A subtle reminder of Erika’s tragic story on a tee, tote, or mug that you can use for years!
Makes a great gift for bookworms and independent authors!
Your favorite novella has now joined the inventory at Charis Books and More! Stop by and grab a copy or order your paperback version online at CharisBooksAndMore.com!
For immediate release. Please pass along to any producers and voice talents who might be interested.
CLARKSTON, GA, June 4, 2017– As of midnight on May 31st, Volo Press found itself without a producer for its latest book, Show Her. Now, it is opening auditions up to the public via the Audible (Amazon) site ACX.com in order to draw talent from all across the world.
“It’s an unfortunate and bizarre circumstance,” says T. L. Curtis, Founder and CEO of Volo Press. “We had a producer who actually recorded the entire piece, then didn’t finalize the project by the due date of May 31st. Now we’ve got to start over from square one.”
California radio DJ Don Abad was hired to take on the project. He had recorded and submitted the entire book for final revision requests. But, according to Curtis, once the revisions were requested, there was no response.
“I thought maybe he was just working on it. Got busy with some other projects, you know. But I never heard back from him. At this point, it’s time to make sure the project gets done at all. I hate it though, since he had done a good job over all.”
Volo Press invites interested parties to submit auditions at https://www.acx.com/titleview/AYJ473JO41T3J.
The audition script is available on the ACX website.
Show Her is a dystopian, psychological thriller that follows the story of Erika Wogo as she battles threats to her marriage and her “perfect” life. The book currently holds more than 4.5 stars on Amazon.com, 3.5 stars on Goodreads.com, and 4 stars on BarnesAndNoble.com.
For more information, T. L. Curtis can be contacted at TLCurtis@Volo-Press.com or 404-666-1126.
It looks like a butterfly, hummingbird, or even a puppy. But it can read a book to you when you’re tired, find your car keys, drop off a letter, help you find a lost sock, or even bring you a glass of water when you’re thirsty. It’s called a Prone, it comes in whatever shape you want it to, and we all need them in our lives.
Just imagine, your own personal drone that hovers right over your shoulder helping you avoid some of the more tedious tasks that we have to deal with on a daily basis. Your Prone could do your laundry, wash your car, make you a sandwich, summarize a lengthy email, or even grab aspirin for you when it senses that you have a headache.
From the Masterminds at Microsoft
Prones have been in use for the past ten years. Microsoft has only handed them out to people who could afford to pay for the prototypes. This means people like ultra-sexy lifestyle-blogging goddess Erika Wogo or her master, Khaled Wogo. Only a a few dozen have been operating worldwide. Microsoft hopes to be able to bring Prones to the masses soon. Wogo says of her own dove-shaped Prone, “It is like having the most versatile and tireless assistant in the world.”
A Watchful Eye and a Helping Hand
Prones come with an easily embedded microchip that goes under the skin behind your ear. This microchip allows the Prone to keep track of various aspects of your physical health, including vitals like blood pressure and respiration. When a Prone senses high stress levels, it can assess the current context to make decisions based on whether you’re excited, angry, or actually in mortal danger.
And beyond being a great companion for the laziest among us, there are several speculative applications that could mean saving lives once Prones become as common as smartphones. An elderly person fails when they’re home alone, a Prone can call for medical assistance. A blind person can navigate around their city without having to rely on an animal that others are allergic to, must be fed, must have water, needs a space to sleep in, can get sick, will die, and must be trained. Children and teenagers traveling around their neighborhoods or the world alone will always have a Prone to be able to ward off potential kidnappers who could hold them for ransom, exploit them, sexually assault then, and even kill them. How many rapes could be eliminated because the Prone senses non-pleasurable stress and physically intervenes or calls for help as needed? This could include intervening if it seems that sexual intercourse is about to occur if a person’s blood alcohol level is above a certain limit. The droves of people who die each year from accidents, murders, and suicides could all have a greater chance at survival because a Prone would be around to get them the help they need quickly.
Learn More About Prones and Pre-Order Yours
In case you haven’t realized it yet, Prones only exist (right now, anyway) in the science fiction realm of Show Her, the latest psychological thriller from T. L. Curtis. If you want to learn more about how Prones work and hear more about what they can do, click on your favorite site link below to instantly download the book:
I thought he deserved his own version, poor baby! 😀 Remember to share with bookworms!
For whatever reason, I actually felt less and less nervous about publishing my first novella the closer the release date came. Here’s an inside look into what transpired in the days leading up to the release of Show Her.
Given the near-nervous-breakdown I had when I published the first version of Show Her many, many moons ago, I kinda figured it would go the same way this time. I would be making an insane amount of changes up until the very last second and then would click ‘Publish’ with my eyes closed and go curl into the fetal position on my bed feeling like I’d just murdered a herd of puppies with a blunt axe.
In short, I didn’t think that I had really gathered any confidence at all since the last time I tried to do this. I thought it would be a cluster-fuck of epic proportions.
Yet, it didn’t go like that. Don’t get me wrong, I am a procrastination master (though I am trying to become a better person in this regard), so I was still making major changes to the plot, character descriptions, and even the entire ending as of a week before the launch.
However, I found myself getting more and more excited about release day coming as it approached. I found myself actually telling family members, co-workers, and even strangers early on, with ease and relative comfort.
There are a couple of major things that happened since I began thinking that I wanted to make writing my full-time career that contributed to this more relaxed reaction to self-publishing. Please feel free to use this information for your personal healing if that’s helpful for you.
First, Donald Trump got elected as President of the United States of America. I’ve never been so glued to an election in my life (okay, 2008, I guess, but you know what I mean). So, why was Donald Trump an inspiration that eased my anxiety? Because–following the “rules” of politics–he shouldn’t have won. He should have lost. He should have been an epic failure, a laughing stock. He should have been rejected by every single voter in the country according to traditional political ideology because he “didn’t fit in.” He didn’t look, think, act, walk, or talk like a president or even your run-of-the-mill politician. Yet, he won it all, and by a landslide.
If this man that stood “no chance” of winning the day he announced that he was running made it all the way to the top through sheer persistence and giving haters and critiques the bird, who was I to feel inadequate? How dare I be afraid of rejection! If he can make it to the top of Mount Everest from the Earth’s core, certainly I can make it from the bottom of the mountain (geez, at least I’m above sea level).
Second, E. L. James’ Fifty Shades of Grey not only became a bestseller, but went on to become a proverbial movement in the literary and cinema worlds. I just had to read it since it was getting so much hype, but when I tried, it was like trying not to pass out while sawing off my own leg.
Why is this inspirational for me? Because I struggled so hard to get through the book. I’ve never been a huge fan of romance novels (though I do enjoy erotica) so that was already a strike against her. Beyond that, I personally thought the book wasn’t well written and the plot was not realistic or thought through very much. It was like she wrote it and sent it in without any rereading it herself, having a friend look at, hiring a copy editor or proofreader, etc.–straight from brain to print.
And yet, look at the enterprise that has been built from it! So, again, what the fuck would be wrong with me to think that I can’t be successful just because I don’t love the things that I write? What kind of sense does it make for me to doubt myself and the reading public? If she can do what she loves successfully, so can I.
As an added bonus, I have my beautiful and talented Curtis Cartel as backup. Forming my own cartel was something I knew that I needed to do in order to keep myself moving forward with publishing and hold myself to deadlines. But I could not have imagined how invaluable they have been in helping me turn Show Her into a solid piece of literature.
If you find yourself doubting your work or your abilities, just remember that there are people out there making hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars who don’t write half as well as you do, who don’t have the same education and experiences that you have, and who don’t have the same world view as you do. Just because you are technically different from these people doesn’t mean that you can’t succeed at the things that they do. Good luck!
It’s brought some to tears and made others nauseous. You’ve been warned. This is the opening chapter of ‘Show Her’. If you want to order it now for delivery after April 1st, just go to volo-press.com/show-her or order at the end of this post. Thanks!
Everyone knows you can’t force a man to come back if he doesn’t want to. But coercion, enticement, and allure can work wonders.
Of course, none of this was Erika’s intent. She was an eleven-year-old girl still silently reeling over the departure of her father for a younger, prettier version of her vessel—the woman who gave birth to, and raised, her and her younger sister, Elena.
About two days after the packed bags, begging, and arguing, Erika was sitting on the front porch with her sister. She attempted play, pushed to feign joy, but she couldn’t get Elena out of her funk. But Erika was old enough to understand that once he was gone, he was gone. There was nothing else to be done. So why wallow? Why fret? Why not get on with things?
Erika was using the mobile television to play one of her favorite movies about a man fighting to find his kidnapped son. Erika laid back on the black silk, goose down quilt, on top of a day bed, her sister beside her. A drone the size of a dollar bill projected the film onto the ceiling. Erika commanded the drone to turn up the volume as the sound of their vessel in the kitchen chopping shallots became increasingly distracting.
Erika giggled and squeezed her sister as the puppy that opened the movie came on screen. Erika made sure Elena noticed her being okay, laughing, enjoying spending time with them. Erika wanted her happiness to be contagious. Somehow, then, it would be real.
She felt Elena’s sniffling slow and her whining calm. Elena’s face inched away from Erika’s hairless armpit and towards the ceiling as the boy found the puppy and decided to bring it home in an attempt to keep it as his own. The meek laughter that sounded from her sister when the boy had to stop at some park sprinklers to try to get some of the puppy urine off of his shirt comforted Erika.
Erika could feel the tension in her sister’s body easing away as the film went on, only to return with a vengeance when the boy finally got home and confronted his father about the puppy.
Even though the father was kind, thoughtful, honest, and pleasant in his interaction with his son, her sister couldn’t stand to be reminded of what they’d lost. She began crying again. Erika felt her frustration rising and left her in the day bed to rot in her sadness.
“You big baby!” She yelled at the melancholy strain surrounding the house.
Erika went back into the house and upstairs, passing pictures of herself and her sister at even younger ages. An eight-foot-tall portrait of her father was painted directly onto the slate wall at the top of the stairs, dominating the hallway. Erika paused to glare at the portrait with clenched fists. Her father was by all accounts a handsome man. Hair always freshly twisted, neat. His face, in the portrait, carried a light that only creative license could inject. In person, her father rarely smiled or laughed. Not that he seemed depressed or particularly sad, simply…uninterested. The portrait showed him in a tailored midnight blue suit, the color complementing his café au lait skin. His hazel eyes were not (maybe could not be) painted to show the intense judgment and power that emanated from the real things.
Erika blinked her stinging eyes and walked to the master bedroom. Before her stood a piece, ten feet long, molded into a semi-circle, glistening in the light of the crystal and white gold chandelier in the center of the room, and adorned with five mirrored panels. This was her vessel’s personal makeover studio. Erika had snuck peeks at her vessel making her face throughout her early childhood and the transformations she witnessed seemed nothing short of magic. Years fell away, fatigue disappeared, anger softened into angelic peacefulness.
As she grew older—as was her vessel’s duty—Erika got lessons from her on how to dress, speak, and craft her face to entice, seduce, and maintain the attention of a potential master. Erika was fascinated about the fact that she could create happiness and tranquility with dusts, creams, and stains.
She stepped up to the center of the bow of koa wood trimmed with ebony, allowed her eyes to glide over the various boxes, baskets, cups, and trays of oils, powders, fragrances, conditioners, and paints.
In her peripheral vision she saw a sparkle. Looking up at the last mirror on the right, she saw her father’s watch hanging on the corner of the frame. With hands and digits made entirely of black diamonds, the watch had been his most prized possession. This was the utmost confirmation that he would never return. If he had left something so important to him behind for so long, he meant to stay away.
Erika pulled on one of the crystal knobs on the top drawer and withdrew some of the brushes and pencils. She used cleanser pads to clear her skin, allowing it to dry before she got to work changing her face. When she finished, she pulled a short, pleated, black skirt and long-sleeved, gunmetal blouse from the closet and put them on.
She was surprised that she had developed enough at eleven that the skirt stayed up and the blouse didn’t hang off of her, but hugged her swelling chest. She pressed a button below the center mirror and it moved forward and tilted down so that she could see her entire body and not just her head and torso.
This was the first time she saw herself in her own styling. The first time she realized that, as she grew older, finding someone willing to purchase her was going to be the least of her worries. The thickness of her thighs and flare of her hips told the story of a body that would draw masters for miles. She would have her pick. A tiny, mournful smile touched her lips as she observed herself. Erika, the grown up.
After a few more seconds of twisting, turning, and modeling for herself in the mirror, she had worked up some laughter. Heartfelt laughter, not the kind she used to try to coax her sister and her vessel into being happy again. She released her notions of a lady’s proper behavior and let the mirth tumble freely, raucously from her throat. Short of breath, she finally walked back up to the dresser and used the control panel to put the center mirror back in place.
As she reached for makeup remover, she felt a presence behind her and realized that her father had entered the room. He must have snuck in through the rear door since her sister wasn’t trailing him and her vessel had not screamed curses.
For a moment, Erika was overwhelmed with happiness. She thought her hopes had been realized and that he had seen the error of his ways and returned to the family. He had come to make peace.
But the way he was looking at her in the mirror disturbed her more than usual. His normally cold demeanor was mixed with something electric. Dangerous even. He looked at Erika from head to toe from behind and at her reflection in the mirror.
“Those are your vessel’s things you have on.” His voice was deep and monotone, as though he were bored. Erika now knew, based on his body language and the words he chose to speak at that moment, that he was preparing to discipline her for using her vessel’s things without permission. Tears burned her sinuses again as she realized he had probably only come back for the watch.
“I’m sorry, Daddy. I didn’t mean any harm. Please don’t hit me. I’m taking it off.” Erika tried her best to hold back her tears as she reached for the makeup remover, hoping to move quickly enough that he would let her go without punishment. But he was faster.
Erika’s father took two quick, long strides and was by her side, grabbing her wrist. He force her hand down onto the dresser and signaled for her to put her other hand on the dresser as well. Crying had always made her beatings worse—her father noting that she was trying to manipulate him and therefore deserved more punishment—but she couldn’t hold the tears back any more, especially as he grabbed the watch off of the mirror and put it on his wrist.
Erika understood that this may be one of the last times she ever saw her father as he goes on to live a new life with his cuter, more youthful, childless purchase. She hated that this was how she was going to spend this time—being hit, feeling sorry, having made her father angry. Erika felt worthless and ashamed.
Erika’s father stood behind her and pulled down her skirt and panties and then she heard him taking off his belt. She made fists with her hands, but kept them on the dresser, per protocol. She braced herself for the lashes to come, letting her tears flow freely, but silently.
The first lash came like a wave of anguish that spread across her skin. The pain only intensified strike after strike, as though the belt were sprouting spikes and flames the longer it was wielded.
Finally, after Erika was certain she wouldn’t be able to sit for the rest of the day, and her father was breathless behind her, the hits here, just like she hoped for. He’s here…he’s here…he’s here…
Erika could see her father in the mirror when she looked up and he was smiling, lost in an ecstasy that didn’t match her experience at all. This was the most expressive she had ever seen his face. His moaning and gasping was like a beautiful, new language he was speaking to her. In the midst of her violation, she was shown a power that she didn’t realize that she had.
She kept her eyes on the reflection of his in the mirror until he finished with her.
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