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review 2018-02-20 01:16
Release Day ARC Review: Teaching Ben by Shae Connor
Teaching Ben (Dreamspun Desires Book 52) - Shae Connor

Ben Cooper put in his time with the military, but at 24 is now looking for a fresh start, using his GI bill to attend college in Savannah, GA. And finally step out of the closet. 

David Powell is a TA in Ben's class, same age as Ben, but obviously off-limits due to his status. David also had some struggles in his past, but has tried hard to stay away from temptation and stay the course. 

The attraction is immediate, but neither can act on it, thus there is lots of UST in this book, and the romance is super slow burn. David and Ben become friends, and as they learn more about each other, and secrets are revealed, their friendship, while platonic, becomes even stronger. 

I liked how the author gave Ben room to expand his horizons, how she let him spread his wings, away from his commandeering father, away from the rigors and structure of the Air Force, building the life he wants to live. 

David made a huge mistake once and it cost him dearly. He's making up for it, but he also knows that he cannot step a single foot out of line, no matter how attracted he is to Ben. The author did a fine job fleshing out his character and giving him a background story that felt realistic and believable in how much it still impacted his life. 

Told alternatively from Ben's and David's point-of-view, we get a well-rounded story with a believable plot that even had a bit of suspense, though the villain of the story was rather clear from the get-go and the suspense was more in how this particular piece of the plot would unfold and impact their budding relationship. 

As with all the books in this series, there is little explicit steam on page, which is fine as far as I'm concerned. I much rather read about the relationship development, and how the two MCs get to their HEA than about what they do in the bedroom. I much rather see an emotional connection develop more so that a romp in the sheets, and I got that here. Ben and David really clicked, like they were meant to find each other, with both of them having had to struggle to get to this point in their lives, which meant that they were more aware of what they found and thus more protective of it. 

I enjoyed reading this. 

** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher in exchange for an honest review. **

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review 2017-11-05 00:00
Teaching Patience (Homespun)
Teaching Patience (Homespun) - Katie Crabapple The characters that Katie Crabapple have created in this series are amazing. They are flawed and real in a way that a lot of other authors cannot capture. Reading about a character in the old west who suffers from a germ phobia or crippling social anxiety was a revelation to me as it's difficult to even find contemporary romance books that address those issues.
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text 2017-05-11 10:34
11th May 2017
The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma - Bodhidharma,Red Pine

As a lamp, a cataract, a star in space
an illusion, a dewdrop, a bubble
a dream, a cloud, a flash of lightning
view all created things like this.


Red Pine


May 11, 868: The Diamond Sutra, a book of Buddhist teachings, is thought to be the oldest surviving complete printed book that has a date of printing. Bill Porter, pen name Red Pine, is the author of a popular English translation.

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text 2017-05-07 07:35
I am going use this book for my 5th Roll
Teaching Christ's Children About Feeling Angry - Almar Denso,Corine Hyman Ph.D.

I did Roll on May 4th. Which is when I finished my book. I got an 11 (5+6) and landed on Tomorrow Land 34 - Buzz Lightyear Auto Blasters. I am to read a book with YA or Middle Grade or Read a book with a child or Children toys on the Cover.


My book has 2 children on it. I hope it will work.

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text 2017-04-20 07:37
Introduction to Memoir Writing - workshop outline FREE

A dozen people turned up to my free workshop, Introduction to Writing Memoir.


I spoke for an hour - flat out. In the end there was applause and a few participants bought my books, nicely displayed on a table near the door (so they couldn't miss them).


A lot of participants who attend the Creative Writing Circles I facilitate are writing memoirs. A lot of them don't know where to begin, how to structure or write their stories. I thought a workshop that addressed these issues would at least get them started off right, saving them a lot of time and frustration revising.


They might even be grateful enough to buy a book. Some apparently were.


Here's the workshop outline I distributed to those who attended. You might find this information helpful if you're considering writing about an event in your life. If you do (and your feeling grateful) sign up for my Advance Reading Team and I'll send you a FREE E-BOOK edition of my latest novel The LOCAL RAG.


Here's the link. http://eepurl.com/cj5wjj



Introduction to Memoir Writing

Facilitator: Rod Raglin

Amazon Author Page - https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B003DS6LEU

Website: http://www.rodraglin.com

E-mail: rod_raglin@yahoo.com


This short program is designed to set you on the right path to writing a memoir.


What is a memoir?

A memoir is not the story of your life (autobiography) but rather a story of one of your life experiences. It has a distinct beginning and end.


How to plan your memoir

Your memoir should be structured like any good story. Before you begin writing you should decide the story's Goal, Motivation and Conflict.

Goal: What did you want?

Motivation: Why did you want it?

Conflict: What was stopping you from getting it?


Be specific about your Goal

It's best to be specific and not generalize - I wanted to be happy is a generalization. I wanted out of the marriage I was in with an alcoholic so I could be happy is specific. Rather than wanting a good job which is a generalization; write I wanted to be a neuro-surgeon.



Dig deep to discover why you wanted what you wanted. You might think you wanted to start your own business because you hoped to make a lot of money but was there more - the prestige, the power, the independence?



These are the challenges that are preventing you from attaining your goal. Here again dig deep. What was stopping you from writing that novel - the responsibility of a family, lack of time - or fear of failure?


Where to start

Start with the inciting incident. The moment you decided things were going to change, or the moment something happened that changed the status quo.

Don't start with backstory - your personal history - fill that in as the story unfolds and only what is necessary for the reader to understand your motivation. Always make it minimal and relevant to this memoir.


Story structure

The story arc - begins with the inciting incident and the tension rises as you are confronted with one obstacle (conflict) after another that you have to overcome to achieve your goal. The highest point of the story arc is the climax - the final battle that will resolve whether or not you achieve your goal.


Then denouement - wrap up loose ends and finish.


Some tips about writing

Always ask Why and How - and answer these questions honestly


Evoke emotion - how did you feel about the person, the event, the award, the death? Reading is an emotional experience and if you don't tell the reader how you felt about the events you're writing about your memoir will be uninspiring and not entertaining. Remember the paradox of writing - the more personal you write, the more universal the appeal.


Show don't tell

You want your reader to feel like they're actually experiencing the event not being told what happened. One of the best way to do this is to use lots of dialogue. Dialogue is action and action is showing not telling. It doesn't matter if you don't remember exactly what was said - this is your story.


Consider the writing technique Scene/Sequel.

Write an action scene and then a sequel reflecting on the action.


Use specifics - don't generalize



Once you've written your memoir you need to put it away until it's out of your system. You need to get perspective on it. That could take anywhere from a minimum of three months to? Then take it out and re-read and revise. You'll likely have lots of revisions.


Once you've done the re-write, you need to find as many "objective" people as possible to read, proof and comment on it. Try to find people who can be honest and do not have a conflict of interest.


Consider joining a local writing group or register on an online critique site. Then revise taking their comments and corrections into consideration.



Once you've done all the revising you can decide to self publish on Amazon - free with a 70-30% royalty split or begin the submission process to publishers.


Books that are helpful:

The Writer's Process, Getting Your Brain in Gear by Anne Janzer 

Writing MEMOIR, The Practical Guide to Writing and Publishing the Story of Your Life,

by Jerry Payne


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