New Interview With the Fantastic Traci Sanders!

I am thrilled to have with us again, the lovely and talented Traci Sanders. Traci Sanders is a multi-genre, multi-award-winning author of ten published titles, with contributions to three anthologies. An avid blogger and supporter of Indie authors, she writes parenting, children’s, romance, and nonfiction guides.

Her ultimate goal is to provide great stories and quality content for dedicated readers, whether through her own writing or editing works by other authors.

Today, we’ll be talking about her newest novels which aids the author in the editing process. But! Are also encouraging and helpful to the aspiring author.

Traci, we’re so glad you’re here again. There’s a lot of questions I’d like to ask you, so let’s get started!

1. There is so much to know and learn about editing. How long did it take you to write these novels regarding editing?
This entire book series is based on a year-long blog segment where I offered tips on all aspects of the writing and publishing industry. So, you could say it took me a year to conduct the research and write these books. 😊

2. How important is it for writers to get that editor?
Professional editing is a crucial aspect of producing a high quality book. I would even say it’s more important than formatting or cover design, in some cases. Many readers judge a book by its cover, but some just want what’s inside.

3. What are some mistakes editors make?
It’s important to realize that NO editor is perfect. They all miss things, usually small things like an extra space, or a common word like “quite” being mistaken for “quiet”. That’s one of my faux pas, anyway. As humans, we are fallible and we miss common things that we’re used to hearing all the time. Our brains don’t always register the difference when we’re reading or editing. That’s why it’s crucial that you, as the author, read over your editor’s comments carefully, and be proactive. Try to catch anything he or she misses. You both have the same goal in mind: to produce the best story possible. As long as you learn something, you’re always becoming better at your craft.

4. What awards have you won?
My romance novella Unsevered won Best Second Chance Romance from Bottles and Books Readers’ Favorite Awards and Bronze from eLit Awards. My debut novella When Darkness Breaks won Best Romance Novella from Bottles and Book Readers’ Favorite Awards. They were both nominated for other awards, but didn’t place. I haven’t taken the time to enter any of my other titles in competitions.

5. Tell us if you can, how can an author identify a true writing contest among the false, on the internet?
First, it’s important to know that writing contests and award contests cost money. There is always a fee.
In my opinion, the ones that are quality are those such as Readers’ Favorite and local awards’ programs and contests, especially the ones that offer true feedback on your stories, not just prizes.

6. Okay, since you are an author and an editor, I’ve always wondered, do you edit in your mind while reading a book?
Oh my gosh, yes! And it’s a blessing and a curse. Every book I read, I want to send the author a note to let them know what tiny errors I found in their books, not to insult them or make them feel bad, but because I would want to know about my errors. I want my work to be as close to perfect as possible. Most authors appreciate that I do this. Now that I’ve learned all the editing tricks that I’ve acquired so far, I find it extremely difficult to take off my editor hat and simply enjoy a story. Like I said, a blessing and a curse.

7. Is it a desire to see writers succeed and improve in their craft?
I’ve been a people pleaser, and an advocate for the underdog, for my entire life. So, yes, I’m always willing to help others succeed, even to the detriment of my own success. It’s just the way I was raised. It brings me great joy to help others.

8. In your opinion, what percentage of writers can actually edit their own work?
Most writers can PRE-edit their work, and should, but every author is usually too close to his or her own work to edit objectively. An extra set of “trained” eyes always makes a difference. I even hire professional editors for my books.

9. As an editor, what do you typically notice a writer has problems with? i.e. Spelling, tense, dialogue, sentence structure…
The biggest two issues I see involve tense change and sentence structure. Spelling and grammar issues are easy to fix, and most experienced writers have learned the basic grammar rules. But, things like hanging modifiers and overwriting are not as easy to recognize for some.

10. How many novels do you typically edit within a month?
I just started editing full-time this year, but I’d say I can get at least three edits done per month.

11. Will we be seeing another editing book collection in the future?
Probably not. I covered a plethora of topics in this series, that go above and beyond what most will find on their own, without searching a multitude of sources, which is quite time consuming. Unless the grammar rules change dramatically, this is THE go-to set that every author can use to improve his or her writing dramatically.

12. What education have you had to aid in your editing?
I’m self-taught, but I’ve trained under some extremely talented editors, who’ve shown me the ropes. Plus, I’ve always had a firm grasp on grammar and a love of word play, so this feels like a natural progression in my career.

13. If someone has a desire to edit, what sort of tips can you relay to them?
Read, read, read. Books, blog posts, and tutorial guides. Learn the mechanics of writing, then practice them. Do reworks of your own writing. Pay attention to pauses in writing and structure of dialogue.

14. In your book, “Beyond the Book”, what are a few marketing details readers can expect to learn?
Oh my goodness. There aren’t a few. It’s over 300 pages of out-of-the-box ideas for marketing your books, networking with other authors to build your brand, and tips on producing high quality books. It’s truly a great resource. Even I refer back to my tips!

15. “Before You Publish” is a wonderful tool-since I’ve read about half of it- I see it’s a great aid for those who are aspiring authors. What are a few tips readers may learn in this helpful book?
This is more of a “let me look this up” type of reference book, rather than a “read cover to cover” title. I incorporate a ton of grammar topics – common spelling errors and word-usage errors, and even creative-writing tips. Basically, this book covers all aspects of the writing portion of publishing.

16. In “Living the Write Life”, what are a few tips authors can learn from this book?
Even though this is my shortest book, I’m probably most proud of this one because it’s a guide for life as an author. It includes answers and suggestions for things like: how to be inspired to write, 7 stretches for writers, and how to respond to the dreaded question – “How much do you make with your books?”

17. I love to play a fun game on my blog so readers and fellow authors can learn more about you, and what sorts of things you enjoy and love. So, let’s begin! Writing or editing??
Writing is more fun, for sure. But, editing makes me feel more accomplished.

18. Coffee or espresso?

19. Reading in the morning, afternoon or evening?

20. Playing with your kids, or taking a nap?-no we won’t hold it against you if you pick a nap! HA!
I don’t take naps.

21. Beta reading or editing?

22. Writing or marketing?

23. Lake or the ocean?

24. Swimming or sun bathing?
Sun bathing

25. Thunderstorms or snow storm?

26. Spring or summer?
Spring. I hate sweating.

27. Texting or talking on the phone?
Texting, unless I have a good bit of time to spare. I do love hearing people’s voices.

28. What’s your favorite color?

29. What is your favorite comfort food?
Strawberry short cake, which isn’t easy to find around here, so if I want it, I have to make it. My mama used to make me one every year on my birthday.

30. Chocolate or white chocolate?

31. How many kids do you have?

Three – 19, 17, and 11

32. Tell your readers one of the funniest things your kids have done?
Wasn’t funny at the time, but, my boys painted my entire house with chocolate syrup while I was working at home one day. They were two and four … and hungry, apparently. This story actually turned into a children’s book for me.

33. I’m excited to hear of your blog tour and we wish you only the best. Give us the details of where you will be heading so readers may join you and snatch one or ALL of these books?
You can always check my blog I’ll be announcing each stop there each day.

34. Where can we find a list of all of your novels, including these three “new” releases-which I’m dying to own in paperback?
My Amazon page:

35. Is there anything you’d love to relay to your readers, before we say goodbye?
My ultimate advice would be DON’T SETTLE FOR STATUS QUO. Sure, you can produce a so-so book and maybe get a few 3-4-star reviews, OR, you can take the time learn the rules of grammar and mechanics, and produce an outstanding story that readers won’t be able to forget.

Even though I wrote short romance novellas, and some of the reviews from my readers mentioned that fact, NONE of them really said they felt cheated, because I offered a compelling story. You won’t be remembered for your book’s page count, but you will be remembered for the emotions you brought about for that reader who “needed” that book at that very moment, even if this person didn’t know it.

This has been a fun and one of the most helpful interviews I’ve had. I’m so thankful you stopped by Traci! I and everyone else congratulate you on these new releases and I’m so grateful you’ve written them. I’ll be purchasing all in paperback!

Guys, this has been another AMAZING interview with a wonderful and talented author. Stay tuned for more interviews and give this blog a follow to stay connected.

You Want to Stay Tuned For This Interview!

Hey all! I’m super excited because in a few days, there will be a wonderful author interview with the talented author and editor, Traci Sanders! She has a blog tour coming up that you don’t want to miss including several prizes!
<em*ONE unsigned paperback copy of Before You Publish – Volume I

*ONE unsigned paperback copy of Beyond The Book – Volume II

To enter, all you have to do is email me a proof of purchase of a digital copy of either of these two books during the tour.

I will draw TWO winners total, at the end of the tour.

Please email your proof of purchase (can be a screenshot) to

For years, she’s been a devoted editor backing and helping fellow authors, and now she has written these new novels which you definitely want to pick up!

Stay tuned, follow and share because you need to read this interview!!

Author Tools

There are many things to watch out for, when improving our writing craft. Some things I watch out for are: keeping the same tense throughout, spelling, punctuation, not overusing a certain word, making sure my characters have a unique voice, protagonist issues, antagonist, learning new words….
Seems unending, doesn’t it? Na! The more you read, the more you know! The more you speak with other authors, you soon realize we are all on a specific journey. No writer is ever alike. Don’t ever strive to be like someone else. God gave you a specific talent. Use it!
On that note, here is a terrific post aiding us in expanding our vocabulary. I personally adore when I receive word charts. Word to use other than look. Words to use other than like. Here is a terrific one to help you out. Happy writing and reading! Have a wonderful day in the Lord.

Word Power: Words To Use Instead of Good (ABILITIES)

If you’d like to be interviewed, and you write relatively clean novels, give me a shout at

New Author Spotlight WITH…

I’m so blessed to have a new author spotlight with Author Gigi Sedlmayer author of The Talon Series.


Gigi welcome!  I’m excited to have this time to pick your brain so let’s get started!


What made you want to be a writer?

Surviving cancer and finding myself still alive after two years of just sitting around, (but caring for our adopted twin-girls and my husband Albert) waiting to die, I finally came to my senses. Since I couldn’t work at a traditional job any longer. I couldn’t stand or sit too long, had too much damage through the radiation and it’s still very painful, and having bad feet, Albert, my husband, taught me how to use a computer.

Earlier, in my teen years, I wrote lots of little animal short stories by hand writing. Nothing came out of them, I just loved it.

I remembered this time and so I started to write, since there was nothing else for me to do.

In the beginning, I wasn’t sure, in which language I should write. But then I decided to write in English, since my English became better and we live in an English-speaking country.

I wrote many short stories and entered them into competitions and often got very good reports back, which gave me confidence to go on writing and inspired me to go on.

One of the short stories was about Talon and Matica. Judges from the competition loved the story and so I thought, I could develop a series about Talon and Matica. And so, the TALON series came to life.

Tell us your series genre?

I actually thought, it would be a series for children, reading age, from 9 to 13 years. But it turned out to be for all ages, as some reviewers tell me.

Tell us about your book series and how it’s available. (Kindle, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles, paperback or hardcovers)

I let Matica, my main character, speaking in her own voice. It’s best to describe her and her books:

My name is Matica and I am a special needs child with a growth disability. I am stuck in the body of a two-year-old, even though I am ten years old when my story begins in the first book of the Talon series, TALON, COME FLY WITH ME. Because of that disability, (I am saying ‘that’ disability, not ‘my’ disability because it’s a thing that happens to me, nothing more and because I am not accepting it as something bad. I can say that now after I learned to cope with it.) I was rejected by the local Indians as they couldn’t understand that that condition is not a sickness and so it can’t be really cured. It’s just a disorder of my body. But I never gave up on life and so I had lots of adventures roaming around the plateau where we live in Peru, South America, with my mum’s and dad’s blessings. But after I made friends with my condors I named Tamo and Tima, everything changed. It changed for the good. I was finally loved. And I am the hero and I embrace my problem. In better words: I had embraced my problem before I made friends with my condors Tamo and Tima. I held onto it and I felt sorry for myself and cried a lot, wanting to run away or something worse. But did it help me? Did it become better? Did I grow taller? No, nothing of that helped me. I didn’t have those questions when I was still in my sorrow, but all these questions came to me later, after I was loved and was cherished. One day I looked up into the sky and saw the majestic condors flying in the air.  Here and now, I made up my mind. I wanted to become friends with them. I believed if I could achieve that, all my sorrow and rejection would be over. And true enough, it was over. I was loved. I even became famous. (You can read all about it in the series) And so, if you are in a situation, with whatever your problem is, find something you could rely on and stick to it, love that and do with that what you were meant to do. And I never run from conflicts.


How important is it to read books when you want to be an author?

I would say, very important. But again, I have med writers, they never read, they just write their book. I read a lot and review them as well.

What book genre do you enjoy reading the most?

I love reading sci-fi and fantasy. YA books.

What genre will you absolutely refuse to read?

Erotica and Romance. I never would read them.

Share with your readers, what’s the best way to handle a less than outstanding book review?

Don’t dwell too long on it. It’s horrible, the first 5 seconds. I got one only with one star. I just couldn’t understand it, but it was there. Yes, I cried, but then I said, okay, it’s not my problem, it’s his/her problem. Next review.

Is there a message you’d like to send through your book?

Live life the fullest, as much as you can. Smile as much as you can. As Crayn said in my book: Let your smile change the world, don’t let the world change your smile.

And: Smile – it’s the most beautiful attire.

And: “If you don’t know how to go on in life, whatever it might be, even if you have a disability, find a ‘condor’.” Not literally in your life, because that was for Matica, but something you can rely to, something you love doing, something to help others. Whatever it is, that makes you happy. The condors made Matica happy. You have to find yours.

What encouragement can you give to the aspiring author?

Never give up. Your book must have a good story line and a good message, as my books have, I believe.


What characteristics do you relate to with your main character Matica and why?

To face myself. When I started to write the book, I never thought of the things they came out then. I wanted to write an adventure story for children and see what came out of that. Because, like Matica, I was rejected in school, not because of the growth handicap she has. I had other things. I had to face what Matica is facing, rejection, and learned, even from writing the book, more and more to cope with myself, to overcome my own rejection and to realise that I have survived a deadly disease.

In a sense, it changed my life as well. I have more confidence now as I never had before. I never thought I could write a story like that. But now? I can and I will write more stories about Matica and Talon and her adventure, her life.


What are some of the challenges that face Matica?

I wanted to let children and parents know, that they don’t need to suffer more than they already do. So:

Children suffer from all sorts of afflictions and through my book they can learn how to coup with everything, as Matica did, the main character in my TALON books. She had to learn it in her early life. Children can find a “Condor” as Matica did. Not literally a condor, but every child or adult for that matter, they are battling with none curable afflictions, should find something that let them forget what is happening to them. Finding a “Condor” would help them to overcome that.

Parents can read my books to younger children so they can see that they are not alone, if they have some type of affliction, but that they can overcome it in a positive way, not in a negative way.

I say:  Children with special needs or with disability, or are handicapped don’t have an illness, so there is no cure and it’s not contagious. They want what we all want, to be accepted.

My books are not only for children. As I said, adults face some illnesses as well, so my books are for adults as well as for children.


What gave you the inspiration to write this Talon series?

“Teaching Children Self-Confidence through Service to Others.” Children today face immense pressure to fit in with their peers. This pressure is leading to record rates of depression among preteens and teenagers and this to suicide. Parents look for ways to build their children’s self-esteem; however, teens look to their peers and popular culture for acceptance rather than their parents. This puts parents in a challenging situation. Most children of this age group have issues with acceptance and this is explored and resolved in a positive manner within the story line of the Talon series, Matica shows children and teens that they can overcome great obstacles with love, patience and a selfless attitude toward helping others and experience exciting adventure on the way.

Which part of the publishing process do you detest most?

I hate to do the promotion. Mainly because I have no idea how to promote. My computer skill is not good enough for that anyway. So, why isn’t there anyone out there, who would love my books and so would take them and promote them for a fraction of the money the promoters are charging. I can’t do it myself, and I can’t give the books to someone and pay. I just don’t have the money.

Tell us how the atmosphere needs to be for you to be able to write. Example, music on or quiet etc.

I can’t listen to music and write, it has to be quiet. I am looking lots of times outside, to clear my head for a little while, then I go on.

What is one special goody you must have at your desk when you’re writing?

Actually, no goodies. Sorry

What is the worst thing you’ve had to overcome before publishing your novel? IF it’s too personal just make a generalized statement if you can. 

After I finished writing the first novel in the Talon series about Matica and Talon, I wrote query letters and sent my manuscript to several conventional publishers here in Australia. And guess what? I always got that rejection letter back. I even lost count of them. I tried for many years. I failed.

Next I approached an editor and agent and she edited my book properly. She loved my book and she tried to place it with a conventional publisher. But she too failed.

So, I looked up all the self-publishers here in Australia and decided to let my book be published by BookPal in Brisbane. At that time, they were new here in Australia and weren’t as expensive as the rest. They did a very good job with the designing of the cover page, the outlaying of the book, the distribution, and making an eBook. They also wrote a press release.

When I finished the second book in the Talon series, I approached them again. They were a bit too expensive for me then. But a friend of ours offered me to pay, because he just loved the first book and thought, the books has to go out, people have to read them. And now in the meantime I finished the third as well and published with BookPal again.

But now, since I finished the fourth and the fifth book I had to look for another publisher, since BookPal became too expensive for me. I found Aurora House.  She is doing now a very good job, even better. We re-published the first four books with new covers. Better. And she has published the fifth book as well. I am happy with them, they do editing as well.

When you need some extra encouragement when going through your manuscript, who do you turn to?

Most of the time I go to my husband. We talk it through and all is well again.

How do you market your book? If it’s a marketing service, please give the name.

Since I hate the promotion thing and marketing, I actually don’t do much. But I promote my books in Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, Google+. I have just entered a cover competition with Authorsdb with the first and fifth book. Ab to now I won the finals for both covers.  But now waiting for the GOLD, SILVER or BRONZE finals.

Have readers ever contacted you? If so, tell us the BEST thing they’ve said to you.

When they read my book, they nearly always say, how wonderful the story is. But buying my books? They like to have a free copy. Okay, I give it to them. At least they do write a review then as well. Mostly 5 stars.

What is the worst thing someone has said to your regarding your work? How did you respond or overcome the criticism?

Didn’t had a negative yet. Not that I recall. Only one review with 1 star. That was bad enough.

Who do you trust to read your finished books before publication? 

I trust myself. So, sadly to say, no one likes reading my books from my family. All too busy to do other things or working too hard to have the time. But I give it to my editor, and she loves my stories.

Tell us all about your very first book signing. Take us there with your description of people, place, food, décor etc.

Well, my first book signing was a very long time ago. But I have to say, it was great and I nearly sold all the books I had there. People were so friendly and asked what’s the story about. All in all, it was a good experience and I loved it. Did many more after that, until Angus & Robertson closed down their stores. Since then, sadly, I had no book signings anymore.

What are some of your hobbies when you’re not writing?   

I like to relax, go for a drive with my husband with our 4×4 car, into the hinterland of Australia or even further, when going on a holiday, into the outback of Australia and hunting for fossils.

I also like gardening, watching good movies and DVD’s and, I am reading a lot, real books, paper backs, or kindle.

Tell your readers what your favorite food and color is. Let them in to just who Gigi is.

I love blue, like the sky. All my clothes are mostly blue and grey. Favorite food? Well, potatoes and tomatoes. More German food then the food the people are eating here in Australia. Hehehehe. Can’t describe them. Love them. You have to come and I cook for you and see and test it for yourself.

Tell us your favorite novel?

My favorite series is DUNE, from Frank Herbert. All Ben Bova novels. All Sci-fi. Hehehe. But I do love YA novels as well. Like Fairies, Fantasy

What was your favorite children’s book growing up?

Since I grew up in Germany, I loved Karl May. You can’t get his books here. They are a big series as well. They were a mixture of sci-fi, adventure. I still have some of his books.

Now a fun game I’ll ask what your preference. Let your readers know what you love.  

Fantasy book or science fiction?

Actually, both. I love Fantasy and sci-fi, but sci-fi more. Love to read them anytime.

Singing Christmas carols or watching someone sing Christmas carols?

Watching someone sing Christmas carols. Don’t like singing. Well, can’t really sing. hehehe

Favorite side with your Thanksgiving turkey?

Sorry, we don’t have Thanksgiving here. Never ate a turkey. But with a chicken, it’s the leg. Hmm

Watching Christmas light shows on T.V. or driving around to see the Christmas lights?

Both again, love to see the Christmas lights in real, and watch them on TV

A kindle or a paperback?

I love reading books, real books as paperbacks, but it’s more economical reading kindle. My shelves in my house are full with books. Can’t fit any more on them. So, it has to be kindle.

Thanksgiving dinner before 3 pm. or after 3 pm.?

If we would have one, it would be after 3 pm.

Favorite pie during the holidays?

Pastry I like, but not so much pie, or yes, shepherd’s pie. Hmm

Pie or cake?

Definitely cake

Holiday flavored creamers or regular creamers?

Regular creamers

Espresso or regular coffee?

Regular coffee with milk

How many days do you eat your leftover Thanksgiving dinner?

Well, all leftovers, only a few days. No longer

Are there any mistakes you have made during the publishing process? How did you learn from them?

Not really, I only say, when you start writing, don’t give up. Go on, press on. The success maybe right around the corner. When you give up, you will never know. So, stick to it. And with writing you are becoming better each day.

And what I am doing is, reading, reading, reading other books and write reviews. That will help your writing. Well, it helps me.

When in doubt, who do you trust to help you out?

My trusted husband

What is one thing you’d like to address to your readers?

Never give up, success maybe is just around the corner, as I said earlier.

When is the release of your next novel? Name genre or if it’s part of a series. If your book is part of a series tell the readers about the others that are out for sale.

I am writing on my sixed book in the Talon series. It is finish, but I am on the re-writing, and that I will do several times. I will call it: TALON, WINDSONG. So, it will be available, hopefully, early next year. With all the editing and publishing. It all takes time.






All my books are available as paper back and kindle at amazon, B/N and all the other places.


Where can we find your author page of your work to follow you and purchase your awesome books?

My website:

But my editor and publisher is just in the brink of doing for me a new and better website.

My website:

YouTube animation clips for the Talon books:

First book:

Second book:


Thank you, Aimee, for letting me express myself. Had fun answering all the questions.

You’re welcome!  We loved having you.  And I don’t know about anyone else but these novels need to be added to my reading list!  

TALON 1 Come fly with me.jpg

TALON 2 On the wing.jpg

TALON 4, Connected.jpg

TALON 5, Encounter.jpg


Ya’ all follow along for more author spotlight reviews!!

Welcome To the Spotlight Author Mary Woldering!


Welcome one and all! I’ve been sick so we’re late but we can’t pass this interview up! It’s with the talented Mary Woldering. This is going to be fun so let’s get started!

What made you want to be a writer? I always wanted to be one.

Tell us your book’s genre? Historical/Visionary Fantasy

Tell us about your book and how it’s available. (Kindle, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles, paperback etc.) Amazon print and e-book

How important is it to read books when you want to be an author? Fairly important. However, it DOES cut into writing time.

How did you come up with this fantastic idea? I had a lot of dreams and meditations on the Ancient world with friends, A story emerged bit by bit later.

Which character do you identify with most in your novel? Ariennu of Tyre – my darker, wilder side

“Did the Bible have anything to do with your idea for this novel? Not specifically. Many legends and customs of the ancient Middle East that are mentioned in the Bible show up.

Is there a message you’d like to send through your book? If you journey from being man to god, you don’t lose human nature. There are still emotions or all kinds as long as we live. That’s just one of many, though.

Which part of the publishing process do you detest most? MARKETING

Tell us how the atmosphere needs to be for you to be able to write. Example, music on or quiet etc. Generally quiet.

What is one goody you must have at your desk when you’re writing? Coffee in the morning

What is the worst thing you’ve had to overcome before publishing your novel? IF it’s too personal just make a generalized statement if you can. A regular job. I had to retire.

When you need some extra encouragement who do you turn to? My writer’s group

How do you market your book? I have no real plan. I talk about it on Facebook & Twitter and my website. I go to live sales events. I don’t have a marketing budget.

Has readers every contacted you? If so, tell us the best thing they’ve said to you. They love my books and can’t wait for the next one to come out. I’m a bit late this year and they are coming after me.

Who do you trust to read your finished books before publication? My writer’s group & my son

Tell us all about your very first book signing. Take us there with your description of people, place, food, décor etc. I’ve never had an official signing that featured only me. I’ve sold signed books at fairs and gone to meetings with my spouse… sold signed copies there.

What do you enjoy when you’re not writing? Being with my spouse & talking with my family.

Tell your readers what your favorite food and color is. Let them in to just who Mary is. I love the colors of sunrise, sunset , night and rainbows… almost all colors

Tell us your favorite novel? There are many I like. I don’t really have a favorite.

Now a fun game I’ll ask what your preference. Let your readers know what you love.
A live drama or the opera? Live drama
Chips or crackers? Tortilla chips
Hamburger or chicken sandwich? Chicken
Fries or onion rings? Fries
Milk shake or smoothie? Milk Shake
Thunderstorms or star gazing?? Thunderstorms
Kindle or paperback novels? Kindle

Are there any mistakes you made with your first book? Also my covers are great, but don’t promote the books well. I’m constantly improving. They still get 5 stars though.

What kind of advice can you give to other either aspiring authors? Publish earlier, don’t think your book isn’t good enough. Your readers will let you know.

When in doubt, who do you trust to help you out? Writer’s group and my son or daughter.

When is the release of your next novel? Name genre or if it’s part of a series. If your book is part of a series tell the readers about the others that are out for sale. Book 3 of the Children of Stone Series –

Opener of the Sky. Scheduled for the Fall.

Where can we find your author page of your work to follow you and purchase your awesome book?
1 CstoneVICfront

This has been great! Thanks Mary! I hope all of you run to grab her awesome novels!
Join us next week. You’ll never know who will be in the spotlight so follow this blog!

This Week’s Author Spotlight We Have Seven Steps!

Author Photo

Welcome and we’re back with an all new author’s spotlight with the lovely Seven Steps! Seven thanks for coming and joining us this week! I’m excited at some of the topics we’re tackling so let’s get started!

What made you want to be a writer? I was an avid reader growing up. I remember my father and I hanging out in bookstores for hours. It was a natural progression for me to become a writer and to tell the stories that I didn’t see written growing up.

Tell us your book’s genre? I write Science Fiction Romance.

Tell us about your book and how it’s available. (Kindle, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles, paperback etc.) The Slave Planet is set in an Earth colony stationed on the planet Venus. Over time, women have taken over the government and enslaved all men. The main character is a woman named Nadira who has fallen in love with her slave, Kiln. When she is elected to the High Council, she becomes caught up in a crooked politician’s murderous scheme. The collateral is her slave, Kiln. The story follows Nadira in her quest to get Kiln back by any means necessary.

How important is it to read books when you want to be an author? Reading books when you’re an author is like studying biology before you become a doctor. It is indispensable. You must read if you write. There is no way around it.

I personally love how you add characters that are a black woman and a white man. How did you decide to write a book about an inter-racial couple? I am an African American woman, and I have always been attracted to other races. I think that my preference just comes out in my writing. It is also important to me to make sure that my books are as diverse as possible. I want to write in a way that anyone can relate and everyone feels included.

Which character do you identify with most in your novel? Definitely Nadira. I am a hopeless romantic and I go against the grain, just like her. I’m also stubborn, head strong, and have a nervous tick where I rub my stomach. Hmmm… maybe Nadira is more like me then I thought.

Is there a message you’d like to send through your book? Love conquers all.

What made you want to add a very difficult issue such as slavery in your novel? I thought that it would be a unique perspective on the slavery issue. Having white males be slaves to black women is a trope that I have never seen before, and I love the uniqueness of it.

Which part of the publishing process do you detest most? Marketing. I’d rather spend time writing more books then constantly trying to promote myself. I’m an introvert, so putting myself out there is hard for me.

Tell us how the atmosphere needs to be for you to be able to write. Example, music on or quiet etc. I need it to be quiet with no interruptions. My favorite writing times are in my car during my lunch break, and while my husband plays video games. He normally plays with a headset on, so I can sit in the recliner and really get stuff done. I usually listen to whales singing or animal sounds. I know, it’s weird.

What is one goody you must have at your desk when you’re writing? A wrist rest.

What is the worst thing you’ve had to overcome before publishing your novel? IF it’s too personal just make a generalized statement if you can. My own self-doubt. Its one thing to read what you wrote and say that is good. It’s another thing to put yourself out there for the world to judge. But, I ripped the Band-Aid off and I’m glad I did.

When you need some extra encouragement, who do you turn to? I have great friends on Facebook who give me the extra push that I need when I need it.

How do you market your book? I like to use different book related blogs and websites.

Has readers every contacted you? If so, tell us what they said. I have had good feedback from readers who’ve told me that they enjoyed my book and that they are looking for the next one. It’s really flattering and humbling when anyone says that they have read anything that I’ve written.

Who do you trust to read your finished books before publication? My beta readers and my editor.

Tell us all about your very first book signing. Take us there with your description of people, place, food, décor etc. I have never had a book signing but I hope to have one in the future.

What do you enjoy when you’re not writing? I love hanging out with my family. We are really big movie buffs, and we especially love Disney movies. I also am a bit of a wine connoisseur. Well, not a connoisseur. Maybe a wine connoisseur in training. Who am I kidding? I just like to drink wine!

Tell your readers what your favorite food and color is. Let them in to just who Seven Steps is. Baked Macaroni and Cheese and the color blue.

Tell us your favorite novel? The Air He Breathes by Brittinay Cherry.

Now a fun game I’ll ask what your preference. Let your readers know what you love.

A walk in the park or a stroll around town? A stroll around town. I’d love to take in the sights.

Ice cream or frozen yogurt? Ice Cream.

Cool whip or real whip cream? Is there a difference?

Sci-fi novels or romance novels? Oohh, can I have both? No? Ok, romance.

Orange juice or milk? Orange juice all the way.

Cold cereal or hot cereal?? Hot cereal, particularly oatmeal.

Kindle or paperback novels? Nothing beats a good paperback.

Are there any mistakes you made with your first book? I wish I had gotten a better editor / proofreader.

What kind of advice can you give to other either aspiring authors? Write every day. Read every day.

When in doubt, who do you trust to help you out? My family.

When is the release of your next novel? Name genre or if it’s part of a series. If your book is part of a series tell the readers about the others that are out for sale. My next novel is a clean contemporary rock star romance, titled THE LAST ROCK KING. It is a stand-alone.

Where can we find your author page of your work to follow you and purchase your awesome book? On my website,


I don’t know about all of you but my reading list is growing lol. Thank you Seven Steps! I look forward to interviewing you again when your next novel is released.
Everyone, follow along for next week’s author’s spotlight. Who will it be??? What genre?

Wonderful BLOG Interview With Blogger Sara Rose Chatterjee!

Everyone welcome back from a restful holiday weekend! This is a fun interview with a blogger Sara Rose! She’s here to offer some much needed advice for blogging. We have so much to discuss with her so let’s get started!!

How important is it for authors to have their own blog?
For authors, blogging is a wonderful way to introduce their work to their readers, update readers about upcoming books and share their views in general. Of course, the social media platforms are always there but I guess blogging is a more eloquent way of expressing oneself as an author. I wouldn’t say it is absolutely essential for authors to have a blog but it benefits both the author and their readers. Also, it’s a great way to interact with other writers and build a supportive community.

What are the subjects you tackle in your blog?
My blog is a book review blog. I mainly review Indie books and books that are published by lesser known publishers. I also do author interviews and feature guest posts on my blog.

What interest’s readers to flock to your blog?
Readers come across a wide variety of books as I review several different genres. Indie books often go unnoticed because potential readers don’t even get to know about them. Blogs such as mine exist to help readers discover some amazing books by authors they’ve never heard of before.

How many times a week do you post?
That depends on my schedule. But I definitely post once a week. If I manage to make time, I do three to four posts.

Do you get to interact with readers of your blog?
Yes, it is a pleasure to interact with readers. Many readers of my blog are authors themselves and they often share guest posts.

What are some of the questions or comments you’re asked on your blog?
Since my blog mainly focuses on book reviews I receive quite a lot of emails from authors who wish to get their work reviewed by me. Many authors seek suggestions for book marketing and website building. I try to keep my review guidelines and other guidelines as simple as possible and this has been appreciated by authors. Readers have commented on the appearance of my blog posts and said they liked how each post looked somewhat different from the other. Also, I never drop any spoilers in my reviews and share my thoughts on them instead of judging them as good or bad. This is something that readers appreciate.

How do you market your blog?
My blog is listed on IndieView and BookBlogger List. These websites are great for Indie authors and bloggers alike. Most readers and authors have found my blog on either of these. Of course, Twitter is the most effective source when it comes to marketing. I have a separate account for my blog on Twitter and this helps in gaining readership. The authors and publishers with whom I interact share my blog with others and this is also quite helpful

What is the blog site you use to begin your blog?
I have always used Wix. I like it best because it’s very flexible and even people who don’t have a lot of knowledge about coding can experiment with different features. There is a fast growing app market for Wix websites. In short, you can get creative with Wix websites and there are very few restrictions unlike in Weebly or WordPress.

If an author or aspiring author doesn’t have a blog, what is some advice you can give them?
I was a clueless writer wanting to get some feedback. That is how I stumbled upon some interesting blogs on Goodreads and on IndieView. I decided I should start my own blog because I thought of it as a tribute to my love for books. I would suggest authors to consider blogging because it’s a welcome break and it’s fun. But they should never consider it a compulsion or just a tool for marketing their books because that will spoil the fun. I strongly feel that authors should only devote their time and energy to a blog if the idea truly appeals to them.

Do readers get to see the blogger’s writing skills and interests in their blog in their posts?
I’d say yes. But it varies. My blog doesn’t really showcase all my interests because it is limited to books. The only way readers get to know about my other interests is the ‘About’ section.

If an author refuses to begin a blog, what would you expect to see from them as a writer?
If the author traditionally publishes his or her book and the publisher is one of the more famous ones, I don’t think a blog is really necessary. If the author decides to self-publish, a blog helps to communicate with readers because Indie authors don’t get the same opportunities as traditionally published authors. But there are other options if the author is unwilling to start a blog and social media is one of those other options. I would expect them to participate in events outside cyberspace too.

How many followers do you have on your blog?
I don’t have a follower counter app on my website. All I know is that I have enough followers to persuade me to continue with the blog.

Who designed your blog?
I am the only person behind my blog!

If readers would like to follow your blog, please give us your blog address to follow along.
Here’s a link to my blog I hope your readers enjoy their visit to my blog!

What is some encouragement you can give people who are vacillating on beginning a blog?
I’d simply say give it a shot. It will definitely be a rewarding experience. Blogging has given me a chance to meet some talented authors and avid readers. Best of all, it has exposed me to a world of fascinating books.

This has been so helpful and I don’t know about any of you, but I see the importance to blogging. Follow her terrific blog!

Stay tuned for our next author interview!