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Debut Author Heather Smith Meloche On The Submission Process

  Posted by bigblackcat97 in Writer, Writer Pants on Fire, 27 September 2016 · 1 views

If there's one thing that many aspiring writers have few clues about, it's the submission process. There are good reasons for that; authors aren't exactly encouraged to talk in detail about our own submission experiences, and - just like agent hunting - everyone's story is different. I managed to cobble together a few non-specific questions that some debut authors have agreed to
answer (bless them). And so I bring you the submission interview series - Submission Hell - It's True. Yes, it's the SHIT.

Today's volunteer for putting up with my SHIT is Healther Meloche, who graduated from Michigan State University (MSU) with a degree in English and Telecommunication. At MSU, she wrote and copy edited for newspaper and television, and also mentored with poet Diane Wakoski. After college, she pursued a Master’s in Teaching English as a Second Language through Bowling Green State University (BGSU), and eventually took classes through The Institute of Children’s Literature. Her debut, RIPPLE,  released from Penguin Putnam last week!

How much did you know about the submission process before you were out on subs yourself?

I knew pretty much zilch. I really trusted my very seasoned agent, Heather Schroder, to know how to go about getting the book out there effectively. 

Did anything about the process surprise you?

My agent sent the book out in rounds. She chose about a half dozen editors she thought would be a good fit for the first round. When none accepted, she regrouped and did it again with a second group. 

Did you research the editors you knew had your ms? Do you recommend doing that?

Heather gave me a brief, verbal list of the houses she was submitting to, but not specific editors. So there wasn’t a chance to research. I’m really glad about that because I’m sure I would have obsessively looked them up online, social media stalked them, Googled them a thousand times. It would have been maddening. And pointless. An editor was either going to accept or not. My Googling them ad nauseam wasn’t going to change that. 

What was the average amount of time it took to hear back from editors?

The first round took three to four weeks to complete. When that was done, the second round was faster since there were a couple editors interested. They got back within a couple weeks.

What do you think is the best way for an author out on submission to deal with the anxiety?

Trust the book, the time and effort you put into it to give it legs of its own, and your agent. And frankly, move on. Keep writing something else. It will distract you and keep you focused on the idea that, if the novel on sub can’t get sold, you’ve got something else prepping in the queue.

If you had any rejections, how did you deal with that emotionally? How did this kind of rejection compare to query rejections?

When Heather came to me with the news that the first round was not successful, I was frustrated. But my agent is awesome and always positive. She immediately told me she was getting her next set of big guns out and getting ready to fire that second round. Because I knew she was out fighting for me and she was already a fan and an advocate, those sub rejections were a lot easier to deal with than any query rejections. With her by my side, I knew I already had someone in the publishing business who believed in me and my work. 

If you got feedback on a rejection, how did you process it? How do you compare processing an editor’s feedback as compared to a beta reader’s?

The feedback I got from editors was much vaguer than a beta reader’s and primarily dealt with them not quite grasping the issue I was writing about. One of RIPPLE’s main themes focuses on an issue that people tend to either click with or not. I actually drafted an author letter with my personal story connected to the issue and sent it to my agent as added fuel for selling if she chose to use it. As far as I know, she never did since the second round ended successfully. But I’ve used that letter now as the basis for other promotional author letters to media outlets who receive my book, so I’m really glad I wrote it!

When you got your YES! how did that feel? How did you find out – email, telephone, smoke signal?

Heather called super excited to tell me a great house and a fantastic editor had chosen RIPPLE. It was a simultaneous, long-distance happy dancing session, for sure!

Did you have to wait a period of time before sharing your big news, because of details being ironed out? Was that difficult?

I told my immediate family and closest friends right away, since they’d been on this publishing journey – with all its ups and downs – with me. “See! All Mommy’s moodiness was worth it!” I didn’t share the news with most people until I signed the contract. I know that in this business, until things are written down, filed, on the shelves, they can fall through. So I waited to shout it from the rooftops until all the legalities were in order. Then I shouted like a crazy woman.

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Senden Musik lange Strecke mit Hilfe eines Laserpointer

Posted by yukihirasoma in starklasers's Blog, 27 September 2016 · 13 views
Laserpointer and 1 more...

Senden Musik lange Strecke mit Hilfe eines Laserpointer
Dies ist nicht das erste Mal, dass wir DIYers gesehen haben über einen laser für luftgewehr zu senden Musik, sondern die Brüder [Armand] und [Victor] sind sicherlich in der Absicht für das Senden der Musik die längste Strecke, 452 Meter / 1480 Meter von ihrem Haus, über die Spitzen von ein paar Häusern, durch einen Baumwipfel und in der Wohnung eines Freundes. Die empfangene Klangqualität ist auch ziemlich erstaunlich.
Im Falle Sie haben das noch nie angetroffen wird, wird das Licht des laserpointer 30000mW mit einem Signal moduliert direkt von der Audioquelle , es ist eine analoge Übertragung zu machen. Der Laser ist ein 250mW Diodenlaser von eBay gekauft. Es ist durch eine 5-Volt-Spannungsregler 7805 durch eine 12V-Batterie gespeist mit Strom versorgt. Das Signal von der Schallquelle tritt in die Schaltung durch einen Aufwärtstransformator , sie zu isolieren, so dass kein DC von der Quelle eintritt. Der Seite des Laser des Transformators speist die Basis eines Transistors. Sie enthalten einen Schalter, so dass der Strom von der Regler entweder durch den Kollektor und Emitter des Transistors gehen kann, die von der Schallquelle kontrolliert wird, eine starke Modulation zu geben, oder der Strom direkt auf den Laser gehen kann, während Modulation durch nur vorgesehen ist, die Transistors Basis und Emitter. Das Schema für die Schaltung ist am Ende ihrer Video gegeben, die Sie nach der Pause zu sehen.
Sie erhalten den Strahl in der Wohnung ihres Freundes Solarzellen, die dann einen ziemlich großen Verstärker und Lautsprecher füttern. Aus dem Video können Sie die überraschend hohe Qualität Klänge, die Ergebnisse zu hören. Also check it out. Es enthält auch eine kleine Benny Hill Humor.
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Und wann haben wir vor der Laserkommunikation gesehen? Warum Ihr demonstriert wirklich eine kürzere Reichweite Getriebe einen Shop-Dollar pet Spielzeug-Laser zu einer Solarzelle und selbst gemachte Verstärker zu senden. Wenn Sie graben wollen tiefer, Gigabit Ethernet-Laser ist das Richtige für Sie.


pointeur laser pas cher et puissant deviennent

Posted by orage in pointeur laser Blog, 26 September 2016 · 26 views
pointeur laser

pointeur laser pas cher et puissant deviennent
pointeur laser pas cher et puissant deviennent de plus en plus populaire sur le marché. Le pointeur laser ressemble à un jouet - mais il peut être très dommageable fonctionne maintenant correctement.
Lasers doivent être classés en fonction de leur dangerosité. Les classes sont définies dans la norme de sécurité laser.
Classe 1 et classe 2 lasers sont considérés comme sûrs - nos yeux sont protégés par notre réflexe de détourner le regard et clignote.
Beaucoup de pointeurs laser sur le marché ne sont pas classés, mais sont inclus dans la classe 3B ou de classe 4 lasers de classe 3B peut causer des dommages permanents aux yeux avant qu'ils ne puissent réagir. Lasers de classe 4 peuvent brûler la peau.
Le gouvernement a publié de nouveaux règlements pour contrôler la vente d'appareils à laser puissants, y compris tous les pointeurs laser 3 et 4).

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puissant pointeur laser
En fonction de la puissance d'un pointeur laser, ces appareils peuvent être extrêmement dangereuse causant des lésions oculaires, des brûlures de la peau, et même un incendie. Les pointeurs laser ultra puissants ne doit être utilisé lorsque vous portez des lunettes de sécurité. Une analyse des précautions et des lois de sécurité du fabricant relatives aux lasers dans la municipalité locale est un élément important du bon fonctionnement du pointeur laser.Lors de l'achat d'un pointeur laser dans la boutique en ligne, s'il vous plaît choisir celui qui convient le mieux à vos besoins. Si vous avez besoin d'un pointeur laser pour votre chat ou un chien de chasse, ce que vous voulez vraiment est un laser de faible puissance avec un seul point. Plus important est la qualité du laser. Si vous voulez un coffre-fort et super lumineux pour des applications astronomiques, aller avec un laser vert pointeur laser, et la plage de puissance recommandée est de 20mW - 50mW.
Maintenant, une fois que vous avez décidé la quantité de puissance de sortie du stylo laser vert 200mw dont vous avez besoin, votre prochaine décision est la couleur du laser. pointeurs laser rouges sont généralement moins chers que les autres couleurs. Vous pouvez même acheter un excellent savoir-faire de pointeur laser rouge qui prend piles AAA souvent pour aussi peu que 10 à 20 fois plus cher que les imprimantes laser rouge, mais rayon vert est la distance beaucoup plus longue. Le laser vert semble être environ 80 fois plus brillante que faisceau laser rouge avec la même puissance. La raison est simple - l'oeil humain est 80 fois plus sensible au vert que de rouge, donc si elle est la même puissance, le faisceau vert apparaît beaucoup plus lumineux.
Le vert est la couleur la plus visible parce que tout son faisceau peut être vu par des yeux humains. Cependant, les utilisateurs doivent faire en sorte qu'ils ne regardent un laser. Sinon, ils pourraient causer des dommages à vos yeux. font S'il vous plaît assurer que les mesures de sécurité sont prises en compte, les pointeurs laser peuvent être à la fois utile et divertissant.
Lasers 5mW plus peuvent être dangereux et ne sont pas sûrs à utiliser et sans équipement de sécurité. Vous trouverez de grandes variations dans le prix de ces Class 4 pointeurs laser de quelques centaines de dollars à quelques milliers de dollars, et il y a de grandes variations dans la sécurité et la qualité d'entre eux. Après tout, quand vous pensez à la sécurité, s'il vous plaît ne pas acheter des produits inférieurs, ou entraîner des conséquences graves.
Où acheter un pointeur laser
Les pointeurs laser de faible puissance sont disponibles à la vente sur eBay. Si vous voulez obtenir un pointeur laser super puissant, s'il vous plaît visitez notre magasin (+ 5mW pointeurs laser ont été interdits en vente sur eBay et Amazon). Si vous décidez d'acheter chez nous ou ailleurs, nous espérons que vous pouvez obtenir le meilleur produit pour vos besoins.

Et le risque de lésions permanentes aux yeux, quelqu'un qui a un laser rouge pas cher sur ses yeux, même brièvement, sera «un aveuglement». Flash cécité causer la perte temporaire de la vision, et les images éventuellement persistants dans l'œil atteint. Il peut être une distraction. Il peut prendre quelques minutes pour se remettre de ces effets - ou il pourrait prendre plusieurs jours.
Points forts du produit
• Ce modèle est notre plus puissant pointeur laser vert avec une excellente capacité à brûler
• Avec le boîtier épaissie, une résistance thermique élevée, et la structure antichoc
• Un pigtail est disponible pour éviter toute blessure accidentelle, ce qui est sûr et facile à utiliser
• Protection interne: système de refroidissement, l'optimisation du circuit et protection de circuit
• La fonction d'approche mécanique est disponible pour régler le point de lumière et de l'angle de divergence


LAST CALL! Get Swept Away & Save 80%

  Posted by Jean Oram in The Love Bug Blog, 25 September 2016 · 18 views

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Last call!

You’re running out of time to save over 80% on this series readers are calling addictive and heart-warmingly funny!
That’s right. I’m currently offering my Blueberry Springs series starter box set that contains three reader favourites for only 99 cents!
But this deal is ending soon!

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Box set includes:
Whiskey and Gumdrops: Mandy is willing to risk everything to follow her restaurant dreams, but is she willing to lose her heart to the man she’s always denied–her best friend?
Rum and Raindrops: Nature guide Jen may have just burned down the forest she relies on for her tours but what is she going to do when she starts to fall for the investigator sent to find the culprit?
Eggnog and Candy Canes: Doctor Nash has returned to Blueberry Springs for one thing–nurse Katie. But can these two enemies find a way to stop fighting and become more than friends?

A $7.97 value for only $0.99!

That’s over 650 pages of laughter and love my bestselling Blueberry Springs series. Grab your discounted set before the price jumps back up:






Fall head over heels for the series readers are calling addictive fun!

Definitely a must have!

My first read from this author but definitely not my last!

One of the cutest stories I’ve read in a while!
–Amazon Customer

Start falling in love for only $0.99






The post LAST CALL! Get Swept Away & Save 80% appeared first on Jean Oram.



The Bliss of An Uncluttered Day

  Posted by Joe Stephens in My Train of Thought, 24 September 2016 · 25 views

calendar, agenda, planner, notebook, meeting, business, office, desk, meeting, workingI started to turn off my alarm this morning, but then I remembered that I have nowhere to be until 7:15 tonight, which means I am free for the entire day and I didn't want to miss any of it. I did lie in bed for about twenty minutes just enjoying the fact that I didn't have to get up and be ready to go somewhere. But then it was up for tea and devotions and browsing the Internet while I let my thoughts on my blog gel in a meandering, leisurely pace. I read a little, had some breakfast and another cup of tea, and here I am, two hours later, writing my post. After this, I might read some more--I'm getting to the good part of my book--or I may FINALLY get some writing done.

I have been thinking a lot about retirement lately. Trying to decide at what point I'm going to hang up my teacher spurs and turn to writing full-time. Despite the fact that I'm just in love with my kids again, there are times when I yearn for the ability to do this regularly. Get up early because I want to. Read. Write. Promote. Exercise. As my old friend Dan Daniel always used to say, make every week six Saturdays and a Sunday.

clock, timeBut then I think about just how much I was looking forward to today. A single uncluttered day in the midst of calendar slots filled with school activities and writing activities and church activities. And it takes me back to the summer, when I had great long stretches of days with literally nothing requiring my time. I took them for granted. I took no great joy in them. I failed to take advantage in the way I should have. I mean yes, I did travel a good deal and spend time with people I treasure, but I didn't get nearly the writing done that I could have and I definitely didn't read as much as I could have. Why? Because I had all the time in the world. If I didn't get 5,000 words written today, that's all right--I have tomorrow. Until I didn't. And then I looked back on all that time I didn't use how I could have. I'm not on a guilt trip. It was a good summer. But what I'm saying is that I tend not to appreciate free time unless I don't have it. Intellectually, I know that it's finite, but I'm not always intellectual. Sometimes I'm lazy and unfocused.
nature, outdoor, green, grass, forest, trees, plant, road, path, sky, wood, peaceful
But not on days like today. Today I'm like a laser. Reading. Writing. Cleaning up my room. Enjoying the fact that tomorrow, when it's back to the rat race of church and school and ClutchMOV stuff, I'll be able to look back at a day spent well.



Problème de pointeur laser

Posted by orage in orage's Blog, 24 September 2016 · 42 views
pointeur laser

Stylo pointeur laser acheter
Pointeur laser acheter main verte est maintenant le plus populaire dans le monde, parce que le feu vert est rouge six fois, beaucoup plus élevés que le faisceau de lumière rouge, et le prix est moins cher que beaucoup de bleu et de jaune. Les utilisateurs utilisent souvent stylo vert pointeur laser.
2000MW 532nm stylos laser vert longueur d'onde de la lumière émise est un type de laser est le troisième niveau, deux piles AAA. Pointeur laser vert luminosité est plus objective, de sorte que le risque relativement élevé de la puissance de l'œil le plus dangereux. En général, le laser commun pointeur laser de 5000mw, le marché américain de façon plus nécessiteux 5W 5W laser le violet, par le biais d'une autorisation spéciale. En Chine, ce qui nous oblige à accorder une attention particulière à la sécurité des utilisateurs, au lieu des yeux ou d'autres zones sensibles, peuvent également empêcher la lumière laser réfléchie pénètre dans l'œil à travers sans aucune restriction. Souvent, le double commutateur de protection avec le vert de mise au point réglable.
Acheter du puissant laser fonctionnant en mode d'impulsion ou quasi-continue à refroidir et réduire le problème, pour prolonger la vie de la batterie.
Annoncé laser vert harmonique inutile a une plus grande efficacité.
Même la nuit, faible énergie verte diffusion Rayleigh due aux molécules de l'atmosphère peut également être vu, ce pointeur laser pour les amateurs d'astronomie souvent souligné constellations et les étoiles. un pointeur laser vert peut avoir une variété de puissance de sortie. 5mW utilise est le plus sûr, et peut-être la lumière sombre, donc il n'y a pas besoin de chercher à cibler plus de puissance.

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Quand il vient à faire une présentation à l'école, un projet au travail, nous avons tous nos petits trucs. Pour éviter le ridicule, il ressemble à un idiot, plus sa part, notamment pour éviter des problèmes de matériel.
équipement de charge, comporte toujours une alimentation interne sont essentiels. Pour ceux qui veulent aller plus loin, pointeur laser Présentation 30000mw et bleu à distance devrait également, il est toujours nécessaire d'avoir oublié. Si vous avez apporté dans l'iPhone.
Ceci est de fournir IPIN, un gadget, donc l'iPhone et des pointeurs de comportement et de contrôle à distance:
IPIN est en fait l'un des avantages et des inconvénients de la présentation indispensable. Parce qu'il intègre dans la fabrication de l'iPhone, IPIN pas d'espace. Une fois que le glissement, ne devrait pas avoir peur d'être oublié. Pas besoin de penser à la charge. Parce que tous les iPhone sont équipés de points de vente, ne pose aucun problème pour l'avenir non plus.
Une fois en place, et l'application conçue pour le développement de la dernière occasion iPIN peut jouer son rôle. Outre la fonction de pointeur laser, le créateur a décidé d'annexer l'iPhone en une télécommande de luxe, vous pouvez passer d'une diapositive à l'autre, en jouant des souris, même l'horloge, qui peut être très pratique lorsque le temps est limité
Stylo pointeur laser
L'utilisation d'un pointeur laser, il est possible d'apprendre à un chien à aller de l'avant avec un pointeur laser pour un grand nombre d'objets. Cette technique peut être utilisée pour déterminer rapidement les clients de formation de chien, ou comme un jeu amusant avec votre partenaire. Typiquement, Overkill laser lorsque le chien apprend à partir d'un pointeur laser et l'objet cible est un couple de semaines.
Pour les personnes à la maison peut atteindre avec votre chien, vous savez! Allez! Essayez-le! Ce chien est très intéressant, et je sais que cela pourrait être une chose précieuse une personne avec l'aide à la mobilité réduite. Par ailleurs, si vous avez besoin d'un pointeur laser pour votre chien ou chat, jetez un oeil à notre boutique en ligne!
Pour ce faire, vous devez d'abord apprendre au chien une série de commandes. Comme d'habitude, les récompenses progressivement d'utilisation et les variables aléatoires, appliquer un large éventail de technologies et, surtout, amusez-vous!
Ici, il est comment former un ajustement du laser de chien.
Étape 1: Enseigner le chien la commande "Bring It On".
Dans un premier temps, les étapes sont: le maintien de l'objet dans leurs mains, donner la commande "Take it!" Et laisser le chien jouer avec des jouets. Si vous voulez que le chien d'apprendre à distinguer entre plusieurs mots, vous pouvez toujours donner le nom de l'objet avant de commander. Récompensez votre partenaire, vos jouets. lampe de poche laser et a ensuite demandé le chien des objets sur le sol, et la récompense quand il a couru. Une fois que le chien a déjà démontré comprendre l'ordre, "Ne vous inquiétez pas!"
Ne pas oublier d'utiliser le bâtiment primaire et secondaire au bon moment. Je ne sais pas comment? Découvrez notre série de vidéos sur les commandes de dressage de chiens de base, les récompenses et l'emploi renforcement secondaire (indicateurs d'action droite) pour plus d'informations.
Étape 2: apprendre au chien à garder l'objet et les rapports.
Tout d'abord, peu importe si le chien est pas dans votre main un objet direct, mais va progressivement montrer qu'il n'a pas renoncé à l'objet, et directement à votre main pour lui. Utilisez les "gardiens" Une fois que vous mettez les objets et de contrôler la transmission de la pratique "!". Il est très important de ne pas arrêter à ce stade des animaux! Dans sa première étape, les progrès récompense chien tous les jours, ou à une certaine fréquence, et ne prête pas attention aussi, l'objet a chuté, et le fait que grâce à la réhabilitation. Il peut être utilisé efficacement ici, une mauvaise action de l'indicateur. Idéalement, un simple "merci!" Ou aucun bruit lorsque le sujet échappe, tout cela est d'accélérer les chiens apprennent à éviter moral. Rappelez-vous qu'il est toujours importante forme d'un jeu d'enseigner une nouvelle commande.
Augmentez graduellement pendant ce temps, le chien doit rester des objets du temps et de pratiquer la séquence suivante: "Take it" "Go" Suivie Et enfin, "Dale"! "Garde!".
Étape 3: Enseigner le chien la commande "Target" (en fonction du laser).


FIRST FIVE FRENZY with Stephanie Fretwell-Hill of Red Fox Literary

  Posted by Amy Trueblood in Amy Trueblood's Blog, 23 September 2016 · 28 views

              If you’re like me, you toil for hours editing and fine-tuning the first pages of your manuscript. You look at the first lines to make sure they are compelling and tight. You examine the next few paragraphs hoping your MC’s voice is already taking hold of the reader.   […]



Rachael Thomas and The Art of Dialogue

  Posted by Jemi in Just Jemi, 12 September 2016 · 39 views

Please welcome Rachael Thomas back to the block today!
The Art of Dialogue 

Well written dialogue will move your story forwards, allow the reader to really get to know the characters and allow you, the writer to show instead of telling. It also makes for a more attractive page within a book, one which isn’t a solid block of text and therefore more appealing to the reader. 

How to ensure your dialogue works hard in your story: 

  • There is no need to include all the normal everyday parts of dialogue. Take your reader straight to what matters and leave out things like hello or goodbye. You also don’t need every umm to make the conversation sound realistic. 
  • Use dialogue to show your character. Every time your character says something the words they chose and the way in which they speak will bring life to your character and enable the reader to get to know them. 
  • The use of dialogue tags, like he or she said, isn’t always necessary, but ensure it’s clear just who is talking. There is nothing worse than having to scan back up a page to work out just who is talking.  
  • Take care when you have more than two characters involved in a conversation. Use some dialogue tags and you do not always have to ensure each character takes their turn.  
  • Use your scene. Build in what’s happening around the characters and what actions they make as they talk. Make it a living breathing discussion instead of constant to and fro. When you want what is said to really stand out and make an impact use only the words the character said. 
  • Different characters will use different words. An old lady would not sound the same as a teenage girl. Think about your characters and how they would speak. Make each one unique and recognisable to the reader. 
  • Ensure your dialogue moves the story forward. It should reveal your character, show their emotion to the reader so chose your words carefully. Make each one count. 
  • Don’t allow a character to use long rambling speeches. Break their dialogue up with internal thoughts or actions going on around them or another character’s dialogue. 
  • Finally, read your dialogue out loud. Did it sound natural and flowing to read out? If not, think of how it can be changed, then read it again. 

I love escaping to distant shores with my characters, entering their glamorous world and feeling all the emotions they experience as they discover their love for one another. A love so strong it will overcome all obstacles eventually, leading to that promised happy ever after.
Connect with Rachael Thomas on the web:
Website         Blog        Facebook                Twitter              Goodreads


"When you've finished making offers for the bracelet, I have a proposition for you." 
Billionaire Liev Dragunov has spent a lifetime plotting revenge against those responsible for his family's ruin. Finally he has the way: Bianca Di Sione. 
She's denied their obvious attraction and coolly rebuffs every request to work for him—until he finds her weakness: a diamond bracelet she desperately needs! 
Bianca must become his fake fiancée if she wants her trinket! But the taste of revenge isn't as sweet as desire, and Liev discovers that she is innocent in more ways than one… 
Book 3 of The Billionaire's Legacy

Buy Links

Harlequin US      M&B UK        M&B Aust
B&N        iBooks

Thanks Rachael! I love both reading and writing dialogue and these are excellent tips! 

How about you? Are you a fan of writing dialogue? Do you read aloud and does your family think you're nuts (or is that just me???)?



The Dark Times

Posted by JordanTheNinja in JordanTheNinja's Blog, 08 September 2016 · 71 views

“There are darknesses in life and there are lights, and you are one of the lights, the light of all lights.”
Bram Stoker, Dracula

There was a brief amount of time within the last year or so where I was in this strange state of being. I didn’t really write. I didn’t feel passionate or driven to. I didn’t really feel like doing anything anymore; it was a dark period for me. My life wasn’t bad, but I just didn’t have any desire. And it was one of the worst feelings to experience.

I imagined living a free life, with no responsibilities – a real life Neverland where I could just be an adventurer and not have to deal with adult reality. Where there were no bills to pay or a job to go to. Honestly, I still desire that. I was stuck, in the deepest way, in a rut that I feared I would never get out of. I was not happy. I felt like I was going crazy. I did not want to indulge in the normal things that I used to do: write, read, explore various outlets for my creativity. I was a shell of my former self. And it wasn’t something that happened right away, it was bred over the course of time, created out of my own personal fear of things in my life.

Everyone has dark days. Dark times. Where the sun is hidden and the monsters come out to play. I am no different. For the longest time, I truly felt I would never feel a normal type of happy. It wasn’t until recently that I started searching for that happiness I once had. I was tired of feeling like I did, like I still do to be honest. I wrote some short stories and I felt a little bit of life come back; I was using my creative muscle once again, a muscle that had atrophied from lack of use. It was a beautiful, familiar thing.

I have not found the happiness I once had, but I feel I may be on the ride road. The whole entire point of this blog post was to be honest with myself and to show that we are all human and we all have our dark days or even our dark times. But I know for a fact that not all our days will be dark. There are sunny skies, there is happiness. There will be creative expression and love and all of those beautiful things.

So slowly, I’m getting back there. I’m back to writing, not only as an outlet, but as a means of survival. I know how it feels when I don’t write—my body isn’t the same. My mind isn’t the same. I’m sick more often. It’s literally as if I have to write, otherwise I will wither and die. It’s something I was always meant to do, and I’m wondering if these dark times were to show me that I should never give up on the things I love.

And you shouldn’t either. Whatever you love, whatever you’re passionate about doing, go after that damn thing. Don’t hesitate, don’t neglect your soul of what it needs.

I've decided to share a story with you guys, it was one I wrote during these dark times, and the content of it definitely shows that. I don't know I feel about the story because there are a lot of negative emotions attached to it, but I do feel that if you want a peak at the rawness I was feeling, feel free to look at it.

And if you are going through dark periods, don't be afraid to talk to people you trust and love. People care about you, and they want to help you. And take time to do something you love doing every day.

Until next time, I hope you're all doing well, wherever you are, however your life is going.



^ the story


My Telegraph (obit)

Posted by Terence Park in T.P. Archie's Blog, 01 September 2016 · 85 views
Writing Groups, My Telegraph and 1 more...

My Telegraph was a blogging and commenting platform hosted on the Daily Telegraph servers (the DT is a national UK paper published daily). It was a free service with an interface that used aspects of Wordpress and Disqus and was provided as is. There were some 20,000 + registered usernames. Many of these participated in the user groups and back in 2010 with my first draft to my first novel handy, I was ready to engage. I headed straight for Creative Writing. It quickly became apparent that the group was headed for oblivion — it's members needed organising so I re-jigged its competition. In 2012, the DT began promoting a new group, the Short Story Club. We had no idea what would happen when it was introduced — how it would run and whether it would replace Creative Writing... in the end, with the inputs of author Louise Doughty, it became a success. There was a back story, however. The DT promoted this new group but the landing page was hard to navigate and there was no supporting infrastructure, this left those wishing to take part not knowing what to do — and there were thousands of them. For several months it was chaos — hundreds of joiners each week, many of whom leaked over to the Creative Writers Group — we helped where we could — some stayed. It took a while to sort things out.


Late on in 2015, the Daily Telegraph began changing its main site. Commenting disappeared from some articles. By Easter 2016, virtually all of DT had moved to a new look and feel. The blogging platform, My Telegraph, remained untouched. It was legacy and obviously low priority, a system ready for the chop. This was a hidden community that could have been much more user groups such as Rugby, Finance, Book Club, Job and Careers, Expat, Corduroy Mansions, The Archers Messageboard, Politics,Travel, Technology... there was much potential but these groups just withered for lack of attention. The DT didn't respond to questions about the future of the platform. Users speculated and began to make plans. It was only a matter of time before the plug was pulled, which happened June 2016. Usernames, blogs, groups and platform all disappeared, lost in the final dark of: no servers, no data. History. Ah yes, I forgot History. The link is of course dead.


As a social site, users were prone to petty acts of spite – they had vendettas and ganged up on each other. Doubtless this helped convince DT of the wisdom of closing it. The community became a net diaspora and survives on Facebook and WordPress. There is a closed group at https://www.facebook...12280382310342/ and several WordPress presences.

For old time’s sake, here’s a memory:

Posted Image

More info on DT's My Telegraph.


Bleeding Hearts Blog Tour!

  Posted by Lora Palmer in Lora Palmer's Blog, 31 August 2016 · 57 views

Today, I'm thrilled to host my fellow Clean Reads author Dana Provo, with her new release, Bleeding Hearts!

Author- Dana Louise Provo
Title: Bleeding Hearts
Genre: New adult, romantic suspense
Blurb: Orphaned at an early age, now twenty-four-year-old Camryn Lucks is ready to commit to find that special someone, and so accepts a date from a charming, gallant, handsome stranger. The last thing she imagines after accepting that first date with Carson would actually be the beginning of her worst nightmare.
Red roses, a reminder of her parents' killer, soon become an emblem of horror for Cami as one by one, those closest to her fall victim to a serial killer. Cami becomes an obsession for Carson, the man she had finally allowed herself to love. Not only is he vying for her heart, but also her life.
Finding herself in a whirlwind of torments shadowed by the blood-colored bloom, Cami finds solace in Isaac, a neighboring police officer. She’s desperate to escape the haunting memories, but she must revisit them in order to catch her would-be killer. Living life in constant fear has driven Cami to second-guess every choice she makes. Will the police catch the illusive murderer, or will Cami be forced to face him once again?
Author Bio: Dana Provo has always loved books and reads everything from young adult fantasy to Adult Historical Romances. She is the author of the Romantic Suspense novel Bleeding Hearts. When she's not reading or writing her next novel, Dana can be found riding her horses and getting ready for competition. Dana lives with her husband and two house plants in Richmond, Virginia.
My arm trembles as I grip the cool handle of my pistol, keeping a firm grasp to ensure it doesn’t slip out of my sweaty hand. It usually stands sentry in my left nightstand to scare the nightmares away. But this isn’t a dream. The room is dark and hides the face of the man whose intent is to kill me. But I know who he is. A metallic taste fills my mouth; I want to gag. My blood drips off the blade in his hand in slow, steady beats on the carpet. My arms shake as I lift the barrel and point it in his direction. He doesn't move. His heavy breaths alert me to the meager distance between us.
We’re at a stalemate.
A soft glow from the lamppost just outside my window casts a sliver of light on his face. His dark, beady eyes that I have grown to know rake over my body like I'm another one of his many victims. He lifts the edges of his mouth into a smile. My heart plunges into my stomach. I know what that sinister expression means, and I think back to all the times he had looked at me like that before. I had been so blind.
Before I react he lunges at me, grabbing onto my waist and twisting me to the ground. I shriek as my head slams against the bed frame. Black spots flood my vision. I squeeze my hand only to find it empty. My gun is gone. The sound of the knife clattering on the floor gives me slight hope. Not much though. He climbs up my body trying to pin my arms to the floor. I thrash my fists around, desperate to knock him off.
“Get off!” I scream, pulling on his shirt and kicking him off balance. Wrapping his hands around my arms, my attacker cuts off the circulation of blood. Rug burns flare across my skin as he drags me across the carpet. He closes his hands around my neck, shutting off my air supply. I pull at his hands but it's no use; he has always been stronger than me. My pulse drums a frantic beat in my ears. The air slowly leaks out from my lungs, killing any hope I may have left. I search for the gun around the room; it may be my only savior now.
"Why are you doing this?" I struggle to get the words out. He squints his dark eyes. I'm wondering if there might be a chance that he will stop this madness. I am wrong.
"It'll be over soon, sweetheart." His hands again tighten around my neck, blocking the air from entering my lungs.

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Once Upon a Typewriter

Posted by thebookworm in thebookworm's Blog, 15 August 2016 · 76 views
Preface, typewriter, preteen

Once Upon a Typewriter

Once Upon a Typewriter:

It was a lovely sunny day, on a quiet street tucked away from the world, where Delilah came across a shed, abandoned by time. She cautiously approached the shed and was surprised to find all of the trinkets and treasures before her eyes.

Page 1 (with illustrations)

As soon as Delilah placed her hand on the dusty old typewriter, she knew she had to have it. “Was it stealing?” she thought to herself or was it hers to keep? Delilah decided to that she couldn’t possibly part with her new found treasure. After exploring the run down structure for some other forgotten treasure, she headed home, typewriter in tow.

Page 2 (with illustrations)

Delilah darted through the living room, up the stairs to her room, slamming the door with excitement. She gently placed the typewriter on her desk, clearing space for the new toy. Some of the keys on the typewriter had faded over time, so Delilah would have to do some research on how to properly clean and repair this new gadget.

Page 3 (with illustrations)

As soon as the new typewriter was polished and good as new, Delilah was finally ready to write her very first story. Sitting quietly at her desk, gazing out the window of their old farmhouse, Delilah could see a shadow cast by the full moon that gently touched the trees, yet appeared to be a castle, it was such a lovely illusion. Snapping to it, Delilah knew the topic of the new book!

Page 4 (with illustrations)

“I know!” Delilah gleefully gasped as her fingers started to dance over the keys, as if the story was flowing out of her, with an unstoppable driving force. Starting on page 4, she was so enveloped in her writing that Delilah failed to notice her surroundings changing. She could not believe her eyes when she finally realized what happened. Delilah was IN her story!!

Page 5 (with illustrations)

“What is going on?” Delilah quietly thought to herself, “This MUST be a dream”, panic set in and she felt lost. “Ok, pull yourself together” she shouted to herself. This was all so real. Delilah slumped down on a rock, overlooking a beautiful valley full of flowers, just like in her story. It was just as Delilah had imagined it would be.

Page 6 (with illustrations)

After the initial shock of what just happened passed over her, like a fog lifting. Delilah had a plan but first she would need to find the typewriter that was responsible for this phenomenon. Walking through the tall grass over-shadowed by a massive castle that seemed to reach up past the clouds, Delilah could see something glistening in the warm summer sun, could it be? Was it the typewriter? Running through the field, Delilah eventually came upon the typewriter and typed herself home.

Page 7 (with illustrations)

Book 1 of many!


Summer Reading Prize Pack Giveaway

  Posted by MarcyKate in MarcyKate's Blog, 01 August 2016 · 84 views

Happy Summer! I have very fond memories of lazy summer days reading on the porch or under a tree. It was a favorite past-time for this introvert bookworm. So, since it’s summer and I just announced my next middle grade duology last week, how about a summer reading giveaway? And since my books have that creepy fairy […]



Internet Fixed

Posted by LWFlouisa in LWFlouisa's Blog, 26 July 2016 · 147 views

So now I can do research full time now. Sometimes the Internet is still a little slow.

Just finished Hemato Tomato: Bloodlust. Not sure how I feel about the finished product. I still feel like the story is only half way told, so I may end up writing 10,000 more words on this.

This was my first experiment in Historical Futurism, where historical characters play a role in science fiction setting with plots that cross over between science fiction, fantasy, horror, and romance in a very that makes you feel really strange.

It's like suddenly meeting Charlotte Corday at your local Star-bucks without any implication for time travel, and the reader is just suppose to take the plausibility of the romance for granted. They are stalked by magic wielding robot police, and the you have a grand ole adventure.

A bit of an exaggeration, but you get the idea.


Do Agents and Editors Support Diverse Books?

  Posted by SC_Author in SC Write--Writing, Publishing, and Harry Potter, 25 July 2016 · 101 views

Hi all! This is my first post after a seven month hiatus (wow). I'm so happy to be back!

There's a big push in the publishing industry for "diverse" books (and I put "diverse" in quotations because I'm not a fan of that word - it leads to tokenization of writers and characters of color). Agents have been actively asking for "diverse voices", "diverse characters", etc. Which is great! It is signifying a real shift in the publishing industry.

Or is it?

Whenever I am unsure about the efficacy of an action against racism, I look to the "white gaze". This, I define as the culture that dictates that literature and art that must meet the approval of Whiteness.

The Whiteness I talk about is not just Trump-like confederate flag culture. Whiteness is liberal racism. Whiteness is white feminism. Whiteness is quoting Martin Luther King Jr. out of context. It is idolizing Jon Stewart for saying what Black people have been saying for decades. It is this Whiteness that pervades the publishing industry, and so it is this Whiteness that I am talking about.

Whiteness is a mostly-white industry asking for diverse books and diverse writers while pushing little to diversify their own industry insiders.

Now, I'd like to move the anti-racism rhetoric to something that I hope the publishing community will follow. The problem for writers of color is not only that the publishing industry is made up of predominantly white employees - although this is influential. "How removed from Whiteness is the operations of the industry?" is the question we should be asking.

Even if, in some magical step, the publishing industry hires hundreds of people of color, people of color are not a monolith. They are not interchangeable. The ideologies of the people of color who make up the industry matter. Are the people of color anti-racist or are they yes-men to their bosses? Will they speak up? A better question might be: if they do speak up, do they have reason to fear reactions and discipline from their bosses and colleagues? Are the "radical" people of color not hired by the industry?

Whiteness is when a race-related novel hits an agent's desk and the entire industry's initial instinct is "How will white people respond to this book?" instead of "How will the communities depicted in this novel be impacted by this book?"

Something as simple as "How will the market respond to this book?" has layers of ramifications that can be deconstructed with pointed questions concerning race: "What populations make up said market? What responses are you afraid of?" When race-related novels come to play, the supposed colorblindness of the market that the publishing industry always focuses on is revealed for its whiteness.

When I look at the publishing industry, I see some publications that I trust to be pretty removed from the white gaze (such as AC Thomas's THE HATE U GIVE). However, these are far and removed. A view of the publishing industry structurally reveals that the white gaze is ingrained into every layer of its culture and operations. The race books that are published must be "respectful" enough to not upset white people too much. With white fragility, this goal is almost impossible to achieve.

(Sidenote: the task to publish an "not respectful" novel about race is not impossible. There are a few ways to accomplish it. 1) If the author glorifies the pain of people of color - especially Black people - which people crave to consume and which distracts from their constructive guilt. 2) If the author of color has credentials that no white author would be expected to have (see: Ta-Nehisi Coates). 3) If the book is written with such a high degree of technical expertise that no white debut author is expected to write with. All these reasons should not exist.)

When I look at the publishing industry's anti-racist work through the lens of the white gaze, I am less optimistic that true subversive and anti-racist change is occurring. The white gaze has not been addressed, confronted, or deconstructed; it has only ever dictated which novels can be published and which novels cannot. Whiteness has been the gate-keeper of the publishing industry since its origins, and it has not ended yet; it has simply morphed into liberal racism. The present era of colorblindness has indeed led to the publication of novels about race and writers of color; most of this literature still continues to be dictated by the white gaze.

I think about all the authors of color who did not get published. The books of color which got rejected. The books of beautiful color which got revised into books of beige. What did the editor's red pen scratch out?

Do agents and editors support books that will upset white people because they aren't written for white people? Do agents and editors support books that talk honestly about the rage people of color feel towards Whiteness and white people? (Because God forbid that people of color being brutalized and beaten by Whiteness ever dare to say, "Fucking white people.") Do agents and editors support books that engage with anti-capitalism, books that refuse to say "Not All Cops", books that have Assata-supporters and radical queer activists of color that reject the white gaze?

I guess my point is, do agents support diverse ideas or do they support diverse faces speaking the same White ideas? It is a masterful tactic of white supremacy to have its ideas be spoken by a person of color (see: Ben Carson, Nikki Haley, Bobby Jindal). The same white gaze that uplifts these people also shuts down those of color who dare speak ferociously against it.

I know the main criticism of my assertion: the profitability of the market dictates what books are published or not, not race. To that, I have three responses.

1) Why not both? The publishing industry, with bookstores and libraries disproportionately in white areas, has structured a market geared towards white consumers. Yet the truth is: people of color buy books too.

2) Why assume white readers won't read books outside the white gaze? If the publishing industry seeks to engage in allyship, it cannot babysit its readers.

3) The profitability bottom-line must be confronted. In a Western world where white people are the plurality and hold most of the wealth, the publishing industry can not say it is anti-racist without troubling its profitability idolization.

So I guess I come back to my initial question: "Do agents and editors support diverse books?" And by this, I mean diverse ideas.

If any agent or editor is reading this, please feel free to comment, Tweet, respond, etc. with #YesIDo. I am SC_Author on Twitter. I want to create a list of agents and editors (right below!) so that writers who seek to find supportive agents might find someone to query.

1. Your name here!

Writers need to know which agents and editors will support them - if any. It's scary to speak. In my own personal case, I've decided that there's no point to me being a writer if I have to swallow what I want to say. So I'm speaking, I'm pushing, and will continue to do so.

What do you think? Please feel free to comment below, and share!

This has been a post part of the Write Inclusively campaign. I'm planning to change its name soon, but if you would like to be up-to-date with the campaign, sign up for the newsletter. We do not email much - in the last  two years, only two emails have gone out. We were responsible for #BigFiveSignOn.




Who Do You Write For from Bishop O'Connell

  Posted by Michelle4Laughs in Michelle4Laughs: It's in the Details, 12 July 2016 · 64 views

As writers we often have one eye on our intended audience as we write, even if it isn’t conscious. Like a lot of art, if you ask a writer about his book, either you or he will compare it to something else: “It’s Harry Potter meets A Tale of Two Cities.” Inadvertently, or perhaps quite intentionally, this book’s audience has been identified. It is the very small but dedicated group of readers who enjoy books about child wizards during the turmoil of the French Revolution. Most of us don’t intend such comparisons to define our intended audience, but it happens and permeates what we write. No matter your genre—including literary fiction—odds are you have a set of preconceived notions that go with your selection of an audience.


Almost a year after their wedding, and two since their daughter Fiona was rescued from a kidnapping by dark faeries, life has finally settled down for Caitlin and Edward. They maintain a facade of normalcy, but a family being watched over by the fae’s Rogue Court is far from ordinary. Still, it seems the perfect time to go on their long-awaited honeymoon, so they head to New Orleans.

Little do they know, New Orleans is at the center of a territory their Rogue Court guardians hold no sway in, so the Court sends in Wraith, a teenage spell slinger, to watch over them. It’s not long before they discover an otherworldly force is overtaking the city, raising the dead, and they’re drawn into a web of dark magic. At the same time, a secret government agency tasked with protecting the mortal world against the supernatural begins their own investigation of the case. But the culprit may not be the villain everyone expects. Can Wraith, Caitlin, and Edward stop whoever is bringing the vengeful dead back to life before another massacre, and before an innocent is punished for crimes beyond her control?


As a fantasy writer, I tend to take for granted that my readers will know that elves have pointed ears, dwarves are short and bearded, magic spells are cast by wizards, and countless other small things. I’m assuming those readers will have enjoyed other fantasy novels, particularly what is considered the canon (Tolkien especially) and thus have some context. But, our assumptions can cut both ways. Experienced fans of our genre might read in a mystical explanation to something completely mundane. Conversely, the uninitiated might be completely mystified by something that is a given to most fantasy readers. How do we as writers prevent this?

For me, the answer is simple: assume your reader has never picked up a fantasy novel before. That’s right, nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch. This has two benefits. The first is that you prevent any confusion or frustration on the part of your reader. The second is that you’ve just opened your book up to countless readers outside your genre. That’s not to imply this is an easy feat. What is easy is to be so proud of the complex world you’ve created that you can’t wait to show your reader and you inundate her with information. In my post, Too Much Information! Knowing What to Reveal and When I went over the “how” of exposition. What I will delve into, is the “why.”

Let’s ignore the obvious: you don’t want your reader to be bored by a dissertation before getting to the story. That’s important, of course, but what I want to discuss here is the second reason. I take Ms. Rowling’s lead and assume ignorance on the part of reader and that opens my books up to a broader audience. Really, in the end, don’t we as writers want our stories to be read, and enjoyed, by as many people as possible? I certainly do. I’m sure there are those who think of themselves as purists and unless you know the arcane details you’re not “worthy” of reading the story, but that’s not for me. I want my tales to be enjoyed by anyone who picks it up, even if their usual preference is romance, mystery, biographies, printer manuals, math books, cereal boxes, newspapers, well, you get the idea. I believe if you strip out the supernatural aspects out of my novels and replace them with mundane aspects, the plot and characters still hold together. At least, that’s what I strive for. That, and no readers left scratching their heads when they’re done.

This is something all of us should strive for. It doesn’t matter if you’re writing a book about faeries, or the Founding Fathers of the United States. After all, your readers might not be American or aware of American history. See? There I just assumed the readers of this piece were mostly American. I could’ve deleted that line, but I think it serves to show all of us that we have to strive, constantly, against those sorts of assumptions. Don’t limit yourself, or your work, by not inviting someone in to enjoy it. Be a good host and make your party as inclusive as possible, and ensure each guest is as welcome as possible. I hope if you’ve read my books, you found them so welcoming, and if you haven’t, consider this an open invitation.


Bishop O'Connell is the author of the American Faerie Tale series, a consultant, writer, blogger, and lover of kilts and beer, as well as a member of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America. Born in Naples Italy while his father was stationed in Sardinia, Bishop grew up in San Diego, CA where he fell in love with the ocean and fish tacos. After wandering the country for work and school (absolutely not because he was in hiding from mind controlling bunnies), he settled Richmond VA, where he writes, collects swords, revels in his immortality as a critically acclaimed "visionary" of the urban fantasy genre, and is regularly chastised for making up things for his bio. He can also be found online at A Quiet Pint (aquietpint.com), where he muses philosophical on life, the universe, and everything, as well as various aspects of writing and the road to getting published.

The Returned ebook

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Just playin' with preview.

  Posted by Rick Pieters in Room to Wonder, 22 June 2016 · 158 views



9 Simple Ways to Get Outdoors as a Family

  Posted by Jean Oram in It's All Kid's Play Blog, 23 May 2016 · 95 views

Posted ImageSo many schools are reducing recess–outdoor play–due to budget cuts and hopes of boosting test scores. However, studies show that increased recess time results in better test scores compared to increasing time in the classroom. Yikes!
But here’s something you may not have heard about in the argument for keeping recess. Outdoor play–and specifically, recess–helps our kids eyesight. I know! Wow, right?
On the website All About Vision, they quote several studies that found all sorts of interesting results. Here are a few quotes I found particularly interesting:

The researchers calculated a 2 percent drop in the risk of developing myopia for each additional hour children spend outdoors per week. “This is equivalent to an 18 percent reduction for every additional hour of exposure per day,” they said.
Compared with children with normal eyesight or farsightedness, children with myopia spent an average of 3.7 fewer hours per week outside.

In other words, more time outside means you’re increasing your child’s chance they WON’T need glasses. Think of all the money you’ll save!
In favour of recess:

The study authors concluded that outdoor activities during recess in elementary school have a significant protective effect on myopia risk among children that are not yet nearsighted and reduce the progression of myopia among nearsighted schoolchildren.

The 12-year-old children who spent more time outdoors had less myopia at the end of the two-year study period than others in the study.

There you have it.
Let’s get outside and play! What do we do in the Oram household? Well, first of all we got a dog. Why? Because not only does it teach our kids empathy and responsibility for others, but our dog gets us outside daily. We walk the dog, the kids ride their bikes alongside or walk too. It’s great exercise for all of us!

The brain is better able to pay attention, hold things in memory, and show self-control after it has been outdoors.
–Gabrielle Principe, Your Brain on Childhood

Getting a dog isn’t your thing? It doesn’t have to be complicated or strenuous. How about these simple activities that will get you outdoors:
9 Ways To Get Outside as a Family

Watch the Sunrise / Sunset
Does the world seem different at this time of day? What colors do you see in the sky?
Find Cloud Animals
Lie on your back and look at the clouds—whoa! Is that a giraffe?
Draw on the Sidewalk with Chalk
Try and Catch Your Shadow
Can you catch it?
Water Fights
Ring Toss
Make your own rings out of plastic container lids. Then shove a stick into the ground to toss them onto!
Play CatchPosted Image
Eat Outside
Picnic, BBQ, simply taking your meal out on the deck–it’s still outdoors and you’ll still get the benefits of being out in nature. Both for your soul and your eyesight.

Thanks for playing! See you next time. And if you need more activity ideas don’t forget to check out my book, 1,001 Boredom Busting Play Ideas. It’s reasonably priced so everyone can play.



BOSTON KNIGHTS - A Story About A Little Gold And A Little Love

Posted by AK Paladin in AK Paladin's Blog, 29 April 2016 · 158 views
Love Gold Treasure

This story was inspired from two directions. The first was the discovery of two unusual keys at the Flinder's Market in Adelaide. The second was two ladies that I have known for many years that do everything together. And no, there is nothing of me in this story. Well, very little that I will admit to anyway.

This story practically wrote itself. The keys were discovered the first weekend in February, the story was finished and through the first critical editing by the second week in March.

The teaser for Boston Knights follows:


The discovery that some ancient stories handed down in the families had more truth to them than fiction sparks a hunt for the real truth of the stories. Told as bedtime stories, three individuals find themselves working together to find out more about their ancestors and where they might have hidden some gold, or if it was after all, nothing but a hoax.

The adventure begins with Steve, whose elder brothers work in construction. Having found an old desk amidst some demolition work of theirs, they call their brother to salvage it and see if perhaps he might want to restore it and some other bits and pieces.

As Steve is an antiquities restoration expert, he is definitely interested. Within the desk, behind some well locked drawers, he eventually finds hints that the stories he was told as a kid, may have been more than just stories. In his pursuit of answers, he finds members of two other families that heard the same stories when they were children.

This begins a delightful adventure that finds the three of them embroiled in more and more details that lead them further and further from their homes.

Eventually, the puzzle pieces begin to come together in Ayr, Scottland when they make the acquaintance of some more members of the extended families, only to find their hopes dashed when they discover any gold that may have existed was quickly squandered. Moreover, any additional clues seem to have been destroyed.


This is what I would call a light romance and adventure. At a somewhere over 63,000 words, it is a quick and easy read aimed at young adults and romantics looking for something a little different.

I will 'clean up' my teaser as I get this book through its final editing. It is, by the way, a finished manuscript ready for presentation to an agent/publisher.

I'm still looking.


Batman v. Superman A Movie review

  Posted by Utsav M in Pineapple Lightning, 16 April 2016 · 108 views

Wassup peeps. Last week has been a bit busy, so this is a little late. I meant to watch and review this movie earlier than this but even though I did manage to do the watching part, I did not feel like reviewing it. Why you ask? Because they messed up a potentially epic movie.

Starting off Batman as a seasoned crime-fighter is great. It gives us a perspective few super-hero movies do. However, even though they make him a grizzled veteran, they cannot but help show his origin story of parents dying and falling into a cave of bats. Make that the first scene and we are already into 15 minutes of logos (yeah, call out to cinema sins) and a story shown in a much better and detailed manner in Batman Begins a decade ago. Batman is portrayed decently by Ben Affleck, who has found his acting chops since the horror known as Daredevil- the movie. Thankfully both Affleck and Daredevil seem to have moved on to bigger and better things.

As far as Superman goes, I have never liked Henry Cavill as the Man of Steel and I did not like the movie either. I am glad they kept continuity from the movie and turned the mass destruction of Metropolis into a plot point but the story feels hollow even with the bone-structure of a great movie. Superman is conflicted but not conflicted enough to hang up his cape. Lois is ever present and irritating (I cannot believe I said that about Amy Adams) and is supposed to be his human anchor but again feels forced.

Luthor - well...sigh. While they alluded to the fact that this is Alexander Luthor not Lex Luthor, I wonder why they would not pull the trigger on one of the most iconic villains of all time. With the story backdrop, he would have been perfect as a foil to bring down Superman. Instead, we get a Joker ripoff trying to build Doomsday and kidnapping Superman's mother to goad him into a fight with Batman. Talk about lame and cliched.

As far as the fight is concerned, it is a good fight but the end of the fight is contrived and feels...you guessed it...forced. I mean, who in their right mind would say, "Save Martha", instead of  "Save my mother"? I want to slap the guy who came up with the cool realization that both Batman's and Superman's mother share a name and would be a cool plot point to use that to stop their fight.

The only breath of fresh air is Wonder Woman who is mysterious and understated and her reveal is very well done. She looks every bit Superman's equal in the fight against Doomsday. The fight was well done and Superman sacrificing himself was a good twist...except that it wasn't.

Everyone and their three next generations know a Justice League movie is coming and Justice League cannot not have a live and flying Supes. Ending the movie without showing his casket move would have been brave for the new Justice League. Let it be formed without Superman. Let him join in a dire hour. Make his return monumental. But nah...DC has no cojones.

And as far as the random teasers for the Flash, Cyborg and Aquaman sprinkled throughout the movie, they feel ...gah...yes ...forced and unnecessary. They could have just mentioned their names without having video trailers for each of them. Learn from Marvel, Thordamnit!!

Anyhow, I am disappointed even though I never had much hope to begin with, which shows how poor a job they have done. And I am forced to stop myself from ranting.

Signing off,



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