Greetings,

Just wanted to provide you an update! At the March meeting, I shared that I would be in the Table Topics Division Contest on April 1st! I’m happy to share that I came in 2nd place out of eight contestants and earned a trophy!

Also this week is the first week of the Inspirational Running Club that I was inspired to start! iRun Presented by Desire To Inspire will have our kick-off run on Tuesday, April 5th @ 6:45 pm at the Edison Bridge Downtown Fort Myers! If you like us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/DTIYou) you can subscribe to our events, that way you never miss-out on upcoming events. “The key is to start where you are.” Let’s come together to Pray… Run/Walk… and Pray again on Tuesdays and Thursdays! Be sure to bring your running shoes!!!

Thanks so much for the amazing support and the excitement shared when I announced that the film “Ring” which I am a Supporting Actress (yes I had a speaking part, I am so excited!!!) will be in the Fort Myers Film Festival showing on Saturday, April 9th at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center the film will be in the 7:15 pm block.

April is a very exciting month. I recently learned that  “Hanging Millstone” the full feature film in which I play a Doctor was recently accepted to the Fort Myers Beach Film Festival and “Ring” will also be in this 10th annual film festival! (How cool is that?!?!) The Fort Myers Beach Film Festival will be held April 20 -24. I believe the films will be showing Wednesday, April 20th starting at 7:30 pm at the Beach Theater (http://www.fmbfilmfest.com) I will follow up once they provide more details. Thank you for the love and support checking out this share!

Have an AWESOME Day!

~ Jamilla D. Brooks 🙂

At last a winner

I took the advice of Henry Heitmann, who last year was a winner in the DreamquestOne writing contest, and  I entered one of my short stories in this years contest. This year I won third place and was very pleased to do that. Dreamquest is a National/ International web site and draws 1000s of entries each year from around the world. Winning is a plus and I encourage you to try it.  Ken Feeley..   (view the winners at http://www.dreamquestone.com )

THE DIRTY WORDS

THE DIRTY WORDS

By Russ Miller (734 words)

 

Have you noticed the foul language of this present generation?

Even movie scripts are rife with verbal and visual degradation.

It is a moral risk taking family to the theatre these days,

Dirty dialogues abounding, what has happened to decent mores?

 

They say: ‘that is the way people talk today.”

F words and B words and others I won’t say.

Environment could be a reason for some,

But I’ve even heard scholars, swear with aplomb.

 

What is the need for profanity and what is the gain?,

For anyone to use words that are unquestionably profane.

Violating sensitivities, with intent to defame,

Some cultured listeners may tolerate the use, albeit with disdain.

 

Dirty words in text, used to be blocked out leaving blank spots

Later the technique was to print the first letter, followed by dots

There is no guessing what the words were, that were blocked out,

And now filthy words are complete, leaving nary a doubt.

 

Have you notices “T” shirts the collegians are wearing?

Four letter words emboldened, encouraging solicitations for paring.

Coed dormitories are convenient for debauchery and such,

Parental influence is no longer a factor and not seen very much.

 

One’s shallow lexicon, is an indication of one’s choices,

Obviously demonstrating their short comings, when hearing their voices,

But a small vocabulary does not have to be defiled,

By using words that you would not teach a child.

 

A shameless vocabulary, imparts shame indeed,

And demonstrates that the relater is sorely in need,

Of more cultured articulation, without the crust,

For an otherwise acceptable message, void of disgust.

 

I recall orators, in the classic annals of literature who excel,

Outstanding by their brilliance and lauded prose to tell.

I cannot recall in quality works that I have read, vile or dirty words,

Common scurrility as used today would only be among the absurd’s.

 

Yes I know that times have changed, as our mores relax,

But the rules of decency still prevail, the facts are still the facts.

There are some acceptable exceptions within limits, that may do no harm,

Imagine Rhett Butler saying, “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a darn”

 

GONE WITH THE WIND, will live for centuries,

One word contributed to a ban by the Church and their juries,

The word was “damn”, it relegated a great film to the list of the profane,

I’ve heard worse from Priest’s mouths, with scorn and disdain.

 

 

I will have no influence with the dirty mouth generations,

Nor will I try, I am satisfied with my own untainted creations.

My writings span a period over 70 odd years to date.

I search for right words, with no deference to the common vulgate.

 

I am embarrassed to read or hear irreverent uncultured trash,

Shakespeare said “ Speak the Speech, proudly with panache.”

We are judged by what we say and how we say every bit,

I want my words to be remembered with class, as I say it.

 

Would you be pleased or uncomfortable, listening to you,

Uttering foul, obscene vulgarities, like maybe some friends may do?

It is not just the middle or lower class now, using foul orations,

Even socialites use evil tongues with defiling connotations?

 

Some say “that’s just the way it is at this point is time,” really”?

I have not heard it taught in churches or schools, where languages flow freely.

Most offenders clean up their mouth, speaking with a child or a parent.

There are times when even the worst offenders know, that they daren’t.

 

Does anyone give respect to a dirty mouth friend or a mate,

Admiring their curse words, which connote a distasteful spate?

Spare me the need to listen with disgust and dismay,

“Speak the Speech with panache” as Shakespeare would say.

 

Have I Spoke the Speech, have I encouraged some restrain.

As the word master teaches, there is no need to be profane.

Words are our jewels, with millions of facets, sparkling like stars,

For all to use, in dignity, with pride, they are for us, they are ours.

 

It is our choice and ours alone, to choose from the myriads of verbal jewels,

Profanity has no meaningful use in any language, and is not taught in schools.

Those who embrace sounds of scurrility, are justifiably regarded as low class.

Even Webster and, Funk and Wagnall’s gave “THE DIRTY WORDS” a wide, wide pass.

…………………………………………………………………..

 

For over 100 more nostalgic or poetic

short stories, by Russ, go to:

www.russmillerstories.com

What makes a good writer?

What makes a good writer?

Geneva Kelly

Are you a writer, or insane enough to love one?

Suppose you had the chance to sit down with one of your favorite authors. Who would it be, and what would you ask?

If you’re the writer chances are you’ll ask: What was your inspiration? How did you get your big break? How long did it take before your work got accepted? My question would be, “What do I need to do, to become a successfully-known writer?”

If you are a writer’s lover on the other hand, your question may be, “When will they stop questioning everything?” I’ll make that one easy for you by saying NEVER.The word Write on a cork notice board

Just the other day he called me dramatic—my lover that is. It’s not my fault my story was about him! I could blame it on his eyes. I could say he threw me into a frenzy of anger because loving him is painful. Or I could do what I did: tell him that I remember everything he’s ever said! Blame it on the writer— not the girl.

Over the years I’ve wondered when and where, why and how for just about everything imaginable. But the one thing I have never wondered is what makes a good writer. It seems to be the only thing that makes total sense to me.

Being a good writer means creating stories in the middle of doing something else, without even expecting it to happen. It means being in tune with the world; being able to laugh at it, when you want to throw your hands up and slap the shit out of somebody. It means being Clark Kent at your day job, just so you can pay your bills on time, while locking up bad guys at night with the strength of your pen.

It also means relating to pain with compassion, or total disregard; whatever works best for the story. It’s knowing that at the end of the paper you spilled your guts, no matter what the outcome. You had no choice but to get it out!

I’m aware that my writing comes from a place that sometimes has nothing to do with me. It comes from a place I’m unfamiliar with and don’t even care to question. I can’t say that about much of anything else in life.

You know you are a good writer if what you write moves others to places that make them laugh, and cry. But you also have to be willing to laugh at yourself. I believe honesty has a vulnerability that can break through steel. Writers are taught that good writing means more than telling someone you had the best day of your life; a good writer shows them what if feels like to jump out of that plane (even if you bump your head on the way down).

A good writer is an architect. She enjoys straightening out the lovely mess in her head and structuring the roles of the ten or more people living there.

On the other hand- if you are the one in love with a writer, there are a few things you should know. You should be:

  1. Crazy.
  2. Patient. There are times when you will have to be more supportive than you want. (Like when your lover stops you mid-sentence because something you said just gave them a new idea for a story.)
  3. INTERESTING. Writers just don’t do BORING very well.  Sorry for the bluntness, but at times we have to make something out of nothing and in order to do that, we need some inspiration.
  4. Good in bed. Ok- this could just be a personal opinion, but writers are liberated by passion. We breathe it, sleep it, see it when it barely exists; if you want to see our creative juices flowing- it’s simple: get them flowing.

After reading Stephen King’s memoir, On Writing, I thought it was awesome that he emphasized how his wife’s unwavering belief in him pushed him forward. He said, had she doubted him, he may have given up on himself. For me, this confirmed the importance of supportive people in our lives.

I am intensely against horror films, so reading anything from Stephen King would seem almost unheard of to someone who knows me well. Something about a man chasing me down the hall with a large knife and a crazy grin, just doesn’t do it for me. Though now, I am able to understand the writing behind it, and I’m intrigued by how this man has mastered the craft.

I never expected him to have such a sense of humor; never expected to relate to his writing either. But after reading about his life, he no longer seemed so creepy. After I finished the book, I even listened to the CDs. Hearing Stephen’s explanation of his story inspirations, amazed me.

I got a kick out of it when my son’s father questioned why I, (of all people) was listening to Steven King? While he (of all people) was listening to Pastor Joyce Myer (after my suggestion). I’m laughing because Joyce doesn’t care for horror films either. Though I’m pretty sure she would say, “Love the man, not his actions.”

There are plenty of things I say and do that I’m sure will warrant forgiveness. But I think as far as writing goes, I wouldn’t  forgive myself if I didn’t make it my business to share my stories with the world. Even with all my misspelled words, and failed attempts at punctuation; if I didn’t write, I would not know my purpose.

So I think that’s what makes a writer good. When you can’t think of anything else that you crave doing; when you have to make a story of something, nothing, anything, or—you know- your lover.

If plain yes and no just don’t work for you because all the details matter; or if you can describe the way something tastes, smells or feels, so that someone else can enjoy it just the way you did- then you know you are on the right track. And if by not writing, it feels like someone took out one of your lungs, and the only way to breathe is to write that breath back into your life- then you know you are a good writer.

     Oh man- I am dramatic!

March 2016

This month I have to rehash old business. Last year I told you how to get a searched link out for marketing to show Amazon that lots of people were searching for your book. As is the norm on the internet though, things are always evolving.

Amazon quickly got wise to this tactic and added a tiny bit of information to each search that now prevents this from being a useful tactic. There is actually a time stamp within the link now.

So! Long and short of it. Back to using the original link they provide you in your KDP account. It look like this http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B018TDAYHS Everything past the capital letters in the link is all excess and can be deleted.

If you took my advice and went and got a shortened link from bitly or another service, you can simply go change the link there and all your marketing is still intact with the new updated link.

February 2016

GoodReads reviews

Since Amazon owns GoodReads, the reviews on there hold quite a bit of weight with the eBook selling giant.

To get reviews on GoodReads though, you need to begin by giving reviews. Not in exchange, but to build a report with people, so when your book needs reviews you can politely ask if they might return the favor.

Always ask for honest reviews though. What is the point of getting a fake one? Do you truly want your book to claim what it’s not?

If you do get a lower review than what you expected, simply use the advice and revise your book to make it better. Then ask the same person to check it out again.

January 2016

To hashtag or not to hashtag…

This past year, the hash-tag became more popular and migrated from just Twitter to many other social sites.

Now though, Facebook has decided they no longer want to be a part of the hash-tag coop. They will give any posts that have a # a lower quality mark, which means it will be seen by less people.

So your January Market Tip, use it on Twitter and Instagram, but do NOT use it on Facebook.

KWIZZLES

Carl Megill’s second book has been published called “KWIZZLES.” It’s a word game I created that uses trivia, jumbles and quizzes all in one. There are Kwizzles covering many topics (music, tv, movies, sports, personalities and more). It’s perfect for that puzzle lover, or trivia expert in your family. You’ll find it on amazon and at my website www.carlmegill.com. I hope you’ll check out this new and challenging game.

Mike Fuller releases SINK RATE

Snowbird author Mike Fuller, who spends the cold months in Naples and the rest in frosty Pennsylvania, has released the first in his Sam Deland Crime Novel series, SINK RATE. Years in the making, re-making and, with the help of a cast of several, Mike has finally published his first novel. A good guy – bad guy story of double murder in rural Pennsylvania that puts Corporal Sam Deland’s state police squad on the hunt for big city shooters. Published by Rogue Phoenix Press and available on Amazon, Mike has written a careful and compelling tale of police drama told by a colorful and diverse cast of characters.

Visit Mike at:  www.mikefullerauthor.com

Get SINK RATE on AMAZON:

 

November

Everyone knows to pass out their link to Amazon to sell more books, although did you know that simply giving the root link isn’t enough?

The root link is the one Amazon gives you. It looks like this http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008GUMQHG

To help your ranking, you actually should do a search for your book using one of your key words. For example, my book here, my top key word (phrase) is ‘ebook cover design.’ So I typed that in Amazon’s search bar, scrolled through the books until I found mine, clicked on it to open the sales page, and I get a new link. This new link has lots of information in it, all mixed into the extra letters.

This is what it looks like now: http://www.amazon.com/Judge-Cover-Designing-Great-eBook-ebook/dp/B008GUMQHG/ref=sr_1_211?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1446201433&sr=1-211&keywords=ebook+cover+design

Notice now it has some of the title of my book as well as the key phrase I used. I don’t like to hand out something so messy, so I take this over to bitly.com to shorten it. You can take their first option, which I like because it still says Amazon in the link, like this: http://amzn.to/1ScZLvm. Or you can customize it with your own words and you will get a link like this: http://bitly.com/book-cover.

Why, you ask, do you need to do this?

That long link actually tells Amazon that I was searching for a book on ebook cover design and that I found Judge a Book and opened it. That lets their system know that Judge a Book is indeed about ebook cover design. Each time someone uses this new link, it will look to Amazon as if they also did the search and find. More and more people using the link will help to raise the book up the ranks, above all the other books that didn’t get clicked on.