Thirsty Thursday – The Jalapeno Margarita and Digital Book World

It’s been over a 100 degrees here in Dallas/Fort Worth for, oh I don’t know, two and a half years now, so I thought this recipe for a jalapeno margarita would provide enough cool, with a little kick, to bring some relief. It comes courtesy of the folks at the Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine, Texas, and, like everything from my fair state, it is the best damn jalapeno margarita recipe I’ve encountered (it’s the only one I’ve encountered, but still):

3 limes, sliced

2 small circular slices of a jalapeño pepper

1 1/4 ounces tequila (silver preferred)

3/4 ounce triple sec or Cointreau

2 1/2 ounces sweet-and-sour mix

Salt

Lime wedges or slices, and jalapeño pepper slices for garnish

1. Muddle lime slices and jalapeño slices in the bottom of a 12-ounce glass, combining the fresh lime juice with the jalapeño juice and seeds.

2. Pour tequila and orange liqueur directly into the glass, then add the sweet-and-sour mix.

3. Fill the glass with ice, then pour the contents into a cocktail shaker; shake ingredients together.

4. Wet the rim of the glass, turn it over and press the rim into salt.

5. Pour ingredients back into the glass and garnish with lime wedges or slices and a jalapeño slice on the edge of the glass.

6. Let us know how you like it with a post.

And while you’re enjoying this delicious beverage, check out Digital Book World. Calling themselves, “The publishing community for the 21st Century,” DBW provides a forum for the writing community, which includes writers, agents, booksellers and technology vendors,  to gather online. They also host an annual conference, which has become a pretty big deal.  I just hope they serve jalapeno margaritas there! 
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Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author whose latest, award-winning suspense thriller, The Brink, is now available as an eBook for Amazon.com Kindle and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

The Brink is a hell of a read.” – Bestselling author Sandra Brown

“Mark Fadden is a masterful storyteller.” – Writer’s Digest

“Mark Fadden is the next Dan Brown.” – Triple C Ranch Book Club, Southlake, Texas

Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at http://www.markfadden.com

App Wednesday – Creative Thinking in 84 cards or less

Creative Thinking. Let’s be cool and call in CT for the rest of the post. Effective CT is the foundation of good writing. But is there a way, or a need, to warm up the old noggin to make sure we’re getting quality CT from it rather than just tired memories in disguise? Is there a way to, like a good workout does for our bodies, exercise our brains to get them ready to give us quality CT when we need it?

I think there is. So did Einstein. So does a guy named Roger von Oech. He’s an author, inventor, and speaker. According to his website, “his seminars and products have enriched the creativity of millions around the world.” He has an iPhone app called the “Creative Whack Pack” (CWP) that consists of 84 creativity strategies that look like playing cards that are supposed to stimulate us to think creatively. Von Oech’s app has received this accolade: “The most impressive brainstorming tool in the App Store, hands down.” —Innovation Tools. At over a million copies sold, the CWP is also an iTunes bestseller. But, the question is, what can it do to stimulate quality writing? Well, let’s all put our $1.99 where our mouths are and find out.

Or not. Would you rely upon an app to stimulate the creative juices? Or will old-fashioned doodling to the trick? To the keyboards!

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Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author whose latest, award-winning suspense thriller, The Brink, is now available as an eBook for Amazon.com Kindle and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

The Brink is a hell of a read.” – Bestselling author Sandra Brown

“Mark Fadden is a masterful storyteller.” – Writer’s Digest

“Mark Fadden is the next Dan Brown.” – Triple C Ranch Book Club, Southlake, Texas

Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at http://www.markfadden.com

Locals only!

Book signings. I love them. I love running my mouth, so any chance I can get to talk to readers and, more importantly, listen to what they like and dislike about books they’ve read (“There were too many characters to follow”, “I had to wade through 60 pages of boring stuff before the story got interesting”), it is an opportunity to get priceless information that I use to continually evolve as a writer.

However, not having a name that ends in “ing” or “isham”, sometimes it’s hard to schedule a book signing. It involves extra work for the staff, and a commitment from the store to buy and stock your books. But, there is another option to get yourself a book signing. It’s called, “An Evening with the Authors.”

Last night, I participated in such an event at the Hurst, Texas Barnes & Noble. Myself and two other local authors were the featured scribblers. Granted it was a slow Wednesday night (it would have had a better turnout on a weekend for sure) but still, it was yet another chance to talk to potential fans and lay another brick in building the brand. 

So, the next time you ask your local book store about hosting your book signing and you get a little pushback, suggest that you’ll participate in the local author event. If they don’t do one, suggest they have one. Events draw customers into stores and, in turn, to you. A true “win-win” all around.

BTW, below is the article I did on the event that I sent to our local paper. I included the same pic as the one above. Enjoy!  

Hurst Barnes & Noble goes local

The Barnes & Noble book store in Hurst recently hosted an “Evening with Local Authors.” Three local authors, Kevin Cook, Mark Fadden, and Jan Leland signed copies of their latest books and spoke to customers about the writing life. “The publishing industry is in such a dynamic flux right now,” offered Fadden, whose latest book, The Brink, uses the recent financial meltdown as the foundation for a taut suspense thriller. “More and more people are talking about eBooks and eReaders. More and more authors are talking about going into digital self publishing. I think that to really connect with your readers and to get the much needed feedback about your books, it is still vital to make the book tour rounds, sign actual books and establish relationships with your audience and with the book store staff.” 

Carol Scalzo, Community Relations Manager at Barnes and Noble in Hurst echoed Fadden’s point about establishing relationships with authors. “We were thrilled to feature these local authors. Barnes & Noble is always seeking to feature local talent. We were excited to represent their latest works and hope to work with them again soon to help promote their future works.”  

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Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and award-winning author of Five Days in Dallas and The Brink. Send him an email at mark@markfadden.com.  

New Ereader? Download the eBook version of The Brink in seconds, for less than $8

Need a unique gift? Buy a signed copy of The Brink for the book lover in your life. 20% off the cover price + FREE SHIPPING

Press Release – Local author sells out at Plano Barnes & Noble

January 16, 2011 (Plano, Texas) – Being a sellout is usually a bad thing. Unless you’re talking about an author’s book signing. Local Colleyville author Mark Fadden had a book signing at the Barnes & Noble at Park and Preston in Plano on Saturday where he sold every single copy of his latest thriller, The Brink, the store had on hand. The book uses the 2008 financial meltdown as the foundation of a taut suspense thriller in which a fugitive Texas Ranger helps a woman running for her life, only to get sucked into a global financial conspiracy. The book, which has already won two awards from its publisher, has also been nominated for a third award based on its sales success.

“He was great with our customers and he was very interactive. Those are two big reasons why he sold out,” said Cody McMan, Community Relations Manager at the Barnes & Noble at Park and Preston. The Brink was also a part of the Barnes & Nobles Special Collection during the month of December, which recognizes up and coming authors. Fadden continues to appear at local signings in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. His next event will be “Pots & Plots” at the Dish cooking school inside the Market Street grocery store in Colleyville, Texas. The event, which allows participants to cook a dish from the book while discussing it, has been sold out for weeks and a second event is being planned. The Brink is also available in eBook format, and Fadden even signed bookplate stickers for those customers that showed up at the signing and downloaded the book on their nook eReader devices.

News Release: Colleyville author presents lecture on writing, marketing novels at Newark Public Library

Pat Winn, Newark Library Director Megan Suffling , Mayor Pro-tem of Newark Laura Pixler, and author Mark Fadden

“To get your books read, writers can no longer just write. They must promote their books in every way imaginable and in even new ways that no one’s ever thought of.” That was the key message of author Mark Fadden’s recent presentation to patrons of the Newark Public Library in Newark, Texas.

During his lecture, Beyond the book: How being an “authorpreneur” will help you sell books, build your author platform and gain lifelong fans, Fadden gave listeners helpful hints on how to use mostly free online tools to manage their book marketing campaigns. These ranged from the simple, using Google Alerts to find out when someone’s name was mentioned anywhere and anytime of the web, to how to use PRWeb.com to launch a press release, something he did recently. “My press release, entitled Author’s Latest Thriller Eerily Similar to Recent Events, had more than 61,000 news feed impressions. Out of those it was read 1,177 times, and I am beginning to follow up with those sources to see if I can leverage that interest into a book review or other publicity.”

Fadden readily admits his new novel, The Brink, not only predicted the currency wars, the Federal Reserve’s latest reaction to the mounting U.S. debt crisis, and even the recent Washington, D.C. Metro bomb scare, it is an extremely controversial financial thriller. The book features a lost Constitution article while it uses real-world economic numbers to weave an intricate conspiracy tale that takes up where the recent financial meltdown left off. “Great fiction should inspire us to challenge the status quo,” Fadden said, “especially when the status quo involves our country’s truly dangerous financial situation.” It is this dangerous financial situation that becomes the focus of the story after the main character, fugitive lawman Danny Cavanaugh, helps a woman running for her life, only to get sucked into a secret society’s plot to create financial Armageddon.

The Brink is Fadden’s third novel. His first novel, Five Days in Dallas, was published in 2003. It received critical acclaim and Fadden himself was even called a “masterful storyteller” by a Writer’s Digest reviewer. Fadden, who grew up in Houston and now lives in Colleyville, Texas, has several book signings and lectures scheduled in the next few months. His event schedule and the first 22 pages of The Brink can be previewed at markfadden.com.  Fadden has also created a blog about writing novels and book marketing using social media entitled, “Book Marketing Wars: building your author platform,” which can be read at markfadden.wordpress.com.

News Release – Local author signs his latest “chillingly current” thriller at Lewisville Barnes & Noble

 

Mark Fadden readily admits his new novel, The Brink, could be the most controversial book of 2010. Not only does it feature a lost Constitution article, it uses real-world economic numbers to weave an intricate conspiracy tale that takes up where the recent financial meltdown left off. “Great fiction should inspire us to challenge the status quo,” Fadden said, “especially when the status quo involves our country’s truly dangerous financial situation.” It is this dangerous financial situation, which Fadden spent years researching, that becomes the focus of the story after fugitive lawman Danny Cavanaugh helps a woman running for her life, only to get sucked into a secret society’s plot to create financial Armageddon.

Fadden was in Lewisville on Sunday, Oct 10 to sign copies of The Brink and to talk to thriller fans about his books. The Brink is Fadden’s third novel and is a continuation of his first novel, Five Days in Dallas. Published in 2003, Five Days in Dallas received critical acclaim and Fadden himself was even called a “masterful storyteller” by a Writer’s Digest reviewer. Fadden, who lives in Colleyville, then began working on the follow-up in 2006, which eventually became The Brink. “I’m really proud of it,” Fadden said of the book, which has won two awards from his publisher. “It explodes off the first page and maintains that action-packed pace to the very last paragraph. It also delivers the level of suspense that thriller readers have come to expect with a plot that couldn’t be more current. There’s great chemistry between the two main characters. They’re both strong personalities, but each struggles with deep inner conflict that has shaped who they are.”

While writing The Brink allowed Fadden to navigate the complex world of economics and politics, it’s his lead character that he’s still trying to understand. “Danny Cavanaugh is an interesting guy. He has this unstoppable desire to help his fellow man, but he has also made some bad choices that have put him in a precarious position. When The Brink opens, he’s hiding out in Mexico contemplating suicide; not exactly a typical hero’s situation, but that’s what makes him relatable. We’ve all faced situations where we want to give up, where things seem insurmountable, but something deep inside keeps us going.”

“The signing went wonderfully well,” said Lewisville Barnes & Noble Community Relations Manager Debbe France. “This is how reputations are made and this is how bookstores stay open, with successful events like this one.”

Readers can preview The Brink at www.markfadden.com.  Fadden has also created a blog about writing novels and book marketing using social media at www.markfadden.wordpress.com.

News Release – Local author signs ‘absolutely shocking’ book at The Book Carriage

Larry Granados, Treena Carpenter, Mark Fadden, Mercedes Reagan, and Leanne Skinner hold copies of The Brink, Mark Fadden's latest thriller, during his visit to The Book Carriage in Roanoke, Texas

Cooler temperatures make a lot of people want to curl up with a good book. And that’s exactly what customers got a chance to do at The Book Carriage & Coffee Shop in Roanoke on Sunday when Colleyville author Mark Fadden stopped by to promote and sign copies of his latest award-winning thriller, The Brink. In the book, Fadden incorporates a lost article of the U.S. Constitution into the story of a fugitive cop that helps a woman running for her life, only to get sucked into a secret society’s plot for global financial Armageddon.

 “It’s a completely gripping thriller, one that I hated to put down,” said Leanne Skinner, who works at the store and read an advance copy. “I appreciated the short chapters, so when I did get the inevitable interruption, I could finish the chapter, take care of the interruption, and then get back to it.”

 During his visit, Fadden talked about the “real-world” economics that are part of the book. “I began researching the book in 2006. Back then, I wanted to do a story that used the country’s exploding debt problem as the basis for a conspiracy thriller. I also wanted to use real numbers and real economic theory to showcase just how fragile our financial system is. Little did I know then that the events happening now, like the government debt bubble and actions of players in the international financial system, like what the Bank of Japan is doing to stabilize its economy, practically mirror what happens in the book. The truly frightening thing is that these actions, in the book anyway, ignite the complete unraveling of the entire global monetary system.”

 “It’s absolutely shocking,” said Angie Granados of the financial realty in the book. Granados, with her husband Larry, owns The Book Carriage & Coffee Shop. “Mark talked about some of the financial numbers he uses in his book, real numbers from the real world. It’s almost too scary to think about what could happen.”      

 The Book Carriage & Coffee Shop opened two years ago. Granados and her husband built the unique building from the ground up, scraping the existing building that once stood there in order to comply with the city’s zoning ordinances for the revitalized Oak Street corridor. The building features a conference room on the second floor that can be rented and a stage that overlooks the main part of the store where bands play on Saturday nights. “Because of the construction, this was our first signing event in a while,” said Granados. “Now that the construction is over with, we are looking forward to having more events and more signings.”

 The Book Carriage & Coffee Shop is an independent general bookstore/coffee shop located at 304 North Oak Street in Historic Downtown Roanoke. Contact them at  info@bookcarriage.com or 817.491.2858. Or visit their website at www.bookcarriage.com.

 Mark Fadden can be reached at mark@markfadden.com. He has several upcoming signings in the DFW area and is available to attend book club reviews as well. He is also giving workshops on how authors can use social media to sell their books at various local libraries. Visit www.markfadden.com to view his schedule of events or to preview The Brink.