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I recently read an article about how writers need to connect more with the wants of readers.  The idea is to help writers.  The only way to get these answers though is to do a survey or ask people in a blog what they want to read.

I love to read children’s books and some adult fantasy and mystery books. I have also been reading some fantasy young adult. Please comment below what you like to read?

The reason I read these genres is because this is what I like to write. In the book store or library, my head will be bobbing up and down in the children book sections examining all the new or old titles, looking for the next big hit. I love to explore new authors works. I also like to read what is at the top of the New York Times bestseller list. This keeps me up to date on what the market is selling, or publishers pushing, and also what readers are hungry for.

Readers are an important part of the writing process. They keep authors writing more to please them.  When a book review comes up on Goodreads or Amazon about a book you wrote, then you want to read it no matter if it is good or bad. Authors are starving for feedback. What is working and what is killing a book?

I love readers and I feel happy when I see someone curled up in a chair with their nose in a book.

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To read the article click here: http://www.writersdigest.com/online-editor/advice-for-writers-3-keys-to-connecting-with-young-readers-online

 

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A book that uses the shoulders and backs of other hard working novels to become a bestseller tends to get some attention. When I read a book I look for the audience it is written for: like Children, Middle Grade, Young Adult, and Adult. Then I see what the genre it is: Comedy, History, Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror. Is it Fiction or Non-fiction? Does it have a huge following? Is the author well known? Has the book won an award? Or has the author won any awards? These questions are used for the selection of book I will read to fill my brain with.  image_preview

There is a little bit of space in my brain and unlike a computer I cannot add an external hard drive to store more information. So I am pretty selective about what I read. I have a degree in English literature and have had to read books that were not of my choosing. These books were chosen because they are in the literature canon. Not every book that makes it into this collegiate masterpiece of literature is likable. I did not like reading “One Hundred Years of Solitude” by Garcia Marquez Gabriel, nor did I understand how this book became a classic. But other books I was glad to have read.

I have read so many books over the years that I have to have a log of what I read or I would forget them all. My genre of choice is Middle Grade fantasy. Why? Because this is what I write. When a writer is told by other authors to “write what you know”, that means to write what you read or experienced.  Now this does not mean I do not read adult or young adult books, because there are occasions in which I flit over to the other shelves tempted because of an attractive cover. Which brings me to my point.

 

I just finished reading a novel (more like a novella) called “A Shade of Vampire” by Bella Forrest. The authors name alone told me she was a fan of “Twilight”, but I should have noticed by the title that she was a fan of “Fifty Shades of Grey”, too. This book is what makes other writers cringe. Too many cliches. Too predictable. And the writing was high school level. When I say she wrote what she knew it is evident when you read the first few pages. This is not classic literature with beautifully written prose. Nor is it written by someone with a large vocabulary. When did romance/fantasy novels become sub par on their writing? There are adult books written by Mary Higgins Clark or Nicholas Sparks that are smarter than what I read. Books should be enjoyed and pondered over. Young adults should not be reading something that needs to belong in the Adult section of the bookstore. The only thing stopping me from giving this book a negative review on Goodreads was that I know what happens to books like this. The book everyone hates turns into a best seller because everyone wants to know what the big deal is, then they go buy the book. So I gave it an average rating and made no comments. Readers beware of the trap of making a new writer into a hit. Instead read the cover for yourself and decide if you want to read some drivel about a guy and a girl and you know how it ends. The books are all the same. In fact new writers spit out so many books at readers that they all blend into one massive collection of phlegm. Gross!

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Please save a reader! Write good works.

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I was doing some reading and found this article to help my writing.  Hopefully it will help anyone else out there in the revision stages.

 

WFMAD Day 18 – Revision Roadmap.

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There are some books I love to re-read just because they were so much fun the first time like Harry Potter, The Last Apprentice, and The Sword of Shannara.  But what makes your all time list of favorite books?

 

 

Which book have you read the most times? | Nathan Bransford, Author.

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6 Reasons To Fall In Love With Maggie Stiefvater’s “Raven Cycle”.

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This is the longest debate about reviews for authors.  Some people on Goodreads, or other sites where you can leave reviews of books, do not understand we are reviewing a book and not the author.  Author’s should not let these reviews feel like a personal attack. But how do you not?  Read more in the article below.

 

How Many Times Do I Have to Say This? Reviews Are for Readers, Not Authors | Mike Mullin.

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So I usually don’t write about what I am doing besides writing and reading.  I blog about what I read.  Or I blog about the latest piece I’m working on.  But I hardly ever talk about what I am learning.  I just finished a class on Astronomy.  It was elementary astronomy in my last semester of college.

I have always loved astronomy.  I have studied the stars, moon and other constellations ever since I was small.  Late at night my family and I would watch meteoroid showers shoot across the sky.  A shooting star is something I constantly wish upon.  How can anyone not be amazed by the heavenly sight we see at night?

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A solar flare erupting.

 

 

 

I follow astronaut Reid on his Twitter page along with NASA on their Google+ and Twitter page.  How interesting it is to see the solar flares that shoot from the sun everyday of the week, or see pictures of the Earth as colors of fall change the face of the planet?  We can view photos of other stars colliding with each other.  And now we know a black hole sits in the center of our galaxy.  Our limited grasp of knowledge on the universe is like a grain of sand compared to how huge the universe really is.

Now compare this bit of information I have learned to the science fiction books I have read. When I finished reading the “Maze Runner” series, by James Dashner, I knew he must have researched the effects of CME’s or solar flares on Earth.  Most science fiction writers, who are smart enough, will do their research and make sure they are not making up a fantasy world.  It must be a plausible idea.  Whether a solar flare causes the equator to dry up like a desert or lightening storms cause massive damage, each idea must have a working theory.  Just like the idea of bug aliens who come to destroy us like in “Ender’s Game” by Orson Scott Card.   Each idea must stem from a piece of truth.

Truth #1 There is a possibility we are not alone in the universe.  Take SETI and their mission of finding life in space.  Research them on your own at www.seti.org

Truth #2  A solar flare can cause a communication black out on Earth.  Look at history and see what they say about 1859 and CME’s.  Also check out what a solar flare can do to you if you are on a plane when it hits Earth. http://science.howstuffworks.com/solar-flare-electronics2.htm 

Truth #3  A black hole exists at the center of our galaxy.  Astronomers can show proof that stars near the center of the Milky Way speed up at a central location.   https://www.nsf.gov/about/history/nsf0050/astronomy/milkyway.htm

The proof is in the pudding.  We have brilliant astronomers who have theories that they must prove right.  Can anyone argue with them?  I wouldn’t.  A theory refers to a framework of ideas and assumptions that must be continually tested.

I love astronomy and now I know a little bit more about the subject.  Never stop learning and reading.  Because if one day you decide to write a science fiction book about the sun imploding and turning into a black hole then you will need to go back to the drawing board and learn more about the sun.  There are 12 stages of a star, and we are in stage 7 of the main sequence.  If the sun reaches stage 12 (becoming a planetary nebula) then it has passed the stage of red giant and 100 million years has gone by.  All life had been destroyed when the Sun’s core heated up and expanded.  We would have died in stages 8 and 9.

October in North America means the Orionid meteor shower.  Don’t miss it.  Take out that dusty telescope and start searching the night sky for a spectacular light show.

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Jessica Wilson’s Reviews > Happenstance Found

Happenstance Found by P.W. Catanese
Happenstance Found (The Books of Umber, #1) 
by P.W. Catanese (Goodreads Author)

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Jessica Wilson‘s review

Jul 05, 14  ·  edit

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Read from July 04 to 05, 2014

 

Wow! I have been searching for something like this for a long time (maybe years). This was a wonderful surprising cleverly written story that takes you on a journey to a world you never want to leave. I loved the main character Happenstance and all the mysteries surrounding him. Lord Umber is a character you root for and hope to see in the next installments as someone who will surprise you with more hidden bits of wisdom. Catanese is a great writer and has the ability to capture your attention with just a few lines. I am hooked and I am seriously going to invest in purchasing the series.
1 like ·  fla

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1468803_10151725873696533_2066499872_nIf you haven’t read “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Publishing Children’s Books” then stop reading now.  I read it and somewhat loved it.  The no-nonsense way of telling writers who they can query and who would give a flip is awesome.  I always thought that companies like Scholastic would be open to new authors.  Well they are not.  Even though they might look at your work, they are really closed to new work.  Theses companies want to publish only the authors they have had for years.  The same authors and the same series.  It is their bread and butter.  Sure J.K. Rowling was a new name over ten years ago and sure Scholastic picked her books up.  But does that mean you have the next “Harry Potter” series?  I am pretty sure it’s a “no”.

So the book breaks down what is trade, mass market and independent publishing.  It also breaks down what an agent does and doesn’t do.  Some of the things is pretty standard stuff.  But reading it I thought I would find a golden nugget instead I found flakes of gold through out it.  This is a good thing.  After reading this book you will see that you do have to have connections and everyone in the publishing industry are human and want to be treated as such.  Common sense, right?  Well it should be, but for some writers I know, they tend to think they should do something to stand out in the slush pile.  Big mistakes are made and bridges burnt.  Instead try to learn who is working where and see how great the company is doing.  Is the company getting bought out or the agency closing down?  Is an agent retiring or focusing on their own career?  I looked up an agent once.  I Googled him, facebooked him, and even read his Tweets.  He sounded really good and seemed to be the right fit for me and my work.  Well what I didn’t know until after I queried him was that he just wrote a book.  He asked for my manuscript but was more interested in how his new baby was doing in the market.  Researching agents is tricky because sometimes they are focused on things you don’t know about until they make an announcement.

Publisher’s doors are closed and special invitations are needed to attend the party.  Trying to get in the “in-crowd” is about as difficult as pulling your own wisdom teeth out.  So for all the pain, worry, work, and research you do on your own sometimes it might be best to read a book, like the one I am suggesting above, to give you a clue about what to do next.  This book tells you to join a writing group (I’ve done that), to find writing critique groups (done that too) and to read (done) and write (done) until you have perfected your craft before you query (sigh*).

Well read the book and then tell me what you learned from it.  I’d love to see new advice.

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A great post I stumbled upon today:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/harpercollins/10-life-lessons-from-oscar-wilde-9npd

 

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