof. “Now, y’alls got to come with us! They’s evacuatin’ the whole valley!”
Twenty years since Mama died and left her the house, twenty years since Iris came back to live the South Alabama life she’d fled hoping never to return, twenty years running all her errands in nearby towns to avoid in-yer-business local busybodies, yet now these uniforms had the gall to come uninvited right onto an old woman’s property.
“If you’re in there, you’s got to come out now!”
Nothing is what she ever got to do, especially for two bullies with badges. She’d seen Sheriff Dander on the news a few times, always under investigation for some kind of brutality. Seems like the kind of person who wants to be a cop is the one who has no business being one.
Letting her screen door slam, the intruders retreated into a frenzy of rain. Iris Heidway hobbled to the window and peeked through the curtains. A county van packed with busybodies turned around, then rocked and swayed its way back up the hill, splashing through a frantic gravel-washer streaming down the rutted road. She couldn’t see herself climbing in with that mob, or wedged between all those so-and-so’s at some makeshift shelter, everybody grabbing and hugging, you’ll be okay honey this’ll be over soon anything you need just let us know . . . Touchers pretend they’re doing something for you, but they’re the ones tricked by a fool’s notion of connection. Anybody lays a hand on Iris Heidway, he’ll be lucky to get it back.
The Whole Story
It’s the top post, but I’ll add the precise URL to the comments below. Be sure to come back here!
Okay, find “Veneer” along with the other two in my YouTube channel, precise link on my blog today.
Find the Book Now
Should be just about everywhere, but here are the biggies:
Other Places I Lurk
Hello readers! I’d like to introduce you to Rebecca Hubbard. Rebecca is a native Texan, who enjoys spending time with friends and family, including her two dogs, Idgie and Sully, and her two horses, Cash and Cloud. She also loves to read, paint and garden.
Please tell us a bit about your book, The Gift:
“The Gift” is a story about a young girl, Pip, who receives a horse for her birthday and her desire to have a best friend. She believes that the horse she names Buck should be her best friend because he was given to her. She learns that in order to have a friend she has to develop a friendship. She struggles with how to do this and misinterprets Buck’s behavior. From her father she learns how to understand Buck’s perspective and how to develop a friendship with him. The story is told from the perspective of Pip and the perspective of Buck. From Buck, we learn how he interprets Pip’s behavior and how he feels about the things she does to try to make friends with him. We also learn about the things that bring him joy and what causes him to feel afraid. It is a story about understanding one another, patience and developing a true friendship.
Where did the story idea come from?
The seed of the idea came from an interaction that I witnessed between a girl who desperately wanted to be friends with a horse and the horse completely ignored her existence. Something about that interaction and the heartbreak the girl felt played over and over in my mind. My business partner at the time kept asking me to write a story about a kid and a horse but I felt I didn’t write those types of stories so I tried to ignore her request. She, however, would not allow me to ignore it. She asked me frequently when I would write the story, keeping the idea of a story about a kid and a horse in the forefront of my mind. So when my muse struck the interaction between the girl and the horse became my template for “The Gift.”
The Gift is told from two distinctly unique POVs – first from Pip’s POV and then from Buck’s. What made you decide to write the book this way?
This is going to sound silly but I never considered telling the story any other way. I feel that in order to fully understand the story you must hear from both characters. If you only hear Pip’s side of the story, then Buck appears ornery, belligerent and maybe even snobbish. When you hear Buck’s side of the story, you have compassion for him and understand his behavior and may feel that Pip is selfish and ungrateful. Having both points of view makes you appreciate the dynamic that occurs between the two of them. In addition, telling the story from two points of view gave me the flexibility to help children understand that things are not always the way we think they are, and that there are many reasons for the behaviors of others. It also opened up the ability to help children with learning perspective taking and understanding from another’s point of view, allowing for increased sensitivity and compassion.
Can you tell readers a bit about your background with horses?
I was born with the “horse gene.” Folks say you either have it or you don’t. Horses are in my blood. As a child I spent as much time with horses as I possibly could. I would ride my horse for hours pretending I lived in the old west traveling to the mountains or pretending I was a Comanche with excellent horsemanship. I grew up in a rodeo family, so I competed in rodeos on weekends. When I left home for college and started my career I wasn’t able to be around horses. That was a very sad time in my life. I remember the first time I was able to be around a horse after many, many years. I was overcome with emotion. I buried my face in his neck and cried. Later in my career I was able to marry my two loves, horses and therapy, and now I am around horses almost every day. When I drive onto the ranch I am greeted with the site of horses grazing and playing. My whole workday is surrounded by horses and it makes the day so much less stressful than doing traditional therapy.
What types of books do you like to read?
I love to read mysteries, crime novels, westerns, children’s books of all kinds, and some fantasy. When I was younger I would read anything I could get my hands on. My papa set a good example for me about reading. He was an avid reader. He would stay up all night to finish a book. Sometimes I would find him asleep in the chair when I woke up in the mornings. I love books that pull me in and paint such vivid pictures that I lose myself in them.
What would readers be surprised to know about you?
ually an art that develops with mentoring, time and experience. It takes an enormous amount of time and effortPeople who know me very well know I am extremely shy and I avoid being in the spotlight. People ask me how can I can be shy and talk for a living. Well, usually I am only talking to a few people at a time. But early in my career, even doing that was hard. This project has been so important to me that it has pushed me outside my comfort zone but it has been so worth it.
Many authors struggle with self-promotion. Has book marketing and promotion been difficult for you personally?
In August my book will have been out a year and I feel like over the last six months I have just begun to better understand the importance of marketing and how to do it. I think marketing is act
Being shy I struggle with self-promotion. It would be much easier for me if all I had to do was write the books and somehow they sold themselves. But promotion is important to do so I use Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. I developed a blog, had a book trailer made, and talk about my book at events when asked. I also write guest blogs for Natural Lifemanship.
Should readers be expecting a follow-up Pip and Buck story in the future?
When I wrote “The Gift” I did not intend for it to be a series. But after completing “The Gift” Pip and Buck continued to stay with me. I am working on the second book now, “Pip and Buck: Saddle Up!” I am considering adding to this book the point of view of the father. This book focuses on the importance of relationships over tasks and things.
How can readers connect with you?
What advice would you give aspiring authors?
The best advice I could give is to write often, write about things you are interested in, things that make you wonder, things that make you think, and things you dream of. Practice describing what you see, what you feel and what you think. Practice perspective taking, spend time observing people and things around you and allow yourself to just feel those things in the moment. Read as much as you can. Every moment in which you are truly present makes your life richer and in turn will make your writing richer too.
MORE ABOUT REBECCA HUBBARD
Rebecca J. Hubbard is a master’s level Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with over twenty years of experience working with children and their families. She began writing short stories as a child for her own amusement and enjoyment. Rebecca discovered that she could facilitate the healing of her young clients by writing stories for them.
Currently, Rebecca works at Spirit Reins as a clinician and as the clinical supervisor where she practices Natural Lifemanship, ™ a Trauma-Focused Equine Assisted Psychotherapy™ model.