Monday, August 31, 2015

Pack your bags and Go Cruising Alaska Tropical Style!

Patty Kunze Tatum has published Cruising Alaska Tropical Style, the story of a 15-year-old girl who spends a summer on an Alaskan-based cruise ship.

Cape Canaveral, FL – Patty Kunze Tatum has published Cruising Alaska Tropical Style, the story of Sara Alexander, a 15-year-old girl who spends a summer on an Alaskan-based cruise ship with her workaholic “Queen Mother the Cruise Director” who drives her insane. Drawing from her experiences working on board cruise ships, Patty gives readers a behind-the-scenes view of what it's like to work in the cruise industry while enjoying a tour of Alaska as seen through the eyes of a teen. Patty is a native of Orlando and lives in Cape Canaveral. She performs with the acoustic duo Sound Traveler. Cruising Alaska Tropical Style is available on Amazon, Kindle, CreateSpace, and at Sound Traveler performances.

“Sara's story is a coming-of-age adventure of a typical teenage girl who finds herself in an exotic setting,” Patty explains. “Most people would love nothing more than to have the opportunity to live on board a luxurious cruise ship.” However, when faced with separation from her friends and father, then being forced to spend an extended amount of time living in close quarters with her mother with whom she has a strained relationship, the situation is not very appealing to Sara. As the summer progresses and Sara interacts with people from all over the world, her perspectives broaden and she learns more about life, both on land and at sea.

Patty Kunze Tatum worked on board Norwegian Cruise Line and Holland America Line for over three years as a social hostess, youth coordinator, and art director. The experiences she gained provided her with the background information to create Cruising Alaska Tropical Style. Teaching middle school language arts inspired her to write something of special interest to adolescents while still being enjoyable for readers of all ages.

“I want readers to experience a heightened awareness of what it takes to keep a cruise ship afloat. I also want them to feel encouraged to follow their dreams wherever they lead and not be afraid to work hard to make things happen,” Patty says. “Many things in my life, like working on ships and getting this book published, started as dreams that took hard work to accomplish. I hope to inspire others to do the same in their own lives.”

For additional information about Cruising Alaska Tropical Style, contact Patty Kunze Tatum by email at or her website Copies of Cruising Alaska Tropical Style (ISBN 978-0692491669) are available in paperback at Amazon, CreateSpace, and directly from Patty. E-books are available through Kindle.

Book News - Brian Games by Jennifer Swanson

National Geographic Kids is pleased to announce the publication date of Jennifer Swanson’s, middle grade nonfiction book Brain Games. Brain Games is a super fun, super interactive collection of challenges, myths, fun facts, science and games based on the hit National Geographic Channel's TV show of the same name!

Ever wonder why you act the way you do? It's all in the brain! So, fire up your neurons, hang on to your hippocampus, and join us on a rockin' ride through the twists and turns of the cerebral superhighway to discover how this amazing organ—that's about the size of a grapefruit and looks like a grey sponge—works!

Brain Games will be released on September 8, 2015. A book launch is planned at the Barnes and Noble, St. Johns Town Center, in Jacksonville, FL on Saturday, Sep. 26th at 2pm.  Learn more about Jennifer Swanson and see her other fun science books for kids at

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Book News - Bully Route Home by DL Havlin

Double Edge Press is pleased to announce the publication date of DL Havlin’s award winning literary novel, Bully Route Home. Winner of the Florida Writers Associations prestigious Royal Palm Literary Award, Bully Route Home's focus is on two issues that continue to command today’s headlines, bullying and race relations.

Set in the rural 1940’s south, the book reveals roots of these chronic societal concerns. When twelve-year-old “Pooch” Robertson becomes the local bully’s favorite target, he attempts to avoid the daily beatings by taking a secret route home … one that goes through the “negro quarters.” This simple act lights a fuse of events that threatens to end in a full-fledged race war within the community.

Bully Route Home is the fourth DL Havlin novel published by Double Edge Press. The planned date for the novel’s publication and release is August 15. Learn more about Double Edge Press at and DL Havlin at

Friday, August 28, 2015

Mystery- Thriller Author Dirk Wyle to To Give Travel Advice for the Mayan Riviera and Yucatan at Local Bookstore (Delray Beach, FL)

A mystery bookstore might seem an unlikely place for receiving advice a Caribbean vacation, but that is what Dirk Wyle, author of Yucatán Is Murder, will be serving up at the Murder On The Beach bookstore.

“Everyone knows the Mayan Riviera as a great fun-in-the-sun destination," Wyle says, "but fewer know about the pyramids, monuments, cenotes and Mayan and Spanish-colonial history of Yucatan.”

Wyle will make these connections in a slide show at 7:00 p.m., Friday, September 18 (Murder on the Beach, Delray Beach), showing  photos and locations of important pyramids and spectacular cenotes.

Cenotes are water-filled holes and caves in the limestone bedrock that are connected to the peninsula's extensive underground water system," Wyle explains. They were the source of water that made the Mayan city-states possible.

After suggesting pyramids to climb and cenotes to swim in, Wyle will sketch out over one-thousand years of Mayan history, making connections to their religion, astronomy, calendar and counting systems. He will explain how knowledge of their glyph writing system was lost with the Spanish conquest and has been restored by scholars in the last several decades. And he will answer practical questions like whether it is best to arrive by cruise ship or airplane.

He will also be available to autograph copies of his mystery-thriller, Yucatán Is Murder, which is the sixth book in his Ben Candidi (PhD)/Rebecca Levis (MD) series. The present-day couple discovers a present-day victim of a murder which has the earmarks of an ancient Mayan rite. Moved by the tears of the mother -- a Maya villager who speaks no Spanish -- and disappointed with lack of interest by the police, the couple investigates, bringing their medical, scientific and cultural-tourist skills to bear.

7:00 p.m., Friday, Sept. 18, 2015
273 Pineapple Grove Way
Delray Beach, FL 33444
(561) 279-7790



Florida Authors and Publishers Association Awards High Honor to Orlando Author, Patricia Charpentier, for Helping People Write Their Life Stories

Orlando, Florida – Patricia Charpentier, multi-award winning author of Eating an Elephant: Write Your Life One Bite at a Time, received high honors from the Florida Authors and Publishers Association (FAPA) at its annual conference on August 8, 2015. The Founders Award is given to a long-standing member of FAPA who has published multiple books and made great contributions to both the organization and the community.

In presenting the award, FAPA Past-President Mark Wayne Adams stated, “Our recommendation of Patricia Charpentier was based on her dedication to starting a publishing business to help others share their life stories. She has not only grown within the organization but has also encouraged new members to pursue successful writing and publishing careers.”

Charpentier travels the country, encouraging others to pen their memories. She is proud of the thousands of people she has mentored through her many projects, classes, and presentations. Her students range in age from 13 to 104, proving, as she says, “You are never too young or too old to write your life story. Sharing your life in writing with those you care about is a true gift of love.”

Charpentier’s career spans more than sixteen years, beginning when she founded Writing Your Life to assist people in leaving legacies for future generations. Her services include both online and in-person classes, editing, ghostwriting, coaching, and publishing. To date, she has produced more than thirty-five books. Her book, Eating an Elephant: Write Your Life One Bite at a Time, breaks down the monumental task of writing a life story into manageable pieces and has won numerous awards.

For a free get-started guide or more information about Charpentier and how to write your life story, check out her website or contact her directly at The next session of her latest video/coaching program, begins soon.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

bookmark it presents Central Florida Educationrs' Open House/Book Fair

Bookmark it has invited 20 Florida authors to participate in Central Florida Educators' Open House/Book Fair on Sunday, September 13th from noon-4pm in East End Market’s beautiful APEX meeting space.  

Participating authors include: Mark Wayne Adams, Vivi Barnes, Christina Benjamin, Jaime Engle, Christina Farley, Dannette Hayworth, Peggy Lantz, Maddie Lock, Ethan Long, Lauren Mathur, Nancy Jane Quackenbush, Ron Roeder, Candace Ruffin, Taryn Souders, DG Stern, Jimmy Vee

In addition, Jamie M. Engle sent in this information about the event. She will be in attendance to share her anti-bullying presentation and novel Clifton Chase and the Arrow of Light, appropriate for grades K-6. Engle will be providing a FREE teacher’s curriculum guidebook to each school that books in 2015 for a school visit. She speaks in classrooms throughout Brevard and Lake County, Florida.

Additionally, representatives from local, award-winning non-profit will be available for questions regarding their free after-school programming for at-risk kids and annual creative writing teen anthology contest. This summer, Jaimie M. Engle volunteered to speak with Page 15 students during four weeks of Young Author’s Camps in Orlando, where she was able to share the day in the life of an author and provide autographed copies of her book to each attendee.
The open house is free and it is designed to allow teachers to meet authors in person, preview (and purchase) their titles, collect school visit information, and review any specially designed curriculum or teaching tools that accompany their books. Rounding out the event will be a special pop-up ‘bookstore’ for school purchases offering a 20% educators discount and free school delivery for special orders. 
Registration is requested to help with organization and printing, but walk-ins are always welcome ! For more information, please check out their links:

Event information:
Date: Sunday, September 13, 2015
Time: NOON - 4pm
Location: East End Market - Upstairs in APEX meeting hall and boardroom
2301 Corrine Drive, Orlando, FL 32803
Cost: FREE to attend. Books available for purchase using cash, charge and OCPS
purchase order. School ID required for discounted pricing.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Mad about Words is presenting a Writing Workshop with Meg Sefton: Flash Fiction Fundamentals

Flash Fiction Fundamentals: Unearthing the Unexpected


  • When:  Sunday, September 27, 2015 |  1 PM – 4 PM
  • Where: MAD’s Condo Community Clubhouse in Winter Park FL
    (address provided upon registration)
  • Fee: $35.
If you're interested in writing Flash Fiction, this workshop get you started...

For full details and registration information, Click Here


Award-Winning Author Spends Summer With “Page 15” Kids

" At Page 15, anything goes... as long as it gets kids excited about reading and writing."—

Jaimie M. Engle of Melbourne, Florida, donated four weeks over the summer sharing the process of writing and publishing with students at Page 15 Young Writer’s Camps in Orlando. The award-winning author waived her presentation fee and signed copies of her award-winning novel, Clifton Chase and the Arrow of Light, for each student.

“It’s an incredible opportunity to hang out with these amazing young writers who have chosen to spend their summers working on a book at camp, instead of playing video games or going to the beach,” said Engle. “I enjoyed it so much, that I accepted the request of the Page 15 staff to volunteer at all four camps. It was an awesome experience!”

In 2008, the Urban Think! Foundation launched Page 15, a children’s literacy program that works one on one with students in the community through supplemental reading programs. With workshops and after-school tutoring, Page 15 helps to inspire students with a lifetime love of the language arts through reading and writing.

Jaimie’s presence in our Young Writer’s Camps has supported our mission as an organization – to celebrate every student’s unique voice and empower them to be a positive influence in their community,” shared Michelle Riddle, Program Coordinator for Page 15. “We appreciate Jaimie!”

Students wrote, edited, and published a book during the week long camp, with cover art and binding included. Visit for more information about their programs.

Engle is always looking to partner with schools that promote anti-bullying education programs. More information, to purchase books, or to request a school visit go to

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Appreciation: Friend of Florida Book News

Thanks so much to Jennifer Swanson for becoming a Friend of Florida Book News.  Your support is greatly appreciated.  Please click on her badge in the right column and have a look at what she's doing.

White River Monster by Keith Rommel

Keith Rommel releases 3 books in the White River Monster Kindle series at only .99 cents each!

The White River Monster has eluded people for over a century. Manhunts were brought to a fever pitch in Newport, Arkansas, where people were anxious to prove the existence of the river monster. 

For years, sightings were reported up and down the White River, but no physical evidence ever came forth. Soon the monster faded into obscurity and was dismissed as a legend never to be solved ... that is until a curious news reporter sets out to capture what no one else has been able to! 

Thriller writer Keith Rommel brings this cryptozoological mystery to life -- in a classic tale of drippy, slimy, and deadly horror!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Retired Police Lieutenant, Clinical Instructor & 30-Year Vet Share Stories

Local authors to sign, share, and sell copies of their new books

Suntree, FL, August 21st, 2015 - On Saturday, September 12, 2015, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., three local authors will introduce their newly released books to Brevard County audiences and have signed copies available at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall, 3115 Friendship Place, Rockledge.  All three will give presentations and be available to discuss and inscribe their books.  The Fellowship Hall is located one block west of U.S. 1, two blocks north of Suntree Blvd.

Don Gilleland, Pat Pesce, and Holly Fox Vellekoop, will be available to provide personal inscriptions.  Two have new books published within the last few weeks.  Don Gilleland’s new book, America: An Exceptional Nation, is the third in his series on America. Holly Fox Vellekoop’s book, Encouragers, Those Who Help Others Succeed, is her seventh published work.

Don Gilleland retired from a 30-year military career, followed by ten years in the defense industry, where he retired as corporate director of public affairs for General Dynamics Corporation.  He has published three non-fiction books heralding his love for America,

Patrick Pesce is a retired Lieutenant from the New York City police department.  He rose through the ranks and served on the First Deputy Police Commissioner’s Special Force.  Blue Memories, Life In Law Enforcement, is a memoir, which describes a police officer’s career in the New York City Police Department.

Holly Fox Vellekoop, retired from a career as a Clinical Instructor in Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, is an accomplished writer, poet, columnist and speaker.  She has seven published books, both fiction and non-fiction.

As an added attraction, Dr. Valerie Allen will also be available to discuss and sign books she has written.  She has written ten books. Dr. Allen is a psychologist, author and public speaker, who writes fiction, non-fiction, short-stories and children’s books.  She has been in practice for more than 20 years and has published ten books.

Marshall Frank, another local author, will be the Master of Ceremonies and as a special attraction the Dick-Doc Duo, with Dr. Jay Barnhart on piano and Marshall Frank on violin, will perform briefly.  Light refreshments, including wine and cheese, will be served at the book launch.

Contact:  Donald Gilleland, Home: 321-255-1185, Cell: 321-431-1474, Internet

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Inaugural Jeremiah Healy Mystery Writing Award Winner Announced

Among Irvin's winning prize package is this bobble-headed “Jerry” trophy, created in the likeness of the beloved late author Jeremiah Healy.

Award-winning mystery writer Sandra Balzo and Absolutely Amazing eBooks Publisher Shirrel Rhoades presented J. E. Irvin of Springboro, Ohio, with the inaugural Jeremiah Healy Mystery Writing Award on Saturday, August 15, during the annual Mystery Writers Key West Fest, a three day mystery genre festival set in the tropical paradise of the Florida Keys.
Author J. E. Irvin of Springboro, Ohio
Irvin was one of four finalists in a nation-wide competition for the prize, which garnered her a book-publishing contract with AAeB, free 2016 Mystery Writers Key West Fest registration with hotel accommodations for two nights, and a bobble-headed Jerry trophy.
Sponsored by AAeB, the award salutes late author Jeremiah Healy’s legacy as a beloved and influential mentor credited with helping and advising many aspiring authors. Writers from all over the country answered the call that invited candidates to submit the first three pages of a finished, unpublished mystery manuscript.
“Jerry often said a book either captures a reader in the first three pages … or it doesn’t,” commented Shirrel Rhoades, who co-produces the Mystery Writers Key West Fest along with Mad Mick Murphy Key West Mysteries author Michael Haskins. “We agree with that assessment and decided to use it as a yardstick for a writing competition in his honor. He helped us get the first Fest off the ground, and this way we will keep him as a part of it in future years.”
“The quality of the entries we received was excellent,” said Balzo, Healy’s fiancée and lead judge. “Jerry would have been both honored and impressed.”
Irvin says her submission, titled "Dark End of the Rainbow," is a portrayal of the corrosive effects of secrets and the healing power of love. The other three award finalists and their titles are: “All Hocked Up” by Jack Bates of Rochester, MI; “Portside Screw” by Gregory S. Dew of Ponce Inlet, FL; and “Square Grouper” by Lewis Haskell (previously identified under the author’s pen name, Crichton Lewis) of Key West, FL.
Unable to attend the Fest due to a recent surgery, Irvin accepted the honor via Skype.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Florida Romance Writers’ September Meeting

DATE: Saturday, September 12, 2015
TIME:  9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Hyatt Place, 1851 SE 10th Avenue, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
COST: $20 per person/member, $25 non-member; includes buffett breakfast
DIRECTIONS: I-95 to 595 E. (Exit 24). Go east on 595 till US1 North.  Take US1 to SE 17th Street Causeway and turn right towards the beach. Then take the second right onto SE 10th Avenue. Location is one block in on your right. (Behind the Outback Steakhouse.)
PARKING: Open parking - free of charge.
PROGRAM: “Book Bundles To Bestsellers”
Book bundles (or box sets) are all the rage right now. These multi-author collections have become a great way to connect with new readers, increase visibility, and increase sales of not only the book in the collection, but other titles as well. Most importantly, they can help an author reach the USA Today or New York Times bestseller lists. Box sets come in all shapes and sizes (and heat levels) from sexy paranormals to sweet contemporaries, from brides and summer flings to holiday happily ever afters. So, how can you chaptalize on this hot trend and turn it into publishing success?
Join Traci Hall, Mona Risk, Bonnie Vanak, Kristin Wallace & Patrice Wilton, 5 authors who have all hit bestseller lists with a box set (some multiple times). You’ll learn the ins and outs of creating a bundle as they take you step-by-step through the process.
Topics will include:
 -Finding the right authors
-Determining the type of bundle 
-Handling financials (payment to authors)
-Using a third party for formatting, upload & payments
-Formatting for consistency 
-Front & back matter
-Getting reviews
-Marketing & Advertising
-Pre-release buzz
-Blog Tours 
-Launch Day/Launch Party
-How to handle disputes 
About the Authors:
Traci Hall is a USA Today Bestselling Author of young adult, medieval, western historical and contemporary romances. Her popular series include: By The Sea, Boadicea, Spokane Falls, and Rhiannon Godfrey. Visit her website at: 
Mona Risk is a NYT and USA Today Bestselling Author of contemporary romance who enjoys setting her books in exotic locations from France to Greece to Russia. Her popular series include Holiday Babies, Doctor’s Orders, Foreign Lovers, and Christmas Here or There. Visit her website at: 
Bonnie Vanak is a USA Today Bestselling Author of historical, paranormal and erotic romance. Her popular series include Werewolves of Montana, Draicon Werewolves, The Phoenix Force, and her Egyptian series. Visit her website at:
Kristin Wallace is a USA Today Bestselling Author of inspirational and contemporary romance filled with “Love, Laughter and a leap of Faith”. Her popular series includes the Covington Falls Chronicles and Shellwater Key Tales. Visit her website at: 
Patrice Wilton is a NYT and USA Today Bestselling Author of contemporary romance. Her popular series & titles include: The Candy Bar, Serendipity Falls, Night Music, and Revenge is Sweet. Visit her website at: 
RESERVATIONS REQUIRED: Please e-mail Rossie Cortes at for a reservation and visit us at

Monday, August 17, 2015

Florida Mystery Writers of America: Southwest September Meeting

The next Florida Mystery Writers of America: Southwest meeting will be at 1pm on Saturday September 12th on the campus of Florida SouthWestern State College. 

Our guest speaker will be Private Detective Walter Zalisko. Mr Salisko, a retired Chief of Police, police detective, and corporate security director, has over 38 years of experience. Mr. Salisko is President of Global Investigative Group, a private investigation and security consulting firm and serves on the Executive Board of Directors for the Florida Association of Licensed Investigators (FALI). 

As a private investigator, Mr. Salisko has handled a variety of cases including: matrimonial investigations, background investigations, personal injury investigations, corporate due diligence investigations, criminal defense investigations, insurance fraud, and other investigative matters. Mr. Salisko is an authority on Russian Organized Crime, has investigated Russian Crime Syndicates throughout New Jersey, New York and Florida, and is fluent in Ukrainian and Russian languages. 

We're meeting in room 108 of the L-building at FSW - adjacent to the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall. There will be signs inside. Check the Lee Campus map here for more details  <>;
You are allowed to park in Lot 7 next to the L-building (usually reserved for faculty) on Saturday, even if there is an event going on at BB Mann.

The group will meet for lunch at 11:30 at Jason's Deli - 13550 Reflection Parkway, Fort Myers. It's off Cypress Lake Dr. near the FSW campus.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Mission (im)Possible Writing Course Challenges Students to Write a Book

Award-Winning Author Jaimie M. Engle teaches from idea through publication at Eastern Florida State College

“My books are meant to inspire, empower, and entertain the next generation of leaders.” author, Jaimie M. Engle
How do you write a book? Where do you even begin? Award-winning local author Jaimie M. Engle will spend eight months on the Eastern Florida State College Melbourne Campus teaching students and faculty the process of writing.

“My plan is to get students thinking about not just an idea they love, but one they can develop into an entire book and spend eight months completing,” says Engle, whose children’s book was recently awarded an indie B.R.A.G. Medallion of Excellence.

The course beginning on Tuesday, August 25th and repeating on Wednesday, August 26th will run the last Tuesday and Wednesday during the months of August, September, October, November (the week before Thanksgiving), January, February, March, and April from 9:30am to 10:30am with an encore from 11am-12pm. Courses includes:

o       Intro to Writing
o       Writing and Publishing
o       Pre-Writing
o       NaNoWriMo
o       Revise and Edit
o       Agents and Publishers
o       Selling and Marketing
o       While You Wait

I'm excited about the potential of students writing and publishing a novel through the Mission (im)Possible program,” says Danielle Redding, Director of Melbourne campus Student Life at Eastern Florida State College. “I think it’s a great idea and the students are excited to work with Jaimie again.”

The free 8-month long program is open to the public and held in the college writing center at 3865 N. Wickham Road, Melbourne, Fl  32935. Engle will have her books on hand for purchase. Freebies for all participants. Pre-register at Engle is available for interviews and welcomes the press to attend this event.

About the Author

Jaimie M. Engle is a freelance writer and the owner of A Writer For Life, an editing and coaching service for aspiring writers. Her work has appeared in Writer’s Digest and Clubhouse Jr. Magazine, and she published her anti-bullying children’s book Clifton Chase and the Arrow of Light in 2013. Engle is an anti-bullying ambassador, conference speaker, freelance teacher, and writing volunteer at local libraries and elementary school programs, represented by Pam Howell of D4EO Literary. She heads PR for Texas publishing house Black Rose Writing. Follow her at and hire her at

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Anaiah Press announces release of Jacqueline by Jackie Minniti

Eden Plantz, Executive Editor of Anaiah Press, announces the release of Jacqueline, a middle grade historical fiction by Jackie Minniti, on July 21, 2015. e book is available in paperback and digital formats from most major
online and eBook retailers.

St. Petersburg, FL, July 21st, 2015

“Jackie Minniti’s book brings the realities of life during the holocaust to middle grade readers from the perspective of a twelve-year-old girl who actually lived during that time.”
– Eden Plantz, Executive Editor, Anaiah Press LLC

About Jackie Minniti

Jackie Minniti was born and raised in the heart of New Jersey where she spent 25 years as a classroom teacher and was an education writer for the Courier Post. A fter retiring from teaching, she moved to Florida and turned to writing full-time. She is currently a columnist for The Island Reporter in St. Petersburg. Her first novel, Project June Bug, the story of a young teacher’s e fforts to help a student with ADHD, won several awards, including Premier Book Awards “Book of the Year.” A number of her stories have been included in Chicken Soup for the Soul collections.

About the Book

Jackie Minniti takes readers on a ride that is both heartbreaking and heartwarming. Based on a true story,Jacqueline is a tale of family, faith, unusual friendships, and the resiliency of the human spirit set against the backdrop of occupied Rennes in 1944. 

When ten-year-old Jacqueline Falna hears her mother’s scream, she is unaware that the axis of her world is about to tilt. Her father’s plane has been shot down by German fighters. In the midst of poverty, food shortages, air raids, and the grinding hardship of daily life under Nazi rule, she forms an unlikely alliance with David Bergier, a twelve-year-old Jewish neighbor who poses as her cousin after his family is “relocated” by the Nazis. When Rennes is liberated, Jacqueline meets an American soldier and becomes convinced that he has been sent to reunite her with her father.

With the drama of fiction and the authenticity of personal history, Jacqueline is both a story about family and a family’s story.