Weather Report, July 13

Beach umbrellas 2

THE CURRENTLY FEATURED BOOKS ARE “BENEATH THE STONES,” BY SUSAN CORYELL AND “BLACK TIDE RISING,” BY KELVIN SINGLETON. YOU WILL FIND THEM BY SCROLLING DOWN IMMEDIATELY BENEATH THIS POST.

UPCOMING ON SNOWFLAKES IN A BLIZZARD …

JULY 14-16: “COLLISION COURSE,” BY JOE BROADMEADOW AND “CONSCIOUSLY CONNECTING,”  BY HOLLAND HAIIS.

Joe Broadmeadow brings a key ingredient to his first police novel, “Collision Course”  – experience. He spent 20 years with the East Providence, RI police department, retiring as a captain, and like most members of his profession, he has been conflicted about recent controversies involving police brutality. While he understands the pressure that beat cops are under – especially in an urban setting — he also knows that possessing a gun and a badge can bring out the worst in some people. Broadmeadow attacks that issue head-on in “Collision Course,” which revolves around a fatal police shooting and its ramifications in a small city.

Most of the time, machines are our friends and helpmates. But they are also jealous companions who tend to suck us into their influence to the exclusion of everything else. Holland Haiis has made a career out of disconnecting us – or, rather, teaching us how to connect with life instead of a computer screen.

JULY 17-20: “THINGS UNSAID,” BY DIANA Y. PAUL AND “THINK LIKE A WRITER,” BY TOM BENTLEY.

We’ve had a couple of Christian writers so far, but Diana V. Paul is our first to come from the Buddhist tradition. Her novel, “Things Unsaid,” dissects family and generational relationships not only from the traditional storytelling perspective – and she tells a compelling story – but also from the wellspring of her philosophical beliefs.

Tom Bentley is a writer’s writer, a veteran with the versatility of a Swiss Army knife.  He’s done non-fiction books, self-help books and novels. He’s written for magazines, Websites and anyone willing to hire him. And along that path, he has learned that there is something in their way of looking at the world that sets writers apart from other people. “Think Like a Writer” is a primer on how to make that perspective work for us in our writing.

OBSERVATIONS:

1. Holland Haiis, whose book “Consciously Connecting”  will be featured on Snowflakes this week, makes frequent use of radio to promote her work — not radio ads, but radio appearances. If you occupy a particular niche (and all four of the books profiled above fit into that category) radio talk show hosts are always looking for guests. You don’t have to be famous, just a person with something interesting to say and a vehicle with which to say it.

“I say ‘Yes’ to every opportunity that presents itself,” she says. “Some shows have larger audiences than others, but I believe that if you only look at numbers you are doing yourself a disservice. It’s impossible to know who might tune into a particular show, on a particular day, and how that may change your life. It’s also great to support others who are following their dreams as well. So the next time you’re asked to give an interview, any kind of interview, remember what could connect you to something really great…YES!”

2. Given the rise in shark attacks at some Atlantic beaches this summer, perhaps it’s safer to remain on the sand with a good beach read. Here are a few suggestions from books that have been “Snowflakes in a Blizzard” features this year:

Beneath the Stones. Featured on the site for one more day, this Susan Coryell novel combines romance, history and a ghost story. That equals beach book times three.

Caught. Books of short stories are perfect for the beach, because they can be read in small increments. This one, from New Zealand author Deidre Thurston, has as its theme the potential importance of everyday life events,

How Not to Avoid Jet Lag. Summer vacation often involves travel — and while your particular beach may not be exotic, the odds are you’ll enjoy Joshua Samuel Brown’s irreverent travelogue.

Downfall, by Deborah Teller Scott and Death of a Cabman, by Nina Boyd. I lump these two together because they are both “cozy mysteries” set in the UK, although Scott’s is contemporary and Boyd’s a period piece from the turn of the 19th century.

When Clouds Gather, by Ryan Jo Summers. Another blend of mystery and romance. The fact that its focus is a bed and breakfast makes it even better to take along on vacation.

Island Dogs. The whole idea of a vacation is to have fun, and B.M. Simpson’s rollicking novel about a group of expats who meet and bond in a Caribbean bar is vivid enough to transport you there.

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writersbridgebridgebuilder

Recently retired after 35 years with the News & Advance newspaper in Lynchburg, VA, now re-inventing myself as a novelist/nonfiction writer and writing coach in Lake George, NY.

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