Monday, July 13, 2020

Author Interview: Women's Fiction Author Laura Preble #AnnaIncognito








Laura Preble is the award-winning author of the young adult series, Queen Geek Social Club (Penguin/Berkley Jam), which includes the novels Queen Geeks in Love and Prom Queen Geeks. Her novel, Out, dealt with the concept of LGBTQ rights within a young adult dystopia; Alex Sanchez, author of Rainbow Boys, says “Out explores an intriguing, mind-bending, and challenging portrait of an upside-down world that turns the tables on homophobia, acceptance, and love.” She has won a Kurt Vonnegut Fiction Prize, and has been published in North American Review, Writer’s Digest, Hysteria, and NEA Today.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

Website:  www.preblebooks.com
Twitter: www.twitter.com/LauraPreble
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/laura.preble1   
 
Q: What’s inside the mind of a women’s fiction author?

I like to think of myself as a writer whose main characters are generally female, so I guess what’s in my mind when I’m writing is creating a real and complete personality for my women (and men.) I also draw on a lot of my own experiences to create my characters, and since I’m a woman, that usually shows up somewhere. I’m also really glad that the book has been recognized with a silver medal from the Independent Publisher Book Awards as well as a Runner-Up in the Screencraft Cinematic Book competition. Clearly ‘women’s issues’ are broad enough to deserve these kinds of recognition.

Q: Tell us why readers should buy ANNA INCOGNITO.

It’s funny, first of all. I’ve been told that by many reviewers. This is odd mostly because the subject matter is kind of heavy (mental illness, trauma, abandonment) but like real life, Anna’s life is a crazy quilt of beauty, sadness, hope, and confusion. And especially since the pandemic, Anna’s extreme OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) may not seem as crazy as it once did! 


Q: What makes a good women’s fiction? 

I think good women’s fiction is the same as any good fiction. It must have well-rounded, human characters with whom the reader identify, someone they can believe in. I think women’s fiction uniquely focuses on situations and topics that are uniquely feminine: a woman’s role in society, the interplay of relationships (mother-child, doctor-patient, neighbor to neighbor), and what I’d call the relationships that often shape the course of a woman’s life. I also think women come from an undervalued place, so I like to raise my female characters up and help them fight for what they need.


Q: What has writing ANNA INCOGNITO taught you?

So much. I’d written several novels previous to ANNA INCOGNITO, but I can’t say that I ever really poured my own pain and sadness and joy and humor into a book in the way I did with this one. I love my other books, but they are YA (young adult), and exclusively the territory and concerns of teens. In this book, I could draw more on my own experiences as an adult woman, and really explore some territory that for me had been uncharted, mostly because I hadn’t been brave enough to mine it yet. 


Q: Where can readers find out more about you and your work?

I have a website, www.preblebooks.com. My publisher, Mascot Books, is the best place to purchase the book  https://mascotbooks.com/mascot-marketplace/buy-books/fiction/romance/anna-incognito/. If you do a google search, you’ll also find a lot of information on my writing and also my singing and composing (I’m married to a professional musician and we were playing together until the pandemic halted live performances.) Here’s a link to a great write-up by the San Diego Union-Tribune also.  https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/columnists/story/2020-02-04/column-san-diego-author-laura-preble-turns-a-germaphobe-into-a-heroine-youll-want-to-hug









Lots of narrative pull…wonderfully complicated. – Jincy Willett, author of The Writing Class, and anthologized by David Sedaris in Children Playing Before a Statue of Hercules.
Anna Colin Beck knows all too well what can happen when things go wrong really wrong. So, she’s spent the last several years living an extremely regimented life at home, doing everything she can to avoid subjecting herself to the torments of a germ-infested world. Everything must be just so, and when things don’t go to plan, she punishes her own body…and that still hasn’t helped alleviate her pain.

After a chance meeting in a laundromat, she finds herself completely infatuated with another person, something that hasn’t happened to her in a long time. Dr. Edward Denture is seemingly brilliant and magnetic…and in the blink of an eye, she’s attending intense somatic therapy sessions as his newest client. The more he draws from her, the further their relationship grows, until it’s crossed countless lines and consumed Anna with a fierce toxicity. And before she knows it, she finds herself buckled into the driver’s seat of a powder-blue El Dorado for a solo cross-country road trip, determined to stop his wedding. It’s a trip that will test every limitation she’s ever set for herself, and though she’s planned extensively for all contingencies, there are some twists and turns you just can’t prepare for.
With wry observations on the intersection of luck, fate, and life, Anna Incognito is a searing, darkly witty exploration of what it means to be alive.

PRAISE FOR ANNA INCOGNITO

IndieReader.com: 5/5 “Rich with witticism in the face of painful realities and evoking lyrical truisms throughout, from of a rating scale of 1 – 5 this novel is so off-the-charts good, it deserves a 10.” LINK HERE

OnlineBookClub.com: 4/4 “The writing was captivating…This book would be great for readers who are struggling with mental health or for those trying to understand it better. Are you ready to go for a drive with Anna?. Buckle up, because you are in for the ride of your life!” LINK HERE
Kirkus Reviews:  “The protagonist’s acerbic wit and mordant tone work well in the difficult material in Preble’s unconventional road novel. A razor-sharp, oddly fun  romp through the American West.” LINK HERE

ORDER YOUR COPY

Mascot Books → https://mascotbooks.com/mascot-marketplace/buy-books/fiction/romance/anna-incognito/

Amazon → https://amzn.to/3gWo7wf

 Barnes & Noble → https://bit.ly/2MtLLSV

Thursday, July 9, 2020

First Chapter Reveal: Slow Down by Lee Matthew Goldberg


Title: SLOW DOWN
Author: Lee Matthew Goldberg
Publisher: All Due Respect
Pages: 270
Genre: Thriller/Noir

How far would you go to make your dreams come true? For budding writer and filmmaker Noah Spaeth, being a Production Assistant in director Dominick’s Bambach’s new avant-garde film isn’t enough. Neither is watching Dominick have an affair with the lead actress, the gorgeous but troubled Nevie Wyeth. For Noah’s dream is to get both the film and Nevie in the end, whatever the cost. And this obsession may soon become a reality once Dominick’s spurned wife Isadora reveals her femme fatale nature with a seductive plot to get rid of her husband for good.
Slow Down, a cross between the noir styling of James M. Cain and the dark satire of Bret Easton Ellis, is a thrilling page-turner that holds a mirror up to a media-saturated society that is constantly searching for the fastest way to get ahead, regardless of consequences.

Here’s what readers are saying about Slow Down!

“Slow Down is a frenetic first novel…full of unedifying characters scrambling for the elusive, perhaps imaginary, brass ring.”
Publishers Weekly
“Lee Matthew Goldberg writes like a young Bret Easton Ellis doing a line of uncut Denis Johnson off the back of a public urinal. Memorable in the best possible way, also mostly illegal, Goldberg’s Slow Down is a mad man’s tour of Manhattan’s vices, follies, and ultimate betrayals.”
–Urban Waite, author of The Terror of Living and Sometimes the Wolf
What would happen if one of Raymond Chandler’s 1940’s femme fatales were to join forces with one of Jay McInerney’s enfant terribles? Lee Matthew Goldberg wrings every delectable trope imaginable out of this mashup while still managing a fresh spin. A writer to watch out for.”
–David Kukoff, author of Children of the Canyon
“Slow Down starts fast and gets faster quick, gunning through yellow streetlights on its way to a full collision with your shattered soul. Lee Matthew Goldberg takes on the American Zeitgeist in this stunning debut.”
–Stephen Jay Schwartz, LA Times bestselling author of Boulevard and Beat
Slow Down is a brilliant rush of a work charting the rise and fall of Noah and other pretentious losers. Savor this book.”
Foreword Reviews
“Dark and hard-boiled writing that grabs you by the throat. Slow Down is one of those rare novels that’s so good you want it to go on forever!”
–Nick Pengelley, author of Ryder: An Ayesha Ryder Novel
“The plot takes off…there’s no denying it’s fun to watch rich snots destroy themselves.”
Booklist
“Goldberg’s portrayal of the New York demimonde is one of the book’s strengths and brings to mind Bret Easton Ellis’ Less Than Zero. He also succeeds in marshalling a complicated plot.”
CrimeFictionLover.com






THE STEPS THAT LEAD ME TO MY CATACLYSMIC ENCOUNTER WITH DOMINICK BAMBACH WERE PUT IN MOTION TWO DAYS EARLIER WHEN I GOT THE NEWS ABOUT BEING DOUBLE-FIRED FROM MY SOULSUCKING JOB. Ah, Classic Screw-Up Noah. I’d come home a little buzzed from a Yankees game to hear my parents’ cook, Consuela, shouting from room to room trying to find me. Since my parents’ place was big enough to get legitimately lost in, I had no clue where she was, but I did run into my brother Dex ripping bong hits on our wraparound terrace.

“That mad Guatemalan woman has been huffing and puffing around the apartment for over half an hour,” Dex said.

“Is she okay?”

“Importante!” Dex mimicked, rather poorly, sounding more stereotypically Asian than stereotypically Spanish. “Más importante, señor Noah. Su jefe llamando! Your boss called!”

I caught up with Consuela in what my parents dubbed their “Conservatory,” named with pretension like we all lived inside the game of Clue. Actually, it was a shoebox of a room that had wedged in a piano, a piano bench, and a rather spectacular view of Central Park. I found Consuela perched on the window seat, hands folded in her apron like she was praying, breaths heavy and sad. She was a whale and I had made her sweat.

“Señor Noah. Oh, señor Noah,” Consuela heaved, the life drained out of her, ready for her deathbed. “Message for you.”

She had written the message in Spanglish on a post-it stuck Slow Down

to her large left breast. She displayed it to me like it was a medal of honor. It also had a blob of her famous Diablo sauce and basically said that my jefe sounded muy angry and would call my cell at nine tomorrow morning.

My father had adopted Consuela fifteen years ago, a rotund woman who fancied spiced rum and sour looks. My parents had met her during one of their “slumming vacations”—meaning a stay anywhere in the Third World, even if they shelled out for five-star hotels. This time it had been in Guatemala, where she was an overworked cook who made delectable tamales at the breakfast buffet. After one bite of her tasty creations, they whisked her back to the States as their latest charity case. But my father, all red nosed and with a jarring demeanor, had stated the real reason one night at a dinner party:

“You should see some of these people, just ghastly…” my father, a swirling glass of port in his hand, spouted to an audience of wondering blinks. I couldn’t stop looking at his blinding white teeth, which made him look demented. “That is where Consuela would still be if Janet and I hadn’t opened up our home to her. But my God, can that good woman make a tamale!”

I had passed out from a couple of late-night bong hits and woke up the next morning thinking about the note Consuela had given me. The sheets had been pulled up to my neck, the open window letting in cool hums of early spring air. I ran one cold big toe over the other as some morbid indie band played from my iPod alarm, soft and sweet as if they were singing me back to sleep. I had to download some new songs soon.

It was odd that my boss Irene had called, since the company only had few days left before it shut down completely. So calling me on a Sunday night, a time better spent basking in her wonderful glow, meant that something huge had gone down.

I’d been recently fired. No big deal, most of the company had been “downsized” or “let go,” or any other nice way of describing permanent termination. An economy in the toilet meant a whole lot of trouble for an independent media production company with only one client. Recently, all my co-workers had been summoned one-by-one into her office situated away from the rest of the peons.

The day I got the ax, I’d been ignoring the red light blinking on my office phone, which always meant that the Queen wanted something. E-mail this, call so-and-so, walk my dog while I get my hair done for an upcoming interview on CNN (that would probably never air). I finally picked up the receiver.

“Noah, come into my office.”

Click.

I wanted to be “let go.” Really I was aching to do nothing but come up with an idea for a novel and then adapt it into a film, my guaranteed tickets to fame. Back in college, a story I wrote for a fellowship won me five-hundred bucks and a trip to a Writer’s Colony in Wyoming, so I knew I had chops, but since then I’d written zilch. I had only one year left before I turned twenty-three and became older than F. Scott Fitzgerald when he wrote his timeless classic, This Side of Paradise. And, if I wanted to direct an adaptation of this yet-to-be-written novel, I had to hurry up before I turned twenty-five and became older than Orson Wells when he directed Citizen Kane. I longed to give an interview that would bring up both these bits of trivia and anoint me into the history books, but time was running out fast.

So this bullshit job where I booked authors for an interview series that aired on a Big Bookselling Chain’s website was really just holding me back. I pitched the project to the author’s publicists, set it all up, and sent them an embarrassing questionnaire that my boss created with questions like:

If someone described you as an animal, what animal would you resemble on the outside, and what animal would you identify with on the inside?

Unfortunately, this whole venture was happening right around the time that Big Bookselling Chain was going bankrupt. Anyone who didn’t anticipate a downsizing was in serious denial or too stupid to breathe.

When I stepped inside the Queen’s office that afternoon, it felt like walking smack into Calcutta. She had cranked up the heat on a day that didn’t require it. Her panting dog greeted me by doing an interpretive dance on the rug. The thing was about a hundred and sixty-five in dog years and begging to be put down.

“Have a seat, Noah.”

She gave me a smile that was completely devoid of any emotion. I could tell that it had taken so much out of her to produce, and it still managed to only be the smile of a stroke victim, one end being pulled up by a puppeteer’s string and the other end long forgotten.

“How are things?” she said, grimacing.

“Super.” I nodded.

Her half-smile had already vanished.

“I’m sure you know that the Big Bookselling Chain is in dire straits right now.”

Yes, I did already know this. I had figured it out one month ago when all of the authors the company filmed were mysteriously pulled from the B.B.C’s website without any explanation, and then The New York Times reported that one third of the B.B.C’s staff had been terminated.

“So, Noah, along with that, I don’t think that we can keep you on any longer as a Talent Booker,” she said, with a sigh to show how traumatized she was by having to fire me, a sigh to convey her plight. Forget the fact that she had just closed on a two-million dollar property in the Village a couple of weeks ago.

“As of today?”

“No, I am giving you two weeks notice. Any interviews you want to go on are fine by me, but this is the way it has to be.”

Her little rhyme made her sound like an Alice and Wonderland character, the caterpillar atop the mushroom blowing plumes of smoke in my face. I choked on a fake cough to keep from laughing since I’d been waiting for a day like this for the last few months. At least now I wouldn’t have to quit and go through the process of telling her off, something I honestly did to people in power too often and was a trait I needed to rectify.

My cell rang at exactly 9:00 am. The moody music had lulled me back to sleep for the past hour, but the phone was relentless. I found it under a pair of balled-up khakis and a Fight Club poster that had floated down from my wall.

“Hello,” I said, out of breath.

“Can I speak with Noah Spaeth?”

The voice was curt and cold. This couldn’t be good.

I am Noah’s complete lack of surprise, I thought, as I pictured Edward Norton’s sad-sack character from Fight Club.

“This is Irene, your boss. I don’t want you coming in today or any of your last days.”

“Uh, why…?”

“Well, Noah, over the weekend I decided to go through some of the e-mails that you wrote on your office account…”

She said it as if it was the most normal thing to do, as if he should be proud of her shadiness.

“Since I was allowing you to use me as a reference, I needed to make sure you had been spending your days here productively, but I realized with some of the things you wrote about me and the company itself that you never took this job seriously and that you’re just some immature twenty-two-year-old child. This means that you’re fired.”

“I was already fired.”

“No, you were let go; now you are fired.”

“I’m not understanding the difference.”

“Meaning you will not be able to use me as a reference anymore, so good luck finding other employment.”

I blew a raspberry into the receiver.

“Excuse me? Is that all you have to say?” I blew another raspberry.

“You little shit.”

Click.

I stayed on the line, the dial tone pulsating in my ear. I had trashed her as a person and a boss, e-mailing to friends that she was a trust fund baby who got the company as a type of hush money from parents who just wanted to get rid of her, but worst of all (well maybe not worst of all because, at least, it was making me laugh at the time), I had e-mailed to a friend about her big ass, how it was über long and flat in the white mini skirts she’d always wedge herself into and made her look like a pulled tooth when she bent over due to that sizable rear and bowling pin legs. All of this had now been read and dissected by her; she probably fled to the bathroom afterwards and planted herself in front of a long mirror that only proved those accusations right. Her frequent mentions of a personal trainer weren’t fooling anyone.

My cell rang again to the sound of breathing at the other end.

“Hello,” I said, ready for her. Her breathing sounded winded, as if she was trying to blow up a balloon from across the room.

“I…” she began, but I was too fast.

“Have a big ass. I know.”

I threw my cell to the floor without hanging up and could hear her muffled shouts, but I was laughing so hard that I could care less. I held my stomach and rocked in a fit, wanting her to hear.

My laughter echoed down the hallway as my teenage sister Cassie passed by, yakking on the phone. She was dressed in the skimpiest amount of clothing that the Baron School for Girls allowed. Just a few years ago she was wearing leotards and tumbling through the house with her hair in pigtails.

“No, Maddy, we’re totally gonna make her cry at school tomorrow…I know, I’m so psyched. All the Untouchables deserve to cry.”

I stepped out of my room in front of her so she couldn’t get past. She twisted a finger around her bra strap and let it snap against her skin. Her expression looked as if someone was using her face to juice a lemon.

“Move out of my way, Noah.”

“Why does everything you say need to have its own lingo?” I made a grab for her cell. “What the hell is an Untouchable?”

I could hear cackling coming from her cell. Cassie rolled her eyes as if I wasn’t worthy of sharing her air.

“It’s someone at Baron that’s poor. Just like you’ll be one day.”

She snapped her gum and continued past me with her middle finger in the air. The finger had become yellow from her new smoking habit; the nail caked with white powder. As if her bloodshot eyes weren’t enough evidence that she’d snorted her breakfast.

When she was born, I thought she’d been stolen from another family in the hospital because her hair was so blonde. My parents had let me hold her, and I whispered “my baby” into the tiniest ear I’d ever seen.

That seemed like many lifetimes ago.

Heading to Consuela’s kitchen for breakfast was always the best part of my day. I could already smell her Hollandaise sauce, which meant that I’d be eating Eggs Benedict soon. A perfect cure for my newly fired self. Good ol’ Consuela, with a work ethic like an Alaskan race dog in the Yukon, knew what I needed. The fact that it was Monday and her “Noie” (as she sometimes called me) wasn’t already at work had indicated that something was up. A wise shaman had once told her during a trip to the jungles of El Petén that “food cured all,” so she lived with that mantra and preached it unabashedly.

But as my nose followed the Hollandaise aroma through the hallways, I began to feel unsettled. Five minutes ago the whole boss-reading-my-e-mails thing had been ridiculously funny, but now reality was starting to sink in. My girlfriend at the time, Margaret, was bound to dump me because she had a firm plan of a career path and life for us both. Being attached to an unemployed artiste and wasting her glory twenties, as she called it (which always made it sound perverse) was not part of The Plan. So if I wanted to keep her around, I knew I’d have to scour the job sites, go on interviews, and pretend to be interested in whatever lame experience some company offered.

I entered the kitchen to find Dex and Consuela whispering to one another.

“Why aren’t you at work already?” Dex asked, studying me through his thick glasses without any lenses. His hair was a brown ball of chaos, and he wore a lopsided sweater over pajama bottoms that he’d probably live in for the rest of the day.

“Why aren’t you in school?” I shot back, knowing Dex had dropped out of Franklin & Marshall College last spring because he couldn’t take the Amish people in the town anymore, obviously an excuse that sounded better than his likely suspension.

“Touché, brother. Consuela, chop-chop with the Eggs Bene. I’m about as hungry as an Ethiopian at a Smorgasbord, or a newly-fired boy desperate for another job.”

He gave me a condescending squint while pushing the bangs out of his eyes only to have them fall into place again. I knew that he kept those bangs to give his fingers something to do: at parties, talking to girls, it was his thing. He could hide behind his hair if he wasn’t interested, or flip it away, show you his eyes, and pretend to care.

“Maybe you wouldn’t be so hungry, Dex, if you didn’t have two joints for breakfast already.”

“Haha, double touché, brother Noah.”

For the past year, Cassie, Dex and I lived in our childhood apartment parent-free with Consuela as the only authoritative figure; primarily there to make sure we ate. Our parents occasionally traipsed back home with stories of the South of France, or the wonders of Vanuatu before clearing out the gin and Scotch and slipping under the cracks in the door to board any type of transportation away from us all. Our grandfather, Hubert, my mother’s father, had finally choked on his own vomit in his sleep from an overdose of morphine medication that a hired specialist insisted was necessary for his emphysema. Hubert had paid for our pre-war, Classic Eight masterpiece on 79 th and Central Park West, but mostly kept his “little princess Janet on a tight leash” (his phlegmy words) with a monthly allowance that included weekly spa indulges and daily lunches at Le Cirque and the like. He let my dad foster his career as an art dealer and insisted on private schooling and a maid for his three grandchildren whose names he always mixed up.

Since I could remember, my parents had been planning their ultimate kids-free journey once the old geezer stopped breathing, complaining about a “youth idolized” New York. So when Hubert upchucked his last breath, they packed up their suitcases and vowed to live out of them. After air-kissing us, they left some vague numbers in case they needed to be reached (but only for an emergency!), along with some martini-soaked advice about the real world before slamming the front door and returning mostly through postcards.

I always imagined what I’d say to them and the rest of my family if I ever made it big:

“Mom and Dad, I’m a famous author-slash-filmmaker and you two did nothing for that. Cassie, you’ve become a hideous lost cause, but Dex, you can stick around. You may not be a good friend, but you’ll always be my brother. I know you’ll keep circling back into my life each time your antics stop being amusing to everyone else, and I will be all you have left.”

An overpowering smell of weed pummeled my nostrils as I opened Dex’s door to find him inhaling a massive hit and drumming on his knees in a lotus position. Dex held out a smoking bong as an offering.

“So what happened with your job, bitch?”

I shook my head and gazed around Dex’s room, a study in dementia. Retro Playboy magazines created a non-existent carpet, a mob of tits and eyes scrutinizing me. Chynna, the mannish wrestler from back in the day, seemed to be the most inquisitive, spreading her legs and giving me a “yeah, why’d you get canned?” glare.

“My boss read some nasty e-mails I wrote about her.”

“Haha, you fucked up big time.”

“I was already let go, it just means I can’t use her as a reference. It doesn’t really matter–”

“Tell that to the judge, or rather, tell it to Margaret and see if she’ll ever let your irresponsible ass touch her coot again.”

I’d been dating Margaret for almost a year. We met as seniors at Connecticut College, a tiny enough school where we knew everything about each other before ever really having a conversation. The first time we actually spoke, I was bombed out of my mind and found myself in some ethical debate with her, which sounded life changing at the time. We left some party, the Connecticut sky pure and smelling of the surrounding woods, dizzy with one another. Throughout the rest of the year, she became more of a convenience than anything. The type of girl who joined every amnesty-animal-feminist rights organization to compensate for her bland personality and championed her pre-law studies as being more important than whatever anyone else was doing. I kept her around because a few months before I met her I had tried to kiss Nevie, who then cut me out of her life for good.

“You should come to a party tonight,” Dex said.

“I should write tonight.”

I thought of Nina, the only character I’d created so far. I pictured her at a bar, twisting away on a stool, smiling wide from all the drugs she’d consumed. People would be naturally crowding around her because she had that magnetic effect. She longed to be in movies, using her skinny, but still rocking body, to work her way into chic clubs and get close to anyone with connections, but she wound up vomiting a cocktail of pills by dawn. She had peaked too early and knew her biggest accomplishment was bound to be a tragic headline. She’d need the hero of the novel, a guy just like me, to remind her of the Nina that she used to be, someone who’d stop her from rushing toward an early death and let her find solace in his arms. I could be that hero.

“Dude, come to the party. You can even bring…Margaret.”

“No, I should stay home and get serious about my writing.”

“You are such a pretentious loser. You’ll lock yourself in your room and write some dumb story with me as this screw-up who’s going nowhere and you’ll be the protagonist who gets him to go back to school or some shit like that. Oh, wouldn’t that be lovely?”

“Are you done?”

“I heard your whacko girlfriend going off on me the other day. Evidently, I gave her some look that she misinterpreted when she was here with her nose on the ceiling.”

“Yeah, she can’t stand you, what’s your point?”

“My point is that you can still bring her to this party because I can see you need a night of fucking fun after getting canned. You can always write tomorrow. And the next day. And the day after. In case you didn’t realize it, we’re basically living a charmed life here without any expenses and can do whatever the hell we want to do.”

“You’re right, man,” I said, shoving Dex and making sure, as always, to play the role of Older Brother. “You are so right. Why should I agonize over getting another job and dealing with another possible Queen? And Margaret can kiss my ass if she has anything to say. I’m about to create something that’ll blow people away and no one can stop me.”

I imagined my character Nina again, home from college at her country house in South Hampton, deliriously stoned after a round of golf at her parents’ club. I envisioned myself beside her as we danced around a bonfire on her private beach.

But I knew she wasn’t actually a creation, just a substitution. That night on the beach in South Hampton was based on one of the last times I saw Nevie. I can remember she was leaning in too close to the fire while high on something, and that I caught her before she burned herself.

“Are you okay?” I had asked.

“My hero,” I longed for her to say, but she only wriggled out of my arms, staring at the fire as if she wanted to fall in.

“I’m never okay,” she said, and stumbled up toward her house where she locked her bedroom door and didn’t even come out to wish me good-bye in the morning before I had to board my train.

That weekend had also been one of the last times I was able to write anything.

I told myself not to stress about that now. Tonight I’d be Nevie free. And maybe if I’d be able to keep forgetting about her, a bevy of dazzling ideas would flow once again.

“The Spaeth boys will be out for blood tonight,” Dex cheered, taking a final bong hit. “Brother Noah, I think I know how to get you started on the fast track to living.”

A cloud of smoke obscured Dex’s face as he continued preaching.

“Zoom. Zoom. Zooooooooom!”



ORDER YOUR COPY

Amazon → https://amzn.to/3dmv8UU

 


Lee Matthew Goldberg
Lee Matthew Goldberg is the author of the novels THE DESIRE CARD, THE MENTOR, and SLOW DOWN. He has been published in multiple languages and nominated for the 2018 Prix du Polar. The second book in the Desire Card series, PREY NO MORE, is forthcoming, along with his Alaskan Gold Rush novel THE ANCESTOR. He is the editor-in-chief and co-founder of Fringe, dedicated to publishing fiction that’s outside-of-the-box. His pilots and screenplays have been finalists in Script Pipeline, Book Pipeline, Stage 32, We Screenplay, the New York Screenplay, Screencraft, and the Hollywood Screenplay contests. After graduating with an MFA from the New School, his writing has also appeared in the anthology DIRTY BOULEVARD, The Millions, Cagibi, The Montreal Review, The Adirondack Review, The New Plains Review, Underwood Press, Monologging and others. He is the co-curator of The Guerrilla Lit Reading Series and lives in New York City.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

Website: http://www.leematthewgoldberg.com
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/LeeMatthewG
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leemgol
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/leematthewgoldberg

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

New Release! What Did Jesus Say by Rev. Terry Allan Christian



WHAT DID JESUS SAY
By Rev. Terry Allan Christian
Christian / Nonfiction

This incredible book organizes the teachings of Jesus using only the words spoken by Jesus and nothing more. The book puts readers into an imagined walk with Jesus on the beach, allowing readers to hear over 500 passages spoken by Him as recorded in the 4 Gospels.

“I was asked one time, where did this book idea come from?” says Christian.

“Well, when I was suddenly called away from motivational speaking at the top of my business career, I knew, I was being called to do what Jesus told me, 30yrs earlier. When I asked Jesus what He wanted me to do that wasn’t already being done, Jesus said; ‘Tell them, what I told them and nothing more, add no comments or opinions.’ With those instructions, I composed What Did Jesus Say: The Seven Messages from the Master containing over 500 scriptures spoken only by Jesus to those who loved and followed Him and I’ve added no opinions or comments. Whoever reads this book will know and understand what Jesus said to those who loved and followed Him and what’s expected from those who call Him their Lord and Savior.

Featuring the “best of the best” of what Jesus said, this book is a ‘one of a kind’. The scriptures, stripped of everything save for the words spoken by Jesus, have been composed into seven primary messages and serves as a daily Teaching Devotional.

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Message I
The Christ
It’s early morning and the sun is rising over the water.
You can see a crowd gathering at the water’s edge, waiting for Jesus to appear, and teach them.
As everyone begins to quiet, a deep silence falls and the only
sound to be heard are the birds flying above.
Then Jesus suddenly appears and says...

Peace be with you my brothers and sisters
I AM the Christ
I have come down from heaven,
not to do My own will,
but the will of Him who sent Me.
John 6:38
Truly, I Say to You
The Spirit of the Lord
is upon Me,
because He hath anointed Me
to preach the gospel to the poor;
He hath sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovering of sight to the blind,
And
To set at liberty those who are oppressed.
Luke 4:18
Therefore,
I say to you who hear,
Come to Me, all you who labor
and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest.
Take My yoke upon you
and learn from Me,
for I am gentle and lowly in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls.
For My yoke is easy
and my burden is light.
Matthew 11:28-30
If anyone desires to come after Me,
let him deny himself,
and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.
For whoever desires to save his life will
lose it, but whoever loses his life
for My sake will find it.
For what profit is it to a man
if he gains the whole world,
and loses his own soul?
Or what will a man give
in exchange for his soul?
Matthew 16:24-26
Again I Say
If anyone thirsts,
let him come to Me and drink.
He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said,
out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.
And
If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and
where I am, there My servant will be also. If
anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor.
John 7:37-38 / John 12:26
Now, take heed and listen
Do not think that I came
to bring peace on earth.
I did not come to bring peace
but a sword.
For I have come to
set a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
and a daughter-in-law
against her mother-in-law
and a man’s enemies will be those
of his own household.
Matthew 10:34-36
Therefore
He who loves father or mother
more than Me is not worthy of Me.
And he who loves son or daughter
more than Me is not worthy of Me.
And he who does not take his cross and
follow after Me is not worthy of Me.
And
I say to you who hear,
He who finds his life will lose it,
and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.
Matthew 10:37-39
Most assuredly, I say to you,
he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door,
but climbs up some other way,
the same is a thief and a robber.
But he who enters by the door
is the shepherd of the sheep.
To him the doorkeeper opens,
and the sheep hear his voice;
and he calls his own sheep by name
and leads them out.
And when he brings out his own sheep,
he goes before them; and the sheep follow him,
for they know his voice.
Yet they will by no means follow a stranger,
but will flee from him,
for they do not know the voice of strangers.”
John 10:1-5
Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door.
If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved,
and will go in and out and find pasture.
The thief does not come except to steal,
and to kill, and to destroy.
I have come that they may have life,
and that they may have it more abundantly.
I am the good shepherd.
The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd,
one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf
coming and leaves the sheep and flees;
and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them.
The hireling flees because he is a hireling
and does not care about the sheep.
John 10:7-13
I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep,
and am known by My own.
And
As the Father knows Me,
even so I know the Father and I lay down my life for the sheep.
And other sheep I have which are not of this fold;
them also I must bring and they will hear My voice:
and there will be one flock and one shepherd.
John 10:14-16
Listen Closely
My sheep hear My voice,
and I know them, and they follow Me.
And I give them eternal life,
and they shall never perish;
neither shall anyone snatch them
out of My hand.
My Father, who has given them to Me,
is greater than all;
and no one is able to snatch them
out of My Father’s hand.
Truly
I say to you who hear,
“I and My Father are One.”
John 10:27-30
Now,
let these Words sink down in your ears.
I am the true vine,
and My Father is the vinedresser.
Every branch in Me
that does not bear fruit He takes away;
and every branch that bears fruit
He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.
Abide in Me, and I in you.
As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself,
unless it abides in the vine,
neither can you,
unless you abide in Me.
John 15:1,2,4

Assuredly, I Say to You
I am the vine, you are the branches.
He who abides in Me, and I in him,
bears much fruit;
for without Me you can do nothing.
If anyone does not abide in Me,
he is cast out as a branch and is withered;
and they gather them and throw them into the fire,
and they are burned.
If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you,
you will ask what you desire and it shall be done for you.
And by this My Father is glorified,
that you bear much fruit;
so you will be My disciples.
John 15:5-8
Peace be with you.
Then Jesus started walking and we followed Him.















Since dedicating his life to Jesus at the age of 23, Terry Allan Christian has been reading the red lettered version of the 4 Gospels as recorded in the KJV Bible. Even though Terry reads the whole Bible, his primary focus is on the words of Jesus and the example of His actions.

Terry grew up in a violent dysfunctional family where he quit school at 16 and left home. He stuttered so bad he could only say 3-5 words in a row. His family and friends mocked him and that caused much stress in his early life.

At the age of 23, he had a near death experience and in which he had a dream. In this dream, he was told that one day he would be a teacher for Jesus. Needless to say, he was scared at first because of his stuttering and lack of structured education however, he always had a child-like faith and trust in Jesus as Lord.

After the dream, he was soon hired by the Dale Carnegie Organization and trained in sales and public speaking, where he met a man who taught him how to visually read. During the next few years Terry read several hundred books on the subject of personal growth.

At the age of 30, Terry became a professional Motivational Speaker and Executive Trainer and over the next 20 years he would deliver more than 2,500 presentations to private and public audiences across America and Canada.

Several years ago, Terry retired as a public speaker after feeling the Holy Spirit redirecting his life. He was led to do what Jesus told him many years earlier. After researching the 4 Gospels he composed the book What Did Jesus Say: The Seven Messages from the Master, using only the Words spoken by Jesus as recorded in the 4 Gospels, without adding any personal comments or opinions.
As in all God called missions it took longer, cost more and challenged him to the edge of his faith. He would later say, he had to read the Book of Job just to understand why this was happening to him and was he being tested or penalized. In the end, he was being tested and by the grace of God, he prevailed.

Now after 12 years of study, obedience, difficulty and struggle, this book is now available in Paperback, eBook, Audio Book and Kindle.

Today, Author and Counselor, Rev. Terry Christian is founder of Foundations for Life ‘Online’ Ministries and he presently lives at Negril Jamaica where he does local missionary work in schools and churches while counseling Christians worldwide online thru his program Christians Helping Christians.

Negril, Jamaica is where Rev. Christian went to fast & pray while seeking divine healing for Bladder Cancer. His doctors gave him 3yrs to live so he created a healing sabbatical and after fasting & praying, and walking the beach for 21 days, he returned to his Doctors and they released him ‘cancer free’.

Terry calls this program: The Life Walk –aka- The Miracle Walk and now offers this ‘restoration’ program online or in Negril, for everyone seeking Life, Health or Marriage Restoration.
Terry believes: WITH GOD, all things are possible, all the time, wherever we live and at every given moment, when we pray, believing.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

Website: www.whatdidjesussay.org
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RevTChristian
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/revchristian