Tag Archives: Book launch

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


Shock up shock I have no events this week – wow that doesn’t happen often. Now what to do with all this ‘free’ time? Well writing of course. I will meet up with an author friend later in the week and probably ‘escape’ to the library one night for uninterrupted writing too.

How does your week look? I have a dog staying until Tuesday so it is nice to walk in the cool of early morning and later night.

I wrote this about my dog a few years ago.

Just Walking the Dog!

The air smells wonderful after the rain, all fresh and clean. The vetch and clover’s scent float like gossamer in the breeze. Drops of water glisten on leaves and grass, leaving wet patches on my feet and legs. The cool is so refreshing after the baking heat of the morning, when I had helped my husband do his lumberjack impression. Hauling branches and logs into the truck, so they can be piled up in the far side of the acreage.

This peaceful walk brings me respite and time to relax without the demands of house, husband and children.

The trials are damp underfoot, the sun dapples through the high branches, gradually making the air more humid as I walk. I watch dancing butterflies of orange and yellow and damsel flies of crimson, burnt orange and emerald green flitting quickly side to side. In front of me the sudden flash of black and white signals the flight of crickets in wave after wave throughout the long grass. As the grass brushes my jeans it leaves little tears of moisture dampening the fabric.

I find a new trail to explore, the earth is wetter here we leave our mark in the sticky mud: paws and shoes. The trial peters out emerging onto a huge earth mound, made by excavators. Looking around for a familiar landmark all I see is the main road I took to get to this off leash area. With no obvious exit, we retrace our steps back to a clearing and find another trial through the birch trees, which eventually brings us back to familiar territory.

Passing the time of day with other walkers, we watch our dog’s engage in the sniffing routine and then part again. Once back to the car park, it’s a bowl of water for my dog and a sip from a bottle for me. I really enjoy this place it gives me time to relax and enjoy the wildlife. One early morning we came across a deer and then a coyote ran across the meadow, quickly chased by my dog until I recall her, just in case there is a pack within the far wood – another story for another time.

Story Slam

Location: The Mercury Room, 10575 114 Street, Edmonton
Event Cost: suggested donation $5 at the door
Contact: Alison Hagan
http://www.edmontonstoryslam.com/
http://www.edmontonstoryslam.com

Story Slam is every third Wed of the month, every month
Competitive story telling event with no censorship. Up to 10 people have 5 minutes to tell a story. 5 random judges are in the audience. Winner takes home the donation hat and total glory.

OPPORTUNITY ALERTS

The Golden Quill Awards. The theme is “Liberation.” $500 first prize. Short fiction, poetry and personal essay categories. Up to 1500 words for prose, 40 lines for poetry. Entry fee $15. Deadline September 15, 2017. 

University of New Orleans Press Lab Prize. A prize of $1,000 and publication of your book-length manuscript by UNO Press for a short story collection or a novel. The selected manuscript will be promoted by The Publishing Laboratory at the University of New Orleans, an institute that seeks to bring innovative publicity and broad distribution to first-time authors $18 entry fee. Deadline August 15.

Writer’s Digest Popular Fiction Awards.  Write Romance, Thriller, Crime, Horror, Science-Fiction, and Young Adult? Short fiction: 4,000 words or less. $20 fee. Grand prize $2500. Deadline October 16th, 2017

What local events do you have coming up?

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


After a busy weekend, I am now into Board meeting week! Firstly, Tuesday will be with the Writers Foundation of Strathcona County meeting. We have our annual Words in the Park to plan and organize for 30th September, this will be our 10th year! So we are endeavoring to make it bigger than ever.

Web site banner WitP 2017_0

As part of the Canada 150 celebrations we are also publishing a book of Canadian themed stories. This project entails reading, editing and approving members submissions. The book will be launched at Words in the Park. We have already voted on a cover – to be revealed at the launch!

book project

My second, board meeting will be on Wednesday for the Arts & Culture Council of Strathcona County. We too will be organizing and planning our event, Culture Days in conjunction with our partners the Writers Foundation. The event is also part of Alberta Culture Days, which is celebrating 10 years. In all a busy time for everyone. We will have artisans and performers throughout the day.

Friday evening I will meet up with a writer friend for coffee/tea after work. It is one of my favorite things to do. Connect and discuss with other writers. Our venue is a local non-profit coffee shop, which incidentally stocks several books from my publisher, Dream Write Publishing.

What are you up to this week?

Other events:

From July 13-16, The Saskatchewan Festival of Words takes place in Moose Jaw, SK, featured authors including Marty Chan, Dawn Dumont, Marina Endicott, Anosh Irani, Jael Richardson, Alissa York, and more.

The Lakefield Literary Festival runs July 14-16 in Lakefield, ON, (near Peterborough), with a line-up including Zoe Whittall, Marni Jackson, Lynne Katsukake, Jane Urquhart, Kerry Clare, Douglas Gibson, Steven Price, Lindy Mechefske, and children’s events with Andrew Larsen and Kari-Lynn Winters. The program also includes Craft Talks for writers.

Add your upcoming events – no matter where you are located!

Upcoming Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


canadadaysouthhuron

This week began with Canada Day and the extra special Canada 150 celebrations on 1st July. My ‘new’ country is so young compared to my ‘old’ country, England. It is unique to see the excitement and pride my fellow Canadians take in their country.

road trip

I am away with my dear friend, Linda in Red Deer for the next three days, enjoying the scenery, wildlife, and relaxing in writing companionship. It has been sometime since we have been able to ‘escape’ and it is certainly appreciated by us both. 

I will miss our writing group’s monthly meeting on Tuesday but as it seldom happens I think I’m forgiven. Someone else can take the reins on my behalf.

Saturday will be my joint author signing with Eva Blaskovic at Audreys Bookstore in Edmonton. We are hoping to draw a crowd to buy books and ask us questions. Preparations have been made, a draw basket created and advertising blasted.

New and Improved Author Signing-page-0

On Sunday 9th July I will be once again attending an annual event for Strathcona County- Savor Strathcona. It celebrates the best independent food and art in our area. I will be doing double duty as Secretary of the Writers Foundation and President of the Arts & Culture Council, luckily the tables are together! 

Savor Strathcona

What are you up to this week?

Other events:

Hylke Speerstra, Meet & Greet

hylke

Hylke Speerstra will be presenting ‘The Comfort Bird’, his new book in English translation.

Monday at 11:00–14:00 at Dutch Delicious – 13232-118th Ave, Edmonton, Alberta T5L4N4

And Author Reading and Book Signing 4 July at 11:00–14:00 at The King’s University 9125 -50 Street, Edmonton, Alberta T6B 2H3

Toys, Bikes and Books Swap
Hosted by Edmonton Chinatown Chinese Library – 9 July at 13:00–17:00 at 9540 – 102 Ave. Edmonton

china

Recycle Book Sale

book sale

8 July at 11:00–15:00
The Village at Pigeon Lake
6b Village Dr RR#2, Westerose T0C 2V0

Upcoming & Past Writing Events- Add Yours for your Location…


events

Our author reading on Saturday was amazing – eight readers and a great audience. Social Grounds Coffeehouse did us proud with allowing us once again to utilize their beautiful premises.

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On Sunday I attended a friend’s book launch – Carla Howatt has written an emotional and powerful book about her experience after her son’s suicide. 

http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/retail/books/bearing-witness

Last week I also attended a grant presentation for my writers group, Writers Foundation of Strathcona County. This grant will assist us in publishing our Canada 150 book, which tells stories of Canada, whether it is memories, wildlife, landscape, seasons or any other ‘Canadian’ theme. County Clothesline are always so generous with their grants to local non-profits and organizations. http://wfscsherwoodpark.com/wfsc-canada-150-book-project

This week is less eventful (pardon the pun) so writing is my goal.

Other upcoming events:

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30 June at 19:00 to 2 July at 17:00
The Bennett Center, 9703-94 Street, Edmonton, Alberta T6C 3W1

https://www.facebook.com/BennettCentreYEG/”https://www.facebook.com/events

  • wordplay

 

The children’s festival WordPlay takes place in conjunction with the grand opening of Sheree Fitch’s dreamy new venture, Mabel Murple’s Book Shoppe and Dreamery, on July 3 in River John, NS, with Alan Syliboy, Marie-Louise Gay, and plenty of celebration.

 

Why not add you local events here – promotion is never a bad thing!

Words in the Park 2016 – An Author Event…


mandy

Once again I attended this fantastic event. Part of Alberta Culture days, organized by my writing group, Writers Foundation of Strathcona County and with co-hosts, Arts and Culture Council of Strathcona County. With over thirty authors and a dozen artisans filling the venue as well as an aboriginal fancy dancer, hoop workshop, memoir presentation, African drumming tutorial, live music, children’s activities and author readings, the event offered fun activities for all the family.

I planned my table to display my children’s books at the front with Rumble’s First Scare and soft toy Rumble of course, with hats, T-shirts, bookmarks and pins. Ockleberries to the Rescue had the animal ornaments and the ‘door’ display. Then there was Clickety Click – the day of the launch! I made the exploding planet to attract readers and had special scaly toques made in two shades of purple. The purple table covering also focused the eye as did my purple inspired outfit. To the side I displayed The Rython Kingdom, my fantasy romance, as it is an adult book, with its glowing orb and handmade bookmarks.

This year I created an activity table, which you can see behind me in the photo, with ‘monster’ and Rumble pictures and also animal quizzes. A couple of kids won prizes for their entries, unfortunately I only got a photo of one! She loved her monster slippers.

monster-slippers

It was a successful day and I sold many books and a few toques too. See this lad with his Rumble toque.

rumble-hat-boy

I find the themed displays and merchandise attracts the children’s attention and then I have a chance to explain the books to the children and their parents. I was fortunate to have one Clickety Click book bought by our Mayor who will donate it to a local school.

Another lady purchased two copies of Ockleberries solely on the review she had read in our local paper. She even cut it out and brought it with her.

book-review-2

I enjoyed participating in the author readings and shared part of Ockleberries to the Rescue – Stump the Woodpecker to be exact.

mandy-reading

To be part of such an event, sharing my words with readers and forging new friendships with other authors further confirms my love for the written word and this select membership that is ‘writer’.

How do you attract people to your author table?

 

It’s Off To Press – Ockleberries to the Rescue…


This afternoon I submitted my final proof read to my publisher for my children’s chapter book, Ockleberries to the Rescue. Later, I received word that it has been sent to press…I wait with feverish mind to see the finished product.

In the meantime I have been contemplating promotional display items for this book – I already have small animal figurines that light up & have sparkling globes for their bodies, but I wanted something special. I toyed with the idea of making a diorama and then something wonderful happened.

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A coincidence occurred that is one of those marvelous, magical meant to be miracles. I posted a sneak peek of the book’s cover (see left picture) on my face book page and almost instantly an acquaintance posted a picture of something in her store. (see right picture). She advised me this ornament just came in and I could not believe how similar it was to my sprite’s door. I will be collecting this masterpiece tomorrow. An extra treat is the little door opens! It is as though it was custom made for my book.

 

Ockleberries Cover

 

 

Sprite door

 

What coincidences have you experience in regards to your writing or novels?

Quotes:

We are continually shaped by the forces of coincidence.  Paul Aster

There is always room for coincidence.  Alva Noto

Coincidence is important, the convergence of different ideas. Dries van Noten

FunDay

Prompt – So let’s make coincidence the them of today’s prompt.

 

Pre-order here: http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/products/ockleberries-rescue

Promotional Items for Book Marketing – My Latest Rumble Promo and Ideas for Ockleberries Promo too…


Every year I run a coloring competition for my children’s picture book, Rumble’s First Scare. After choosing the picture for the competition, I have to decide on what the prize will be that accompanies a free copy of the book. In past year’s I have given hand-made Rumble puppets, a Rumble bag filled with squishy toy ‘pets’ just like Rumble’s own and this year I have T-shirts as well as hand-made hats. Both of these last items can be offered for sale at any time of course, but I like to meet the winners of the coloring competition, when possible, so have the prizes available at the annual Words in the Park event in Sherwood Park, Alberta. http://words.sclibrary.ab.ca/

I was excited to find a crafter, who volunteered her services to make these marvelous Rumble hats (see below) and production is under way. If you can’t wait until October, send me a PM and I can reserve you one. They are fantastic unique gifts for Halloween too.

RumbleRumble hat

This year’s T-shirts are unique as well – the front says ‘I love Rumble and his bag of pets’ and the back says ‘Grab your Rumble at http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca

Rumble tshirt frontRumble tshirt back

 

I have ideas for my new children’s chapter book, Ockleberries to the Rescue, as well, which will be launched in October. As the story follows two magical woodland sprites, I want to fashion T-shirt designs but also some sort of toy, for younger children. I already have a couple of animal figurine and glitter filled light-up globes (which you might be able to make

out here – one is a rabbit and the other a squirrel) IMG_0233

What promotional items have you used for your books?

How successful have your promotional items been for you? 

I found this link, which is helpful:

http://writersrelief.com/blog/2014/05/make-promotional-items-stand-out-boost-sales/

Selling Your Book – A Personal Touch…


Oologist – definition: someone who specializes and collects birds’ eggs.

I am going to flip this word completely on it’s head. We all know the old adage ‘putting all your eggs in one basket’ but as authors we are always striving to sell our books in multiple venues. Modern technology gives us a multitude of options to achieve sales.  From e-book format to print on demand to on line sites. There is of course the much more pleasing method of actually meeting your readers.

I attended the annual Words in the Park event in Sherwood Park (Alberta)  last Saturday. Forty seven authors attended, so there were certainly books available for every taste. My publisher, Dream Write Publishing,was in attendance too and assisted four of their authors to launch their books. As you can see from the display the range of books is extensive.

10460682884_8767e95184_bLinda at the Dream Write Publishing table.

If you want a closer look go to the link.

http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/

trymex_logo

I worked hard on my display for several weeks before the event. You always need something to attract passers-by. Rumble sat beside his book – Rumble’s First Scare and bookmarks.  I made a blue illuminated globe as a prop for The Rython Kingdom (there is one in the story) and postcards with the e-book details. (It is now available in print as well.) Lastly, I displayed Ockleberries to the Rescue proof copies with little hedgehog & squirrel ornaments that changed color  and glittered. I received a pre-order for one Ockleberries book so I’d better get on that then!

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My other responsibility during the day was to host the children’s author readings. As secretary of my writing group, The Writers Foundation of Strathcona County, I and the rest of the group are responsible for the annual event in conjunction with the library. There were six authors reading and it was a delight to hear the different stories and meet these aspiring authors.

http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/retail/books/rumbles-first-scare

Rumble's First Scare

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=the%20rython%20kingdom&sprefix=the+r%2Caps&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Athe%20rython%20kingdom

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Two of my friends launched their first books at Words in the Park and I want to give them both a shameless plug – after all that’s what friends are for.

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Sharon Baggs’ charming tales of her life are written in poetry with wonderful photos.

http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/retail/books/musings-prairie-chicken-girl

Front_cover Sharon

 

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Beth Rowe’s children’s story follows the adventures of a young man in a magical land.

http://www.dreamwritepublishing.ca/retail/books/bird-barjag

Beth cover

The beautiful library display for Words in the Park. I can see Rumble – can you?

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Do you prefer face to face events?

What venues do you attend?

I found this interesting link regarding finding venues – it’s a bit cheeky but if you can get away with it why not?

http://www.mrfire.com/article-archives/guest-articles/bootleg-bookselling.html

 

Report on Literary Weekend…


Well I’m back to the grindstone but feeling relaxed and regenerated after a wonderful long weekend. The drive to Saskatoon took five hours and my companion, Linda, kindly drove all the way (although I did volunteer). For those of you who do not know, I live on the Albertan prairies, which, as the name suggests, are flat. As an expat, I sorely miss the rolling hillsides of England. So you can image my delight in seeing undulations in the landscape as we travelled toward Saskatchewan. Of course nothing matches the English countryside but it was a real treat to see hills.

We arrived early evening and after registering at the hotel, went in search of supper. We found a great Chili’s restaurant and afterwards at the hotel indulged in uninterrupted writing – bliss. On the Saturday we attended a conference hosted by PWAC (Professional Writers Association of Canada).

Connect, Celebrate, & Collaborate

Date: September 22, 2012
Location: The Refinery, 607 & 609 Dufferin Avenue, Saskatoon, SK

This was a very informative day where we networked and gained some valuable insights. Linda and I have come up with a game plan for her publishing company, Dream Write Publishing, advertising campaign. So we are both pumped. Not to end the day too quickly we happened upon a great Italian restaurant so had to partake of the fine pasta with a glass of good red, of course.

Sunday was The Word on the Street event and we drove downtown to set up beside the library. Rows of white canopies with dark blue covered tables welcomed us. It didn’t take long to have all the books displayed and I had one corner for Rumble to sit ‘guarding’ his books. I loved to see the reaction of children and adults alike when they noticed my little monster. With lots of cuddles and pats on the head and a candy for a treat, I found everyone intrigued at the Rumble coloring competition.

http://dreamwritepublishing.ca/retail/competitions/rumbles-coloring-competition

I also had postcards for my e-book, The Rython Kingdom’s front cover on display with the Smashwords link on the back – http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/214247

The weather was kind with lots of sunshine and with Linda and Tammy, whose book was launched we had a great day conversing with some very interesting people. At day’s end we were tired after packing up the boxes of books so indulged in a quick fast food meal in the hotel. Having plenty of time to check out we slept late before our trip home. I managed to sew a couple of Rumble hand puppets on the road, which got a few looks from other travellers but it did help the five-hour drive pass quicker.

How far have you traveled for your book sales?

Book Promotion…


Rumble

Well as you can see my children’s book is now a reality and I am child-like in my excitement! However, now comes the promotional element of this part of my journey and more steep learning curves to conquer. My publisher, Dream Write Publishing, has a stack of Rumble’s First Scare neatly boxed and awaiting shipment – I have promoted at any and every opportunity I can think of for weeks. Even going into my local post office, bank and employer supply companies selling my wares – to great effect I may add. Sales are steady and I have felt quite the celebrity with everyone asking for my autograph upon purchase.
In my innocence I decided to ‘create’ a soft toy version of my little monster character – Rumble. I was very fortunate to have had an accomplished seamstress assist me in this task. Rumble’s official birthday was 8th October 2011 at 4.45pm. As you can see he is quite a character and Sharon (seamstress extraordinaire) and I had a great time ‘birthing’ him.

My next ‘first’ is my official book launch at a local book store – wish me luck.