Archive for March, 2016

Following Our Passion in Life

Sunday, March 6th, 2016

Bruce and Carolyn, the male and female protagonists, respectively, of my novel,  “Just A Kiss,” have much to learn about following their passions.  At first, when we initially meet both of them…Bruce, the would-be executive who is drifting his way through life …and Carolyn, the dutiful daughter, who is afraid to do anything that might upset her parents in the least,  even if it means following a course that will in the end make her very unhappy…they are both under their parents’ thumb, so to speak.    How do they achieve independence and find their way?

Of course, to get all the details, you do have to read the book, but I can give you the main idea.  Bruce finally is beginning to find his way when his father fires him as part of the deal that he makes with Carolyn and her father when the Donovans are being threatened by a lawsuit from them for sexual harassment.  Bruce  is hurt at first that his father would actually even think of firing him, but, although his dad explains to him privately that he would be reinstated once things began to die down and the situation was under control, Bruce begins  to realize that being terminated from the family  company actually meant freedom for him to choose what he wants to do with the rest of his life.

In a similar way, Carolyn first shows her independence from her father’s way of thinking by refusing to take the Donovans to court, but instead accepting their alternative offer of paying for her senior year of college as well as graduate school and giving her an open invitation to train as an executive at the Donovan company whenever she is  willing and/or ready.  Later,  Carolyn makes other instrumental decisions, which affect whom she is going to date, whom she will marry, and where she is eventually going to work and make her home.

Neither Carolyn nor Bruce can find happiness and grow into mature human beings until they learn to think intelligently and wisely for themselves.   They have to forge their own paths without hurting and even alienating their parents  unduly.  It is hard for them to find their way when the direction is opposite to what their fathers want for them, but that has to be the goal of both Bruce and Carolyn if they really want to grow up.

More insight into the novel when we get together the next time.  Until then, enjoy the weekend and the week ahead.  I will catch up with you  as soon as I can.

 

Cheryl

 

 

 

 

If you want to order any of my books or “look inside the book”…

Saturday, March 5th, 2016

I will try to write another blog later today, but for now, just in case you were wondering how to read a few free chapters of any of my books or if you were not sure how to order, see below:

 

Amazon for just about all my books, which you will find listed on this website under

 

About the Book

or

Library

Amazon seems to  be the only company to have the option to read a few chapters by clicking on “Inside the Book”.

 

Xlibris for “Just A Kiss”

 

Red Lead Press for “Escape From the Maelstrom”

Until later today,

 

Cheryl

 

 

Another Important Issue Explored Within my novel, “Just A Kiss.”

Saturday, March 5th, 2016

As I have said in previous posts, “Just A Kiss’ explores many issues in between the lines of the novel.  The one that I will discuss today is the relationship between parents and children, especially grown children  since that relationship is more complicated and challenging.

Both of the principal characters, Carolyn and Bruce, had great difficulty in communicating with their parents, but Bruce’s relationship with his father, Kent Donovan, was even worse than Carolyn’s relationship with her father, Philip Kahn.  At least Carolyn spoke to her father and tried to communicate honestly with him, even though it often  didn’t work out the way she had intended.  For example, when Mr. Kahn wanted Carolyn to press sexual harassment charges against Bruce, she told her father that she really didn’t want to go that far as to have to testify in court.  However, Phil kept pushing her, obviously not understanding how difficult it would be for Carolyn, who often experienced panic attacks, to go public like that when she could settle the matter out of court.  When Phil pressured Carolyn, she often felt like shutting down altogether, and yet, her father didn’t understand or even acknowledge that Carolyn was very sensitive and was not capable of doing some of  the things her father wanted her to do.   It took all of Carolyn’s emotional strength to accept an out-of-court settlement while her father was in the same room and obviously negative about her decision.

Carolyn was not always honest with her dad, however.  When she starts to date Bruce, whom she meets  upstate later in the novel, she is afraid to tell her dad about it. She also cannot at first tell him that, after graduation,  she doesn’t want to teach English in a posh high school on Long Island, but rather in a high school in Binghamton, where Bruce wants to teach physical education and health.  Yet, it is so hard for Carolyn to keep these secrets from her father!

Bruce, on the other hand, cannot communicate with his father at all.  He works in an executive position at his father’s advertising firm when the novel begins, but he hates what he is doing and is drifting along in his life without any goals or direction.  His father knows that Bruce is doing a poor job, but he doesn’t talk to his son about it.  He takes the easy way out, although Kent Donovan really does care about his son.

When Bruce falls in  love with Carolyn, he cannot communicate that to his father for fear of his lack of acceptance of Carolyn.  Later, when  Bruce wants to teach instead of finishing law school, he finds it impossible at first to confide in his father.  He talks to Carolyn and the principal of the school upstate where he will be teaching, but he cannot face his own father.

Good communication between parents and children is crucial, as we all know.  How do Carolyn and Bruce work out their problems?    Of course, I cannot tell you the whole story.  It would be much better if you read the novel yourself!  But the next time I will give you an idea of how the parents and adult children  become closer and able to communicate much better.

 

Until the next time,

 

Cheryl

 

 

 

 

AN IMPORTANT ANNIVERSARY

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

Last January one of my favorite self-published novels, “Just A Kiss,” was published by Xlibris Publishing Company, and an exciting journey began.   A few press releases were written.  One was my  own, and my publishing company wrote another.  Both were used to alert newspapers and magazines that a new novel was en route to the literary public…my book …kind of like my newborn.  There were e-mails sent by the marketing company from Xlibris to those who had previously voiced an interest in romance novels like mine.  There was even a marketing campaign to get my novel into a few bookstores and to be seen by publishers, teachers and librarians at the  prestigious  Los Angeles Book Fair.

However, to be really noticed, a book usually has to be advertised a great deal more than that, but if you are self-published, usually, you are operating on a tight budget, and there is only so much that you can do to promote your book.  You can’t afford to have time on television or the radio as well-known writers do.  You can try on your own to reach various television and radio stations and maybe achieve some success with a five-minute slot on the news or possibly someone’s show, but,  relatively unknown as you are, probably, the spotlight will not be on you and your book(s).   You wind up having to rely on word of mouth of those who have actually read your book or local stores giving you some time for exposure and a book signing.  Those, fortunate like me, have a website, where they can highlight their books, tell the reader a little bit about themselves, and blog about different facets of the book.  I am grateful for that!

But why should you buy a paperback or e-book version of my novel, “Just A Kiss?”  (I’ll discuss my other books , one by one, at a later date.)  There are many reasons.  I will go into one very important one  here and continue with more reasons on my next blog.

First, it is an entertaining novel that is realistic to our time.  The main characters, Bruce  and Carolyn, meet under rather unusual, but completely credible conditions.  After all, the first chapter is based upon something that actually happened to me.  It was not the beginning of a romantic relationship for me, as it is in the novel, but I did work as a temp in a lithography company, and my boss did make a pass at me.   In real life the boss kissed the secretary…me, and I felt sorry for him and remained to do the secretarial work after he promised to leave and not come back for the rest of the afternoon.    In the novel, the female protagonist also is kissed and remains to do the work, but she reports the incident to her parents, who want to make a case out of it for sexual harassment.  Back over forty years ago when the actual incident occurred, people did not sue each other for sexual harassment, especially just a kiss, so my parents suggested that I forget the whole thing, and nothing like that would probably ever happen  again…and, fortunately for me, it didn’t!

As an author, however,  I asked myself what would have happened if there were a threat of such a case.  Would the president of the company make a deal with the girl and her parents?  Could I change things around so that the perpetrator (the one who kissed the girl) was not actually the president of the company, but the handsome son of the president?  Could I make him into a sympathetic character…a young man who was never understood by his father and drifted so far through life?  All of these ideas swept through the author’s head…my head…and the structure of the book kind of strolled into view.  A new novel had been born!

What other reasons would you have for taking your hard-earned money and buying an e-book or softcover edition of this novel?  In the next post I will discuss other relevant issues to our time that the novel touches upon.  There are many of them, as you will see.

Meanwhile, if you have the time, “look inside the book” at Amazon.   You can read the first few chapters.  See if you can read a review of the novel.  If you do these things, you will be really ready to read about the other issues the book brings out.  Until the next post,

 

Cheryl