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1. Life in Publishing: Seven Things I’ve Learned So Far

Hello Pub Crawlers! I’ve put off writing this post as long as I could, because I’ve just had so much fun with you all over the years! From the wonderful conversations we’ve had in the comments, to the smart and thoughtful questions that prompted many of my posts, I’ve learned a lot in the time I’ve spent as a part of this wonderful group.  I mean, there aren’t many places on the internet where you actually should read the comments! But all good things must come to an end, and it’s time for me to say my goodbyes. By way of saying farewell and thank you, I thought I’d follow in the footsteps of Alex Bracken, and share with you a few things I’ve learned so far in my publishing journey — some solid, concrete tips, and a few that are less so, but just as important!

1. Take care of your back. I’m serious! This is one of my most heartfelt, and least heeded pieces of advice! Put any group of authors in a room, and pretty soon you’ll find at least a couple discussing back stretches, standing desks and physical therapists. There’s a reason for this. Keep up your core strength, make sure you have a good chair and good posture while you’re writing, and pause regularly to stretch. If you can try a standing desk, go for it. This one really matters!

2. Take care of your tech. While we’re being practical, let’s add this one to the list! Put a password on your phone–your contacts may hold numbers that the owners might not want shared. Your email will hold manuscripts that the owners absolutely won’t want shared. Back up your computer regularly. Back up your computer. Back up your computer. (Click here for some suggestions on how, and check out the comments for lots more ideas.)

3. Think before you speak. To put this one really bluntly: don’t gossip. I don’t want to be a downer, and I’m not saying you should never talk about the industry, and I’m not saying you should never vent to friends, of course. You’re human. But don’t carry stories around, especially if they’re less than complimentary. For a start, you have no idea if they’re true (and there’s ALWAYS more to the story than you know), and if nothing else, you’ll get a rep! Now, writing is a solo sport, and needing to vent and debrief is totally normal. So here’s what you do: find a couple of friends you truly trust, and trust them with the stuff you need to discuss, wonder about, get off your chest or analyse. That’s healthy, normal and helpful, and you won’t be sorry you did it later. Gossiping with the whole world works about as well as it would in any workplace!

4. Cultivate a life. No matter what stage you’re at in your writing journey, you need things that will make you happy outside the writing world — tying your happiness to writing and publishing only is dangerous. Whether it’s time with your kids, your weekly game of basketball, making time to attend that BBQ on the weekend, make sure you do it. It will help with perspective more than anything can. Getting away to your day job doesn’t count, if every minute you’re not there, you’re writing. Leisure activities will help you relax, work more efficiently, and remind you that there’s life away from your computer. Sunshine and fresh air are good for you! Laughing and the company of friends–good for you. Remember the story of the tortoise and the hare? Writing is a long career, and you need to make sure you’re resting under a tree along the way, tortoise style.

5. Just do the work. Don’t talk about doing the work more than you do it. Don’t tweet about doing the work more than you do it. Don’t play endless games on your computer, then later feel you’ve had a long day because you were at your screen the whole time. If you have to unplug the router, do that. If you have to install a program to block the internet, do that. In the end, all that platform-building, networking and sky writing will mean nothing if you didn’t get the words on the page. And most of all, don’t just nod in agreement to this point — pause and think about what concrete steps you can take to make sure you really do the work!

6. Stop comparing. It will kill you. It will kill your creativity. It will make you jealous. It will make you sad. It will make you angry. And you’ll probably be wrong! To paraphrase a Louis CK quote I’ve always liked: “Never look into your neighbour’s bowl, unless you’re checking they’ve got enough.” Every minute you spend wishing you had someone else’s agent, book deal, marketing plan, tour, fancy embossed ARCs, foil cover, panel appearance, etc is a moment you could spend doing something that’s good for you. You also have no idea what’s going on for them. Perhaps they have the agent of your dreams, and it isn’t working out at all. Perhaps they have the book deal you always wanted, and it was the wrong decision for them. Perhaps they got the panel appearance you’d love, but didn’t get the support they needed to organise a bumper launch party in their home town, and they’d trade with you any day. Even if this isn’t the case, envy will eat you up. Someone else’s success is not your failure. Every reader who enjoys a book is just looking for the next book to read. A rising tide lifts all ships.

7. Have fun! For my last piece of advice, I’m going to echo the very wise Alex Bracken — publication is just one day of your journey, and the rest of the trip takes a long, long time. So make sure you enjoy yourself! Read great books, take joy in your writing, enjoy your friends and your community. Thanks for all our time together, and here’s to everything you’re yet to write!

 

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2. Would You Read It Wednesday - The July Pitch Pick!!!

Greetings, everyone!

I hope you have all had a lovely week since last we met :)

Today, since we're tying things up before the August break, we have the July Pitch Pick but no new pitch, so less work for you! :)

Oh, and of course Something Chocolate to get you fueled up (and rewarded!) for your help!

Let's start with that because... why not? :)  How's this for perfect summer chocolate?

Chocolate-Dipped Watermelon!
Okay.  Possibly a little weird :)  But I'll bet delicious! :)  It has chocolate on it.  How can it not be?

Alrighty!  Here we go on the July Pitch Pick!

#1 Lavanya - How I Made My Baby Sister (PB ages 3-7)
The thing about making a baby sister is, you have to be patient. First, you have to be patient until Mom and Dad realize you have the best idea. Then, you have to be patient for the baby to come out. But hardest of all is being patient while the baby grows big enough to play with you.

#2 Rene - Berr-r-rnice (PB ages 3-5)
Wee Woolly Bear caterpillar is STILL eating even though wintry winds are whipping. Journeying to her hibernation destination through mushy mare meadows proves treacherous. Wee Woolly Bear must persevere and ultimately discovers she's not alone in her troubles. A 390 word story of perseverance and friendship for 3 - 5 year olds.

#3 Kirsten - Stuck In The Muck (PB ages 4-8)
Sir Whiskerson loves kitty facials and paw-dicures. When he comes whisker to whisker with a mangy mutt named Sunny, Whiskerson is desperate to remain pristine. But with Sunny stuck in the muck and sinking, Whiskerson must decide whether doing the right thing is worth a gloppy, sloppy fur coat.

Please choose the pitch you think most deserves a read and comments by editor Erin Molta and vote for it in the poll below by Sunday August 2 at 5 PM EST. Thank you all so much!
July 2015 Pitch Pick
I will miss you all during the next few weeks, but this has been a pretty tough summer so far and I'm afraid I'm going to pretty much disappear from the internet.  Good lord willing and the creek don't rise, I'll see you all on September 9 for the next installment of Would You Read It! :)

Have a wonderful, happy, relaxing, fun-filled, rejuvenating rest of the summer everyone!!!

See you in September! :)


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3. Jean Little Library! July 16 at Matheson Memorial Library in Elkhorn, Wisconsin

I first became aware of Jennifer Wharton's brilliant book reviews on the Jean Little Library blog a couple years ago, when she mentioned an Ellie McDoodle book and my awesome friend, children's book author Carrie Pearson alerted me.
It occurred to me, why not look up Jennifer's library and see if my travels would bring me near it sometime? And to my utter shock, I was indeed going to be within sketching distance in just a few months.
I attended my agent's retreat in Lake Geneva, and the Jean Little Library isn't more than a pebble toss away.


We drew penguins, owls, Ellie McDoodle, Ben-Ben, dragons, cats, dogs, ... all sorts of stuff.
Here's Ben-Ben:




I like to draw on a document camera and project it onto the wall so people all over the room can join in easily. We were in a big room, and that crowd really filled it up.
One girl gave me a drawing with an impressive use of spirals:



This is my favorite kind of event: connecting with enthusiastic kids. What a great author life I lead.

Thank you SO much, Jennifer and Jean Little Library!

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4. If You Were Me and Lived in … China, by Carole P. Roman | Book Giveaway

Prizes and samples provided by Carole P. Roman The Children’s Book Review | July 29, 2015 Enter to win a complete autographed set of the If You Were Me series, written by award-winning author Carole P. Roman and illustrated by Kelsea Wierenga; including If You Were Me and Lived in … China: A Child’s Introduction to Culture Around the World! […]

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5. AW15 PREVIEW - paperchase : let's face it

All this week we have been getting a sneak peak preview of the upcoming designs from Paperchase for their Autumn Winter 2015 collections.  Today we have a Japanese style collection for kids and the young at heart called 'Let's Face It'. This fun print merges quirky characters with fruit and foods for a Kawaii effect. Expect to see lots of lunch products such as water bottles, snack boxes, cups,

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6. Lucky’s Choice by Jamie Begley Release Blast

 
Enter to Win A
Custom LAST RIDERS T-Shirt & Mug,
$25.00 Amazon eGift Card and Signed Copy of SHADE’S FALL
 
 
LUCKY’S CHOICE
The Last Riders #7
Jamie Begley
Releasing July 29th, 2015
Young Ink Press
 
 
Life dealt him a dead man’s hand.

Lucky had always led a life of service, always putting his life on the line for someone else, managing to survive by pure luck and skill. After bringing an end to a multi-state drug ring, he was finally able to live the life he had wanted as a Last Rider.

A good man would walk away and not touch the curvy woman who had been tugging on his heartstrings. Lucky wasn’t a good man. Therefore, the bad-ass biker in him had a choice: once again become the man he had pretended to be and stake his claim or take the devil’s highway.

Some girls had all the luck.

Willa wasn’t one of them. All she wanted to do was give a home to the children she had made orphans. Instead, she found herself needing help from the man who had left the pulpit behind to embrace a life of sin.

Painfully shy and withdrawn, she wanted a quiet life, a simple man, and well-behaved children. The last thing she had ever expected was for Lucky to want her size twenty body and show her a passion that would lead her straight to hell.


BUY NOW

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
 
“I was born in a small town in Kentucky. My family began poor, but worked their way to owning a restaurant. My mother was one of the best cooks I have ever known, and she instilled in all her children the value of hard work, and education.
Taking after my mother, I’ve always love to cook, and became pretty good if I do say so myself. I love to experiment and my unfortunate family has suffered through many. They now have learned to steer clear of those dishes. I absolutely love the holidays and my family puts up with my zany decorations.
For now, my days are spent writing, writing, and writing. I have two children who both graduated this year from college. My daughter does my book covers, and my son just tries not to blush when someone asks him about my books.
Currently I am writing five series of books- The Last Riders, The VIP Room, Predators MC, Biker Bitches, and The Dark Souls.
All my books are written for one purpose- the enjoyment others find in them, and the expectations of my fans that inspire me to give it my best.”

HTML Copy/Paste for Virtual Tour: July 30th – Aug 14th
 
Enter to Win A
Custom LAST RIDERS T-Shirt & Mug,
$25.00 Amazon eGift Card and Signed Copy of SHADE’S FALL
 
 
LUCKY’S CHOICE
The Last Riders #7
Jamie Begley
Releasing July 29th, 2015
Young Ink Press
 
 
Life dealt him a dead man’s hand.

Lucky had always led a life of service, always putting his life on the line for someone else, managing to survive by pure luck and skill. After bringing an end to a multi-state drug ring, he was finally able to live the life he had wanted as a Last Rider.

A good man would walk away and not touch the curvy woman who had been tugging on his heartstrings. Lucky wasn’t a good man. Therefore, the bad-ass biker in him had a choice: once again become the man he had pretended to be and stake his claim or take the devil’s highway.

Some girls had all the luck.

Willa wasn’t one of them. All she wanted to do was give a home to the children she had made orphans. Instead, she found herself needing help from the man who had left the pulpit behind to embrace a life of sin.

Painfully shy and withdrawn, she wanted a quiet life, a simple man, and well-behaved children. The last thing she had ever expected was for Lucky to want her size twenty body and show her a passion that would lead her straight to hell.


BUY NOW

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
 
“I was born in a small town in Kentucky. My family began poor, but worked their way to owning a restaurant. My mother was one of the best cooks I have ever known, and she instilled in all her children the value of hard work, and education.
Taking after my mother, I’ve always love to cook, and became pretty good if I do say so myself. I love to experiment and my unfortunate family has suffered through many. They now have learned to steer clear of those dishes. I absolutely love the holidays and my family puts up with my zany decorations.
For now, my days are spent writing, writing, and writing. I have two children who both graduated this year from college. My daughter does my book covers, and my son just tries not to blush when someone asks him about my books.
Currently I am writing five series of books- The Last Riders, The VIP Room, Predators MC, Biker Bitches, and The Dark Souls.
All my books are written for one purpose- the enjoyment others find in them, and the expectations of my fans that inspire me to give it my best.”

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7. Illustration Friday: Nature


Liana the Siren
Music was in her nature.  Just like drawing things in groups of three seems to be in my nature.  I just noticed that.



Here's something I drew for last week's prompt (Treasure) but never got around to posting:



How was your All or Nothing Day???  I hope you were able to accomplish, or at least start, something wonderful.  Thank you so so SO much for sharing my enthusiasm for the book project.  Jeepers, I guess I'm committed now.  I can't very well go back on my word.  We had a health scare in our family last week (all is well now), so I was unable to make huge strides on it.  But here are a few WIP pages to start.  

Several years ago, my kid discovered a glass doorknob in my purse.  (I was renovating a closet door and was intending to take it to a store to find a match.)  She asked me why I kept a doorknob in my purse.  And I replied that it was to open doors, of course.

And that is the start of an adventure....




Because as it so happens, this doorknob has special powers.  It can open doors anywhere.  Even if there is no door there at all.




To be continued.

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8. Spotlight and Giveaway: Frisk Me by Lauren Layne

 

About FRISK ME

After a photograph of Luc Moretti saving a tourist hits social media, he instantly becomes New York’s most famous and beloved cop. When a major network decides to run a special on the “American Hero,” Luc’s boss gives him no choice but to cooperate in the name of good exposure for the department. Luc doesn’t mind the celebrity status-what he does mind is the gorgeous brunette journalist who’s been assigned to follow his every move. Especially since she also happens to be the same knockout that rejected him rather publicly the week before.

Ava Sims is a woman who gets what she wants. And what she wants is to be CBC’s lead anchor-but to get there, she’ll need to nail the fluff piece on the playboy cop. Luc Moretti is everything Ava knows to stay away from: a stubborn charmer with a hero-complex. But the more Ava gets to know Luc and his oddball family, the more she realizes that beneath the swagger and the blue uniform is a complex man who makes her heart beat too fast. Soon, Ava’s doing the unthinkable, and falling for the best of New York’s finest …

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1Ce7CW8
B&N: http://bit.ly/1Iwgtn8
iTunes: http://apple.co/1ISpNxr
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1ISpMJG
BAM!: http://bit.ly/1IwgyqY
Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1NzOxxV

About Lauren Layne

A long-time romance reader, Lauren Layne thinks the only thing better than reading about happy endings is writing them. She now pursues a full-time career in Happily Ever After, a job she’s naturally suited for after marrying her high school sweetheart. A bit of a nomad, Lauren’s lived everywhere from Orange County to Manhattan, and currently lives in the Seattle-area. Her hobbies include coffee by day, wine by night, and lots of writing in between. She’s also a total website nerd and insists you check out laurenlayne.com!

http://laurenlayne.com/

https://twitter.com/_LaurenLayne

https://www.facebook.com/LaurenLayneAuthor?fref=ts

Excerpt:

Ava Sims reached out and gave his arm a smug little pat, either oblivious or indifferent to Luc’s inner turmoil.

“We start Monday. What time do you get to work?”

“Sorry?” he said.

“Your work day. When do you start?”

He shook his head. “Why does it matter? Don’t you just tell me what day and time to show up at your studio?

She rolled her eyes. “We can’t just have three hours worth of face-to-face interviews in cushy chairs. This is an inside look at America’s Hero.”

“Hold on now,” Luc said, his irritation escalating to panic. “Three hours? And America’s what?”

“America’s Hero. It’ll be the name of the series.”

Oh sweet Jesus.

“Now hold the hell on,” he said. “There’s not going to be a series. Just ask me a few questions and be done with it.”

Her grin had gone beyond smug to full out gloating. “It’s already approved. It’ll be a three-hour special, divided up over three nights. Pretty standard.”

“Standard, my ass,” Luc snapped. “How the hell are you going to stretch four minutes of amateur video into three hours?”

Ava gave an expectant look at the captain who cleared his throat nervously before explaining. “Ms. Sims and her team will be shadowing you for a while, Moretti. A day in the life of a New York’s Finest, and all that.”

“Just think, two whole months together!” she said, with a mockingly bright smile meant to annoy him. “Won’t that be fun? You can show me all the lives you’ve saved with those parking tickets.”

Luc was too busy grinding his teeth to reply. Ava dug something out of her purse, slapping it against his chest before sweeping towards the door in her sexy high heels.

“See you on Monday, Officer.”

Luc swallowed against the surge of panic. He couldn’t do this. He wouldn’t do this. It was one thing to be a local hero. Another thing entirely to become a “household names” as Ava had indicated. The last thing Luc needed was an even brighter spotlight on him, shining in places that should remain in the dark forever.

“I don’t like it either,” Brinker said gruffly, displaying a rare perceptiveness. “But I can tell you right now, there’s no point in fighting it. Your father’s replacement made it clear that this was an order. Not a request.”

Fuck. Fuck. If he were Anthony, or even Vincent, he would have pushed back. Would have shoved his principles down Brinker’s throat, superior or not.

But Luc wasn’t his brothers. Luc wasn’t a hotheaded hotshot. And he had far too much respect for the NYPD to pull a tantrum. 

He would do his duty. He always did his duty. With pride.

Still, he couldn’t stop the groan of dread in anticipation of what lay ahead , Luc glanced down at the crumpled piece of paper that Ava had thrust at him. There was a coffee stain in one corner, and something that looked like lipstick smeared across the front, but there was no mistaking what he was looking at.

It was a three-year-old parking ticket. 

She’d never paid it. 

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9. ZIBF

       The Zimbabwe International Book Fair began Monday -- and in The Herald Stanely Mushava reports that Book Fair begins on high note.
       He notes:

Keynote speaker Walter Bgoya, of Mkuki na Nyota Publishers from Tanzania, said there was a lot of nostalgia for the heydays of the book fair outside Zimbabwe.
       No doubt -- but, damn, they certainly managed to spoil a good thing. Here's hoping things are improving again.

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10. Charming Greeting Card Illustrations by Natalie Adkins

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4-baubles_8003-mistletoe_800 2-carcker_800 5-prsent_800

Natalie Adkins Website >>

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11. Comics for back to school!

I know, I KNOW. It’s July 29th. It doesn’t feel like it’s time to go back to school.

And for lots of districts, it’s not.

But for huge swatches of the South and the Midwest, it’s happening this week or next week. It’s so early, it’s so hot. The kids are so cranky (I would be, too, if I had to go back to school so soon!)

What’s the solution?

COMICS.

Here’s some great, recent comics/graphic novels to give to your kids. Throw these up on a display, handsell them, or stealthily slide them across your circ counter. Your tweens will thank you.

Gotham Academy Volume 1. Do your kids love Batman? This comic is set in a prestigious prep school right in the heart of Gotham. With great supporting characters, secrets, and possibly a ghost, this hits all the superhero buttons. The mysterious Wayne family might even make an appearance…

Oddly Normal! Image Comics just reprinted this with a new cover. It’s INCREDIBLY fun. Oddly is a half-witch and having a mother from Fignation isn’t always a walk in the park. It’s even less fun when her parents disappear and she has to go live in Fignation. She’s the only being in the whole world that’s even remotely human. Hijinks ensue.

Baba Yaga’s Assistant is out next week. It’s a bit spooky but not outright scary. Masha needs some adventure so when Baba Yaga advertises for an assistant, she decides to try it out. But she has to be clever and wily enough to earn her place.

BONUS:

I am Princess X is actually a novel, but there’s a story-within-a-story here that’s told in comics, and it’s a very cool example of mixed-format storytelling. May’s best friend Libby passed away a few years ago in a really tragic accident, and she’s been lonely ever since. But all of a sudden, she sees Princess X popping up all over Seattle: Princess X was a childhood creation that only Libby and May knew about. As May dives into the world of Princess X and webcomics, she begins to wonder–could Libby be alive?

Enjoy the last part of your summer!

*

Our guest blogger from YALSA today is Ally Watkins (@aswatki1). Ally is a Library Consultant at the Mississippi Library Commission.

The post Comics for back to school! appeared first on ALSC Blog.

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12. 2 Nonfiction Picture Books

I am looking for more informational picture books to read aloud early in the school year. I am looking for books that might spark some notebook writing as we launch writing notebooks. I found 2 that I think will work out great for this early in the year.


A Chicken Followed Me Home! Questions and Answers About a Familiar Fowl by Robin Page
The premise of this book is that if a chicken followed you home, what would you wonder? Each page spread focuses on one of those questions and then gives readers an answer about chickens in general and then about the specific chicken that is following you home. This is a great Q and A format and it will also be good to talk about wonderings and questions you have throughout the day or about specific topics.  I love Robin Page's work and she is an author I want my students to know.


I'm Trying to Love Spiders by Bethany Barton is one that will make kid laugh. The author hates spiders and is trying to love them. But she just wants to squish them (and she does squish a few). But as she learns more about spiders, she starts to realize they aren't so bad. A fun way to learn about spiders and a fun type of writing to try in notebooks early in the year, I think.

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13. Ruff Life Mascots - Bella & Max Pesky Moment at Loughborough GCR

Watch Ruff Life Mascots - Bella & Max's Pesky Moment at Loughborough GCR.


Come and see us at The Solent Shopping Centre Kids Club, Portsmouth, PO6 4TP, Thursday 30/07/2015

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14. If You Were Me and Lived in … China: A Child’s Introduction to Culture Around the World | Dedicated Review

If You Were Me and Lived In … China is an easy read and a fun way to introduce the People’s Republic of China to children.

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15. Review: The Texas Wildcatter’s Baby by Cathy Gillen Thacker

 

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

Continuing my Harlequin marathon, I discovered that the library has Harlequin bundles in their collection.  BUNDLES! Of HARLEQUINS!  It’s like being a kid in a candy store after hours, with no supervision and nobody to tell you to STOP gorging yourself with all of that yummy candy!  This discovery is the equivalent of finding King Tut’s tomb, so forgive me as I gleefully consume as many Harlequins as I can. Every day I read until my EYES BLEED!

Getting back to the topic at hand:  I borrowed the March 2014 American Romance bundle because it was actually available for check out.  These bundles are very popular, and I am on wait lists for about 4 others.  I love the opportunity to read new to me authors, because when I pick single issue titles, I go by authors I have already read, or a brief perusal of the blurb.  I don’t even look at that with the bundles.  I just start at the beginning and work my way to the end.  I have yet to encounter a title I disliked so much that I didn’t want to finish it, and it’s been fun just reading for the sake reading. 

As it turns out, I have read Cathy Gillen Thacker a few times before.  Each title has been a solid read.  The Texas Wildcatter’s Baby featured a great hero, but I had some trouble with Ginger, the heroine.  She is fearful of being betrayed after an unhappy marriage, so she has become super independent.  When she learns that she’s pregnant after a night with her serial hook-up Rand, she’s momentarily panic-stricken.  She is bidding on the biggest oil drilling project of her career, and she only has one shot to get it right.  This is a make it or break it moment for her fledging business.  Now that she’s pregnant, she’s afraid of how it will impact her career.  The oil business is dominated by men, and after her husband’s company humored her ambitions to build a career for herself, she’s afraid of anything that will make her look weak before the competition.

With a plan in mind, she confronts Rand with the news.  Then she proposes a temporary marriage to him, just until the baby is born.  It will be better for her business if she’s married when the pregnancy is common knowledge.  She also wants Rand to be a part of their baby’s life.  They agree to a quickie wedding at the county courthouse, but things don’t go exactly as they had planned.  Instead, they show up at Rand’s family home, where his family has already learned about the marriage and throws them a surprise wedding party.  It’s also a chance to catch up with a few of Rand’s brothers, who have been featured in other books.

Once they’re married, it’s all about work for Ginger.  She has to nail down her proposal for the oil drilling project, and work comes first for Ginger.  She now has a little one to worry about.  Forget about Rand!  He’ll be fine one his own.  That’s what drove me bonkers about Ginger.  Rand is one of the most perfect romance heroes that I’ve come across, and Ginger is too busy maintaining her independence to figure that out.  He’s kind, protective, and helpful.  What woman wouldn’t give her eyeteeth for a guy who FOLDS laundry??  Or lets her sleep in and catch up on her rest?  The list of his positive qualities is endless, but Ginger turns a blind eye to all of them.

To stir up trouble with the couple, they also have to deal with Ginger’s clingy mother and her devious ex.  Through it all, Rand has her back, and eventually, even Ginger begins to appreciate his presence in her life.  She’s just too afraid of losing her independence to admit it to him, let alone herself, so the grade took a knock because I was so frustrated with her.  It’s not until 4 or 5 pages until the end that she gives in to her feelings and confesses her love, and that was cutting it far too close for me.  Otherwise, this was an enjoyable read.

Grade:  C+

Review copy borrowed from my local library

Love Isn’t Part of the Deal

Ginger Rollins can’t believe she gave in to temptation—again! It’s time for her and Rand McCabe to face the consequences. Never mind that the geological engineer and sexy environmental cowboy are on opposite sides when it comes to the Texas land they both love. Now that she’s pregnant, they have one option.

Rand isn’t used to being proposed to by a woman—especially one as gorgeous as Ginger—but he’s all for getting married. Too bad the independent wildcatter sees their union as a nonnegotiable deal. Doesn’t she know they share more than hot chemistry? How long can he keep his feelings—and their baby—a secret? Rand vowed to love and honor Ginger forever. And it’s a promise he intends to keep….

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16. What ʻĪsā Ibn Hishām told us review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Muḥammad al-Muwayliḥī's turn of the (last) century What ʻĪsā Ibn Hishām told us, just out in a two-volume edition in Roger Allen's translation from the Library of Arabic Literature.

       Yes, yes, I know; you already have your copy, why would you even need my review ..... Read the rest of this post

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17. Lost in NYC: A Subway Adventure by Nadja Spiegelman & Sergio García Sánchez, RL: 2

Something that I adore and deeply appreciate about TOON Books is the attention to detail that goes into each book. Of course the writing and illustrations are exemplary. The packaging is superb, from the trim size to the recognizable TOON wallpaper pattern that appears on the spine to the way that the books look so wonderful lined up on the shelf. TOON Books are so visually appealing and

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18. Writer Wednesday: Open Submissions Approaching!

If you read last Wednesday's post, then you know that I'm now the acquisitions editor for Leap Books' middle grade line, Seek. I also mentioned that while Seek is only open to agented submissions I'd be holding an open submissions period in August. Well…

From August 1 to August 14, I'll be accepting unagented submissions. If you have a middle grade title (geared toward tweens) you can query me at kellyhashway.leapbooks@gmail.com. Please make sure your query includes the 
following:

  • Subject line: Open Submission: TITLE OF YOUR BOOK
  • Query in the body of the email
  • synopsis and first three (3) chapters of your book (as Word attachments)

That's it! Please only query me at the Leap Books address above. Queries sent to 
my regular email will be deleted unread.

Not sure if your book is a good fit for Seek? Here's what I'm looking for:

I am looking for immersive middle grade fiction stories of approximately 30-40,000 words, in all genres, with characters that LEAP off the page. Submissions should demonstrate:

  • strong, polished writing

  • engaging and age-appropriate storytelling that will appeal to the target audience

  • solid character development

  • powerful world building

  • an exciting plot

***Preference for mystery, contemporary, and fantasy at this time.***
Good luck!

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19. New Bench

cartoon new banch by monica gupta

New Bench …

Three-judge SC bench to hear Yakub Memons plea today – Livemint

The curative writ petition filed by the 1993 Bombay blasts convict Yakub Memon will now be considered by a three-judge bench of the Supreme Court on Wednesday.

The decision was taken by the chief justice of India (CJI) H.L.

Dattu after a two-judge bench of justices Anil R. Dave and Kurian Joseph gave a split verdict on Tuesday.

Senior counsel Raju Ramachandran, appearing on Memon’s behalf, mentioned the matter before a five-judge bench headed by Dattu.

“I will constitute a bench,” Dattu said when the matter was presented before him but he refused to stay the execution.

Dave said the matter should be heard immediately, preferably on Wednesday, given the urgency of the issue. Read more…

The post New Bench appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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20. मेरी गुडिया

मेरी गुडिया

cartoon doll by monica gupta

मेरी गुडिया… मेरी गुडिया, प्यारी गुडिया, गुडिया रानी … पहले बच्ची को इसी नाम से सम्बोधित किया जाता था. किसी से नाम भी पूछ्ना होता था तो यही बोलते थे गुडिया तेरा नाम क्या है पर आज विडम्बना  देखिए  गुडिया कोई नही कहलवाना चाहता क्योकि आज गुडिया के मायने बदल गए हैं आज गुडिया पीडिता निर्भया, ज्योति के नाम से जानी जाती है … यही इसमे दिखाने की कोशिश की है कि मासूम बच्ची को अहसास करवाया जाता है और उसे बता दिया जाता है कि (उस रेप  हादसे के बाद से) जो भी उसे पुकारेगा वो वो गुडिया या निर्भया या पीडिता की पुकारेगा…

बेहद दुखद

The post मेरी गुडिया appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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21. सोना सस्ता

cartoon sona by monica gupta

सोना सस्ता

इन दिनों दो खबरें एक साथ सुनने को मिल रही हैं पहली तो ये कि सोना हुआ सस्ता और दूसरी ये कि सब्जी हुई महंगी अब ऐसे मे ये श्रीमती जी अपने पति से क्या बतिया रही है जरा देखिए तो …

IBN Khabar

नई दिल्ली। विदेशों में बहुमूल्य धातुओं की कीमतों में मजबूती के रुख के बावजूद मौजूदा स्तर पर आभूषण विक्रेताओं और फुटकर विक्रेताओं की मांग घटने से राष्ट्रीय राजधानी दिल्ली के सर्राफा बाजार में आज सोने की कीमत 190 रुपए की गिरावट के साथ 25,300 रुपए प्रति 10 ग्राम रह गई। इस तरह दो दिन से जारी तेजी का सिलसिला थम गया।

औद्योगिक इकाइयों और सिक्का निर्माताओं के कमजोर उठान के कारण चांदी की कीमत भी 150 रुपए की गिरावट के साथ 34,050 रुपए प्रति किलोग्राम पर बंद हुई। सर्राफा व्यापारियों ने कहा कि मौजूदा स्तर पर आभूषण और फुटकर विक्रेताओं की मांग घटने के कारण मुख्यत: बहुमूल्य धातुओं की कीमतों में गिरावट आई, लेकिन वैश्विक बाजार में मामूली रूप से बेहतर रख ने गिरावट पर कुछ अंकुश लगा दिया।

निवेशकों को यह लगा कि फेडरल रिजर्व लंबे समय के लिए ब्याज दरों को कम रखेगा जिससे वैश्विक स्तर पर सिंगापुर में सोने का भाव 0.4 प्रतिशत की तेजी के साथ 1,097.99 डॉलर प्रति औंस हो गया। चांदी का भाव भी 0.6 प्रतिशत की तेजी के साथ 14.64 डॉलर प्रति औंस हो गया। राष्ट्रीय राजधानी दिल्ली में सोना 99.9 और 99.5 प्रतिशत शुद्धता की कीमत क्रमश: 190 .190 रुपए की गिरावट के साथ क्रमश: 25,300 रुपए और 25,150 रुपए प्रति 10 ग्राम पर बंद हुई।

पिछले दो सत्रों में सोना 440 रपये चढ़ा था। गिन्नी की कीमत भी 200 रुपए की गिरावट के साथ 22,200 रपये प्रति आठ ग्राम पर बंद हुई। सोने की ही तरह चांदी तैयार की कीमत 150 रुपए की गिरावट के साथ 34,050 रपये प्रति किलोग्राम पर बंद हुई। जबकि चांदी साप्ताहिक डिलीवरी के भाव 120 रुपए की गिरावट दर्शाते 33,765 रुपए प्रति किलोग्राम पर बंद हुए। चांदी सिक्कों के भाव 1,000 रुपए की गिरावट के साथ लिवाल 49,000 रुपए और बिकवाल 50,000 रुपए प्रति सैकड़ा पर बंद हुए। See more…

 IBN Khabar

नई दिल्ली। लगातार हो रही बारिश के चलते सब्जियों के दाम आसमान पर पहुंच गए हैं। लोगों की थाली से सब्जियां गायब होती जा रही हैं। व्यापारियों के मुताबिक प्याज, आलू, टमाटर और हरी सब्जियों की थोक कीमतों में 10 से 20 फीसदी तक का इजाफा हुआ है जबकि खुदरा बाजार में इन सब्जियों की कीमत 50 से डेढ़ सौ फीसदी तक बढ़ चुकी है।

देश में हो रही भारी बारिश से सब्जियों की फसल बर्बाद हो चुकी हैं जिसके चलते कीमतों में आग लगी हुई है। आलू 20 रुपए, प्याज 40 रुपए, टमाटर 53 रुपए प्रति किलो तक पहुंचा चुका है। वहीं भिंडी 40 रुपए, गोभी 98 रुपए, लौकी और बैंगन 70 रुपए जबकि खीरा 42 रुपए प्रति किलो बिक रहा है। Read more…

The post सोना सस्ता appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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22. Round 2 Voting Now Open: Vote for Your Favorite Opening Lines!

Vote for your favorite opening lines below!

Winners of the contest receive critiques from industry professionals, aiding their careers - by spending a couple of minutes voting, you're helping emerging writers!

Voting closes at 11:59pm Eastern Time on Monday 3rd August.

Spread the word using the hashtag #GreenLightWIP. Good luck to all that entered! We'll be contacting those who successfully made it into the next round on Tuesday morning.

The survey will load shortly.

Some people using Internet Explorer have been having issues with the voting form above. If this is you: don't worry! You can still vote HERE.

If you'd like to read over the rules and see what you're helping our emerging authors win, then click here.

0 Comments on Round 2 Voting Now Open: Vote for Your Favorite Opening Lines! as of 7/29/2015 6:35:00 AM
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23. New Magnus Chase Series from Rick Riordan

the sword of summerThe First Book in the New Magnus Chase Series Comes Out October 6, 2015!

If you are a Percy Jackson fan wondering what to read next, then Rick Riordan has just solved your problem! He is the author of the Percy Jackson series, and he is writing a NEW series about a NEW demi-god. Get ready to meet Magnus Chase!

Book #1: The Sword of Summer

Magnus Chase has seen his share of trouble. Ever since that terrible night two years ago when his mother told him to run, he has lived alone on the streets of Boston, surviving by his wits, staying one step ahead of the police and truant officers.

One day, someone else tracks him down—his uncle Randolph, a man his mother had always warned him about. Randolph starts rambling about Norse history and Magnus’s birthright: a weapon that has been lost for thousands years. And also, Magnus’ father was a Norse god.

But he doesn’t have time to consider it all before a fire giant attacks the city, forcing him to choose between his own safety and the lives of hundreds of innocents . . .

DUN DUN DUUUUNN! *dramatic sound effect*

Will you be reading this new series by the author of Percy Jackson, Heroes of Olympus, and Kane Chronicles? Leave a Comment!

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

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24. The Super-Secret Key To Publishing Success by Erica O'Rourke

We're excited to welcome author Erica O'Rourke to the blog today. Erica's Resonance is the thrilling follow up to Dissonance. Today she's going to share with us the key to becoming a publishing success.


In Which I Reveal The Super-Secret Key To Publishing Success by Erica O'Rourke


As a published author, one of the most common questions I hear is, “Which conferences/classes/websites/resources do you recommend to aspiring authors?”

It’s a list I’m happy to provide. So many people have taught me essential things about the craft and business of writing on my path to publication, and I want to pay it forward.

However.

None of those resources are a magical key that will unlock the door to publication – because there isn’t one. There’s only the real key, and it’s not on any list.

The real key – the single biggest factor that helped me become a published author – was this: I got serious about writing.

If you’d asked me the year before I sold my first book, I would have said, “Yes! I am serious! I belong to a writers’ group, I read lots of books on craft , I attend conferences, I talk to my writer friends all the time! I’m polishing my elevator pitch and follow important people on Twitter! I am super-serious!”

Except… all the books and classes and meetings and writerly coffee dates…weren’t writing. Analyzing episodes of Lost wasn’t adding words to my story. Polishing my pitch wasn’t the same as polishing my own prose.

And then one day, I decided to enter a contest, and it required a full manuscript.

Which I did not have.

Read more »

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25. Série Noire profile

       Via I'm pointed to Russell Williams' The Série Noire and Social Intervention at the Los Angeles Review of Books, a nice introduction/overview of Gallimard's 'grande collection de romans policiers', their Série Noire.
       And, of course, it would be great to see more of the French works they publish in English translation.

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