YOU Pick the prompt – The Word Count Episode 31

redblueWell, the massive project I’ve been working on went live this week and the Orange Karen anthology is out to critical acclaim.  So while I get back into my writing projects, I can’t think of a more fun way to celebrate then to put up a poll to pick the theme for the next Word Count Podcast (you can check out ALL the past shows via iTunes or by heading to my Libsyn page. ).

I’ve found a designer to help with what will eventually will become a separate site for The Word Count—but while she does here designing stuff, stay right here for now.

But for the next show—episode 31—we’ll do things the old fashioned way.

I’ve setup up a poll off to the left with a choice of FIVE possible prompts for The Word Count episode 31.  You know the drill—vote for your favorite by making a selection and clicking on the “vote” button.  Remember to check the results to confirm your vote counted as sometimes the interwebs are as touchy as a menstruating cougar.

WAIT.  You don’t KNOW what the Word Count Podcast is?  Well, read ON dear sinner!

What is The Word Count Podcast?

It is a free broadcast by writers for writers.  Simply put, a theme for each show is announced via this site, Twitter and Facebook and writers are given a week or two to write AND RECORD their stories based on said theme.


Why not, says I.  It’s a great way to practice writing and public speaking.  It’s another way for writers to get their work “out there.”  And I love to meet fellow authors and have a blast putting the show together.  It’s just that simple.

Now for the voting!

Again, to the LEFT, I’ve posted five potential prompts for the next Word Count.  The poll will remain open for the weekend, and close out midnight the 3rd of May 2013.


I think there are a few good ones to choose from…so vote often an early and get your friends to help YOU pick the theme for the next Word Count!


Review: Cascade Effect (Book #2 of The Physics of Falling trilogy)

LeahWith everything that’s been going on this past week in my hometown of Boston, I thought I’d post something good…actually…something GREAT.


In the second book of the Physics of Falling series, called Cascade Effect, author Leah Petersen builds on the origin story of Fighting Gravity and throws our newlyweds—Jake and Pete—into the political machinations and maneuvering of the Emperor’s court. 

The future in Petersen’s universe has made peace with the subject of homosexuality, but still struggles with class as the elite of the Empire continue to scheme against the young couple.  The intricate web woven here reminded me greatly of Robert Graves’ “I Claudius,” and is a testament to Petersen’s plotting and overall storytelling skills. 

But even with the fluidity of loyalties and the complexity of the schemes afoot, Cascade Effect shines the most in scenes between Pete and Jake.  The relationship is the cornerstone of the trilogy, and the depth in which Petersen explores how the men grow together and expand their family is touching.  You will care what happens to these characters and the rollercoaster of emotions the reader will feel will leave you both exhausted and wanting the third book simultaneously. 

Petersen’s growth as an author is obvious and I look forward to more from this young writer.

Links to both Book One (Fighting Gravity) and Book Two (Cascade Effect) below. Absolutely a pick-them-up-today situation!


Fighting_Gravity       Cascade_Effect

Book One: AMAZON                 Book Two: AMAZON

A Note from a Bostonian


As a resident of Boston, I feel compelled to write about the tragic events that occurred at the Marathon on Patriot’s Day.


One of the many reasons I call Boston home is the extremely diverse population.  You want intellectual stimulation?  We have that.  Jazz clubs? No problem.  Passionate professional sports teams and their passionate fans? We have loads of them.  You want to find a Chinese New Year party or a Passover celebration? How about Ramadan or Diwali? My point is all are welcome here.


I want to first thank everyone for their concerned calls, texts and postings—we are fine and love you all for your concern.


But many people are not fine.  And three– eight-year-old Martin Richard of Dorchester, MA; twenty-nine-year-old Krystle Campbell of Arlington, MA and Boston University student and Chinese National Lu Lingzi—will never be “fine” again.


As of this writing, over 80 people are still in hospital of the 170+ who were wounded as a result of this cowardly attack.  There have been, and will continue to be surgeries, amputations and long rehabilitation paths ahead. But we have top tier medical centers and professionalsso I’m confident that the best care possible will be provided to all the victims of this unspeakable act of violence.


Eventually, the perpetrators will be brought to justice.  It’s too soon—and quite frankly dangerous—to speculate on who may have planted the devices.


In Massachusetts, we have a holiday called (as I mentioned earlier) “Patriot’s Day.”  It’s a 238-year old tradition dating back to the battles of Lexington and Concord.  The day reminds us of what we have fought for and the patriotism that makes us who we are. It is a celebration steeped in American History and we will celebrate the 239th Patriot’s Day next year.  And the Boston Marathon—the oldest marathon in the states– will be run again as well.


We are Bostonians.  We will argue with Yankee fans, scream at our politicians, enjoy a wicked-good Sam Adams with a  “lobstah,” and help those in need.


And we will do it all again tomorrow.  Because that’s who we are.


We will mourn our dead, take care of our wounded.  And when we find out who did this….




We’ll “take care” of them too.

The Word Count Episode 30 – Orange Karen

OK_CoverWelcome to Episode 30 of “The Word Count” podcast!

This is a very special ‘cast in which featured are teasers and stories from the ORANGE KAREN: TRIBUTE TO A WARRIOR anthology! 

Pick it up TODAY at AMAZON

From the book’s jacket:

 Get swept off your feet by an Internet romance

 Escape from a war-torn encampment with a mystical healer/princess

 Witness the murder of a NASCAR driver in the bathroom of local Home Depot

 Join Miss Della and Chip as they find friendship and a new zest for life in their golden years

ORANGE KAREN: TRIBUTE TO A WARRIOR is a collection of 39 stories that explore the strength and resilience of the human spirit. From the monster in the basement to the teddy bear on a young woman’s pillow, each story uses the colour orange as a thematic element, revealing the power of love, friendship, and the will to live.

Karen DeLabar is a friend, author, and mother. In June of 2012, she was stricken with Toxic Shock Syndrome.

One hundred percent of the proceeds from the anthology will be donated to Karen and her family, to assist with her medical expenses, and ongoing recovery.

Follow Karen’s story at, and learn more about the symptoms, effects, and treatment of Toxic Shock Syndrome at

Acknowledgements by Christina Esdon

Foreword by JenniferGracen

Introduction by Karen DeLabar

But before we introduce our contributors from the anthology, a bit about the show:

What is The Word Count Podcast?

It is a free broadcast by writers for writers.  Simply put, a theme for each show is announced via this site, Twitter and Facebook and writers are given a week or two to write AND RECORD their stories based on said theme.


Why not, says I.  It’s a great way to practice writing and public speaking.  It’s another way for writers to get their work “out there.”  And I love to meet fellow authors and have a blast putting the show together.  It’s just that simple.

Okay.  Where can I find it?

You can listen to the latest podcast below, subscribe via iTunes or listen at the show’s site.





iTunes (and remember, iTunes takes their sweet time in posting.  If you don’t see it yet, keep trying!):


Our guests this week:


KarenKaren DeLabar

Karen DeLabar is currently a stay at home mom who is working on her paranormal romance/urban fantasy in between diaper changes and nap times.  When not reminding her daughters not to lift their skirts up over their heads in public, she can be found on Twitter conversing with like-minded dreamers or knocking back a Scotch with a good book.

Website (To learn all about what she went through and to meet the woman herself):


Our Author Guests:

dsavannahD. Savannah George

D. Savannah George is a proud member of #TeamOrange and believes strongly in the power of community and the written word. She has been writing since she could hold a pen (or crayon, she can’t remember which) and is a multi-disciplinary artist – she also paints, crochets, takes photographs, and makes beaded jewelry, bookmarks, and notecards. She also serves as an editor for authors and several small publishers. D. Savannah currently lives in Georgia – either on the coast or in the big city of Atlanta – with her husband, dog, turtle, two cats, and a ton of art and art supplies.





online art store:



gsy1Gareth S. Young

Gareth S. Young was born and raised in Scotland. He packed up his kilt and moved to the United States and now does much the same as he did in Scotland only people think his accent is way cooler.

In 2010, he self-published his first full length story, a mystery/suspense novel called Monsters. In April 2013, he will have his first short story published in the “Orange Karen” anthology. In the meantime he is hard at work on his second novel, Persephone, which he intends on querying to agents.

Website (blog):

Facebook Author Page:

Twitter: @Spartagus


valerieHAuthor_PicValerie Haight

Valerie Haight is a short story writer and contemporary suspense and romance novelist. She is a member of Ozarks Writer’s League through College of the Ozarks in Hollister, MO where she placed first in the 2012 OWL Flash Fiction Contest.

Her first novella, HAPPENSTANCE, released December 13, 2012 from Turquoise Morning Press. Her short story, MAGNOLIA BRIDES, was chosen for Turquoise Morning Press’s “The Wedding Day Collection Anthology” coming in June of this year.


Facebook author page:

Twitter: @Valeriebrbr



Andrew_F._Butters_-_Orange_Profile_PicAndrew F. Butters

Andrew F. Butters lives in Cambridge, Ontario with his wife and two children. He loves hockey, skiing, curling, golf, and all things Canadian. When not on daddy duty, he can be found working for a software company as a project manager, singing as part of the band Argyle Speedo, taking pictures of things that look like letters for Andrew’s Alphabet, blogging at Potato Chip Math, and writing his first novel.



Twitter: @andrewbutters




StephStephanie Fuller

Stephanie Fuller is an avid crafter (crochet and scrapbooking) and the creator of The Book Hipster Blog. She resides in the Chicagoland area with her husband and daughter. She has no published works to date, but has big dreams. This is only the beginning.

Website Links: Blog –

Facebook Page –

Twitter: @ImaFuller


alexAlex Kimmel

 From his website:

“I grew up in Los Angeles, California during those heady days when kids could still trick-or-treat outside instead of walking around from store to store inside the sterile safety of shopping malls. My friends and I could run and play without any thought of being shot or kidnapped leaving riderless skateboards spinning their lonely wheels.

Though I grew up in that relatively safe environment, the nightmares still came to find me every night. Pulling the covers over my head, I welcomed them. I enjoyed reading stories of monsters and ghosts lurking in the shadows. I loved the terror and suspense of good scary movies. Constantly daydreaming that something horrible awaited me around every street corner of this beautifully manicured suburban neighborhood.

When I wasn’t reading I played music. It took over my life, though my love affair with words never strayed far from my fingers. Writing and performing provided me with the keys to an education and the ability to see the world. With incredible luck, my musical journey brought me to a gig in a dingy Irish pub near the ocean in Santa Monica where I would meet my future wife.

Even then, the nightmares continued to flow through me. I scribbled down a poem here or wrote a song there. There were ideas for stories running through my head at all times of the day or night. Eventually my wife suggested I take writing fiction more seriously, since it featured so prominently as a creative outlet for me.

My first novel “the Key to everything” was released by, Booktrope Publishing in June of 2012. In the midst of building momentum and promotions for that, I continue to write down my nightmares and those mysterious sounds coming from just behind my shoulder.”


Twitter: @alexkimmellauth


JMW_PhotoJohn Moore Walker

John majored in Photography until he decided to tell stories instead of show them. He lives with his wife and animals in Austin, TX.



Twitter: @johnmoorewalker

Release Day!



OK_CoverYou may have noticed the Website has a bit of an orange tinge to it.

Well, I mentioned a while back that I’d had a short story accepted as a part of an anthology.  But this book, out right now, is more than an anthology.

Much, much more.

Orange Karen: Tribute to a Warrior is a work of love, admiration and quite frankly of hope for a fellow author.

Karen DeLebar—called “Orange Karen” due to her red hair—is a writer as well.  You have NO idea how good it is to use the present tense in that phrase.

See, less than a year ago she very nearly died from Toxic Shock Syndrome.  To this day, no one knows what really caused it. But the one thing friends, family and the doctors agree on, is that Karen is still with us today because of her fighting spirit, her tenacity and her strong survival instinct.

In short—she’s a warrior woman.

She still feels the effects of her struggle to this day, and you can read the details of her recovery at her site.

KarenEveryday, this mother of two gets stronger.  Every day she survives.

But the medical bills are mounting.  And that’s where our anthology comes into play.

Thirty-nine authors and many more individuals have donated their time and their talents to build a collection of stories all written to one theme.


The writing is top tier. The editing vicious and brilliant. The artwork stunning.  This is a book I’m honored to be a part of, and encourage you all to pick up.

Because not only are the stories worth your time, but 100% of the proceeds go to pay down the medical bills of a very brave, extremely well loved woman.


Paperback (US Amazon)

Kindle eBook (Amazon)


The Word Count episode 29 is now LIVE!

cuteWelcome to Episode 29 of “The Word Count” podcast!

I really do need a seperate site for the podcast.

The show was a bit delayed (seems to be the story these days…ba-DUM-bum) due to family reasons, but we’re back on track now!

SIX authors, my friends.  Count ‘em, SIX!

All are returning guests; all had fun with our them for the show:

That’s when the cameras all turned toward me…

But before we introduce our writers, a bit about the show:

What is The Word Count Podcast?

It is a free broadcast by writers for writers.  Simply put, a theme for each show is announced via this site, Twitter and Facebook and writers are given a week or two to write AND RECORD their stories based on said theme.


Why not, says I.  It’s a great way to practice writing and public speaking.  It’s another way for writers to get their work “out there.”  And I love to meet fellow authors and have a blast putting the show together.  It’s just that simple.

Okay.  Where can I find it?

You can listen to the latest podcast below, subscribe via iTunes or listen at the show’s site.




iTunes (and remember, iTunes takes their sweet time in posting.  If you don’t see it yet, keep trying!):


Our guests this week:


bill_KirtonBill Kirton “Turning the Tables”

Before taking early retirement to become a full-time writer, Bill Kirton was a lecturer in French at the University of Aberdeen. He’s written stage and radio plays, short stories, novels, skits and songs for revues, and five non-fiction books aimed at helping students with their writing and study skills. His five modern crime novels, Material Evidence, Rough Justice, The Darkness, Shadow Selves and Unsafe Acts are set in north east Scotland and his historical crime/romance novel, The Figurehead, is set in Aberdeen in 1840. The Darkness won the silver award in the mystery category of the 2011 Forward National Literature Awards and his spoof mystery, The Sparrow Conundrum, was the winner in the humor category.

He’s had radio plays broadcast by the BBC and the Australian BC.  His short stories have appeared in many anthologies, including three of the CWA’s annual collections, and one was chosen by Maxim Jakubowski for his 2010 anthology of Best British Crime Stories.

Writing as Jack Rosse, he’s published a novel for children called The Loch Ewe Mystery.

He’s been a Royal Literary Fund Writing Fellow at universities in Aberdeen, Dundee and St Andrews.

Twitter: @carver22




mHolder2M. Holder “Sick”

M. Holder lives in Georgia with two guys, cats and a 8 year old girl. When not writing or attempting to catch up on The Walking Dead, she studies Taekwondo and trains for a 5k.

“Sick” was inspired by a response to a Tweet, a two-week cold and the smell of barbeque.





TristanTristan John S. “The Redemption of Robert Peppler”

Born the eldest of non-identical twins in Kent, Tristan’s first ambition was to become a writer.  Having trained as a Junior Exhibitioner at the Royal College of Music, London from 1995-2001 on a joint first study of violin and piano, he went up to Cambridge University where he graduated with an MA in Theology and Religious Studies.  Since 2008 he has been a Qualified Secondary Teacher of Music and RE.

Tristan started writing poetry as a teenager and then turned his attention to prose, completing his first novel whilst still at University.  He has written five plays, three of which have been produced and is now seeking publication for the first in a series of novels for young adults, The Lesser Evil.

Having left full time teaching, Tristan now works as a freelance musician, writer and private tutor.  He is also an avid film maker and directed a feature film adaptation of the beloved book “Blitzed” by celebrated children’s author, Robert Swindells in 2010, in collaboration with a local primary school.

Websites: ,,    Facebook =


AngelicaAngelica Dawson “Blue Moon House”

Angelica Dawson is the author of Blue Moon House, a Vampire BDSM novella, as well as contributor to the third Campus Sexpoits Anthology and the first Serviced Anthology. As an environmental consultant, she is no stranger to blood sucking hordes, but finds they are more often mosquitoes and black flies than vampires.



Twitter: @angelicadawson


AntonioAntonio Angelo  “The Captain’s Daughter”

My pen name is Antonio Angelo which I write erotica under

I write some action adventure type short stories under Brad O’Neill

My current work in progress is a choose your own adventure style erotic novel.  It is a cross between Mike Hammer and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.  There are some BDSM elements and the reader gets to play the part of the Detective.  Who in addition to harboring a minor drug problem and doing some pimping on the side has a series of murders he is trying to get to the bottom of.

@antonioangelo21 is my twitter handle

You can find his erotic stories on Smashwords


eden_at_benmcnallyEden Baylee “From Every Angle”

Eden Baylee writes literary erotica and infuses erotic elements into many of her stories. Incorporating some of her favorite things such as travel, culture, and a deep curiosity for what turns people on, her brand of writing is both sensual and sexual.

Her latest release is a book of erotic flash fiction and poetry called HOT FLASH.

SPRING INTO SUMMER is her second collection of erotic novellas and the companion piece to her first book, FALL INTO WINTER.

Connect with her via her websiteblogtwitter @edenbayleefacebook