Saturday, June 29, 2013

"The Write Step with RJ Jeffreys" ~ Talk Radio - Live!

The Write Step with RJ Jeffreys is a "live" radio interview show focused primarily on the lead players in the Arts and Letters who are authors, poets, writers, book publishers, and those who create works of art in film, fine art, music and other creative disciplines.

Occasionally, we will feature exclusive guests from behind the scenes in publishing, film, theater, Fine Arts, literary agents, editors, writing coaches and academics from both creative writing and the Fine Arts fields.

Be prepared to hear some of the most recognizable writers, entertainers and artists of our times speaking about their craft and creations.

You will also have the distinct pleasure to phone in and speak one-on-one with these remarkable guests.

Join published short story writer; poet; essayist; playwright; Editor-in-Chief and featured blogger, RJ ‘JeffJeffreys for an unforgettable show!

Red River Writers radio network archives 

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Thursday, June 27, 2013

The Write Step with RJ Jeffreys interviews publisher, Ami Kaye

Publisher of Glass Lyre Press and the principle owner and managing editor of Pirene's Fountain, a poetry journal.
Listen to the Ami Kaye interview

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Host, RJ Jeffreys "Jeff" of The Write Step is most honored and pleased to welcome publisher, poet and managing editor, Ami Kaye. Join us for a lively and in-depth conversation on poetry, the craft of writing and the business of publishing books.

Ami Kaye serves as publisher of Glass Lyre Press, and is also the principle owner and managing editor of Pirene's Fountain, a poetry journal. Ami edited and published Sunrise from Blue Thunder in response to the Japan 2011 disasters. More recently she co-edited First Water: Best of Pirene’s Fountain. Her poems, reviews and articles have appeared in various journals and anthologies including East on Central, First Literary Review- East, Tears in the Fence, Cartier Street Review, Wild Goose Poetry Review, Peony Moon, Scottish Poetry Review, Diode Poetry Journal, Dance of the Peacock, Enchanting Verses, among others. Ami’s work was nominated for the James B. Baker award, and received an honorable mention in the 2013 Tiferet Journal writing contest. She is the author of What Hands Can Hold. Ami Kaye has also interviewed various literary personalities.

To find out more about Ami Kaye and her publications and books, please visit:

Of Ami Kaye’s work, Cin Hochman, Editor-in-Chief, First Literary Review-East states, “Ami combines the best of all possible traits: she is a brilliant poet, storyteller, editor, and publisher, and is the type of empathetic friend you want to have along to share all things literary AND life-affirming. In addition to her love of craft and intuitiveness for quality, she demonstrates a tremendous respect for her fellow poets. And now Ami has made the logical leap into the small press world, and as someone who possesses several of Glass Lyre’s maiden publications, I can vouch for the fact that all of Ami’s elegance, refinement, goodness, and goodwill have been brought to bear in these beautiful books. And now I am thrilled that THE WRITE STEP has discovered her too.”

The Write Step with RJ Jeffreys is a "live" radio interview show focused primarily on the lead players in the Arts and Letters who are authors, poets, writers, book publishers, and those who create works of art in film, fine art, music and other creative disciplines.

Please visit the World of Ink for more info on their other excellent hosts and broadcasts:

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Holly Robinson interview

The World of Ink radio network

The Write Step with RJ Jeffreys -- Talk Radio -- Live!

Holly Robinson
Award-winning journalist, author and celebrity ghost writer

Listen to the interview with Holly Robinson

My esteemed guest is award-winning journalist, author and celebrity ghost writer, Holly Robinson. Holly and I discussed the craft of writing, her published novels and her latest book, The Wishing Hill, which is already receiving glowing reviews and was just published by New American Library/Penguin on July 2, 2013.

Holly’s marvelous work appears regularly in national venues such as Better Homes and Gardens, Family Circle, Huffington Post, Ladies’ Home Journal, More, Open Salon, and Parents.  She also works as a ghost writer on celebrity memoirs, education texts, and health books. Her first book, The Gerbil Farmer’s Daughter: A Memoir, was named a Target Breakout Book. Her first novel, Sleeping Tigers, was named a 2011 Book of the Year Finalist by ForeWord Reviews and was more recently listed as a Semifinalist 2012 Best Indie Book by Kindle Book Review.

–Caroline Leavitt, New York Times bestselling author of Pictures of You says of The Wishing Hill, “Who and what make us who we really are? In Robinson’s luminous novel of buried secrets, she explores how the past can jumpstart the future, how motherhood can be more than genetics, and why finding yourself sometimes depends on discovering the truth in others.”

 The Wishing Hill can be purchased at Barnes & Noble and links below: and

 Feeling Creatively Blocked? Turn Off the Noise in Your Head!

by Holly Robinson

We all have mornings like the one I had today: making breakfast, using the cattle prod to get kids off to school, kitchen cleanup, laundry, email, texting, phone call to the car mechanic, phone call to the insurance company—and all BEFORE we go to work. Is it any wonder we have trouble turning off the noise in our heads long enough to feel creative?

Thanks to our handy phones, which can do everything but drive our cars, it’s getting harder to hear our own thoughts, and becoming nearly impossible for us to feel creative. If we’re not keeping up with our virtual lives as well as our actual physical ones, we feel like failures. Yet, the more we scramble to keep up, the worse that ugly static sounds in our minds, obscuring our thoughts and making it impossible to tap deep enough into our souls to produce new work.

Luckily, this past weekend I stumbled across an amazing essay in the May/June 2013 issue of Poets and Writers magazine. That piece, “The Calm Before the Calm: Silence and the Creative Writer” by Daphne Kalotay, hit home for me because she wrote it while waiting for her new novel, Sight Reading, to be published by HarperCollins. I’d been biting my nails prior to the publication of The Wishing Hill by NAL/Penguin, valiantly seeking refuge where I usually do: in writing something new.

But I was having a problem: I couldn’t concentrate. It wasn’t just because of the usual writer’s crisis-in-confidence, but because it’s the end of the school year and, as any working parent knows, June is a nightmare of activities, events, final exams and graduation parties which all drop you headlong into summer, where your free time is sliced, chopped and grated tiny bits. I’m also supposed to be promoting my book.

How could I possibly think, never mind write? I couldn’t! But then I read Daphne’s finalparagraphs, where she talks about silence being important because “silence is where we go to write,” and found the inspiration I needed in the last paragraph:

“Silence is where you were when you first lifted your pen and listened for the words in your head. Silence is where you are sovereign, where you write what you are drawn to write, not what you are told to write. It is where the muscle-work of creation takes place. And, in this age of nonstop tweets and text messages and headlines flashing across screens, silence—that space free of anyone else’s words—is more elusive and precious than ever.”

As we try to survive the relentless meteor storms of information hurtling toward us—storms that we, as writers and artists, are fully expected to contribute to by promoting ourselves and our work—Daphne’s words should serve as a call to action, reminding us to seize time for our creative selves in the midst of the madness.

The same day I read that essay, I turned off my phone and shut down the computer. Then I went outside to sit on the porch and write longhand in my journal, trying to recreate my last writing retreat. I only had half an hour to myself, but it was enough for me to feel like a writer again.

I can’t do anything about being a working mom scrabbling for free time in June. But, when I do have free time, I can vow to make better use of it and do what I love most: follow the story.

You can do the same. Find just half an hour, or even ten minutes, and turn off the noise in your head. Pay attention to what’s around you. Breathe.

Then create.

Reprinted with permission from the author, Holly Robinson
(All rights reserved))

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

William Kenower

The World of Ink radio network
The Write Step with R Jeffreys -- Talk Radio -- Live!

Editor-in-Chief of Author magazine,  lecturer and writer 

Listen to Kenower interview
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My esteemed guest is the Editor-in-Chief of Author magazine, a writer, and a lecturer, William Kenower.  Bill and I will be discussing the writing process and the just released compilation book of his most excellent essays written for Author magazine, Write Within Yourself: An Author's Companion

In Bill's own words, "Whether it's fiction or non-fiction, interviewing or speaking to groups, I am always interested in the intersection of creativity and everyday life. Everyone is the author of their own life; some of us write that life with a pen."

Please join us for a lively talk on what we love about the craft of writing!

This a reprint of Bill Kenower's essay Four Reasons,” from his recently released book “Write Within Yourself: An Author's Companion,” which he so graciously shared with me and my audience during our interview. 

Four Reasons

I don’t think writing is intrinsically hard. I understand that people find it hard all the time, as have I, but there are always reasons for this, and by my count, usually one of four:

1. You don’t actually want to write. Maybe the idea of being a writer appeals to you intellectually, but the writing itself brings you little actual pleasure. There is no crime in this. There are lots of things in the world to do, and writing is by no means the noblest. Find what you truly love most and do it all you can.

2. You are writing the wrong thing. You think you should write something commercial, but you want to write something literary; or you think you should write something literary, but you would rather write a thriller. Or you are trying to write what you think will please an agent or an editor or your writing group or your mother. You are the only one you need to please, and anything can sell, and people don’t actually know what they like until they see it. In short, everything is on the table, so pick what makes you happiest, what comes the easiest.

3. You are impatient. No matter how disciplined you are, there is no forcing the river. Whether you write two drafts or ten, you have no choice but to allow the work to come at the rate it wants to come. Patience is required not just to see long projects like novels all the way through, but sentence by sentence. Sometimes waiting another thirty seconds for the full idea to bloom can make all the difference. And oddly, I have found that the more patient I am, the more I am willing to wait, the quicker the work comes.

4. You are holding two contradictory ideas. For instance, I want to make a nice living, but nobody reads my kinds of books. I love to write, but the publishing industry is capricious and uncaring. I love to write, but I’m just not talented enough to be published. One idea is going one way, the other idea is going in the exact opposite direction. You in the meantime remain stuck between these competing ideas, convinced they can both be true. Choose what you want to believe and believe only in it, evidence be damned. Evidence, in my experience, changes precisely to align with whatever I believe the most.

You can click here to purchase Write Within Yourself: An Author's Companion on Amazon.

Praise for Write Within Yourself: An Author's Companion

"Bill Kenower writes with great insight about writing, but Write Within Yourself is about far more than the act of putting words on paper.  It is about passion and creativity and knowing yourself, about the joy of chasing plastic bags caught in the wind and the fear of writing something that doesn't feel like you.  Like Brenda Ueland's classic If You Want To Write, this is a book you'll want to keep on your nightstand or desk, always available, ready to inspire you."

—Erica Bauermeister, bestselling author of School of Essential Ingredients.

“Write Within Yourself is not another how-to-write book, thank God, but something much more crucial to writers: a why we write book.  These thoughtful, insightful, and downright lovely essays on writing – and life – show that Bill Kenower gets what it means to be a writer.  This is a book to keep nearby for whenever your writer-spirit needs feeding.”

—Deb Caletti, author of the Honey, Baby, Sweetheart, and He's Gone.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

April Lufriu, Mrs. World 2012, Mrs. America 2011

The Write Step with R Jeffreys -- (World of Ink Network)  
Talk Radio -- Live!

April LufriuMrs. World 2012, Mrs. America 2011 
Miss America, 1st. Runner Up
2010 Volunteer of the Year -- Vision Conference award
VisionWalk Tampa Bay Chapter President
National spokesperson for Retinitis Pigmentosa

Listen to April Lufriu interview

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My luminary guest is literally one of the world's most beautiful women, April Lufriu, April is the Mrs. America 2011 title holder, and recently crowned Mrs. World 2012. She is the National spokesperson for Retinitis Pigmentosa and the VisionWalk Tampa Bay Chapter President.

I'm joined by the dynamic CW TV host and model Mandy Starling as co-host. Best Selling author of Six Weeks to Yehidah, the Tiferet Talk radio interview show host, Melissa Studdard, produced and moderated this broadcast.

April Lufriu’s will to win both the Mrs. America and Mrs. World crowns was further reinforced by her life changing 2010 diagnosis of Retinitis Pigmentosa. Her two children have also now been diagnosed with (RP), which is a genetic, retinal degenerative eye disease that gradually leads to blindness.

She also made history by being the oldest winner to be crowned in the pageant’s 35 year history. Her motto is “Become What You Believe.”
April and her sister Melissa were pioneers in establishing the Foundation Fighting Blindness Tampa, FL Chapter in 2007. Both sisters co-chaired Tampa’s first VisionWalk in 2008. She has served as the Tampa Bay Chapter President from 2007 to present and was awarded the 2010 Volunteer of the Year at the Vision Conference in Baltimore, Maryland. April’s mission as a mom is to find a cure for (RP). She speaks at numerous events about her journey to becoming Mrs. World and for the foundation she tirelessly advocates and supports. Her goals are to raise awareness and funds for retinal degenerative eye diseases. With her new title as National Spokesperson for the Foundation Fighting Blindness, April is reaching out at the national level to fulfill her mission.

April also operates a successful granite & marble fabrication business "Lufriu Marble, Inc." with her loving husband George.

"The Write Step with R Jeffreys” is an interview based show focused primarily on the lead players in the Arts and Letters.

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Write Step with R Jeffreys -- Talk Radio -- Live!

(on left)
Melissa Studdard Writer, Professor, Editor and Talk Show Host of Tiferet Talk radio, and Best Selling author of the books Six Weeks to Yehi­dah and its companion journal My Yehidah.
(on right)
Donna Baier Stein Writer, Editor, Producer of Tiferet Talk and Publisher of the globally acclaimed literary journal of multi-faith prose, poetry and art: Tiferet: A Journal of Spiritual Literature.

Listen to internet radio with tiferetjournal on Blog Talk Radio

I am beyond honored and pleased to guest host the Tiferet Talk radio show on September 6th at 7 pm, EST! I will be interviewing Tiferet editor and Tiferet Talk show host (and dear friend) Melissa Studdard, and Donna Baier Stein, the publisher of Tiferet: A Journal of Spiritual Literature, a global community of writers.

We will be discussing the release of the “Tiferet Talk” book: a collection of the first year of Tiferet Talk interviews with some of the most brilliant, creative thinkers, and writers of our times.

"Imagine joining intimate conversations with a brilliant and eclectic group of writers and thinkers who are eager to improve the world. That is what this book invites you to do, and you will savor every word."
Publisher, Tiferet Journal ~ Donna Baier Stein

The Tiferet Talk Interviews book includes a special introduction by publisher, Donna Baier Stein and in-depth interviews with Julia Cameron, Edward Hirsch, Jude Rittenhouse, Marc Allen, Arielle Ford, Robert Pinksy, Dr. Bernie Siegel, Robin Rice, Jeffrey Davis, Floyd Skloot, Anthony Lawlor, and Lois P. Jones.

The Tiferet Talk Interviews is a fascinating collection of twelve interviews transcribed from the Tiferet Talk Radio show, hosted by Melissa Studdard. Some of the world’s most notable writers and spiritual leaders share their thoughts on writing, tolerance, and the world we live in today. Gain incredible insight into their perspective on ways to tell the truth of our lives, access creativity, and balance magic and craft.

Within these pages you will be moved and inspired by the wisdom and creative minds of these literary luminaries, spiritual teachers, internationally published authors, award-winning poets and great thinkers and lecturers.

  You can purchase The Tiferet Talk Interviews book on Amazon! 

Melissa Stud­dard is the author of the best­selling novel Six Weeks to Yehi­dah and the newly released My Yehidah, a companion journal that nurtures emotional intelligence, creativity, and authenticity. Since its August 2011 release, Six Weeks to Yehidah has been the recipient of many accolades, including the Forward National Literature Award and January Magazine's best children's books of 2011. She is also, with Scott Lutz, co-author of For the Love of All, which is the fifth story in the Mark Miller’s One series, and which debuted in the number one spot for Hot New Releases in Literary Criticism and Theory in the Amazon Kindle store. Her poetry, fiction, essays, reviews, and arti­cles have appeared in numer­ous jour­nals and antholo­gies, includ­ing Boule­vard, Con­necti­cut Review, Pleiades, Gradiva, Amer­i­can Book Review, Poets and Writers, and The Smok­ing Poet. She cur­rently serves as a Reviewer-at-Large for The National Poetry Review, an editorial advisor for Lapis Lazuli Journal of The Harold Pinter Society of India, and a con­tribut­ing edi­tor for Tiferet. As well, she is the host of Tiferet’s radio inter­view program, Tiferet Talk, which interviews writers and spiritual and religious leaders. The Tiferet Talk Interviews, a collection of the first year of Tiferet’s interviews, will be released by Tiferet Press this summer. Additionally, Studdard is a professor at a community college in Texas, where she teaches literature, composition, rhetoric, and creative writing, and she is a teaching artist at The Rooster Moans Poetry Cooperative.

Donna Baier Stein's writing has appeared in New York Quarterly, Virginia Quarterly Review, Prairie Schooner and many other journals and anthologies She has received a Fellowship from Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars, a Scholarship from Bread Loaf Writers Conference, the PEN/New England Discovery Award, Finalist in Iowa Fiction Awards, Honorable Mention in Allen Ginsberg Poetry Awards, four Pushcart nominations, a New Jersey Council for the Arts grant, awards from the Poetry Societies of Virginia and New Hampshire, and more. Her chapbook Sometimes You Sense the Difference was published by Finishing Line Press. Her story collection is forthcoming from Serving House Books. She was a Founding Poetry Editor of Bellevue Literary Review and is Founder and Publisher of TIFERET Journal.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Write Step with R Jeffreys -- Talk Radio -- Live!

The Write Step with R Jeffreys -- Talk Radio -- Live!

Co-founder and publisher of Ibbetson Street Press  
Literary columnist for The Somerville News
College writing professor

Listen to the Doug Holder interview archive

My guest is fellow writer, poet and Bostonian, Doug Holder. Doug writes a literary column for The Somerville News, is the host of his own interview show "Poet to Poet: Writer to Writer" a college writing professor and tireless promoter of fellow poets, writers and the Arts.

His latest book of poetry is "The Man in the Booth in the Midtown Tunnel" (Cervena Barva Press).

Doug Holder co-founded Ibbetson Street Press in 1998 with Richard Wilhelm and Dianne Robitaille. Ibbetson has published over 60 books of poetry and has released 26 issues of its acclaimed literary journal "Ibbetson Street."

Doug conducts a series of interviews with poets and writers on his Somerville, Massachusetts Community Access TV Show "Poet to Poet: Writer to Writer" as well as for his literary column in The Somerville News, and at the Wilderness House Literary Retreat, founded by his friend Steve Glines. Acclaimed poets and writers he has interviewed include Mark Doty, Tom Perrotta, Pagan Kennedy, Claire Messud, Lan Samantha Chang, Afaa Michael Weaver, Lois Ames, Steve Almond, and many more.

He is on the Creative Writing Faculty of Endicott College, and teaches College Writing at Bunker Hill Community College in Boston. His work, both poetry and prose have appeared in Rattle, Cafe Review, Boston Globe Magazine, Toronto Quarterly, Endicott Review, Small Press Review and many others. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Write Step with R Jeffreys -- Talk Radio -- Live!

The Write Step with R Jeffreys -- Talk Radio -- Live!

Founder and Director, Global Medical Relief Fund for Children
Outstanding Humanitarian and now Author

Listen to Elissa Montanti interview

Listen to internet radio with The WriteStep with R Jeffreys on Blog Talk Radio

Our very special guest is Elissa Montanti: Founder and Director, Global Medical Relief Fund for Children and who People Magazine dubbed "the saint of Staten Island"—is changing the world, one child at a time.

I am thrilled to co-host this interview with my dear friend Melissa Studdard, author of the award winning book "Six Weeks to Yehida" and host of the radio show Tifert Talk.

Fourteen years ago, Elissa Montanti was a lab technician in Staten Island. She had, in the span of only a few years, lost her beloved mother, grandmother, and high school sweetheart. Hoping to find a way past her own troubles and the depression and panic attacks that quietly crippled her, she decided to raise money for school supplies for the children of war-torn Bosnia. But at a meeting with the UN ambassador she learned that those children didn’t need pencils. He showed her a photo of a boy who had lost both arms and one leg to a land mine; these children needed a lot more.

She went to Bosnia, brought the boy and his mother back to Staten Island, and arranged for free prosthetic's and medical care. The Global Medical Relief Fund was born.
Elissa Montanti will also be joined by multi-published writer and Psychology Today columnist Jennifer Haupt. Jennifer worked in collaboration with Ms. Montanti in writing “I'll Stand by You” (to be released August 2, 2012) about Elissa’s personal experiences in aiding children who are missing or have lost the use of limbs or eyes, who have been severely burned, or have been injured through war, natural disaster or illness throughout the world.

Elissa founded the non-profit, non-partisan Global Medical Relief Fund. A 501c3 organization, GMRF is supported entirely by private donations and grants. Since 1997, GMRF has brought more than 150 children to the U.S, from Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia for treatment, surgery and prosthetic limb and eye fittings. The countries include Bosnia, China, El Salvador, Haiti, Indonesia, Iraq, Kosovo, Liberia, Mexico, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, the Congo, Afghanistan, Sierra Leone and Libya .The injured children come from countries or regions that can offer only minimal medical care, poorly fitted prostheses, or none at all.
Elissa Montanti and her story of unconditional love and charity to grievously injured children throughout the world has been widely featured in every media outlet. She has also received numerous awards and honorariums for her outstanding humanitarian work.
Ms. Montanti has been featured in Parade Magazine, Reader’s Digest, People Magazine, Ladies Home Journal, Redbook, and numerous other print media’s.
“60 minutes”, “Life Time Television for Women, MSNBC, NBCToday-New York”, CBS “Early Show”, Dr. Phil Show, (presented the first “Heart of a Woman Award “), Hallmark Family Channel, American Morning CNN, Aaron Brown, Anderson Cooper 360 CNN, and all local major news networks.
BBC World News, WBAI, “Democracy Now” World Vision Radio, Senator Bill Bradley radio program, “American Voices”, Voice of America, WCBS.
I'll Stand by You“Why good things happen to good people” and “Being the Change”
The NY Times, Washington Post, N.Y Daily News, New York Post, Newsday, USA Today, Philadelphia Inquirer, Kuwait Times, UK Herald, Jesuit Provincial, Catholic New York
Honors/ Notable Mention
People Magazine voted Elissa Story “the Saint of Staten Island” one of the five best stories of the year
Amnesty International “Modern Day Saints”
Dr. Phil and his wife Robin Presented “Heart of a woman” award
HOC (Humanitarian Operating center) in Kuwait, awarded Elissa for her bravery and humanitarian work in Iraq., Voted one of the 12 most inspirational people of the year.
First woman Grand Marshall in the Staten Island Columbus Day parade, given the honor by Borough President James P. Molinaro.
Athena Award. The Woman’s Coalition Organization in Staten Island.
American Legion
The Circle of Friends Award. The Staten Island children’s Museum
ACIM American Committee on Italian Migration
Circle of Friends, Mount Manresa
“To Walk Without Fear”. Documentary Produced by Miracle Mile Films. Premiered at the United Nations, Nov.16th 2006. Sponsored by the UN Correspondence Association and the Prince of Jordon
Inducted in her New Dorp High School Hall of Fame
Shriners Humanitarian award
Woman Of University Award
St Johns University presidents Medal
Soon to be honored:
The Salvation Army
The Urban League
Staten Island Woman Of achievement
For further information visit: