Monday, November 2, 2015

New Release - REVIVAL: The Donald Braswell Story by Mark Koopmans


I'm thrilled today to be part of Mark Koopmans' book release blog tour. Mark is a talented writer and a funny, kind guy, whom I'm grateful to call friend. Tomorrow is the official release day for REVIVAL: The Donald Braswell Story, but we're starting this party early. Congratulations, Mark! :D




From Juilliard to jumper cables; from wasting all the talent in the world to America's Got Talent, REVIVAL—The Donald Braswell Story is a memoir about the "Texas Tenor" who lost his voice in a random accident, but finds his calling through faith—and a musical miracle.

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I must interject that I have had the pleasure of reading REVIVAL, and I can assure you it's a well-written, compelling story that is very much worth your time. Hands down, REVIVAL earns five stars.

Here's Mark...


Aloha,
Thanks Melissa for inviting me to begin my book tour here. (You’re so brave!)

Tomorrow is the actual Launch Day of my first book, REVIVAL – The Donald Braswell Story, but before getting to know Donald, some people wanted to learn a little about me.

Okay, so Mom and Dad, the strangest thing I’ve ever done for my writing is also one of the coolest.
In 2006, I worked for my first newspaper, a weekly in Central Florida called Hometown News. Never an ambulance-chaser journalist, (and I never will be), my beat covered a huge area, so I was always on the lookout for a feature, something different to sink my gnashers into.

I found this small charity, Gift of Water, which educated the people of Haiti about water safety. (Teaching the Haitians the importance of safe, filtered water had cut down on the thousands who’d previously died through water-borne diseases.)

Talking with charity officials, I became the first reporter in our company to work an overseas story, and spent four days in Haiti, basically embedded with the charity workers as they did their thing.

It became one of the professional highlights of my career, and the five-part series I subsequently wrote remains among my favorite pieces prior to writing REVIVAL.

My point is this—if a writing assignment presents itself, you should grab that bugger by the throat, and not let him go until the final period or exclamation point is on the page.

Embrace the challenge and step outside of your box. Who knows the end result, but magic definitely won’t happen unless the magician practices her craft.

Ever stepped out of the box to further your writing?

Thanks so very much, Melissa, and to everyone who stops by!

(Tomorrow, I visit Elizabeth Seckman, my “eTwin” who plans to throw a box of cheap red wine against the side of her laptop and officially launch REVIVAL!)

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Donald Braswell II is an American actor, classical crossover tenor and composer. Braswell was on a fast track to become an internationally acclaimed opera singer when he suffered a car accident in 1995 that made him unable to speak for almost two years. After that, he lived a quiet life outside of the spotlight until his appearance on the 2008 season of America’s Got Talent where he was a Top 5 finalist, which gave him another chance at a career in entertainment. Since then, he has entertained audiences both internationally as well as shore to shore in the United States in concerts, television appearances, inspirational speaking and radio. Donald has recorded four studio albums and has an international fan club with followers in more than 25 countries.


Donald is a testament to the powers of the human spirit in difficult times and he inspires all who come to know him. 

Learn more about Donald’s story via this 6-min YouTube
clip showing his awe-inspiring first audition on
America’s Got Talent.

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Mark Koopmans is originally from Ireland. After working in Holland, Spain, France and England, he won his U.S. “Green Card” in 1994, and is an American by choice since 2003. Koopmans began his writing career with a feature for a regional magazine in California. Since then, he’s worked as a staff writer for newspapers in Florida and Texas. Koopmans is also a proficient blogger and is working on his next book, a novel. Koopmans lives in Virginia and is a married, stay-at-home dad to three active boys under the age of nine. He writes at night. 

Find Mark’s blog at
MarkKoopmans.blogspot.com



Buy Links for REVIVAL:

Reminder: I'm still on hiatus except for 
previously scheduled promo posts and IWSG.

Thanks for visiting. :)

20 comments:

  1. I learned early on not to pass up any chance to write, be it for an anthology or a website.
    Elizabeth will be throwing a box of wine against her computer? That I have to see.
    Congratulations, Mark!!!

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  2. Thanks Alex!! (And, I'll do my best to intercept said box of beverages :)

    @Melissa: Thank you, *friend* :)

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  3. Hm, I think I had better join you in that interception Mork. I wouldn't like you to get splashed too much. Many congratulations on your upcoming masterpiece. I mean that sincerely too.

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    1. Thanks, Jo. Your kind words mean a lot, because I know the other kind, too :)

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  4. Hi Mark - I hadn't realised that's how you got started ... what a wonderful story to pursue ... and yes we should be inspired by you in making it all happen for ourselves. I'd have some of that vino too ...

    Excellent - here's to tomorrow ... I'll drink to you then! Cheers Hilary

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    1. Thanks, Hilary, and if I ever find myself back in your neck of the woods, I'll bring a bottle with me :)

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    1. Cheers, Sara - and thanks for stopping by!

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  6. That was very brave of you as a young reporter to go out and grab the news. Congrats on the release.

    Susan Says

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    1. True story: My training at my first job was 45 minutes (and it was simply an orientation of how the office works!!)

      So, it was sink or swim... but this was my very first writing and I wasn't going to drown :)

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  7. That's awesome about the Gift of Water charity you were involved with. Never knew that about you. You were never an ambulance chasing reporter and never will be? Huh... I thought only lawyers chase ambulances. :D

    Congratulations on starting your book tour and good luck! Hugs, Eva

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    1. Oh Eva, you have nooooo idea how rotten *some* reporters can be.. You know that old saying, "if it leads, it bleeds,".... I saw that with my own eyes dozens of times (and I worked in regional newspapers...)

      I hated that, and while I was ordered to write up some reports on accidents, I never once volunteered...

      Thanks... it's been a crazy week:)

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  8. Oh wow, living and working in Haiti must have been challenging. Cool that your series was so well received in the press.

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    1. Thanks and speaking of Hawaii, O'ahu is as amazing as they say it is... AS SOON as you get out of Honolulu :)

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  9. Great post!! Wishing you all the best on your new release Mark. Thanks for hosting Melissa. Have a lovely week.

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    1. Thanks Nicola, Appreciate the kind words:)

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  10. Mark has just been everywhere. I'm so jealous!

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    1. I'm like a bleedin' gremlin.. I keep multiplying :)

      Thanks again for hosting me, too!!

      [Gives e-sibling noogies]

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  11. Mark, congrats on the new release. I enjoyed learning more about you and appreciated your encouragement in developing a writing career. Thanks, Melissa.

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    1. Thanks to you, JQ, for stopping by to share your words. I really appreciate them - and you!

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