This Week on Books Direct – 28 April 2013

This Week on Books Direct – 28 April 2013
Here is a list of the articles you may have missed this week:
“Blogs and Typos: A Big Deal?” – Article by Victoria Grefer.
How much do typos drive you up the wall? I’m with Victoria. If you ever see a typo in one of my blog posts, please let me know privately so that I can fix it.
“Writers: Create Your Digital Press Kit” – Article by Web Design Relief.
Every author who is serious about self-promotion should invest in an author website and engage in social media. The next step to making your digital author platform shine is creating your digital press kit and making it available online.
Kai discusses the importance of coming up with an author tagline. Have you got one?
“Follow You, Follow Me” – Tutorial by Carol E. Wyer for Indies Unlimited.
Let Carol guide you through the tricky business of setting up follow gadgets on your blog.
“How Indie Authors Can Work Together” – Article by Jason Boog for GalleyCat.
What a great idea! A team of indie authors recently banded together to create The Indie Voice group and release an eight-book To Die For boxed set, expanding their fan base and promotional reach.
You’ll make a lot more real friends and sell a lot more books in the long run if you heed Anne’s list of do’s and don’ts.
“How to Correctly Format Your Book Interior Using Word” – Article by Chris Robley for BookBaby.
We’ve all seen self-published books put together by well-meaning authors who really want to succeed but, for one reason or another, are unclear on how exactly to go about it. Chris has the solution.
“Formula for a Bestselling Horror Novel” – Article by K. S. Brooks for Indies Unlimited.
K. S. Brooks has already shared her tips on writing other genres. Today it’s time for horror.
“The 4 Best Strategies for Savvy Self-Publishers” – Article by Brian Klems for Writer’s Digest.
Having read the amazing stories of authors who’ve made it on their own, you may start to consider taking the leap into self-publishing. Brian shares four simple strategies to help you on your way.
Authors often question if they should have a blog but if you have a done a book signing recently you will quickly realize that the answer is yes. Take a look at these tips which should help you get your blog up and running.
Charlie shares his experience using Scrivener writing software to write his book.
Happy First Blog-iversary to Victoria! Victoria shares the most important lessons she has learned during her first year of blogging.
Kim gives us a run-down on the difference between the Mystery and Suspense genres

Do you ever feel alone in your journey to self-publish? You don’t need nurturing. You need connections and support. One of the most fabulous aspects of self-publishing is that the community is large, noisy, active and supportive.
Structure applies at all levels of writing, from the structure of your sentences and paragraphs – which help you grab the reader and convey the essential emotion that is at the heart of all writing – to the over-arching structure of your entire work.

"The Tier of Eternal Grace: The Moon Clearing" by Tania Elizabeth

The Tier of Eternal Grace:
The Moon Clearing
by Tania Elizabeth
Today I introduce you to Tania Elizabeth, writer, fellow Aussie, and passionate advocate for the Starlight Children’s Foundation, a charity dedicated to granting the wishes of terminally ill children. Please help Tania in her fundraising quest for this worth cause.

A Message from Tania Elizabeth

I am asking for everyone’s assistance.

To give to others is to give to oneself, and I NEED YOUR HELP!!!

Help us to raise funds for the Starlight Children’s Foundation, which supports terminally ill children and their families.

There are two ways in which people can help. It is very simple.

By simply hosting, reviewing or interviewing myself/my book via a blog post, Amazon, newspaper, radio, TV within a 21-day window frame, between the dates of 12 April and 3 May. For every appearance, I will be donating $1 to the Starlight Children’s Foundation.

If any of you could help, I would be so grateful. If you could connect me with anyone else who would be happy to interview, do a short post or review on myself/my book, I would be ever so grateful.

I am also asking for donations, even $1, which you may do direct via this link:

You may also follow our progress on the Starlight Author’s Aid Facebook Page.

We are looking at making this an annual event. This year it is based upon myself, though every year after, we will base it upon another upcoming author. So please share and pass this along to all. Let’s make this a huge affair and raise much needed funds for a very worthy cause.

My heartfelt thanks to all.

Love, Blessings and Faerie Kisses always xo

I am a divine being of divine beauty and power.
My power lies in love, my strength I’ve gained from grace
I am grounded in thy truths and live purely of heart.

I’ve a gratitude for all life’s glory; never shall I be misplaced.

Though it comes to pass that I am rivaled
By the name of another and that of my own uncertainties,
dare I be denied my truths, my mind’s clear
By the name of another, I am now in jeopardy.

Beyond the boundary that separates the mundane and earthly planes from the divine lies Eterna Fadas, a place ruled by extraordinary beings, lithe and human-like in appearance, yet ethereal in their grace and beauty, and sensuous in nature.

“I have existed always! Where I began I do not know, for all I know is just as I am today!”

As Queen, Tatiana was thought to have lived a life of opulence, her faith and beliefs her endearing essence. Why then was it so, that beneath the picture of perfection laid torments and terrors even she dare not explain. Being She came with its prices paid. Being She came with a deal; a contract in which she was to relinquish herself to a rogue of unmerciful fury. Would this be the end of all she know? Would this be the end of her existence?
Book Trailer
Crystabella had never seen him so vulnerable. She had never seen or felt such sincere looks of gratitude and love from him. So although she despised that he was under so much pain, she relished his innocence. He sincerely needed her for the first time ever . . . not the other way around.
That was to be the last she had seen of him before she was to hear the every detail from the night of the Moon Clearing, including Edan’s true intentions regarding herself.
It was then that Crystabella snapped herself out of the senseless dream she had now been living for so long.
“Do you see now Tatiana? Why it is I apologize! Why I must redeem myself!”
Tatiana took a deep breath so as to gather her thoughts before answering.
“My beautiful Crysa, you have absolutely no reason to apologize for following your heart. If anything, I am proud of you!”
Crystabella looked at Tatiana so confound.
“How is it that you can be so proud of me when I have gone against all our beliefs? I have disregarded myself, our kind and you; not just as our Queen, but as my friend!”
“But don’t you see, you have done no such thing! You have unfortunately been misled at times, but there was not one moment where your best intentions were not apparent.”
Making sure the following comment was heard evidently clear, Tatiana paused before speaking with conviction.
“Your heart was always in the right place even if it was in the wrong place!”
“How could I ever be ill tempered at you for that? I can’t!”
Crystabella would continue to fight with her percipient choices of mind versus heart. Her mind would try to deceive her, have her believe that she was not worthy. Though her heart, her soul knew better. She was worthy and deserving of more than she had allowed herself to acknowledge in a long time.
A Devine tale of magic and mysticism, of love and lust, of loyalty and deception, of endearing friendships and betrayals, Tania Elizabeth’s debut, must read tale The Moon Clearing is sure to enrapture the hearts and minds of readers of all genres. Set in the beautifully depicted faerie realm Eterna Fadas, mother earth is both the splendid scenery and an integral character of the story, vivid depictions of the magic and wonder that abounds our existence are plentiful. Queen Tatiana’s story is not unlike our own life’s journeys as she faces and overcomes obstacles and obligations, experiences heartache and joyful splendor, relishes in admirable friendships and battles her ego mind as she encounters a tortured soul whose inner turmoil wrecks havoc on her own existence and that of her devoted people. Through the entwined lives of these stunning, enchanted beings you will become lost within a world of magic and of faith, where beauty abounds and a deep seeded belief that love prevails is prevalent throughout. You will become enthralled by their stories and find yourself deeply invested in these characters, consumed with all that they are, feeling as they do, absorbed by both the beauty of Tania Elizabeth’s writing and the underlying message that seen or unseen, love, magic and faith in oneself are contained in the hearts of us all should we simply choose to trust in ourselves. I found myself getting lost in this story, only ever putting it down to savor in the anticipation and the enchantment of Tatiana’s fate. I have been left hungry for the second installment and I am certain you will be too.
Interview With the Author
Hi Tania Eizabeth, thanks for joining me today to discuss your new book The Tier of Eternal Grace, Book One: The Moon Clearing.
Which writers have influenced you the most?
To begin with, I would have to name Enid Blyton. For it was her books, The Magic Faraway Tree and The Adventures of the Wishing Chair in which had me lost in the fantasy worlds as a child. The classical and poetic writings of William Shakespeare. And, Florence Scovel Shinn, who wrote the book in which was the catalyst for my own journey of self love and discovery.
What age group do you recommend your book for?
The glory of The Tier of Eternal Grace is that it is for all ages from late teens through to that of the older generations.
What sparked the idea for this book?
My ideas arose from the desire to write a book that not only enabled the reader to delve into an enchanting realm of magic, love, betrayal, deceit, every emotion under the sun. But that also had the reader begin a journey of self discovery and to learn to love oneself within. As for the faeries, I have had an avid interest in faeries ever since I was a child.
Which comes first? The character’s story or the idea for the novel?
In the case of The Tier of Eternal Grace, I have to actually say that is was a mixture of both elements arising all at the same time.
What was the hardest part to write in this book?
The very deep disturbing emotional elements were most definitely the hardest, as much of my book relates to that of my own life in one way or another. Thus it unearthed particular moments in my life that I had pushed beneath the carpet so to speak. Though in the same breath, I am grateful. For it is through the writing of this book in which I have healed and found my true self once more.
How to you hope this book affects its readers?
To live and breathe in the words of Tatiana and her people. To learn a greater respect for that of Mother Earth and that of oneself. And to simply loose themselves in the enchantment and the magic of each page they cast their eyes upon.
How long did it take you to write this book?
11 months in total.
What is your writing routine?
Most of my writing is done in the darkness of the night skies. For as a single mother of three beautiful children, my days are full running around after them. Once they are in bed … give this girl a cup of coffee and my chocolate, and I am set for another long night of writing.
How did you get your book published?
I am self-published. I had long made the choice to self-publish, for I was not willing to lose any control when it came to how my book was to be perceived and read by the public.  Not to say that my thought on this would not change. I just knew that this was the right decision at the time for myself.
What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published writer?
First and foremost, Believe! Do not allow doubt and fear to become one’s friend.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Ahh … that’s easy. Spend quality time with my angels. Be it at the beach, hiking the mountains or snuggled up on the couch watching a movie. Perfection lays best when my babies are at my side.
What does your family think of your writing?
They are incredibly supportive and love all of my work.
Did you enjoy school?
Yes, very much so. I was at times an outcast, though I loved it all the same. I seem to now flourish in being different. I love it … just as I love my life!
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
It has always been a dream, though it was not until I had come to a place of pure contentment with oneself and learnt the true meaning of I Love Me, that I gained the courage to pursue my dreams.
Did your childhood experiences influence your writing?
Yes, many of my weekends were spent in the countryside and the rainforests of Far North Queensland by the Great Barrier Reef, where I would lose myself in my imagination along with my siblings and cousins in abundance. My father, Lionel, also began to enlighten me on how to meditate and understand the sagacity of energy. Thus, my growth into the spiritual world.
What was your favorite book as a child?
The very same books that inspired me and began my love of fantasy … Enid Blyton’s The Magic Tree and The Adventures of the Wishing Chair. Mind you, I also loved, The Sleepover Club series. Once a teenager, I found myself delving into poetry book after poetry book.
Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
I have had some beautiful comments and reviews made. I like to stay well connected to my readers as much as possible.
What can we look forward to from you in the future?
The second and third installment to The Tier of Eternal Grace series. From there, the world is my oyster J
Thanks for joining me today, Tania. I wish you every success with your writing and in your fundraising endeavors.
About the Author
Like each and every one of us, Tania’s journey has been one of trials and tribulations, of Love and of passions; and the dissolutions of it. Heartache, sorrows, smiles and laughter always seeming. Through the writing of this book and the words of Tatiana, Tania has found a peace within and learnt the true meaning of ‘I LOVE ME!'”
Tania Elizabeth is the author of The Tier of Eternal Grace. Book One, The Moon Clearing, was released earlier this year. Book Two, The Mirror’s Shadow, will be released about September. Book Three will then follow in the early part of 2014.
Aside from her writing and her three angels, Tania is also an advocate for the Starlight Children’s Foundation. Being a mother herself and having seen firsthand what some of these children are dealt with on a day to day basis, and yet seeing the strength and courage they each maintain, Tania felt the need to not only donate her time, but to also help raise much needed funds.

This Week on Books Direct – 21 April 2013

Here is a list of the articles you may have missed this week:
“First Sentences of Great Books” – Article by Chris Robley for BookBaby.
Chris looks at first sentences from 20 books that have already become classics (plus some semi-recent hits and a few more-obscure favorites) in order to see if the magic was happening right from the start, or if it took the author a little while to get cooking.
What’s your best first sentence? Share it with us below.
As creative writers, sometimes we need to stretch our muscles, step outside our stuffy little comfort zones, and try something new. But what can writers do to step out of their comfort? Here are a few ways to get started.
What was the last thing you did that inspired a new idea?
“Book Promotion Strategies that Actually Worked” – Article by Jason Boog for GalleyCat.
What’s the best book promotion strategy you’ve ever seen?
“The Basics of Beta Readers” – Article by Laurie Boris for Indies Unlimited.
Someone should look at your finished novel before you publish. Maybe you should try a beta reader.
Have you used a beta reader before? Please share your experience with us below.
“The Kissing Booth Editor on How to Discover an Author” – Article by Lauren Buckland for Everyday eBook.
Learn how 17-year-old author Beth Reekles got discovered on Wattpad.
“This is Your Brain on Revisions” – Article by Laurie Boris for Indies Unlimited.
Are your revisions going nowhere? Try some of Laurie’s fairly harmless, out-of-the box suggestions to get your project moving again.
What do you do when your revisions come to a screeching halt?
“How to Start a Story” – Article by John H. Carroll for The World of Ryallon.
There are just as many methods of writing as there are writers. John shares his method of starting a story.
Do you have any tips to share with us?
“Five Things You Need to Know About Blog Tours Before Signing On” – Article by D. Kai Wilson-Viola for Book Junkies Journal.
Blog tours CAN be one of the best things you can do for your book and author brand – but if you don’t pick a company that’s committed and dedicated to your tour, or is running too many, you risk being ignored. 
“Give It Away” – Tutorial by Big Al for Indies Unlimited.
Ever wondered how to create a Rafflecopter giveaway? Let Big Al show you how.
“The 12 Dos and Don’ts of Writing a Blog” – Article by Brian A. Klems for Writer’s Digest.
Thinking about writing a blog? Been writing a blog for some time now and have yet to establish any growth? Stick to these 12 specific dos and don’ts of writing a blog that Brian has developed over his 10 years of experience.
“H.P. Lovecraft’s Advice to Aspiring Writers, 1920” – Article by Maria Popova for Brainpickings..
Lovecraft enumerates the twenty most common mistakes of young authors, “aside from those gross violations of syntax which ordinary education corrects,” and offers a common cure for all.
“The Art of Character: The Five Cornerstones of Dramatic Characterization” – Article by David Corbett for The Creative Penn.
Creating believable and resonant characters is one of the great challenges of the fiction author. The concept of character has also become more important in narrative non-fiction and memoir, and even business books start with character stories to illustrate their points. David Corbett, author of The Art of Character, helps us with some key aspects to keep in mind.
“4 Time Management Techniques for Writers” – Article by Lisa England for JourneyCraft.
Lisa shares tips on how to manage your time as a writer.
Matthew gives us some tips on how to come up with the right title for your book.

“How to Find a Job: When There Are No Jobs” by Paul Rega

FREE Kindle Edition 22-26 April


Paul Rega is president of a retained executive search firm he founded in 1985 and a professional recruiter with over twenty-eight years of job hunting and career planning experience. His provocative new book strikes a nerve with millions of displaced workers and goes well beyond the principles of job hunting. Paul introduces a revolutionary new concept in career management and personal development called “Intuitive Personal Assessment.” He takes his readers on a powerful journey as he tells a gripping story about his own career and the challenges faced as an executive recruiter, often fraught with personal tragedy. This is a must read for anyone who is looking for a new job or wants to change careers in the worst economy since the Great Depression.

The author shares his vast knowledge of career planning and the inner workings of the job search process, citing hundreds of proven and effective job search techniques. He explains how to market your background to a targeted audience, interviewing skills and techniques, network building strategies, how to utilize personal and business contacts, effective use of social media, including LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, insider tips on working with headhunters, salary and benefits negotiation, how to write a resume, cover and follow-up letters, how to start and succeed in your own business and much more.

In a message to his readers, Paul believes that despite the many challenges faced by those suffering as a result of the weak job market, change in one’s life can be positive. He explains that, “Change throughout your life is inevitable, and as your life changes so often does your career.” His book is an effective guide that will provide you with the necessary tools, skills and inside knowledge from a professional recruiter to help you navigate through difficult economic times and find a new job or change careers.


How To Find A Job: When There Are No Jobs is a necessary and effective guide for those who are in the process of making a career change or looking for a new job and want to survive and prosper in today’s hyper competitive job market. In order to conduct a successful job search in a weak labor market, it is imperative that you first identify and determine your individual career path. Once established, your career path will act as a map to further guide you through your job search.

As president of a retained executive search firm for over twenty-seven years, I have developed a unique twelve-step career assessment and goal setting process called “Intuitive Personal Assessment” or IPA to help accomplish this important first step in your job search. The twelve steps and exercises of the IPA process will guide you through the discovery, acceptance and implementation of your desired career path. The IPA self-assessment program utilizes an individual’s intuition and incorporates their ideas, skills, interests, values and life experiences to determine one’s career path.

Coupled with the IPA process are hundreds of proven job search techniques and career planning strategies I have developed over a period of twenty-seven years as a recruiter, including how to effectively market your background, interviewing skills and techniques, networking strategies and more in a practical and easy to read format.

Nearly everyone is keenly aware of a friend, relative, neighbor or coworker who has been laid off or fired due to corporate restructuring and subsequent downsizing. The job market and the economics of the United States continue to change at a staggering pace. To be successful and prosper in today’s rapidly changing hyper competitive job market, you must be armed with the proper job search knowledge and skills. It will be imperative to identify your specific career path and be able to quickly adapt to a continuously changing job market by increasing your job search knowledge and by making proper adjustments to your skills and career.


By Kelly Gilberts

This is an outstanding career guide that has been updated for 2012. I have been impressed with the past editions of Mr. Rega’s book but this version is much more comprehensive and is packed with many more helpful job search tips and advice. Written by a leading expert in his field, it’s a book that would be beneficial to anyone who is looking for a job or has ever thought about changing careers. The book very quickly gives you insightful information about yourself that you will be able to use to mold into a career that is right for you. It’s my favorite job search book for nurturing and developing career self-awareness. This is a quick read that has given me the guidance and the courage I desperately needed to advance my career. It offered a great method to help refocus my career goals and a perfect way to set new goals and make promises to myself. It helped me find the courage from within to take the necessary risks and understand what truly energized me in my work.

This book is definitely not for those who don’t want to hear the truth or who are averse to doing the work that is necessary to move their life forward. I absolutely loved this book and have referred it to many of my colleagues. It was refreshing to read with many true to life career stories I was able to relate to. The author has a way of speaking to his audience in a comprehensible manner. By completing the self-guided exercises it made me feel like I finally understood what I was worth in the job world. There are no games in this book, just excellent career advice from someone who has obviously been there himself. My hat is off to you Mr. Rega, for sharing all of your many years of experience and knowledge as a recruiter and career coach. My advice is to use the time you have to read this book wisely as the exercises will become your truth. The language the author uses makes you feel that he is speaking directly to you, and knows exactly how you are feeling in all the situations you may be facing in your present job or career.

About the Author

Erica VerrilloPaul Rega is president of Paul J. Rega & Associates, a retained executive search firm he founded in 1985. He is well-known throughout the business community as an executive search professional and career coach. His new bestselling book, How To Find A Job: When There Are No Jobs hit the #1 position in Job Hunting books in the country, surpassing What Color is Your Parachute. The book continues to be one of the most downloaded books on Amazon with over 13,700 downloads during a 3-day promotion. It rocketed to #1 Job Hunting, Careers &; Resumes, #2 Nonfiction and #2 Business &; Investing. It was also ranked in the Top 20 at #14 on Amazon Kindle.

Paul holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with a minor in Journalism, having attended the University of Illinois and Western Illinois University. He began his writing career while attending Western Illinois University as a staff reporter for the Western Courier. Prior to establishing his executive search firm, Paul held the position of Chemical Marketing Manager with Fisher Scientific Company, a division of Allied Chemical where he sold and marketed food and pharmaceutical grade chemicals. He currently lives with his fiancée in a small town along the Gulf Coast of Florida where he is working on his next book, a novel, and coaches his children in soccer, one of his other passions in life.

For further insights, read an interview with the author.


Amazon US Kindle
Amazon UK Kindle
Amazon author page
Twitter @paulrega
Interview with the author

“Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Treatment Guide” by Erica Verrillo

FREE Kindle Edition 20-21 April


Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Treatment Guide by Erica Verrillo


This one-of-a-kind reference – now completely revised and updated – includes over 100 effective treatments, from antivirals to vitamins, as well as locations of specialists and clinics, Internet ordering information, and national, local, and international CFS/ME organizations. New and expanded sections include doctors’ protocols and research on the causes and mechanisms of the illness, all written in concise, easy-to-understand language.

Every aspect of the illness is thoroughly examined, from diagnosis to an in-depth discussion of symptoms, from traditional to alternative therapies to essential coping strategies. The new edition contains chapters for those coping with multiple chemical sensitivities and dietary restrictions, as well an expanded section on children and adolescents with CFS/ME. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Treatment Guide remains the most comprehensive reference guide on this disease.



Healing is a matter of time, but it is also sometimes a matter of opportunity.”


CFS/ME is one of those illnesses for which receiving a diagnosis can bring as much frustration as relief. All too often a person who has spent years searching for a diagnosis expects that identification of the illness will bring with it, if not a cure, at the very least an effective treatment plan. Unfortunately, most of us who have received the diagnosis have also been told that CFS/ME has “no known cause or cure,” a phrase that invariably creates enough hopelessness to offset any relief the diagnosis may have offered.

The lack of known cause or cure, while discouraging, certainly does not imply that an illness cannot be treated, or that those who suffer from it will not recover. Throughout the ages, physicians have successfully treated diseases on the basis of their knowledge of symptoms and human physiological responses rather than on test results. And because human physiology has not changed much over the past 40,000 years, treatment approaches, for the most part, have remained remarkably consistent. For example, the Chinese medical system, which relies heavily on nutrition and the use of herbs, was codified more than 5,000 years ago. Herbal remedies, their pharmaceutical derivatives, massage and manual manipulation techniques, nutritional therapy, and stress reduction methods (meditation, yoga) are treatments that have withstood the test of time, and still form the mainstay of medical systems throughout the world.

The premise of this book is that the absence of a cure does not in any way imply that there is no treatment for CFS/ME. To make the grounds for this position clear, consider the popular concept that an illness “attacks.” Cure, in this conceptual framework, consists of killing the attacker. In CFS/ME, the attacker is unknown, unidentified, and perhaps not even a single factor; thus counterattack is impossible. The victim is left with only two choices: lie back and let nature take its course (which in CFS/ME can be agonizing), or seek alternative points of view. The alternative is to view CFS/ME as a form of systemic damage that must be gradually, methodically, and thoughtfully repaired. Or, to use an analogy, if CFS/ME is like falling into a hole, as some patients have observed, recovery is like climbing out of the hole, step by step, rung by rung.


By Midwest Book Review

According to the CDC more than a million people across the country suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome; yet information about the condition has been scattered and largely unavailable in one place – until now.

The second updated edition of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Treatment Guide acts as both a modified encyclopedia and as a sourcebook for any seeking information about the syndrome.

There may remain no cure for the syndrome – but there are treatments: many of them; in fact – and many effective approaches for understanding the condition’s triggers, management, and outlook.

Over a hundred effective treatments, from medications to antivirals and holistic approaches, are included in this volume, along with lists of doctors, clinics and specialists working with chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers, print, and Internet references and links, and more.

The long list of therapies and treatments which have proven successful are contained in a reference guide section that lends to quick browsing and location of data: from an overview and history of the illness to discussions of how CFS affects body and mind, descriptions of various CFS symptoms and treatment approaches, and discussions of traditional and alternative therapies, this book is packed with material discussing a wide variety of coping methods.

New and expanded sections to this second updated edition include not only the latest research findings and recommendations, but physician protocols and keys to self-help and management.

Also discussed are the multifaceted symptoms of CFS. Symptoms may run the gamut, but often include recurring infections, fatigue, nausea and abdominal pain, confusion and attention span problems, and much more. Each symptom receives an in-depth coverage including various treatments, likely causes within the CFS diagnosis, and bibliographies for further reading.

The author herself was completing a doctorate in 1992 before she fell ill with the disease, so has many years of personal experience with CFS, during which approaches to and understanding of the condition have seen much change. These changes are reflected in this new edition of the book, as well as her own compassion for other sufferers.

There is simply no other treatment guide on the market that is presented with such expansive coverage, making this a ‘must’ for any health collection and for any reader concerned with understanding the extent of CFS.

About the Author

Erica VerrilloErica Verrillo was born in Rochester, New York on May 10th, 1953. Her parents, both classical musicians, named her after famed violinist, Erica Morini. Following in her parents’ footsteps, Erica studied piano with her mother as a young child, and then flute with John Oberbrunner. At age seventeen she moved to England, where she played in the Oxford Symphony Orchestra and studied with Gareth Morris, principal flutist of the Philharmonia Orchestra. A year later she moved back to the U.S. where she attended New England Conservatory as a student of Boston Symphony Orchestra’s James Pappoutsakis.

Although Erica’s first love was music, she finished her undergraduate education at Tufts University, where she majored in Latin American History. Soon after receiving her B.A. from Tufts, she set out to explore Latin America on foot, hitchhiking through Central America, over the Andes to Argentina, and finally to Brazil. She describes her two-and-a-half-year sojourn as “The Motorcycle Diaries, without the motorcycle.”

Erica returned to the U.S. to complete her M.A. in Linguistics at Syracuse University, after which she moved to Manhattan, where she taught English as a Second Language at the World Trade Center and at the New York Association for New Americans. In 1982 Erica entered SUNY Albany’s Ph.D. program in Anthropology, where she became linguistic supervisor of the Albany-Chiapas project, an eighteen-month field project among the Chamulas of southern Mexico.

Living in Central America, Erica soon turned her energies to refugee aid. In 1984 she founded the Guatemalan Refugee Crafts Project, a weaving co-op funded initially by Seva Foundation. As Erica describes it, the idea was to make an aid organization which was fully self-sufficient. Over the next ten years, Erica earned $100,000 for the camps, supporting over 600 people.

In 1990, Erica resumed work on her Ph.D. at UT Austin, this time in Speech Communication, where she combined her knowledge of linguistics with anthropology. But, in 1992, after several bouts with tropical diseases in Guatemala, Erica fell ill.

“I had to let everything go–the PhD, the refugee project, my husband, my home, everything. It was the end,” says Erica. “But it was also the beginning. Being ill for so many years makes you re-evaluate your priorities. It’s amazing how many things just aren’t important.”

When asked what things are important, Erica doesn’t hesitate. “For me – writing, my children, and writing. In that order.”


Amazon US Kindle
Amazon UK Kindle
Amazon US author page
Amazon UK author page
Twitter @EricaVerrillo

"After Eternity (Side Stories of the Iron Flower)" by Billy Wong


FREE Kindle Edition 19-21 April

After Eternity

(Side Stories of the Iron Flower)

by Billy Wong


After Eternity is a heroic fantasy tale featuring the indestructible female warrior known as the Iron Flower.
Legendary warrior Rose thought she could get at least some rest playing bodyguard for her merchant friend Alex. But when they inadvertently revive an ancient hero and learn of an apocalyptic prophecy, Rose must travel to a haunted kingdom to battle a nation-killing demon and stop the event known as the Disaster.
This is a novelette featuring characters from the Iron Flower series.
The sun rose slowly from behind the white hills called the Gods’ Knees, but its rays brought little warmth to the frigid northern air. As the two fur-clad travelers continued down the road, the young man said, “My pocket’s getting hot.”
Rose looked at Alex, confused by his statement, and watched him pull a wedge-shaped chunk of stone out of his breeches. “Do you know what this is?”
Snatching it out of the apprentice merchant’s slender hand, Rose felt an inexplicable warmth and realized it was magic. Though it was reddish-brown all over, different shades of the color gave it a pattern resembling a flickering flame. “Where the hell did you get this thing?”
For a few moments the silence was broken only by snow crunching beneath their feet. “I think I got it off Lord Terror, after you killed him,” Alex eventually said.
Terror had been the name used by the former knight Sir Terrence Milford in his stint as a bandit leader. He’d kidnapped Alex during an attack on a merchant camp, and Rose had killed him rescuing her charge. But that had been weeks ago.
“Why didn’t you tell me about this?” she demanded. “Magic can be a dangerous thing, you know. I’m your bodyguard, but how am I supposed to protect you if you don’t even tell me what you’re doing?”
“Sorry, Rose. I didn’t even know it was magic at the time. You’re mad, aren’t you?”
She didn’t bother to take the scowl off her face. “Of course I am. You’ve got to be more careful.” It didn’t really matter if she was scaring him. She cared more about making him beware the dangers of the world, than being nice all the time. She’d lost far too many friends not to do her best to keep all the ones she had left safe. Still, she felt a bit guilty watching his unnerved eyes.
“It doesn’t look magical at first sight,” Alex said. “Besides, you were… busy when I found it.”
Narrative flows fast without lagging of plot. Intriguing beginning to Rose and Alex’s adventures for new readers of the Iron Flower series, definitely recommended!
About the Author
Billy Wong is an avid fan of heroic fantasy, with a special love for strong female warriors. He draws inspiration from the epic legends of old, and is on a quest to bring over the top deeds and larger than life heroes back to prominence in today’s literary world.
Billy lives in Coney Island, Brooklyn. He has written numerous fantasy books, including the Iron Flower series and the Gothic Warrior series.

“The Second Diary” by Ciara Threadgoode

Mother’s Day Gift Idea

The Second Diary by Ciara Threadgoode


Don’t forget Mother’s Day will be celebrated on Sunday 12 May this year in Australia and the US. This book would make the perfect gift for your mother.


When people keep diaries, they usually record trite tidbits of daily life. Dorothy Rose Nolte Hughes, however, hides a second diary under the polka-dot towels and causes quite a stir in the family. Her use of metaphor, alliteration, and analogies keep readers learning some new turns-of-phrase and laughing while uncovering some family truths that lay hidden from the world.

Dottie’s daughter isn’t interested in the language and turn-of-phrase, however, only the secrets revealed to the one who finds the diary. Dottie’s favorite granddaughter, her husband, and their six dachshunds take care of Granny, but her diary leaves them not only befuddled and confused but also excited and elevated in spirit.

Moving back and forth between the granddaughter’s story-telling and the grandmother’s diary entries, readers are compelled to keep reading to the very end and learn about fairytales as part of the truth. Does the truth hide in fairytales and come forth when least expected or do fairytales hide in truth and just sort of spontaneously spew forth?


By Jeepster

My husband was wondering why I kept giggling as I was reading this. I love the way The Second Diary is told by two different generations, past and present. It’s a warm & humorous look at families, love & life that will have you wondering what secrets YOUR family is hiding.

About the Author

Ciara Threadgoode

Ciara Threadgoode is this authors pseudonym. It’s believed that Edgar Degas once said, “While I want to be famous, I also yearn to remain unknown.” This author would concur. She collects sunsets, colorful fall leaves, evening silhouettes and 1959 pennies. When she’s not traveling, Ciara spends her days feeding the birds, learning to play the guitar and making handmade patchwork quilts for gifts.

The Second Diary is Ciara’s first novel. She is also the author of two newly released books, For What It’s Worth and I Made You First.


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Amazon UK paperback

Amazon US author page

Amazon UK author page