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Michael O'Gara
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Characteristics of Good Fiction Writers

I recently wrote a blog about the characteristics of good fiction writers.  Following are seven characteristics I came up with.  What would you add?First good writers are born with a talent for…Continue

Tags: tips, writing, characteristics, writer, writers

Started Apr 12, 2013

Reciprocal Author Reviews – Unethical credibility damagers or good business?
16 Replies

The concept of author’s trading reviews is somewhat troubling for me.  Even if unspoken or stated otherwise, does it create an expectation of “I’ll give you five stars and you give me five?”  Won’t…Continue

Started this discussion. Last reply by Alan Porter Mar 7, 2013.

A Checklist for Marketing Your Book.
9 Replies

I recently decided I need to be even more organized in scheduling and tracking my book marketing efforts.  As a result I started an Excel spreadsheet to use as a check list for marketing.  It…Continue

Started this discussion. Last reply by Michael O'Gara Feb 15, 2013.

Character Interview Questions
19 Replies

Character interviews are an interesting and creative way to introduce potential readers to a book's character(s).  The fun is deciding how your character would answer the question but the questions…Continue

Started this discussion. Last reply by Michael O'Gara Jan 5, 2013.

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Welcome! A Mystery / Thriller Author

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Author
Michael O'Gara posted a blog post

Review of "Titus" by Keith Yocum

This is a book that may appeal to those who are interested in the civil war period.  The book’s historical context seems realistic and the premise is interesting.  The book from a technical standpoint is well written.  However from my perspective the book has some significant faults in its "story telling". I found the pace too slow for my taste.   I also found it hard to get invested in the characters  and as a result I felt like an observer of the story rather than being able to “get lost” in it.  The events the characters found themselves in, the dialogue, and the descriptions failed to evoke empathy for any of the characters.   In fact, it was unclear to me for some time who the main character of the story was.  The final flaw was the ending of the book which was ruined for me by events mentioned in the Epilogue as they related to the serial killer.  It seems to me the twist occurring in the Epilogue should have evolved earlier in the book, been foreshadowed there, or left out…See More
Oct 30, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a blog post

Review of "Savannah: Or a Gift For Mr. Lincoln" by John_Jakes

This book is an entertaining and easy read for those who like historical novels. The characters are interesting and the plot is light.  It is set in Georgia in 1864 during the Christmas season as the Yankees approach Savannah.The jacket describes the book as follows: "This rousing tale of battlefield danger, wartime romance, and indomitable courage brings ....."   I didn't see the book that way.  I didn't find it rousing; my blood pressure never rose with passion, emotion, and enthusiasm. I did find it kept me curious about what the characters would do next and I enjoyed the interplay between them.  The romance was there but it was at best secondary.  Courage?  This was more about normal people surviving abnormal circumstances.   That was entertaining, especially given the author worked in the good and evil in people that becomes evident in time of war.It's  a good read but in my opinion not as advertised.  My rating: 3 of 5 stars.For Michael O'Gara's books please click on…See More
Aug 13, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a blog post

Review – Deer Run Trail – David R. Lewis

Review – Deer Run Trail – David R. LewisI was recently provided a complimentary copy of Deer Run Trail – David R Lewis for an honest review.   I will be the first to admit I have only read a few books of the Western genre.  If they were all as good as this one, I would read a lot of them.  I think novelists should be good story tellers and David is!For me reading Deer Run Trail was like being masterfully drawn through a window in time and I went willingly.  The author’s creative use of a point of view was excellent and led me to readily accept the book’s virtual reality.  It was easy to become drawn into the interesting story line.  The nice balance between story line and characters made this an easy read.  This is a book I did not want to put…See More
Jun 24, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a status
"The only thing better than reading a good book is writing a good book."
May 31, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a blog post

eBook Giveaways

Copyright Michael O’Gara 2013  All Rights ReservedOK, “going in” I know some readers are not going to like what I have to say here about  eBook giveaways.  Let the cards fall where they may.  This post is really about why it is not in an author’s best interests to give away their work to the public and how the practice of eBook giveaways distorts the market. First let’s look at it from an author’s point of view. It seems a lot of indie authors are  using eBook giveaways of their work in the hope of building an audience.  I think this is a big mistake.  Some point to the fact that traditional publishers have used giveaways.  My response is yes, but they did it in a targeted way as part of a marketing plan.  They did not distribute freebies to the public.  There was a method to their use of promotional copies.Indie authors should be smart about eBook giveaways; using them only as promotional tools that are part of a marketing plan.  This means only sending free copies to reviewers /…See More
May 4, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a blog post

Michael O’Gara Interviews Indie Author Jessica Flaska

Posted on May 2, 2013       If this was a newspaper article the headline would be Michael O’Gara Interviews Indie Author Jessica Flaska – so now you know what this piece is about.  Jessica is an indie author who published her first book titled “Two Storms” in 2008.  Since then she has published 10 more books in various genres.           You can find out about Jessica’s books at: …See More
May 2, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a discussion

Characteristics of Good Fiction Writers

I recently wrote a blog about the characteristics of good fiction writers.  Following are seven characteristics I came up with.  What would you add?First good writers are born with a talent for writing.  As with most things in life, you can become better at anything but you must be talented at something to be good at it.  However, having a natural ability alone will not make a writer successful which brings us to characteristic number two.Good writers are passionate about their work.  Writers write a lot.  They develop their natural talent by doing.   There is some truth in the saying that practice makes perfect.  A problem can result though from practicing bad habits instead of developing good ones.  This brings us to the third characteristic.Good writers learn from feedback and training; whether formal or informal and usually both.Good writers are also prolific readers.   I have yet to meet a good writer who has not read “tons” of books and probably so many they can hardly begin to…See More
Apr 12, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a blog post

7 Characteristics of Good Fiction Writers

You might ask how I came to develop the 7 Characteristics of Good Fiction Writers.  It all started early one morning when I was reading tweets from other authors;  I realized fiction writer’s are a diverse group.  I had an intuitive insight that there are some common characteristics that  good writers share.  I came up with the 7 characteristics of good fiction writers:First good writers are born with a talent for writing.  As with most things in life, you can become better at anything but you must be talented at something to be good at it.  However, having a natural ability alone will not make a writer successful which brings us to characteristic number two.Good writers are passionate about their work.  Writers write a lot.  They develop their natural talent by doing.   There is some truth in the saying that practice makes perfect.  A problem can result though from practicing bad habits instead of developing good ones.  This brings us to the third characteristic.Good writers learn…See More
Apr 12, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a blog post

Previewing Books

Previewing books is a time-honored tradition. We have all seen people in a library or book store reading the first few pages in a book. We’ve probably done it. We’ll look at a book read a bit and maybe put it back and choose another. It’s like taking the books for a “test drive”. People are in the habit of previewing the books they are considering. Now we can do that in the comfort of our homes online using our laptop, PC, etc.Since most recent books, even print books, are available in e-Reader formats, there is opportunity to preview large sections of books for free before making a buying decision. On Amazon.com you can look up a book, both Kindle and print, and “Look Inside!” to read a sizable excerpt. You can also download e-book excerpts on Smashwords.com for all major e-reader formats and in PDF for your computer. Some books offer as much as 20 to 30% of a book for previewing.I recommend previewing books you are considering before you spend your time and money. I do it. I know…See More
Mar 22, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara's discussion was featured

Reciprocal Author Reviews – Unethical credibility damagers or good business?

The concept of author’s trading reviews is somewhat troubling for me.  Even if unspoken or stated otherwise, does it create an expectation of “I’ll give you five stars and you give me five?”  Won’t the perception of readers that this is “going on” hurt the credibility of the participants?Now don’t get me wrong.  I think it is good that authors and writers are willing to do reviews.  Why shouldn’t those so intimately involved in the profession participate in reviewing others’ books?   The potential problem arises when reviews are “traded.”I think the correct policy to follow may be a willingness to review others’ books but not of authors who have reviewed your work.   The problem is that there is a shortage of reviewers for most genres.  So how do we find a happy middle ground where everyone involved is served.  What do you think?See More
Mar 4, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a discussion

Reciprocal Author Reviews – Unethical credibility damagers or good business?

The concept of author’s trading reviews is somewhat troubling for me.  Even if unspoken or stated otherwise, does it create an expectation of “I’ll give you five stars and you give me five?”  Won’t the perception of readers that this is “going on” hurt the credibility of the participants?Now don’t get me wrong.  I think it is good that authors and writers are willing to do reviews.  Why shouldn’t those so intimately involved in the profession participate in reviewing others’ books?   The potential problem arises when reviews are “traded.”I think the correct policy to follow may be a willingness to review others’ books but not of authors who have reviewed your work.   The problem is that there is a shortage of reviewers for most genres.  So how do we find a happy middle ground where everyone involved is served.  What do you think?See More
Mar 4, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a status
""The Deliberate Sheriff " is now available in print."
Feb 21, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara's discussion was featured

A Checklist for Marketing Your Book.

I recently decided I need to be even more organized in scheduling and tracking my book marketing efforts.  As a result I started an Excel spreadsheet to use as a check list for marketing.  It contained columns such as Task, Priority (for sorting), scheduled date, and date completed. Of course my first task was to add the book on my website.  As I worked I wondered what I’d missed.  I was sure there was more I could do.  Then it "hit me" that the only way to get a comprehensive list was to enlist the help of others.  How about contributing your ideas?  Perhaps we can all help each other develop an effective checklist. See More
Feb 10, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a discussion

A Checklist for Marketing Your Book.

I recently decided I need to be even more organized in scheduling and tracking my book marketing efforts.  As a result I started an Excel spreadsheet to use as a check list for marketing.  It contained columns such as Task, Priority (for sorting), scheduled date, and date completed. Of course my first task was to add the book on my website.  As I worked I wondered what I’d missed.  I was sure there was more I could do.  Then it "hit me" that the only way to get a comprehensive list was to enlist the help of others.  How about contributing your ideas?  Perhaps we can all help each other develop an effective checklist. See More
Feb 9, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara joined Molly Edwards's group
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Bloggin' for books and giveaways!

A place where you can post your reviews, promote your blogsite and host your giveaways!See More
Jan 15, 2013

Author
Michael O'Gara posted a status
"I presently have a contest running for print copies of the thriller "Crossing Cassandra" @ http://www.michael-ogara.com/contest-s.html"
Jan 15, 2013

Profile Information

Favorite Book
Bible
About Me:
I'm a writer of mainly mystery, thriller, romance and historical action adventure novels. My favorite thing to do is write.

I have published seven books in the Millie Mystery Thriller series. The published eBook titles in the series (in chronological order) are: The Happenstance Marshal; The Deliberate Sheriff; The Persistent Sheriff; The Windfall Sheriff; The Mogul Sheriff;The Mentor Sheriff; and The Caring Sheriff. Some of these are available in paperback.

I have also written thrillers titled: Crossing Cassandra; Ambassador Death; and Sinister Intent. Also released is a historical action adventure "Sword, Cross and Crown." Soon to be released are a western Gunnerson's Gunners, a thriller mystery titled Generational Sins, and a yet untitled romance.

My e-Books are available for all the major e-book reader formats at most of the major online vendors. The easiest places to get a free excerpt or buy them are:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/search?query=michael+o%27gara

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Ddigital...
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Comment Wall (26 comments)

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At 7:15am on December 4, 2012,
Author
G G Collins
said…

Are you looking for character interviews or sample questions? Thanks.  G G

At 6:08pm on October 16, 2012,
Author
Amy Metz
said…

Hi Michael! Things are going well. I have your interview coming up on on my blog for the end of the month. I'll let you know for sure when we get closer to the date.

At 1:03pm on October 3, 2012,
Author
Amy Metz
said…

Thanks for the friend invite, Michael!

At 11:42am on May 5, 2012, Alan McDermott said…

Yeah, it's not easy when you have to balance writing with a full time job and a family.  Perhaps one day I'll get 5 or 6 books out and be able to concentrate on writing for a living.

 

One day....

At 5:21am on May 5, 2012, Alan McDermott said…

Hi Michael,

not getting as much done as I would like but it's shaping up nicely.  Got about 13k words done on the 3rd book and hope to add to that this weekend.  I didn't get anything done for 10 days as I was on such a high after the KDP free promo on Amazon, which got me 9800 free downloads and another 1800 sales in the following week.  Now that things are back to normal I can hopefully make up for lost time.

At 8:54pm on March 30, 2012,
Author
Rossandra White
said…

Thanks so much for the welcome, Michael. Sorry it took so long for me to get back to you. I'm spinning a lot of plates in the air right now. Will check out your site.

At 2:22pm on March 13, 2012, Phyllis Straub said…

Hi Michael,

Sorry I missed the download, was away on vacation (I snoozed, I lose!)...  Please keep me on your contact list!  :D

- Phyllis

At 3:57am on March 10, 2012, Alan McDermott said…

Hi Michael,

haven't really had the chance to update it in the last few weeks.  I did an announcement of the new book release and let people know how the launch went, but most of my time has been spent on the third book in the trilogy.  I'm sure that when the block hits me I'll manage to get another post up.

Alan

At 11:56pm on March 6, 2012, Beth E Cutwright said…

Thanks for the welcome to Book Blogs Michael....sorry I missed the downloads you offered.    Try me again sometime and I'll react quicker...lol!    Visit me anytime at

http://bethartfromtheheart.blogspot.com/

I'm currently attempting to publish a children's book for my girlfriend and my grand kids...waiting on illustrations now.   I'm off to check your blog out now :)

At 1:08am on February 24, 2012, Alan McDermott said…

You are so lucky to be writing full time.  I dream of the day I can do that.

Michael O'Gara's Blog

Review of "Titus" by Keith Yocum

This is a book that may appeal to those who are interested in the civil war period.  The book’s historical context seems realistic and the premise is interesting.  The book from a technical standpoint is well written.  However from my perspective the…

Continue

Posted on October 30, 2013 at 5:05pm

Review of "Savannah: Or a Gift For Mr. Lincoln" by John_Jakes



This book is an entertaining and easy read for those who like historical novels. The characters are interesting and the plot is light.  It is set in Georgia in 1864 during the Christmas season as the Yankees approach Savannah.

The jacket describes the book as follows: "This rousing tale of battlefield danger, wartime romance, and indomitable courage brings ....."   I didn't see the book that way.  I didn't find it rousing; my blood pressure never rose with…

Continue

Posted on August 13, 2013 at 3:30am

Review – Deer Run Trail – David R. Lewis



Review – Deer Run Trail – David R. Lewis…

Continue

Posted on June 24, 2013 at 10:53am

eBook Giveaways

Copyright Michael O’Gara 2013  All Rights Reserved
OK, “going in” I know some readers are not going to like what I have to say…
Continue

Posted on May 4, 2013 at 4:34am

 
 
 

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