Saturday, December 31, 2022

Happy New Year from all over the world - by Vijaya Schartz


Find Vijayas latest book
At the very end of December, after all the holiday parties, the family gatherings, the excessive eating, the drinking, and the sugar comas, we tend to reflect on why we gained five pounds… And new-year’s-eve is still ahead. But with the New Year comes new hope.

Also called St Sylvester’s night in Europe, New Year’s Eve, and New Year's day, include many traditions to ease the transition and generate good luck and prosperity.

In the US, whether you are, from the East to the West coast, you will probably have or attend a party, count the seconds to midnight, and watch the ball drop in Time Square. You will have a drink and sing Auld Lang Syne, and some will stand under the mistletoe, for a chance of a kiss at midnight.

In Canada the fireworks are magnificent. And some of the most popular New Year’s Day traditions are the Polar Bear Swim in Vancouver, and to go ice-fishing. Brrrr!

In Japan, December 31st is a national cleaning day. The houses are scrubbed from floor to ceiling and decluttered, to start the new year in a favorable setting. On New Year’s Eve, it is also the tradition to eat buckwheat noodles called Toshikoshi soba. Just before midnight, Buddhist temple bells ring out 108 times, representing the 108 earthly temptations a person must overcome to achieve nirvana and get rid of last year’s bad luck.

The enormous bell is rung with a strong pole, pulled by several people with ropes.

In Brazil, everyone wears white on New Year’s eve for good luck and peace. They also run to the beach and throw white flowers into the ocean. Of course, it’s summer and beach weather in Brazil that time of year.

In Mexico, at midnight, people drop a gold ring into their glass to bring good fortune in love and money. Then on January 1st, they go door to door, offering home-made tamales to friends and neighbors. I’ve also seen it done in Arizona as traditions migrate.

In Greece, onions are a symbol of good luck and fertility, so, on New Year's Eve, they hang bundles of onions above their doors to invite prosperity into the home. Then, on New Year's Day, parents wake up their children by gently knocking them on the head with the onions that were outside.

In Singapore, revelers let wishing spheres containing their hopes and dreams float down the river. Thousands of them on the Singapore River make for a magical sight.

In Puerto Rico, they dump a bucket of water from a window to ward off evil spirits. I hope it’s not on the pedestrians below. They also sprinkle sugar outside their houses for good luck.

In Russia, New Year's Eve revelers write a wish down on a piece of paper, burn it and add the ashes to their champagne or vodka glass. Then they drink the entire glass quickly at midnight, in less than a minute, to make their wish realize.

In France, Champagne is the drink de rigueur to ring the New Year, along with raw oysters on the shell, turkey, goose, and seafood, in an elaborate and abundant meal they call a reveillon. And in Paris, the Eiffel Tower lights up in a splendid show of lights for the occasion.

In Spain, to get good luck in the New Year, you must eat 12 grapes on the 12 rings of midnight, and keep the pace… no sweat, just don’t choke!

In Switzerland, they summon wealth, and abundance by dropping ice cream on the floor at midnight. Personally, I think it’s a waste of delicious ice-cream.

In Denmark, to celebrate the New Year, they smash old plates on the doors of family, friends, and neighbors, to ward off evil spirits. The more broken plates at your door in the morning, the more good luck in the New Year.

In India, they build an effigy of an old man and burn it at midnight, to symbolize the death of the old year with its struggles, to make room for the new and hopefully better year.

In China, they celebrate the New Year on a lunar cycle, in January or February, and the festivities last two weeks. Lots of dragons parading on the streets, food, fireworks, and the color red, for good luck.

I wish you all a fantastic New Year, with success and happiness all year long.

Vijaya Schartz, award-winning author
Strong Heroines, Brave Heroes, cats

Monday, December 26, 2022

Frank Sinatra and the Mafia Murders - by Mike Rothmiller


Click on cover for Amazon link

Mike Rothmiller and Douglas Thompson draw on LAPD intelligence files, a cache of FBI documents, and extensive interviews with prime sources who worked with Frank Sinatra. Many of them tracked his long and fatal association with American Mafia leaders, including Sam 'Momo' Giancana, who shared a lover with President John F. Kennedy. 

Shortly after John F. Kennedy’s assassination, 19-year-old Frank Sinatra Jr. was kidnapped at gunpoint in Lake Tahoe, Nevada. A $240,000 ransom was demanded from his father. While law-enforcement agencies sprang into action, Frank secretly contacted his Mafia friends for help. The Mafia believed they could free young Frank much more quickly through their underworld connections. In the end, nine people died. 

Revealed here as never before is the extent to which Sinatra was adopted by the Mafia. They promoted his career and ‘watched his back.’ In return, Sinatra danced to their tune. The book reveals Mafia and CIA interests as well as explosive, previously secret documents. 

 Available for pre-release sales on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other outlets.

Mike Rothmiller is a New York Times Bestselling Author, nominee for the Pulitzer Prize, historian, former cop and Army medic. He's also served as a TV reporter, an award winning documentary producer and television host for ESPN, PBS and other international television markets. He's written and produced over 25 television documentaries, numerous TV and radio ads and has authored movie scripts. His nonfiction book, My Hero. Military Kids Write About Their Moms and Dads (St. Martin's Press) received international acclaim and holds the honor of being the only book in history to have forwards written by three living Presidents and General Norman Schwarzkopf. He's authored many books and his Secrets, Lies and Deception and Other Amazing Pieces of History was featured on Fox News and over 40 Television News Stations across America. Readers of his books include three Presidents, former First Lady Laura Bush, the late Charlton Heston and Queen Elizabeth II. 

Monday, December 12, 2022

Books as holiday gifts, by Vijaya Schartz

Vijaya's latest release.
 Find it HERE

Whether it’s a stocking stuffer novel, a kindle gift sent to a friend faraway, or the wrapped gift of a complete paperback series, if you know the favorite genre of the avid readers among your family and friends, books make wonderful gifts.

Maybe it’s the story they talked about but never got to buy for themselves. Maybe it’s the new release in a series they started and loved. Or you can surprise them with a book you enjoyed and want to share with them. In any case, it’s becoming simpler and easier than ever to gift books.

You can do it from your laptop or phone, order online from your favorite retailer, and have it shipped or emailed. It takes little time and effort. It will be appreciated on cold, snowy, or rainy days.

Going with a reliable publisher, like BWL Publishing, will ensure it’s a quality book. Other ways to select a good book is considering the author’s track record. Award-winning authors usually deliver consistent quality reads. You can also read the ratings and reviews shared by other readers on the retail sites.

The most difficult part of this process is selecting the right genre and the right titles. Find out if you friend likes cozy mysteries, romance, action/adventure, Historical novels, fantasy, science fiction, or a mix of genres.

I write in many genres and also like to mix them. From contemporary romance to realistic Celtic legends, to space opera and science fiction, including even felines in some of my stories. But each author brings his or her personal touch to the writing, and if you like an author in one genre, chances are you will like that author’s other writings as well.

Here are some suggestions from my popular writings:

Curse of the Lost Isle series (Celtic legends – Edgy medieval)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo

Chronicles of Kassouk series (Sci-fi romance)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo

Azura Chronicles series (Set on another planet – includes cats - androids - romantic elements)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo

Byzantium series (Set on a space station - cats – action - sweet romance for all ages)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo

Archangel twin books (Aliens and angels in a contemporary setting)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo

Romance (rated R)
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo


Happy Holidays with books!

Vijaya Schartz, award-winning author
Strong Heroines, Brave Heroes, cats
amazon B&N - Smashwords - Kobo FB 

Monday, December 5, 2022

Back to Basics by Ashley E. Sweeney



Who is your most memorable character in literature? Jay Gatsby? Scarlett O’Hara? Sherlock Holmes? Gandalf? What is it about that particular character that has stayed with you over the years?

Scout Finch tops my list, the indomitable young girl in Harper Lee’s 1960 classic, To Kill a Mockingbird. Scout’s naiveté, coupled with her tomboyishness and blunt honesty, creates a flawed yet fully fleshed character who’s stayed with me since I first read the novel in the early 1970s. Even when I taught a unit on TKAM every year in high school English, I never tired of Scout or her earnestness. If anything, her character grew on me.

So how do we, as authors, create memorable characters in our own works? Knowing our characters inside and out, sometimes before they hit the page, is one of our most important tasks as authors. 

Think of it like dating. You don’t marry someone you hardly know (well, not usually!) It can take weeks or months (or in my case, years) to decide if that certain someone is right for us. We assess, observe, and question our potential mate’s inner and outer characteristics as we experience shared events and situations. 

Does he/she/they have road rage? Negative political views? A nasty habit? Does he/she/they have a penchant to do good in the world? Accept others, warts and all? Love wildly? All of this factors into our decision whether to take a chance on a relationship.

The same goes for characters. Who are they? And why should readers spend time with them?

Early on in every manuscript, my (very detail-oriented) editor asks for a five-pronged character map for each of my characters. Talk about time consuming! When I’d rather be writing! But it’s proved an invaluable tool for each novel.

Here is a sample:

Character Worksheet 

Be as specific as possible 

Vital Statistics - Physical Traits - Socio/Economic Situation -  Gut Reactions
Full Name: Height: Education: Certainty vs. Change: Gender: Weight: Occupation(s):
Confusion vs. Understanding: Age: Ethnicity/Race: Income:
Defeat vs. Success: Born: Hair:
Attitude toward wealth/ poverty: Despair vs. Joy:
Now Resides: Eyes:
Jealousy vs. Acceptance: Birth Order:
Striking Features: Personality Loss vs. Gain:
Parents: Physical Flaws: Introvert/Extrovert/Other:
Love vs. Hate: Siblings: Habits: Mental Illness (if any):
Panic vs. Calm: Spouse (if any): Health: Strengths:
Worthiness vs. Unworthiness: Children (if any):
Skills: Weaknesses: Pertinent Backstory: Hobbies:
Triggers: Disabilities: Spiritual Life (if any): Speech 

After this exercise, take the five category headlines (Vital Statistics, Physical Traits, Socio-Economic Situation, Personality, Gut Reactions), winnow it down, and write a character synopsis. I repeat this exercise for every major character in the book, first the worksheet and then the paragraph.

Note that these are more detailed for primary characters than secondary characters. Tertiary characters and cameo characters are not as fleshed out (or at all).

Here’s an example of a character synopsis of the protagonist, Ruby Fortune, in my recent release, Hardland.

Ruby Fortune: protagonist; VS: Ruby Barstow Fortune, b. 1873 in Tucson, Arizona (6 years old (1879) to 34 years old (1907) in span of novel), only child of now-deceased George “Big Burl” Burlingame Barstow, widowed, mother of five boys (one deceased), resides in Jericho, A.T. north of Tucson, kills husband, Willie Fortune, in self-defense, swindles co-mine owners for claim of Silver Tip Mine outside Jericho, A.T. 

PT: Short, blonde, thin, flat-chested, weathered face, fit, attractive, low voice

S-E: Eighth-grade education, "Girl Wonder" (sharpshooter in her father’s Triple B Traveling Carnival and Wild West Show), now owner/proprietor of Jericho Inn/The Miracle.

P: Extrovert, outspoken, hard worker. Character Strengths: willful, loyal. Character Weaknesses: details, men. Triggered by nightmares of past abuse. Admits mistakes. In awe of nature.

GR: Difficulty working through change. If taken once by someone, vows not to be taken again (exception: Willie Fortune). Accepts everyone at face value, although not without judgment; slow to alter first impression, but does, when warranted (for good or evil). She-bear about sons; puts them first at her own expense. Struggles with relationship to God. At times, hot-tempered and foul-mouthed; at other times, reflective and soulful. Often own worst enemy. Makes mistakes in relationships. Works to manage pain and panic. Questions whether she is worthy. 

You’d be surprised how many times I returned to this synopsis while writing. When Ruby is hot-tempered, her mouth runs ahead of her thoughts. Check. I’m being consistent. When she’s reflective, she goes somewhere deep, into a place reserved for interior dialogue. Check, again. Consistency to character is paramount.

If it sounds like a lot of work to create characters through devices such as worksheets and synopses, it is. I contend you’ll be more satisfied with your characters, though, and so will your editors and readers.

But wait, there’s more!


After getting to know my characters, my editor then assigns a chap-by-chap plot summary worksheet, using the following classic plot template:


Opening: Falling Action: Inciting Incident: Denouement: Rising Action: Ending: Climax

My entry for the first chapter of Hardland begins this way:

September 7, 1899, Jericho, Arizona Territory


Weather detailed: windy/cloudy/dark
Locale detailed: dry/unforgiving/spare
Character detailed: stature/anxiety/bruised neck from recent abuse

Inciting Incident:

Ruby Fortune navigates steep, dangerous incline to Silver Tip Mine outside Jericho, A.T., almost falling into a crevice

Rising Action: 

Ruby Fortune arrives at Silver Tip Mine with forged will of dead husband Willie Fortune to claim ¼ of mine ownership; plans to buy a dilapidated roadhouse with funds 


Ruby confronts and pulls gun on mine owner, Jimmy Bugg

Falling Action: 

Sheriff Sheldon Sloane arrives at mine on business


Sloane arranges for Bugg to pay Ruby the next day at Jericho First National Bank


Ruby and Sloane ride back to Jericho in middle of monsoon

As a classic “pantser,” this worksheet is not nearly as detailed as outlines of classic “plotters,” but it does give structure to each chapter. And remember to end each chapter, as novelist Olivia Hawker says, with a “cymbal crash” (others call it a “cliff-hanger” or an “uh-oh” moment, something to keep your readers going and not wanting to put your book down).

In closing, there is much we can do before we even start our stories to flesh out characters and give our stories shape. Of course, authors must be flexible as writing is underway. Maybe a character develops an unforeseen ailment to deepen the plot, or we have to switch up or delete chapters for clarity. Life—in reality and in fiction—is full of surprises. Be open to them!

Until next time, Happy Writing!

Ashley E. Sweeney is the winner of the 2017 Nancy Pearl Book Award for her debut novel, Eliza Waite. A native New Yorker, she is a graduate of Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts, and resides in Tucson. Answer Creek, released in May 2020, is her second novel. Her third novel, Hardland, is set in the Arizona territory at the beginning of the 20th century. It was released on September 13, 2022. Find out more about Ashley at: 


Wednesday, November 30, 2022

New book release: Marky the MAGNIFICENT Fairy - by Cynthia Kern OBrien

Find this book in pre-order on Amazon HERE (2023 release)

 Believing in yourself isn’t always easy. Marky learns that firsthand when the other woodland fairies make fun of her. They laugh at her one small wing and say mean things about her fiery-red hair, her glasses and her freckles. It is hurtful, but through Marky’s determination, she helps them understand that everyone has exceptional qualities. Some are visible. Some are invisible. Through her kindness, Marky teaches her friends about self-love, confidence, acceptance, positivity and compassion. She reminds them they are magnificent. Readers of all ages learn to believe in themselves and the importance of treating everyone with respect and kindness.

About the author:

Cynthia Kern OBrien is the author of the A True Story by Granny debut picture book series: I Used to be a Fairy; The Tooth Fairy and the Baby Elf; and I Don't Want to Go to Preschool, the Fairy Queen Calls. A grandmother of three, she resides in California with her husband and Yorkshire mix, Pickles. OBrien finds inspiration for her writing in her grandchildren and their worldview, aspiring to teach young readers caring and kindness for people and animals of all stripes. Early on, her book series became a Readers Favorite and multi-award-winning recipient.

Thursday, November 24, 2022

New book release: GRACIE a rescue dog - by Marlene Baird

Find this book on Amazon HERE

 Marlene Baird is the author of four published novels: Murder Times Two, The Filigree Cross (The Salvation of Larry Broadfellow), Minnie and the Manatees, and Claire Walker, which are available at She took third place in the Lorian Hemingway International Short Story Contest, and has won several other awards. She is a member of Professional Writers of Prescott and Arizona Authors Association. On two occasions she has taken first place in the Arizona Authors Association's annual writing contest and serves as a judge for the contest. Marlene is a transplanted Canadian living in Prescott, AZ with her husband, Bob, and Gracie.

Gracie, on the other hand, belongs to no organizations. She is adept at eating, sleeping, hiding, walking and being petted. She can lift spirits and make a person laugh. She loves other dogs, snacks, and playing. She is a smart dog who has taught her people all of her tricks. Her ancestry is unknown.

Gracie was adopted December 15, 2020 from Yavapai County Humane Society in Prescott, Arizona. This is the story of how she became so important to the family that adopted her. The purpose of the book is to promote adoption of helpless animals and to thank all of those individuals who do this necessary work.

Monday, November 21, 2022

New book release: To Travel Well, Travel Light - by Mary Coday Edwards

Find this book on Amazon HERE

As a young mother, Mary moves from the US to Peshawar, Pakistan, with her family to help her Afghan friends rebuild their country, only to painfully watch her patriarchal Christian worldview tumble down and be rebuilt with soul-driven goals and values.

To Travel Well, Travel Light is a two-part memoir of an outward journey and an inward journey. Part 1 tells the story of the joys and pitfalls of living and working abroad with children in tow. A USAID program brought educated young Afghan men to the Midwest to instruct them in public administration. Mary and Mike befriended them through a community friendship program, and these mujahideen persuaded this adventurous family to move to Peshawar.

They lived in Pakistan instead of Afghanistan because of security concerns. But with Peshawar’s ultra-conservative honor code of Pushtanwali, men threw rocks at Mary because of her exposed blonde hair, and she traveled through Pakistan’s tribal territory veiled and disguised as a good Muslim woman.

She worked for an Afghan NGO in post-conflict reconstruction projects inside Afghanistan, and Mike administered the Afghan Eye Hospital in Peshawar. Their older son finished high school in Peshawar through a university distance-learning program and, in the process, learned to hang glide, grew fluent in the Pashtu language, and met young people from all over the world. Their younger son attended pre-school with children from around the globe and picked up language peculiarities, such as calling an eraser a "rubber".

In Part 2, Mary narrates the crumbling of a worldview that no longer served her and the creation of its replacement.

This section opens in Indonesia where the family moved after living eight years in Pakistan. Mary worked as an editor for Indonesia's newspaper The Jakarta Post, and Mary toured and wrote about a rehabilitation and release sanctuary for majestic hawks and eagles located on one of the nation’s 17,000 islands. Rescue personnel ensured that these birds of prey did not become dependent upon humans and thus unable to survive in the jungles upon their release.

Mary compares the dangers of domestication of wild birds with Clarissa Pinkola Estés’ interpretation of the Red Shoes Fairy Tale. Dr. Estés explains how a woman can be metaphorically captured through coerced cultural conformity, overly domesticated as she tries to fit in, and then when she is free, goes feral. When feral, she is vulnerable to various wounding traps.

Mary uses Dr. Estés’ tale as a metaphor for her own life. In Chapters 19 to 23, she recounts how she was “captured” as a child. When set free in her late teens, she made unhealthy choices before joining the Jesus Movement, which morphed into the trap of patriarchal Christianity—a system of belief that denied adult women their agency and kept them as children.

She knew she had to flee that enforced childhood. Just as the hawk and the eagle needed a safe space to recover, Mary narrates in Chapters 24 to 30 how she found her safe space during her global travels in Pakistan, Tanzania, Kenya, and Indonesia. She dug out the buried parts of herself that had gone underground and, with that as her foundation, created a life-affirming worldview. Her initial guides were psychiatrist Carl Jung and the sixteenth-century monastic John of the Cross, both of whom affirmed her inner knowing.

A wise South African professor led her to more guides: physicists-turned-theologians Ian Barbour and John Polkinghorne and their research and comparison of religion and science. Through them she gained new ways of considering the natural and spiritual realities. These tools included critical realism; the use of metaphors, models, and paradigms in science and religion; and the philosophical implications of quantum mechanics.

This family traveled and worked around the world for almost 20 years before settling back in the States in 2011.

About the author:

Of the twenty years Mary Coday Edwards lived and worked abroad with her family, eight were in Pakistan, where she worked in Afghan refugee post-conflict repatriation and reconstruction projects. She is an internationally published author and worked as an editor for English daily newspapers in Jakarta and Mexico. With her BS in engineering, an MA in energy and environmental studies, and post-grad studies in ecological justice, abroad she worked and wrote on environmental sustainability issues at both global and local levels emphasizing the physical interconnectedness of all things.After living in Asia, Southeast Asia, East Africa, and Latin America, upon returning to the US she became a nonsectarian ordained minister through Denver's People House, where she has been a regular blogger for more than six years.

Monday, November 14, 2022

Energizing Your Marketing &Technical Strategies - by Jeanne Burrows-Johnson

Operational Organization For Authors & Artists

As I prepared to receive a new desktop computer, I realized it was a great time for pruning hardware and electric gadgets, as well as software—at least versions that were no longer relevant. This project revealed challenges that could have been avoided if I had simply reviewed my operations periodically. Other issues appeared unexpectedly, as during the review of book manuscripts.


While I awaited the arrival of my techie and her latest construction of a desktop computer, I examined the contents and arrangement of my office. Due to the wiring in the room, I was not able to arrange the furniture and equipment as I would have preferred, but everything is now functional and relatively aesthetically pleasing.

How appropriate are your office furnishings to your daily tasks? Would a simple change in your desk chair or adding a recliner enhance your working hours? If adding new pieces, consider using an L-shape to improve your work flow. I have a multi-level rolling table that I place alternately in front of chairs or perpendicular to my desk. I’ve found secondhand residential and office furniture stores, as well as retail stores that are closing, offer useful pieces with lift-up leaves and chair-side tables with electric strips. And don’t forget that shelving, craft, lap-top, and even puzzle tables can greatly expand functionality within a tight space.

Are there greater elements that you should spend the time and money to upgrade? Lighting is especially important to artists. Would louvres or other window covering improve productivity? What about adding a skylight or other lighting enhancement? I removed closet’s clothing bars and added shelving to accommodate office supplies and equipment (a process that can be reversed if needed). Are there other construction, floor covering, or painting projects you should consider undertaking? Depending on whether you take a tax deduction for your office, or you plan to sell your property, such expenditures may be appropriate. A tax professional can help you evaluate such options.


The world of technology is constantly evolving. Some emerging products are truly wonderful. Others, not so much. As with most authors, data storage is a major concern for me. With the arrival of each new product in the marketplace, the public is assured that we will never have to worry about the loss of information again. That’s proven to be about as real as the promise that the modern office does not need paper. But the need for varied forms of backups and even paper printouts continues. You may laugh, but I still have some files stored on floppy diskettes. Why? Because zip discs, CDs, DVDs, and even thumb drives can fail...probably at the worst possible moment. Sadly, I have sometimes failed to backup material, or to print out invaluable data I could not replace fully.

Here are examples of the unfortunate experiences of two colleagues to which you might relate. One of them spent months restructuring two books because when her computer crashed, she did not have printed copies of her manuscripts nor any other form of electronic backup. Another friend (very tech savvy) had a glitch occur when a thumb drive was plugged into his CPU. So, what are you doing to safeguard your precious words and images? I trust that you have multiple forms of data storage, as well as hardcopy backups. I believe the major issue in updating hardware is having the input of a techie who truly knows you, your needs, your technical capability, and the spectrum of features available in the products that you are about to purchase.

Another issue I face is checking the synchronization of various electronic gadgets. Most important to me was ensuring that my tablet was in sync with my desktop computer. First there was the matter of passwords. For me that’s simple, because unless I’m travelling, I minimize the use of passwords. Encryption is another issue, and again, I suggest you confer with a techie who can provide consistent advice. 

Next are phones. You may laugh at the idea of hardline phone service, but if there is ever a major power outage, a cell phone will only be serviceable as long as the last charge it received. Therefore, our household has both hardline and cell phones. If you have been following the scandals and crimes regarding phones, you already know that your cellphone data is subject to being hacked.

Some electronic devices do not require much maintenance. This includes e-readers, since e-books can be accessed on your desktop or laptop computer, tablet and smartphone. One thing I urge you to think about is that the number of images you have stored on any device can become unmanageable and you should consider backing them up, just like your text files.


 Many software companies are forcing users of their products into subscription programs to maximize their profits…and to force acceptance of changes the company wishes to foist on the public during regular updates. Personally, I’ve been very displeased with such updates that often lessen, rather than enhance, functionality.

While I greatly dislike the cost and complexity of subscription services, there’s little you can do to avoid them. Even if you have an original CD or DVD of a program, you may not be able to install it if it’s not compatible with your new operating system. As I watched this growing trend a few years ago, I rushed to buy the last versions of programs that were still available on CDs or DVDs. I recognize that eventually even these versions of programs will become obsolete as updated operating systems refuse to recognize them. But for the foreseeable future I am able to massage images that I have designed for the projects I am now undertaking.


Many people find the Cloud their preferred method of backup. But how do you feel about your original creations being available to sharp hackers cruising that universe? To avoid this, you can use a cloud service with patented and standardized encryption design. I should note that my designer uses Cloud services, over which I have no control. Also, remember that once you have uploaded your work to any website, it is available to the public.

In closing this article on operational organization for authors and artists, I suggest you ask yourself, “What will happen to my copyrights of material I have saved to my websites and the Cloud when I die?” Consider ensuring that you have legally stipulated beneficiaries who will receive the benefits of your labors once you have departed from this plane…

Wishing you the best in your creative adventures,
Jeanne Burrows-Johnson, author, narrator, consultant, and motivational speaker 

For more ideas to aid your career as an author or artist, visit: Author Website:
Author Blog:
Marketing Website:
You can email me at 

Jeanne Burrows-Johnson is an author, narrator, consultant, and motivational speaker who writes works of fiction and nonfiction. She is the author of the award-winning Natalie Seachrist Hawaiian Mysteries, featuring pan-Pacific multiculturalism and history in a classic literary form that is educational as well as entertaining. She was art director, indexer, and a co-author of the anthology Under Sonoran Skies: Prose and Poetry from the High Desert. Drawing on her interdisciplinary experience in the performing arts, education, and marketing, her authored and co-authored articles have appeared in literary, professional, and general readership publications such as Newport This Week, Broker World, the Hawai`i Medical Journal, and The Rotarian. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Announcing the winners of the 2022 Arizona Literary Awards



1st place Fiction
Second place Fiction
Third place Fiction


1st Place Nonfiction
2nd Place Nonfiction
3rd Place Nonfiction

Honorable Mention Nonfiction


1st Place

2nd Place
3rd Place

Honorable Mention


2nd Place

1st Place


1st Place
2nd Place
3rd Place


Honorable Mention