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Archive for the ‘Promotion: novels & blogs’ Category

Next Stop on Blog Hop Tour RE “My Writing Procedure”

What is Lori Foroozandeh ’s writing process for sharing some of the most horrendous experiences imaginable: rape, starvation, beatings in an Iran concentration camp. Visit her blog to read her answers:  http://lorissong.com/2014/02/16/blog-hop-tour/ and visit Amazon.com to learn more about her book: Lori’s Song

Do You Review? Micki Does!

canstockphoto11687088I do a lot of my purchasing online these days, primarily because I can read other customers’ experiences. When people take the time to not just “like” something but to explain why,  I’m more confident that it will (or won’t) interest me. I bet you feel the same way. But do you reciprocate?

Micki does!

Writing reviews of books or any product can be time-consuming, forcing us to draw on our creative side which already is overworked or may have been dormant so long we’re not sure it still works. So why not just let others do it; after all, there are people who get paid to do this.

But do we always believe or agree with the professional reviewers? Think about the movie reviews you’ve read recently… Most of us would rather access reviews of people who are similar to us, people we can identify with. But those people are busy doing some of the same thing we do, like my colleague, Micki.

Micki on Pinterest  Micki Peluso is a published author who still does all the things a wife, mother, grandmother, student and instructor (without the formal titles), friend and  involved citizen does. Yet she has written 56 book reviews–her most recent being a review of my novel (for which I’m extremely grateful!) Her gift to readers, freely given to those of us who rely on reviews for our own buying decisions, has become a personal call to action.  Taking the time to write a review of my own purchases–whether books or any other necessary object–is a gift to people I may never meet, whether creators or potential buyers. Yet it’s proof that, like Micki, I am interested in others!

I’m concluding my plea for all of us to post more reviews with this link to examples of Micki’s reviews: Micki Peluso’s book reviews (including mine!)  To entice you to go there, here’s the final lines from her review of Pieces of You.

A Book That Speaks to the Soul, February 8, 2013
This review is from: Pieces of You (Paperback)

Author J. F. Elferdink writes a remarkable compelling story which will linger in the minds of the reader, perhaps forever. It might entice or scare readers, helping to redefine their lives, examine their actions and the motives behind them. It is not a work that one can just read and put down without in-depth personal contemplation. This is a book that speaks to the soul.

When and where is the last review you’ve written?

Don’t We All Love Recognition!

On January 16, I’m in the Author Spotlight here!

If you click on the underlined statement, read the “spotlight”

written by Morgen Bailey and give me feedback,

I will grant you one request (one that isn’t illegal or immoral and one I can fill…)

AND ask you to consider giving recognition to someone who needs to hear it.


Great Novels are Handbooks for Personal Development

[A review of “Reading for Personal Development” by Marta Merajver-Kurlat]

The premise of this reflective little book is that reading provides much more than entertainment–books provide keys to some of the questions in our lives. A great book, one that stands the test of time, discusses issues “so profoundly human that we feel they inform the present.” Merajver-Kurlat also says, “Books have an ending, but are not truly finished until readers reinterpret and actualize them.”

I’ve chosen two of the ten books she interpreted in “Reading for Personal Development” to reinterpret for myself and to let other readers glimpse what Merajver-Kurlat’s researched analyses offer us.

I chose is Aldous Huxley’s “Brave New World” primarily because some of us find the future more fascinating than the past, maybe because we think we can have a part in improving the future while the past…is past. Huxley warns us of a future under a totalitarian regime. Merajver-Kurlat adds to this prophecy the potential to become a casualty rather than a liberator if we “renounce individuality for the sake of safety amid the flock.”

In my other choice, “The President” by Miguel Angel Asturias, Merajver-Kurlat asks us to bleed over this book to truly comprehend the nature of evil. For those of us who’ve never experienced life under a Latin American dictatorial government, the “unspeakable abominations” written about seem unreal. Yet those who’ve lived through these circumstances must be abler to place themselves in the roles of those who pretend nothing is wrong, or with those who must make themselves invisible to survive. Admitting to the horror would likely be a death warrant. Could it be that those of us who dare to read The President and similar books are the ones able to survive when we have the courage to demand an end to the horrors?

After finishing each chapter, I felt like I needed more of Merajver-Kurlat’s astute insights into each book’s meaning and application for my life–until I reviewed her purpose for writing: to teach me, the reader, to read between the lines.  Once I accepted her challenge to reach my own conclusions, I knew I‘d found the keys to answering my questions—instead of the author’s.

What books have been your handbooks for personal development?

Five Things I Love About Davis Bunn’s Latest Book, “Rare Earth”

  1. Bunn’s impression of Kenya, its culture, challenges, and natural features
    Here are a few examples from the book:

    • the African limp handshake of warriors trained to show no aggression;
    • the African rhythm, where the passage of time is measured in the sweep of stars, the rising of crops, the carving of cliffs by wind and rain;
    • the elders’ circle where tribal leaders meet to discuss local issues
  2. Davis’ protagonist, Marc Royce, who characterizes a man with the standards, strengths, and physical features of a man almost any woman could love
    Here are a few examples:

    • Traits: strength (“swinging around, his entire body a whip”) and sensitivity (he feels for the villagers loss of their homes “with all his heart”)
    • Leadership ability: called Shujaa by the elders – a warrior who rises within the tribe to save it in times of crisis
  3. International intrigue mixed with social justice issues

    • Chinese are trying to control the world supplies of rare-earth minerals using a cheap, primitive extraction technology
    • An Israeli kibbutz has found an environmentally-friendly and cost-effective solution
  4. Portrayal of hope that people of different backgrounds and belief systems can learn to serve each other in ways that allow everyone to benefit

    •  Clans who were sworn enemies meet together in peace
    •  Representatives from the U.N., the U.S., the Kenyan government, and elders of three dozen displaced villages work out a solution to the book’s primary conflict
  5. The book’s ending – justice prevails: the bad guys get caught and the good people get the rewards they deserve

    • Lodestone is under investigation, their worldwide assets frozen
    • A Kenyan corporation is formed, holding all licenses for extraction and refinement of rare earths with one-third of all profits to go to villages
    • And the missing man, Serge… you’ll have to read the book to find out if he’s found alive (and to find out if Marc gets the girl)

I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from Bethany House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.


“You can’t judge a book by its cover”–or can you?

cover for “Pieces of You”

This is my proposed cover for my novel. Can you tell what the book will reveal by its cover?

P. S. I plan to make Pieces of You available through Amazon soon, so please don’t put off giving me your honest feedback.

Joyce (J. F. Elferdink)





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