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1. Digital India Weak

Digital India Weak /week ???

Digital India  week by  monica gupta   Digital India Weak / week ??               बेशक देशवासी Digital India week  को लेकर बेहद उत्साहित हैं सब कुछ नेट से जुड जाएगा और आराम ही आराम होगा … पर मूल भूत समस्या का क्या करें समस्या है नेट का न चलना या नेट का बेहद धीरे चलना !!!  तभी तो आज  Digital India week ???मनाए  या Digital India Weak !!!


PHOTOS: Digital India Week: PM Narendra Modis 15 point dream | The Indian Express

“I dream of a digital India where 1.2 billion connected Indians drive innovation.” (Express photo by Anil Sharma)

“I dream of a digital India where knowledge is strength and empowers people.” (Express photo by Anil Sharma)

“I dream of digital India where quality healthcare reaches right upto the remotest areas through e-health care.” (Express photo by Anil Sharma)

“I dream of digital India where cyber security becomes an integral part of national security.”

“I dream of digital India where there is mobile and e-banking for financial inclusion.”

“I dream of digital India where e-commerce drives entrepreneurship.”

“I dream of digital India where the world looks to India for the next big idea.”

“I dream of digital India where netizens are empowered citizens.” See more…

‘M-Governance (Mobile, Not Modi),’ Quips PM at Digital India Push: 10 Facts

Prime Minister Narendra Modi launching the Digital India Week. See more…

The post Digital India Weak appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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2. कहानी का जन्म

story by monica gupta (2) story monica gupta

कहानी का जन्म… बात सन 92 की है जब कहानी लिखी और  सांध्य टाईम्स  के दफ्तर जाकर  कहानी दे आई . (उन दिनों नेट नही हुआ करता था और लेखकों का पूरा फोकस सांध्य दैनिक और राष्ट्रीय समाचार पत्र पत्रिकाओं पर ही होता था क्योकि भारी मात्रा में उसे ही पढा जाता था तो मैं बता रही थी कि कहानी लिखी और सांध्य टाईमस के दफ्तर में दे आई.  उसी शाम वो कहानी प्रकाशित भी हो गई. इससे लेखनी को बेहद बल मिला और लेखनी लगातार चलती रही. बहुत लोग चाह्ते हैं कि आज कुछ लिखा और वो राष्ट्रीय पत्र पत्रिका में छप जाए. बेशल सोशल मीडिया बहुत बलवान हो गया है और लेखन को दिखाने का बहुत अच्छा माध्यम भी है पर अगर शुरुआत लोकल स्तर पर हो और धीरे धीरे अपनी कमियों को देख कर उपर उठते जाए तो बहुत अच्छा होगा …


The post कहानी का जन्म appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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3. The Scarlet Rider by Lucy Sussex. Ticonderoga Pulications, 2015

Mel, an unemployed young woman not long out of university, is offered a job by a small press dedicated to women writers, especially women crime writers. They need her to do some research for them. They have a wonderful Victorian mystery novel set on the goldfields and first published as a serial in a small local newspaper. The problem is that the book was published anonymously. The publishers believe the author was a woman, but can't be sure and if the novel wasn't written by a woman, they can't publish it. It's up to Mel to find out, using the public library, old police files and her aunt's expertise in history and genealogy. While following the trail of the mysterious novelist, Mel must handle a lot of personal and family problems, not to mention some strange dreams and the uncomfortable feeling that she's being haunted, perhaps even possessed...

I read this book when it was first published by Tor, back in the 1990s. The original edition didn't do all that well, I believe, for reasons unconnected with its quality. Not in the US, anyway, though it received a Ditmar Award here. Apparently, it was hard to place on bookshop shelves, due to being cross-genre - fantasy, history and mystery.

There's a definite feel of reality about the research, not surprising with the author's academic background. It's slightly dated, of course, because while there is still plenty of research done by reading primary - physical - documents, there is also a lot you can do online, not available at the time when the novel was written. Also, Mel would have been spared a number of troubles if mobile phones had been as common in the 1990s as they are now.

 But this is not a story that can be updated much; it would lose a lot of the suspense and drama if Mel could simply Google something or pull out her mobile phone to make an emergency call instead of having to find a phone booth and the right change. It makes me think of Josephine Tey's Daughter Of Time, published back in the 50s, when the hero solves a mystery from his hospital bed, with some help from a researcher - in the 21st century, Inspector Grant would probably be carrying on with his paperwork with a borrowed laptop or iPad, but could also Google information about Richard III -  if he even bothered to do something not work related. 

It's great to see this wonderful novel back in print, and well done to Ticonderoga for not only publishing it, but giving it a much better cover than the Tor original. I can only hope that there will be an ebook edition at some stage, making it available around the world, but meanwhile, you can buy it from the publisher, Ticonderoga Publications, here or, if you're in Australia, ask your local bookshop to order it.

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I have ten photographs with mixed mediums. Please join us. Thanks. Mary Nida Smith

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5. July Reading

Can you believe it’s July already? I can’t. I was just getting used to June, just starting to feel like I was in the June groove, and now it’s time to move on. I am not ready. Can we turn the calendar back to June 15th please? That should be enough for me to get my fill of June and then when July 1st rolls around again I will be ready. Not going to happen you say? Where’s Marty McFly or the TARDIS when you need them?

Well, let’s barrel into July then. What will the month hold for reading? I get a 3-day holiday weekend coming up for Independence Day. Groovy, some extra reading time.

Even though I have been (mostly) good about keeping my library hold requests down to a manageable number, two books I have been looking forward to reading that have long waiting lines have, of course, both arrived for me at once. I now have to either a) rush through The Buried Giant and Get in Trouble in three weeks, or b) choose one to focus on and not worry about the other and get in line for it again if I run out of time. Choice “b” seems the most likely one I will go with which means Ishiguro’s Buried Giant will get my attention first. I am looking forward to it.

Carried over from last month, I am still reading Elif Shafak’s The Architect’s Apprentice. I am enjoying it much more than I was before even though I am making my way through it rather slowly.

In June I began reading Portrait of a Lady by Henry James and The Martian by Andy Weir. Two very different books and I am enjoying each of them quite a lot. James manages to be funny and ironic and ominous and can he ever write! I know people make fun of his long sentences but I get so involved in the reading I don’t even notice the length of the sentences. I do notice sometimes the paragraphs are very long, but that is only when I am nearing my train stop or the end of my lunch break and I am looking for a place to stop reading. And The Martian, is it ever a funny book. The book itself isn’t funny I guess, there is nothing very funny about being left for dead on Mars, the character, Mark Watney is funny; humor as survival tool. Weir, I must say, does a most excellent job of writing about complex science in such a way that is compelling and interesting and makes me feel smart.

I have a review copy of a new book called Miss Emily by Nuala O’Connor on its way to me. The Emily in question is Emily Dickinson. It’s a novel from Penguin Random House and they are kindly going to provide a second copy for a giveaway. Something to look forward to!

I will also begin reading Elizabeth Bishop this month. I’m still reading Keats letters and biography and poetry but he will get a bit less attention as I start to focus on Bishop. Much as I wanted to like Keats, it seems I like the idea of Keats more than the actuality; enjoy his letters more than his poetry. Not that his poetry isn’t very good, it is, at least some of it because there is quite a bit of mediocre stuff he wrote to/for friends that makes me wonder why I decided to read the collected rather than the selected. Hindsight and all that. But even the really good Keats poetry left me with mixed feelings. I mean, I appreciate it and sometimes I have a wow moment, but it generally doesn’t give me poetry stomach (the stomach flutters I get when I read a poem I really connect with). We’ll see how it goes with Bishop. I have her collected as well as her letters to work my way through over the coming months.

Without a doubt there will be other books that pop up through the month, there always are! The unexpected is all part of the fun.

Filed under: Books, In Progress Tagged: Andy Weir, Elif Shafak, Elizabeth Bishop, Emily Dickinson, Henry James, John Keats, Nuala O'Connor

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6. It's Now July

Oh me, oh my! It’s now July!
The months are flying fast.
The summer days, with sun and haze,
Will soon be in the past.

The calendar cannot defer
To what we may desire,
That time would pause a bit because
The days too quick expire.

So we must take each day and make
The effort to embrace it,
Before July is kissed goodbye
And August does replace it.

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7. Hollow Heart review

       The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Viola Di Grado's dead-girl-talking novel, Hollow Heart, just out from Europa Editions.

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8. I.W.S.G. and an excellent way to beat Writer's Block!

It is that time of the month to take stock of  ones writing progress, or the lack of it via Alex's I.W.S.G and this made me think of the main problem of writer's block.
I know much has been written on this subject, however, and in the Summer 2015 issue of the Mslexia, a magazine for women who write, (the magazine is worth its weight in gold), there is a brief and very helpful article by novelist Jenny Alexander, called Moving Images, on removing writer's block and it works for me every time.  
To put this briefly,  it relates to Jung and his images. Jenny writes that there is a connection between the block and your personal life. Jenny says you must think about your work in progress, relax, sink into an inner world and ask for an image. Go with the first image that comes into your head. 
My image was a velvet box. I asked the image what it wanted, how it felt. The immediate reply was that it wanted to be found, to be safe. 
I had lost this velvet box that contained a necklace, and the problem of loss was brought forcibly to my attention. After much thought, I realised that this represented a much deeper loss in my life. I needed to come to terms with this, I wanted to feel safe. Once I was aware of what was causing the block, I was able to write.

0 Comments on I.W.S.G. and an excellent way to beat Writer's Block! as of 7/1/2015 8:52:00 PM
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9. भविष्यकर्ता

cartoon kaam wali bai by monica gupta

भविष्यकर्ता -ये हैं हमारी भविष्यकर्ता !!इनका नाम है मिस टेक … भविष्यवाणी में साढे सात साल का लम्बा अनुभव है … ना जाने कितनी तरह की अलग अलग किताबें इन्होने पढ रखी हैं पर एक बात से ये भी सहमत है कि बेशक हम कितने भी बडे ज्योतिष क्यो न बन जाए पर एक बात आज भी पता नही लग असकते कि काम वाले बाई आज काम पर आऐगी या नही

The post भविष्यकर्ता appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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10. I suddenly had no What Next

People who know me, know: I am one of those. Give me a project, and I get it done. Tell me I have two months, I work toward two weeks. Give me a house to clean or a home to declutter, and I. Am. On. The. Job. I've managed by way of a sort of strictness toward self. Up before the dawn, give myself no excuses, let nobody down. Snip, snip, I'm cracking.

But lately I have lived in the Land of No Routine. A flutter of many things to do. An absence of systems and governing plans. I've been off to New Haven. Then to Krakow. Then to Bethlehem. Then to Arcadia. I've been writing talks, giving talks, reading books, writing reviews, creating classes and teaching classes, hoping for and hoping against, watching the women play soccer, driving quick to see friends, celebrating 30 years of marriage, planning for next New Year's Eve and now (just now) a blueberry festival. I've been helping to advance a family project, seeing my beautiful brother and his family and forgetting to say goodbye to his son (I fixed that!), cleaning out my basement, cleaning out my shelves, cleaning out my drawers, cleaning and cleaning again, writing for clients.

And then, bam, crash, wait. I suddenly had no What Next. For an hour or two late this afternoon, I had nothing that I had to do.

I sat down. I sat still by a screen door, feeling the breeze. I closed my eyes. I listened to a distant hammer bang. I listened to the one bird in the near tree. I listened to my own heart beat. I fell to deepest sleep.

Sometimes sleep is the best job around.

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11. Books from Finland closes shop

       More than a month ago I mentioned they were pulling the plug on the wonderful Books from Finland site -- keeping it only as an archive -- and now they've gone and done it: here's the final post.
       Yes, after: "almost 10,000 printed pages and 1,500 posts" they've decided it's no longer worth adding content, so they're calling it a day. Very disappointing.

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12. July Blogging Break

It's time for our annual co-author summer vacation. But wait, we have lots to keep you going in the meantime!

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13. बाल कहानी-मणि

story by monica guptaबाल कहानी -मणि

मणि छ्ठी क्लास में पढने वाली बेहद चुलबुली और शरारती लडकी है. वो भी बडे होकर कुछ बनना चाह्ती है. कभी सोचती है पत्रकार बन जाऊ कभी सोच में आता है कि टीचर बन जाऊ तो कभी पुलिस अधिकारी पर आखिर में क्या होता है और क्या बनने की सोचती है … इसी का ताना बाना है कहानी मणि में …

ये कहानी नेशनल बुक ट्रस्ट की पत्रिका पाठक मंच बुलेटिन में प्रकाशित हुई थी …

The post बाल कहानी-मणि appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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14. Here’s What A ‘Samurai Jack’ CGI Film Could Look Like

There's no official "Samurai Jack" film coming anytime soon, but that's not stopping fans from creating their own work.

0 Comments on Here’s What A ‘Samurai Jack’ CGI Film Could Look Like as of 7/1/2015 7:30:00 PM
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15. Director John Tiffany Talks about New Harry Potter Play

In an exclusive interview with Scotland Now, director John Tiffany talks about his early acquaintance with J.K. Rowling and his decision to work on Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.  Tiffany is the former assistant director of the National Theatre of Scotland and has worked on several productions.

I first met Jo years ago when we didn’t know who each other was. I had just started at the Traverse in Edinburgh, and now and again I would see a woman with a pram writing in longhand in the cafe. She’d write in Nicholson’s, The Elephant House and the Traverse cafe.

We knew each other to nod at. I’d be having meetings with writers and actors and I’d see her. Eventually we’d say hello to each other and a year later – bam!.

Rowling was writing her novels, and now, 20 years later, Tiffany will be directing her play. Apparently, it was a decision that he weighed heavily.  With Scotland Now, Tiffany says:

It was my three nephews and my colleague Vicki Featherstone’s two kids who said to me, ‘You have to do this’ when I first spoke to them about it.

They were instrumental. Those stories sparked something amazing in them that will never leave them. Particularly the reading of the books. People get very emotional when they talk about Jo and her books, because a lot of kids learned to read, or think they learned to read, because of Harry Potter.

While John Tiffany says that he read the Harry Potter books as an adult, he knows that they have had a profound effect on a generation.  He also remembers that they were some of the first children’s books that adults had no shame in reading in public.

In the interview, Tiffany also talks about his hopes for the play’s eventual world tour.

To learn more from John Tiffany, see here.

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16. railhead ambassadors

Yesterday I got to be a RAILHEAD AMBASSADOR at a special early-preview event for Philip Reeve's upcoming novel, Railhead. (Look at me, being all railway and ambassadorial in gold braid and hat. Also slightly overheated.)

Funnily enough, I used to go to lots of ambassadorial events when I first met my husband, when he was working for the British Embassy in Moscow. Back then, I was very studenty and didn't really have any dress-up clothes, so I pretty much wore black jeans, a velvet shirt and Doc Martens everywhere. All the foreign service wives had perfect English-bought clothes for every occasion and I always felt a bit awkward and gauche. So it was nice to be going to an ambassador event when I'd stopped caring about not blending in and could look like a twit with the greatest of joy, ha ha.

Anyway, back to the book, and I'm really excited about this one. Here's a snapshot of one of the posters on display at the event:

'Gentlemen Take Polaroids' is definitely my favourite train name. And here are the other assembled Railhead Ambassadors! Some of them had won a competition to attend, and others were young reviewers for the Guardian Children's Books website.

Here are a few of the tweets from Philip's first Railhead reading:

After the reading and Philip's answers to some very well-thought-out questions from the audience, we had drinks upstairs with Darren Hartwell from BookZone, Caleb Woodbridge and Laura Heath of the aforementioned tweets.

Here's Guardian Chidren's Book website editor Emily Drabble (who, incidentally, commissioned our Seawigs Comics Jam, my How to draw a hungry T-Rex, How to Draw Jampires and How to Draw a Silly Unicorn.)

Then I got to meet some more of the ambassadors while Philip signed advance review copies for the guests. (This version isn't quite finished - there will be a few more tweaks and editions in the final version - but it's ready enough to show to reviewers, to give them an early jumpstart before the book comes out in the autumn.)

These guys made me laugh. They're like, 'REEVE? We are going to CRUSH HIS VERY BONES.'

I'll look forward to reading their reviews! And I'll post a review here nearer to the publication date. But I CAN say that Railhead is ace.

And here's a good showing from the Oxford University Press Railhead publicity team: Keo Baxendine, Liz Scott and Alesha Bonser. You can check out what people are saying over on the #RAILHEAD hash tag.

Funnily enough, on my way to meet Philip, I met a REAL train driver! In fact, I'd met James Bacon before at a comics convention, but I had no idea he drove the Heathrow Express. (How cool is that?)

One more thing: Railhead is Philip's solo book (I'm not a co-author), but there's been a lovely review of our joint book, Oliver and the Seawigs by Stephen Holland of the excellent Page 45 comics shop in Nottingham. Stephen's a legendary reviewer, so I was hugely flattered to see that he'd taken time to focus on Seawigs, which isn't even a comic! I love reading his reviews: they're so exuberant, and he comes up with the most original descriptions and observations. And it's wonderful to see a review that talks so much about the illustrations. Thanks, Stephen! You can read the whole review here (scroll down a bit).

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17. लेखों का संसार

Article in champak by Monica guptaPhotograph (131)champak story  monica guptaलेखों का संसार

बेशक आज नेट का जमाना है हर एक चीज क्लिक करके सोशल मीडिया पर डाली जा सकती है जिस करोडों लोग एक ही पल में देख सकते हैं पर आज से 20- 25  साल पहले ऐसा नही था.

एक कहानी या लेख लिखने के बाद पत्र के माध्यम से सम्पर्क करना पडता था. कुछ जाने माने हाउस अकसर जवाब भी देते थे पर कई बार भेजा गया पत्र कही गुम होकर रह जाता था न ही वापिस आता था और न ही प्रकाशित होता था.

जानी मानी बाल पत्रिका जैसे “चंपक” में लेख या अन्य कोई भी सामग्री छपना बेहद गर्व की बात होती थी.

The post लेखों का संसार appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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18. Sincerely, Carter Leads Self-Published Bestsellers List

Sincerely, Carter by Whitney Gracia Williams leads the Self-Published Bestsellers List this week.

To help GalleyCat readers discover self-published authors, we compile weekly lists of the top eBooks in three major marketplaces for self-published digital books: Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Smashwords. You can read all the lists below, complete with links to each book.

If you want more resources as an author, try our Free Sites to Promote Your eBook post, How To Sell Your Self-Published Book in Bookstores post and our How to Pitch Your Book to Online Outlets post.

If you are an independent author looking for support, check out our free directory of people looking for writers groups.

Amazon Self-Published Bestsellers for the Week of July 1, 2015

1. Sincerely, Carter by Whitney Gracia Williams: “Arizona Turner has been my best friend since fourth grade, even when we \"hated\" each other. We’ve been there for one another through first kisses, first \"times,\" and we’ve been each other’s constant when good relationships turned bad. (We even went to colleges that were minutes away from each other…).”

2. Dare to Touch (Dare to Love Book 5) by Carly Phillips: “Olivia Dare, executive director of the Miami Thunder, and team travel director, Dylan Rhodes share more than just a passion for football–their chemistry is explosive and their feelings for each other are intense.”

3. Destined Dragons: BBW Paranormal Romance by Terry Bolryder: “Roxy is just a normal girl working hard to achieve her dreams. Until she saves someone’s life, gets on the news, and winds up kidnapped by a group of mysterious men targeting brave-hearted women. Just when she’s about to give up hope, two gorgeous men appear, rescue her and whisk her away to their castle-like mansion to keep her safe.”

4. The Allure of Julian Lefray by R.S. Grey: “Lily, you predictable perv. I knew you’d open this email faster if I tempted you with a glimpse of JT’s “PP”. Well, put your pants back on and grab some bubbly because I have much better news to share.”

5. Sweet Sinful Nights by Lauren Blakely: “Ten years ago, Brent Nichols let the love of his life slip through his fingers. It’s his greatest regret, especially since she’s all but disappeared. But when the gorgeous and captivating woman walks into his life unexpectedly, he’s determined to win her back. Whatever it takes, he won’t make the same mistake twice.”

6. Night with a SEAL by Cat Johnson: “A team of sexy SEALs, a terrorist threat, and an attraction that can’t be denied…Ten years of dedication to the Navy taught SEAL Jon Rudnick one thing—he’s not afraid to risk life and limb for his country. But when navigating military red tape begins to present more challenges than the enemy it makes Jon question his future.”

7. Desired by Dragons: BBW Paranormal Romance by Terry Bolryder: “Drake and Quill are dragon shifters, the big bad protectors of the shifter world, tasked with missions no one else can handle. Though hot, rich and capable, their partnership is held back by their sometimes clashing personalities. When they save a curvy woman named Tara from drowning, they may have just found the one thing they can agree on. They want her. Forever.”

8. Double Dragons: BBW Paranormal Romance by Terry Bolryder: “Draven and Ran are dragon shifters, the fire-breathing enforcers of the shifter world. The ones they call when things go wrong. Strong, sexy and wealthy, the only thing the two partners are missing is a mate to share it all with. But that’s tricky in the dragon world and after years of searching, the dragons have basically given up. That is, until a sexy, reckless human librarian lands in their path during a mission.”

9. Priest: A Love Story by Sierra Simone: “There are many rules a priest can’t break. A priest cannot marry. A priest cannot abandon his flock. A priest cannot forsake his God. I’ve always been good at following rules.”

10. The Island of Alphas: A BBW Paranormal Romance by Amira Rain: “Fertility Doctor Liz Fowler is not having the best of times in life. Her fiance has left her, she is in debt and now she is unemployed. So she cannot believe her luck when she is approached by a handsome and very mysterious man named Eric who offers her a job. A job he describes as being very, very important.”

Smashwords Self-Published Bestsellers for the Week of July 1, 2015

1. Negotiating for Success: Essential Strategies and Skills By George J. Siedel

2. Third Reality Revealed: Vision, Persistence, and Inventing a New Latino Identity by Third Reality Publications

3. Third Reality: Crafting a 21st Century Latino Agenda by Third Reality Publications

4. Stocks on the Move – Beating the Market with Hedge Fund Momentum Strategies by Andreas F. Clenow

5. His Bad Boy Ways By Faye Aden

6. Cunning Plans: Talks By Warren Ellis by Warren Ellis

7. Strong Brains, Sharp Minds: The Definitive Guide to the MINDRAMP Method For Brain Health & Mental Development by Michael C. Patterson & Roger Anunsen

8. Bryony And Roses by T Kingfisher

9. Prodigals Do Come Home by Bob Steinkamp

10. Depth Astrology: An Astrological Handbook – Volumes 1-4 (Introduction, Planets in Signs, Planets in Houses, Planets in Aspect) by Gargatholil

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19. Artist of the Day: Sarah Mazzetti

Discover the work of Sarah Mazzetti, Cartoon Brew's Artist of the Day!

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20. Writing in ... Africa

       In Vanguard Ikenna Asomba reports on the Nigerian Breweries/Farafina 2015 Literary Evening held last weekend, where Adichie, Wainaina worry over dearth of literary works in African languages.
       Good to see the topic and concern at least be addressed this prominently; one hopes it'll inspire some of the participants (and others, too).

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21. Down the Rabbit Hole Leads iBooks Bestsellers List

Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison has debuted on the iBooks bestsellers list this week at No. 2.

Apple has released its top selling books list for paid books from iBooks in the U.S. for the week ending on July 1, 2015. Grey by E. L. James is No. 1 on the list and The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins is No. 3.

We’ve included Apple’s entire list after the jump.

iBooks U.S. Bestseller List – Paid Books 7/1/15

1. Grey by E L James – 9781101946350 – (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group) 2. Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison – 9780062372123 – (Dey Street Books) 3. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins – 9780698185395 – (Penguin Publishing Group) 4. Paper Towns by John Green – 9781101010938 – (Penguin Young Readers Group) 5. The Rumor by Elin Hilderbrand – 9780316334501 – (Little, Brown and Company) 6. Truth or Die by Howard Roughan & James Patterson – 9780316408738 – (Little, Brown and Company) 7. Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll – 9781476789651 – (Simon & Schuster) 8. The Martian by Andy Weir – 9780804139038 – (Crown/Archetype) 9. Fifty Shades Darker by E L James – 9781612130590 – (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group) 10. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr – 9781476746609 – (Scribner) 11. Fifty Shades Freed by E L James – 9781612130613 – (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group) 12. The Melody Lingers On by Mary Higgins Clark – 9781476749136 – (Simon & Schuster) 13. The President’s Shadow by Brad Meltzer – 9780446553957 – (Grand Central Publishing) 14. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah – 9781466850606 – (St. Martin’s Press) 15. Tom Clancy Under Fire by Grant Blackwood – 9780698404861 – (Penguin Publishing Group) 16. Fifty Shades of Grey by E L James – 9781612130293 – (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group) 17. Wicked Charms by Janet Evanovich & Phoef Sutton – 9780553392722 – (Random House Publishing Group) 18. Finders Keepers by Stephen King – 9781501100130 – (Scribner) 19. Dark Places by Gillian Flynn – 9780307459923 – (Crown/Archetype) 20. In the Unlikely Event by Judy Blume – 9781101875056 – (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group)

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22. July Words without Borders

       The July issue of Words without Borders, now available online, features: 'Emerging German Writers', with a bonus batch of: 'Burundi: Writing from the State of Sleep'.

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23. New York Public Library Hosts a Display to Celebrate July Fourth

nypl logoThe curators at the New York Public Library have put together a display in celebration of July Fourth.

The theme of this program will center on Sparking The Revolution: “No Taxation Without Representation.” The items chosen for this display include Benjamin Franklin’s annotated copy of a pro-Stamp Act pamphlet, an engraving of the Boston Massacre, a copy of the Continental Congress’s Olive Branch Petition, and a rare copy of the first New York printing of the Declaration of Independence.

According to the press release, visitors will see items that that spotlight on “key historic moments surrounding the American Revolution and the Declaration of Independence. A key focus of the display is the 250th anniversary of the Stamp Act, a wildly unpopular British tax on all paper used by the American colonists, and one of the critical sparks that launched the fight for American independence.”

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24. Reading Roundup: June 2015

By the Numbers
Teen: 13
Tween: 7
Children: 4

Review Copies: 11
Library: 11

Teen: Hold Me Like a Breath by Tiffany Schmidt
Riffing on both Rapunzel and the Princess and the Pea, this story about a frustrated, sheltered, and naive girl becoming a self-reliant young woman caught me hard. I just had to hang there through the slow start.
Tween: The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer L. Holm
This story of a grandfather who's discovered the fountain of youth and a granddaughter who's discovering science, and the way they both learn to accept that life is about change, tugged at my heart with its humor and emotional honesty.
Children: Locomotive by Brian Floca
Do you know a history-and-trains-obsessed kid? They will eat this up.

Because I Want To Awards
Precious Cinnamon Roll: Sebastian in The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
The younger brother of the love interest, Sebastian is also a little boy who adores mermaids, and gets enormous flack for this love from his father and the town, but never lets that daunt him from dressing up as the princess of the sea. Ockler places no labels on him, other than "loves mermaids," and it's a beautiful thing.
Brains Not Brawn: The Doublecross by Jackson Pearce
A lot of books overtly express that value, but this one really lays it down by showing how Hale's intelligence and ability to coordinate a team stands him in much better stead in spycraft than being able to run a mile.

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25. I feel like a proud parent

When I first left my day job and was scrambling a bit for money, I taught an 8-week mystery-writing class at my local bookstore, Annie Blooms Books.  I've also taught one-off classes here and there for a long time, more as a way to give back than to make money.

Sometimes i don't even make any money. For example, on July 18th I'm teaching a class on plotting as a fundraiser for Write Around Portland.  It costs $35 and all the money goes to the organization.

This year, I've also taught that class for Left Coast Crime and for Oregon Literary Arts.  A few years ago, I taught a class on how to start a series.

Well, one of the guys who was in that class, Curtis C. Chen, came up to me after my signing at Powells, and told me he had just made a two-book deal and had been going over the old notes from my series class to help him approach his series.

And then today, I saw that another one of my old students, Lisa Alber, had also made a deal:

And last year, Cindy Brown, a woman from one of my original classes who went on to be my friend, made a three-book deal.  The first book, MacDeath, is laugh-out-loud funny (a rare thing) and I'm in the middle of reading an advance copy of her second, The Sound of Murder, which is even funnier.

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