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By: Heidi MacDonald
Blog: PW -The Beat
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, Doctor Who
, Top Comics
, Top News
, 9th Doctor
, 9th Doctor issue 1
, Cavan Scott
, Hitchhiker's Guide
, Jack Harkness
, Ninth Doctor
, Ninth Doctor issue 1
, Rose Tyler
, Secret Wars
, Titan Comics
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In 2005, few believed that a modern re-launch of the BBC adventure series Doctor Who would be successful. The show broadcast it’s last episode just before Christmas, 1989 after running for 27 years. In reviving the show for a new audience, the casting of Christopher Eccleston was a masterstroke, as the actor was known for his more serious roles in both television and film. Eccleston burst onto the scene as the Ninth Doctor, grabbing former pop-star Billie Piper’s hand and telling her to “run!” Eccleston parted ways with the show after only one season, something never done before or since in Doctor Who history. This left fans of Eccleston’s Ninth Doctor hungry for more. When Titan Comics announced they’d be releasing new Doctor Who comics, fans reportedly stuffed their email inbox with pleas for the release of a Ninth Doctor comic series.
We spoke with Cavan Scott, writer of the new Ninth Doctor Comic series about what it was like to bring Nine back to life in a new story featuring fan favorite companions Rose Tyler and Jack Harkness.
Edie Nugent: So, first question: why did you choose this particular moment in the Ninth Doctor’s timeline for your story?
Cavan Scott: For two reasons. First of all, it seemed the only natural gap in the series. Most of the episodes lead straight into each other, like one continuous story. Here, between The Doctor Dances and Boom Town, we have a definite gap where lots of stories are said to have happened that we never saw. Handy!
Secondly, we wanted Jack in there, mainly because we never saw enough of the three of them in the TV show.
Nugent: I had that thought instantly upon seeing where this story occurred: the fans will be so excited, because this group and moment were so popular.
Scott: Well, I hope so. They’re such a well-oiled machines when we see them in Boom Town too. They’ve obviously been adventuring together for some time.
Nugent: You have a lot of dialogue describing the “science” of the situation up front. Do you have a real interest in the science part of science fiction?
Scott: That question makes me smile because I have an ongoing ‘debate’ with Doctor Who book author Nick Walters where I insist that Doctor Who is fantasy and he throws things at me shouting that its science FICTION!
You know, in this case I didn’t even think about whether there was a lot of pseudo-science in the book. I was just trying to capture the tone of the original series, where they throw a lot of pseudo-science around. I think with Doctor Who, you need to make it sound plausible even if some of the science is dodgy!
Nugent: Nine is showing his most chipper self in this book, is that due to being flanked by the ‘dream team’ of Rose and Jack? Or has he just progressed in his emotional healing from the Time War by this point?
Scott: I honestly think that Doctor number Nine is chipper for the most of the time we see him – or at least he’s trying to give the impression that he is. A lot of people pigeon-hole him as an ‘angry’ Doctor, but he spends a hell of a lot of time smiling and even cracking really, really bad jokes.
Trust me, we’ll see his angry side as the book continues, but I wanted to show the fact that he is enjoying himself again.
Nugent: Sure, but there’s a real difference in tone here from, say, Dalek for instance, which is only 4 episodes earlier.
Scott: Well, the situation in Dalek is pretty grim. Certainly, we see a ‘lighter’ Ninth Doctor in The Empty Child to The Long Game. I think the resolution of The Doctor Dances would have helped as well. There we see the Doctor at his most optimistic. I definitely think he’s enjoying life with Rose and Jack.
Nugent: This story had a real “hitchhiker’s guide” feel to it, was that intentional?
Scott: Not at all! In fact, I didn’t realise it was there! Never a bad thing though, especially as Douglas Adams’ City of Death was apparently one of the templates for 21st Century Who.
I’m intrigued now. Which elements did you think were Hitchhikers-esque? (Is that a word? It is now)
Nugent: The story set up: they’re beamed into the hold of a sluggish and war-like race, scanned repeatedly to determine who they are, then saved from death only to be sentenced to it a moment later. Reminded me of Ford & Arthur’s first stop after hitch hiking off the earth into the Vogon ship. No poetry from your war-bots though.
Scott: I think the Lect would be particularly bad poets. All those ‘Directives’ and ‘Possibilities’ in their speech patterns will never touch the soul!
Nugent: Your credits are so diverse–was it exciting to be able to tell a self-contained, more adult television episode-style story? Was your approach to the material different as a result?
Scott: It was. In a lot of ways writing the comic was similar to writing Doctor Who audio plays, definitely when I was structuring the plot for all five issues, I went about it the same way as my audio work, working out the big set pieces, working out where the cliffhangers sit.
But – and this is a huge but – the fact that it’s a comic has left me giddy with excitement. Writing a long-form American style series has been a dream for me ever since I first picked up a Marvel UK reprint back when I was a kid.
Nugent: And what comic was that, do you remember?
Scott: I do. It was Marvel Superheroes Secret Wars issue one. I knew superheroes from TV and films and, even though I was a massive comic fan, it was largely British humour weekly titles. That first issue of Secret Wars literally changed my life, or at least my interests. It opened my eyes to the Marvel universe, which led me venturing into a comic shop and seeking out US comics, both for Marvel and their Distinguished Competition.
Oh, and it had Alpha Flight as the back up strip which introduced me to John Byrne, who I became obsessed about!
Nugent: That’s a lot of continuity to absorb for a first ever comic experience! Sort of like Doctor Who…
Scott: I think that’s what appealed to me. i like continuity and diving into new universes. It’s why I’ve been enjoying picking up the Valiant books recently.
Marvel’s Transformers comic was another major hook for me. Basically, the UK weekly soon ran out of original US material and so started slipping in extra stories between the US issues – which of course were part of the Marvel Universe too. And the Doctor Who universe for that matter, as Death’s Head first appeared in Transformers and then slipped into Doctor Who and then into the main Marvel U.
You’ll be sorry you asked me about that now! I could talk about this stuff for ages!
Nugent: Well, it is somewhat timely. Are you following the announcements from Marvel about the new Secret Wars? As a comic writer AND fan, you probably have different perspectives on it.
Scott: With a huge amount of nostalgia! I’m certainly intrigued to see what’s coming. The continuity geek in me is having a whale of a time spotting references in what’s been released so far. The writer in me is having heart palpitations about what they’re trying to pull off. I’m looking forward to it. I’m a sucker for these big game-changing events. Again, it’s John Byrne’s fault for Man of Steel!
Nugent: I noticed lots of moments in your story where Rose reaches for the Doctor’s hand & is pulled away. Is this an intentional after-the-fact foreshadowing of the separation from the Tenth Doctor in Doomsday?
Scott: Heh! It might just be. It might not be the last time you see that motif in the series either.
Nugent: So far you’ve written for Doctors: Three, Five, Six, Seven, Eight, Nine, Ten and Eleven. What Doctor would be your top choice to write for next?
Scott: Well, I wouldn’t say no for a chance to write for the current model – but really I’ve got a hankering to complete the set. In fact, I’ve written for another incarnation that I can’t mention yet. Spoilers!
Nugent: Speaking of spoilers, are there any tidbits you can give our readers regarding events still to come in your Ninth Doctor story?
Scott: Well, there are going to be suns and romans and floating octopi and dinosaurs and masks coming off. And lots and lots of more great art from Blair!
Ninth Doctor issue 1 is available in comic stores on April 1st.
By: Julie G,
Blog: Book Hooked
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As a young bride, Jennifer Smith couldn't wait to build her life with the man she adored. She dreamed of closeness, of being fully known and loved by her husband. But the first years of marriage were nothing like she’d imagined. Instead, they were marked by disappointment and pain. Trapped by fear and insecurity, and feeling totally alone, Jennifer cried out to God: What am I doing wrong? Why is this happening to us? It was as if a veil had descended between her and her husband, and between her and God—one that kept her from experiencing the fullness of love. How did Jennifer and her husband survive the painful times? What did they do when they were tempted to call it quits? How did God miraculously step in during the darkest hour to rescue and redeem them, tearing down the veil once and for all? The Unveiled Wife is a real-life love story; one couple’s refreshingly raw, transparent journey touching the deep places in a marriage that only God can reach. If you are feeling disappointment or even despair about your marriage, the heart-cry of this book is: You are not alone. Discover through Jennifer’s story how God can bring you through it all to a place of transformation.Writing
I have to be honest, after having just read This Is My Body
, I found the writing here to be a bit less than I had hoped for. I hate to say it, but in terms of quality of writing it's more in line with the simplistic and less literary forms of Christian memoir than it is with the literary style of memoirists like Ragan Sutterfield and Anne Lamott. That doesn't mean it's a bad book or that it has no value - it may appeal to a wider range of readers because of its style - but it didn't appeal as much to me personally. I felt like it was probably written for those who don't usually read outside of the "inspirational" category of non-fiction. It has more of a glossy magazine depth than what I'd consider to be truly amazing writing.Entertainment Value
Despite my disappointment with the writing, I did enjoy reading Smith's story. Almost immediately after my wedding (on my honeymoon, in fact) I developed some serious health issues that plagued the first few years of my marriage. I could so identify with her story of struggling in her new position as a wife and feelings of inadequacy. Because it does read fairly easily and it's not terribly lengthy I was able to finish it in just a few sittings, and I found the story compelling enough that I didn't want to stop reading.Overall
I recommend it to those who may have similar experience to Smith or who are struggling in the early years of a marriage. I don't think it's going to appeal to many readers outside of young women in the early years of marriage and in the evangelical Christian religion. It's really written for a fairly specific audience and I think that that audience is certainly out there (I'm proof of it) and will enjoy this book, but it does have a narrow reach.
Thanks to NetGalley for providing me with a copy to review!
Secondary Characters and Why They Matter
So any author knows how hard it is to incorporate secondary characters into your plot. It's easy to get lost in your main character's personality and development and completely overlook your "side characters' " depth. But secondary characters are way more than pawns used to move a plot forward- in fact, secondary characters can add to your protagonist and the overall feel of your story as well. Here are a few reasons secondary characters are so important:
1. They can Foil your Protag
If you have a really developed secondary character, he or she can help by being a foil to your protagonist. This is a simple way to move plot forward and keep your reader engaged- a foil (aka: opposite personality) to your lead is something that keeps a story well rounded.
2. They Move Plot Forward
Well developed secondary characters can help move plot forward creatively. If you have a good team of side characters fully integrated into your protagonist's story, the plot will move smoothly to a solid finish.
3. They Add Depth
Of course, secondary characters add a lot of depth to the story. If it was only your protag and a few villains it wouldn't be interesting! Not only that, but with a variety of characters comes a variety of themes and deeply felt emotions.
4. They Mix it Up
Secondary characters help to add variety and fun to your story. If you only have two types of characters it would get very boring very fast! In order to keep your reader engaged and interested, you need a wide range of characters and each one needs to be somewhat relatable/easy to empathize with. This will progress your story and keep your audience on its toes!
So those are a few reasons to really get cracking on your secondary character base! Hope they were helpful! If you have any further tips leave them in the comments below!
Describe your latest book. So You've Been Publicly Shamed is a book about the savage renaissance of public shaming that we've decided for some insane reason to inflict upon ourselves in this social media age. All my books are about crazy cruelty. But usually — as with my book Them — the crazy cruel people [...]
Earlier this year, the organizers behind the United States version of World Book Night announced its shut down. To retain some presence of this beloved event in this country, BookRiot and Harry Potter Alliance (HPA) will host a BYOB Book Drive.
In this case, BYOB stands for “bring your own, outrageous, outstanding, overflowing books.” Four meet-ups will take place on April 23rd (the same night as this year’s United Kingdom edition of World Book Night) in Chicago, Richmond, Washington, and New York City.
Here’s more from the announcement: “While we can’t provide multiple copies of favorite books to givers, we figure that if you’re anything like us you’ve got mountains of beloved books at home that you’re more than willing to share with others. So set aside some to donate, swap favorites and stories with fellow participants, and help the HPA’s Accio Books campaign reach this year’s goal of 60,000 books collected. With our powers combined!”
Disney parodies are becoming harder to distinguish from real Disney films.
Welcome to the biggest book promotion event I’ve ever seen, let alone held! To celebrate the release of four new books in the Trifecta catalog on March 31st, we’re putting everything on sale. We’ve also asked several of our friends to join with us, making this an amazing event. Please scroll down through the entire post so you don’t miss anything!! Then, on March 31st, head on back to http://www.trifectabooks.com and check out the four new releases – their purchase links will be live. They are:
Captain Schnozzlebeard and the Singing Clam of Minnie Skewel Island
by Rebecca Blevins
Fire Gate (Shinehah Saga #1) and Crystal Gate (Shinehah Saga #2)
by Pendragon Inman
Nemesis: Knight (the Chess Quest series #2)
by Michael D. Young
Let’s start with some Trifecta books!
ten-year-old Andy moves from California to his new house in Colorado,
the last thing he expects is to meet a ghost named Annie.
has been living in that house for eighty years. Will Annie spook Andy
away? Or will the two find out that sometimes, the best of friends might
not be who you first expected?
Andy & Annie series by author Jenni James and illustrator BC
Sterrett is like Diary of a Wimpy Kid meets Junie B. Jones with a
paranormal twist. Your young reader will love getting to know these
characters and going with them on amazing adventures!
You can purchase A Ghost Story for Kindle here and print here. Special event price: .99!
Andy and Annie are back at it again. This time, they’ve decided to
conquer the bullies who like to tease Andy for wearing green shirts.
Annie uses her magical ghostly powers for good in this funny early
reader story. She decides it’s time the school learns that wearing green isn’t mean—it’s cool! Join Annie and Andy on an adventure that will change even the toughest of hearts, and maybe even make the principal happy, too.
You can purchase Greeny Meany for Kindle here. Special event price: .99!
When nerdy eighth-grader Rich Witz unwittingly becomes a paladin, a white knight in training, he is thrust into a world where flunking a test can change the course of history, and a mysterious bully is playing for keeps with his life.
Rich’s grandmother leaves him one thing before disappearing for
good—a white chess pawn with his initials engraved on it. The pawn marks him as the next in an ancient line of white knights. He must prove himself in a life-or-death contest against his nemesis, a dark knight in training. With the ghost of an ancestor for his guide, he has seven days to complete four tasks of valor before his nemesis does, or join his guide in the realm of the dead.
You can purchase Paladin: Pawn for Kindle here or for Nook here. Special event price: .99!
Young Adult Contemporary Fiction
is Cami’s escape from her dark home life. It’s the only thing that
gives her hope – until she meets Adam Black. A talented dancer in his
own right, he asks Cami to be his partner, and she gains strength and
confidence as he unlocks whole new possibilities for her.
When Cami’s abusive mother overdoses and her already-broken family falls to
pieces around her, dancing with Adam helps Cami pull through. But he has
secrets of his own, and someone wants him found at any price. Cami gets
dragged into a web of danger and deceit. Now she must make a choice
between familiar darkness and uncertain light.
You can purchase Dancing with Black for Kindle here and in print here. Special event price: .99!
Mattie’s smart and she’s in line for a college scholarship, but she’s
not exactly the most popular person in school. When the hot and hunky
guys at the women’s convention bread booth give out free samples to all
the cutest, trendiest girls in the room, they overlook her. It’s just
proof that she’s not worth their attention—she’s not a free bread girl.What she really wants is to date Travis Banks, her high school’s
soccer king. But he just can’t see past her clumsiness and frizzy hair
to the real Mattie underneath, and sometimes, she can’t either. What’s
it going to take for Mattie to find the free bread girl within?
You can purchase Free Bread Girl for Kindle, Nook, and print. Special event price: .99!
Does true love really prevail?All
Lilly Price has ever known is living in the shadow of her widely
successful foster family. But when a twist of fate deals Lilly the hand
of Harrison Crawford, the most popular guy in Bloomfield, NM, everything
flips upside down.Sean Benally is a hard worker, he’s funny,
he’s generous, and he’s kind. He’s also the most amazing guy Lilly has
ever known. And she’s totally fallen in love with him. But he’s her
foster brother…Now she must choose between the unavailable love of her life—or the guy who promises to be available forever.
You can purchase Mansfield Ranch for Kindle here and print here. Special event price: .99!
Young Adult Fantasy
A black dragon hovered outside of Newtimber.
Sianna rubbed her eyes, but the dragon was still there, clutching a
round object that looked like a spotted egg. And then the egg fell,
hitting the ground like an atomic bomb, sending out waves of a
slow-moving fog that distorted everything it touched.
citizens of Newtimber change. Griffins. Vampires. Zombies.
Creatures from the myths of every culture come to life through the
people. Even Sianna changes, her skin becoming stone hard, and
she gains the ability to travel from the human realm into the dimension
of the fae to battle the evil bent on taking over the world.One person to
heal a family, a town, and save the world. It seems an impossible task,
but with the help of her new friends, it could happen. Right?You can purchase Newtimber: Fractured
for Kindle here
, Nook here
, and print here
. Special event price: .99!
lives her nightmares every night. While other teenagers are
dreaming of boys or traveling to exotic places, she must run a staircase
with no beginning or no end, or a terrible debt will never be paid.
Just before her seventeenth birthday, the dreams change. She is no
But her nightmares don’t end when she wakes up. Her stepmother and
stepsisters threaten to ruin everything she holds dear. She must protect
the secret that both she and her father have magic or they will use it
to their advantage.
As Sydney learns to control her magic, what seemed impossible
before—escaping her stepmother and those ever-present stairs—is now at
her fingertips. When she learns the ultimate plan of her evil captor,
Sydney must stop her at all costs, or she will forever be trapped inside
You can purchase Endless for Kindle here and for print here. Special event price: $3.99 – going to .99 on the 31st!
had it with her life. Six siblings in an overstuffed house are enough
to drive anyone crazy, and sometimes she dreams of escaping to some
fantasy world. When she suddenly wakes up to find herself being kissed
by a strange—but very handsome—prince, Jenny knows her life just got a
lot more exciting. Now stuck in a medieval land of castles and royalty,
when Jenny learns that the queen has agreed to marry her off to the
prince, it’s time to take matters into her own hands. She goes on a
quest to find out who dragged her to this time while trying to keep from
falling in love with either of the boys vying for her attention.
Genevieve has only known life under her mother’s rule. She wants to do
more than go to battle or deal with suitors. She wakes to find herself
in a new world filled with gadgets, electricity, and moving carriages.
She finally has the freedom to be who she wants to be with a family who
cares deeply for her and a boy worth any sacrifice. It’s more than
everything she always wanted.
As Jenny and Genevieve settle into their new lives, they face an unknown
evil which threatens everything they care about and makes them face
tough questions—like who they are and what they really want their lives
You can now purchase The Princess and the Prom Queen for Kindle here and print here. Special event price: $2.99 – going to .99 on the 31st!
Realistic Women’s Fiction
only been a year since her divorce, so why would Jane Adamson do
something as stupid as attempt to date again? Wasn’t her marriage
scarring enough? The answer was simple—her kids. They worried about her
and wanted to see her happy again.
She needed to be happy . She needed to learn to trust again and feel pretty again and human again.
As a mom of five, it was too easy to hide herself away and focus just on her kids. Who needs men, anyway?
Jane in part one of a six-part journey of self-discovery, conquering
the past, understanding love, and most importantly … healing, as she
finds the woman she once was.
You can purchase Drowning for Kindle here. Special event price: .99!
Sweet and Clean Romance Collection
Love Notes#1. Elahna Nezario gave up her musical dreams to help run the Queen of
Hearts, her mother’s chocolate shop, after her sister’s sudden death.
After an unfortunate run-in with Elahna’s childhood crush, owner of the
Dolce Theater, not only do her dreams surge back to life, but so does
You can purchase Hearts in Harmony for Kindle here. Special event price: .99!
Love Notes #2. Meredith Aaron lost all hope for love after a car accident put her in a
wheelchair. Who would want her, broken as she is? After her brother
tells her to save a dance for him at his wedding, she decides to somehow
learn how to dance on the only legs she has left—her wheels.
You can purchase Waltzing on Wheels for Kindle here and Nook here. Special event price: .99!
Love Notes#3. Camille Clark spends her time bringing light to the memorable moments of
Dolce—playing her harp at weddings, anniversaries, and even funerals.
She can’t help but wonder if someone will ever play for her. Will the
dark secrets of her past come to Dolce and ruin her future? Or will she
find her soul mate and finally walk down that aisle?
You can purchase Healing a Broken Harp for Kindle here and Nook here. Special event price: .99!
Main Street Merchants #1. Bridal consultant Laurie Fletcher spends all her time helping others
prepare for the most special day of their lives. Logan Reese is easily
the most irritating man on the planet, and for some reason, he’s made
annoying Laurie his mission in life. Will true love ever come Laurie’s
way, or is she doomed to watch others get their happily ever after while
she sits on the sidelines?
You can purchase And Something Blue for Kindle here. Special event price: .99!
Main Street Merchants #2. Cynical Morgan learned at an early age that life is just plain hard.
She’s decided that no one could possibly fall in love with her – all the
good guys want perfect girls, and with her messed-up family, she’s
anything but perfect. But then along comes the guy who falls
head-over-heels in love with her just as she is and helps her find the
bright side of life – and a second chance for perfection.
You can purchase For Love or Money for Kindle here and Nook here. Special event price: .99!
Main Street Merchants #3. Even though Cara has lost her childhood weight and is now composing her
own music, she can’t see her own beauty and she has no confidence in her
talent. A bumpy relationship with her mother certainly hasn’t helped.
Only the right guy can help her see inside herself to the amazing person
who has always been there, and to mend her frayed family ties in the face of her greatest sorrow.
You can purchase Five Golden Rings for Kindle here and Nook here. Special event price: .99!
Main Street Merchants #4. Quinn spends all her time managing D’Angelo’s Bakery – so much time, in
fact, that she rarely does anything else. When things get tough for the
bakery’s owner and she’s needed more than ever, dreams of romance and a
family of her own fly out the window – but then along comes someone who
shows her just how sweet life can be.
You can purchase Just Desserts for Kindle here and Nook here. Special event price: .99!
Main Street Merchants #5. Regan spends her days working in a bookstore and her nights reading. She
goes on grand romantic adventures in her head . . . but not in real
life. That all changes when someone sweeps her off her feet and carries
her up a mountain.
You can purchase Between the Lines for Kindle here and Nook here. Special event price: .99!
And now for some books from our friends! Authors are listed alphabetically by last name.
Big dreams take strength and determination.
dream is on the verge of becoming a reality. Lockhart Sanctuary, a
refuge for abused and confiscated cats, is what Cami has worked for her
entire life. But a dream that big requires a daily commitment. Cami
yearns for someone to share the dream with, and knows everyone in town
thinks Alex is the perfect man for the job. There’s one problem. She
wants fireworks with every kiss, not just friendship with a hint of
Sometimes what you wish for is closer than you think.
Alex Reynolds shares Cami’s passion for the sanctuary, and as the head
ranchhand, spends every day helping her dream come true. He longs to
tell Cami she’s held his heart since childhood, but losing a lifetime of
friendship is a big risk to take. Being by Cami’s side at the sanctuary
is better than letting go, but Alex knows someday he’ll want more.
Risk losing everything or fight for the dreams to come true.
The sanctuary is put in jeopardy when ignored threats take a deadly turn.
Cami and Alex must each choose to stand and fight, or lose everything
they dream of. Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
A Secret to Save Them All . . .
It was whispered years ago that when a pirate cursed a Philippine village with langbuan, or flying undead, a boy received a secret that would protect him from certain death. But even armed with a secret, can anyone survive the undead for long?
Seventeen-year-old Antonio Pulido has never known a time when the langbuan didn’t roam the streets every Ghost Moon Night, killing anyone in their path. He works hard to protect his family and the girl he loves from the deadly attacks, but he wants them stopped once and for all. Can Antonio uncover the decades-old secret and will it help him defeat the langbuan? Or will Ghost Moon Night come again and take someone he truly cares about? It falls on Antonio to save his village, but time is running out. The next Ghost Moon Night is nearly here and Antonio knows this is his last chance to destroy the undead and end their reign of terror — or die trying. Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
When she was
nine-years-old, Katie knew she wanted Chris to give her her first kiss. It
wasn’t because she was in love with him (no way, he was her best friend!
Besides, she was in love with his fourteen-year-old big brother), it was
because she could make him do anything she wanted.
didn’t really mean anything. After all, it was only a kiss.
started to change. They grew up. They parted ways and went to different high
schools. Then other girls and other boys—well, just one particular boy—came
into the picture, throwing their lives upside down.
Told from the alternating points of view of Katie and Chris, this love story between
two best friends will tug at your heartstrings and leave you thinking about how
the simplest things mean so much. Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
Parkview Manor has a secret, and
eighteen-year-old Cynthia is curious!When
Cynthia Holt takes a job at a former sanitarium, now operating as an assisted
living center, she instantly discovers something more is occurring than simply
providing the elderly with housing and care. Something very strange is going on
behind the locked door of Room 913!
she is warned to stay away from the room and to not discuss it or the occupant
with her co-workers, she is even more intrigued – and suspicious! Letting her
curious nature guide her, she immediately begins asking questions. When she
finds that Room 913 has been closed off; locked and sealed for many years, her
curiosity turns to concern. Though rumors abound, no one seems inclined to talk
about it.Not giving up so easily, Cynthia
persists in her pursuit until she finds out the truth – or does
she? Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
BFFs are matchmaking geniuses. They schemed to get Ginnie’s widowed dad to fall
in love with Tillie’s divorced mom. Then Ginnie stumbled upon her late mom’s
journals, making life totally awesome sauce … until her dad confiscated the
Ginnie is counting on Tillie’s help to make Dad change his mind, but Tillie’s
not sure the ghost of Ginnie’s mom will make a good addition to their new
family tree. When a blast from the past shows up and makes Tillie go
nutburgers, Ginnie is torn between helping her BFF and having her questions
answered. Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
In The Darkest Hours of Addiction, A Light Shines
one LDS woman’s husband flies off to Mexico to meet another woman, she
sells his stuff and starts a new life. To support her three children,
she guts part of her home to start a preschool and rents out another two
life is soon filled with new friends and activities, but the new
friends bring problems of their own. Is hope and healing possible as
they strengthen one another and rely on the Lord? And will romance
blossom again for Jessica?
is a story of love and friendship loaded with drama, inspiration,
romance, and the tenacity of three young women who find their strength
in the Lord. Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
The only thing she stands to lose are her shoes.
Cinderella is an ordinary teenage girl, with an
extraordinary name. But because of that
name, she and her cousins, Belle, Aurora, Ariel, and Snow White suffer years of
torment from their peers. Then as the
girls enter high school and the enticing world of dating, a life-altering
decision must be made. Is it finally
time to stop fighting, and surrender to the fairy tale clichés that have been
holding them back? By embracing their
names, the girls discover an inner-strength they never knew existed. And by
putting everything they have on the line, maybe, just maybe they will discover there
really is such a thing as ‘happily ever after’. Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
Bracken is a
typical teenage boy, more interested in the angles of the girl’s exposed
back teasing him from the seat ahead of him than in anything the
geometry teacher could present. His life is filled with school, video
games, and thoughts of girls, not necessarily in that order. Life just
flows along uneventfully and unacknowledged, like the electricity that
courses through the power lines — until PF (Power Failure) Day. On PF
Day, the sun strikes Bracken’s world with an unseen surge of
electromagnetic fury, which cripples power stations and burns
transformers to crispy nuggets of regret.
one in Bracken’s world had ever thought about how much they depended on
electrical power, but now, without it, they are plunged into survival
mode. Bracken soon realizes how lucky he is to live on a farm in the
Midwest. What seemed like a dull and backwards life before is now the
greatest chance for survival in what seems like a powerless world. Food,
water, and heat are readily available, although hard work is required
to make use of them. Bracken and his family must learn to survive like
their ancestors, who settled their land. Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
eight parade floats explode during the annual Fourth of July
celebrations, Agent Chris Harmer must find who planted the bombs before
the terrorists strike again. His troubles aren’t isolated to terrorism.
Chris falls in love with the FBI’s feisty psychiatrist, Alexis Osborne.
She won’t commit to someone who doesn’t share her religious values, and
Chris has no desire to convert. Purchase here. Special promotional price: $.99!
At forty years of age, I was impoverished and severely addicted to
tobacco cigarettes. I could not even afford a decent birthday gift for
my dear friend Cathy I had met online years earlier. In this book, I
tell the story of how my friend turned my makeshift present for her into
a gift of life for me. I tell how I overcame my addiction gradually. I
share tips, photos, and more! If you have ever said, “I wish I could
quit smoking,” or “I wish I could cut back,” I hope you will read this
book. Purchase here. Special promotional price: .99!
Today at Strange Horizons, I review Zen Cho's Crawford-winning short story collection Spirits Abroad. This is something of a milestone for me--the first review I've had published in Strange Horizons since stepping down as a reviews editor. It's also a welcome return to writing full-length book reviews, and for both of those occasions I couldn't have chosen a better subject with which to mark
When I was a boy, I remember my father who was an engineer, reminiscing about the days before Auto-Cad. When actual draftsmen would layout the details of the factories. My dad would talk about how he could see a certain beauty in the way that the conduits and ducts would be organized. I was thinking […]
via Studio Bowes Art Blog at http://ift.tt/19ALKX4
By: J. S. Watt,
Sometimes Princesses busy their lives with so much that it doesn't seem as if they have enough room or time for their own royal duties. They fill their time slots with the purposes and plans of others. They put off what they are called to do. And sometimes that causes a slip up in their understanding.
Last week I attended a small gathering at the library to celebrate a local author's new children's book. She is also the illustrator of her book. I read the entire flyer for the book signing. All I saw was the word costume. So guess who throws on her tutu and tiara and does same for Princess Stinkerbell and treks across downtown Galax for an awesome afternoon event? Yep, that would be me. When we arrived there were costumes already there. PERIOD COSTUMES. Made especially for the event. Pioneer times, and Indian costumes. Yours truly nonchalantly sits down to a table with her blue and pink tutu and a tiara. Ugh. Lack of time to prepare properly has started wars, I am sure. But in the midst of my sweet little blunder, I am still a princess. Thank God for His covering grace and mercy.
Not many days before that (or maybe it was right after?) I had a dream. It was graphic, and details are not necessary. The basis of it was Princess Jae running around helping all the other pregnant ministries come to birth when I was in the labor (almost HERE) stages myself. Finally the nurse told me it was time and I had to stop helping everyone else because my baby was HERE.
I got the hint, Lord. It is time for me to put a stop to helping everyone else get their lives together. Their ministries- together. It is time for me to settle into my own calling and just give it all the push necessary... because it's time. Seriously time.
God has perfect timing, even if we as His children do not, my lovelies. Never forget that. If you do not remember anything else in your walk, remember this. Pray daily for God's perfect timing. He will direct your paths. And it all shall work out smoothly if you take the time to listen to His direction.
Have a wonderful week my little ones. And be blessed in Jesus' name.
Above Disney Cinderella tiara can be purchased on ebay.
Constance Wu, the lead actress from the Fresh Off the Boat TV series, took on First Book’s speed reading challenge. In the video embedded above, Wu reads aloud from Margery Williams’ The Velveteen Rabbit.
Wu (pictured, via) managed to recite 59 words in 10 seconds. Click on these links to watch speed reading attempts from author Mo Willems, two actors from the Agent Carter show, and two actors from the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. show.
Just came across these fun book-focused parodies of Meghan Trainor's "All About The Bass", like Mount Desert Island High School:
Also love this "All About That Book" video from Griffin Elementary's Literacy Night:
and "All About The Books" from Andover Elementary:
and from Calusa Elementary:
and from Christina Iadicicco on YouTube:
And they're all right, of course! It's ALL ABOUT THE BOOKS.
Bibliotecas para niños y jóvenes adultos, proyecto de IFLA:
El objetivo del proyecto "El mundo a través del libro álbum" es crear una lista anotada de libros ilustrados de todo el mundo, recomendados por los bibliotecarios. Son 10 libros por país y estoy orgullosa de que mi Caperucita roja esté en la lista por Argentina.
IFLA viene de publicar la 2da edición de esta lista, ampliada ya a 52 países. Se puede bajar en PDF o comprar en versión impresa.
Acá dejo los links:
Poet Sjohnna McCray is the 2015 recipient of the Walt Whitman Award, an esteemed first-book prize for poetry given annually by the Academy of American Poets each year. McCray’s manuscript for Rapture earned him the award.
McCray will receive $5000 and his first book will published by Graywolf Press as part of the prize. In addition, McCray will be invited to a six-week residency at the Civitella Ranieri Center in Italy.
An Ohio native, McCray’s work has been published in a number of journals, including: The Southern Review, Chicago Quarterly Review and Shenandoah. Pulitzer Prize-winning Poet Tracy K. Smith selected McCray for the award.
“These poems are so beautifully crafted, so courageous in their truth-telling, and so full of what I like to think of as lyrical wisdom—the visceral revelations that only music, gesture and image, working together, can impart—that not only did they stop me in my tracks as a judge, but they changed me as a person,” stated Tracy K. Smith of his work Rapture. “Sjohnna McCray’s is an ecstatic and original voice, and he lends it to family, history, race and desire in ways that are healing and enlarging. Rapture announces a prodigious talent and a huge human heart.”
April is a fun month, the beginning of Mud Season here in central MA.
I've got a few appearances and lots of theater happening this month, all of which I hope you enjoy if you get the chance to pop by.
My first book, DON'T LET THE PIGEON DRIVE THE BUS! was published 12 years ago on April 1st thanks to the efforts of my agent, Marcia Wernick, editor, Alessandra
"Mrs. Thompson, why we only got two Bluford High books?" "We need more manga." "I like that Sharon Draper lady. We got anymore of her books?" These were just a few of the questions and statements directed at me about our high school media center's collection when I became a media specialist. Through day-to-day direct observation and through results of a student survey, I quickly realized areas of our collection that were being underserved - manga and urban fiction. There were groups of students who were all clamoring for the same few titles that we had of a certain genre or series and our "hold lists" were growing longer by the day.
Several reasons may attribute to underserved groups in a library program. Community dynamics change. Our small suburban school system has seen tremendous growth in the 18 years that I have been here - 400% growth. That translates into a graduating class of 78 in 1998 to a graduating class of 478 in 2015. In the same time period, our minority population grew from 5% to 30%. Our media center's collection does not reflect this growth. Another reason for underserved groups is the rapid growth in new styles of writing, like manga. It can be difficult to know whether new styles of writing are going to be accepted by your patrons, and we hate to waste money on books that are just going to sit on the shelves. We started out with three different manga series to test the waters. The popularity of these titles exploded! They rarely made it back onto the shelves as students would grab them from the "re-shelf" cart as soon as they were checked in. They also became our most stolen titles! (We do not currently have a book security system.) There were titles that our students desperately wanted to read, so why wouldn't I listen to them to continue to foster their love of reading.
As a reader, I cannot stand to read things in a series out of order. Many of my students are the same way. Why did we only have some of the Bluford High series? Why were #1, 4, 6-8 of Full Metal Alchemist missing? Our database showed that we had owned, at one point, #1-15 of the manga series BlackCat, but several of the titles were now marked "Lost". I set filling in the gaps of the asked about series as my first goal in strengthening our collection for our underserved patrons. In the urban fiction section, we went from two Sharon Draper titles to all 10 of her young adult titles. We were also able to fill in the missing Bluford High titles, which serve our urban fiction fans as well as our Hi/Lo students. For the manga patrons, we filled in all of the holes in the series we already had and aimed to include four new series a year.
Another strategy for building our collection for these underserved populations was to get input from the students. In adding more manga, we allowed the students who were most interested in these series to help us with the selection of new titles. They perused catalogs and looked online for reviews and suitable content (as some manga is aimed at a more adult audience). My African-American girls, who were devouring the urban fiction, asked about adding the Drama High series. They loved looking for new authors to tell me about as well. With the addition of the new titles, plus the marketing of the items through displays, our circulation increased 67% in one year! Allowing students to assist in making our collection stronger for them gave them a sense of ownership and pride in our media program.
YALSA's Teen Programming Guidelines states that librarians should "create programming that reflects the needs and identities of all teens in the community." Many media centers and libraries run into the problem of having an underserved population, and it is the duty of the librarian to recognize the needs of all patrons and work to strengthen the weak areas. Investigate your collection for missing titles and allow your teens input. These practices can go a long way in reflecting the needs of the communities we serve.
By: Carmela Martino and 5 other authors
Blog: Teaching Authors
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, Jimmy's Stars
, Mary Ann Rodman
, The Roller Coaster Kid
, Yankee Girl
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On our first date, my husband-to-be asked what I did for a living. I told him I was a school librarian. "Well there's a profession that will be obsolete in twenty years," he chuckled. I did not chuckle. I did marry him and twenty five years later I am still waiting for his prediction to come true.
OK, I admit that twenty five years ago I never dreamed that I would have a phone that could help me find my way around the zillion streets of Atlanta named "Peachtree." Or a device that could download hundreds of books, cutting down considerably on overweight luggage fees. My 1989 school library had computers, but they were little more than fancy typewriters. Who knew that entering the right search words on my jazzy little laptop could find pictures of the battleships my father-in-law served on in WWII? Or the history of the long demolished amusement park of my childhood, the genesis of The Roller Coaster Kid? Yes, Craig was right...I could access all that information without setting foot in a library.
But yet there are still libraries. In my neck of the woods, it appears that most people are there for free computer time and to check out videos. If I am there, it is to do research. Guess what? Not everything is available on the Internet. At least not for free. When I wrote Jimmy's Stars and Yankee Girl I spent months reading newspapers from WWII and the 1960's....on microfilm machines. While there are a good number of old periodicals available online these days, they never seem to be the ones I need or there is a hefty fee to join a database. All the branch libraries in my immediate area were built in the last 15 years and don't have microfilm machines. But if I need one, all I have to do is go downtown to the main library.
The library is a source of professional literature such as Library Journal or Publisher's Weekly. Usually they are kept in the librarians' work area, but they have always let me read them on the premises if I ask. There are also databases and reference materials that I can't find anywhere else...at least not for free.
I have had the good fortune to have worked in a university library which gave me access to all
kinds of information not found in a public library. My library allowed the public to use the collection for a nominal yearly fee. As an employee I had free reign, but even if I hadn't, I would have paid the fee. It's something to investigate.
I could go on forever about the information that you will find only in a library....but why tell you? Check it out yourself. By the way, my husband has had to finally admit that libraries and librarians are not obsolete or likely to become so any time soon.
Posted by Mary Ann Rodman
A lot--A LOT--of people are writing to me about a page in Home, the new book by Carson Ellis. Published in 2015 by Candlewick, here's the cover:
I draw your attention to the last image in the top row (a tipi) and the first image in the fourth row (an igloo). And... I sigh.
Once you start reading this picture book, you'll come to a page that says "Some homes are boats." But it isn't just a boat. No boat is just a boat, right? They have purpose.
On the facing page of the boat are three figures, partially clothed, standing in front of a structure, looking out at that boat as it approaches. The text is "Some homes are wigwams." That tells us that this particular boat is one on which--shall we say, Europeans--are aboard.
That boat has been their home for a while, but they're looking to build new homes. On Native lands. On the home lands that belong to those three figures standing by that wigwam.
I wonder if those thoughts occurred to Ellis as she did this part of the book?
I wonder if Ellis imagined, say, children of tribal nations on the East Coast as readers of her book?
While a lot of people are sighing with pleasure as they turn the pages of this book, lots of others are rolling their eyes. I'm among the latter. And all the Native and non-Native people who are writing to me? They're of the latter group, too.Home
-- for its point of view -- is not recommended.
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Since I just finished a series of posts on the right away to promote your books and get reviews, I thought I’d share the mistakes that you can avoid, too.
Before I self-published my first book, I did have a plan and a set of goals. I even hired two editors to help me polish up my manuscript, a book cover designer, and I did some online promoting. I co-own a small eBook publishing company, but I did most of the publishing on my own.
Nevertheless, there was still a lot that I didn’t know. And other things I did know (like using keywords), but for whatever reason, I didn’t utilize them. This post is meant to be helpful and advise you not to make the same blunders that I did when I was starting out on my publishing journey.
These mistakes are all taken from my own personal experience and in no particular order…
Mistake 1) Not setting up a mailing list on my website and blog right away. This is so important and the first thing every writer should do. Build an email list of readers who love your writing style and send out an email whenever you publish a new book or have a promo. (Be careful not to spam them too often.)
Mistake 2) Not asking book bloggers and/or reviewers to post a review on Amazon or goodreads. I just assumed that most of them would or that it was rude to ask. Make it easy for them by politely asking and providing links to where you want the reviews posted.
Mistake 3) Not having a link to purchase the other books in my series at the end of each eBook. If you have published more than one book, then make sure at the end of any and all previous published titles that you include a blurb (back jacket copy) and a link to buy your other novels.
Update every single book you have already published whenever you self-publish a new title. (I know it sounds like a pain in the butt, however, as a self-published author you are also running a business and doing all the marketing. Never miss an opportunity to sell more books.)
Mistake 4) Responding to negative reviews. (Yeah, I’m not proud of this.) I know it’s hard (like a punch to the gut or a stab to the heart) to read anything negative about your work and not feel defensive. It is natural and normal to want to respond—but don’t. Remain professional and just try to STOP reading reviews.
Mistake 5) Being too lazy to update my keywords or use them effectively. I had read about keywords on blogs and forums and in marketing books, but I didn’t think they were all that vital. Boy, was I wrong, wrong, wrong.
I was lucky enough to have another talented and successful writer explain how they work and why having the right ones would boost sales. Once I revised and entered the new keywords, my books sales tripled within about six weeks. (It does not happen overnight, so be patient.)
Mistake 6) Not “branding” my book series with an original series title. I just picked a random series title without researching it. “Spellbound” is so widely used that something more original would have been better.
Mistake 7) Not “branding” my book covers in my YA series. Each of my covers had a different look, so at a glance readers couldn’t tell what the reading order was.
Marketing Tip: And book covers in a series with the exact same image used on every cover can be confusing for readers, too. And since only self-published writers seem to do this, it will red flag an author as not traditionally published. If you want to "brand" your series, you can use similar images and the exact same font style on every cover instead, just like designers do on a traditionally published series. In my opinion, the goal is make your book appear as if it has been professionally published by having a quality-looking book cover and amazing product description, among other things that will weed out your competition.
Mistake 8) Wasting money on blog tour companies. (No offense to the ones that are actually helpful.) I had more success and reached more reviewers on my own. Yeah, it is time-consuming, but so worth it. There are many sites that have lists of book bloggers by genre that you can use to contact reviewers on your own. Create your "review request letter" and do your own promotion.
Mistake 9) Not connecting with readers. I should have started a “street team” after the first book was published to help promote my other novels. Interacting with readers is so awesome and fun. Readers and book bloggers are so supportive and amazing that if you are lucky enough to build a fandom, they will become your biggest promoters.
Mistake 10) Sending out ARCs to reviewers, and then two weeks later, sending them a revised version after catching a typo or plot hole, because I was worried about getting negative reviews. This only made bloggers angry and cluttered their inbox. (My advice is that once you send it to a reviewer, do not contact them again. Not even to follow up and ask if they had read the book yet or posted the review. Unless, you are promoting for a pre-order and want to send reviewers a polite reminder the day the book goes live.)
I made a lot of stupid mistakes doing this on my own, and if you can avoid some of mine, you’ll have a much better chance at success with your first published book.
However, I did do a few things right, like having critique partners go over my manuscript, working with freelance editors to polish the storyline, getting a professional book cover design, contacting book bloggers, and studying the craft and marketing techniques.
Wishing every one of you much success on your publishing journey!
What not to do when using social media.
I came across an article about why apocalyptic fiction and movies appeal so much to the YA audience. The writer, Tommy Wallach, author of We All Looked Up, expands the notion to include science fiction as well. See “The Lasting Power of End-of-the-World stories here.
On a related note, I enjoyed “What I Learned from Watching ‘Insurgent’ with My Mom” by Maddie Crum for an inter-generational look at YA apocalyptic stories and their broader appeal. I haven’t seen Insurgent yet, but hope to get there this week. It’ll be very interesting to see what they do with the third novel, considering what happens to Tris, the protagonist, in the end.
For what it’s worth.
© 2015 Ray Rhamey
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There is a new genre emerging..."New Adult" fiction for older teens aka college-aged readers. You never stop growing up, but little in the market seems to address the coming-of-age that also happens between the ages of Nineteen to Twenty-six. Life changes drastically once high school is over, you have college, first jobs, first internships, first adult relationships…Part of the appeal of NA is that the storylines are about characters who are taking on adult responsibilities for the first time without guidance from their parents. And the storylines generally have a heavy romance element.
Keep this in mind as you revise your wonderful story, New Adult books are mostly about that specific time in every person's life—the time when the apron strings are cut from your parents, you no longer have a curfew, you're experiencing the world for the very first time, in most cases, with innocent eyes. New Adult is this section of your life where you discover who you want to be, what you want to be, and what type of person you will become. This time defines you. This is the time of firsts, the time where you can't blame your parents for your own bad choices. An NA character has to take responsibility for their own choices and live with the consequences. Most storylines are about twenty-something (18 to 26) characters living their own lives without any parents breathing down their necks, and learning to solve things on their own as they would in real life. New Adult fiction focuses on switching gears, from depending on our parents to becoming full-fledged, independent adults.
I am a firm believer that if you’re going to write a certain genre that you should read it, too. So I’m going to recommend that you start devouring NA novels to get a real sense and understanding of the genre before you write one.
Here are some great recommendations: https://www.goodreads.com/genres/new-adult-romance and http://www.goodreads.com/genres/new-adult and https://www.goodreads.com/shelf/show/new-adult-romance
Just as YA is fiction about teens discovering who they are as a person, New Adult (NA) is fiction about building your own life as an actual adult. As older teen readers discover the joy of the Young Adult genres, the New Adult—demand may increase. This, in turn, would give writers the chance to explore the freedom of a slightly older protagonist (over the age of 18 and out of high school, like the brilliant novel, "BEAUTIFUL DISASTER" by the amazing talents of author, Jamie McGuire) while addressing more adult issues that early 20-year-olds must face.
Older protagonists (basically, college students) are surprisingly rare; in a panel on YA literature at Harvard’s 2008 Vericon, City of Bones author talked about pitching her novel, then about twenty-somethings, as adult fiction. After several conversations, Clare realized she had to choose between adults and teens. She went with teens.
Quote from the publisher, St. Martin’s Press: We are actively looking for great, new, cutting edge fiction with protagonists who are slightly older than YA and can appeal to an adult audience. Since twenty-somethings are devouring YA, St. Martin’s Press is seeking fiction similar to YA that can be published and marketed as adult—a sort of an “older YA” or “new adult.” In this category, they are looking for spunky but not stupid, serious but not dull, cutting-edge, supernatural stories.Quote from Georgia McBride, author (Praefatio) and founder of #YALitChat and publisher at Month9Books: "New Adult is a fabulous idea in theory, and authors seem to be excited about it. But in a world where bookstores shelf by category, to them, it is either Adult or Young Adult. Some booksellers even call their YA section “teen.” And when you have a character who is over a certain age (19 seems to be the age most consider the start of New Adult), it is received as Adult. In some cases, the designation by publishers causes more confusion than not.Let’s face it, YA is associated with teens, and at 19, most no longer consider themselves teens. So, it would support the theory of placing these “New Adult” titles in the Adult section. However, with the prevalence of eBook content, it would seem that the powers that be could easily create a New Adult category if they really wanted to...." There’s also a list on goodreads of New Adult book titles. These books focus on college age characters, late teens to early twenties, transitioning into the adult world.
Some popular authors of the NA category include:
- Jamie McGuire
- Jessica Park
- Tammara Webber
- Steph Campbell
- Liz Reinhardt
- Abbi Glines
- Colleen Hoover
- Sherry Soule
Would you buy New Adult books?
Does the genre appeal to you?
Does it sound better than YA (teen novels)?
Or are you happy with YA as it stands?
Do you consider YA to include characters that are over the age of eighteen?