"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." - Walt Disney

Monday, November 25, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving!

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good.
              -Psalm 107:1 NIV

It’s the week of Thanksgiving in the United States. I’ll be spending time with family and friends, and hopefully doing very little actual work :-). I also plan to enjoy some of my favorite foods! 

I feel so very blessed. I'm in a particularly reflective mood and my heart is full of gratitude for the many things for which I am grateful: family, friends, home, food, health, travel, and so much more. 

For some fun reading, here are ten reasons I'm thankful to be a writer.

I'm also extremely thankful for my online family. As a thank-you to my readers and fellow bloggers, I wanted to share a short Thanksgiving romantic fiction piece I wrote (about 800 words). I hope you enjoy! http://writinginwonderland.blogspot.com/2017/11/thankful-every-day.html

I also hope you all enjoy a wonderful week full of good times. In case I don't make it online again this week - Happy Thanksgiving!

What are you thankful for having in your life?

Thursday, November 21, 2019

November Scribbler Box: Science Fiction

I just received my eighth box from Scribbler. You can learn about previous boxes, and why I subscribed by clicking the "Scribbler" link in the labels below.

I was surprised it came a week early this month - I suppose in anticipation of the holiday rush. This month's theme is science fiction. As always, the first thing you see upon opening the box is a writing exercise/contest postcard. Each month provides a new challenge for writers to practice. However, the deadline for this month says 11/14 which was before they shipped the November boxes. I'm assuming this is a typo which should say 12/14, but I have not heard back from the company yet for a clarification of this. I will try to update this post when/if they clarify.

The "Curated Writerly Gifts" this month include A Writing Map to Fabulous Stories text and writing prompts with ALICE IN WONDERLAND themed artwork (and absolutely beautiful illustrations), a SPICE HOUSE packet of hot cocoa (yum), an "I make stuff up" sticker, a tablet of "Chapter Planner" pages, and a couple of cards of art inspired prompts/suggestions from writingmaps.com.

As usual, this box also came with an inside look at the publishing process for this months author, and an exclusive invitation to chat with a publishing professional: Grace Doyle, editorial director at Thomas & Mercer, as well as the collectible 'Writing Passport' with the authors discussing this months theme of SCIENCE FICTION.

This months new release novel is AFTERSHOCKS by Marko Kloos:

Across the six-planet expanse of the Gaia system, the Earthlike Gretia struggles to stabilize in the wake of an interplanetary war. Amid an uneasy alliance to maintain economies, resources, and populations, Aden Robertson reemerges. After devoting twelve years of his life to the reviled losing side, with the blood of half a million casualties on his hands, Aden is looking for a way to move on. He’s not the only one.
A naval officer has borne witness to inconceivable attacks on a salvaged fleet. A sergeant with the occupation forces is treading increasingly hostile ground. And a young woman, thrust into responsibility as vice president of her family’s raw materials empire, faces a threat she never anticipated.
Now, on the cusp of an explosive and wide-reaching insurrection, Aden plunges once again into the brutal life he longed to forget. He’s been on the wrong side of war before. But this time, the new enemy has yet to reveal themselves…or their dangerous endgame.

To learn more about this monthly box service: https://www.goscribbler.com/

Do you subscribe to any boxing services? Have you heard of SCRIBBLER? Are you tempted to join?

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Writing Veterans and Military Appreciation

Happy Veterans Day!

Thank-you to all veterans and active military. We may not show it enough, but you are so very appreciated!

A few years ago my interview of Vietnam War Veteran and author Tim O’Brien appeared in Proud to Be: Writing by American Warriors, Volume 2. Now, I'm getting ready to introduce my eleventh graders to THE THINGS THEY CARRIED.

Since my own contribution, the publishers have continued the tradition of supporting our troops. This yearly anthology presents essays, fiction, poetry, interviews, and photography by military-service personnel, veterans, and their families. It is an annual series published by Southeast Missouri State University Press in cooperation with the Missouri Humanities Council's Veterans Projects and the Warriors Arts Alliance.

"The stories and poems of service and sacrifice are essential in understanding what has so broadly been termed 'the American experience.' For me, Proud to Be: Writing by American Warriors is required reading and worthy of a thousand tears."     ―St. Leger Monty Joynes, veteran, Vietnam

Books can now be ordered from the Southeast Missouri State University Press and Amazon.

Interested in submitting to Volume 9? They are already accepting submissions which are due by April 17, 2020. Contests and prizes will be awarded in each of the five categories. To learn more, please visit:  http://www.semopress.com/events/proud-to-be-writing-by-american-warriors/

Want to check out more "support America" reads? Chicken Soup for the Soul publishers have several books honoring veterans and their families as well. Try some of their titles such as: Military Families and The Spirit of America.

How about reading more veteran related material? Try Noir and Returning War Vet Sub-Genre, or Being a Veteran.

Have you thanked a Veteran for their service? Have you written with our military in mind? What military reads would you recommend?

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

IWSG: Strangest Google Searches

It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! founded by Alex J. Cavanaugh. Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs. You can also join us on twitter using the hashtag #IWSG, or on the Facebook page.

Now, IWSG hosts have changed up the format in an effort to make it more fun and interactive.Every month, they will announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG Day post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say. 

Don’t forget to visit others that day to see their answers. Want to join, or learn more? Visit our - Sign-up List.

NOVEMBER QUESTION: What's the strangest thing you've ever googled in researching a story?

MY ANSWER: That would have to be "ritual suicide by self-disembowelment on a sword; practiced by samurai in the traditional Japanese society. Synonyms: hara-kiri, harakiri, seppuku Type of: self-annihilation, self-destruction, suicide, the act of killing yourself". I did some research on these ideas when I was writing my short story "WIN". I only briefly mentioned a similar event in the story, but I can only imagine what others might think of writers if they see our search histories ;-)

How about you? What's the strangest thing you've ever googled in researching a story?

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Book Signing: 16 Texas Horror Authors

16 authors: one signing

15 other authors and I will be celebrating a new book launch in one week. On Saturday, November 9 we will hold a book signing at Fleur Fine Books from 3 to 5 pm in Port Neches, Texas.

The book officially released a couple weeks ago, but most of us are finally able to come together for one joint signing. If you're in the area next weekend, we'd love for you to come by and visit us at this amazing book store.

For more information about the book, or the authors, click here.

Do you hold book signings? Do you visit other authors when they hold a signing?