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Wednesday, February 24, 2016

BOOK RECOMMENDATION: J. C. Staudt's Driftmetal, Segment One

I'm a relatively new reader of the steampunk/diesel punk genre, and I loved this first book of this series set on shattered bits remaining of the planet Esperon. Author J. C. Staudt has two other series as well (each set in different worlds), which I'm looking forward to reading also. His snide humor is present throughout Driftmetal, and several times I found myself laughing out loud while reading (which I rarely do).

This book was easy to read and went by too fast. Amazon does list it as 166 pages, but I find my own books' page counts are sometimes short of my Microsoft word count. And, as book one of five in this series to date, I can look forward to having more to read in this world.

I loved the main character in Driftmetal, a pirate of sorts, Mulroney Jakes aka Mull, who prefers to think of himself as a "commodities appropriation and merchandising specialist." Granted, he doesn't always have the purest of motives, but, to me, as someone who is all too responsible, I found him altogether refreshing. Plus I can appreciate his reactions to his family's antics and am living vicariously through his derring-do deeds.

There may be the beginning of a love story with Mull and a female captain in this book, which I would have enjoyed seeing more fleshed out in this first installment. And what is Mull's middle name? He learns of it herein and mentions not even knowing that he had one. I'm curious ...

Anyway, if you're a fan of the Alliance-hating Mal Reynolds in Firefly or the irreverent Captain Jason Nesmith in Galaxy Quest, I think you'll enjoy this story too.

"If your vocation isn’t a vacation, then quit, leap, change careers."

Denise Barker, Author, Blogger, Copy Editor
Books that Build Character(s)


What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you. Ralph Waldo Emerson
When you give someone a book, you don’t give him just paper, ink, and glue.  You give him the possibility of a whole new life. Christopher Morley
The best inheritance you can leave your kids is an example of how to live a full and meaningful life. Dan Zadra

Monday, February 15, 2016

Five Regrets to Avoid Over Your Lifetime

I found this courtesy of StumbleUpon. For the full article, click here: http://www.inc.com/jessica-stillman/5-surprising-life-regrets-that-you-can-easily-avoid.html. You may need to sign up to review more than once.

However, for the recap, I'm providing this handy list:

  • Too much effort in pleasing others [especially when to the exclusion of self]
  • Too much pointless worry [when does your worry ever manifest itself?]
  • Too much acquiring of stuff [the important things cost nothing]
  • Too little taking care of your physical health [our health is actually our first wealth]
  • Too little travel [does armchair researching of faraway places count?]

I happen to agree with all, especially the first two bullet points and the fourth.

Don't wait until the final days of your life to address these issues. We should all hope to die peacefully in bed while asleep (or however you envision it) and with no regrets, no forgiveness due anyone (including ourselves), and with overflowing love filling our hearts, minds, and souls.

God bless us, one and all.

"If your vocation isn’t a vacation, then quit, leap, change careers."

Denise Barker, Author, Blogger, Copy Editor
Books that Build Character(s)


What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you. Ralph Waldo Emerson
When you give someone a book, you don’t give him just paper, ink, and glue.  You give him the possibility of a whole new life. Christopher Morley
The best inheritance you can leave your kids is an example of how to live a full and meaningful life. Dan Zadra

Monday, February 1, 2016

BOOK RECOMMENDATION: Jodi Taylor's Just One Damned Thing after Another, Part Two

In case my previous post didn't incite you to check out this book, here are some tempting quotations from that wonderful start to the series (that I've Americanized from her British English spellings), just to show you this author's wit and talent:
[This] day I got away from that invention of the devil—family. 
[A] woman in a smartly tailored suit. She looked elegant, dignified, and judgmental. 
Thinking carefully is something that happens to other people. 
She was unpopular, self-important, and lacking the sense of humor gene. 
I hadn’t realized how closely together we would live and work. … Now we moved into the physical part of our training. Apparently, up until now, we’d had it easy. … I suspect there are married couples who have less intimate physical contact than we did.
I started to make plans. Not to cheat exactly, because that would be wrong, wouldn’t it? More like dealing with the situation on my own terms.
How did you find the East Gate?
I was looking for the South Gate.
I can’t seem to find your name on the transport list.
Bloody hellfire, sir. Does that mean I didn’t have to do this?

“Miss Black, there are two Ps in oppressed and only one N in minority. You are neither. Delete [that]." 
I saved Sussman’s life when he told Kal her bum looked big in a bustle.
He looked tired. I looked at the clock. It was so late it was early. 
The reason I can’t deal with sympathy is because I never bloody get any. 
You’re more generous than I think I would be.
Yes, well, he’s dead, and I’m not. If it was the other way around, I’d probably be a bit miffed. 
Half of me looked forward to seeing what she had done, half of me didn’t want to go out and mix with people just yet, and half of me (presumably the half that can’t add up) didn’t want to see her because I knew she would blame me for Sussman. 
Dieter and Markham … squared up to each other. Given their respective sizes, it was rather like a chipmunk hurling itself at Mount Everest. 
My fist, traveling at the combined speeds of rage and retribution, impacted hard on her nose. 
Directly or indirectly, I was responsible for everyone currently in sick bay. That had to be some sort of record. 
"You’ve seen this unit go through historians like laxatives through a short grandmother."
Others came to help. I’ve never been undressed by so many people. 
He was calm and soothing and had a reasonable explanation for everything. No woman should have to put up with that. 
The building … was just like us—noisy and gloriously tasteless. 
We had them on speed-dial. They had us on their blacklist.
In the distance, I could hear shouting. And screaming. Familiar sounds. St. Mary’s [staff] thundered past on their way to make a crisis considerably worse. It was nice to be home. 
See what you're missing?

"If your vocation isn’t a vacation, then quit, leap, change careers."

Denise Barker, Author, Blogger, Copy Editor
Books that Build Character(s)


What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you. Ralph Waldo Emerson
When you give someone a book, you don’t give him just paper, ink, and glue.  You give him the possibility of a whole new life. Christopher Morley
The best inheritance you can leave your kids is an example of how to live a full and meaningful life. Dan Zadra

Friday, January 22, 2016

BOOK RECOMMENDATION: Jodi Taylor's Just One Damned Thing after Another

This is Book One of her series entitled The Chronicles of St. Mary's. It's simply wonderful. This UK author has a wicked sense of humor and obviously a love of ancient world history. As an American, just reading her British idioms transports me to another place, while the main character, Alex, takes me to some more. Love her and the other creative rule-breakers who work for St. Mary's. Except for the bad guys of course.

If you like your sci-fi/fantasy/time travel stories with comedy, tragedy, adventure, romance and a smattering of history lessons, this one's got it all. Even work intrigue. I read it in one sitting. What fun! There are seven books in the series, counting this first one plus the one due out May 5, 2016, which you can preorder now on Amazon.

Can't wait to read the rest of them. Enjoy! 

"If your vocation isn’t a vacation, then quit, leap, change careers."

Denise Barker, Author, Blogger, Copy Editor
Books that Build Character(s)


What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you. Ralph Waldo Emerson
When you give someone a book, you don’t give him just paper, ink, and glue.  You give him the possibility of a whole new life. Christopher Morley
The best inheritance you can leave your kids is an example of how to live a full and meaningful life. Dan Zadra


Thursday, January 21, 2016

Amazon to Mark E-Books with Spelling and Formatting Errors Beginning 02.03.2016

Haven't read about this yet? Here's the link to the article: http://goodereader.com/blog/e-book-news/kindle-e-books-will-have-a-warning-message-if-they-have-spelling-mistakes-or-bad-formatting.

If you Indie authors have been meaning to update the spelling and grammar errors in your e-books, now is the time to get a copy editor lined up, before the 02.03.2016 rush begins. I'm not a professional formatter, but I'm handy with Styles within MSWord and can do an initial pass with my general formatting knowledge (as I do my copyediting magic) before you then hand over the book to your professional formatter.

I'm available now. FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED (based on the order in which my special PayPal account receives the accurate fee amount paid in full, plus my acceptance of said prepaid project's subject matter). I RESERVE THE RIGHT TO REFUSE BOOKS ABOUT CERTAIN TOPICS and/or BASED ON MY AVAILABILITY.

READ THIS LINK to MY POST re 2016 FEES and SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS: http://livingthedreampublishing.blogspot.com/2015/12/denise-barker-freelance-copy-editor.html.

Then contact me at LivingTheDreamPublishing@gmail.com.

"If your vocation isn’t a vacation, then quit, leap, change careers."

Denise Barker, Author, Blogger, Copy Editor
Books that Build Character(s)


What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you. Ralph Waldo Emerson
When you give someone a book, you don’t give him just paper, ink, and glue.  You give him the possibility of a whole new life. Christopher Morley
The best inheritance you can leave your kids is an example of how to live a full and meaningful life. Dan Zadra


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

New Year, More Reading: This Time It's Tony Dunbar's Crooked Man in the Tubby Dubonnet Series

Last night I read book one of Tony Dunbar's Tubby Dubonnet series, entitled Crooked Man. This was his amazing debut novel. My only drawback to his stories is the sad lack of seafood in my house (and my proximity to New Orleans, as I live in DFW). He described more than a few Cajun meals that had me drooling. No matter. I will read this man's words even if my cupboards are bare and no excellent Cajun fare is within one hundred miles of me.

This initial offering in his series is a great read with some truly brilliant twists to efficiently tie up all the plotlines into two endings: a main one and a quickie secondary finale as well.

Have you ever read a book that made you question your own art, your own creativity? Tony Dunbar does that to me. Regardless I won't quit consuming his works nor will I stop creating my own. He just raises the bar a good bit.

Enjoy!

"If your vocation isn’t a vacation, then quit, leap, change careers."

Denise Barker, Author, Blogger, Copy Editor
Books that Build Character(s)


What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you. Ralph Waldo Emerson
When you give someone a book, you don’t give him just paper, ink, and glue.  You give him the possibility of a whole new life. Christopher Morley
The best inheritance you can leave your kids is an example of how to live a full and meaningful life. Dan Zadra
 

Monday, January 11, 2016

In Love with Tony Dunbar and the Tubby Dubonnet Series

I'm a little late to the party but found this extrawonderful author via a BookBub special on Lucky Man, book six of Tony Dunbar's Tubby Dubonnet series.

Wow. I'm addicted to this man's words with just one book (even read out of order).

First, I'm a Baton Rougeborn gal, with an artist's appreciation for the colorful sights and delectable smells of New Orleans. In this one book he mentioned most of my favorite Cajun foods, except for grits (with shrimp of course) and crawfish etouffee. But I forgive him.

Second and beyond, his writing is beautiful. He has fresh similes and metaphors, not a cliché in the bunch. I actually read his descriptions instead of skimming over them. They are a subject matter to be studied by any author intent on self-improvement. I liked his skillful overlapping of plotlines, even to the point where he surprised me with one or two of them.

And this author has great insights into human nature, while pointing out Tubby's shortcomings with humor.

The plot sped along, with twists and turns and tidbits to keep me very enthralled and entertained. The story touched upon the many facets of Tubby's life: his ex-wife, his three daughters, his secretary, his friends, his work, his needling and as-yet-to-be-determined unsatisfaction at this time, his sobriety. It felt so real reading this tale that I expect to visit New Orleans, eating my way through food I miss so much, hearing the sweet sounds of the lovely Cajun/Creole accents, to find Tubby sitting beside me, drinking ginger ale.

I'll be reading and rereading Tony Dunbar's works for the rest of my days, both to pull me into his novels and to study his art.

What a find.

I feel lucky. I'm one lucky woman. (Pun intended.)

"If your vocation isn’t a vacation, then quit, leap, change careers."

Denise Barker, Author, Blogger, Copy Editor
Books that Build Character(s)


What lies behind you and what lies in front of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you. Ralph Waldo Emerson
When you give someone a book, you don’t give him just paper, ink, and glue.  You give him the possibility of a whole new life. Christopher Morley
The best inheritance you can leave your kids is an example of how to live a full and meaningful life. Dan Zadra