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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

bookshelves: favorites

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.

images

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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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Jessica Wilson’s Reviews

 > The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

 

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
by Mark TwainGeorge Eliot (Afterword)

3252247

Jessica Wilson‘s review

Mar 01, 14  ·  edit
Read from February 21 to March 01, 2014
A great adventure after another. Huck surprises you with his willingness of lying to protect a friend. The bonds of friendship as surpassed with Huck and Jim. In the end this classic novel is a part of history and culture that defines us as a country and of the type of people we are.

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Libraries seem to be an institute that was going the way of the dinosaur.  But now they have e-books for their members to borrow.  This has to be the saving grace that keeps them in  business by keeping with the times.  For those who do not use the library then how do you read without breaking the bank?  I must read more than twenty books in six months.  By the end of the year I am getting close to fifty books read.

The downfall of e-books from the library is the small amount of selection of books.  They do not have all the books on your list you are wanting to check out.  So now what?  You could wait and see if they can order it for you.  Or if you can’t wait, then buy the e-book through Amazon or Nook, whichever one is your preference.

A lot of companies will be disappearing by the end of 2014.  Those that made the list are: JC Penny and Barnes and Nobles Nook ( http://247wallst.com/special-report/2013/05/23/ten-brands-that-will-disappear-in-2014/2/ ).  It is daunting to see some of the companies go but we have seen them struggle for too long.

If you know of another business on it’s last leg share it here.  There have been many publishing companies merging with other companies but this seems to make good bedfellows.  No big publishing companies are even hinting of shutting their doors.  Thank goodness!

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With the changes in the publishing industry to accommodate writers, who are breaking in whether through traditional or e-pub, there is a wave of new things to cover.

Amazon +1 vs. Safari

Amazon +1 vs. Safari (Photo credit: gcorrin)

First there are new genres.

  • NA – stands for New Adult books.  This is for young adults who have left their parents house and are trying to make it in the world on their own.  A lot of the stories are focused around college students or young adults in the working world.  Some new NA books that are hot grabs are Jamie McGuire’s Beautiful Disaster.  Check out USA Today’s article about this genre and the authors making headlines at http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/books/2013/04/15/new-adult-genre-is-the-hottest-category-in-book-publishing/2022707/ . ( I just recently found out about this genre. )
  • Metaphysical Fiction – It is not really a new genre but more of a sub-category of fiction writing, whether it is for YA, MG or adult books.  This subject covers the mixture of some fantasy with real world phenomenon and or magic.  You can read a better description of what this category covers at Karen M. Rider’s blog at http://www.karenmrider.com/what-is-metaphysical-fiction/ .  She goes over the category really well along with visionary fiction.  The post is a great read.

The new writing styles have been put into these new categories to help readers find these books.  The changes seem minuscule and sure there are categories above I left out.  But you can find them on your own by visiting Amazon or Goodreads and searching through the many categories.

So what are the headaches to come with these changes.

  • Readers will have that many more choices to choose from.
  • Older books will have to be re-categorized to accommodate the new genres.

But here is the plus side to all this for authors out there.  We can now have our works more specifically categorized.  Which in turn will help all those readers out there who know what they are looking for in a good book.

So read on, fellow book enthusiast.  And may the writers imagination be forever endless.

 

Barnes & Noble eReader Software Coming to iPad

Barnes & Noble eReader Software Coming to iPad (Photo credit: John Federico)

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C201010-Best-Schools-lead

I do have to say that I am as excited as my young kids that school is starting again. The smell of crayons, glue, new pencils, erasers and fresh paper has me all bubbly inside. With the new classes comes new challenges of meeting higher expectations. For some students the challenge is taken head on. But for others the mountain top looks unreachable. So how do you prepare students for the new school year?Sorry I am not giving out any answers to this dilemma because for everyone who is a parent knows that people deal with problems differently and not one answer is always right. So good luck to all the parents out there and bring on the quiet house!

Backpack

With a quiet house comes many hours of great writing.  Sitting at my desk uninterrupted writing and reading will be heaven.  Some authors say they write with any kind of distractions but silence is my best friend.  If the silence becomes a little much I turn on my play list.  I love to play my music list on iTunes and get carried away in a story.

How do you like to get lost in your writing?

iTunes Showtime

iTunes Showtime (Photo credit: ☃)

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