Monday, December 31, 2018

Obsession leads to compression

With every audiobook he produced for me, Don Warrick shared his thoughts about his craft, about the way he explores his experience to find the core of the story and inhabit the characters. This time, working on our suspense audiobook, Virtually Lace, felt like a marathon. It came into being in super-speed, so I became more curious than ever to hear his thoughts. I'm so glad to share these thoughts with you:

Obsession leads to compression
By Don Warrick

There is an expression that engineers and geeks understand. Obsession leads to compression. First the obsession part. I was introduced to Uvi's work with the WWII series that we produced. I loved performing her sweeping historical romances. They were warm and lovely, humorous and sometimes poignant. I still want an Uncle Schmeel of my own.

Then came Lace. I had no idea what I was getting into. I wasn't prepared for how compelling this novel would be. Up to this point I had been doing a lovely waltz, and she changed the music to hard rock. I am also a technologist so the very idea grabbed my attention from the start. Then the book sucked me in.

 It didn't tug at me, or coax me, or ask me politely, it pulled me in recklessly with abandon. Adrenalin is a dangerous thing. 

Ordinarily when I am producing an audiobook I take my time, I set a reasonable pace. I had estimated that I would have the book finished by the end of January. I am writing this post on new year's eve 2018 a month ahead of schedule. Compression.

When you record an audiobook, you have three things in your awareness.  
  1. Being true to the characters
  2. Paying attention to the rhythm and pace
  3. Actively listening to sound quality and articulation 
Ordinarily you juggle all three balls in the air and you proceed in a reasonable manner. What I encountered with Lace, is that when you become a little bit obsessed it greatly reduces your production time. Obsession leads to compression.

 I so enjoyed crawling into this book that I never slowed down. I got the tracks laid down and immediately jumped into post. I have never enjoyed recording a book this much.

When Uvi asked me to explain how I managed this feat of legerdemain I can only do so in the rear view mirror. This book was an amazing read. A roller coaster and a brain teaser. She never ceases to amaze. 


(Volume II of Ash Suspense Thrillers with a Dash of Romance)
Kindle ★ Nook ★ Apple ★ Kobo ★ Smashwords
AudibleUS ★ UK ★ FR ★ DE
AudiobookAmazon US ★ Amazon UK ★ iTunes
PaperbackAmazon ★ Barnes&Noble

Haunted by discovering the body of a beautiful dancer, Michael sets out to create a virtual reality simulation of her murder. Can he bring the mystery to life? Can he solve its clues in time, before the killer turns on the woman he loves, Ash?



Don Warrick's Website

His body of work:

AudioBooks:
Uvi Poznansky
Mary Campisi 
A Family Affair: The Promise (Truth in Lies book #7)  
A Family Affair: Winter (Truth in Lies, Book 6) 
A Family Affair: Christmas (Truth in Lies, Book 5)
A Family Affair: Fall (Truth in Lies, Book 4) 
A Family Affair: Summer (Truth in Lies, Book 3) 
Michael J Dawson
Oleg V. Oksevski
Richard James Chance
Julie Elizabeth Powell
John Franz
Artistic Direction
Dayton Playhouse, Dayton Ohio
Central Ohio Professional Theatre, Columbus Ohio
Covered Bridge Theatre, North East Maryland,
Performance
A Little Night Music - Fredrick
Kiss Me Kate - Petruchio
Mack & Mable - Mack Sennett
Man of La Mancha - Don Quixote
Sound of Music - Capt. von Trapp
South Pacific - Emile DeBeque
Sweeney Todd - Sweeney
The King and I - King of Siam
Two by Two - Noah 
The Grand Duke - The Grand Duke
HMS Penafore - Ralph
Pirates of Penzance - The Pirate King 
The Merry Widow - Danilo 
The Mikado - Nanki Poo 
Orpheus - Mercury
Les deux aveugles - Patachon
Die Fledermaus - Eisenstein
Gianni Schicci - Gerardo
La Boeheme - Parpigno
La Traviata - Georgio Germont
Marriage of Figaro - Don Basillio
The Impressario - Herr Eiler
A Lion in Winter - Henry
Lend Me a Tenor - Tito Merrelli
Medea - Jason 
Oleanna - John
On Golden Pond - Norman
Plaza Suite - Jessie Kipplinger
The Odd Couple - Felix 
The Rainmaker - Starbuck
Zoo Story - Jerry 
Brigadoon - Tommy Albright
Camelot - Arthur
Candide - Candide
Jacque Brel - Player 
Convenience - Abe
Fantastics - El Gallo
Godspell - Jesus
Guys and Dolls - Sky Masterson

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Why I Did It

A great review of my novel, A Favorite Son, from Aurora Dawn:

December 29, 2018
In this story, Poznansky tackles the biblical story of Issac's sons in the form of a frank, first person recollection on the event from a much older Yankle (Jacob). The author expertly portrays a dysfunctional family where the bitter rivalry between a pair of twins and their parents favoritism is so great that we can easily believe and even sympathize with Yankle's plotting to steal his brother's birthright by deceiving his dying father.
Like so much of the Old Testament, this is a story of brutal people who were jealous, conniving and dishonest (and those were the good guys), but in this version of the story, told in modern, colloquial language, we are given insights that helps us to imagine what it might have been like to have been that younger brother and just how the events that are laid out in the Bible as facts, without much explanation, might have come to happen.
Poznansky's stories are always a delight to experience, whether in the written or the audio versions and this one, though a little shorter than most, was no less of a magical journey into a magical past.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Virtually Lace is #1 new release in Virtual Reality!

Doing the happy dance! My new Suspense novel is #1 new release in Virtual Reality!

(Volume II of Ash Suspense Thrillers with a Dash of Romance)
Kindle ★ Nook ★ Apple ★ Kobo ★ Smashwords
Audible: USUKFRDE
Audiobook: Amazon US Amazon UK ★ iTunes

Paperback: Amazon ★ Barnes&Noble

Haunted by discovering the body of a beautiful dancer, Michael sets out to create a virtual reality simulation of her murder. Can he bring the mystery to life? Can he solve its clues in time, before the killer turns on the woman he loves, Ash?

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Her writing and her art are tightly coupled.

A lovely review for my WWII Romantic Suspense novel, Dancing with Air:

December 22, 2018
This is the first book I’ve read by Uvi Poznanski. When I read the author’s bio, the description of her writing so accurately portrayed her work I felt compelled to share her words in my review—Her writing and her art are tightly coupled. “I paint with my pen,” she says, “and write with my paintbrush.”

The Music Of Us is a beautifully crafted story of love through the ages. Written in first person through the hero’s eyes, Poznansky shares the poignant, bitter-sweet memories of Lenny as he chronicles the beautiful love story between he and Natasha. With a backdrop of WWII and an amazingly accurate description of the era, Poznanski paints her story on the canvas of our minds.

I felt the emotion from love at first sight and his desperate attempts to win over Natasha’s mother to his acceptance of his love’s struggle with Alzheimers as he reads of her failing mind in her diary.
A mesmerizing, powerful saga!

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Cover design for Apart from War

I'm so excited to present my new bundle, Apart from War. It includes three novels, where one begins where the previous one ends, so you keep yourself immersed in the times and in the saga that begins when they first meet and spans several years, following them from the US to England to France during WWII:
In designing the cover for this bundle, Here I imagined a family member—perhaps Ben, Lenny’s son—studying old photographs of his mother, Natasha, to begin to understand her secrets, her previous life, and the love story of his parents before he was born.

These photographs are also the covers of the three individual novels. Framed with vintage photograph edges, they are presented on top of old letters, with pressed flowers that might have been sent in the same envelope between the lovers.


Volume III, IV & V: 
Audible: Soon 
Audiobook: Soon
Paperback: Soon

Monday, December 17, 2018

I get to inhabit the lives of your characters

Today I have the pleasure of presenting the gifted narrator of my upcoming Romantic Suspense Technothriller, Virtually Lace. 

Don Warrick has already voiced the characters for three of my WWI Romantic Suspense novels,  The Music of UsDancing with Air, and Marriage before Death. With my new series come a host of new characters, lead by Michael, a software engineer specializing in Virtual Reality, and his sweetheart, Ash, who is coming back to him after a traumatic incident in her recent past. I have just heard Don narrating the first chapter and can't wait to share voice clips with you, so please, stay tuned...

Don is an actor who spent his entire life presenting the written word, and is second to none in his storytelling. He is a musician of many skills: teacher, performer, conductor, and recording artist. And he is an audiobook publisher. One day, he took the advice of his son, a writer, and found himself on the ACX page. Many days later he came up for air, realizing that he found the place where all roads converge. What I admire about him--besides his incredible talent--is that he can read my thoughts and make them his own. In his own words, which he expressed in the beautiful article he wrote titled Intimacy

What I really love about producing audio books is that as an actor I get to inhabit the lives of your characters for more than a couple of hours. My relationship with you is the most intimate of relationships. I alone have climbed inside your head and stood with your lovers and your demons. I have let your tears roll down my cheek, locked in a tiny little box in my basement, in front of a microphone and a script. Just the two of us.

Intimacy.



Don Warrick's Website

His body of work:

AudioBooks:
Uvi Poznansky
Mary Campisi 
A Family Affair: The Promise (Truth in Lies book #7)  
A Family Affair: Winter (Truth in Lies, Book 6) 
A Family Affair: Christmas (Truth in Lies, Book 5)
A Family Affair: Fall (Truth in Lies, Book 4) 
A Family Affair: Summer (Truth in Lies, Book 3) 
Michael J Dawson
Oleg V. Oksevski
Richard James Chance
Julie Elizabeth Powell
John Franz
Artistic Direction
Dayton Playhouse, Dayton Ohio
Central Ohio Professional Theatre, Columbus Ohio
Covered Bridge Theatre, North East Maryland,
Performance
A Little Night Music - Fredrick
Kiss Me Kate - Petruchio
Mack & Mable - Mack Sennett
Man of La Mancha - Don Quixote
Sound of Music - Capt. von Trapp
South Pacific - Emile DeBeque
Sweeney Todd - Sweeney
The King and I - King of Siam
Two by Two - Noah 
The Grand Duke - The Grand Duke
HMS Penafore - Ralph
Pirates of Penzance - The Pirate King 
The Merry Widow - Danilo 
The Mikado - Nanki Poo 
Orpheus - Mercury
Les deux aveugles - Patachon
Die Fledermaus - Eisenstein
Gianni Schicci - Gerardo
La Boeheme - Parpigno
La Traviata - Georgio Germont
Marriage of Figaro - Don Basillio
The Impressario - Herr Eiler
A Lion in Winter - Henry
Lend Me a Tenor - Tito Merrelli
Medea - Jason 
Oleanna - John
On Golden Pond - Norman
Plaza Suite - Jessie Kipplinger
The Odd Couple - Felix 
The Rainmaker - Starbuck
Zoo Story - Jerry 
Brigadoon - Tommy Albright
Camelot - Arthur
Candide - Candide
Jacque Brel - Player 
Convenience - Abe
Fantastics - El Gallo
Godspell - Jesus
Guys and Dolls - Sky Masterson

You chose the wrong side in this fight

The front door opens. A big guy in a cowboy hat too small for his head walks in. Close set eyes lock on her, and he comes straight to her table. In an accent that sounds like Eddie and Senor Valdez, he says, “Hank Sibley’s buckle bunny. Just the woman I want to see.” 
Her eyes lock on the scar along his jaw. The man from the VIP area at the rodeo earlier. The one who delivered dois cervejas to her and Senor Valdez. She tries to look and sound casually surprised when what she feels is terror. “What?” With one hand, she covers the buckle Hank had playfully secured around her waist earlier.
“Don’t play any dumber than you are.” His voice is cutting, his eyes dismissive in his olive face.
Inside rages bubbles up to mix with her terror. “I don’t know what you’re talking about, and I’m certainly nobody’s buckle bunny. I’m just a singer. I played at the Buckin’ A the last few nights.”
He shakes his head. “I know where you played, but a thing is at it appears. And you appeared here with Hank Sibley.”
“I’m on the road to my next gig in Billings.”
“You chose the wrong side in this fight.” He slides into Hank’s chair. 
“You need to leave.”
He pats his hip. “This is a gun in my pocket. You’re going to follow me to the parking lot.”
“What do you want from me?”
His eyes bore into hers. “If you do anything stupid, I shoot someone. Maybe you. Maybe that teenager waiting people. Maybe the grandmother with the babies by the door. I don’t care who. Got it?”
She swallows. Hank really had gotten the wrong people mad. She hopes her prayer wasn’t too late. If this guy was here for her, this could mean Hank escaped. “Got it.”
He stands, and Maggie follows his lead. He gestures for her to walk ahead of him, then does it again impatiently when she hesitates. Her legs feel wobbly and blood rushes from her head. She steadies herself with fingertips on the table. Come on, Maggie. Come on, she tells herself. Finally, her legs move, and she shuffles forward. 
Inspiration strikes. She stops. “I have to go to the bathroom.”
“Not now.”
“But—”
“I said not now.” His hip and the hard metal of his gun bumps her from behind. “You’ve got two seconds until I start shooting.” 
She feels his hand move into his pocket, and she musters up the courage to move again. He trails her to the exit of the restaurant. Maggie tries to make eye contact with people, but no one pays any attention to them. Maybe the waitress will see I’ve walked the check and come after us. But that will be no good, if this Neanderthal keeps his promise to shoot. He opens the door, indicating she should go first. The night wind bowls her over, hot and hard, like it wants to push her back into the safety of the diner. 
He grabs her elbow.
“Ouch.” She tries to yank away. “Where are you taking me?”
His grip is steady, but he doesn’t answer. He marches Maggie beyond the reach of the lights from the street and from Western Sky’s. They reach a boat-like sedan, decades old from the shape but well-preserved. She can’t identify it in the dark. He stops at the driver’s door, reaches in, fumbles around, and pushes a button repeatedly.
“Damn old piece of shit.” He propels her ahead of him. “Around back.” He opens the trunk with his key. 
Maggie’s heart is a drumroll in her chest. He’s going to put her in the trunk. There’s no way she can let that happen without a fight, because whatever he does to her somewhere else will be much worse than what he can do here. 
“Are you looking for Hank? I can tell you where he is.” She unbuckles her belt and slips it into her hand behind her back. Her fist tightens on the belt, and she tenses, ready.
“I couldn’t care less where he is. You’re my assignment.”
“But why? I don’t get it.”
“He disrespected the boss. The boss always returns the insult. You’re Mr. Sibley’s punishment. Now, you can get in, or I can put you in.”
“Aren’t you going to move the tire over? I won’t fit.”
He glances at the interior of the trunk. 
Maggie grits her teeth. With all her strength, she whips the ten-pound belt buckle into the side of his head, then rears back, ready to do it again. He falls forward. She lets the belt drop. With strength she didn’t know she had, she grabs him around the thighs and topples him the rest of the way in. As she slams the trunk, he’s already recovering and beginning to thrash. She pauses with her weight on the trunk lid, listening. He’s groaning, cursing, kicking. It hasn’t been half an hour. Her breaths come fast in panty gasps. She can’t leave Hank. Can the thug get out of the trunk? She has no idea. There could be a latch. Or he could bust it open. 
Cautiously, she stands, watching the trunk latch and at the ready with her giant belt buckle. His efforts seem futile, and she finally decides she can risk it. He’s not going to break out. She has to get back to where Hank expects her to be waiting for him. Shaking, she puts the belt back on, looking around her to see if anyone had seen what happened as she does it. But she’s completely alone except for the struggling man in the trunk.
She takes a few deep breaths, each less shaky than the last. “I’m nobody’s buckle bunny, asshole.”


Excerpt from Buckle Bunny
By Pamela Fagan Hutchins
Included in Love Under Fire


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Friday, December 14, 2018

Cover reveal for the audiobook edition of Virtually Lace

I'm so happy to start working with my narrator, Don Warrick, on our upcoming project, Virtually Lace! Don has produced three of my audiobooks and I admire the quality of his work and the way he steps into the skin of the characters, so I can't wait to hear how he gives them voice!

Meanwhile, I've designed the cover for the book: I wanted to bring together the virtual universe, as signified by the 0's and 1's in the top half of the cover, and the natural world, as signified by the ebbing of water in the bottom half. This way, the cover reflects the thoughts of my protagonist:

Even before Michael spotted the body, the idea of creating a simulation of the scene occurred to him. At sunset, the panoramic view of Laguna Beach was awe-inspiring. He wondered if he could render it convincingly in his model, the virtual reality model which he had been developing in the back of his garage for months, until the recent acquisition of his software by a military ops company. 
Could beauty be taken apart without loss of emotional impact? Could its data be synthesized, somehow, into a lifelike experience? In short, could he apply his analytical skills to fool his own senses?



Virtually Lace
(Volume II of Ash Suspense Thrillers with a Dash of Romance)
Kindle ★ Nook ★ Apple ★ Kobo ★ Smashwords
Audible: USUKFRDE
Audiobook: Amazon US Amazon UK ★ iTunes

Paperback: Amazon ★ Barnes&Noble

Thursday, December 13, 2018

A wide-faced white watch ticking away for a woman who would never again need to know the time

His partner patted him on his shoulder. “Take your time.” 
“No, let's get this over with.” Michael led the way into the building where the county medical examiner met them at the door. 
They flashed and pocketed their badges in sync with each other. Jeff—the senior agent—dispensed with introductions. Michael only caught snatches of the conversation. The sharp ringing in his ears blocked out any other sound. The coroner's grim expression and somber tone told the whole story. 
“I haven’t performed the autopsy yet. I was waiting for y’all to come by and see the body. From my initial examination, it looks like this might be another victim of the serial killer you’re after. I can tell you for sure she put up one helluva fight.” 
Jeff shot a quick glance at Michael, who shook his head and wet his lips. He shuffled forward following the examiner into the cold morgue, his heart pounding and his breath quickening. He leaned against the wall as the examiner pulled out the drawer and peeled off the crisp white sheet covering the body. The dead woman’s left hand slipped off the tray showing a wide-faced white watch ticking away for a woman who would never again need to know the time.  
Michael let out a huff of relief as he bent at the waist. 
Fresh air. I need fresh air. 
He bolted.

Excerpt from Summer of '78
By K.M. Hodge


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Wednesday, December 12, 2018

A tragedy of classical proportions

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Aurora Dawn


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 A Father's Sorrow 

Overall  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️    
5 out of 5 stars
Performance  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️    
5 out of 5 stars
Story  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️    
5 out of 5 stars
Reviewed: 12-05-18

This volume chronicles the clash between David's sons Amnon and Abselon with a poignancy that captures the pain and despair of a father as he watches his family fall apart. Poznansky weaves bits of biblical text with her own words as she spins this sad tale of one of the low points of the great biblical king's life. It's a tragedy of classical proportions full of pride, hubris and the inevitability of the fall.
Bob Sterry, in my mind one of the best narrators working today, brings the story to life with all the warmth, nobility and eloquence it deserves.
A story you won't want to miss. 
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