Author Interview with Normandy D. Piccolo

questions & answers
about Bullied Dying to Fit In


Book Summary: Each year, approximately 4,400 children commit suicide due to bullying. ‘Bullied Dying to Fit In’ is every bullied person’s story and needs to be heard. Will you listen? The book captures the raw emotional side of bullying. Though everyone’s bully story is different, the pain felt is the same. The broken-heart tells the tale. ‘Bullied Dying to Fit In’ takes the bullied, the non-bullied and even the bully on an emotional roller-coaster of tears, insight and triumph.

How did you become involved with bullying?
I was severely bullied from the age of five until my mid-twenties.

Were you ever suicidal because of being bullied?
Yes. It did reach a point where I attempted suicide one time.

What stopped you from ending your life?
I realized that if I ended my life, the bullies won. And, they were not worth my life. I decided I wanted to no longer be a victim. I wanted to overcome the pain and help bullied kids to not feel the horrific pain I had experienced for years.

Did you write ‘Bullied Dying to Fit In’ as a way to help you heal from being bullied? It is put together in an unusual format, not like most books about bullying.
Yes and no. Yes, because it did help me heal as the words poured forth.

But, the main reason I chose to write ‘Bullied Dying to Fit In’ and, in that particular format, was because the market is flooded with so many “my bully story” books. I wanted the reader to know that “I get it”. I understand how they feel because I have been there. But, at the same time, I also wanted to allow the reader (a person who is being bullied) to see it as “their story”. I also wrote it this way for those who have never been bullied, to help them realize how painful it is to be bullied. And, I am hoping to help parents who have a child being bullied or lost a child who was bullied to understand the pain and maybe answer some of the ‘whys’ which are often asked after a tragedy.

What do you hope the book accomplishes for those who are being bullied?
By the turn of the last page, I want bullied kids to see their future in a positive light and to heal from the pain and know that they are not alone. The book contains five sections; hurting, facts, scoop, healing and #tbh, which range from the pain of being bullied, to information, to the bold truth about bullying and how to gain strength to rise above it.

How do we end bullying?
Unfortunately, there will always be bullying. Bullying exists even in the animal and insect world. As for humans, hopefully through better education programs at school, more communication at home with their parents, the teaching of basic manners, learning how to agree to disagree and develop better acceptance and tolerance of others. As a society we need to become more sensitized and less desensitized. This happens by having more human contact vs electronic communication.

Taking these steps, a bullied victim will better understand how to stop being a victim and see their bully through new eyes. The same goes for the bully. Hopefully he or she will learn how to better communicate with others without using physical, mental or emotional abuse towards them.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned while writing ‘Bullied Dying to Fit In’?
I discovered I had a lot of pain that was tucked away down inside that I never dealt with.

And have you since dealt with the pain?
I have. But, I would be lying if I told you everything in my life is perfect since dealing with and healing from the pain. Perfection is an unrealistic goal. And, if anyone tells you otherwise, they are mistaken.

If you had one piece of advice to give, what would it be?
Life throws us challenges every day. It’s how we choose to handle those challenges that makes us or breaks us. You have the power – you have had it all along. The power of choice. You can choose to allow a bully to ruin your life. Or, you can choose to take your life back. Your choice.

What do you think makes a good story?
The truth.

What were your goals and intentions in this book?
To help someone not feel the way I did about myself for the longest time because of bullying. Having people hate you hurts. And, I did hate myself right along with the bullies. When someone says hateful things about you over and over, it’s hard not to believe them after a while.

How do you feel you achieved your goals and intentions in ‘Bullied Dying to Fit In?
If I help only one person overcome bullying and heal, then mission accomplished.

What was the hardest part of writing this book?
I would have to say the section entitled, “hurting” because I had to reach deep down inside and basically bear mine and every bullied person’s soul.  It was a very painful, and yet at the same time healing journey. Being bullied is very damaging to a person mentally, physically and emotionally. It goes deeper than I think most people realize.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
I really enjoyed writing the section entitled, “#tbh” because it is truthful, honest and positive. The section talks to you, not at you. So, for those who have no one to talk to or get advice from, this section can be helpful.

Bullied Dying To Fit In
Author: Normandy D. Piccolo
Illustrator: Normandy D. Piccolo
Publisher: Normandy’s Bright Ideas
Genre: Parenting / Relationships / Juvenile Non-Fiction / Bullying
ISBN: 978-0997934946
Pages: 288
Price: $10.99 (Paperback) $2.99 (Kindle)
Available at: Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble and Amazon.com/uk

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Author Bio: Normandy D. Piccolo is a writer, book reviewer and former Advertising Copywriter. She has written several books featuring “underdog characters”, appeared on Television and in Mom Blogs, written radio scripts for the “Click It or Ticket” national campaign and for “Operation Lifesaver” with well-known Country Stars including Charlie Daniels. Her song, “My Bestfriend Ted”, received continuous air-play on Chicago radio. Additionally, she worked on the GodSpeaks Billboard campaign contributing campaign concepts, along with scripts for the televised cartoon, Auto-B-Good. She is a participant of the Hillsborough County Anti-Bullying Advisory Committee.

“I believe there is nothing better in the world than to take hold of a book and while reading, allowing the book to take hold of you and your imagination. Reading, next to learning, truly is the greatest adventure of them all.”

Additional information, including radio, magazine and television interviews, can be seen at http://www.NormandysBrightIdeas.com

Visit my youtube channel by searching ‘Bullied Dying To Fit In Book’ for book trailers.
Youtube Book Trailers

Author Website: www.normandysbrightideas.com

Author Links:
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Bullied Dying to Fit In Book Website
*includes Press Release
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Bonjour! Let’s Learn French: Visit New Places and Make New Friends

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Bonjour! Let’s Learn French: Visit New Places and Make New Friends
Author: Judy Martialay
Illustrator: Judy Martialay
Publisher: BookBaby; Bilingual edition
Genre: Children’s Books / Language
ISBN: 978-0997468700
Pages: 40
Price: $16.99 (Paperback) $Unlimited (Kindle)
Available at: Amazon.com

 

Book Review:
Buckle your seat belts for Pete the Pilot is not your ordinary airline pilot in the book, Bonjour! Let’s Learn French: Visit New Places and Make New Friends. While in flight to France, Pete teaches his young passengers some important French words to help them navigate around the country easier. And, that is only the beginning of the adventure. While at the beach, the children, Arlette, Jacques, Marie and Pierre unwittingly construct a special château (castle) and help make a little escargot’s (snail’s) dream of being King come true.

The beginning of the book transports the reader to France, while the following pages incorporate some lessons in elementary French language use. Ms. Martialay has added practice exercises for the reader to learn colors, objects, days of the week, art, music, and the culture to help the reader further expand in French speaking skills.  An adventure with Louis the escargot, who goes into town and must use French to get around, adds to the reader’s practice for using the French language.  The one thing Bonjour! Let’s Learn French: Visit New Places and Make New Friends could use would be a breakdown on how to properly pronounce the French words.

The illustrations in Bonjour! Let’s Learn French: Visit New Places and Make New Friends are displayed in a variety of tones – from light pastels, to vibrant colors that leap off the page. One cannot help but to develop a love for snails after seeing the adorable drawings of Louis the Escargot. It is quite evident Ms. Martialay is very talented when putting brush in hand. To add further flavor to the book are actual pictures of some delicious French food, along with the French flag and a few other surprises.

If you or your child want to begin to learn French, then Bonjour! Let’s Learn French: Visit New Places and Make New Friends, is the perfect book to get you started. Au revoir! (Goodbye!)

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Author Bio:
Judy Martialay was born in Mount Vernon, New York, and received a BA from Mount Holyoke College and MA from Columbia University. She taught world or foreign languages in elementary school, middle and high school. During and after retirement, she devoted time to public advocacy for foreign language education with the New York State Association of Foreign Language Teachers. Her dream is to give all children the opportunity to experience a foreign language, as early as possible. Judy has traveled to Mexico, France, Spain, Italy, Algeria, China, Ethiopia, Greece, Israel and other countries. She loves guitar, oil painting, and gardening. She lives in Sea Cliff, N.Y. with husband Javier, has two daughters and one granddaughter.

Author Website:
http://www.polyglotkidz.com

Author Links:
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Bullied Dying to Fit In

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Author: Normandy D. Piccolo
Illustrator: Normandy D. Piccolo
Publisher: Normandy’s Bright Ideas
Genre: Juvenile / Non-Fiction / Social Issues / Bullying / Mental Health
ISBN: 978-0997934946
Pages: 284
Price: $10.99 (Paperback)
Available at: Amazon.com

Each year, approximately 4,400 children commit suicide due to bullying. Bullied Dying to Fit In is every bullied person’s story and needs to be heard. Will you listen?

The book captures the raw emotional side of bullying. Though everyone’s bully story is different, the pain felt is the same. The broken-heart tells the tale.

Bullied Dying to Fit In takes the bullied, the non-bullied and even the bully on an emotional roller-coaster of tears, insight and triumph.

Learn more about Bullied Dying to Fit In by clicking here

 

If I Was a Caterpillar

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Authors: Ben Jackson and Sam
Illustrator: Danko Herrera
Publisher: Indie Publishing Group
Genre: Children’s Books / Growing Up & Facts of Life / Bugs & Spiders
ISBN: 978-1988656083
Pages: 32
Price: Paperback ($9.99) Kindle ($2.99) Hardcover ($18.94)
Available at: Amazon.com


Book Review:
If I Was a Caterpillar is the story of a little caterpillar who knows no limits on what he can accomplish in life. From being sophisticated enough to sip tea with Royalty, to metaphorically taunting the ‘fashion police’ by wearing different shoes for fun, to bouncing about in a kangaroo’s pouch, to soaring the open skies with an eagle, and so much more.

Ben Jackson and Sam Lawrence once again do not disappoint in their latest children’s book, If I Was a Caterpillar. Although the story appears light and charming, do not underestimate the influential lessons weaved in the storyline for children to grasp. The power of positive thinking. The ability to achieve goals. The will and desire to be anything you want to be when you grow-up.

Danko Herrera’s illustration of the little caterpillar in If I Was a Caterpillar easily relates to young readers with its childlike innocence and appearance. He takes detail in creating a variety of joyful facial expressions to match the adventures taking place. This allows the young reader to vicariously enjoy the experiences, too.  The colors used are cheerful and aid in the illumination of the little caterpillar’s adventure with each turn of the page.

“If I Was a Caterpillar what would I do?” Simple.  I would curl up inside a cocoon and read the book, If I Was a Caterpillar until I blossomed into a beautiful butterfly.

 

Ben and Sam
Author Bio:
Ben and Sam currently live in Ontario, Canada. Ben was born in Tasmania, Australia, while Sam was born in Toronto, Canada. Between the two of them, they enjoy travelling frequently, and both have two children. With three boys and one girl, they both enjoy spending quality time with their families, reading books, playing games and exploring both Canada and Australia.

Author Website:
Amazon Author Page

Author Links:
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Illustrator Bio:
Danko Herrera, when not walking natural landscapes, works as an illustrator for various indie writers like Arnie Lightning and Jeff Rivera.  His work has been part of Saca la Bici, a bicycle organization in Mexico. He started illustrating for a short-tale collective in Querétaro (Mexico) called “cuentos para iluminar”, a fanzine containing short illustrated tales with a psychological approach. Danko is a contributor to Rockademix, a multimedia academic program based in California. As a visual artist, his work has been exhibited in Mexico, Denmark, and Argentina.

Jesus Loves You!

Jesus Loves You Book Cover

Author: Christine Topjian
Illustrator: N/A
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing
Genre: Children’s Books & Bibles / Children’s & Teens
ISBN: 978-1519489102
Pages: 26
Price: $6.95 (Paperback) $0.00 (Kindle)
Available at: Amazon.com


Book Review:
Did you know that in the Holy Bible, Jeremiah 1:5, it states, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.” Long before you had breath in your body, before you grew inside your mummy’s tummy, Jesus knew you and loved you. So many lost souls in the world fail to know this and go through life feeling lost and alone. They never realize Jesus has been with them all along. They were never truly, alone.

From her dedication page forward, it is apparent, Christine Topjian is rooted and highly knowledgeable about Jesus and the Christian faith. The core of the book is to have the reader made aware that Jesus is a daily and living part of their life.  Ms. Topjian shares the bold, truth in her book, Jesus Loves You! The fact is that no matter what is going on in your life, whether good or bad, Jesus is there for you. First steps. First heartbreak. First paycheck. First love. Marriage. And, even caring for your ailing parents. Jesus is there, either celebrating your victories or comforting you during the unfortunate sufferings and failures in life.

The illustrations in Jesus Loves You! are one-dimensional sketches with a childlike appearance. This simple illustrative approach does not distract from the message Ms. Topjian has throughout the book. If anything, it enhances it, because we are all God’s children. Even though the name of the little boy in the book is not given, the illustrator’s ability to draw raw emotion upon his face per each life experience, helps make his situation easily relatable to the reader. The illustrations compliment Ms. Topjian’s message. Good or bad, Jesus loves you.

If you never knew Jesus loved you or ever doubted He did, you will be certain He does after reading Jesus Loves You!

Author Bio:

Jesus Loves You! is the first book in a new series of children’s picture books written by Christine Topjian. It is available for sale on Amazon, published by Lighthouse Christian Publishing.

“The purpose of the series is to inspire readers to develop a one-on-one, intimate and meaningful relationship with Jesus,” says Christine Topjian. “I myself did not have this experience until later in life and looking back, I wish I had. With these books, I hope to help others realize His love in their life earlier on.”


Author Website:
http://www.thejesusseries.com

Author Links:
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The Oregon Kids: Runaway Whiskers

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Author: Bob Richley
Illustrator: Hilbert Bermejo
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing
Genre: Children’s Books / Growing Up & Facts of Life / Family Values
ISBN: 978-1546928812
Pages: 34
Price: $9.99 (Paperback) Unlimited (Kindle)

Available at: Amazon.com

Book Review:
A suburb in Oregon is hopping with emotions. Johanna’s pet rabbit, named Whiskers, is missing. Johanna is extremely heartbroken and misses her furry best friend. Meanwhile, another little girl named Autumn has wanted a pet rabbit of her own, since visiting the petting zoo. Her dream comes true while out with her brother Billy, when they find a white bunny rabbit. Autumn is immediately smitten and filled with joy. But it is short-lived when Billy points out a pet collar and tag around the rabbit’s neck. The rabbit clearly belongs to someone. Now, Autumn must decide what to do. Will she be selfish and keep the rabbit? Or, will she let go of her dream, do the right thing, and seek out the pet rabbit’s owner?

Bob Richley tackles the issues of integrity and trust in his second installment of The Oregon Kids: Runway Whiskers. Doing the right thing is not always easy. It is hard to let go of a dream and trust that something better awaits down the road. The reader cannot help but feel for both Johanna and Autumn, as each character experiences the pain of loss. Mr. Richley’s portrayal of Autumn’s struggles between right and wrong are on point, especially the conversation shared with her father about what she should do versus what she wants to do. Mr. Richely could have had the father order Autumn to immediately return the rabbit. But, instead, Mr. Richely presents the lesson of choice, which every child needs to learn early in life.

Hilbert Bermejo once again delivers the familiar faces of siblings, Billy and Autumn in colorful, one-dimensional illustrations. His artistic talent shines and compliments Mr. Richley’s words, especially when expressing emotional moments during the story. One gets a tug of the heart strings when sorrow is represented on a character’s face. And then, when happiness appears, feels that same broken heart jump for joy. The earth-toned colors Mr. Bermejo uses are both pleasant to the eye and help set the atmosphere as the story hops from page to page.

You can’t go wrong heading down this rabbit trail when purchasing a copy of The Oregon Kids: Runway Whiskers.

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Author Bio:
Bob Richley grew up in the Chicago area and now lives in beautiful Colorado. Growing up he would often go camping in the Rocky Mountains. It was these childhood camping trips and especially his visit to Crater Lake in Oregon that was the inspiration for events in the Oregon Kids series. Richley is a parent, who has volunteered for years in children’s ministry. Teaching children good values and the grace of God are his passions. His stories, originally written for a single mom to help her raise her children, are a way to fulfill this passion. Richley has always loved children, wanting all children to be raised with love and grace. It is his hope that his stories will be one of many tools that parents will use to teach and to raise their children with Godly values.

Author Website:
http://bobrichley.tateauthor.com/

Author Links:
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Author Interview with Corrina Austin

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Book Summary
: Everyone needs their own special corner…
It’s 1969 and ten-year-old Davy is in a predicament. With two weeks remaining of the summer holidays, he’s expelled from the public pool for sneaking into the deep end and almost drowning. How will he break the news to his hard-working single mother? She’s at the diner all day, Davy has no friends, and he’s too young to stay by himself.

The answer lies in his rescuer, mysterious thirteen-year-old Ellis Wynn. Visiting her Grammy for the summer, Ellis offers to babysit Davy. She teaches him about “corners”–forgotten or neglected areas fixed up special. Together, the kids tackle several “corners” and Davy learns what it means to bring joy to others. Davy begins to wonder, though. Why does Ellis want to be his friend? Why doesn’t she ever smile? And is Davy just one of Ellis’ “corners?”

Where did the idea for your book ‘Corners’ come from?
My mother’s house and garden are filled with beautiful, quaint corners. She is a Dutch lady, and the Dutch are “corners specialists.” I have been a “corner” designer myself since I was child. I always had to share a room with my sister as I was growing up, and craved a little space of my own. I would pester my mom to give up a little corner of the house somewhere so I could have a place to write and draw and paint. My mom let me have a hall closet when I was around thirteen years old. I put all my art supplies and notebooks and pens in there, and then I’d open the door half-way and sit on the floor, pretending the door was a wall and the closet was my room. I think anyone with creative interests needs a special spot to call their own.

On a different note, I have always thought that positive changes do not have to be big, in the grand scheme of things. When individual people focus on creating beauty and kindness in their own little corners, there is a chain effect that can have a huge impact.

Why did you choose to set the story in the year 1969?
I grew up in the 1960’s and have clear memories of that time period. It’s been said that authors should “write what they know.” I am not sure that is always the rule, but in this case, my memories created a solid foundation for the setting of “Corners.” The public pool, the diner, even the noisy fridge in Davy’s apartment are all artifacts of my own childhood and I was “seeing” them as I wrote the story.

Davy is quite a mischievous and inquisitive character. Was there a real-life inspiration for him?
I was an elementary school teacher for thirty-one years. Davy is not modeled after a particular student, but rather a conglomeration of several little characters who came and went over the years. Children often carry burdens of sadness that they try to hide from others. In my mind, Davy represented those kids.

What were your goals and intentions in ‘Corners’? How well do you feel you achieved them?
I wanted to write a book for adults who were looking for a more “pleasant” read, devoid of gratuitous and graphic violence and foul language. I didn’t want to sugar-coat anything and there are definitely issues for the characters in “Corners,” but I was hoping to ultimately produce a “feel good” story overall. As Davy was narrating the story as an adult and a father, I wasn’t really thinking of a target audience of Middle Grade children at the time I was writing the book. When Lesley at Dancing Lemur suggested Middle Grades as a target audience, I was kind of surprised that the book had come off that way. I see now that it makes sense. Lesley tells me that there is a substantial amount of adults who read Juvenile fiction, and it makes me content to think that my reading audience could potentially be larger than the one I originally imagined.

What was the hardest part of writing ‘Corners’?
I have written several manuscripts. One of my novels was so challenging that it took me eleven years of “on and off” writing to finish it. I have to say that “Corners” was nothing like that challenge. Maybe because the setting was so vivid for me, the story formed itself quickly. I took a year’s sabbatical when I was still teaching (two years before I retired) and “Corners” was born in that time. As it’s not overly long and cumbersome, it took me only two months to write.

What did you enjoy most about writing ‘Corners’?
I loved the time travel–the music, the food, the furniture and appliances, the clothes. Revisiting those things brought me right back to my childhood, which was a happy time in my life. I also enjoyed creating the house that Hannah lived in—I’ve always loved those old brick houses with enormous front porches and crammed attics to explore. Developing the characters also brought me a lot of joy. I had the “end game” in mind as I wrote, and it was fun to steer the plot towards that.

 Ellis appears to have a mysterious and interesting background. What inspired you to create her thoughts about corners and the need to address forgotten or neglected areas?
As a writer and a reader, I know that a sense of mystery can be intriguing and I wanted to include this element to engage my potential reading audience. Ellis’s interest in creating corners is inherited from her mother who did the same thing as a young girl. Although creating corners began with her mother’s influence, it continues on as an effort to heal from a traumatic event in Ellis’s life. People who struggle and have difficulties in their lives don’t have to wait until “everything is okay” to find something to offer the world.

Does ‘Corners’ have a lesson or moral to be learned? If so, what?
Traditionally, heroes and heroines are known to engage in enormous quests or overcome massive challenges and adversity. In real life, heroes are often ordinary people, even though their quests appear to be small or inconsequential. People do not have to create a masterpiece or cure a disease or produce some monumental invention to be heroes. The real heroes are people who use their gifts and talents to make their own little corner of the world into something that can enhance the lives of others around them. If everyone did that, the entire world would be impacted. It has to start somewhere. Why not with a thirteen-year-old girl?

What made you want to become a writer?
I was about eight years old when I knew I wanted to a writer. I was playing outside in my yard and climbed into the low branches of the willow tree. It occurred to me that I was sitting “in the willow’s lap.” It was such a cool thought that I decided to write it down and make a poem out of it. Once I connected to the thrill of the written word, I wrote constantly. I would write on gummed paper pads, the backs of old calendars, in the left-over pages of used notebooks. I was writing novels by the time I was twelve. I would go to the homework room at school during recess and write instead of going outside to play. Really, writing wasn’t ever a decision, just more of an aspect of my “self” that could not be ignored.

What is the toughest criticism given to you as an author?
On occasion, I have received some feedback from the publishers who’ve taken my novels to editorial review, but then declined to publish them. Often, the feedback about my writing has been positive, but the common reason for the rejection is “it’s just not the right fit for us.” Although I appreciate that these busy editors found the time for a few comments, I find that tough criticism, because it’s vague. I am quite open to criticism and improving my skills as a writer, but specific suggestions are hard to come by.

What is the best compliment?
Editors have expressed that my use of description brings the reader into the story, and that my characters are well-developed. I have also been told that my use of dialogue between the characters sounds natural. The best compliment a writer can get is an offer to publish. I thank Dancing Lemur for that one!

What do you love most about the writing process?
I usually have the end in mind before the rest of the story materializes in front of it, and it is a lot of fun to build the plot with the end framing everything. But, I would have to say, bringing a character to life gives me the most pleasure. These characters become real people to me. When I think of them after finishing a story, I often think of them as being out there in the world somewhere, and I wonder how they’re doing since I saw them last.

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
That is such a difficult question because I love so many writers. I don’t think I would want to be mentored by anyone rich and famous, or I’d be too star-struck to really focus on what he or she was trying to teach me. I read a book by Annie Barrows called “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” which told a beautiful and heart-breaking story all in the form of letters written between the characters. It was brilliant and brought me to tears at the end, which very seldom happens, as I read so critically. The author passed away before she had the novel finished, and her niece completed it for her. I would love the chance to be mentored by Annie Barrows.

Are you currently working on another book? If so, how soon can your fans expect its arrival?
I always have a novel in progress. I have five manuscripts in various stages of completion that I have vowed to return to at some point. The one I am focusing on right now is told from the perspective of a six-year-old boy who is living in the aftermath of a terrible event. I hope to finish it in the next few months. As far as publishing goes, that could take much longer. But I will do my earnest best to find a publisher. 

Do you have any advice for other writers?
As cliché as it may sound, don’t give up. Getting published is not easy. Persistence will pay off, somewhere along the line.

Write solid proposals and synopses for your manuscripts. Most publishing companies will ask for one or both of these things. Google some samples first and study them. Keep your proposals and synopses on the brief and concise side, but make sure that what you write is interesting and engaging.

Pay attention to what presses are asking for when submitting. If they ask for a synopsis and three sample chapters, then that is exactly what you need to send. You will make a good impression when it is obvious that you have read and respected the submission guidelines. Every publisher has different requirements, so do your research.

CORNERS

Release date – March 6, 2018

Author: Corrina Austin
Illustrator: N/A
Publisher: Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.
Genre: Juvenile Fiction/Boys & Men / Friendship
ISBN: 978-1939844392
Pages: 136
Price: $10.95 (Trade Paperback)  $3.99 (eBook)
Available at: Amazon.com

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Author Bio:
Corrina Austin is a retired elementary school teacher, living in beautiful South-Western Ontario, Canada. She has Bachelor’s degrees in both English and Education. Corrina has published several short stories and essays and was twice the recipient of grants for a novel in progress from the Ontario Arts Council. “Corners” was inspired by her experiences as a child growing up in the 1960’s and contains many artifacts from her memories of those times.

Author Website:
https://trustcake.wordpress.com/

Author Links:
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Where Do They Go? (Part 1)

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Author: B.D. Donaldson
Illustrator: B.D. Donaldson
Publisher: Tellwell Talent
Genre: Children’s Books / Mysteries & Detectives
ISBN: 978-1773022437
Pages: 40
Price: Paperback ($7.95) Kindle (Unlimited) Hardcover ($16.95)
Available at: Amazon.com


Book Review:

Most are convinced a dryer’s favorite thing to eat is socks. Or, that missing socks evolved into cremated remains in the lint tray. Two go in, but only one comes out. Such is the dilemma for siblings, Naleaha and Jaylen, who land in hot water with Mom over missing socks. They are just as perplexed as Mom. So, they set a trap hoping to find out who the sock thief might be. Could the dryer be devouring the socks? Does the monster in the closet have cold feet? Is Max the dog using the missing socks for chew toys? Perhaps the dust bunny living under the bed is making sleeping bags out of them? Or could the culprit be someone from out of this world?

‘Where Do They Go?’ (Part 1) is a true who-done-it for children and parents, too. Mr. Donaldson has created a clever tale built around a question frequently asked by Mom’s come laundry day, “Where in the world did my kid’s other sock go?”, as she feels around in the dryer, and double-checks the washing machine before adding the lonely sock to the growing mismatch/missing pile. While the story does center around finding out who the sock thief is, there is a strong undercurrent, showing the unity of two siblings working together using modern technology and common sense to reach an important goal and solve a question that has boggled minds since the invention of the dryer in 1938.

The illustrations in ‘Where Do They Go?’ (Part 1) are colorful with great attention to detail. Mr. Donaldson clearly conveys each character’s personality with gentle strokes of the pen. The colors used are pleasant and monotone in appearance, with some patterns, fuzzy borders and shading to set the mood for whatever scene is taking place.

In doing a little research I learned many fascinating facts about socks. Did you know socks have been around since between 300-500 AD? Did you know the side design on a sock is called a clock? And, did you know the word sock comes from the Latin word, soccus, which means loose fitting slipper. No wonder the mysterious sock thief wants them. But, what does he or she want Naleaha and Jaylen’s socks for? I suppose we will have to wait for B.D. Donaldson to release ‘Where Do They Go?’ (Part 2) to find out. In the meantime, put on a pair of warm, fuzzy socks of your own and curl up with a copy of ‘Where Do They Go?’ (Part 1).

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Author Bio:
B.D Donaldson currently resides in Toronto, Canada. He graduated in 2011 with an MBA from Ryerson University. He is also a graduate of Colgate University in New York. His first book Where Do They Go? Part 1, was inspired by his family. What began as a silly joke turned into a fascinating tale of mystery and adventure. He will be following up his first book with the second part later this year.

Author Website:
http://www.bddonaldson.com

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#BabyLove: My Toddler Life

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Author: Corine Dehghanpisheh
Illustrator: Corine Dehghanpisheh
Designer: Paula Riley
Publisher: My Art to Inspire
Genre: Children’s Books / Growing-up & Facts of Life
ISBN: 978-0997898507
Pages: 40
Price: $12.95 (Paperback) Unlimited (Kindle) $24.00 (Hardcover)
Available at: Amazon.com

Book Review:
The word mischievous often comes to mind when someone mentions the term ‘toddler’. And with good reason. These pint-sized cuties have gigantic curiosities and playful, varied personalities that often leave baffled parents laughing or shaking their heads in disbelief.

In the book, ‘#Baby Love: My Toddler Life’, Ms. Dehghanpisheh delivers a humorous and endearing look through the eyes of an inquisitive toddler who gets a hold of his Mom’s cell phone and begins exercising his fingers. Many selfies are snapped, including pictures of the family dog and funny faces. In addition to describing the picture snapping festivities, Ms. Dehghanpisheh tailors the manuscript and captures the special bonding of the relationship between a mother and child as they take a trip down memory lane while viewing pictures Mommy has taken. I wonder if this clever toddler will try and “frame” the dog for running the phone battery down and filling up Mom’s phone memory card?

‘#BabyLove: My Toddler Life’ has page after page of adorable illustrations which complement the story line. The color choices for ‘#BabyLove:My Toddler Life’ are bright, cheerful and leave you anxious to turn the page and see what your eye might behold next.

The popular toddler word, “No!” will certainly not be heard when suggesting ‘#BabyLove: My Toddler Life” to read or add to a child’s bookshelf. This book is easily enjoyed not only by a child, but also the parent. It is not just being able to relate to what the toddler does regarding the phone, but for those treasured moments with your child as you lovingly reflect-back on how fast they’ve grown in such a short period of time.

Corine Dehghanpisheh
Author Bio:
Corine’s inspirations for writing and illustrating come from everyday life.  When she is not busy being creative, she is most likely having fun taking pictures of her family. Corine is a Mom’s Choice Awards® Silver Recipient and a Next Generation Indie Author Finalist for her debut children’s book Can We Play Again?. Her inspiration for this book came from her work as a Licensed Creative Arts Therapist in NYC. She is also the author of Buddy’s Dream. Corine recently moved to Dallas, TX from NYC with her family. Readers can connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads. To learn more, go to BooksByCorineD.com

Author Website:
www.
BooksByCorineD.com

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Little Duckling (Mini Look at Me Books)

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Author: L. Rigo
Illustrator: L. Rigo
Publisher: Barron’s Educational Series Brdbk
Genre: Children’s Books / Animals / Ducks & Other Waterfowl
ISBN: 978-0764165108
Pages: 10
Price: $5.27 (Hardcover) Board book ($4.59)
Available at: Amazon.com

Book Review:
“Lord love a duck” means to be stunned. This phrase certainly suits the precious toddler book, ‘Little Duckling’ by L. Rigo, as part of Barron’s Educational Series, Mini Look at Me Books.

L. Rigo has created an easy to read board book about the life of a duckling. The story weaves brief snippets into what ducklings do, but don’t be fooled by the brevity. Those few sentences per page, not only pack information, but clearly parallel the responsibilities any mother faces when raising a child or in the momma duck’s case, several children.

The eye-catching cover is cut in the shape and size of an adorable fuzzy duckling. This design makes the book accessible for tiny toddler hands to hold and carry around with them. The artistic drawings by L. Rigo, are peaceful to view with the soft array of colors chosen, such as; pink, various shades of green and blue, and of course, yellow.

‘Little Duckling’ is no goose egg. It is the type of book to be visually enjoyed by a toddler, but perhaps better understood verbally with a little help from a parent. Either way, it is a must have for one’s collection of barnyard books.

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