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How I learned to stop worrying and love TikTok… my 5 tips by Jina Bacarr

June 11, 2022 by in category Jina’s Book Chat, TikTok, Writing tagged as , ,

Do you TikTok?

Love it or hate it?

What to post? Dancing to retro music in your PJs?

Reading from your book while trying to looking into your cell camera?

Show your face or not?

Just when we authors felt comfortable Tweeting and Facebooking, now we’re TikToking.

Sort of.

It’s the Wild West in TikTok-land and it’s difficult to know what works and what doesn’t. For example, I posted a vampire short story about speed dating a sexy vampire with sound effects, action, romance, humor… it only got 12 views…

Sometimes I talk into camera about my books, but I haven’t mastered ‘page flipping’ the book, holding the camera, and saying anything remotely intelligent at the same time. I’m still sweating it, but I haven’t given up.

When I post beautiful cakes that I find in my local markets, I get hits. Over 700 on this one:

I even did an April Fools’ joke — a video about my ‘next’ book ‘LuLu goes to Paris’ about a little turtle’s journey…

Here’s my latest TikTok video where I show off my ‘cake skills’ — sort of, the vanilla buttercream icing melted — and talked abut my two Paris WW2 books. So far I have. ZERO views. (it can take HOURS for the TikTok algorithm to put your video in the queue… whom to show it to… where (country)… and a million other reasons. I don’t use the music you can add… I prefer to talk about what my books. If anyone has any comments about using the music tracks, I’m all ears (no pun intended but I couldn’t help it — it’s 3 am as I write this). UPDATE: 19 hours later, I have 335 views.

@jinabacarrauthor

tempting goodies while I wait for edits on my next Paris WW2 novel #booktok @boldwoodbooks #writingcommunity #book #historicalfiction

♬ original sound – Jina Bacarr

In the end, be yourself. If you love hamming it up in bunny slippers and Disney Princess PJs, go for it. Everybody knows we authors are ‘different’, so show the audience that part of you.

—————————–

5 tips:

post often

post short clips

be real and be quirky if that fits you

talk about your books… short and I mean short excerpts, lines, etc. Provocative, intrigue the viewer to want to know more…

use ‘author’ in your name so viewers know you write books. Mine is: https://www.tiktok.com/@jinabacarrauthor

I discovered these 5 tips by joining https://www.facebook.com/groups/tiktokforauthors — a fabulous group of TikTokAuthors on Facebook.

I’ve also just applied to join author Fiona Lucas’s new FB TikTok group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/tiktok4authors

That’s it for the moment… If you have any tips or TikTok stories you want to share, please do in the comments.

Most of all, have fun!!

Jina

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Mothers and daughters… theme of my next Paris WW2 book and why I wrote it by Jina Bacarr

May 11, 2022 by in category Jina’s Book Chat, women's fiction, Writing tagged as , , , ,

On this Mother’s Day past, I was looking for a pretty graphic of flowers or chocolate or a cute puppy

to post but how to personalize it?

Hmm…

I ate all the chocolate during my marathon writing week finishing my manuscript.

I could buy red roses… or pink… I like yellow…. I couldn’t make up my mind.

And if I went puppy shopping, I’d come home with as many cute puppies as my arms could hold.

Back to square one… how to personalize Mother’s Day?

Especially since my next Boldwood Books novel is about Paris WW 2 is about mothers and daughters. How two daughters (Irish-American and German Jewish) — my heroines — and their relationships with their moms are affected by war.

A topic dear to my heart since I lost my mother many years ago. I had such a wonderful relationship with her. We were so close and, growing up, I adored her. When we lived in Kentucky, she was a model on live TV commercials and I used to race home from grade school to watch her on TV modeling fashion from a local dress shop.

I’ll never forget the day I was watching TV with my sitter and we were waiting to see my mom when we had a major thunderstorm. Powerful winds and a drenching downpour. I was around eleven when lightning struck the tall TV tower and it fell on the TV station… the television went black… pouring rain outside. Telephone lines down. Where was Mom? I panicked when she didn’t come home. My dad came rushing home from work to check on us… what, Mom isn’t here?

He grabbed me and we jammed to the TV station in our old blue Dodge, braving the pouring rain and deep puddles. When we got there, we saw….

Firetrucks… police cars… reporters.

Then someone said a woman had been killed when she was struck by falling debris.

I was a kid, but I never felt such panic cut through me, such anguish that something could happen to my beautiful mom. She was always there for me… we baked cookies together, sewed dresses together… I couldn’t grasp the idea of losing her. It pained me more than anything in my young life.

I turned to see my dad’s face so pale, his jaw clenched… he told me to wait with the police officer while he checked to see–

He left the words hanging…

It was the longest time in my life, waiting….

Then the news.

No, it wasn’t Mom. She came racing back with my father in tow, holding her tight around the waist. I ran into her arms and she hugged me tight… I could feel her trembling. She was wearing a red satin shirtwaist dress she was modeling that day and she was in the makeup room waiting for her cue when the tower fell. She was shaken up, but okay.

A woman who worked there lost her life that day and we cried and said prayers for her and her family. I never forgot it.

The pain and anguish of seeing how quickly you can lose someone so dear to you stayed with me. When I thought about what I wanted to write about for this next book. I decided to explore mothers and daughters during wartime… I begin my story back in 1934 when we meet my two heroines and their mothers and see their relationships grow over the years… the joys, frustrations… growing pains… then war is declared…

I hope you’ll come with me on my journey to publication of this unique World War 2 mothers and daughters story!

And for Mother’s Day?

I decided to post this short video of Mom and me when I was ten. Enjoy!!

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The Titanic sailed today 110 years ago…with a Pig on board by Jina Bacarr

April 11, 2022 by in category Jina’s Book Chat, Reading, Titanic, Writing tagged as , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Photos: Dreamstime.com — using RF stock, my interpretation of the ship and female passenger and of course, the little pig.

Downton Abbey is but a memory… but it will be forever in our hearts.

Do you remember that first scene when a messenger on a bicycle brought a telegram to the Crawley family that would forever change their lives?

And ours?

A telegram about two male relatives lost at sea.

On the Titanic.

Hard to believe it’s 110 years ago today the grand ship Titanic left Ireland.

So in honor of the souls who perished that night and those who survived, here is a lesser known story about the Titanic.

And the pig.

According to the New York Herald on April 19, 1912: Five women saved their pet dogs and another woman saved a little pig, which she said was her mascot.

The reporter goes on to say that she didn’t know how the woman cared for her pig aboard the Titanic, but she carried it up the side of the ship [the Carpathia, rescue ship] in a big bag.

How did the pig get into the lifeboat?

Was the little pig traveling first class?

In a word, yes.

More about this intrepid little piggy and the important part it played in the sinking of the Titanic later. First, it seems you can’t get away from pigs and the Titanic.

In the Julian Fellowes’ mini-series Titanic, a passenger in third class isn’t happy about traveling steerage to New York. She tells her husband that her daughter said their Irish Catholic family is like six little pigs packed into that cabin, all trussed and bound for market.

They’re not the only Irish aboard the ship with pigs on their mind.

Ava O’Reilly, the heroine in my historical romance, THE RUNAWAY GIRL nearly doesn’t make it on board the ship because of a pig.

Katie runs away from the grand house where she is in service after she is wrongly accused of stealing a diamond bracelet. The law is after her, but she has one chance to escape.

The Titanic.

Will Ava make it on board the Titanic before she sails? Only by the skin of her teeth.

Does she see the pig during the crossing?

Few passengers did because the cute little pig with the curly tail was the lucky mascot of Miss Edith Russell.

She loved to wind up its tail and it would play a lively musical tune similar to a two-step called Maxixe.

You see, the pig was musical pig.

The reporter on the Carpathia didn’t know the real story behind Miss Russell’s pig. How it was given to her after she survived a horrific motorcar crash. She promised her mother it would never be out of her sight. When she realized the Titanic was sinking and she’d left her mascot in her cabin, she sent the steward to retrieve her lucky pig.

Still, Edith was hesitant to get into a lifeboat. When a seaman tossed her pig into a boat (believing it was a baby wrapped up in a bag), Edith insisted on getting into the boat, too. Its nose was gone and its legs broken, but Edith and her little pig escaped in lifeboat no. 11.

Overcrowded with sixty-eight passengers (nearly one-third were children), Edith realized her little pig could comfort others as it had her. She wound up its tail so it would play music for the children. Most of the little ones stopped crying as the pig’s sparkling musical notes calmed their fears.

Its furry, white-gray body wet with sea spray.

Its cute grin giving them hope they would be saved.

It was the little Titanic pig that could.

Thanks for stopping by!

~Jina

The Runaway Girl

Buy Links:

Amazon:

US https://amzn.to/30yll8P

UK https://amzn.to/2NCqTty

Audible https://www.amazon.com/dp/B084MM1D4R

Spotify https://open.spotify.com/album/3A08bcsCeI6LHWRQTmAM30

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-runaway-girl-jina-bacarr/1135653540?ean=9781838893736

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-runaway-girl-1

Apple Books: https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-runaway-girl/id1492269132

 

PS check out TITANIC AND ME, my story behind the story on the BOLDWOOD BOOKS Blog.

Once upon the ship of dreams… me dressed as a first class lady

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The Lost Girl in Paris hit # 33 on the Kindle Charts & # 2 Fiction & Literature on Apple by Jina Bacarr

March 11, 2022 by in category Jina’s Book Chat, Writing tagged as ,
@jinabacarr

The Lost Girl in Paris hit 33 on #Amazon #kindle @boldwoodbooks #booktok #booksoftiktok #authorlife #authorsoftiktok #writer #author #histfictok

♬ original sound – jinabacarr

Celebrating The Lost Girl in Paris hitting # 33 on the US Amazon Kindle List.

And # 2 in the Fiction & Literature category on Apple.

Amazing…

BookBub Deal:

99 cents/99p

My heroine, Angeline de Cadieux, is a Roma girl in WW2 Paris… she’s strong, fights in the Resistance… makes exquisite perfumes and comes up with an amazing marketing campaign during the war to boost morale in France.

Thank you!

UK https://amzn.to/3j7eU6S

US https://amzn.to/3aD9Jae

CA https://amzn.to/3IbaVRZ

AU https://amzn.to/3xtrF1A

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The ‘Kissing Bandit’ for Valentine’s Day or how I learned to ‘Know Your Value’ as a young woman in High School by Jina Bacarr

February 11, 2022 by in category Jina’s Book Chat, Writing tagged as , , , ,

 

As Mika Brzezinski, co-host of MSNBC’s ;Morning Joe’ says, ‘Know Your Value.’ She’s the founder of this fabulous empowerment community and it’s not just in the workplace. Knowing your value starts in high school, as my heroine, Riley Murphy, finds out on Valentine’s Day in my short story, VIRGIN KISS

Valentine’s Day.is Monday — a time for kissing.

But what if your first kiss was just plain awful?

Meet Riley Murphy. She’s a kissing virgin, waiting for the right guy to come along. Until she joins the Drama Club at Holywell High and has to kiss the class dweeb on stage in front of the whole school on Valentine’s Day.

 

VIRGIN KISS

Jina Bacarr

Introduction

What’s in a kiss? A kiss by any other name is—

—sweet, romantic, intimate, passionate, wet, sloppy, disgusting, probing, awful, nasty, sexy, tingly, and sometimes just plain wonderful.

But what if it’s your first kiss? And you have to pucker up in front of a live audience at your high school? What then?

Pass the Altoids, please.

The kiss-from-hell happened to me, Riley Murphy.

This is my story.

* * *

A few weeks before Valentine’s Day…

I’m the new kid at Holywell High School, a shy, skinny freshman with cinnamon-colored freckles sprinkled across my nose. Flat-chested. I’ll never be Miss Popularity with the bouncy boobs and flirty lashes.

I’m more like an olive stuck on the end of a toothpick.

Even with that dossier, I’m not a total dork. I’ve gotten pecks on the cheek and quick brushes on the lips, but I’ve yet to experience the soul-melting kisses you see in the flicks. The passionate lip-lock I’ve dreamed about, wrote about in my diary.

I’ve pined for that kiss, but it’s yet to happen to me. God knows, I’ll be in graduate school facing lifelong debt before the right pair of lips meet mine.

To overcome my shyness, my mom convinces me to try out for the Drama Club. Somehow I land the leading role in a one-act Chekhov play.Yes, Chekhov.

I play this mad, beautiful countess with passion and heart. I love it. I come alive on stage. I can do anything, be anybody, say anything, I can—

—kiss the male lead?

A gangly sophomore named Harold Brimwell with long, greasy hair and an upper lip curled in a perpetual snarl. He’s going to anoint my virgin lips with my first kiss?

Forget the Altoids. I need a stress pill.

I quit the play. They can find another dupe. Not me. I’m not going to let him use my lips for kissing practice.

Then I hear this little voice in my head telling me this is acting. Going through the motions at rehearsals and on stage don’t count on the kissing scale. I can pucker up with Harold on stage and still be a kissing virgin.

Right?

After my pep talk to myself, I sail through rehearsals, knowing my lines and ‘connecting to my character’ according to the director. He says I’m a natural, my emotions raw but real. This is amazing. Me, Riley Murphy, the kid who’s always the ‘new girl’ at school because we move around so much because of my dad’s job, found something she’s good at.

Then the trouble starts.

The director insists on method acting.We don’t rehearse the kiss. He wants a real kiss on stage, not a phony smooch.

Worse yet, we open on Valentine’s Day with a preview performance at the afternoon school assembly. Not only do I have to kiss this guy, I have to do it on the most romantic day of the year in front of the entire student body.

I dump the Altoids… along with my confidence down the toilet.

* * *

Valentine’s Day dawns rainy and cold. Perfect weather for a Russian play.

I arrive at the gym early, put on my makeup in the girls’ bathroom then, with my hands shaking, I hook up my long Victorian black lace dress borrowed from the costume department, the silk petticoats rustling around my feet. I’m way nervous, but something cool happens as I run my lines over and over, my fear slowly dissolving into a shaky confidence as I slip into my character’s skin. Humming ‘I will survive’, I check my props, my fingertips tingling as I pull on my snug dueling gloves, then twirl the dainty parasol over my head like a spinning top.

I grab the small pistol for my big dueling scene, then heave out a big breath, praying I don’t drop it and everybody laughs at me.

I save putting on my lipstick for last.

First, I gargle mint-flavored mouthwash until my lips turn green and my mouth goes numb. Next, I line my lips with Chekhovian, dark red lipstick and smack them together. Perfect. I’m ready for my lip close-up.

It’s showtime.

I’m so nervous when the lights come up, I garble my opening lines. Then I trip over my own feet and nearly crash into the backdrop. Hot tears form in my eyes, but I want this too bad to give up now. All my life, I’ve stayed in the shadows. If I fail now, I may never get the courage to try again. I ignore the smirks and catcalls and swish my long skirts around like a real countess to boost my confidence.

I can do this.

Somehow, I get my groove on and my theatre training takes over. I sail across the stage, chin up, shoulders back, my voice clear, my lines down to a T. I’m ‘in the moment’. Much to my relief, the dueling scene goes off without the pistols misfiring.

Then it’s time for…

… the kiss.

I’ll never forget the expression on Harold’s face when he takes two long strides toward me. A mixture of sadistic pleasure and baddass ‘tude comes over his face, as shiny and sweaty as his palms, freaking me out. Lower lip snarling, my co-star gives me that ‘I’ve got you now’ look all fired up in his eyes, pinning me to the wall.

My teeth chatter. My mouthwash stops working.

It’s so quiet in the high school gym you can hear the director chewing on the end of his pencil.

My heart pounds so hard I can’t get my breath on when Harold pulls me into his arms, yanking me around like I’m a dollar store rag doll and then—

—he slams his mouth onto mine.

Bile rises in my throat as he pushes my lips apart and thrusts his mushy, saliva-coated gum into my mouth, making me nauseous. I swear if my dress wasn’t hooked up so tight, I would have ralphed all over him. Before I can push him off me, he shoves his tongue down my throat, way down, nearly gagging me.

I start choking.

I can’t breathe. Oh, my God, I’m going to pass out.

No, I can’t, I won’t. I’m determined not to faint. I have to get him off me. No gum-chewing, phony-macho sophomore is going to get the best of me.

I’m an actress, I tell myself, so act!

With stars circling around in my pounding head, I pull up my strength and kick him in the shin. There.

Startled, he jerks backward, but not before he bites my lower lip.

What the—

I taste coppery blood. Fresh, oozing, smearing my perfectly-applied lipstick. I’m in shock, disbelieving. It can’t get any worse.

Can it?

It can.

Dabbing my bleeding lip with my silk sleeve, I struggle in his arms, but he holds me tight, slobbering all over me, licking my face, my throat, coating my skin with stringy gum. My ears won’t stop ringing. The audience is going crazy, yelling and shouting like they’re at a basketball game and I’m the bouncing ball.

No, no, he’s not going to take advantage of me. I worked hard to get this part, learn my lines. Practiced how to walk, how to find the core of my character. Gosh darn, this is the first time in my whole life I’ve come out of my shell and done something really special.

He’s not going to ruin it for me.

I have to do something. Fast.

The pistol.

Where is it? After the mock dueling scene, I threw the prop gun down on the round table. It has to be there, but where?

I reach out behind me, my nails catching on the lace doily… I twist my head just a little… yes, I see it. I edge the gun toward me, an inch at a time. Sweat oozes down my too-tight collar and my knees buckle, but I don’t give up.

Almost got it… there. My fingers wrap around the pearl-inlayed handle. I suck in a breath then, without losing my nerve, I jam the prop into his ribs. Hard. I yank my body with such fury, I rip the black silk sleeve right out of the armpit. It slides down my shoulder, but it doesn’t stop me.

Get your hands off me, you sloppy-kissing, gum-chewer!’ I yell, ignoring the script and re-writing Chekhov. ‘Or you’re getting an “F” in drama class.’

The director gasps. Loudly. But he doesn’t refute what I said.

‘Yeah, sure,’ Harold stutters, letting me go, raising up his hands and backing away. ‘Anything you say, Riley.’

‘That’s telling him!’ a girl yells from the audience.

Amy Zanderbar. His ex-girlfriend.

She’s not the only one. All the girls stand up and start chanting, ‘Go, Riley, go!’

Wow. I hit a nerve with the females sitting in the bleachers who had their share of bad kissers.

They love it.

The audience starts clapping wildly and stomping their feet and continue chanting my name. I break the fourth wall and give them a ‘V’ for Victory high sign until the chanting dies down, then my thespian instincts kick in and I get back into character, giving Chekhov his due and ending the play as he wrote it.

I’ll always remember this night when a shy freshman girl in a borrowed Victorian dress took on a snarky sophomore and became empowered to stand up for herself in front of the whole student body.

It changed my life.

* * *

Epilogue

We performed the one-act play for the next few nights without further incident, faking the kiss each time. Harold is cool, not attempting any more way-out kissing. For me, it’s strictly acting.

I’m still a virgin in lip-land.

But I’ll never forget V-Day and my experience with the gum-toting, kissing bandit. Not a bad guy, just a rotten kisser.

And in case you’re curious, next semester I do find the right pair of lips to land that first kiss.

A hottie junior. Jack Dwayne.

When Jack takes me in his arms and lowers his face to mine, I quiver with anticipation and soon discover a kiss isn’t just a kiss, it’s…

… magic.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

——————–

PS — yes, Riley is me, a shy freshman back in the day.

And here’s a short clip of me back in high school…

—————

Music: ‘Sweeter Vermouth’ Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/b…

Photos: https//www.Dreamstime.com

BONUS: The Princess and the Stilettos for VALENTINE’S DAY.

Music: ‘Fairytale Waltz’ Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/b…

Photos: https//www.Dreamstime.com

—————- 

Love Forties Fiction?

A girl from a controversial upbringing becomes a famous perfumer during the war when she comes to Paris in 1940 to escape the Gestapo. Then how she uses perfume to do her part to win the war…

THE LOST GIRL IN PARIS is on Amazon!

US https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09B1QDRVW/

UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B09B1QDRVW/

CA https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B09B1QDRVW/

Australia https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B09B1QDRVW/ 

——————–

Over 600 ratings on Amazon UK!

The Resistance Girl is a KINDLE MONTHLY DEAL IN THE UK FOR FEBRUARY!

Juliana discovers her grandmamma was a famous French film star in Occupied Paris & her shocking secret…

UK https://amzn.to/3bU18Qv 

US https://amzn.to/2FoKKeS

 

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