Monthly Archives: December 2006

The Thief Maker by D. H. Schleicher

D.H. Schleicher
The Thief Maker

Book Synopsis:

William looked like a statue, all marble and confidence. He turned his head up to the camera and smiled, his baby-faced sincerity hiding his devious plans.

Con man William Donovan has stooped to a new low. He steals from nursing home residents in the Alzheimer’s ward-victims who cannot be used as witnesses for the crimes committed against them. Donovan’s disillusioned girlfriend, Alice, and Lucas Tolliver, the security guard still scarred by his experiences in New York City on 9/11, act as his accomplices.

Private investigator Marcus Pierce and Felice Morrison, the mysterious granddaughter of one of the nursing home’s residents, are determined to put a stop to Donovan’s activities. Meanwhile, the groundbreaking work of psycholinguist Rodamas Fowler and his wife, Catherine, a childhood development psychologist from Princeton, may be put in jeopardy when their foster child’s mother becomes involved with the residents at the nursing home.

With the characters’ lives tragically intertwining, author David H. Schleicher weaves a chilling tale of love and hate on the streets of New York and Philadelphia. Set against the backdrop of America’s war on terror, The Thief Maker explores the duplicity of memory and the loss of one’s identity.

From The Author:The Thief Maker ($14.95, ISBN 0-595-40518-5) is a suspense novel that explores the destruction and restructuring of human relationships in the wake of personal and communal tragedies. Told in “thematic chronology,” the non-linear, multiple point-of-view style is meant to reveal the psychological complexities and intimate details of human interactions.
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David H. Schleicher graduated from Elon University in North Carolina with a BA in psychology in 2002. He currently resides in Voorhees, New Jersey.

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I can’t help myself …

… but I have to write!

I started when I was about 14, writing ‘scripts’ for TV shows in the vain hope that someone would see them and commission me (not that I knew what ‘commission’ meant in those days).

I wrote short stories, bad novels, TV plays, stage plays … anything to put words on paper. Then I did a degree in Creative Arts that included Drama and Writing, and that put me into the academic rat race for a few years. I started doing more talking about writing than actual writing, which was a Bad Thing.

So a few years ago I started writing prose again. I’d been reading mostly American crime novels – Elmore Leonard, Robert Crais, James Lee Burke, the list is endless – so I decided to write that kind of novel, but in a British setting. Most English crime writing is either police procedural stuff or amateur detective, and I wanted to write about a noir-ish Private Eye. The result is Altered Life, available through or Amazon. I’m now half-way through the second one in the series starring my detective, Sam Dyke. It’s a tough life, but I enjoy it!

Keith Dixon
Altered LifeAltered Life

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Plunge Divers

The goal is to heal the wounds, fuse the fractures or arrest the respiratory infections and get them outside to the pool enclosure as soon as possible when pelican patients are admitted to the Intensive Care Unit. Pelicans are the messiest and stinkiest birds on the planet. There is no nice way to say it. How can they not be sloppy and smelly? Their diet is fish, and they crap constantly. It’s always the same drill in ICU; diagnose, treat, clean, feed, clean, clean some more and repeat. But despite all that, there is no way not to love them. They have the sweetest dispositions of all seabirds and want to follow you around like a puppy. When a pelican sidles up to me while I’m cleaning his dorm corner and lays his head against my leg as if to say, “thanks for helping me,” I just melt.

Now, I can’t say we’ve never had a pelican at the shelter with a nasty disposition, because we have. Recently, actually. I called him ‘Killer!’ Even though he was only a juvenile, his attitude was well set to be very protective of his fellow pelicans and intolerant of humans he perceived could do him or his own harm. As a retired Marine, I understand that posture all too well. Cautious as he was, he never turned down a fish tossed into his bowl though. In ICU we cordon off corners of the room for these large seabirds, affording them room to walk, if they can, spread their five to six feet wing spans, if they can, and toss their heads back to direct meals of nice big fish, head first, down their throats. Most, cooperatively, stay behind the shower curtains and wait for one of the rehabilitators to tend to them as needed, which is usually meal time or ‘change-the-papers, then-mop’ time. Young Killer was another story. Beyond the pelican ward to the prep kitchen we could hear his repetitive loud clicks as he slapped his foot long scissor bill together announcing his displeasure with being held in captivity. There came a time when I walked through the door into ICU and he was waiting in the middle of the room for a face off after slashing through his shower curtains like some scene from an Alfred Hitchcock thriller. It became important to look through the small window in the door to find out exactly where he was before entering. He could be hiding behind the door, and that bill around a leg could give quite the pinch. It didn’t matter how bad he felt, he didn’t want to be there and wanted us to know that there wasn’t a wildlife shelter big enough to hold him! His cockiness impressed me and always made me laugh. I’d never met a pelican like him.

With his respiratory infection cured, Killer’s three and a half weeks stay at the shelter ended yesterday. He and two other pelican cohorts, another young male and a female, were released at the waterfront in Swansboro, across from Pelican Island, during a slight drizzle. Three kennel cabs were aligned and all the woven wire doors opened toward the sea. Killer was the first to trot out of his carry cab, then the other two quickly followed his lead. He didn’t stay on the seawall long, just a quick glance our way. Not really a ‘thank you,’ probably just a ‘see!’


. . . . . . Be well, Killer, live long.


Happy New Year Everyone!

Linda Bergman-Althouse

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Any way you slice it


How many of you dream about walking past your favorite bookstore and seeing your novel displayed in the front window, or even gracing the shelves for that matter? Most of us, I would venture to say. Some believe the only way to attain this goal and succeed in this business is to be picked up by a traditional publisher, and while that may have been true at one time, thankfully this is no longer the case.

I’m always amazed when I hear fellow authors say that anyone who pays to have their book published, meaning any route other than traditional publishing, isn’t a real author. Well, I’m here to tell you, that no matter which route you take on your road to being published, any way you slice it, you’re going to pay for a piece of the literary pie!

You can choose a publisher that uses the POD method of printing, who charges fees for various services (many of which claim to do more than they actually do), and take a percent (albeit usually small), of all sales; but in the end, you have a published novel with it’s own ISBN and LCCN number, a listing in Ingram’s books in print catalog, and a book that is readily available for purchase at Amazon and most chain bookstores. This service varies widely and can run from a few hundred dollars well into the thousands. Be sure to do your homework if choosing this method and read your contract carefully.

You can dive headlong into the journey of becoming your own publisher, which takes a great deal of time as well as money, but in the end you retain all profits, once you’ve recouped your expenses. If you search the internet, you will find and endless array of books written by self published authors, many bestselling novels as well as classics adorn the lists. Many of these authors are willing to share their secrets…for a price mind you, and while there are no secrets in this business, no proven formulas and no magic potions, hats off to them for taking on such an ambitious endeavor!

Small press publishers are virtually in every town across the country and many are eager to jump into the book publishing business whether they have any experience or not. This is not to say that all small press publishers are inexperienced, far from it, but I’ve heard my share of horror stories from authors who spent thousands of dollars to have their books published (printed), only to reach the end of their journey and be left with a flawed book, (falling out or missing pages, not properly formatted, misaligned cover photos, etc.). On a more serious note, I know of a few small presses that went out of business and left the authors high and dry, with or without their published novel. This is certainly the exception to the rule, but these things do happen.

Just be careful and do your homework before signing with a small press and be sure to ask for a list of authors whose books they have published then contact them and ask about their experience. You’ll find more often than not, an author is more than happy to give you the information you’re seeking.

Finally, if it’s the traditional method you prefer then you should be prepared to search and retain a literary agent, as most traditional publishers won’t give you the time of day unless you are represented by an agent. You will need to contact the agents with a query letter, synopsis and outline of your book and be ready to submit your manuscript should it be requested. You’ll find that some agents try to charge a reading fee; these agents should be avoided at all cost, as any legitimate agent does not charge the author for anything. Once you obtain representation, you can expect to pay at least 15% of your earnings, as this seems to be the normal industry standard.

One thing to keep in mind, if you succeed in retaining an agent and get a book deal with a traditional publisher, it can take anywhere from 1 to 3 years to see your book in print, then you have an allotted timeframe to meet the publishers sales quota that they have set for your book before it’s pulled off the shelves and deemed out of print. You can also expect to give up that catchy title and cover you worked so hard to develop as well as facing the possibility of edits that you might be less than thrilled with. It’s all part of the game.

What’s that you say…you deserve to be paid an advance by a traditional publisher to have your masterpiece published? Of course you do, we all do, but I personally know of five romance authors who signed contracts and received advances from a few of the top selling romance publishers in the industry, only to be sued for the amount of their advance because their books didn’t meet the publishers sales expectations. Were they warned this might happen? Told to hold on to that advance just in case they had to pay it back…probably somewhere in the fine print, but it certainly came as a surprise to them when it happened.

Any way you look at it, all of these options cost money to pursue, so one way or another, you, as an author, pay to have your novel published. It may not be pleasant, but it’s the nature of this beast! But don’t be discouraged…there are so many options available these days that not having your book published might be more difficult.

Just remember, no matter which road you choose, educate yourself, do your research first. Ask questions even if you feel they might be inappropriate; no matter who you’re dealing with, there are no inappropriate questions, and if you truly are dealing with professionals, then they will be more than happy to answer your questions and provide you with references as well.

Remember, this is your baby we’re talking about…the one you’ve labored over for months, possibly years. Don’t trust it with just anyone. And one more thing to remember that some authors tend to overlook or simply don’t realize; No matter how your book is published, you are still responsible for promoting your work and getting it into the hands of the readers. There’s no doubt that you can pay someone to pretend they have an interest in your work, but only you can make it happen!

Believe in your dreams…

Jill Terry
Author ׀ Poet ׀ Wordsmith Extraordinaire


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The Book’s Den Newsletter

(Sample Newsletter)

Issue # Year # Date


This is the first issue of The Book’s Den Newletter, the newsletter that provides readers will the latest news, articles, and books from our growing list of authors. You can read about books ust about anywhere, but here you can also get to know the authors.

Visit us frequently and read their posts, news, announcement, participate in contests and provide reviews for consideration on future book printing issues. This is just the beginning of a growing trend of authors who actively promote their work and at the same time stay in touch with their readers.

Feel free to comment on the blog and tell your friends about it.

Clary Lopez, The Book’s Den

What’s New at The Book’s Den

Ongoing news of new books, articles, interviews, contests, reviews and presentations by our contributor authors.

Meet the Authors

The Book’s Den is composed of authors; they are the contributors and developers of this blog.

Marilyn Meredith Marilyn Meredith
Linda Fox Linda Fox
Keith Dixon Keith Dixon
Jill J.A. Terry
Jamie Beckett Jamie Beckett
Clary LopezClary Lopez


Internally Love Shines Internally Love Shines by Linda Fox
Jamie Beckett Burritos and Gasoline by Jamie Beckett
book Portraits in the Dark by Nancy O. Greene
simplicity Simplicity – Richness of Life by Clary Lopez
MarilynThe Choice by Marilyn Meredith
Full Circle Full Circle by J.A. Terry
Altered LifeAltered Life by Keith Dixon

Find out more about the books by going to the Blog Contributors list and visiting the author’s website.

Book Talk

On this section authors speak about their books, what inspired it and the possible questions that a book club can use.

Book Title:

(Author entry:)

Author Tracking

List of authors and where they are scheduled to appear

We Hear You

What our readers say about The Book’s Den blog and newsletter. Send us your comments and suggestions. Subject: The Book’s Den Sponsor

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Why is He Different

Have you ever encountered a child who acts differently, such as being bossy, screaming, disrespecting his parents, and asked yourself, why does this child behave like this? Is it uninformed parenting or something else altogether?
Parents and teachers alike will discover a helpful tool in dealing with these situations in the new children’s book entitled, “Why Is He Different?”

Why Is He Different is about a young boy in the 1st grade named Kyle who suffers from ADHD. Kyle’s unique qualities endear him to his classmates at times, and disturb them at others. The story is told through the eyes of his best friend, a compassionate young boy who despite knowing Kyle’s differences befriends him.

This book was inspired by Linda Fox, the mother of a boy whose life is very similar to that of the child in this story. Mrs. Fox’s son endured much of the same misunderstandings and teasing that many children do who are diagnosed with conditions within the Autism Spectrum.

The story’s purpose is to bring about awareness and provide a forum that will open up discussions and promote tolerance and acceptance of these children whose disabilities may not be understood by school-age children.

ISBN 0-9781-4753-7

To arrange a book signing or interview, contact Linda Fox at 314-440-9952 or

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I would like to introduce myself….

My name is Linda and I am a 42 year old mom of two little boys. I have always enjoyed writing, but it really took off last year when I discovered Nanowrimo. I failed in my quest, but in the last year have published 3 books.

The first one is an anthology of poetry called Internally Love Shines. It is a collection of work that I wrote some 15 years ago. I was lonely and I had just lost my grandmother.

I then wrote “Big Brother, Little Brother which is based on my two sons.

My pride and joy though has got to be “Why is He Different”. This project was from my heart. My oldest son has ADHD and is on the Autism Spectrum. It broke my heart when the kids at his school would sometimes tease him, so I wrote this book so that other children would learn acceptance of other kids no matter how different they are.

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