What’s up Authors?

August 16, 2017

The results are in!  Based on the numbers in two polls, The Bookshelf Café News will be adding author interviews.

Do you want to be interviewed by The Bookshelf Cafe?

At this time, the format and selection is not yet decided.  However, if you want to be interviewed, submit the following information, and we will contact you as soon as we are ready to move forward.

Welcome aboard!

If you want to be interviewed, submit the following:

 


July 18, 2017

Summer time is time travel time.

Last weekend, I was in 1800s Spain and this weekend I plan to be in the 25th century…in space!  Summer brings me such great time travel opportunities, more so than any other season because I can read outside.   Sitting in a park near a lake, enjoying the fresh air and warm sun increases the odds that by the time I reach the third page of a book, I am in that book fully, completely, and unmistakably engrossed in the story.

Yes, reading by the fireplace while it is snowing takes me away too, but nothing compared to being able to sit unfettered in the amazing outdoors.  I may be particularly prone to author’s work during the summer because I live in Seattle.  Sunny days are the park are not as plenty as other locations, which makes these days so very precious.

If you haven’t gotten comfortable with a blanket and pillow on a beach, or park, or lake, or park on a beach or a lake, you are missing out.  Try it once and you will be there again.  When you have a really great book, you become immersed by the cover and can almost physically jump into the book, swimming in a new world.

That’s my summer tip to you.  Pack light.  Find a spot.  And read.  Breathe the air.  Feel the warmth on your skin.  And join the book characters in their journey.  Want to make it even better? Bring someone with you. It’s the best time travel experience ever.

<edit> A disclaimer for beach reading…maybe you shouldn’t read JAWs…..


May 28, 2017

I just finished reading Stephen King’s End of Watch.  The only part of a review I wish to give is about the Author’s Notes in the back of the book.  To paraphrase, Stephen King states he learned a lot about computers in order to write about programming in the story, but he decided to not follow reality in order to fictionalize computer programming to make the story work.  In short, he changed the rules of math in order to force it to work.

I’m not keen on that for the most part.

My level of suspension of belief depends on the story.  With a Stephen King story, I can let many things go because it’s fantasy (or horror-fantasy) and many of the things that happen are clearly impossible to happen in reality.  But it’s the things that aren’t fictional that don’t particularly help me get into a story if a fact like math is changed for the sole purpose of fiction.  Not a big thing, but it does affect my reading of a story when I start to question the story line, especially after reading notes at the end of the story that says the author changed reality so much that he had to apologize for it.  For magic to work (for me), the story has to work with great writing with a dash of reality.

 

With that, you have a feeling of what I look for when reading anything.  I love magical stories with mythical creatures as much as I love a good thriller.  But with each story, I beg for writing so well done that the story is plausible in my eyes or done so authentically correct that it reads like true life.  And like many authors know, it’s hard to write realism and usually unnecessary when developing your character.

Just my opinion, but in order for me to suspend my belief, there has to be some believable aspects (realism) in other parts of the story.  If the story describes reality and throws in some fantasy, I’m much more apt to accept everything as reality, or possible in that fictional world of the story.

One thing you can do for your story is to do a bit of research on a topic that you don’t know about but want to be part (or supporting part) of the story.  A little bit of knowledge is all you need to solidify a tad touch of reality to push the fictional story forward.

Even with following physics and facts, sometimes it just doesn’t sound plausible.  When I read The Martian, I got online to check out the reality of what I read.  I was surprised to find so much was accurately well-written.  I read the book twice and saw the movie once.  Great story spattered everywhere with reality to push the fictional story forward.

Now to get to the point of this post…you have access to a tremendous amount of research online that can be directly used in your writing, beyond just Wikipedia.  You have government research at your fingertips!

Writing a space novel? Check out NASA’s research, all made public, all freely available online.

https://www.sciencealert.com/the-us-library-of-congress-just-put-25-million-records-online-free-of-charge

How about most everything in the Library of Congress?  It’s available now, online.

https://www.loc.gov/cds/products/marcDist.php

The Library of Congress will even teach you how to “Hack to Learn” for extreme research skills to find what you need in the millions upon millions of collection items.  How about that?

Yes, fiction is fiction, but when you need some realism and facts, get online and check out the resources and research that has already been done.  You’ll probably find some other really neat things too, like NASA’s space tourism posters….those are so so cool and inspirational for your science fiction book cover 🙂


April 14, 2017

I’m looking for just one thing.  That’s all I need. One thing.

Every year, I attend at least one writers conference.  Some years, I attend two.  I am fortunate to live less than 10 minutes away from an outstanding conference in the Seattle area, so that is my guaranteed once-a-year attendance for a writers conference.  The others? It depends on time of year, speakers, topics, and the budget consideration to answer the question of “is it worth it?”

When I attend a writers conference, I carry around my trusty pen and notepad.  This year, I may bring my iPad, but I will have pen and paper on hand just in case.  I write down everything. Absolutely everything.  If I hear a tip or word of advice that may be useful, I write it down.  Mostly I write it down because I know in 15 minutes I will have forgotten it.  Even if I remember day-1 of the conference, by day-3, I have forgotten 90% of day-1.  Therefore, I write everything down.

I take solace in that I am not the only person writing down as much as possible, but I do notice that those who take notes are not the majority.  Although I feel that perhaps my memory is not as good as everyone else who can keep eye contact with the presenters, I tend to believe that many people just don’t look for what I do at a conference, which is that one thing that can make a difference.

@NancyJCohen has a fantastic list of what to bring to a writers conference.  For me, the most important on her list is #18 (hint: it’s a notepad).

The reason I am harping so much on my personal perspective of a notepad and pen is that whether I realize the moment I hear it or days later when reviewing my notes, I am looking for that one tip that makes all the difference in the world that justified my time at the conference.  Yes. I like meeting and greeting new people.  Yes.  I love the atmosphere of a great conference.  And yes, I even like the excitement of traveling to new places.  But in the end, it is that one tidbit, that one golden nugget of advice I am looking for to make it all worthwhile.

The tips I look for are not the unbelievable claims of how to win the lottery or of a promise that your book will be on the NYT best seller list, but rather those little things that make me a better writer, or a better reader, or a better business person (writing is a business….).   Sometimes the one thing that makes all the difference is writing down the name of someone I met who later becomes a mentor or wonderful friend.  Just one thing.

The most difficult aspect of writers conferences is picking one to go.  Like I mentioned, I am lucky to live within a short distance of a local conference.  It’s close enough for a short bike ride, which may actually beat out the traffic.   As for my second conference of the year, I spend more time trying to find a conference to attend than the time I probably spend at that conference I choose.  But for the time I spend looking, it makes it more likely that the conference I choose will have that one thing I need to justify all the work and time spent to get there.

If money and time were not a factor, I could practically spend a year non-stop at conferences all over the world, because when I see tweets like this one from @WendyandCharles, I involuntarily start to check Travelocity for flights…

And if finding a conference isn’t hard enough, there are just too many people that I would want to listen to that picking the conference for me is not easy.  Seriously.  Who would not want to listen to @BillTravisWrite after seeing him tweet this?  I would love to hear his talk because I know with his humor, I may just find that one thing.

Did I mention that I love going to writers conferences?


March 11, 2017

I have a confession to make.  I like being entertained.  Whether it is from movies or a comedy show, I like entertainment.  Books are no different, but with a book, I am more immersed in a story, flow with the characters, and have my emotions moved than I am being purely entertained.

Now…one of the ways I get be entertained while at the same time getting some good info on books is with YouTuber book reviewers (aka “booktubers”).  Seriously.  There are several YouTube channels that I am regularly checking to see what new videos have been uploaded.

I am not saying that being a funny YouTuber book reviewer makes for entertainment, but rather than I enjoy listening (and watching) someone talk about a book with passion.  I also found that if a YouTuber book reviewer likes the same books that I like, I keep coming back to the channel.

With that, here are some of my favorite YouTuber book reviewers.

Hailey in Bookland loves books and it shows.  I just love watching book lovers talk about book love.  Follow Hailey on twitter at https://twitter.com/hailsinbookland.

Katytastic reads a lot (maybe more than me?) and has a popular Youtube channel.  I suggest putting her channel on your Youtube viewing list and follow her on Twitter at https://twitter.com/kat_tastic.

Abookutopia makes my list too as a regular booktuber visit.  Also put her on your Twitter follow list at https://twitter.com/sashaalsberg.

You also can’t miss out on Christine Riccio’s channel.  Again, top of the list!

These are just a few of the amazing booktubers on YouTube.  I would take a guess at how many there actually are, but I would probably be off by a hundred thousand or so.  However, my point is that if you are looking for book reviews and at the same time being entertained, check out the booktubers on YouTube.  You are sure to find someone who reads what you read.

And if you are interested in booktubing….this is YouTube BookTuber’s advice on get started.

As a side note, just about every day I learn a new “word”, as in a new word that isn’t in the dictionary.  I can still remember the first time I saw the word “booktuber”…..


March 4, 2017

We sometimes forget the power of the written word. Words can inspire or incite. Words can sway emotion from anger and sorrow to joy and elation. Words have power. As an author, you have the ability to move mountains with your voice. Words are so important that they are given the #1 spot in the Bill of Rights.

If you ever doubt the power of words, consider the stories of the past that continue today with writers who persevere through oppression, protests, and arrests over their words. No one ever said writing is easy.

Take author of @JamieFord as an example with his keynote speech as a visiting author. The students made it practically impossible for Ford to give his keynote. For some reason, they did not want him to speak, so they protested with noise by clapping and shouting to stop his speech.

 

But, Ford continued to speak over the noise of the students. It takes strong will to keep going when being shouted down. Words are powerful if you don’t quit using then.

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/03/us/middlebury-college-charles-murray-bell-curve-protest.html?_r=0

Author of “The Bell Curve”, Charles Murray tried to speak at Middlebury College in Vermont, and like author Jamie Ford, was shouted out to the point of having to be taken to a private room and speak over a video feed. Even that didn’t stop the students from disrupting the speech by pulling fire alarms and even physically assaulting Murray.

 

 

Writer Tarek Fatah was simply at a poetry festival and was protested, kicked, and attached by a crowd for his writing. Words, even poetic words, are powerful.

Countless other stories happen today, as they have happened for centuries, where the spoken or written words have resulted in the writer being verbally attacked, physically assaulted, arrested, and even killed.

Superheroes do not exist, in regards to people with super powers. But writers are the closest thing to people having super powers because words are powerful. They can move mountains through inspiration. Be careful with your words, but use them.

 

So…do you still want to be an author?

If after reading these storied (which happened within the past month!) do not make you want to find another career or pastime, then you already have it in you to write and speak. Your words may ‘only’ amount to fiction, but the power in the words are no less as strong as any other. The passion to write what you believe, what you feel, and what you want others to feel is the bedrock of not only Rights as people, but as a necessity of society to grow.

Writers, you have my deepest respect.


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Feb 18, 2017

There is something special about self-publishing authors.  The special-ness is that they choose to jump on a stampeding Rhino in the middle of a typhoon while barefoot instead of having a traditional publisher print their books.  By that I mean a traditional publisher is more like stepping onto a plane, putting on headphones, and taking a nap under a blanket while the airline does all the work.  They build the plane, fix it, fuel it, fly it, land it, and clean it.  For an author to self-publish, you get to do all by yourself.  Write.  Edit (or pay for an editor).  Design the cover (or pay for a cover design).  Print (or typically hire a print shop).  Market.  Find and squeeze into distribution channels. Market.  And then market some more.  And then take all the blame for everything that goes wrong.  Like I said, it’s like riding a runaway Rhino during a typhoon.  The best part…you have total and complete control of your words.  The worst part is that you have total and complete control of your words.

When you have to do all the work, that means handling all the work (books).

The respect I have for self-published authors is no less than I have for a traditionally published author.  Yes, having your book “chosen” to be published by one of the big guys demands respect.  But so does doing it all yourself.

Self-Published Book Beats the Odds By Making New York Times Bestseller List

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/eva-lesko-natiello/selfpublished-book-beats-_b_11909842.html

Never underestimate the power of a well-written, well-marketed self-published book. Eva Lesko Natiello showed exactly what can happen with a good book, self-published or otherwise.  A good book can shoot right up the best selling lists next to any traditionally published book.  Well done Eva!

Former Roseburg resident writes his first psychic detective novel while attending OSU

http://www.nrtoday.com/a_and_e/former-roseburg-resident-writes-his-first-psychic-detective-novel-while/article_ae8c4af6-c4ac-5d09-bdf2-a24324217911.html

Gabriel S.A. Clason shows that it is possible to self-publish even when you are a student.  And he is writing more books.  Age and experience can be irrelevant when you can write what people want to read.

‘Being an Irish author is more of a Grimm fairytale than a Cinderella story’

https://www.irishtimes.com/culture/books/being-an-irish-author-is-more-of-a-grimm-fairytale-than-a-cinderella-story-1.2979174

The best line in this article – “Traditional publishing is a bit like fight club…”.    I liked this article enough to read it several times as it really hits the important aspects of publishing in an honest but helpful way.

What was your excuse to not self-publish?  Oh, never mind.  Amazon has an answer to that one.

Amazon simplifies self-published paperback printing

https://www.engadget.com/2017/02/15/amazon-simplifies-paperback-printing/

Just when I thought it was easy enough to publish on Amazon, they make it even easier which begins to eliminate excuses to not self-publish now rather than waiting on your manuscript being reviewed by a traditional publisher..

Winnipeg Wattpad writer receives book deal from U.S. publisher

http://www.cbc.ca/books/2017/02/winnipeg-wattpad-writer-receives-book-deal-from-independent-us-publisher.html

Nothing says you can’t go from traditional publishing to self-publishing.  In fact, nothing says you can’t go from self-publishing to traditional publishing when the publishers fight over your self-published book!

Print book sales numbers up but figures don’t tell full story

Speaking of Amazon, how about this statistic? “Eighty-two percent of all e-books purchased in the U.S. were Amazon Kindle titles.” http://www.columbian.com/news/2017/feb/12/print-book-sales-numbers-up-but-figures-dont-tell-full-story/

If you are self-publishing, regardless of how you may feel about Amazon, 82% is a big number.  A really really big number to consider when putting your book out as an ebook.

Ok.  One more Amazon story…

Amazon launches £20,000 prize for self-published ebooks

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/books/news/amazon-launches-20000-prize-self-published-ebooks/

Amazon just made it even easier to get your book into print, as if it weren’t easy enough on Amazon and they are for the next big hit with the next big writer.  Guess what?  That could be you.


 Jan 27, 2017

Love of words does not necessarily mean love for making money from words.  You already know that getting a contract with a publisher is not a sure thing.  Even if you get a publishing contract, best seller status is not a sure thing.  In fact, even if your book becomes a best seller, that doesn’t necessarily mean you will retire on a tropical island from royalties.

So why do you write, if not trying to make money?

In short, because you love words.  You love putting your thoughts and dreams on paper (or an electronic piece of paper…), weaving a tale, and sharing your story with the world.  You want to share and for that, I commend you.  You risk putting your reputation out in public for writings that may fail or succeed, and either way, your name is on the words.  For that, I salute you.

Let’s take this one more step further.  Your words, all of them, are shared with the world when you write online.  Your blogs, your email, your comments, and your social media.  And as an author, your words carry weight because readers read what writers write.

Since your words are taken so seriously, consider the point made by @BookEndsJessica with her blog post of  “Keeping the “YOU” Out of Your Brand“, where she states that she unfollowed authors because of their controversial views.

Research shows that “Literature on blog credibility shows that blog readers find blogs more credible than the mainstream media” (http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/15456870.2015.1092740?journalCode=hajc20).

WOW!  Your words on your blog have more credibility than the evening news!  Your words are so influential, that even best selling author  wrote “Blogging is Serious Business”.

https://goinswriter.com/blogging-is-a-serious-business/

So, with that, I encourage you to keep writing outside of your books.  Blog away!  Connect on social media!  Put your name out there because people are reading it, even if they don’t comment on your words.   Your words on an Internet blog are just as meaningful as the words in a heavy-bound, bestselling novel.  But just as important, remember that writing controversial comments and opinions on social media or blogs define you as a person, which affects your brand, which affects how readers perceive your written word. Then again, if you want to be defined in public by controversial opinions, Twitter and Facebook certainly allow you to do so…as for my opinion, I’ll keep it to myself (but will probably write it in my diary).


Jan 9, 2017

The second-best thing a writer can do (besides writing…)

Perfect the greatest gift anyone can give is a story written so well that stirs emotions for generation after generation.  The long-lasting effect of an emotional poem or high tempo thriller can affect people around the world each time the words are read and spoken.  This, I believe, is the best thing a writer can do: move the world with words.

This brings us to the next best thing an author can do.  Charity.

Few acts can bring about as much joy and emotion as charity.  Sure, some authors may donate to gain some marketing for book purchases, but most authors donate more than just books. They donate their time, love, empathy, support, and care to causes that are closest to each of them.

Let’s take a look at a few authors over the past week making the news with charity.  I am sure that by the end of this blog post, you will say to yourself, “I want to do something too.”

War author vows to give a teddy bear to every child in Scotland

https://stv.tv/news/features/1377425-war-author-vows-to-give-a-teddy-bear-to-every-child-in-scotland/

 

Author Aileen Orr has taken up an amazing gift of giving a teddy bear to every child in Scotland.  Yes..every child – one teddy bear – in Scotland, as in the entire country.  I cannot imagine the lifelong effect this will have not only on the children, but the country as a whole in spirit.

You don’t have to donate to every child in your country to make a difference of the same impact.  Take Author Nila Webster for example.

Author Nila Webster donates 2,300 books to youngsters

http://www.northjersey.com/story/news/essex/montclair/2017/01/03/author-nila-webster-donates-2300-books-youngsters/96118196/

Nila donated over 2,00 books to several schools in New Jersey.  Her books are of hope and courage (as Nila is battling cancer herself).   The children exposed to Nila today may not know the impact she has had on their lives until later, but for sure, she is making a positive life impact on so many.

Author Amanda Prowse donates and signs books to help hospital scanner appeal

http://www.thewestonmercury.co.uk/news/author_amanda_prowse_donates_and_signs_books_to_help_hospital_scanner_appeal_1_4835692

Amanda Prowse is helping her community through donations to raise money for a hospital scanner for her community.  The amount of good that medical technology can provide to individuals is more than you can ever imagine unless you have seen the good that can be done by great medical care.  Thank you Amanda!

 

@MrsAmandaProwse donates & signs books to support our Scanner Appeal https://t.co/Gh9hP3vUpY| Full story via @WSMERCURY pic.twitter.com/mbVKLuUvX5

Wine Writer Jancis Robinson Donates Personal Papers to UC Davis

https://www.ucdavis.edu/news/wine-writer-jancis-robinson-donates-personal-papers-uc-davis/


Something else to consider when thinking of what you can do is thinking about what you have already done.  Writer Jancis Robison donated her life work to UC Davis.  Jancis has given UC Davis her personal papers dating back to 1976!  The details of her travels and tasting notes, photographs and more.  The future students of UC Davis will have access to history that did not exist before Jancis donated her work.    The one thing about sharing your life’s work is that it takes a lifetime to make it and a big heart to share it.  Thank you Jancis!

So….what are you thinking of doing 🙂


Dec 24, 2016

One undeniable benefit of writing is that only one thing matters.  That one thing is writing.  Regardless of who the writer may be, the words are what we read that move us emotionally.  Perhaps the last thing I think about is, “I wonder how old the writer is” because when reading a book, if my emotions are stirred, the only thing I ‘think’ about is how I ‘feel’, not how old the author may be.

With that, whether you are young or not-as-young, write.  Write your heart out.  Move your reader (that’s me) with your words.  This is the one most wonderful thing we can do all of our lives-write until we cannot write anymore, no matter how old we may be.  That also means that when you start writing is not as important than starting to write in the first place.

Young Kazakh Author Presents Book in London

young1

http://astanatimes.com/2016/12/young-kazakh-author-presents-book-in-london/

Eleven.  That how many years Maide Akan has been on the planet and she published her first book, a children’s fairytale.  How awesome is that!

Young author debuts with a dash of suspense

http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/tp-tamilnadu/Young-author-debuts-with-a-dash-of-suspense/article16902525.ece

13

A mystery book at 13 years old. Aksharaa Agarwal is another young writer starting out with a published book, a mystery no less!

35 Over 35 Honors Authors Who Found Success Later In Life

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/35-over-35-honors-authors-who-found-success-later-in-life_us_585c196fe4b0d9a5945778d9

Let me skip quickly over this article, only because to add it this post.  This article seems to imply “35” is later in life….

However, when I say “not-as-young”, I do not mean that to be authors in their “30s”…. I mean authors a bit older than that.

100-year-old Pearl Harbor survivor from Tennessee lives on to tell the story

http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/local/2016/12/06/100-year-old-pearl-harbor-survivor-tennessee-lives-tell-story/94601028/ 

seals

James A. Seals writes about his life, which includes describing his experience as a Marine Corps Private stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on December 7, 1941.  An amazing life that we can read about.

‘Oregon Art Beat’ 2016: Meeting A Living Legend, Getting Metal And More

http://www.opb.org/news/series/2016/oregon-art-beat-2016/

beb

You know of Beverly Cleary because she has written books that you read growing up.  Born in 1916 with her first book published in 1950, her life has affected so many millions of children (many of whom are now adults!) with her wonderful writings.

Youth nor age determines when you start writing.  Only your desire to keep writing and share your words is what matters.  In life, how many other occupations, past times, or hobbies can you do for your entire life that can compare with writing?


Dec 16, 2016

This week in “What’s up authors?” offers a glimpse into those who bare their soul for all to see; the authors and writers of every generation and locale.  With that, we have the holidays coming up.

Approaching the holidays reminds us that we live with others, work with others, and need to help others.  Writers and authors are different than the rest of the world for they tell their stories with the typed word.  Because they put their souls for the rest of us to read in their writings, they also leave their lives open for all to see, for the good and the bad.

Vietnam veteran’s daughter finds peace writing about traumatic childhood

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-05-03/vietnam-veterans-daughter-finds-peace-writing-about-childhood/7379560?pfmredir=sm

 ruth

Author Ruth Clare talks about her childhood and living with PTSD and alcoholism in the linked article and gives details to make anyone shudder of a childhood and trauma endured by her family.  Ruth published a memoir and shared her life to not only help herself, but certainly to help others.  To read about anyone surviving adversity and helping others in the process is worthy of taking the time to read about.  Thank you Ruth.

 

Petaluma author shares recovery journey in new memoir

shawn

http://books.blogs.pressdemocrat.com/10407/petaluma-author-shares-recovery-journey-in-new-memoir/

Author Shawn Langwell also talks about his troubled childhood and addiction battles in the linked article.  He says his main purpose of his book is to share his story to help others and he has done so for over 30 years.

Kirk Douglas Turns 100: The Legendary Actor Recalls Kubrick and the Blacklist

douglas

https://variety.com/2016/film/news/kirk-douglas-100th-birthday-actor-turns-100-spartacus-1201934250/

Actor and author Kirk Douglas doesn’t talk about a difficult childhood in this article, but he does talk about loneliness.  At 100 years old, he says he misses those no longer living and is lonely.  But even outliving friends and family, Kirk has been a prolific author and philanthropist.  He has given over $120 million and written almost a dozen books.

Kirk’s humility shows in the article and the world is a better place to know his story.  Happy Birthday Mr. Douglas.

From sleeping rough to becoming a published author: This man’s story will make you think twice about ignoring the homeless

homeless

http://www.irishexaminer.com/examviral/real-life/from-sleeping-rough-to-becoming-a-published-author-this-mans-story-will-make-you-think-twice-about-ignoring-the-homeless-434565.html

Author Craig Stone experienced homelessness, wrote about it, and shared his story with the world.  He also bares all in the article discussing the depression and hopelessness.  Writing a book saved him, shared his story with others, and gives us insight into a serious problem of homelessness that we should never ignore.  Great job Craig and thank you for sharing your story in written words.

5-year-old ‘superhero’ raising money for homeless vets

5yearold

http://www.fox5dc.com/news/local-news/223783896-story

It’s never too late to share your story and help others.  Young author Tyler Stalings shows that it is also never too early either.  At 5 years old, Tyler has published a book, takes collections for those in need, and spends time helping others with his mom.  A big heart in a little kid!

Former homeless man trying to give back after getting back on his feet

stew

http://ktvl.com/news/local/former-homeless-man-trying-to-give-back-after-getting-back-on-his-feet

The experience of homelessness must be one of the most tragic experiences any person could endure.  To go through homelessness and then help others shows the character of a lion.  Author Lance Nevis wrote three children’s book to give back to the community.  Congratulations on your books Lance, and your road away from homelessness to help others.

And finally…

Chris Gardner: The homeless man who became a multi-millionaire investor

gardner

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-38144980

You may already know the Chris Gardner story since it was made into a movie, The Pursuit of Happyness, starring Will Smith.  But what you may not know is that Chris grew up in poverty, never knew his father, and raised with a physically abusive, alcoholic stepfather.  Adding to that, as a father, he was homeless before becoming successful.  His wife died of cancer after the release of his movie and again, his life changed.  He now helps people, all over the world, and sponsors homeless charities.   His humility, and acceptance that his life was difficult so that his children would not be shows one of the greatest character traits.  Thank you Chris, for your positivity and for changing the world.


Dec 9, 2016

Greetings everyone!  This week, the spotlight is on selected new book releases.  Take a look at what authors are doing with new releases, new writings, and future works.

Annette Dashofy announced the release of her 5th book in a 6-book contract series.

annette


Very nice!  Read more about Annette in her local newspaper at http://www.weirtondailytimes.com/news/local-news/2016/12/local-author-announces-release-of-new-mystery-book/.

Congrats Annette!

I love mysteries, and here is a new one.

Lois Vermeer with illustrator Joe Hoksbergen released a very cute book, “A Chrismoose Mystery” and will be at the Pella Public Library on Saturday, December 10 at 11:00 a.m (http://kniakrls.com/2016/12/local-author-writes-about-a-chrismoose-mystery/) .

moose

I give an A+ on title creativity.

Speaking of mysteries….

Author Laura Burke is working on her next mystery book, “Alone”, which should be available in January.

burke

One point of what to expect in the book is that Laura was a PI for 30 years!  Imagine the stories! Read more about it at http://southfloridagaynews.com/Wilton-Manors-Gazette/local-author-working-on-her-next-murder-mystery.html.

A true life mystery

Misty Thompson talks about her work in a personal story.  Read more at Unsolved case inspires local author’s work (http://www.eacourier.com/news/unsolved-case-inspires-local-author-s-work/article_574eb3ec-bc1a-11e6-919d-d3b46711b909.html)

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Wish Misty well in her endeavor with such a personal story to be told.

Local author publishes and tells regional stories

Not only has Kyle White published a new book, but he will be at The House Café on Sunday, Dec. 18 to talk about the stories from both his books.

neighbor

If you live nearby, this sounds like a neat time to spend some time with Kyle. http://www.daily-chronicle.com/2016/12/06/local-author-publishes-and-tells-regional-stories/avtt0sb/ 

That wraps up this week!  Come back next week for something new, something different, but always something about writers and the books written.


Dec 2, 2016

Great Writing Tips

If you are a visual person, and I think you just might be (you like to read, right?), then this Pinterest board is for you.  The board is full of visually stimulating writing tips: https://uk.pinterest.com/PrettieBirdieC/great-writing-tips/ that I found not only entertaining, but informative.   I even printed a few and posted them on the wall in front of my desk…

pinterest

Acquire a cat.

The title of this writer’s tip blog caught my eye for one reason: It says to get a cat.  Emma Straub suggests that a cat will make you a better writer.  http://aaww.org/emma-straubs-writing-tips-acquire-a-cat/

But I guess that even if a cat doesn’t help, you can have some company while battling the writing block monster!

Not 1. Not 2. Not 3, but 50 pieces of writing advice from authors!

Check out http://www.shortlist.com/entertainment/50-pieces-of-writing-advice-from-authors to see some great advice from the most famous writers in history.

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Writing alone is a, well, lonely business.  So if you are considering a partner is writing, check out 10 Great Tips on How to Write a Book With a Co-author  http://www.writersdigest.com/online-editor/10-great-tips-write-book-co-author Granted, I like writing alone, but many days I wish someone else could prod me along or take over the keyboard for a chapter or two…

I know you read the 50 tips on writing, but wait, there’s more!  How about 65 more? Check out Practical Writing Tips from 65 Best Selling Authors at http://www.creativindie.com/practical-writing-tips-from-65-bestselling-authors/

Are we done yet? Not quite yet.  Did you get any good tips yet?  Here are some more!

Inspirational writing advice from Louisa May Alcott and 26 other great women authors

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/books/what-to-read/inspiring-writing-advice-from-the-greatest-women-authors/

 women

Whether man or woman author, any tip can help or maybe that one tip can make your book THE book of the year!

 

My last writer’s tip of the week: 10 Smart Writing Tips By Twinkle Khanna Which The Bold Author Swears By

65

 

For me, I still need more tips!  But this week was certainly a good start.

Remember…READ, WRITE, REPEAT!

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