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Hide a Book Day – September 18th

I’m sure you’ve heard of it before – celebrities hiding books in well-known places. This year is a bit different. Goodreads, for their tenth anniversary, is teaming up with The Book Fairies.

Don’t be surprised if you find a book or two on your way to work or at the park. Book Fairies will be hiding books in some unusual places to help promote reading and literacy. Pictures of Emma Watson hiding a few of her favourites are already making rounds on the internet.

This is an amazing event, but did you know you too can participate?

As a reader, I know first hand I always have excess books my shelves can’t handle. Rather than leaving them sitting in boxes this year, I plan on distributing a few around nearby towns for people to find. As an author, I’ll be adding a few of my own into the mix.

On the Book Fairies website, you can order book bags, bookmarks, stickers, buttons and ribbons to include with the books. It can add up fast, though. Authors can also offer their books to be hidden by others – an amazing idea. Other than the price, the other downside is you have to order them from the UK, making shipping time an issue. I’ve ordered mine.

If you want to participate and are out of time there are still a few options. Write a note on a sticky pad and attach to the inside cover, or, if you are the author, write a note directly in the book and sign it for an added special touch!

I’m looking forward to participating and hope to run into a few other fairies on September 18th. Thanks for reading, and see you next week for more of The Write Information.

For more information on The Book Fairies please visit http://ibelieveinbookfairies.com/

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My Top Picks for the Summer Indie Book Awards

It is September and that means the polls are open for the Summer Indie Book Awards hosted by Metamorph Publishing. Readers can vote in flocks for all of their favourites from September 1st to September 11th, 2017. This is the event’s second year and so far it looks like the growing pains it experienced in 2016 have been eliminated.

Full List of Books Nominated for the Summer Indie Book Awards


It’s still early, but here are the categories and my personal picks for front-runners in each:

 

Anthology

There are so many great titles in the Anthology category, but I’m putting my money on Hugs and Kisses: A Writers’ Retreat Romance Anthology coming out on top.

Biography 

There are only three choices in this genre. It is also my first time hearing about any of them. Good luck to all three authors.

Children’s 

Even though my kids are now grown, I love children’s books. After checking out the choices I think Where’s the Frog? could be a front runner.

Contemporary

We have a competition in this one! It’s going to be a close call, but I expect ICE to lead the pack.

Crime 

Dead on Your Feet could take this away. I have, however, added A Few Simple Murders to my wish list.

Diversity 

I’m predicting Catch Me If I Fall, but with only four to choose from, this is anyone’s game.

Dystopian 

I’d be surprised if Untamed didn’t walk away with this.

Erotica

PanDora’s Destruction by Kitten Wallace has potential in this category. I will note there is a distinct absence of some of this year’s top indie erotica titles.

Fantasy 

This is the category to watch! It’s so tight, anyone could take this. I’m looking for Crown of Delusion or More Things on Heaven and Earth to place well. The competition is going to be tough, though, with the likes of Grant Leishman, Mark McQuillen and R.R. Virdi being among the authors to choose from.

Although one of my own books was nominated in this category, I don’t expect it to place in the top five.

Historical

This is a hard choice, but I’m betting on The Beekeeper’s Daughter doing well.

Horror 

Yolanda Olson has a couple titles listed and both are probably going to end up topping the list. I’m looking for Dawn of a New Breed to stake a claim in the top few as well.

Holiday 

Only two titles are listed. It could be exciting to see who comes out on top. I can see both being in the top two.

Humor 

This is another category with only a few choices. I expect to see Actually, Don’t Write a Book About Me come out on top.

Mystery 

I’m picking Agents of Shadow to rake in the votes on this one.

New Adult 

I can see Jenna’s Story doing well.

I’m not picking a clear winner as one of my own titles is in the mix and I have to keep my fingers crossed. Good luck to all the authors.

Novella 

Another tough fight. I’m looking at Snowed In to be near the top. Kiss of Vengeance should also place well.

This is another category one of my books is nominated in. As a sequel in a series, I don’t think it has the following needed to hit the top.  Good luck to all the authors nominated.

Paranormal

This genre is packed with choices! I expect to see Embellished by Karen Glista finish high on the list. I’m not counting out Jill by Rose Montague, either. This is going to be a tight race to the finish and one of the more exciting categories to follow.

Poetry

Wow! Talk about some great poets! I’m picking Transverse to edge out the competition and Look for Stained Glass to place near the top.

Romance

This is an impressive list! I’m expecting to see Refusing to Expire by Tricia Daniels and Advance by K.A Duggsy to take the top two spots.

Science Fiction 

I expected this genre to be slam packed with titles. As it turns out, it is a manageable size. I’ll be looking for Starstruck and The Riddle of the Gods at the top of the pack

Self-Help 

With only three titles listed, all will place well. I’m taking a pass on predictions on this one.

Short Story 

There are a lot of good short stories on this list. I’m taking a pass on picking the top spots as one of my own titles is in the running. Good luck to all the authors nominated.

Thriller 

I’m expecting Amanda Evans’ book Finding Forever to place at the top, but I can’t count out R.M. Gauthier’s two nominations either. This could be an exciting finish.

Time Travel 

An interesting category! This one is anyone’s game and I simply can’t pick a clear cut winner. I’ll be watching the results closely!

Young Adult

Again I see some familiar names I expect to do well, but I am predicting a surprise victory for an underdog title in this one!


Good luck to all the authors nominated. I can’t wait to find out the winners! Whether you agree or disagree with my picks, you can have your say by voting daily!

Until next time. Happy reading!


KEEP READING! ARTICLES ON BOOKS AND AUTHORS MENTIONED IN THIS ARTICLE: 

Q&A: E.A. Comiskey
Q&A: Karen Glista
Q&A: Amanda J. Evans
Review: Grave Beginnings by R.R. Virdi
The 'Write' Information

The Art of Writing Short Stories

One might expect writing a short story to be an easy task in comparison to penning a full sized novel. The age old saying, ‘not everything is as it appears’ definitely applies here. The short story is actually one of the most difficult literary genres for an author to find success.

For all intents and purposes, the short story is a beast on its own. It isn’t a poem or novella or even a novelette. It isn’t meant to lead up to something bigger and should never be the first chapter of a book yet to come. When a reader picks it up they know it is self-contained and stand alone.

That doesn’t sound so hard, until you break down what needs to be incorporated:

  1. A complete plot, beginning to satisfying end.
  2. All loose ends need to be tied up. Readers shouldn’t be left with questions.
  3. Characters worth caring about. This is probably the most difficult part. Many times it is difficult to make readers connect with characters in larger works.
  4. The story needs to be thought-provoking.
  5. An infusion of emotion.

All of that needs to be accomplished in less than ten thousand words. That’s a task! Those who are successful find a way to infuse the emotions of their genre into a web of words that traps their audience for a short while, before releasing them back, ever so slightly changed.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be exploring the world of short stories and their authors. I hope you’ll join mine on my latest literary adventure! Until next time, happy reading!

The 'Write' Information

Do You Believe in Magic?

How many books have you read where the strongest magic is love?

“I don’t want realism. I want magic!”
― Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

If you are like me, it’s a lot. Whether it’s Harry Potter or even some of my own titles, love can steal the show. It is as strong and powerful as any main character and can foil a villain without violence. But is that notion real or fantasy?

I’d like to share with you a story:

It was anything but a typical Mother’s Day. My husband had been diagnosed with terminal cancer the November prior. He didn’t go out much and I hadn’t expected a gift, but there was one. A tiny rose plant sat on my desk, little red buds ready to explode into blossoms. He told me a cut flower would wither and die but this plant would last forever.

The following January he passed away. The plant sat on my desk, a reminder of his love. I went through another tragedy soon after when my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer and I began home care. He passed away the following January. My rose bush bloomed a single white rose.

You might think nothing of a flower, but the roses had always been red until that day. Now on special occasions such as mother’s day or my birthday I receive a present – flowers in all different colours from the same plant. I’ve seen pink, white, yellow, orange, peach and starburst. To me it’s the very definition of magical.

So, when someone asks if I believe in the magic of love, I will always answer, “Yes, I do.” Until next time, Happy Reading.

Until next time. Happy Reading.

The 'Write' Information

Finding Inspiration to Overcome Writer’s Block – July

How do you deal with writer’s block? That’s probably the most frequently asked question of any author and their least favorite to answer. I decided to tackle finding an answer in 2017 by drawing inspiration other forms of art. Once a month, I’ll be trying something different and discussing the results.

For July, I trudged out of my comfort zone for a paint night at a local artist’s studio. The Brier’s Edge in Brantford, Ontario offers both group and private lessons for what seems to be any artistic endeavor a person might want to take on. I decided to attempt a painting.

Some people might not think a simple painting to be a big challenge – I assure you, for me it was. Anyone who knows something about me knows I can’t draw. I’m the stick figure lady, and even those are lopsided. I can’t even make a straight line. The artist, Susan, had her work cut out for her. I’m sure she wished for a stiff drink a few times during the two-hour session.

The best part about the experience was that the finished product was a combination of the artist and myself. She showed me things and helped me. There wasn’t a stick figure or wavy line in sight. While I’m not ready to try painting on my own, I feel that artistically I have grown from the experience and would recommend paint nights to everyone.

Are you wondering about the results of my experiment? I couldn’t help but be inspired by such a talented artist! Expect to see some new announcements in the near future. This evening was a success!

I’m looking forward to finding a new adventure in August. I hope you’ll join me for those results next month!

Thanks for reading The Write Information.

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The Ultimate Fan Art Experience

Recently, I was approached by another local author with some ideas about a new event. If you remember last week’s article on paint night, it ties in.

The Ultimate Fan Art Experience is an author signing event, a painting event, a dinner party, a charitable auction and more. There are even optional Zumba classes. Think author retreat with book sales and you’d be close to what this event is shaping up to be.

Set tentatively for November 30th to December 2nd, 2018, there is plenty of time to prepare. It’s also prime holiday shopping time in an art loving community. A full weekend event where authors and fans can participate as much, or as little, as they choose.

Here’s how it works. Friday there will be an optional meet & greet followed by an author paint night. The paint night is included in your table price. This is where participating authors create a painting of one of their book covers. That painting will be used as the example in scheduled workshops for fans on Saturday and Sunday. Authors are urged to visit workshops where their book cover is being recreated.

Author signing will be open both Saturday and Sunday. There will also be a charity raffle and/or auction both days.

Saturday Night Authors will be treated to a buffet dinner and dance (included in the price of the table).

Zumba classes will also be made available for those interested.

If you are looking for a great experience, look no further.


Author Interest Form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc8vm0VEXI7RoVfjJmqshEGL9ivh8jKxDZKy6sUSXpX-wfzWA/viewform

 

Looking to attend as a fan?

https://www.facebook.com/groups/863211700486200/

The 'Write' Information

Fantasy – More Than One Genre

As a Fantasy author, I have witnessed people stick their nose up at the genre many a time. They wave their hands and say, “I don’t read Fantasy.” But why? The answer to that may lie in what people think of when they envision fantasy books.

Truth be told, this genre is misinterpreted by many a reader. The first thing that pops to mind is the high fantasy realms of medieval wizards, swords, and dragons. The second might be low fantasy works such as Harry Potter. While these might not be a reader’s cup of tea, there are many other options to explore.

There are also:

Dark Fantasy, which could double in the horror genre. These tales are sure to frighten, especially if read around a campfire.

Historical Fantasy, which adds a magical presence to the past.

Portal Fantasy, which opens doorways to new worlds.

Urban Fantasy, which takes place in the reader’s backyard, or probably a major city close by.

War Fantasy:  The end of the world as we know it.

Dystopian: The world ended and has been reborn.

Sci/Fan (Science-Fantasy): This mash-up has everything the future could imagine including technological advancements and/or space travel melted together with fantasy elements.

Romantic Fantasy: Love is for everyone after all.

Readers can even find erotic fantasy stories to enjoy.

There is a little magic, some unusual individuals with unheard of talents, perhaps a god or two throwing around curses, dragons of all sizes, elves, dwarves, fairies, humans, robots, vampires. shape-shifters, heroes, vigilantes, villains, talking cats and yes, there may even be a sword fight or two. It is, however, still what readers love about all the other genres in fiction as well. If you haven’t given a good fantasy a try lately, take another look – I think you’ll be surprised what the genre actually has to offer.

Thanks for reading The Write Information.

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Summer Reading Fun

It’s July ~ Welcome to Summer.

This is such a fabulous time to read. Whether at the beach, by the pool, or having a picnic at the park, summer is made for the bookaholic in all of us. One of my suggestions to make the decision of what to read a little easier: the summer reading bucket list.

How many books can you read in the next two months?

Take a moment to honestly assess that question. Two a month isn’t bad for an average reader. That would be 4-5 over the course of the rest of the summer. We, however, are all above average. If you are nodding your head in agreement you probably have ten or more as your answer. Whatever number you came up with, double it.

For the purpose of this article, we now have twenty. Of course, the odds of us finishing all twenty before the leaves change colours are slim. It’s the challenge we are after!

The next part takes a bit of a challenge on your part – research.

You need to locate titles to match the number you came up with and write them down, one title at a time on pieces of paper shaped like ballots. This is where the bucket part comes in. It doesn’t actually have to be a bucket, you can use a box, hat, bag or another container to hold all the papers.

Now it’s time to start!

Stick your hand in and grab one paper. Whatever title appears on it is your first book to read. When you are done, grab another. As soon as you see your first tree void of green; you go back to school; or in some areas of the world the first day of fall, the challenge is over. Count up how many pieces of paper you have left to see how you did. The results may surprise you. I know the first time I tried a similar challenge I read more than I thought I was capable of.

Good luck and happy reading.

Thanks for reading The Write Information.

Authors Worth Following

Authors Worth Following – Susi Wright

It’s no secret that I am an avid Indie book reader. I love giving self-published authors a chance – looking for the diamonds in the rough, so to speak. In my exploration of this side of the literary world, I have, for the most part, been pleasantly surprised by the talent that publishers have overlooked. Every now and then, however, I come across an author whose writing is so exceptional that I know they are going far.

Susi Wright is one of those authors.

Wright’s books fall into in a genre that I know a lot about – Fantasy. Epic Fantasy, to be exact. Her trilogy, The Fire Chronicles, includes well-thought-out worldbuilding and character development. The author takes her readers on a journey, letting them in on every step of way – sometimes it may be a little too much planning and strategy.

The plot is sound through all three works and earns an overall solid 4-star rating. Love, betrayal and a good fight are all included as we follow Luminor, the Lord of the Fire, and Xandor, a young warrior who seeks out others of his kind. Gaians, a magical race, cohabitate the planet with humans in an Alliance. A new enemy threatens to destroy all that has been created.

My one main comment to the author would be to take a look at ways to reduce the wordiness of some of the sentences.

If you like Sword and Sorcery, it might be worth looking into this series. It’s a Young Adult series, so it can be read by almost everyone. I’ll be watching Susi Wright’s career, expecting it to take off in the future.

Thanks for reading The Write Information.

Finding Inspiration, The 'Write' Information

Finding Inspiration to Overcome Writer’s Block – June

How do you deal with writer’s block? That’s probably the most frequently asked question of any author and their least favourite to answer. I decided to tackle finding an answer in 2017 by drawing inspiration other forms of art. Once a month I’ll be trying something different and discussing the results.

For June, I decided to keep to the theme of Pride month. I attended an event at the Starving Artist Cafe for an open mic night put on by the BATA (Brantford Advocacy Transgender Awareness). It was refreshing to find a gathering of supporters representing all different sexualities coming together in a very much ‘be who you are‘ atmosphere.

The evening started out with the announcement of the M.C. For the night, the beautiful Blair Bitch, a well-known local Drag Queen and musician. I first met Steven B. Andrews at this same event last year and I am a huge fan of his music in every persona. He performed several songs, including my favourite of the evening, Karma Chameleon, and had the room dancing and clapping along.

Throughout the evening various attendees took the stage to showcase their talents ranging from improv acting to music and poetry. I enjoyed every single one as well as the constant stream of Sangria that kept my glass full. Christina, the owner of The Starving Artist, makes a particularly tasty one.

Are you wondering about the results of my experiment? I couldn’t help but be inspired by such a talented group! Expect to see some new announcements in the near future. I feel a new series brewing. This evening was a success!

I’m looking forward to finding a new adventure in July. I hope you’ll join me for those results next month!

Thanks for reading The Write Information.