Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Book signings

While meeting with my critique group today, I mentioned that I couldn’t help chuckling as I read a post on The Guardian blog on the subject of book signings. The article,“On the perks and pitfalls of signing books,” written by author Rick Gekoski, was hilarious but unfortunately true. Been there. Done that.

He took it all in good stride, like most of us do. I know many of us, at one time or another, have experienced what this author went through with book signings. I recently wrote a humorous similar article myself on this topic. It was accepted by SCBWI and will be published sometime soon in the national bulletin. I’d love to hear from other authors about their book-signing experiences.

 A writing group should share your goals – whether it’s getting published, getting critiqued, getting support, or getting out of the house. Avoid those that do nothing other than sit around and gripe.” – Writing tip from Writer’s Digest Weekly Planner

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Writing an author bio

You know when you send in queries to publishers how sometimes they ask for a brief author bio? (You, as a writer, wonder: how brief is brief?) What do you include in that bio? How much do you say about yourself? Should you be witty? What if you don’t have any publishing credits to your name? Is there a difference if you’re submitting fiction or non-fiction? How long should the bio be? Rachelle Gardner has a post on her blog, “How to Write a Terrific Author Bio,” that offers excellent tips on this topic.


Here’s a more detailed post on The Book Publicity blog that covers what to include in email signatures, websites, and “what authors (and venues) need to know about scheduling book talks/signings.”

No matter what your writing life brings, believe in yourself and keep moving forward. Most writers cycle between periods of self-doubt and periods of confidence.” – Writing Tips from Writer’s Digest Weekly Planner

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Making your story great

What do we need to make our story not just the best, but the greatest that it can be? Here’s a really great article, “7 simple ways to make a good story great,” by Elizabeth Sims on the Writer’s Digest blog. It doesn’t matter what genre you’re writing in for this to work. The seven steps include believability, the five senses, freeing up your writing, not dumbing down your work, leaving  out stuff that doesn’t have a purpose, and lastly, “…make them laugh, … make them cry.” Excellent article.

“Young readers have the right not only to read, but to read about themselves, about who they are and what they want.” – Virginia Hamilton

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Copyrights and Picture Books

One of the questions I hear frequently at writers’ workshops is: “Do I need to copyright my story before I send it out? Here’s a very brief post by Scott Francis on The Writers’ Digest blog on the topic of copyrights that should answer that question.

 Here’s a blog post by Emily Temple on “The 20 Most Beautiful Children’s Books of All Time.” The illustrations are awesome. Illustrators, you will really enjoy seeing these.

I am pleased to post REFORMA’s blog book review of Alicia’s Fruity Drinks/Las aguas frescas de Alicia. Click here to read the review.

Birthday Cake Display
"What I do with my books is to create windows to my world that all may peer into. I share the images, the feelings and thoughts, and I hope, the delight." -- Walter Dean Myers

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Abandoned Wal-Mart Becomes a Public Library

When I was growing up, my favorite place was the school library. It was not only cozy, but the books I read took me to faraway places I could only imagine. I would get lost in those books. That’s where I discovered the magic of words and the fun of reading. So when I read that a former Wal-Mart had been converted into a public library in McAllen, Texas, I was overjoyed. What a marvelous gift for the people of that city.  

Acording to the article, “How an Abandoned Wal-Mart Became an Award-Winning Public Library,” posted by By Daniel Lametti and Katy Waldman in the New York Times blog, “When a Wal-Mart retailer moved to a larger facility down the road, the city purchased the old building and created the McAllen Public Library.”

You must read the above post and view the pictures of the massive library. Great news isn't it?

"Search through your childhood memories and rediscover what it felt like to live in the world of a child; the joys, the fears, and the dreams." -- Audrey Wood

Monday, July 9, 2012

Golden Books Legacy Exhibit

Last week I was with my critique group at a library in Boerne. As I walked out, I noticed a display of illustrations on the wall, which I hadn’t seen before. Turns out the library is hosting the “Golden Legacy: Original Art from 65 Years of Golden Books.” Who doesn’t remember those Golden Books of years past?

This exhibit, sponsored by The National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature (NCCIL), can be seen at the Patrick Heath Public Library in Boerne through August. I think both illustrators and children’s book writers would be interested in this exhibit. Plan to visit before summer’s over. The art from these books goes all the way back to 1949. Amazing!

Golden Books Legacy Exhibit
"I hope to say to all children that they are special…that all of us are special…important just because we are ourselves.” – Patricia Reilly Giff