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Viewing: Blog Posts from All 1562 Blogs, dated 11/17/2012 [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 56
1. Advent Event Day 12

 Welcome to day 12 of the Advent Event! Please share this event with your friends. The more anthologies we can sell, the more money we can raise for the National Down Syndrome Society.

Purchase the book here: http://amzn.com/1479266248

Or visit this site for more information: http://adventanthology.wordpress.com

Here’s a look at the last stories:

"Twas the Flight Before Christmas" by Michael Young

‘Twas the flight before Christmas, and all through the plane, holiday travelers were going insane…
A coach airplane seat was never meant to house a grown man and a squirming toddler. It’s a stretch for a first-class seat. This, however, was the just the situation I found myself in on Christmas Eve, 2009. Having recently been laid off, I had opted for the cheapest flight I could find, which happened to be on the day before Christmas. My wife couldn’t get off work, and so this Christmas, it was just me and little guy.
Our plane was stuffed fuller than Santa’s bag of toys, and none of the passengers looked like it was the most wonderful time of the year. My son was too young to understand that he wasn’t supposed to pout or cry around Christmastime. Doubtless, some of the passengers wondered what I had done to deserve a fate worse than coal. Though his grandfather is a pilot, my son is not a natural in the air. His ears never pop, he always wants to be free to move about the cabin, and doesn’t understand when I have to put away his DVD player for takeoff and landing.
Despite my son’s aversion to flying, we made it through the first leg of our flight and reached our layover in Wisconsin. As soon as the doors opened, I grabbed everything and dashed off the plane, knowing that my window for catching our flight was slim. It turns out, I could have crawled to the gate backwards and still arrived in time. It might have put me on the TSA’s Naughty List, but then again, it might have also gotten me on YouTube.

"Silent Night" by Shirley Bahlmann

 “Silent night, holy night,” Willis sang in a vibrant tenor voice that filled the cozy kitchen as his butter knife kept time with the music. “All is calm, all is bright.”
“Willis!” His mother’s panicked voice stopped his song.
“Yes?” he called, his knife hovering over the bread as he tried to decide if he should panic too.
“Come here, hurry!” Her words trembled in the air. Willis dropped the bread and the knife, which landed on the creamy yellow butter with a slurpy thud. He hurried to the front room and found his mother with a stack of mail in one hand and a single envelope in the other.
“What is it?” Willis asked, taking the letter from Mother’s shaking hand. “You’d better sit down.” He steered her to a chair and pressed down gently on her shoulders. She collapsed onto the cushion. “It’s the draft board,” she said, her teary eyes raised to his.
Willis ripped open the envelope and pulled out a sheet of paper. Printed across the top in bold letters were the words, “ORDER TO REPORT FOR INDUCTION.”
“My son is going to war,” Mother moaned.
Willis dropped to his knee so he could encircle her shoulder with his arm. “Lots of men are going.”
“But you are so talented. You’re a wonderful singer, the best I’ve ever heard—Margery  Milton even says so, and she’s not related.” Her face crumpled. “Oh, Willis, your barbershop quartet will be a trio.”
“It will turn out all right,” Willis soothed, patting her back. “I can re-join the quartet when I return.”
“Some soldiers never return,” she sobbed. “I prayed this day wouldn’t come. I prayed so hard, but it didn’t do any good, and it’s almost Christmas!”
Willis couldn’t think of anything to say to comfort her. He hated leaving his widowed mother, but there was a war that needed to be fought. All he could do was kneel on the carpet and pat her back until her tears were spent.

"I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" by J. Lloyd Morgan

My trash can was nearly overflowing, and crumbs from several days’ worth of lunches were scattered on the floor. It seemed that once again, the cleaning crew hadn’t done their job. A blinking light on my phone indicated that the voice message box was full, even though I had cleared it out the previous night. While my computer was booting up, I looked at my planner from the day before. I always wrote down the things I needed to accomplish during the day, and then I’d cross them off as I’d go. Yesterday’s list started with ten items, and over the course of the day, it had grown to twice that size. I sighed when I realized I had only crossed off three.
After putting away my homemade lunch in my desk drawer—I didn’t dare put it in the break room fridge because it would disappear before I’d get a chance to eat it—I pulled up my email. I had one hundred and thirty-two new messages. About every third message was marked “urgent”.
I plowed through my work, like I did every day, when at around 4:45 pm I got an interoffice buzz on my phone.
“Jenkins here,” I answered.
“You’re required in conference room F,” said my boss’s secretary.  She hung up before I could ask why. I still had several hours’ worth of work to complete before I would be even marginally caught up.
I walked by the bigger, empty conference rooms as I made my way to F. Unlike the other rooms, F didn’t have any windows. My guess was that my boss preferred it that way so there were no distractions.
“You wanted to see me?” I asked.
“Sit down,” she said without looking up from the papers in front of her.
Though she wasn’t that many years older than me, she looked twice my age. Her hair was gray with streaks of black, and she wore narrow glasses that rested on the end of her nose. I imagined that at one time she could have been considered pretty, but years of being in a bad mood, and thus frowning, had created wrinkles that made her look like she was always upset.

And here a look of one of the prizes:

A signed paperback copy of "Sing We Now of Christmas"

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

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2. Git Idea - Clipa - The Instant Handbag Hanger + a Giveaway

Let's keep the Stocking Stuffer theme going today with today's gift idea.  But instead of a gift that goes in the stocking, how about a gift that allows Santa to hang them almost anywhere.

Git Idea - The Clipa

About - The Clipa is an instant handbag hanger that allows the user to hang their bag almost anywhere.

Features include
  • Understated and elegant
  • Stays right on the handbag for instant access
  • A purse accessory that gets used
  • Circular shape with wide opening makes the ideal purse hanger
  • Hangs most anywhere
  • Durable, heavy duty construction - holds up to 45 lbs
  • Non-slip pads on both clip arms
  • Can be worn as a bracelet or bangle
  • Gift boxed

The Clipa was designed as a handbag hanger, but don't let that fool you.  My husband could use this to hang up his tool bag when he is working in the garage or around the house.  This would also be perfect to get my daughters dance bag off the floor.   And as we don't have a fireplace, I also think it would be a great way to hang our Christmas  Stockings around the house this year.

To Buy - The Clipa comes in a variety of different styles and colors.  Prices start at just $19.99, and you can get one as plain as you want - or as blinged out!

To Win - We are giving away the sterling silver Clipa to one of you!

To Enter Complete any of the entries on the rafflecopter form below.  Open to US.  Make sure and read the terms and conditions below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I received a product to review from the above company or their PR Agency. Opinions expressed in this post are strictly my own - I was not influenced in any way. I received no monetary compensation for this post. By entering this giveaway you agree to my giveaway/disclosure guidelines

28 Comments on Git Idea - Clipa - The Instant Handbag Hanger + a Giveaway, last added: 12/2/2012
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3. Meet This Year's Poetry Judges

Our Poetry Category Chair, Jone MacCulloch, has posted part one of what will be a three-part series interviewing some of her panelists in the Poetry category. Wondering who these folks are and what they're looking for in a poetry nominee? Here's a brief excerpt of the interview on Jone's blog, Check It Out:

MsMac [aka Jone]: What is your day job?

Anastasia: I teach writing workshops (online) and write books for kids.

Mary Lee: My day job is 5th grade Language Arts teacher.

Carol: I am a literacy coach at a K-8 bilingual school in urban Denver.

MsMac: Who are your poetry mentors?

Anastasia: I love, love, love poetry by Valerie Worth, Lilian Moore, Margaret Wise Brown and Eve Merriam.

Mary Lee: My poetry mentors are Robert Frost and Kay Ryan; J. Patrick Lewis, Douglas Florian, Joyce Sidman, Jane Yolen, Heidi Mordhorst, and Amy Ludwig Vanderwater.

Carol: Not sure if they are mentors but I love (in no particular order:  Kristine O’Connell George,  Anna Grossnickle Hines, J. Patrick Lewis, Doug Florian, Valerie Worth, Mary Oliver, Langston Hughes, Mary Lee Hahn, Marilyn Singer, lots and lots more.

To read the rest of the interview, click here.

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4. 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #306: Featuring Jayme McGowan

The Buskers

The best thing that came out of writing about Elin Kelsey’s You Are Stardust, illustrated by Soyeon Kim, which I did here at 7-Imp in September, was that I met Jayme McGowan. (Well, I cyber-met her, though I wish I could say we had actual coffee together.) She contacted me after reading that post to tell me she also works in cut paper/3D art, and then I visited her site and knew I’d want to feature her at 7-Imp some day very soon.

Today’s the day!

I’m going to give it over to Jayme now, since she tells us all about herself and her work below, as well as her most exciting news — that her debut picture book is to-come soon. I thank her for visiting 7-Imp today … (more…)

20 Comments on 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #306: Featuring Jayme McGowan, last added: 11/30/2012
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5. NaNoWrMo week 2


We’ve crossed the halfway point so we all are up to at least 25,000 words.

Yeah, right.

I spent the day with some writing friends at Cheryl Klein’s plot class and the number people not doing NaNo this year surprised me. The obsession with word count and winning seems to be at issue. It is a worthy goal for some, yet a source of discouragement for others.

Cheryl Klein’s workshop was excellent, by the way. It deserves a post of its own one of these days.

This is my first NaNo so maybe the lack of experience equates to indifference, or low standards. I almost didn’t enter, knowing I simply do not have the time to slap down 1600 words each day. And if I’m doomed from the start, why even try?

If I get to 25,000 by the end of the month, I will be happy. In the middle of the week, I started keeping track. I’ve topped 700 once. My current rate is somewhere between 450 and 475 words per hour. I don’t have four hours a day to write. I can’t find much more than an hour a day.

NaNo calls for a different writing strategy. I get too meticulous, too compulsive in my normal writing mode. I can’t go onto chapter 2 until everything is right in the first. Each chapter requires perfection of the previous. This is on the first draft, mind you, bound to be re-written anyway in later drafts. NaNo has been nice in that I’m forced out of my comfort zone. You just throw it down. The heck with whether it’s right and it is liberating. Don’t need to worry about spell-check, only about ignoring those irritating red underlining the offending word. When I come to a difficult part, I write a note to myself to have the character do this or say that then move on. It moves the story and pads my word count.

Problems have arisen in the storyline itself, some minor, some not. I hate my main character’s name and have tried on three or four on him. None of them work so far, but it’s not a deal-breaker. There have been moments of doubt and realization that there is no story. Now, that’s a showstopper. It takes more wind out of the sails than low word count. So I’ve had to halt and spend part of my hour a day planning or Googling something for accuracy. I did write out my research notes and included them in my word count, too. Every little bit helps.

50,000 words by December 1? It doesn’t look like it’s going to happen. A rough draft of a story? Maybe not even that. I will have a several thousand words and notes and other superfluous crap to edit through and mold into a story. That’s a win for me.

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6. Flashbacks

When should you use flashbacks and how should you incorporate them into your writing?


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7. The post office delivered WHAT?

Last week I was expecting two boxes of books from a friend, Barbara Vey. Well, one of the boxes came in and all was well.  Yay! A few days later I get another box. The box was still sitting on my front porch, and I wondered why the hubby hadn't brought it in. He proceeds to tell me he wasn't bringing that mess inside. Hmm. I had no idea what he meant be that.

So I go outside to bring the box inside, and found a very odd surprise. The box had multiple holes in it, and it had oily stains all over it.

I figured this box was accidentally delivered to me, so I proceeded to read the label and it matched the first box of books, but I could barely see where it had come from, but sure enough it was from the same address as before. 

I opened the box and found an engine. Wha???? Needless to say I was very puzzled.

My daughter suggested that Barbara was shipping the engine to a mechanic, and accidentally sent me the engine and sent the mechanic the books. Well, wouldn't he get a surprise if that were true... :-)

So I called Barbara and her voice mail picks up. I leave her a message that went something like this.
"Hi Barb - It's Dawn. Um. Did you send me an engine? Call me."

Anyway I left the engine on my porch because the stupid thing was leaking oil through the box, plus it must have weighed 40 pounds, which got me thinking, how could some one ship an engine for $10.95?  That's what the label read.  Man she got a deal. lol

Later I left for the mall with the kiddo to shop for her home-coming dress and shoes, and while she was trying on dresses, Barbara called me back.

"Hi Dawn.  I don't think I heard you right. Did you say, and she proceeds to spell it. "E.N.G.I.N.E."

I busted out laughing in the dressing room, and I'm sure people thought I was insane.  "Yep. That's what I said. The box was from you, but didn't have books inside. It had an greesy engine."

We laughed and she suggested I contact the post office.  So I called them and told them and the lady thought it was funny.  She told me the supervisor would call, but I haven't heard a word. The motor is still sitting on my porch, and it might still be there for Thanksgiving when all the family comes over. Wouldn't that make a great conversational piece. :-) "Er, Dawn. Why do you have an engine on your porch?"  

Were you ever surprised by a package before? 

Dawn Chartier
Diamonds, Amazon, Nook, Siren-Bookstrand
Not An Angel, Amazon

1 Comments on The post office delivered WHAT?, last added: 12/2/2012
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8. Bloomsbury Bully Package Giveaway!

Today I have a giveaway package brought to you by the lovely Bloomsbury! This is a bully package where there will be two lucky winners. Each winner will receive a package containing BUTTER by Erin Jade Lange and FREAKS LIKE US by Susan Vaught.

A lonely obese boy everyone calls "Butter" is about to make history. He is going to eat himself to death-live on the Internet-and everyone is invited to watch. When he first makes the announcement online to his classmates, Butter expects pity, insults, and possibly sheer indifference. What he gets are morbid cheerleaders rallying around his deadly plan. Yet as their dark encouragement grows, it begins to feel a lot like popularity. And that feels good. But what happens when Butter reaches his suicide deadline? Can he live with the fallout if he doesn't go through with his plans? With a deft hand, E.J. Lange allows readers to identify with both the bullies and the bullied in this all-consuming look at one teen's battle with himself.

When Jason Milwaukee's best friend Sunshine vanishes, Jason knows that something is terribly wrong, but solving her disappearance will require pushing through all the voices in his head and then getting the world to listen to him. His schizophrenia is stopping him from remembering the events leading up to her disappearance, and often he discounts his own memories, and his own impressions. But his deep knowledge that he would never hurt his friend, plus the faith of his parents and a few others in the town bring him to the point of solving the mystery. In the end, it's Sunshine's own love for Jason (Freak) that persuades him of his own strength and goodness. By turns brilliantly witty and searingly honest, Susan Vaught's newest novel is a laugh-out-loud, tear-jerking, coming-of-age story.

Winner must respond within 48 hours
Open to Everyone

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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9. Gail's Connection To Hostess Brands. Seriously. I Have One. And Another E-book Announcement, Too

So, you've heard that Hostess Brands is going belly up, right? No? Well, it is, and that means the Twinkie is on its way out. Well, maybe not, because another company could buy the rights to the cake. But for now, things aren't looking good.

So what does this have to do with moi? And, more importantly, what does it have to do with professional moi, since this is a professional blog, no matter what others may tell you to the contrary?

Well, in addition to Twinkies, Ding Dongs, and Ring Dings, Hostess made...something...called Sno Balls. I did not eat Sno Balls frequently when I was a child, but I definitely admired them back then. So when I needed a highly processed treat for the last chapter of my first book, My Life Among the Aliens, Sno Balls were the first thing that came to mind.

I have been thinking of Aliens very recently because just this past week the rights to the book were returned to me from my publisher. Thus, people, there's reason to hope that the world will see a new My Life Among the Aliens e-book edition sometime next year.

0 Comments on Gail's Connection To Hostess Brands. Seriously. I Have One. And Another E-book Announcement, Too as of 1/1/1900
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10. Nov. 17, 2012: Demi Signing at Hicklebee's

The prolific azhenghe.jpgnd award-winning author Demi will be at Hicklebee's Books on Saturday, November 17, 2012 at 2:00pm. She will be signing her newest book, The Great Voyages of Zheng He.

Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012
2:00 pm
Hicklebee's Books
1378 Lincoln Ave.
San Jose, CA 95125

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11. The Raven Boys, by Maggie Steifvater (a reaction, not a review)

I really, really liked The Raven Boys, by Maggie Steifvater (Scholasitc, YA, Sept. 2012). 

I'm cheerfully assuming that anyone reading this has already read reviews and summaries; since I don't feel like doing one myself, I'm skipping straight to my personal reaction as a fan of character-driven fantasy.

And boy, did The Raven Boys please me with its brightly sharp-edged cast of central characters, who are (like so many people) complicated, uncertain, variously lovable and not so much so.  Blue is the daughter of small town Virginia psychics, living in house of women's magic.  The four Raven boys are students at the ultra posh prep school that sits uneasily in town, each boy with his own complex back story.   The tangled-ness of self and other, the uneasy negotiations of loyalty and friendship, and the sense of precipices of hurt waiting to happen, combined with the fact that the majority of them are lovable, was enthralling.

These characters drive the story.  Sure, there's a plot with people racing around on a quest of great magical antiquity, and yes, there is a mystery,  and supernatural-nesses, and a strong sense of place, and all that was good, but I felt at some level that it was there so that the characters could exist.   Although I enjoyed the gradual em-piling of magic upon reality (and it was fascinating, interesting magic), that part of the story seemed to give the characters room to create themselves, rather than dictating their actions in external, quest-related, terms. Which is to say--the interpersonal relationships (which are by no means romance focused, although that's there) come first in reading primacy, followed by the actions involved in achieving the object of the quest. Which is just fine with me.

I didn't quite love The Raven Boys,  because I was too anxious about people getting hurt.   It isn't a safe and cozy book, and I generally choose comfort reads over wrenching ones.   However, and this is a new thing, I am distressed to find that when I am confronted with vulnerable teenaged boys, I react as a mother (although my oldest son is still not quite 13....).   I fought it hard while reading this--asking myself which of the boys I'd have a crush on, and that sort of thing--but it was no use.  I felt maternal and wanted to hug them.  So utterly annoying.

I think that this is one that I will like lots more (perhaps even to the point of love) when I re-read it after I've read to the end of the series.  At that point I'll know the ending (unless Maggie Steifvater makes mean author choices), and I'll know all the things that we aren't being told, and perhaps I'll get to see Blue and a Raven boy or two happily settled into a peaceful life together or some such, and I won't have to spend my reading energy on fretting...

Just for the record:  out of Maggie Steifvater's books to date, this is only the second one that I really liked.   The first being Ballad, which is lovely (here's my review), and which I highly recommend even to those who haven't read the (less personally appealing) first book, Lament.   I couldn't finish The Scorpio Races, because it was too anxious, and the Wolves series just didn't interest me.

disclaimer:  review copy received from the publisher

10 Comments on The Raven Boys, by Maggie Steifvater (a reaction, not a review), last added: 12/2/2012
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12. Piggles favorite movie...

About this book:
On his first day of school Piggles worries about everything. But Piggles learns to think for himself as he outsmarts dinosaurs, a witch, a goblin, a UFO, a dragon and a pirate. Filled with puzzles and interactive fun, Piggles loves school once gets there.

'Piggles Goes to School' challenges children to think for themselves and overcome problems as they travel with Piggles on his way to school. Touching objects initiates sounds, actions, animations.  Help Piggles solve a variety of puzzles to make his way safely to school.

As an illustrator and writer of more than 50 children's books I had a great time creating this app. You can download this app in the InteractiveTouchBooks.com bookstore, which is an iTunes store

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13. This Turkey Is Thankful For Good Football Books!

It's almost Thanksgiving, the day a lot of guys like to eat insane amounts of turkey and watch FOOTBALL! Of course the Iron Guy does too. (I guess that makes me the Gridiron Guy---ah hahahaha!!!) The season is halfway over and we in Charlotte have groaned all year, watching our beloved and frustrating Panthers lose some games that were going our way. Anyway, here are some good books about the pigskin sport:

How Football Works by Keltie Thomas

Here's one that I've written about before and it's still terrific. Chock-full of useful information, this book is a must-read for the the novice or the long-time fan. You can see my original  review here.here. Go ahead and take a look--not only does it tell you how terrific the book  is, but it lets you see how hopeful we Panthers fans at this time last year. Well, we had Cam Newton tearing up the gridirons in his impressive rookie year, so we had good reason. But this year---Oh, will we ever learn????

Long Arm Quarterback by Matt Christopher

Most reader guys know that the name "Matt Christopher" on a book guarantees a good read. Here's what I said in the original review:

 Long-Arm Quarterback by Matt Christopher. I hope you know about him already. He writes sports books and I haven't read one yet that I didn't like. Cap Wadell is frustrated because his little Texas town is so small that they can't get enough guys together to make a football team. His grandfather Tully remembers when he was in high school and played with six-person teams; in fact, there was a high school league made of six-person teams. Tully suggests that all the small towns in that area get together and make such a league. Cap's friends get excited at the idea and, before long, there's a league going. Tully agrees to coach Cap's team but there's a problem--Cap's friend Jimmy joins the team. That's not so bad, but Jimmy's grandfather Sable comes along to help coach. Sable used to play on Tully's league on a different team and was a good player. Tully won the championship that year and Sable is still mad about it after all these years. Will that old rivalry tear the team apart? Will Sable ever put his anger away and think about the good of the team? I had to read all the way to the end to find out!

NFC South by Michael Teitelbaum

This is a good one if you want some quick facts about the teams in the NFC South Division: the Atlanta Falcons, the Panthers, the New Orleans Saints or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The whole book took me only 15 minutes to read. There a short history of each team (only a page long) plus info on the Home Field, Big Days, Superstars (Then and Now), and Stat Leaders for each team. Interesting reading.

And here's a video to make you laugh. It's based on an old Andy Griffith routine called "What It Was Was Football" about a young hillbilly boy who sees his first football game. It'a about 7 minutes long, so make yourselves comfortable.

If I don't see you before then,  I hope you have a great Thanksgiving.

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14. a candy cane striped zebra named peppermint...?

you betcha ;)

just about done my painting for my holiday 2012 card. here's a little mug shot of pippa's buddy peppermint, the candy cane striped zebra.

only in nicole's world...;)

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15. Research for Quetzalcoatl (A-Z)

I just finished reading Gods Graves and Scholars last night  (a classic book about all the pioneers of Archaeology).

I dare say it was on my reading list in university but it somehow passed me by which is a shame because its a great read.

If you haven’t read it you must, especially if your into the exploring and adventuring side of archaeology and it explains how it all got going as a science.

I like to research things for my illustrations to try and get details right and to work up inspiration for future drawings. I also wanted to use my archaeology knowledge more in my artwork than I have previously.

Quetzalcoatl Studies

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16. Library Loot: Third Trip in November

New Loot:
  • Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A New English Version edited by Philip Pullman
  • Little Lord Fauntleroy by Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • Untold Tales by William J. Brooke
  • Reached by Ally Condie
  • Pahtfinder by Orson Scott Card

Leftover Loot:
  • A Crown of Swords by Robert Jordan
  • The Path of Daggers by Robert Jordan  
   Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire and Marg that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.   

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 Comments on Library Loot: Third Trip in November, last added: 12/2/2012
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17. Call for Submissions: the Lindenwood Review

The Lindenwood Review, the literary journal of Lindenwood University, is currently accepting submissions of fiction, poetry and personal essays for Issue 3, to be published June 2013.

Deadline for submissions: December 15, 2012

We welcome submissions from new writers as well as established writers. (Current Lindenwood University students are not eligible to submit their work). We look for fiction with believable characters and a vivid story; poetry with original, interesting use of language; well-crafted, honest essays; and mostly, work that moves us.

Submissions should be emailed to:

 TheLindenwoodReview(at)lindenwood.edu (Replace (at) with @ )

Please read and follow the full submission guidelines here.

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18. Call for Submissions: MARY: A Journal of New Writing

MARY: A Journal of New Writing is in search of new work to publish! We are sending out a call for Creative Non-Fiction, Fiction, and Poetry for our 2013 issue.

See guidelines below on how to submit and visit our online submission page to submit now. Thank you for your time, and we look forward to reading your work!

There is no fee to submit to MARY. Writers selected for standard publication are awarded $50. Those who are chosen for the Nouveau section (a portion of the journal dedicated to emerging writers who have not yet been published) are not awarded payment. When you're ready to submit, please fill out the entire submission form. Please do not submit more than six pages of creative non-fiction, fiction, or six poems. The deadline for the 2013 issue is December 31, 2012. Good luck writers!

MARY: A Journal of New Writing is an online literary journal sponsored by Saint Mary's College of California's MFA Creative Writing program. Since 2002, MARY has published contemporary poetry, prose, and new media arts from a diverse group of established artists, including: D.A. Powell, Peter Orner, Rebecca Curtis, Matthew Zapruder, Eric Pankey, Candace Nadon, as well as other talented and emerging writers! MARY has also conducted interviews with award-winning writers such as Michael Palmer, Nick Flynn, Forrest Gander, Lysley Tenorio, and many more! Visit our website to view previous issues.

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19. Roxbury Reading: Poetry & Music

Begin your holiday season with a relaxing afternoon of poetry and music in a cozy, comfortable, country library on December 2, 2012, Minor Memorial Library, 23 South Street, Roxbury, CT. 

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20. This Is Not My Hat

Ever taken something that was not yours? Keep reading… This Is Not My Hat is the follow up to the award winning and hilarious I Want My Hat Back by author and illustrator Jon Klassen. This Is Not My Hat explores the dangers and consequences of taking what is not yours, when a very tiny [...]

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21. Life, Loss, and Picture Books

Arthur Rackam

With life comes loss. Whether you lose a memento, job, home, pet, or loved one, the pain can feel the same.

With writing also comes loss...

Lately I’ve been mourning the loss of paragraphs, phrases, and words in my picture book manuscript.

Breaking up with a cleverly crafted phrase or an endearing scene can be excruciating. It’s so difficult to part with something you love.

After any period of mourning, it is imperative to move on. Often, life sends better things your way. 

I am starting to think as a picture book writer instead of a children’s book writer. I cut out anything that can be shown or explained with the illustrations. 

My manuscript has gone from 563 words down to 253 words. And you know what? It’s getting better. 

Here are some great quotes by picture book author Juliet Clare Bell on the subject:

“Editing picture book manuscripts is different from editing other manuscripts….A manuscript for a great novel will read as brilliantly as the novel itself. A manuscript for a great picture book will not. But that’s the point. It’s not MEANT to. It’s a picture book. It’s all about the book as a whole

“Remember, you’re not aiming for something that will flow beautifully without the aid of pictures (as it will look as a manuscript in your hands); you are looking for something that will flow beautifully as a picture book.” 

“…picture book editors know how to imagine the pictures. It's their job.” 

How do you deal with loss in your writing?

4 Comments on Life, Loss, and Picture Books, last added: 12/2/2012
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22. Call for Submissions: Soundings Review

The editors at Soundings Review are currently accepting submissions for the Spring/Summer issue.

About Us:
Soundings Review, a bi-annual publication in conjunction with the Northwest Institute of Literary Arts, publishes poetry, fiction, children/young adult and nonfiction, including essays and interviews. We read all submissions.

January 1, 2013 - for Spring/Summer Issue
May 1, 2013 - for Fall/Winter Issue

For more information, visit: our website.
Submit online.

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23. Call for Submissions by Women: Sou'wester

Call for Submissions: Sou'wester

Editors Stacey Lynn Brown and Valerie Vogrin are thrilled to announce a call for submissions for the spring 2013 special issue: A Celebration of Women Writers. We are seeking poetry, fiction, and nonfiction by female and female-identified writers in all stages of their careers. Valerie is particularly interested in innovative prose forms, work that examines the lives of women, and graphic narratives. And Stacey is, as always, looking for poems that would take off the top of Emily Dickinson's head.

A special editors' prize, The Robbins Award, will be given to one emerging poet and prose writer from either the fall or spring issue.

Please note on your submission whether you are eligible for this award, and visit our website for specifics and instructions on how to electronically submit via Submittable. Submissions are open from November 7 through January 31, 2013. We look forward to reading your work.

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24. 2013 Calendars

As many of you know, each year I have desk calendars printed with a different image of my art for each month.
I have so much fun matching the image to the month!
This calendar has reproductions of my illustrations, paintings and collages.
Mim, guess who represents October? :)

Here's the link to my shop in case you're interested.

I'm only charging $5 above what they cost me, plus shipping. 

Sorry for the sales pitch! Tis the season :)

3 Comments on 2013 Calendars, last added: 12/2/2012
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25. Lord of Chaos

Lord of Chaos. (Wheel of Time #6) Robert Jordan. 1994. Tor. 720 pages.

I struggled my way through Lord of Chaos. I didn't find it as easy to love as some of the earlier books in Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series. Because I was so enthusiastic at the start of the series, it was disappointing to "just" like a book instead of love it.

Lord of Chaos does have almost all of the characters I've come to like, love, enjoy. (Of course, in this good vs. evil battle there are plenty of not-so-good characters.) Rand isn't having an easy time being the Dragon Reborn. Sure, some people love him or the idea of him. Some might arguably be a little too enthusiastic for the cause. But others hate him and will stop at nothing to bring him down. But rather it's love or hate, there are plenty who just don't know him at all. They see him as a symbol, an idea, not a human being. Being around Rand brings danger to his friends... But this is never just Rand's story. There are a dozen or so "main" stories in this series. And hundreds of characters--at least--to follow through the narration. Some characters seem to have chapters and chapters dedicated to them, and others just a couple. Unfortunately, the proportion this time around didn't match my interest level. That is also how I felt about much of Lord of the Rings. There were characters that I just LOVED, LOVED, LOVED so very much and whose stories I found so compelling and wonderful. And then there were other sections where I just kept reading so I could get to the good parts I knew were coming.

Read Lord of Chaos
  • If you're a fan of fantasy series, long fantasy series
  • If you enjoy epic battles between good and evil 

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 Comments on Lord of Chaos, last added: 12/2/2012
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