Sunday, January 21, 2018

Why you should buy my books from Libros 787

It’s not often you’re able to pursue your dreams while supporting a new business from your home, yet this is an opportunity I’m able to enjoy thanks to Libros 787In case you're wondering, 787 is the area code for Puerto Rico and three numbers that will always live in my heart. This website is a Puerto Rico based company committed to supporting Puerto Rican authors while offering the largest selection of Puerto Rican authored books to distribute around the world.

In short time they’ve made a lot of progress and what I can tell you for sure is that unlike other experiences I’ve had with stores in Puerto Rico, this team is dedicated to running a solid operation that stays on top of things. Their negotiation was very fair and not only that, when they had a sale of one of my books, they contacted me directly to see where to make the payment to and did it with a faster turnaround time than Amazon. In addition, they are HUNGRY to find any Puerto Rican author to support them so that we all win. If that's not enough, they genuinely care about Puerto Rican authors and are all about all of us succeeding.

My experience so far has been extremely positive and one of my goals is to have them call me at least 3 times to ask for more books. Granted, I didn’t send many copies of my work, but they’ve offered promotion and done so without asking. It’s a refreshing experience and one I fully support. So if you’re looking for ways to get my books in physical form, this is a wonderful option to support me, support a business in Puerto Rico, and help me get more exposure.

Some people may ask if I’m not worried my sales rank will fall on Amazon… and the honest answer is that I’d rather lose a sale on Amazon than not give my full support to a well-run Puerto Rican business launched under the direst of circumstances. While some people would second guess launching a business right after Hurricane Maria, Libros 787 committed to their launch date and are offering inspiration to local businesses and people on the Island. Also, when it comes to my writing, it will never be about just me. It’s about the people who support me, who read my work and tell people, who review or rate, who believe in me and when someone genuinely offers support, they have mine. It’s not quid pro quo with these people, it’s respect and appreciation for something that’s not just from Puerto Rico, but something being done in a way that aligns with my values, which is worth WAY more than a sales rank on Amazon any day of the week.

So if you want to support me and a Puerto Rican business, by all means, visit www.libros787.com. If you do, you’ll get a free eBook with any purchase. Just contact me and I'll be happy to hook you up. In the meantime, also feel free to check one amazing book selection from people that like me, dared to dream of writing and carry the 787 in their blood.

Peace, love, and maki rolls.



Por qué debes comprar mis escritos en Libros 787

Si hay algo bien típico de Puerto Rico es la gente que dice que hay que apoyar lo del patio (o sea lo local). Es una frase con buenas intenciones pero que nunca me ha caído del todo bien, porque para mí lo bueno es lo que se apoya, no sólo lo que es local. Hay muchas bandas, autores, artistas y celebridades de Puerto Rico que en realidad no pintan nada en mi vida y tienen renombre. Sin embargo, hay artistas de poca fama que tienen TODO mi apoyo no porque sean locales sino porque son buenos.

Siguiendo esta línea de pensamiento, puedo decir sin duda alguna que Libros787 cuenta con mi apoyo total como autor independiente de Puerto Rico, no porque sea un negocio local, sino porque lo están haciendo bien.

Anteriormente he bregado con negocios de Puerto Rico y la experiencia ha sido bastante frustrante. No digo esto para señalar dedos sino para decir la verdad. Cobrar un libro vendido en una librería ha sabido tardar 5 meses. Con Libros 787, con la primera venta que tuvieron de mi libro Twenty Veinte, me contactaron, pidieron información de cómo pagar y me pagaron. Cero drama. Cero necesidad de perseguirlos. 100% proactivo. Una experiencia sumamente agradable, para serte sincero. Para otros negocios en Puerto Rico he sabido preparar 3 artes para Facebook, texto de introducción y han sabido usar uno de los elementos si acaso y editar el texto para añadirle información errónea y errores ortográficos. Incluso, las veces que pregunté si podían poner mi información, me dijeron, pues a ver si se puede. Con Libros 787, han compartido mis artes, han pedido información y me han recomendado sin tener que dar un llorao’. Salió de ellos apoyarme y eso para mí vale oro.


Más allá de estos detalles, su misión y valores son admirables. Como misión, ellos quieren ser la mayor fuente de libros de autoría puertorriqueña para distribuir estas obras al mundo. Su modelo de negocio no quiere acaparar toda ganancia sino que quieren que TODOS ganemos. Incluso, su lanzamiento fue poco después del paso del Huracán María. La fecha a ojos de muchos se tendría que cambiar pero ellos insistieron y lanzaron y de esa manera dan esperanza a los negocios y artistas de Puerto Rico de que no todas son malas noticias y que juntos echamos pa lante. Al momento mi experiencia ha sido sumamente positiva y gracias a esto tengo como meta que mínimo me llamen 3 veces a pedir más libros. Conste, no es que yo venda millares de libros ni que ellos tengan docenas de copias, pero me gustaría que muchas ventas de mis obras surgieran a través de ellos, porque quiero que mi éxito sea nuestro éxito.

Hay gente que me pregunta si no me preocupa que mis ventas se afecten en Amazon y la realidad es que no. Más me importa y más vale que mi éxito ayude a apoyar un negocio bien manejado de Puerto Rico con valores alineados a los míos que un ranking de venta en Amazon. Hace tiempo que mi trabajo va más allá de beneficio personal. Se trata de apoyar los que me apoyan, dar gracias a los que me leen, reseñan y recomiendan y crecer junto a otros. Ellos han apoyado lo mío con un verdadero interés genuino y eso se gana mi aprecio, mi respeto y un apoyo recíproco.

Así que si quieres apoyarme a mí y un negocio puertorriqueño, visita www.libros787.com. Si lo haces, te envío un libro electrónico gratis para darte las gracias por apoyar a los que el 787 es el código de casa y del alma.

Un abrazo

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

My top Books of 2017

Typical top-of-the-year lists include a Top 10 and after going back and forth on my list, rather than cutting out or leaving out any books I would actually recommend, here’s a long list of books I read in 2017 and why I think they’re worth your time or why they’re important reads. What I’ll offer here is just a snippet of my opinion of the book and will link to my reviews for each of these books, but safe to say, I honestly believe they’re worth your time.


Some books make an impact in our life. Maybe it’s what they say, maybe it’s how they say it. It doesn’t need to be long, but it packs a punch. Letters from the Heart is an exercise I believe everyone should engage in. In this short book, she writes a one-page letter to different emotions, thanking them, or engaging in conversation with them. The concept is a powerful one and something anyone of any age, any gender, and any social class can relate to. It’s a short read which you can read in 20-30 minutes, but it can change a life by inviting people to look at their emotions in a different light. Wise beyond its word count, it’s something to share with patients, survivors, students, and humans of all likes in life. An amazing concept by Cate Evans, which prompts the question, if this is how you start your writing career, what’s next?



Anaïs Chartschenko is one of the most powerful poets I’ve ever read. I didn’t say indie poets. I said poets. General. No alienation from the general population of writers. She does not pull punches. She does not flinch and she writes fearlessly. The Weightless One is a novel in poem form and it is raw and heartbreaking. It is about a young woman who is in a psych ward and it talks about her experience with an eating disorder and the circumstances that led to her stint. It is also one of the most important books I read last year and something I believe ANYONE going through this should read. It is not for the faint of heart, it goes where you know there will be pain. It is not a gentle read, she is not a gentle poet, and that it what makes her elite.  


What I expected from this book and what I got are two different things altogether… and that’s an amazing thing. This is NOT a Batman book yet it is a very Batman book. It’s about Paul Dini and how his life experiences have been influenced, impacted, and filtered through the lens of the caped crusader. It is intense, honest, gorgeously written, and exquisitely drawn and shows that when it comes to graphic novels, the sky is the limit and the soul is the fuel.


Although not the only non-fiction book on this list, it might be one of the most important to read. Although I dare anyone to spell the author’s name right from the first go, I invite most people to read it to ask themselves the questions of how to enjoy life more. Powerful, relatable, real. Non-fiction has a bad rep for being boring, and this is ANYTHIING but boring.


How many flash fiction books have you read? Odds are not many (and quite a lot of people will say none). Flash fiction is a literary style not often indulged in book form, which is odd since people so often say humans nowadays have a limited attention span, but that’s not why this book is great. This book is great because if you’re a writer, reading Sarah Brentyn will spark neurons and inspire you to write. That’s the beauty of the flash fiction in this collection. In just a few words, your brain is firing on all cylinders… and that’s not just because this is flash fiction; it’s because Sarah Brentyn is a damn fine writer and she shows off her brand of magic time and time again.



Big name stars, artists, actors, musicians, and writers are not people who you can always relate to…. Except if you’re talking about Neil Gaiman. I often refer to Neil on a first name basis and it’s not because I know him (though that is a life goal). I do so, because he’s someone that time and time again seems to be taking words and paragraphs from my heart and saying them out loud. This collection is varied and includes intros, letters, articles, and a whole lot of miscellaneous writing… and I can relate to most if not all of it. Neil is my fav author because he finds something he wants to do and does it. Not only that, he has an eerie way of saying things that are in my brain and it gets to the point where it sometimes scares me… and that is a beautiful thing to experience.



Terry Pratchett left us gold in his Disc World series. Every book seems to be a love letter to the written word and reading the series sequentially, I’m drawn more and more to him. If you want to learn how to write, you need to read…. And your brain will thank you for feeding it this Michelin Star author each and every time.


Neil Gaiman’s wonderful American Gods is not a perfect book. It’s downright weird in how it’s made up, with parts 1 and 2 being huge, part 3 being super short, and part 4 being an unexpected coda to an ethereal work of art. Some people have issues with certain characters. Some people think that some things were not well developed. Some people love the damn book. It’s on my list and it’s a chunky book, so what do you think I think of the book?


Oh how I’m tempted to write about this book in Spanish, but for this instance, I’ll keep it in English. Sin Noticias de Gurb is a random tale set in Spain and if you’re from Spain or have visited, you will adore this book. I have it 4 stars for the SOLE reason that since I haven’t been in the places mentioned, I KNOW I missed out on this. Hilarious, random, weird, and funny (because it needs two words referring to humor). I don’t know if there’s a translated version of this book and I truly hope there isn’t. Learn Spanish and read this book.


Roald Dahl books are PERFECT if you’re in a reading slump. They’re naughty, silly, fun, and clever as hell. From the three Dahl books I read last year, this was my favorite (the others being George’s Marvelous Medicine and the Giraffe, the Peli, and Me). Growing up is a trap and any Dahl book is the perfect escape.


Your inner child needs to read this. Apart from that, this was a very important book for me to read. Apart from smile inducing, fun, whimsical, and just a good for the soul read… it validates that what I do with the Daydreams on the Sherbet Shore is on point. To put it shortly, I needed to read this for validation of my artistic instinct with that project.



Oh how I loved visiting back with Pixie and friends. This sequel to the Adventures of Pixie Piper by indie author Maricel Jiménez is another lovely slice of fairy lore. It’s fun and starts wayyyyy familiar before gently and steadily leading you into a world all its own. The end has some fascinating twists and prospects for the series and shows Jiménez is only getting started.



Another wonderful poetry collection, the strength of love and vodka is in its variety. Christina Strigas is a talented word smith and while some people indulge in fluffy poetry, she offers a wide assortment of word mixology, from smooth, to biting, she’s someone to read and enjoy however you please.



Another collection by Chartschenko. This collection shows variety, range, and depth from this wonderful wordsmith. Like most of her work, it’s not for the faint of heart but it rewards readers who can take the most intense shots of life delivered in word form. She has four collections out and I’ve read three… but she’s so good, I know I can recommend all four and once I read her latest release, I’ll tell you why a little more. She is someone you need to read if you want to see how intense poetry can get.



The Strange Luck series is an odd trilogy because it fluctuates in genre and tone from one book to the next, which may confuse some people but I think will reward more. The first book is a darker middle-grade fantasy, while its sequel is a dark fantasy with some spine chilling scenes with exquisite phrasing and a very ethereal feel to it. A Darling Secret feels like a mid point between both previous entries, more YA than middle grade, with some twists and turns, but where Winters always excels is in her concepts. It’s an odd thing to focus on but so often I read something and am amazed by how smart a concept it is that you want to take the idea, grab a hold of it and look at all the angles.



I listened to the audiobook of this story and I HIGHLY recommend you do it too. The narrator is amazing and definitely brings this story to life in an amazing way. That said, the story is also incredibly fun with some nods to Douglas Adams and Pratchett in terms of humor and overall wit, but for a slightly younger audience.


This is one of those books they give in business school when it should be given in philosophy. A LOT of what is written in these pages can be related to life and is a deeply enriching experience.


You either like Bukowski or you don’t. There’s probably very few people in the middle when it comes to him. I like him and he’s the type of poet that can get feelings from me… which is just the way I like it.


Walt Whitman might have been partially prophetic because some of the things he writes feel like they’re from this century and not the 19th. Rich, deep, impactful. A wonderful poetry collection worth your time and possibly a place in your library.



For me, Frost is a polarizing poet and some of his poems are wonderful while others I’m sure I can’t relate to because I live in another century… but when he strikes gold, it’s til the end of time. This lovely collection is handy to keep around to have a read and I particularly like when he limits himself to 1-2 pages per poem because I feel like he hits the nail home, while longer poems wander a bit too much for my taste.



I had been given this book in high school AND college. I’d enjoyed it marginally but it was assigned, i.e. forced. Picking it up as an adult, it was a refreshing experience to read and enjoy on my own terms and for the love of the written word. In addition, it also brought to light how I feel being from Puerto Rico. Although proud of my heritage and my Island, I love being from the Caribbean and after Hurricanes Irma and María decimated our collective home, I find myself loving my Caribbean sisters and brothers more than ever. We’re all in this together and this collective identity is something I want to promote more.