Sunday, December 30, 2012

How to Make An Audiobook. Part 1 of 3

I recently published the audiobook of Chocolate Roses, my LDS modern retelling of Jane Eyre. I learned a lot with each step of the process. There are easier ways to make an audiobook (such as hire a recording company who specializes in audio books), but I don't have big bucks for such things. My talented sons can figure out anything electronical, so I went on the hope that I inherited from them some of their ingenuity, and plunged ahead.

Each time Amanda Freeman volunteered to read in Sunday School class, I noticed how effortless reading seemed to her. She also acts and sings---is theatrical all around. Even her hair is a striking statement (beautiful dark long ringlets against fair skin.) I discussed recording my novel with her. She had previously entertained the idea of becoming a professional reader, and so she agreed to do the project.

I first tried to convince my publisher to finance the recording. He/she wasn't interested in expanding his business at the time to include audiobooks, so they assigned me the audio rights to Chocolate Roses.

Now I was on my own. I had recorded singers for my music site, so I'd had some experience in recording. I had limited funds, and renting a recording studio and a technician was out of the question. My son Ted has a small soundboard and a microphone, and I have a computer, so there had to be a way to do it myself. After discussing the idea with my sons, I did some how-to research on the Internet.

First, I made a sound booth out of a large cardboard box I found at a local appliance store. I removed one side panel, cut up an old foam pad and literally sewed it to the cardboard with heavy string, lining the entire inside (top and remaining three sides.).

Wah-lah! Dee-Lux soundbox.

I found a small room--windowless and in the center of the 1st floor of a two story building. Even though noisy jets pass overhead on their way to Sky Harbor Airport, the room was virtually soundproof with its solid door. Plus, we were practically alone in the building. Another plus was the rent was free. (An oxymoron, I know--free rent.)

I borrowed my son's soundboard and microphone. The first day at the building, he made sure the equipment was set up right and refreshed me on how to run the software--GarageBand that came with my Mac. (The second morning I did the set-up myself.) I sat at the soundboard outside the room. Wires ran from the box and under the closed door into the room where Amanda sat facing into the padded soundbox on a table. A towel covered the table to reduce sound, the microphone rested on a rolled pillow placed inches from her mouth.

So, with spirits and hopes high, we began. Two rookies in the recording business, we learned a lot in those two days of recording. My next post will include a list of do's and don'ts learned by trial and error. 

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Audiobook Part 2, Recording

My reader, Amanda Freeman, is amazing. She didn't need directing and is a natural at interpreting my prose and portraying Janie Rose Whitaker. Thank you Amanda!

We learned:
  • Record each chapter into its own file. (Required when uploading to Internet.)
  • Use an electronic book device--a kindle or computer that can be scrolled noiselessly (finger glide, not clicking) to eliminate sounds of page turning. It's okay if you don't have the device, but each time you need to turn a page, stop reading and make sure the reader (and page) is settled before starting to read again.
  • Reader should take a decongestant before the session even if they don't think it is necessary. This is a MUST.
  • Reader should do no writing. We started out having Amanda mark the script each time she had to repeat a line, but the mic picked up the pencil scratching. The second day, I marked the script. It was unnecessary in the long run. I only referred to the script a few times while editing. 
  • When reader makes a mistake, she should pause and then repeat the line. Read the full sentence again, not just a phrase. No need to stop recording. Even when we found it necessary to discuss an issue, we kept the recording running. It is simple to edited out the discussion later.
  • Everyone makes mouth noises--smacks, swallow, breaths, sniffles. Most sounds can be edited out later. The director/technician should not be shy about pointing these out (if they are correctable-- such as starting to read before finishing a swallow. We all do it.)  The hardest sound to edit out is breath on the microphone (use an impact shield) and soupy nose sounds in the middle of words. When/if you hear these noises during recording, STOP immediately and repeat the line. You will regret later that you didn't.  (After this experience, it was hard to listen to speakers in church without mentally editing their noises!) Reader, don't be afraid to stop and breath, blow your nose, etc. It can all be edited out.
  • Take breaks. Don't wear yourself out. The energy at the beginning of the day fades by the end. 
  • We came back a week or so later to "fix" some spots, and even though it was in the same room, the sound in the recording was slightly different. I didn't use most of the material in that last "make-up" session.
  • The homemade sound booth worked great. Using the inner room worked well, too. I'd do it again.
  • Make sure you have a cover/impact shield on the microphone to eliminate bursts of breath.
  • I found it helpful to read along with Amanda. There were a few places that I, as the author, wanted her to interpreted differently. 
Overall the recording part of the experience was a lot of fun. I had the privilege of hearing Chocolate Roses read by an amazing reader, and fell in love with Roger Wentworth all over again.

Reader: What other important points have you learned in recording sessions that you could share here?

Friday, December 21, 2012

Do-it-yourself Audio Book, part 3, Editing

And now to edit 10-12 hours of recording.

 There are several programs you can use to record. We used Garageband, and in this article GB will represent whatever program you use. There are probably other programs more suited for audiobook, but GB is what I own and have used for years in my music. It is simple and very well designed.

I first went through and cut all the long pauses, page turns, loud breathing, and discussions I mentioned in part 2. I listened to all the repeats and chose the best ones, and mixed cuts when needed. In GarageBand, you can actually isolate a nose squeak in the middle of a word, and remove it.

Some chapters took longer than others to edit due to how many deletes it required. After editing all, I scrutinized each chapter again and found many more noises to edit out. I figure I spent three 3-4 times more time in editing than in recording.

One of the major problems I next faced was when I sent my song from GB to iTunes, was that the volume reduced. (It is annoying to turn the volume to max on an audiobook and still not be able to hear.) After several attempts using every method I knew to raise the volume, I googled the question, (isn't Google great) entering "reduced volume sending GarageBand to iTunes." I found others' posts about the problem, and the solution is to go to GarageBand--Preferences--Advanced-- and uncheck Auto Normalize. Problem solved! The volume stabilized in the transition.

When importing the chapters from GB to your computer's iTunes, choose "Share" from the menu-- then, "Send to iTunes" in the drop down menu. A setup box will appear. Title your project, and then for Compress Using choose MP3 encoder, and for Audio Setting choose Higher Quality. Comprendo? MP3 and Higher Quality is required for the Internet. (Don't laugh at my simply instructions. I had to go back and redo it correctly.)

My son-in-law recorded the beginning and ending announcements. He has impeccable diction, which I love, and is essential for a good recording. The beginning and ending must be in separate files. To enhance them, add background music as a theme--something that fits the style of your novel.

I chose the intro music at  and bought it for 99¢.  You'd think a composer would record her own music, but to tell you the truth, they offer great stuff and it took the stress out of finishing my project. Jewelbeat is also where I found the music for the book trailer for my novel The Star Prophecy.

Now, I assumed Chocolate Roses was ready to sell on Amazon and would be simple to upload. Ha, ha! Was I wrong! I searched Amazon's site for a way to upload my audio files, and found NO way. Amazon does not let you upload your audiobooks directly.

Again, Google came to the rescue. I searched for "How to upload an audiobook to Amazon" and found that I had to go through  They format your recording and put it on Amazon, iTunes, and Audible. Aha! Ask and it shall be given.

ACX is a self explanatory site and did a great job of walking me through the process so I understood every step. Individual chapters upload individually, so each must in a separate file. If you get the notice that your "bit rate" is not high enough, go back to GB and make sure you chose Higher Quality as noted above. (Remember I had to go back and remix. Blush.) It took over an hour to upload all the chapters. Be ready with your beginning and ending credit recordings, and an audio sample, too, for promotional use. The audio sample can be the first chapter.

After uploading Chocolate Roses in its entirety, the completed product totaled 5 hours and 32 minutes. ACX immediately sent me an email saying to approve my audiobook for quality would take 2-3 weeks, which meant they would check to see I did it right.

The notice about the wait was a surprise, but with relief of having the project finished. After three weeks, I received an email telling me Chocolate Roses was now available on Amazon, iTunes, and Audibility. 

Listen to Chapter 1 here.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

2012 Christmas Song "A Baby Born For All"

Every year I write a Christmas song. This year "A Baby Born For All" is recorded by Annie Fletcher. You are invited to listen and print the sheet music at

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Arizona American Mothers literary contest

It's that time of year again! I am heading up the annual literary contest for the Arizona chapter of American Mothers. We've had some great winners in past years

So, if you are a mother and live in Arizona, sharpen your pencil, plug in your computer, and get your creative juices flowing. 

The Patricia Arnett Literary Contest 2013 is now open. Details:

A cash prize of $25 will be awarded to the winner in each category.
Eligibility rule: Applicant must be a mother and an Arizona resident.
Entrants may submit one entry in each category. All entries should reflect aspects of family life and motherhood.
 Deadline is January 25, 2013.  Submit to:

Joan Sowards
American Mothers Inc. Literature Contest
1437 N. Coleman Circle
Mesa, AZ 85201

Entries must not bear the author’s name. Please submit the following form with each.

Categories are:
Essay          (under 1000 words)
Short Story (under 2000 words)
Poetry         (under 50 lines)

Check Category:    Essay ___ Poetry __ Short Story _______

Entrant’s Name _______________________________________

Address _____________________________________________

Email _______________________________________________

Phone # _____________________________________________

Name of Entry _______________________________________

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Chocolate Roses is now an audiobook!

Narrated by Amanda Freeman, Chocolate Rose is now available on Amazon as an audiobook!

Click HERE 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Once Upon A Baby by Shari Guess, Interview and Giveaway

Welcome to Shari Guess, author of Once Upon a Baby! After learning about this great book, be sure to read to the bottom of this interview and enter to win a $25 gift certificate or your own a copy of Once Upon a Baby.

Once Upon a Baby: A Tale of Adoption by Shari Guess

A heartwarming tale of LDS Adoption. Follow a child's journey from the Pre-existence to his family's home on Earth. The divine guidance of the Savior, along with the love and prayers of both birth and adoptive parents are gently and lovingly portrayed in this tender story of the ultimate "Happily ever after".


"Shari Guess has written a "must read" for every LDS family. She made a relevant issue for our time seem simple, yet to the heart."
~Brenton G. Yorgason, PhD

"I cried grateful tears to finally find a book for our children that explains their unique place within our family in a spiritual way."
~Nancy Reynolds, CA

Author Shari Guess

SHARI GUESS is a proud, first-time children’s book author and lives in rural North Texas where she is “Mom” to her beloved 9-year-old adopted son, Garrett. Happily married to her husband Walter for going on 13 years they share their cabin-in-the-woods with a small herd of Great Danes and farm animals. Shari is currently a part-time real estate agent and property manager and prior to marriage worked for over a decade in the music business, spanning from Los Angeles to Nashville. She wore many hats as a journalist and publicist representing multiple recording artists, magazines and music publishing companies, along with being a part-time performing artist and songwriter. Her hobbies include choral, Americana and rock music, martial arts, photography, travel and anything in the mountains.

Thank you for agreeing to do an interview today! I'm sure readers will want to know what prompted you to write Once Upon a Baby.

Shari: This was the story that I always wanted to read to my adopted son, but was unable to find. It focuses on adoption from an LDS (Mormon) standpoint as it chronicles the adopted child’s journey.

Joan: Did you have a mentor in getting it finished?  

Shari: I had a few of them! This project started seven years ago. Probably my biggest cheerleaders were a couple of close friends-Deanna Jones and Debbie Haskins. I did much of it on my own. My biggest inspiration was my little man. 

Joan: Please tell a little about your background—where you grew up, etc. 

Shari: My story reads like a strange novel! I was born in Dallas, grew up in the mountains of Colorado and Utah and worked multiple years in the Hollywood and Nashville music business. I even lived in Jerusalem for several years when I was younger. I currently reside in North Texas with my small family. I love everything arts and outdoors. I am active in church, sing in a large philanthropic choir and take karate with my son. We live on a small farm and I am lucky to be able to count my blessings every day! When I’m not writing I enjoy work as a small town Realtor. 

Joan: What was the hardest/easiest part of writing this book? 

Shari: Getting it finished! Wow! You can’t even believe how difficult that was! Getting an illustrator to finish it, (Two started but didn’t finish) and then all the technical details prior to its release was very difficult for me!

Joan: Technical details can being challenging. 

It is great to find an illustrator who believes in your project and will carry through to the end. So, who did you find? 

Shari: Kate Featherstone, a brilliant artist that lives here locally in Texas. She was really able to capture what I saw for this book in my mind’s eye. Every day I am grateful for her!

Joan: Do you have other books published, in the works? 

Shari: I’m working on a few “secret” projects at this time. They are non-fiction and are being written to serve a certain need. Thanks so much for asking! =)


Tour Giveaway:
$25 Amazon Gift Card + copy of Once Upon a Baby
Copy of Once Upon a Baby
(Paperback open to US only, Kindle ebook for International)
Ends 11/30/12

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Spinster's Folly by Marsha Ward

Marsha Ward
It's party time! Spinster's Folly, the long-awaited fourth novel of the Owen Family Saga written by western author, Marsha Ward, is scheduled for release November 10th. Join the Facebook event to win great prizes.

Congratulations, Marsha!

Here is a synopsis of Spinster's Folly:

Marie Owen yearns for a loving husband, but Colorado Territory is long on rough characters and short on fitting suitors, so a future of spinsterhood seems more likely than wedded bliss. Her best friend says cowboy Bill Henry is a likely candidate, but Marie knows her class-conscious father would not allow such a pairing. When she challenges her father to find her a suitable husband before she becomes a spinster, he arranges a match with a neighbor's son. Then Marie discovers Tom Morgan would be an unloving, abusive mate and his mother holds a grudge against the Owen family. Marie's mounting despair at the prospect of being trapped in such a dismal marriage drives her into the arms of a sweet-talking predator, landing her in unimaginable dangers. This fourth book in the Owen Family Saga is infused with potent heart and intense grit.

Marsha has agreed to answer two off the wall questions here. The first is:

Which of all the love interests in your novels could you, in real life, fall in love with or want your daughter to marry?

Marsha: This is an interesting question, especially in regards to my daughter. Before I finished Spinster's Folly, I would have said "James Owen." Now, however, I have a new favorite male character with whom I could fall in love. I know for sure I would want my daughter to marry someone like Bill Henry. He's an interesting guy, but he's steadfast and loyal, and I would want that for her, or for me!

What is different about Spinster’s Folly than the other books in the Owens series/saga?   

Marsha: This question is harder to answer. The difference is in that I used a real-life experience as a basis for a character and a part of the plot. I deal with a hard issue, abuse in several variations, but I've conquered hard issues before, so writing about that subject doesn't set the book apart. I've never written light, fluffy novels, but perhaps this one goes a bit deeper into intensity. Maybe giving more dimension to the interactions of the mother and father, Rod and Julia Owen, helps distinguish this novel. Overall, it's probably written with more facets and depth because of my growth as a writer.

Thank you, Marsha, and best wishes with your newest novel. I am looking forward to reading Spinster's Folly, as I have read the first three in the series and recommend them to anyone looking for a fantastic read and a great series. 

Visit Marsha Ward at her Facebook Event where she is giving away super prizes in honor of her new novel. One of the prizes is Chocolate Roses by Joan Sowards!

The first three books in the Owens Family Saga:

Spinster Folly's Blog Tour Schedule 

November 4
Joan Sowards 

November 5
Words and Works

November 6
Ryan Hunter 
Tina Scott, Author and Artist 

November 7
Mama Pike Says
Murphy's Law 

November 8
Teatime Romance 
Donna K. Weaver, Author: Weaving a Tale or Two 

November 9
Shaunna Gonzales

November 10
Spinster's Folly Online Book Release Party
wordpaintings Unlimited 
Shaunna Gonzales

November 11
Stardust in My Pocket

November 14
Creative Hodgepodge 
Of Writerly Things 
Tanya Parker Mills 

November 15
Alethea Williams: actuallyalethea 

November 16
Writing Wranglers and Warriors 
Debra's Window into Writing  

November 17
Anna del C. Dye 

Readers: Which of all the love interests in the novels you have read, could you in real life, fall in love with, or want your daughter to marry?

Join the Spinster's Folly Facebook Event,  for ways to win great prizes.
 The event runs from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm MST November 10.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Lean Construction Pocket Guide

Lean Construction isn't fiction.

But I introduce this little book here because a lot of readers and readers' spouses work in construction, and using Lean principles to eliminate waste and improve productivity is a must.

This pocket book (yes, it fits in your shirt pocket) was written by my husband, Dennis Sowards, a foremost expert and consultant in the industry. He has over 30 articles published in construction magazines and has taught Lean for several years.

This book lays out the principles of Lean in a language all can understand. It explains Lean tools such as 5S's, A3 Thinking, Kaizen, Kanban, Muda Walks, Poka Yoke, Spaghetti Charts, Value Stream Mapping, and much more that are essential to improving profits.

Why use Lean principles?

"Lean is an answer. Lean is all about increasing value and cutting waste. Doing Lean will lead to more loyal customers, more engaged employees which together drive more successful companies and stakeholders. Sounds like a Disney story, doesn’t it? While there is no guarantee of survival in this ever-changing business climate, Lean brings a higher probability of success than doing it the way we’ve always done it." -Dennis Sowards, Lean Construction Pocket Guide, pg 3.

The Lean Construction Pocket Guide is available on Kindle or hardcopy. Visit his website.

Monday, October 22, 2012

The Next Big Thing

Lizanne Sowards tagged me for "The Next Big Thing"-- a blog tag game being passed around the internet right now. It is fun because authors get to talk about our work-in-progress (WIP) ...and how often do we get to do that?

What is your working title of your book?


What genre does your book fall under? 

 LDS Romance. It is mildly a paranormal. The title refers to dreams Jessica has, and that she visit teaches a woman who sees the fate of relationships.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?   

Jessica leaves Arizona, her newlywed father, and ex-boyfriend to make a fresh start at an small Oregon oceanside village newspaper office, and unwittingly gets involved with the residents, learning their past lives and secrets.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?  

One year.
May we see an intro?    

Trrring! Jessica glanced at the chiming cell phone.

Vince. She moaned and disconnected the line so he could not leave a voicemail. “What part of it’s-over-between-us don’t you understand?” The phone bounced as it made contact with the passenger seat.

Jessica pushed Vince from her thoughts, thankful for the twelve hundred miles separating them, and stood from the over-packed car. She breathed to calm her fluttering stomach and stretched her aching muscles from the long drive. She already had the internship at The Ridge newspaper. The manager, Christine Strand, hired her on merit of the writing samples she had sent and also the recommendation of the head of Arizona State University’s journalism department.

Now to meet her boss.

Jessica stood before the building’s double doors and reached for the knob. The door flung open. A young man stepped out and almost ran her down. “Excuse me!” He glanced at her briefly before stepping around and continuing to the parking lot.

“No problem.” Jessica assured him, but suspected he hadn’t heard. She straightened the yellow plaid skirt and white blouse she wore, and checked the hair twist for loose frizz before entering the office.

The smell of newsprint, ink, and the cheerful smile of a twentyish girl greeted her at the counter. “May I help you?”

“Yes. I’m here to see Christine Strand.” Jessica gripped the shoulder strap of her laptop bag in an effort to control her shaking fingers.
The girl’s long, straight brown hair swayed as she headed to an open door at the back of the office. “Hey, Mom! Somebody’s here to see you.”

  Who or what inspired you to write this book?

A few years ago I visited the Puget sound. There was a lovely Victorian house standing high on a hill overlooking the sound. The story came to me of Jessica living in that house and looking down on a lonely beachcomber who spent the evening hours sitting on a rock. The man tells Jessica his life in bits and pieces as her own story also unfolds.

Thank you Lizanne for tagging me on The Next Big Thing! Liz is just getting started with her medieval blog and her upcoming novel, Shadows of Montsegur, and would love followers.

Friday, September 28, 2012

The Star Prophecy Book Trailer

I have made a book trailer for The Star Prophecy. It was a lot of fun making, and took several days gathering the pictures (thank you, and the music (thank you, Then I had to learn the movie program. 

So, it's true you can teach old dogs new tricks!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Author Valerie Steimle

Today my guest is non-fiction author Valerie Steimle. We have been members of the same writers group for years, and she has been an inspiration to me.

Hi, Valerie! Please tell us the titles of your published books. 

I have four books--all non-fiction from the columns I have written, and information I want to share.

Home is Where the Learning Is--Homeschool Lifestyles from Homeschool Moms, Home is Where the Heart Is, and Of One Heart--Being Single in the LDS World. 

The most recent is Dogs, Blogs, and Hobbits: Writings from a Widow's Perspective


Are you one of the lucky writers who get to write every day? 

At the same time each day? No. I write on average five days a week, or try to.  Life has its ups and downs sometimes.

What is a favorite book from your childhood? 

The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton. Love that book.

I love that story too. The book is 70 years old this year and it is still good. 
What is one of your favorite quotes?

 I love so many different quotes that I hear, but recently one surfaces a lot in my head:

We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.  We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
--the French Monk Philosopher, Teilhard de Chardin.  
I love what he said. We get so wrapped up in the day to day work of life that we forget that we are spiritual beings after all!

I love that quote, too. Next question: If you could travel through time, what time period would you visit? 

That’s a tough one.  I want to visit medieval Europe and the Book of Mormon times back in the days of Alma the Younger.
I'd go with you to both eras, but since time travel hasn't been invented, what do you do with your time when you aren’t writing? 

I cart boys to soccer, Young Men’s meetings, work and classes for school. We are also remodeling an old hotel into a museum and bed and breakfast. Do you think I have too much on my plate? LOL

The old hotel sounds exciting. I'd love to come visit. Sounds like a launchpad for a novel!
Okay, back to the questions. When did you start writing? 

A Young Women leader gave me a journal when I was 12 years old.  I've never stopped writing after that.
Do you have more books in the works?

Two. And I go back and forth on. I like it that way. The first, Thoughts from the Heart: Writings from the Gulf Coast of Alabama is a collection from my newspaper column.  The other, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Synagogue: A Conversion Story from Judaism to Mormonism.   

What is the best writing advice you’ve ever received? 

Never give up—always keep trying.

Thank you, Valerie, for the interview!

Thank you, Joan, for the opportunity to talk about writing. Really appreciate it!

Visit Valerie at her website, and her blog.

Readers: Please leave a comment. What is the best writing advice you have received? What tidbit can you give other authors?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Dark Days of Promise and Interview with author Shaunna Gonzales

Dark Days of Promise is author Shaunna Gonzales' debut novel and is chock full of promise.

Thirty-four year old Vicki Laramie must learn to trust before she can love, but she might die trying.
While Vicki’s children grapple with the death of their father -- a man whom she’s successfully fabricated as loving, a lie her rebellious teenager recognizes -- she must find a way to support her family and find a role model for her boys. She never intends to fall for Staff Sergeant Chase, her best friend’s son, who suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). She’d much rather choose a safer man to love, but her children have a voice in the decision she makes. With two deaths to deal with, a suitor after her money, a rebellious son, and Sergeant Chase’s repeated attacks, she can only hope to survive the danger she faces. If she doesn’t, her children will be left without either parent.

Oooh! Sounds suspenseful!

Shaunna, it is so good to have you on my blog today! First question: 

Where did you get the idea for Dark Days of Promise

Would you believe me if I said the Lord? I had this love story so smooth that it bored me, the writer to tears, literally. I knew I had to "speed" it up, give it something to make it fly but didn't know what. I prayed and pulled my chair up to the computer. My fingers flew with very few mistakes, something that is unusual for me. That scene is in the book with very few changes -- only a few grammatical corrections. I'll give you a hint: Victoria goes flying!

How did you choose the title? 

Dark Days of Promise, was initially inspired by an untitled Christmas tale for the young women I was working with at the time. I thought the story was good and targeted their needs but the comments I got were along the lines of, "Wow, that's a real dark story." I responded with, "But it is so full of promise!" After the final veto and the passing of the season the title came to life every time someone asked me what I was working on.
What surprises you the most about being a published author? 
The work that goes into promoting a single title. I'm hoping that with more titles the work doesn't increase. How would I get the third title written?
Hey, I agree with you on that. So--what advice to you give to aspiring authors? 

Write what you know and love. Write for yourself, not your imagined perfectly matched editor or publisher. Should you one day find them, they will, if they know their stuff and we all hope they do, bruise you and your precious fledgling novel. (Smile - those bruises heal and make you both better.)

What are your goals in writing, your next project? 
To write several novels before my health fails. Right now I'm working on finishing Talisman: Crisscross in Time. I'm hoping to have it ready to go when the editor asks for it. That means pressure on me.
Why should we read Dark Days of Promise?

I hope readers will become more aware of PTSD. It effects more than the veterans and their families, but all who love them. It isn't unusual for me to be talking with someone and get this "Oh, they are dealing with Post Traumatic Stress" this way or that way. The "Disorder" part, as far as I have learned, comes from intense stress, such as battle and other potentially fatal situations. Some deal with PTSD with faith and prayers on the one hand while others use counseling and sometimes drugs to manage the disorder. But for me, my PTSD is rather low key and manageable.

What is something that most people don’t know about you that you wouldn’t mind sharing?

Wow! I've really pulled back recently. I'm scared to death of being stalked.

What? Well, that issue we will address in the interview for your next novel. :-) Thank you, Shaunna, for the interview!

Reader can buy Dark Days of Promise here.
Visit Shaunna Gonzales on her blog.

Please leave a comment for Shaunna!