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In a recent post, you offered as an aside that a writer whose platform involved speaking out on the issues of the day might not be a good fit for you. Can you expand on why a polemicist or controversialist, however well known, might not be right for you, and why such a platform might be counterproductive in the realm of fiction writing. I make my living selling books to publishers and then helping authors have successful careers. By and large this means selling Many Many copies of this book, then the next book, and so on. Rinse, remainder, repeat.An author who is busy writing blog posts on why Felix Buttonweezer is a scamp are 1. alienating all Felix Buttonweezer fans; and 2. getting known as a Felix-basher, not novel writer.I'm not saying don't do it, I'm saying do it in moderation. A blog that's all Felix, all the time isn't a blog that general readers are going to follow, or check in with to find out there's a new book coming.What many writers realize only after the book is published is the author persona is an entity that may not be a clone of the writer.May I use myself as an example here? I've been known to rant about certain political things once or twice. Most often it's in response to a query.
Sometimes I really bring out the big guns and start quoting Scripture.Most of my blog readers are willing to let me do this because I don't do it often, and I'm generally not going to delete their comments if they disagree with me.This blog is known for dispensing information, advice and rants to writers. That's my goal. The other blog posts are just cause I get riled up sometimes as we all do.When you're planning your social media, ask yourself what your goal is. Is it to make friends who will buy your book and support your career? Is it to convert people to your political agenda, or show them the error of their ways in thinking differently than you do?Those are mutually exclusive goals, and if you don't know it, I do.
Today's blog post brought to you by The Tao and The Bard by Phillip dePoy.
The Tao Te Ching or Book of the Way of Virtue is a touchstone of Eastern philosophy and mysticism. It has been called the wisest book ever written, and its author, Lao Tzu, is known as the Great Archivist.
Shakespeare, the Bard, was the West’s greatest writer and even invented human nature, according to some.
The Tao and the Bard is the delightful conversation between these two unlikely spokesmen, who take part in a free exchange of views in its pages.
By: Donna McDine
Blog: Write What Inspires You
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It's time to celebrate, it's already March 4th and you know what that means... Spring is on it's way! Yippee!
To celebrate even further, it's the first Wednesday of the month and it's #IWSG day!!
Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!
Our Twitter hashtag is #IWSGThe awesome co-hosts for the March 4 posting of the IWSG will be Chemist Ken, Suzanne Sapseed, and Shannon Lawrence!
For my post this month, I'm not chatting about my writing insecurities, I'm chatting about a cause near and dear to my heart...
Numerous studies from both government and the private sector provide clear evidence that early reading skills are an investment in a child's future. Early reading skill development dramatically affects the quality of life for children as they grow into adulthood. Sadly, a recent article by Carole Dickerson on the Journal Standard website quoted a local social worker who stated that many of the parents in the homes she visits do not own a single children's book. This is quite shocking to me and in response, I am announcing a children's book drive within my county to support the Rockland County Department of Social Services. I encourage other authors of children's books to do the same or if you have gentle used children's books to please donate to the book drive.
I invite those interested in donating to contact me directly at email@example.com.
In my opinion, "the bare essence of learning to read opens up the world of exploration to a child. Across the curriculum it is imperative children grow in their reading capability so success in their classes can be had. Without the fundamentals it is very difficult to progress successfully."
"I believe in ‘paying it forward.' That one book donation may be all it takes to make a difference in a child’s life. By encouraging the love of reading in our young muses their look of wonder as they bubble with excitement on their next reading journey swells my heart."
I urge you to join me in my quest to ignite curiosity in children through reading by donating to the Rockland County Department of Social Services book drive.
I look forward to hearing from you!
P.S. I will comment back to visitors and visit with fellow #IWSG members once I return from work today!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Best wishes,Donna M. McDineMulti Award-winning Children's AuthorIgnite curiosity in your child through reading!Connect with Donna McDine on Google+
A Sandy Grave ~ January 2014 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc. ~ 2014 Purple Dragonfly 1st Place Picture Books 6+, Story Monster Approved, Beach Book Festival Honorable Mention 2014, Reader's Favorite Five Star ReviewPowder Monkey ~ May 2013 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc. ~ Story Monster Approved and Reader's Favorite Five Star ReviewHockey Agony ~ January 2013 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc. ~ New England Book Festival Honorable Mention 2014, Story Monster Approved and Reader's Favorite Five Star ReviewThe Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc. ~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval, Readers Favorite 2012 International Book Awards Honorable Mention and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist
Happy Secret Garden Wednesday !!! Every Secret Garden Wednesday readers can drop by & find new and special happenings in the Secret Garden. There will be crafts, great food, fun and laughter.
Last week was filled, and I mean filled, with ice, sleet… and finally a big dose of wonderful snow. Once the snow hit and we could get out of the house, everyone had a great time sledding, and cross country skiing as well as fort and snowman building. Some of the best fun of all was had by our resident foxes who played a roving game of kick the can with us as well as many adventuresome moments diving into the snow.
Traditionally speaking snow days in our house also brings out traditional foods. There’s always a big pot of vegetable soup on the stove, warm bread out of the oven, and more hot chocolate than you can muster. There is also a dessert that is so warm and cozy that it’s one of the first things I make on a “snow day” and that’s Sticky Toffee Pudding. Warm, sticky, and completely lovely. Its the perfect ending to a perfect snow day. The only thing more perfect is to eat it by the fire.
Cheers and Enjoy !!!
From the book A Year in the Secret Garden (page 63)
Sticky Toffee Pudding
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for the pan
- 1 1/2 cups of sifted all purpose flour, plus more for the pan
- 1 1/2 cups chopped pitted dates ( about 6 ounces)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/4 cups (Packed) light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup (1/2) stick unsalted butter
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream
(Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature.)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 C). Butter and flour Bundt pan. Bring dates and 1 1/4 cups water to a boil in a medium heavy saucepan with tall sides. Remove from heat; stir in baking soda ( mixture will become foamy). Set aside; let cool.
Whisk 1 1/2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat 1/4 cup butter, sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl to blend (mixture will be grainy). Add 1 egg; beat to blend. Add half of flour mixture and half of date mixture; beat to blend. Repeat with remaining 1 egg, flour mixture, and date mixture. Pour batter into mold.
Bake until a tester inserted into center of cake comes out clean, 40-45 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Invert pudding onto rack.
(Can be made 4 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature. Rewarm gently before using. )
Bring sugar, cream, and butter to a boil in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly. Continue to boil, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla.
Cut cake into wedges. Serve with sauce and whipped cream.
Want to enjoy more month-by-month activities based on the classic children’s tale, The Secret Garden? A Year in the Secret Garden is over 120 pages, with 150 original color illustrations and 48 activities for your family and friends to enjoy, learn, discover and play with together. A Year In the Secret Garden is our opportunity to introduce new generations of families to the magic of this classic tale in a modern and innovative way that creates special learning and play times outside in nature. This book encourages families to step away from technology and into the kitchen, garden, reading nook and craft room. Learn more, or grab your copy HERE.
The post Secret Garden Wednesday: Sticky Toffee Pudding appeared first on Jump Into A Book.
I promised you more Europeans so here is another fellow-Brit, Emma Yarlett. I think when you see ORION AND THE DARK, you will realize why I shot off an email immediately to Emma to see if she would be up … Continue reading
Disclaimer: I received no compensation from the author or publisher for this honest review.
About the Book
Merry Gentry, ex–private detective and full-time princess, is now the mother of triplets, a rarity in the high ranks of faerie. And not everyone is happy about it, including Taranis, King of Light and Illusion. He’s using the human courts to sue for visitation rights, claiming that one of the babies is his. To save herself and her children, Merry will use the most dangerous powers in all of faerie: a god of death, a warrior known as the Darkness, the Killing Frost, and a king of nightmares. They are her lovers, and her dearest loves, and they will face down the might of the high courts of faerie—while trying to keep the war from spreading to innocent humans in Los Angeles, who are in danger of becoming collateral damage.
Here's what I'm giving it:
Rating: 4 stars
This is the long awaited ninth book in the Merry Gentry series. For the fans of the series, you should give this a read. It feels like the way Hamilton used to write and I liked it.
We finally learn more about Meredith, her kings and her babies in the latest installment to this series. What I enjoyed the most was that the sex didn't drown the story. There was enough that it complimented the flow of the overall plot which was a breath of fresh air.
We also learned a little bit more about Meredith's mettle and what makes her tick.Would I recommend this book? Yes.
DON'T MISS THE OTHER BOOKS IN THIS SERIES
Welcome, fellow l’annabes. My name is Layla, and I will be your guide to the planet L’eihr (and the innermost workings of Cara Sweeney’s mind). To prepare for this journey, I want you to remember the following: Cara, our heroine, is fiery and passionate. You know this because she has red hair. Also, she is a woman. Aelyx, our hero, is logical and doesn’t totally get human emotions 100%. You know this because he is a man. (And an alien from a planet where they like … bred out human emotion because it is a weakness, do you hear me? A weakness! Don’t worry, they’re trying to fix it.) The L’eihr don’t believe in: feelings, compassion, humans not sucking. In this universe, it is totally realistic for one teenager to give up her life on Earth and decide to “build a life together” with her alien boyfriend on his alien... Read more »
The post Review: Invaded appeared first on The Midnight Garden.
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By: Marjorie Coughlan,
Planting the Trees of Kenya: The Story of Wangari Maathai
by Claire A. Nivola
(Frances Foster Books; Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2008)
Winner … Continue reading ...
By: Rafael Rosado & Jorge Aguirre,
NAME: Prince Sargent the Simple
HOME: The Northwest Kingdom
BACKGROUND: Prince Sargent the Simple is not the most sophisticated of the Seven Lovelorn Princes, however he does love to explore and find new things — usually in his nose or belly button. Back home, he enjoys wrestling alligators and letting the gators win. Every now and then you might find a pearl of simple wisdom uttered from his lips, however you’ll need to wait for a pretty long time.
PRINCELY POWER: He possesses the ability to enjoy the simple things in life, but that’s mainly because those are the only things he understands.
BookBuzzr subscriber – Luana Ehrlich’s book – One Night in Tehran has been seeing steady success on Amazon. It has garnered over 150 reviews and recently hit the number one spot on the Canadian Amazon store. We connected with Luana to learn her story.
The screenshot below was taken on Feb, 16 2015.
Hi, Luana, thank you for taking the time to do this interview. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Although I grew up in Illinois, I’ve lived in either Texas or Oklahoma for most of my adult life. For a short period of time, I also worked with my husband, who is a Baptist minister, as a missionary in Latin America.
I’m called “Granny” by my two grandsons who live nearby, and until my husband’s retirement from a long-time pastorate, I was identified as “the pastor’s wife.” Now, at least among my friends, I’m simply known as “the author.”
This may be more than you want to know about me, but I’m also an avid reader, a news fanatic, and an enthusiastic supporter of the Dallas Cowboy football team.
What is the premise behind One Night in Tehran?
Because I’ve been a freelance writer for several years and also a fan of spy fiction, it’s probably not surprising I’ve always had a desire to write my own espionage thriller. However, until recently, I didn’t so because, quite frankly, I’ve never enjoyed reading Christian fiction as much as secular fiction. Yet, I knew the element of faith would have to be present in any novel I wrote. Then, one morning, after hearing about how Christians in Iran were living out their faith under intense persecution, the character of Titus Ray and the plot of One Night in Tehran suddenly came to life for me. I began by asking these questions: “What would happen if a veteran CIA intelligence operative in Tehran encountered a group of Iranian Christians and became a believer? How would his conversion affect his career? How would a man trained to lie and deceive others be able to follow the teachings of Christ in the real world? What if he was involved in a murder and was being pursued by an assassin at the same time?
When did you start writing One Night in Tehran and what was the process like?
When my husband and I retired, I began writing a blog. The support I received from my followers led me to start thinking about writing a novel. Once I had the general plotline in my head, I wrote it down in the form of a brief paragraph. Then, I began mapping out some character details. After that, I did very little in the way of outlining; instead, I allowed the action and dialogue to be spontaneous. The process became like reading a book, only at a much slower pace.
What was the process you employed in getting the book cover designed?
Book covers in the mystery/suspense/thriller genre have a certain look to them. I can easily pick up a book and know whether or not it’s written in that genre without reading the description. They’re usually printed in dark color with short titles in bold white type. When I studied the covers on Amazon and noted the ones that caught my eye, I realized how important a cover was, even in deciding to read a book’s description. With that in mind, I made a prototype of my cover using Adobe software, and I used that prototype to tell my professional cover designer what I wanted. Even though she never saw my homemade design, the end result was very similar to the one I’d done. I’ve done this same thing in visualizing the cover for my second book.
What is your goal as a writer?
My primary goal as a fiction writer is to entertain my readers. I want them to experience being in the skin of a covert intelligence officer, to know what it feels like to make life and death choices, and to know the constant pressure of hiding one’s identity in the shadows of obscurity.
As a Christian fiction writer, my secondary goal is to encourage my readers to live out their Christian faith by introducing them to characters who are flawed, weak, and struggling, yet determined to follow the teachings of Christ anyway.
What is your biggest frustration as a book author?
My biggest frustration as an author is not being able to write for several hours at a time without getting tired. Although writing appears to involve merely the mental processes, writing for an extended period of time takes its toll on the body as well.
What is your biggest challenge as a self-published author?
My biggest challenge as a self-published author is that I must wear several different hats at the same time. I need to promote myself as an author—the job of a publicist—format and publish my manuscript—the job of a publisher—and create and write my book—the job of an author. Achieving that balance is the biggest challenge.
What are you currently reading? How did you find this book?
Currently, I’m reading Personal by Lee Child
. He’s one of my favorite authors, and I was notified by a book club when he published this novel.
How do you divide your time between marketing your book and writing your next book?
I usually spend 3 hours a day marketing One Night in Tehran. That includes answering emails, visiting advertising websites, staying updated on market trends, and then blogging and using social media. After that, I spend approximately 8 hours a day writing my second book, Two Days in Caracas.
Do you use Hootsuite or any other twitter scheduling tools for your social media marketing?
I use Buffer for scheduling my social media marketing; I’ve found it very useful in both scheduling and also in its analytical capabilities.
How did you find your first 100 readers?
Much of the action in One Night in Tehran takes place in the state of Oklahoma, and my first 100 readers came from this geographical location. This was primarily because a month after publication, a person of influence in Norman, Oklahoma, read the book and advertised it heavily as a thriller worth reading. As a result, I was able to sell over 100 books at my first book signing.
When is the next book in your Titus Ray series coming out and what can readers expect?
Two Days in Caracas will be published in May 2015. In this action-packed second book in the Titus Ray Thriller series, Titus travels from Costa Rica to Caracas with a surprise stopover in between. Besides hunting down Jihadi terrorist, Ahmed Al-Amin, Titus will face an old nemesis, mentor a new operative, and deal with several demons from his past.
Stan Lee, Michael Uslan, and David Uslan have established great careers within the comics and entertainment industry. Soon, they will also take on the role of educators.
EdX, a nonprofit education organization, will present three newly-formed massive open online courses (MOOCs) developed by the Smithsonian Institution. The “Rise of Superheroes and Their Impact on Pop Culture” class will feature instruction from the three comics legends.
Lee gave this statement in the press release: “It’s a great honor being invited to share my views on the evolution of superheroes and the genre’s overall impact across all generations of people. Throughout my career, characters have evolved so much – from drawings on a page to other-worldly special effects only animation could produce, to live-action and so much more. I can’t wait to dive into these discussions thanks to Smithsonian and edX.” (via The Hollywood Reporter)
By: Terry Hooper-Scharf,
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NASA Blurred Out Image Of UFO Sighted Near Sun — UFO May Have Destroyed Satellite To Send Warning, Blogger Claims
Read more at http://www.inquisitr.com/1891103/nasa-blurred-out-image-of-ufo-detected-near-sun-ufo-may-have-destroyed-satellite-to-send-warning-blogger-claims/#I3FVl6hcK24ZZHRm.99
Prolific UFO hunter Streetcap1
claims he has detected in a recent LASCO C3 photo
, a massive UFO with an intricate articulated design near our sun.
The photograph was captured by the SOHO
(Solar and Heliospheric Observatory) satellite in halo orbit around
the Sun-Earth L1 gravitational balance point from where it transmits to Earth a continuous stream of near-real-time data about solar activity used to predict space weather in the vicinity of the sun.
The alleged massive UFO, about the size of the moon, has a complex articulated design suggestive of a sophisticated craft built by a very advanced extraterrestrial technological civilization.
Scott Waring, editor of UFO Sightings Daily
that the crystal-like shape of the object is unlike natural objects or space rocks.
“If you look carefully, you will see there is a geometric shape to it. This shape is impossible for any comet, meteor or natural phenomenon other than crystals. This object looks a about the size of the moon, maybe a little bigger. This explains why the helioviewer is down for…cough, cough…maintenance.”
Waring suggests that the appearance of the massive alien spacecraft near our sun could explain why NASA’s Helioviewer
was down early this week. He alleges that when he finally got the Helioviewer to work, he discovered that the image of the UFO on the viewer had been blurred out.
“I finally got the Helioviewer to work and the photo at that moment is there, however the UFO has been blurred so much that its outline can no longer be seen. The UFO appears suddenly at 07:49:00 until 08:00:00, then at 08:01:00 the UFO vanishes as fast as it appeared.”
UFOlogists have accused NASA
multiple times of deliberately attempting to hide evidence of alien UFO activity in our space locality.
Waring also tentatively links the latest sighting with a recent news report about a decommissioned U.S. spy satellite which exploded “after an unexplained spike in temperature.”
According to the Telegraph
, the U.S. Air Force space command confirmed
that the “catastrophic event came after a sudden spike in temperature was detected, followed by an unrecoverable loss of attitude control.”
The explosion caused more than 40 pieces of debris to scatter into orbit.
According to Waring, the massive UFO sighted near the sun may have destroyed the satellite to send a warning. The official explanation that the satellite exploded after “an unexplained spike in temperature” could be evidence of a targeted laser strike on the satellite.
“A military satellite was destroyed on Feb 1, 2015. The satellite detected a sudden spike in temperature and then gone… I present the assumption that this UFO near our sun, destroyed this satellite and maybe others as a warning of what it is capable of doing, and to hide what it is doing near or in our sun.”
If Waring’s speculation is true, then the incident might have sent a warning to NASA and the U.S. military that our space locality is under the control of an intergalactic extraterrestrial superpower.
But one can imagine a host of skeptics smiling indulgently at the UFO hunter’s speculation about military politics in our local system.
Notwithstanding, the alleged UFO bears a remarkable resemblance to another recent find by Streetcap1, which Waring described
as a “rocket-like craft with a tripod fin end.”
The Inquisitr described
the UFO, discovered
in a 1971 Apollo 15 mission photo in the archives NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LROC), as an “articulated tripodal UFO.” The Inquisitr
noted that while skeptics would dismiss the “tripodal UFO” as a photo glitch, its apparent intricate features suggested to UFO enthusiasts a massive spacecraft built by an very advance alien civilization.
“However, going by Waring’s description of the object, we could surmise that the craft has an intricate articulated design suggestive of a highly advanced civilization.”
Read more at http://www.inquisitr.com/1891103/nasa-blurred-out-image-of-ufo-detected-near-sun-ufo-may-have-destroyed-satellite-to-send-warning-blogger-claims/#I3FVl6hcK24ZZHRm.99
The new UFO discovered near the sun also has a complex articulated shape. If, as UFO enthusiasts believe, it is not an incidental splotch or glitch in the LASCO photo, then we may surmise that it was built and designed by the same technological civilization that built the 1971 Apollo 15 mission photo and that the civilization is taking a keen interest in our vicinity of space.
The Inquistr pointed out
in a previous report why a highly advanced alien civilization might send spacecrafts to our space vicinity.
Going by the frequent claims of sightings of massive motherships near our sun, our sun might have been claimed by an energy-hungry Type II or Type III civilization
, farming our sun for energy, taking advantage of the fact that our civilization, the only one in the sun’s orbit, is still too primitive to successfully stake its claim on the intergalactic level in which advanced civilizations compete for scarce energy resources.
[Images: Helioviewer; UFO Sightings Daily]
This is a Green Skies promo and NOT reality despite what any UFO nut says!
By: Julia Callaway,
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The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recently released their report regarding a new name (i.e., systemic exertion intolerance disease) and case definition for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). In brief, the IOM proposed that at least four symptoms needed to be present to be included in this new case definition [...]
The post The IOM’s effort to dislodge chronic fatigue syndrome appeared first on OUPblog.
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I received a question whether I was going to write about the word key in the series on our habitat. I didn't have such an intention, but, since someone is interested in this matter, I’ll gladly change my plans and satisfy the curiosity of our friend.
The post Keys and bolts appeared first on OUPblog.
It feels like Alaska
outside, so snuggle in
with Bo and the gang.
Bo at Iditarod Creek by Kirkpatrick Hill, illustrated by LeUyen Pham. Holt, 2015, 288 pages.
|Male leopard in South Africa, Wikipedia photo by Lukas Kaffer |
Disruptive coloration is a type of camouflage that makes an animal disappear against its surroundings. It appears in nature on both predators and prey to interfere with their perception of each other.
It can not only disguise a subject against its background, but also against others of its own kind, making the boundaries of the form hard to see. The effect would be especially powerful when these zebras are running off in all directions.
|Abbott Thayer with Richard Meryman, Peacock in the Woods, 1907.|
Early in the twentieth century, a group of artists and scientists developed an interest in this topic, including Abbott Thayer, a student of Jean-Léon Gérôme. His book called Concealing Coloration in the Animal Kingdom
contributed to the use of camouflage in World War I.
Doing a painting like this goes against our artistic instincts to separate forms from the background, yet the effect presents a powerful appeal to the viewer.
Other painters took up the idea around the same time, including John Singer Sargent. In his painting "The Hermit," he posed an old man in the foothills of the Alps and lit him with sun-dappled light, which nearly loses him in the the background.
In the left center of the picture are two well-hidden gazelles. The animals were based on a stuffed gazelle that Sargent brought with him as a prop on his alpine travels.
I've had to really add lots of easier nonfiction to my 3rd grade classroom library. I realized so much of what I have requires lots of experience with nonfiction text. But I am thrilled to find lots of great nonfiction and my 3rd graders are reading more nonfiction than ever. It is tricky to find nonfiction perfect for 3rd grade--it has to be interesting enough for 8 year olds but it needs to be accessible. I have seen nonfiction really turn some of my kids into readers this year because I've been so intentional about the nonfiction section of our classroom library.Scholastic Discover More
series is one that I have come to LOVE LOVE LOVE this year. There are three different "levels" to this series but the difference isn't so obvious to kids. The easier books in this series are 32 pages long and they are great for primary readers. The topics are interesting and I have several kids who have read all 8 books in this part of the series. Definitely one of my favorite nonfiction series as it is packed but the text level is doable for kids who have trouble finding engaging nonfiction.
I've mentioned before how much I love Brad Meltzer's picture book I am Rosa Parks
this week--not sure how I missed it when it was released. My kids love this series and this one is as good as the others. I love the way that Rosa tells her own story and how much readers can learn about the civil rights movement from this book. This series continues to impress me--just wish they were coming out faster!
The last nonfiction book I picked up recently was Kali's Story
by Jennifer Keats Curtis. It is a simple story with very accessible text. I am glad to add as many shorter, easier texts as I can because I believe volume matters and kids are more willing to read a book that seems doable for them, when nonfiction is new. Kali's Story is the story of a baby polar bear who was rescued after his mother died. It is a story my kids will love and one that might lead them to other books with similar rescue stories. The photos are adorable and they will draw kids in immediately.
So glad I committed to reading more nonfiction in 2015. I am already a bit behind but just knowing I set a goal has me reading more than I would have otherwise. You can head over to Kidlit Frenzy
for the Nonfiction Wednesday round up!
I first ran this series five months after May B. hit the shelves. With Blue Birds releasing next week (!), it feels like the right time for me to revisit my Writer’s Manifesto — a list of things I’d like to focus on in my public, private, and writing life.
This is not in any way meant to be preachy or condemning (please notice I’m directing all of this to myself). I have yet to figure everything out and am in many ways a pro at doing the exact opposite of what I know is best. Yet these are ideas I’ve circled back to again and again, things I know will ultimately benefit my career, my friendships, my writing and my life. I’d love to hear your thoughts below.
In my private life I will…
- Err on the side of love: I got this beautiful quote from author Irene Latham, who first heard it from her mama. It’s a good way to think about the world in general and is especially important in our small community. Assume the best of others, their intentions, their actions. It will make you happier and kinder, too.
- Let go of what I can’t control: This is pretty much everything from how my work is received by professional reviewers, bloggers, readers, and friends to sales, publicity, and marketing efforts outside my hands. I can do what I can, and that is all. It isn’t right or fair to try to own things that aren’t mine and never will be.
- Be real with other authors in a safe, closed community: I’ve talked a lot about the Class of 2k12 and The Apocalypsies around here. Though both function as promotional groups for debut authors, they are first and foremost a place I can go for support. The debut year is full of new experiences only other debuts can truly appreciate and understand. Knowing I can go to these stellar people with anything has helped bolster and encourage me.
In my private life I won’t…
- Hold my colleagues to unspoken expectations: This one is easy to do without even realizing it — trusting a colleague will read my book as I have read hers, assuming someone else will talk up my titles as I have for him, believing another should comment on my blog as much as I do on hers and on and on. Insisting others are beholden to me because of what I’ve done for them is a sure formula for heartache, especially when those friends have no idea of my expectations. Maybe they haven’t read my book yet but still plan to. Maybe they have, and out of an attempt to be courteous haven’t mentioned it because it wasn’t their thing. Maybe they’re not interested in it at all. Ultimately, it’s none of my business and becomes another opportunity to err on the side of love.
- Compare or begrudge the successes, sales, or careers of others: About six months ago, there were a number of posts in the blogosphere about envy and contentment. There was tremendous response from readers confessing similar feelings. The drive to compare is such a gut-level thing it’s sometimes hard to avoid. Some people are able to use comparison as a sort of motivation for their own work. Not so with me. Comparison leads to frustration and feelings of inadequacy…or feelings of superiority, neither of which benefits me. My friends’ successes don’t somehow negatively reflect on my own efforts. There is room for all of us. Just because my career will unfold differently from someone else’s doesn’t make it wrong and doesn’t give me the right to be bitter with others’ success.
The post Navigating a Debut Year: Private Life appeared first on Caroline Starr Rose.
Last month we welcomed publisher Georgia McBride to the blog to talk about her phenomenal success with Month9Books, which she founded. Today we're pleased to host Georgia again, but this time we're exploring Georgia the author. Listen in to what goes on in the mind and world of one amazing overachiever. And then check out the giveaways below!
Interview with Georgia McBride, A WOW-Wednesday PostWhat advice would you give to first-time writers?
Read books in the genre and category you want to write in. Read the big books, the ones that are the mega sellers. This will help you learn the market. Take note of what books are being acquired to get a sense of what agents and publishers are interested in and or effectively selling. Know your weaknesses as a writer and read everything you can on craft and or that specific weakness. Agents and editors freely share information on social media and their own blogs and websites about the publishing business as well as their experiences and opinions. Read it. Join writers groups for in-person support, networking, and mentoring. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Don’t assume your first draft will be THE ONE. Write as much as you can as often as you can. It does not have to be perfect. JUST WRITE. If you don’t write, you are not a writer. And if you aren’t a writer, you will never become an author!What one thing do you feel made the most difference in getting you from aspiring author to published author
Confidence. I doubted myself for so long. I worried too much about what people in the business would say. I needed (or so I thought), their approval. Turns out, I needed nothing of the sort.If you could travel back in time to tell/warn newbie writer or newbie author something, what would that be
For every 1 person who hates your book, there are sure to be 3 who love it – and that doesn’t include YOU or YOUR MOM. There will be an audience for your work. It might be a small one, niche or GIANT one. BUT, there will be one. Of course, if you never release your book, there can be no one who loves it. And yes, I am shouting in ALL CAPS.What is your writing/revision process? Is it the same for every book, or does it change from book to book
I like to revise as I write. I will usually write a chapter, then go back and revise it immediately after.How do you recover from a writing slump or writer’s block
I have found that writer’s block stems from the need to control the story, rather than letting the story develop organically. If you don’t know what to write, it could well mean you are heading down a wrong plot path – and the block is the Universe’s way of pointing you in a different direction. I see that block as a gift and hope to inspire others to feel the same. As well, writer’s block can also be caused by fear. Don’t let fear rule your writing.Who do you most look up to in the literary world and why
I was inspired by Stephanie Meyer when I read her story. She’s a mom, just like me, and she was able to make a career for herself. She wrote during her kids’ practices and whenever she could make time. It helped me do the same and not feel guilty about finding time for myself to do something I love. And, like me, J.K. Rowling was unemployed when she started penning her novel. If she could find the motivation to do so while living in her car and not give up, then so could I, despite family members telling me to give up. So, I have been tremendously inspired by these women, both moms, both told they couldn’t do what they were compelled to do, and both enjoying success beyond their wildest dreams. Finally – I cannot say enough about Maya Angelou and Oprah Winfrey and their influence on my life. Oprah showed the world that people of color do love to read. I’m grateful for that.What are some of your worst fears when it comes to writing
I’m always worried that I’ve missed something, or could have done something better, or that readers will hate it.Did you ever feel like giving up on writing? How did you get past that
I never wanted to give up, although I don’t have nearly as much time nowadays to write my own books.What was your biggest obstacle in getting published? How did you get over it
My biggest obstacle was finding an agent who thought the genre I write in was still viable and that readers would want to read it. It killed my confidence since fantasy, paranormal, and horror is all I care to write. So, I struck back starting my own press for works of this very kind and published my novel through that press.What is the stupidest thing you’ve ever done as a writer/author? How did you turn it around
Hmmm. Stupid? Well, I released my book assuming it was going to sell on its own because I had such a great social media following. That was really, really, really stupid. I turned it around by doing live events, signings, podcasts, interviews, etc. I did the hard work!What do you struggle with the most in writing and/or in real life
I struggle with balance. I work all the time to the point where I have no time to actually read for pleasure or to read competitive titles in the market. I hope to change that this year!Do you read your reviews? How do you deal with negative comments and how do they affect you
I do read reviews. The bad ones really hurt. But sometimes you have to hear those things so you can possibly fix what you got wrong the first time. Sometimes, bad reviews can make a writer better – if they are willing to change and grow.
About the Author:
Georgia McBride is founder of Georgia McBride Media Group, home of Month9Books, Swoon Romance, and Tantrum Books. She develops content for film and TV, and is also a speculative fiction writer. Georgia founded the #YAlitchat hashtag and weekly chat on Twitter in 2009.Website
About the Book:
Volunteers from a small town in Missouri have been searching for seventeen-year-old Grace Ann Miller for weeks. Police never mentioned the note she left to say she planned to run away, or her reportedly strange behavior just prior to going missing. They suspect something sinister and more terrifying may be at play.
But Grace Ann Miller is no ordinary runaway. She's found on the estate of international rock star Gavin Vault, half-dressed and yelling for help, and becomes an instant media sensation.
Grace insists on Gavin's innocence, that he didn't harm her as police suspect. But the evidence is overwhelming, and Grace will need a lot more than her word to clear Gavin's name.
So Grace does the one thing she knows will save him. Despite the potential consequences, she tells police the truth: She is an angel. She didn't run away. She left to protect the people she loves.
But authorities believe that Grace is ill, suffering from Stockholm Syndrome, the victim of assault and a severely fractured mind.
Undeterred, Grace reveals the secret existence of angels on earth, an ancient prophecy and a wretched curse that could change everything humans believe about their origins.
But are these the delusions of an immensely sick girl, or could Grace’s story actually be true?Amazon
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For those of you who like to read your series in one big chunk, there’s now an omnibus ebook edition of the entire PARALLELOGRAM series–and it’s incredibly cheap for the moment. All four books for only $7.99! And more important, no waiting in between cliff hangers.
To be continued...
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Labuan Bajo akan menjadi persinggahan pertama bagi siapapun yang berkunjung ke Flores.Tidak peduli apakah anda tiba dengan pesawat, atau dengan perahu sekalipun.
Menurut laporan pemerintah Kota,Labuan Bajo adalah kabupaten yang paling berkembang saat ini. Dalam 3 tahun terakhir Pelabuhan Bajo telah memiliki perkembangan dua kali lipat dan populasinya pun semakin bertambah. Hal ini karena pengunjung Internasional yang datang ke Labuan Bajo meningkat. Terlebih dengan adanya Taman Nasional Komodo.
Hal ini tentu saja menjadi kabar yang sangat baik terutama bagi pemuda-pemuda yang ada di Flores. Itu artinya, mereka bisa mengelola tempat ini menjadi lapangan pekerjaan.
Labuhan Bajo seperti kota pelabuhan kebanyakan di dunia, hotel-hotel dan restoran tumbuh seperti jamur dimusim hujan dan berusaha mencari keuntungan. Selain itu, agen traveling menjadikan Labuan Bajo sebagai lahan basah mereka.
Dari Labuan Bajo anda bisa pergi ke mana pun yang anda inginkan, mulai dari Lombok, Sumbawa, atau anda juga bisa menuju ke Pulau Komodo dan berbagai tempat di Flores lainnya yang populer.
Penginapan yang ada di tempat ini serta restoran yang bertaraf internasional semuanya menyediakan kenyamanan untuk anda. Dan tentunya dengan harga yang lebih bersaing.
Di tempat ini pemandangan alam boleh dikatakan sangat dramatis karena menyajikan keindahan yang luar biasa. Disini, di Labuan Bajo anda bisa melakukan apapun yang anda inginkan mulai dari berwisata, berbelanja souvenir di jalan Yos Sudarso,atau mencari kain ikat lokal serta kain tenun songket dan berbagai kerajinan tangan khas flores lainnya.
Jika anda berkunjung ke pelabuhan bajo,sama seperti beberapa tempat di wilayah timur Indonesia,anda harus berbekal losion anti nyamuk dan obat malaria. Karena tempat ini memang masih memiliki banyak hutan yang di huni nyamuk malaria. Dan tidak lupa juga anda harus membawa topi, sun block, serta kacamata hitam karena cuaca di tempat ini sangat panas.
Pulau-pulau yang mengelilingi Labuan Bajo kebanyakan belum berpenghuni. Akan tetapi, pulau-pulau tersebut memiliki pemandangan yang luar biasa. Beberapa pantai di sekitar Labuan Bajo menawarkan keindahan dan pesonanya sendiri. Anda bisa melakukan beberapa kegiatan seperti menyelam dan senorkeling. Beberapa pulau terdekat seperti Pulau Kanawa atau Pulau Kukusan juga biasanya dijadikan sebagai spot diving.
Recently I posted on Twitter that I had run out of blog ideas. Brilliant planning since I just restarted the blog. Well thankfully a few kind souls came to my aid with questions that they thought I might be able to answer. We'll see about that.
@BookEndsJessica @BookEndsKim What is something that you wish people who submit to you knew about your job?
2/11/15, 10:55 AM
Thank you @EmilieLoritch for your question. This is something I hope I convey regularly on the blog when it might feel like I'm really just kvetching. Of course a couple of things came to mind, but the very first thing I thought of has more to do with writers and their expectations than it does with me and my job. At least I think that's what I'm about to write.
The first thing I want people to know about agents is that the least important thing we do is actually sell the book. I think there is, understandably, a lot of emphasis on that sale and while that's not wrong (because without the sale none of the other stuff, the more important stuff, would really happen) it's probably, in some ways, the easiest part of an agent's job.
What an agent actually spends the day doing is dealing with all that other stuff which really amounts to planning the author's career. I would say the most important thing you agent does for you is negotiate the contract and I don't mean the advance and royalties. I meant he nitty-gritty details of the contract that will allow, or not allow, you to do other things in the future. With contract negotiations comes an eye toward the author's career. What will this author want to be doing next year or two years down the road and how can I make sure this contract doesn't prohibit that?
I'm going to keep this simple rather than go into the myriad of other things an agent does, but what I will tell you this, which I know you've heard before, is that one of the things an agent rarely does while in the office is read. That means submissions or otherwise. Between phone calls, meetings and contracts there's very little time to put my feet up and whip out a good book.
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, Abraham Lincoln
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Dred Scott, an African-American slave, appealed to the Supreme Court for his freedom based on having been brought by his owners to live in a free territory. Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, writing for the majority, wrote that persons of African descent could not be, nor were ever intended to be, citizens under the US Constitution, and thus the plaintiff Scott was without legal standing to file a suit.
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In last Monday's blogpost I shared my adventure on drawing fishing boats from the pier in a Thai marina. On that same pier, I sat again the next day, to draw one of the many tuk-tuks on the island. I found a place in the shade, with a good view on a parked tuk-tuk. There was a little terminal post I sat on. Not very comfortable, but it gave me the right point of view and perspective to draw all the details of the motorcycle and its awesome cart build around it.
Again, I found myself drawing for an hour or so (my butt was totally numb after that!), and every now and then someone would walk over to stand behind me for a while. looking over my shoulder. The last 15 or 20 minutes of the drawing, one man stood behind me to follow the process intensely and each time I looked up, he would give me a big smile and a thumb up. I don't speak Thai and he didn't speak much English either, so 'good' and 'thank you' were pretty much the words we exchanged.
After adding the last bit of colour, I told him it was finished and he wanted to take a picture of the final drawing with his mobile phone. After that, he thanked me and walked over to the tuk-tuk to drive off with it. I hadn't realized he had been waiting for me to finish the drawing. So I apologized and thanked him about a million times (I am glad I know how to do that
in Thai!). It was really awfully kind of him, and I felt kind of bad for letting him wait and maybe miss out on clients! I felt relieved when 10 minutes later I walked by the tuk-tuk, parked in front of a house in town. it had a blanket over the motor so that indicated he was done for the day. The driver had been on his way home anyway and I believe he was proud that his tuk-tuk was being portrayed and it was worth a little bit of hanging around on the pier before heading home. Otherwise I'm sure he wouldn't have waited for me to finish the drawing, and just drive off anyway.
Later that day, I added a little layer of coloured pencil, to deepen the colours and add some more depth and contrast to the drawing. I left room for writing on the right side of the page and I might as well still write this story there.