Welcome to YA Scavenger Hunt! This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors…and a chance to win some awesome prizes! On this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize–one lucky winner will receive one book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 120 hours!
I’m still hunting Easter Eggs, but I’ll be here tomorrow with the Young Adult Scavenger Hunt. Please stop by Tuesday and join the hunt. YOUNG ADULT isn’t just for teens. My readers are ages 16 to 65, and I know that holds true for others who write in this category. The hunt happens each April and there are hundreds of books available…and it’s fun. It will post at NOON and run 21 hours.
I’m on Team Pink which seems appropriate for spring.
Remember that the first Wednesday is the day after tomorrow. I’m going to put my post up HERE.
More news: I’ve signed up for the ALLI FREE LIVE CONFERENCE from the London Book Fair. It’s April 14. Be sure to check out the details. Speakers include: Robin Cutler, Director of IngramSparks, Ricardo Fayet, Co-Founder of Reedsy, Jane Friedman, Author & Publishing Expert and many more.
Well, I made it through March–barely. If you saw my FB post, you’ll know my computer crashed on Friday! Anyway, this is my last post for the month, and next month I’ll be posting on Tuesday, April 3 for the #YASH (Young Adult Scavenger Hunt). Come see. There are over a hundred book being given away. AND IT’S FUN.
On the first Wednesday–#IWSG–I’ll be at Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime. We have a super blog, so please come for a visit. I’ll leave a reminder here with a link, so I hope you’ll pop over and see what’s up there.
I’ve featured authors who are in that anthology, and today we have the last author of the month and a chance to chat about the publisher, Dancing Lemur Press. Take it away.
Juggling all of the authors can feel like herding cats sometimes. We have to keep track of each story’s edits, author information, and coordinate marketing with a group rather than an individual.
What’s refreshing is the variety that comes with so many viewpoints. Ideas pour forth in terms of promotions. Each writer is in a different location, broadening the marketing reach. Yet they all come together into one powerful dynamo.
For some of the writers, it’s their first publication, and that is just a joy to behold. Plus the stories are unique, which adds a little spice to the editing process. That will also add some spice for the readers.
Thanks for back story from the publisher’s point of view! And what you wrote about spice is so true. I read all of the stories, and each of them has a unique take on the theme. There’s something for every reader, and yet all will appeal because they are well-written.
Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.
Freedom Fox Press
Our trademark is not just a logo – the Dancing Lemur represents optimism, enthusiasm and belief. Our goal is to provide hope for the reader’s dreams and aspirations. Share the vision and come dance with us!
And now here’s Mary Aalgaard.
This is my first publication outside of magazine stories and producing my own play, and what a great way to start! The other authors are all creative and supportive. We’re working together to promote the book with such great energy.
The short story I wrote for the Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime anthology is about a woman who is making a major change in her life. She faces great danger in doing so and has a limited amount of time to pack up her life and leave.
I can’t believe I agreed to get a puppy! Honestly, I have enough people to take care of. The boys are only 8-years-old, and they can promise until they’re blue in the face that they’ll help take care of him, but I’ve seen their room! Ha! They can’t even remember to make their beds in the morning or put their dirty underwear in the clothes hamper in the bathroom – come to think of it, neither can their dad! If I had a dollar for very pair of dirty boxers I’ve handled!
Of course, Grayson got the boys’ hopes up by talking about the dog and showing them pictures of Golden Retrievers. I hope he doesn’t try to push all the work off on me like he does with the boys. I could count on one hand the number of dirty diapers he changed or school lunches he’s packed. He’ll have to be the one to train him for hunting.
Later that day…Well, who can resist a face like that!?! The boys absolutely fell in love with the puppy as soon as the owners introduced us to him. After much debate, and a family vote, we decided to name him Bo. Jake wanted to name him Cheerio and Justin was pushing for Vader. Grayson shot those names down, a little unkindly, IMHO, but when I said, “Bo,” he actually said he liked it.
Bo napped tucked up against my leg this afternoon. I couldn’t help but fall in love
Mary Aalgaard is a playwright and piano/theater teacher, living in the heart of Minnesota. She writes theater reviews and supports the arts through her blog Play off the Page. She teaches youth theater workshops in the Brainerd lakes area, writes articles for regional magazines, and works with both seniors and youth in multi-generational programs to enhance quality of life and build community. Her website is PlayoffthePage.com. You can follow her on her Play off the Page Facebook page, @MaryAalgaard on Twitter, and email her at Mary@playoffthepage.com.
I’m not doing a quiz this week…I know how disappointed you are, but it’s time for a spring break. Class dismissed.
Did you guess the authors for each of these justice themed books? Here are the answers.
A. Absalom,Absalom! is William Faulkner’s masterpiece. Its complex, fragmented structure is a reading challenge, but wow, does it belong among the literary greats in America.
B. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee hits the themes of racial injustice and the destruction of innocence. This author went to core issues of “class, courage, compassion, and gender roles in the American.”
C. The Dispossesed by Ursula K. LeGuin tackles the fight for social justice, economic inequality and racial inequality in this futuristic novel.
S. In The Crucible Arthur Miller used the Salem Witch Trials as an allegory for the anti-communist Red Scare and the congressional hearings of Senator Joseph McCarthy going on in the United States in 1953.
Quote of the Week: “I tend to be drawn to the weirder, darker stuff. Horror and sci-fi anthologies.” Unknown
It’s Monday again, my blogging day. I’m getting close to making some major changes in my blogging ritual, but for now I’m determined to keep to my first day of the week schedule. I’ve been chasing my own tail for several months with illness in our family and two books due to come out in May, so I’ve made a few mistakes.
If I sent you something you didn’t ask for, or didn’t send you something that you did ask for, give me holler. I’m making lists of what I have to do to clean up any messes I’ve made lately. I’m sure there’s a paper and pencil here somewhere. I’ve nearly given up on this “trusty” Apple I used to love. That’s another reason I’m not running on all cylinders. Sometimes this beast likes me and sometimes it doesn’t. Today it brought me spam as a present, like my cat used to bring me mice. Thank you so much.
But on to the business of the morning. This month I’m featuring some of the authors who wanted to join me here and who were selected to be in
Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime.
Coming May 1.
We could use help in spreading the word about the launch, so if you haven’t already signed on and can give us a blog post, some tweets, Instagram boosts or Facebook shout outs, leave that in the comment, and I’ll get back to you.
Today my guest is Rebecca Douglass with her story, The Tide Waits. [Read more…]
I’ll be giving a shout out to Tick Tock: A Stitch In Crime anthology each week this March, and here’s my second Featured Author, Tara Tyler and her story, Reset.
My Review: Reset is a time travel story in which an old man finds a young girl with the “energy” necessary to propel him back in time. He’s waited for years to make this journey and change an event that forever altered his life and the life of everyone in his family. A well-told story with an unexpected end that you’ll think about for a while. Perhaps the past should remain exactly that.
Now here’s Tara.
When I write a story, I don’t usually have a theme in mind. Then when it’s written and I have to talk about it, I realize there was one hidden in it all along! And though RESET is a short story, it has three themes:
Here’s the snapshot of RESET:
Twelve-year-old Casey has no time for her quirky family.
Mr. Zander has been searching for the perfect specimen to save his.
When Casey walks into Mr. Zander’s clock repair shop, he sees her as a prime contender and coerces her to help him. Hopefully, the machine will work this time.
I’m excited to read the rest of the stories in the TICK TOCK, A STITCH IN CRIME anthology. Thanks for having me over, Lee. Always a treat to be featured here!
About the Author:
Tara Tyler is a math teacher who writes to share her passion for a good story with others. She loves dogs, coffee, and is the lazy housewife, living in a world of boys with three sons and a coach husband. Join her for an adventure!
Book Three! – Latest Release
I love time travel stories, don’t you? Here’s a T/F Quiz about other stories with this theme.
1. The classic tale, The Time Machine, was written in 1930.
2. A Wrinkle in Time caused a bidding war among publishers when L’Engle submitted it.
3. It was Scott Turow’s endorsement of The Time Traveler’s Wife on The Today Show that kickstarted that book’s climb up the charts.
Answers to last week’s quiz about matching authors with their stories written with multiple points of view.
A. My Sisters Keeper- G. Jodi Picou
A. My Sisters Keeper- G. Jodi Picoult
E. William Faulkner
B. Poisonwood Bible- H. Barbara Kingsolver
F. Margaret Atwood
C. The Sound and the Fury-E. William Faulkner
G. Jodi Picoult
D. The Robber Bride-F. Margaret Atwood
H. Barbara Kingsolver
Quote of the Week: “Time travel used to be thought of as just science fiction, but Einstein’s general theory of relativity allows for the possibility that we could warp space-time so much that you could go off in a rocket and return before you set out.” Stephen Hawking
Remember, the question is optional!
My favorite thing to do at the end of a project is to get outside and take a long walk or hike. Then I love to think about anything that’s not related to the story I’ve just completed. Like this little bit of information about Wednesday!
It seems that the name Wednesday came from two different gods, the Germanic god Woden (Odin) was one. However, if you look at the Romance languages, (French: mercredi and Spanish: miércoles) it’s the Roman god Mercury who brought the modern word to us. The Germanic story is that Woden created earth and sky from the dead body of a giant named Ymir. He also created the first man and woman from an ash tree and an alder. This guy was tireless, because after fashioning the planet and the human race, he established the laws of the universe. Impressive!
I also like to pick up someone else’s book and dive into it. I appreciate all the work that’s gone into it, but I’m so relieved that I didn’t have to do it. Here’s a new release from Dancing Lemur Press. Corners by Corina Austin that I plan to dive into.
Everyone needs their own special corner…
It’s 1969 and ten-year-old Davy is in a predicament. With two weeks remaining of the summer holidays, he’s expelled from the public pool for sneaking into the deep end and almost drowning. How will he break the news to his hard-working single mother? She’s at the diner all day, Davy has no friends, and he’s too young to stay by himself.
The answer lies in his rescuer, mysterious thirteen-year-old Ellis Wynn. Visiting her Grammy for the summer, Ellis offers to babysit Davy. She teaches him about “corners”–forgotten or neglected areas fixed up special. Together, the kids tackle several “corners” and Davy learns what it means to bring joy to others.
Davy begins to wonder, though. Why does Ellis want to be his friend? Why doesn’t she ever smile? And is Davy just one of Ellis’ “corners?”
Release date – March 6, 2018
$10.95 USA, 6×9 Trade paperback,
Print ISBN 9781939844392 eBook ISBN 9781939844408
$3.99 EBook available in all formats
“Austin’s message of true friendship and selflessness will resonate…strong addition to the realistic fiction genre.” – Library Journal
“This book was so engaging! Five out five stars.” – TDC Book Reviews
“This is a story about love and loss, wrapped in a blanket of friendship… reminds me of the storytelling method used in The Princess Bride.” – Gina @ Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers
“I hope you enjoy making a corner once you’ve read this sweet emotional read.” – Nayu’s Reading Corner
Corrina Austin grew up in the 1960’s. She became a mother of four and an elementary school teacher, but always found time between work and family for writing. From childhood to the present, if she wasn’t reading a book, she was writing one. While honing her craft as a writer, Corrina strives to infuse the ordinary with beauty, whimsy, and connection. She lives in St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada.
Thanks for stopping by this first Wednesday of March. Please come back. And if you’d like to read Alligators Overhead, I’ve got a Goodreads Giveaway going this month.
Jump in and enter!
Invitation to my Giveaway
After my month of featuring LOVE, I’m now switching to CRIME.
I like variety.
Some of the authors who were selected to appear in the Insecure Writers’ Support Group newest anthology are visiting me in March. My first guest is Jemi Fraser.
My Review of Until Release: We all dislike that prisoner due for release. And the people who wait outside the prison hate him as well, each for different reasons. What will happen when Sean Walker steps outside that gate? Will he die or survive? The clock’s tick-tocking, and we won’t find out until the end. Told from multiple points of view, the story is a slow reveal of each person’s tragedy that all center on this one man. You gradually understand what kind of person is about to step into freedom. Ms. Fraser writes an edge-of-the- seat tale that you have to keep reading because you want to find out how justice is meted out or if it is. Take it away, Jemi!
My story in the Tick Tock: A Stitch In Crime anthology, is titled Until Release. I love this little story and I can’t wait for it to be out in the world. Until Release is a story about a criminal (Sean Walker) getting released early for good behaviour. Not everyone is happy about this and therein lies the heart of the story.
Jemi Fraser lives in beautiful Northern Ontario where she works hard and plays harder with both her family and her students. Holding an ever-present mug of Chai tea, she spends her free time baking cookies and writing Happy Ever Afters. The world can always use more of both.
It’s challenging to write a story from multiple points of view. Until Release succeeds in doing it well. Here are some other stories that have also done it well. Can you match the author to the book? Give it a try.
|A. My Sisters Keeper||E. William Faulkner|
|B. Poisonwood Bible||F. Margaret Atwood|
|C. The Sound and the Fury||G. Jodi Picoult|
|D. The Robber Bride||H. Barbara Kingsolver|
Answers to last week’s quiz about romantic couples in literature:
|A. Molly & Fibber McGee (old radio couple)||E. Mr. Darcy|
|B. Elizabeth & Mr. Darcy (Pride & Prejudice)||F. Rauol|
|C. Beatrice & Benedict (Much Ado About Nothing)||G. Fibber McGee|
|D. Christine & Rauol (Phantom of the Opera)||H. Benedict|
And how did you do?
Quote of the Week: Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable… Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Well, this is my last post for February, and I have to move on from writing about love after I finish this one. However, I may just have to make LOVE my topic every February. Why not?
I starting thinking about all the things I love, and so that’s what this is about today. I’m not including the people I love. That would take up an entire year of posts if I started in on that list.
Mornings when I look out my bedroom window
Spring when all the daffodils I planted reward me with their sunny faces
Days on the beach with kids and dogs and sandy feet
Farmer’s Markets with fresh vegetables
Cloudy skies, especially when those clouds look like dragons or alligators (inside joke)
Egrets. I admire their patience.
Different countries with different languages and cultures to explore.
Books! Of course. I love those. Yours, mine, theirs. (I’m reading one of J.H. Moncrieff’s ghostly tales now and loving it! Notice, however, the terrified eyes.)
I’ll stop. But I have more. I guess posting about love for the month of February would be very easy because I’m so lucky to have a lot to write about.
How about a matching quiz this week? Can you match these literary lovers?
|A. Molly||E. Mr. Darcy|
|B. Elizabeth||F. Rauol|
|C. Beatrice||G. Fibber McGee|
|D. Christine||H. Benedict|
And how did you do on last weeks quiz?
Answers to last weeks quiz:
1. Aphrodite is the Greek goddess of love whose Daddy was Cronus.
FALSE: Uranus was Dad, and no wisecracks.
2. If you speak Greek, you call the god of love Cupid.
FALSE: If you spoke Greek, you’d call him Eros. Romans turned him into Cupid.
Quote of the Week: “The best and most beautiful things in this world cannot be seen or even heard, but must be felt with the heart.” — Helen Keller
This has been my month to feature Love. An interesting, exciting, and sometimes stressful emotion. Remember that bitter song by Tina Turner? It always made mad sad, especially after I learned about Tina’s abusive relationship with her husband. No wonder she could sing this so convincingly.
I much prefer the Diana Ross and Lionel Richie’s Endless Love. Okay, I’ll admit it. I’m a romantic concealed in a cynical exterior.
I often wonder why I don’t write romantic stories? Most of my books give a nod to Eros, but it’s a very light one, and it usually has to do with the early struggles to find identity. When I go back through the stories I’ve written I now discover that most of my love scenes are humorous and awkward. I’d never be a bestselling romance author, that’s for sure. Here’s a “love” scene from Princess of Las Pulgas. Carlie (my upper class, displaced heroine) and Juan are in her car. She’s just made a derogatory comment about the neighborhood she’s dropping him off in. (Now that’s an awkward bit of phrasing, isn’t it?)
Juan turns his head so his eyes meet mine. “It’s no use.”
“I’m tired. I’ve got tons of homework to do and two scenes of dialog to memorize. If you think I’m some kind of bigot, you’re wrong, but I don’t have the energy to argue about it tonight.”
“Well, you are a very pretty bigot.”
“What are you talking about?”
“So because I study French, I’m a bigot?”
He doesn’t answer.
“That’s so… dumb. It’s important to know another language, appreciate a different culture. Can’t you understand that?”
“Sure I do, but why do you study French? Because you live in the middle of a densely populated French-speaking state?” He leans over and kisses me, stifling my witty response. “Adios.”
Are you ready for a tiny quiz about LOVE?
- Aphrodite is the Greek goddess of love whose Daddy was Cronus.
- If you speak Greek, you call the god of love Cupid.
Answers to last week’s quiz:
Queen Elizabeth I used John Dee, a noted astrologer of the 1500’s to determine her coronation day, which was January 15, 1559.
TRUE: In the day’s of Shakespeare, people relied heavily on astrologers for setting important dates and even for medical diagnosis. This was the hay-day for astrologists who were respected for their “knowledge.”
The Western zodiac signs were described for the first time by the Alexandrian astronomer and astrologer Ptolemy in the second century AD.
KIND OF TRUE: Ptolemy was responsible for a lot of contributions to knowledge about the stars, the geography of the earth and mathematics. His Ptolemaic system (earth posited as the center of the universe) was taught until Copernicus said, “Nay, ’tis the sun that is the center.” But there were stars connected to animals and described as far back as 3,000-500 BC in Mesopotamia.
Quote of the Week: “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage. Lao Tzu
I have a confession. I’m officially a year older as of the first of this month. Chalk one up for the Aquarian.