pameladlloyd: Happy Bear by Boynton, "Oh, What a Great Moment!" (What a Great Moment!)
My friend, the terrific author Janni Lee Simner [identity profile], is offering prizes in connection with the paperback release of her YA novel Faerie Winter.

Faerie Winter novel cover

Faerie Winter is the sequel to Jannie's novel Bones of Faerie. These are the first two books in her Bones of Faerie trilogy. Bones of Faerie is a great book with one of the best opening chapters I've ever had the pleasure to read. While I haven't yet read Faerie Winter, I'm sure it meets the same high standards as the first in the series. Janni Lee Simner's Bones of Faerie series has received high praise from many distinguished authors and reviewers.

I highly recommend you read these books.

The Rules (as posted at

- Mention in a blog post, fb post, tweet, tumblr, and/or anywhere else online and publicly visible that Faerie Winter comes out in paperback on April 10 and that it's the sequel to Bones of Faerie (or, alternately, book 2 in the Bones of Faerie trilogy). If you want to say something more about either of the Faerie books, that'd be lovely, though not required.

- Link to the Faerie Winter website

- Come back to [Janni's] post and link to the places you did both of the above

- (optional, for blog entries) Copy these rules (including this one :-)) to your post, and encourage your readers to enter this contest by doing all of the above in turn, and telling them to then to come back to your blog and link to their mention or mentions

- Deadline is April 20 (at midnight Pacific Daylight Time) and [Janni will] ship anywhere.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (lady with cup)
As have many of my writer friends, I've examined the pros and cons of self-publishing. The publishing industry is in flux, and this means that there are new challenges and opportunities for writers. I think that many of us struggle with the idea that, if we could just figure it out, we could determine the "best" way to get our work published.

But the reality is that there is no more one best way to publication than there is one best way to write.

All that said, Amanda Hocking, USA Today best-selling author, who has achieved her success through self-publishing, shares her thoughts on the subject in her blog post, "Some Things That Need to Be Said ". It's well worth reading.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (library stairs)
My Dad's Saturday routine includes going to the Westside branch of the El Paso Public Library, where he enjoys researching investments. This routine had been interrupted by my brother's death, but last Saturday we were able to follow the routine. The last time I went to the library with him, probably twenty years ago, his research was conducted with print materials, but now he logs onto Value Line, to which the library has a subscription. I suspect, but don't know for sure, that he was reading a print version of Value Line two decades ago.

Wanting access to the computers, as well as to the books, I spoke with one of the librarians about my situation and was granted a library card, even though I didn't have any local IDs. Hooray! for a system that works on a human basis and doesn't throw bureaucratic rules in the way.

The first thing I did with my new card was to sign up for a computer and, once I'd dealt with my email, to visit LiveJournal. My Saturday post (sorry, currently friends-locked) was made from the library. When my hour was up, all too quickly, I wandered the shelves in search of new reading material, having completed everything I brought with me, either on the train trip here, or in the all-too-limited bedtime reading I manage before I fall asleep. I could have perused the home library, but there's something alluring about a public library whose shelves you haven't wandered in decades.

I wound up checking out two books. The first was White Night by Jim Butcher. Jim Butcher and his wife, Shannon, will be co-Guests of Honor at TusCon, this year, so this seemed like a good time to reacquaint myself with his work. Besides, my eldest son and a number of his friends are huge Dresden Files fans, and my son has been at me for years to read more of his work. (I'd only read the first in the Dresden Files series, Storm Front, and while it was fun enough I hadn't kept up with the series. I enjoyed White Night and was pleasantly surprised to discover that I'd retained enough of the first book that there was a sense of continuity. I was also pleased that I didn't feel that picking up a book mid-series was a problem, as any references to prior events were handled so that they left me neither confused, nor feeling that the story had been interrupted for an infodump of the backstory. I read the first half of the book that evening, in the living room of some of my dad's friends, while he and they played Bridge. Most of the rest of it I finished Sunday morning, while my dad slept in. I really needed the relaxation and I was very grateful to have something to keep me happily occupied while I relaxed.

The other book I picked up was the second edition of The Annotated Wizard of Oz. (The cover isn't as decorated as the one on GoogleBooks, but it's still a very attractive book.) I've been enjoying it immensely, although I doubt I'll finish it before I return to Tucson.

In the Introduction—which may just be the longest introduction I've ever read, finishing on page cii (102) and including a brief biography of Baum, a history of his many publications with an emphasis on the Oz books, and a discussion of criticism of the Oz books— the editor Michael Patrick Hearn writes, "Of course, fairy tales and especially American fairy tales are not for everyone, for, as E. M. Forster wrote, 'Fantasy asks us to pay something extra.'"[Emphasis ] [1], [2].

As a reader and writer of fantasy, I found that line intriguing. Intriguing enough to write this long essay, as much to be able to mention the extra cost or effort required of fantasy readers, as to share with you the events leading up to that mention. It seems to me, that if fantasy (and its close cousin science fiction) requires greater effort upon the part of readers, that readers would read such works only if they feel they get something more from fantasy or science fiction.

1. Hearn, Michael Patrick. Introduction. The Annotated Wizard of Oz. By Baum. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2000. xcix-c. Print.
2. Hearn's footnote for the Forster quotation, 38. on page c: "In Aspects of the Novel (New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1927), p. 109." You can see the quote in context in the electronic version on Google Books.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (Kitty Call Out)
Vera Nazarian ([ profile] norilana) of Norilana Books is struggling financially and asking that folks help get the word out about her most recent novel, Mansfield Park and Mummies: Monster Mayhem, Matrimony, Ancient Curses, True Love, and Other Dire Delights (available from Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and a host of other sources).

Lest you wish to quibble at the thought of the damage a current-day author may have done to Austen's work, here's what Norilana Books has to say about the authors:
Jane Austen is an author of classic immortal prose.

Vera Nazarian is a shameless Harridan who has taken it upon herself to mangle Jane Austen's classic immortal prose.
[ profile] norilana has excerpts in her journal, starting with Chapter 1. You can also read excerpts of the excerpts on Jane Austin Today.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (Alice and Rabbit)
One of the blogs I follow is the Writer Beware Blogs!. A recent post by Victoria Strauss, It's Official: DOJ Investigates Google Book Settlement discusses the complex Google Books Settlement, which requires a number of authors and publishers to make a crucial decision to opt in or out of the settlement, before fairness hearings and the results of a DOJ investigation are complete.

As I don't have any published novels and I'm not a member of the Authors' Guild, I don't (to the best of my knowledge) have an official stake in the issue, but it's possible that some of you, Fair Readers and Steadfast Friends, may. So, you may want to go check out Victoria Strauss' take on this and consider your options.

ETA Here's a very different take on the Google Books Settlement, courtesy of Lisa Gold: Research Maven: "…those lost books of the last century can be brought back to life and made searchable, discoverable, and citable…".
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (read or die)
Ana, a self-described "twentysomething bookworm," over at things mean a lot, posted today in The Sunday Salon - Book Buying, about a new book out by Peter S. Beagle: We Never Talk About My Brother, by Tachyon Publications. If you've ever read anything by Beagle, you know this is a book you have to read. If you've never read anything by Beagle, you must take my word for it that this is a book you have to read (along with everything else of his you can get your hands on), because Beagle is wonderful.

Ana, who receives a newsletter from Beagle, reports that only 5,500 copies of this book were printed and that Conlan Press (which my limited researches indicate is a press specifically to promote Beagle's work) is trying to sell out the entire run by March 31, 2009, in the hopes of convincing Tachyon to issue a second printing. Like many authors, Beagle is having financial difficulties. In this instance, his financial difficulties are related to disputes over compensation for the many screenplays he has written. You can read more about this on the Conlan Press website.

Oh, and if you enjoyed the movie, The Last Unicorn, I hope you know that it was based on Beagle's book of the same name and the book is better! (Even though it is an excellent adaptation.) The movie version I just linked to is a new DVD release. If you buy from this link at Conlan Press, Beagle is supposed to receive more than 50% of the purchase price; buy it elsewhere and Beagle gets nothing from the sale.

One more thing I should mention--if you purchase from Conlan Press, you can, for an additional fee, request that your purchase be signed or personalized by Beagle, which would make a wonderful gift for some special someone. Even if that special someone is you. ;)

So do Peter and yourself a favor, and add one more book to your reading list, and one old favorite movie, remastered, to your viewing list. You won't be sorry.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (reading)
Award-winning author Eugie Foster ([ profile] eugie) is hosting a book launch party in her journal for her short story collection, Returning My Sister's Face and Other Far Eastern Tales of Whimsy and Malice, published by Norilana Books. For more information about the author and the book, see the Norilana press release issued by [ profile] norilanabooks.

I love the title of this book and the cover is absolutely gorgeous. She's another author whose work I know only by reputation, but whose book absolutely must go on my to-read list. As an added bonus, Ms. Foster is offering anyone who purchases the book this month a limited edition of the Returning My Sister's Face audio MP3 CD, which has audio versions of five of the stories, including one previously unreleased.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (Palimpsest)
How could I resist an opportunity to help an author get the word out about her newest book, while at the same time putting myself in line to possibly win a copy of said book and all sorts of really cool, wonderful goodies inspired by the book? Including chocolate. And jewelry. Did I mention chocolate?

So, with no further ado, I introduce you to Palimpsest by Catherynne M. Valente ([ profile] yuki_onna).

I also recommend that you check out her post announcing the book, the contest, and the many tie-in products, several of which are the work of folk who are also part of the LiveJournal community.

How did I discover this book? Well, via [ profile] faerie_writer most recently. (But also many others, some from outside of LJ. Hrmm. I suppose all these mentions mean I have competition for the prize. *glares*) I also followed a link to [ profile] yuki_onna's evocative trailer, possibly from a link on one of the many blogs about writing and books that distract me from getting work done keep me apprised of the industry.

Catherine's book The Orphan's Tales: In the Night Garden has been on my Goodreads to-read list for several months, since shortly after I read one of her short stories, and all of her books get great reviews, so I'm sure this new one will be wonderful. Valente was recently interviewed by Green Man Review about The Orphans Tale and I love the way she describes her choice to use the structure of The Arabian Nights for her tale as a means of telling the story of a young girl. I've moved this to the top of my to-read list and reserved it from our local library. I'd do the same with Palimpsest, but since I'm out of work, I'm not buying new books and I don't know whether or when they'll get it in. I've learned to my chagrin that I can't borrow new books using the Interlibrary Loan System, only books that are at least a year old, so I've really got my fingers crossed that I'll win a copy.

I've missed telling you all sorts of exciting news, so please, whatever else you do, go check out her announcement post and the companion music by [ profile] s00j.

ETA: Here, let Catherynne Valente, in this post on John Scalzi's blog, tell you about Palimpsest.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (lady with cup)
[ profile] jpsorrow, aka Joshua Palmatier, has this message for you:

I love that kid's face; she manages to pull off sullen and dangerous, while still looking cute. That's quite a trick.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (snowball fight)
Christmas dinner menu )

Gifts )
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (RCA victrola dog)
[ profile] jpsorrow, aka Joshua Palmatier, is conducting a Spirit of Giving contest, for which he is doing all the giving. He will donate hardcover copies of The Skewed Throne and The Cracked Throne to your favorite local (US) library, including libraries for schools, hospitals, shelters, etc., and enter your name into a drawing to receive either hardcover copies of all three of his books, or a gift certificate good for $40. All you have to do is send him the contact information for the person in charge of handling donations and the address to which he should mail the books. For more details, see his post: The Spirit of Giving Contest.
pameladlloyd: Alya, an original character by Ian L. Powell (reading)
Yeah, that's right, this site is an advertisement for a book: Kandide the Secret of the Mists by Diana S. Zimmerman, the first in a series, which I found by clicking an advertising link at The Edge of the Forest, an online magazine about children's literature. It's got a fun flash animation, blurbs by fairytale and literary characters, lots of cool animated graphics, an online game, and more. I think this site is really cool and if I ever publish a book for kids I want whoever put this site together to put one together for my book.


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