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Viewing: Blog Posts from All 1540 Blogs, since 12/19/2007 [Help]
Results 37,176 - 37,200 of 160,806
37176. Magical Realism

How it's different than paranormal and five tips to get you started. 

http://writeoncon.com/2011/08/writing-magical-realism-vs-paranormalfantasy/

1 Comments on Magical Realism, last added: 10/6/2011
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37177. Career Fair: Why Write?



In presenting to a group of Utah high school students this week, I'm letting them know what it takes to be a writer and why its a great thing to go into. I could probably talk all day on the subject, but sadly, I was only given 30 minutes.  As for the why, I narrowed it down to six. 

  • You are limited only by your imagination. 
  • It can be done almost anywhere and worked into a busy life. 
  • It can bless the lives of others. 
  • It can be a good source of income. 
  • It's fun to do and to share. 
  • You don't need a specific degree or license to do it. (Though it does require a lot of effort) 

There are many other reasons.  What are some of your reasons? What motivated you to start writing and what motivates you to keep writing? 

For me, it all started with an overactive imagination. It was as if I just got to a point where it couldn't all stay in my head anymore.  I read so much growing up that I really wanted to try to make my own contribution.  It has been disheartening at times, but for me all it takes is just one person telling me that they loved something that I have written to overcome all the rejections and critics that are part of writing life. 

I'd love to hear all of your stories!  Please comment below. 

Writing Update: After knocking out that huge German translation project, I got back to the projects that are dearer to my heart.  I'm up to 28,071 in Simon Says, my contemporary family drama, and up to 16,513 in my sequel to The Last Archangel.  Xandir finds himself in Rome facing a demon who wants to be the second person to fiddle while the city burns.  

6 Comments on Career Fair: Why Write?, last added: 10/6/2011
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37178. Signs and Wonders

Signs and Wonders: A Harmony Novel. Philip Gulley. 2003. HarperCollins. 224 pages. 

The summer Barbara Gardner turned sixteen, she was crowned the Tenderloid Queen by the Lawrence County Pork Producers.

While I enjoyed the first Harmony book very much, I haven't quite been able to appreciate the later books in the series. (The Christmas novella was nice, however.) Signs and Wonders, the fourth book, is the biggest disappointment to me yet. I am finding things that made me laugh out loud in the first book--the 'observations' about how church meetings go--are making me cringe now. Because what I took for light fun in the first book--and even, to a certain degree, in the second book, I now feel is over-the-top mocking. In a condescending, mean-spirited way. To laugh with characters that are quirky are one thing--to make them be 'the joke' five hundred thousand times in a row--is another. The sentimentality lessons which I found more charming than annoying in the first book are now much too much for me to endure. Because I now feel he is pushing an agenda, that he has a message, and if you don't agree with him, well, you'll end up being the next big joke.

I don't know if I'll continue on with the series or not.

© 2011 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

2 Comments on Signs and Wonders, last added: 10/5/2011
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37179. LAUNCH of LITTLE MAN ~

Fred Willingham, a CAT ARTIST and the illustrator of LITTLE MAN…written by David Wooley, and Dionne Warwick (who reads the video below) … is VERY pleased to brag about the book’s LAUNCH this week from Charlesbridge.  Fred’s sensitively realistic pastel paintings are gems!  The story, based on Dave Wooley’s youth,  is motivating and full of ideas for kids to find good ways to get what they want…and how to find themselves while doing that! 

Little Man Video
it’s lovely to hear Dionne’s voice tell this story……. ENJOY!! 

1 Comments on LAUNCH of LITTLE MAN ~, last added: 10/6/2011
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37180. Sketch for a New Book Project


I'm working on a new picture book and I thought I'd post one of the sketches - it's a bit rough but I thought I'd post work in progress as I get going on it. This will be another ebook that I will finish down the road. I say down the road because I know this one is going to take much longer than the other ones I've produced in the past. I've decided to gamble more time in order to produce a final product that I feel is worth of long term recognition. Illustrating children's books is still probably the funnest thing on earth and when I'm working on one like this -time seems to move x 10.

17 Comments on Sketch for a New Book Project, last added: 10/6/2011
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37181. WHAT NOT TO DO WHEN BAKING!

When my child who is in the Navy wanted more zucchini bread  to be sent to her, I was delighted because her roommates wanted more also. In fact, they told her "We order your mom to make more".  A plea to send two batches of them was the request.

Well, I also have a child away at college in a dorm room, and I knew this kid loved this bread too. So I thought o.k. I'll make a double batch and send some  bread to to both of them. But, then my hubby and third child said they wanted some too.

Now I have only doubled this recipe, so I thought I'll just triple this recipe and give one to the Navy kid, one to the college kid, and keep one for us here at home.

I was so careful to make sure I had tripled every ingredient  going into the mixer. Six eggs, nine teaspoons of vanilla, you get it, large amounts of each ingredient. When I got to the needed NINE CUPS of flour, only four cups fit into the mixer, still needing five more cups of flour and SIX CUPS of shredded zucchini! Now what? I looked in the pots and pan cupboard and found the largest kettle I had. Now I had to dump the mixing bowl of half made batter  into the kettle and hand stir the rest of the flour and zucchini.  Goodness gracious! Talk about wrist hurting, arm pumping exercise workout in the kitchen. How did I not know how much this would make?! So for the next two and a half hours I baked bread and muffins. 

What was I thinking? This is where I still had another 9 cups of ingredients still to go.


This picture does not really show how FULL and  BIG  thing darn thing was.
If you'd like to make some of these yummy things here is the recipe. But! Remember only double if you have too.


Zucchini Bread or Muffins
3eggs                                         1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 cup oil                                      1 tsp. cinnamon
2 1/2 c. sugar                              2 cups grated, unpeeled zucchini
3 tsp. vanilla                     &nbs

5 Comments on WHAT NOT TO DO WHEN BAKING!, last added: 10/7/2011
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37182. Top Ten Tuesday #23: Book Endings That Left Me With My Mouth Hanging Open

I don’t post spoilers in this blog, so I can’t comment much on the books below, but if you’ve read them, too, you know what I’m talking about!


by Sue Grafton

Liar
by Justine Larbalestier

"The Lottery"
by Shirley Jackson (short story)

"Good Country People"
by Flannery O'Connor (short story)

Of Mice and Men
by John Steinbeck

The Tenth Justice
by Brad Meltzer


Whale Talk
by Chris Crutcher



Stuck in Neutral
by Terry Trueman

10 Comments on Top Ten Tuesday #23: Book Endings That Left Me With My Mouth Hanging Open, last added: 10/4/2011
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37183. Book Review: Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston

Title: Wondrous Strange
Author: Lesley Livingston
Series: Wondrous Strange Book 1 of 3
Released: September 9, 2009
Publisher: HarperCollins
Tags: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance, Faeries, Midsummer's Night Dream

17 year-old Kelley Winslow doesn’t believe in Faeries. Not unless they’re the kind that you find in a theatre, spouting Shakespeare—the kind that Kelley so desperately wishes she could be: onstage, under lights, with a pair of sparkly wings strapped to her shoulders. But as the understudy in a two-bit, hopelessly off-off-Broadway production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, wishing is probably the closest she’s going to get to becoming a Faerie Queen. At least, that’s what she thinks... In this fun, urban fantasy, Kelley's off-stage life suddenly becomes as complicated as one of Shakespeare’s plot twists when a nighttime trip to Central Park holds more than meets the mortal eye.

The Wondrous Strange series has been on my to-read list for nearly two years. I had company coming this past weekend and needed to spend a day cleaning so I needed a good audio book to listen to. Wondrous Strange did the trick and I got my house clean and an entire book listened to all in one day.

I was a little worried when I started this and it said "read by the author". Most of the books I have listened to that have been read by the author have been a less than stellar performance. Thankfully Lesley Livingston did a great job with the narration of her book.

I enjoy young adult faerie stories and love the characters from Shakespeare's A Midsummer's Night Dream so Wondrous Strange was right up my alley. I loved the Iron Fey series and although this book has some of the same characters it is completely different.

I was completely drawn into the story, loved the writing and characters. I'm just about to start the sequel Darklight.  For those who enjoy young adult faerie stories I recommend you give this book a try, I'm hoping the rest of the series is as good as this one.


Rating: 4.5 Stars - Highly Recommend

Source: Audio download from Audible.com

Content: a little language (maybe 4 or 5 times throughout but no F word)

6 Comments on Book Review: Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston, last added: 10/4/2011
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37184. Which Cover Has The Bollywood Vibe?


(One was released in the US, and one is releasing this month in India.)



3 Comments on Which Cover Has The Bollywood Vibe?, last added: 10/4/2011
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37185. New Mouse Pad

This is so much fun, I had to buy it - always in need of a new mouse pad.



1 Comments on New Mouse Pad, last added: 10/5/2011
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37186. Gender battles: Miyazaki is shocked to see a woman driving a bus

201110031902 Gender battles: Miyazaki is shocked to see a woman driving a bus

It might come as a shock that Hayao Miyazaki, the revered animator behind such enduring and magical characters as Totoro and Nausicaa — a creator whose body of work nearly defines entertainment that everyone can enjoy — might have some odd ideas about women animators but that’s what this tweet seemed to imply:

@Miyasan_bot: They say it’s over for animation in Japan. When we look for new hires only women respond, and I get the feeling that we’re done for. In our last hurrah we borrow from outside staff (i.e. outsource), but soon we won’t be able to do that forever.


Incredibly — and surely with great trepidation—the great Anne Ishii actually questions Myazaki on Twitter and got a response and here’s her translation:

@miyasan_bot:
Part 1:
They say it’s over for animation in Japan. When we look for new hires only women respond, and I get the feeling that we’re done for. In our last hurrah we’ll borrow from outside staff, to lend a hand but we can’t do that forever.

Part 2:
These are not reasons for me to take production to China. I don’t want to deplete Japan in that way. So, what do we do?

Part 3:
(Ghibli Studios) has been resolved to rowing the boat altogether as a team and giving it our all, while everyone around us is jet-propelled with new technology and running at full-speed. We still illustrate with pen and paper. I say we continue to give this our all, together.

Part 4:
I counter the point some make that we’re in an age where you’ll find women driving buses by asking if it’s ok to have women all over cotton mills. (LOL)

Part 5:
I think it would be great to see a female animation director, but as far as Ghibli’s concerned, I can’t think of a single one for us. So what about newcomers? Well, I believe women are incredibly fast-learners and self-starters. If you look at men, even today, they develop much slower.


Ishii, analyzes the response and find it a bit more nuanced than was indicated:

My conclusion from Part 4 of the Quintweet is that for Miyazaki, status quo is an issue that starts with the basic tenet that women do work at all. Amazing to think the studio responsible for so many phenomenal heroins doesn’t think women actually earn their keep in modern professions. Actually I take that back. Nausicaa is an animist warrior; Chihiro and Ponyo are both children, as are Totoro’s neighbors. The closest thing to a working professional woman in Ghibli films is a witch who delivers packages from a bakery. [Note: I LOVE all these films and still think primary, secondary and all tertiary female characters could categorically kick every female animated Disney character in the proverbial “Pocahontas”.] And finally, Part 5. “Show me the women!” he says. Damn straight. And this is the variable that changes my perspective on the entire argument against his seeming indifference to the glass ceiling. Women are fast learners. Men are comparatively late-bloomers. Get a leg up, women! Get out of the cotton mills,

15 Comments on Gender battles: Miyazaki is shocked to see a woman driving a bus, last added: 10/5/2011
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37187. New Brixton Bros. Releases Tomorrow

October 4th is the official release date for Mac Barnett's Brixton Brothers #3: It Happened on a Train. So here's another look at one of my interior illustrations–a masked goon and potential car thief.

The sketch:



And the finished illustration:

2 Comments on New Brixton Bros. Releases Tomorrow, last added: 10/4/2011
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37188. One Quarter Ninja

Recently I got the chance to work on a really cool iPad book called One Quarter Ninja (@1quarterninja)

I've gotten permission to post some of the art and I'll do that over the coming days. Most of the work I'll show however will be nearer to the app's release so you can be sure you'll be hearing about OQN again.

Here's a look at one of the more dynamic shots of the "one quarter ninja" himself.


Rough.




Final.

* * * 
Since this is for an iPad book, most every element in the collection of work is layered. My experience with the animated projects I've gotten to do has been invaluable in learning how to work not only layered but quickly and not sacrifice any of the quality.

This was a super fun project to do since one of my biggest thrills as a draw-er is getting to do figure work. For the most part I'd rather draw people (or creatures) and organic things over industrial objects any day. I got to do many, many poses of the ninja who is simply a dark, knocked out figure on a white background so there's no hiding imperfections in the drawing or anatomy. The silhouette is what's most important.

I loved the chance to bring this book to life in this way and I can't wait for you to see the finished product.

2 Comments on One Quarter Ninja, last added: 10/6/2011
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37189. one of the MANY things I love about Jack Reacher novels

Lee Child has a deft way of writing about women. It's not an easy task, I'm convinced, for men to write about women in a way that doesn't focus somehow first on their sexuality.

Lee Child does it better than most.

Here's what reminded me of that today:


She wound down her window and looked straight at me, first my face, then a careful up-and-down, side-to-side appraisal all the way from my shoes to my hair, with nothing but frankness in her gaze. I stepped in closer to give her a better look, and to take a better look. She was more than flawless. She was spectacular. She had a revolver in a holster on her right hip, and next to it was a shotgun stuffed muzzle-down in a scabbard mounted between the seats. There was a big radio slung under the dash on the passenger side and a microphone on a curly wire in a clip near the steering wheel. The car was old and worn, almost certainly bought secondhand from a richer municipality.



So, you know a lot about this woman, without hearing a single thing about what she looks like. You know Reacher finds her very attractive. You know she's a cop. And you know she's armed. Any questions? Yea,  I didn't think so.

7 Comments on one of the MANY things I love about Jack Reacher novels, last added: 10/4/2011
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37190. Another Studio Day



Spent the day in the studio - yay! Click here to see the whole piece.


1 Comments on Another Studio Day, last added: 10/7/2011
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37191. First Drafts Stink So Just Do It.

     One of my big "Ah ha" moments in my never-ending quest of "learning to write," was reading Anne Lamott's book, Bird by Bird.  I know I have invoked Bird by Bird many times in this blog, but I can't help it.  When I am discouraged, bogged-down, or, as I mentioned in my last post, just plain "done" (as opposed to "finished") I call on Anne to get me out of whatever funk I am in.  Whatever it is, she's been there and done that a zillion times. Anne is a right-to-the-point kind of writer who isn't afraid to use four letter words and a little political rhetoric to get her ideas across. I know this bothers some people, so I mention it in recommending her book. If you skip past those occasional references, Anne is my right-hand-in-print-writing-guru.
    Anne was the one who gave me "permission" to write lousy first drafts (Anne uses a somewhat different word than lousy.) First drafts are for getting down the story, getting to know your characters and setting. When I sit down to a first draft, I don't agonize over word choices, character names or other details that don't come to mind immediately. Whatever doesn't come to mind immediately, I leave out by typing in XXXX. When I am revising, it alerts me that I know something is missing here, and hopefully, I now know what it is. If I still don't know, I leave it in until I do know. If that XXX is still around in the
final draft it's usually a sign that I didn't need whatever it was in the first place.
    Unlike Jo Ann, I hate writing first drafts. Sometimes I feel like Moses wandering in the wilderness. Very often there are huge holes in my plot (like Jeanne Marie, plotting is my weakness). Right now I am going to break Esther's very sensible rule about not talking about what you are writing (the more time you spend time talking about it, the less energy you have to write it.) However, I am pushing my fiction envelope and writing a verse novel. For the record, I am not writing a verse novel because I am a poet ( I most definitely am not) or because verse novels are hot stuff right now. I just think it is the best and possibly the only way I can write this particular story, which is in three voices and so intense and occasionally gruesome, that it is too heavy to write as straight prose.
     The best thing about writing this first draft is that the verse format works really well with my particular way of writing. I don't write in sequence. I don't start with chapter one and then proceed to chapters two, three, etc. When I sit down to write, I write whatever is clearest in my mind that day. When I go back to write again, maybe I will continue with that scene, character, episode (pick one) or it sparks a chapter that I know will come before or after what I have already written. I don't worry where it will come. I just write. Backward, forwards, occasionally upside down (kidding). The only consistent thing is that whatever I think is going to be the last chapter, never is.
      When I go back for revision (the part of writing I love) I put my work into a preliminary order, sometimes shuffling chapter positions, but always discovering where there is a hole, or where I need a transition. Sometimes I find characters hanging around the edges of the story, not pulling their load. (They are fired.)
      This might not work for anyone but me. (I am ADD, and not the most organized person...at least not by organized person standards.) The point is to do what it takes to get out that first draft. This morning I've been writing a poem that I have no idea where it is going to fit in the book's trajectory. Maybe it will get the old heave ho in the final draft. But for right now, I feel pretty good about it. (I actually got the idea sitting in the skating rink parking lot last week, and wrote the notes for it on the deposit slips of my checkbook..I didn't have any paper.) I have also written on McDonald's napkins, air

1 Comments on First Drafts Stink So Just Do It., last added: 10/3/2011
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37192. Review of Junonia by Kevin Henkes

Henkes, Kevin.  Junonia.  Greenwillow, 2011.

The world of an only child is filled with grown-ups, or at least that's the case for Alice during an annual vacation in Florida.  Generally there are other kids as well, but not this year, the year she is turning 10 years old.  This year, the only other kid is the problematic Mallory, the 6-year-old daughter of Alice's Aunt Kate's new boyfriend.

So Alice spends her vacation, and her birthday, having attention lavished on her by the adults around her - but also having to be mature herself when relating to the troubled Mallory, who misses her far-away mom.  It's not always easy for Alice, who finds herself full of resentment and hurt when ancient Mr. Barden remarks that Mallory is the prettiest girl he ever saw.  But conquering her irritation and doing the right thing turns out to have its own rewards.

This is a quiet book on the surface, but full of the heaving emotions that can boil in sensitive people of any age, often unexpectedly or even inexplicably.  It feels a bit claustrophobic and intense at times; you just want Alice to be able to run along the seashore joyfully without being jostled about by currents of annoyance or sadness or disappointment or anger.  And she does, actually, but never for long - for small things do seem mighty fraught in Alice's life.  Perhaps it comes of being the only child of older parents and of having an aunt with no kids of her own, plus plenty of other adults in her life who spend a fair amount of their time thinking and caring about her.

The writing is beautiful and Alice's emotions are genuine and age-appropriate - but this feels like a grown-up book nonetheless.  Perhaps it was sentences like this one that took me out of Alice's head and made me feel like an adult observer - "She was loose jointed, and although she felt awkward much of the time, she often appeared graceful."  No kid would think about about herself or any other kid.

Thoughtful, introspective children may well feel that they've found a soul-mate in Alice, but even these kids may crave a tiny bit more action.

For ages 8 to 11.

1 Comments on Review of Junonia by Kevin Henkes, last added: 10/3/2011
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37193. House Portraits

a residence in San Francisco, 2011  © Paula Pertile
(click to see this larger)

One of the hats I wear that I don't advertise much is "architectural renderer". 

I used to do a lot of this, some for private clients and some for print, for quite a while. The print clients have sadly largely gone the way of the dodo, thanks to the economy and the end of budgets for hand done art in favor of clip art or photography, or the demise of the publications all together.

So I've decided to dust off my portfolio a bit and start offering my skills to anyone who might need or want a rendering done of their home or business. 

This was done with black colored pencils. You see a lot of black and white building 'portraits' done with pen and ink, which I also do, (and love), but I thought something in black pencil would be a nice change. Its a softer look.



I used my handy dandy black pencil swatch chart I did a while back to choose a range of blacks that would make greyer or blacker blacks - much like how you would use different grades of graphite pencils to control the values in a graphite drawing. For this one I used Polychromo and Coloursoft blacks, and a variety of textures and marks to make the picture. 



I'll be adding more black and white samples, as well as some in color, to my etsy shop in the coming days. These make nice Christmas presents, and now is the time to start thinking about commissioning something like this! If you're interested, please email me. 




2 Comments on House Portraits, last added: 10/4/2011
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37194. Old Term, New Trend: Space Opera

Sitting at a lunch for YA author Marissa Meyer and her Cinderella-as-android title Cinder the conversation turned to the current trend of fairy tales in literature and popular culture.  Aside from Meyer’s tale, no one else has really attempted to combine fairy tales and science fiction in a serious way for young adult readers.  It got me to thinking about the current crop of novels for kids and teens set in outer space.

With so many kids in love with Star Wars-related television shows, books, movies, etc. it has always surprised me that space isn’t more popular amongst middle grade and YA readers.  Why is this?  Do they associate space with little kids?  Is it fault of book jackets?  Or is this a case of poor labeling instead?

As any librarian will tell you, label a section of the library “Science Fiction” and you can pretty much guarantee that your circulation in that area will be lamentable at best.  Kids don’t go for sci-fi.  So here’s a proposal for you.  Consider, if you will, what would happen if you took all the space related fare and relabeled it “Space Opera”.

The term is hardly new, having been used for years in the adult fiction world, but it’s never been consistently applied to works for youth.  As defined by Wikipedia (as of this post, anyway) a space opera is “a subgenre of science fiction that emphasizes romantic, often melodramatic adventure, set mainly or entirely in outer space, generally involving conflict between opponents possessing advanced technologies and abilities.”

Definitions can be artificially applied if the need arises.  I wonder to myself if anyone has ever attempted this particular labeling for their MG and YA sections before.

7 Comments on Old Term, New Trend: Space Opera, last added: 10/4/2011
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37195. Signed, Sealed, Delivered (2)

A roundup of exciting new book deals!



Annabel by Mary Lindsey
Summer 2013 | Philomel
Author of Shattered Souls

A dark retelling of Poe’s final poem, Annabel Lee, pitting a pair of star-crossed lovers in a doomed struggle with forces of ancient malice and evil.




Fall 2013 | Philomel
Author of Nightshade

Sixteen-year-old Charlotte and her fellow refugees have scraped out an existence on the edge of Britain’s industrial empire. Though they live by the skin of their teeth they have their health (at least when they can find enough food and avoid the Imperial Labor Gatherers) and each other. When a new exile with no memory of his escape from the coastal cities or even his own name seeks shelter in their camp he brings new dangers with him and secrets about the terrible future that awaits all those who have struggled has to live free of the bonds of the empire’s Machineworks.

The Inventor’s Secret is the first book of a YA steampunk series set in an alternate nineteenth-century North America where the Revolutionary War never took place and the British Empire has expanded into a global juggernaut propelled by marvelous and horrible machinery.

Also announced are two Nightshade prequels, Untitled due out in Fall 2012 and Rise due Summer 2013.


Black Dawn (The Morganville Vampires #12) by Rachel Caine
April 2012 | NAL
Author of The Morganville Vampires & more

Two more Morganville Vampires installments, #13-14, are also planned for release.


Untitled Standalone
???? | NAL

4 Comments on Signed, Sealed, Delivered (2), last added: 10/6/2011
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37196. If I Had a Million Dollars – A Tu Books Launch

Galaxy Games Bus Advert

Galaxy Games gets cross town treatment

Over the summer I spotted a mural for the last Harry Potter movie and I remember being impressed. The mural got me thinking about the kind of promotions we could do if we had unlimited funds.

Tankborn phone booth advert

Tankborn on every street corner

Every day we are inundated with advertising and branding, but wouldn’t it be a nice change if cities across the country promoted books for children instead? Would children’s sensibilities toward reading be altered if society pushed reading as hard as the latest iPad or Nike sneakers?

Wolf Mark subway advert

Worf Mark goes downtown

This Fall we released the first list from our new Tu Books imprint. It was very exciting for the staff at LEE & LOW to work on promoting and selling these books for older readers, since we have mainly published picture books in the past. The Tu launch photos featured here are part of my fantasy promotion. This is what a Tu Books launch might look like if money were no object.

Tu Books taxi advert

Tu takes a taxi

It doesn’t cost anything to dream. Enjoy!


Filed under: Dear Readers, Musings & Ponderings, Publishing 101 Tagged: marketing, Science Fiction/Fantasy 3 Comments on If I Had a Million Dollars – A Tu Books Launch, last added: 10/7/2011
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37197. Update on Amazon Associates

As I announced earlier this summer, due to a new California law Amazon discontinued it's Amazon Associates program. So although I was no longer participating, I still had the notice on my blog, simply because I couldn't figure out how to remove it

Today I found out that this law was recently appealed, and Amazon has continued the Associates program for California residents.  So you can consider the disclaimer notice on the blog to be in effect once more.  I will be reinstating the missing Amazon links over the next few weeks. 

Just FYI.  :)

5 Comments on Update on Amazon Associates, last added: 10/4/2011
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37198. WRITING RIGHT, RIGHT?


Whoops—sorry. Look what I have gone and done. The title of this blog is grammatically incorrect!!! But even though I don’t like rules about writing, or rules about anything else for that matter, I think I can give our readers a few helpful tips by inviting eight famous guest authors to lend me a hand.

Let’s start with a tongue-in-cheek excerpt from Great Rules for Writers by Pulitzer Prize winning columnist William Safire:

Do not put statements in the negative form. Don’t use no double negatives. Never use a big word when a diminutive one would suffice. Don’t overuse exclamation marks!!! Last but not least, avoid clichés like the plague.

Whoops—I’ve slipped up again. I already used too many exclamation marks in my first paragraph, and I’ve added two clichés to boot. Now I’ve done it again!!! No worries, though. I've invited another author to join in:

There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are. (W. Somerset Maugham)

That did not help. Besides, this is a nonfiction blog. I should probably go back to the beginning and start with tips about writing good titles. My own valiant attempt may not have been grammatically correct, but did it at least attract some attention? To find out, I looked up a rule about writing blog titles from Top 100 blogger Daniel Scocco:

It must be search engine friendly. Like it or not most people find information through search engines.

Hmmm…check it out. Google says there are about bout 1,040,000,000 results for the word “writing.” That’s pretty stiff competition. OK, so how about this writing rule from the great Mark Twain?

The per

6 Comments on WRITING RIGHT, RIGHT?, last added: 10/5/2011
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37199. AIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

"I am seeking representation for my novel, a completed Non-Fiction Romantic Crime Drama."


Even if your novel observes the laws of gravity, and respects the laws of physics you do not ever say your novel is non-fiction. Many things in a novel may be true. That does not make it non-fiction.

A "non-fiction novel" is narrative non-fiction. You'll see "non-fiction novel" used to describe early works in this category; IN COLD BLOOD is a classic example.

But now, and forever onward, here's the rule:

1. Novels are fiction by definition. (no fiction novels much like there is no presidential president)

2. Non-fiction with a narrative arc, and a riproaring good story is  "narrative non-fiction."

3. If you don't observe this rule, I will arrange for my non-fictional flying monkeys to visit you.

14 Comments on AIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE, last added: 10/4/2011
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37200. Wolfborn Trailer Up On Youtube

Since my Teachertube video still won't open, I've given in and put the Wolfborn book trailer up on Youtube. There are a few typos there, but Kristen worked hard on it and I'm very proud. I hope she will do well in the Inkys Creative Reading competition for which she created the trailer.

Even though you might have seen the trailer here, please do wander over to Youtube and take a look. It's a great little trailer and at this stage it has no hits yet.

Wolfborn Trailer

6 Comments on Wolfborn Trailer Up On Youtube, last added: 10/4/2011
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