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1. ‘The Story of Ebola’ by Yoni Goodman

A short animation for Global Health Media Project about the dangers of Ebola.

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2. Six Steps to Nail Your Plot, Motivation, Character, and Story Opening plus AN EMBER IN THE ASHES Giveaway

I was reading an interview with NYT Bestselling author Tess Gerritsen over on Novel Rocket, yesterday, and she mentioned that her favorite piece of writing advice is to focus on the character's predicament. I love, love, love that, because it actually addresses four different aspects of your WIP.

In one fell swoop, you can nail the core of your character, the movement of your story, the place you start it, and how you tell it.

Here's how.

  1. Start by putting yourself in your character's head. What's her problem? What no-win predicament does she find herself in? Journal this, just as a rough paragraph or two or three, writing as if she is screaming at someone for putting her in that situation. Let it all loose. Imagine the confrontation, all the emotion, the frustration, the desire to move forward and fix something.
  2. Examine that thing that she has to fix and establish the consequences if she fails. Brainstorm why she wants to fix it and jot it down your on one page in a notebook, note software program, or on a Scrivener entry. Why does she need to fix the problem? Why does she have no choice to act to change that situation? 
  3. What is your character willing or forced to give up to fix her predicament? Add a second page to your notes. Write down what is most important to your character. Explore what defines her view of herself, and how this predicament effects that. What wound from her past or weakness of character is going to make it harder for her to repair the problem? What unexpected strengths can she find along the way that will help her?
  4. Now build your plot like dominos. Once you have a pretty good grasp on the predicament itself, it's relatively easy to make a timeline of how the problem, the person who created that problem (or personifies it) and your character intersect. You can build your plot as if it's inevitable: this happened, your character reacted, because your character reacted, this other thing happened, and so on. One thing leads directly to another.
  5. Next, taking into consideration who your character is, find the place in the timeline, or right before what you've jotted down, where the problem first rears its head. This could be something that your character did that set the problem in motion, or something coming in from outside to shake things up, but there has to be a change. This is where you're going to begin your story, on the day that is different, with the first domino. Write down what that incident is.
  6. Finally, put everything together to set up the story. Your opening has to show the inciting incident, suggest the story problem, and jump start the action, but you also want to foreshadow your character's strength and the weakness that is going to hold her back. You want to give us a hint of the personal lesson she will have to learn in order to get out of the predicament she's facing.
That's it. When you look at it from the standpoint of the character's predicament, every aspect of the story comes together. Whether you're a plotter or a pantser, and regardless of whether you're writing a fantasy or sci fi novel, a romance, a contemporary, or virtually anything else, these six simple steps will help you get enough information to structure it in a way that will let it feel like it's writing itself. 

Happy writing!

This Week's Giveaway



An Ember in the Ashes
by Sabaa Tahir
Hardcover
Razorbill
Released 4/28/2015

I WILL TELL YOU THE SAME THING I TELL EVERY SLAVE.

THE RESISTANCE HAS TRIED TO PENETRATE THIS SCHOOL COUNTLESS TIMES. I HAVE DISCOVERED IT EVERY TIME.

IF YOU ARE WORKING WITH THE RESISTANCE, IF YOU CONTACT THEM, IF YOU THINK OF CONTACTING THEM, I WILL KNOW

AND I WILL DESTROY YOU.

LAIA is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire’s greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution.

ELIAS is the academy’s finest soldier— and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he’s ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor.

When Laia and Elias’s paths cross at the academy, they find that their destinies are more intertwined than either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself.

Purchase An Ember in the Ashes at Amazon
Purchase An Ember in the Ashes at IndieBound
View An Ember in the Ashes on Goodreads

More Giveaways

I have exciting news! Want to know the title for the final book in the Heirs of Watson Island trilogy? Head on over to Elizziebooks.com. Liz has my first ever video about Compulsion and the title, plus a great new giveaway. There are two additional places to win a necklace and T-Shirt, and you might even find a Persuasion teaser along the way. : )





There's also a grand prize, and you'll be automatically entered to win it when you enter any of the three T-shirt giveaways. But if you'd like even more chances to win, keep an eye out here, and on my Facebook page. I'll be posting a separate Rafflecopter in a little while!



And finally, don't forget. There's a new Compulsion for Reading bag of books this month!


What About You?

Have you wrestled with this kind of an approach to writing your story? Are you a plotter or a pantser, and is this too much or too little planning for you?

As a reader, do you like stories where the plot feels inevitable? Can you think of an example of a book that read like the characters never had any choice but to do what they did?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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3. Butterfly and Friends!

Bryan Ballinger - www.bryanballinger.com 

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4. Violent. Fierce, Proud: Reviewing Lidia Yuknavitch's THE SMALL BACKS OF CHILDREN

Lidia Yuknavitch is fearless—a trait I typically admire. Her new book opens with an exquisite scene and then slowly peels away to fractions. My reflections on it all are here, in the New York Journal of Books.

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5. हिंसक होते बच्चे

हिंसक होते बच्चे

कई बार लगता है कि बच्चो की गुस्सैल और हिंसक होती प्रवृति के जिम्मेदार और कोई नही हम खुद ही है. कारण भी एकदम ठोस है. असल में, बदलते समय के साथ साथ हमारी करनी और कथनी मे फर्क आता गया जो हम महसूस ही नही कर पाए और बच्चे इस बदलाव को सह नही पाए.

 

यकीनन हम बच्चो को किताबी पाठ पढाते रहे कि सदा सच बोलो . ईमानदारी का जीवन अपनाओ. बडो का आदर करो. नकल करने से जीवन मे कभी सफल नही होगे.पर हकीकत मे हम उनके आगे कुछ और ही परोसते रहे.

मसलन, अकसर झूठ बोलने पर हम ही उन्हे उकसाते हैं.पाठ ईमानदारी का पढाते हैं और आफिस से रिश्वत या तो ले कर आते हैं या उनके सुखद भविष्य के लिए दे कर आते हैं और तो और परीक्षा हाल मे बच्चो को नकल मारने के लिए सदा उत्साहित करते हैं ताकि कही अच्छी जगह दाखिला होने मे कोई दिक्कत ना आए.

जुगाड संस्कृति से हमेशा बच्चो को जोडे रखना चाहते हैं ताकि कोई दूसरा बच्चा उसको काट करके आगे ना निकल जाए. बडो का आदर करने का पाठ तो पढा देते हैं पर हम घर पर अपने ही बडे बुजुर्गो से ऊची आवाज मे बात करते हैं.

ऐसे मे अगर हम अपनी गलती मान लें तो कोई छोटे नही बन जाएगे.बच्चो का सही मार्गदर्शन हमारा पहला और आखिरी कर्तव्य होना चाहिए….

कैसा लगा आपको ये लेख हिंसक होते बच्चे …. जरुर बताईएगा :)

The post हिंसक होते बच्चे appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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6. First Look: ‘Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip’ Trailer

Alvin, Simon, and Theodore are going on a road trip…

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7. Rhys Ifans visits School he is Patron Of, Hosts Q&A

Rhys Ifans plays many ostensibly “quirky” characters, and is best known to us as Xenophilius Lovegood. Like many other Harry Potter actors, Rhys Ifans works to be apart of the community of which he is from, and give back in anyway he possibly can. Originally from northern Wales, Ifans has become patron of a school near where he grew up.Ysgol Plas Brondyffryn in Denbigh, the school that Ifans is patron of, is the regional center for autism education. Of its importance to him, Ifans said thatYsgol Plas Brondyffryn feels like “home.” On a recent visit to Ysgol Plas Brondyffryn, Ifans hosted a Q&A about his acting career, and spoke to The Daily Post about his work there. The Daily Post reports:

The Ruthin-born actor was treated to an impromptu performance of the song from Oliver! by youngsters at Ysgol Plas Brondyffryn, the regional centre for autism education in North Wales of which he is a patron.

Ifans, who has appeared in blockbusters such as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and The Amazing Spiderman, responded with applause and said: “That was great guys. When are we going on tour?”

He spoke of his rise to fame and the pros and cons of life in the spotlight during a question and answer session which followed.

“They (the staff) very kindly invited me to be patron. I thought it was just a great opportunity.

“I have many friends with children who suffer with varying degrees of autism, so I am familiar with the condition.

“My friend’s kids who are autistic, I am so very, very fond of them. They’re just such amazing kids on every level.

“Given that there was an establishment like this doing such great work on my doorstep, it made sense to get involved as much as I can.

“For all my success, being able to give up my time and energy to support this beats any award you can ever be given.”

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8. It's live!! Cover Reveal: How It Ends by Catherine Lo + Giveaway (International)

We have another great cover reveal for you, YABC!

Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for HOW IT ENDS by Catherine Lo, releasing June 7, 2016 from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from Catherine:

 
Hi YABC! Welcome to the cover reveal for HOW IT ENDS.
 
A little something about me – I’m a huge admirer of visual artists, but have absolutely zero skill in that area. Less than zero. So when people asked me what I hoped for in a cover, I just stared at them blankly. I couldn’t imagine how anyone would translate my book into cover art. 
 
On the day the email arrived with the subject line Cover!, my hands were shaking so badly that it took me three tries to tap the attachment. And then the cover you’ll see below filled the screen. To say that I love it would be the understatement of the century. I’m so grateful to everyone at HMH Kids for all their hard work, including my editor Sarah Landis and the amazing designer who created this stunning cover, Cara Llewellyn. 
 
I cannot wait to share this book with all of you, and revealing the cover is just the first step.
 
So scroll down and check it out! And let me know what you think on Twitter with the hashtag #HIEcover.
 
~ Catherine Lo (HOW IT ENDS, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers)
 

 

 

Ready to see?

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Here it is!

 

b2ap3_thumbnail_HOW_IT_ENDS.jpg

*** If you choose to share this image elsewhere, please include a courtesy link back to this page so others can enter Catherine's giveaway. Thank you! ***

 

HOW IT ENDS

by Catherine Lo
Release date: June 7, 2016
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers
ISBN: 978-0-544-54006-4
 
 
About the Book
 
How it begins…
 
"You're in my English class, right?"
I almost checked behind me to make sure she wasn't talking to someone else.
 
How it unravels…
 
“You can be my best friend without being my only friend."
Her words were knives raked along my skin. I could hear the goodbye in every syllable.
 
How it Ends.
 
Why should I keep her secrets when she didn't keep mine? All it would take was one little click and a carefully worded message.
 
How it Ends is an honest, heart-wrenching tale of a friendship from first meeting to breakup. Told through alternating points of view, it is about two best friends’ tumultuous sophomore year of bullying, boys and backstabbing and what can happen when friends choose assumptions and fear over each other.
 

b2ap3_thumbnail_catherinelo2.jpgAbout the Author

Catherine Lo is a high school teacher who has the good fortune to work with some of the most creative and personable kids around. She keeps her classroom bookshelves stocked with the latest YA fiction, and considers it her personal mission to match even the most reluctant readers with books that will speak to them. Catherine lives in Mississauga, Ontario with her husband and two children, who make her laugh every day and are extremely tolerant of her writerly obsessions. HOW IT ENDS is Catherine’s debut novel.
 

Twitter | Web | Goodreads | Facebook

 

 

Giveaway Details

One winner will receive a signed ARC of HOW IT ENDS (when available). 

Entering is simple, just fill out the entry form below. Winners will be announced on this site and in our monthly newsletter (sign up now!) within 30 days after the giveaway ends.

During each giveaway, we ask entrants a question pertaining to the book. Here is the question they'll be answering in the comments below for extra entries:

What do you think about the cover and synopsis?

Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter the giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Read More

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9. Free Video Training Series on School Visits

Group of Elementary Pupils In ClassroomFor those of you who write children’s books and are interested in school visits, here’s some great news!

I ran a survey several months ago asking you to tell me your biggest question (or fear) about school visits. So many of you responded and shared your concerns and questions, that I’ve decided to provide a FREE Video Training Series that will answer your most burning questions.

The topics will be:

VIDEO #1: 10 Tips for a Successful School Visit (these ten tips will provide you with a solid foundation for doing school visits)

VIDEO #2: Things That Can (and Do) Go Wrong – and How to Deal With Them (we’re always afraid of the unknown, with this video I’m looking to make you more prepared!)

VIDEO #3: Answers to Your Top 10 Most Frequently Asked Questions (certain questions came up in your submissions again and again – I will answer these critical questions in order to make you feel more confident going into the classroom.)

Click here to sign up for the free training…. but do it quickly. The videos expire on July 14th! Once you sign up, you will soon receive an email giving you access to the first video!

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10. Margaret Atwood to Create Cartoons For a Comics Anthology

Margaret AtwoodAward-winning author Margaret Atwood has become well-known for writing novels, short stories, and children’s books. Now, she will also add “comics artist” to her résumé.

Atwood has agreed to produce artwork for an anthology called The Secret Loves of Geek Girls. According to the Kickstarter page for this book, she “will be contributing her own drawn cartoons detailing her personal experiences as a young woman, created specifically for this project.”

Publisher Hope Nicholson describes this book as a collection of dating and love stories from both the fans and creatives behind video games, comic books, and science-fiction works. To date, this crowdfunding campaign has received more than $60,000 in donations; the initial fundraising goal was set at around $30,000. (via Entertainment Weekly)

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11. Illustration Friday: Sharp



Well.  That's going to hurt.

I originally doodled this thinking about a sharp dive into something wonderful.  My younger daughter suggested stars, so stars it was.  But then it slowly dawned on me, after I had drawn about 70 stars, that those things are rather pointy.  And sharp.  But then my older daughter suggested that perhaps those are cooked pasta stars, the tiny ones that go into soups.  Yes!  Pasta stars!  Nice save.

Speaking of diving into things, I am going to dive into something of my own.  I recently had the pleasure of meeting and learning more about Heather Von St. James.  The more I read, the more I became inspired.

In 2005, just three months after giving birth to her daughter and at the age of 36, Heather was diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer.  Without treatment, she had just 15 months to live.  I can't even pretend to know the level of heartbreak and fear she must have felt then.  As a child, Heather liked to wear her father's jacket, which was crusted with drywall dust, essentially wrapping herself in asbestos.  The effects of high asbestos exposure can take decades to manifest, lying in wait.  And when they appeared in Heather, things looked dire.  She underwent a very risky surgery which, thankfully, was successful.  Now, ten years since her diagnosis, she is a cancer research advocate and blogger, bringing awareness to the need for funding and research and helping those battling cancers of their own.  She is a survivor, she is a warrior, and she is awesome!

Heather introduced me to All or Nothing Day, which is coming up on July 26 and which embodies how she strives to live her life since her diagnosis.  All or Nothing Day is about devoting time to live life to the fullest, to be bold, and to push yourself to do things that you've always wanted to do.  So this year, for All or Nothing Day, I have decided to truly put effort into a project I started about five years ago.  As bucket lists go, mine is pretty short.  All the important things, I have and do everyday.  I'm lucky.  But one thing that has been nagging at me is the desire to create a picture book loosely based on the antics and adventures of my daughters.  I'd like them to have something to look back on when they are older that brings back the memories and giggles of a childhood well spent.  I've been working on it in bits and pieces without any cohesiveness.  A few of the images I've even posted for Illustration Friday.  But I'd really like to dive back into it this year and really try to finish it.  I'm hoping that a public declaration, even if it's to the few who visit this blog, will spur me on.

Wish me luck.

July 26.  All or Nothing.  What will you do this year?

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12. Malala Yousafzai Launches the #BooksNotBullets Hashtag

Nobel laureate and education activist Malala Yousafzai has launched the #BooksNotBullets social media hashtag. In honor of her eighteenth birthday, she hopes that world leaders will consider redirecting eight days’ worth of military spending for educational pursuits.

According to the Malala Fund Blog, this act would raise $39 billion which could “provide 12 years of free, quality education to every child on the planet.” To promote this agenda, Malala hopes to inspire followers to post a photo of themselves holding one of their favorite books and a statement on why they prefer “books not bullets.”

Malala herself kicked things off on Instagram with a picture of herself and a copy of The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank. Author James Patterson joined in by sharing the following message on Facebook: “Peter Pan inspires me to this day. That’s the power of books and education.” Click here to watch a video that showcases Malala’s 2015 Oslo Education Summit address.

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13. Mischief and Malice by Berthe Amoss

It's 1941 and in New Orleans, Addie Agnew, 14, is a girl with a vivid imagination and some big growing pains.  Addie had been living with her Aunt Eveline in a house that she loved and that contained all her memories.  But when Aunt Eveline passed away, Addie was forced to move next door and live with her Aunt Toosie, Uncle Henry and her cousin/rival Sandra Lee.  But luckily for Addie, her strong Catholic faith and the communion of saints allows her to keep a running conversation with Aunt Eveline, who was and still is her moral compass.

Addie has always been best friends with Tom, a next door neighbor, but when his father Louis suddenly shows up, she falls head over heels in love with the older man, despite the fact that he had deserted Tom and his mother ten years ago.  And after Louise asks Addie to go to the train to pick up Tom, she is sure he feels the same way about her.  Tom, however, refuses to speak to his father and friction flares between him and Addie over it.

Meanwhile, a family has rented out the house that Addie lived in with Aunt Eveline.  Addie discovers their real home is a plantation called Oakwood, just north of New Orleans, so they are not planning on remaining in the house for long.  And they have a daughter, Norma Jean Valerie, who is rather thin and sickly.  She's Addie's age, and soon the two girls are friends.

Addie's life revolves around her family, her friends, her school, an upcoming dance that she doesn't want to go to and a Christmas play she is helping the nuns at her Catholic school put together, and of course, boys, crushes, and being in love with an older man and with always trying to best Sandra Lee and never succeeding.  It all sounds like pretty normal stuff, until Addie overhears a strange conversation between Louis and Mrs. Valerie.  Realizing they are up to something, their conversation leads her to do some investigating on her own, and pretty soon she has a real mystery on her hands to try and solve.  And, it turns out, the mystery involves her directly and the house she loves so dearly.  How could she possible have any connection to Louis and Mrs. Valerie's connivances?  She never met the Valeries before and Louis has been gone since she was four years old, much too young to get involved with anyone's schemes. Or is it?

And to top all that, the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor and the US enters World War II.

Mischief and Malice is a sequel to a book called Secret Lives, written 30 years ago.  I hadn't read Secret Lives, so when I first started reading Mischief and Malice I was a little lost among all the names and Addie's relatives and their back story, but it didn't take long to catch on.  I think that is because it is written in the voice of a very chatty, lively 14 year old with lots of thoughts that are really explanations for the benefit of the reader.

Addie Agnew is the first person narrator and her thoughts and observations contain a certain honesty not often found in many coming-of-age characters but very well defined here.  Her confusions, her crushes, and conscience all make up a nice well rounded character.  Addie is a typical teenaged Catholic girl and her religion is a real part of her life.  She reminded me so much of some of my friends at that age who were Catholic.  

I did love the competition between Addie and her cousin Sandra Lee.  That reminded me of my sister and me when we were growing up.  But I also loved how they could pull together when the situation called for a united front.

The mystery isn't really a big deal and comes towards the end of the novel, but Mischief and Malice is a wonderful work of historical fiction giving us a window into life just before the US entered the war.  War was certainly on people's minds, in reality and in this story, but took a backseat to everyday life before Pearl Harbor.

I had a lot of fun reading Mischief and Malice and kudos to Berthe Amoss for taking up Addie's story again.  Will there be a third Addie story?  I hope so.

This book is recommended for readers age 10+
This book was sent to me by the publisher, Ig Publishing

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14. Suffer the Children

A fellow writer wants to know more about something I've written, something centering on a child's body at the center of the storm of war. She asks, "Why bring violence and sexuality so close to the body of a child?" Her eyes blur and magnify when she says it. I can hear the flutter of [...]

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15. 9th Harry Potter POP! Vinyl Figure Unveiled!

It looks like another Harry Potter Funko POP! figure is on the horizon! The 9th figure announced is that of Harry holding the Sword of Gryffindor. This will be the third Harry Potter figure in the collection; there were previously two others announced–Harry in his Hogwarts uniform, holding a wand, and a special Quidditch Harry, which is exclusive to Hot Topic pre-release. It has been clarified that the Quidditch Harry will be available to all after the initial release.

Snitchseeker.com reports:

Accordingly, the Quidditch Harry Potter figure is said to be a pre-release exclusive for Hot Topic, while the set with Gryffindor’s sword is indeed the company’s actual exclusive piece.

You can preorder the Harry Potter Pop! Vinyls here. They will be available for purchase later this month.

Thank-you to our friends at Snitchseeker.com for posting about this!

 

 

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16. David Hackett Fischer Wins Award for Lifetime Achievement in Military Writing

David Hackett Fischer  (GalleyCat)David Hackett Fischer, a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, has won the 2015 Pritzker Military Museum & Library Literature Award for Lifetime Achievement in Military Writing. Fischer will also receive $100,000 in prize money.

Here’s more from the press release: “Author of 15 major publications on topics ranging from the American Revolution to the logic of historical thought, Fischer received the American Enterprise Institute’s Irving Kristol Award in 2006 for his ‘pivotal role in reviving popular and academic interest in American history and its lessons for the present.’ Among his notable works are bestsellers and award-winners like Washington’s Crossing (Oxford University Press, 2004), a National Book Award finalist and 2005 Pulitzer Prize winner for history; Paul Revere’s Ride (Oxford, 1994), a 1996 Boston Globe Top 10 Book of the Year; Champlain’s Dream (Simon & Schuster/Knopf Canada, 2008), an internationally acclaimed biography published in English and French; and Albion’s Seed: Four British Folkways in America (Oxford, 1989), a groundbreaking study of the roots of essential American traits—a second volume of which is now in progress.”

Fischer will accept this award at a gala event which will be held at the Hilton Chicago on November 7. Some of the past winners include Sir Max Hastings, Allan Millett, and Tim O’Brien.

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17. Katharine Morling

Stitched up Katharine Morling_2

KATHARINE MORLING0017-72dpi _2

Butterfly Box KATHARINE MORLING_0017

Time KATHARINE MORLING_with hook Plenty -KATHARINE MORLING_large

Katharine Morling is an award wining artist working in ceramics, describing her work as “3 dimensional drawings”. She creates her sculptures from porcelain, using a monochromatic aesthetic. Katherine’s work has been featured in the likes of Elle decoration, Country & Town House and Dpi Magazine.

To see more of this amazing artists work visit her website and Facebook page 

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18. What do writers do when they are not writing...

Hi Readers! I am working on a new manuscript and I am excited to finish it so that you can all read it I was asked a great question by a young lady today. She asked me "What do writers do when they aren't writing?" I felt like it was most appropriate to answer it publicly. I write often. It is my core job and also a very big passion. I love that being a writer allows me to sign books at stores, libraries and programs. When I am not writing...here are a few things that I am doing. 1.) I have a counseling practice and I listen and help people who want to make a change in their lives. 2.) I go to schools and other locations and read my books and give talks. 3.) I contribute to magazines, radio stations, etc. and answer questions about self-esteem, diversity and anti-bullying. I could add a lot more but as you can see my schedule gets pretty full. I will add a 4th past-time...I give back. I am involved in many charitable programs and organizations and I lend support, expertise, money and time to help people who need it. Our time is valuable so think about what you can do while you might have some time off in the summer or on one of your upcoming breaks. Can you give back? Take on a new hobby? You might even decide to start writing. -read something great

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19. How Google Doodles Help Authors Become More Popular

Not surprisingly having a Google Doodle can help spike an interest in an author.

For example, when Google featured a Google Doodle of Mark Twain in November 2011 to celebrate his 176th birthday, searches for the author reached an all time high. The majority of those searches came from the United States and related searches that trended included: “quotes mark twain,” “mark twain quotes,” “about mark twain,” and “mark twain school.”

You can explore how this feature has influenced the online popularity of other authors using this Google Trends tool.

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20. ‘Adventure Time,’ ‘Uncle Grandpa’ Among Cartoon Network Renewals

Five Cartoon Network shows have earned season renewals.

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21. Cover Revealed for New Johanna Basford Coloring Book

Lost Ocean by Johanna Basford (Galleycat)

Artist Johanna Basford has unveiled the cover for Lost Ocean: An Inky Adventure & Coloring Book. We’ve embedded the full image for the jacket design above—what do you think?

According to the press release, some of the images being featured in this adult coloring book include “exotic fish, curious octopi, and delicately penned seahorses.” Penguin Random House has scheduled the publication date for October 27.

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22. The Fault in Our Stars: Dramatic Structure

The dramatic structure of The Fault in Our Stars

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23. Motherhood

If it's one thing I've learned in twenty-four years of parenting- it's let them figure it out for themselves. Shoving scripture and unwanted advice down your teenage/adult child's throat is only going to make them want to do exactly the opposite of what you say. Yes, it's good parenting to give them guidance and boundaries. Ultimately, though, what they do with their lives is between them and God.
They learn a tremendous amount more from observing the behaviors and screw ups of others than they do a speech for every question they ask. If we gently show them what the Word says, we have gained a victory because the Word does not return void.
That, and that alone is my hope.
I would rather my children chase righteousness than riches. Blessings from the Lord are much more fulfilling than toys (of any size). This morning was a wonderful reminder of that.
My blessings will come through the generosity of my heart, not from my husband's bank account. My heart has been blessed today. Thank You, Lord.

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24. Punctuation and Rhythm

The different punctuation marks can be used to speed up or slow down the pace of your readers, adding rhythm to your story.

http://www.teachingauthors.com/2015/06/for-love-of-comma.html

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25. Somewhere over the Rainbow

It was a wonderful time to be in San Francisco. Libraries, a cultural embodiment of inclusion and acceptance, happily shared in the celebrations honoring equality. In this past year, with our focus on diversity in all its aspects, materials, services and our own ranks, it was particularly fitting that we would be at the center of this latest piece of good news. Rainbows were everywhere.

I am struck again and again by the passion of our members. Library work is more a calling than a profession and in this digital age, our work is more vital and less understood. In my presidential year, I was particularly gratified that children’s librarians are embracing their role in helping families determine how and what media to use to help children learn and thrive. The leadership discussion of the ALSC white paper on media mentors was a highlight of the conference for me. The awards ceremonies are always grand and I am always impressed with our members desire to discover the best of the best of what is published for children each year.

My president’s program, MORE TO THE CORE, focused on the premise that excellent informational books are created, loved and read with the same alacrity of our most loved fiction. Words and images combined to ignite imagination and inspiration continue to move the next generation to greater empathy and understanding of our world. We heard from both a creator, award winning illustrator and author Melissa Sweet and practitioner, RIF’s Judy Cheatham. Both speakers’ passion for great literature for children was evident and affirming.

Great books are at the root of children’s ability to understand and empathize with others. That ability gives us hope and moves us all forward to the better world we imagine. This June in San Francisco we were there as we moved a little closer together. I like to think there is a great children’s book waiting somewhere in the imagination of some child that will describe this time for others to remember, imagine and understand.

The post Somewhere over the Rainbow appeared first on ALSC Blog.

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