Thursday, April 24, 2014

Interview with Author Susan Harris



Susan Harris
Saskatchewan, Canada


Good Morning, Susan.  Welcome to Vision and Verse, the Place for Art and Artists.  What have you written? 
Four books- Golden Apples in Silver Settings (2011, White Lily Press), Little Copper Pennies: Celebrating the Life of the Canadian one-cent piece (2012, Borealis Press), Little Copper Pennies for Kids (2012, Borealis Press), Remarkably Ordinary: 20 Reflections on Living Intentionally Right Where You Are (2014, White Lily Press).

What is your favorite genre to write? 
Inspirational, Non-Fiction

Favorite food. 
Deep fried and salty

Tea or coffee? 
Coffee

Pizza or ice cream?
How about black forest cake?


Where would you like to visit?
Monaco.

Favorite musical artist.
Shara McKee


Do you listen to music when you write? 
No. Silence does it for writing.

What makes you laugh?
The cats and their antics

How old were you when you started writing?
Age 13 stands out when my English teacher commended my essays

Describe your perfect evening.
With friends, but preferably with my husband, sharing a meal, discussing world news, our lives and dreams, joking, and playing board games.



Where do you get your inspiration? 
From the environment, current affairs, and my own needs.

What do you do when you get a writer's block? 
I haven't found writer's block to be a concern but if I need to rev up my inspiration, I change the channel by switching writing themes or going outdoors.


Who is your favorite author?
As a child it was Enid Blyton. I don’t have a favourite author now as an adult but I read non-fiction by several authors.  I'm drawn to Joel Osteen's writing because it is more inspirational than "religious".

Best book you ever read. 
The Bible.

Who is the one person who has influenced your personal life the most and why? 
One of my English teachers at Advanced Level. She was an exceptional teacher and I aspired to be a teacher because of her. I left a post with a government ministry to become a high school teacher. I transfer my love to educate in my books, Little Copper Pennies and Little Copper Pennies for Kids.

If you could sit down and have a conversation with ONE person, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it be and why?
Oprah Winfrey. She is a living icon of inspiration, stardom, success, charity. Oprah rose above minority status, shattered glass ceilings and paved a way for anyone who dares to dream and work hard. She took an ordinary life and made it extraordinary. And that's what I aspire to do through my newest book, Remarkably Ordinary. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JICVCQM


What advice would you give someone who aspired to be a writer? Dream, and remember that you are the most significant actor in realizing your dreams. Write about what drives your heart. Rewrite it again until it's your best, for your best is what will get you noticed.


Contacts:
http://susanharris.ca
https://www.facebook.com/SusanHarrisCanadianAuthor

https://twitter.com/SusanHarris20


SUSAN HARRIS
Author & Speaker
Remarkably Ordinary, Little Copper Pennies
http://susanharris.ca
https://www.facebook.com/SusanHarrisCanadianAuthor
https://twitter.com/SusanHarris20

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Interview with Landscape PhotographerJason Bartimus

Jason Bartimus
Landscape Photographer
Hawaii

Good morning, Jason, and welcome to Vision and Verse, the Place for Art and Authors.  We are happy to have you here from beautiful Hawaii.  What is your area of artistic expertise? 
Landscape Photography

What is your favorite art medium? 
Photography

How did you get started in photography?
I have always had some sort of interest in photography, but it became a serious hobby after a trip to Italy and Greece in 2009, both amazing places for inspiration.

I've been to Italy and agree it is very inspirational.  Do you have any formal training in art, photography? 
Nope

Turtle Bay









 Me, either.  You don't need it.  Your work is gorgeous.  What one tip could you offer us for taking better photos? 
First off keep it simple.  Don’t get bogged down with the technical stuff.  Yes you need to know the technical things but first and foremost dig deep into composition.  Study the great painters and learn how theycreated a scene.  Framing is by far the best thing you can learn that will help you in making great shots.  The frame is where you create the mood, tell the story, and keep everything in balance. Composition is not just about leading lines and the golden ratio.  It is also how you include or take away things from the frame or how the subjects interact with each other.  I think of the golden ratio and leading lines as kind of a basic framework that can be used as a guide.  But as you really work the frame you may find that the general frameworks do not apply. Composition is not limited to just the frame either.  Composition is also how you see and use light.  It is how you create contrastand use shadows. Even your colors and tones affect the overall structure of you photograph.  Composition should not be limiting.  Sometimes you will need to put more emphasis on one or the other, but remember that composition is framing, light, contrast, tones and color. So in summary I would focus first on learning how to frame your shots using the general guidelines of composition.  The most important thing that will help is obviously practice but even moreimportant than that is looking at a ton of great photos.  Master the ability to quickly see and find why the photo works or not.  I have looked at so many photos that I can be confident with what works and does not.  A really good composition with all the elements in place will have an aesthetically pleasing flow almost like rhythm in a poem.  In a way the photo begins to sing to you.  I don’t mean to be corny buy it’s true.

Oh, honey, you are talking to a romance writer.  I love that kind of stuff.  That's great advice, Jason.  i'll try it.  Favorite food.   
Bacon and eggs.  I love a good breakfast.

Makapu
Tea or coffee. 
Tea.  

Pizza or ice cream. 
Definitely Pizza.

Where would you like to visit?  
I would love to go to Ireland, Egypt, Jerusalem, a few parts of China, Bali, and back to Italy to name a few.

Favorite musical artist.
I am very eclectic with my music tastes but if I had to narrow it down then it would be Beethoven, simply timeless.

Do you listen to music when you work
Yes 

What? 
Usually classical or a moving instrumental.  Music is very helpful to me when editing and shooting.

What makes you laugh?
British Humor and random humor.

How old were you when you started creating art? 
I actually first started creating poetry at a young age. In many ways a photograph is like a poem.  Photography came later in my life.

Where do you get your inspiration? 
The places I visit.                                                                                                  Eternity Cove

What do you do when you get artist's block? 
Usually if I have an artist block is because I am bored with my subject matter.  So I explore other subject matters and see if I can create interesting projects out of seemingly boring environments.  There is always something out there.  Ideally a great way to get out of an artist block is to travel. But the real answer to this is that with photography you do need to take inspiration anyway you can get it.  Another way is by limiting yourself to only certain equipment.  What I have done in the past is to only shoot with just one lens for a long period of time to make it interesting.

Who is your favorite artist? 
As far as photographersthis may seem odd being that I am a landscape photographer, but Elliot Erwitt is by far my favorite. Next would be Steve McCurry, his work has been very impactful to me. Then it would be Henri Cartier Bresson, and Saul Leiter.  Among some of the others are Art Wolfe, Michael and so many more modern artists, but those are the ones that come to mind quickly. I recently have discovered Edward Clark (A past LIFE photographer), the list is always growing.  As far as painters I really enjoy Albert Bierstadt, Johannes Vermeer, Claude Monet and of course Rembrandt.

What is your favorite painting or sculpture? 
I don’t really have answer for that one.

What’s the last book you read? 
The Art of being Unmistakable

Describe your perfect evening.
 A good dinner at home, watching a movie with my family or out photographing during the sunset.

Who is the one person who has influenced your personal life the most and why? 
There have been many influences in my life and I cannot list just one person.  But I can list two and that would be my Mom and Dad.




If you could sit down and have a conversation with ONE person, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it be and why? 
This would be Carl Sagan without a doubt. He is a brilliant combination of philosopher and scientist.

What advice would you give someone who aspired to be a professional photographer? 
Make what you love to shoot your focus and don’t make it about the money.  You can make a living taking photos but even better is to take photos as a way of living.  Very corny I know, but what I mean is that unless you really like the grind of running a business, make sure to protect your passion ofphotography, which may mean keeping it as a hobby.  I approach it backwards a bit. The best solution is to take your passion and figure out how to make a serious income without compromising your passion.  This means it may be a much slower process.  Just because you are passionate about photography doesn’t mean it equates to enjoyment of being a professional photographer.  The only way it works is to find the right path for your photography to flourish.Again it may not mean professional photography.

Follow Jason on Pinterest.  Do you have any other links for us to follow you?
www.jasonbartimus.com  Check out this site for prints of Jason's gorgeous work!



Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Kristin Mazzola's Falling Back Together Release Party

 

Falling Back Together (Crashing #2)

by Kristen Hope Mazzola

ETA: May 20, 2014

Cover Artist: Cover it! Designs




blurb

“I don't know if it’s fate, coincidence, or my curse, but I'm still breathing, and my breaths are for you.”

Mags McManus is far from a normal woman in her mid twenties. Being a war widow, a business professional, and a brokenhearted train wreck only skims the surface of the layers of who Margret McManus truly is. Waking up in a hospital bed, alone and confused, Mags once again has to pick up the pieces of her shattered heart. With her best friends by her side, Mags slowly starts to learn the answers she so desperately longs for. But is everything going to continue to spiral out of control? Or is there a light at the end of this dark, twisting tunnel where all the broken pieces can finally fall back together?

A portion of all royalties from Kristen's Crashing Series are donated by the author to The Marcie Mazzola Foundation.

**18+ for sexual situations, cursing, and adult content.***
{{ Please note: this is the second book in the Crashing Series, and should be read after Crashing Back Down }}

Add to Goodreads


playlist



Crashing Back Down (Crashing, #1)
Also by Kristen Hope Mazzola:
Crashing Back Down (Crashing #1)

Publication: November 4th 2013

Crashing Back Down is Kristen Hope Mazzola’s debut into the literary world. It is a New Adult Novel, with hints of contemporary romance and thriller.

Blurb:

Mags McManus has just become a war widow in her mid-twenties. Her late husband, Randy, left for the Army right after their wedding. Instead of celebrating his homecoming and living in marital bliss with her soulmate, Mags finds herself living in constant agony. Dealing with the guilt of still living without Randy, are Randy’s best friends and parents.

Rising from the ashes of this tragedy, Mags starts to learn how to love and trust again, finally being able to find happiness. But sometimes things really are too good to be true and again Mags learns how cruel the world can be as she crashes back down.



Hi! Thanks for dropping in...
You want to know more about me? Well, let's see...
I am just an average twenty-something following my dreams. I have a full time "day job" and by night I am an author. I guess you could say that writing is like my super power (I always wanted one of those). I am the lover of wine, sushi, football and the ocean; that is when I am not wrapped up in the literary world. 
Please feel free to contact me to chat about my writing, books you think I'd like or just to shoot the, well you know.



giveaway


Goodreads Book Giveaway

Falling Back Together by Kristen Hope Mazzola

Falling Back Together

by Kristen Hope Mazzola

Giveaway ends July 01, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win




Hosted by















Buy Links for Crashing Back Down: Amazon | B&N | CreateSpace | Smashwords | iTunes
Blurb:
*** Sequel of Crashing Back Down ***
“I don't know if it’s fate, coincidence, or my curse, but I'm still breathing, and my breaths are for you.”
Mags McManus is far from a normal woman in her mid twenties. Being a war widow, a business professional, and a brokenhearted train wreck only skims the surface of the layers of who Margret McManus truly is. Waking up in a hospital bed, alone and confused, Mags once again has to pick up the pieces of her shattered heart. With her best friends by her side, Mags slowly starts to learn the answers she so desperately longs for. But is everything going to continue to spiral out of control? Or is there a light at the end of this dark, twisting tunnel where all the broken pieces can finally fall back together?
A portion of all royalties from Falling Back Together are donated by the author to The Marcie Mazzola Foundation.
**18+ for sexual situations, cursing, and adult content.***
Sign up link: http://bit.ly/1glPsEa

XoXo - Just One Indie's Opinoin (the tour host)



Buy Links for Crashing Back Down: Amazon | B&N | CreateSpace | Smashwords | iTunes

Monday, April 21, 2014

A Great review for Waiting for Richard


What has a feisty older author, a reclusive veterinarian, an elephant, a guy in drag, Pavlova, thugs, and an airport?  Why, Waiting for Richard, of course!  Here is a great review.



By CC
Format:Kindle Edition
A Review on Waiting For Richard
I don’t usually use the blurb for my review but because this back story is so complex I am including the blurb for edification of the story line in the words of the birth mother of the project Author Carol Ann Kaufman
“This is rather long, short story in the TIME AFTER TIME series, which follows a pair of quintessential lovers, Richard and Nicole, through their lives together, at different times, in different places, with different names and faces. This follows the alternate theory that the relationships we forge in this lifetime, both good and bad, are continued in the future and rooted in the past. Those people who have had a profound effect on us in this life will find us in the future.”

With that said on with the review from a reader’s perspective.
Imagine kissing someone for the first time after you've already kissed them for the last time. This is a charming and delightful slice of life comedy/fantasy that explores that premise with all the humor and pain that accompany it. Not to mention a really cute costar by name of Gretchen. You'll know it's her when you read her she carries her baggage in her trunk.
But seriously there is a much deeper subtext as far as I’m concerned. It is about reevaluation and those glorious second chances in this life or another to get it right in love, destiny and purpose, the story is unique in the context of time travel books.
Think about it - if you had the chance to see someone again who had died long before, from a relationship that felt like a dream, or was it? What would you say to them? What would you do? This wonderful story gives us the chance to find out. This is a truly touching story about going back in time or into the future and being able to experience your youth and priceless times that you will never be able to experience again, or so you think.
This book addresses the answers to those questions of doing it all over again. In the end, would you still do the same thing? If you had the opportunity to relive your life. Making the same mistakes and suffering the same consequences, would you do it? Remember, in making your decision, that it could effect for instance your life, and the loves and friendships experienced. The memory of these are contingent upon your answer.
So Skye isn't actually going back in time occupying the same space actually she is reliving the past with memories buried in her subconscious. There is a big difference.
The author’s attention to details pays off on an emotional level. The heroine isn't weak because Skye ultimately surrenders to a destiny that she can't seem to escape from. Quite frankly who would want to.
Her surrender is what ultimately sets her free. But did Skye actually relive her life? Or was it a dream? You can speculate either way. The important thing is the lessons learned from her experience. The author deserves credit for taking a story that could have been a rip-off of any time travel book. Skye turned it into a great story about love and life I highly recommend this book. I hope it becomes a bit more well-l known along with the series
Perhaps it's because we often find ourselves daydreaming of the good old days and simpler times...far removed from the hectic pace of today. That I find this story so appealing it should be noted. The tension between the two main characters was at times that age old come here go away game lovers play. I wanted to just yell and say "quit your whining enough already let’s just make this happen, you two.”
But at the end of the day only they can connect the feelings about mistakes and choices made in this or any other life. I got from this that all the experiences make us who we are. That destiny is destiny regardless of what time capsule we wake up in. Or as Miss O'Sullivan says in Peggy Sue Got Married, ‘‘you’re just browsing through time.''
I’m giving the book five stars because “Ms. Kaufman, you worked me like a fiddle, leading me right into the need for reading the series Time After Time.
Well played Ms. Kaufman, well played.”

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Update for "Waiting for Richard" Available






Waiting for Richard is a novella about a feisty, older author who finds love on a book tour with a reclusive elephant veterinarian and madcap adventure ensues. 
  

I have updated my Time After Time novella, Waiting for Richard. The story has not changed. I have eliminated the unnecessary spaces and tweaked (not twerked) the formatting a bit.

Excerpt:
WAITING FOR RICHARD
A Novella in the
TIME AFTER TIME Series
By
Carol Ann Kauffman
Copyright 2013


This is a work of fiction.  All places, characters, and events depicted in this story are fictional.  Any resemblance to any actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental and unintentional.

Each book in the Time after Time series follows a pair of quintessential lovers, Richard and Nicole, through their lives together, in different times, with different names, and sometimes even on different planets.  This follows the alternative theory that the relationships we forge in this lifetime, both the good and the bad, are continued into the future, and are rooted in the past.  How we live, whom we love, and the good and evil deeds we do today follow us into the future.  Unsettled issues will present themselves again and again until they are ultimately resolved.  Those people who have had a profound effect on us in this lifetime will find us again in the future.

Location:  Sterling, Ohio

“Run!” said Rita, fear catching in her voice.
“Are you kidding me?” replied Skye.  “I’m too damn old to run!  Want me to have a heart attack?  Fall and break a hip?  If some slimy son of a bitch wants a piece of me that bad, let him come!  He’ll be damn sorry.”
“We gotta get out of here.  I’m scared,” Rita whispered.  Skye pulled out her cell phone and tapped 9-1-1.
“Yes, we’re in the underground parking garage of the Sterling City Center and we’re being chased by a madman with a knife, and my friend here is scared and I’m too damn old to run.  Yes.  Skye McKenna.  Sixty-six.  Well, I’m glad you agree that’s too old to run.” 
“Help is on the way, Rita.  Calm down.”
“Skye, you don’t know he has a knife!”
“You’re absolutely right!  He could have a gun.  Shall I call her back and correct myself?”  Sirens were blaring in the distance.
“Isn’t this illegal?  This is at least a misdemeanor, if not a felony.  Skye!  We could end up in jail!”
“Would you rather be murdered in the underground parking garage?”
“No”
“Then, cry and sniffle, look weak and helpless, and let me handle Sterling’s Finest.  Damn!  If I knew there was a chance we were going to die on the way to the car, I would’ve had dessert.  They make this wonderful strawberry and mascarpone cream cheese torte in there that is pure heaven on a plate.” 

Link to buy: