DEADLY COOL by Gemma Halliday


Marit Wesisenberg

SELECT FEW Official Blog Tour

Sean Penn


D.J. MacHale

ORACLE OF DOOM by D.J. MacHale Nerd Blast

Ashley Eckstein


Peternelle van Arsdale


D.J. MacHale

JBN Podcast

Liana Garder


Mary Ting


Ronald H. Balson


Lisa Edelstein


Mark Rivers

BIG MOUTH - Podcast

Jenna Gavigan


Friday, October 19, 2018

Camilla Way Author Interview

Photo Content from Camilla Way

Camilla Way was born in Greenwich, south-east London, and studied Modern English and French Literature at the University of Glamorgan. Her father was the poet and author Peter Way. Formerly Associate Editor of the teenage girls' magazine Bliss, she is currently an editor and writer on the men's style magazine Arena. Having lived in Cardiff, Bristol, Bath and Clerkenwell, she now lives in south-east London.


Where were you born and where do you call home?
I was born in Greenwich in south-east London but as an adult lived in Wales (for university) then Bristol and Bath (where I worked for a time for a magazine publisher). I moved back to London in my late twenties and I’ve stayed here ever since. I live in an area called Brockley in south-east London, which is a lovely part of the world; lots of green space, a vibrant creative community full of writers, artists, musicians and actors, and only ten minutes or so from central London by train. I love it.

What advice would you give to someone who wanted to have a life in writing?
I’d like to begin this by saying I really am no expert – I’m still trying to work it out myself, but…

Write! Just write. Sounds obvious but you need to get those words on a page before you can do the most important bit of writing, which is rewriting, I think. To begin with, write as though no one’s going to read your words, write for yourself, play around with characters, styles, ideas, allow yourself to write a load of crap (it doesn’t matter, no one’s going to read it!). Out of those many pages of crap, there’ll be a spark of something usable. Focus in on that, whittle away the dead wood, ask yourself what makes that spark interesting/exciting and build on it.

You don’t have to be published to have a life in writing. If you write creatively, in your spare time, then you’re a writer. If you’re writing your first or fifteenth novel you’re always learning. Be persistent. I wrote my first book while working very long hours on a magazine, chipping away at it during the evenings and weekends. There were, and always will be, plenty of times when I tore my hair out in frustration, I’m not the most patient person but I’ve found that if you just keep on keeping on, you can eventually make a book work.

Also: read. Read and read and read. Internalize the rhythm of good prose, authentic dialogue, believable characters and so on until you begin to get the hang of it and do it instinctively.

Your new book is THE LIES WE TOLD, can you tell my Book Nerd community a little about it
The Lies We Told is about a young woman, Clara, whose boyfriend Luke vanishes one day in 2017. We follow Clara’s journey as she tries to find out what happened to him, and how his disappearance is linked to that of his long-lost sister Emily, who also vanished twenty years before. Alongside Clara’s story is Beth’s, who, in the 1980s, is raising a daughter who she increasingly suspects to be a sociopath. There are many twists and turns along the way until we finally find out how the two stories are connected. Pretty much everyone apart from Clara is lying about something and it becomes clear that even the most perfect-seeming family has something to hide…

What were your inspirations for the character development?
A variety of things. The character of Hannah was good fun to write; I enjoyed turning the usual dynamic of woman-as-victim on its head. To research her character I read a lot about psychopathy, personality disorders and so on which is always fascinating (to me, anyway).

But like many psychological thrillers, this book’s about outwardly ordinary people who are either hiding a darker side to their nature, or a terrible secret. This type of character is far more difficult to write than an out-and-out villain, because you have to get the balance just right between making the character relatable (if not likeable) but at the same time capable of making bad decisions or behaving terribly.

The characters in all my novels are fictional, but I draw on elements from a variety of people for inspiration, either someone I’ve known in real life or who I’ve read about in the news. I once based the physical attributes of one character on a girl I sat opposite on the subway. I’m also a reality TV addict and occasionally base a character’s appearance, vocal ticks or mannerisms (for example) on someone I once saw on ‘First Dates.’

What was your unforgettable moment while writing THE LIES WE TOLD?
There are always two pretty memorable moments when writing a book: typing the words ‘Chapter one’ and, a long time later, ‘The end’! Faced with that first blank page (knowing that there are a few hundred more to follow) can be pretty terrifying, especially when you have a tight deadline looming. But it’s also exciting and exhilarating to just dive in, knowing that only you can write the book you have in mind. With The Lies We Told I wanted to kick off with a really grabby first line, and eventually settled on, ‘At first I mistook the severed head for something else,’ because I wanted to put the reader right in the middle of poor Beth’s predicament.

Writing the words ‘The end’ is also momentous. The Lies We Told is a pretty complex book in the sense that there are a large cast of characters, multiple interweaving threads, lots of red herrings and quite a few twists. You also have your agent’s suggestions and editor’s comments to work through, so by the time you get to the end it can feel as though you’ve just finished a mental triathlon. The sense of satisfaction and relief is epic.

What part of Clara did you enjoy writing the most?
Clara is possibly the one person in the book who doesn’t have a shady side. I wanted to write someone whose shoes the reader could imagine being in, discovering each secret and lie alongside her, hopefully making them feel part of the book as it unfolds. She also needed to be quite a stark contrast to Hannah. So the most challenging (and enjoyable) aspect of writing her was making her bravery and actions believable – she had to have enough chutzpah to go digging the way she does, but it was also important to show her as someone very ordinary, who makes the same decisions and mistakes we probably all would.

What book would you recommend for others to read?
I love anything by Patricia Highsmith and Barbara Vine (Ruth Rendell’s alias), both masters of psychological suspense. My all-time favorite thriller though is Hangover Square by Patrick Hamilton. Set between the two world wars in a very seedy corner of London, Hamilton’s depiction of place is incredible and his writing is so lyrical and evocative. It’s a rather odd book, and definitely not to everyone’s taste, but I love it.

What are some of your current and future projects that you can share with us?
I’m currently working on my next psychological thriller. This one’s about a woman named Vivienne, who as an eight-year-old was the only other person in the house when her sixteen-year-old, and heavily pregnant, sister Ruby was murdered. The evidence Viv gave at the time ensured that Jack, Ruby’s abusive boyfriend and father of her unborn child, was convicted. But now he’s out of prison, still maintaining his innocence, and wanting revenge. When Jack kidnaps her daughter Mo, Vivienne has forty-eight hours to find out who really killed her sister if she ever wants to see her daughter again. Added to that, the only person who could have lead Mo to Jack, must be someone who knows Vivienne and her daughter well – so who can she trust?

Tell us your most rewarding experience since being published.
Books have always played an important part in my life. I was quite a shy kid, so they were a kind of refuge back then, and even now it’s hard to find me without a book to hand. Reading brings me so much pleasure and it means a lot to me that I’ve written books others might enjoy too. The thought of strangers on the other side of the world being entertained by my stories is very rewarding.

If you could introduce one of your characters to any character from another book, who would it be and why?
Great question! I think I’d like to introduce Monica, Edie’s friend and neighbor in Watching Edie, to Vivienne, the main protagonist of my work in progress. Monica is level-headed, straight-talking and brave and I think Vivienne could do with a friend like her to help her on her quest to find out the truth. Monica’s also pretty shrewd, so hopefully she’d be able to spot who in Vivienne’s life isn’t quite who they pretend to be!

Favorite things to do alone?
I have eight-year-old twin boys who are, obviously, wonderful and I love them to pieces… However, they are also completely insane. Their energy and noise is truly breathtaking. So, when they are at school and I am at my desk writing, the novelty of eating chocolate (without having to share it) and hearing myself think is AMAZING. So basically, at the moment, my favorite thing to do alone is eat chocolate and breathe.

If you had to go back in time and change one thing, if you HAD to, even if you had “no regrets” what would it be?
I think I’d change how little faith I had in myself when I was younger. I look back at myself in my teens and twenties and wish I’d had a bit more self-belief. I kind of drifted aimlessly for a long time. When I first had a go at writing a novel, at twenty-eight, I suddenly knew what I wanted to do with my life, what would really make me happy – and that was totally mind-blowing. I still had no clue I’d be published one day – that barely seemed feasible for an idiot like me ­– but just finding something I didn’t completely suck at gave me a self-confidence I’d never had before. So, yep, I’d go back and change my lack of self-esteem because perhaps then I might not have made some of the bad decisions I did make back then!

What do you usually think about right before falling asleep?
I get terrible insomnia and the only way I’ve been able to stop the constant jumble of thoughts running through my head at night is by listening to audible books. I love them; I choose something fun but undemanding like a Liane Moriarty novel, put the sleep timer on and for the first time in years I actually drift off quite easily. Life changing!

Where can readers find you?
I love to hear from readers via Twitter (@CamillaLWay).

1. I read the news. I’ve never directly taken a story from real life events, but a news story can sometimes inspire my books. I try to think of the ‘why’ behind headlines. For Watching Edie I read a story in the British press about a horrendous case of teenage bullying, where one girl betrayed her ‘friend’ in perhaps the worst way possible. The consequences were tragic and the story really haunted me. I thought about what could motivate a person to behave the way this particular girl did, and the answer I came up with sparked the idea for what would become Watching Edie.

2. I write a short story or poem. Sometimes writing a novel can become a little overwhelming, and nothing seems to flow. When I find myself really stuck I take a break and have a go at writing a poem or a short story instead. It somehow helps to kick-start the creative cogs again – and occasionally I find that a character or scene from a story can be inserted into the novel somewhere too.

3. My friends. Psychological thrillers are all about human relationships, and how particular dynamics can fuel dysfunctional or even criminal behavior. Whilst none of my friends are criminals (as far as I know!), the conversations we have often center around the relationships we have with others – our partners, family or friends for example – and can sometimes spark an idea for a plot point. For example, a friend who mentions tensions between herself and her mother will make me wonder what’s really behind the acrimony – jealousy? Loneliness? Fear? These relationship dynamics (albeit a more dramatic, amplified version) often inform my writing, as they’re something that most people can relate to.

4. I give myself a change of scene. Writing is a solitary pastime which often involves sitting alone in a silent room for hours. Though that’s clearly necessary in order to get the words down it’s just as important to immerse yourself in real life, otherwise you’ll have nothing to write about. Location and setting is important in my novels, so I walk a lot through my city, drinking in the landscape. I take public transport and people watch – I’ve based more than one character’s physical appearance on someone I’ve sat opposite on the Tube. I listen to people’s conversations – the rhythms of their speech, their vocal mannerisms – to ensure my dialogue rings true. I walk in the local graveyard to steal interesting surnames from graves for my characters. But mainly I just observe and daydream.

5. I try to think about what my novel is actually about in a broader sense. I think about the themes I want my book to discuss – guilt, regret, memory and culpability are usually ones I come back to again and again. Once I’ve got that overarching theme nailed down I then try to build my story around it.

6. I move. I have heard other writers say this too, and I have no idea why it’s the case, but for some reason the physical act of movement has some sort of magical effect on the creative part of the brain. I’ve lost count of the times a scene has suddenly appeared to me while riding the subway or driving my car. Or a plot hole I’ve been struggling with has been resolved by going for a run.

7. I ‘free-style’. Every now and then I start writing the moment I wake up in the morning, still half asleep, and give myself permission to write whatever comes into my head. I don’t try to write anything coherent, it’s usually just stream-of-consciousness, but out of those pages of waffle I can sometimes find a kernel of something useful. I haven’t read The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, but apparently this is a technique she advises, and I’ve heard other writers say it works for them too.

8. I immerse myself in different kinds of art. I go to the theatre or to a gallery, or I listen to some music or watch a film. Switching off from my own work-in-progress and enjoying someone else’s creation is a good way to get my own creative juices flowing.

9. I give myself permission to not write – at least for a while. It can pay to have a vacation from writing, even if it’s just for a day or two. It’s surprising what can germinate subconsciously when you’ve allowed yourself not to think about your book for a while. Sometimes the best ideas arrive when you least expect them.

10. I read poetry. This is actually the best way I’ve found to inject life into my writing if its become a little stilted and wooden. Something about reading poetry loosens up my own prose, and makes it a little more lyrical than it perhaps was before. My favorite poets are T.S. Eliot, Philip Larkin, Seamus Heaney and Carol Ann Duffy.

The highly acclaimed author of "Watching Edie" returns with a new novel of dark psychological suspense that explores how those closest to us have the most to hide...

When Clara's boyfriend, Luke, disappears, everyone believes that he's left her, but Clara thinks she knows the truth. Recent evidence suggests that Luke had a stalker, and Clara worries that he's been kidnapped. Then Luke's older sister, Emma, who vanished twenty years ago, suddenly reappears.

Emma wants to help Clara with her search for Luke, but she refuses to talk about what happened--even though it nearly destroyed her family when she vanished. And the deeper Clara digs into Luke's mysterious disappearance, the more convinced she is that the two incidents are connected.


“[A] twisty psychological thriller….Think you have the plot figured out? Think again. There are no easy answers in Way’s dark, compelling story. Grade: A” —The Cleveland Plain Dealer

“[A] tale of twisted narratives fueled by obsession…[a] tense psychological thriller.” —Washington Times

“Camilla Way, author of the 2016 thriller, Watching Edie, delves once again into the realm of the bad seed thriller with The Lies We Told. Way is a master of both the unreliable narrator and disturbing plots.” —Palm Beach Post

“This creepy stalker thriller about secrets coming home to roost from Way highlights a queasy theme for the baby boomer set: how little control parents have over their children….powerful.” —Publishers Weekly

“Tense, unsettling, and keeps you guessing till the very end. We Need to Talk About Kevin meets Other People’s Children.“ —Cara Hunter, author of Close to Home

“Combining all the classic ingredients of a rip-roaring psych thriller–a creepy We Need to Talk about Kevin-esque child, an unexplained disappearance, a dysfunctional family–The Lies We Told adds pace and suspense in a way that’s refreshing for even the most jaded of readers….If you want to be kept awake at night then The Lies We Told is your insomnia buddy.” —Stylist

“Deftly plotted with lovely, satisfying twists.” —Emerald Street

“You’ll be kept guessing with this compelling plot.” —Prima

“A top class psychological thriller, smartly crafted and oozing tension.” —Sunday Mirror

You can purchase The Lies We Told at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you CAMILLA WAY for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of The Lies We Told by Camilla Way. 

*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*
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|Podcast| The Hangman - Zwelethu Radebe

Photo Content from Zwelethu Radebe 

Zwelethu Radebe spent much of his youth behind the lens, recreating his favourite film scenes with nothing but an 8mm camcorder, his BMX and his younger brother as the actor. By the time he was cast as a caricature of cricket legend Lance ‘Zulu’ Klusener in a washing powder commercial, the film bug had its fangs in deep.

Zwelethu finished top of his class throughout film school, winning numerous awards and the bursaries he needed to fund his studies. The trend continued at his first Loeries, where, just months after graduating, he won a Student Silver for Ster-Kinekor Thato.

Still in his twenties, Zwelethu has spent a busy last four years directing commercials full-time for both local and international agencies and clients, shooting in nine countries across Africa and Europe. In 2017, he won a Silver Apex Award for Creative Effectiveness for Strongbow, while his short film The Hangman has won Best Foreign Film at the Oscar-qualifying LA Shorts Fest, Best South African Short Film at the Durban, Jozi and Shnit film festivals, and Best African Short Film at Zanzibar International Film Festival, among other accolades. He was included in Mail and Guardian’s 200 Young South Africans feature in 2018.

JBN Podcast   JBN Podcast

In 1976 Mfundisi, a father to Khetha (11), realizing the late hour and no return of his wife Sizakhele from work. Mfundisi decides to leave Khetha at home in search of her. When Sizakhele returns in a battered and bloodied state. A distraught Khetha learns from his mother that his father will never return.

Khetha is never told the details of what caused his father’s disappearance and causes a disjointed idea of his father actions that night, which haunts him throughout his youth into adulthood.

Several years later Khetha finds work as a prison warder in Pretoria Maximum Prison death row. When a prisoner is transferred from C Max into Death Row Khetha learns that this is his father.
Khetha chooses to conceal his identity from his father and begins a campaign of reprisal chastising Mfundisi covertly through the prison system in the weeks before his execution. When the truth of Mfundisi’s disappearance is brought to the surface on the eve of his execution. Khetha must either choose forgiveness or live forever with regret of failing to accept the truth.

When the truth of his Father's disappearance is brought to the surface on the eve of his execution, Khetha, a prison warder in Pretoria South Africa must either choose forgiveness or live forever with regret of failing to accept the truth.

Starring: Thato DH Dhladla, Lerato Mvelase, Khulu Skenjana & Mxolisi Matlabe Executive Producers: Tebogo Keebine, Kearan Pennells, Dithapelo Segodi Producer :Dumisani Mvumvu Writer & Director: Zwelethu Radebe DOP: Ofentse Mwase Production Manager: Neo Noesha Letsogo Production Coordinator: Nelisiwe Mwase Production Assistant: Bridget McCoy Story Board Artist: Kevin Narain Continuity: Kelly 'Kelsie' Leeuw Social Media: Jade Kebbie Production Design: Bonisa Mndaweni & Sibusiso Bhengu Costume Design: Rozanne Whyte Make Up/ Hair/ Prosthetic: Khumoetsile K-push Hlatshwayo On set Photographer: Kgomotso Neto Tleane Post Production: Deepend Post Production - Comfort & Fame Studios Editor: William Kalmer Colorist: Nic Apostoli Music Supervision: Glenn Sebeelo Sound Design & Final Mix : Sotho Mafia Entertainment Additional Music: Steve "Sticky" Raphadu Music Composer: Grant Booth Behind The Scenes: Motion in Time - Nkosinathi Simelane

The top-ranked production company at the 2017 Loerie Awards, Egg Films represents directors Brent Harris, Dani Hynes, Kyle Lewis, Lebogang Rasethaba, Robin Adams, Slim, Sunu and Zwelethu Radebe. We do TV ads, music videos, short films and other things too. For more information, visit
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Thursday, October 18, 2018

|Podcast| Angel of Anywhere - James Kicklighter

Photo Credit: Casey Nelson Photography

Director James Kicklighter spent the first eighteen years of his life in Bellville, Georgia, population 123. Since then, he has gone on to become a multi-award winning Los Angeles-based filmmaker. His work has been recognized by the world’s press, including The Hollywood Reporter, The Times of India, Film Courage and FilmInk Australia. Kicklighter will release two films in 2018, Angel of Anywhere and The American Question.
Current Work

Angel of Anywhere is the story of an empathetic stripper who plays therapist to his many damaged clientele and co-workers. Angel of Anywhere stars Briana Evigan (“Step Up Movie 2: The Streets”), Ser’Darius Blain (“Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle”), and introduces Axel Roldos as Angel.

The American Question, his new documentary, examines personal values systems to understand the partisan divide in America. It cuts below politics to find the common ground that can be the foundation for coming together. The film is being produced with a wide range of thought leaders across the cultural spectrum. The American Question recently began editorial with Carlos Puga, the Emmy-award winning producer of MTV’s “True Life.” Carlos is also a SXSW Jury Award Winner and Sundance Award Nominee.

Additionally, he recently directed the debut advertisement for We The Future. It was established by 2008 Obama for America Field Organizer and former Lyft executive John McBride. WTF arms supporters with new tools that leverage social networks and digital communication channels to mobilize their friends and communities in elections.

JBN Podcast   JBN Podcast

Director James Kicklighter on the set of JamesWorks Entertainment's ANGEL OF ANYWHERE
with actors Briana Evigan and Ser'Darius Blain.
Photo Credit: Casey Nelson - © JamesWorks Entertainment

"I am so not this girl, I never do this." Don't be turned off by the headline, this is a very impressive dramatic short film. Angel of Anywhere is an award-winning short directed by James Kicklighter that has been playing at festivals this year. The story is about an empathetic stripper who chats with his clients and helps them work through their problems. It goes to some very deep, personal places, with a very intelligent script. Angel of Anywhere stars Briana Evigan as Michelle, Ser'Darius Blain as Brian, David A. Gregory as D.C., plus Nihan Gur, Adam Carr, Krystal Conway, and Axel Roldos. It's always great to see a story that challenges us to rethink our initial judgments, and listen more to each other. Definitely worth a watch.

"Don’t be turned off by the headline, this is a very impressive dramatic short film. Angel of Anywhere is an award-winning short directed by James Kicklighter that has been playing at festivals this year. The story is about an empathetic stripper who chats with his clients and helps them work through their problems. It goes to some very deep, personal places, with a very intelligent script."

"Repeatedly recognized by MovieMaker Magazine as one of the Top 25 Festivals in the World and by TIME Magazine as one of the Top 10 Festivals for the Rest of Us, Sidewalk annually brings over 200 films to Birmingham, Alabama. JamesWorks Entertainment’s Angel of Anywhere screens on Sunday, August 26th at 12:30 PM."

2017 Accolade Award of Excellence
2018 Jaipur International Film Festival
2018 Irvine International Film Festival
2018 Four Seasons Film Festival, London
2018 Utah Film Festival & Awards
2018 Vero Beach Wine & Film Festival
2018 Hollyshorts Film Festival
2018 Kew Gardens Festival of Cinema
2018 Macon Film Festival (Winner, Best Narrative Short)
2018 Sidewalk Film Festival
2018 Catalina Film Festival and New Media Summit
2018 Shorts International, DirectTV

Coming to audiences in 2018, Angel of Anywhere is the story of an empathetic stripper who plays therapist to the many damaged clientele and co-workers who frequent the popular Anywhere Bar.

JamesWorks Entertainment’s Angel of Anywhere stars Briana Evigan (“Step Up Movie 2: The Streets,” “Sorority Row”) as Michelle, Ser’Darius Blain (“When The Game Stands Tall,” “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle”) as Brian, David A. Gregory (“One Life to Live,” “The Good Fight”) as D.C., Nihan Gur (“Westworld,” “Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders”) as Alexx in Wonderland, Adam Carr (“The Call Room”) as Drunk Patron, Krystal Conway as Bartender, and introducing Axel Roldos as Angel.

Angel of Anywhere is directed by James Kicklighter (“Desires of the Heart”), written by Casey Nelson & Kate Murdoch (“The Last Treasure Hunt Movie”) and produced by Beau Turpin (“Beneath The Leaves”)
jbnlatestinterviews, jbnmediainteriews, jbnpodcast, jbnfilms

{Nerd Blast} The Royal Order of Fighting Dragons by Dan Elish

Age Range: 9 - 12 years
Grade Level: 4 - 7
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Vesuvian Books (August 7, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1944109544
ISBN-13: 978-1944109547


"…a fast-paced, entertaining story with appealing characters, a healthy dose of action, and a dash of humor." ―Publishers Weekly


This is a Nerd Blast, you will post the promotional info we provide you with, including the giveaway. No reviews required. Please mark your Calendar.

Born to... Fight?

Ike Rupert Hollingsberry is haunted by the past because complete strangers won’t let him forget that his famous father died on the set of The Fighting Dragons, a cult favorite that still has people talking. But when he’s attacked by a large locust, like the one that killed his dad, Ike is helped by the geekiest nerd of all, Elmira Hand. Killing the giant locust is only the beginning of the surprises in store for Ike as he is whisked away from New York City to an isolated Florida compound to assume his role as the next in line to lead the Royal Order of Fighting Dragons—that are NOT supposed to exist—and learns his dad’s death was a cover-up for a far greater purpose…

You can purchase Guys Read: Heroes & Villains at the following Retailers:

Photo Content from Dan Elish

Dan Elish is the author of nine novels, including The School for the Insanely Gifted, The Worldwide Dessert Contest, and Born Too Short: Confessions of an 8th Grade Basket Case (Simon & Schuster), which was named a New York Public Library "Book for the Teenage" and a "Young Adult Choice for the International Reading Association.”

Dan co-wrote the book for the Broadway musical 13with music and lyrics by Jason Robert Brown, which premiered on Broadway in 2008 and is slated to be a movie by CBS Films. Dan is also a TV writer who has worked on shows such as Cyberchase (PBS) and Jo-Jo’s Circus (Disney). Dan has received fellowships and scholarships to the Bread Loaf and Sewanee Writers’ Conferences and is represented by Matt Bialer at Greenburger Associates. He lives in New York with his wife and children.

*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

|Podcast| Big Mouth - Mark Rivers

Photo Content from Mark Rivers

Mark Rivers - An American Treasure!
Mark was born and raised in Atlanta, GA where he spent the majority of his formative years watching sitcom reruns and listening to Rush albums. He took up the drums and, not surprisingly, his early bands all sounded like Georgia teenagers trying to play Canadian prog rock.

Mark learned a thing or two studying music at Georgia State University, then three more things at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, though he spent most of his time there hanging out with his aspiring comedian friends at Emerson College. He even had an Emerson dining hall card.

Somewhere in there Mark dropped out of Berklee to start a band called the Cavedogs which would eventually release several CDs on Capitol Records and tour the country exhaustively. Occasionally the band would team up with their comedian friends and perform music-comedy bits that at the time seemed hilarious, but would now probably be embarrassing. Nonetheless, Mark’s passion for comedy writing was born.

When the band broke up, Mark started a dog walking business!

One day Mark’s old friend David Cross called and hired him to write the theme song for Mr. Show with Bob and David. Sensing new opportunities, Mark saved his dog walking money and moved to Los Angeles where he has spent many years resisting the temptation to start yet another band and to pick up dog shit. Instead, Mark found work writing comedy and composing television music with a particular knack for comedy tunes and theme songs.

Mark has been a staff writer on several shows, including Robert Smigel’s TV Funhouse and Jimmy Kimmel Live. He has also created and produced the pilots Let’s Fish and Krog for Cartoon Network. He has composed music for Mr. Show, Parks and Recreation, Louie CK, Human Giant and lots, lots more.

Geddy Lee would be proud.

JBN Podcast   JBN Podcast

Big Mouth is about Teenage friends find their lives upended by the wonders and horrors of puberty.

2018 TV-MA2 Seasons

Teenage friends find their lives upended by the wonders and horrors of puberty in this edgy comedy from real-life pals Nick Kroll and Andrew Goldberg.
Starring: Nick Kroll, John Mulaney, Jessi Klein
Genres: TV Shows, TV Comedies, TV Animated Comedies, Adult Animation
Creators: Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Mark Levin, Jennifer Flackett

Netflix has been leading the way for digital content since 1997

Netflix is the world's leading internet entertainment service with 130 million paid memberships in over 190 countries enjoying TV series, documentaries and feature films across a wide variety of genres and languages. Members can watch as much as they want, anytime, anywhere, on any internet-connected screen. Members can play, pause and resume watching, all without commercials or commitments.
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{Nerd Blast} Jaclyn and the Beanstalk by Mary Ting

File Size: 2830 KB
Print Length: 214 pages
Publisher: Vesuvian Books (September 3, 2018)
Publication Date: September 3, 2018
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Language: English


A mash-up of "Jack and the Beanstalk" and "Lord of the Rings" ... RECOMMENDED ―School Library Journal

"Keenly descriptive and eloquently written with touches of sixteenth-century language, the story takes the reader into the world of monsters controlled by a diabolical villain, and into a land of mystery and magic beans." ―Readers' Favorite Review

"Mary Ting managed to surprise me at every turn, even though I must have read this story a million times as a kid. The most impressive surprise was the creation of a girl protagonist who is so much better than the original Jack. Then she brings in the boy, Jack, as the love interest. Sheer genius and a great idea. The writing is great. The plot is good, and the various themes woven throughout the story make it a very compelling tale." ―Readers' Favorite Review

Mary Ting writes with an adventurous heart, a clever pen, introducing young readers to a classic that meets fantasy, shedding light on the family devotion and a love story that buds to completion by the end. This short novel comes as a highly recommended read for parents and young adults that prefer fantasy fiction with a Christian-based theme and a creative perspective. Mary Ting is one of those writers to notice and watch. ―Kingdom's Review


This is a Nerd Blast, you will post the promotional info we provide you with, including the giveaway. No reviews required. Please mark your Calendar.

What fate awaits a girl who hears monsters at night…

Sixteen-year-old Jaclyn looks up to her father. An honest man who once fought for the king, he now teaches Jaclyn how to use her wits—and her sword.

But he has a secret. And his secret may have a connection to the one thing Jaclyn is hiding from him.

Upon hearing “monsters” are terrorizing the small villages around Black Mountain, Jaclyn’s father and his friends head out to hunt them … but they don’t return.

Armed only with her sword and three magic beans—a gift from a mysterious old woman—Jaclyn sets out for Black Mountain to save her father.

On her climb, one bean drops and grows into a beanstalk, catching her when she falls.

She isn’t the only one that takes the ride. Jack, her childhood friend and secret crush, is following her.

Jaclyn and Jack will have to work together to save not only their fathers, but the townspeople the beasts plan to lay waste to before it’s too late.

You can purchase Jaclyn and the Beanstalk at the following Retailers:

Photo Content from Mary Ting

Mary Ting is an international bestselling, award-winning author. She writes soulful, spellbinding stories that excite the imagination and captivate readers around the world. Her books span a wide range of genres, and her storytelling talents have earned a devoted legion of fans, as well as garnered critical praise.

Becoming an author happened by chance. It was a way to grieve the death of her beloved grandmother, and inspired by a dream she had in high school. After realizing she wanted to become a full-time author, Mary retired from teaching after twenty years. She also had the privilege of touring with the Magic Johnson Foundation to promote literacy and her children’s chapter book: No Bullies Allowed.

Mary resides in Southern California with her husband, two children, and two little dogs, Mochi and Mocha. She enjoys oil painting and making jewelry. Being a huge Twilight fan, Mary was inspired to make book-themed jewelry and occasionally gives it away as prizes to her fans.


*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

|Podcast| Black Lightning: Tobias's Revenge - Choice Skinner

Photo Credit: James M Black - © Darkan Entertainment, LLC 2018

Choice Skinner was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York and from a very early age was always into some form of entertainment. With the birth of his film company Darkan Entertainment Inc., Choice’s influence as a film director can be seen in the award winning dramatic short film “Brotherly Love”, and his first and second full length features “Wingman Inc.” and “Keep The Faith”. When not acting or directing Choice shoots photography as well as teaches and develops actors at The Breakingthrough Acting Workshop located in Sherman Oaks, CA.

JBN Podcast   JBN Podcast

"Black Lightning - Tobias's Revenge" was filmed in the spring/summer of 2016 for a total of 7 days and funded out of pocket by several actors starring in the short, including the director/lead actor. All VFX are being completed by James M Black Choice Skinner & Chase Baker. An official date on when the short will debut online will be available soon. The short stars award winning actor/director Choice Skinner as Black Lightning, James M. Black as "Static", Dimitri Morantus as "Tobias Whale", Jay Hunter as "Gangbuster" and Sachiko Ishida as "Lady Shiva".

"Black Lightning - Tobias's Revenge" was filmed in the spring/summer of 2016 for a total of 7 days and funded out of pocket by several actors starring in the short, including the director/lead actor. The film should be completed by March based on the current VFX timetable. All VFX are being completed by James M Black Choice Skinner & Chase Baker. An official date on when the short will debut online will be available soon. The short stars award winning actor/director Choice Skinner as Black Lightning, James M. Black as "Static", Dimitri Morantus as "Tobias Whale", Jay Hunter as "Gangbuster" and Sachiko Ishida as "Lady Shiva".

Ex-Mayor and crime Lord Tobias Whale has returned to Suicide Slums to exact revenge against local famed superhero Black Lightning. Tobias gathers gang members from the local gang 100 and several other super villains to kidnap the mayor of Metropolis and lure Black Lightning into a trap. Just when things for Black Lightning take a turn for the worst, he gets help from unexpected sources who interrupt Tobias’s plans of revenge.

Dimitri Morantus ― Tobias Whale was born in Brooklyn, New York. His passion and talent for the arts were apparent at even a young age. Performing in a variety of stage plays in high school and in college, Dimitri honed his skills and moved to Los Angeles. He has been training and working on Tv shows like Showtimes' House of Lies, The Stick Up, and his current film Black Lightning - Tobias Revenge. Where Dimitri plays the antagonist Tobias Whale.

JAY HUNTER ― Gangbuster/Jose Delgado
Following his retirement from sports, he dove into acting and has had quite an array of featured roles. These roles placed him alongside great talents, such as; Mark Wahlberg, Vivica Fox, Omar Gooding, Ving Rhames, Donald Faison, They have also allowed him the opportunity to successfully portray various characters ranging from villains to sex-symbols. His upcoming appearances will be a cameo in the new TV comedy “Boy Bye” starring Wendy Raquel Robinson, and will soon see him again on the big screen as a supporting character in “Acrimony”, starring “Empire’s very own Taraji P Henson.

Sachiko Ishida was born in Kyoto, Japan. She is known for her work on He's Just Not That Into You (2009), Boxer (2015).

CHASE BAKER ― Mayor Berkowitz
Chase Baker was born in Salt Lake City, UT. His love for acting and movies was birthed out of being taken to see classic films as a child and reenacting scenes with his sisters and friends. Chase has done, a tremendous amount of work on both sides of the camera. From acting to sound to DP to art department to producing.

AUSTIN UKU ― Holocaust
The Nigerian American actor was born in Benin Nigeria and raised in Pittsburgh PA, before moving to Los Angeles CA. A standout athlete, excelling in Football, track and field and martial arts. After graduating with a degree In Fine Art with a minor in Physical education he began to Advance his modeling career. Austin has been featured in magazines like muscle and Fitness, and Maximum Fitness. Building upon his success as a fitness model and took a role in a Spanish Martial Arts film Cage Fight, in which he also worked as assistant fight coordinator on. 2016 was a Breakout year for Austin. A year in which he had a costarring role in the Smosh Film Ghostmates, a lead role in Brad Lee, a Lead in the Tomb Raider short, Croft: Liabilities and is the lead star in the powerful dramatic short the Audition.

Michael Graham returned to acting in 2011, and has been seen this past year in co-star and recurring co-star roles on CBS’s SCORPION, FOX’s LETHAL WEAPON, and FX’s AMERCIAN CRIME STORY: THE PEOPLE v. OJ SIMPSON. Since 2011, he’s appeared in six feature films, two short films, and 20 national commercials. He began his career as a print and fashion model, and commercial actor in the 1980’s, before embarking on a full-time 27-year career in Law Enforcement. His passion for performance combined with his broad life experience and deep insight into human expression, have strengthened his skills as a powerful actor!

Born and raised in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago, Illinois, Daffany Clark knew from an early age that she wanted to be an actress. As a Columbia College graduate, Clark came to Los Angeles in 2009 and managed to move quickly from LA transplant to working actress. Clark trained under the tutelage of Choice Skinner at the Breakin Through Acting Workshop before landing her first recurring guest star role on The Fosters as "Daphne" in 2012 Daffany is currently producing, writing and starring in her own One Woman Show entitled Pieces.

MIKE BIANCO ―  Det. Bill Henderson
Born and raised in Rhode Island, Mike moved on to UCONN to study Finance. Upon graduation, he returned home where he began acting as well as writing and performing in a weekly sketch comedy show. From there he moved to New York to further his studies and create such roles as Richard Long in "The Coming of Dick" and Danny in "Self and the Pity". Shifting focus to film, Mike starred in the award winning "Close to Midnight". Since moving to Los Angeles he has graduated from both The Second City Hollywood and IO West improv programs. All while starring in several independent feature and short films.

RAMSAY PHILLIPS ― Bibbo Bibbowski
Phillips is a naturally tremendous and powerful, yet soft spoken in everyday life.

Ramsay stars in the film "Falsely Accused" as well as his upcoming film "The Reunion" where he plays twins.

Johnse Allende Jr is an actor based in LA, moved from San Juan, Puerto Rico where he calls home. He has about 5 years in acting experience. LA is the city where he has studied the true arts of becoming an actor. He studied for almost 5 years at the Young Actors Space with acting coach Choice Skinner.There Johnse would study Breaking Through Acting Workshop. With other talents like dancing and martial arts mixed with his fluidity of speaking Spanish, he has cultivated and made use of each gifts on screen. Be sure to watch out for him as the rising star makes his breakthrough towards the industry.

Jesse Lorenzo, born in Newark, DE, makes his action film debut as Warthog, in the anticipated fan film Black Lightning (2017). He got his first break when he appeared as the double for lead actor, Carlos Pratts, in the Disney produced film, McFarland, USA (2015). Since then, Lorenzo has worked on numerous projects including Choice Skinner's Christian drama Keep the Faith (tbd) and has secured lead roles in hit television series, Investigation Discovery's Deadly Sins (2016), and TLC's Sex Sent Me to the ER (2016). He is currently working on 5150, a thriller drama set for release in 2017.

Versatile, energetic, and handsome, Ola Bamisile is a sight for the screen. Pulling from his artistic passions, personality and African heritage he takes a big step into every character. From set to premiere he's moving us to watch, and that we will.

Alexander is best known for his hilarious portrayal as the recurring character Raul on Fx’s You’re The Worst. But it doesn’t stop there, Alexander has appeared in small parts on the hit TNT show The Last Ship & NBC’s The Player, and will be appearing in the Season 2 finale of Netflix original series Love in the early part of 2017. Alexander is also known for his portrayal as the Title character in the multi award winning short Jacob Stone, which he was nominated twice for Best Actor at the California Women’s Film Festival and the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival Awards. Jacob Stone was a hit around the festival circuit taking home the audience award for Best Short in 2015 at the prestigious Catalina Film Festival. It took home four more awards on the festival circuit and piled up a grand total of eight nominations.

Frantz Durand was born in New York to Caribbean parents (Haitian & Dominican). He was introduced to theatre by his uncle writer Dany Laferriere at the age of 4. Soon after he moved to Miami and continued the arts all the way to college. He moved to LA after school to work with the most talented artists in the world.

Virginia Native, Mychal Thompson is quickly becoming a rising star within the acting community. Currently costarring in the short film BLACK LIGHTNING, directed by multiple award winner Choice Skinner; This isn’t the first time the two have worked together, Thompson showcases his versatility and creative finesse as the lead character “Timothy ‘TJ’ Jackson,” in the Christian-Themed Drama KEEP THE FAITH in which Choice Skinner wrote and directed. In conjunction with his starring role in KEEP THE FAITH, Thompson can also be seen in the first season of the “FOX HIT” TV show LETHAL WEAPON in a guest starring role as “Boogie”, starring opposite Damon Wayans and Clayne Crawford. Mychal Thompson is definitely a force to be reckoned with and continues to enhance his craft.

JASON WOODS ― Derek Barnett
Jason Woods, a LA native, grew up playing sports. At 14 he had his first experience with acting, and has had the "bug" ever since. Last year he starred in the film, "San Andres Quake" as well as the lead role in the stage premiere of "When Stars Align" and co-starred in "Jane the Virgin", "Switched at Birth," Sweet/Vicious", and "NCIS - New Orleans". You can also see him styling for Vibes USA hip/hop/street wear at


Bethany Michelle Curry is what you could call a triple threat… Actress/dancer/model. She has danced on MTV, Nickelodeon, booked a National Verizon commercial and also appeared in several high profile music videos, short films, and fitness videos. She models swimwear and recently appeared on the NFL's 'Rob Riggles Picks'.
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