Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Guest Post: Jo Sparks, author of The Birr Elixir

Welcome to author, Jo Sparks who joins us today with a guest post titled:  "A Tale of Perspective – and the Loss Thereof".  She is promoting her new book The Birr Elixir.  Welcome!

PublisherSparkes Productions
Date of publication: June 2013

Marra had never heard of Birr Elixir.

But when Drail of the Hand of Victory saw the words in an old book, she found herself agreeing to make it. Even lacking the right ingredient.

And after drinking it, the Hand of Victory defeated a Skullan team, something no one had ever done before. Now Drail walked the path his grandsire had walked, and Marra was offered a place as Brista, his potions mistress. She doubted her ability, but took the chance to escape her slave-like existence.

When she found a way to wake the mysterious sleeper, Marra wondered if she deserved the title after all.

But with Tryst's waking, ill luck and bad things suddenly dogged their tracks. Drail, being a man of action, saw only the good in people. Marra lacked his faith, but was frozen by her own timidity. When the time came to confront these enemies, would Tryst stand with them or against them?

Would it make any difference?

A Tale of Perspective – and the Loss Thereof
By Jo Sparkes

Years ago, heading off to college and terribly nervous about it all, I knew I needed a few things to make me different. To stand out, so to speak. Tarot cards were part of the plan, to give you an idea of how my mind works.

The big one was cultivating a love of NFL Football.

Being both a ‘Daddy’s girl’ and from the D.C. area, I’d grown up with the Washington Redskins. I knew the game, the names of the players, and thought it would give me a little edge in meeting all the other students.Particularly male students.

I hadn’t counted on my own obstinacy.

I threw myself into it, as with most things, with zeal. I watched all the football games and news, and grew proficient at picking winners. Several girls on our floor won the weekly pool, much to the astonishment of their boyfriends.

I entered it myself only once. You see, there was a guy I was interested in, and he loved football. He entered the pool that week as well.

At lunch on Monday he announced to our table that the football pool was tied. The game that night would come down to the tiebreaker – the selection of the final total score.Looking at me with a gleam in his eye, he said one person had picked 48, and the other 32.

I shook my head. “Pittsburgh and Philly – both strong defenses. Whoever took 48 is dead.”

Of course, he had picked the 48. And the 32 – the winning score as it turned out – was mine.

He never did ask me out.

The moral of the story? Maybe it’s not to get so focused on the immediate goal that we lose perspective on the larger task. Or perhaps that the male ego may indeed be as large as women claim – but our own can be pretty big sometimes.

Or, quite simply, that whatever you study in college, there’s truly money to be made in sports.

About the author:

A well-known Century City Producer once said Jo Sparkes “writes some of the best dialogue I’ve read.”

Jo graduated from Washington College, a small liberal arts college famous for its creative writing program, forgot about writing totally, until she had a chance to study with Robert Powell, a student of renowned teachers Lew Hunter and Richard Walter, head of UCLA’s Screenwriting Program.

She has written feature film scripts, scripts for Children’s live-action and animated television programs, a direct to video Children’s DVD, and commercial work for corporate clients. A featured writer on several websites, she was a member of the Pro Football Writers Association and (very unofficially) the first to interview Emmitt Smith when he came to the Arizona Cardinals.

Jo served as an adjunct teacher at the Film School at Scottsdale Community College, and even made a video of her most beloved lecture.

Her book for writers and artists, “Feedback How to Give It How to Get It” has received glowing reviews.

When not diligently perfecting her craft, Jo can be found exploring her new home of Portland, Oregon, with her husband Ian, and their dog Oscar.

Her latest book is the fantasy, The Birr Elixir.  Purchase your copy at AMAZON.

You can visit her website at or connect with her at twitter at  

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