Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Virtual Book Tour: Publishing Secrets of Religious Leader and Author Jerry Pollock

I am grateful to be sharing this journey with your readers. Thank you.

After writing and publishing seventy-five articles in peer reviewed scientific journals and books, and writing grants to fund my research in the Oral Biology & Pathology Department as a Professor at Stony Brook University, I thought I was a writer. Wrong! When it came to write my spiritual memoir, Divinely Inspired: Spiritual Awakening of a Soul, it was a very different experience. My first draft of my incomplete biography was about five-hundred plus pages. I just wrote and wrote wanting to capture every moment. When I looked at what I wrote, I said, “This stinks,” I need help.

I read Dan Poynter’s Self-Publishing Manual and picked out an editor, Gail Kearns, from his list at the back of his book. This was back in 2002 as the first edition of Divinely Inspired was published in 2003. The paperback came out as a second edition in January of 2009 under our Shechinah Third Temple, Inc. publishing wing. You wouldn’t want to have read Gail’s comments if you were me. “This is not a book,” she wrote and she was right. I went back to the drawing board and now instead of wrote and wrote, I cut and cut. What would be Gail’s response this time. “Well now Jerry, you have the makings of a book. You are about 80 percent there.” I was ecstatic. I now added a copy editor, Barbara Coster, listed in Dan’s book and Divinely Inspired soon was ready for publication.

I looked for a Publisher and quickly found out that no one is interested in a memoir of someone like myself, who is not a famous person. What the hell did they mean? I was a Professor and I was not only writing about my life, I was writing about miracles and God’s intervention into my life. Who wouldn’t be interested to read my book? The better question to ask might have been, who would want to read my book? So I gave up on the publishers and tried contacting agents. For the two or three who responded to my queries, the answer was the same as the publishers. Being a more than a little defiant and stubborn too, I threw caution to the wind and self-published. God leads humans in the direction they wish to go.

The self-publishing meant learning a whole new industry. I had to get my ISBN, my LCCN, find out about and learn book design programs, get a Book Cover Image, seek endorsements, and learn how to organize a book. With a lot of grit and inquisitiveness, I managed to put a book together. I was fortunate that my colleague, Phil Garant, at Stony Brook University was writing his own academic book and he helped me with the Adobe PageMaker program. I was also lucky that my youngest daughter Erin married Magnus, a graphic design artist and wonderful human being. My son-in-law is an exceptionally gifted artist but this was his first attempt at a Book Cover. I flew from New York to Los Angeles, and then Magnus and I drove to visit Alan Gadney and Carolyn Porter, marketing specialists, who told us exactly how to set up the Book Cover. They also set up our initial publicity campaign. Little did I know that writing and publishing the book was only five percent of the endeavor. The remainder was marketing which turns out to be far tougher.

The research for the book required more than two years of my time. I had a full time job as an academic at Stony Brook. I began writing the book after the unusual spiritual experiences I had in late 1998 that carried over to 1999 and thereafter. After about a month of writing, I realized that yes I was a scientist, but I didn’t know anything about my heritage and not much about anything else outside of science. Just about every day in the wee hours of the morning, I would be reading. I read the Hebrew Bible, parts of the New Testament, a bit of the Qur’an, other books on different religions like Buddhism, articles and book descriptions of the soul and faith, the origin of life and the universe, Creation and Evolution, and human anthropology. I condensed all of my readings into the Epilogue chapter of Divinely Inspired. Your readers may find the Epilogue interesting. My original ideas are penned in this last chapter. It’s where my faith came together with my science. I will always be a scientist, but I now have unshakable belief and trust in God. You can’t separate my science from my faith and vice versa. I see God as the master scientist responsible for both Evolution and Creation.

Although Divinely Inspired is an incomplete biography, I now realize that without writing my memoir, I probably wouldn’t have written the Messiah Interviews five years later in 2008. Maybe my third book will be another five years from now. I would like to complete the trilogy. In my dreams, I would like to tell God’s story in His own words so that humanity would know Him. It is prophesied that we shall know God in the Messianic Age at the End of Days; that is, if we are lucky enough to be admitted. I write about this in the Messiah Interviews.

You can find out more about me, the books, and our Third Temple Nonprofit by visiting our website at www.shechinahthirdtemple.org Go also to the Blog for additional information and publicity. If readers are interested in speaking with me, they can contact me at jerrypollock@bellsouth.net

Again thank you for the opportunity to share with your readers. May I wish all of you much joy and happiness.

Jerry Pollock is the author of seventy-five scientific publications. His background includes both a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Pharmacy from the University of Toronto, a Ph.D. in Biophysics from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, and Postdoctoral training in Microbiology at the New York University School of Medicine. Dr. Pollock is currently Professor Emeritus in the Oral Biology and Pathology Department in the School of Dental Medicine at the State University of New York at Stony Brook on Long Island. Jerry’s first writer of the arts book, Divinely Inspired: Spiritual Awakening of a Soul, was a spiritual memoir originally published in 2003. The second edition of Divinely Inspired will be reissued in Paperback on Jan. 1, 2009. His ‘not so fictional’ novel, Messiah Interviews: Belonging to God, due out also on Jan. 1, 2009, is Jerry’s way of giving back to the Creator. Jerry is married to Marcia, his bashert or destined one. They reside in Florida.

For more about Jerry and his work, please visit www.shechinahthirdtemple.org.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Virtual Book Tour: Publishing Secrets of Historical Fiction Author J.A. Hunsinger

This is the worst time in publishing history for a new author to get published. I spent a solid year sending submission packets to literary agents because you cannot approach publishers directly, only through an agent. Agents have their very own criteria for submissions, so do your homework, otherwise forget it. The effort was futile, heart-wrenching, and a waste of my time. Unless you have a controversial topic that is certain to cause a flap, or are already famous, you can forget the agent/publisher route.

I formed a publishing company and I work with BookMasters, Inc. and copy editors to publish, print, warehouse, and distribute my works. At this point, it is virtually the only avenue to publication. Be warned, it is expensive and that is why the road to publication is fraught with obstacles.

J. A. Hunsinger lives in Colorado, USA, with his wife Phyllis. The first novel of his character-driven, historical fiction series, Axe of Iron: The Settlers, represents his first serious effort to craft the story of a lifelong interest in the Viking Age—especially as it pertains to Norse exploration west of Iceland—and extensive research and archaeological site visitations as an amateur historian. He has tied the discovery of many of the Norse artifacts found on this continent to places and events portrayed in his novels. Much of his adult life has been associated with commercial aviation, both in and out of the cockpit. As an Engineering Technical Writer for Honeywell Commercial Flight Systems Group, Phoenix, AZ, he authored two comprehensive pilots’ manuals on aircraft computer guidance systems and several supplemental aircraft radar manuals. His manuals were published and distributed worldwide to airline operators by Honeywell Engineering, Phoenix, AZ. He also published an article, Flight Into Danger, in Flying Magazine, (August 2002). Historical Novel Society, American Institute of Archaeology, Canadian Archaeology Association, and IBPA-Independent Book Publishers Association, are among the fraternal and trade organizations in which he holds membership. You can visit his website at www.vinlandpublishing.com.

J.A. Hunsinger will be on virtual book tour in March and April '09. Please visit his official tour page here to find out more about his new book, Axe of Iron: The Settlers!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Virtual Book Tour: Publishing Secrets of Heroic Fantasy Author R. Scot Johns

Do you have a novel that you’ve written but have struggled to get published? Have you spent endless hours crafting a work no editor will ever read? If your answer is “yes,” then you’re not alone. In fact, you are only one among a vast majority of authors whose long labor goes unrewarded. Certainly many of these have neither the skill nor talent it requires to rise above the others in the highly competitive world of commercial fiction. But then, many of them never intended to do so. Most books simply don’t fall into that category, and so have little chance. Trade publishers run a multi-billion dollar business, and they just can’t take the chance on very many manuscripts of esoteric interest.

This is the predicament I found myself in upon completing an epic seven-hundred page historical fantasy novel. On agent that I queried replied with the brief, but pointed question: “364,000 words, are you kidding?” This from an agent who purportedly represented fantasy fiction. I responded in kind with: “Have you never heard of Robert Jordan?”

So it is that many of us with valid works are stranded outside the standard commercial channels (I feel justified in calling my work “valid” as it has since received rave reviews). But the face of publishing is changing. Today’s technology has made it possible to publish your own work, not through marginal vanity presses of ill repute, but rather by taking matters into our own hands, much as authors such as Mark Twain and Benjamin Franklin did before us. Print-on-demand technology and internet marketing bridges the gap between the authors and their audience, bringing the writer and the reader together. Today there is no need for high-priced middlemen who do little to promote your work, and pass on less when it comes to profits for the author.

Rather than waiting idly by for more replies like the one above, I started my own publishing house to produce my own books, and I did it for little more than a few hundred bucks. Today I own and operate Fantasy Castle Books, have complete artistic control and ownership of my work, and gain 100% of the profits from my novel. It’s been a long road with a steep learning curve, but I can tell you there is nothing better than success that comes from one’s own efforts. For an ongoing and in-depth discussion of the process, visit my blog at http://authoradventures.blogspot.com.

R. Scot Johns is a life-long student of ancient and medieval literature, with an enduring fascination for Norse mythology and epic fantasy. He first came to Beowulf through his love of J. R. R. Tolkien, a leading scholar on the subject. As an Honors Medieval Literature major he has given lectures on such topics as the historical King Arthur and the construction of Stonehenge. He owns and operates Fantasy Castle Books, his own publishing imprint, and writes the blog Adventures of an Independent Author, where you can follow his progress as he writes The Jester’s Quest, his second novel. You can visit his website at www.fantasycastlebooks.com.

R. Scot Johns will be on virtual book tour in March '09. Please visit his official tour page here to find out more about his new book, The Saga of Beowulf!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Virtual Blog Tour: Publishing Secrets of Inspirational Author Sheri Kaye Hoff

Sheri Kaye Hoff resides in Parker, CO with her husband and three children. She is a Life Coach and owner of the Sheri K Hoff International Coaching Company. She teaches college classes as an adjunct faculty member and has earned her Master of Arts in Organizational Management. Her new book, Keys to Living Joyfully, offers a way of living a meaningful, successful and joy filled life.

Ms. Hoff is a personal and executive life coach. Spirituality is a vital part of her life's work. Prayer and meditation are integral pieces of her daily ritual, which enables her to pursue her life's passions and live a truly joyful life.

Her words on faith are derived from her own Christian walk and spiritual self-discoveries. Her action steps mix faith and years of leadership training, mentoring, and management. Sheri Kaye Hoff suffered the tragic death of her younger brother when she was a teenager and struggled for years to rediscover the capacity to feel joy and to enjoy her successes. She has a heart felt desire to pass on her knowledge and discoveries that have led to a truly transformational life. Ms. Hoff publishes a free weekly inspiration newsletter, Coach Sheri's Weekly Inspiration Tips. The Sheri K Hoff International Coaching Company also offers:

* Teleclasses.
* Webinars
* In person small and large group Coaching
* Corporate Training
* Keynote speaking
* Seminars
* Individual Career and Life Coaching (For a limited time- receive a free introductory one hour life coaching session)

You can visit her website at www.lifeisjoyful.org.

Throughout my life, I was always interested in why some people were very successful and other people with the same or more potential were not successful. I read hundreds of books on leadership, motivation, and inspiration. I also experienced tragedy in my family at a young age,which left me dealing with post traumatic stress disorder for years afterwards. I experienced remarkable positive change and felt very deeply in my heart that I wanted to reach out to other people who were trying to find happiness. I write from a Christian faith perspective, however, I also, encompass some of the concepts of positive thinking and the law of attraction. I wanted to write a synthesis of everything that helped me get better and truly experience joy—and I wanted it to be simple, workable, and easy to read. I wrote from the heart-the words just poured out of me-time seemed to stand still when I was working on my book. From the time I started writing seriously for the book, Keys to Living Joyfully: I finished in five weeks. I decided to self-publish through createspace in order to have my book available quickly. I hired a graphic designer to create a beautiful cover and found the perfect person, Michele Caron, creator of mylifecoach.com to write the Foreword. From start to finish, the whole process took five and a half months. I have accomplished one of my life dreams and am still in awe when I wake up each morning.

About the book:

Keys to Living Joyfully is an inspirational book on experiencing joy, peace, passion, and energy in daily life. It is designed to demonstrate the powerful roles of thoughts, action, and faith. The book is a merging of Sheri Kaye Hoff's spiritual life and lifelong interests in leadership and motivation. The ideas presented in the book are techniques and processes that have worked for the author and clients. Foreword is written by Michele Caron, creator of MyLifeCoach.com
The book, Keys to Living Joyfully, was born out of a heartfelt desire to share the keys that lead to living a transformational life. Ms. Hoff is a personal and executive coach working with individuals, small businesses, and corporations. Her words on faith are derived from her own Christian walk and spiritual self-discoveries. Her action steps are a mix of faith. love, leadership skills, and management experience. Chapters include topics such as: Is your heart thinking right? And how to tap into intrinsic motivation. This book, Keys to Living Joyfully, offers the techniques and insights that move people towards more peace, joy, energy, and passion in everyday life.

Sheri Kaye Hoff will be on virtual book tour in March '09. Please visit his official tour page here to find out more about her new book, Keys to Joyful Lving!