Meet Historical Romance Author Lynn Hubbard


Chase The Moon book cover

Chase The Moon by Lynn Hubbard. Now on sale at Amazon.com

Way back in the 19th century, when buffalo and cowboys still roamed the plains, when bare-chested men and petticoat-bound women looked to each other for love and passion, very few people were taking notes … or keeping score.

Enter author Lynn Hubbard. Lynn brings those bygone days of white-hot passion, snappy dialogue and humorous circumstances back to life in a series of historical romance novels. She released her latest (and fourth) novel,  Chase the Moon, on September 25th. It is now available for sale on Amazon.

(Ladies, you best have a fan handy to shield your blushing cheeks from pryin’ eyes and to keep you from swooning from all the excitement. A little smellin’ salts wouldn’t hurt, either.)

Now, before you click on the book cover above to scarf up your own copy of Lynn’s newest book, I suggest you set a spell as we interview the very gal whose moving words bring the old west back to life with such gusto!   

 Lynn, what got you started writing historical romance novels?

I didn’t really pick romance, it just happened. I Love History and wanted to make it more colorful.

What do you find most compelling about this particular genre, or, in other words, why didn’t you choose to set your books in the present or the future?

My books always start with a character and I build a world around them. I do not always write westerns, my YA is set in Ohio in 1959 and I’m currently working on novel set in 1776. Great year!

What’s your writing process and how long, on average, does it take you to write a book?

I can’t write on a schedule. I have to be inspired, It takes me about a year to write a book. Of course that is while I was working full time, and running my publishing co.

Who are your core readers? Could you tell us a little bit about them and what they find most appealing about your books?

My fans love my books for the escapism. I take them into another time, a nice break from reality. Kind of like a refreshing vacation. In fact, so many of them fell in love with Chase’s bit part in RITW they begged me to write a sequel.

Your latest novel, Chase the Moon, is set in late 1800s Mississippi. How did you research the book and what made you pick that particular setting?

Chase the Moon is a follow up to my book Run into the Wind. Poor Chase had no other choice than to travel to Mississippi, Sabrina would have killed him if he hadn’t. I live in the south, I LOVE the south, it is so RICH in history. Every road, every building tells a tale. I did most of my research online. It is difficult writing about the past. Even if you visit there today, it is not going to be the same visually as it was back then.

What were your biggest challenges in writing Chase the Moon?

It is much, much harder to write a sequel than an original book. You have to make sure everything is the same as in the first book. I work with many characters and develop a background story for each of them. To make them real. Therefore, I was constantly rechecking eye color, horse’s names, attitudes, etc., to make sure they were consistent.

Do you have a special passage from the book? What makes it special for you and would you please share it with us here?

I have a twisted sense of humor and like to instill that on my poor characters. This is one of my favorite scenes.

Chase was somewhere between consciousness and sleep. His eyes drifted shut as he finally relaxed to the swaying sensation of the train. After all the travel and bustling about it was nice to finally unwind.

His peace was interrupted by a droning sound. The resonance could be heard over and over again above the clank of the wheels. Ever alert, he slowly lifted an eyelid. He gazed around the car to see if anyone else had heard the odd noises coming from the doorway. They had not. Aggravated not a soul seemed to notice the eerie sounds he climbed sleepily to his feet and opened up the inner door. Grabbing the swaying wall for support he stepped up to the outer door.

He was startled to find a white, ghastly face peering in through the small square window. An eerie howl arose from its mouth and a chill stole through him. The whipping hair reminded him of a childhood legend his mother used to tell him about: It was a banshee. Had he angered the Gods somehow?

An amazingly human like hand smacked the glass in front of him and he quickly wiped the sleep from his eyes. Taking a brave step forward he unlatched the door and the beast was upon him. He instinctively grabbed it and wrestled it to the ground as his family scrabbled over to see the disturbance.

“Are you insane?” It screeched in an unearthly voice. Chase felt a sudden pain in his ear as his mother quickly summed up the situation and twisted. With a yowl, he was forced off the creature so that his ear would remain intact. He watched in slow motion as Thomas and Jaelyn hurried over to help it up to its feet.

What writers have influenced you the most in your career?

If I had to pick a writer, It would be Kennesaw Taylor. Kennesaw is always running at full speed and encouraging me to get out there and write, write, write. He writes non-fiction as do many of my other writer friends.

What made you decide to go the “indie” route in publishing your work?

LOL! Good question, I never spent much time trying to break into the “Publishing World”. I did some research and sent out 4-5 queries to agents. All of which came back saying, “We are no longer accepting new clients.” So I first self published through one of the free automated services. Then I ran across a book called Aiming for Amazon by Aaron Shepard and it changed my life and my entire view of the publishing world. It had instructions on how to make your own PUBLISHING COMPANY. So I did, and Lemon Press was born.

What book marketing endeavors have you found to be the most successful?

I am totally obsessed with bookmarks. Online it would have to be ads at Night Owl Reviews, they have a large following and are always very supportive to indies. Of course I love my local bookstores who carry my books and encourage me (The Bookworm and The Bookshelter)

What valuable lessons have you learned about book marketing that you could share with other writers?

Free will only get you so far. I read somewhere that writing the book is 10%, editing the book is 30% and marketing the book is 60%. My favorite freebie is free book giveaways at Goodreads I have two of mine currently listed.

What haven’t I asked you about that you’d like to share?

I just wanted to say that this has been an amazing ride so far and I look forward to choosing my own path for the future!

Thank you for visiting and letting us get to know you better!


					
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Book Review: “Rework” by Jason Fried & David Hansson


Book Review: “Rework” by Jason Fried & David Hansson.

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Review: Rework is Not Your Daddy’s Business Start-up Book


"Rework" by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson

Published March 2010 by Crown Business a division of Crown Publishing, NY.

Rework, by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, is a great book for anyone who either owns, or is contemplating starting, a business. The authors founded 37Signals, a Chicago-based software development firm that created the website development software Ruby On Rails and the popular Highrise contact management program — among others. The book expresses their successful business development philosophy which distills down to:

(1) create a product/service that you would like to use
(because it solves a problem you have experienced)
(2) start it now
(3) learn from your successes (as opposed to other
people's failures) and
(4) continuously rework your business in response to
market signals to make it better.

Along the way, they provide invaluable advice designed to disabuse people of commonly accepted business practices that they have found to be counter-productive. These include everything from building extensive mission statements to seeking outside investment capital and working from written business plans. (As you can see, Rework is no ordinary business book!)
The authors are creative minimalists who believe in distilling and developing a core business idea without encumbering it with non-essential frills (see Chapters “Be a Curator” and “Throw Less at the Problem.”) They also believe in a new entrepreneurial work ethic that includes a 10- to 40-hour work week.
They practice what they preach. Rework, they write, began as a 57,000 word book which they then edited down to 27,000 words. Consequently, the book provides a quick, entertaining, thought-provoking read on pages peppered with insightful quotes and great, game-changing ideas.
Highly recommended.

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How to Get the U.S. Economy Humming Again Without More Deficit Spending


“I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts.”  — Abraham Lincoln

Today, Wall Street breathed a collective sigh of relief. The July employment numbers came out, and they exceeded expectations. Instead of generating 85,000 new jobs, businesses managed to fill 117,000 new positions. The added jobs brought the ‘official’ unemployment rate down to 9.1 percent and signaled that we might yet avoid a second economic contraction. The economy has stabilized, and that’s something. But we still have a long way to go. (It takes 120,000 net new jobs each month, experts say, just to keep up with our ever-growing workforce.)

So, three years and nine months into this economic morass, we’re still stuck in neutral. What, if anything, you may ask, will it finally take to get us back in gear, zipping down the road to recovery? In my opinion, it will take two things: honesty from our public officials and a single brief, but decisive, piece of workplace reform legislation.

First, our elected officials need to level with us about the true nature of the economic mess we’re in. They could start by acknowledging that the ‘Great Recession‘ is, in actuality, a depression. (Since our difficulties began, back in December of 2007, the U.S. Gross Domestic Product has shrunk by more than 10 percent — a key determiner of a depression. Second, our real unemployment rate is approximately 22 percent — or 2.5 times the ‘officially’ acknowledged rate of 9.1 percent. The government’s severe under reporting stems from its insistence on using an inaccurate unemployment measure, known as U3. U3’s formula accurately estimates unemployment rates in mild recessions, but it does a poor job during longer, deeper economic contractions, such as this one.

Once the government acknowledges the true depth and breadth of our economic problems, the need for decisive political action will become clear. With one in five Americans either unemployed or seriously under-employed and the rest worried that a shaky recovery could fall apart and put their own jobs at risk, it’s no wonder that consumer confidence has remained so low, for so long. Consumers will not start spending again and lifting us out of this depression until we put them back to work in secure, stable, good-paying jobs.

One sad irony of major economic downturns like this one is that businesses learn, out of necessity, to operate far leaner at the outset, when the deepest economic contractions occur. Afterwards, when the major danger has passed, many of them no longer feel compelled to expand their payrolls. It happened during the Great Depression and it’s happening now. Only today, we have computers and powerful software apps multiplying the employment dampening effects of our productivity gains. We also have tax code capital-depreciation incentives acting as accelerants.

The combination of a constricted economy and sharp productivity gains has produced a severe oversupply of workers. The solution — and it’s an elegant one — is to limit the amount of time anyone can work, by adopting a 4-day, 32-hour work week for all Americans — hourly and salaried workers alike. An employer who asks anyone to work longer hours would need to pay double-time.  And the law should have teeth: stiff fines and even prison terms for employers who violate it. We also should roll it out in stages over a period of months.

Numerous researchers already have shown that a 32-hour work week actually increases worker productivity. And the additional day of leisure time would allow people to pursue extra career training,  spend more quality time with their families or get back into the habit of spending money as economy-stimulating consumers.

Before you dismiss the idea of a shorter work week out of hand, consider this: The five-day, 40-hour work week has only been with us since the end of World War II. During the first half of the 20th century most Americans worked 8 hours a day, six days a week. In the 19th century workdays of 10, 14  even 16 hours were common. Shorter work weeks have been recognized, repeatedly, as a civilizing benefit of heightened workplace productivity.

Both Herbert Hoover and Franklin Roosevelt tried to institute 30-hour work weeks to promote employment during the Great Depression, but their independent efforts failed to pass Congress. But with democrats and republicans now firmly committed to reducing the national debt, this might be the ideal time for them to pass such a measure.

America’s cash-rich businesses can clearly afford it. After all, aren’t they collectively sitting on an estimated $2.5 trillion dollars in cash? This is probably the best investment they could make in restoring the national economy and growing their domestic markets.

All we need to do now is get our elected officials to champion this simple measure and demonstrate their willingness to serve the people, advance economic recovery and secure prosperity for all Americans. Are you with me?

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Have They Turned Prez Obama into another Oval Office ‘Bubble Boy?’


Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...

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On May 22, 2011, I went to the official White House website (http://whitehouse.gov) and dropped President Obama a line. I sent an email congratulating him on some of his more courageous actions to date and urged him to criminally prosecute the Wall Street investment bankers who brought the U.S. and global economies to their knees. I suggested that, should he fail to do so, future historians might construe that as  ‘proof’ of the moral bankruptcy of his administration. I then checked off the box at the bottom of the web page requesting a reply. That was more than nine weeks ago, and I’m still waiting to hear something. (At this point, even an acknowledgement of receipt would be nice!)

All of this  makes me wonder: “Has Obama remained ‘approachable’ and ‘accessible’ to the people — one of his stated goals as a newly elected President — or has he allowed his coterie of ‘handlers’, many of whom are now former Wall Street insiders, to do what handlers do:  Have they cut him off from the people? Do they now tightly control, and filter, his exposure to the public? Furthermore, could they be doing this for their own benefit or for the benefit of their friends and former associates?  Has Chief of Staff William Daley succeeded in reducing President Obama to just one more Oval Office ‘Bubble Boy?’

The answer depends on who William Daley is and where his true allegiances may lie. A member of Chicago’s Daley clan, William is heir to one of our nation’s most powerful Democratic political machines. But he’s also a former vice chairman at JPMorgan Chase, America’s second largest bank, in terms of total assets. Mr. Daley ran the bank’s Corporate Responsibility division, which managed its relationships with lobbyists and government officials. He was still in that position, last January, when President Obama appointed him White House chief of staff.

Let’s not forget who we’re dealing with here. Daley worked with bank lobbyists, the same people who, in recent years, pursued greed-inspired policies that ravaged American consumers. It was the bank lobbyists, operating at the directives of people like Daley, who convinced Congress to “reform” (translation:” eviscerate”) personal bankruptcy laws. They also got elected officials to:

  • Sanction usurious credit-card interest rates
  • Bless unfair, one-sided credit-card contracts and predatory banking fee structures
  • Remove virtually all consumer protections and operational constraints on banks
  • Leave the emerging derivative and credit-default-swap markets unregulated — an omission that lead directly to the global economic collapse.

At the time of his appointment, Daley owned $7.2 million in JPMorgan Chase stock. His Wall Street background and stock holdings raised concerns. In January, 2011, Simon Johnson, a professor at the M.I.T. Sloan School of Management and a former economist with the International Monetary Fund, told the Huffington Post that the bank’s financial tentacles extended into “anything and everything.” He said it was therefore “essential” that Daley sell his interest in the company, if he wanted to avoid any potential conflicts of interest. Johnson warned, “Bill Daley now controls how information is presented to, and decisions are made by, the President.”

Should the President ever see my email and then decide to act on it, bank share prices certainly might fall, but Mr. Daley’s person stock — as a negotiator and fixer — could plummet.  His former Wall Street brethren would know that he had failed to rein in federal prosecutors  on his watch as White House chief of staff.

As I thought about this, I imagined some White House staffer dutifully pressing “delete” and sending my email slipping into cyber oblivion, along with thousands of other anti-Wall Street missives directed to the President. Is it possible that what President Obama now believes to be the ‘authentic’ voice of the people expresses only those thoughts acceptable to the men and women who surround him?

If you were Bill Daley, and you had the power to filter what the President saw, what would you do?  That, my friends, is the nature of the problem we may now face.

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Book Bloggers: Share Your Review Preferences with Indie Authors


Books about survey research and survey design.

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Save time. Avoid needless headaches. Take our short, 9-question survey and let Indie authors know the kind of books you want to review and the format you want your review copies in! We will post your results on Write@You!, a blog about fiction, indie publishing, politics and the ‘writing life.’

Just follow this link to the survey form!

This survey is currently open to the first 100 book bloggers to respond.

© Jonathan S. Reisfeld and Write @ You!, 2011. (See full statement in footer.)

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The Pinacle of ‘Shameless Self Promotion’


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Cover via Amazon

9 Reasons Why I Think You Should Put My New Novelette at the Top of Your Summer Reading List

I don’t think ‘shameless self-promotions’ could possibly get any worse than this! But, so be it. (Mea culpa!). Some things simply need to be said. And so, lacking a huge PR apparatus to do this for me, I’m going to tell you why I think you should put my ebook novelette, The Last Way Station: Hitler‘s Final Journey, at the top of your summer reading list.

My nine reasons:

  1. My book is, if anything, unusual. It’s subject is nothing less than a speculative look at the final judgment Hitler receives in the hereafter for his vast and horrific crimes.
  2. The book raises many moral questions about the cause, psychology and nature of evil and such evil-doers as Hitler and the recently killed Osama bin Ladin.
  3. It examines the issue of “moral relativism” – the way deeply depraved, ingrained and institutionalized evil, such as Hitler’s, influences what I’ll call the “moral continuum” we live in. (Consider it analogous to the way gravity bends the physical space-time continuum.)
  4. I based the book on historically accurate information about Hitler, so you may learn something new and interesting about him.
  5. It provides a good, quick read. A colleague of mine at authonomy.com characterized the writing as “flawless,” no doubt a bit of hyperbole, but I think it moves quickly and reads smoothly.
  6. The book is short (only 13,000 words) so you can read it at one sitting.
  7. It’s cheap ($0.99) and available at either Amazon.com (in Kindle/mobi format) or at Smashwords.com in all popular ebook formats.  (Even if you don’t own an e-reader, you can download FREE ebook reader software at Amazon that will let you read the book on your PC or MAC (links are available on every book page, on the right-hand side).
  8. The book has a bit of a surprise ending. And, last but not least,
  9. It provides a wealth of material for lively book discussions! And isn’t that a big part of the enjoyment we get from reading interesting books?

You’ll find an extensive preview of the book right here, on my blog. (Just click the moving icon of its cover on your right!)

Thanks for putting up with my shameless behavior. I couldn’t help myself, because I deeply believe I’ve written something worthy of your consideration. (If it turns out I’m wrong, you can lodge your complaints in the comment section below, but please read the book first!)

Thanks for listening. Now, I’m going to purchase a hair shirt and start flogging myself mercilessly! (Ugh!)

© Jonathan S. Reisfeld and Write @ You!, 2011. (See full statement in footer.)

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Filed under General, Historical Fiction, Historicl Fiction, Online book promotion, Uncategorized

Book Bloggers: Share Your Review Preferences with Indie Authors


Book Bloggers: Share Your Review Preferences with Indie Authors.

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eBook Giveaway Ends in Two Days!


Do you like history? Fantasy? WWII? Have you wondered, in the wake of Osama bin Laden‘s killing, if “super evil” people are ever held accountable for their crimes or subjected to ‘fitting punishment’? Then, you’ll want to read, “The Last Way Station: Hitler‘s Final Journey.”

Right now, you can get the book for FREE, by visiting The Avid Reader blog. The offer expires on May 31st. So, get your FREE copy while you can!

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The Atlantic Launches Twitter-Based Book Club


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Jeff Howe, author of Crowdsourcing: Why the Power of the Crowd is Driving the future of Business, has gotten The Atlantic Magazine to sponsor the rebirth of his summer of 2010 Wired online experiment: a twitter-based book club, promoting and discussing one book a month with its entire membership.

The club, called 1book140, will read Margaret Atwood‘s The Blind Assassin. (More than 1,400 readers voted, over a three-day period, among a pool of 300 member-submitted titles, to ultimately settle on Atwood’s book.  Howe and The Atlantic’s editorial board also had a say in the final selection.

The twitter-based “public bookclub” idea is an intriguing concept for publicizing new works online, although only one title gets the spotlight each month. 1book140 will start accepting and voting on nominations for July’s book-of-the-month, in mid-June.

I’m going to join and test this out myself. Read Mashable’s write up by Lauren Indvik here: The Atlantic Launches Twitter-Based Book Club.

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