Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Meeting SuperHeroes at an author visit.

Thursday I met some wonderful students along with Media Specialist, Chris Prince, at the Whitworth-Buchanan Middle School in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

In the library, I was greeted with a banner and my book’s name on the Lego Wall! I heard the Lego guitar was hard to make.

I started by greeting each student and handing them a SuperHero themed playing card as they entered.
My presentation was all about focus and teamwork as it relates becoming a published author.

I opened my presentation with a magic trick asking all the students to focus on a volunteer and the card he had selected. I asked the volunteer to focus on his freely selected card as he held the box of cards above his head. When everyone focused, the chosen card ascended from the box like magic.

I continued with my story about how my own lack of focus in my school days left me at a disadvantage. Especially when I decided I wanted to become a writer. It took years for my SuperHero to arrive and tell me that instead of leaving my dream on a shelf of becoming a writer, I should do something about it and become a writer. My wife is that Hero.

One grammar course and a writing course later, along with conferences, workshops, books on the craft, focus, and teamwork with others, I was on my way.

The first time my SuperHero slide appeared in my presentation she was preceded with my catchphrase, “Whoosh!” After that, every time I would cup my hand at my ear, the group would respond with and audible, “Whoosh!” and my superhero would show up again.

I illustrated teamwork with another magic effect and the help of eight other students.

I concluded by reminding the students they each have SuperHeroes in their lives they may not know about. Those heroes include teachers, family, friends, and the adults around them. I also reminded them that they are each SuperHeroes. Within themselves they each have the power to make their own dreams come true.

I had a blast, and think the students had fun too. After questions about my book, and the writing/publishing process, I think every student stood in line to have me sign those SuperHero cards. (I signed a few books too!)

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

SE-YA Book Fest!

 This is where I'll be taking Blues Bones Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
One school visit, two panels, and lots of YA and MG readers.
This Leap author is excited!

Young Adult Book Con Returns to Rutherford Co.

MURFREESBORO, Tenn., Nov. 1, 2016 – A free, one-of-a-kind book convention will connect area teens and the general public to authors of young adult literature with its return to Murfreesboro March 10-11, 2017.

Now in its second year, the Southeastern Young Adult Book Festival is being organized by a group of Rutherford County school librarians, with the goal of promoting literacy in young adults and thereby advancing education in the community. Last year, nearly 2,000 people attended the event, including students from 40 Tennessee middle and high schools and visitors from 12 states.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Rose Glen Literary Festival!

Come join the fun in Sevierville Tennessee on February 25th!

I will be signing my book, Blues Bones, at the Rose Glen Literary Festival in Sevierville Tennessee. Come meet authors and attend lectures and workshops! All the programs are free except for the luncheon and it's only $20 per person.

Check out the links below. Hope to see you there!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Oops! Wrong File.

Editing the wrong file!

This is a tip from my writing presentation, “Taming Technology.”

I love to revise and edit. The first draft is the hard part for me.

When I revise, I end up with multiple versions. I give each one a number at the end of the file so I can keep track of the newest version. An example,“My Story 43. doc.” I also save all those old files just in case. Imagine my shock when I discovered I was revising the wrong file one day. All that work on the wrong version! Imagine my shock when I did it again! I finally figured out how to avoid this.

My solution? Color!

It’s simple. Now every time I save a file for the last time I change the page color of the whole file. In Word, simply go to the Page Layout tab, click on Page Color, and choose your favorite color. I use a light blue. Now when I look back at an old file to see my original words, I know not to revise on that version. It works.

I also use this on files returned from editors, beta readers, and critique partners. I open both files side by side on the computer screen or on a second monitor, depending on where I am working, and know which file to work on.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Winner's Circle!


I am excited to be included in the Winner's Circle. Here is a link to the interview on the Institute of Children's Literature's site.


Interview with Rick Starkey.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Busy, busy, busy.


We are a part of the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Community craft show at the Gatlinburg Convention Center. It started Nov. 22 and ends on Dec. 4. We are carving our bears on the main street in front of the convention center so we have to pack up everything each evening and bring it back each morning. It makes for long days, but the show is a lot of fun.

I don’t have as much time for physical writing during the show, I am able to brainstorm a writing project I have been working on.

That’s what I’m up to. How about you?

Friday, October 28, 2016

Skid by Tracey Martin

Sometimes when you lose control, you find yourself.

It took Gabrielle ten seconds to skid on black ice.
Ten seconds to wreck her car and her back.
Ten seconds to ruin her Olympic dreams.
Ten seconds to kill her younger sister.

Eight months later, Gabrielle's haunted by guilt, dependent on drugs to numb her pain and alcohol to numb her brain. Then Erik Tennyson crashes into her. Soon Gabrielle's immersed in the ghostly legend surrounding the Tennyson orchard, convinced that her sister is linked to its mysterious origins.

If she can just discover the truth, maybe she can put her sister's spirit to rest.

But as Gabrielle grows closer to Erik, her world skids out of control once more. Instead of appeasing the dead, she starts to do the thing she fears most: she remembers how to live.

"SKID is my favorite kind of story, one that acknowledges that life gives us pain and joy, love and sorrow in equal measure. I rooted for Ellie every step of the way!" -Jennifer Mason-Black

About Tracey Martin:
Tracey Martin wanted to be an astronaut, a doctor, and an actor, possibly all at once. Instead, she studied psychology , and that led her to have an epiphany–imaginary people are way more fun than real ones. And so she became a writer. Her books include Another Little Piece of my Heart, the Miss Misery series, and the RedZone dulogy.

She likes her coffee simple, her music epic, and her movies to contain explosions. A city girl at heart, she doesn’t understand how she and her husband ended up living in New Hampshire, but writing keeps her off the mean, small town streets.

Follow Tracey on Twitter and via her website.tracey-martin.com, @TA_Martin

Follow Tracey Martin: Website | Twitter


Friday, October 21, 2016

Avalanche by Denise Jaden Cover Reveal!

When Ellis and Dylan’s resort world and all of their hopes crash – literally – around them, they’ll need to depend on each other to survive.

About Alexandra Diaz:

Denise Jaden is the author of the critically-acclaimed young adult novels Losing Faith, Never Enough, and Foreign Exchange, as well as two nonfiction books for writers: Writing With A Heavy Heart and Fast Fiction. When she’s not writing, she’s usually homeschooling her son (who is also a fast drafter of fiction) or dancing with her Polynesian dance troupe. Find her online on Twitter, Facebook, or on her website at denisejaden.com.

Follow Denise: Facebook | Website | Twitter | Tumblr | Pinterest