WOOOOO HOOOOO! It Has Taken Time But Cat Has Finally Reached 500 Book Blog Posts on WordPress About All My Fine Authors and Their Books …Thank You, Readers, and Friends.

OH, HAPPY CAT DAY!! 

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500 POSTS

500 Posts

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Congratulations on writing 500 posts on “Cat Lyon’s Reading & Writing Den”!

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Couldn’t Have Done It Without All My Readers, Friends, and New Visitors Asking For More Authors and All Their #BOOKS! THANK YOU!

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Have You Heard Comedy Fiction Readers? Author, Rusty Blackwood Has a New Release to her Adult Comedy Series. Book Three of “DERWOOD” Now out!

 A newly retired government official, Derwood J. Tugbottom, an English bachelor is a man who fancies the ladies … An adult fiction comedy series and the character of Mr. Tugbottom, he both audacious and eccentric! Amazingly Hilarious and a FUN SERIES TO READ! ~Review

 

Let’s Start With BOOK ONE: “The Misadventures of Derwood Tugbottom” Kindle – $2.99!

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The Misadventures of Derwood Tugbottom

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The Misadventures of Derwood Tugbottom is an adult comedy short centering around newly retired government official, Derwood J. Tugbottom, an English bachelor who fancies the ladies but never found one that could take his attention from his appointment until he travels to an active Canadian Retirement Centre.

Throughout a series of misunderstandings, mostly brought on by himself, the over-bearing retiree finally retaliates, leaving the retirement center reeling in his wake.

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Now BOOK TWO: “DERWOOD RETURNS – Kindle $2.99”

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Derwood Returns

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The audacious and eccentric, retired London City Hall senior official, Derwood J. Tugbottom, who was first introduced to readers in 2012’s unforgettable adult comedy short, The Misadventures of Derwood Tugbottom, is back in this hilarious follow-up, entitled, Derwood Returns.

The bubbling and pretentious Englishman, known for his staunch outlook and demanding ways, decides to return to the picturesque village of Vinehaven on the Lake, where he takes up residence in the swinging Sunset Villa Retirement Center, located directly across the road from the infamous Anchors Away, of which he hastily departed two years earlier. Now he is back, with a hard learned lesson beneath his belt, and hopes of finding the life that escaped him on his initial try.

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NOW, BOOK THREE – Just Released!: “DERWOOD GOES CARIBBEAN – Kindle $2.99”

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DERWOOD GOES CARIBBEAN by [Blackwood, Rusty]

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The austere and proud Derwood Justice Tugbottom, dejected by a defunct love affair at his current residence, the swinging Sunset Villa Retirement Center, located in the picturesque village of Vine Haven On-the-Lake, convinces his best friend, down-to-earth Scotsman Robert McEwen – also wandering through life searching for the same contentment as Derwood – to join him on a new adventure.

Christmas of 2014 is fast approaching, and an intrepid Derwood talks Robert into taking a single’s cruise to the Caribbean with him, which sends them on another eccentric adventure.

Will they find what they hope to aboard ship?

Will happiness present itself in one the ports of call, or will it avoid them altogether? 

*** Derwood Goes Caribbean is the third installment in the well-received Derwood Tugbottom comedy series, beginning with, The Misadventures of Derwood Tugbottom, followed by Derwood Returns.

Watch for the fourth installment, Derwood Comes Home, coming in late 2019! ***

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Canadian Indie author, Rusty Blackwood, has written an array of titles and genres. Miss Blackwood resides in the city of St. Catharines, located on the southern shores of Lake Ontario, Canada. (Photo courtesy of her dear friend Sammy who passed).

Top ranking romantic fiction author Rusty Blackwood believes the flair for fantasy is anything the mind wishes it to be, and she is a master at this. Within her expressive mind is found an endless array of romance, passion, textures, and colors to sweep the reader to exotic, faraway places where anything is possible, proving that her words really do leave you breathless.

Canadian born Blackwood, who chose her plume de nom by combining both the colour of her russet hair with her estranged husbands’ great, great, Scottish grandmother’s maiden name, grew up on her paternal grandfather’s farm in southwestern Ontario, Canada where she developed her love of writing while still in grade school, entering numerous competitions and writing exhibitions throughout her area, and attributes her love of writing to her late father James, and to the late Gladys Carroll, her elementary teacher. Although unprofessionally trained in the field, Rusty has always had an affinity for the written word, a gift to express it, and has demonstrated this talent many times since becoming a serious writer in 2001.

Miss Blackwood is a bronze medalist winner in the 2006 Annual International Library of Poetry, sponsored through PoetryPoem.com, for her 2005 poem, Desire. She enjoys writing adult fiction comedy as well. 
Her work is available on all Amazons online worldwide.
Visit her official website: Author, Rusty Blackwood and connect with her on Social Media.

Amazon Author Page   GoodReads Author   Official Facebook Author Page and on Twitter.

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“Author, Rusty Blackwood and Her New Release of ‘The Perils of Autumn’ Book Tour Begins!” Many Updates and Tour Schedule …

WHO IS Author, Rusty Blackwood?

ONLY THE Amazing Best- Selling Canadian Writer and Author of Romantic Fiction, Drama, and Suspense! THAT’S WHO!

And now her New Release and Book Tour for “The Perils of Autumn” has begun in Canada …

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About Rusty Blackwood:

Romantic fiction author Rusty Blackwood, who chose her plume de nom by combining the colour of her russet hair with her husband’s great, great, Scottish grandmother’s maiden name, was born in St.Thomas, Ontario, Canada on October 5th, and grew up on her paternal grandfather’s farm in the County of Elgin, located in the south-western portion of the province of Ontario.

She acquired her love of literature while still in elementary school where she entered her original compositions into county fairs, school contests, and whatever venue allowed participants in the writing field. She has carried that love ever since and has put it to use many times since becoming a professional writer in 2001.

From the time of youth she has loved the Arts in their many unique forms and is a graduate with honors in Interior Decorating & Design. She spent many years on the south-western Ontario stage performing with her family’s country music band: The Midnight Ramblers, followed by the country – rock – blues band: ‘MIRAGE’ as an accomplished vocalist, bassist, and rhythm guitarist. She now resides in the cultural city of St. Catharines, Ontario.

Please visit her official website http://www.rusty-blackwood.com for numerous reviews and information on her work.

UPDATES and TOUR DATES So Far:

First Book Signing Was April 6th, 2019 at Coles, Seawall Mall,  in Welland, Ontario.

Then just today an Amazing Interview that can be listened now and Hosted by “The Joe Show Network – TJSN” Here is a Message from Rusty all about how it went.

“I am pleased to share Joe’s interview with me for readers and followers of my work. As you will hear, I had fun – I always do as Joe, being the exceptional entertainer that he is, makes it enjoyable, and this shows in the finished product.
Note: It wasn’t mentioned by name, but the comedy series we speak about is the Derwood Tugbottom comedy series.

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Next Book Tour Dates:

I am pleased to announce the upcoming official launch and signing series throughout the Niagara Peninsula for my 5 star-award-winning romantic fiction drama, The Perils of Autumn, and they are, accompanied with their event link,  as follows:

 

May 5th, 2019, 1 to 4 pm at Pen Center COLES, 221 Glendale Ave, St. Catharines, Ontario.

https://www.facebook.com/events/2079181012373386/

June 2nd 2019 1 to 4:30 pm, INDIGO/CHAPTERS, 737 Golf Links Road Unit 1, Ancaster, Ontario.

https://www.facebook.com/events/332831857607187/

June 15th, 2019,  at Fairview Mall Chapters, St. Catharines, Ontario., 1 to 4:30 PM.

MORE COMING!

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More Updates will be shared soon! Until then? Make sure you visit her website at “Official Rusty Blackwood Author” and sign up for her News Letter to be “In The Know” where this Beautiful Author Will Be Next …Then, Take a trip over to her “Amazon Author Page” for all her fabulous reads!

Connect With Rusty Blackwood on Social Media

Facebook

Twitter

GoodReads Author

And On All Author!

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“Cat Lyon’s Reading and Writing Den and Lyon Media Services”

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Easter Is All About Kim Carter, Author, and Her Amazing Award-Winning Book Series. “A Clara and Iris Mystery” With More Coming!

Hello and Welcome Avid Readers, Friends, and New Reader Visitors,

Well, Cat has to apologize as I had been pulled away for a wee bit due to my new website of “Lyon Media Services.”   has been coming together and NOW expanding my Author and Media marketing to include more mainstream media services for not only authors and book promoting but now helping Businesses and Recovery Events too! I’ll be doing a launch and sale for my newly expanding business and services very SOON! But today is all about my amazing friend and Best-Selling Author, Kim Carter …SO, here we go!

If YOU have not yet read one of her Deeply, Suspense filled Mysteries? You have not read a Real, Gripping, Page-Turning Mystery . . .

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

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Kim Carter

Kim is an author of suspense, mystery and thriller novels. She was a finalist in the 2018 Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award and recipient of the 2017 Readers’ Choice Award for her book Murder Among The Tombstones. This is the first book in her Clara and Iris Mystery series. The characters in this series are a couple of overly curious widows who become private investigators and were inspired by Kim’s mother and her mom’s best friend. 

Her other titles include: When Dawn Never Comes, Deadly Odds, No Second Chances, And The Forecast Called For Rain, and Sweet Dreams, Baby Belle. 

Kim’s writing career started after she suffered an illness that made her housebound for a couple of years. An avid reader of mystery novels, she embarked on writing as a means of filling her time. Kim shared those early writings with friends and family who encouraged her to pursue writing professionally. Her health struggles and successes have been chronicled on The Lifetime Television in early 2000, The Atlanta-Journal Constitution, Women’s Day Magazine, and Guideposts. 

Before her illness, Kim worked in many different capacities in county government ranging from Park Director with Parks and Recreation to the Grant Department with Human Services. But, ultimately, it was her job as a correctional officer that provided her the opportunity to interact with a variety of people from all walks of life. Her experiences ran the gamete of inspiring success stories to tragic endings, much like her mysteries.

She self-published her first book No Second Chances. One of the guest speakers at the launch party she had at the Performing Arts Center in Newnan, Georgia included her close friend retired Atlanta Police chief Eldrin Bell. This connection would become helpful as she started doing more research for other books, this time working with a small publishing house.

Kim started networking and made connections with the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office. Her research has taken her many places including morgues, death row and the occasional midnight visit to cemeteries.

She is a college graduate of Saint Leo University, has a Bachelor Degree of Arts in Sociology. Kim and her husband have three grown children and live just outside of Atlanta, Georgia.

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Breaking News Avid Mystery Readers! Author, Kim Carter of Raven South Publishing Has A New Novel Series! And new books coming soon …

“The wait is finally over and Author, Kim Carter has blessed mystery readers with another great suspense -filled read. Kim’s New “A Clara and Iris Mystery” novel series and books one and two are released on Amazon online.”

Since winning Best Mystery of the 2017 Readers Choice Book Award and Book one of her series chosen as a 2018 “Killer Nashville Finalist”; Lyon Media Services and Raven South publishing announce her Book Series E-books now on sale Kim’s series titled; “A Clara and Iris Mystery.” The celebration launch has happened, and now Kim is working on her next book, and she’s celebrating with an e-book sale that now includes all of her Mystery Suspense SIX Titles.

Her novel series and stand-alone mysteries are available now on Amazon, Amazon Kindle Store, and Barnes & Noble and E-books are now only $2.99! Book one of ‘Clara and Iris’ is titled; “Sweet Dreams, Baby Belle” and book two titled; “Murder Among The Tombstones,” is wowing avid readers, are filled with suspenseful thrills – mystery readers and reviewers alike are raving about with all the 4 and 5-Star Reviews!

“I love research and travel visiting cemeteries, morgues and sitting among gravestones to hear the whispers of those departed by murder.” ~Kim Carter, Author

Kim, a “Georgia Southern Belle.” along with her husband Julius have raised three successful grown children. Kim resides in the community of Newnan, 40 miles southwest of Atlanta. One of her favorite things about writing is the traveling and research required to bring her novels to life.

Her research has taken her to places such as morgues, death row, and midnight cemetery visits. Kim is a lover of retired greyhounds, and she and her husband attend many events held annually for them, as well as educating others about their need for great homes and what great pets greyhounds make after they retire from racing. “I’m the kind of person Newnan readers would love to know more about.”

“A Clara and Iris Mystery – “Two crafty septuagenarian widows, turned private investigators; a crabby Atlanta cop, recovering from a gunshot wound, and a cunning killer who dumps his victims rather appropriately in cemeteries. Those are just a few of the zesty ingredients in Murder among the Tombstone.” ~Author, Ron Yates former journalist of The Chicago Tribune.”

When Atlanta homicide detectives are called in to investigate the murder of a nineteen-year-old girl found dumped in historic Oakland Cemetery; they immediately begin working the case. But with no leads to follow, and their case log growing larger by the day, the murder quickly gets cold. Desperate to keep the investigation of her deceased sister going, Ginger Baines hires two novice sleuths to solve the case.

Widowed, well into their seventies, and new to the world of private investigating, Clara Samples and Iris Hadley aren’t your average private eyes. When a second dead body turns up in a neighboring cemetery, the plot thickens. Can a serial killer be on the loose? Joined by their young apprentice Quita, Clara and Iris are determined to stop at nothing to find the killer before they can strike again.

But, will their bodies be the next ones discovered among the tombstones?

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Murder Among The Tombstones

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Raven South Publishing owned by President/CEO Kelly Keylon had hosted a “Kick-Off”  evening book launch at “The Atlanta Water Gardens”… Which is located at 2165 Cheshire Bridge Rd, NE Atlanta, GA. If you live in Atlanta? Kelly’ Water Gardens is a Must Visit!
Lyon Media Services and Literary Consulting owner Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon has been promoting mad marketing best-selling fine authors like Kim Carter for 7+years. She offers book marketing and exceptional promoting, ghostwriting services as well as represents many high profile clients from former NFL sports pros, actors, and many award-winning authors like Ms. Kim Carter.

Please call Cat of Lyon Media at 1(602)795-6345 for having Kim Carter for an interview, learn about her Traveling Book project, and she enjoys appearing for Book Clubs along with Author Book Signings and Literary Appearances.

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How Do Authors Handle Publicity In a Spiritual Way and Not Sound Like Bragging? Tony Gives Us a Sample.

Revealing Voices

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Sharing Some Delight in Disorder

Since my book was published, I’ve not done much to get the word out. As a result, I haven’t sold many copies. People who have read it tell me what a difference it has made in their lives, but I have not followed up on this and reached out to others.

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“I have a hard time walking the fine line between bragging about myself and celebrating what God is doing in my life.”

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Lately, I have come to accept the importance of the mission God has called me to carry out. There are so many people impacted by mental illness who are in desperate need of saving faith. As the body of Christ, it’s our delightful duty to show compassion for hurting souls.

The emotional anguish caused by brain diseases like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depression, is as real and agonizing as any bodily pain caused by a physical illness. I know this. First hand. I also know the grace of God that provides a measure of healing in this life and the hope of healing in the next.

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“It’s time to take my bushel off God’s light in me, even if I reveal the flaws I so want to hide.”

So this weekend, I posted this message on Facebook:

For almost twenty years, I served as a pastor with bipolar disorder. I have journeyed with this illness from manic (even psychotic) peaks to dark valleys of despair. At both extremes, I have flirted with death—coming very close to ending my life and doing great damage to those around me. .

Countless times, when I have been driven to the edge of a cliff, God has rescued me and set me on level ground. Why would God do this? Because God delights in me even in disorder. Delight is first an expression of God’s love for us. Since God delights in us, we have a “delightful duty” to share in God’s joy.

The media often portray the terrible extremes where untreated mental illness leads to horrific homicide or shameful suicide. What is missing is a compassionate portrayal of all the rest of us who struggle to survive and be faithful. Delight in Disorder reveals the beautiful grace of God that flows into grateful living if you have a mental illness and greater understanding if you want to love another who does.

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60 people have shared the message. I’ve sold more books in 24 hours than Amazon has sold for me in 48 months.

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“But the most powerful response was from one who didn’t buy a book or share the post. It was a desperate plea.”

 

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Me:   D., thank you for reaching out and being open about you suicidal thoughts. It’s important that you get help. Please message me.
D:   I am a daily survivor I do it for my kids I’ve tried suicide and failed. My sister has committed suicide it runs in my family my mother attempted when I was a kid
Me:  D., do you have a plan to kill yourself?  When you say you have suicidal thoughts, Denny, what do you mean? I’m praying for you, brother.
D:  No. I’ve planned but never went thru with is. I got two biological and one step son. I work daily sometimes I feel like I’m better off dead but my kids bring me back from reality
Me:  Well, I’m very glad you’ve found a reason to live. Your kids love and need you, for sure.
D:  I’m reminded every day I’m needed if not for anyone else then my two biological kids.
Me:  Amen to that!
D: Thanks man I need someone to talk to sometime. Thanks for even taking the time out to talk with me
Me: Message me anytime, D.. I can’t promise I will always be available. But when I am, I’ll respond.
D:  Ty really means a lot. I deal with it everyday. So I’m sure if I need someone to talk to I’ll reach out. No-one in my life understands. So it’s hard when no one understand and it makes me feel a lot different
Me:  I get that, brother.

 

Maybe you have a D. in your life. Maybe you are D. If so, get professional psychiatric and therapeutic help. And, consider Delight in Disorder to find spiritual support you will need to face difficult days ahead.

 

Get an autographed copy of Delight in Disorder for just $12.

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Delight in Disorder: Ministry, Madness, Mission

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I highly recommend Delight In Disorder. Tony has a way of humanizing mental illness and explaining things in a profound, yet simple way that resonates with his readers. Whether you have a diagnosed mental health disorder, some other kind of disability, know someone who does, or simply struggle with faith and believing that God delights in you, this book is for you. ~ Veronica J.

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Please make sure you stop and visit Author, Tony Roberts as he has so much help and information on his blog “Sharing Delight In Disorder” about life, living with Mental health, being an author and more as well as checking out his Podcast Called: Revealing Voices on iTunes! 

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Popular Author, Rusty Blackwood is Coming to Coles- Sea Wall Mall in Welland, Ontario – 1 PM-April 6th, 2019

Welcome Readers, especially all my readers in Ontario, Canada! 

Those of readers who just happen to live in and around the area of  Welland, Ontario area?

You don’t want to miss this! Favorite Best-Selling Canadian Author, Ms. Rusty Blackwood is coming for a book signing, and she has two fabulous new book releases to share, at Coles, she will be sharing with you “The Perils of Autumn” and excited to do so!
Here is a special message by Rusty.

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“I invite you to join me for the first official book-signing launch for “The Perils of Autumn,” my latest 5-star-award-winning romantic fiction drama, happening April 6th/19 at Seaway Mall COLES in Welland, Ontario, between 1 – 4:30 pm.

I am pleased to bring this heart-touching drama to Welland readers, and I hope you all take advantage of the chance to obtain a signed copy by yours truly of this exciting read.”

“Looking forward to returning to Welland’s Seaway Mall!”  ~Rusty Blackwood

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

From the author of the riveting romantic fiction drama, Passions in Paris: Revelations of a Lost Diary, and the celebrated, 5-star award-winning romantic fiction drama, Willow’s Walk, comes the intense romantic drama, The Perils of Autumn.

‘PERILS,’ a page-turner, set primarily in the early 1970s, centers on a young Kentucky woman, Autumn Leeves, born in 1946 to Abigail Leeves, an unwed mother who struggles to make ends meet. By 1970, Autumn graduates nursing school and is sent on assignment by the local hospital to care for the terminally-ill wife of middle-aged English equestrian master, Cyril Landon, owner of Landon Lawns Stables, a most successful thoroughbred racing stable located just outside Lexington, Kentucky in the posh community known as The Meadows.

Duff Taylor, world renown jockey who is tops in his field, lives full-time above the tack room at Landon Lawns and enjoys the many benefits it brings, but he also has a dark secret surrounding an unsolved racing incident from his past that he will go to any length to protect.

Autumn arrives at Landon Manor in time to be thrown into the fray and finds herself caught in the ongoing disruption that ensues.

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Rusty has also released another writing “labor of love” and continuing her comedy series about Mr. Derwood J. Tugbottom with book threes and hilarious, “DERWOOD Goes CARIBBEAN.”  Now I had decided to begin DERWOOD from the beginning with book one of The Misadventures of Derwood Tugbottom.” And so far? A great and humorous read thus far! 

Then will be book two titled; “DERWOOD RETURNS” and then book three! A little bit about book three of “DERWOOD Goes CARIBBEAN” …

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ABOUT DERWOOD Goes CARIBBEAN:

The austere and proud Derwood Justice Tugbottom, dejected by a defunct love affair at his current residence, the swinging Sunset Villa Retirement Center, located in the picturesque village of Vine Haven On-the-Lake, convinces his best friend, down-to-earth Scotsman Robert McEwen – also wandering through life searching for the same contentment as Derwood – to join him on a new adventure.

Christmas of 2014 is fast approaching, and an intrepid Derwood talks Robert into taking a single’s cruise to the Caribbean with him, which sends them on another eccentric adventure. Will they find what they hope to aboard ship? Will happiness present itself in one of the ports of call, or will it avoid them altogether?

Derwood Goes Caribbean is the third installment in the well-received Derwood Tugbottom comedy series beginning with, The Misadventures of Derwood Tugbottom, followed by Derwood Returns.

Watch for the fourth installment, Derwood Comes Home, coming in late 2019.


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Romantic fiction author Rusty Blackwood, who chose her plume de nom by combining the colour of her russet hair with her husband’s great, great, Scottish grandmother’s maiden name, was born in St.Thomas, Ontario, Canada on October 5th, and grew up on her paternal grandfather’s farm in the County of Elgin, located in the south-western portion of the province of Ontario.

She acquired her love of literature while still in elementary school where she entered her original compositions into county fairs, school contests, and whatever venue allowed participants in the writing field. She has carried that love ever since and has put it to use many times since becoming a professional writer in 2001.

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Rusty Blackwood

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From the time of youth she has loved the Arts in their many unique forms and is a graduate with honors in Interior Decorating & Design. She spent many years on the south-western Ontario stage performing with her family’s country music band: The Midnight Ramblers, followed by the country – rock – blues band: ‘MIRAGE’ as an accomplished vocalist, bassist, and rhythm guitarist.

She now resides in the cultural city of St. Catharines, Ontario.
lease visit her official website Author, Rusty Blackwood for numerous reviews, and information on her work.  You may also visit her officia
l poetry site, ‘Inspiration In Thought.’

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Connect with Rusty Blackwood on Social Media! Official Facebook Author Page
She is on Twitter.

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“Rusty Blackwood believes the flair for fantasy is anything the mind wishes it to be, and she is a master at this. Within her expressive mind is found an endless array of romance, passion, textures, and colors to sweep the reader to exotic, faraway places where anything is possible, proving that her words really do leave you breathless.”
(Photos Courtesy of Doan’s Photography”)

Sharing Reads and Authors From Literature Approved. Author, Valerie Cotnoir and “EVERLASTING.”

One of my favorite things to do is to visit many other book blogs and meet new book marketers and book businesses who promote authors like I enjoy doing. Please visit my new friend Rayleigh’s amazing website for awesome reads on Literature Approved
~Cat Lyon

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“Behind all the Books We Love From Author Valerie Cotnoir”

Books are often so much more than just a way to pass the extra minutes or hours of the day. Books are both a way to escape reality, as well as to reshape our reality with the values we take from stories or testimonies. Any dedicated reader likely has a favorite book that changed the way they looked at life or a situation, and that’s because authors–often intentionally–write their books from personal passions or experiences.

In our new blog series, we are sharing the purposes and inspirations of these books. Behind the Books We Love From the Authors We Love will be an ongoing series for the next few months and will feature authors of all genres to all ages of readers. You may recognize some of their books as being featured on Literature Approved before, and others are entirely new. But these posts are sure to give you a fresh look at a book that you loved, or may even motivate you to pick up one you’ve never read. We invite you to join us by checking back with us every couple of weeks, or ensure that you’re following us so that you get the articles in your email–who knows, maybe your favorite author will be featured?!

Catch all the Behind the Books posts

Behind “Everlasting” from Valerie Cotnoir

I don’t remember how old I was exactly, but I was young. Maybe eleven or twelve. But I have this vivid memory of following Mom through the aisles at an arts and crafts store and this question sort of popping in my head:

What if a girl of sixteen was cursed so that she grew really old—to the age of ninety!—within a few weeks or months? 

This was quickly followed by another question:

What if a boy was in love with her and would stop at nothing to prevent her death?

As we continued roaming the store and reached the toy aisle, I saw this row of figurines: wizards, fairies, kings, elves, and so on. They were very colorful and their facial expressions varied, sparking my imagination. My sisters and I, while Mom shopped, liked to play with these figurines whenever we went to this store. Eventually, a new thought occurred to me: what if this girl and boy lived in a fantasy world? Better yet, what if the girl was actually a fairy?

Before I give too much away, let’s just say I went home and wrote what I imagined to be the prologue of this story. Later on, I wrote the first two or three chapters. This story, or the start of one, sat in my documents for a long time before I looked at it again, as more ideas came to me and I got distracted. When I was in tenth grade, I joined a writer’s club with other homeschoolers and, having finished writing another book, I considered which novel to write next. I came across Everlasting—as its title has been since the beginning—in my documents and decided it was time to finish writing it. I was sixteen when in January of 2014—soon after self-publishing my first novel—I finished writing the first draft of Everlasting.

Almost three years of editing later, I self-published Azalea’s and Malachi’s story in December of 2016.

There are many elements and themes in this story. Yet, so much of it has always been, since the conception of it in those store aisles, that it can be difficult for me to separate what messages I tried to incorporate versus what parts of the story just are. After pondering these thoughts, however, I think I can articulate a few.

A huge element of Everlasting is the motley crew of characters that join Azalea and Malachi on their journey to defeat Sebastian, Azalea’s cruel, power-hungry uncle. While the concept of a bunch of eccentric characters forming a team isn’t altogether original, one of the elements about it I stressed was the idea that when it came to stand up and fight—and fight for something worth fighting for—the individuals who signed up—the only ones willing to risk their lives—were the smallest, weakest and most insecure persons of each tribe. They were forced to overcome their fears and doubts in order to truly contribute to the team. In other words, sometimes big, heroic deeds come from small people.

Because sometimes it’s the little people who have the biggest hearts.

Another aspect of Everlasting is the many groups of creatures, the “others” you could say, that don’t fall under the category of human or fairy. In this heated rivalry between humans and fairies, the other creatures (elves, dryads, mermaids, etc.) get neglected and forgotten. Their significance is basically nonexistent. But as Azalea and her friends travel throughout Orutia (uh roo shuh) and seek help from these groups, Azalea especially realizes the need for the throne to recognize these creatures and their needs and desires. A lot could be accomplished if the clusters of creatures worked together rather than lived their separate lives.

Finally, and most importantly, there’s the meaning behind the title of Everlasting itself.

This is another case of “has just always been”. Shortly after writing the prologue, I saved the document and was forced to come up with a title. It didn’t have to be permanent necessarily, but I had to write something down in the meantime. I thought for about a minute and then typed what made the most sense: Everlasting. After all, the last sentence in the prologue I’d just written was: King Zechariah and his daughter would soon learn that, although death can take away someone you love, love itself is never conquered by anything, but is everlasting.

And here lies the very point of this story: Malachi’s love for Azalea is so determined and selfless, never once willing to give up, that it became everlasting. It was, it is and always will be—until the end of time. It’s as simple as that. Just as simple as it was for me to come up with the title.

Honestly, this novel was one of the easiest for me to write. Ha, I wish all my novels came to me as easily as this one did. Sure, there were hiccups along the way—mostly to do with world building. But the actual characters themselves came easily to me. It’s like the story itself came from some deep, hidden part of me and was finally released when I laid my fingers on the keyboard. Honestly, that’s how all my best stories seem to come. From deep, deep within.

Have you picked up Everlasting? Do you enjoy fantasy adventures? Drop a comment and let us know what you’re thinking and we’ll make sure Valerie sees it!


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Author Bio:

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Valerie Cotnoir is a Homeschool graduate currently pursuing a Bachelors in History through Lumerit Education. She was born in Montreal, Canada, but lived for fourteen years in Plano, Texas before moving with her family to the Raleigh area in North Carolina. She is the oldest of four and has two sisters and one brother.

She has been writing since she could hold a pencil and reading books just as long. Her favorite pastimes (besides reading and writing, of course!) include working with preschoolers, watching movies and spending time with her family and friends. Her first published novel is “Bridget’s Journey” (2013) and she has also published a fantasy novel, “Everlasting”, in December 2015.

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