Writers Write - Radio Show Podcast

Tuesday, March 7, 2017


 

 

 

 

 


Eleanor Parker Sapia, author of A DECENT WOMAN: A Novel. http://amzn.to/1X0qFvK

 

 

Author Interview: Marsha Casper Cook

marsha-cc-photoWelcome to the Tuesday Author Interview series at The Writing Life. Each Tuesday, I have the great pleasure of chatting with authors across genres about books and writing, and marketing and publishing. 
Today I am very pleased to welcome Marsha Casper Cook, a talented screenwriter, novelist, editor, and writer of children’s books. Marsha, who hails from Chicago, is a radio show personality on Blog Talk Radio, which is how we met a few years back. Her World of Ink Network partner for the last five years is V.S.Grenier, an author, editor, and radio show host, who lives in Utah. Marsha’s group discussions always feature interesting and talented writers and center around writing, publishing, screenplays, and books. I love her show, and always come away with pages of writing tips.
In this interview, Marsha graciously offers readers a glimpse into the business of turning books into audio books, and I’m excited to begin.


Welcome, Marsha!

marsha-cc-book-cover
What is your newest book’s genre?
Romantic comedy.


Please describe what Grand Central Station: Some Relationships Are Just Meant to Be is about.
A famous child psychologist, who has authored several bestselling books on raising children, discovers he doesn’t know as much as he thought he did when he meets a pediatrician and mother of three. Neither of them imagined how their lives would change when they shared a flight headed for Las Vegas for a medical convention.For Jack Winston and Victoria Feingold, whatever happens in Vegas doesn’t stay in Vegas. It follows them back to Chicago.Jack doesn’t want to fail, but he’s not sure he’s emotionally prepared to live with Victoria’s three children. Not to mention her mother, sister, dog, and needy ex-husband.
Grand Central Station is a fast-paced ride and a lot of fun! 



Congratulations on Grand Central Station, Marsha! How did you come up with the title?  
There was so much going on in the story, and it seemed as if Grand Central Station would be the perfect fit. A busy house with so many characters coming and going. 

What inspired you to write this romantic comedy?
It’s taken from one of the screenplays that I had written several years ago and loved. It had been optioned, but never produced.


How exciting that the screenplay was optioned, Marsha. In my mind’s eye, I can see this romantic comedy on the silver screen. Best of luck!


Does your main character resemble you? If so, in what ways?
Actually, there really were no similarities to any of the characters in my book, but I felt the family quarrels were most likely a part of any family, including my own.


What do you find is the most challenging aspect of writing?
Not coming up with another story while I’m working on one. I usually think any idea that pops in my head might be better than what I’m writing, but usually the feeling passes.


That’s a familiar scenario when I’m writing, as well. What is your favorite part of writing?
I enjoy the fun of not knowing exactly how my story will end. I always feel if I don’t know the ending, the reader will be just as surprised as I was when I wrote it.


What authors or person(s) have influenced you as a writer and why?
I have been lucky to meet wonderful people all through my life that have guided me in my writing by telling me their stories, and in turn, I listened with open ears and learned how to write good characters with real problems.


Marsha, many of your books are now audio books. Could you tell us about that process? I know I’m more than interested.
One of my favorite passed times is listening to audio books. When I hear an audio book, it’s becomes a special event and very entertaining. The story comes to life, and it’s so enjoyable I sometimes wish the story could go on forever; however I do agree with the common complaint about the narration. If you like the voice behind the words, it’s such fun to imagine the setting and the story, but if you don’t, the feeling is not the same, and sometimes it’s enough to make you go on to something else. It doesn’t hold your interest.

I never thought my books would become audio books, but because of Audibles and the sharing method between the producer of the audio and the author of the book, it became possible.
The children’s books that I have on audio were a great learning experience for me. I got to hear every word and realized that after reading a book and listening to the audio, the experience is far greater than just the read, especially for children.


I urge authors and readers to give audio books a chance.


For authors go to www.acx.com

Marsha's Audio books Marsha's Audio Books

http://www.audible.com/search/ref=a_search_tseft?advsearchKeywords=lady+jane+sinclair&filterby=field-keywords&x=0&y=0

Thanks so much for sharing, Marsha. I love audio books, and would love to go down that path with my first book. 

Do you have a favorite place to write? To read?
I love writing in coffee shops or restaurants when I’m by myself. That’s when I truly feel I’m completely in my characters world. 


Tell us something personal about you people may be surprised to know?
I’m very organized, however as a teenager I wasn’t and didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do. I usually try to tell parents not to judge their children so harshly because life has a way of working itself out and growing up isn’t easy. Every child needs their space as do adults.


True words and great advice for parents. As a kid, my interests were varied and appeared to have no rhyme or reason to many adults. Looking back, the common denominator was creativity and a healthy imagination.

Did the writing process uncover surprises or learning experiences for you? What about the publishing process?
Over the years, I have learned so much from writing and doing my radio shows, which in turn gave me the best education ever on how to independently publish, and not worry that a publisher may have rejected my work. If the story is good, readers will enjoy your work regardless of who published the book. Enjoy writing and try to remember that if your book makes you laugh or cry, that is always a good thing because your readers will probably do the same.

I also feel that because things have changed over the years in publishing, authors have an open field for fulfilling their dreams. They just have to be persistent.



marsha-cc-book-cover
What do you hope readers will gain from your book?
It’s always good to hear your reader understood what you were trying to convey in your story, and as authors that is the best feeling imaginable.


Looking back, what did you do right that helped you write and market this book?
I used my own judgement. Listening to too many people can end up causing a writer to feel insecure and not finish their story. Finishing the story works!


I agree wholeheartedly–finish writing the book! What didn’t work as well as you’d hoped?
Usually by the time my story is written, I’m hopeful that everything worked during the journey because if I felt uncomfortable on any level, I would try to re- work my story until I got it right.


Any advice or tips for writers looking to get published?
My suggestion would be if you are having trouble getting an agent or publisher, find an Independent service and publish your own book, but don’t skimp on three very important aspects of successful publishing: editing, formatting, and getting the best artwork you can for your cover.   


Website and social media links?
Radio Show Blog – http://worldofinknetwork.blogspot.com/
Author Blog – http://whatsnewwithmarsha.blogspot.com/
Marsha’s Website-   http://marshacaspercook.com
Radio Show Website – http://worldofinknetwork.com
https://www.facebook.com/marshacaspercook


Where can we find your books?
https://www.amazon.com/Grand-Central-Station-Relationships-Meant-ebook/dp/B01B8CBDMC
https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/michiganavenue
https://www.kobo.com/us/en/search?Query=marsha+casper+cook  


A list of Marsha’s books:
Novels: Grand Central Station – romantic comedy & audio book; Guilty Pleasures series – erotica
Children’s books: The Busy Bus; No Clues No Shoes – also audio; The Magical Leaping Lizard – also audio; Snack Attack -also audio; I Wish I Was A Brownie- also audio
Screenplay (book): It’s Never Too Late
Non-Fiction:
To Life 


What’s next for you?
I have several projects in my head. One is to write another romantic comedy, and the other is to add to my Guilty Pleasures series.


Thanks so much for joining us today, Marsha. It’s been a real pleasure getting to know more about you and your books. I wish you the very best with your many books and audio books!
About Eleanor:
ellie
Puerto Rican-born Eleanor Parker Sapia is the author of the award-winning historical novel, A Decent Woman, published by Scarlet River Press. Her debut novel, set in turn of the century Ponce, Puerto Rico, garnered an Honorable Mention for Best Historical Fiction, English at the 2016 International Latino Book Awards with Latino Literacy Now, and was selected as a Book of the Month by Las Comadres and Friends National Latino Book Club in 2015. A writer, artist, and photographer, Eleanor currently lives in Berkeley County, West Virginia, where she is working on her second novel, The Laments of Forgotten Souls, set in 1920 Puerto Rico.
Eleanor’s book: http://amzn.to/1X0qFvK
Please visit Eleanor at her website:
www.eleanorparkersapia.com



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Eleanor Parker Sapia

Puerto Rican-born, Eleanor Parker Sapia is the author of the award-winning, historical novel, A DECENT WOMAN, published by Sixth Street River Press. The book is a Finalist in the 2016 International Latino Book Award with Latino Literacy Now, and was Book of the Month with Las Comadres and Friends National Latino Book Club. She is featured in the award-winning anthology, Latino Authors and Their Muses, edited by Mayra Calvani. Eleanor is a writer, artist, photographer, and blogger, who is never without a pen, notebook, and her camera. Her wonderful adult children are doing wonderful things in the world, which allows Eleanor the blessing of writing full time. http://amzn.to/1X0qFvK Please visit Eleanor at her website: http://www.eleanorparkersapia.com

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Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Writers Write- Host Marsha Casper Cook - World Of Ink Network









Please join Marsha on March 1 at 4EST 3CST 2 MT 1 PST when she welcomes Eleanor Parker Sapia and Jack Remick  it's going to be a great show.

Eleanor Parker Sapia is an award-winning author, poet, and exhibiting artist. Her debut historical novel, A Decent Woman, published by Scarlet River Press, garnered an Honorable Mention for Best Historical Fiction, English, at the 2016 International Latino Book Awards with Latino Literacy Now.


Jack Remick is an award winning poet, short story writer, and novelist. Gabriela and The Widow--Montaigne Medal Finalist in the Eric Hoffer Award competition.Gabriela and The Widow--BOTYA Finalist.Gabriela and The Widow: Wins "Best Women's Fiction" Orangeberry Hall of Fame Virtual Expo Satori, Poems, from Coffeetown Press was released on May 1, 2014.







Radio Show - March 1 2017




Friday, February 24, 2017


Nothing Lasts Forever

Meet Virginia Templeton



Every Man Wants Her








                           Chapter One

V
irginia Templeton arrived at her psychiatrist’s office, ten minutes late as usual. She was always late, as she rather enjoyed a grand entrance. Virginia was beautiful and knew it, tall and graceful, with hips tapering into long, slender legs. A body to die for, as they say. All heads turned when Virginia entered a room; women wanted to be her, and men just wanted her.
She was just as sexy dressed as she was undressed, as she absolutely loved fashion. Her favorite expression was “shop until you drop,” and she did just that. Virginia loved expensive clothes and shoes—oh, how she loved shoes—and accessorized every outfit. She didn’t look at price tags and, luckily, she didn’t need to.
Virginia’s image didn’t allow her to be all smiles or say nice things, as she preferred to play the misunderstood diva and use her good looks for favors. People didn’t cross the line with Virginia often and, when they did, her wrath was like nobody else’s.
Nicholas Waters, her psychiatrist, sat behind his desk, waiting for Virginia to make the first move. Sometimes she didn’t speak during her sessions, instead just walking back and forth, angered that she was wasting her time in sessions that she loathed. The only reason she had even agreed to see a doctor was because her deceitful husband made that a provision in their ongoing divorce proceedings. She wanted every last dime she felt she had earned in their ten-year marriage. She had smiled when she had to, and undressed when her husband wanted her. A small price to pay for getting anything and everything she wanted.

Virginia thought that Nicholas wasn’t paying attention to her, which really pissed her off. Even though he was just her psychiatrist, it was still important to her that he pay attention. Little did Virginia know that Nicholas couldn’t concentrate on anything else when she was near him.

Nicholas Waters was bound by an ethical code to avoid involving himself with his patients. But in his mind, they were just fantasies. Desiring a woman and actually acting upon his desire were two different things, and his fantasies usually went away after a visit or two. Virginia Templeton was a different case. He knew it, she knew it, and so did anyone who had ever come in contact with her.
She had been looking at him from the moment she arrived, but didn’t say a word. Nicholas sometimes wondered if she knew how much he wanted her. He would imagine himself lying next to her, consuming every inch of her sensuous body. Kissing her, touching her breasts, wondering how he could make her happy. She was filled with desire — and, sometimes, quite a bit of rage — but that didn’t stop Nicholas from having tight control of his mind every time she came for a visit. He was her psychiatrist, and that was the way it had to stay … for now. 

He was also a married man and, regardless of his unhappiness, he had remained married to the same woman for more than twenty years. When Nicholas met Carmella, he was a struggling medical student with loans, minutes away from personal bankruptcy. She was beautiful, with vibrant red hair and a sweet smile that usually presented her in a glamorous, but guarded, light. Love never entered the picture. Her family was very wealthy and highly visible. He knew she was the solution to his financial problems.

Carmella’s main flaw was that she usually had a drink in her hand at eight in the morning and continued drinking until very late at night. She never wanted sex with him. That didn’t mean she didn’t like sex; she just didn’t like sex with her husband. For his part, Nicholas didn’t care about love or sex until he met Virginia.

From the very moment Virginia Templeton walked into his office, attitude and all, he was hooked. He had never felt such a strong, passionate connection to anyone. Actually, he never questioned his life as much as he did once Virginia Templeton became his patient. 

A friend of his had referred her, and Nicholas reluctantly took her on as a patient because he felt doing otherwise might put her on the edge of doing something horrible. She came in with a lot of hatred and, whether she admitted it or not, he sometimes thought they made a breakthrough. A patient who didn’t want help never got better, but he felt she could make progress by increasing her visits to his office. 

Nicholas watched Virginia, waiting until she was ready to start. It always took her a little bit, as she prepared to start the sessions in her own way.
After strutting around the office, Virginia kicked off her leopard, four-inch Stuart Weitzman pumps and sat her ass right smack in the middle of Nicholas’s desk. She was wearing a very tight, black leather skirt, and a seethrough, white lace shirt. Because she was all leg when she crossed them, which she liked to do, Nicholas could see her black lace panties and the tiny rose tattoo on her upper right thigh. 

“So, Nick, where shall I begin today?” Nicholas didn’t answer, and that angered her more than he knew. “What the fuck? Help me out here, Doc. I need some answers.”

For months, everything Nicholas had tried had completely pissed her off. At that moment, he felt she might be ready for a breakthrough, and quietly let her continue. “Okay, let me tell you what happened last night,” she went on. “Slater, my loving, sweet jerk of a husband was out of town. I got in my car, went right back to my old stomping grounds, drank too much, and fucked a whole lot of times. Since you didn’t ask who I was with, let me tell you. Two men were in my bed last night. One was very tall, with dark curly hair. The other was very short with a long blonde ponytail, kind of a freaky looking guy. One was on my right and one was on my left. Blondie had one finger in my ass and the other dark, sexy guy, who looked a lot like you, was in my cunt. What do you think about that?”

Nicholas began to write notes. All thoughts of him having a conversation with his patient were off the board for now. He was so busy picturing the details that he couldn’t really concentrate. He was so far away from where he should be ethically that he stopped himself, took a breath, and then continued with his notes.

Virginia took full advantage of the moment, as she quickly scooted off his desk and proceeded to strut around the office. “Wow, Doc, when did you get that picture-perfect plant?” She didn’t actually give a shit about the plant on the floor; she just wanted Nicholas to enjoy the view as she leaned down to touch it. “Follow me, Doc.” Bending down even lower, she spread her legs, once again exposing her lace-covered bottom. Then, just as quickly as she had lowered herself, she stood up, turned around, and smiled beautifully.

“You know, Nick, you’re such a bore. You just sit there and write and write and write. Come on. Say something. Do you ever answer your patients, or do you like to totally piss them off? If that was your intention, it worked. You win. I’m totally pissed off.” 

Nicholas could sense her anger boiling over, and watched in anticipation that Virginia might actually be feeling something. She was just about to explode; he knew it, but chose not to stop it from happening. Sometimes that was all a patient needed to break through the barriers they’d surrounded themselves with. He also had to keep reminding himself of what was ethical. He was in danger of crossing the line, and he knew it. He hoped his feelings weren’t transparent to Virginia. 

“I hate boring men,” she continued, as she paraded around the room. “My father was boring. He rarely talked, and he never smiled. You can write that in your little notebook. My father was a piece of shit — a mean, selfish asshole. He never talked to me or treated me like his daughter. He had no love in him; that’s what my mother used to say. He had no soul, and I didn’t even cry when he killed himself. It was no loss to anyone. There are two things I hate in men. A man who doesn’t smile, and a man who acts like he’s better than me.”

Nicholas glanced down at his watch, realizing that Virginia was getting more agitated. There was usually a moment during her treatments that pushed her to the top. The moment varied, but the pattern always repeated. “Is my time up?” she asked. “Even if it’s not, it’s time for me to go. We’re getting nowhere today. As a matter of fact, I think today will be my last visit. I don’t need to be here. Time is money. Face it, Nick, you can’t help me. No one can.”

Nicholas decided it was now or never. “Virginia, sit down and stop pacing. Let’s go with what you just said. You do want me to help you, don’t you?”

“No, I don’t think so. How would you feel if you were seven years old and your father pulled out a gun and pointed it at your mother? Then shot her, took the same damn gun and shot himself in the head while his daughter watched? I watched that! What kind of a person does that to his child?” She was quite proud of herself for once again coming up with a good story. “What makes it worse was my phony foster parents stuck me in the attic with ten other kids. Sometimes I looked around the attic and wondered how my life could ever be anything but dreadful and confusing. There were days when I didn’t even feel human.” Oh, she was so good at this.

“Okay, Virginia. Now that you have told me what happened to you, and you think I bought it, let’s begin all over again. Every time you come here, you tell me a different story. This time, tell me the truth. Then maybe, just maybe, I can help you.” 

“Fuck you, Nick!” she growled. “That was the truth.”

“Okay, then. Tell me how and why you married a man you didn’t love.”

Virginia began to laugh. “You don’t really think I come here for your advice. Do you? I come here because my asshole husband makes me come here. He won’t give me my fair share in the divorce unless I agree to have some therapy. He wants to ease his conscience. He’s afraid he’ll look bad if I go off the deep end, and he doesn’t want any headlines. A man like Slater puts himself before anyone.”

Nicholas returned to his desk, which served as his safety net. He could sense Virginia was getting quite angry, and wasn’t sure if he should push during this session. Usually, that only infuriated her more, causing her to tell more lies. 

“Okay, Nick. Since we’re having this nice little chat, let me tell you what I think. My husband wants to fix me and set me free. Women like me don’t get fixed. We like men, sex, and booze. We drink for fun and fuck like crazy. What’s so wrong with that? If it feels good, why not? I hate to think that being in love is enough for anyone.” 

After thinking for a moment, Nick figured it was time to talk. “Believe it or not, love is enough for many people. One day, you will be in love, and maybe that will be enough for you too.”

“Oh, really? Are you in love with your wife? Do you even have a wife? I don’t know anything about you, other than I want to fuck you. And I think you want to fuck me. I don’t do normal, and I don’t think you do either. Or let me put it another way. You might do normal, but you don’t really like normal.” 

Nicholas was on his way to understanding her convoluted view of what she was all about. He didn’t soften just yet, but he was on his way. He didn’t want to compromise, but he was a man. Virginia had gotten to him even with all his armor; she knew how to dig deep. He was very close to giving in to his fantasy, and she knew she had finally penetrated into his soul. It was, she thought, her moment.

Game on! She was euphoric. “I bet if you let me get you in the sack, we would be born again as one. If you allowed me to slowly undress you, button by button, and then gently massage every morsel of your being. My lips would embrace that cock of yours and you, my dear doctor, would never be the same. I promise you that! I can take you on a journey that will totally overwhelm you, and you will be mine forever, or for as long as I want you.” A sultry smile spread across her face.

Virginia found herself moving as close to Nicholas as she possibly could. She could barely breathe. Her breasts pressed against his chest, she could feel his hardness against her. He didn’t feel like other men. He was distant and completely disconnected from her. To her surprise, he showed no reaction. He just stared at her in silence. 

Being this close to a man who seemed to feel nothing was quite disturbing to her ego. Every man she knew would have reacted quite differently. Although, she was excited by the challenge he presented. She straightened her shoulders, not allowing herself to be weak. 

Nicholas wanted to forget that he was her doctor and instead take her in his arms. He was uncertain how long he could resist, but he knew there would be no turning back once he gave in. He stepped back, putting some distance between them.

His rejection angered Virginia. “You’re not the right doctor for me. Tell me why you took my case. Your practice was full, but you added me to your patient load. Did you really think you could help me?”

“Yes, of course I thought I could help you.”

“Then why the fuck aren’t you helping me?” she spat.
“Because you don’t want help. You have repeatedly told me one lie after another. I can’t perform miracles.”

“Screw you, Nick. Screw you. I don’t like to waste time and today, as usual, I am wasting my time. The only thing left is for us to go to bed together. I know you want me, I can tell. But you can’t do it if you’re my doctor.”

“Virginia, sit your ass down. I’m your doctor, not your lover. Why would you think that I want to go to bed with you?” His patience was wearing thin.

“Because every man wants me,” she purred, again closing the distance between them. Reaching for his belt, she began to slowly lower his zipper. “You want me and I know it.”

“Virginia, you need to leave. Now. As of this very moment, my services as a doctor are over.”
Virginia backed off. “You don’t mean that.”
“Oh, but I do. Watch this.” 

Nicholas wrote on his notepad, “Virginia Templeton’s sessions have ended as of July 9.” He signed the paperwork to make it official, then pointed to the door. 

“You need to leave right now.”

Virginia strolled out of the office, not looking back. She refused to let Nicholas see the tears in her eyes. He had won, and she hated that.
Nicholas took several deep breaths, relieved to have resisted her very tempting offer. Their sessions had ended, and only time would tell if he would miss her. If he was honest with himself at that moment, though, he was disappointed at the thought of never seeing her again.