Sunday, March 22, 2015

Book Spotlight: Noise by Brett Garcia Rose

by Brett Garcia Rose

Paperback: 236 pages
Publisher: Velocity Imprints (June 17, 2014)

Kindle Edition
File Size: 543 KB
Print Length: 147 pages
Publisher: Velocity Imprints (June 12, 2014)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.

Noise, by Brett Garcia Rose, is a thriller/mystery centering on a deaf character's search for his missing sister. It's short, violent, but ultimately it's about love. Noise was published in June 2014 and is available for sale on Amazon and Barnes & Noble


The world is an ugly place, and I can tell you now, I fit in just fine.

Lily is the only person Leon ever loved. When she left a suicide note and disappeared into a murky lake ten years ago, she left him alone, drifting through a silent landscape.

Or did she?

A postcard in her handwriting pulls Leon to the winter-cold concrete heart of New York City. What he discovers unleashes a deadly rage that has no sound.

A grisly trail of clues leads to The Bear, the sadistic Russian crime lord who traffics in human flesh. The police—some corrupt, some merely compromised—are of little help. They don’t like Leon’s methods, or the mess he leaves in his wake.

Leon is deaf, but no sane person would ever call him disabled. He survived as a child on the merciless streets of Nigeria. He misses nothing. He feels no remorse. The only direction he’s ever known is forward.

He will not stop until he knows.

Where is Lily?

Book Excerpt

About the author:

Brett Garcia Rose is a writer, software entrepreneur, and former animal rights soldier and stutterer. He is the author of two books, Noise and Losing Found Things, and his work has been published in Sunday Newsday Magazine, The Barcelona Review, Opium, Rose and Thorn, The Battered Suitcase, Fiction Attic, Paraphilia and other literary magazines and anthologies. His short stories have won the Fiction Attic’s Short Memoir Award (Second Place), Opium’s Bookmark Competition, The Lascaux Prize for Short Fiction, and have been nominated for the Million Writer’s Award, Best of the Net and The Pushcart Prize. Rose travels extensively, but calls New York City home. To learn more, go to, or connect with Brett on Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Guest Author: Tamara Branch (5 Book Marketing Ideas for the Self-Help Genre)

5 Book Marketing Ideas for the Self-Help Genre
by Tamara Branch

In June 2014, my first book, ITGIRL4LIFE was published. I had the paralyzing realization in that moment, that nobody in the Universe knows about this book. Seriously, no one on the planet knows this book exists, I thought. I had read articles and blogs that said you should be marketing your book 6 months before it comes out, at least. Well, I didn’t do that. Everything was new for me on this publishing journey. I was winging it. I did some of what was recommended and did my own thing in other areas, and made a few mistakes that I learned from. I would have started earlier looking back but I also know that there are no hard and fast rules, no black and white as a self publisher. You do what works best for your individual project, schedule and budget. Here are 5 marketing ideas that have really helped my book sales and increase overall awareness of my brand.

Get Social. You are IT. In other words, people, your fans, your target market want to hear from YOU. Your book - your platform! Share your writing journey, your personality, your truth, why you wrote your book. Talk about the messages you want to convey, the societal impact, who you want to inspire and why. Create a real ‘in person’ presence, beyond your book. Authenticity is your greatest marketing tool. Blogging, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube are my go-to channels for promotion. Social media can have a tremendous impact, if used thoughtfully and with purpose.

Give Your Book Away For Free...Strategically. I wrote a self-empowerment guide for teen girls. My team of two reached out to hundreds of girls organizations, foundations, and philanthropists who are committed to the enrichment of girls. We also sent books to teen celebs, and young women in the entertainment industry. Countless pdf’s of my book went out to help spread awareness of how this book can be used as a tool to help build high self-esteem. Hard copies went out as well. It worked. We got a lot of support, reviews, shout-outs outside of customer reviews on Amazon. Think outside the box. Find people and organizations who will likely resonate with your mission and connect with them. It’s networking time. Don’t be shy!

Submit for Awards. Do some research - select the top awards for your genre and submit your book for a handful of them. Any award recognition is helpful, may bump up sales, add credibility and create a extra interest.

Check out Expo’s and Book Fairs. Good Expo's can draw a huge crowd and can be a great opportunity for YOU, the author to be seen, sell books and build your brand. I participated in The Ultimate Women’s Expo in Los Angeles, which exposed me and my book to hundreds of organizations interested in supporting girls. I gave it a whirl and it was a huge success - not cheap though. Book fairs are all about books. Traveling to Book Fairs can be very costly. There are companies that for a small fee will represent your book at fairs in the States and abroad. My book was represented in the Frankfurt Book Fair and Beijing International Book Fair and a few agents expressed interest while I stayed in the comfort of my home. That little move may turn into an international book deal. I do want ITGIRL4LIFE translated in several languages. We’ll see.

Set Aside Marketing Budget. You can do a few things with no money but you can do more with some cash. Put aside some money for your promotional budget. You will need it. You may have to hire an assistant, a marketing expert, pay a fee to submit your book for awards, get an intern, do a virtual book tour, or a traveling book tour, you will likely have to order your books in bulk to support your own events, etc. Make an early promise to yourself that you are going to give your book a fighting chance in the marketplace. Do whatever it takes to get it out there.

Let’s face it, there are a million ways to market your book and honestly, it can feel like a long uphill climb, at times. Bottomline, you have to promote from different angles. Some things will work and some won’t. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Keep building. Remember the joy and passion you had when you decided to write something and share it with the world. You need YOU in all your glory to be strong and committed to your success. Never give up. Your book just needs the right combination of buzz worthy activity to reach new heights.


Author: Tamara Branch
Publisher: Heart Project Publishing
Pages: 98
Genre: YA/Self-Esteem
Format: Paperback/Kindle

Writer, artist and speaker, Tamara Branch serves up 40 bite-sized chapters on how to build unshakable self-confidence, honor your life, and shine bright in the world, in ITGIRL4LIFE: How to bring out your special something and so much more. Packed with sage advice, life-changing insights and affirmations to help you soar, ITGIRL4LIFE offers ideas, tools and principles that you can reference and build upon, supporting you in becoming your best. Get ready to fall in love with your own wisdom, beauty and strength.

For More Information

ITGIRL4LIFE is available at Amazon.
Pick up your copy at Barnes & Noble.

Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.

About the Author

"I believe in the power, beauty, strength and amazing potential of girls. I believe girls deserve to feel extraordinary. I believe that when girls shine their light, they are unstoppable!"

- ITGIRL4LIFE by Tamara Branch

Tamara Branch is from New York, born and raised in the Bronx. She is thrilled to share her first book release, ITGIRL4LIFE, kicking off the ITGIRL4LIFE self-esteem movement to empower girls to stand up, stand out and shine bright in the world.

Tamara has worked as a professional model and actor for almost two decades. She strutted down the runway for designers Calvin Klein, Donna Karen and Christian Dior, acted in a few independent films, co-hosted PBS New York’s education series, “What’s up in Technology” and appeared T.V. commercials and print ads for Levi’s, Old Navy, Hershey’s, Colgate, Kellogg’s Special K, Revlon, Hanes, Nike and many others. A Penn State alumnus and lifelong student of personal development, Tamara is deeply passionate about uplifting the human spirit.

After graduating from Institute for Integrative Nutrition, studying under Deepak Chopra, Dr. Andrew Weil and some of the top health and wellness experts in the world, she was inspired to raise the bar on her own ‘self care’ and support others in living more vibrantly. She is an abstract artist and teaches a dynamic dance class, where she gets to fuse her varied background, having trained in everything from jazz, ballet and modern to Afro-Caribbean and Salsa.

Tamara was recently asked to become a Female Visionary Author guest blogger for The Brave Heart Women Global Community.  She's a SAG/AFTRA member since 1998, a member of Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and is represented by Abrams Artists Agency.

Tamara currently lives in Los Angeles, California, with her husband of seven years and offers ITGIRL4LIFE workshops to assist girls on their self empowerment journey.

Her latest book is the YA/self-esteem book, ITGIRL4LIFE.

For More Information

Visit Tamara Branch’s website.
Connect with Tamara on Twitter.
Find out more about Tamara at Goodreads.
Visit Tamara’s blog.
Contact Tamara.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Guest Author: D.J. Burr (I Just Wanted Love: Recovery of a Codependent, Sex and Love Addict)

The Power of Rigorous Honesty by D.J. Burr

I Just Wanted Love: Recovery of a Codependent, Sex and Love Addict
by D.J. Burr

Paperback: 232 pages

Publisher: ABLE Counseling Services, LLC; 1 edition (December 31, 2014)
Amazon Paperback Link

Kindle Edition
File Size: 495 KB
Print Length: 236 pages
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Amazon Kindle Link


In my book, I Just Wanted Love: Recovery of a Codependent, Sex and Love Addict, I learned that I needed to be religiously honest with myself and the world. I wrote about my trials and triumphs as a person in long-term recovery. It feels good to be honest. In active addiction, I learned to lie and manipulate to get my needs and wants met, although most of the time I was lying to myself. 

I learned to lie at a young age. It wasn't as if someone taught me how to lie, but in my less than nurturing childhood environment I was able to see others lie to get what they wanted. My stepfather used to lie about his drinking, but would stumble around the house drunk. My mother used to lie about not feeling hurt because my step-father was neglectful to her and us kids, but then she would lash out at anyone in her path. 


D.J. Burr is a man on a mission; successful business owner, highly respected psychotherapist and survivor of a dysfunctional life. 

At a young age, all he wanted was to be loved, but instead found himself targeted by a sexual predator. D.J. slipped into a life of addiction and clawed his way through broken relationships and seedy sex clubs--looking for love in all the wrong places. D.J. will take readers on a roller coaster of emotions as he details his search for grace and love.


I was often confused by adults and their lies and manipulations. I couldn't understand why everyone couldn't just be honest. I think I know now; to be honest, means to be vulnerable. I learned that to be vulnerable meant “cowardly,” “childish” and “gay.” Of course being called “gay” as a derogatory name was hurtful because I am gay. That was just another reason to keep my mouth closed. I learned it wasn't safe for anyone to be vulnerable, so I shut down, bottled up my feelings, and found a way to numb the excruciating pain of shame, guilt, and fear. 

One cannot live a life full of shame, guilt, and fear forever. It is too painful. My pain led to active addiction. I searched for other people, places, and things to numb my pain until I got to the bottom, which was when I wanted to commit suicide. I was desperate. I wanted thirty plus years of hurt and anguish to be over. Luckily, I sought treatment and learned about “rigorous honesty.”

The Twelve Steps of recovery talks about the importance of being rigorously honest, especially when writing. There is power in being truthful. The power I have gained from being brutally honest about the abuse I suffered as a kid and the pain I caused others while acting out my addiction has catapulted my life to new, sober heights. I no longer have to live in the shadows of shame. I am able to tell people my entire truth. I don’t leave out much – no need when I am rigorously honest. 

It really is true that the “truth will set you free.” I am free from active addiction, over two years now, and I am free from shame ruling my life. I became a sex addict to numb my pain because I couldn't be honest about my need for love, affection, compassion, and good parenting. Now, I am able to say that, yes, I am a sex and love addict, and my needs are valuable, necessary, and valid.  My life has changed for the better. Without being rigorously honest, my new book would not be the powerful tool that it has become for my readers. 

I encourage you to write with a feverish passion and be as rigorously honest as you can be. You will thank me later. 

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