Weekly Writing Spark~April 29th, 2013 || via

“Some of us think holding on makes us strong, but sometimes it is letting go.”

~Herman Hesse

Many of us hold on to things that aren’t healthy for us because the fear of what will happen if we let them go paralyzes us.

What do you need to let go of? A bad habit? An unrealistic ideal? A stressful situation? An unhealthy relationship? What would be the worst thing that would happen and what would be the best? Reflect and write!

Books, Writing

Interview with Indie Author Micheal Rivers

If you are familiar with the online Indie Author scene you have no doubt heard of Paranormal Thriller Author, Micheal Rivers. Micheal was kind enough to take a few minutes to share with us a bit about himself and his brilliant work. Welcome Micheal!

Author Micheal Rivers

Tell us a little about yourself. When did your interest in writing begin?

I was born in small town on the inner coast of North Carolina called Ahoskie. At the time, I believe the population was about six thousand and still trying to grow like so many towns of its size. At seventeen, I entered the Marine Corps during Vietnam and life rolled on from there with a lot of travel and seeing lands I thought only existed in a book somebody wrote. I am married to a fascinating woman and we are currently preparing a move to South Dakota. I love to fish and hunt so it is a little slice of heaven to me. We have six sons, one grandchild and another due in July. My interest in writing has been with me for as long as I can remember and I hope it never goes away. I love to watch the stories develop and where they will take me next

You have five books out, three fictions and two non-fictions. If you could possibly choose, which one was your favorite to write?

I enjoyed writing all of them and I hate to choose just one, but I guess I would have to say Ghosts of the North Carolina Shores because it revolves around my life as a North Carolinian. There is so much personal history there for me. The spirit of the founding of the United States as well as the actual amount of factual history is astounding. Anything from wars to famous men who shaped our lives can be found here. It is a land that the stars seem to shine just for you in a perfect blue-black sky.

Ghosts of the North Carolina ShoresWhat is the most important thing for you when writing your novels the characters or the plot?

Both are equally important to me. A tale cannot begin or end without characters. The story just happens like the Karma in your life. I believe a famous poet once wrote that a man is the master of his ship. That being said he decides his own fate. Hence, you have a story, good or bad. When I combine characteristics to create a character I sometimes laugh out loud at his or her actions. I almost have a tendency to want to see the bad guy get smacked for his behavior toward others. Sometimes people will get so engrossed in the story that they write to you and tell you they hated the story because the bad guy was a jerk. Mission accomplished, the reader gave a great review and never realized how much she actually became involved in the story in the book.

The Black Witch

What does your writing routine look like? How has this routine changed from when you first started?

My writing routine is a story in itself. I write inside my head regardless of what I am doing because I am always on the prowl for some quirk someone has or maybe an unusual look about him, such as the way he or she is built or their manner of speech. A million things to decipher and possibly use in the future are always present. My routine has always been the same. I never know when I am going to sit down and deliver a story of some kind. Not all will go into a book at the time. But, it’s like anything in life; its time will come sooner than later. Has the routine changed, I dare say not.

Verliege (1)

What is the most memorable response you have had about your writing?

I received a five-star review of one of my books from a highly qualified reviewer. Her words were very humbling and I had no idea my writing had that kind of effect on her intellect. She gave me the kind of review I will hold forever in my memory. She knows who she is and thank you will never be enough.

Appalachia Mountain Folklore

.Which one of your characters (if any) would you invite to a party?

You are kidding, right? Hanging out with those people could get a guy arrested, or dead, take your pick. Seeing any of those people in one room mingling with your guest would cause a nervous breakdown. Except for one and he would be glad to give everybody advice while you listen to his life’s story. On the paranormal end of the party, I expect it would be very interesting..

Moonlight on the Nantahala

.What books and/or authors have most influenced your life?

Pick one. Almost all of any notoriety has had something special for someone to hang on to. Currently my favorite author in the Indie world is Glenn Starkey, a gentleman by all respects. He writes page-turners and I am ready for his next book. From the big six I have several. The classics are always at the top of the list with Voltaire, Poe, Dumas, Ellison, Faulkner, and Hemingway. These guys had style that is lost forever.

Can you tell us what is coming up for you and where can we find you online?

I have six books in the works at this time. One of them is out of my genre and for those who like a little history and adventure you may like this one. It will be a pleasant surprise to those who have read my work, not a single ghost in the story anywhere. The other five most likely be some more paranormal with more than a subtle twist to help you sleep with the lights on more often. The book entitled ‘Scratch” is based on a haunted house that has recently burned down much to some people’s satisfaction.

Thank you Belinda, I’ve enjoyed the chance to chat with you and your readers.

For those who wish to contact me online or by email just send your hellos or questions to:


I know you’ve been very busy and I thank you Micheal for taking a few moments to chat! To learn more about Micheal, please check out his links, not to mention his wonderful work!


Quote of the Week via ~ April 26th, 2013

Dirty Pen“The secret of it all is to write in the gush, the throb, the flood of the moment–to put things down without deliberation–without worrying about their style–without waiting for a fit time or place. I always worked that way. I took the first scrap of paper, the first doorstep, the first desk, and wrote–wrote, wrote…By writing at the instant, the very heartbeat of life is caught.”

~Walt Whitman


Interview with Indie Author ~ Eri Nelson

Recently I had the amazing opportunity to interview Indie Author and Owner/Creator of #WROTM~”Supporting Authors One Read at a Time” the wonderful and generous Eri Nelson!

Eri Nelson Pic

Welcome Eri!

Tell us a little about yourself. When did your interest in writing begin?

Writing in my belief is like many art forms. You are typically born with the imprint and in time, the passion is grown out of moments in your life. So with that said… I can honestly say that I have been writing most of my life. My first start outside of poems was a romance I had written at sixteen. Nevertheless, the focus then was more sidetracked than now (lol).

As I grew a life with my husband, my writing grew. This first sprouting came in the form of Christmas cards, which expanded over time into three hundred a year. Within each card came a short story that bared my name.

It was not until my daughter was coming up on graduating high school that I thought “Well I am not an at home Mom now”. With that looming idealism rolling around in my mind, it became clear that it was time to start something I never thought I could before.

Tell us about your writing style. I have read that you call yourself “non-traditional”, how so?

(She smirks wickedly with a slight giggle) Yes, that is how I refer to myself as well as a few other things. (lol) When I say “Non-traditional”, I mean many things. They range from my presence, format, follow through, terminology of what Indie means to me, covers, as well as the twist and turns of my own words.

To explain this I will have to back up a tad to relate how the notice of my style appeared.

“Destiny Repeats Twice” was a book that started it all. It was that idea that gave me hope to look beyond that ‘at home mom’ who did a little bit of college and always the part time job that fit around everyone’s schedules. This was me fulfilling something I never thought I could. And although it was a dream fulfilled, it sat on a shelf for a year with my husband nagging me to do something with it (lol). However, it would wait a tad longer when I saw a call out for 10-15 thousand word shorts by a multitude of authors to go under one cover. The premise was for a paranormal and it sparked something far different in me from “Destiny Repeats Twice”.

The short was written and submitted and although it was turned down due to being untraditional, I did not understand then exactly why. I just assumed it was my story line. It would not be until the series of 15 thousand words turned into another coming in at a little over 24 thousand and another over 30 thousand that it would be more clearer to me.

DHC, “Dearhart Clan Series” are short fast-paced reads that gain in length with each book. The fourth will be around 40 thousand and shape the beginning of a new series “INK”. These will be all around 40 thousand and stay true to a darker intent that I always felt the books to have. It was this intent that swayed me in an unconscious way, so much that the words twist and turn. It is a beat that takes the reader a few pages to pick up the rhythm, as any song of intense tempo will do. With the above in mind, it set readers to think that my verbiage and nouns were out of place and balancing on errors. To that end… I must now state another point that clears up my non-traditional. I edit my own work.

Outside of the first book “The Call From Within”, had an editor as well as a cover artist. Another point is of the artwork, which I will pick back up on here as I finish with my current ramble of editing (lol). Although the book had an editor we found, my husband and I, that content was changed. Outside of the error acknowledgement, my style was altered as well as the characters themselves. This objectivity to a self-published piece hit me and ultimately influenced me to take the task of editing on to myself. This is something I am chastised about but is something I clarify in my disclaimers, which reside in each book.

I am not without errors and although I strive to be, I know logically, they will follow me. This “doing it myself” nature to me is what indie means. Course as progression finds its way into all things our definitions will change, resulting in many forms of self-publishing.

As many will be assuming, from my break down, that I am labeling Indies as not professional and still in training. I know this because it is often an issue that is brought to me so for clarification I offer you this.

INDIE AUTHOR= A writer growing, learning, developing their trade-set based on skills they are acquiring along their journey. (They are not in training or less professional. They are simply working with their own allowances of income with financial support far from the more broader publisher’s stature to try to produce the best quality of work for you the reader.)

This is my own definition; hence, you will probably not find it in any dictionary. Although, it probably should be. Now on to artwork, this stipulates back to my presence and the covers that I mentioned prior. Outside of “The Call From Within”, which was illustrated by Richard Roberts, from the, I have done all my own covers. Often taking out my own camera and digitally manipulating several layers of images to create the final products. This I have even done for a few other authors.

The covers in my opinion are far from what is the hottest trend of the year. Therefore, in my eyes, fall under the non-traditional label.

I would have to say my final point on styling is following through. I am very hands on. Even now as I have sought out PRs, it is important to me to be there for readers. Someone to turn to or shout at if they don’t like how a character played out (lol). For you see, it is not about a sale. It is about acknowledging the pleasure of a read and how important it is to obtain.

Eri Nelson Books Banner

In my opinion, you are wonder woman ~you are hands on in all areas of the production and publication of your books, how do you manage it all?

With a lot less hair. (lol) Joking aside, I don’t pull my hair out as often as you might think.

Let me take a moment to say (as she takes her star imprinted bracelets off) thank you for referring to me as “wonder woman”. It is something, outside my similarity of bracelets, which I can strive for as an alter ego. (lol)

Now to truly answer your question I would have to say I typically look at three screens and multi task.  Sometimes I am successful and other moments feel as if I am drowning. However, as time has done its cruel joke and aged me, I have learned to float. (lol)

Eri Nelson Logo

I know firsthand that you tirelessly support other authors and produce a monthly newsletter called “WROTM Newsletter: Supporting Authors One Read at a
Time”~Tell us a bit about that.

#WROTM came about on the back of a magazine some 2 ½ years now but as the magazine came to an end this past month the idea of support did not.

Currently, we are reformatting and are hoping to reach a multitude of voices wishing to be heard. This is literally, what we are trying to do. For you see, we have started a ‘VIDEO BOOK TOUR ‘ which comes in the form of an interactive slideshow that features images that branch into links as well as the videos placed on YouTube. Presently, we are playing with what works and what doesn’t and you don’t need to pay to get involved. We understand an author’s budget because we are authors. The only thing we ask is that you post it on your blog once a month or post to any social media then notify us of your posting. This gets your book and its active link on our next tour. It is that simple… and a straightforward way to promote yourself as well as other authors.

Now as the above is stated, we have other ways to help promote you on our site. Such as sharing our hashtag on your tweet with #WROTM… when you do this the feed is shared on three sites; our site, my blog that branches off my site in its link, and the site that originates the feed. Even posting to our page on Facebook will get you this same result. We also have a forum and a free to 99-cent page to help promote you and connect. Of course, we are just getting started under these new installments as well as being still in development.

Tell us about your work, in particular the “Dearhart Clan Series”. What inspired you to write these stories in particular?

As I stated somewhere closer to the top of our discussion the DHC was brought to me on the posting of a call out. The idea just brought something out in me. It was dark, primal, adult, heated, action packed, and laced in erotic natures.

I could let my mind go wild for they are not human. These “wolfly” characteristics have no humanity. They strive to remember it and refrain from acting on the most primal resolves.

“The Call From Within” is a simple introduction to this series and although it ends with a fast forced love story not every ending will be so likely. Course you will just have to read the books to find out. In fact hit me up for a free look into the series at

Which character (if any) would you most like to hang out with?

Hmmm, it would be “Wash” from the “DHC” but “Izzy” from the “Isabella (Izzy) Tulley & Aiden Black” Series (“Destiny Repeats Twice”). “Wash” is intense and completely a joy to write on the torment of one’s soul. However, I would ultimately know going in that my life span would be greatly shortened. (lol) “Izzy” for she is a trip. Action upon action with her truly addicting sense of humor.

What books and/or authors have most influenced your life?

Since I am surrounded by authors due to my connections, it would be hard to decide on merely one or a few. Every word should be absorbed and devoured by any author that you can get a hand on their work. We are human so therefore in a constant stand of learning and open to influence.
Can you tell us what is coming up for you and where can we find you online?

Presently, I am working on the “Scent Of Power”, the second in the “Isabella (Izzy) Tulley & Aiden Black Series”. This will hopefully be out this coming 2013 summer. Next up is the fourth in the DHC, which won’t release until winter 2013.

As always, you can find me on, which holds all my social media outlets as well as all my ramblings and book trailers (yeah).


I would like to take this moment to thank Belinda and her always-delightful presence. I often look forward to her smiling tweets and posts on Facebook. You, Belinda, often make my days brighter.

Best Wishes to you all and thank you so much for stopping by to read just a little about me ~ Eri Nelson


I would like to thank Eri so much for taking the time to share a little bit about her work and thoughts on writing. Please take a moment to check out her sites and if you are an author please take a look at #WROTM.


Weekly Writing Spark~April 22nd, 2013 || via

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. “

~ Author Unknown

What was a poignant moment in your life, a moment that redefined what happiness meant to you? Was it the birth of a child, meeting the love of your life, or realizing that you’ve reached a goal?

Reflect and write!


Books to Read ~ Have No Shame by Melissa Foster

When civil rights and forbidden love collide

 Have No Shame

“This book will resonate with readers who enjoyed Kathryn Stockett’s, THE HELP, Julie Kibler’s, CALLING ME HOME, John Grisham’s, A TIME TO KILL, Sue Monk Kidd’s, THE SECRET LIFE OF BEES, and Kathleen Grissom’s, THE KITCHEN HOUSE.”

Buy it Now on Amazon:
Buy it Now on B&N:

Within moments of starting to read, you will be transported back to the Arkansas of 1967 – hot, dusty, utterly rural and edgy. Poor white farmers dependent upon cheap black labor who, due to their superior numbers, are constantly suppressed, living on the wrong side of town, ghettoised and terrified. You will remember scenes from `In the Heat of the Night’ and `Easy Rider’; you will remember that, less than fifty years ago, if you were black, you could be beaten for simply being in the wrong place at the wrong time. And if you died at the hands of a white youth, justice would almost certainly be denied you.” Author Roderick Craig Low


 Alison Tillman has called Forrest Town, Arkansas home for the past eighteen years. Her mother’s Blue Bonnet meetings, her father toiling night and day on the family farm, and the division of life between the whites and the blacks are all Alison knows. The winter of 1967, just a few months before marrying her high school sweetheart, Alison finds the body of a black man floating in the river, and she begins to view her existence with new perspective. The oppression and hate of the south, the ugliness she once was able to avert her eyes from, now demands her attention.

When a secretive friendship with a young black man takes an unexpected romantic turn, Alison is forced to choose between her predetermined future, and the dangerous path that her heart yearns for.


“A gripping and poignant novel dealing with a subject once taboo in American society.” Hagerstown Magazine

“Have No Shame is a powerful testimony to love and the progressive, logical evolution of social consciousness, with an outcome that readers will find engrossing, unexpected, and ultimately eye-opening.” Midwest Book Review

“A historical novel of love and its triumph, told with a unique and compelling voice.” Bestselling Author Kathleen Shoop

“Have No Shame is a delightful eye opener and a rather poignant book that everyone everywhere should put on their must-read list.” Readers’ Favorite

“A dynamic and heartwarming tale of young love, giving testament to those who struggled so we can live in an integrated society.” Author Rachelle Ayala


“[HAVE NO SHAME] Perfectly catches the South at the dawning of the Civil Rights Movement. Melissa Foster takes us on an adventure that twists and turns unpredictably to a tense climax that renders this novel a true page-turner. This is undoubtedly the best novel I have read in a long time.”  Roderick Craig Low, Author of ‘Promises of Love and Good Behaviour’

“This book is not just a story; it’s an experience.” Author G.E. Johnson

Buy HAVE NO SHAME on Amazon:


Melissa Foster

Melissa Foster

 Melissa Foster is the award-winning author of four International bestselling novels. Her books have been recommended by USA Today’s book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the Women’s Nest, a social and support community for women, the World Literary Café. When she’s not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on Fostering Success. Melissa is also a community builder for the Alliance for Independent Authors. She has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.

Melissa hosts an annual Aspiring Authors contest for children and has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Melissa lives in Maryland with her family.

Visit Melissa on The Women’s NestFostering Success, or World Lit Cafe. Melissa enjoys discussing her books with book clubs and reader groups, and welcomes an invitation to your event.


Megan’s Way
2011 Beach Book Award Winner (Spirituality)
2011 Readers Favorite Awards, Winner (Fiction/Drama), Finalist (Women’s Fiction)
2010 Next Generation Indie Book Award, Finalist (Spirituality)
2011 New England Book Festival, Honorable Mention (Spirituality)

Chasing Amanda
2011 Readers Favorite Awards, Winner (Paranormal), Finalist, (Women’s Fiction, Mystery)
2011 Dan Poynter’s Global eBook Awards, Winner, (Paranormal)
Top 10 Books of 2011, Pixel of Ink
Amazon Top 100 75+ Days running
Indie Reader’s Bestselling List That Counts (8 weeks)
Top Books of 2011, The Write Agenda
Come Back To Me

2012 Next Generation Indie Book Awards, Finalist,

2012 Readers Favorite Awards, Finalist

2012 Kindle Book Review Best Indie Books Award, Finalist

2011 Dan Poynter’s Global Ebook Awards, Finalist

Top 5 Must Read Books of 2011, IndieReader
Top Ten Books of 2011, Tea Time With Marce
IndieReader Best Reviewed Books of 2011, Huffington Post





The Women’s Nest, women’s social network:

World Literary Café:

Fostering Success:

Facebook Melissa Foster: (Fanpage)



Quote of the Week via ~ April 19th, 2013

© Belinda Witzenhausen 2013
© Belinda Witzenhausen 2013

“We live and breathe words. …. It was books that made me feel that perhaps I was not completely alone. They could be honest with me, and I with them. Reading your words, what you wrote, how you were lonely sometimes and afraid, but always brave; the way you saw the world, its colors and textures and sounds, I felt–I felt the way you thought, hoped, felt, dreamt. I felt I was dreaming and thinking and feeling with you. I dreamed what you dreamed, wanted what you wanted–and then I realized that truly I just wanted you.” 

~ Cassandra Clare, Clockwork Prince