My Wonderful, Crazy, Bossy, Loving, Supportive SISTER!

Sister is probably the most competitive relationship within the family, but once the sisters are grown, it becomes the strongest relationship.      Margaret Mead

Michael Braun in Through the Fire didn’t have a sister.  She had a wonderful brother.  Daniel had his twin, David.

The FBI Trilogy tells the story of three sisters.  I know about sisters as I have one of the best in the world.

Margaret Mead had it correct.  My sister is older and when we were growing up, she was the BOSS when my parents were not home.   Even though we are several years past our teenage years, she sometimes thinks she’s still the BOSS…and that’s O.K.

We weren’t close for many years, having gone our separate ways.  It took an almost-tragedy to allow us to both understand how important we were to each other.  Someone asked me if having a heart attack and heart surgery was the worst thing to happen to me.  I told them no, it was a blessing.  It was the event that showed me how wonderful and loving my sister is.

Even though we live far away from each other; she is my support and my sounding board for life.

We text many times every day. She is the only person I can understand on facetime, so she is the only person I ever speak to directly on the phone.  Everyone else is a text or an interpreted phone call.

We take trips together, leaving our husbands to fend for themselves. So far they have managed to survive.

I haven’t written the dedication to the trilogy, but when I do.  One will say:

To my dearest sister, Vicki.  Before we had our wonderful husbands to

bolster us and love us; before we had our children to fill our hearts,

we had each other.  There is no one who fills my life with so much.

Thank you for being my sister! Thank you for being my friend.

Thank you for your time and as always “Keep Reading!”

Raj Lowenstein

www.rajlowenstein.net

Where oh where?  Holiday and Laziness!

I’m back!

Where was I?  Good question.

I was home. Part of the absence was due to the Jewish Holiday of Pesach (or Passover.)

I was busy and tried to keep work to a minimum.  Writing is not really work to me, but… (shoulder shrug)

I wanted to get something up on the BLOG even if it wasn’t insightful.

So, for today, this is it.

I promise I will get a meaningful BLOG post in a few days. Or, I will at least try.

Thank you for your time and as always “Keep Reading!”

Raj Lowenstein

www.rajlowenstein.net

Location Change…again!

On 4 December 2016, I posted a blog titled “Location, Location, Location!” Today’s blog is connected to that.

In the book Through the Fire, Michael Braun and Daniel Hartman live and work in Houston, Texas.  I lived there for several decades and I know the area well.  It was easy to put the characters at the local hot spots or recreate the notorious traffic on the 610 Loop.  It was my home.

I had posted on “Location, Location, Location!” that with today’s technology, I don’t have to go to the middle of Minnesota for my second book in the FBI Trilogy.  Google and Google Maps helped me find what and where the characters needed to go even if it was a local place for Esperanza O’Conner and Kyle Moran to rent DVDs.

In the first book of the FBI Trilogy, Cat Conners is placed under witness protection in Palm Springs, California.  This was an easier place for me as I have family there.  It was easy to text my cousins and ask, “Where would you go for a good breakfast on the weekend?”  “What is your favorite Mexican Restaurant?” (I worship Mexican food!) Using their input and technology, I was able to let Cat and her FBI Agent ‘Mason Park’ explore – as much as was possible – Palm Springs and the surrounding area.

Soon, I will begin the third and final book of the FBI Trilogy.  This book will take place a bit closer to my home now in northwest Washington.  The Puget Sound is full of small islands, many which have ‘camps’ or summer homes.  The smaller of these islands often are only assessable via boats. This is where Olli Rose Bergstrom will find herself sequestered.

If I drive a few miles from my home, I can see several islands. Recently my husband and I walked the many trails that meander through our community. This particular trail, at one end, deposited us at a rocky beach. Like a slap to the forehead, it was “why not put Olli Rose’s story in my own backyard?”

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This gives me an opportunity to learn more about my new home and places the story in a familiar location as it had in Through the Fire.

Brilliant!

Thank you for your time and as always “Keep Reading!”

Raj Lowenstein

rajlowenstein.net

Just Rewards

Anyone who has some artistic drive, whether it’s painting, singing, acting or writing, has those qualities we hold up as our role models – even if we have never or will never meet them – and do our best to emulate their success.  I strive to be the next Nora Roberts or Stephanie Meyer or even Dean Coontz, yet it is a journey that I started later in life.  Although not as late as Anna Mary Robertson Moses (a.k.a. Grandma Moses) who started her painting career at 76, I am nonetheless definitely a late bloomer.

This all being said, I received my first royalty check the other day.  I was ecstatic!  I did a little jig of joy! I rushed out and spent it all for a coffee and pastry at my local Starbucks.

Yes, that’s correct.  It was a trivial amount but that was never the goal. Yes, I want to do well enough to make a nice living from my books.  Who wouldn’t?  It was never about the money, not really.  It was always about putting these stories that knock about in my head – demanding to get out – onto paper.

Some people will love them, others not.  That’s fine.

For me, it is the process of putting the story down, bringing characters to life, telling their story that is for me the joy.  Having someone say, “I read your book and OMG!  It is GREAT!” is Wunderbar! Even hearing someone, like my friend J.H. who read my book because she is a friend, letting me know “it really wasn’t my cup of tea…” with a smile and a hug, was maybe not Wunderbar but it was still great!

So I will keep writing and publishing.  Hopefully you will keep reading.  Together, we will get there!

Thank you for your time and as always “Keep Reading!”

Raj Lowenstein

rajlowenstein.net

Positive LGBT Characters in Fiction

I know and I have many LGBT friends and family members.  They are not some abstract construct:  they are uncles, cousins, aunts, and friends.  I will always have LGBT positive characters in my books, sometimes as main characters as with Through the Fire and sometimes as supporting characters.

Because they are family and friends, because their lives, good and bad, are part of my life, I will always try to portray my Lesbian, Gay and Transgendered folks as honest and real as possible.

In Through the Fire, David is the brother of Daniel, the detective who falls in love with the beautiful Michael.  Michael is not only the employee of David, a doctor, but she introduced David to his now husband Kelly.  While David and Kelly are supporting individuals in the book, we see a glimpse of their family life.

Many transgender people transition late in life such as Caitlyn Jenner and others such as Jaz Jennings, transition very early.  Some do it quietly and even though it is part of their life story, it isn’t the focus of who they are.  You might pass a handsome man or beautiful woman on the street or in the store and never know they are trans and that is fine. Everyone lives their life as loudly or quietly as fits them.

So then, Michael is one of those who transitioned at a very young age.  Being trans is just a part of who she is like having violet eyes and ebony hair.  It’s part of her, but not all.  She is educated and a nurse. She is a loyal friend to David and Kelly, and Auntie Michael to their three children. She is a passionate lover.  She is also the survivor of several brutal attacks due to this one small thing that is a fragment of the many things that makes up who she is.  So, she hides!  Like Lisa Unger’s book, In The Blood, the story is not about Michael’s transition, it about her living her life.

I suppose my point here is that like many people, I have gay, lesbian and transgendered folks in my family.  I love and cherish them for who they are. I want those folks in my books because they are who enrich my life for the better.

To my David…to my Michael…to my Kelly…I want to thank you for inspiring me and allowing me to bring a little of the light you give me to my readers.  XXOO

Thank you for your time and as always “Keep Reading!”

Raj Lowenstein

rajlowenstein.net

#romanticthriller #lbgtfiction #transgenderfiction

https://www.amazon.com/Blood-Novel-Lisa-Unger/dp/1476708231

P.S. They # is a new thing for me.  I hope I am going it correctly.  Have to ask my grandson, he’s eleven and KNOWS everything.

HELLO!? HELLO!? IS ANYONE OUT THERE?

Being a new published author is a little like being the first person at the Arctic Circle with only a hungry polar bear as witness.

Great! You did it! Your friends and family all know you have arrived, like the polar bear, they witnessed your process and arrival. Some have purchased a copy of your book, some still wait for their free copy.  You hope…and ask they tell their friends to by “this wonderful book I read, that just happened to have been written by my (fill-in the blank.)

Do they?  I haven’t a clue.

That’s the huge problem I am facing. As a baby author the publisher gives a little help with publicity, the rest is on me.  I know that my eleven year old grandson – Colby – (who is handsome and brilliant – by-the-way) knows more about Twitter, Facebook, and anything doing with social media, than I.   I accepted that years ago when he. At four, he explained how my cellphone worked.

If you don’t know – ask.  This is something I will be doing.  Networking, finding those who know is equally important as setting at the computer and bringing a story to life.

One doesn’t live in a vacuum. Realizing that and asking for help is always a step in the correct direction.  Just be careful of asking the polar bear, remember he was hungry!

Thank you for your time and as always “Keep Reading!”

Raj Lowenstein

rajlowenstein.net