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I read because I must. It's like breathing to me. And I love talking about books. But I'm also an Arsenal fan, a wine drinker, a music lover and weirdly obsessed with pop culture. I mostly blog about books, but sometimes about things I'm thinking or doing. When I'm not on the blog, I'm scoping deals for a professional services company, hanging out with friends, or seeing some live theater.


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  • Author Interview: Kim Megahee
  • It’s 2020. We’re Locked In With A Pandemic. And I’m Finally Back to Blogging.
  • Three Women
  • I’ve Never Been to Me
  • Daisy Jones and The Six



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Author Interview: Kim Megahee

Posted on 15 Apr 2020 In: Reading

I am thrilled to be featuring an interview with author Kim Megahee on the blog. Kim and I became friends years ago when we were both consultants for the same client. Although our careers took us in different directions, we’ve stayed in touch. It’s a pleasure to be able to celebrate him as an author as he publishes his new book, Time Twisters, the second in a series about an Army Ranger who conducts historical research via time travel technology.

Blogging is not my full time job, so I have not invested in great video and audio recording equipment. We did this interview in a written Q and A style, but we did a video chat for about an hour catching up and talking about his writing career and life in general. What follows is our interview as it was written, with some additional commentary by me.

TBF: To the extent you are comfortable talking about it, you’ve had some major life changes over the last few years. How have they changed your writing? [Commentary- I felt a little awkward asking this question- I knew there had been really big changes in Kim’s life, and I wasn’t sure how welcome this question would be].

KM: A lot has happened since I started writing – I changed from a large client account to a consulting firm and then launched a boutique consulting firm with a friend. I also got divorced, went back to single life, met my soulmate, got married again and moved from Atlanta to Gainesville GA

I’m sure it’s impacted my writing in some way, but I’m not sure what to point out as an impact that I wouldn’t have done anyway as I learned more about the writing craft.

Over the last few years, I dove into craft books for writing – all about character arcs, plot points, “man in the mirror moments”, etc. That’s what’s changed my writing over the last few years.

TBF: Tell us a bit about your main character, Marc McKnight.

KM: Marc McKnight was raised up as a farm boy near Pendleton Oregon. He got a good set of values from his parents and good grades and won an appointment to West Point.

His Dad was in Army Special Forces and his team was ambushed in Afghanistan when Marc was in college.

He’s somewhat introverted, but handsome, 6’0’’, dark, some Native American blood, brown hair and eyes.  Picture Henry Cavill. Cavill looks a lot like what I envisioned McKnight would look like.

He’s afraid of making a mistake. It’s rare that he does, of course. When his father was killed, he resolved to be the best, so he trained and studied hard. His team sees him as a role model – fair but demanding. He won’t ask them to do something he wouldn’t do himself.  He is driven and assertive at work, but keenly afraid of making a mistake that gets someone killed.

This fear of making a mistake spills over into his social life. He has no trouble meeting girls, but most don’t hang around for very long because he’s married to his work. He really does want a relationship, but shies away from the point of commitment.

He’s very conscious of having screwed up many a relationship by inaction, so he’s stuck in paralysis of analysis.  


TBF: With Lieutenant Karen Hatcher, you had a character go in a direction you weren’t expecting. Tell us about her.

KM: Karen Hatcher was raised in Hinesville, GA and got her military officer training at the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega. Many people don’t know that UNG is right up there next to West Point for the quality of their officers.

She’s 5’9’’, pretty and athletically built. Dark hair, brown eyes. Think Gal Gadot – who looks just like the Karen I envisioned. Ponytail and all.  She doesn’t say much, but is the consummate professional officer at work.

There’s a man in her life, but they work in different cities and we don’t meet him at all.  I wanted Hatcher to be a strong female protagonist that didn’t live in anyone’s shadow. [Commentary- as we were talking about this in our Zoom, when Kim mentioned this, I commented that it’s awesome that this would likely pass the 免费ssr节点2022. A very good thing.]

She’s an expert in hand-to-hand combat. McKnight is the only one to beat her in PT sparring, and he only did it once. She’s a legend because of this and highly respected in the local officer ranks. She gets a couple of chances to show off her fighting skills in THE TIME TWISTERS.

Karen is special because she is second-generation female Army Ranger. Her mother is a General in the Rangers and her dad is retired Special Forces.  She claims she doesn’t, but it’s clear that she feels the need to prove she’s where she is on her own merit, not her family’s.

She’s introduced in my first book TIME LIMITS – a single scene where she demonstrates what a “bad-ass” she is.  I never intended her part to be as big as it became.  The vision for her came out of nowhere. This was definitely a really nice place that “pantsing” took me to. As the story for THE TIME TWISTERS started to develop, I saw her blooming as a character and knew she had to have a bigger role. She has her own character arc in the story as she learns that things aren’t always black and white. Sometimes they are extremely gray and a military officer has to learn that lesson before he (or she) can truly be a good leader.

TBF: What’s been the most illuminating thing about the editing and publishing process for you?

KM: The editing part is my favorite part. As a consultant, I took a lot of pride in my written communications, so I wasn’t a stranger to editing a piece to ensure it says exactly what I want. If anything, I over-edit. Sometimes I have to just tell myself to stop editing, it’s as good as I can get it – don’t obsess over it.

I self-publish my works. I spent some time querying agents, and I got some great feedback that made me a better writer, but I just couldn’t see the interval. Traditional publishing can take a year after you finish before anything hits the street. After a while, I realized I have a lot more stories to tell and I don’t want to wait. With self-publishing, I can get work on the street in less than a week.  I actually take much longer than that, but I think I could put out three to four books a year, now that I’ve settled into a rhythm of work.

[Commentary: Here, Kim and I talked about how, even if you sign with a publisher, the hard work of marketing a book, finding an audience, spreading the word, is really all on the author. And we talked about the importance of good editing.]

TBF: What’s it like preparing to release a book in the middle of a pandemic that has people staying home?

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And Martha (his wife) is great to spend time with. We come from the same sort of political leanings and business background (She ran a 22 Billion business for SunTrust), so we have plenty to talk about and speak the same language, most of the time.

TBF: You have a few creative outlets- you’re a writer and a musician. How do they play together for you, or do they?

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TBF: What are you reading right now? 

KM: I always have several writing craft books going. If you look at my GoodReads “reading now” library, you’ll be astounded at how many I’m reading at the same time.

I’m reading “The Quartet” by Joseph Ellis. It’s about the four guys who carried the United States from the Articles of Confederation to the Constitution we have today – John Jay, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and George Washington.  I always thought it was Thomas Jefferson. A lot of people do. He was actually more involved in the Declaration of Independence. At the time the Constitution was being drawn up, he was in Paris as ambassador.

As it turns out, it’s becoming book research. Martha had an idea for a new Marc McKnight adventure involving those guys, and I’m investigating and thinking.  Can’t say more about it yet.

TBF: Is there something you would go back and tell your younger self about writing if you could?

KM: Absolutely. There are really two types of writers. We call them “Plotters” and “Pantsers”. Actually they are the two extremes. Plotters are writers who create an outline and use their creative juices to envision and plan the entire book before they write the first word of the book. Pantsers are writers who start with a premise and just start writing (by the seat of their pants) and let the “muse” lead them where it will. Most writers fall somewhere between the two extremes.

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[Commentary: This is the first I’d heard of “pantsing” in this context. Kim and I had a good laugh about that.]

TBF: What would you like readers to know about you and your books?

KM: My number one thing is to help the reader to have a good experience. I’ve always liked to tell stories and help someone have a good time. I picture the movie I’d like to see and write what I picture. My stories aren’t hard scifi. The science isn’t the important part – the people are. My stories are intended to be fun and escapism. I want there to be action, fight scenes, humor, good people working together to stop the bad guys from whatever bad thing they’re trying to do.

At the same time, I want my hero and heroines to be real people with idiosyncrasies and problems like the rest of us. I hope that comes across. If it doesn’t, I hope folks will tell so I can fix it in the next book.

I enjoyed having a chance to catch up with Kim. I hope you’re excited to check out his Marc McKnight series, and here’s how you can do that and how you can follow/reach Kim:

Click on the links below to find THE TIME TWISTERS

Amazon, 手机上怎么使用ssr, 几鸡ssr教程 and here for ebook fans


And on these links to get your copy of TIME LIMITS

Amazon, Barnes & Noble, KOBO and to see anywhere you can get the ebook, click 几鸡ssr官网.

Want to keep in touch with Kim? Find him at

Twitter:  @authorkmega


Website:  几鸡ssr安卓

Email:  小火箭ssr永久免费节点

  • Tags: fiction, interview, Military, new release, Time Travel

It’s 2020. We’re Locked In With A Pandemic. And I’m Finally Back to Blogging.

Posted on 6 Apr 2020 In: Reading

2020 y’all. It’s already one for the history books. I hope you and your loved ones are well. I hope you’re staying home if you can. I hope you’re reading a lot.

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I’m on book 13 right now, and not one post blogged! Guess I better get on it. Pitter patter, as they say on Letterkenny.

There’s an author interview coming soon, too.

Book Cover of Atomic Habits

Atomic Habits by James Clear

There were some changes I wanted to make in my life a few months ago, and I needed help getting motivated to do them. I forget exactly how I came across Atomic Habits, but I used an Audible credit and downloaded the book.

It’s an easy listen, only a few hours, but I found it worthwhile. Some of the advice Clear gives is things we have all heard before, but his strategies for making habits stick were game-changers for me. I found them practical and easy to use.

I’m using them today, in fact, and have been every day since I finished the book. Despite life being upended in its current chaos.

If there’s something you’d like to change in your own life, I recommend Atomic Habits. The audiobook was great, the narration straightforward and easy to listen to. But I think it’s worth buying or downloading a copy of the book as well, especially if you want to refer back to it. And you may very well want to do just that.

  • Tags: habits, non-fiction, self-help


Posted on 16 Dec 2019 In: 几鸡ssr教程

Y’all. This book. This Book. It is definitely outside some people’s comfort zone, but I absolutely loved it. Finished it in a day and have told so many people to read it.

I adore the writing style. It’s non-fiction that reads like prose, the result of the “immersive reporting mentioned below.

From the book summary:

In suburban Indiana we meet Lina, a homemaker and mother of two whose marriage, after a decade, has lost its passion. Starved for affection, Lina battles daily panic attacks and, after reconnecting with an old flame through social media, embarks on an affair that quickly becomes all-consuming. In North Dakota we meet Maggie, a seventeen-year-old high school student who allegedly has a clandestine physical relationship with her handsome, married English teacher; the ensuing criminal trial will turn their quiet community upside down. Finally, in an exclusive enclave of the Northeast, we meet Sloane—a gorgeous, successful, and refined restaurant owner—who is happily married to a man who likes to watch her have sex with other men and women.

Based on years of immersive reporting and told with astonishing frankness and immediacy, Three Women is both a feat of journalism and a triumph of storytelling, brimming with nuance and empathy. “A work of deep observation, long conversations, and a kind of journalistic alchemy” (Kate Tuttle, NPR), Three Women introduces us to three unforgettable women—and one remarkable writer—whose experiences remind us that we are not alone.”

I found the stories to be intriguing and heartbreaking. It feels almost voyeuristic reading such intimate details of these women’s lives, but at the same time, I think it was very brave of them to share their stories. I think there are a fair number of readers who will relate to Maggie, Lina, and Sloane.

There are times the book is hard to read. Minor spoilers here…..

Lina, for example, is so consumed by her affair, she can’t see that her lover is not in love with her, even though she’s convinced she is in love with him. Maggie was taken advantage of more than once. And I don’t think Sloane is as happy as she wants to be in her marriage.

I’ll be honest, my friend Lisa didn’t love this book- like I said, it won’t be for everyone, but I’m glad I chose it as a recent book of the month. If you’ve been on the fence about this one, give it a chance.

  • Tags: immersive non-fiction

I’ve Never Been to Me

Posted on 8 Dec 2019 In: Reading

Do you remember the song “I’ve Never Been to Me” by Charlene? I HATE this song. Viscerally. With a passion. I remember the first time I heard it. I was in college, years after the song was popular, and I thought it was a joke. It’s bad. I feel like you should know that going into this review. I detest this song.

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The song “I’ve Never Been To Me“, if you’re unfamiliar, is all about how a woman who lives the high life and is successful isn’t really content, and will end up alone and empty because she’s not married with a child or children- that is what completes her. You can see the lyrics here. This book is supposed to show the parallels between Charlene’s life and the song. Except it doesn’t, and I don’t think Charlene sees that.

And now, finally, onto the review.

Charlene wrote this book with someone called Jordan Paramor. A Google search shows me that Jordan is a ghost writer and journalist. Apparently there was a publisher, but I feel there’s scant evidence of a decent editor.

One thing I want to address early is that Charlene clearly suffers from some form of mental illness- she often refers to crippling depression she suffers and that her mother suffered. Anything that I say in this review is not intended to make light of any form of mental illness, but I am going to offer my opinion on some of her choices and decisions.

The first thing that bugged me about this book is that Charlene is American. She grew up in Los Angeles. She’s lived in the UK (her husband is British) but currently lives in California- and has for years. Yet the book, likely due to Jordan Paramor living in the UK, uses UK spellings and slang. It’s pretentious and precious.

There are things that felt contrived or didn’t really ring true to me in the book. The story starts out with how much Charlene’s family loved her and she loves them, but everyone at school hates her and bullies her for no good reason. She’s friendless. Like a lot of young girls, she is critical of her looks. But in the midst of all her angst about her looks, someone nominates her for a “Miss Dream Girl” competition and she goes all in for it and wins first place. That comes across like faking not liking your looks but secretly knowing people think you’re attractive and you know it, too.

As a teenager, she starts trying to meet famous people and is hanging out with guys far too old for her. She falls madly in love with a wannabe musician with a drug problem, alienates her family, gets pregnant and runs off with her boyfriend, marries him, and lives in extreme poverty while trying to make it in the music business because she wants to be a STAR. She names her daughter Chadney (yes) and has the sense to let the father’s parents raise Chadney because Charlene and her husband are clearly not mentally or financially prepared to raise a child. And the husband’s an abusive addict (because of course he is).

Here’s the first instance of a lack of editing in the book. Charlene goes on and on about how much she loves her horses (the only thing she was good at aside from singing, and who ground her and bring her peace) but when she finally (rightly) leaves the abusive husband for the first time, she says “… I even left my car and my horses behind. But I felt like I didn’t need them. This was going to be a new life for me, and I could always replace anything I needed.”

This bothered me so much and is an early example of where I felt an editor would have come in handy. To so cavalierly dismiss “beloved” animals as not needed and replaceable makes Charlene sound soulless. I understand getting out of an abusive situation often means leaving with only the clothes on your back. I’m not judging for leaving the animals behind. I’m judging the tone with which this part was written.

The narrative in this book is colloquial and repetitive. Wonder/Wonderful were used 66 times in the book. Happy occurs 81 times. Two consecutive paragraphs start with “I ended up…” The book needs some serious editing.

But I think what bothered me most is that Charlene comes across vapid and entitled and she doesn’t learn from her mistakes.

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After her tumultuous marriage and a few other misadventures, Charlene predictably finds god. She attributes recovering from a serious illness to god’s magical powers and then talks about giving her life over to him, yet thinks nothing of carrying on for years with a married man, which seems a bit at odds with one of the Ten Commandments.

The thing that grated my nerves the most in the book, though, is Charlene wants success and fame and money more than anything else- in fact, she feels like she 几鸡ssr安卓 them.

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I know myself pretty well and so I know that once I’ve had more success, I’ll be able to let out a deep breath and say ‘I’ve done it. The battle is won and the quest is over.’ I know it’s hard for people to understand that and people try to analyze me or tell me to let go of things, but it’s not that easy. I lost what I should have had – and should still have now- because of a bad contract.

Yet, she never seems to learn from her mistakes. She jumps at any opportunity that she thinks will make her famous without vetting it. When she’s paid any advance of any sort, she appears to spend it all and save none of it, so she and her current husband and their children don’t have a financial safety net. She separates her family for months at a time while she pursues these half baked ideas that she wants to make her famous.

It’s almost laughable since in her song, being content with a man who loves you and children is what should complete a woman. She still is the person she’s preaching about not being- but that she thinks she is.

I think until you learn lessons in life you will keep making the same mistakes. Somewhere along the way I must have subconsciously realized I deserved more.

There’s a lot more I could say, but I think you get the point with what I’ve written here. I’ve Never Been to Me is, I think, another attempt at fame and money, but instead is more of a discontented mother cursing at her life. I still hate the song.


Daisy Jones and The Six

Posted on 18 Sep 2019 In: Reading

When I read this one, people compared it to A Star Is Born. While a few points are similar, I don’t think it is a fair comparison. I think Daisy Jones and The Six stands in its own right.

How best to describe this one? It’s like reading an episode of the old VH1 show, Behind the Music. You get the backstory, the inside story, the triumph, and the heartbreak. You’re just reading it and imagining the video clips.

I enjoyed reading this one. The beginning was a little slow but it picked up, and I found myself turning the pages. I enjoyed getting to know the characters, with their current commentary interspersed with the words and actions of the past.

I felt it bittersweet towards the end, but also a satisfying ending. After all, life is bittersweet. I read this one in about a day. It was a perfect vacation read, but I’m a little mad at myself for letting it sit on the shelf so long. If you like stories of how the band got together, and what tore them apart, then Daisy Jones and The Six may be a perfect read for you.

  • Tags: 几鸡机场ssr官网, Music
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