Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Make an Elvis song into a book contest!

Today we welcome Mimi Barbour to the blog to talk about her new Elvis series and contest. 

**After I listened to an old Elvis Presley hit called She’s Not You, I couldn’t get the words out of my head. Finally, it came to me. The sentiments were so beautiful that the story they told should be written. So, I wrote the first chapter and the song stopped haunting me. I released book #1 of the Elvis Series late in Nov.  

When it came time to decide which of Elvis’s song should be chosen for Book #2, I decided who better than the readers themselves to make the choice.
 ~Mimi **

“Make an Elvis song into a book contest!”

Here it is live for the whole month of February.

Please let all your friends know about it!

Tell your mom and her pals who grew up with the King!

Share this link with your Facebook buddies and twitter followers.

It'll be fun to see which of his songs will grace the cover of 

Book #2 in Mimi Barbour’s

Elvis series.

Here’s what the winner will receive:

  1. The winner will have his/her favorite song chosen as the title and theme for the next book in the Elvis series.
  2. It will be dedicated to the winner.
  3. And their name will be used for one of the characters.

Video of Elvis singing – Book #1 She’s Not You


Thanks, Mimi, for bringing this content to us! If you think you know the perfect Elvis song for a book, make sure you enter the competition.
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Thanks for stopping by and visiting with us!

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Bullying is Never OK

I don’t think you need me to tell you the horrifying statistics on bullying – the proportion of the population that has been bullied, or that has seen someone bullied – not just as a child, but as adults. Bullying is rife in our schools and workplaces.

School children are committing suicide because of the pressure of bullying, which is no longer confined to the school yard, but follows them home via the internet.

Australia has just enacted specific workplace bullying legislation to combat the rising productivity costs of workplace bullying.

In 2012, in Australia, the lone survivor of a tragic boating accident that claimed the lives of his three friends committed suicide. Why? Because he had been attacked, bullied, and received hate mail to the effect that he ought to be ashamed of himself for surviving, or somehow failing to save his friends. As if the man wasn’t already grieving the loss and suffering survivor’s guilt. As if those people somehow had the right to make such cruel statements and make his life worse than it already was. That man was survived by a wife and small children.

More than likely, those who bullied him have washed their hands of responsibility – it wasn’t me, it's not my fault, I didn't make him do it. They either can't believe, or don't want to believe, that their acts added to a man's already unbearable burden.

What kind of people commit these acts? Too often they are shielded by the anonymity of the internet.

Now, we have the era of the Goodreads trolls. I have seen them at work, attacking a friend of mine because she dared to ask a question. Insidiously, they take the high moral ground and behave as though they have somehow been wronged, while perpetrating the very behaviour of which they falsely accuse. My friend was accused of being judgmental and lecturing simply because she asked a question. The trolls proceeded to tell her she had no right to ask the question, and judged and lectured her, somehow ignorant of the irony. In fact, she of course could ask the question – she simply had no right to an answer, and did not assert one.

And this is the mild end of it. The Goodreads bullies have been known to bully to the point of making ill-wishes against those they dislike, to the extent of wishing rape and death on people. I can't fathom the kind of crime that would need to be committed against me to wish such dreadful things on someone - certainly more than a mere difference of opinion.

As if that weren’t enough, a few weeks ago I saw something that appalled me. A writer was accused of plagiarism. She responded to the accusations, including by listing some of the bullying acts that had been perpetrated against her, acts which extended to some horrific comments made about her husband and her very young daughter.

I don’t know if the accusations of plagiarism are true. I don’t know if the accusations of bullying are true. It doesn’t matter. The point of this is that I saw some people say, in apparent bald-faced honesty, that she deserved everything she got if she is a plagiarist.

That there summed up for me what is perpetuating this bullying culture that we have stumbled into. Some people think it’s OK, including in some cases as some kind of misguided justice for wrongs.

Bullying is never OK. No matter what someone has done, they do not deserve to be bullied. If they have broken the law, then it is a matter for the justice system. If the justice system fails, as it sometimes does, then you must pray for divine justice if such is your beliefs. If you’re an atheist like me, then suck it up, sunshine – you get no justice, and that’s a consequence of your world view. I accept that justice may not always be possible in a world with no gods.

Bullying is never OK. If we say otherwise, we set a double standard and perpetuate our bullying culture.

A line once crossed is easier to cross again, and for less justification.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Navigating the World of E-Book Publishing

--> Navigating The World Of E-Book Publishing was released fourteen days ago and it has been on several & Top 100 Bestselling Lists since. This is a short e-book with some of the basic beginning steps on the road to e-publishing your manuscript by Deena Rae Schoenfeldt. This is not a roadmap to getting a best seller nor it is a technical manual or writing guide, rather it addresses things that most aspiring authors don't take into consideration before starting their publishing journey. Filled with tips, tricks, and helpful advice, this book a must read if you have aspirations of joining the indie publishing ranks, have already published your own book or have a full back-list of titles already on the bookstore shelves.

Book Description

With a no-nonsense, conversational style, Deena Rae of E-BookBuilders gives advice to aspiring authors about indie publishing. Filled with information about social media, pricing, formatting styles, covers, reviews and platforms (to a name a few) there is a wealth of information for the novice author. Even experienced authors and publishers will find this book helpful and informative.
With sections such as 'Authors - Quit Doing This!', 'In Praise of Audio(books)', 'Twitter Primer for Authors', and 'Should You Use Amazon's Author Central', Deena Rae gives detailed information that anyone in the industry of publishing should know and consider.
Whether you are just starting on your publishing journey, considering entering the literary world or have 30 books for sale, there is something for everyone in this book.
If you would like to add the book to your Goodread's shelf - just click the button!

What Other's Are Saying

This book is a must read for Indie Authors. Deena lays out the ins and outs of ebook publishing that many other people fail to hit on. From the novice writer to the seasoned pro, there are hidden nuggets of gold for everyone in this book. The author shares her viewpoint, having worked in the industry on several sides, as if you were talking to a friend. With helpful hints, do's and don'ts, this is the best "get your feet wet" book I've come across. -Janet W., Amazon Customer
...I got down to reading and oh my word. Almost a year into self publishing the hard way, learning everything on my own, I thought I knew it all, but no. Deena Rae's book is filled with little known information, tidbits of advice, obviously picked up from years of working in the trade. Not only was there much information to be soaked in, but my brain was pleasantly sponging every little thing up because the book is written in a fun and engaging way. I read it in one sitting, and as my kindle can attest, any other tech book is rarely read beyond 40%. -Lisa G., Goodreads Reader
...This book will answer so many questions that come up during the process, which had me baffled and almost ready to throw in the towel. The author also gives excellent information on how to promote your book. She does all this with a personal touch. You will not be buried in tech speak where even a dictionary would fail miserably....I highly recommend this book to anyone that is considering self-publishing their work, or is interested in seeing how it is all done. -Amazon Customer
I had the feeling of believing and trusting Deena knowledge, straight shooting style and passion for what she does while reading her book. She produced an ebook that was easy to read and kept me scrolling through without stopping.-Mauri B., Amazon Customer
Like many authors I wish had had read books like this before I published my first book. However it is never too late to learn. It is good to read about the things I seem to have got right, the things I could improve on and to learn a few tricks from scratch. The book is very well laid out with descriptive chapter titles so that it will be easy to dip back into which I certainly will. -Wendy U., Goodreads Reader

Who Is Deena Rae?

E-BookBuilders is the online alias of Deena Rae. She was born and raised in Texas - home of bluebonnets, boots, beef and big hair - into a family that was in the printing and publishing industries. Her father was a computer programmer for major newspapers when the equipment took up whole rooms and mother has been a publisher for almost 30 years - trying, unsuccessfully, to bring her into the family business. She is a second-generation genetically perfected super-nerd.
She was happily living her life, having three third-generation genetically perfected super-nerds herself, but then through a series of events (unfortunate and fortunate), she officially joined The Book Connection - her mother's publishing and packaging company - as the Digital Director, to create the e-publishing division in 2011. Her computer skills, willingness to help authors, love of literature, no-nonsense attitude and quick wit has helped shepherd many authors through the maze of digital publishing.
Through her work with E-BookBuilders, Deena Rae has been able to meet authors and writers from all over the world and in every genre imaginable. She has a biting wit, obscure sense of humor, awareness of the absurd, and a love of literature all which led to the creation of Bluebonnets, Bagpipes and Books, the #NSFW publishing discussion podcast she produces and hosts with Janet Wrenn and Peter Burnett. Her no-nonsense attitude makes for some hilarious discussions and plenty of "Oh my God, did she really just say that?" moments. Sometimes it is as if there is no filter between her brain and her mouth. But if she likes you she tries to be nice - sometimes. Deena also has the safe-for-everyone author interview show, B3's Bookworm. You can find her most hours of everyday attached to her computer either researching, tweeting on her 6 accounts, posting on her different Facebook timelines and pages, coding e-books for her fabulous friends/clients or with her nose buried in her Kindle reading.
If you are serious about publishing your own work, or just kicking the idea around, head over to Amazon and download the ebook Navigating the World of E-Book Publishing, available exclusively on Amazon. I am also available on many social media platforms and you can track me down that way if you have a question about e-publishing.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Feminist Rant – What’s Wrong With the Word ‘Vagina’?

My friend, Eloise March, recently sought advertising space for her new novella. Close Call: A Doris and Jemma Vadgeventure is humorous feminist chick lit. On application, the site enquired about the word ‘vadgeventure’.

Close Call features talking genitals in an exploration of how female self-esteem is often linked to male opinion. Doris, you see, is Jemma’s vagina. Therefore, March explained, ‘vadgeventure’ is a made up word representing the adventures of Jemma and her vagina.

We can’t promote a book cover featuring the word ‘vadgeventure’, the site stated. Children use this site, you know.

Excuse me? Excuse me?

How is the fact that children use the site a reason not to feature a book using the word vadgeventure? Half of those children have vaginas.

Which raises a point. Little boys have ‘willies’. But what do little girls have? Setting aside the question of whether we should even make up cute names for children, there remains the fact that a ‘cute little name’ apparently doesn’t exist for women. Are girls not allowed to know the names of their own body parts? Not even euphemisms? What does it say to women that parts of their body throughout childhood should remain nameless?

I’m all for telling girls the proper names. They will ask, believe me, as they go through a stage where they point at everything and ask you what it’s called. And yes, she will eventually ask about her vagina.

But according to this site, children, including girls, aren’t allowed to have any exposure to that word, or any derivatives – even if they find themselves in possession of said organ. 

Ironically, the site defending the purity of childhood does promote and advertise books with covers exhibiting half-naked men and women, most of whom are perpetuating the unattainable physical ideal plaguing the self-esteem of teenage girls – one of the very issues Close Call tries to tackle. 

About Close Call: A Doris and Jemma Vadgeventure:

Twenty-two year-old Jemma can’t seem to get her life in order. Her track record with men stinks, and she constantly worries about getting fat and ending up a spinster at thirty. To top it off, she has to be a bridesmaid at her most-hated cousin’s wedding. She feels like her life is over, until Doris decides to help. Who’s Doris? Doris is Jemma’s vagina and she thinks more of Jemma than her own brain does. Doris is on a mission to save Jemma from herself, but is the task too much for one vagina to handle?

If you're interested to know more about Close Call, it's available from:

Smashwords -

For more about Eloise March, check out her website.
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