MIRROR – Writing Wednesday

Did you participate in last week’s #WritingWednesday post? It was about an unopened box. If you haven’t posted your response, click HERE so you can do that now. Then, make sure you check in here ~ every Wednesday ~ for the latest #WritingWednesday writing prompt! Now, back to today’s regularly scheduled post…

Remember, #WritingWednesday is an EASY, STRESS-FREE, weekly writing challenge.

  • Read the writing prompt below,
  • Spend 5 minutes writing (in your own voice or the voice of a character you’re writing) whatever comes to mind,
  • DON’T EDIT what you write! IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT!

The goal is 5 minutes of creativity.

Today I am writing in the voice of The Twin, a character in one of my current ‘WIP’ manuscripts.

Today’s writing prompt:

MIRROR

Have you ever been in a fun house? You know the kind with the mirrors covering every wall. You go in a dark entryway and come face to face with what seems like a thousand clones of yourself. It’s not dark, not really, but it isn’t light either. Because the walls are made out of mirrors, you can’t tell which way to go or even which ways you can go.

That’s me. I’m the mirror.

They call me ‘The Twin.’ They have since I was a little girl.

“Which one are you? Are you The Twin?” they would ask.

Sometimes they were right, but most times they were wrong. I was pretty good at mimicking others when I was young. Now that I’m older, they’ve stopped guessing. I guess when you’re always wrong, you stop playing the game.

I don’t mimic people any more. I become them. If you’re my target, good luck. You’re going to need it.

© 2020 Nina Soden


Alright, now it’s your turn. I’d love to see what today’s writing prompt [MIRROR] inspires in you. So, if you are willing, go to the comment section below and start typing. Take 5 minutes and let’s see what you come up with! 


What books have made your March 2020 reading list? Comment below and let me know! Then, click on the links below to check out my latest post for the New York Times Top Ten Lists and see which books you’d like to add to your reading list!


Author Interview – Esraa Yousry

I’d like to welcome Esraa Yousry, author of In Your Absence: Emerald Lover, to my site today.

Let’s start by finding out a little bit about you

  • What is your name and do you write under a pen name? My name is Esraa Yousry same name as my Pen Name 
  • Where do you call home? Besides my own house? In a library but of course, my house with my beloved family and my loved ones. 
  • Obviously, we know you are an author, but some writers have other jobs as well. Do you have another occupation? Do you believe you’re any good at it? Do you like what you do? I’m a designer, video editor, and screenwriter. I’m good at directing also.
  • What is your family like? When I say My family is the best I mean it. Incredibly, wonderfully, talented and loving. We’d die for each other. 
  • Do you have any hobbies, other than writing? What do you enjoy doing? Of course, astrology is my favorite hobby. I’m a Taurus so I love knowing more about Astrology.
  • Not to pry too much, but do you remember your first love? And how can I forget? even though we are not together anymore but I still respect him to this day. That’s all.
  • What is the most terrible thing that ever happened to you? That’s a hard question, many terrible things happened to me that I can’t even name one, honestly. 
  • What or who inspired you to start writing? And how long have you been writing? My family, that’s where it all began, they inspired me to start all of this. Professionally? for three or two years. As a hobby? maybe five years ago.
  • Who is your role model? My role model is Maya Angelou for sure. 
  • What is your greatest fear? My greatest fear is losing my loved ones. Maybe that’s why I’m overprotecting them, that sometimes they think that I’m controlling them.
  • Do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hard-covers or audio-books? I’m more into paperbacks, hard-covers.
  • Have you ever read a book just based on its cover? Maybe once? you know they always say never judge a book by its cover, but I did once and it was the worst.
  • What is your favorite film based on a book? Let me be clear, I hate when books are turned into movies. It loses its identity. 
  • What is your favorite book genre at the moment? Literature. 
  • What books have made it onto your wish list recently? And why? I don’t have any on my wish list recently, I don’t know why or maybe It’s just me. But nothing really attracts me right now. Recently, books are cheap and that’s my own opinion maybe it’s wrong. 
  • What book are you reading at the moment? And in what format? At the moment, I’m not reading any. I’m currently supervising the writing of some new books by new writers.

Let’s shift somewhat and talk about your latest story.

  • What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 20 or fewer words, what would you say? The name of my most recent book is In Your Absence: Emerald Lover. It’s all about relationships, culture, beauty, love, family and pain.
  • Is the above book part of a series? Yes, the book is part of the In Your Absence series.
  • How did you come up with the covers? Who designed the covers of your book(s)? The cover is Inspired by my African culture and roots. The cover is designed by me.
  • Did you listen to any particular songs while writing your book(s)? The answer is yes. Actually, the songs I was listening to inspired me to write more of what I even expected to write in this book. 
  • How did you come up with the title for your book(s)? The title is a secret, that only a few will understand but maybe if you read it you will understand why I gave it this title.
  • Do you have a book trailer? If so, where can we watch it? No, I don’t have a book trailer.
  • How did you come up with the idea for your latest book? My culture, my family and my own experiences.

Let’s talk now about your writing process.

  • What is your writing style like? Are you a pantster or a plotter? I change my mind a lot so, I’m a Pantser. I start at the beginning and let the characters and situation determine what happens next.
  • Are you a self-published/Indie author or did you publish through a traditional publishing company? I’m a self-published author.
  • If you’re a self-published/Indie author what made you go that route instead of the traditional publishing route? I choose to be a self-published author so I can do whatever I want, I can control my whole writing process from writing to publishing. 
  • What’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing? “To pen down something isn’t a big deal. But to pen, something that has never been said or something spoke like never before takes courage and skill.”
  • What advice would you give someone who wants to start writing? My advice is to ask themselves why do you want to become a writer? If you want to do it for the love of the writing itself then do it, if not for the whole process then just let it go. It’s not for you. But if you do it for the whole Idea and process of writing then just try to be professional in every way and in everything that you do, that doesn’t mean that you can’t make mistakes. Of course not, you’ll fail many times but it makes you more educated. Write on a regular basis and know who you are writing for. 
  • Where can your readers follow you?

FACEBOOK       INSTAGRAM       WEBSITE GOODREADS


Also by Esraa Yousry:

MADRE: Three kids realize they’re stuck in the basement of a psychopath old woman who claims to be their mom, and forces them to call her “Mommy”, can they escape this nightmare?


If you have questions for Esraa, please comment below and she will answer them as they come in.


The Unopened Box – Writing Wednesday

Did you participate in last week’s #WritingWednesday post? It was all about Dreams. If you haven’t posted your response, click HERE so you can do that now. Then, make sure you check in here ~ every Wednesday ~ for the latest #WritingWednesday writing prompt! Now, back to today’s regularly scheduled post…

Remember, #WritingWednesday is an EASY, STRESS-FREE, weekly writing challenge.

  • Read the writing prompt below,
  • Spend 5 minutes writing (in your own voice or the voice of a character you’re writing) whatever comes to mind,
  • DON’T EDIT what you write! IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT!

The goal is 5 minutes of creativity.

Today I am writing in the voice of Tanja, a character in one of my current ‘WIP’ manuscripts.

Today’s writing prompt:

THE UNOPENED BOX

A coffin is just a box. A box we fill with the bodies of our lost loved ones. A box we fill with tears at the passing of friends and family. A box designed to keep out unwanted pests and vermin, vandals and thieves. A box not to difficult to unlock, from the inside, even when buried six feet under. All it takes is a little magic and a talented guide.

I am that guide!

I learned the ritual from my mother and my Aunt Clara when I was only ten years old. Although they were well known throughout our community and thought of as true practitioners, they had only scratched the surface of what it really means to be a necromancer.

By the time I was eleven, my mother was gone, sealed in a pine box and buried six feet below the earth’s surface. For the last six years, I’ve been salting the earth, above her body, weekly to protect her remains from those who practice the black magics. She was powerful, maybe not as powerful as I, but powerful enough that others might want to steal an ounce of blood, a sliver of skin, a lock of hair, or even a bone or two in an effort to intensify their own magic. It would work too. That’s why I salt the earth. That’s why I’ve never left New Orleans. That’s why, when Operation Atlas came knocking on my door I insisted that if I were to work with them, I wouldn’t be one of their pets, locked in a cage… or cell… or wherever they kept them at the corporate offices. When I showed them what I was capable of, they agreed to let me stay in my home in New Orleans. Not that they really had a choice.

© 2020 Nina Soden


Alright, now it’s your turn. I’d love to see what today’s writing prompt [THE UNOPENED BOX] inspires in you. So, if you are willing, go to the comment section below and start typing. Take 5 minutes and let’s see what you come up with! 


What books have made your March 2020 reading list? Comment below and let me know! Then, click on the links below to check out my latest post for the New York Times Top Ten Lists and see which books you’d like to add to your reading list!


Deer Among Wolves ~ Giveaway

I’m so excited to be one of the many tour hosts sharing information about Deer Among Wolves!
Deer Among Wolves (A World in Ruin Book 1) by Rebecca Fernfield
Genre: Post-Apocalyptic Survival

An extinction-level plague was only the beginning

Sixteen years have passed since an unstoppable plague ripped through the world killing billions.

A few desperate, mis-matched groups of men, women, and children found their way to a small town and learned how to survive, then thrive.

Now death is stalking them once more!

Newly appointed First Officer, Jude Sinclair, is under pressure when death follows a group of struggling survivors into town.

As the townsfolk sicken then die after a short, painful illness, Jude is desperate to learn how to stop the disease and save the town from extinction.

Deacon Carlisle lost everyone he loved to the plague and then ruthless survivors, now all he wants is to protect his new family and escape the infected town, but the unthinkable happens when his son disappears.

With the sickness claiming lives, and the boy missing, Jude and Deacon must rely on their own ingenuity to discover the truth, and save everyone they love.

Does Jude have what it takes to protect the town from its invisible enemy?

Can Deacon rise to the challenge of saving his son?

What is the truth behind the deaths and the boy’s disappearance?

‘Deer Among Wolves’ is book 1 in ‘A World in Ruin’, a series of action-packed and intriguing tales of life after the apocalypse.

Goodreads * Amazon

British author, Rebecca Fernfield, is a lapsed medievalist who spends her days plotting the overthrow of evil regimes and devising intricate plans to rescue their victims. She’s also given to flights of fancy about the end of the world and what she’d do if supermarkets suddenly ran out of chocolate, wine and other essentials. She lives among the flatlands of the Humber estuary where Vikings and Saxons once fought and where, sometimes, on foggy mornings, you can still hear the echoes of clashing swords.

Website * Facebook * Instagram * Bookbub * Amazon * Goodreads

Would you like a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card? Follow the tour HERE for special content and giveaway instructions.


#Theredheadedauthor Presents the March 2020 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – YOUNG ADULT

As an avid reader of fiction (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, here it is… The independently ranked top 10 Young Adult selections for March 2020!

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the cover image, the title or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


#1 A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder

by Holly Jackson

While trying to solve a murder-suicide case for her senior project, Pip now finds her life in jeopardy.


#2 One of Us is Next

by Karen M. McManus

In this sequel to “One of Us Is Lying,” a deadly game of truth or dare via text now plagues the students of Bayview High.


#3 Children of Virtue and Vengeance

by Tomi Adeyemi

Zelie must stop the threat of civil war in Orisha.


#4 One of Us Is Lying

by Karen M. McManus

For five students, a detour into detention ends in murder.


#5 The Hate U Give

by Angie Thomas

A 16-year-old girl sees a police officer kill her friend.


#6 The Queen’s Assassin

by Melissa de la Cruz

Caledon Holt and Shadow embark on a dangerous quest and fall in love.


#7 Infinity Son

by Adam Silvera

Twin brothers are caught up in a war between the magical Spell Walkers and Blood Casters.


#8 Children of Blood and Bone

by Tomi Adeyemi

Zelie fights to restore magic to the land of Orisha.


#9 Yes No Maybe So

by Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed

Romance blooms between two unlikely teens while working together on an upcoming local election.


#10 Five Feet Apart

by Rachael Lippincott with Mikki Daughtry and Tobias Laconis

Stella and Will are in love, but they can’t get within five feet of each other.


When you purchase a book using a link on this site, I earn an affiliate commission. All commission earnings go back into funding my books; editing, cover design, etc.


#Theredheadedauthor Presents the March 2020 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – FICTION

As an avid reader of fiction (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, here it is… The independently ranked top 10 Fiction selections for March 2020!

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the cover image, the title or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


#1 One Minute Out

by Mark Greaney

The ninth book in the Gray Man series. Court Gentry tries to stop the head of a group trafficking women and children.


#2 American Dirt

by Jeanine Cummins

A bookseller flees Mexico for the United States with her son while pursued by the head of a drug cartel.


#3 Where the Crawdads Sing

by Delia Owens

In a quiet town on the North Carolina coast in 1969, a young woman who survived alone in the marsh becomes a murder suspect.


#4 Little Fires Everywhere

by Cheleste Ng

An artist upends a quiet town outside Cleveland.


#5 Chasing Cassandra

by Lisa Kleypas

The sixth book in the Ravenels series. Cassandra teaches a railway magnate a lesson.


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#6 The Silent Patient

by Alex Michaelides

Theo Faber looks into the mystery of a famous painter who stops speaking after shooting her husband.


#7 Golden In Death

by J.D. Robb

The 50th book of the In Death series. Eve Dallas seeks the sender of packages that give off toxic airborne fumes.


#8 The Dutch House

by Ann Patchett

A sibling relationship is impacted when the family goes from poverty to wealth and back again over the course of many decades.


#9 The Giver of Stars

by Jojo Moyes

In Depression-era Kentucky, five women refuse to be cowed by men or convention as they deliver books.


#10 The Tattooist of Auschwitz

by Heather Morris

A concentration camp detainee tasked with permanently marking fellow prisoners falls in love with one of them.


When you purchase a book using a link on this site, I earn an affiliate commission. All commission earnings go back into funding my books; editing, cover design, etc.


Author Interview ~ Alegra Loewenstein

I am so excited to welcome Alegra Loewenstein, author of Body Wisdom Journal. She is here today to talk to us about her latest book, her writing process, and her life in general. If you have questions that aren’t covered in this interview, please feel free to comment below so she can answer them.

Author Alegra Loewenstein

Let’s start by finding out a little bit about you…

  • What is your name and do you write under a pen name?
    My name is Alegra Loewenstein. I don’t use a pen name, though if I started to write in a different genre, I might.
  • Where do you call home?
    San Diego, CA

I love San Diego. I moved there for a year after college before moving up to Los Angeles. Its a beautiful place with the most amazing weather.

  • Obviously, we know you are an author, but some writers have other jobs as well. Do you have another occupation? Do you believe you’re any good at it? Do you like what you do?
    I write my own books (author) and I also write other people’s books (ghostwriter). My clients are happy, so I think I’m pretty good at it! I enjoy the work, and I find it to be a very different creative process than writing my own books.

That is so interesting. As an author myself, I would worry that spending so much time writing for other people would distract me from my own manuscripts.

  • What is your family like?
    I am close with my family. We like to laugh together and make food together.
  • If it doesn’t bother you, can you let us know what your childhood home looked like?
    I grew up in a house that looked like southern California… but we were in Texas!!
  • Do you have any hobbies, other than writing? What do you enjoy doing?
    I like to walk in nature and make crafty stuff. I also enjoy cooking (but I hate cleaning).
  • What is your greatest dream?
    I have a very big book project that I’d like to bring to fruition. I’m a bit superstitious about it, so I can’t tell you that much, but it’s sort of a memoir.
  • What kind of person do you wish you could be? What is stopping you?
    Hmm. That’s a good question. I think I do a pretty good job on improving myself. I guess maybe I’d like to be more patient with my kids and more vulnerable with my loved ones.
  • Not to pry too much, but do you remember your first love?
    Wow, getting tricky. I had a lot of crushes. My first one was in elementary school. Taylor Clark. He was more of a frenemy though.
  • What is the most terrible thing that ever happened to you?
    I think my life has been overall pretty lucky. I have had some disturbing experiences that involved being under the influence and being in situations that could have turned out very very very very bad. They are disturbing to think about, even though at the same time I am grateful they weren’t worse.
  • What or who inspired you to start writing? And how long have you been writing?
    I’ve always loved writing. I went to a school that encouraged creativity and love of nature, and those things inspired me.

That is wonderful. I think all to often now, schools are not fostering a love for books, writing, or other creative arts. As a mom, I am always teaching my kids the importance of reading everything and expressing themselves creatively.

  • What was your dream growing up? Did you achieve that dream? If so, in what ways was it not what you expected? If you never achieved the dream, why not?
    I used to want to live in San Francisco, and that never happened. I also wanted to combine science and art in my profession, and I do feel that I’ve succeeded in that.
  • Who is your role model?
    I love Lady Bird Johnson. She was such an advocate for wildflowers! I also love Michael Pollan and his ability to dive deep into subjects and give common sense answers.
  • What is your greatest fear?
    I am very afraid of physical pain in my life. Also, I fear having a lot of regrets.
  • Do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hard-covers or audio-books?
    Sorry trees. I love paperbacks.
  • Have you ever read a book more than once? And if so, what was it?
    Many times. Brighty of the Grand Canyon as a kid. The Hero Within as an adult. More I can’t think of.
  • What is your opinion of novellas?
    Like a small novel? I like small books for nonfiction, though for fiction I prefer about 300 pages.
  • Have you ever read a book just based on its cover?
    I don’t think so.
  • What is your favorite film based on a book?
    Harry Potter did a great job!
  • What is your favorite book genre at the moment?
    I’m kind of obsessed with nonfiction!
  • What books have made it onto your wish list recently? And why?
    Oh, that stack is too big to recall! My book club is reading the Testaments. I’m working my way through Persephone Rising. And about ten more.
  • What book are you reading at the moment? And in what format?
    I just finished The Magician’s Nephew on my kindle because I was on a trip.
  • If you could invite any four (4) celebrities (alive or dead) to your dinner party, who would you invite and why?
    Lady Bird Johnson and Michael Pollan from above – I also think they’d be super interesting to talk to. Michelle Obama because after I read her book, we were obviously best friends. Maybe Jill Lublin because she’s not that famous, but I went to her workshop once and she was awesome.

Let’s shift somewhat and talk about your latest story.

  • What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 20 or fewer words, what would you say?
    Body Wisdom Journal. It’s about getting in touch with your body as a tool for self-awareness and intuition.
  • Is the above book part of a series?
    Not really, but since I write in non-fiction people do tend to buy more than one of them. They work together.
  • How did you come up with the cover? Who designed the cover of your book(s)?
    I have an amazing graphic designer! I send her a bunch of ideas and she makes something that looks great!!!
  • Did you listen to any particular songs while writing your book(s)?
    No music for this one. The superstitious memoir has a soundtrack though.
  • How did you come up with the title for your book(s)?
    I was trying to make it clear what the journal was about, though I’m not sure I succeeded. It’s all a learning process!
  • Do you have a book trailer? If so, where can we watch it?
    I’ve always wanted to make one, but since I write non-fiction, I’m not sure how I’d do it, plus my to do list is long enough.
  • In your latest novel, who is the lead character and can you tell us a little about him/her?
    I know that nonfiction is a deviation from the norm for your readers, so in this case there are no characters. Or perhaps we can say that you are the character! I was specifically looking for YA audience because I know that this guided journal really resonates with a youthful spirit. 

Let’s talk now about your writing process.

  • What is your writing style like? Are you a pantster or a plotter?
    I write very organically. So, while I have an outline, it changes as I write the book.
  • Have you come across any specific challenges in writing or publishing? What would you do differently the next time?
    I hate sitting still for long periods of time. That’s rough when you write for a living.
  • Are you a self-published/Indie author or did you publish through a traditional publishing company?
    Self-published on this one! I’ve experimented with hybrid publishing but have not had great experiences. I hope someday I’ll be recruited by a large publishing house, but I’ll wait for them to come to me.
  • If you’re a self-published/Indie author what made you go that route instead of the traditional publishing route?
    I have total control over the creative process, which is awesome. I can also just publish a book anytime I get an idea (and write it of course), and I don’t have to get approval or wait around. Plus, I love that if I re-read it a year later or whatever, and I find something I hate, I can just change it and update the file, and then from then on readers get the new version!
  • What’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
    Balance the love of writing with a business plan so you can see success and not get discouraged.

That is wonderful advice. I find, as an author, that the hardest part isn’t the writing… its the marketing. The business aspect of being an author can be very difficult for creative types like me.

Where can your readers follow you? Please list links to any applicable websites and/or social media accounts.