Friday, April 28, 2017

Interview with Jacqui Letran, author of I Would, But My Damn Mind Won't Let Me!

Jacqui Letran is a passionate and energetic leader who is truly gifted at helping teens transform into confident, happy and successful young adults. Jacqui teaches teens that success and happiness are possible, regardless of their current struggles or circumstances.

Jacqui is an International Best Selling Author, National Speaker, and Founder of Teen Confidence Academy. She has 17 years of experience in Adolescent Health as a Nurse Practitioner, Success Coach and Teen Confidence Expert. Jacqui is passionate and committed to guiding teens to achieve remarkable success in their academic and personal lives.

She is also the winner of the:
2016 Literary Classics Lumen Award and Gold Medal for Youth Non-Fiction
2016 Readers' Favorite Gold Medal Award for Young Adult Non-Fiction

When not working with teens or writing, you can find her traveling in her RV, hiking with her dog or spoiling her three cats. She now lives in
Asheville, North Carolina.



About the Book:

Literary Classics' 2016 Lumen Award for Best Young-Adult Non-Fiction book of the year, "I would, but my DAMN MIND won't Let Me! is recommended for home, school and public
libraries and for use in clinical settings."

Do you believe that life is unfair or that change is impossible? Are you unhappy and frustrated with your life? If you answered yes, you’re not alone! Teen Confidence Expert, Jacqui Letran, is here to show you a quick and easy path to a happier, healthier life. You can learn to create permanent changes for the better!
Your past can cause you to believe that making positive improvements requires a miracle. In Letran’s award-winning book, I would, but my DAMN MIND won’t let me!, you will learn the simple steps to overcome your obstacles and struggles. Once you understand how your mind works, you will have the knowledge and power to take control of your thoughts and feelings. The power to challenge your old negative patterns and create the exact life you want is in your hands.
In this book, you will discover:
·             How to challenge old negative beliefs and create positive new patterns
·             How to stay calm and in control of even the most difficult situations
·             How to keep unhealthy thoughts at bay and replace them with positive ones
·             How to use the power of your mind to create the success you deserve
·             How to create positive life experiences and much, much more!
I would, but my DAMN MIND won’t let me! is a groundbreaking guide to help you take control of your life. If you like real-life advice that works fast and doesn’t talk down to you, then you will love Jacqui Letran’s game-changing book for teens and young adults. This book is recommended for teens, parents of teens, professionals working with teens, and anyone who is interested in learning how to take control of their mind.
Get the award-winning book today to give yourself an unfair advantage in life!

I Would, But My Damn Mind Won’t Let Me!
is available for purchase at

Thanks for this interview, Jacqui. Can we begin by having you tell us about yourself from a writer’s standpoint?

I’m an author, speaker, and teen confidence expert.  I have 16 years of experience working with teens in both the medical setting as a Nurse Practitioner, and the holistic setting as a Teen Confidence Expert and Success Coach.  

I became an author two years ago not because I wanted to be an author, but because my clients kept asking me to write down what I’ve taught them. They loved what they were learning from me during their private sessions and wanted detailed notes to remind them.  After hearing the same request from many clients, I decided it was time to write my book.  
I was really surprised by how difficult the writing process was, and at the same time, how much fun it was.  I feel so blessed to be able to share my message and help so many people through my books.  

When not writing, what do you like to do for relaxation and/or fun?  

I am a lover of animals and nature.  I spend a large part of my time spoiling my three cats with treats, cuddles, and playtime.  I also spend a large amount of time spoiling my American Eskimo with long hikes. He loves nature just as much as I do! As a family, we all love taking RV trips and exploring the beauty that surrounds us.

Congratulations on your new book! Can you give us the very first page of your book so that we can get a glimpse inside?

Why Can’t You Just Control Yourself?

How many times have you been told by well-meaning parents, adults, or even your friends that you should just stop thinking or feeling a certain way? They tell you that the problems you have are all in your head. They tell you to stop making a big deal out of things, that you’re too sensitive, and there is no reason to be nervous or anxious. And yet you are. You don’t know what to think or how to feel. You feel tense and nervous. Others seem to have it so easy. But for you, life is difficult and so unfair!

Your situation may seem hopeless, and perhaps you have even concluded that you were just “born that way,” and there is nothing you can do to change.

Would you say it’s been a rocky road for you in regards to getting your book written and published or pretty much smooth sailing?  Can you tell us about your journey?

My journey started slightly bumpy and ended up very smooth. When I decided to write my books, I sat down at my work desk and started typing. I wanted every sentence to be perfect so I would type, delete, rewrite, type, delete and rewrite again. After hours of hard work, I only had a few paragraphs to show for it.  
It was so frustrating.  I knew my topic very well and I can teach it in my sleep, yet, I couldn’t articulate it on paper.  I knew that if I continued this way, it would take years to complete my book, and that was not OK with me.  This was when I decided to write everything out by hand.  I would go to my local coffee shop or to the beach and write as if I was teaching to a client.  I wrote freely; no re-reading, and no editing.  I spent two to three hours writing each day, and within seven weeks, I had the first draft done. It took several days for me to type up everything and then the first round of editing began.
I self-published my book approximately ten weeks after I started the writing process. It hit #1 in several categories and several countries on launch day, and has consistently stayed within the top 20 books in those categories for the past two years.  

If you had to summarize your book in one sentence, what would that be?

You have the power to create the life you want by learning how to control your thoughts, feelings, and actions.

What makes your book stand out from the rest?

My book is written in a very straight-forward, easy to understand way that talks to the readers -- not at them.  I love taking a complex idea and breaking it down to make it simple.  Because of this, I have won 2 Gold Medals in the Youth Non-Fiction category as well as the Literary Classics’ Lumen Award for Best Youth Non-Fiction Book of 2016.

If your book was put in the holiday section of the store, what holiday would that be and why?

I would have to put my book in the Fourth of July section. Since the quality of your thoughts become the quality of your experiences, being able to change your thoughts into empowering ones will change everything in your life. This book helps you to understand how your mind works and how to be the boss of your mind so you can create the life you want and deserve.  Once you learn how to control your thoughts, you gain your freedom (Independance Day!) to create and live the life you want!

Although not a holiday, I would also love to see this book in the Birthday section. This is definitely one of the “must have” instructional manuals for the mind that each human should receive upon their birth.

Would you consider turning your book into a series or has that already been done? 

This book is actually the second book in a series called, “Words of Wisdom for Teens”.  The first book of the series is called, “5 Simple Questions to Reclaim Your Happiness!” This book help readers to use 5 simple questions to understand their feelings and letting them go so they can move forward and create or enhance amazing relationships.

What’s next for you?

Currently I am writing the second edition to, “5 Simple Questions to Reclaim Your Happiness!” to incorporate my readers suggestions and requests. When I’m done, this book will be a 3-part book with part 1 being an overview of the 5 Simple Questions. Part 2 will be case studies to demonstrate how to put the 5 Simple Questions to work. Part 3 will be workbook style to help readers resolve their own conflicts using the 5 Simple Questions.  

In addition, I am also working on the third book of the series called, “How to Unleash Your Inner Super Powers and Destroy Anxieties and Self-Doubts!”  I’m working toward a late August release, just in time for teens to go back to school with increased confidence having learned how to unleash their own Inner Super Powers.

First Chapter Review: Beethoven in Love; Opus 139 by Howard Jay Smith

Author: Howard Jay Smith
Publisher: SYQ
Pages: 385
Genre: Literary Fiction/Biographical Fiction

Book Blurb:
At the moment of his death, Ludwig van Beethoven pleads with Providence to grant him a final wish—one day, just a single day of pure joy. But first he must confront the many failings in his life, so the great composer and exceedingly complex man begins an odyssey into the netherworld of his past life led by a spirit guide who certainly seems to be Napoleon, who died six years before. This ghost of the former emperor, whom the historical Beethoven both revered and despised, struggles to compel the composer to confront the ugliness as well as the beauty and accomplishments of his past.  
As Beethoven ultimately faces the realities of his just-ended life, we encounter the women who loved and inspired him. In their own voices, we discover their Beethoven—a lover with whom they savor the profound beauty and passion of his creations. And it’s in the arms of his beloveds that he comes to terms with the meaning of his life and experiences the moment of true joy he has always sought.

Purchase Information:

First Chapter Review:

I love doing first chapter reviews because I believe that the first chapter really gives readers an idea of where the book will be going or should be. I was interested in reviewing the first chapter of Howard Jay Smith's BEETHOVEN IN LOVE because a) Beethoven intrigues me and b) I was hoping it was one of those stories that gave you an inside glimpse of who the man behind the music really was and, most particularly, I wanted to know about his one true love.

First of all, wow - the writing. Smith takes us into the first chapter with such talented prose. Beethoven has died and it's Beethoven who is narrating. Cool, huh? That in itself is worth the read! He talks about the world around him since his death and ends the first chapter asking for one final wish - that he could have one more day. One more day to be in her arms once again.

I have goosebumps. This first chapter definitely made me want to read the rest of the book. I wanted to hear it in Beethoven's words why he wanted that one more day to be in his beloved's arms again.

I will be reviewing this book soon and can't wait to read more! Loved the cover, btw...

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Blog Tour: The Spirit of Love by the spirit of love known as glen

At the peak of his destructive cycle glen was so consumed by addictions, that on any given day saw the abusive consumption of cocaine, MDMA powder, special K, ecstasy, crystal meth, marijuana, prescription drugs (anti-depressants, sleeping pills) and alcohol.

A time that saw him attempting and failing to out race police cars through the streets of a Melbourne suburb one night, to experiencing a near death experience while bleeding out from a glass injury when holidaying overseas, a time of daily self-harming with the prospect of suicide never being far out of reach.

However, through the unconditional love of his parents, glen found himself backpacking though South America where a collection of events and direct experiences with the local people and Mother Earth herself, triggered the beginning stages of what would later become known to him as the shattering and dissolving of the false identity of the illusionary mind-made-self and its “poor me” story.

An inner-journey that awakens the spirit of love, known as glen, to not being a personal identity as such but rather a way of being, a way of simplicity, a way of the heart, a way that embraces and dances with the perfection of the present moment like no other.

You can visit the author’s website at or his Facebook page at

About the Book:

The Spirit of Love is a collection of short writings, poems and phrases written by a man who took himself into some of the darkest and most destructive depths that one can go with drug and alcohol
addictions back in his early twenties.

The collection of writings contained within The Spirit of Love are the result of one man’s healing journey within himself and the deep questioning that has arisen from within it.

With the love, support and guidance of his dear friend Edwina, in helping to bring these writings from the handwritten scribbles on paper to how they are presented today, The Spirit of Love is a reminder that no matter how dark, desperate, alone, helpless or trapped one believes they may be, the sheer beauty of the perfection of life in its totality is silently and patiently living within us all, and its love is so powerful that it can heal anything that has come to pass.


Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Please accept my deepest thanks and gratitude for creating a little slice of cyber space to be here with you now, at The Literary Nook, I am most honoured that you have allowed this space to be filled with this interview.

Thanks for this interview, Glen.  Can we begin by having you tell us about yourself and what do you believe is your life's calling?
 I am not much for words these days, as in silence is where one feels most at home and from such a space there is not a lot that one can say about oneself. For at one time, when attached and identified with the thinking mind’s perception of who it thinks it is, I answered such queries with a little story about what I did or had done in the past, whether it be a profession, job title, father, etc, however this is no longer the case, as giving such an answer to your request is not the true nature of who one is.

Maybe the following writing from within The Spirit of Love is a respectful way to honour your request.

For whilst thoughts, emotions, content, story and experience is a part of the journey, it is a mere ripple on the surface of the vast depthless ocean of thy being, of which I know nothing.

As for a belief in the purpose of one’s life calling?

If one examines what a belief is, a thought contained within the mind that can be as changing as the weather in a day or as fixed and hard as cement for a lifetime, from this perspective one does not hold onto a belief that one has a life’s calling.

At best, choosing the journey to explore the inner-journey of one’s true nature beneath and beyond the thinking mind’s perception of who and what it thinks it is, has been of most value so far.

It is a practice ongoing to be at ease, to be at peace and one with the pure moment
Every present attention required so as the voice of fear and control does not grip one away
Into its grand stories of falsehood and pride
Look at me, it says proudly
Look at what I’ve done and what I plan to do next
Praise me for all my efforts, of what I have achieved
Let not your awareness rest peacefully in the pure moment dissolving all my stories into ash
That’s boring, the voice of fear and control declares
For where is the conflict without me to create it?
For where is the suffering without me to create it?
For where is the drama without me to create it?
Where indeed?

When not writing, what do you like to do for relaxation? Is there a special place you go to figure out life's mysteries?

Right now, I can hear a collection of different birds all talking and singing their unique songs; the Sun is breaking its way through the grey rain clouds, while a dog is barking down the street somewhere. This is relaxation, a very simple yet grateful awareness of all the beauty and mystery that is happening within this moment is where I experience the deepest relaxation.

As for trying to figure out life’s mysteries........

I let go of trying to figure out life’s mysteries, this is why life is called a mystery.  And what is something that continues to remain as a mystery, if not something that cannot be figured out?

Accepting that life is the ultimate unsolvable mystery has allowed one to be in the mystery of life itself, a continuous adventure into the unknown imagination and possibilities of creation, what more could one want to experience?

Spirit, great loving spirit
Emptiness of thy vessel opens to a grace so untouchable
Like the beautiful butterfly that teases the senses
But remains just out of one’s reach and touch.

Your book, The Spirit of Love, is so powerful. If you had to summarize your book in one sentence, what would that be?

There exists a belief in the thought of you, dissolve it.

What makes your book stand out from the rest of books of poetry?

I didn’t publish The Spirit of Love to stand out from any other books; all books have their place within the play of life, none any more or less of value than any other. Although the book does contain poems as a form of writing style, the essence of the book is beyond any category or genre that it gets labelled into.

The Spirit of Love will find its way to whomever it is destined to.   

What’s next for you?

I don’t know yet, maybe I’ll go outside and feel the warmth of the Sun on this body, maybe I’ll have a cup of tea, I guess I’ll know in the moment of when I am experiencing it.

The awakened One leaves no footprints upon the earth that one treads
Such lightness that the weight of the past dissolves behind each step
Leaving no trace of such an existence
Such presence
That the future never sees the awakened One coming before one appears

Thank you to The Literary Nook for accepting this interview, thank you to all the readers out there and to everyone for being here on Mother Earth in this moment, love knows the way home.

the spirit of love, known as glen

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Interview: Chris Clouse, author of Making it Home

Inside the Book:

Title: Making it Home
Author: Chris Clouse
Publisher: AuthorHouse 
Genre: Self Help/Personal Growth
Format: Ebook

We are cocreators, both directing and observing this movie called life. So are you cocreating this quest with me! Are you not producing a holographic image of this book, which contains words that we have manifested into time and space together? Like every book, this book, Making It Home, has already been written. The question you should ask is, "What part about these words and this book do I need right now in my life?" If you know the right question-or "quest you are on"-your mind will produce an answer out of the material of life itself, and the book becomes a catalyst for your own story. When you read-and more important, think-about the information in these pages, your chakras will activate, and new cognitions will be created about heaven. This of course depends on one condition: that you have a deep-seated desire to achieve joy, love, and peace in this lifetime.

Question1- Do you listen to music while writing? If so, what do you listen to?

Much of my writing is done in coffee shops such as Starbucks, where they often play genres of music that invoke a light spirit. Popular artists include: John Lennon, Aretha Franklin, Bonnie Raitt, Bob Dylan, Yo-Yo Ma, the Rolling Stones and Ray Charles 
Question2- Do you have any suggestions for upcoming writers?

Find your voice about a topic you are most passionate about and start a journal on the topic. This will force you to develop this voice by adding to your journal on a regular basis. Eventually, your desire will be so strong, that you cannot stop writing. That is when you should start a larger project (i.e. book).
Question3- What is it you like to do when you are not reading/writing?

Traveling with my family
Running in the gym or outside
Attending Mastermind events with like-minded individuals
Question4- Is there an author/authors that have inspired you?

Authors in my genre that most inspired me are:
Neal Walsh
Ralph Waldo Trine
Napoleon Hill
Question5- As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

At an early age, I was interested in computer science, psychology, spirituality, and metaphysics; I exhibited traits of an entrepreneur or project manager. I wanted to start my own business as an entrepreneur and inventor.
Question6- How do you/would you react to a bad review of your book?

I generally take the good with the bad, and add a healthy dose of compassion for both the reader and the author. We are all trying our best in this world and when people don’t make mistakes, they aren’t trying very hard!

About the Author

Chris Clouse leads a full career balancing two professional disciplines while maintaining an active lifestyle with his wife and three kids. In the field of project management, Chris has created Centres of Excellence for two world-class IT organizations. His longtime passion in life has been in the area of spiritual science, for which this book was created. As a certified master life coach, Chris brings his pursuit of excellence and passion into his classes, helping others find their power and purpose