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1. ***Tipsy Painting Party***

All new Tipsy Painting Party at Maggie's Underground on Tuesday June 16th from 7-9!!!!! 
😉🍷🍻🍸🎨🎨🎨🍹🍺🍷
I'll be hosting a step by step workshop on how to paint your very own painting. And what's better? You can sip on some cocktails while you learn!!! Tickets are $30. You can purchase them through the banquet department of Maggies. Ask for Courtney (732) 363-8124 x10
145 Country Club Drive, Lakewood, Nj 08701

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2. Grumpy Cat is getting her own comic book from Dynamite

GrumpyCat01-PRCover.jpg
Grumpy Cat, the professional name of the mixed breed cat Tardar Sauce, is getting her own comic book! Considering that she draws the biggest lines at any event she shows up at and has 31 million YoutTube vies, I’d say…it’s about time. The comic will co-star her real life brother Pokey, and if you get a little Garfield Odie vibe, well…it’s Grumpy’s time.

The comic will debut as a three-issue mini series this fall.

Dynamite is proud to announce a collaborative licensing partnership with Grumpy Cat Limited to develop print and digital comic books and graphic novels featuring “The World’s Grumpiest Cat” and her brother, Pokey. Grumpy Cat will debut the first of her all-new misadventures in a three-issue miniseries, released in Fall 2015, and collected into a hardcover graphic novel in time for the holiday season. Dynamite also plans to launch a website this summer where new Grumpy Cat comic strips will go up online every week.  
 
“With her ever-present pout and sassy disposition, Grumpy Cat has won the hearts of people everywhere. I can tell you, we’re thrilled, just absolutely thrilled, to bring this adorable curmudgeon’s misadventures to the comic world!” says Keith Davidsen, Marketing Manager of Dynamite Entertainment. “One of the most important responsibilities for today’s comic publishers is creating content that will attract fresh new audiences to experience the wonders of the medium, and Grumpy Cat is the perfect combination of unbearable cuteness, instant fan appeal, and established multimedia presence to make just such a thing happen. If you love the memes, the videos, and that irresistable scowl, then get ready for the wildly fun antics of Grumpy Cat and Pokey in Dynamite’s all-new, all-sensational Grumpy Cat comics!”
 
Grumpy Cat’s global following includes 7.6 million Facebook fans and over 31 million YouTube views. Since her photos first went viral in 2012, Grumpy Cat has gone from Internet star to real-life celebrity. She has two New York Time Best Selling Books, her own Lifetime movie Grumpy Cat’s Worst Christmas Ever (voiced by actress Aubrey Plaza), has made numerous appearances including the MTV Movie Awards, American Idol, The Bachelorette, The Today Show, SXSW, Good Morning America, and even hosted WWE Monday Night Raw. Grumpy Cat is Friskies official “Spokescat”, has filmed videos with Disney and Sesame Street, and appears in commercials for McDonald’s and Honey Nut Cheerios. Licensed Grumpy Cat merchandise is currently available at retailers worldwide.
 
Dynamite Entertainment’s Grumpy Cat comic books and graphic novels will be available to consumers through the comic book specialty market, and its graphic novels will be available at major bookstore chains, online booksellers, and independent bookstores courtesy of Diamond Book Distributors. Grumpy Cat comics will also be available for purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, Dynamite Digital, iVerse, and Dark Horse Digital. Fans and retailers are encouraged to follow Dynamite Entertainment and Grumpy Cat’s official social media channel for the latest updates regarding creative teams and release dates.





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3. Troy Little to Adapt a Hunter S. Thompson Book

Fear & Loathing in Las VegasComics artist Troy Little has landed a deal with IDW Publishing. Little plans to adapt the Hunter S. Thompson novel, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: A Savage Journey to the Heart of the American Dream.

The publisher has partnered with the Thompson estate for this project. Top Shelf Productions, an IDW imprint, has scheduled the release date for October 2015.

Thompson’s book was initially published as a two-part series in 1971 by Rolling Stone magazine. According to the press release, the story “follows Thompson analogue Raoul Duke on the mother of all Vegas benders, as he and his attorney Dr. Gonzo cover a motorcycle race, crash a drug-enforcement convention, and rack up obscenely large room-service bills, all while dosed to the gills on a truly spectacular assortment of mind-altering substances.”

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4. Sam Hiti is not dead, but that’s about all we know

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Yesterday, the tumblr of incredibly talented cartoonist Sam Hiti presented a post called Rest in Pages Sam Hiti which suggested that he had passed away. Immediately social media flooded with reports that he was in fact alive and podcaster Charlie La Greca was on the phone with him.

Hiti is, in fact, still alive, but as the post may indicate, not going through the best of times. and has perhaps decided to put his comics career aside…for keeps.

David Zissuo has a much linked to post asking for compassion at this time. It seems Hiti has undergone a bunch of setbacks, including ill health following an accident, and perhaps for a moment ot two it all seemed too much.

Comics is a cancerous profession. 

An overwhelming amount of people struggle with comics and it spreads them really fucking thin. A lot of people will come off jaded, ignorant, or morose, if not completely alone. It shows. It’s contagious. Its demand and time consumption won’t flow when the effects of production on personal lives destroy motivation and productivity. Especially when publishers try to get you to work at wholesale prices without the benefits you need to keep yourself healthy, support a family, and insure that if something happens to you, you have something there for you and your family to fall back on.

I don’t want to be pessimistic or “realistic” about comics. Comics at its best is one of the  most nurturing communities I’ve known. But, as a career, judging from the people I know who struggle from depression and have expressed suicidal thoughts, it has the ability to have the creator running breathless with hooks digging deep into their backs.


I don’t know that comics is any worse as a creative profession than writing or art in general….but I DO know that the rewards are generally smaller. I don’t know if its possible to run a financial analysis of various creative professions but I can guarantee that even the highest highs of comics don’t come close to the highs of writing, fine art, music, acting and so on. There are several cartoonists who make very comfortable livings from comics, don’t get me wrong, but no one is buying an island…at least they haven’t since the early Image days.

Anyway, I don’t know Hiti’s specific situation but it seems similar enough to others to at least guess that maybe buying something from his store would be a help even if to just clear away memories of something he wants to move past.

Hiti is also enormously, talented, did I mention that? I wish him the best in moving through whatever it is he’s experiencing and finding joy in his life again.

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5. Five Authors Share Their Favorite Writing Prompts

New Voices Award sealThis year marks our sixteenth annual New Voices Award, Lee & Low’s writing contest for unpublished writers of color.

In this blog series, past New Voices winners gather to give advice for new writers. This month, we’re talking about writing prompts and what gets the creative juices flowing.

Linda Boyden, author of The Blue Roses, New Voices Winner 2000

Prompts are all around us. When I do school visits, I refer to the place where our imaginations live as the “Cosmic Goo,” and urge them to wander outside looking and listening to the wonders that spark our imaginations to awake. Nature is a never-ending source of writing inspirations. Because I am a voracious reader, I glean phrases from the books I devour. Since the Espresso Shotend of 2011, I have written a poem a day as the means to jump-start my prose writing. I use many of the phrases I’ve underlined in the books I own for my daily poetry prompt.

Paula Yoo, author of Sixteen Years in Sixteen Seconds, New Voices Winner 2003

My favorite writing prompt is to write from the point of view of an animal. It’s a writing exercise I teach in my writing classes as well. I love this writing exercise not only because I’m an animal lover and Crazy Cat Lady (ha) but because it forces you to think from the point of view of someone who is definitely NOT YOU. You have to know and embody the nature and physicality of the animal character, and it forces you to look at story and emotion with a new perspective. It’s a great exercise for point of view writing, and it helps me when I do write another children’s book because I am very conscious of writing from a child’s perspective, which is so different from mine as an adult.

Glenda Armand, author of Love Twelve Miles Long, New Voices Winner 2006

I don’t need much to prompt me to write. Usually I have the opposite problem. I need to a compelling reason to stop writing:

It’s past midnight and I have to substitute teach in the morning.

Clothes are mildewing in the washer.

The fridge would be empty if not for egg whites and ketchup.

On the other hand, a writing prompt for me would be an early morning after a good night’s sleep: My mind is clear.

My thoughts are flowing.

My coffee is steaming.

My computer is calling.

I answer the call.

Pamela Tuck, author of As Fast As Words Could Fly, New Voices Winner 2007

I don’t really write from prompts, but what I try to use as a guideline for all my writing is the use of sensory details: Seeing, Hearing, Feeling, Smelling and Tasting. It’s not always relevant to include all of these details, but it’s good to include at least 3 within a scene. If I feel that I can’t move forward in a story, I’ll “step inside” my character and try to figure out what “I” am seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling or tasting at that point. If my character is neutral, then it’s time to rewrite the scene.

Jennifer Torres, author of Finding the Music, New Voices Winner 2011

I enjoy finding and thinking about interesting writing prompts, but I don’t have a favorite. I have to confess, when it comes to writing prompts, I usually don’t get past the “thinking about it” stage. However, I used to work for a daily newspaper, and I learned from that experience how valuable it can be to cultivate a habit of writing – in a structured way – every day. And I turn to newspapers, sometimes, when I’m stuck or need a place to start. Headlines can make for some pretty great prompts. Direct quotes are even better – like an overheard piece of conversation. Here’s one that helped me pull FINDING THE MUSIC into focus: “He wanted to rest in peace, but with music.”

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6. Crazy Happy Love Love Topanga Art

“We just want something really cool that has our ‘Unplugged’ theme and reflects the spirit of Topanga!”

I’m paraphrasing, but that’s the direction I was given for a piece I did a few months ago for the 66th Annual Topanga Chamber of Commerce Awards dinner. Translated, that means, Yay, I get to play!

Topanga is a community in the Santa Monica Mountains of Southern California (my favorite). It’s somewhat rural, the people here love their trees, animals, festivals, flowy-colorful clothes, sunsets, and folk music.

Check out the final result:TCoC 66th Awards Program v3

This was the cover for the program. Heather, the event organizer, also needed it in oodles of different formats for flyers, posters, Facebooks posts, emails, and even table placards. Because I created the final art digitally, it didn’t take much more work to adapt the design for those oodles.

This is one of the most fun pieces I’ve done in a while and not only does the art reflect that, the responses of the attendees were off the charts crazy happy love love. Loose direction leads to fun art creation, which equals crazy happy love love. Yes?

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7. Dan Gurney's Sons Drive His Cars at Indy



My cousin Dan Gurney was mighty proud last Sunday when his four sons took some laps around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in four of his creations. (link to YouTube)

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8. Vermeer’s Music Lesson travels to the Netherlands in 2016

Masters of the Everyday: Dutch Artists in the Age of Vermeer. An exhibition from the British Royal Collection
29 September 2016 – 8 January 2017
The Muaritshuis, The Hague

from the Mauritshuis website:
A royal visit from Great Britain: in the autumn of 2016, the Mauritshuis will exhibit a selection of seventeenth-century Dutch paintings from the British Royal Collection. The selection contains representations of daily life as depicted by painters of the Dutch Golden Age, and offers an exceptional chance to see over twenty masterpieces from the Royal Collection, the largest loan to a Dutch museum to date. The Royal Collection, held in trust by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, contains unique highlights from the oeuvres of famous painters such as Gerard ter Borch, Pieter de Hooch, Gabriel Metsu, and Jan Steen. The highlight of the exhibition is The Music Lesson by Johannes Vermeer.

http://www.mauritshuis.nl/en/discover/exhibitions/upcoming/

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9. Why Don’t Books About Women Win Awards?

Novelist Nicola Griffith has analyzed the winning books of six major book awards over the last 15 years and has come to the conclusion that both women authors and story’s written from a woman’s perspective are less likely to win awards.

Griffith looked at data from the Pulitzer Prize, Man Booker Prize, National Book Award, National Book Critics’ Circle Award, Hugo Award and Newbery Medal. She found for instance that men were more likely to get a Pulitzer Prize. While women authors had won the award, it was only for works in which the narrative was from the man’s perspective or at least both a man and woman’s perspective. (No narratives written soley from a woman’s perspective won the award). Here is more from Griffith’s blog:

It’s hard to escape the conclusion that, when it comes to literary prizes, the more prestigious, influential and financially remunerative the award, the less likely the winner is to write about grown women. Either this means that women writers are self-censoring, or those who judge literary worthiness find women frightening, distasteful, or boring. Certainly the results argue for women’s perspectives being considered uninteresting or unworthy. Women seem to have literary cooties.

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10. Summer Fun for the Family: Pickin’ and Grinnin’ at the Earl Scruggs Center



  by Sally Matheny
photo courtesy of Wikipedia
The lazy days of summer are about to plop on the sofa. As comfy as it is, we know it's not healthy to veg out all day. It's time to plan some fun activities for the children. Here's an idea that'll make your kids smile.

If you've ever watched The Beverly Hillbillies,you may remember musicians Earl Scruggs and Lester Flatt. Occasionally, they sauntered through the Clampetts’ mansion door pickin’ and grinnin’. If you missed their appearances, you didn’t miss out on their music. Scruggs and Flat also performed the theme song for the show.


You can share the history of the toe-tapping, bluegrass music with your children by visiting a wonderful museum in western North Carolina. The Earl Scruggs Center, which opened in January 2014,  is located on Lafayette Street in Shelby, North Carolina.

My local homeschool group recently visited the museum, housed in the former 1907 Cleveland County Courthouse. An array of activities provided opportunities for learning the history, music, and cultural traditions of western North Carolina. 

Presented with complimentary ear buds upon arrival, each visitor is encouraged to plug in and participate throughout the museum. Receiving a set of ear buds, to keep as their own, brought immediate delight from the children in my group! 

At the museum, you’ll learn about the legendary banjo player, Earl Scruggs, known for popularizing the three-finger playing style. Through live demonstrations, short films, and exhibits you’ll discover how Scruggs continually stretched music boundaries by learning new techniques to grow with the changing times.

The Common Threads Table
The museum is definitely pushing the edge with fascinating technology. One of the most popular, interactive exhibits is the Common Threads table. Touch screens, the size of your dinner table, make different instruments, various music styles, and musicians come to life. The students in our group found the hands-on learning extremely fun!

Another exhibit allows participants to adjust the speed of a banjo picking visual so they can actually see the placement of each finger and the sound it produces. Very cool.

In addition to the evolution of banjos and playing styles, the Earl Scruggs Center also houses exhibits on other aspects of N.C. history, such as the cotton industry, cooking, and the advancements of technology. 

I want to go back and read all the interesting tidbits I missed. Someone, excited to go see the next exhibit, kept tugging me away. I know Earl Scruggs recorded some Christian bluegrass at one time. I'm curious to see if there is anything posted about how his faith influenced his music.

All ages will find things of interest at the Earl Scruggs Center. The exhibits are best suited for children over age five, but those under five get in free. 

Special events occur at the center on a regular basis—from southern cooking demonstrations to outdoor performances. You can find out what’s taking place as well as the hours and prices on the website: www.earlscruggscenter.org



That's me with my fifth cousin, Earl Scruggs.
Allow plenty of time for your visit. We went with a group of sixty people and stayed about three hours. We still didn’t feel like we explored it fully and look forward to returning.

Pull the kids off the sofa. They may not be guitarists or banjo-pickers, but I'm confident they'll leave the Earl Scruggs Center grinning.








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11. Cinebook The 9th Art: Valerian & Laureline 09 - Châtelet Station, Destination Cassiopeia



Valerian & Laureline 09 - Châtelet Station, Destination Cassiopeia
 Authors: Mézières & Christin
Age: 12 years and up
Size: 21.7 x 28.7 cm
Paperback
Number of pages: 48 colour pages
ISBN: 9781849182447
Price: £6.99 inc. VAT

Publication: March 2015


Our two spatio-temporal agents are on a new mission, but this time the duo is split up. While Laureline flies solo from planet to planet, on the trail of arms dealers and forbidden technologies, Valerian is on 20th century Earth, teamed up with the eccentric Mr Albert. And he, too, is hunting down technologies incompatible with the era. What is the link between the two cases, separated as they are by centuries and light-years?

It's been a real joy seeing these albums in English.  I love the art and some of the really weird stuff Mezieres drew.  And the stories are great.  This is one I have not seen before -if it wasn't published in English or German I never saw it.  There is very much "almost" a feel of Alphaville here* while Valerian is in the past, but still telepathically in contact with Laureline in the future.

I ****** love this.

Just how does someone from the future go about his business in the past without drawing too much attention to himself?  If fact, should such a person allow himself to be picked up by a mysterious blond in a car?  I think we may well find out in the next album -Brooklyn Line, Terminus Cosmos.

And Laureline's solo mission just might get a little more dangerous.

This is great comic book reading and, I really hope, another big success for Cinebook!
 














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As I feel it my duty to educate now and then: * Alphaville: une étrange aventure de Lemmy Caution (Alphaville: A Strange Adventure of Lemmy Caution) is a 1965 film starring Eddie Constantine as Peter Cheyney's private eye Lemmy Caution ("Only my mother ever got away with calling me 'Lemuel'!"

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12. This Food Truck Honors Animation Legends with Pretzels

We'll have 2 Chucks, a Natwick, and a Blair.

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13. Preparing the Pool

So. I can’t remember if I told you guys that our rental house has a pool.

Well. It does.

Kevin has spent countless hours on this pool. (Notice I did not say ME and Kevin have spent countless hours on this pool. I have not lifted one finger on this project. Two reasons: 1. I have no idea how to help but more importantly, 2. I’m lazy).

It did not look like this when we bought it. It was dirty filthy and had disgusting sludge in the bottom. Kevin and Roy sucked/shoveled out the sludge and used the pressure washer on it. Kevin and Roy found a pressure washer at a yard sale, (they have both been scouring yard sales lately and it’s been AMAZING the kind of stuff they have been finding! Pretty much everything that Roy has been needing for his house. I truly believe God has been providing for Roy because he wouldn’t have been able to afford these items otherwise. GOD IS SO GOOD!), and Roy used that (for days – he loves the pressure washer) on the concrete around the pool, the slide and the diving board along with the interior of the pool (removing the old paint).

Kevin and Roy then painted the interior of the pool and Kevin has been working on making sure the pool will hold water. Which, has been touch and go. His current headache – something to do with some valve, blahblahblahblah, will have to dig, blahblahblahblah. Honestly, valve and dig were the only two words I heard. lol

Kevin said he’s going to have to do his first digging since working on the pool.

I’ll be honest. This stupid pool has been my biggest concern since purchasing this rental house. It’s an ongoing project that will always cost us money to upkeep and maintain. And when we bought the house from the previous owner, he told us he had a pool company come out and give him a bid on how much it would cost to fix up the pool and make it usable again. He quoted thousands of dollars. So when Kevin said he was going to get the pool up and running by this summer, dollar signs began to flash before my eyes.

Crap.

However. Once again, my husband has surprised me with his resourcefulness. He has watched countless YouTube videos, (what did we do before YouTube??) about how to fix the pool and dog gone it, he’s gotten it to the shape you see above. Roy has “helped”, though not really. He “helps” but standing by and watching – Kevin is really the one who can take credit for this feat.

The weather has been cool and rainy thus far. Kevin said the pool water is a cool 60-some odd degrees right now, too cold to go swimming, but he fully plans on using the pool as soon as it warms up and I’m quite confident he will have fixed this latest problem when that times comes, too.

Notice I said HE plans on using the pool. I will stick my feet in the pool and soak up some sunshine. My swimsuit days are OVER. Thank God.

(I can already feel my resolve weakening after watching Kevin dive in. Dang it!)


Filed under: Rental House Woes

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14. PREVIEW: ‘High Crimes’ #10 is a chilling read

 

High_Crimes_10-21

The latest issue of Monkey Brain‘s digital first comic High Crimes is available at Comixology. I have read the review copy and it’s exceptional and chilling. Page one gives you the same cold feeling when you open a walk-in freezer. Christopher Sebela’s striking and circumstantial words pair with Ibrahim Moustafa’s art on various levels. Lesley Atalnsky’s colors have a Laura Allred feel, and help create the grim mood.

All the characters are detailed from their extreme weather clothing to their facial expressions, word choice, and body language. New readers will appreciate the strong pace and look forward to catching up with the back issues. BTW, I wouldn’t skip the user’s guide if I were you.

I say it’s worth the $1.

High Crimes #10
Writer: Christopher Sebela
Artist: Ibrahim Moustafa
Price: $0.99
Pages: 21
Rating: 17
A partner in distress, a team of killers, a dead body full of secrets, the roof of the world. Only a few hundred feet separate Zan from all of them, but in the last desperate stretch towards the summit of Mount Everest, they may as well be miles away.





Read the first few pages below:

High_Crimes_10-1 High_Crimes_10-2 High_Crimes_10-3 High_Crimes_10-4 High_Crimes_10-5

Click here to go to Comixology and read High Crimes.

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15. ’1150 Canyon Road’ by Art&Graft

A glimpse into a suburban street, but not everything is as it seems.

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16. Tilda Swinton entering negotiations for Doctor Strange

tilda swinton

Per THR, a fellow well regarded thespian may be joining Benedict Cumberbatch in Doctor Strange, as the outlet reports that Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton, Only Lovers Left Alive) is entering negotiations to play The Ancient One in the upcoming Marvel picture.

Were Swinton to join the cast, this would be her third comic book movie role, having played Gabriel in Constantine and the delightful Minister Mason in Snowpiercer.

The Ancient One, as most of you who are up on your Marvel lore probably already know, served as Stephen Strange’s mentor in the Himalayas. When the character died in the comics, Strange began to summon him through the spiritual plane and he continued to aide the good doctor.

THR also reports that Marvel originally sought a male for the role, but that the studio eventually retooled the role for a female.

It’s hard to argue that there’s any actress (and perhaps any performer, male or female) that’s been on a more incredible streak in terms of on-screen acclaim than Swinton. The sheer diversity in her role selection also speaks volumes about her avoidance to tread the same ground or be type-cast in any way. Honestly, Swinton is one of the few “sure things” in Hollywood right now, and if Marvel secures her services, it would prove quite a coup.

Doctor Strange, directed by Scott Derrickson (Sinister), will see release on November 4, 2016.

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17. Francis Lawrence to Direct The Odyssey Movies

Francis Lawrence (GalleyCat)Lionsgate plans to create an adaptation of Homer’s epic poem, The Odyssey. Variety.com reports that the movie studio intends to shoot at least two parts. Three members of the team behind The Hunger Game film franchise have come on board for this project.

Francis Lawrence (pictured, via) will take the helm as the director. Peter Craig will write the screenplay. Nina Jacobson will serve as a producer.

Here’s more from Deadline.com: “Lionsgate has put this on a fast track. The plan is to begin production early next year, right after the filmmakers complete promotion of Mockingjay – Part 2, which will be released November 20. Motion Picture Group co-president Erik Feig is overseeing this with exec production veep Jim Miller and development director James Myers. The project took root when Feig pitched it to Lawrence in Paris while they worked on the Hunger Games finale.” Click here to download a free digital copy of The Odyssey.

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18. My pecha kucha talk about Open Library

14CWL

I went to the Vermont Library Conference last week and mostly handed out Vermont Libraries Passports but I also gave a short talk about Open Library in pecha kucha format. I’d never done one of these before. Twenty slides, twenty seconds each. Total talk is under seven minutes. You have to be brief and you have to practice. This was a session with six or seven presenters and we got to learn a little bit about a lot of topics. You can probably see what mine was about by watching my abbreviated slide show. I also learned how to make an animated GIF from a slideshow which is not as tough as you might think and quite useful.

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19. It's live!! Cover Reveal: The Mirror King by Jodi Meadows + Giveaway (US Only)

Welcome to another fabulous cover reveal, YABC!

Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for THE MIRROR KING by Jodi Meadows, releasing April 5, 2016 from Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins Publishers. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from Jodi:

 
Hello, YABC-ers!
 
I'm beyond pleased to share the most amazing cover that was ever created -- the cover for THE MIRROR KING, which is, of course, the sequel to THE ORPHAN QUEEN. Since this is a sequel, I knew roughly what to expect in terms of layout, font, and people on the cover. I was not prepared for the UTTER GLORY that appeared on my screen when I clicked the attachment. I think I cried. I know I petted it. My husband reports that I screamed.
 
If you're asking who to thank for this most perfect cover, please aim your praises at the same team responsible for THE ORPHAN QUEEN cover and all four novella covers, Colin Anderson (photography) and Erin Fitzsimmons (design). Aren't they amazing??
 
~ Jodi Meadows (THE MIRROR KING, Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins Publishers)
 

 

 

Ready to see?

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Here it is!

 

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

 

THE MIRROR KING

by Jodi Meadows
Release date: April 5, 2016
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins Publishers
ISBN: 9780062317414
 
 
About the Book
 
Wilhelmina has a hundred enemies.
 
HER FRIENDS HAVE TURNED. After her identity is revealed during the Inundation, Princess Wilhelmina is kept prisoner by the Indigo Kingdom, with the Ospreys lost somewhere in the devastated city. When the Ospreys’ leader emerges at the worst possible moment, leaving Wil’s biggest ally on his deathbed, she must become Black Knife to set things right. 
 
HER MAGIC IS UNCONTROLLABLE. Wil’s power is to animate, not to give true life, but in the wraithland she commanded a cloud of wraith mist to save herself, and later ordered it solid. Now there is a living boy made of wraith—destructive and deadly, and willing to do anything for her.
 
HER HEART IS TORN. Though she’s ready for her crown, declaring herself queen means war. Caught between what she wants and what is right, Wilhelmina realizes the throne might not even matter. Everyone thought the wraith was years off, but already it’s destroying Indigo Kingdom villages. If she can’t protect both kingdoms, soon there won’t be a land to rule.
 
In this stunning conclusion to THE ORPHAN QUEEN, Jodi Meadows follows Wilhelmina’s breathtaking and brave journey from orphaned criminal on the streets to magic-wielding queen.
 

b2ap3_thumbnail_11Meadows-0051-240x300.jpgAbout the Author

Jodi Meadows lives and writes in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia, with her husband, a Kippy*, and an alarming number of ferrets. She is a confessed book addict, and has wanted to be a writer ever since she decided against becoming an astronaut. She is the author of the INCARNATE Trilogy and the forthcoming ORPHAN QUEEN Duology (HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen). Visit her at www.jodimeadows.com
*A Kippy is a cat.
 

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Giveaway Details

One winner will receive an ARC of THE MIRROR KING (when available). 

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

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

What do you think about the cover and synopsis?

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20. Book Review: Rejoicing in Lament by J. Todd Billings

From Goodreads:
At the age of 39, Christian theologian Todd Billings was diagnosed with a rare form of incurable cancer. In the wake of that diagnosis, he began grappling with the hard theological questions we face in the midst of crisis: Why me? Why now? Where is God in all of this? This eloquently written book shares Billings's journey, struggle, and reflections on providence, lament, and life in Christ in light of his illness, moving beyond pat answers toward hope in God's promises. Theologically robust yet eminently practical, it engages the open questions, areas of mystery, and times of disorientation in the Christian life. Billings offers concrete examples through autobiography, cultural commentary, and stories from others, showing how our human stories of joy and grief can be incorporated into the larger biblical story of God's saving work in Christ.
Writing
Billings is such a talented writer - I'm not sure why this is the first I'm hearing of him, since I pay fairly close attention to what's being published in Christian non-fiction.  He does seem to write more academically-geared titles, which may be the reason.  This book is, in my opinion, the perfect blend of academic theology and personal insight.  Billings uses his personal struggles to illustrate his theological understanding of the Psalms and Lament.  This isn't just a surface look at lamentation though, this is deeply considered and obviously written by someone who is skilled both as a writer and as a theologian.

Entertainment Value
While it wasn't always an easy read, I feel like this answered some of my major questions about how Christians should face times of lamentation.  He talks about why praying for immediate healing is fine, but not always helpful to the person who is in the midst of suffering and what is more helpful in terms of prayer.  He also does a great job of explaining how "instant" healing is an illusion - even if Billings were miraculously healed, he would still be facing a lifetime of invasive tests for a reappearance of his cancer and he would have also still have missed valuable time and experiences with his family as well as physical suffering.  His take on life in a fallen world and the legitimacy of grieving and anger in the face of the suffering that brings made a huge impact on me.

Overall
Obviously, this is a book for the Christian reader.  It's beautifully written and well-researched and studied, but it's appeal will necessarily be limited to those who want to read about Christianity and the Bible.  It's also a lot more academic and deep than the majority of popular Christian non-fiction. It's exactly what I look for in Christian non-fiction, but it takes more concentration to read and grasp it.  I think the reward is totally worth the effort here.  I've already recommended it to several friends and my church group is considering using it for a future study.

Thanks to NetGalley for providing me with a copy to review.

0 Comments on Book Review: Rejoicing in Lament by J. Todd Billings as of 5/27/2015 4:17:00 PM
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21. Troy Little adapting Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas in October

fear_little.jpg

Hunter S. Thompson’s birth of the gonzo memoir fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is getting a comics adaptation from Xeric-winning, Eisner nominated artist Troy Little (Chiarascuro). Created in cooperation with the Thompson estate, the book is due this October from Top Shelf. Notably, it’s also the first book to be an “IDW/Top Shelf” production as Little has a prior relationship with IDW 9(they also published his Angora Napkin. “I’m so pleased that one of the first collaborative projects to come out of the Top Shelf / IDW relationship will be Troy Little’s inspired take on a true classic of American literature,” said Top Shelf Editor-In-Chief Chris Staros. “One of the most unforgettable writers turned loose in one of my favorite cities! We can’t wait to show you what Troy’s done with it.”
 
Thompson’s classic tale follows journo Raoul Duke and attorney Dr. Gonzo on a drug-fueled, prototypical American road trip through the desert backwaters of Vegas.

IDW acquired Top Shelf as an imprint last January, and as most expected the changes to how the long running indie operate have been minimal up until now. This is a promising project, so it’s all good thus far.
fear_little2.jpg

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22. "You Are Me," Says A Young Comedian

I got a high compliment recently from Middleton High School student Ali Khan, who told me, basically, that he was my mini-me. Last year, Ali created a trailer for my book OPEN MIC: RIFFS ON LIFE BETWEEN CULTURES IN TEN VOICES (Candlewick, 2013). Our approach in that anthology of adding humor to discussions of race strongly resonated with Ali, who happens to be hilarious (go ahead, watch the trailer he made).

Read On Wisconsin and the Cooperative Children's Book Center at the University of Wisconsin, Madison arranged an interview to bring us together to share thoughts on the book, racial identity, and humor. Here's an excerpt from the interview:



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23. Cover Revealed for New Cindy Pon Book

Cindy Pon Book (GalleyCat)

The cover has been unveiled for Cindy Pon’s forthcoming book, Serpentine. We’ve embedded the full image above—what do you think?

According to the publisher’s Tumblr page, the story was “inspired by the rich history of Chinese mythology.” The publication date has been set for September 8th.

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24. Rebel: A Stepbrother Romances Leads the Self-Published Bestsellers List

Rebel: A Stepbrother Romance by Kim Linwood 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 May 27, 2015

1. Rebel: A Stepbrother Romance by Kim Linwood: “I married my stepbrother. Yeah, no one’s more surprised than me. I can’t fucking stand him. All I wanted was a quiet summer before starting college. Catch up on my books.”

2. Knocked Up by the Bad Boy by Vanessa Waltz: “The only settling down I do is at night, when I take a girl home to f*ck. I get laid to unwind from the chaos in my life. I live to hear them scream my name, but one night is all they get.”

3. Blue Moon Brides Boxed Set: Books 1-3: “This boxed set includes the first three Blue Moon Brides books: TEMPTED BY THE PACK, PLEASURED BY THE PACK and CLAIMED BY THE PACK. Once in a blue moon… the Pack hunts for mates.”

4. Insatiable by J.D. Hawkins: “It’s not cocky when you’ve got the goods to back it up. Lust-maker. Pleasure giver. Fantasy creator. I can blow your mind in five seconds flat — but trust me, you’ll want this to last all night.”

5. Insatiable 2 by J.D. Hawkins: “It was supposed to be simple: I teach her a crash course in pleasure. No commitment. No strings. Now she’s found the perfect guy — and it’s not me. I should move on, but I need her. And I never back down from a fight.”

6. The Other Man by R.K. Lilley: “He was brazen as hell from the moment I laid eyes on him. He was aggressive, and dominant, with Mack truck arms, and a bar brawler voice.
He was too good looking for his own good, with a hard jaw, and harder eyes.
I’d always led a fairly peaceful life, but even I could tell at a glance that this man was dangerous. For so many reasons.”

7. Viper’s Defiant Mate: Sarafin Warriors Book 2 by S.E. Smith: “Prince Viper d’Rojah, a warrior from the Sarafin cat shifter species, is not happy when he is sent on a special mission by his older brother Vox, King of the Sarafin. The mission is to deliver important documents to the human authorities before kidnapping the sister and grandmother of Vox’s mate, Riley.”

8. Bridenapped: The Alpha Chronicles by Georgette St. Clair: “Bridenapping? That old tradition where the Alpha grabs the bride of his choice and takes her back to his pack’s property to submit to his lustful demands? That’s so 19th century.”

9. PUCKED by Helen Hunting: “With a famous NHL player for a stepbrother, Violet Hall is well acquainted with the playboy reputation of many a hockey star. So of course she isn’t interested in legendary team captain Alex Waters or his pretty, beat-up face and rock-hard six-pack abs. When Alex inadvertently obliterates Violet’s misapprehension regarding the inferior intellect of hockey players, he becomes much more than just a hot body with the face to match.”

10. Love, Laughter, and Steamy Ever Afters: “From the hot big city heroes that make us melt, to the sassy small town heroines that make us smile, this limited edition collection has something for everyone. Ten sexy and sweet full-length novels—a wide mix of fun, heart-tugging, addictively romantic love stories—each handpicked by an all-star gathering of ten of today’s most popular contemporary romance authors.”

Smashwords Self-Published Bestsellers for the Week of May 27, 2015

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

2. Bryony And Roses by T Kingfisher

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

4. His Bad Boy Ways By Faye Aden

5. Private Practice Preparedness – The Health Care Professional’s Guide to Closing a Practice Due to Retirement, Death, or Disability By Rob Reinhardt, LPCS, M.Ed., NCC & Anne M. \"Nancy\" Wheeler

6. Everyone Is A Business – Orchestrating Innovation In Your Life, Career And Business by Paul McKey

7. Dragonoak: The Complete History of Kastelir by Sam Farren

8. Something Like Thunder by Jay Bell

9. Daughter of The Sun by Michael Lane

10. Our Universal Journey by George Kavassilas

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25. Change of Address, Writing Books, Husband, Website and Blog!

Hello again,

Hoping all is well with you. At the moment I am finding the care of my husband, updating my blog, running a house, gardening, writing my books more and more demanding. So for a while I shall just be updating my website, vital if I want to let people know about my book progress,  and shall see how it goes. It would be lovely if you could visit my website from time to time. And it would be great if you could sign up for my 'newsletter'. It is once a month, barely half a page, and with an unsubscribe button, too. And of course, my website has a contact page. I must add one that is more user friendly. Maybe see you there. Kind regards, take care, Carole.

0 Comments on Change of Address, Writing Books, Husband, Website and Blog! as of 5/27/2015 2:03:00 PM
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