Authors Talk About It

Book Award Contest & Podcast

Category: memoir

Nowhere Else I’d Want to Be: A Memoir – Entered in 2017 ATAI Book Award Contest

5 Stars

Click here to get your copy!

Carol D. Marsh

Nowhere Else I Want to Be is Carol Marsh’s heart-wrenching memoir of her time living and working at Miriam’s House in Washington, D.C. She founded Miriam’s House in 1996, as a place for homeless women suffering with AIDS and addiction to receive the care, shelter, and safety that they so desperately needed. In providing for these women, who came from backgrounds incredibly different than her own, Carol had to learn to face her own shortcomings: privilege, discrimination, poor leadership skills, and an overwhelming, yet often denied, desire to be liked. In doing so, she, along with the staff and residents of Miriam’s House, transformed it into a safe haven for victims of AIDS and their families, saving dozens of lives in more ways than one. 

In terms of content, Nowhere Else I Want to Be is certainly not the easiest book to read. It is rife with tragedy, from abandonment to parental neglect, devastating illness to inevitable death. It weighs on the heartstrings in a manner that most books cannot achieve, largely because the stories Carol Marsh shares are all real. These “characters,” who often seem larger than life in some respects, existed once, and now, do not. It’s an awful feeling, to fall in love with each quirky, lovable woman as Carol did, only to be forced to face their eventual demise. However, the tender tone in which each woman is described is admirable and honorable, shining a spotlight of love and acceptance on an otherwise horrific life. It’s devastating, but profound, in all the best ways.  

Nowhere Else I Want to Be is not a book easily defined, as it balances perfectly the qualities of humor, love, sadness, disdain, and acceptance, combined into one spectacular memoir. Carol Marsh takes her readers on the same journey she once walked, alongside society’s forgotten as they struggle to better themselves, contribute to communities who continuously reject them, and just survive, at any cost. It wasn’t, and still isn’t, easy, but it is forever worth it. Nowhere Else I Want to Be is a treasure as much as it is a tragedy, if for nothing else, for Carol’s bold, dignified, and honest approach to a truth best not left forgotten.

Originally critiqued by a member of the Authors Talk About It team.

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The Grand Gypsy – Entered in 2017 ATAI Book Award Contest

5 Stars

Click here to get your copy!

Ottavio Gesmundo with Ottavio Canestrelli

The Grand Gypsy: A Memoir is the enchanting story of Ottavio Canestrelli, an Italian circus performer. Born into a circus family several generations long, Canestrelli was raised under a makeshift big-top, performing alongside his family members and a colorful menagerie. As an adult, he traveled the world, both as a performer and while in the army. He shares his stories of growing up in a circus, living and fighting through both World Wars, crossing paths with grand historical figures like Gandhi, and carrying on the legacy of the Canestrelli Circus. After Canestrelli passed away, his grandson, Ottavio Gesmundo, polished and published his grandfather’s memoir, honoring the man he knew as The Grand Gypsy.

This book opens with a quote by author, historian, and editor, Dominique Jando: “Artists from old Italian circus families are the keepers of a precious wealth of historical knowledge.” That alone sums up Ottavio Canestrelli’s memoir perfectly. His words are, quite simply, precious. His life experiences and unique voice in sharing them help shed a new light on one of the most fascinating and tumultuous eras in history. Peppered with additional text from his grandson, Gesmundo, and a plethora of captivating historical photographs, The Grand Gypsy is an outstanding literary experience from beginning to end.

The Grand Gypsy is equal parts an entertaining portrait of circus life, a war drama, a heartwarming snapshot of family life, and a thrilling memoir. By the end of the book, Ottavio and the Canestrelli family feel welcome and familiar, as if all who read The Grand Gypsy: A Memoir are now truly a part of the Canestrelli legacy, too.

Originally critiqued by a member of the Authors Talk About It team.

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The Covered

Today’s Featured Author and Book

The Covered

Click to get your copy!

Book Description:

Upon graduating from Purdue University, Alexis Nicole White decides to relocate to the Land of Opportunity – Atlanta, Georgia. While in pursuit of her dreams, her passion for journalism grows cold. After meeting a variety of people who pledged to help her, Alexis is introduced to a world of trouble. Realizing all that glitters is not gold, Alexis finds herself in the middle of drama that is full of deceit and mischief.After being betrayed by a friend, she’s left all alone in a strange city. Tormented by her decisions, Alexis has to decide what is best for her sanity. Not sure who to trust, Alexis decides to activate her faith in God, proving that she is Covered, above all. Will she return home as a failure? Or, will she conquer the fight of her life to survive the mean streets of Atlanta?


Alexis Nicole White

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Alexis Nicole White was born in Gary, Indiana, where she lived with her grandparents. Raised an only child, Alexis developed a passion for the arts; reading, writing and acting. As early as middle school, she began to expand upon her creative talents by writing books, plays and even publishing poetry. In college, her talents grew into professional journalism with blogging, radio and television.  After moving to Atlanta to pursue her career in journalism, Alexis’ passion for writing became stagnant after not being able to secure a full-time paying position. Still, she has used her voice to empower the disenfranchised and promote awareness to various social problems. Currently, Alexis is raising awareness to emotional abuse disguised in forms of deceit, mischief and betrayal in her memoir, The Covered


Learn more at AlexisNicoleWhite.com.


If you enjoy these author interviews be sure you subscribe to Authors Talk About It via iTunes or follow on Podbean and get your copy of The Covered.


Peace and Love,

Rob and Janelle

 

 


Have you checked out the 2016 Book Awards Contest yet?

Book awards give you clout and credibility!

Authors Talk About It Book Award Contest

Whether you’re a first time author or a New York Times Best Seller this book award contest is for you.

Are you ready for the chance to be an award-winning author?  

Yes!  Excellent!

Click here to learn more and enter!


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The Memoirs of I

Today’s Featured Author and Book

The Memoirs of I

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Click to get your copy!

Book Description:

“To make one think is to change a generation, to build one thought is to grow a better world.”

In The Memoirs of ‘I’, De Iuliis covers the years 2014 to 2015, providing a daily encounter with her writings, visions, dreams and thoughts, allowing you to see the world from a different perspective.

 


Yolanda De Iuliis

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Yolanda De Iuliis was born in North Ayrshire, Scotland, in 1985. She grew up with an Italian/Irish background which soon led to an awareness of identity confusion within herself. From the age of 20 she left the countryside to explore not only city life but to encounter the other side of the world and for over ten years has been travelling to every continent to gain as much knowledge and experience as possible. After ten years of writing and collecting her autobiographical poetry she published Underneath my Soul (2015) which shows her growing from adolescence to adulthood using only poetry as a means of telling her story.

De Iuliis resides in her home town of Irvine, Ayrshire, for the time being and her current academic venture is Classical Studies combined with Modern Greek. French and Greek philosophies have also been studied and observed to motivate her mind in producing different thoughts and ideas. Her passion to write and provide an insight for others is not only her mission but her reason to exist.

Learn more at YolandaDeIuliis.com.


If you enjoy these author interviews be sure you subscribe to Authors Talk About It via iTunes or follow on Podbean and get your copy of Memoirs of “I”.


Peace and Love,

Rob and Janelle

 

 


Have you checked out the 2016 Book Awards Contest yet?

Book awards give you clout and credibility!

Authors Talk About It Book Award Contest

Whether you’re a first time author or a New York Times Best Seller this book award contest is for you.

Are you ready for the chance to be an award-winning author?  

Yes!  Excellent!

Click here to learn more and enter!


Please like & share:

The Hooker’s Daughter

At the tender age of six, Dale Stanten, was opening the front door for her mother’s johns. She and her sister were often used by “props” by her mother such as times her mother would take them to the movies, but instead of actually going to the movies with them Dale’s mother would leave the girls at the movie and go somewhere else with her boyfriend. Then the girls would be expected to lie to their father about where their mom really was.

Have you already judged Dale’s mom? Well, guess what. Dale says that her mom taught her to be kind to others and not shame them! She must have understood what it felt like to be shamed by others. Not only was Dale’s mom a prostitute, a thief, a wife, a mother, a girlfriend (as she had a boyfriend on the side for years), but she saved her family from poverty in perhaps the only way she knew how to.

Pic Book Cover-1Get a copy. 

From early on Dale knew she had to be strong, and she struggled to be “normal” – “whatever normal is/was”.  The key is to turn your flaws into flowers.

Tweet: Turn your flaws into flowers. - Dale Stanten, The Hooker's Daughter via @authorstalk http://ctt.ec/OcwEf+Tweet: Turn your flaws into flowers. – Dale Stanten, The Hooker’s Daughter via @authorstalk http://ctt.ec/OcwEf+


Pic New Dale Picture at Beach

While raising her young family, Dale Stanten obtained her RN degree and practiced psychiatric nursing. She parlayed her medical and extensive sales experience to become CEO of her Destination Management Company which for twenty years organized conventions, corporate events, and meetings for local, national, and international guests. Dale conducted numerous educational seminars and assisted in developing a tourism college degree program.

She serves on the North Shore Board of Juvenile Scholarship Aid, volunteered as a Big Sister, and is an active member of Power of Women, National Association of Women on the Rise, and The Arizona Humanities Consortium for the Arts. A life-long learner, she studies Kabbalah and Torah and shares her personal journey to encourage others to rise above their circumstances, no matter how difficult, using their inner strength to determine the course of their own lives. She resides in Boston and Phoenix with her husband.  

Learn more at TheHookersDaughter.com.


Fascinated by why each of thinks is normal life,

Drs. Rob + Janelle Alex, Ph.D.

 

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He was the Constant Outsider

The environment we grow up in and continue to live in often just seems normal.  Doesn’t everyone know criminals and mobsters?  Um…perhaps not.  However, Tom grew up in scary and shockingly, colorful part of Boston during James “Whitey” Bulger’s heyday.

It all seemed normal to him – the buying of “hot” goods out of trunks of cars; the requests to hold secretive poker games in his shop; the offer to “get rid of” someone who didn’t deliver what he paid for.  The key for Tom was NOT turning to crime.  He chose not to cross the line and join the criminal side of life, but boy oh boy, does he have a lot of stories.

After writing his memoir and sharing his fascinating and sometimes, hilarious, tales, he created a novel focused on his experiences.  What if…what if he had take the other road and chosen a path filled with crime?  What might have happened?  Tom’s novel explores just that idea and makes for an interesting companion to his memoir.

Memoir  Get your copy of the memoir.

#20-Why_I_Wrote_67_Cents  Get your copy of the novel.

 


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Tom Cirignano authored two books. His autobiography, titled, The Constant Outsider: Memoirs of a South Boston Mechanic, gives readers a chilling look at what went on in South Boston during the 1970’s and ’80s, the era of Mobster Whitey Bulger’s “reign of terror,” as Tom calls it. Due to its time and place in Boston’s tumultuous history, along with the situations and people Tom encountered, The Constant Outsider is an exciting story in its own right. But in Tom’s second book, titled 67 Cents: Creation of a Killer, he explores an even more bizarre existence. In this fictional adaptation of his memoir, Tom answers the following question which had lurked in the back of his mind for years. “How might my life have evolved had I taken the path to crime and violence which truly was available to me ?”

Learn more at http://www.theconstantoutsider.com.


Intrigued while laughing our butts off,

Dr. Rob + Janelle Alex, Ph.D.

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The Miss-Adventures of a Cosmo Bachelor

The Call of the Wild inspired him. Michael Modzelewski (an Oprah repeat guest) wanted to experience life in a different way.  He was in search of wilderness.  What would that mean for him.  Shortly after deciding he want to find out he was on his way to Alaska.

He was not prepared, and really had no idea how to survive in the wild.  In fact, he had only been camping two times in his life prior to his excursion.  He ended up in a tiny cabin trying to live from day-to-day.  His first winter there he went 67 days without seeing another person!  He told us that he was scared every day.

Obviously, he did survive and learned to not ask how to survive, but instead to let nature ask the questions. Profound…

When he flew back to New York he “felt like a martian landing on Earth for the first time.” More than that though, Cosmopolitan had named him bachelor of the month, and he had 5000 letters from women waiting on him to read them.  Did this single man (at the time) over indulge in after being around no women for two years?  Yep.  But, he also ended up meeting the love of his life!  We were so touched during our conversation with him when he spoke of his wife, Pamela.  The love simply poured through the airwaves.

Read about his amazing adventures…he had some wild ones.

WL

Get your copy now! 


 

Michael

Michael Modzelewski is a Correspondent/Co-Host for EarthWise — the anchor TV show on the Outdoor Life channel, featuring all the powers and nuances of the Natural World. Michael is a roving Correspondent for the national radio show The Good Life, reporting from the field on his adventures all over the world.

After living “date-less” on the wild island, upon returning to civilization, Michael was startled to find he was chosen Cosmopolitan Magazine’s “Bachelor-of-The-Month” and AlaskaMen Magazine’s centerfold story (keeping his pants & parka on, but getting a staple through his navel). After receiving 5,000 letters from women around the world, he married one of the correspondents. Michael’s latest book, WILD LIFE: THE MISS–ADVENTURES OF A COSMO BACHELOR is attracting rave reviews from everyone except his mother.

Learn more at michaelmodzelewski.com.


 

Impressed,

Drs. Rob + Janelle Alex, Ph.D.

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Looking For THAT Story for Decades

Today’s guest is Peter Hochstein.  He was a journalist before tabloids existed.  In fact, he took a job at one point with the first rag mag.  As he put it, he was a very naive young man at the time.  He only worked there a week, but it made a lasting impression on him as we could tell talking with him.  He shared a vivid account of the experience.

We wanted to know why he named his memoir, Heiress Strangled in Molten Chocolate at Nazi Sex Orgy! A Memoir.  His response was something like, “Hey what gets attention – sex, money, food, violence and the word “Nazi”.”  So, after look the THAT story for decades he wrote his memoir and gave it a title he believes is the most eye-catching title he could create.

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Want a copy?

Mind you this interview is not R-rated…our conversation was not even PG-13.  So, if you are concerned…don’t be.  And, if you were hoping for more, well…grab the book and understand the the title is pretty much tongue in cheek.  However, Peter is a fabulous storyteller.  That was quite clear just from our interview with him.


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Peter Hochstein started his career as a newspaper reporter, switched into advertising, and now does both. His clients have included advertising agencies, corporate and brand marketing departments, publications, nonprofits and well-to-do individuals.

 

He’s glad he’s had so many satisfied clients. But let’s face it. Copywriters are a dime a dozen. What sets him apart is the ability to embrace those really big projects that would fluster and befuddle most copywriters. Learn more about Peter at http://PeterHochstein.com.


Intrigued,

Drs. Rob + Janelle Alex, Ph.D.

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William Shakespeare and Kids??


If you have ever taught someone, especially kids, something, then you know sometimes it can be quite challenging.  The challenges you face are not just yours but those of your students too.  So, just imagine trying to teach elementary school kids how to perform William Shakespeare’s plays!  Well, that is exactly what Mel Ryane did…and she volunteered to do it!

Her memoir, Teaching Will: What Shakespeare and 10 Kids Taught Me That Hollywood Couldn’t, shares with you not only funny stories, but a story of great success and growth for all.  She discovered how to master teaching by opening up to what the kids needed, and the personal growth opportunities that she offered her students were profound – whether she fully realized it at the time or not.

TeachingWill

Click to get your copy!

Send me an email and one lucky person will get a free copy!

*Free copy drawing Feb 28, 2015.

(Print version if in US. Digital version if outside US.)

If you love kids or if you are or know a teacher, this book is for you!


MelRyane_lg

Following a distinguished career as a classically trained actor onstage and in film and television, Mel Ryane has found a new artistic home in the written word with her memoir, Teaching Will: What Shakespeare and 10 Kids Gave Me That Hollywood Couldn’t.

Mel became a professional actor during her teens in her native Canada, and then followed her career to New York City and to theatres across North America. After applying her skills to coaching actors on major studio and network projects, Mel was accepted into the Directing Workshop for Women at the prestigious American Film Institute. She subsequently wrote a screenplay that advanced to the semifinal round in the Motion Picture Academy’s Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition.

Mel travels across the country teaching “From Page to Podium: Reading Your Work Aloud,” a workshop that helps writers find their public speaking voice. She also offers school workshops introducing Shakespeare to students. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, their dog and cat.


We know what we are, but we know not what we may be. – Shakespeare

Janelle + Rob

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