Showing posts from July, 2012

Three Times A Charm with Jo Linsdell

Three Times a Charm is a weekly feature that spotlights authors, illustrators, bloggers, agents, editors or promoters from the publishing industry.
This week author/illustrator, Jo Linsdell, is visiting with us. Jo, can you please tell us a little about you?
I'm originally from the UK but moved to Rome Italy in 2001 where I now live with my Italian husband and our two sons. I've been writing pretty much since I could hold a pen but only started taking it seriously in 2006 after having my first article published in a newspaper. Since then I've written for various publications and websites and published several books, winning a few awards along the way. You can find out more about me at my website
Tell us about your book, Out And About At The Zoo.
My latest project is a rhyming children's picture book OUT AND ABOUT AT THE ZOO for which I am both the author and illustrator. The book follows a child on a day out with his mum to the zoo discovering all the …

When No Means No - A Guide To Rejections

Maybe you can help me. I received a rejection on a query today that read:
“We reviewed your project and find it to be drivel. There is no chance on this great earth that we would publish it. We won’t even waste our time to request a partial. Perhaps someone once told you that your writing showed promise. We want to assure you that they were simply being polite. You should abandon all efforts toward publication. Cease and desist immediately. We are using your SASE to return this reply because we wouldn’t even invest the cost of postage in this crap.”
I don’t know. What do you think they mean by drivel, exactly? Do you think they might be interested in another manuscript I’ve been shopping around?
Seriously, I’ve never really received a letter like this, I’m just playing up the desperation most of us run into at some point or another when we are clawing our way out of the submissions trench, looking for the first ray of light we’ve seen since being buried alive. How do we get so low …

When Research is Fun

I am not a camper. I don’t mind going without a shower. If the woods are deserted enough, it doesn’t bother me to do my business out in the open. But I can’t sleep worth snot away from home and when I’m camping, I may as well, not even lay down. The nights are painfully long and either miserably cold or stifling hot. If it weren’t for the nighttime, I’d really enjoy camping.

So you can imagine my husband’s surprise when I said, “You know what I want to do for our family vacation this year? Tour ghost towns. Go in search of the ghostliest town we can find and then just camp out in the middle of it.”

“You want to camp?” he asked. Frowning.
“Well, no, I don’t want to camp. But I can’t see how else I can soak up the ghostliness if I don’t,” I replied.
That was all the prodding he needed. He loves online research and suddenly he had a perfect project; to plan the epic Ghost Town Tour.
It really was fantastic. We had all four kids for the first couple of days. We found a beautiful open meadow ne…

Three Times A Charm with Elaine Westley

Three Times a Charm is a weekly feature that spotlights authors, illustrators, bloggers, agents, editors or promoters from the publishing industry.
This week author, Elaine Westley, joins us. Elaine, tell us about you.
Even as a kid I loved to make up stories, but knowing it wouldn’t be easy to earn a living as an author (and eat!), I trained as a journalist instead. Jobs in papers, radio and PR followed and then, after a move from the UK to Australia, various roles on various magazines took me from sub-editing, to deputy editing.
And all the time I was writing – fiction, fiction and more fiction – anything from love stories to crime to teen romances, and a mix of all three! It’s true as well, the more you write the better you get. Whilst my pile of rejection letters grew (some of them really quite nice), the acceptances started to come too, and soon I had a steady stream of stories in magazines in Australia and the UK.
My first foray into books came with stories in Devils, Demons a…

World of Ink Tour with Sands Hetherington

Night Buddies and the Pineapple Cheesecake Scareby Sands Hetheringtonis an after lights-out adventure story that will delight young readers and middle graders who relish roller coaster fantasy and fun, filled with unforgettable characters and an astonishing and inventive collection of magical whatchamacallits.
The book is all about the nighttime adventures of a young boy named John, who is not ready to go to sleep, and his friend, a bright red crocodile named Crosley who turns up under John’s bed.
They sneak out of John’s house using Crosley’s “I-ain’t-here-doodad” which makes them invisible to John’s parents. They then embark on an adventure chasing down enemies and cleaning up one mess after another as they solve the earthshaking mystery: who stole all the pineapple cheesecakes from the only factory in the world that makes them!
I recently talked with Sands about some of his life experiences that might have acted as inspiration for his new book.
Kai: What age range is your book for?

Three Times A Charm with Linda Derkez

Three Times a Charm is a weekly feature that spotlights authors, illustrators, bloggers, agents, editors or promoters from the publishing industry.
This week author, Linda Derkez is visiting with us. Welcome to Strands of Thought, Linda. Can you please tell us a little about you?
I’ve always enjoyed writing, especially journaling. The mother of three, I began writing children's stories that would reinforce lessons or values I wanted my children to learn. I’m the author of one previously published children’s book, Caleb's Missing Whisper & Other Stories (currently unavailable). I also co-authored Cody Knows with award-winning author (and sister) Karen Wiesner. I enjoy writing children's stories with my husband and my brother-in-law, David Fielding, who illustrated One Large Peanut Butter Sandwich To Go (just released from Guardian Angel Publishing).
We’d love to hear about your recently released picture books.
Chip’s Sharing Day: Cousin Dorcas is visiting today and Chip…

Three Times A Charm with Kevin J. Doyle

Three Times a Charm is a weekly feature that spotlights authors, illustrators, bloggers, agents, editors or promoters from the publishing industry.
This week author, Kevin Doyle, is visiting with us. Kevin, can you please tell us a little about you?
I live in Kansas and I’m a stay home dad to two awesome kids - a big sis and a lil’ bro. We spend our days reading, playing pretend and dancing to music. As often as I can, I leap into my imagination and look around for stories to write. I like to collect records and jam out to the warm sounds put out by those amazing little vinyl circles. I wish I could play guitar or drums but I can't so instead, I rock with Guitar Hero on the Wii. My fingers have yet to master that tricky orange button. I have always loved video games. And movies too! “Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs”, “Up”, every “Toy Story” and “The Princess Bride” are some of my favorite films which many of you kids may have seen.
Please read more here... http://www.doylekevinj.

INDIEpendence Day Blog Fest

Happy INDIEpendence Day!
I am joining the Indelibles to celebrate indie authors (self-published and small-press) by holding up an example of an outstanding indie work. Like the 25 Indelible authors, I believe amazing works of fiction can be found in indie novels and I want to help you, the reader, make informed choices on your indie purchases.
When I read about the INDIEpendence Day Blog Fest, I had to sign up because I had a specific indie book in mind that I wanted to read, but hadn’t had the time yet to do. What better reason than an INDIE shout out to get my to-be-read list in order and read what’s important (I know, they ALL are, really)
So I bought the Kindle version of Winging It! by Shel Deslisle and took it on vacation with me. First of all, I read Shel’s first book, Dolphin Girl and loved it. The main character had a great voice. Second, I’ve met, Grace, the main character of Winging It! She’s been on my blog and I fell in love with her when she gave the most fun interview I’ve…