Author Q and A with John McClements

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What inspired me to write the book? The book was partly based on true accounts. When I went to work on the cruise ship which sailed out of Miami, I met a woman called Drinda, when the ship sailed into San Fran she convince me to jump ship,  I lived and worked, using my cabins mates Identification, the date was 1982 during the Falklands war with UK and Argentina. Drinda introduced me to her friend, his name was Peter, and for my book I changed his name to Pedro.
A lot of things had happened then and I felt that I had to write about it.
What books do you enjoy? I really enjoy reading books by the author Vince Flynn
What is your next projects? Don’t have a next project of such as yet, too busy running restaurants but in my spare time I may write a follow up to The Assassins keeper
Wouldn’t it be nice to be rich? Not sure about that, I think I would spend all the money too quick, my son James and myself we love to travel business class, might be tempted to upgrade to first class.
Would you ever write an autobiography? I would never write an autobiography, too many secrets
What are your hobbies? When I get it I write, but because I am chef by trade, both my wife and myself enjoy the fine dinning restaurant experiences
Favourite places in the world? Would love to visit Argentina but can’t convince the family. Though Tokyo by far was my favourite
As a chef what do you enjoy eating? Favourite food is French cuisine, but I really would eat anything, if it moves I would eat it. Am afraid thats the chefie attitude in me.
What inspires me? After working in a busy hot kitchen for 14 hours a day, getting home late, relaxing, winding down. With me it’s like shaking a fizzy drink and once it settles you are ready to do it again. Most of the time I write at night which I can reflect on the past and think things through what I want to write about.
What is the best advice you were ever given? Best advice I was given was write about what you know
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Now 99c and 99p – Next of Sin Psychological Thriller – Kindle, Nook, Kobo and Apple

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BLOOD IS CRUELLER THAN WATER.

A series of supposed drownings all bear an eerie hallmark and young lawyer Gaby is the first to link them as the handiwork of a ruthless and conniving serial killer; a killer with a mask of respectability and success, a killer she knows only too well.

Recently married and on the brink of partnership at her firm, Gaby should be on top of the world, but she has stumbled upon something which will make her enemies in high places and will tear her personal life to threads. Who will believe her? Who can she trust?

Gaby joins forces with former detective, Robbie Baggio and they race to gather the evidence and bring down the web of evil protecting this serial killer. However the killer’s instincts alert him to danger and when those closest to the Gaby start turning up dead, she must rely on both her legal skills and grim determination to ensure justice is served.

Conspiracy at the top levels of the judiciary and corruption weaving its way right to the heart of family life; there is more to Gaby’s mission than unmasking the murderer.

A thriller that will make you wonder if you can ever trust anyone again and the safe answer…..is NO.

Kindle Version of Next of Sin

Nook  version of Next of Sin

Kobo version of Next of Sin

Apple Version of Next of Sin

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99 CENT from JUNE 5-10 TERRIFIC FICTION AT A STEAL

 

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NOW ONLY 99CENTS on AMAZON

Ever wonder what happened to those stories filled with suspense with twists and turns? You know the kind that Alfred Hitchcock produced, making us bite our nails and worry for the hero or heroine! Well Lisa Gordon has penned that type of thriller and it’s worth reading. Her heroine, Gaby thought she was leading an ideal life. She was a rising star in her legal firm and just married a handsome man. Then the nightmares started plaguing her and memories of a childhood trauma erupted. To save her sanity Gaby must delve into the secrets of a serial killer and risk her own life to bring him to justice.   Dianne Rapp

 

Absolutely loved this book. Once I started reading it I couldn’t put it down. I fell in love with the characters & the story line..I couldn’t wait to see what was gonna happen next. The characters are so real you seemed to really connect with them. I found myself feeling the sadness, frustration, & triumph with them. This is the second book I’ve read by this author and I can’t wait to read more…Waiting very impatiently for her next book.  Jennifer’s Bookk Review

 

The story had its glowing moments and yes, the villain was extremely creepy, in fact, I think the villain was actually my favorite character in this book. He was smarter than everyone, and went for a very long time doing whatever he pleased without anyone being the wiser. If it wasn’t for Gaby’s slip under peer pressure to smoke a joint he may never have been found out. I felt he controlled the entire story.  Tina Marie Says

 

I was happy to receive this book for an honest review. It certainly proved to be a good read. This excellent reads starts you out with a bang as you experience the killing of a young teen, but why? What does this have to do with the rest of the story? Ah! Our author draws you in with the ‘I have to find out,’ trick. It’s been a while since I have read a book that takes you around so many curves in the story and yet at the end ties all the notes into one bow. This one does.  Shirley Johnson Amazon Top 100 Reviewer

 

Matron only gives five starts when they are deserved. This tale does. Why:

Oh it isn’t literary genius. And the writing is simple. And the characters obvious. And some of the scenes are utterly chick-lit but for all that it’s what we buy books for : a riveting read and you can’t put it down. So few books do that now. Books don’t have to be clever.

So, young boy gets kick out of killing girl. Years later a series of murders all come together. And you realise his family are involved. And there’s a race to stop him, of course.

Just a good book. No more. What it says on the packet and we don’t always get. I’ll buy Lisa again.  London Matron

 

 

SEX is SO LAST YEAR – THRILLERS are back say the Amazon bestseller charts

Sex is so last year – or at least it is  according to Amazon’s annual list of bestselling books.

A year after the S&M-themed Fifty Shades  Of Grey by EL James licked and screamed it’s way up every best-seller list, book buyers have been seeking  different kinds of thrills.

In 2013 major hits on Amazon.com included The Cuckoo’s  Calling, a crime story JK Rowling wrote under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith and whose sales only soared after it was revealed that JK Rowling was the in fact the author.  John Grisham’s Sycamore Row was well received but perhaps only because of his famous name rather than the quality of the book.

Here are the bestseller lists, but what do readers really think?

TOP TEN ADULT BEST SELLERS 2013

1. Inferno: Dan Brown
2.  And The Mountains Echoed: Khaled Hosseini
3.  The Cuckoo’s Calling: Robert Galbraith (JK Rowling)
4.  The Husband’s Secret: Liane Moriarty
5. Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead; Sheryl  Sandberg
6. The Hit: David  Baldacci
7. Sycamore Row: John  Grisham
8. Entwined with You: Sylvia  Day
9. Never Go Back: Lee  Child
10. The Storyteller: Jodi  Picoult

Do readers love these books or do they merely buy them due to the hype, the accessibility and the comforting sound of a name you know and once loved or at least heard ad nauseam about?

Clive Miller said, “The villain in Inferno was thoroughly anaemic and yet we were lead to believe he was really diabolical even if he looked like a bit of a wuss in pantaloons and harlequin jacket.”

Tommy Shaw said, “Every Dan Brown plot is the same: choose a famous picturesque Italian or European city and make sure the action man Prof has a punch up at each and every one of the tourist attractions there and escapes by the skin of his teeth thanks to last minute divine intervention, knowledge of the finer points of physics or the fact that he really is Rasputin and David Haye wrapped up in one.”

Emily Smyth said, “I’m sure there are numerous other novels of different titles over the last few  decades with the same formulaic pattern and banal quality of characters that  goes to make the modern ‘thriller’. The only 2013 moderately original ‘thriller’ was  Lauren Beukes, ‘The Shining Girls’.”

Alison Kendal, “You don’t need sex to sell!” or any literary talent judging by Dan Brown’s  efforts. A good publicist is all that is needed these days to become a best  seller.”

CJ in Oxford, “I just never understood the 50 Shades thing. Definitely seems a “frustrated  housewife” thing to me. For goodness’ sake, if you’re that interested, people,  stop reading about it and go have a bit of fun.”

As far as The Cukoo’s Calling goes, Meredith Pinnock said, “This tome was packed with boring, inconsequential trivia that did not help the plot at all, and the different accents, all painstakingly written out, became more than tedious.”

Even die hard Grisham fan’s felt pained by his latest effort, “Sorry, this was so far the Grisham’s poorest effort, and I have ever been his die-hard fan. Dull, boring, dragging for eternity, with a helluva legal and trial hotchpotch and tens of messy characters who grew in numbers with each new page turning… An absolute and inconsistent mess.”

Of course all of these books also received rave reviews, we could put it all down to a matter of taste, but then again we cannot discount the tide of brutal criticism from readers and fans?

Does cream really rise to the top?  A bad egg also floats to the surface you know.

If you are also in the camp that has the morbsville with dull, contrived plots, plastic predictable characters and wishy-washy dialogue give an up and coming Indie Author a try.

DARK SIDE CROSSING by CULE HINDER

Did you ever look in the mirror and wonder where it all went
wrong?

Emerson knows just where it all went wrong and the career he has
carved out as a restorer of Churches is symbolic of his desire to seek
redemption and a path back to the light side.

The author focus on three phases of Emerson’s life. His childhood growing up in a
gritty Northern Town where his love of literature, poetry and the finer things
in life mark him out as rather bourgeoisie for the gangs he finds himself hooked
up with, is poignantly told. Emerson is the type of character in life who tags
along on the periphery and always ends up slap bang in the centre of the fracas.
The author’s tone and use of the vernacular capture the era and the spirit of
boyish youth which will chime with many.

The second ‘lane’ is Emerson in his early adulthood as a student revolutionary with the Baader Meinhof
Group.

The ‘fast lane’ in terms of the thriller aspect of the story kicks off when a thirty something and more mellow Emerson returns to the town he grew up in and meets by chance an old flame of his, Chemey. Cupid seems to have hope
for Emerson and Chemey who make a promising start romance-wise; however a female detective friend of Chemey has immediate suspicions about Emerson and he retreats back to Kent. With his new romance seemingly doomed, Emerson sets about finding out what happened to his first love Diane. Diane seems to have disappeared and when Emerson finds a corpse hidden in the fireplace/cellar of Diane’s childhood home, he fears the worst. Emerson’s investigations into
Diane’s death lead him to discover a bizarre Christian sect with only a handful of elderly members and yet seemingly vast resources. How is this Christian cult linked with Diane’s death? Are they linked to a string more recent of murders in
England? What really happened when several hundred of the cult members ‘ascended’ a decade previously. What does Emerson’s old comrade and now MP know about it and will he tell? Emerson’s investigations lead him full circle: back
to Chemey and back to where it all began in that Lancashire town.

Completing the circle will bring him redemption; but will he live
to enjoy life with a clean conscience?

NEXT OF SIN by LISA GORDON

A string of murders dating back to 1987 and in all that time only one witness
and she doesn’t even know she’s a witness!

Two teenagers fooling about on a  camping holiday; a young woman marries surrounded by her loving family; an
idyllic honeymoon; a salubrious law firm – the image of perfection and yet evil
lurks. A body on a Moroccan Beach; a missing girl in Japan; a corpse floating in
the Mediterranean – what is the link?

The vital clue lies locked in away in a
memory – a memory that now wants to be remembered.

A desire to explain a
recurring nightmare, leads young lawyer Gaby to a horrifying discovery which
throws into question everything she thought she knew about her past, her family
and even herself. She is forced to stray onto the wrong side of the law in world
where the scales of justice are rigged in favour of her eminent and respectable
adversaries. Along with an unlikely set of allies from across the social strata
she digs into her past, knowing that it will change her future forever. Gaby’s
hunt for the truth will cost her everything; it may even cost her her life.

 

SCORPIO RISING by ALAN ANNAND

A criminal profiler investigates the killing of a New York City heiress and
discovers her death is linked to two other murders on the same day: a dot-com
millionaire in San Francisco, and the team leader of a CIA counter-terrorist
project in Los Alamos, New Mexico.

————

Criminal
profiler Axel Crowe investigates the killing of a New York heiress, and
discovers her death is linked to two other murders on the same day: a dot-com
millionaire in San Francisco, and the team leader of a CIA counter-terrorist
project in Los Alamos, New Mexico.

A finder of wayward people and stolen
possessions, the enigmatic Crowe profiles subjects in a distinctly unique manner
– using astrology, palmistry and other unconventional techniques.

Facts
are gross, but the truth is subtle, Crowe’s guru used to say. And although the
truth behind this three-way conspiracy lies buried in the past, Crowe is
relentless until he uncovers it.

————

In the space of
one hour, three strangers die violent deaths. A hit-and-run vehicle kills a
dot-com millionaire jogging in San Francisco. A car bomb obliterates the team
leader of a government counter-terrorism project in Los Alamos, New Mexico. An
assailant ambushes a New York heiress walking home from Broadway and forces her
own pepper spray down her throat.

In all three cases, investigators
reach an immediate impasse. Each victim leaves an estate of millions, but their
beneficiaries all have perfect out-of-town alibis. Theories swirl around the
victims like flies on a corpse – a contract killing for financial gain, a
lover’s quarrel spiraled out of control, a domestic al-Qaeda strike…? The
police are stymied and the FBI is worried.

Axel Crowe, criminal
psychologist, is summoned to New York by the brother of the woman who was
murdered. Crowe is a man with an obscure past but a brilliant reputation.
Occasionally he consults as a profiler for the police. More commonly, he is a
finder of wayward people and stolen possessions. Despite initial stonewalling
from the NYPD, Crowe profiles the killer in his own unique way – using
astrology, palmistry and other unconventional techniques.

His
investigation follows a tangled trail of illicit relationships – from one
suspect to another and, eventually, yet another. Ultimately, he learns that all
three victims were killed in the space of one hour. But is it coincidence or
conspiracy?

Facts are gross, but the truth is subtle, Crowe’s guru used
to tell him. And although the truth lies buried in the past, Crowe is relentless
until he uncovers it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NEW THRILLERS TO LOOK OUT FOR:

NEXT of SIN

The DREAM which made her life a NIGHTMARE – Brand new, devious and dark thriller

NEXT OF SIN – New Book Release

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A string of murders dating back to 1987 and in all that time only one witness
and she doesn’t even know she’s a witness!

Top Amazon Reviewer Dii called it, “A chilling thriller that will dig deep into your marrow and whittle away at your faith in humanity and justice.”

 “I really enjoyed this suspenseful novel! It reminded me of a Hitchcock thriller,
filled with danger but not depending on blood, guts, and gore like modern
novels.” – Dianne Rapp

The characters are so real you seemed to really connect with them.” Julie’s Book Review

Susannah St Clair of VINE VOICE said, “I sure can’t wait for the next one but Lisa?? This is going to be hard to top!”

Not your usual crime story with a clichéd plot and characters but genuinely
creepy because these are people and situations that you might meet in everyday
life.”  Linda Bahnan, author of Hot Times in Goa.

Winner of the 9th American Gem Literary Festival, Lisa Gordon presents her second thriller, Next of Sin.  A must read if you enjoy a quality psychological thriller written in a peppi contemporary style.

Two teenagers fooling about on a camping holiday; a young woman marries
surrounded by her loving family; an idyllic honeymoon; a salubrious law firm –
the image of perfection and yet evil lurks. A body on a Moroccan Beach; a
missing girl in Japan; a corpse floating in the Mediterranean – what is the
link? The vital clue lies locked in away in a memory – a memory that now wants
to be remembered.
A desire to explain a recurring nightmare, leads young lawyer Gaby to a
horrifying discovery which throws into question everything she thought she knew
about her past, her family and even herself. She is forced to stray onto the
wrong side of the law in world where the scales of justice are rigged in favour
of her eminent and respectable adversaries. Along with an unlikely set of allies
from across the social strata she digs into her past, knowing that it will
change her future forever.
Her quest for truth will cost her everything;
it may even cost her life.

Next of Sin will make you wonder whether anybody you meet can be trusted and the safe answer
is, NO.

Next of Sin is an entertaining must-read with a serious true to life twist and needs to be loaded onto your kindle and packed into your suitcase as a holiday read for Easter or a cosy paperback to curl up with while the Polar Vortex still bites.

Available right now on kindle and paperback via amazon US, UK, and other sites across the world.

Is Self Publishing No Longer Plan B?

The future is bright, the future is Indie! Amazon, Audible and Create Space have made it easy for even the techno phoebe to get their book into kindle, audio or paperback versions: what’s more the author retains all rights and up to 70% of the profit.

For decades, perhaps even centuries aspiring authors gazed at the gleaming palaces of the big publishers in awe, wishing that the Kings and Queens of publishing would recognise their talent and decree that the sorcerers and wizards of the realm cast the spells that would transform dusty manuscripts into rows of slick hardcovers on the best seller shelf.  The journey of authorship was one of disappointment.  The publishing palaces were surrounded by deep and murky moats where the agents swum menacingly with their sharp fins making sure the literary hoi palloi was kept at bay.  But, one day the publishing Gods decided to shine on the aspiring author – it was not a burning bush or a tablet of stone which was revealed, but rather Kindle Fire and Amazon.

For years I was one of the aspiring literary hoi palloi, consistently searching for the answer to, “What do publishers want?”

Of course in the current economic climate many mainstream publishers are dropping even mid-table authors and the responsibility for marketing is increasingly down to the author.  Unless an author already has a public profile or proven journalistic track record, it is highly unlikely that an agent or publisher will give their submission a second thought.  When I asked an agent what she was looking for, her answer was, “It has to be really exceptional.”  Which made me wrack my brain in search of the last “really exceptional” book I had read.  Maybe I read the wrong genres.

I spoke to five fiction writers currently self publishing about their experiences, ambitions, successes and advice.  Their candid comments should be very useful for anyone embarking on the journey.  Paul H landes

Is Self Publishing No Longer Plan B?
“S”elf Publishing now Plan A.

Paul H Landes (San Fransico) Pictured to right – “I had two mainstream publishers look at my first novel, Wings to Redemption, and each one was prepared to make me an offer. I didn’t pursue it any further, however, because neither one was going to provide me with any help in marketing my book.”

Clive Hindle (Newcastle UK) – “I have written many scripts over the years, two of which got past rejection slip stage but things did not work out.  I published three books with self publishing companies Janus, Authorhouse and Matador, it was expensive and they retain copy-write.   I self-publish because I’m not done with a book until I am done. So I ping it out to register it on eternity’s microscope slide. There it is, endless, immutable, a little unchanging piece of me at a snapshot in time.”

Rick Quinn (Alaska) –  “Initially I was going to self-publish but instead elected to go with a new local (in Alaska) publisher. However, after firing my original publisher, I have self-published and am very happy. It is easy as Amazon, B&N and Create space give you step by step instructions on formatting and ultimately you have TOTAL control of your work and are able to reap 100% of the benefits – which allows you to keep prices lower in order to see a decent return on your efforts.”

Karen Andor (Northampton, UK) –  “I read a lot about self-publishing. It seems that whether I sell one book or a million books, I will make more money self-publishing. I can write the type of book I want the way I feel it should be written. As I am not a celebrity or a known writer, I would not get an advance or much help with marketing. In fact, I learnt that I would have to do my own marketing either way. The only advantage I could see with going to a mainstream publisher was having a professional in the industry’s opinion of my work, which I would love to have and the ego-boost of having a book accepted by a big publishing house.”

Alan Annand (Toronto) Pictured below – “During the 80s I had four novels published in the traditional manner.

In the 80s it was relatively easy to get read by publishers, and equally easy to get an agent. But things began changing in the 90s, and changed hugely in the 21st century. The last time (2005) I sought an agent, I sent out about 75 queries, got three interested responses and in the end, one agreement to represent.

Nowadays, I think it is far harder to get an agent than it was to get published 20 years ago.”

Alan Annand

On success and marketing tools:

Rick Quinn:  “I believe I am moderately successful. I use social media and word of mouth along with some internet sites to get my work noticed and reviewed. Since it is your work, you care more and will do more to make it better and work harder to get it noticed. Don’t expect anyone else to care as you do.”

Paul Landes: “I sold over 9,000 copies my first book.  As an independent publisher I need to work every angle I can find and there is no end to marketing sites and tools available today.”

Alan Annand: “Modest success, but then everything is relative to your expectations. I’ve always taken the long point of view, and believe that a writing career is not just one book but a body of work. I love to write, have to write, so there’s really nothing else to do but persevere. I gave away one of my books free for a year, which provided necessary exposure and lots of positive reviews, so hopefully there’ll be a trickle-down effect to my other books.

Clive Hindle: “Authors should write. Life takes care of the rest. If you build it they will come. If you doubt that let it go. Be content with your creation as a fulfilment in itself.”

Karen is starting the journey with the release of her thriller, ‘Shadow Jumper’ in December, 2013.

Karen, Rick, Clive, Alan and Paul gave me such meaty answers that I feel a follow up article on publicity and editing your self published book is in order.  Keep checking Newswire.