Tag Archives: Kathryn Treat

Ronesa Aveela in “WHO’S ON THE SHELF WITH NONNIE JULES?”

Hello and welcome to “WHO’S ON THE SHELF?” with yours truly, Nonnie Jules!  Since we are a book club, you know we had to offer something that included a book shelf.  A lot of interviews merely cover an author’s work or an individual’s career stories.  Here on this “SHELF,”  we get down and dirty and ask the questions no other interviewer dare ask.  We ask the questions that you want to open up a book and find the answers to on your favorite authors and fellow book club members, but no one has dared to cover them.  WE get personal!  Because when you sit on the RRBC “SHELF,” YOU are an open book!

Today I have with me on the “SHELF” our Current “SPOTLIGHT” Author, Ronesa Aveela!!! 

Face_of_Ronesa

NJ:  Before we get started, how does the “shelf” feel to you?  Is it comfy?

Rebecca:  Yes, but it’s a little scary sitting here for the world to see.

NJ:  Really?  Oh, honey, I love being way up here for the world to see!!  Let’s start by confirming whether or not your author name is your birth name or a pen name?  I mean, if you’re not too uncomfortable to answer -__________-

Rebecca:  It’s a pen name, but Rebecca is what my mother wanted to name me. There’s a story behind why she didn’t get to, but I won’t bore you with that, but I will tell you that neither Rebecca OR Ronesa are my birth names!

NJ:  Huh?  Guys, please ask R&R that question after the show.  We only have an hour here.   Tell us where you were born?  Do you still live there now?  If not, what city and state are you calling home these days?

Rebecca: I was born in New Hampshire. The old hospital where I was  born, Emerson Hospital, is now part of Keene State College.  Guess that’s why I like learning. I don’t live in the same home town that I grew up in, but it’s in the same county. I’m still in NH, the only state with no state income tax or sales tax.

NJ:  Married or single?

Rebecca: Happily single. Never married.

NJ:  Kids or no?  If yes, how many?  Sons or Daughters?

Rebecca:  No children. My youngest sister lived with me for quite a while, so I had her children around. They were plenty fun. I didn’t need my own.

NJ:  So, which of your niece and nephews, was your favorite? (And be honest…I’m sure they’re not reading this interview):

Rebecca: In regards to my niece/nephews. The oldest boy was probably my favorite, mainly because his mother had him when she was quite young. I practically was his mother at times.

NJ:  Pets?  What kind?

Rebecca: Currently no pets. I live on a busy highway. But my family had plenty of pets while I was growing up. Cats, dogs, rabbits, chickens, birds, a turtle, and even a white rat.

NJ:  What’s your favorite food?

Rebecca: Turkey soup.

NJ:  What’s your favorite color?

Rebecca: Blue.

NJ:  Favorite sport?

Rebecca: I’m not a sports fan, but when I was younger, my mother and I would watch the Red Sox (baseball).

NJ:  Favorite TV Show?

Rebecca: I have three that I watch. Once Upon a Time. Vampire Diaries, and its spinoff, The Originals.

NJ:  Favorite Actress/Actor?

Rebecca: Bette Davis. She was just so sassy!

NJ:  Oh, I loved Bette, too!  She was phenomenal!  When that woman played Baby Jane, I could have died and gone to heaven, she was so good at it!  OK, couch potato or workout nut? Be honest.

Rebecca: Couch potato. Or computer potato. All I do these days is sit at my computer, both for work and writing-related activities.

NJ:  Biggest pet peeve that makes you want to stomach-punch somebody?: (For the record, NJ does not condone violence but she does believe in being honest so she has to admit that there are times when she feels like some friendly stomach-punching is a little necessary).

Rebecca:  Arrogant know-it-alls who enjoying making others squirm when they do or say something wrong.

NJ:  Oh, you met her, too, huh?  Hahaha.  OK, so tell us, are you neat or messy?

Rebecca: Definitely messy. I like to clean up my work space after a project has been completed, though.

NJ:  Glad you said you liked to clean up, though.  I was about to suggest you be banned to that island!  Have you heard of it?  The one for all the messy folks?  Yes, if you should ever end up there, say hi to my hubby and oldest daughter.  Facebook or Twitter?

Rebecca: I understand Twitter better, but I think Facebook offers more depth to anything you want to push out to your fans/friends.

NJ:  Hmmm, interesting.  I tend to favor Twitter more.  Name two of the most supportive people you’ve met on either Facebook or Twitter? Hurry and tell us so we can become their friend.

Rebecca:  Nonnie and her team, and Alex Cabal (owner of Scribophile).

NJ:  Well, that was the sweetest thing to say!  Thanks, Ronesa!  Now, here’s the life or death question, meaning, if you answer incorrectly, you could be met with an untimely “accidental”/potentially fatal fall from this very high shelf. -________-  Nonnie Jules or Wonder Woman? Be honest.

Rebecca: Wonder Woman has had her 15 minutes of fame; she’s old news. Nonnie Jules is the new trend.

NJ:  Whew!  You hesitated too long, you had me worried there for a minute.  That’s why I kept inching closer and closer to you.  Didn’t mean to frighten you (as I scoot back down on the shelf).  So, everyone knows the names Mark Twain and Stephen King but how about you give us two names of some INDIE authors that you favor:

Rebecca: RRBC’s, Harmony Kent is one. And another one I discovered on GR {we don’t say the full name of this entity here} is Lasa Limpin.

NJ:  What is it about them that you’ve come to like?

Rebecca: I like stories that are different from plots you’ve read before. Both of these authors have unique tales to tell and a distinctive voice, and great descriptions.

NJ: I’m sure Harmony will be happy to hear this from you.  She is a gem, you know.  Name two favorite INDIE books that you’ve read:

Rebecca: Well, I guess the books from the above authors: The Glade (Harmony) and Uplanded (Lasa).

NJ:  ONE good INDIE book you read that was so good you wished the entire world would read it…

Rebecca: I’d like them to read mine, but I probably can’t say that, so let me look at my list. I’ve read so many great stories lately. There’s a book that’s still being written that I find intriguing. It’s called “McGuffy’s Law.”

NJ:  Uh, Ronesa, if it’s still being written, how did you read it?  (NJ:  Might she be a mind-book reader?)  But, OK, tell us what was so great about it?

Rebecca:  It’s a spiritual tale about puppies and God’s warriors. The puppies choose their owners. It’s not your typical fast-paced novel, but it shows how the puppies help their chosen owners.

NJ:  OK, sounds odd, but hey, different strokes for different folks, right?  After you read books, do you post reviews?

Rebecca:  Always.

NJ:  That’s awesome to hear!  Good for you!  What do you think readers should base their reviews on?

Rebecca:  If you’re a writer yourself, I think you should write a review looking at the book as both a writer AND a reader. With the writer’s eye, you are looking at the structure of the story, grammatical errors, punctuation problems, POV, and other issues. But first and foremost, you should look at it as non-writers look at it, people who are looking for good stories. Is it interesting? Is it a story worth telling? But, I find I cannot give someone five stars if their book has an overabundance of errors or is poorly written, no matter how great the story is.

NJ:  I’m with you there.  Poorly written and too many typos, which I call hiccups, makes for an uncomfortable read as well as a not-so-easy read.  I want my reads to be enjoyable and I want them to flow smoothly.  Are you one of those who are afraid to be honest in their reviews lest the author gets upset with you, or is honesty your best policy, especially in reviews?

Rebecca: I try to be honest, but also kind, although recipients who receive any negative feedback may not think so. It’s not that I’m afraid they’ll be upset with me but I don’t want to trash anyone’s hard work. There is always something nice you can say. But if you don’t point out problems, too, you won’t be credible as a reviewer and the author can’t grow. But as an author myself, I also now know how much work goes into writing, so I don’t always point out things that I would have if I were critiquing the novel. I would expect people to be honest reviewing mine, too. It may not be a book everyone will enjoy.

NJ:  Ronesa, have you read any poorly written books lately?

Rebecca: I started one or two that I couldn’t finish.

NJ:  Where’s your review so I can go and check it out?  LOL,  No, seriously.

Rebecca: If I ever DID make it through terrible books, I don’t think I would post a review. If I could contact the author, I might make some suggestions for places he or she could go to make improvements.

NJ:  Oh, so you’re not telling?  OK.  Are you an author, Ronesa?

Rebecca: Yes! First book was published in July of this year. So exciting.

NJ:  Which personality published?  Rebecca or Ronesa?  LOL, I’m just teasing…but the more that I think about it, I’m not. -_________-  How long have you been writing?

Rebecca: I wrote my first story in high school, many years ago. I have one that I’ve dabbled with off and on, but I didn’t really get into writing seriously until about two years ago when my friend asked me to help her with her story.

NJ:  What books have you written?

Rebecca:  “Mystical Emona: Soul’s Journey” is the first book in a series of three (and maybe even a couple prequels), but each can be read as a separate story. I hate to leave the reader hanging. Only the first chapter of the second is written. We took a break and started writing a non-fiction one about the rituals and customs in “Mystical Emona,” digging deeper into the ancient Thracian origins. That one will be out around December.

NJ:  Do you have a blog or website?

Rebecca: Yes: http://mysticalemona.com/

NJ:  Name three great online resources or organizations that every author should belong to:

Rebecca: In order of when I came across them. 1) Scribophile.com is a writer’s group. I found this after a publisher kindly rejected “Mystical Emona” and provided feedback from their readers. They suggested finding other readers, so I came across this group. It changed my life as a writer. I put “Mystical Emona” through three major rewrites from the suggestions people gave me, and I’ve made the most wonderful friends for life. (Look me up if you join!) 2) Rave Reviews Book Club!  I found this when we were close to publishing. (Thank you, Kathryn Treat, for the invitation!) You need reviews, right? Well, then I found out it was more than just getting reviews. Great support here, too!  3) GR. Another place you can get reviews, and also a way to get your novel visible to others.

NJ:  Which online resource or organization has helped you as an author the most?

Rebecca:  As far as helping with my writing, I have to say Scribophile, but I also see how supportive RRBC  is.

{Sounds of woman screaming for help} woman-falling-down

NJ:  OH, RONESA!  I’M SO SORRY! I’VE NO IDEA HOW THAT HAPPENED!  HERE, LET ME HELP YOU UP.  Are you OK?  Good, well let’s continue.   How were you helped by that OTHER organization?  {NJ mutters under her breath:  You know the one that almost got you killed a moment ago  -__________-}

Rebecca:  Scribophile really helped me hone my writing skills—all those subtle POV slips you are unaware of, what filters are and how to eliminate them, action vs. dialog tags, and so much more. Now, the great support continues here at RRBC. Taking me under your wing and shouting out to the world.

NJ:  Since you’re sitting on the SHELF, you’re obviously a Rave Reviews Book Club member, so what do you think of the club?

Rebecca:  Like writing, it’s a lot of work. But pleasant work. You all are such busy little ants preparing for success. You all work together great as a team.

NJ:  Ronesa, you are so right on all counts.  We are as busy as an army of ants, although our army (Governing Board) is a lot smaller.  Have you come across any other online entities like RRBC?

Rebecca: No. And I was looking for a while for a place to cuddle up and get comfortable.

NJ:  And then you found us?  How sweet.  Would you recommend RRBC to your friends and family?

Rebecca: Yes. Well. Most of my family and friends don’t read and write (novels). But I’ve met plenty of people in the writing world who I’ve encouraged to join.

NJ:  This shelf is getting hard on my hiney, so we’re going to wrap this interview up.  Any final words?

Rebecca: I just want to let you know how honored I am to have been selected. You have a lot of supportive people out there.

NJ:  Thank you so much for joining us here today, Ronesa!  That was an enjoyable interview until your little mishap?  Are you sure you’re OK?  {NJ doesn’t want any lawsuits or anything like that.  Her shelf isn’t fully insured yet}.  You have made our interview on the SHELF today, a quick one, but a most pleasant one!  To my guests, please support Ronesa by picking up a copy of her book, MYSTICAL EMONA:  SOUL’S JOURNEY, with its brand new cover!  You can also support Ronesa  by visiting her blog stops on her tour which ends on Saturday.  You can find the tour line up here.  Lastly, I’m sorry for the confusion.  Ronesa asked to be called  Ronesa, then she referred to herself as Rebecca the entire interview. {Shaking my head}.  Just know, Ronesa and Rebecca are one and the same.  

MysticalEmona_BookCover

Have you joined Rave Reviews Book Club yet?  Well, here’s your chance!  And since Ronesa was on the “SHELF” today, tell them she sent you.  Make it a great day, my friends.  We’ll see you next week, right here on the SHELF”!!

Advertisements

Joy Nwosu Lo-Bamijoko in “WHO’S ON THE SHELF WITH NONNIE JULES?”

Hello and welcome to “WHO’S ON THE SHELF?” with yours truly, Nonnie Jules!  Since we are a book club, you know we had to offer something that included a book shelf.  A lot of interviews merely cover an author’s work or an individual’s career stories.  Here on this “SHELF,”  we get down and dirty and ask the questions no other interviewer dare ask.  We ask the questions that you want to open up a book and find the answers to on your favorite authors and fellow book club members, but no one has dared to cover them.  WE get personal!  Because when you sit on the RRBC “SHELF,” YOU are an open book!

Today we have a very special guest on the SHELF with us.  Joy is one of our VIP members, that means she’s UBER-SUPPORTIVE, and if you’re a VIP, you get invited to our exclusive VIP Lounge.  Once a month, a random VIP member receives a special gift from the club, and since Joy sent me a letter explaining why she should be a guest on THE SHELF, what better gift to give her! (If you’d like to be a guest on THE SHELF, email me at RaveReviewsPresident@gmail.com and tell me why you should be).

100_0142

NJ:  Before we get started, how does the “shelf” feel to you?  Is it comfy?

Joy:  Very comfy. Thank you Nonnie. I had to move to the hard seat, best for my back.

NJ:  That’s fine.  I want you to be comfortable.  Let’s start by confirming whether or not your author name is your birth name or a pen name?

Joy:  My author name is a combination of my maiden name and my married name. That is why it is that long. It could be longer, but I have omitted a couple more names. The full name would be Joy Ifeoma Nroli Nwosu Lo-Bamijoko.

NJ:  Well, Joy, let me be the first to thank you for shortening that looooooooooooooong name!  Tell us where you were born?  Do you still live there now?  If not, what city and state are you calling home these days?

Joy:  I was born, and grew up in Enugu, Nigeria, a beautiful town on the foot of the hill, even though the name implies that the town is on top of the hill.  At 18, I left Enugu for Rome, Italy, and spent ten years in Rome, studying and waiting out the end of the then civil war in Nigeria. I returned to Lagos, Nigeria, in 1972, and spent three years working as a Radio producer, and twenty-three years as a university teacher. I migrated to New Jersey, USA  in 1996, and taught K-12 for ten years. I retired in 2008 and since then have  lived between Lagos, New Jersey and Los Angeles, USA.

NJ:  WOW!  You’ve lived all over the world, literally….and you know what, you look like a school teacher!  So, tell us, are you married or single?

Joy:  Fortunately separated for over twenty years. My husband, a Moslem refused to divorce me, and I, a Catholic, refused to take the initiative. So we have an impasse.

NJ:  You said Moslem, I do know that you guys use that version in Nigeria as opposed to Muslim.  Hmmmm…interesting fact.  Now back to this husband situation, so you’re still married then?  Now, Joy…I don’t want to see you on any internet dating sites, OK? You look mighty comfy and happy behind that Apple keyboard up there.  Kids or no?  If yes, how many?  Sons or Daughters?

Joy:  I always tell people that I have three kids, and I do. One, my daughter, is biological, and the others, a boy and a girl were inherited. In my culture, we can inherit orphaned kids from within the family. This is how I came to inherit my late brother’s son, and my late sister’s daughter.

NJ:  Now, I like that about your culture.  That is wonderful.  Do you have a favorite child?  And be honest…I’m sure they’re not reading this interview…

Joy:  I will not lie. I love them all, but I have a special spot for my biological daughter.

NJ:  FINALLY!  Somebody up on this darned shelf, speaks the truth!!!!!!  Thanks for that, Joy…but even though I loved you speaking the truth, you are not supposed to have any favorites being a mommy, but since the others are really your niece and nephew, you’re OK with that truth.

NJ:  Pets?  What kind?

Joy:  I am a cat lover, being a Leo. The last time I can remember, I had three of them named, Calico, Frisky, and Wolverine respectively. I don’t keep pets anymore, because of my moving around so often.

NJ:  Why do you move around so often, Joy.

Joy:  I am just a restless soul, Nonnie.  I started travelling when I was quite young and I’m still travelling.

NJ:  Well, I guess the good thing about that is, it lets everyone know you’re not dead, right?  When you get older and you sit still for so long, that’s how people tend to think of you…as a breathing corpse.  Good for you!  We want to know all about you so now we’re getting really (randomly) personal.  You can learn a lot about someone just knowing their favorite food, so what’s yours?

Joy:  When I want to give myself a treat, I go for Fufu. Fufu is made from all kinds of flour paste: rice, semolina, wheat, corn, or oats, and eaten with a variety of soups. I like oat fufu with egusi or okra soup best.

NJ:  OK, you’re throwing out some words and names of stuff that I’m not going to even BEGIN to ask what they are.  We know you have a favorite color and judging from the pics on the wall behind you, and the darling babies in those pics, all in red and black, I’m going to shoot for the combo of red and black.  Am I right?

Joy: Nope.  It’s Blue. It is so calming

NJ:  {Clearly uncomfortable because Joy proved her wrong PUBLICLY}.  Uh, Joy…the next time I’m wrong about something, i’m gonna need you to pretend as if I’m right.  Just in public, you know…I have a reputation for NEVER being wrong and for being one of the smartest folks around. I guess my people didn’t send you THAT memo before you made it to the shelf.  Heads will roll when this interview is over.   Joy, if you’re done correcting me, would you like to share your favorite sport with us?

Joy:  I love taking long walks very early in the mornings. I like inhaling that early morning breeze, and feeling it on my face. Very refreshing.

NJ:  {Here we go again.  Another guest who isn’t listening to me.  Well, she seems to be in her own world with that response, so I’m going to let it go.  Maybe I’ll get down from this shelf early today}.  What’s your favorite TV Show?

Joy:  Downton Abbey for sure.  I am waiting for the new season of the Downton Abbey to begin in January. I love other shows too, which I will not mention because you asked for one, but my favorites are usually English dramas.

NJ:  Thanks for following THAT one question rule, Joy, and for the record, I like English reality.  I can’t have it in my real world, all the catty-ness and fighting and backstabbing, so I have to get it somewhere.  Actually, I’m trying to hurry through this interview so I can watch a replay of one of my Housewives shows AND catch SCANDAL right after.  Do you have a favorite Actress/Actor?

Joy:  George Clooney was my favorite, but he is now taken.  Still, I like the man, his suaveness, and kind heart.

NJ:  I loved him, too!  I was highly disappointed to find out that he would no longer be able to serve as the lover in my dreams, and honey, I loved that man in my dreams!  His new wife better watch her back!  Couch potato or workout nut? Be honest ☺

Joy:  I would say couch potato. After my walks in the mornings, I sit a lot working on my lap top. My doctor tells me that I must sit less, as if I don’t know that.

NJ:  Joy, listen to the doctor, please.  When we are writers, sitting is the worst part of the job, so we must make it a priority to get up off our tushes and exercise more.  It keeps us healthy.  That, and the fact that it keeps our butts from spreading, too. Share with us your biggest pet peeve that makes you want to stomach-punch somebody?: (For the record, NJ does not condone violence but she does believe in being honest so she has to admit that there are times when she feels like some friendly stomach-punching is a little necessary).

Joy:  I cannot stand discrimination of any type. I come from a culture where women are relegated to the background, and I have spent my life fighting it.

NJ:   I’m with you there.  Joy, I must admit, I wouldn’t last one day in your culture.  My hubby always says that if we’re ever on a plane and it’s hi-jacked, I’m gonna be the first one to get hit in the mouth with the barrel of the hi-jacker’s gun.  I don’t know when to be quiet but I surely won’t have a man telling me when I should be.  It’s that confrontational bone I inherited from my grandmother, I suppose.  Don’t like anyone bossing me around.  So, are you neat or messy?

Joy:  I am neat. I do not like clutter.

NJ:  Joy, I knew there was some reason I liked you!  Me, too!  I think that all messy folks (including my hubby and oldest daughter) should be relegated to their own island with no way to get off!  Facebook or Twitter?

Joy:  I prefer Twitter, it is easier to use. I find FaceBook very invasive.

NJ:  I find Facebook to be “something.”  And I have another name for it, but I’m not gonna say it here, because all my church-going friends read my interviews sometimes.  Name two of the most supportive people you’ve met on either Facebook or Twitter? Hurry and tell us so we can become their friend.

Joy:  I have two friends on FB. Enitan Doherty-Mason follows my blogs and reacts to them regularly. Pete Vanlaw and I read and comment on one another’s FB posts.

NJ:  Oh, OK.  They are names I’m not familiar with so you must invite them to join us here.  Nonnie Jules or Wonderwoman? Be honest ☺

Joy:  You really want to know?!  You of course, Nonnie. You were right, you are Wonderwoman.

NJ:  Well, Joy, in all honesty, I’m not the one who refers to me as Wonderwoman, it’s that Team of mine, but thank you so much for being so kind. My Team is the  WonderTeam!  Let’s move on.  Joy, everyone knows the names Mark Twain and Stephen King, but how about you give us two names of some INDIE authors that you favor

Joy:  The Indie authors I know are the ones I met through our great #RRBC.  I have met quite a few, but you said to name only two, so here goes. For now, Rhani D’Chae, and Tamie Dearan.

NJ:  Oh, I’m so glad they’re from the club!  We do have awesome members, don’t we?  And I must say, that I am in love with SHADOW OF THE DRILL!  That Rhani D’Chae is a phenomenal storyteller!  Why don’t you tell us what it is about them that you’ve come to like…

Joy:  Rhani blew my mind with her “Shadow of the Drill” story, and the beauty of the story telling, and Tamie wrote a very entertaining romance. I love romances, and that was the best I have read so far.

NJ:  OK, I’m glad you got to experience what I did with the SHADOW!  Now, name two favorite INDIE books that you’ve read and enjoyed.

Joy:  Apart from the two I have already mentioned, I will not forget the deliciously good story of “Jazz Baby” by Beem Weeks, and the wickedly horrifying story of “Daydreams Daughter, Nightmare’s Friend” by Nonnie Jules.

NJ:  I speak for myself and Beem in thanking you for saying to the world that you took the time to read and also enjoyed our books.  THANK YOU!  Joy, you’re doing pretty good in sticking to just my questions, so name one good INDIE book you read that was so good you wished the entire world would read it.

Joy:  Of all the ones I have already mentioned, I will root for “Shadow of the Drill.”

NJ:  {You know that uncomfortable moment when you are nominated for an award but your best friend gets it instead?  I’m feeling that right now since she had the nerve to not name MY book, right here in my face!  She’s about to get “accidentally”  bumped a little closer to the edge of this shelf}.  What was so great about THAT book?

Joy:  It was just so well written,  and the story gave an insight into the dark side of our world, which we hear about, but which we know very little about.

NJ:  You know, Joy…even though you didn’t name MY book, I’m going to have to agree with you about SHADOW OF THE DRILL and that’s because, you are so on the mark about that book. IT WAS ONE OF THE MOST WELL-WRITTEN BOOKS I’VE EVER READ!  After you read books, do you post reviews?

Joy:  I do now, since I started publishing my own books. I have since gone back and started reviewing books I read before which I did not review.

NJ:  That is very kind of you.  I think there are quite a few of us who had never written a review before we became authors and once we realized the importance of them, we changed our habits.  I’m hoping now that you’ve shared what you’ve done, others will follow your lead and go back and post reviews on past books they’ve read.  What do you think readers should base their reviews on?

Joy:  I like a good and entertaining story, told well. My limits for typos or errors in a story is usually three, beyond that, I will still enjoy a good story, but will penalize it in my rating for the many typos or errors.

NJ:  Oh my, I thought I was a harsh critic!  Are you one of those who are afraid to be honest in their reviews lest the author gets upset with you, or is honesty your best policy, especially in reviews?

Joy:  Not at all. I will always give a hint in my reviews if I find something wrong with the read. Those hints usually determine the way I rate the books. I always try to find something good to say about any book I read whether I rate them high or not.

NJ:  Have you read any poorly written books lately?

Joy:  Unfortunately yes. One in particular was so full of errors, I nearly did not finish it.

NJ:   Where’s your review so I can go and check it out?  LOL.  No, seriously.

Joy:      Like I said, I still tried to find something good to say about the book after my grouse with the errors I found. I would rather give you a link to one of my good reviews. 

NJ:  {NJ:  When I saw that link, for a minute there I thought Joy had REALLY given me a link to a bad review!  LOL}  How long have you been writing?

Joy:  I wrote and published my first two books in the Italian language when I was in Italy. That was over forty years ago. Back in Nigeria, I wrote regularly for newspapers and magazines. I started writing again in earnest, with my first book in English in 2008. I have not stopped writing since then.

NJ:  What books have you written?

Joy:  My Italian books are not available here, and they are actually out of print, but one of them is now being re-printed. Apart from those two, I have two more books; “Legend of the Walking Dead: Igbo Mythologies,” and “Mirror of Our Lives: Voices of Four Igbo Women.”

Legend of the Walking Dead by Joy Nwosu Lo-Bamijoko

Mirror of Our Lives by Joy Lo-Bamijoko

NJ:  I love those titles.  Which one do you think is the best?

Joy:  The two books are in two different genres, and I like them both.

NJ:  Well, it seems the books fared better than your “favorite” kid question.  HaHaHa!  Do you have a blog or website?

Joy:  Yes, I always invite guests to visit my blog at: jinlobify.com, and my websites are:

http://sbprabooks.com/JoyNwosuLoBamijoko/

http://sbpra.com/joylobamijoko/

NJ:  We will have to go check those out and Follow your blogs and sites.  Name three great online resources or organizations that every author should belong to

Joy:  Rave Reviews Book Club of course. I am also a member of the GR, (I better abbreviate it), but I haven’t seen the benefits yet.

NJ:  I’m glad you only used the initials.  Someone obviously sent you that memo on how I feel about that site.  You say you haven’t seen the benefits yet?  Well, have you noticed any profanity, book/author bashing, incredible vileness over there?  Well, you’ve seen the benefits.  Which online resource or organization has helped you as an author the most?

Joy:  Again, Rave Review Book Club, no other

NJ:  So happy to hear you say that.  I’m sure my Team appreciates it.  How is RRBC helping you?

Joy:  To begin with, since I joined #RRBC, my followers have increased on Twitter, as well as on all other online social sites. And here I am sitting on the shelf!   My blog has also been visited several times even by non members of our club. The support I receive has been awesome! Do I continue?

NJ:  No, I think we get the gist of what you’re trying to say.  You absolutely LOVE Rave Reviews Book Club!  Now tell us in one word what you really think of the club…

Joy:  Fantastico!

NJ:  Have you come across any other online entities like it?

Joy:  Nada!

NJ:  Would you recommend RRBC to your friends and family?

Joy:  Yes. I don’t have friends or family members who are authors, but when I do, I will enlist them into our #RRBC.

NJ:  Oh, Joy…they don’t have to be Authors to belong to this club.  Our membership is open to anyone willing to adhere to the Policies and Procedures of the club.  So, keep that in mind and refer your friends who are readers!  This shelf is getting hard on my hiney now, so we’re going to wrap this interview up.  Any final words?

Joy:  Just a few words. This experience, of sitting on the shelf, has been extraordinary for me.  #RRBC has a way of making members feel real good. Moreover, the way it allows members to participate in every activity, gives one a sense of belonging, and the shelf is a wonderful avenue for getting to know ourselves better. Thank you, Nonnie for giving me this opportunity, and thank you great members of our great #RRBC for allowing me to share more of me with you today. May more of us have a chance to sit on it, too, so that we can get to know more of us better. Thank you.

NJ:  Thank you so much for hanging out on THE SHELF with us today, Joy!  You are truly a joy to know.  You have made our interview on the SHELF today pretty interesting…I’m glad you didn’t, you know, accidentally fall off or bump your head against the tree branch or anything like that.  To my guests, please pick up a copy of one of Joy’s books to show her how happy we are that she took the time to share with us today {even though she liked Rhani D’Chae’s book better than mine!…but that’s OK…..*Smiles*}

Have you joined Rave Reviews Book Club yet?  Well, here’s your chance!  And since Joy was on the “SHELF” today, tell them she sent you.  Make it a great day, my friends, or not.  The choice is yours!   We’ll see you next week, right here on the SHELF” with a ANOTHER INTERESTING GUEST!!

Harmony Kent in “WHO’S ON THE SHELF WITH NONNIE JULES?”

Hello and welcome to “WHO’S ON THE SHELF?” with yours truly, Nonnie Jules!  Since we are a book club, we had to offer something that included a book shelf.  A lot of interviews merely cover an author’s work or an individual’s career stories.  Here on this “SHELF,”  we get down and dirty and ask the questions no other interviewer dare ask.  We ask the questions that you want to open up a book and find the answers to on your favorite authors and fellow book club members, but no one has dared to cover them.  WE get personal!  Because when you sit on the RRBC“SHELF”, YOU are an open book!

Today I have with me on the “SHELF” RRBC’s  ADMINISTRATIVE ASSTAuthor, HARMONY KENT!!!

20140611_192259

NJ:    Welcome, Harmony!  Or, shall I say HARMZ?  Because that’s what we call her on our board.  But, before we really get started, how does the “SHELF” feel to you?  Is it comfy?

HARMZ:  It’s very comfy, thanks. And CLEAN—and the best thing is . . . No spiders! Lol.  It’s a bit high though (did I mention I don’t like heights? Ah well, it’s a good thing my philosophy in life is to feel the fear and do it anyway! Maybe I’ll get real brave in a minute, and DANCE on the shelf!).

NJ:  Uh, OK…Just no dancing up here.  I don’t have insurance on this place yet.   So, how about we start by confirming whether or not the name we know you as, is your birth name or a pen name?

HARMZ:  Pen name. Harmony is the English translation of my first name, which is Japanese in origin. My surname I took from the county I was calling home at the point I published my first book. Although I no longer live in Kent, my pen name ‘Harmony Kent’ has become my brand name, so I don’t really want to change it at this point.

NJ:  Good, because we like you as Harmony Kent.  I mean, how would you look as a Smarden Kent, or Crundale Kent or even Reading Street Kent?  Hey, wait a minute…that last one could have worked!  Oh, well…if you ever want to change your brand, that last one is a go! So, tell us where you were born.  Do you still live there now?  If not, what city and state are you calling home these days?

HARMZ:  I was born in Catterick, in the North of England. But I never lived there. There’s quite a story behind that one! Do you want to hear it?

NJ:  (Pretends to look at her watch which isn’t even set to the correct time) Oh, no, HARMZ…I wish we had the time but I’m a little rushed today.  I have another appointment after we’re done here.  So, are you Married or single?

HARMZ:  I was supposed to be one baby boy, born in September. The reality was two baby girls born in July. My dad was in the army, and my mum was registered at the family accommodation at the barracks in Catterick. At the time she went into premature labour, she was staying with her parents in Leeds. Instead of the ambulance taking her to Leeds infirmary (about a half hour journey, tops), there was some mix up, and they took her all the way to Catterick! (About three hours away.) They had to pull over twice on the way, as they thought mum was going to give birth there and then. I’m glad she managed to hang on, as my sister and I probably wouldn’t have made it otherwise.  You heard it here, on the shelf, first. An online exclusive! A never-told-before-now story.

NJ:  (Am I crazy, or did I just tell her I didn’t want to hear that story? Another one!  Does Marlena not vet this people?) What an incredible story!  You’re a twin! OOOOOOK, well, moving on (again), are you married or single?  (If she answers single, I will know why.  She’s a mighty presumptious one and she talks entirely too much.  This is going to be a looooong interview!)

HARMZ:  Single, but I’m still hoping!

NJ:  (Mutters under her breath, Yea, well you keep hope alive, Ms. TalksALot) Kids or no?  If yes, how many?  Sons or Daughters?

HARMZ:  No kids. Just lots of cute gremlins who claim to be my nieces and nephews.

NJ:  Whew!  For a minute there I thought you were gonna say Leprechauns!  Skerred me silly.  Inside joke on this one, y’all. (We all must thank Aoife Sheridan for my constant state of terror at the mere mention of critters, creatures, etc, now.).  Any pets?  If so, what kind?

HARMZ:  No pets. I would love a dog, but with my physical limitations it wouldn’t be fair on the dog. I couldn’t look after it well enough, or take it for long walks, etc.

NJ:  Physical limitations?  (Hmmmmm, I would like to know more about that but if you give this woman a foot, she goes 10 miles…so forget about it!) HARMZ, share with us your favorite food? (There goes  my mouth-water again, every time I hear the word FOOD.  Now, I want Wendy’s.  I hate Wendy’s!  That’s probably because Nicholas  has been going on and on about there not being a Wendy’s in Greece anymore.  Now he’s tapped into my sub-con).

HARMZ:  Pizza! I am definitely the Pizza Queen. I have to exert great self-discipline not to eat it every day!

NJ:  Yes, who could not love Pizza?  I think GOD should put everyone who doesn’t like pizza, on an island, with no boats, so they can’t get off.  It’s downright sacriligious to not like PIZZA!!!! So, what’s your favorite color?

HARMZ:  Umm, now, that depends on what mood I’m in! Sometimes blue, other times brown, and then at others… purple. I’m a pretty eclectic personality. (I’m just glad there’s not a bigger story behind this).

NJ:  You look like a purple girl.  Yea, I like to give people colors.  So, give us your favorite sport, if you have one.

HARMZ:  I don’t play sports, and never enjoyed P.E. at all. I used to love walking, and would drive up to Scotland during vacations, and just walk. These days the only thing I can do, whether I’m able to wear my prosthetic limb or am in the wheelchair, is swim. I like to watch tennis on T.V., as well as rugby or the Grand Prix.

NJ:  Favorite TV show…

HARMZ:  Ooh, it would have to be the Game of Thrones. Pretty hard to beat.

NJ:  Favorite Actress/Actor…

HARMZ:  Don’t really have one.

NJ:  You don’t?  I thought everyone had those.  Oh well… So are you a couch potato or workout nut?  Be honest…

HARMZ:  Couch potato. I used to be very active and always on the go. These days, I’ve had to find activities I can do sitting down. Which is how I got into writing in the first place! So, some good came out of my injury.

NJ:  HARMZ, what’s your biggest pet peeve that makes you want to stomach-punch somebody?  (For the record, NJ does not condone violence but she does believe in being honest so she has to admit that there are times when she feels like some friendly stomach-punching is a little necessary.  She also feels she is not alone in these feelings).

HARMZ:  Rudeness. In any way, shape or form. I have met rudeness online, but that never gets me as much as when I encounter it in a face to face situation. There is just no excuse. But really, the person such rude folks hurt the most, is themselves. Sadder still, they don’t see it. When I’m done being annoyed, I end up feeling sorry for them, and their miserable lives.

NJ:  Better to encounter the rudeness face-to-face.  That way, one of two things will happen:  *You might have the opportunity to practice your restraint OR *You might have the opportunity to use that stomach-punch technique, I love so much!  Are you neat or messy?

HARMZ:  I used to be a neat freak. Not anymore. I still have a place for everything, but the cleaning doesn’t get done anywhere near as much as I would like. I get there eventually. I’ve learned to find a compromise. Because sometimes, no matter how much I want to take care of a little job here and there, my mobility and/or pain levels just won’t let me. I have no choice but to accept it and let it go. I’ve had to learn how not to be busy.

NJ:  Facebook or Twitter?

HARMZ:  Twitter. I love the brevity of the tweets, and the immediacy of it. I feel a bit daunted by the whole FaceBook thing. I don’t know why, I just do.

NJ:  I love Twitter the most, too.  Probably because I’m old and it’s the easiest for me.  HARMZ, name two of the most supportive people you’ve met on either Facebook or Twitter.  Hurry and tell us so we can become their friend.

HARMZ:  Well, apart from you and the club, I would have to name Monica (@authorqspades) who founded and manages The Review Board, and Jazz (@YCorreaFB) who founded and manages the All Authors Magazine. These two ladies have been with me from the very beginning of my online life, and have been so uber supportive I don’t think I could ever repay them! Well, here’s my chance to perhaps give a little something back: Thanks, ladies!

NJ:  That was sweet of you to say, about me and the club, that is.  I don’t know those other people. So here’s your chance to continue on that sweet-streak…Nonnie Jules or WonderWoman?  Be honest (but don’t get kicked off the shelf)  -______-

HARMZ:  Is there a difference? I can’t tell!

NJ:  Why, that’s the most perfect response!  Everyone knows the names Mark Twain and Stephen King but how about you give us two names of some INDIE authors that you favor.

HARMZ:  Bette A. Stevens and Zoe Cannon.

NJ:  What is it about them that you’ve come to like?

HARMZ:  Bette A. Stevens (Member) writes lovely children’s books, and novels for older folks, too. She is such a supportive lady, and I admire her greatly. (It was actually one of her posts that led me to discover Rave Reviews Book Club).   Zoe Cannon writes brilliant YA Dystopian novels, and is a nice person too. Her books ask important questions, and really make the reader THINK.

NJ:  Name two favorite INDIE books that you’ve read.

HARMZ:  The whole ‘Torturer’s Daughter’ series by Zoe Cannon and Alan McDermot’s ‘Tom Gray’ Series.

NJ:  ONE good INDIE book you read that was so good you wished the entire world would read it…

HARMZ:  That would have to be White Chalk, by Pavarti K Tyler.

NJ:  What was so great about it?

HARMZ:  It is a hard hitting book, that deals with some difficult issues, and doesn’t pull any punches at the end. Very well written, and well worth a read. But, beware, it’s not light entertainment.

NJ:  HARMZ, after you read books, do you post reviews?

HARMZ:  Yes, always. They are the lifeblood of an author, and very important to prospective readers. I always check out reviews, as well as a book’s sample, before I make a purchase. I am saddened to find that less than 10% of people who buy a book, will leave a review.

NJ:  What do you think readers should base their reviews on?

HARMZ:  The quality of the writing. Definitely not on how the book made them feel! I recently saw a book marked down because it scared the reader! What??? It was obviously well written enough to elicit such a response. The written review was positive, but they gave 2 stars. This makes no sense to me!

I look at a number of factors:

The enjoyment and ‘flow’ of the reading.

The number of errors, typos, etc. Has the book been well proofread?

The quality of the editing, if any. Is the writing passive? Are the plot, pacing and character development well done? Is the ending well rounded?

NJ:  Are you one of those who are afraid to be honest in their reviews lest the author gets upset with you, or is honesty your best policy, especially in reviews??

HARMZ:  I always leave an honest review, and refuse to be bullied into doing anything otherwise. I once received a revenge review (1 Star) from an author who hasn’t even read my book, because I dared to leave him a 3 Star review, within my role as an Awesome Indies reviewer. I reported it to GoodReads, but they chose to do nothing, and the review still stands. Which is a shame, because—having so few reviews to start with—it really brings down the book’s rating. Still, if people bother to compare it to the other reviews, they are bound to see that it doesn’t match up to the others at all.

I decided that no response was the best response. I alerted Awesome Indies to the situation, and they changed their policy, so that all their reviewers are now anonymous under the AI umbrella. It is such a shame that this can happen. The same author also engaged in abusive emails with the president of AI, so all in all not a great guy!

Such unprofessional behavior saddens me deeply. BUT, I will NEVER be coerced into giving a less than honest review. I always try to remain objective in the reviews I give, and always look for something positive to say, no matter how poorly the book might be written. I will certainly never attack the author, or just be plain nasty. It’s not in my nature.

I also try to make comments that the author can use to learn from. I have learnt and grown so much since I first published The Battle for Brisingamen. And it is thanks to honest reviewers! I wouldn’t have known there was a problem without them.

NJ:  Some people just act like children, don’t they?  (Some are just plain crazy!) So, have you read any poorly written books lately?

HARMZ:  Way too many, unfortunately. There have been some books that would have been brilliant if only for some proofreading and editing. I review for a couple of organisations, as well as trying to read as many as I can from the Rave Reviews catalogue, so I see a LOT of books. I am always amazed when I read a book that has two or more typos a page. It’s like: did the author READ their book at all?

NJ:  Are you an author yourself?

HARMZ:  I am!

NJ:  How long have you been writing?

HARMZ:  I started writing in September 2012, after a major life change. My first book was published in May 2013, and there has been no stopping me since.

NJ:  What’s the title of your book(s) so we can all run out and get a copy?

HARMZ:  The Battle for Brisingamen, a Fantasy Fiction Novel. Published May 2013.

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00GNQVPOK?*Version*=1&*entries*=0

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GNQVPOK

The Glade, a Thriller, Mystery, Suspense Novel, Published November 2013, and IndieBRAG Medallion honoree!

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00CNUQCXO?*Version*=1&*entries*=0

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00CNUQCXO

Elemental Earth, A Young Adult Fantasy Ficiton Novel, published 31st July 2014.

NJ:  Which one do you think is the best?

HARMZ:  While The Glade will always have a special place in my heart, I would have to say that my latest book is my best. My writing is much tighter, and my voice stronger. I have learned such a lot since I started out, and I feel all of this has come to fruition in Elemental Earth.

NJ:  Do you have a blog?

HARMZ:  I do. You can find me at http://harmonykent.co.uk. Please come along and say “hi”—I’d love to see you!

NJ:  Name three great online resources or organizations that every author should belong to.

HARMZ:

*Rave Reviews Book Club.

*Some kind of Social Media (twitter has worked really well for me).

*Deviant Art. Not so obvious at first, but invaluable if you make your own book covers. Actually, it’s also great for finding artists who can make them for you. Always be sure to check the copyright and usage terms, and always credit the artist.

NJ:  Which online resource or organization has helped you the most?

HARMZ:  Rave Reviews Book Club! Honestly.

NJ:  How has RRBC helped you exactly, HARMZ?

HARMZ:  There is so much support given to each and every member. I feel I have met some good friends as well. I haven’t found anywhere near so much support anywhere else on the web. It is also a great forum for me to continue to help fellow authors, which is something I started doing as soon as I’d published my first book and identified the need to help fellow indies.

NJ:  Since you’re sitting on the SHELF, you’re obviously a Rave Reviews Book Club member, so what do you think of the club?

HARMZ:  Awesome! I can’t think where I would be without it!

NJ:  Have you come across any other online entities like RRBC?

HARMZ:  None whatsoever.

NJ:  This shelf is getting hard on my hiney, so we’re going to wrap this interview up. Any final words?

HARMZ:  Thanks so much for allowing me to sit up here with you, it’s been fun. Even though you have been so nosey! (Just kidding).   I know it takes a lot of time and effort to keep your shelf clean and well stocked, and I really appreciate having the opportunity to climb up here and enjoy the sunshine for a while.

NJ:  Thank you so much, HARMZ!  That was an awesome interview (you were a little long-winded like your friends Mrs. Slaughter & Mrs. Treat, but that’s OK…hehehehe).  You have made our time on the SHELF, a most pleasant one! Finding out about your physical limitations makes us appreciate who you are even more, because you are truly an inspiration!  You’re always upbeat and encouraging to others, it’s a little hard to fathom that there is anything that could be slowing you down, so thank you…we are truly honored to have you in our midst at RRBC. To my guests, please support Harmony by picking up a copy of either of her 3 books.  You can find them all listed on her Author Page at 4WillsPublishing and by visiting her blog stops on her tour which ends on Saturday.  You can find the complete tour line up here.  Have you joined Rave Reviews Book Club or signed or used any of the services at 4WillsPublishing yet?  Well, here’s your chance!  Book your own blog tour here and get your chance to sit on the shelf with yours truly.  It really is an awesome place to be, but remember, to sit here, you have to be a member of RRBC!  And since Harmony was on the “SHELF” today, if you join RRBC after reading her interview here, please tell them she sent you.   Make it a great day, my friends.  We’ll see you next week, right here on the “SHELF”!!

{NOTE:  Harmony is NOT the current “SPOTLIGHT” Author.  This tour is sponsored by:  4WillsPublishing}

The Battle For Brisingamen by Harmony KentThe Glade by Harmony Kent3D-Book cover Elemental Earth

%d bloggers like this: