Monday, October 31, 2016

Guest Post and Book tour: Explosive Decompression by John L. Shppard


Isaac Asimov meets Charles Dickens with a dash of Jonathan Swift...
In a world that is a science experiment gone horrifyingly wrong, scientist Audrey Novak awakes from a centuries-long sleep to discover that her work has been used to create an appalling world. Aided by commoners, bots, and another refugee from 20th century America, Audrey takes on the power elites on Earth and on the Moon in a novel that is equal parts adventure, science gone haywire, and rollicking humor. ?

A sampling of acclaim for John L. Sheppard
"Sheppard's characters pretend not to be funny, to not be emotional, to not need each other, when of course, they are and they do. There's a clarity to the chaos, the restraint, the vulnerability Sheppard creates, something so human and essential you can't help but turn the page." --Entropy magazine
" easy affection for his characters and a sense of natural, unforced humor." --Booklist
"...You have a good time seeing someone have a bad time. It's fun..." --Padgett Powell
"...raw feeling and taut smart prose."--Sam Lipsyte
"The author grips you from the beginning, I couldn't have put it down if I wanted." --Amazon reviewer
John L. Sheppard wrote the novels After the Jump, No Brass, No Ammo and Small Town Punk.   Follow the Book Tour

                                  Guest Post:

The Church, the Guilt by John L. Sheppard If I listed the basic one-word descriptions of myself — i.e. male, American, veteran — near the top of the list would be “Catholic.” My Catholic upbringing, if you can forgive the pun, has been a mixed blessing. I suppose you could say that I’m a Catholic writer, even though I haven’t been to mass in a quarter century. 
My latest book, Explosive Decompression, is a science fiction book that deals with many religious issues, including eternal life (via technology), meeting your creator (in this case, a scientist who created artificial intelligence), and what our definition of sen‐ tient life might be. Would sentient life include A.I.’s? … mice with enough human genes that they appear human? … humans whose genes have been manipulated and soured enough that those people are the definition of evil through no choice of their own? 
So despite my absence from church, I still think a lot about issues that have something to do with faith. Or at least our place in the universe. Science fiction seems like the obvious place to explore such things. That’s not to say that this is a serious book. I think there’s a pretty good laugh-to-page ratio in there. Anyway, as a child, I was made to go to confession. 
The confes‐ sional was a scary place, and the voice through the grate was frightening even if it was Father Hubert, whose breath was scent‐ ed with whiskey and Pall Malls. He had the voice of Captain Kan‐ garoo. 

I often imagined raining ping-pong balls upon him while kneeling in that dark box. The sisters who taught us at CCD — leading up to our first con‐ fession and subsequently our first communion… the Body of Christ Himself plopped on our tongues (Jesus tastes like dry li‐ brary paste… who knew?) — informed us that as long as we didn’t sin in thought or action, we would remain clean enough to sneak into heaven post-confessional should we die suddenly. Getting hit by a bus was a popular imagined death for the sisters. Naturally, my hand shot up. “So if we think about sinning—?”

 “That’s right, Mr. Sheppard. Straight to hell.” Confession for kiddies is relatively new. It was only in 1910 when the Pope (Pius at the time) infallibly required children to step into the confessional all by their little selves. And the confessional box (now mostly gone) was created in the sixteenth century to prevent priests from pawing at young women. Claw at the screen all you want, Father! You’ll not touch her! I think I was seven at my first confession. I remember there being a lot of instruction required before we were allowed to kneel down before God Almighty’s representative on Earth and talk about how we filched cookies, or talked back to our parents. Afterward, I re‐ member comparing notes with other children on the punishments meted out — Stations of the Cross, Hail Mary’s required, etc. — like we were prisoners out on the yard discussing our court cases. 

At my Catholic high school, I received low marks in “Moral Guidance,” which was a half-hour class in Catholic religious indoctrination. My line of questioning in that class implied that nearly everything that Catholics believe about life and life after death is half-baked nonsense, or worse. The sisters clacked their tongues at my apostasy. Somewhere in there, I graduated from high school. I walked in front of the altar, received a diploma and a communion wafer from a monsignor who’d been imported for the occasion, knelt in the kneeler while sucking the body of Christ off the roof of my mouth, and eventually relaxed back into my pew. I finished ahead of about half my classmates. I didn’t take my Catholic education seriously. How could I? Yet it all stuck no matter how much I tried to suck it off the roof of my mouth. 

It’s all stuck to my fiction, too. Even when I don’t mention the church, it’s in there. Mostly what I have held onto from my Catholicism is my over‐ whelming guilt. I never feel like my slate is clean. Never. I once asked a woman, a friend of a friend, on a date. We were both in our 30’s and unmarried. She was beautiful and smart, so it seemed like the sensible thing to do. She asked, “Are you Catholic?” I said yes. “I don’t date Catholic men. They’re lousy in the sack.” 
I was momentarily offended, even though I am lousy in the sack. “It’s all the guilt,” she said. “It’s like God Himself is in the room with us, judging you.” I shrugged. She was right. 
Because He is.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Life in the Driver’s Seat: Women With Drive & Beyond By Molly Cantrell-Kraig


Life in the Driver's Seat: Women With Drive & Beyond

The road of the entrepreneur is a bumpy one. Full of zigs and zags, detours and dead ends, building something from scratch takes someone with drive. Wouldn’t it be great if you had a friend along the way? ...Someone who had been where you are? Life in the Driver’s Seat: Women With Drive and Beyond is a slim volume filled with bite-sized wisdom you can fit in your pocket, and read whenever you need a bit of encouragement. Author Molly Cantrell-Kraig shares stories ranging from her childhood in Iowa to her starting over when she launched WWDF in Chicago at the age of 45. You’ll see how she went from being a single mom on welfare to being featured as one of the CNN 10 Visionary Women. You’ll also find Journaling Prompts to help you discover your inner compass along the way. UK author and success coach Ethan Michael Carter calls LiTDS, “Informative, combined with a style that's both fun and easy to digest. … I think the British technical term would be ‘no fluff, and all business, luv!’” This book will help anyone who’s starting something new: moms, those embarking on an encore career, seekers of all stripes. With Foreword by Deb Mills-Scofield, Harvard Business Review.

Buy on Amazon | B&N | Kobo | Apple |Books2Read

Molly is a consultative client advocate with almost two decades of experience in both production and sales across multiple media. She develops effective communications and marketing solutions, with direct experience communicating on sustainability via social media. She manages and informs the online interactions, strategies and engagement for clients using social media pillars and appropriate tools. Molly also provides the measurement of same, including ROI and other criteria. She is also the founder and inspiration for Women With Drive Foundation. WWDF builds a collaborative solution to systemic generational poverty with a focus on providing not only the missing element of transportation, but the necessary component of process and structure for the participants they serve.

Find Molly on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Book Blast and Sale: Light’s Out by Cooper & Paulson


When an alcoholic doctor and guilt-plagued nurse are stalked by a vengeful mother during one of the worst storms in the region’s history, an entire town’s survival hangs in the balance. After a botched emergency C-section, Terri lost her son. With her marriage a wreck, Terri holds the hospital staff responsible for destroying every aspect of her life and will exact revenge as the snow pours down. Karen was in the surgical room when it all went down. She has the evidence to prove Terri’s story of corruption and medical malpractice. Instead, Karen falsifies the records in exchange for a briefcase full of cash she needs to save her parents. The guilt of her actions and what she protected erodes her life and brings her to the brink. As the storm rolls in, Karen succumbs to her guilt, ready to set the record straight—but will she get her chance? She’s at the top of Terri’s list. As residents are stranded and seek shelter, the power goes out all over town and provides the perfect cover. Those that know Terri the best—fear the worst. Terri, a survival wilderness expert, will take to the snow to exact her revenge and to hell with anyone who gets in her way. Sandpoint, Idaho is about to be put on notice by a grief-stricken mother without a child and the residents will never be the same. Get lost in the storm and purchase Light’s Out today!

Get it on Amazon for $.99

Free on KU

Meet the authors - About Jill Cooper – I could write this in the third person. I could tell you what I like, where I was born, and what my favorite things are. But instead, I’ll say I don’t want to write like everyone else. I don’t want to craft stories you’ve read a thousand times before. I want my novels to be a cinematic experience, blending themes, genres, and situations unlike any you’ve ever read. I want to break the rules. I want you to break out in a cold sweat as you read my books out of fear, love, and excitement. I want my books to be an experience. When you finish, I want you to feel something. Good or bad. If you do, then I’ll have succeeded. If not, I’ll keep trying. She can be contacted at and please like her to keep up to date: Facebook   

About Bonnie R. Paulson Bonnie R. Paulson mixes her science and medical background with reality and possibilities to make even myths seem likely and give every romance the genetic strength to survive. Bonnie has discovered a dark and twisty turn in her writing that she hopes you enjoy as much as she has enjoyed uncovering it. Dirt biking with her family in the Northwest keeps her sane. Follow on: Facebook / Website/ Twitter / Goodreads / Newsletter/ Literary Addicts / Amazon