Monday, April 28, 2014

Ella Carey - Blending Fact and Fiction

Please welcome Ella Carey to the blog today!!


Ella Carey’s novel ‘The Paris Time Capsule’ is fictional, but inspired by the incredible true story
of an apartment in Paris that was abandoned for seventy years … but how does working around a true story affect the writing process?

I think the answer lies in that very word: ‘truth.’ The main consideration for me as a writer was to ensure that I respected the original story, and that even though my novel is a work of fiction, I still wrote with a sense of truthfulness in mind.

I will come back to that later, but, for now, let me tell you about the abandoned apartment in Paris that inspired ‘The Paris Time Capsule.’ The story was reported in online articles, and then in hundreds of online blogs.

A woman died in the south of France in 2010, but it wasn’t until after her death that the heir
s to her estate discovered that she owned an apartment in Paris that had been abandoned for seventy years. The woman, who was only known as ‘Madame de Florian’  (she became Isabelle de Florian in my novel), fled from Paris on the eve of the Nazi invasion in 1940 but never returned.

Now, this abandoned apartment was not your usual flat. It was filled with the sorts of exotic treasures from the Belle Epoque that would make specialists gasp, and leave the rest of us in shock. The assessors said it was like walking into Sleeping Beauty’s apartment when they first entered.

But that was not all. There was a stunning portrait in the apartment of a woman in a pink dress, her head turned to the side, almost as if she were throwing herself out of her own portrait. Art experts were called in. They discovered after reading love letters that were found in the apartment, that the painting was by none other than leading Belle Epoque art expert Giovanni Boldini. The woman in the painting was identified as Marthe de Florian, a famous courtesan, or demimondaine. Marthe was the owner’s grandmother and the previous owner of the apartment.

But, the question still remained unanswered. Why did the owner of the apartment never return to Paris? Why did she keep it a secret for seventy years?

I was working on a novel about a mystery surrounding valuable art when I read about this story. My novel involved a love story, and a family that had been torn apart. But I adore Paris. I speak French; I love history and art. I abandoned my previous novel, and started researching this.

The process involved much research, of course it did. In fact, at one point in the novel, it seemed as if I was double-checking every word on the page.

But the one thing that I had to bear in mind, the one thing that I wanted to do above everything else, was to write something plausible. The last thing I wanted to do was write anything that appeared contrived. My story had to seem real to my readers, it had to feel just as real as the incredible story of the woman who left her famous ancestor’s past buried in dust for seventy years.
Here is the blurb for ‘The Paris Time Capsule:’

New York photographer Cat Jordan has fought hard to free herself from the past, but when a stranger dies, Cat finds herself the sole inheritor of a treasure filled apartment in Paris that has been locked up and abandoned for seventy years.

A stash of love letters belonging to Marthe de Florian, one of the Belle Époque’s most famous demimondaines, and the appearance of the mysterious and beautiful Isabelle de Florian’s grandson leads Cat in search of the reasons why Isabelle kept her Paris apartment a secret, and why she left her entire estate to Cat.

As Cat unravels the story, she too begins her own journey, realizing that the secrets in the apartment may finally unlock the future.

Now, can you tell me if a true story has sparked your imagination?

I have a free copy of ‘The Paris Time Capsule’ on kindle to give away.

That's an awesome story! Truly amazing. I think for me it's more bits and pieces of the real world that blend together to form a new whole. But one day I'd like to try something like this! Definitely fun! What do you think??

Friday, April 25, 2014

Medeia Sharif -- Snip, Snip Revenge!

SNIP, SNIP REVENGE by Medeia Sharif
YA Contemporary, Evernight Teen
Release Date April 25, 2014

Beautiful, confident Tabby Karim has plans for the winter: nab a role in her school’s dramatic production, make the new boy Michael hers, and keep bigoted Heather—with her relentless Ay-rab comments—at bay. When a teacher’s lie and her father’s hastiness rob her of her beautiful hair, her dreams are dashed. The fastest barber in Miami Beach has made her look practically bald. 

With all her pretty hair gone, Tabby doesn’t believe she fits the feminine role she’s auditioning for. Michael is still interested in her, but he’s playing it cool. Heather has taken to bullying her online, which is easier to do with Tabby’s ugly haircut. Tabby spearheads Operation Revenge, which proves satisfying until all of her problems deepen. After messing up, she sets to make things right.

Author Bio
I’m a Kurdish-American author who was born in New York City, and I presently call Miami my home. I received my master’s degree in psychology from Florida Atlantic University. After becoming a voracious reader in high school and a relentless writer dabbling in many genres in college, I found my niche writing for young people. Today I'm a MG and YA writer published through various presses. In addition to being a writer, I'm a middle school English teacher. My memberships include Mensa, ALAN, and SCBWI.

Find Medeia

Blog   |   Twitter   |   Goodreads   |   Instagram   |   Amazon

Join Medeia's giveaway to celebrate the release of her latest novel.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sounds absolutely fabulous Medeia!! Congratulations on your latest release - can't wait to read it!
If any of you haven't read any of Medeia's books, you're going to love her style and her voice.

Monday, April 14, 2014

All the Voices

I'm over at From the Write Angle today talking about infusing your query with your Voice. Hope you'll pop on over and check it out!

Voice is hard to describe yet it's very obvious when it's there ... and when it's not.

I like reading a wide variety of different Voices. I definitely enjoy some Voices I could never emulate or create. I remember reading Erma Bombeck's hilarious accounts of her real life when I was in elementary school. Love her stuff but it's not a style/voice I could ever write.

I like the flowing fantasy style of Tolkien, the literary loveliness of LMM Montgomery, the darkness of so many dystopian writers.

But would my Voice be able to pull off any of these? Nope.

Not yet.

Maybe some day.

What about you? Do you enjoy reading Voices that are very different from your own?

Monday, April 7, 2014

Jacqui Jacoby

Please welcome Jacqui Jacoby to the blog today!

With my book coming out I started to Google “launch parties” and everything I found dealt with large venues that were rented and inviting the businesses in town with the town’s officials. It was all about sales and presence.
And that is not what I wanted. I didn’t want an “event”. I wanted a celebration with my close friends and family of what I had accomplished.
I took the concept of”launch party” and I pulled it into an intimate setting and started planning what I saw as the perfect way to celebrate years of hard work. 
Invitations were done word of mouth and by Facebook.Nothing fancy.

Food was planned; just a cake and ice cream with a variety of beverages.For the cake, it took three calls in town to find a baker who could make one with a photographic image on it instead of mere icing.
Suggested decorations for the venue:
·         About six or eight small place cards set around the room with character facts. In my case “Jaime doesn’t like chocolate” (above) and “Stephen doesn’t listen to anything produced after 1979.”
·         A playlist that represents your book playing softly in the background. For us, it was Stephen’s classic rock.
·         Recipe cards might be featured.One recipe that works for him, one for her. I made the Sangria that Jaime loves and served it in cups the color that matched the cover of the book. Guests took the cards home.
·         8.5X11 covers of the book displayed in acrylic frames.Not only for this book, but others, if you have them. I put them around the room with a note on two: “Ask Me about My Next Book.” It was a great conversation starter.
·         A couple of disposable cameras for guests to use to capture spontaneity.
·         Balloon bouquets, steamers, silk rose petals here and there. Things that say “party”.
·         Most important: Your new release displayed. Stacks standing next to one that stands alone and strong. Keep a pen handy if someone wants a copy autographed. We sold ours at cost to our friends and family.
A Launch Party doesn’t have to be an official occasion to promote name and sales. Sometimes it can be a mere celebration of this wonderful thing you worked so hard to achieve. Let your family be there with you. Have your friends come and see why you were always so busy. And have fun. In the end, that’s all it is about sometimes!!
Award winning author, Jacqui Jacoby lives and writes in the beauty of the Valley of the Sun. Currently adjusting to her new digs, Jacqui is a self proclaimed, self–defense hobbyist. Having studied martial arts for numerous years she retired in 2006 from the sport.

She is a working Mom, whose career includes writing books, teaching online and live workshops and penning short non–fiction. She can be reached via her website.

Connect with Jacqui      Website   Facebook   Twitter  Author Page


The more she wanted out, the more they dragged her back in!

Daughter to murdered CIA officers, niece to a deputy director, Jaime Walsh has never known
life outside the world of espionage. Until a high-action case in Buenos Aires leaves her gutted. Physically, emotionally…and professionally.

She’d planned for her long-overdue vacation to be a time to rest and reassess. With her longtime partner Stephen not far behind, it’s a tropical paradise away from work. A paradise where boundaries will be tested.

From their training days, Stephen Reid has watched Jaime kick ass while performing what has become his second job—watching her back. But now his feelings have grown.

As best friends look at each other in a new light, they like what they see. And Jaime dreams of a new life outside “the company”.

Except someone from their past won’t be satisfied until Jaime and the man she loves are hunted to the brink of death. Now Jaime must find the strength to trust her heart and let go of her fear. Before she loses everything…
Read an Excerpt     Read Reviews
Buy Links:   The Book Depository     Samhain         Amazon          B&N           PowellsBooks

Jacqui's book is a fun read! I really enjoyed the combination of suspense, action and romance!
Any tips to add for a fun launch party?