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Posts Tagged ‘more deaths than one’

 

I felt a little anxious before I even turned that first e-page of More Deaths than One.

I had never read a book written by anyone I knew before.

While I’ve never actually met the author, Pat Bertram, in person I do consider her to be a good online friend and a valuable writing ally.

What feels even odder to me than reading a published book by someone I know is sitting down and writing a review of a book written by someone I know, and one I count as an e-friend to boot.  It’s even worse than that initial “What will they think?” phase of writing subject matter you perhaps wouldn’t want to write home to mother with.

And, perhaps, I should feel a little bit of guilt in not actually buying the book.  I got the e-book when she was offering it up free to anyone who wanted it.  But, I don’t regret it.  Pat also never asked me to do a review on it.  This, I do of my own volition – much to her chagrin or delight, all depending on what she thinks of my review I guess.

And so, with a small amount of trepidation, I turned that first e-page and eased my way into what may conceivably have turned into a dead man’s life.

Our hero, Bob Stark, is mostly notable for his very essence of being un-notable.  In fact, he is so un-notable that even the people who know him seem to have trouble recognizing him when they first see him.  This very plainness draws you in, making you like him for his simplicity and empathize with him for that unwanted feeling of invisibility that we all share at times.

His ordinariness also proves to be essential to the story.   In fact, his very plainness plays you right into believing the possibility of the truth that comes out later in the story. You’ll have to read the story to find out why.

The story starts with the very ordinary Bob Stark having a very ordinary hot chocolate in the Rimrock Coffee Shop, where his solitude is intruded on by his waitress making a rather ordinary attempt at flirting with him.

Unfortunately for Stark, the ordinariness of his life ends there.

Stark learns from the newspaper that his mother, Lydia Stark, has passed away – again.  Yes, after burying his mother once already, the woman apparently has died a second time, 22 years later.

Convinced it has to be a hoax, Stark decides to show up for his mother’s second funeral.

All the usual people are at the funeral, friends and family, including Stark’s old college girlfriend Lorena Jones.  Stark watches the funeral as an outsider only to find himself with more than one shock.  Not only does the funeral appear to be entirely real, the man his old girlfriend is with comes as a big shock too.  Bob Stark finds himself staring at none other than Bob Stark.  But how can this be?  How can he be watching himself at his own mother’s second funeral?

Stark soon finds himself pulled along an inevitable series of events, his newly befriended waitress Kerry Casillas at his side.

Stark’s search for the truth draws him deeper into a web of secrecy, and deeper into danger as the pair find themselves trying to stay one step ahead of someone who seems intent on catching them.

He soon learns that the road to the truth lies in his own past, a past he in part has to rediscover as if learning it for the first time.

Bob and Kerry travel to Thailand in search of answers that lead only to deeper questions.

The answers to the mystery prove to be as shocking as looking at yourself at your own mother’s second funeral.

In More Deaths Than One, Pat Bertram has woven an intriguing tale of what can happen when the wrong people are given control over another’s life.

More Deaths Than One is published by Second Wind Publishing, LLC.

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 Daughter Am I Blog Tour 2009 – With Guest Pat Bertram

(What Kind Of) Writer Am I

.Pat Bertram

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I am thrilled to be featuring my first ever guest blogger, Pat Bertram, author of three novels published with Second Wind Publishing LLC.

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This is an especially exciting event for me for a few reasons; one being that Halloween is only a few days away and I love Halloween.  Okay, so blogging isn’t exactly the stuff witches, ghosts, goblins, and all manner of things that say “boo” are made of.  Well, unless your guest blogger happens to be the likes of Stephen King, Dean Koontz, or Jeremy Shipp, that is.  But blogging is fun and so is dressing up in a tacky costume and frightening little kids before bribing them with handfuls of candy so they hopefully won’t t-p my house a few years down the road.  I’m not all that scary myself, but the assortment of screaming rocks, cackling witches, gravestones, and various dead creatures decorating my house are.

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 Daughter Am I cover

At first glance Pat’s new book Daughter Am I may not seem the stuff of Halloween.  But when a young woman (Mary Stuart) finds herself on the move investigating her great-grandfather’s deadly secret with the help a group of former gangsters, and a killer on the trail anxious to dig up that same secret, things certainly could get a bit dicey.  A little murder, a little mystery … what more could you ask for in a book to read around Halloween?

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Another reason this is exciting for me is that my first guest blogger happens to be Pat Bertram, who also happens to be my first online writing friend and mentor.  Pat has been an unending source of wisdom, support, and encouragement for me and many other writers who have met her.  And, best of all, she hasn’t complained about any of my silly questions.  Not to me anyway.

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I hope you’ll enjoy Pat’s blog post as much as I did.  And don’t hesitate to visit Second Wind Publishing where you’ll find Pat Bertram’s newest novel Daughter Am I available both in print and ebook format.

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Pat Bertram

Pat Bertram

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National Novel Writing Month is coming up in November, and I am half in awe and half befuddled by those who enter. The writing of a novel takes me a year, and some of the research I’ve done has taken longer than that. But then, I am not an intuitive writer. I have to drag each word out of hiding and find its place in the puzzle that is a novel. I suppose two types could write 50,000 words in a month — the intuitive writers who spew out words, and the logical writers who have the whole thing outlined before they begin. Me? I fall somewhere in the middle. I so hate tossing aside my hard work that I habitually rework my writing as I write. (Though I have rewritten one of my novels four times, and deleted 25,000 words from another.)

I write slowly. Although Daughter Am I came easily to me, I still only wrote an average of 300 words a day. Not that the number of words matters to me, it doesn’t. The only reason I mention it is to let new writers know there are all kinds of writers. Some let the words gush out and try to type fast enough to catch them all. Some, like me, have to pull each word, kicking and screaming, into the world. Some have a compulsion to write; others make a conscious choice. How you write, how often, how many words you write per day are all unimportant, unless, of course, you are a writer under contract. But if you are a writer under contract, you would be writing, not reading this blog.

In the end, the only thing that counts is the finished story. The story doesn’t care how long it took you to write it. It doesn’t care if you wrote it in a month or in a decade. It doesn’t care if you bled words onto the paper or created it slowly, one puzzle piece at a time. A finished story exists complete and entire of itself, separate from the author and the author’s work habits.

Sometimes we wonder how our favorite authors write, but mostly we devour (or savor) their works, wanting only to immerse ourselves in the story. If it moves us to tears, makes us laugh or shiver, that’s what we care about, not how long it took for the author to create the effect. Being writers, of course, we might go back later and see how it was done, but at the time, all we are interested in is the story.

So, here’s the truth. You can call yourself a writer or not. You can write 50,000 words in a month or not. You can write every day or not. The only thing that counts is the story.

That’s what we are all aiming for.

Story.

Pat Bertram is a native of Colorado and a lifelong resident. When the traditional publishers stopped publishing her favorite type of book — character and story driven novels that can’t easily be slotted into a genre — she decided to write her own. Daughter Am I is Bertram’s third novel to be published by Second Wind Publishing, LLC. Also available are More Deaths Than One and A Spark of Heavenly Fire.
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Bookmark (What Kind Of) Writer Am I - With Guest Pat Bertram by L.V. Gaudet

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