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 Betsie's Literary Page Newsletter . Happy Holiday's ! 

Friday -- December 05, 2003 

. . . . . . . . .

Greetings Dear Members,


Betsie's Literary Page url has changed. You can find the new url at the end of this newsletter.

We've also added new articles to our site, stop by and check it out. Also someone asked "how do you write a media alert?" If you'd like send me an email and I'll send you a pdf file, but I will be posting this info on the site soon.

A new letter will be going out bi-weekly, we hope they will catch your interest and send us mail in regards to these authors. Keep an eye out for: For Immediate Release due out on Wed

Due to the amount of books that we have had the pleasure of reading we're cutting this week's newsletter a tad bit short, but I promise to include more in next weeks! **On a special note: Boy oh boy.... have we a very special benefit for our members! You'll find this out as you continue to read and don't be greedy, tell your friends about this!

in this issue
  • In The News, Movie Reviews and More!
  • Recipe of the Week
  • Book Reviews
  • Marketing and More!

  • Recipe of the Week


    (Milanesas de Ternera)


    6 veal rounds
    2 eggs, whipped
    1 cup of bread crumbs
    salt and pepper


    Dip the milanesas in the whipped eggs and in the bread crumbs with salt and pepper. Shake of the excess bread. Fry the milanesas until golden.

    Soak up the excess grease with a napkin or paper towel. (The milanesas may be served with mashed potatoes or with boiled cabbage. To make the plate a little heartier, the milanesa may be served with cheese or with ham.)

    Book Reviews

    Title: Tasting The White Water
    Author: Jack Daley
    ISBN: 1413703755
    Publisher: Publish America (October 20, 2003)
    Genre: Biographies and Memoirs/Inspirational
    Paperback: 59 pp

    Highly Recommended

    An unpredictable journey through life towards a higher understanding of self!

    Mr. Daley shares with us his innermost thoughts and dreams to describe his journey to awaken from the slumber that we call life. A student of Henry Miller, Castaneda, Gurdjieff, and Krishnmurti for over forty years, Mr. Daley has written, Tasting the White Water as both a biography as well as an inspirational story. Like many of us, Mr. Daley takes part in many of the same struggles that we face today. He has a family and the normal obligations that we are all charged with. However, Mr. Daley feels that something is missing and that he has not reached his full potential. He documents his dreams in this book and tries to attach some type of value to them during the course of his day. At times he is overcome by a feeling that he has lost control and that he is not prepared, as his dreams switch from one scene to another. There are so many parts of his inner-self that crave attention as well as outside factors that need to be addressed.

    He and his friend Alex take up white water rafting in this stage of his life as a means of recapturing their youth and they discover a natural and legal high. At first, they feel their way down the rapids with little skill and some success. However, as the book progresses Mr. Daley conquers his fears and insecurities as he battles fearlessly through the rapids, and he begins to awaken from his life and reach towards his true potential. It is as if the worries of his life have vanished to be replaced by a true appreciation of life itself. Time has stopped, material things began to sloth away as every beam of sunlight and every part of Gods creation teaches Mr. Daley about his inner-self and how he has evolved based on his experiences and dreams.

    He acknowledges the fact that we are who we make ourselves to be. Nothing in life is totally out of control, as it is perceived. If you tackle a series of problems in the same manner that you tackle the powerful current as you navigate through vicious rapids, you can achieve success. Sometimes you have to roll with the punches and prepare yourself physically and mentally for the unpredictable that fate and destiny assign to us. Perhaps that was not his entire message, but Mr. Daleys inspiration has awakened a part of my psyche to believe that this is what it means to me. I had some trouble placing the genre primarily because this book can mean so many positive things in so many ways.

    The imagery is vivid and you may find yourself gasping or holding your breath as you ride the rapids with Mr. Daley. He is a true artist well verse in the use of words and descriptions to take you to the places that he has been and to travel down the river that he has conquered. Tasting the White Water is a remarkable piece of literature free from any fluff or un-necessaries. Every word in this book and every scenario offered ties into his central theme that man is still truly asleep in his potential. To awaken we must first realize that we are asleep and then we are prepared to take the next step.

    Reviewed by Tyrone Banks

    Read the interview with Jack Daley


    Title: Pilgrims' Moon
    Author: Stacey Thompson
    Genre: Sciene Fiction
    Paperback: 420 pp
    Publisher: PublishAmerica, Inc. (May 2003)
    ISBN: 1592861601

    Rating: Highly Recommended

    Intense cerebral futuristic tale!

    Aboard the transporter ship Argo Scott Thorne awakens from his biostatic chamber with the assumption they have arrived at their final destination point, Terranova. Instead he discovers that not only has the Argo suffered the loss of its commanding officer, but that 500 years have elapsed!

    In addition: one of the Argo's passengers, a T-Corp Commissioner -Harris, withholds information about his real intentions of travel. Two-dozen militia soldiers remain dormant in biostatics, while the Argo's computer system runs amok due to a destructive virus.

    With an intriguing cast and crew, the Argo sets out to find a hospitable planet on which they can take refuge. At the same time Thorne falls head over heels for the ship's medical officer, Jessica Colby, who happens to have an on again, off again relationship with the newly appointed captain, Cal Adams.

    After finding a planet, which they name Loki. A recon group boards the Jason and heads for the surface to investigate. What they find is certainly not what they expected. Still, having resolved a potentially nasty situation, and finding the planet suitable enough to live on, they re-animate the remaining of the passengers and begin colonizing Loki.

    But it's not long before they find out that Loki was already colonized, as they run into an old man, Eli. He reveals devastating and eye opening news. But even scarier are the creatures of Loki that suddenly surface.

    The author, Stacey Thompson has done a superb job, not just at taking the reader through space and time, but through the birth of a new civilization as well. Pilgrim's Moon is a great science fiction tale that that hooks the audience from the moment you dive into the first paragraph. This brilliantly woven tale makes you forget such a world exists.

    The exciting action will grip readers, but readers will think about the messages that make this novel transcend most science fiction books attaining the golden status of powerhouse. Hard core sci-fi fans are sure to love Pilgrim's Moon and even if you are not a fan, it will certainly guarantee to entertain!

    Reviewed by Edward Vicario

    Read the interview with Stac ey S. Thompson


    Title: Backwater
    Author: Morris L. Striplin
    Publisher: Crystal Dreams Publishing
    Genre: Romance/Suspense
    ISBN: 1591460050
    Paperback; 413pp

    Rating: Highly Recommended

    Hot Suspense Romeo and Juliet in the Bayou

    Backwater is an intriguing romance novel about a young law student, Josh Wagner, who during a visit home bumps into an old school mate, Ellen Pike. Josh and Ellen reminisce about old times and discover that they were made for each other. They spend a passionate weekend together and fall hopelessly in love.

    As their time together dwindles, they are saddened. Neither wants to end this glorious time. They decide that this is a great deal more than just a romp in the hay. However, Josh is from a traditional, wealthy family and Ellen, is a poor working girl struggling to save money for nursing school. Realizing that they must soon part, they brand themselves with a symbol of their love. Josh and Ellen say their bittersweet good-byes with promises of when next they meet. Those promises are short lived when Ellen disappears. Josh is forced to face the reality that Ellen left of her accord and he ends up in a sour marriage.

    The author, Morris L. Striplin manages to simultaneously keep the reader in suspense regarding Ellens disappearance, while Joshs unfortunate story unfolds.

    I truly enjoyed this intricately written fiction, because it reflects on true-life circumstances in which many marry for the wrong reasons. In addition, I was amazed at how well this male author penned romance. I highly recommend this steamy novel full of raw emotions the ending will surprise you!

    Reviewed by Juanita Reynolds

    Read the interview with Morri s L. Striplin


    Title: The Marketing Toolkit for Growing Businesses
    Author: Jay B. Lipe
    ISBN: 0972034501
    Publisher: Chammerson Press
    Genre: Business Management
    Published: Aug. 2002
    Paperback 254pp

    Highly Recommended

    Having owned and managed a few small businesses over the last 20 years, I found this book an excellent tool for understanding the marketing function.

    The book develops the marketing process in a simple, easy to understand methodology. Starting with a basic discussion of the marketing function, identifying the needs for the company and finally developing a meaningful plan. Unlike books that present page after page of marketing theory, The Marketing Toolkit presents easy to understand text with useful forms and exercises all through the book. There are chapters dedicated to the subjects of identifying your market, marketing strategies, marketing tactics, budgets, implementation and tracking.

    While my interests are the small owner managed business, the book presents a wide view of marketing that can be applied to any size business. For the new small business, there are discussions of "So, Exactly What Is Marketing" and "Six Reasons Every Company Needs a Marketing Plan" to issues like "The Key To Branding Your Company" for larger or more established organizations. This book addresses the time-tested processes very well, but also addresses the current issues. The use of the Internet and Websites as marketing tools are included as part of a complete plan. For those who have been through a recession, there is an important chapter on how to market in that business environment.

    The Marketing Toolkit for Growing Businesses is well written with good worksheets to aid in the development of a meaningful plan. It provides the tools to manage the plan and evaluate and revise it over time. I would highly recommend this book for marketing managers and small business owners.

    Reviewed by Jim Craven

    To learn more about Jay B. Lipe and business, visit Emerge Marketing


    Title: The Journey to Armageddon
    Author: James McCann
    ISBN: 1592866816
    Publisher: Publish America; (November 2003)
    Genre: Science Fiction
    Paperback: 201 pp

    Rating: Highly Recommended

    A work of art inside and out that you must add to your library!

    I had the pleasure and the honor to read "Upon the Shoulders of Vengeance: The Journey to Armageddon" recently. First of all the "feel" of this book and the quality of the cover art impressed me. The cover itself did much to set the mood for the adventure that awaited me on the inside of this book. From the very first word to the last, I could see that Mr. McCann has polished his craft to a point that every word, character and plot worked in unison to tell an impressive story as well. The writing is devoid of errors and the dialogue between the character's has been laid out quite well.

    Although there are many character's in this story that can carry a book on their own, the main character; Marcus the Avenger, is an interesting hero. Marcus witnessed his villages apparent demise at the hands of a race of bloodthirsty warrior's called the Krim 'Tiak. He spent over a year in seclusion until he is captured in the "City of God's" and promptly sentenced to death for the crime of stealing bread. Fortunately Princess Kimbra spares his life in exchange for him becoming a protégé, trained to fight other's for the amusement of the masses. Marcus the Avenger, renamed himself Forest when he joined the Hauldinian society as a gladiator, bound to the "City of God's"- until either killed or freed.

    Everyone is equally impressed by Forest's unique fighting style, reminiscent of Ninjitsu with the nunchuka as his primary weapon. This "vagabond" intrigue's the princess and Forest quickly achieves the trust of his "mentor" Sir Theomund, the princess's bodyguard. Forest had again found a "home" until he receives word from his village that there may still be hope for triumph over the Krim 'Tiak attackers. Sir Theomund risk's his life and rank and allows Forest to return to his people with a promise to return. The princess hides her identity and sets off into the harsh world in search of adventure, with Forest in the lead, who is unaware that he has taken a princess from her kingdom.

    At the same time in different parts of the land, other adventures have begun. A wizard and a group of "misfit's" of various races, a wild-man and his trusted steed, a former Krim 'Tiak warrior in search of redemption there are so many characters that are vital to this story and they all held my interest especially when their separate path's merged into a single mission.

    I must applaud Mr. McCann for the effort that he has put into "Upon the Shoulders of Vengeance: The Journey to Armageddon." I recommend that you pick up a copy and take your own personal journey into these pages. As I've said before, this book is indeed a work of art inside and out!

    Reviewed by Tyrone Banks

    Read the interview with Jame s McCann


    Marketing and More!

    PR Tips

    Trying to reach that editor, publisher, or press contact?

    One important tip I tell all my workshop participants is to bypass the mailrooms of these companies. The New York publishers get thousands of pieces of mail a day. Is it any wonder that your proposal or review copy did not make it to the editor's desk?

    Bypass the mailing room and send your material addressed to the specific reporter or editor and send via FED-EX. It doesn't have to be overnight; you can send your package via the 3-day rate. Your response time will be drastically reduced. I queried the large houses in 1998 with my fiction title and received answers within 10 days from all 24 of them. Of course the query and proposal has to be top-notch and professional or why waste your money sending your material to these publishers?

    Yes, you will receive rejection slips, but you will cut down on the response time and go through the submission process much faster.

    In terms of the press, pick out 10 publications that your title is a shoe-in for editorial content, story or review and Fed-Ex a copy along with your media kit to the editor. Make sure to follow-up by phone a week later and never call the editor on a Monday or Friday.

    So for a little bit more money you can revitalize your proposal or public relations process.

    Bypass the mailroom . . . a simple yet effective tip! Personally I sent emails directly to each target, again bypassing "the go between's" and the responses have been sky high.

    News Papers

    To submit your book for review, you can send a copy to Carol Memmott, Book Editor, USA TODAY, 7950 Jones Branch Drive, McLean VA 22107-0020; 703-854- 3400; 800-USA-0001; Fax: 703-854-2053. Email: While the paper reviews few books (only 5 to 6 on Thursdays), the book editor does make all books she receives available in a small library for other editors to use. The Top 150 bestsellers each week are featured online at In August 2002, Carol reviewed a few books herself, including Saved by Kate Morgenroth and Sleephead by Mark Billingham.

    SectionID=17&SubSectionID=56 menu=7

    Production Companies

    Egg Pictures (Jodie Foster)
    5555 Melrose Ave., Jerry Lewis Building
    Los Angeles, CA 90038
    323-862-1414 fax

    Fortis Films (Sandra Bullock)
    8581 Santa Monica Blvd, Ste.1
    W. Hollywood, CA 90069
    310-659-4373 fax

    Parkway Productions (Penny Marshall)
    10202 W. Washington Blvd., Astaire 2210
    Culver City, CA 90232
    310-244-0240 fax

    In The News, Movie Reviews and More!

    WINNIE THE POOH AND JOHNNIE COCHRAN, TOO - An attorney best known for defending O.J. Simpson on murder charges is going to be handling Winnie the Pooh and Tigger, too. The Slessinger family, which owns the rights to the Pooh characters, has hired high-profile celebrity attorney Johnnie Cochran to take over its royalties suit against Walt Disney Co. In the decade-old suit, the Slessingers have accused Disney of shortchanging the family on license fees and royalties generated by Disney movies, TV programs and merchandise based on the characters.

    Sex, Drugs: Search Firms Rock Online Pharmacies And Roll With Porn - Yahoo and Google may have made a move to restrict unlicensed pharmacies from advertising on their search engines, but their policies on online sex ads have slackened considerably.

    CLASSY ACTION SEEMS TO SUIT INTERPUBLIC - Online investor message boards were oddly silent today following Interpublic's announcement of a settlement of its contentious shareholders suit.

    Never mind that Interpublic, the parent of Initiative Media and Universal McCann, said it will shell out $115 million ($20 million in cash, $95 million in common stock) to settle the dispute.

    The fact that it may finally be settled now may calm investor jitters concerning the agency holding company. In fact, as of midday trading, Interpublic's shares were trading up slightly. To cover costs associated with the settlement, Interpublic said it would take a charge of $127.6 million for the third quarter of 2003, which includes $12.6 million for an "unrelated" and undisclosed legal settlement.

    ABC'S HOLIDAY BASH WAS FESTIVE, IF A BIT RESTIVE - Was it our imagination or did the folks at ABC's pre-Christmas party at New York's Reebok Club look especially distracted?

    Perhaps it was the CNBC news crew parked outside on Columbus Avenue? Or maybe it was the behind-the- scenes meeting transpiring among high-level ABC and ESPN executives in an adjoining room.

    Nah, we thinks it was the high-level hijinks taking place with parent Walt Disney Co.'s curmudgeonly board that had the ABC brass on edge. Asked about the CNBC camera truck parked outside, "Maybe they're waiting for Mike [Eisner] to jump out a window," ABC News' Rick Kaplan quipped to reporters, adding, "They'll be waiting there a long time." Of course, while the ABC execs were mingling with the press and chomping on seared tuna and shrimp satay, the Disney board was busy naming Sybase Inc. chief John Chen to fill one of the seats vacated when Disney's nephew-in-chief Roy Disney stepped down earlier this week, along with trusted ally Stanley Gold over their dissatisfaction with Michael Eisner's reign at the Magic Kingdom. Mainly, the ABC execs were predictably mum on conversation about the board's shenanigans, but they did have a lot to say about the rebounding scatter ad marketplace.

    Upcoming Movies

    "Big Fish""
    directed by Tim Burton. Starring: Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy Crudup, Jessica Lange, Danny DeVito.

    A journalist son of a dying salesman tries to figure out if all of his dad's tall tales were really true. The film goes back and forth between flashbacks and modern time, with Finney playing the dad as the old man and McGregor playing him as a young lad in this sure-to-be- strange story from Tim Burton. December 10, 2003 (limited; wider release: December 19)

    "Something's Gotta Give"
    directed by Nancy Meyers. Starring: Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton, Keanu Reeves, Amanda Peet, Jon Favreau.

    In this comedy from the writer and director of "What Women Want" and "Father of the Bride", Nicholson plays an aging playboy who falls for the mother of his much-younger new flame after an accident which leads him very vulnerable. December 12

    "Stuck on You"
    directed by the Farrelly Brothers. Starring: Greg Kinnear, Matt Damon, Cher, Eva Mendes, Seymour Cassel.

    11 hours of prosthetic work brings Kinnear and Damon "together" as conjoined twins who move to Hollywood from Massachusetts to pursue one brother's dream of being a star. The Farrelly Brothers hope to continue their streak of winning comedies with this bound-to-be-funny gross-out comedy, with a featured cameo from Cher. December 12

    Movie Reviews

    The Last Samurai
    It's a genuine pleasure to come across a motion picture like The Last Samurai, a rousing tale that combines high adventure with emotional effectiveness. This movie works because it never loses sight of the characters no matter how epic the scope becomes. With its grand, sweeping battle sequences, lush cinematography, and gripping storyline, The Last Samurai already has a spot reserved on my Top 10 list.

    The Last Samurai earns every minute of its near 2 1/2 hour running length. There's no fat to trim, and no sense that scenes have been included to pad the ego of the director and/or his star. The Last Samurai is 144 minutes of pure story. The kind of powerful mix of epic battle and human interest that so rarely shows up on movie screens these days.

    The Missing
    The Missing is arguably Ron Howard's grittiest effort to date as a filmmaker. Although the leap to this movie from A Beautiful Mind isn't as great as the one made by Steven Spielberg when he followed up Jurassic Park with Schindler's List, it is nevertheless a courageous move. A Western with supernatural overtones, The Missing offers themes about redemption and tolerance, but is primarily an action-adventure movie featuring more than one shoot-out.

    Although Westerns will almost never be as popular as they were during their heyday, they (like musicals) seem to be undergoing something of a minor revival. The perspectives are much different, it's no longer sufficient to have a simple story of cowboys against Indians, but the time period and wildness of the frontier still make for an impressive backdrop. The Missing does not surpass Kevin Costner's Open Range for the title of Best Western of 2003, but it's a worthy effort and makes for an enjoyable (if slightly overlong) 2 plus hours.

    If Timeline is a disappointment, it's because I still have some respect for director Richard Donner, despite his recent lack of success. Because of Lethal Weapon and Superman, I was willing to overlook Assassins. Before Timeline, Donner hadn't made a film in five years. As a comeback, this is a huge letdown. Then again, what could one reasonably expect from a movie that boasts an acting-challenged stud in the lead role. I know.... Keanu Reeves did it in The Matrix, but, sad to say, Paul Walker is no Keanu Reeves and Timeline is definitely no The Matrix.

    There are times when the movie comes across as so laughably absurd that it's almost entertaining. Once or twice, I was half-expecting the Monty Python troupe to appear, searching for the Holy Grail. The lengthy battle scene at the end provides a little entertainment value, but we don't care enough about the paper-thin characters for this to have more than a cursory curiosity value. However, Timeline does illustrate an important aspect of the concept of time dilation that Einstein never contemplated: how the experience of sitting through a 2hour motion picture can seem like it takes all day.

    Here's what everyone has been asking about!

    Betsie's Literary Page Contest

    To enter you MUST be a subscriber.

    Q= What do you get?
    A= Free press release distribution.
    Q= But what if I've already sent out a press release?
    A= It doesn't matter if it was yesterday!
    Q= But I didn't write a book?
    A= Ok so you are the fastest pancake tosser. Then we can submit to magazines of interest, or tv show's like: Believe it or not

    Details: simple.... Five lines telling me why you should be selected.


    1. Do not make lettering so gigantic that you only write 5 words.

    2. Be honest.

    Just so you know Betsie WILL NOT read your heartfelt love notes.

    An outside source has been selected to sift through your entries and choose the winner.

    But here's the best news yet!

    Being the person that she is, Betsie has decided to make this a monthly contest!

    We welcome and appreciate forwarding of our newsletters in their entirety or in part with proper attribution. (c) Betsie's Literary Page 2003

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