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Monthly Archives: August 2012

Flash Fiction Friday 050: Family History by WH Johnson

Welcome to Flash Fiction Friday and the fiftieth piece in this series. This week’s is a 996-worder (to be read / imagined in an Geordie accent) by octogenarian memoirist, non-fiction and fiction author, and interviewee WH ‘Johnnie’ Johnson.

Family History

The flames on Mrs Elstob’s chest always got the blame for what happened. At least as far as Dad was concerned. But he never had a good word to say for her or for her Norman who hadn’t worked since 1928. Whenever Norman complained his leg was giving him gyp, Dad used to say to Mam, “Well, it never lets’m down at openin’ time. He’s at the pub every night at six, leg or no leg.”

But Mam was different. She always saw the good side of people, always wanted to help.

“I’ve never slept a wink all night, hinny,” Mrs Elstob used to tell her. “It’s the flames on me chest.”

And Mam would say, “Oh dear, can I get you somethin’ for it?”

“I can scarcely breathe, missus. There’s no betterness for the flames,” Mrs Elstob would tell her. “Unless you’ve gorra bowl of soup or summick you could let us have.” And then she’d go back into the house, put her head under a towel and snoke up the fumes of Friar’s Balsam.

Not that I knew much about how much the Elstobs scrounged off Mam. I don’t know how she could afford to give anything away. What I do know is that she never let on to Dad. But for me there were more important things in life.

Especially that Wednesday morning in the last week of August when, hard up as they were, Mam and Dad gave me a bike for me birthday. They’d been saving up for it. It wasn’t new but it was beautiful. I rode it every possible minute. On the Friday morning I was still wobbling about. Then, as if by magic, I mastered it. On the Saturday I was riding with no hands. Course, our Maureen was out in the back lane, spying on me.

“I’ll tell if you don’t use both hands,” she kept saying.

At about half-past ten on the Sunday morning, she was there again.

“You’ll have an accident on that bicycle,” she said in her best Convent School voice. “Anyway, you have to be back here in twenty minutes.”

“Why?”

“Dad says. He wants you back. Anyway, it should be obvious why.”

It wasn’t obvious to me.

About ten to eleven when I was leaning me bike on the back lane wall, the Elstobs came out of their back door.

“The batteries’ve gone on the wireless,” Norman said. “We’re gannin’ over to listen to yours.”

Then he saw the bike. He hadn’t seen it before but now he was giving it the once-over, inspecting every part like an expert.

Finally he stood up.

“By, lad,” he said, “wonderful, eh?”

Then Mrs Elstob inspected it.

“Ee, it’s lovely, pet,” she said.

Just then, Mam came out into the lane.

“We’re just lookin’ at the bike here,” Norman said. “By, worra lucky bairn.”

Mam blushed with pleasure and then Mrs Elstob cut in.

“Can he gan a message for us?”

Mam hesitated.

“It’ll only take’m a minute on the bike,” Norman said. “Just up to Hardin’s.”

“Aye, Mam,” I said. “It’ll not take a minute.”

“Worra good bairn,” Mrs Elstob said, pushing a coin into me hand. “Just a bottle of Friar’s Boslum, pet.”

She turned to Mam. “Me chest’s somethin’ awful, hinny.”

“And five Woodbines. And a bottle of Newcastle Brown.” Norman was rubbing his hip. Obviously it was giving him gyp.

“Make sharp, then,” Mam said.

Up at the corner shop I was the only customer. But old Harding only went one speed. He rummaged round in a tangle of skipping ropes, bundles of firewood, kippers and bottles of Tizer.

“Friars what?

“Boslum.”

He sniffed.

“Who’s it for?”

I told him.

“Hm.”

At last he found it.

“And five Woods, please.”

“Who for?”

I told him.

He sniffed again but he gave me the tabs.

“I divn’t sell beer to bairns,” he said. But I got it all the same.

Shortly after eleven o’clock I was home.

It was quiet in the kitchen. Dad sat scowling at the wireless. Our Maureen was staring at the wall. Mam said nothing, just handed the things to the Elstobs.

“Very kind,” Mrs Elstob said.

“Much appreciated,” Norman said.

Then suddenly Dad stood up.

“Hold on,” he said. “Just hold on now.”

You could tell he was angry.

“Now, then,” Mam began to say.

“You an’ all, missus,” he said. “Just be quiet.”

I’d never before heard him speak so sharply to her.

“Now,” he shouted, pointing at the Elstobs. “Get out of this house. I’m sick of your hangin’ about here. I don’t want you in here again. ”

And the Elstobs just turned and went out with not one word.

Dad followed them to the top of the stairs.

“Bugger off,” he shouted after them. “And divn’t come back.”

You could’ve heard him in Jarrow.

“The boy should have been here,” he yelled after them, louder than ever. “Thanks to you two, he wasn’t.”

He came in and went to the window, looking down into the backyard. I’d never seen him so angry.

“He should have been here,” he said again.

And I should have been there. Yes, I should. I should have been there with Mam and Dad and Maureen. To hear Chamberlain. At eleven o’clock. Hear him say the words “… and consequently, this country is now at war with Germany…”

Dad wanted me there. He hadn’t said anything beforehand to his eleven-year-old son. But he wanted him there. On that great, terrible occasion. To hear it. To feel history happening.

And that boy would have been there if it hadn’t been for the flames on Mrs Elstob’s chest and Norman’s beer and baccy.

“And that bike,” Mam used to say later. “That was you. If he hadn’t had that bike…”

Ever after Mam still defended the Elstobs though they never came to the house again. Dad, of course, never wavered and never forgave them.

Nobody ever thought of blaming Adolf Hitler.

I asked Johnnie what prompted this piece and he said…

I had sensible, loving parents – not the sensible, loving ones in the story, by the way – who made what I consider to be a major error on the day war broke out. I was eleven years old and out on my bike that Sunday morning and they didn’t call me in to hear the broadcast. I cannot understand it and have always had some sense of resentment that I missed that important historical moment. I can’t work out why this happened: did they think I was too young to understand? Was my father who served in France from 1916 to 1918 somehow unwilling in a curious sense to draw me into this war? Anyway, when I got in they told me that we were at war and then, just at that dramatic moment, the air-raid sirens started wailing. I think that everyone must have thought that the Germans were pretty quick off the mark.

And by the way, I was an only child. Our Maureen is purely imaginary.

I loved it, thank you! 🙂

Johnnie Johnson has been retired since 1988 since which time he has written 25 books including two novels. Most were traditionally published, others, such as the recently published e-travelogue, A VIRGIN IN THE PHILIPPINES, have been self-published. His website is www.johnniejohnson.co.uk.

Johnnie, because he has the original accent, has kindly agreed to record his story for this podcast which will be released on Sunday 2nd December.

***

If you’d like to submit your 1,000-word max. stories for consideration for Flash Fiction Friday take a look here.

The blog interviews will return as normal tomorrow with mystery writer and publishing interviewee Patricia Rockwell – the four hundred and seventy-ninth of my blog interviews with novelists, poets, short story authors, bloggers, biographers, agents, publishers and more. A list of interviewees (blogged and scheduled) can be found here. If you like what you read, please do go and investigate further. And I enjoy hearing from readers of my blog; do either leave a comment on the relevant interview (the interviewees love to hear from you too!) and / or email me.

You can sign up to receive these blog posts daily or weekly so you don’t miss anything… and follow me on Twitter where each new posting is automatically announced. You can also read / download my eBooks and free eShorts at SmashwordsSony Reader StoreBarnes & NobleiTunes BookstoreKobo and Amazon, with more to follow. I have a new forum, friend me on Facebook, like me on Facebook, connect with me on LinkedIn, find me on Tumblr, complete my website’s Contact me page or plain and simple, email me.  I also now have a new blog creation service especially for, but not limited to, writers.

Unfortunately, as I post an interview a day (amongst other things) I can’t review books but I have a feature called ‘Short Story Saturdays’ where I review stories of up to 2,500 words. Alternatively if you have a short story or self-contained novel extract / short chapter (ideally up to 1000 words) that you’d like critiqued and don’t mind me reading it / talking about and critiquing it (I send you the transcription afterwards so you can use the comments or ignore them) 🙂 on my ‘Bailey’s Writing Tips’ podcast, then do email me. They are fortnightly episodes, usually released on Sundays, interweaving the recordings between the red pen sessions with the hints & tips episodes. I am now also looking for poetry for Post-weekend Poetry.

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Posted by on August 31, 2012 in ebooks, short stories, writing

 

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Guest post: A Writer’s Heart by Sandra Humphrey

Tonight’s guest blog post, on the topic of writing as therapy, is brought to you by middle-grade and YA author Sandra Humphrey. You can read Sandra’s previous guest post, about characters, here.

A Writer’s Heart

When you hear a writer say, “I can’t not write,” it’s more than a truism–it’s the truth!

When my friend Tess is angry, she scrubs the kitchen floor or shops the mall till she drops. What do I do? I write.

When my friend Jeanette is depressed, she raids the fridge and binges big-time. What do I do? I write.

Writing is more than a way of life for us–it IS our life.  We write when we’re high on the mountaintops, and we write when we’re making our tortuous way through the valleys.

When my mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, what did I do?  I wrote a book for her–I Want to LIVE until I Die!. It was a book about life and about hope. In my heart of hearts, I knew she’d never read it, but it was something I had do–because I’m a writer.

When I developed breast cancer, my immediate reaction was not to find out more about cancer treatments (that came much later) but rather a need to journal. So the first thing I did was to go out and buy a notebook.

As it turned out, I did not have to journal alone. Our granddaughter who was ten at the time, journaled right along with me, and we ended up writing a children’s book together: A Family Affair.

The book is written from her viewpoint and in her words, and it is filled with humor because we want the children who read our book to laugh a little. Maybe even a lot.

As a clinical psychologist for over thirty-one years, the patients who probably touched me the most (and most painfully) were those who cut and burned themselves in order to “feel better.”

They’d never learned how to deal with psychological pain and felt more comfortable dealing with physical pain. For them, the physical pain was a temporary respite from their psychological pain.

After I retired, the memories of those young patients’ suffering were still painfully and permanently etched in my heart, so I wrote Making Bad Stuff Good! in an effort to help children learn some coping skills and hopefully how to deal with psychological pain early on before they ended up needing the services of a psychotherapist.

My young adult novel Letters from Camp is brimming over with characters reminiscent of my young patients. There’s Jennifer the anorexic, Rachel the cutter, Andrea the budding hypochondriac, and Kim with all her self-image problems.

These characters became so real to me and so much a part of my life that I would find the camp director, Mrs. A, at my breakfast table shoveling sugar into her tea or rummaging through my fridge, looking for avocados for her guacamole dip.

And I even ran into Cynthia Winston, the villain of the piece, right in my own bathroom–usurping the bathroom mirror while she  applied her eye make-up. It seemed for a while that I saw Cynthia whenever I passed any mirror. She was always there, preening and giving me her little Mona Lisa half-smile.

I wrote my middle-grade chapter book Rules of the Game when I began receiving weekly letters from a young girl in Chicago, whose school I had visited. As she told me how the other girls in her class taunted and tormented her, I knew I had to write about her pain.

The dedication page reads:

To Annie and young people everywhere who every day meet their challenges with personal integrity and courage.

Annie wrote back from Chicago telling me it “was the best book ever,” and that she keeps it under her pillow. Who could ask for a better review than that!

Then there was the confirmation class I led for so many years. The questions they asked during our group discussions were good questions, and those same questions ended up in my book Keepin’ It Real: A Young Teen Talks With God.

I wrote Dare to Dream!: 25  Extraordinary Lives and They Stood Alone!: 25 Men and Women Who Made a Difference to encourage kids to not only have a dream but to also have the necessary perseverance to attain their dream.

To me strong character is more important than ever as society’s values change and role models are transient and questionable at best. That’s why I wrote the three books in my What Would You Do? series–to get kids thinking and talking about moral choices long before they actually encounter these difficult moral situations in real life.

Hot Issues, Cool Choices: Facing Bullies, Peer Pressure, Popularity, and Put-Downs is a collection of 26 stories depicting various forms of bullying with thought questions following each story and all the stories are based on true experiences students shared with me during my school visits. The book is dedicated to a 12-year-old boy who took his own life as a result of being bullied and these were all stories that needed to be told!

Some of my books may never find actual publishing homes, but as long as they find a home in someone’s heart, what more can I ask?

After all, isn’t that why we write? To touch someone and give them something they need at the time–hope or encouragement or maybe just a good laugh.

We are all in our own way encouragers. And what could be more noble a mission than that!

HAPPY WRITING!

Hear, hear. Thank you, Sandy!

Sandra McLeod Humphrey is a retired clinical psychologist, a character education consultant, and an award-winning author of eight middle-grade and young adult books.  She’s also the recipient of the National Character Education Center’s Award for Exemplary Leadership in Ethics Education (2000) and the 2005 Helen Keating Ott Award for Outstanding Contribution to Children’s Literature.

You can learn more about her books by visiting her website at www.kidscandoit.com. Connect with Sandy at:

FB Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/KidsCanDoIt2
Google+ = https://plus.google.com
Klout: http://klout.com/#/Sandra305
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/sandra-humphrey-sandra305/a/b4/441
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/sandra305
Twitter: http://twitter.com/Sandra305
Website: http://www.kidscandoit.com
YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/SandraMHum/videos

***

If you would like to write a writing-related guest post for my blog then feel free to email me with an outline of what you would like to write about. If it’s writing-related then it’s highly likely I’d email back and say “yes please”.

The blog interviews return as normal tomorrow morning with travel writer Thirza Vallois – the four hundred and seventy-eighth of my blog interviews with novelists, poets, short story authors, bloggers, autobiographers and more. A list of interviewees (blogged and scheduled) can be found here. If you like what you read, please do go and investigate further. And I enjoy hearing from readers of my blog; do either leave a comment on the relevant interview (the interviewees love to hear from you too!) and / or email me.

You can sign up to receive these blog posts daily or weekly so you don’t miss anything… and follow me on Twitter where each new posting is automatically announced. You can also read / download my eBooks and free eShorts at SmashwordsSony Reader StoreBarnes & NobleiTunes BookstoreKobo and Amazon, with more to follow. I have a new forum, friend me on Facebook, like me on Facebook, connect with me on LinkedIn, find me on Tumblr, complete my website’s Contact me page or plain and simple, email me.  I also now have a new blog creation service especially for, but not limited to, writers.

Unfortunately, as I post an interview a day (amongst other things) I can’t review books but I have a feature called ‘Short Story Saturdays’ where I review stories of up to 2,500 words. Alternatively if you have a short story or self-contained novel extract / short chapter (ideally up to 1000 words) that you’d like critiqued and don’t mind me reading it / talking about and critiquing it (I send you the transcription afterwards so you can use the comments or ignore them) 🙂 on my ‘Bailey’s Writing Tips’ podcast, then do email me. They are fortnightly episodes, usually released on Sundays, interweaving the recordings between the red pen sessions with the hints & tips episodes. I am now also looking for flash fiction (<1000 words) for Flash Fiction Fridays and poetry for Post-weekend Poetry.

 

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Author Spotlight no.115 – Debbie Dadey

Complementing my daily blog interviews, today’s Author Spotlight, the one hundred and fifteenth, is of children’s author and novelist Debbie Dadey.

Debbie Dadey is a former teacher and librarian.  Her passion is writing books for reluctant grade school readers.  With ten series and forty-seven million copies of her 151 books in print, titles like Slime Wars continue to enchant boys and girls alike.  Debbie’s first series, which she co-authored with Marcia Jones, The Adventures of the Bailey School Kids, is one of Scholastic’s top three best-selling series.  Her newest series, Mermaid Tales with Simon and Schuster, gives students a chance to enjoy a fun story while learning about the ocean and its inhabitants. The first two titles are Trouble at Trident Academy and Battle of the Best Friends.  A Whale of a Tale will be out soon.

And now from the author herself:

I started my writing career by playing hot potato with a friend.  We would pass the story back and forth like a game and meld our two styles together to form a third.  Many people would ask us, “How do you write stories together?”

Our response was always, “How do you write stories by yourself?”  We happily collaborated on almost one hundred children’s books, starting with The Adventures of the Bailey School Kids series.  Our first book was Vampires Don’t Wear Polka Dots.  It was an individual book that developed into a series.  Working with my writing partner, Marcia Thornton Jones, gave me the courage and confidence to try writing on my own.  Something my father, Voline Gibson, said also helped me.  He said, “Debbie, if other people can write books then so can you.”  I decided he was right.  Why couldn’t I?  It was easy to say, but hard to put into action.

I don’t know about other authors, but whenever I start a new story I am very nervous.  Every bad thought enters my head.  “Can I really do this?”  “What am I thinking?” To put all those thoughts out of my mind, I sneak up on my story by writing an outline. Coming up with a plan makes me forget my doubting side and gets me very excited about creating the story.   It also breaks the sometimes overwhelming task up into manageable chunks.

For A Whale of a Tale, book three in the Mermaid Tales series, I did what I do with every story.  Before I even started my outline, I did research.  For this particular story, I needed to study and find out everything I could about whales.  I watched videos and interviewed someone who had actually been in the water alongside humpbacks.   That research helped make my outline richer and gave me fun tidbits to put into the plot.  I tried not to insert an overwhelming amount of facts into my fiction, but just enough to make it more interesting.

Not only have the Mermaid Tail books given me a chance to channel my inner girl for reluctant readers, it’s also given me a wonderful opportunity to write about ocean ecology and marine life.  I’m having a great time including a glossary of sea creatures at the end of every book.  The five main merkids in the story also share reports of what they’ve learned.  Kiki, a mermaid from Asia, is particularly concerned with protecting her habitat.  The glossary is also included on the new mermaid section of my website, www.debbiedadey.com.  I’m also on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

***

The blog interviews will return as normal tomorrow with multi-genre author Micki Peluso – the four hundred and seventy-seventh of my blog interviews with novelists, poets, short story authors, biographers, agents, publishers and more. A list of interviewees (blogged and scheduled) can be found here. If you like what you read, please do go and investigate further. And I enjoy hearing from readers of my blog; do either leave a comment on the relevant interview (the interviewees love to hear from you too!) and / or email me.

You can sign up to receive these blog posts daily or weekly so you don’t miss anything… and follow me on Twitter where each new posting is automatically announced. You can also read / download my eBooks and free eShorts at SmashwordsSony Reader StoreBarnes & NobleiTunes BookstoreKobo and Amazon, with more to follow. I have a new forum, friend me on Facebook, like me on Facebook, connect with me on LinkedIn, find me on Tumblr, complete my website’s Contact me page or plain and simple, email me.  I also now have a new blog creation service especially for, but not limited to, writers.

Unfortunately, as I post an interview a day (amongst other things) I can’t review books but I have a feature called ‘Short Story Saturdays’ where I review stories of up to 2,500 words. Alternatively if you have a short story or self-contained novel extract / short chapter (ideally up to 1000 words) that you’d like critiqued and don’t mind me reading it / talking about and critiquing it (I send you the transcription afterwards so you can use the comments or ignore them) 🙂 on my ‘Bailey’s Writing Tips’ podcast, then do email me. They are fortnightly episodes, usually released on Sundays, interweaving the recordings between the red pen sessions with the hints & tips episodes. I am now also looking for flash fiction (<1000 words) for Flash Fiction Fridays and poetry for Post-weekend Poetry.

 

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Guest post: Point of view by Rosemary McCracken

Tonight’s guest blog post, on the topic of point of view is brought to you by journalist, short story author and mystery novelist Rosemary McCracken.

Before you keyboard your opening sentence, you will need to decide on what point of view your novel will take. I didn’t do this when I began Safe Harbor. I plunged into the story, writing it down from the POV of a third-person narrator. For some vague reason, I felt that the use of a first person narrator was way too prevalent in mystery novels, especially those by North American writers. The late Robert B. Parker used it in his Spenser series. Janet Evanovich, Sue Grafton and Sara Paretsky use it. I must say that I like the works of Parker, Evanovich, Grafton and Paretsky, but I was determined to be different.

I completed the first drafts of Safe Harbor in third person, and early in 2009 I entered the manuscript in Britain’s Crime Writers’ Association’s Debut Dagger competition, a contest open to English-language writers around the world who haven’t had a novel published. The CWA never got back to me, which meant, in a competition that attracts hundreds of entries, that I hadn’t made its shortlist.

I went back to Safe Harbor and applied more polish. Later that year, veteran Canadian crime writer Gail Bowen was writer-in-residence at the Toronto Reference Library and she read the first part of the manuscript. “This book needs to be written in the first person,” she said when we met for our discussion. “We need to know what Pat Tierney is thinking and feeling every step along the way.”

I felt like the carpet had been pulled out from under my feet. Safe Harbor is a murder mystery, but it’s also the story of Pat’s personal journey of coming to terms with her husband’s infidelity and getting on with her life. The story’s major events – Jude’s murder and the danger Tommy is in – affect Pat deeply because of her personal involvement in them. Jude was Michael’s mistress. Tommy is Michael’s son and a living reminder of his affair. I needed to get deeper into Pat’s head. And the best way to do that was to let her tell the story.

I rewrote the book in the first person. I knew Pat intimately, so I felt completely comfortable jumping into her shoes. And right from the start, I knew I’d made right choice. I felt an energy emanating from the story that hadn’t been there before. I showed several chapters to members of my writers’ group, and they agreed.

Safe Harbor had been written in the limited third person, a form of narration that lets the reader see events from the POV of a single character or of a few characters at the most. The focal characters in the original drafts were Pat and, to a lesser extent, Farah Alwan, her young housekeeper. Now with Pat as the book’s narrator, Farah’s role is much diminished. It’s limited to what Pat can tell us about her.

Early the next year, I entered the rewrite in the 2010 Debut Dagger competition. Same title (at that time it was Safe Harbour, with the Canadian and British spelling of Harbour; it was changed to the American spelling when the novel was released by Imajin Books), same story line as my previous submission, but this time told in the first person. That year Safe Harbor emerged as one of 11 novels – out of about 1,100 submissions from around the world – that were shortlisted for the award. I was astonished…and overjoyed. Being on that shortlist has been one of the highlights of my life.

I believe the intimacy created by the first-person narrator made all the difference in attracting the judges’ attention. I’ve learned that every standalone novel and every series demands a certain point of view, depending how far the writer needs to get inside certain characters’ heads. If you’re uncertain which to use at the outset, I suggest you write versions of your opening chapters from different points of view and settle on the one that is most comfortable for you as a writer and the most effective for your story.

Thank you, Rosemary, and congratulations!

Born and raised in Montreal, Rosemary McCracken has worked on newspapers across Canada as a reporter, arts writer and reviewer, and editor. She is now a Toronto-based freelance journalist, specializing in personal finance and the financial services industry.

Rosemary’s short fiction has been published by Room of One’s Own Press and Kaleidoscope Books. Her first mystery novel, Safe Harbor, was shortlisted for Britain’s Crime Writers’ Association’s Debut Dagger Award in 2010. It was released by Imajin Books this spring, and is available as an ebook and a paperback on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk. Visit Rosemary on her website and her blog.

Synopsis, Safe Harbor

Safe Harbor opens when a frightened woman barges into financial planner Pat Tierney’s office with a shocking request: “Look after my boy; he’s your late husband’s son.” The next day the woman is murdered and police say the seven-year-old may be the killer’s next target. In a desperate race to protect Tommy, Pat’s searches for the truth and uncovers a deadly scheme involving illegal immigrants, trafficking in human body parts and money laundering.

***

If you would like to write a writing-related guest post for my blog then feel free to email me with an outline of what you would like to write about. If it’s writing-related then it’s highly likely I’d email back and say “yes please”.

The blog interviews return as normal tomorrow morning with non-fiction author Marlene Caroselli – the four hundred and seventy-sixth of my blog interviews with novelists, poets, short story authors, bloggers, autobiographers and more. A list of interviewees (blogged and scheduled) can be found here. If you like what you read, please do go and investigate further. And I enjoy hearing from readers of my blog; do either leave a comment on the relevant interview (the interviewees love to hear from you too!) and / or email me.

You can sign up to receive these blog posts daily or weekly so you don’t miss anything… and follow me on Twitter where each new posting is automatically announced. You can also read / download my eBooks and free eShorts at SmashwordsSony Reader StoreBarnes & NobleiTunes BookstoreKobo and Amazon, with more to follow. I have a new forum, friend me on Facebook, like me on Facebook, connect with me on LinkedIn, find me on Tumblr, complete my website’s Contact me page or plain and simple, email me. I also now have a new blog creation service especially for, but not limited to, writers.

Unfortunately, as I post an interview a day (amongst other things) I can’t review books but I have a feature called ‘Short Story Saturdays’ where I review stories of up to 2,500 words. Alternatively if you have a short story or self-contained novel extract / short chapter (ideally up to 1000 words) that you’d like critiqued and don’t mind me reading it / talking about and critiquing it (I send you the transcription afterwards so you can use the comments or ignore them) 🙂 on my ‘Bailey’s Writing Tips’ podcast, then do email me. They are fortnightly episodes, usually released on Sundays, interweaving the recordings between the red pen sessions with the hints & tips episodes. I am now also looking for flash fiction (<1000 words) for Flash Fiction Fridays and poetry for Post-weekend Poetry.

 
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Posted by on August 28, 2012 in ebooks, ideas, novels, tips, viewpoints, writing

 

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