Authors' Spotlight

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR LEE ANDERSON | AUTHOR INTERVIEW

It is my pleasure to host author Lee Anderson on my blog today.

Me: Have you always wanted to be a writer?

Lee: Always. When I was little, my dad was a voracious reader, and I was perplexed by what could possibly hold him mesmerized for so long like that. Where was he? My fascination with books was born. An inclination to become a writer naturally came next, I guess. I even wrote my first novel in 2nd grade. It was 2 pages-long and was called “Jaws.”  

Me: What made you pen this down?

Lee: Varies. There’s stories in this collection that are twenty years old, and others I wrote late last year. Some were writing assignments from college while others were just inspired by people I’ve met. Or people I heard about and never wished to meet. Mostly, these are just stories made by whatever odd thing hit my antennae.

Continue reading “INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR LEE ANDERSON | AUTHOR INTERVIEW”
Authors' Spotlight

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR CANDACE SHATTUCK | AUTHOR INTERVIEW

It is my pleasure to host author Candace Shattuck on my blog today.

Me: You have been writing since you were 4 years old. Have you always been an avid reader too?

Candace: Yes and no. I have always loved reading. However, reading was hard for me when I was younger as I had troubles learning language related skills. This also has made writing hard even though it is my passion. I do love reading and a good story.

Me: Will you tell us more about how your relationship with writing shaped your childhood and you as a person?

Candace: At first my stories were all in my head and were kind of my way of coping with the stresses of my childhood. As I grew and learnt to write I began putting the thoughts and stories to paper. Reading provided an escape but writing had always helped me process and get out all the feelings I didn’t feel I could express. Writing has helped me maintain who I am as a person and keep me from falling too far into the darkness. We all have some darkness in our lives and in our minds and we all need something to help us through it and ground us back in truth and light. For me, it is writing.

Continue reading “INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR CANDACE SHATTUCK | AUTHOR INTERVIEW”
Authors' Spotlight

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR ATIYA STEVENSON | AUTHOR INTERVIEW

It is my pleasure to host author Atiya Stevenson on my blog today.

Me: Have you always wanted to be a writer?                                                                         

Atiya: Not necessarily… my desire to write was derived from the pain of my process which I turned into purpose 

Me: What made you pen down this specific book?                                                            

Atiya: Because it began to sadden me the way us women would allow ourselves to be treated by men and in relationships.  It was more disheartened to know that although we as women desire Love we don’t always know how to connect with the areas of a man that causes him to love and guess what??  It’s not through sex.

Me: No Green Beans teaches women to value themselves to get the most out of their love life. Why choose such a subject to write on?                                                                                          

Atiya: Because when we value ourselves, men will have to place the same value on us.  When we allow men to mistreat us and mishandle us, its not the man’s fault, it shows that we ladies have lack of value, confidence, and esteem in ourselves.  When we allow men to cheat on us and be mean to us, it shows insecurity within ourselves.  It is not the man’s fault. A man will only do what he is allowed to do.

Me: A lot of women lose themselves somewhere while they keep adjusting to the ways of a relationship that is often dictated by a patriarchal structure. What will you comment on that and how will your book help them?                                                                                  

Atiya: The foundational tools of the book is our value system as women. Some of us were raised in certain cultures, mindsets and environments which contributes our value in ourselves.   The book will empower women to discover their worth, position their worth and present their worth to real men who desire pursue and capture!

Me: The title and how the book is written is unique. How did it come to be?                             

Atiya: Yes, the book is metaphorically written to depict the woman as the dimensional dining experience she was designed to be.  No Green beans is comparable to “Sex” I show women how to have a man mesmerized with the non-sexual part of who you are.  I show you how to have a man intrigued by your conversation and can’t wait to see you again.  I show you how to have him desiring just to simply be in your presence.

The woman is Valuable, priceless, fascinating, and incomparable!  In the compelling, metaphoric writing, No Green Beans, a Woman’s Guide to Becoming the Ultimate 5 Course Experience, I share tools, experiences, and inspirations by challenging the woman to discover her worth, position her worth, and present her worth to receive what she desires and deserves in relationships.  To achieve this, women are encouraged to refrain from offering themselves as a mere side of green beans (a portion of her) and show up as the “Ultimate 5-Course Experience” she is designed to be and that real men desire, pursue and capture.

Me: Describe yourself in three words.                                                                                                

Atiya:  Igniting, Conscientious, Empowering  

Me: What do you when you are not writing?                                                                                   

Atiya: Enjoying time with myself, writing, creating amazing transformation content, and spending time with my family.

Me: Are there any new projects underway                                                                                           

Atiya: I am launching my Positioned for Love Academy with will have elite coaching, digital library and a community where you can join.


Atiya Stevenson is a dynamic speaker, certified life coach, and love strategist who passionately serves others by aiding through life’s uncharted waters and challenging those to take the uncomfortable, critical leap that penetrates places of complacency and blazes a trail. Atiya’s desire for people and purpose is undeniable as she delicately, yet rigorously inspires change, ignites passion, and imparts value. Atiya will never meet a stranger, loves community, and selflessly gives throughout.


Find Atiya on:

Facebook | Instagram

Authors' Spotlight

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR TROY DEVOLLD | AUTHOR INTERVIEW

It is my pleasure to host author and renowned Hollywood producer Troy Devolld on my blog today.

Me: How is your health Troy? 

Troy: I’m doing very well now. 

Me: What made you pen down One Hundred Poems About Los Angeles

Troy: I had a stroke back in May of last year and needed to figure out how to fall back in love with my life in Los Angeles quickly.  Working on the laptop was terrific occupational therapy, and forcing myself to take inventory of my wonderful life here that I’d all but taken for granted kept my resolve up while I dealt with my frustrating physical challenges.

Me: Will you call the process therapeutic or is it somewhere mentally taxing as well? 

Troy: It wasn’t an easy process, but the more I worked on it, the easier it became to focus.  Having a project and a purpose really helped me slug forward.

Me: Readers say that the poems resonates with their experiences and is uplifting. What would you comment on that? 

Troy: A lot of the people who’ve reviewed it are people who live here and work in various aspects of the entertainment industry.  I think, or at least hope, that the universality of trying to be a creative person in a competitive town is helping people to connect with the book. 

Me: Will you share a poem from either of your books with our readers? A favourite of yours maybe? 

Troy: Sure.

Stargreyzing

The thing they never tell you

About coming to L.A.

Is that all your favorite stars

Are grey

And their boobs look wrong

And their beards look different

And they’re much taller or shorter

Than you imagined

And you will feel old

Thinking about how they are old

And then

As if by magic

You will respect them more

As you recall the scripture

Of picture magazines

That told you all along

That they were

Just

Like

Us

Me: You had a successful career in Hollywood spanning over 20 years. Do you think you’ll be going back to production? 

Troy: I’m working toward that now.  I’m feeling sharp and ready to move forward on something fun!

Me: Both the covers of the books are extremely soothing and attractive. How did they come to be?  

Troy: I found a wonderful cover designer named Yasir Nadeem online.  I like how he lets the mood and text be the star of the covers.  He’ll be doing my next two books as well.

Me: Are there any new projects underway? 

Troy: Yes.  ONE HUNDRED POEMS ABOUT FILM AND TV is about halfway finished, and I’ll soon release a print edition of AND ANOTHER THING, my book on the television notes process.  I’m also nearing completion on my reality tv documentary feature, REMEMBER, WE’RE NOT HERE.


Troy DeVolld is a veteran reality television producer who has worked on some 30+ reality programs, including milestone efforts like The Osbournes, The Surreal Life, The Bachelor, Dancing With the Stars, Basketball Wives and Hollywood Game Night.  He is a past Daytime Emmy nominee for his work on Style Network’s Split Ends and is also the author of the bestselling books Reality TV: An Insider’s Guide to Television’s Hottest Market and And Another Thing: A Beginner’s Guide to the Television Notes Process.

DeVolld has guest lectured as part of the TV Writers Summit live events in London, Tel Aviv and Los Angeles, and has appeared at UFVA (University Film and Video Association) events in Boston, Chicago and Las Vegas.  He has written or contributed to works published in Time, Newsweek, A.V. Club, Emmy, The New York Times, TheWrap.com and The Washington Post and is cited in a number of academic texts, including Palgrave MacMillan’s Real Talk.  He is a Hall of Fame graduate of Full Sail University in Winter Park, FL .

Troy is represented for media appearances and speaking opportunities by Brian Jones at Vertical Talent Agency: brian@verticaltalentagency.com


Find Troy on:

Instagram 1 | Instagram 2

Authors' Spotlight

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR LESLIE REYES | AUTHOR INTERVIEW

It is my pleasure to host author Leslie Reyes on my blog today.

Me: Have you always wanted to be a writer?

Leslie: Actually, not really. However, I’m full of stories that I want to share with the world. Growing up, I faced a lot of decisions and went through events that a child isn’t supposed to go through. This gave me at a very early age, stories that people would love listening to. 

Me: What made you pen down this book?

Leslie: I’m always losing socks and this happened even before I got a dog so I can’t blame her! I would put the pair in the laundry basket and wash them and dry them. But when it was time for folding, one would be missing. So my imagination created this world that’s accessible through an invisible portal inside the dryer. A place where all my missing socks have gone to live with socks that others have lost too!

When I thought about how the other sock would feel being left behind, it made me sad. I thought about children who have lost a sibling, just like me. When my brother joined the military, I was devastated. I was eight years old. Every day, I sat by the window and waited for him to return but he never did. I thought he didn’t love me because he left me behind but then I realized that no matter how far he was, his love was boundless.

Thinking about how a sock would feel losing its sibling also took my thoughts to other places. It made me think about the children who are compared to their siblings and told that they should be just like them. It made me think about how we sometimes give up on the things we want in life because of the impact it could have on someone dear to you. It made me think about how we sometimes get lost on our paths and in reality, we’re not lost, we just have to get through that moment so it can put us on the right track.

When I felt all of these emotions, I thought to myself, wouldn’t this be a cool story so I wrote it down.

Me: It is extremely important to teach children that it is okay to make different choices in life. It inculcates in them a certain level of tolerance and acceptance which is integral in today’s world. What would you comment on that?

Leslie: I agree. Children are so influenced nowadays and at a much younger age. This makes it easier for them to be inclined to be someone they aren’t. We’re all destined to be different and we all have different values that we bring to the world and those around us. If children don’t make different choices they become monotone in their own essence and I believe that our souls become dim when we stop being different.

Me: Who were some of your favourite authors as a child?

Leslie: I was into poetry so I was fascinated with Langston Hughes and Maya Angelou.

Me: What do you love most about writing for children?

Leslie: I love writing for children because they absorb everything! So as long as you have a good story with a positive lesson, you know in your heart, they’ll walk away with their heart a little fuller.

Me: How do you intend to impact readers with Sock World?

Leslie: I hope the readers understand that it’s okay to be different and want different things than those you’re close to. That even if you go off track, it’s okay because that’s where you need to be at the current moment in your life. I hope they can understand that even when someone is no longer close by, your love has no limit.

Me: The proceeds from the sales of this book goes to the purchase of socks for the homeless. Will you tell us more about it?

Leslie: Homeless people spend a lot of time on their feet. Many don’t have shoes so socks take quite the toll, wearing out quickly. They wear out faster than any other article of clothing and are the #1 clothing item needed and least donated for the homeless. Without socks, their feet are exposed, causing them to be more prone to frostbite and infections. Donating proceeds is just a little way of putting kindness back into the world.

Me: Why do you think it’s important for children to develop a love for reading?

Leslie: Having a love for reading helps in so many ways! For some, it takes them away from a reality they’re having a hard time getting through by creating a safe space in their mind. It helps build a great vocabulary foundation for future use which will add to their self-esteem and make them more confident. Through reading we learn social skills, we learn about different cultures, and we learn about ourselves in how we respond to what we read. That’s priceless.

Me: Are there any new projects underway?

Leslie: Actually, I’m thinking about making Sock World: A New Home into a series so stay tuned!!!

Also, I’m looking to explore another path and create a book tailored to 14 and up. This book would focus on overcoming Teen/Adult Domestic Violence and sexual assault.


Leslie Reyes is an HR professional who has a passion for stories. She believes in mythological creatures and daydreams often. She describes her daughter, Bella, as her biggest achievement even as she continues to hope that in another world, she will one day reunite with her brother who she lost.


Find Leslie on:

Website | Instagram | Facebook

Authors' Spotlight

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR RENE FENNER | AUTHOR INTERVIEW

It is my pleasure to host author Rene Fenner on my blog today.

Me: Have you always wanted to be a writer?

Rene: I’ve always been told I’m “good with words,” but I don’t think I understood that someone could be a writer. I’m still not completely sure what it means. Is this really a thing? I love writing and playing with words and phrases. Even the simplest notes or texts can affect people in different ways with the right wording. I live for that. But I didn’t consider myself a true writer until I considered the possibility of publication. Maybe I can be a writer after all. 

Me: What made you pen down The Afterthoughts?

Rene: I truly have no idea where the idea for the premise of The Afterthoughts came from. I knew I wanted to write a book. That’s it. I laid down in my bed, thought about what I should write, and for some reason, deep in the recesses of my insane brain, the idea came to me that my main character would be able to see and experience the memories of the dead in her sleep. 

It’s nuts, and I’m sure this experience will never happen to me again, but as soon as I had the thought, I knew I had to write it. I wrote the first draft of the first chapter that night.

Me: What kind of research did you have to do before writing it?

Rene: They say to write what you know, and I’m an ER nurse, so I started there and made my main character an ER nurse. That helped a ton with needing to do a little less research. That being said, I also feel like Google probably got sick of me. There were medical discoveries I dug into and specific research I did about the brain and memory. I also involve some complicated technology that I had to research. Other than that, it was the usual stuff about serial killers, terrorists, and murderers.

Me: What according to you makes or breaks a thriller?

Rene: I want a thriller to be full of conflict, emotion, and excitement. It should elicit a heightened sense of anticipation, suspense, and expectation. All throughout my book, I hope people try to guess who the villain is and how these mysterious terrorists came to be. I hope they’re right about some things, and that other things throw them completely off guard.

Me: Did you have the whole plot of The Afterthoughts figured out before you started to write it or did it evolve as you went on?

Rene: I plotted most of it out, but things changed as I wrote, and it took on a life of it’s own. The core of the plot is the same, but the story took unexpected detours. 

Me: The cover seems to amazingly reflect on the vibe of the novel. How did it come to be?

Rene: I hosted a contest on 99designs.com. I received some incredible entries but ultimately landed on this artist called Nisbey. She took the idea of the book and some additional prompts I gave, and came up with the most thoughtful and creative design. She did a great job with the Wolves and their weapons. The bodies in the water represent the dreamworld in which Resi is experiencing dead people’s memories. She also added some easter eggs that people may not even notice until later in the book. It’s beautiful and suspenseful. I absolutely love it.

Me: Describe your protagonist Resi Kepler in three words.

Rene: Determined. Compassionate. Sarcastic.

Me: Are there any new projects underway?

Rene: I’m working on a follow-up to The Afterthoughts and dabbling in a story about a ninja-scientist for my nephews!


Rene Fenner is an ER nurse in Houston. Sometimes Rene eats gluten when she’s not supposed to and feels most anxious and alive while watching TV shows about serial killers. She lives in a house with a confused Roomba named Kevin. The Afterthoughts is Rene’s debut novel. 


Find Rene on:

Instagram