Thursday, December 10, 2009

Author Larry Sweitzer stops by... (and a giveaway - closed)

Congrats to lucky winner - Benita!

Readers, please join me welcoming Larry Swetizer, author of The Ghost, the Eggheads, and Babe Ruth's Piano who's guest blogging here today, courtesy Pump Up your Book Promotion!

In this young adult fiction novel, Freddie Holtzman can’t wait to get to Camp Mason, a summer camp for eggheads or rather, gifted teens. At Camp Mason, a science fair pits the eggheads against one another for the top prize of a five thousand dollar scholarship. But, when the projects go missing, friendships are put to the test, relationships get put on hold, and everyone’s a suspect. To make matters worse, the camp is haunted by young Billy Mason who died there decades ago. The boys are determined to solve the mystery of the ghost and the missing science projects.


Making the Leap from Reader to Writer 

If you are reading this, you are probably an avid reader. I’ll bet a lot of you are aspiring writers and even more of you have at least thought about writing a book. We all have at least one story inside of us that just needs to be told. I’m here to tell you that you can do it. You can write that book. How do I know? Because I did!

By making the “leap”, I don’t mean diving in head first and going about it blindly. What I’m talking about is making the decision and sticking to it and then being committed to learning the craft of writing a novel.

The beauty of starting out is that the only investment you have to make is in yourself and in the time you put into it. You already have the tools to get started: a computer (or pencil and paper) and a fertile imagination. If you have memories of funny, interesting, uplifting, or entertaining events from your past then that’s a bonus.

Whether you want to invest in college courses or online classes/seminars is up to you. They are certainly helpful—if not recommended—but not necessary. There are thousands upon thousands of great articles, online communities, blogs, and websites devoted to writing that you can sink your teeth into right away.

I started out small. I read books on writing, scoured the internet for writing resources, and joined a writing group. Most importantly, I started writing something. The next day, I wrote some more. I got feedback from other writers and learned how to improve my writing based on the critiques I received.

A great thing about writing is that you can learn a lot by doing. Sure, that can be said about anything, but things like brain surgery and rocket science can have serious consequences if you were to go about learning them this way. There’s nothing you can write that can’t be re-written or edited. There’s a delete button on your keyboard. My backspace key is practically worn out and I have a whole bag of erasers. You will have fits and starts. You will write some bad prose, but you will have started and that’s the important thing.

I don’t have a college degree. In fact, I can remember having to go to summer school because I failed 11th grade English class. I honestly think if high school had consisted of thirteen grades instead of twelve, I never would have made it. I’ve worked as a machinist and welder for the last twenty years. I can’t think of many professions that are as far removed from literature than those. Why am I telling you all of this? Because, despite of all that, I wrote a novel. I wrote a novel that I’m proud of. I wrote a novel that just might start a young person down the road to becoming a life-long reader. Even if only a handful of people read it, I will consider it a success.

I will never stop learning how to become a better writer. There will always be room for improvement. But, I know I have become a better student years after attending high school. The experience of writing my first book has been a learning experience on many levels.

My point here is to try and convince you to get started. Stop procrastinating, because there are no excuses. Whether your work becomes a best seller, or if only you and your friends and family read it, I want you to try. You’ll not only learn more about the craft of writing—and become more acute to the things you read—but you just might learn a few things about yourself along the way. You’ll be proud of yourself, I guarantee it!

I want everyone to feel what I felt when I finished my novel.


Larry Sweitzer is a writer, musician, and avid baseball fan. He was born and raised in western Maryland and now lives in Virginia with his wife and two daughters. The Ghost, the Eggheads, and Babe Ruth’s Piano is his first novel. Visit him at
Now that sounds like a great whodunit and as is obvious, a lot of care, time and hard work has gone into it. Kudos, Larry. "Stop procrastinating" - words to live by, whether you're an author (aspiring or published) or a reviewer like me. Thanks for stopping by, Larry - it's great hosting you!


The Prize

A copy of this book will go to one lucky reader.

To Enter
  • Tell about a YA (young adult) whodunit that you think is a must-read (apart from Larry's, that is).
  • Please list your email address within your comment so that you can be notified should you be chosen as a winner.
For Extra Entries

Please leave a NEW comment for each extra entry you do.

Deadline   Midnight CST of January 14, 2010.

Eligibility  US only.

Please read the Disclaimer. Good luck!
Note - This book was received for review/feature consideration.
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  1. Nancy Drew has always been my favorite!

  2. I subscribe via google reader.

  3. I am not too familiar with YA, but they could try Stephanie Plum, she is fun! A little too racy in some though.

  4. Thank you for having me today and for being a part of my book tour!


  5. A well-written post. I agree with you about the need to stop procrastination. You can find more help at This website also has plenty of easy ways you can use to stop procrastination.

  6. My boys love any and all Hardy boys books. This looks great! Thanks for the giveaway.

    s.mickelson at gmail dot com

  7. Day of the false King by Brad Geadly.


  8. I subscribe via email.


  9. I follow via GFC.


  10. There is a Justin Case series - Christian based.

    janemaritz at yahoo dot com

  11. Thank you all for stopping by and leaving your comments. The Winner has been notified.