Rosepoint #Reviews – February Recap

Irish flag gif by giphyCan you believe it’s March already?! March always reminds me how this whole writing, reading, blogging, reviewing thing got started–with my grandfather, of course!

Well, Faith and Begorrah (and btw, Begorrah is a form of “By God” in Irish slang), sure reminds me of the beautiful, musical way he pronounced my name. I don’t ever remember him, however, using the term “Erin Go Bragh,” spelled variously and used in wildly different meanings. Erin, of course, is the Angelical assassination of Eireann, which translates to “Of Ireland.” (The Irish word for Ireland is Eire, so says Patrick Murphy, good Irish lad.)

Ireland 9 by gliterly.comMy grandfather, another good Irish lad named Patrick, professed a few more colorful terms, such as “Blatherskite,” given him by his uncle following his kiss of the Blarney stone three times. Apparently, that bestowed him full right to blarney on as he wrote the stories I published for him. Ah, but I digress…

February? I only read and reviewed five books. I KNOW–embarrassing, right? Falling down on the job, no doubt due to my distraction with Bookstagram. However, I was successful in enlisting the aid of my hubby, that Associate Reviewer I call “the CE”, who managed three books of his own. And I did manage three Throwback Thursdays, highlighting authors D. W. Ulsterman, Rick Mofina, and Melissa Stevens (not to be confused with Melissa F Miller from yesterday).

Shadow of a Century by Jean Grainerfor The Love of Ireland by Judy LeslieI’m looking forward to participating in Cathy‘s Reading Ireland challenge, as noted in Lynne’s Fictionophile March post. I already have a couple books for the challenge, one by Jean Grainger, Irish author, Shadow of a Century and another titled For the Love of Ireland by Judy Leslie. It’s a chance to get a couple titles off my TBR!

March hopes to see the coming of spring and also marks another of my birthdays. Gulp–and this one will be a biggee. I’ll toast with some Bailey’s Irish Cream! So what did I read and review in February? (click) Continue reading “Rosepoint #Reviews – February Recap”


10 Amazing Sub-Genre’s in Historical Fiction

10 amazing thingsHistorical Fiction as a literary genre is generously broad and notoriously ambiguous in that the beginning of man can be included in the same spectrum of writing as our own recent Wild West. It was bound to happen then that sooner or later sub-genres would be broken out.

What is Historical?

In that it depicts and closely associates the period social conditions, manners, clothing, and environmental factors, the story can capture any century or millennia from the dawn of man. Generally, “historical” refers to publications written at least 50 years after the event. Considering an extended time frame, therefore, an author would usually be assumed to be writing from research rather than from experience. (In the relatively unusual case of my grandfather’s manuscripts, however, they were written some time shortly after his “sailing, mining, prospecting, and cowpoke days,” over 90 years ago but only recently published by myself.)

So if it’s all historical fiction, what are the ten sub-genres? Continue reading “10 Amazing Sub-Genre’s in Historical Fiction”

Historic Sea Adventure Artist

Wait….what? I read the short, simple email over again. Then I read it to my husband. Could this be real? The owner of one of my grandfather’s paintings was asking if I was the family of the artist, P J Rose? Still not sure what to do, I texted my son. “Mom,” he texted back, “just write her back.”

The "Marguerite"
The Marguerite

Not really the first time someone has connected with me regarding one of his historic sea paintings, as Gary L of Boise, Idaho, contacted me several years ago regarding a painting he had obtained as a young man with a powerful poem on the back. Unfortunately, it had gone missing, but he recognized one of my grandfather’s pen names; i.e. P. J. Rose, Stanley McShane, J. Wesley Rose.


In this particular case, Diane Brown of California wrote, “I have inherited a PJ Rose painting, The Sole Survivor. The sinking of the Marguerite off the Cape of Good Hope in 1890. My grandfather got the painting from PJ Rose in San Francisco. My father inherited it and it has hung on our wall as long as I can remember. I am looking for a family member who might be interested in having this piece of history back in the family.”

Continue reading “Historic Sea Adventure Artist”

Amazon Prime Day – July 12th

Amazon Prime Day
Amazon Prime Day

Member of Amazon Prime? Billed as “Amazon’s Largest Event Ever,” Amazon Prime is preparing for July 12th, their monster sale to attract new prime membership. While my Amazon thoughts always focus on books, particularly for Kindle, there are actually over 100,000 items set to go on “Black Friday” level sales. This one-day only global sale will include everything from books to BBQ’s. This is their second annual Prime Day event where worldwide members “ordered 398 items per second,” last year beating out their own Black Friday sales. Deals will start every five minutes through the day.

Of course, there is a special deal for Kindle Unlimited, which is a $10 monthly subscription service, for up to 40% off. This doesn’t just include books, but ebooks and audiobooks as well. So are we jazzed or what?? Just when I was thinking of offering a sale of Stanley McShane books, they are promoting a monster sale. And yes, these specials extend to the UK, Spain, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada, Belgium, and Austria. Love it!

So what could go wrong? Continue reading “Amazon Prime Day – July 12th”

Freaky Friday Features

He Guest Hosted (Just) Once on SNL!

Known to millions of early television viewers as “Uncle Miltie,” Milton Berle was among the American TV pioneer stars during “the Golden Age” of TV. Born in 1908, he was credited with a number of witty quotes, several (including the one above) were the most popular: “Laughter is an instant vacation,” “If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands.” But I think my favorite is also a poem:

“I’d rather be a ‘could-be’ if I cannot be an ‘are’ because a ‘could-be’ is a ‘maybe’ who is reaching for a star. I’d rather be a ‘has-been’ than a ‘might-have-been’ by far; for a ‘might-have-been’ has never been, but a ‘has’ was once an ‘are.” 
― Milton Berle

Starting in silent films and vaudeville, he was an actor and comedian. He died in Los Angeles of colon cancer in 2002 after a long and illustrative career. ©2016 Virginia Williams Resource Box

Craft a Feature Post

Okay, this is one I can get into up to my well-endowed and rapidly aging hips since it follows my new discovery–creating pins for Pinterest. The current assignment from Blogging 101 is to craft a recurring feature post. blogging-university

Perfect–and I know JUST what I’ll call it:

 Freaky Friday Features

cocos-island-pinWhile the title is not terribly original, the first one posted is a pin I created today using of one of the latest discoveries from my Grandfather’s treasure trove, a painting of Cocos Island. (Only freaky, I guess, if you consider the original painting is close to 90 years old.) Yes, another subject I’ve covered fairly well on this blog. The island is a fascinating study actually borne of all the stories relating to pirate treasure, including the Loot of Lima. There were a number of pirates who buried their treasure on this island, however, one of which was Edward Davis, the subject of my grandfather’s sail to the island.

There are a number of reasons I like the idea of a recurring feature: Continue reading “Craft a Feature Post”

You Won’t Believe Who Is Starring in This Movie!

DAY 30 PROMPT: If a Hollywood agent were to come knocking on your door with an offer to turn your book into a movie and told you that you could call all the shots, who would you have direct and star in it? Write the first paragraph of a glowing Rotten Tomatoes review of your film.

Who stars in the movie of your book?

First, and of paramount importance, would be the heart attack I’d have to survive after the man explained why he was there!

But if we are talking fantasy, then the next question would be “which book?” Since I’d have to assume one of the sailing adventures, I might well imagine that the same actor might be more than capable of making lead character in any of the three. Or….

Harrison FordSO! If I were to save some money (titter titter–in Hollywood–right!), might I combine an actor and producer in one fell swoop with either Clint EastwoodHarrison Ford or Clint Eastwood? (Well, you didn’t say it had to be a present day actor and this is my fantasy–right?) The free-wheeling Ford would make a fine Captain Dan McChesney (Cocos Island Treasure); strong, vigorous, with  fair-minded intelligence in his soft doe eyes. At the same time, Ford might have to find another island, as Cocos Island is uninhabitable, thus forcing the search for a more equitable location. (Maybe the insurance wouldn’t be as high on, say, Tonga, which appears to share many of the same attributes as Cocos Island.)

Clint baby, of course, brings that fierce presence to the screen, creating a no-nonsense compliment of men, capable and strong, but still willing to jump when Clint yells “Frog!” Yes, he could work as well……but maybe not for “Lucky Joe.”

“Lucky Joe” would require a separate producer–perhaps George Lucas–and actor. I like Johnny Depp. depp Depp, of course, would have to have his stowaway mate, Joe, who could be played by a much easier going Brad Pitt. Then the problem might be the continual fights between Depp and Pitt–but perhaps Lucas could keep them separate for the duration of the film–set to be a short one.

Sean ConneryDid I miss Sean Connery? Oh my no! Connery would make the protagonist in “Sons of the Sea,” Captain Beasley (he even has the beard!). Not sure that Connery would want to double duty as producer for this, though I know he is quite capable. The love interest (and yes, McShane did manage to include a love interest; whether or not he knew what to do with it is another question), Edith, Natalie Portmanmight be played by Natalie Portman. Why not, you ask, Jennifer Anniston? Oh, puleese, the over-used Anniston couldn’t make it more than one day in that bug and snake infested environment and in that heat her make-up would be a nightmare. No, I think we’ll stay with Portman. She might be able to pull off innocence a little better as well. Connery might be a tad old for Portman, but they are ACTORS–right?

Rotten TomatoesRotten Tomatoes says of the new film just out, Lucky Joe, “Depp does it again with quiet intensity, saving a weak rewrite of the original historic adventure by Stanley McShane. However, with Brad Pitt serving up redemption with the assurance that he is being guided by a force stronger than he, together all will survive whaling in the Bering Sea in 1901. Whether or not his angel saves his dopey ass in the wilderness of the Sierra’s is another question. You’ll have to see this whole thing to believe it. And you might! If Lucky Joe can bend a bawdy band of seasoned seamen to his will, nothing is impossible.”

Resource Box


These Books Designed Their Own Book Covers

These Books Designed Their Own Book Covers

Describe your process for choosing and designing your book cover. Who created your cover? How did you find him/her? What do you love about your cover? What might you do differently next time?

It’s assumed there is a process for designing book covers and I must admit to being a bit behind the times as at my age, sensibilities were formed a long time ago and things have changed. My process began by studying book covers–LOTS of book covers. What did I like–what didn’t I like?

I like colorful covers and those that hint at what the book is about.

Book Covers

Out of the six covers under the author name Stanley McShane, it may be obvious that none are particularly heavy in romance. That alone may limit interest, but not everyone is a millennial. Urged to seek the help of my cousin’s daughter, three of the covers were designed by Christine Armstrong. Two of the covers feature ships painted by McShane for his manuscripts and the western uses part of another painting. My Titles

I particularly enjoyed the story that Cliff Johnson, retired Idaho Chief of Police, told regarding the cover he hadWrong Side of the River in mind and went about utilizing the son of a friend for his cover knowing exactly where and what he wanted the cover shot. The problem is, it took forever, and it was only after the boy became so tired and bored with the whole thing the picture was made perfect–just what he wanted–and doesn’t it speak volumes!

I love the cover Christine made for “Sons of the Sea”. I’d noticed a statue the town of Grimsby installed to honor their fisherman–and sent that to her. She incorporated it beautifully and I was thrilled with it. Most of the other covers have been changed at least once, several at the suggestion of veteran Quartzsite AZ naked bookstore owner, Paul WinerPaul Winer (who bought several), at the Reader’s Oasis Bookstore. The man knows his music AND his books!! Talk about an unusual venue!

Resource Box

Promotion Through Social Media

The Day 28 prompt is: How are you using social media to promote your book? What aspect of social media would you like to learn more about? What are your next steps? Social Media

Since I’m currently using nine of the ten pictured in Laura’s example, I guess I’m not doing too badly. Probably won’t be doing Instagram and use several of the others to a more or lesser extent.

Really, I’m not sure whether the reach through these social media outlets is successful, though I do believe the name of Stanley McShane is getting out there.

Familiar with the term, “Jack of all trades, Master of none?” Guess that’d be me or more appropriately put, “Mistress of None.” I’ve taught myself Word (and a very old version at that), and opened accounts in Facebook as well as the other media platforms, but have only a basic knowledge; none of manipulation in any of those programs. I know the associated access of personal info by Facebook and try not to “give away the store”, though it’s obvious now that ANY information whatsoever can lead to further denigration of personal information.

Spoon-Feeding PublicI have a major problem with Google+ and given it’s greater participation on the “Richter” scale of social media standings should be doing more there, though it’s feared the same relinquishment of personal information as Facebook. I’m being blackmailed on a larger, more grander scale than ever before, and it’s all legal!!

Given all that–I’d love to be able to use both Facebook and Google+ to gain better name recognition and sales advantage. For that matter, I’ve barely tapped LinkedIn and Twitter. I’ve enrolled in an SEO class, but where are the classes in reversing the information highway through FB and Google+? I’m not interested in paying for ads (Social Security doesn’t allow for more than a few meds). I need common practices and tips that most under the age of 40 freely peruse.

I’ll continue to read, read, read–but the time to write is being consumed by the time required to read, interpret, and digest and I’m no longer blond. OH! The next step then would be the “how to” CD’s. Yes?

Resource Box

Building the Platform

The Day 27 prompt is: What are the three most important things you are doing to grow your platform?

Having started this process with NaNoWriMo in 2011, I’ve been through the gamut of ideas, following rules and advice, and letting the creative juices flow until they became a trickle.

Several initial ideas were dumped: Garbage

1) Forget salt-water taffy at book signings. The kids grabbed a handful and the adults weren’t into taffy.

2) Started with inventories of flyers, bookmarks, postcards, and business cards. It was a toss up how many were found floating around the store, left quietly on a display shelf, or at the check-out. I’ll finish out the current stores, then redesign the business cards.

3) Laminated posters–found difficult to display without investing further in an easel (and I found irritating those authors who had as they captured the eye and blocked the traffic).

What were the three suggestions acted upon and still being implemented? Branding

1) Reading about the idea of “branding”, I went back to my book covers and changed the author’s name font so they were all consistent.

2) I’d established a blog and paid for custom domain. I’d created several very simple websites (including one for my Women On Wheels® chapter and this would presumably involve a shopping cart).

  1. A) Decided instead to create an Etsy and Pinterest account.
  2. B) Opened a separate Facebook account for Stanley McShane with a Rosepoint Publishing page and a Stanley McShane page on my personal FB account.
  3. C) Opened a Goodreads account in the name of Stanley McShane.

Would a database or email marketing list be effective? Possibly, but difficult  for me to consider or implement. I haven’t wanted to muddle a book sale with further requests assuming my ever-growing twitter followers and blog subscribers have first shown the interest and made the contact.

Other than the above, the current push for promotion and marketing strategy will have to solidify the platform, one which is hoped sufficient to provide a solid base for the current launch: “Sole Survivor-A Fiction Adventure Anthology” (released Monday).

Resource Box

If I Had The Money, I Could Sell More Books

If I Had The Money, I Could Sell More Books

DAY 26 PROMPT: What would be the ideal NON-bookstore venue for selling your book? Why? What is your plan to reach out to such a venue to ask about having them carry your book?

As with most things in life, if I had the money, I could sell more books!

Three of the manuscripts I’ve published have dealt with sailing–stowing away, being shanghaied on a whaler, accounts of carrying cargo around the Horn. They would certainly appeal to a particular crowd, and it occurred to me years ago that one good venue might be a boat show. Looking into that, however, quickly discerned the cost was prohibitive. And the logistics–aye–don’t get me started! Boat ShowJack SparrowOne of the MOST fun festivals attended, if not successful or lucrative, was the Pirate Festival in Rockaway  Beach, Oregon (although there are many, including a larger one in Portland). I suspect, depending on the year, and the rain, it would have been an excellent venue given two of his sailing adventures involve pirates.

There is a large tourist market in Seattle called Pike’s Market that given enough time I’d have gladly hunted for appropriate mom and pop shops who would have been interested in the historical fiction books. There was Godfather’s Books and Espresso Bar in Astoria, and I noticed the “bar” had all the accoutrements of a Starbucks–comfortable social seating, wifi availability, affable sea-going crowd, and enough books to surf through 60 cups of Java. I’ve tried libraries, including the one in Cannon Beach, Oregon, where I’ve mentioned before the jewelry shop called Cannon Beach Treasure Company that featured treasures from the deep as well as videos of his dives.

Except that the Maritime History Museum was closed and we couldn’t alter our timing or route, it had sounded promising when I spoke to the manager. Gray’s Harbor in Aberdeen has a wealth of history and maritime related establishments. Aberdeen has also claimed notoriety as the home port of the tall ship Lady Washington, a reproduction of a smaller vessel used by the explorer Captain Robert Gray, featured in the Pirates of the Caribbean film The Curse of the Black Pearl. Obviously, the best venue for his sailing adventures is the coast–either left OR right.

As far as his mining and penny stock certificate tale, in addition to bookstores, there are a number of historical societies, including the one in Tonopah, Nevada, and the library in Pahrump. I suspect the anthology would also be an appropriate addition to those locations as well.

All to say, if I had the money, I’d sweep the Pacific Coast shoreline north and south and every old mining town with a bar and restaurant in Nevada. I don’t. What’s that old saying, “It takes money to make money?”Resource Box

Grandpa May Have Lied

DAY 23 PROMPT: If you could meet one of your main characters or ideal reader anywhere in the world for coffee, drinks, dinner, or a caramel, who would it be, where would you meet them, and why?

It was actually my son who took the genealogy study so much farther than I had. Hitting those walls almost immediately, I had no clue how or where to proceed, and pretty much shut down. Mark, on the other hand, joined and used the resources to their fullest extent including the offer of a DNA test for $99.

My paternal grandmother was born on the Chippewa reservation leased from Cherokee land in the midwest. Told all my life that part was handed down along with French/German (which made sense) and Swedish and Irish on my maternal side, I was shocked when the test revealed no such results.

Would you rather know where you came from or stay in blissful ignorance?

(Ever seen the show “Who Do You Think You Are?”) British Isles

Those of us old enough to remember Kirk Douglas as the fearsome Einar in the 1958 movie “The Vikings” (also known as Norsemen) perhaps received a romantic message about these fierce, seafaring warriors. They surfaced approximately AD 800 and for more than three centuries went about conquering most of the then known (and unknown) world, including the British Isles, and much of the European continent as well as Greenland and Newfoundland.

Vineland (Old Norse Vínland) is the name of coastal North America explored by Norse Vikings, where Leif Erikson first landed in ca. 1000, approximately five centuries prior to the voyages of Christopher Columbus! An “Irish Viking”–yes, I could go for that! Not a specific “race”, most were more collectively known as coming from the areas now known as Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. AH!

And ergo the problem.

Liverpool DocksMy son had no problem tracing the paternal side back on U.S. soil practically to the first ship arriving after the Mayflower. We know they fought in the Revolutionary as well as the Civil War. Grandma Rose–100% Swedish–we know exactly from where she hailed and have contacts there! But Grandpa Rose, Patrick John Rose, J. Wesley Rose, Stanley McShane? No clue.

If I could, I’d pin him down right there in Long Beach near the ocean he loved; perhaps in the park where we took bread crumbs to feed the pigeons that last time I saw him and I’d start asking questions–explain the contradictions in your manuscripts! His real name might answer a few questions and from there, where he was actually born–really. He had an Irish brogue that never waivered, wasn’t faked. But my DNA doesn’t lie.

Resource Box

“James Michener Protagonist”–Stanley McShane

DAY 22 PROMPT: If you could ask anyone in the world to write a blurb for your book, who would it be? Why that person/people?

From Michael Reisig, author of the acclaimed “Caribbean Gold” series including “The Treasure of Tortuga” and “The Treasure of Time”, and numerous additional adventure thrillers in his “Road To Key West” series, comes this description of the …works of Stanley McShane.

“Stanley McShane… the epitome of a James Michener protagonist.

Caribbean GoldI’ve written before of Michael Reisig after reading his Caribbean Gold series. Reisig descriptively penned the exploits of swashbuckling heroes in the year of 1668 as it follows Englishman Trevor Holte and the audacious freebooter Clevin Greymore in their Caribbean adventures. His “Caribbean Gold – The Treasure of Tortuga has been a No. 1 best seller in Amazon’s sea adventures, romance adventure, men’s adventure, and historical Caribbean since it’s release January, 2015 by Clear Creek Press. His works have been optioned for motion pictures, sold to overseas publishers, and produced for ebooks as well as audio.

Humbled and thrilled by his generous praise for the anthology “Sole Survivor” by Stanley McShane due to be released tomorrow, Reisig wrote a stunning Foreword after reading a pre-release copy. Michael Reisig has been writing professionally for fifteen years, as a former newspaper editor and publisher, an award-winning columnist, and a best-selling novelist.Michael Reisig A true adventurer, Michener protagonist himself, he relocated to the Florida Keys after graduating college to establish a commercial diving business, got his pilot’s license, and traveled extensively throughout the southern hemisphere, diving, treasure hunting, adventuring, and writing about his travels. He knows of which he writes!

It is that adventurous spirit, keen eye to detail, and the humorous twist of life that he captures in the heart and soul of his characters deftly brought to life with an intense but compassionate empathy. You can’t help but love his heroes; their strong moral character, as they triumph through the odds.

Yes, it’s truly an honor to have Michael create a blurb for this book–one to which I’m deeply indebted.

Resource Box

The Happy Surprises in Publishing

Day 17 Prompt: What has been the biggest surprise about writing/publishing your book? What has been the most enjoyable or most memorable aspect?

What has been the biggest surprise? Way too easy! As most people know by now, I’ve published my grandfather’s manuscripts who wrote under the pen name of Stanley McShane. He also painted and sold various paintings with some dubious success under both his pen name and that of J. Wesley Rose. The paintings I have on little pasteboard 8″ x 10’s” were meant to illustrate his books.

  1. Discovering that my mother really knew little about her father’s life; nor had been sufficiently interested enough to ask or get some of the most basic facts.
  2. Reading and writing his manuscripts, discovering the tale we grew up with (that of his being born on board his father’s ship the “Marguerite” off the coast of New York) may not have been wholly true. MargueriteIndeed, in succeeding manuscripts, he offers two additional accounts of his birth–including the one of his birth in a maternity home in New York while his father’s ship was being loaded as it was mentioned more than once that his mother always sailed on the Marguerite (which was named after her) with her husband, the captain. There are no birth records.
  3. Stumbling over 90 year old English common of the day and sailing jargon also common during the turn of the 20th Century as he claimed to have sailed into the early 1900’s.
  4. Walking in his shoes through streets still dusty from the choking red clay powder surrounding ghost and near-ghost towns where he sought riches. Rhyolite Casino
  5. Among the most enjoyable or memorable aspects would have to be the people; those who’ve bought and shared their stories; authors with whom I’ve created a rapport. Among the latter, I would have to note Michael Reisig, who wrote the Road to Key West series as well as my favorite historical swashbuckling, page-turning adventure, the Caribbean Gold series.

But the most amazing and happy surprise?

Sole SurvivorThe discovery of a fella named Gary Long, coincidentally from Idaho where I published the books; claimed he had been in the possession of a McShane painting with one of his poems on the back. The poem stuck with him the rest of his life, although unfortunately the painting went missing. He had apparently been researching the name on the internet and wrote me. I was totally astonished and asked if I could use some of his story in the anthology I’ve been working on. I’ll be sending him a copy that includes his story when I complete and release Sole Survivor“, due out in a few days.

This writing thing–sure opens up the world to you–doesn’t it.

Virginia Williams

Blog Challenge-Day 1

Blog Challenge-Day 1

Uh oh! It’s here already?! I thought I was preparing, but thank heaven we are being supplied with a daily prompt!


Easy blog challenge prompt for Day 1–intuitive–what are the goals for the Author Blog Challenge better known as the “ABC“?

(1) Is it to introduce new readers to the blog? (oh yes!)

(2) Is it to increase traffic to the blog? (oh yes!)

(3) Get in some extra writing practice? (of course!)

All of the above! I joined in an effort to force myself accountable in continuing to hone the craft my grandfather thought he’d passed on when he left me his steamer trunk full of his own manuscripts, poems, short stories, and paintings over 80 years ago. As the old wives tale goes–twins (especially identical) tend to skip a generation. Interesting if so. Does it also follow with artistic talents as neither my mother nor my aunt had any interest in their father’s work or in creating histories, stories, or fiction of their own; neither do my daughter or son–but my granddaughter?? Keeps a journal with her and is constantly writing!! Don’t I love that! So, is there a writing gene?

But inheriting the urge isn’t the same as the gift and though I began writing in childhood, winning a few little contests, it wasn’t until I began publishing magazine articles of my motorcycling adventures and later of Stanley McShane’s scripts that I realized this was going to be a LOT of work! To that end, I’ve joined groups (hence the Publishing and Book Promotion MeetUp group of Phoenix, as well as the Idaho Authors’ Community) and written my little heart out translating McShane’s works,  practicing book descriptions, author pages, media promotions, book signings, and creating this blog that has, at times, floundered.

Therefore, in addition to the SEO class I’m signed up for in the Spring, I’ll stubby my fingers on the keyboard trying to meet this challenge. And in so doing, perhaps I’ll tap into that author gene of my own and in the process succeed in items 1 and 2 above!


Your Exclusive Preview!

Irresistibly drawn to tales of treasure hunting, swashbuckling pirates, sailing ships, their courageous crews and the bawdy women who entertained them, I discovered “Brothers of the Sword/Children of Time” written by Michael Reisig in 2001. Envisioning a modern day Stanley McShane, off on another adventure, I witnessed my grandfather’s travels again through Reisig’s historical 17th century masted sailing craft, experiencing much of the same kind of treasure hunting in the Caribbean as did my grandfather in the South Pacific a century earlier. Fortunately for all of us, however, Reisig began fashioning his sea-worthy tales well before he retired from the sea!

Caribbean-GoldIn the first book of Reisig’s riveting new collection, you are drawn back in time, to an era of dark-hearted men, captivating women, and a seafaring adventure so real you’ll taste the salt spray.

The year is 1668. Englishman Trevor Holte and the audacious freebooter Clevin Greymore, sail from the Port of London for Barbados and the West Indies. They set out in search of adventure and wealth, but the challenges they encounter are beyond their wildest dreams – the brutal Spanish, ruthless buccaneers, a pirate king, the lure of Havana, and the women – as fierce in their desires as Caribbean storms.

And then, there was the gold and the emeralds – wealth beyond imagination. But some treasures outlive the men who bury them…

We come to love these raucous men, their love for each other, and their chivalrous devotion to their ladies. Reisig weaves his storytelling in such compellingly descriptive manner that even were it not your normal read, you’ll be glad for the electricity–oil’s expensive! Continue reading “Your Exclusive Preview!”

Shipwrecks, Pirates, Treasures in Maine

Shipwrecks, Pirates, Treasure in MaineAvast and Ahoy, Matey! The book written by Theodore Parker Burbank, “Shipwrecks, Pirates, Treasure in Maine” was an eye-opener. I can’t find the research to explain why it seems the propensity of schooners to sink is over-whelmingly more so than your average yawl, ketch or cutter, but reading his book would tend to scare me off even a multi-million dollar yacht. There were, no doubt, many more schooners plying the world’s oceans than barques or brigs.

Originally, schooners were gaff-rigged, and these were described often in my grandfather’s sailing adventures. Schooners would commonly have two masts, although there again, the schooners described by my grandfather usually noted three. Popular because of their windward ability and speed, they were used for everything from traditional fishing to slaving and privateering–(gulp!!)–also described more than once by the same Stanley McShane.

Of course, many were used to carry cargo, as varied as spices to lumber and were also comfortable on the high seas as well as coastal runs and large inland bodies of water.

Ted  BurbankTed Burbank takes us back to the beginning, describing the ships of the “Golden Age of Piracy” and debunks some pirate myths. Interesting chapters on pirates, including the famous Captain Kidd, who it turns out never really was a pirate!

Burbank then takes us through the shipwrecks from the South Coast and Mid-Coast to Penobscot Bay (New Ireland).

While the focus of Burbank’s book is of pirates, I loved the chapters on treasure in and off shore of Maine and the many neat pictures. It’s obvious he spent a lot of time in research and pulled it all together in a fascinating study of pirates and their ships off the Maine coast. Enjoy watching those waves hit the beach? Love watching those ships? Can you smell that sea air? This book will benefit by the help of a good proofreader, but it’s a fun read and sure gives you the taste for lobster! Elginshire