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Results 1 - 25 of 238,074
1. Friday Feature: Murder on the Mind


I've been reading a lot of mysteries lately, and this one caught my eye because it's about a guy with psychic abilities and my NaNoWriMo book is about a psychic PI! I definitely enjoyed this one, so check out Murder on the Mind by L.L. Bartlett.


After a brutal mugging in Manhattan leaves him with a broken arm and fractured skull, insurance investigator Jeff Resnick reluctantly agrees to recover at the home of his estranged half brother, Richard. At first, Jeff believes his graphic nightmares of a slaughtered buck are just the workings of his traumatized mind. But when a local banker is found in the same condition, Jeff believes the attack has left him with a psychic sixth sense--an ability to witness murder before it happens.Piecing together clues he saw in his visions, Jeff attempts to solve the crime. His brother Richard is skeptical, but unsettling developments begin to forge a tentative bond. Soon, things that couldn't be explained by premonition come to light, and Jeff finds himself probing into dangerous secrets that touch his own traumatic past in wintry Buffalo—and the killer is ready to eliminate Jeff's visions permanently.
The immensely popular Booktown Mystery series is what put Lorraine Bartlett's pen name Lorna Barrett on the New York Times Bestseller list, but it's her talent—whether writing as Lorna, or L.L. Bartlett, or Lorraine Bartlett—that keeps her there. This multi-published, Agatha-nominated author pens the exciting Jeff Resnick Mysteries as well as the acclaimed Victoria Square Mystery series, the Tales of Telenia adventure-fantasy saga, and now the Lotus Bay Mysteries, and has many short stories and novellas to her name(s).


*Want your YA, NA, or MG book featured on my blog? Contact me here and we'll set it up.

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2. Giant Crossword

A giant crossword from The Times
Was in a special section
So puzzle lovers had a chance
At brain cell introspection.

I’ve worked for hours, on and off,
To get the thing completed.
The size is not enough to let
A wordsmith feel defeated.

To finish such a challenge,
Time and patience are required.
It’s fortunate for me I’ve gotten
Both since I retired!

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3. Silly Monster Puzzle. Silly Monster ABC free eBook for Kids


illustration for silly monster puzzle
Monster Puzzle: Which Monster has scoffed the most mouldy toast?
From my kindle ebook for kids, Silly Monsters ABC,
available for FREE on amazon today and tomorrow!


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4. Thursday Review: HIGHLY ILLOGICAL BEHAVIOR by John Corey Whaley

Synopsis: It might not be easy to picture a story that takes heavy stuff—mental illness, coming out—and weaves them into an often-hilarious, totally recognizable story of friendship and love. Highly Illogical Behavior (which takes place in, of... Read the rest of this post

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5. Cause and Effect

Make sure you're telling your story in the correct order.

http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/there-are-no-rules/cause-effect-telling-story-right-order

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6. Two Liners (Hindi)



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7. non fiction

Question: Do I leave my family names out knowing they hate me. afraid they will try to sue. plus who can be a ghost writer? Answer: Writing a book about

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8. "Nobody reads" and book excellence (beware: multiple titles are herein celebrated)

I shall get to the end of this story momentarily, but I will begin with this: The other day, while running on one of those machines at the gym, I was accompanied by a young friend with whom I most often disagree. We sit on opposite sides of the political spectrum. Her tendency is to yell (she'd be the first to admit this; she's adorable when she admits this), while my tendency is to ask questions and listen. She is smart, fierce, interesting, and I don't mind. In her advocacy for the positions that will soon represent the U.S., I listen for facts I might not have otherwise encountered.

We were fifteen minutes into our workout when the conversation escalated. "You're what's wrong with America," she said, loud enough for the entire gym (okay, maybe only our section) to hear. "Nobody in this country reads."

"Are you suggesting I don't read?" I said, and for the first time in any of our conversations, I heard defensiveness creep into my tone. I thought of the hours upon hours, every day, that I spent during the election year—reading, watching, and listening. So many hours that my life had become knotted up with the news, that my conversations were always tilting toward the political, that my home life was growing obstructed by my dark glaring over the dinner table at a husband who was not responsible for the world tumult. So many hours that I was no longer reading the books that gave me comfort—the true works of art that stand above, and beyond.

I gave away so much time in 2016 to learning the issues and refining my point of view that I didn't just lose all kinds of professional ground. I lost one of the things that gives me joy—peaceful times with books that rise above the cacophony.

In this past week, in the post-Christmas quiet, I have returned, with force, to these many books that have been sitting here. I have a semester of memoir to teach at Penn, an honors thesis student whose fiction I will guide, four upcoming Juncture memoir workshops to plan for, and a number of book projects of my own. I don't know what will happen with any of this—I have not met my students, I have not advertised the workshops, I am perched on the ledge of essential revisions—but I do know that I can do nothing that I'm supposed to be doing if I do not sit and read.

And so I have been reading, and now you have reached that place in this post place where I list some of the books I have been curled up with these past few days. One after the other, these books have made me glad. For their intelligence and craft. For their beacon shimmer. For the inspiration that they give me.

Everywhere I Look, Helen Garner. For my thoughts on this collection of essays, go here.

Best American Essays 2015, edited by Ariel Levy. Within these pages I found old favorites (Roger Angell, Isiah Berlin, Sven Birkerts, Hilton Als, Justin Cronin, Rebecca Solnit, Zadie Smith, Anthony Doerr, Margo Jefferson) and new voices (Kendra Atleework, Tiffany Briere, Kate Lebo). Here is Atleework, in a gorgeous essay called "Charade," writing of her mother just before she died. Such simple words here. And so very moving.
A few months before, she was beautiful—you could still see it in flashes. Her hair was thick and blondish, and her body was round in some places and slender in others. Her hands, always cold, held pens and typed and cooked scrambled eggs. Her eyes were blue and her heels were narrow. She looked a lot like me.
The Art of Perspective, Christopher Castellani (Graywolf Press Series)—a refreshingly smart examination of narrative strategy and literary point of view. This may be a craft book, but there is, within the pages, a kind of suspense as the author presents his own quandaries about a story he might write. I could quote this entire book. But this should give you a taste for Castellani's smarts:
Why bother to write if you don't have a view worthy of sharing? I think we judge the literary merit of a text not merely by how closely we relate to the characters' experiences—that's the relatively easy part of the author's job—but by how strongly the author's ultimate vision compels us, provokes us, challenges us, or makes new the everyday.
The Gutsy Girl: Escapades for Your Life of Epic Adventure, Caroline Paul illustrated by Wendy MacNaughton. I'll be honest. I did not know about this NYT bestseller until I read about it in Brain Pickings. I bought it for my niece (to be perfectly honest), and I was just planning to scan enough of it so that we might speak of it later. Well. Hold the scissors. I could not stop. This is a memoir/history/how-to/diary journal with pictures, all in one. But it's not just the cleverness of the design that strikes me hard. It's the cleverness of the prose. Paul begins with a story from her youth, when she set out to build a boat out of milk cartons:

I envisioned a three-masted vessel, with a plank off to one side (of course) and a huge curved prow that ended in an eagle head. So I set about collecting milk cartons. I collected from my school cafeteria. I collected from my friends. I collected from my family. I soon became familiar with the look on their faces when I explained I was building a milk carton pirate ship. It was actually a combination of looks, all rolled into one. Hahaha, what a crazy idea, the expression said. And Good luck, kid, but I don't think it's going to happen. And, Well, at least I'm getting ride of my milk cartons. Then at the very end of this facial conga-dance, I always caught something else. Actually, that sounds like FUN. I wish I could do that, the final look exclaimed.

(Sorry, Niece Julia, I did not write in your book or dog ear its pages. I hope you like it as much as I do.)

Upstream: Selected Essays, Mary Oliver. Truth Alert! I just got this book yesterday, and I haven't finished reading yet. But I do love the three essays I've read, and I want to share this small bit from the first page. This is from the first paragraph, right at the end. It goes like this:

What a life is ours! Doesn't
anybody in the world anymore want to get up in the

middle of the night and
sing?

(Just like that, Oliver breaks into a song. Huzzah!)

Time Travel, James Gleick. Full Disclosure, Which is Bigger Than a Truth Alert. I bought this book for another niece, Claire, because I have a little tradition with Claire that includes the purchases of books. What are you seeking? I asked her this year. She said science, nonfiction, a good memoir were her new cup of tea (a good memoir! did you see that?). I bought her a copy of this book and me a copy of this book, because I'm teaching concepts of time this year in my Penn classroom, and I might as well make myself cool and contemporary. Claire, I have not broken the spine on YOUR copy of this book. I hope we both love it and can talk of it someday.

Finally, sitting here during my many months of not reading much but that which I had to read, has been a book mailed to me by Carrie Pepper, a book called Missing on Hill 700. This is Carrie's tribute to a brother lost in a firefight during the Vietnam War. She was thirteen when the telegram arrived. Her family ultimately crumbled from the news. Carrie's decision was to seek out news of the brother she had lost, and through the letters and photos that others send, a mosaic of a life emerges—a mosaic and also hope that Tony's remains will finally make their way home. The subtitle tells you much about Pepper's heart and purpose: "How Losing a Brother in Vietnam Created a Family in America."

2 Comments on "Nobody reads" and book excellence (beware: multiple titles are herein celebrated), last added: 12/30/2016
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9. Christina Balit on TALES FROM THE ARABIAN NIGHTS

I adored THE ARABIAN NIGHTS as a kid, so I was thrilled when Nat Geo Children's Books asked if I'd like to see their recent incarnation, Tales from the Arabian Nights: Stories of Adventure, Magic, Love and Betrayal, written by Donna Jo Napoli and illustrated by Christina Balit. Christina stopped by to tell us a bit about how she works.


e: Hi Christina, what is your creative process and what is your medium, can you walk us through it?
Christina:
Well I work in a very tiny room at the top of an old stone house in the middle of the Kent countryside in England. Its packed to the rafters with everything I need and because of the way I work I don't need a great deal. Everything I illustrate is done by hand so first and foremost I need all my reference books (of which I have thousands on shelves throughout the entire house) and a table and a comfy chair. I have two chairs actually...so I make sure that I switch from one to the other throughout the day to change my position and keep my back moving.

      I have a very disciplined routine when making a book. I will have worked out in advance exactly how long I have been given to make each image in a book depending on the deadline that I have been set. First thing I do is read the story and then study the space that I have been given to fill with a picture. I also have various instructions that have been given to me sometimes by an Art Director or publisher that I also have to pay attention to and I start drawing. I used to make all my drawings on thick cartridge paper in the old days and deliver them by hand to my publishers here in the UK, but things have changed so much now with computers and I can now deliver sketches by email to anywhere in the world! I still draw everything by hand but now make them onto tracing paper instead so that I can lay out the drawing over the text panels that I have been sent to make sure my sketches fit correctly into the layout.

      Once my drawings are complete I photograph them carefully using a good digital camera and I send these sketches via email to my designer. He/she then uses these sketches to place them within the books grid design and I then wait on feedback from 'the team' - which is the publishing house itself, the author ect., ect. I then make any changes requested and once the sketch is fully approved I prepare to paint. I do this onto watercolour blocks, which already have the edges gummed down in advance. It's very important to find the right paper as it has to absorb the water and not resist the paint in any way, which can happen and be a disaster. I then trace by hand my original drawing onto the water colour block and begin painting. I use Windsor and Newton watercolour paint tubes only as they have extremely pure pigments and are very concentrated. I also mix into the paint some gouache for opacity (to make the colours a bit thicker) and gold inks. I love using gold inks as they make the original art shimmer but of course re-producing the gold in print can be an expensive process for the printers unless they are planning to add a gold foil in reproduction.

e: What do you think makes an illustration magical, what I call "Heart Art” - the sort that makes a reader want to come back to look again and again? I’m looking for your definition of “Heart Art.”
Christina:
Well to answer this I have to think back to what I always loved in illustrations when I was little and pouring through books. And that was beautiful drawing and exquisite detail. But then I didn't have access to all the computer art and digital animation that children have now and books were all we had. But regardless I really think little people love searching for the magic and finding all the little bits and pieces that are sometimes too small to see on a first look. The hidden treasure within the breath-taking awe and wonder of hand made work. Children instinctively draw onto paper and try to make art until they no longer believe they are any good at it, so they instinctively appreciate the loveliness of an illustration.

e: Did you have any tie to the Arabian Knights - what’s it like to illustrate such a classic?
Christina:
Very much so! I actually spent large chunks of my childhood in various parts of the Mediterranean and the Middle East. I went to a small nursery run by some lovely nuns on the banks of the Euphrates in Baghdad, a primary school in the deserts of Abu Dhabi (long before it became a city and it was a small barasti village on a peninsula on the Arabian Gulf) and an extraordinary Quaker school nestled in the mountains of Lebanon. It was a great background to my visual memory.

e: What are you working on next or what would be your dream project?
Christina:
I've been working on two new stories for children - which are based on Babylonian myths and I've also been writing a play (for adults). Furthermore, National Geographic are hoping to produce a further Treasury of Bible Stories soon so that should be just great fun.


Thank you Christina! These are LUSCIOUS!

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10. खान पान की बदलती तस्वीर – 2015 -16 का नेशनल हैल्थ फैमली सर्वे

खान पान की बदलती तस्वीर – 2015 -16 का नेशनल हैल्थ फैमली सर्वे – पैदल कम चलना , शारीरिक मेहनत कम करना और संतुलित खाना न लेना हमारा लाईफ स्टाईल बनता जा रहा है…तो क्या ये सही है… ?? खान पान की बदलती तस्वीर – 2015 -16 का नेशनल हैल्थ फैमली सर्वे khan paan ki badalti […]

The post खान पान की बदलती तस्वीर – 2015 -16 का नेशनल हैल्थ फैमली सर्वे appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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11. Hey Danielle H


I want to send the arc of Audacity Jones Steals the Show to the first commenter on my previous post - Danielle H - but I have no way to contact. 

Will you email me thru my website?

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12. Pastrami on Rye

Went to a deli
And piled way up high
Was the sandwich I ordered –
Pastrami on rye.

I slathered on mustard
And savored each bite
Along with a pickle,
The sour just right.

If you’re feeling hungry
I’d urge you to try
(In a real New York deli)
Pastrami on rye.

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13. Audacity Jones Steals the Show



Just finished this beauty.

So much to love.

Audacity Jones Steals the Show by Kirby Larson

Two words: TOTAL PACKAGE

It has mystery and humor and adventure.

It has a cat and an elephant.

It has HOUDINI!!!


So many things to love about the writing.

I love how Kirby speaks to the reader so seamlessly, without pulling us out of the story. In fact, quite the opposite...she lets us in on the fun:

I know, dear reader, it causes you to shudder as it does me.

I love the absolute SEAMLESS incorporation of historical details:

Not a kid-leather boot nor starched pinafore to be seen in either direction.

Audie inhaled deeply of the automobile fumes, the horse dung, the frankfurter carts, the fishy aromas from the Hudson River. "Just smell all that life!" She turned in a complete circle, arms wide, opening herself to the wonders of Manhattan.

I adore the language, sometimes soft and lilting, sometimes just plain old sparkly:

It smelled of hay and apples and something else: The young thing reeked of sorrow.

A murmur wobbled its way through the crowd.

And Kirby has never been one to write down to young readers. She tosses in so many yummy words, like PERFIDY. 

So much to love about this one.

AND.....I'll send this ARC along to the first person to tell me so in the comments. 

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14. Revision Checklist

Thirty questions to think about before you tackle your next revision.

http://www.adventuresinyapublishing.com/2016/11/revision-checklist-30-questions-to-ask.html#.WFWXQfkrJlY

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15. I've set the MONSTERS free again! Free kindle ebook for kids SPECIAL OFFER!

I've set the monsters free!
SILLY MONSTERS ABC is FREE 28th-30th December!
An ABC ebook for little monsters everywhere!
Download for your kindle here:



picture of an amblemoose
A is for the amblemoose,
who ambles aimlessly.
picture of a buzzlesnout
B is for the buzzlesnout,
who buzzes like a bee.
picture of a crocododo
C is for the crocododo,
who eats carrot cake.
picture of a dampwottle
D is for the drooling dampwottle,
who dribbles by the lake.




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16. Writer Wednesday: What 2016 Taught Me


Maybe I should have titled this post, "What I Learned in 2016." It was a tough year, but I did learn a few very important things. Here they are in no particular order:
  • Cover design  ~  I've been designing covers (in secret) for years, but this year I learned a lot about cover design and even did my own cover for Fading Into the Shadows, which I love.
  • ebook formatting  ~  I've been doing paperback formatting for a while, but this year, I learned fancy ebook formatting thanks to some awesome programs.
  • Self-Publishing is the way to go for me  ~  I've been traditionally published, but I'm not interested in that route anymore. I've worked on both sides of publishing for years now, and I'm ready to take my future in my own hands and self-publish from here on out. (I'm very excited about this!)
  • I love writing adult mysteries  ~  For years I swore I wouldn't write adult books, but look at me now. I don't know why I didn't think I'd like it, but I find the 25-30 age group really fun to write about.
  • Balance  ~  I'm particularly proud of this one because I've had the goal of finding balance between editing for clients and working on my own books for the longest time. I just couldn't figure out how to pull it off until I participated in NaNoWriMo this year. Now, I know I can balance the two and get all my work done on time.
Those are my top five writing lessons learned in 2016. What did you learn this year?


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17. How to celebrate New Year 2017

How to celebrate New Year 2017 – नया साल दस्तक दे रहा है इसे आप कैसे मनाएगें … नया साल कैसे मनाएंगें आप – नव वर्ष की शुभकामनायें, नया साल मुबारक हो, नये साल की हार्दिक शुभकामनायें, नववर्ष की शुभकामनाएँ, नव वर्ष की शुभकामना , how to celebrate new year, how to celebrate new year […]

The post How to celebrate New Year 2017 appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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18.

My Two
Latest Picture Books

As well as Kobi and Oscar, many other unique Down Under animals
share the adventures in both these books. 

An Aussie Word Glossary and animal information are at the back of each book, plus fun details about Koalas and Tasmanian Devils.


Kobi is a young koala who thinks he knows everything about
surviving in the Aussie Bush. He soon discovers he is lost,
scared, and REALLY misses his mom.

Oscar is a Tasmanian Devil who looks like his relatives--mean and ugly.
All the Aussie bush critters are afraid of him. Yet Oscar longs to be
friends with everyone--you see, he REALLY is different.
How he makes the other animals see his friendly
nature becomes a grand adventure.


 16x books to choose from ( PB to Young Teen)
Ages 5 through 14 years.

http://www.margotfinke.com

AUTOGRAPHED--with DISCOUNT
(Direct from my Website)
  $2.50 POSTAGE
Add 50c for each extra book.

KINDLE Downloads - from AMAZON


**************

Magic Carpet of Books
SKYPE Author Visits to Schools

************




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19. Stinky Santa Christmas eBook Success! Stinky Santa does Number 2! Incredible eBook Bestseller!!

Incredible News! Amazing Christmas eBook Bestseller!
Stinky Santa has only gone and got to Number 2 in Children's Christmas eBooks on Amazon.co.uk!
screenshot of stinky santa on bestseller list
SCREENSHOT OF BESTSELLING SUCCESS!

Buy, share or preview below:

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20. Coloring Page Tuesday - Happy New Years 2017

     IThank you to all of you for your kind emails and loyal support throughout 2016. I'm so grateful for every one of you and I wish you all a new year filled with hope, wisdom, peace and joy. CLICK HERE for more coloring pages!
     CLICK HERE to sign up to receive alerts when a new coloring page is posted each week and... Please check out my books! Especially...
my debut novel, A BIRD ON WATER STREET - winner of over a dozen literary awards, including Georgia Author of the Year. Click the cover to learn more!
     When the birds return to Water Street, will anyone be left to hear them sing? A miner's strike allows green and growing things to return to the Red Hills, but that same strike may force residents to seek new homes and livelihoods elsewhere. Follow the story of Jack Hicks as he struggles to hold onto everything he loves most.
     I create my coloring pages for teachers, librarians, booksellers, and parents to enjoy for free with their children, but you can also purchase rights to an image for commercial use, please contact me. If you have questions about usage, please visit my Angel Policy page.

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21. Two Liners (Hindi)



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22. Recent Reading Roundup 42

It's nearly time to sum up the year's reading, and I have a great deal to talk about on that front. Unfortunately, I've been felled by a flu, so I'm hoping I'll be back my feet and in a state to write meaningfully about, well, anything by the time the 31st rolls around (which, as everyone knows, is the only proper time to talk about the year's best anything). In the meantime, however, here are

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23. Let's Meet on Twitter!

I'm taking a hiatus from blogging. Please look me up on Twitter at https://twitter.com/KathyMirkin.

I may stop by now and then to share books news and tips, so please do come back.

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24. Between Final Text and Publication

Many things have to happen after you hand in the final text of your manuscript and its publication.

http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/no-one-tells-page-proofs-blurb-requests

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25. Legalese

There once was a clumsy attorney
Who wanted to go on a journey
     But lacking some grace
     He fell on his face
And soon was stretched out on a gurney.

He’d wanted to taste the exotic
But work made his life so chaotic
     That the thrills he did seek
     Like conversing in Greek
Were replaced by an antibiotic.

When he healed he went back by degrees
For he missed his gargantuan fees
     But the lesson he learned
     Was when trips are concerned
He should stay home and speak legalese!



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