Category Archives: Goodreads

Strange Bedfellows Indeed

Almost Famous – Unlikely Buddies

Quote of the Day: Most Americans, like most Japanese, view their dogs, cats, and other animal companions as family members, and rightly so. Ingrid Newkirk

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Blogger

Bubba Blue and Tookie are unlikely buddies and their friendship has made them almost famous. Their alliance has garnered them the reputation of being strange bedfellows indeed. In my last post about the duo, I mentioned Bubba Blue needed a new aquarium to get some airflow moving through his water world.

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book BloggerIt arrived and I put it together, all by myself. I felt victorious and intense satisfaction for instructions that made sense. I immediately filled the tank with betta water, gravel, an aquatic plant and a play toy for Bubba Blue. I let the water circulate for 24 hours prior to introducing Bubba to his new home.

The rest is history. Bubba swam around and inspected his new quarters as Tookie watched in awe. Since bettas (known as “labyrinth fishes”) take their oxygen from the surface of the water, it makes it easier when he swims to the top to greet his friend.

Tookie always awakens me to feed them both in the mornings. Every day their routine continues – morning kisses to start the day. It’s great having best buddies to brighten my day!

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book BloggerThe Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Blogger

My Writing Life

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Blogger

Setting Goals

My goal for 2018 is to complete a new novel and I’ve begun the first steps toward that goal – focus with a purpose!

I plan to make myself accountable for achieving my new year’s mission. You’ll probably see me talking about that here from time to time.

Join the Fun

If you’re a mystery book reviewer and would like to be a beta reader for my new novel, let me know so I can add you to my reviewers’ list.

Thank you for reading and reviewing my books on reader/novel platforms. Your kindness is greatly appreciated!

Where to Buy My Novels

Check at your favorite online bookstores and corner bookshops. Click the direct link to begin reading on Amazon. Happy reading!


The Long Road Home: Romantic Murder Mystery


Cross-Ties: Historical Fiction Passages

I’ll be writing and sharing on social media. Hope to see you there, too! Carolyn Bowen

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Time Management for Authors 2018

Time Management for Authors 2018

Quote of the Day: Real seriousness in regard to writing is one of two absolute necessities. The other, unfortunately, is talent. Ernest Hemingway

The Writing Life, Setting Goals, Time Management, Carolyn Bowen Author

I’ve resolved that 2018 is going to be the best year ever for me and my writing. First, I’ve got to clean out some debris from habits formed that keep me from my main focus – writing.

As an author they’re several hats we wear, or at least I do. From studying my craft, learning new computer applications (that’s supposed to help reach new readers) creating content for marketing campaigns, interacting with social media, I often have little time to actually write.

I need to set that in focus. For me to actually write – I need inspiration which usually comes through travel. It’s like a story is waiting to be told in the places I visit. Other words, I really need time to travel. If you’ve read any of my interviews, you know I write from the seat of my pants which makes editing a nightmarish expense as well as time-consuming. Yet, I wouldn’t trade the experience for the world.

There are two things that I’ve learned are important to success – time and resources to accomplish your goals. How often have you heard the phrase time is money? Well, it is! When you’re spending time doing something, its dollars spent. You could be earning money elsewhere or in the least relaxing.

Carolyn Bowen Author, The Long Road Home, Cross-Ties, Long Road Home, The Writing Life, Book Bloggers, Blogging

My Remedy

  • Have a clear objective of what I want to accomplish in 2018. This means stating (writing it down) an objective that can be measured. For example, more books sales – what does this require of me?
  • What are the tools that I need to accomplish the objective? Depending on your objective, the tools may vary. However, for authors who already have published books, there’s a need to continue promotions while writing new works of fiction.

In this case, research the best promotional tools – whether this is book marketing companies to promote your books, search engine advertising, Amazon advertising, or any of the major social media sites advertising.

Make a calendar and schedule time for writing new content for advertisements and social engagement.

Writing – set realistic goals and time frame for completing the steps towards completing a new manuscript.

  • Implement new strategies – Yes, trust the new process, monitor promotions and update as needed.

Back to my question, how can I make time to accomplish my personal goal of publishing a new book in 2018 while at the same time continue promotions of my books? It’s all about time management!

Today’s author has to be on the top of the playing field with presence and genuine offerings. I’d love to hear what works for you! Wishing you a super 2018, Carolyn Bowen

Where to Buy My Novels

Check at your favorite online bookstores and corner bookshops. Click the direct link or image to begin reading on Amazon. Happy reading!


The Long Road Home: Romantic Murder Mystery

I hope 2018 is a wonderful year for you! I’ll be writing – and enjoying some great times too. Carolyn Bowen

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Happy New Year 2018

Happy New Year!

Quote of the Day: “For last year’s words belong to last year’s language. And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.” T. S. Eliot

Carolyn Bowen Author, The Long Road Home, Cross-Ties, Long Road Home, The Writing Life, Book Bloggers, Blogging

This past year has gone in a flash! All my writing plans didn’t get completed in 2017. But, that’s history! It’s time to start setting goals for 2018. What are your plans?

Carolyn Bowen Author, The Long Road Home, Cross-Ties, Long Road Home, The Writing Life, Book Bloggers, Blogging

New Year’s Wishes

“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.” Edith Pierce

Please check out my novels here and at your favorite bookstore!  Wishing you joy, peace, happiness, and abundance in this new year. Carolyn Bowen

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Rioting Against The Odds

Book Blog Tour with Author Mark Kloss

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Quote of the Day: “Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.” Charles William Eliot


Rioting Against The Odds
Today’s spotlight is cast on poet, storyteller, and author Mark Kloss. His new book of poems, Rioting Against The Odds was just released and has quickly stormed up the charts to number one best seller.

Love adventure? Be transported to another time and place with Mark’s powerful word imagery. Read more and escape to another world that is best introduced in Mark’s own words.

Follow his blog to be in the know about his upcoming book releases, sweeps, and more!

Christmas PlainThank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. Merry Christmas! Carolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

These are a few of my social media hangouts! Say hello when you get a chance!

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Blog Tour with Author Jaci Wheeler: Silent Song

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler, Book Blog Tour, Blogging, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Jaci Wheeler Author, Play it forward, Book Blogs, About the author, Inspiration, Author InterviewSilent Song coming to life by Jaci Wheeler

Notes from Author Jaci Wheeler

Many authors I know pull from events or people from their own lives for inspiration or storyline. I’ve never been that way personally. I’m an extremely private person by nature, so it’s very unusual for me to use any of myself in my books. That is actually my favorite thing about writing; I’m able to fully create worlds and people out of thin air. It allows you to become whoever you want for the moment. I usually create a main character that is nothing like me because it allows me to be and do all the things I’ve always wanted to.

I’ve had a very eventful life. Those who know me well always ask why I’ve never drawn from my real life for a novel since my life is pretty much a lifetime movie. The idea of writing anything close to home has always been completely horrifying to me. (Super private remember?)

I have a pretty unique situation where I lost my hearing at eighteen years old. (You can read more about it in my letter to the reader in Silent Song.) Deafness is one of those subjects that most people think they understand…but actually, don’t. There is so much more to deafness than not being able to hear. There are levels (decibels) of sound that is so intricate that it is much more than just you can hear or not.

A few years ago I read a book that had a deaf main character. The book was amazing, but there were so many things that weren’t accurate. It wasn’t glaringly obvious unless you were deaf, but it really bothered me. I had brought up the issue to a good author friend of mine and I’ll never forget what she said to me.

“The only way to fix this problem Jaci is to set it straight. That means you are going to have to write the story of a deaf person from their perspective. Show people not only your world but help them understand the deaf world. Who else will?”

I instantly shut her down. There’s no way I’m writing anything close my life. A few months went by and then I had to explain a few things about deafness to people that they just never knew. Like just because you speak English doesn’t mean deaf people can write in English without a struggle. Almost every hearing person I talked to didn’t know that American Sign Language is NOT English. It has its own structure and rules like any other language. ASL is my second language, but it’s the main one I use at home with my husband. It’s hard for my brain to switch back and forth between ASL and English. Because of this, I tend to change tenses when I write, which is very frowned upon in writing. I’m pretty sure I’ve driven every editor I’ve ever had to drink over this little fact.

After having to explain this to several people over a very short amount of time I finally came to terms with the fact that I was going to have to write a story with a deaf character.

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler, Book Blog Tour, Blogging, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Jaci Wheeler Author, Play it forward, Book Blogs, About the author, Inspiration, Author Interview

I decided to go home and just see if I even had a story in me. I don’t outline, ever. I just start writing. I usually write the end first, then the beginning and fill in the middle. (Yeah I’m weird.) So I went home and just started writing to see if I even had a story in me…and I couldn’t stop. I wrote through the night, and all weekend long. By the time I took a break I had almost written half of the book. This is the only book I didn’t have to re-write or revise. It was trapped deep down and apparently ready to be freed. I cried more while writing this story than I have probably ever cried in my life. But it was also the most cathartic thing I‘ve ever done.

This story isn’t my own, but the feelings are completely mine. The painful feelings, fears, and passion are all mine even though the story belongs to Barrett alone.

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler is available on Amazon today.

Thank you, Jaci for sharing the story behind your new novel, Silent Song.

Order your copy of the Silent Song today! Happy reading! 

Thank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. If you get a chance say hello or wave, thank you! Carolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

These are a few of my social media hangouts! Drop by soon and say hello!

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Love picture ideas? Me, too. Pinners Follow here!

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My Great Expectations for Bubba Blue

Quote of the Day: The 99.99% of all castles in America are located in fish tanks. Demetri Martin

Bubba Blue, The Writing Life, Bubba Blue & Tookie, Carolyn M. Bowen Author, Books, Book blogging, Online Holiday Shopping

My Great Expectations for Bubba Blue

Bubba Blue, The Writing Life, Bubba Blue & Tookie, Carolyn M. Bowen Author, Books, Book blogging, Online Holiday ShoppingIf you know me, you’ll know that I have fish named after the heroines in my novels. That is except my newest Siamese fighting fish (Betta Fish), Bubba Blue. He’s so bold and fearless – Tookie our cat with paws grasping the inside the aquarium to say good morning doesn’t scare him or me either.

Bubba Blue, The Writing Life, Bubba Blue & Tookie, Carolyn M. Bowen Author, Books, Book blogging, Online Holiday ShoppingIt’s a ritual – Tookie wakes up and greets Bubba Blue with his face smashed against the glass! For the most part, even his brother by another mother, tabby Ollie, believes his desire for closeness is overwhelming, but not for Bubba Blue. They do this kissy thing and go about their own day.

Bubba Blue, The Writing Life, Bubba Blue & Tookie, Carolyn M. Bowen Author, Books, Book blogging, Online Holiday Shopping
Tookie & Bubba Saying Hello

I decided Bubba Blue needed a water filter (contraption) for his tank and off I went to the nearest big box store to purchase one. It’s the holiday season so I waited in line for my turn and was excited about hooking it up when I got home. Note: Betta Fish are not typically required filters but I was spending way too much money buying Betta water for our tap water even with recommended products still stunk after a few days.

I excitingly opened the box and read the directions for mounting this new life breather for Bubba Blue. Only the box didn’t contain all the necessary parts as indicated on the marketing blitz on the outside of the box. I had a choice – should I go online and find and order the missing parts from a reliable source? Trust me; I’m not going to wait in line to return it!

I went to my go-to reviews for products – Amazon and found something even better that would have saved me from the get-go of buying Bubba Blue. I should have brought him home and put him in a large clear vase with the roots of a Peace Lily to munch on while we waited for our purchase to arrive. But, I didn’t!

Bubba Blue, The Writing Life, Bubba Blue & Tookie, Carolyn M. Bowen Author, Books, Book blogging, Online Holiday Shopping
Bubba Blue

The good news is that Bubba Blue will have a new home soon. It will give him the space for swimming and enjoy the aquatic plants. Tookie can watch him 24-7 with the new light filters. I can’t wait to watch them play hide-n-seek!

Just remember the folks who draw your attention to shopping at Amazon. These Affiliates strive to bring you the corner store atmosphere while providing you their best offerings from Amazon. This is their local storefront and they pay plenty for that online website privilege. You know about Amazon, in part, because of these influencers! Bookmark their pages and when you order – place it through their websites where they’ll get a commission. It won’t cost you a dime more and these are the people who have influenced buyers to shop – Amazon!  Make sure they get a piece of the pie!

My bookmark is set at Roadtrips R Us (since 2011) – making daily food holidays and history come alive with the best in travel, in-house chef-inspired food recipes, and entertainment. Check them out and bookmark their Corner Gift Shop!

Now that Bubba Blue is all set and the Kitties seem happy too, I’ll sign off for now! Happy HolidaysCarolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

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Book Blog Tour: Game Hunter by Mark Kloss

Quote of the Day: “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies, said Jojen. The man who never reads lives only one.”  George R.R. Martin, A Dance with Dragons

Blog book tour, Game Hunter, Mark Kloss Author, Zombies, Reading books, Holiday Gifts, Online Shopping, Carolyn Bowen Author, The Writing Life

Blog book tour, Game Hunter, Mark Kloss Author, Zombies, Reading books, Holiday Gifts, Online Shopping, Carolyn Bowen Author, The Writing LifeIt’s a pleasure to introduce Mark Kloss the author of Game Hunter! Here’s a brief capture of what you can expect from this popular novel.

Game Hunter by Mark Kloss

Zombies in the deserted ruins of the City of London are an endangered species. The only thing keeping them from extermination is the hit reality TV show ‘Game Hunter,’ where people pay to go on a zombie killing safaris. Those left are hardly dangerous and viewer ratings are down unless something changes the show will be scrapped.

The Elders have convinced male and female half-zombie teenagers, reluctant Tremayne and Fiery Red, to find a further five fighters and take on seven of the most ferocious zombie hunters in a series of three gruesome rounds of Game Hunter. They will be feverishly followed by a worldwide audience and the final outcome will determine their annihilation or possible cure.

Yet with the fate of their zombie cousins at stake, a missing beloved sister to find, a budding romance, plus intrigue and conspiracy around every darkened corner, just staying alive until the first round seems to be a deadly struggle in itself.


Game Hunter: Book One of the Game Hunter series

Click the image or link above to order your copy of the Game Hunter! Happy reading!

Thank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. If you get a chance say hello or wave, thank you! Carolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

These are a few of my social media hangouts! Drop by soon!

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Love picture ideas? Me, too.  Pinners Follow here!

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Thanksgivings Begins with Gratitude!

Quote of the Day: Over and over I marvel at the blessings of my life: Each year has grown better than the last. Lawrence Welk

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Thanksgivings Begins with Gratitude!

Thanksgivings Begins with Gratitude, Thanksgiving Day, Thanksgiving Quotes, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Bloggers, BloggingThanksgiving Day is always a special family occasion and one of my favorite holidays. It’s a day of giving thanks for the wonderful blessings of the year.

I have a lot to give thanks for this year! The good health and opportunities myself and family have received. The wonderful friends I’ve met and longtime friends who choose to remain in my life make my life interesting and whole.

I give special thanks for the fans of my books that have taken the time to read, review, or comment about my books. You make my writing life worthwhile through your encouragement and support – thank you! You are invited to join my reviewer beta list to be one of the first to read my new books. Just let me know and I’ll include you with my heartfelt thanks!

Holiday Giveaway

In the spirit of the holidays, I’m giving away one Travel Bag to the top three entries in my “Snap a Photo” reading contest. A great go-to bag for your books!

It’s easy to enter for a chance to WIN! Just snap a picture of your reading or displaying The Long Road Home and submit here! Get as creative as you’d like! The winners will be announced Christmas Day!

Book Reviews

I love reading books and have learned much this year from soaking up writing craft books, fiction, and nonfiction from some very interesting, and skilled authors.

Thanksgivings Begins with Gratitude, Thanksgiving Day, Thanksgiving Quotes, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Bloggers, Blogging

Reviewers Wanted

I would like reviewers for my books. If you enjoy Mystery and/or Historical Romance, let me know. I’ll provide an Amazon Kindle version for your reading pleasure!

From my home to yours – Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday with your family and friends! Carolyn Bowen

Follow my blog for the latest news about my writing life! You can also find me on social media, where I spend way too much time! (Smiles) Here are a few of my favorite hangouts!

Social Media Hangouts!

These are a few of my social media hangouts! Drop by and say hello!

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Book Blog Tour: Wise Before Their Time

Quote of the Day: Plan your life like you will live forever, and live your life like you will die the next day. Unknown

Book Blog Tour, Wise Before Their Time, Author Ann Richardson, Holiday Reading, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen, Book Reviews, Book Bloggers, Book Gifts

“As Powerful As Any Great Classic of Fiction” so said Sir Ian McKellen in his foreword to my book. And it is.

 Wise Before Their TimeBook Blog Tour

Book Blog Tour, Wise Before Their Time, Author Ann Richardson, Holiday Reading, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen, Book Reviews, Book Bloggers, Book GiftsExcerpt from Author Ann Richardson

Do you remember the terrible times of AIDS and HIV in the 1980s and 1990s? If not, are you curious to learn what it was like for those diagnosed?

Book Blog Tour, Wise Before Their Time, Author Ann Richardson, Holiday Reading, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen, Book Reviews, Book Bloggers, Book GiftsWise Before their Time, first published in 1992, shows in moving detail what it was like to live with HIV/AIDS when there was no real treatment for this life-threatening illness. It tells the true stories of over forty young men and women from all over the world, attending an international conference of people with HIV and AIDS in London in 1991.

I have added a new cover and a short introduction to the new version, but the book remains essentially the same.

These were very young people (most were in their twenties and thirties) having to cope with an unexpectedly shortened lifespan.

They describe the difficulties of telling their parents, friends, and partners of their diagnosis, while trying to cope with the day-to-day problems of staying healthy, keeping in work and supporting their friends.

They all experienced enormous stigma, blame, and guilt because of the disease. This can be seen in all kinds of ways – from small things, like an Irishman being disappointed that friends did not want him to play with their child, to larger ones, such as a man being placed alone in an isolation hospital in Goa for some months with no help.

They all knew others who had died. And one mother tells the story of the death of her toddler.

Yet this is in no way a struggle to read. It is touching, it is enlightening and it is sometimes funny.  But most of all, there is virtually no self-pity. On the contrary, the participants were committed to celebrating the joys of life to the full. Which is why I chose the title – they were, genuinely, wise before their time.

Thank you for stopping by and reviewing author Ann Richardson’s book, Wise Before Their Time. For more information or to buy, click here!

This holiday season provides the perfect opportunity to practice compassion towards mankind. I hope you will share peace and love with those who cross your path this season. I plan to make a conscious effort to spread love and joy every day. CB

Book Blog Tour, Wise Before Their Time, Author Ann Richardson, Holiday Reading, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen, Book Reviews, Book Bloggers, Book GiftsBook Reviews

If you have a novel you’d like for me to review, drop me a note here! Check out some of my latest book reviews also on Goodreads!

It’s a Beautiful Day for Fall Reading, Carolyn M. Bowen author, The Writing Life, Book Blogs, Book ReviewsLooking for some winter novels to read and review? Click here for a Kindle gift version of my mystery, The Long Road Home or Cross-Ties adventure. Thank you!

Don’t forget this is National Novel Writing Month! Celebrate your favorite authors by leaving a great review. They’ll thank you! I certainly do!

Where to Buy My Novels

Check at your favorite online bookstores and corner bookshops. Click the direct link or image to begin reading on Amazon. Happy reading!


The Long Road Home: Romantic Murder Mystery

I hope you’ll enjoy a blissful November celebrating the holidays with family and friends. I’ll be writing – and enjoying some great times too. Carolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

These are a few of my social media hangouts! Drop by and say hello!

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Love picture ideas? Me, too.  Pinners Follow

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It’s a Beautiful Fall Day for Reading!

Fall Reading In Nature

It’s a Beautiful Day for Fall Reading, Carolyn M. Bowen author, The Writing Life, Book Blogs, Book Reviews

Quote of the Day

Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full armor and attacked a hot fudge Sundae. Kurt Vonnegut (November 11, 1922 –April 11, 2007)

Today is a beautiful fall day and I’ve got some extra pep in my step! I enjoy watching the seasons change! The first days of the full color burst in autumn or new flowers sprouting in the spring remind me how fortunate we are to live in nature.

Book Reviews

If you have a novel you’d like for me to review, drop me a note here! Check out some of my latest book reviews also on Goodreads!

It’s a Beautiful Day for Fall Reading, Carolyn M. Bowen author, The Writing Life, Book Blogs, Book ReviewsLooking for some winter novels to read and review? Click here for a Kindle gift version of my mystery, The Long Road Home or Cross-Ties adventure. Thank you!

Don’t forget this is National Novel Writing Month! Celebrate your favorite authors by leaving a great review. They’ll thank you! I certainly do!

Where to Buy My Novels

Check at your favorite online bookstores and corner bookshops. Click the direct link or image to begin reading on Amazon. Happy reading!


The Long Road Home: Romantic Murder Mystery

I hope you’ll enjoy a blissful November celebrating the holidays with family and friends. I’ll be writing – and enjoying some great times too. Carolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

These are a few of my social media hangouts! Drop by and say hello!

Goodreads

Twitter

Google Plus

Facebook

Love picture ideas? Me, too.  Pinners Follow

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