Thursday, June 26, 2008

More Book Blog Giveaways for MRS. LIEUTENANT

My last post featured the beginning of a guest post I wrote for the blog Books on the Brain, which is having a book giveaway for MRS. LIEUTENANT with the deadline of June 30.

Here are four other book blogs having a giveaway of MRS. LIEUTENANT in connection with a book review or guest post:

June 30th deadlines:

An Army Wife’s Life at

She Is Too Fond of Books at

The Literate Housewife Review at

July 4th deadline:

Planet Books at:

Check out the comments on these book blog sites – some of them are quite compelling.

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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Guest Post and Book Giveaway for MRS. LIEUTENANT at Books on the Brain

I have a guest post on Books on the Brain in connection with a book giveaway. Here’s the beginning of this guest post about authors promoting their books:

I’m reading Stephanie Chandler’s new book “The Author’s Guide to Building an Online Platform” with the subtitle “Leveraging the Internet to Sell More Books.” It’s one of several such books I’ve read as well as numerous teleseminars I’ve listened to along with attending John Kremer’s two-day marketing event

All the advice is excellent – and if I could replicate into 4 to 6 copies of myself, I’d be able to follow all this terrific advice in the next, say, two to three years.

And yet the truth remains that an author has to self-promote or get completely overlooked. In 1992 when the Jewish holiday book SEASONS FOR CELEBRATION that I co-wrote with Rabbi Karen L. Fox came out, she and I had to do all our own marketing. At least now, thanks to the internet, this is easier to do – as well as harder because there are many more opportunities to chase.

Just the “simple” question of my blog for MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL: How do I attract people to the blog? Where else can I post the blog? Is what I’m writing on the blog of any interest to anyone else? And, oh, could I somehow magically learn html so I could add fancy “things” to my blog?

Book giveaway deadline June 30

Books on the Brain is giving away a copy of MRS. LIEUTENANT to one of the people leaving comments on my guest post. You still have time to read the entire post at Books on the Brain and then leave a comment so you’ll be in the running for the book giveaway.

Go to

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

First Female Four-Star General Nominated by President Bush

The June 24th Wall Street Journal carried this blurb in the front-page What’s News column: A woman has been chosen for promotion to the rank of four-star general for the first time in American history.

For someone whose novel features the wives of four new army officers in the spring of 1970 and who was there at the beginning of the women’s movement, this was a rather exciting headline.

The Journal article itself described that President Bush had nominated Lt. General Ann E. Dunwoody to head the Army Materiel Command, of which she is currently deputy commander. I have to admit that, as a feminist, I was somewhat disappointed in General Dunwoody’s area of operation -- which equips, outfits and arms the soldiers of the U.S. Army.

Then this article paragraph really rankled: Women haven’t reached four-star rank because by law they are excluded from serving in combat roles, which historically have been the path to the highest-ranking positions. That exclusion still applies, but with Gen. Dunwood, the Army has chosen to cast aside its customary limitations on promotion.

Yes, army promotions based on combat roles have always been important. In MRS. LIEUTENANT in the spring of 1970 Sharon Gold learns this when she has just arrived at Ft. Knox, Kentucky, with her husband. Sharon’s next-door neighbor Anne takes Sharon to meet Elizabeth, another young officer’s wife in the same offbase apartment complex:

A large wall-hung wedding portrait in a gilt frame overpowers the small living room. Elizabeth in a Scarlett O'Hara gown and her husband in his army uniform stand together under crossed swords.

Elizabeth follows Sharon's eyes. "Mama said I had to bring it. Wouldn't be a proper home without it. I also brought my silver. An officer's lady has to be ready to assume her duties."

Anne laughs. "Can you tell she's a Southerner? Even if she didn’t have an accent. These Southerners are in love with the 'noble duty' of the army – that's why so many officers are Southern – even if it means going to Vietnam."

There, someone has said the word -- Vietnam.

Elizabeth smiles. "How can a man get ahead in the army if he hasn't had at least one combat command? If my husband decides to go regular army – make the army a career, he has to get ahead."

Sharon mentally runs through any number of responses to this statement. No words leave her mouth. She has promised Robert.

Today, in my opinion, it might be better for both men and women not to need combat roles in order to be considered for promotion to the highest-ranking positions. This then might allow the Army to give out assignments not based on who needs combat experience but instead give out assignments based on the best person for the position.

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Sunday, June 22, 2008

ARMY WIVES Episode 3 Review/Military Spouse Contest Deadline June 29

Lifetime TV’s episode 3 of season 2 of ARMY WIVES appears to have fallen off the back of a truck. It seemed to me as if I were watching a recycled TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL, or at the very least a recycled IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE.

There were no scenes with all four army wives, Joan was missing in action, and her army husband only had scenes of “shooting hoops.” There didn’t seem to be a center for the episode – only a series of vignettes. And, boy, suddenly Roxy’s hair is looking really good. What’s with that?

In contrast to an artificial-feeling episode of ARMY WIVES, those of you who are present or past military spouses still have time to enter the “Tell-Your-Own-Story” contest. See contest rules at for submissions of 500 words or less about your happiest or saddest or most significant military spouse moment.

The five grand prize winners will each receive a Season 1 ARMY WIVES DVD set from Lifetime, a $100 American Express Gift Card, and a copy of MRS. LIEUTENANT. The 10 2nd place winners will also receive a copy of MRS. LIEUTENANT.

If you have friends or relatives who are present or past military spouses, tell them about the contest. This is their chance to tell their own story!

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Friday, June 20, 2008

Virtual Book Tour for MRS. LIEUTENANT: Day 15 and Going Strong(ish)

I haven’t left my computer while taking a virtual book tour for MRS. LIEUTENANT, yet I feel as buoyant and frazzled as if I were on a real book tour.

Buoyant – because I’ve “met” such nice book reviewers and readers. Frazzled – because in addition to writing guest posts I’ve been responding to comments to these guest posts and to comments to reviews of MRS. LIEUTENANT.

And I’ve also been emotionally affected by this tour. Here are three comments from the review of MRS. LIEUTENANT at Planet Books

First comment: This book hits close to home for me. I was a young USAF lieutenant’s wife during the Vietnam era and it was an unforgettable experience. Since we couldn’t afford for me to live on my own, my 2-year-old daughter and I were forced to live with his parents and sister for a year, and that was a battlefield of a different sort.

When he finally came home, he was not the man I had married and the marriage eventually fell apart. The scorn and rejection that we both faced, even though we didn’t support the war, was something I will never forget. Maybe if I had had a support system like these women had in each other, things might have been different.

Even his own parents refused to accept the fact that he was proud to serve his country and considered them all “baby-killers” and wrote him not once during that year. I just have to read this book. I have emotions that, to this day, I keep inside.

Second comment: My brother did two tours of duty in Vietnam in the late ’60s.
I was in my 20s at the time and he was only 5 years older. I think your review [Planet Books review] hits the nail on the head somewhat in comparing today’s situation with that of
Vietnam. However the anti-war feeling then was much stronger than now. At least now there is more patriotism felt about the soldiers serving than there was then.

I can appreciate what [first commenter] said about her husband coming home a different man. I think all of them came home different. My brother did. They had seen so much horror over there and weren’t supported on the home front. They did not come home to a warm welcome.

Third comment: As a former military brat myself, and now living in a military community overseas, this could be a very interesting read for me. Now, as an adult, I view the role of the military spouse in a totally different light than I did growing up…and can appreciate it a whole lot more. Constant moves, deployments, military politics, war… this is a world that could make for a whole series of books. I look forward to reading this one.

Needless to say, I burst into tears upon reading the first comment. Although the entire comment was emotionally wrenching, this line was particularly sad (boldface mine): Even his own parents refused to accept the fact that he was proud to serve his country and considered them all “baby-killers” and wrote him not once during that year. As a parent, I can’t imagine doing that to your child.

(FYI – See for support of soldiers today who get NO mail from home.)

Day 15 – Visit my Fiction Scribe stop today at to read a blog interview of me. And you might want to also stop at yesterday’s Your Military visit where I’ve written a guest post about an incident from MRS. LIEUTENANT –

And while at Your Military, if you’re a past or present military spouse, read the contest rules for “Tell-Your-Own-Story.” The deadline is June 29th!

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Creating the Book Trailer for MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL

Watching the book trailer for MRS. LIEUTENANT –- brings back the memories of those turbulent times at the end of the ‘60s and the start of the ‘70s. Theresa Chaze did such a terrific job of capturing that time that I asked her to write a guest post describing how she chose the elements for the trailer. (FYI – She graduated from Michigan State University a little over a decade after I did.)

MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL offered special challenges for me when I produced the book trailer. It is not always easy to find good graphics that will adequately represent the spirit and content of a historically correct book even if it is a fictionalized account. Since the novel is based around real events, I had to find images that would not only embody the era but the changes in the four women’s lives as they became officers’ wives.

Searching the net for the appropriate pictures, I found myself remembering the newscast of the protest marches, the riots and the Vietnam War. I was 12 in 1970. As a child, I simply didn’t understand the violence and the bigotry.

After one of the riots (it could have been Kent State but I’m not certain) I asked my mother what would happen if someone accidentally was caught up in the middle if they were going to class or to work and took a wrong turn. She told me that everyone who was there deserved what they got. She believed protesting the government was wrong. To this day, I simply don’t understand how she could possibly say and mean it.

Writing the text was nearly as challenging. Even though Phyllis gave me a good start with her synopsis, I had to write copy that would be intriguing yet didn’t give too much of the story away.

It is a delicate balance of storytelling and marketing. You need to hook the reader in the beginning with the plot while carrying the interest through to the end where the goal is to sell books. Reviews need to be short and concise to meet the restrictions of the video medium.

In addition, where the book can be found and bought is also important. However, giving long website addresses will only frustrate the viewer who is trying to write down the information. Individual websites are best listed in the description of the video, where the URLs can easily be cut and pasted in the browser.

The music under the voiceover ties all the elements together into a complete package. In order to prevent emotional baggage, I wanted to totally avoid popular music. Well-liked songs always dredge up an individual’s old memories, which would distract from the message I was sending. Instead, I went with a simple piece that flowed with the images, connecting the story to the sales pitch at the end.

My resume includes a B.A. in English and Video Production with a minor in Theatre. I have over six years experience in broadcast TV as a producer, director and all-around tech. I have two novels in print, with a third due out this fall. In addition, I am an award-winning screenwriter. Nearly two years ago I decided to combine my experience by producing digital videos.

I work with authors, publishers, and PR representatives of all genres. The only books that I will not work with are those that promote hatred and bigotry. To see examples of what I can do for you, go to com/user/ Tirgana. I blog at, and you can learn about my Dragon Clan Trilogy at Contact me at

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Monday, June 16, 2008

Lifetime’s ARMY WIVES – My Take on Episode 2 of Season 2

The start of episode 2 of Lifetime’s popular television series ARMY WIVES had me worried – more of that over-the-top voiceover. “Oh, no,” I thought, “if this season is going to be filled with voiceover, I’m out of here.”

(Did anyone get the reference to the Whoopi Goldberg movie SISTER ACT? You know, when the guy in the bar says about the two nuns Whoopi and Kathy Najimy – “If this turns into a nuns’ bar, I’m out of here.”)

Fortunately, after the first few minutes the second episode of ARMY WIVES turned into a regular episode. And we were also spared any more of the cloying radio talk of Pamela that took place throughout episode 1 of season 2. This episode 2 the actors actually got to act.

And the best part of this episode for me? The scenes of Roxy’s husband Trevor in Iraq as well as Roxy’s responses to Trevor being in harm’s way. (Especially poignant was the reminder that those who stay behind can never really understand the “experience” of those fighting.)

And without giving anything away -- I wasn’t surprised by the colonel’s decision about her pregnancy. As soon as the screen cut away from the doctor’s examining room, I knew what she would do.

FYI -- MARRIED TO THE ARMY blog has posted information about the military spouse contest I’m co-sponsoring with The deadline is June 29 – so there’s plenty of time to enter. Go to for submission rules or to

What did you think of episode 2 of season 2 of ARMY WIVES?

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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Vietnam War and MRS. LIEUTENANT – Part II

As explained in the introduction to Part I, the following Amazon review was written by Diana Faillace Von Behren (“reneofc”), an Amazon Top 500 reviewer, and posted here with her permission.

In this, her first Sharon Gold novel, Miller addresses the concerns of this era in American history. Written perhaps as a part memoir Miller was herself a `Mrs. Lieutenant' the story is cleverly crafted from the viewpoints of four very different young officers' wives whose lives intersect at Fort Knox in Kentucky during their husbands' AOB training.

Choosing from America's vast melting pot of ethnicities and cultural backgrounds, Miller selects wisely, yet not stereotypically, succeeding in exemplifying that no matter how diverse or varied all women carry similar burdens that formulate their personal definition of `dread.'

As the northern Jewish girl, Sharon comes close to that which I am most familiar. Sharon has guts; she questions; she holds firm to her belief system yet remains fiercely loyal to family and friends even though their sensibilities may vary from hers. Her strength is tangible and it changes those around her.

Pretty head-turning blonde Kim hails from the South--orphaned as a child and broken by the indifference of a series of foster parents, she clings to the security given to her by her jealous husband who cannot stand the thought of any other man looking at her.

Wendy, a black girl from South Carolina, sheltered by her parents, knows nothing of the rampant prejudice encapsulated within the societal microcosm of Fort Knox. Seeking nothing but acceptance, she cringes when her husband decides to go regular Army instead of `indef vol' like most of his classmates.

Attractive Latino Donna loves her blonde haired blue-eyed husband dearly, but for her, too, the very word `Vietnam' wreaks havoc in her soul, connoting nothing but death, destruction and possible widowhood. The hopes and aspirations of all four women create a semblance of the `every-woman' of that time.

For each of them, the idea of Hell and Vietnam becomes synonymous.

Miller uses an alternating third person voice to delineate her chapters and to flesh out each of the women and their motivations. As each of the women enters `her own private Vietnam', the reader journeys back to that time period, empathizing with the plight of these couples while experiencing a more comprehensive slice of American life from the varying perspectives.

Miller's use of popular songs and clothing labels from the early 70s titillated this reader again I haven't thought about many of these iconic items for years. Ms. Miller, I thank you not only for the compelling story, but also for refreshing my memory.

Bottom line? Phyllis Zimbler Miller has fashioned her own remembrance of things past in her novel, "Mrs. Lieutenant." Her main characters sing out against the things that disturb them most about life in the early 70s while trying to adjust to being the wives of new second lieutenants and come to terms with their individual desires. As a one time `Mrs. Lieutenant,' Miller's voice rings true in each of her incarnations. The pages fly by in this introspective novel of friendship told beneath the cloud of Vietnam.

Recommended, especially to those children of the 60s and early 70s. For me, this author made this era shake off the dust of the past and again become a viable entity one that rumbled with turbulence and defined those dark specters of dread that remain with us till this day.

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Vietnam War and MRS. LIEUTENANT – Part I

The following Amazon review was written by Diana Faillace Von Behren (“reneofc”), an Amazon Top 500 reviewer. I asked her permission to post this review on my blog because I love the way she talks about the Vietnam War era. My only changes were to break up long paragraphs into shorter ones. So, without further ado, here’s Diana:

When I was a girl in middle school, my homework assignment for one winter evening was to write a Christmas letter to an unknown soldier serving in the jungles of Vietnam.


At that time, just the word conjured up all sorts of morbid illustrations projected onto the big screen inside my head. I could imagine the intense heat, men, no mere boys, dressed in fatigues carrying canteens slick with condensation, dog tags dangling from silver chains that jingled perilously as they walked stealthily through foliage that grew thick and frighteningly multitudinous like some big banana leafed forest in a Rousseau painting.

The teacher at the time, forbidden to express her views about a war that perplexed the American public urged her class to be kind these boys were far from home, from the pleasures we took for granted rides in red convertibles with the tops down, the smell of crispy fries from the new hot burger stand McDonald's, the look and fresh scent of a pretty girl swinging her newly straightened hair as she glanced behind her to see just who was watching her in her plaid miniskirt and dark tights. . .

These random mental snapshots typified the American way of life and justified detouring countless American boys from dreams they had dreamed from the time they were old enough to dream.

I wrote my letter; I don't remember the soldier's name. I knew he was nineteen and probably didn't care about what some sixth grader had to say. While I organized my litany of seasonal trivial events in a neat little handwritten format, I could hear the news the somber voices of Walter Cronkite and Dan Rather recounting the number of American deaths amidst the cacophony of gunfire and chopper blades.

Uncertainty became something familiar an old friend like the grim reaper the shadow of his sickle hovering over all our heads like the darkest rain clouds. The persistent feeling of dread penetrated the sanctity of one's inner spirit like the tattoo of the television's images of helicopters, fire and screaming children.

I thought of my cousin, just ten years older than I was would he be sent away from the huge family dinners of lasagna and laughter? Would men I knew be receiving letters from young adolescents that they didn't even know?

And then on a larger level I wondered if I would be able to sleep at night as the world as I thought it should be would never be the same after all the controversy the peace marches draft dodgers running to Canada the anger over Jane Fonda posing with the Viet Cong Civil Rights protestors raging in faraway places like Alabama. How would all this effect the dawning of the new era what the flower children called the `Age of Aquarius?'

Would my soldier ever get my letter? I never received a response, yet somehow that event that writing of the letter etched in my memory for all time the sensation of losing control. The boys with low draft numbers were devoid of that sense of managing their lives. ROTC became an option, as being an officer was far better than being an enlisted man.

I hadn't thought about my personal origin for that dark feeling of `dread' in a long time that is until I picked up Phyllis Zimbler Miller's novel, `Mrs. Lieutenant.'

Read Part II in the next blog post.

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Flag Day June 14 – Display the Flag This Saturday

I had to look up information about Flag Day in Wikipedia because I had no idea what the day commemorated besides obviously the United States flag.

Here’s what Wikipedia said:

“In the United States, Flag Day is celebrated on June 14. It commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States, which happened that day by resolution of the Second Continental Congress in 1777.

“In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation that officially established June 14 as Flag Day; in August 1949, National Flag Day was established by an Act of Congress. Flag Day is not an official federal holiday.”

It must be because Flag Day is not an official federal holiday that the day gets so little attention. Yet it’s worth taking a moment to contemplate the flag of the United States.

In MRS. LIEUTENANT, Sharon Gold is surprised to learn that, at the college graduation of Kim Benton’s husband Jim, the Confederate flag was larger than the American flag. To Sharon in May of 1970 this is incomprehensible. Why would this be?

Now in 2008 I’ve spent the last months reading about New Orleans, the South and the Confederacy. And while I understand the Southern view much better now – the view that led to what Southerners call the War Between the States and we Northerners call the Civil War – I still can’t understand how, 100 years after the end of that war, Southerners would still think of themselves first as Southerners and second as U.S. citizens.

Perhaps 9/11 changed that view – or perhaps that view changed soon after 1970. I certainly hope that the U.S. flag is now the largest flag flying at a Southern college graduation today.

This Saturday, June 14, proudly display your United States flag.

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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Virtual Book Tour: Day 8 Stop for MRS. LIEUTENANT

My virtual book tour stop for today is at This is a truly delightful book review even though the reviewer is nervous about writing this particular review. Read the review to find out what made her nervous.

And I just got an email from a book reviewer in Okinawa who has graciously agreed to write a guest post about the U.S. military presence there. I’ve very excited to bring you this guest post at a future date.

And for you military spouses out there – are you writing your contest entry for “Tell-Your-Own-Story” at I just heard from Nancy Brown at that Lifetime is sending prizes for the contest.

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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Lifetime’s ARMY WIVES Season 2 Premiere – What Did You Think?

For two days I’ve been mulling over what I thought of the season 2 premiere of the popular Lifetime television series ARMY WIVES, which is based on Tanya Biank’s nonfiction book by the same name.

To be honest, the episode didn’t work for me. Yes, I understand that in order to create suspense throughout the entire hour of the show certain things were revealed in a specific sequence. (I’m not saying what in case you haven’t gotten to see the episode yet.)

What bothered me was the over-the-top commentary of Pamela on her radio show “Have At It.” Her commentary kept yanking me out of the story and into an annoying mood – “Get on with the show!” I wanted to shout each time Pamela began her long, drawn-out ramblings.

It will be interesting to see whether the next episode also depends on Pamela’s running commentary, or whether the show’s writers will decide to write action scenes instead of lines for an audio podcast.

Does anyone agree or disagree with me?

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Saturday, June 7, 2008

“Tell-Your-Own-Story” Contest for Season 2 Premiere of Lifetime’s ARMY WIVES Television Series

I’m excited to be a partner in this contest beginning today for military spouses to tell their own stories. Here’s the press release going out on PRWeb:

The season 2 premiere of Lifetime’s ARMY WIVES television series is the occasion of a new contest sponsored by military relocation service The First Annual “Tell-Your-Own-Story” contest is open to all present and past spouses of military personnel.

Submissions of not more than 500 words will be accepted from Sunday, June 8 – the date of the first episode of season 2 of ARMY WIVES – through midnight on Sunday, June 29. Multiple submissions allowed.

Story submissions should feature the happiest or saddest or most significant moment as a military spouse, and stories must focus on an event actually connected to the military. Your Military community ambassadors will serve as judges for the contest.

The spouses of personnel from all branches are eligible – Army (including Reservists and National Guard), Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard.

To submit a story, go to and click on “Contest Submission.” The contest rules will appear on the submission page.

In honor of the Fourth of July, and will feature the best 15 submissions. All 10 2nd place winners will receive prizes from, including the new book Mrs. Lieutenant: A Sharon Gold Novel by Phyllis Zimbler Miller ( The five grand prize winners will also receive Season 1 of ARMY WIVES on DVD.

“ is pleased to offer military spouses – both men and women – the opportunity to tell their stories in their own words,” Nancy Brown, president of Your Military, said. “We look forward to sharing the best of these stories with our world-wide audience.” makes relocation easier for military families by helping these families learn about their new communities before moving. also offers job websites for every location.

I want to encourage any past or present military spouse to submit to the contest. This is your opportunity to tell your own stories.

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Friday, June 6, 2008

In Memory of Yves Saint Laurent and His Impact on American Women Wearing Pants

The June 3, 2008, Wall Street Journal carried an article by Woody Hochswender entitled “He Made Pantsuits Suit Working Women” in a tribute to designer Yves Saint Laurent, who died in Paris June 1.

I related to Hochswender’s article on two levels. First, in my book MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL, at the Ft.Knox PX Sharon buys towels and washcloths designed by Yves Saint Laurent. "These are terrific prices," Sharon says to Kim by way of making up. "The person who ordered these probably doesn't even know that Yves Saint Laurent is a famous designer."

Second are these words of Hochswender: “(The) trousered suit for women was a look he did not invent but refined and made respectable for respectable women to wear. With it, Saint Laurent changed the course of fashion and perhaps added momentum to the social forces that make history.”

Hochswender goes on to describe a world in which women “were not permitted to enter the finest restaurants in midtown Manhattan unless they were wearing a dress or skirt.” Then he says: “Such was the world in the late 1960s, when Saint Laurent introduced his pantsuit.”

I don’t actually remember this moment in U.S. women’s social history because at that time I was an undergraduate student at Michigan State University, and fashionable clothes were about as far removed as landing a man on the moon. (Matching cardigan and skirt sets by Villager had barely penetrated MSU.)

Yet I do remember May-July 1970 when, as a new army officer’s wife, I had to learn how to be a proper officer’s wife. Here’s what the third edition of Mary Preston Gross’ booklet “Mrs. Lieutenant” (with a copyright of 1968) said about pants:

"Slacks and shorts on the tennis court, or about the house, are fine on a cute slim figure but are out of place and usually forbidden at the commissary, post exchange, theater, and public places. Since today's fashions stress women in pants, try to be discreet as to where and when you wear them."

Obviously the fashion world of Yves Saint Laurent hadn’t yet invaded U.S. army posts in the spring of 1970. Yet, whether we new officers’ wives knew it, the world of women in the United States was beginning to rapidly change. And with hindsight we must give Yves Saint Laurent his due for helping bring about that change.

Day 5 of the MRS. LIEUTENANT virtual book tour: Stop in at for two posts about the book: an overview of the story to be followed by an interview of Kim Benton, the Southern Baptist who carpools with Sharon Gold for the nine weeks of Armor Officers Basic.

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Thursday, June 5, 2008

Virtual Book Tour Day 4: Let’s Start a “Conversation”

Today I’m stopping at I’m particularly pleased with the comments added to the review on Bookfoolery because these “conversations” are what Web 2.0 is all about.

And as a special promotion for my book MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL -- Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour or $25 Amazon gift certificate to one lucky person who comments on the blog stops of Pump Up’s June virtual book tour authors.

Leave a comment on my blog at or at my virtual book tour stops to have a chance to win one of these prizes!

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Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Virtual Book Tour; Lifetime’s ARMY WIVES; Ft. Knox Reporter

Check out the backstory of MRS. LIEUTENANT at and also my guest blog at on this Day 3 of the MRS. LIEUTENANT virtual book tour.

Leave a comment at to be entered into a drawing sponsored by Pump Up Your Book Promotion. For more stops on my blog trail, visit

Last night I watched – courtesy of Lifetime’s website – the first season finale of Lifetime’s wildly popular tv series ARMY WIVES, based on the non-fiction book by Tanya Biank. I wanted to be prepared for the second season premier this Sunday, June 8.

After the cliffhanger ending, vignettes of each of the main characters were featured. I particularly responded to the voice over that these women were from different classes and cultures and yet had one thing in common – THEY FELL IN LOVE WITH A SOLDIER.

And that’s exactly what MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL is about – four very different women whose one thing in common is falling in love with a soldier. (ARMY WIVES and MRS. LIEUTENANT are both set against the background of unpopular U.S. wars – Afghanistan/Iraq and Vietnam, respectively.)

And I was just interviewed by Josh Coffman of The News-Enterprise in Kentucky about MRS. LIEUTENANT, which takes place in 1970 at Ft. Knox. I’m looking forward to reading his article because his news beat is Ft. Knox. (The above-mentioned backstory guest post describes my time at Ft. Knox.)

Coffman asked me what relevance my novel had today for women whose husbands are being deployed now. My response: The novel’s underlying theme of sisterhood – of women bonding together to get through a difficult time – has as much relevance today as it did in 1970.

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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Virtual Book Tours and Internet Marketing Promotion

As announced yesterday, I’ve started on a month-long virtual book tour (organized by for MRS. LIEUTENANT. In actuality this is a blog tour, because – without leaving my own computer – I get “interviewed” on people’s blogs or I get to write a guest post for other people’s blogs. This is a great co-promotional opportunity because the author promotes the guest blogger and the guest blogger promotes the author.

Recently I’ve been recommending the virtual book tour idea to an author I met on, which is a terrific website for book readers and authors. I’m going to include below a part of this author’s email in which he said he didn’t see the need for a virtual book tour that would get him “mentioned” on blogs:

“I am already mentioned on blogs albeit in a narrow corner of the book buying world, those related to comics and cartoonists. These blogs are to help me with ‘search engines.’ I am uninformed about much of the on-line world but doesn't that have to do with directing people to your web site? And I don't have a web site.”

And later in the email he wrote: “The Authors Guild, to which I belong, is holding a telephone-seminar (whatever that is) on book promotion next week. I will sign up for it and let you know how that goes.”

Here’s my email reply to him: Okay, I'm going to give it to you with both barrels. You have to get on the internet marketing promotion wagon. Which means you have to start learning about the possibilities as I did through books, etc. A teleseminar is really good you call in or sign in on your computer and listen. I listened to one yesterday on social media that was very informative.

“And you want the search engines to find mentions of you even if you don't have a website. Did you read the review I got yesterday on someone else's blog? I'm going to have an interview or review on at least one different blog every day this month (Monday-Friday). This should increase my exposure to a lot of different people the readers of each different blog.

“To get an idea of all of this, read RED HOT INTERNET PUBLICITY by Penny Sansevieri (get on Amazon) and then sign up for her free email newsletter at Sign up for John Kremer's free email newsletter ( also. This is an important beginning of your new education.”

And, of course, I’m going to tell him he needs a website and also tell him about John Kremer’s sixth edition of 1001 WAYS TO MARKET YOUR BOOKS, which has a terrific Chapter 12 about internet marketing. And the great teleseminar I listened to yesterday was conducted by social media expert Erica O’Grady on and sponsored by

The important thing to understand about virtual book tours is that an author doesn’t just get a MENTION. The author gets FEATURED for that day on a blog. And when you have a good virtual book tour organizer, that blog has been selected precisely because it fits in with the target market for the book.

Check out my guest blog today at and leave me a comment. Then, if you’re an author or a potential author, get on the internet marketing bandwagon. The person you help will be yourself.

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Virtual Book Tour: Day 2 Stop for MRS. LIEUTENANT at Boomer Chick Blog

The moral of today’s boomer chick guest post ( is: If you’re waiting for someone to say yes to you for whatever it is, at this age look around and see if, instead, you can say yes to yourself!

And I share the saga of the long journey to publication for MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL in order to encourage other boomer chicks. Here’s an excerpt from the guest post:

“Almost 20 years ago I told the story of this unique experience to two female producers, and they optioned the story for a possible film. They took the story “around town” (Hollywood), and then came back to me and said: “People don’t get the story. You’ll have to write the book first.” By the time I had written the first draft of the book, the two producers had moved on to other projects.

“Thus began years of rewriting and rewriting, learning to be a novelist instead of a journalist. Because, of course, this story had to be fictionalized to both add dramatic structure as well as protect identities.

“And all through these last 20 years, women who read a version of the manuscript liked the story, while agents and editors at publishing houses said “no way.” One editor said that the story was no longer relevant because there was no longer any racial prejudice in the U.S. Another editor rejected the manuscript sight unseen because she said the women couldn’t meet through their husbands – they would have to meet at their mutual place of work, such as a law firm.”

But I didn’t take NO for an answer. Read more of the saga of MRS. LIEUTENANT at and leave me a comment about your thoughts on NOT waiting for others to say yes to you. After all, we only live once!

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Monday, June 2, 2008

Day 1 of the MRS. LIEUTENANT Virtual Book Tour

Today I start my month-long virtual book tour with a stop at Book Marketing Buzz: Book Marketing & Promotion Tips, where authors write guest blogs about the marketing strategies for their books. My post begins:

“My main book marketing plan is to become the queen of internet marketers for the promotion of my book MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL.

“When friends ask if I’m going to have book signings, or they suggest I contact the local library, I politely thank them. Then I explain that I can reach more people in one hour of online marketing than I can reach in hours and hours of book signings. And I add that I have to allocate my limited resources of time to maximize my return on investment. (That’s what having an M.B.A. from Wharton will help you realize.)”

Later in the guest blog I list some books that I have found particularly helpful:

Sell Your Book on Amazon by Brent Sampson

Red Hot Internet Publicity by Penny C. Sansevieri

Plug Your Book by Steve Weber

1001 Ways to Market Your Books (sixth edition) by John Kremer

You can read the entire guest post about my marketing strategy for MRS. LIEUTENANT at

The other stop for today is an audio interview at InsideScoopLive – check it out at

And leave a comment on my guest blog post at and you could win a FREE virtual book tour (for published authors with a book recently released) or a $25 Amazon gift certificate (for non-authors)!