Saturday, July 18, 2015

Writers4Higher features author V.L Brunskill

Hi Vicki-lynn! 

Welcome to Writers4Higher.

1. Tell me about yourself. Your book(s), your life, your inspiration.

My professional writing career started when I dropped out of journalism class after landing an interview with the late, great, punk icon Joey Ramone. At the start of my music journalism career, I begged for interviews. After gaining some tenure, record labels let me know when bands would be performing in Boston. You name a band from the late eighties or early nineties, and the chances are pretty good that I interviewed them. My work appeared in Metronome Magazine, CREEM, Boston Globe, and the Boston Phoenix.

When waiting backstage for rock stars became tedious, and I was ready to start a family, I changed careers. It is tough to attend five concerts a week with a baby carrier on your arm. Plus, I wanted my little one to be able to hear! Some of those shows were deafening. After my daughter was born, I worked as a technical writer in the ion implantation field, and as an IT magazine editor. I am currently a conference producer.

My novel Waving Backwards was born of my experience as an adoptee in search. I was adopted at seven-months old in a closed adoption. Closed adoptions are those in which the child can never gain access to their records. The paperwork about the adoption is sealed by the state, and can only be opened by court order. It is an outdated and unfair system, but remains the law in most states.

I have always wondered about my biological family and started searching for my family while I was in college. It took thirteen years for me to locate both my birth mother and birth father. I moved South to be closer to both. We brought my adoptive Mom with us from Boston to Savannah, Georgia.

Waving Backwards tells the story of Lara Bonavito’s unforgettable journey of self-discovery. Adopted into an abusive and impoverished home, Lara’s quest to find her roots lands her in the Southern jewel’s historic district. A vivid cast of characters help her unravel clues found in a cryptic letter hidden in the family bible for two decades.

“The baby’s roots are with the Southern lady who waves forever.”

With the help of mischievously handsome trolley tour guide Robert Taylor, Kipling-quoting florist Abel Bloom, and comically outspoken Louisiana beauty Susan Fletcher, Lara uncovers family secrets wrapped in the mystique of Savannah’s Waving Girl statue.

Waving Backwards is a coming-of-age quest that reveals the healing power of family bonds and maternal love. It really is a heart-warming tale, set in one of the South’s most romantic cities.

2. Where do you see your writing taking you in the future?

My character Lara keeps telling me that she would like to do a bit more traveling. So, I think there will be a sequel to Waving Backwards.

I am also working on a rock memoir that will cover my decade in the music world. The book will feature stories and interviews with the likes of; Buddy Guy, Aerosmith, Deep Purple, Chicago, Steve Vai, Poison, Tesla, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and many more.

3. How do you use your talents/time to help others?

I am an adoption reunion assistant at I advise adoptees on the key steps to take in the adoption search process. I also post search tips, reunion stories, and family-focused articles at Adoption Find.

I also created a charity in 2013 called ‘Books to Build On’. The book drive was launched after I witnessed the devastation caused by the Moore, Oklahoma tornadoes. Two elementary schools were demolished and several students were killed by the storms which hit during school hours. As a book lover, it was important to me that the school libraries be restocked. They lost everything! With my daughter's help, I started a children’s book drive. We had church groups, boy scouts and even the famous Australian boy band 5SOS join the effort. We ended up with 7,000 books, two sets of brand new encyclopedias from World Book, and twenty-four student dictionaries from The Dictionary Project.

UniGroup Logistics (United Van Lines) shipped the four pallets of books from my garage in Savannah to the Moore schools for free. It was so exciting to be able to help the students. After all, what's a school without books? The process taught me that anyone can make a difference. My daughter and I saw a need, and with the help of thousands of generous donations, were able to fill it.

Where to find out more about Vicki-lynn:


Twitter- @RockMemoir

Facebook author page-

My novel Waving Backwards

Amazon author page- 

Book trailer-

Books to Build on article:

Thank you again, Vicki-lynn.

Rhett DeVane

blogmaster, Writers4Higher 

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Writers4Higher features Barbara Joe Williams

Hi Barbara Joe. Welcome to Writers4Higher.

1. Tell me about yourself. Your book(s), your life, your inspiration.

Thanks for having me as your blog guest today. I'm an Amazon bestselling author, indie publisher, and a motivational speaker living in Tallahassee, Florida. I founded my publishing business, Amani Publishing in 2004, as a way to publish my first novel titled, Forgive Us This Day. I also co-founded the Tallahassee Authors Network in 2008. I write romance and women's fiction because that's mainly what I love to read. I have also written a few nonfiction books, a novella, short stories, and compiled several anthologies. My inspiration to write comes from my love for reading and wanting to share my own stories with others. In 2014, I revised and updated my first novel and republished it as a tenth anniversary edition which ended up being reviewed by USA Today. 

2. Where do you see your writing taking you in the future?

I'm working on something different right now. It's a Young Adult series set in the seventies, during the time that I grew up in Arkansas. It's not a biography, but it's my way of documenting some of the things I experienced as a teen and how they're related to what teens are still experiencing today. So I see this series taking me into the schools and other places where I can share my stories with a younger audience and their families. I'm hoping this series will help bridge the gap between the generations and bring more understanding and tolerance for everyone.

3. How do you use your talents/time to help others?

I use my talent's and time to help other aspiring writers by hosting workshops, speaking at events, and publishing reference books that can help them become successful self-published authors. I just published the A-Z eBook series earlier this year to help new and seasoned authors expand their craft. The series includes: A-Z Writing Tips, A-Z Basic Editing Tips, and A-Z Marketing Tips. Each book is designed to be a motivational tool for helping authors achieve their writing goals. I've also hosted online chats as well as Q & A sessions designed to benefit writers and readers. I also volunteer in my community to help disadvantaged children and their families whenever necessary.

Where to find Barbara Joe Williams:

Thank you for joining us at Writers4Higher!

Rhett DeVane
Southern fiction author and blogmaster

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