Interview with Jane O'Brien, Author of Ivy and Fox

June 2, 2018


I was privileged to invite Ms. O'Brien for an interview with BooKecCenTric to discuss her latest bookIvy and Fox. Enjoy!


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Thank you @JaneO'Brien for your time today. Let’s talk about Ivy and Fox. What’s it about, and what inspired you to write it?
@JaneO'Brien: Ivy and Fox is the third book in a series called The Unforgettables. Each book touches base with a famous person from West Michigan, who is in some way fictionally connected to Ivy's family tree. Through her genealogy research she discovers her ancestors' love stories and it fuels her own.

Who is your target audience, and why do you think this book will appeal to them?
@JaneO'Brien: At first, I thought these books were for women, but I have found that men like the mystery and suspense, too.  My target audience is someone who enjoys history flashbacks, while still enjoying a spicy romance in the present.

What message do you wish to pass across to your readers with this book?
@JaneO'Brien: I believe the main focus of most of my books is that family is important, and who came before us paved the way for who we are today. If it weren't for them and their sacrifices, and a few twists of fate, our lives would be totally different.

What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
@JaneO'Brien: The most difficult thing is always the ending, and since I thought Ivy and Fox was the end of the series, I struggled with it, because I did not want to let my 'babies' go, but it soon became clear that there was more to come. I had some unfinished business that I needed to attend to, so I am now writing book four in the series, in hopes of finally wrapping up the loose ends.

As a writer, is there anything you've learned about yourself while writing this book?
@JaneO'Brien: I usually put a little something of myself in my books and this one was no different. I am romantic and very sentimental, and I am sure only my family would recognize what parts are actually me. But I did discover that I have missed a close connection to grandparents and perhaps that is why I wrote about Ivy's family. By creating a family for her, I was creating one for myself.

For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books, and why?  
@JaneO'Brien: I love the smell and feel of real books, and as a former librarian, I always said I would never give up reading an actual book, but I have to admit to being hooked on my Kindle. I miss walking through the stacks, though, searching for my next treasure, but ebooks are just so darn convenient.  I can't give them up.

What is your niche genre, and if you were to write in a different genre, what would it be?
@JaneO'Brien: My niche is romance with a hint of mystery. I don't know if I can write in another genre. I'm not good at fantasy, murder, or comedy. As a matter of fact, even writing a few funny lines is difficult. So I guess I'll stay in my lane for now.

What books and authors have most influenced you?
@JaneO'Brien: I have been very influenced by Sandra Dallas, Nicholas Sparks, and James Michael Pratt. I love sweet love stories that sometimes bring a tear to the eye. One of my all time favorite books is The Diary of Mattie Spencer by Sandra Dallas. I felt like Mattie was me when I was reading it, even though it was about a pioneer woman. Mattie loved quilts and herbs and so do I. It was amazing.

Is there anything you'd like readers to know about you?
@JaneO'Brien: I am a senior citizen who published my first book only four years ago, and now I am working on my tenth. I am having the time of my life. If there is something you always wanted to do, plunge in and do it. Nothing is impossible. You may not be the best, but who cares if you're having fun.

Do you have any more books in the works?
@JaneO'Brien: I am working on the fourth book of The Unforgettables now, called Georgi and Jack. It should be out sometime this summer. I also recently completed a Christmas novella that I am saving for next year.

Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
@JaneO'Brien: I definitely read them. And I listen to constructive criticism. Yes, the bad ones hurt, but then I remind myself that not everyone will like the story line or my writing style. I can't possibly please them all. Still ----

What is your preferred method to have readers get in touch with or follow you (i.e., website, personal blog, Facebook page, Goodreads, etc.)?
@JaneO'Brien: If they have a question about my book, I like them to write to my email address at authorjaneobrien@gmail.com. I always answer back. But my Facebook page and Goodreads is good for quick comments.

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Jane O'Brien resides in West Michigan where she was born and raised. She is married and the mother of two daughters, both authors in their own right. She's had a variety of jobs and hobbies including: piano teacher, librarian, genealogist, gardener, and quilter.

O'Brien loves to write about her experiences living along the Lake Michigan shoreline as a youth, and then later in the woods near inland lakes and rivers. She takes pride in being able to introduce her readers to her beautiful state. She has recently moved back to the lake shore.

Website link:



Interview with D.T. Williams, Author of For Better or For Worse


May 26, 2018


I was privileged to invite Ms. Williams for an interview with BooKecCenTric to discuss her latest bookFor Better or For Worse. Enjoy!

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Thank you @DTWilliams for your time today. Let’s talk about For Better or For Worse. What’s it about, and what inspired you to write it?

What's your book about, and what inspired you to write it?
@DTWilliams: My book is about the ups and downs of romantic relationships. I focus on the coming together of two special characters from various backgrounds and how they build and maintain a healthy bond with one another. After a few short stories and poems, I was inspired to write a full-length novel about a young couple who navigates through adulthood together.

Who is your target audience, and why do you think this book will appeal to them?
@DTWilliams: I definitely hope to gain the attention of young African-American women and men. I believe they will find interest in this book due to the fact that it focuses on similar situations that they may have experienced.

What message do you wish to pass across to your readers with this book?
@DTWilliams: The message I hope to relay to the reader is that life as well as relationships has its ups and downs and although the struggle can be difficult any obstacle that we are faced with is just a test to make us stronger.

What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
@DTWilliams: The main thing I struggle with when working on any of my novels is making sure I'm perfecting each chapter to the best of my ability. Sometimes when writing there is so much creativity going on in my head it's hard to express it all on paper, so I have to take my time and make sure each piece of the puzzle is put together properly.

As a writer, is there anything you've learned about yourself while writing this book?
@DTWilliams: If I've learned anything about myself through writing I've learned that I'm passionate about what I do. In the beginning of my writing career I passed it off as a hobby or something to do that occupies my time, but with each character I create and each story I form together I can see now that this is what has my heart. I am a writer.

For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books, and why?  
@DTWilliams: Although ebooks are more accessible I do prefer reading hardbacks instead. I'm just so used to physical paper that I can pick up and put down at my own leisure where has when dealing with electronics it can become a hassle.

What is your niche genre, and if you were to write in a different genre, what would it be?
@DTWilliams: My genre is mainly romance. Whether it is romantic comedy, romantic drama, or romantic suspense at the end of the day I am all about the romance. If I could write any other genre it would more than likely be murder mystery. I feel this genre involves a lot of thinking, planning and strategies keeping the reader on edge.

What books and authors have most influenced you?
@DTWilliams: White Lines by Tracy Brown; Scarred by Twyla Turner; The doctor's secret bride by Anna E Ross… I could go on but then we'll be here all day but each one of these books definitely gave me a push to pursue writing fully.

Is there anything you'd like readers to know about you?
@DTWilliams: My purpose of writing is to share my work with interested readers from similar and diverse backgrounds. Aside from writing I'm also a personal reviewer who loves to encourage and give helpful feedback to authors just like me.

Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
@DTWilliams: I do read my own book reviews, reason being I want to see what the reader liked about my work as well as what they didn't like. It helps me when writing in the future to know what establishes a connection with my audience and what I need improvement on.

@DTWilliams: What is your preferred method to have readers get in touch with or follow you (i.e., website, personal blog, Facebook page, Goodreads, etc.)?

Any additional comments you would like to add?
@DTWilliams: I just want to thank BooKecCenTric for giving me this interview and I thank all readers who enjoyed getting to know me a little better.


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My name is D. T. Williams. I was raised in Lake City, Florida where I have lived all of my life and now I reside in Orlando. I took a strong liking to books at a very young age and have maintained that same passion as an adult. I have always indulged myself in reading many books from different authors some of which inspired me to create my own work.


Writing for me came a little later in my years; it first started out with poems, short stories until I finally created my first novel. I have now been inspired to showcase my talent to the world in hopes to entertain and inspire others. Now that I am pursing further education I choose to continue to grow in the knowledge of reading and writing. I hope you all will join me on this journey in helping me achieve success through my work.

Website link:


Interview with Don Defreeze, Author of Climb Beyond the Crest

Apr. 26, 2018

I was privileged to invite Mr. Defreeze for an interview with BooKecCenTric to discuss his latest bookClimb Beyond the Crest. Enjoy!


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Thank you @DonDefreeze for your time today. Let’s talk about Climb Beyond the Crest. What’s it about, and what inspired you to write it?
@DonDefreeze: Life is a journey. Whether it’s a day or a series of years combined, the winding road we weave is solely our own, even if we are surrounded by minions. No other can walk in the shoes of another. As an individual creature, what is the essence of the existence you find yourself? We may be comforted by others now, but where will you be in the end? 

As a youth, I had been inspired by Thoreau and his ideas expressed in Walden. Those ideas attuned my thoughts to the natural flow of everything around me and compelled me to seek the connection Thoreau sought. 

In some ways, Climb Beyond the Crest is a modern update to Walden. I’d like to know how he would have reacted to the discovery of black holes, nuclear fusion or quantum mechanics. We live in spectacular time for speculation. With consideration of contemporary science, the thoughts embedded in this story attempt to explain my conclusions about the essence of nature and the consequences we might expect. To get to that clear vision, you’ll have to take this Appalachian hike into solitude. That’s the inevitable state of every individual, and maybe it’s a fruitful idea to contemplate it before the fate our end is fulfilled.

Who is your target audience, and why do you think this book will appeal to them?
@DonDefreeze: I’m asked about a target audience. I hate to think of anyone as targeted these days though every reader is not equal. Some are satisfied with consuming what human culture has to offer while others thirst for a deeper meaning, a more personal connection to reality. 

These seekers can be anyone, from a seamstress to a CEO, peering out a window wondering what it’s all about. The important thing is that they want to know what takes shape once the walls and distractions of mankind are stripped away.   

I believe this book appeals in 2 different ways: First, a walk into the Appalachians is awesome by itself. The adventure of diving farther into the recesses of quintessential wilderness revitalizes a mind clogged with the monotony of our ordered lives. Second, being able to shed every aspect of our social and modern lifestyle is a scenario which most are unable to experience. What would that be like? How would I perceive my surroundings without anything I’ve grown accustomed to?

What message do you wish to pass across to your readers with this book?
@DonDefreeze: I hope every reader wakes up! One at a time. It’s an amazing feat that inert molecules have arranged to make you and consciousness. It is a priceless chance to understand the universal soup that concocted one’s existence and an opportunity to create a connection to it. This is not an armchair curiosity, all will relinquish their lot and lose their minds, thought and reason. Find your heartfelt link before it’s too late to do so.

What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
@DonDefreeze: The hardest thing about writing is language. Words are imperfect and using them to convey an idea, precisely, is sometimes elusive.

As a writer, is there anything you've learned about yourself while writing this book?
@DonDefreeze: I learned what my limitations are. I had thought I could write well and still devote the required time to the rest of my endeavors and life. Well, this outlook was severely tested. The book consumed more time as it expanded, and certain thoughts and actions being written became an obsession to get them right. This resulted in some arguments with neglected friends and lost revenue. I think Clint Eastwood said it best in Magnum Force.

For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books, and why?  
@DonDefreeze: I used to read physical books but rely on a screen more now. Due to time limitations, most of my reading is spent on research.

What is your niche genre, and if you were to write in a different genre, what would it be?
@DonDefreeze: Defining a genre for this book has proven to be slippery. I equate it to choosing a genre for Thoreau’s Walden, if you search for one online, you come up with a bunch of convoluted terms. Part of my book is true adventure, yet it contains pieces of self-reliance, philosophy, inspiration and science with considerations of spirituality, theology and moralism. 

I disagree, vehemently, with Amazon’s placement of this book under Religious & Spirituality, simply because not one religion is mentioned. I try to stick to facts and any conjecture is based on them and as limited as they allow. I guess Thoreau could have been listed under Religion?

What books and authors have most influenced you?
@DonDefreeze: Obviously Thoreau, but for escape i used to read King but have turned from fiction since it does not expand my understanding of the real world.

Is there anything you'd like readers to know about you?
@DonDefreeze: I’d like everyone to know that I’ve devoted the rest of my life to opening the eyes of as many as I can to the riches of the natural world and helping them understand the miraculous circumstances that have allowed them to open their eyes at all in a hostile universe. 

Whether it’s leading a guided tour into the depths of Appalachian bliss or a stirring story, I will feel fulfilled if I can even get one person to fully understand. Could that be you?

Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
@DonDefreeze: Yes, I've had several including a scathing one. I brush this off as inexperience while producing the first book in the series.

What is your preferred method to have readers get in touch with or follow you (i.e., website, personal blog, Facebook page, Goodreads, etc.)?
@DonDefreeze: It's easiest to follow me on twitter @D_Dfreeze or through the excihiking website. I also have a business page on facebook listed under hikemtn or Excihiking.

Any additional comments you would like to add?
@DonDefreeze: I have become a bit bewildered in the course that literature has taken in my lifetime. It seems more people want to be fed illusions, fiction, with little interpretive thought defining any relevance to reality or usefulness. I agree with some that say it's the "dumbing-down of society." I've always agreed that truth is stranger than fiction anyway.


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Born 1959 Long Island, N.Y. Graduated Locust Valley H.S. with honors. Attended SUNY Oneonta earning a BS in meteorology, 1981. Relocated to Roanoke, VA. in 1989 and furthered his studies at VA Western Comm. College & Roanoke College. 

Currently, Don is the owner of Excihiking Treks. He has established a coordinated guide service helping others explore the wonders of the Appalachian Mountains near Roanoke. His book trilogy titled Please Read depicts a 2-day hiking trek along the Appalachian Trail which runs through the region.

Website link:


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