Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Blog Tour: Lost Stars by Lisa Selin Davis [Tips for Aspiring Writers]

As part of the blog tour for Lost Stars, I have the author Lisa Selin Davis on the blog with some handy hints and tips for all aspiring writers. But before we get to that, let's find out more about what the book is all about.

A heartbreaking, wryly funny story of love, longing, music and one very special comet

Carrie is lost. And she’s angry at almost everything and everyone. Most of all though, she’s angry at her big sister Ginny. For dying.

Pretty much the only thing that keeps Carrie sane is her music. Even her beloved comet, the faithful friend that she’s been following for years, can’t help her now that her dad has taken away her telescope.

Then she meets Dean. Gorgeous Dean. He’s sitting out on his front step playing guitar early one summer morning – and everything changes forever.

Lost Stars' was published on the 6th October 2016 by Hot Key Books,

Tips for aspiring writers

So you want to be a writer? Well, it ain’t glamorous. It involves sitting by yourself in a room (or sometimes a cafĂ©, or an office, or anywhere that you can balance your laptop on your lap), and typing, typing, typing, then feeling like you’ve written the greatest thing in the world, only to realize, 12 minutes later, that it’s terrible. It not only requires discipline, it requires the ability to navigate a complex web of emotions. That is, unless you are totally even keeled and have 100% confidence in your work. Which, if you do, is a miracle, and you should call me immediately and tell me how to be that way.

So here are some tips for those who want to write and not go nuts.

WRITE. Okay, this seems dumb, but I’ve met a lot of people who talk about the fiction they’re writing, but their fingers haven’t caught up to their mouths. Sit down and type, as much, as often as you can. Just see what kind of words come out.

TAKE A SOCIAL MEDIA BREAK. It’s hard. It’s so hard. Give yourself at least 20 minutes of writing time, away from Instagram, Twitter, SnapChat, Facebook, and whatever app just came out three seconds ago that I haven’t heard of yet. Let distractions fall away, for as long as you can.

GET READERS, OR A WRITERS’ GROUP. You may just want people to tell you that your work is brilliant, but if you actually want your writing to be better, find some people who give you good feedback, and bake them cookies or take them out for pizza, or otherwise find some way to make them want to read and critique your work. I am so dependent on my writers’ group. Couldn’t live without ‘em.

TURN OFF THE VOICES OF DOUBT. As you’re writing, you may hear voices—not of the characters you create (those are the good kinds of voices), but of doubt: no one will like this. It’ll never get published. I’m no good. FORGET THEM. Do whatever you have to to shut them up: turn on music. Hum. Tell them to take a hike. Type faster. The voices of doubt do not need to be heard!

PREPARE YOURSELF FOR REJECTION. Oh, this sounds so negative. Sorry. There are some people who write and it gets published and they’re showered with public affection and win awards and make money and keep writing and life is good and easy. I don’t know those people, but apparently there are some. For the rest of us,

FOLLOW THROUGH. Writing is about seeing things through, getting to the end of the sentence, the paragraph, the page, the chapter, the book. Keep typing until you get to the end. Then go back to the beginning.

REVISE, REVISE, REVISE. See #6. After you think you’ve done, start again. Print out your work. Read it aloud to yourself. Sometimes you may even type the whole thing back in again.

CONGRATULATE YOURSELF. Did you write something? For real? Feel proud. Then go back and start the process again.

photo by Dave Bigler
About the author
Lisa Selin Davis is originally from Saratoga Springs, N.Y., where she spent summers playing and listening to music with her (older) friends and riding her bike.

She has written articles for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine and many other publications. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two kids, and a very old cat.

website - twitter

Monday, 17 October 2016

Todd Fahnestock's "The Wishing World" Virtual Tour

Today, as part of The Wishing World virtual tour, I have author Todd Fahnestock on the blog to answer some questions.

But before we get to them, let's learn more about the book itself.

Title: The Wishing World
Author: Todd Fahnstock
Genre: Fantasy
Publication Date: 25th October 2016

In the Wishing World, dreams are real. You can transform into your own hero, find wild and whimsical friends, and wield power as great as your imagination. But Lorelei doesn't know about any of that. All she knows is that a monster took her family.

It happened during a camping trip one year ago. Hiding inside the tent, she saw shadows, tentacles and a strange creature. By the time she got up the courage to crawl outside, the monster--and Lorelei's mom, dad, and brother--were gone.

Lorelei is determined to find her family. When she accidentally breaks into the Wishing World, she discovers a way. It's a land more wonderful than she could have imagined, a land of talking griffons, water princesses, and cities made of sand, where Lorelei is a Doolivanti--a wish-maker--who can write her dreams into existence.

There's only one problem: the monster is a Doolivanti, too. What he wishes also comes true, and he's determined to shove Lorelei out, keep her family, and make the whole Wishing World his. To save them, Lorelei must find the courage to face him, or her next wish may be her last.

Sunday, 16 October 2016

The Sunday Post (83)

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news, to recap the past week on my blog, showcase books and things we have received.


Thursday, 13 October 2016

Book Review: Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman & Illustrated by Chris Riddell

Title: Odd and the Frost Giants
Author: Neil Gaiman
Author Info: Website|Journal|Facebook|Twitter
Illustrator: Chris Riddell
Genre: Fantasy, fiction
Source: Publisher
Publisher: Bloomsbury Children's
Publication Date: 8th September 2016
Rating: 5 stars

Tell Me About It
A thrilling, wintry Nordic epic from the truly magical combination of author Neil Gaiman and illustrator Chris Riddell, weaving a tale of legend, magic and adventure which will grip and enchant readers from beginning to end.

Odd, a young Viking boy, is left fatherless following a raid and in his icy, ancient world there is no mercy for an unlucky soul with a crushed foot and no one to protect him. Fleeing to the woods, Odd stumbles upon and releases a trapped bear . and then Odd's destiny begins to change. The eagle, bear and fox Odd encounters are Norse gods, trapped in animal form by the evil frost giants who have conquered Asgard, the city of the gods. Now our hero must reclaim Thor's hammer, outwit the frost giants and release the gods .

This rich and layered tale of courage is told with humour and in breathtaking style by two creators at the height of their powers: from the author of modern classics such as American Gods, Coraline and The Sleeper and the Spindle, Odd and the Frost Giants will leave you spellbound. Lavishly produced and packed with Chris Riddell's glorious illustration enhanced with metallic ink, this is a spectacular and magical gift.

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Book review: The Sight [Devil's Isle #2] by Chloe Neill

Title: The Sight
Author: Chloe Neill
Author Info: Website|Blog|Facebook|Twitter
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal
Series: Devil's Isle #2
Source: Publisher
Publisher: Gollancz
Publication Date: 18th August 2016
Rating: 5 stars

Tell Me About It
The paranormal war that engulfed New Orleans seven years ago is over. But the battle for the city is just beginning . . .

Claire Connolly is a Sensitive, infected with magic when the Veil that divides humanity from the world beyond fell. Magic can easily consume and destroy a Sensitive, and if Claire’s secret is discovered she’ll be locked into the walled district of Devil’s Isle along with every other Paranormal left in the city.

Bounty hunter Liam Quinn discovered Claire’s secret, but refused to turn her in. Together they saved New Orleans from the resurgence of magic that nearly destroyed it. But now a dangerous cult is on the rise, and it will take both Claire and Liam—and magical allies within Devil’s Isle’s towering walls—to defeat the occult threat before magic corrupts them both...
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