Tuesday, August 19, 2014

I am a published author!

Today is the day that the Chicken Soup for the Soul cat book goes on sale, how exciting!  The first in many such experiences, I'm hoping.

Haven't been posting much, but I've been doing a lot of reading (148 books so far this year), and I've started studying Spanish with Rosetta Stone.  Even with all the Spanish I've taken in school, I decided to begin with level 1, and I'm so glad I did.  This is a whole new way of learning.  Rather than making you memorize the laws of grammar, they show you in context, so you learn in an organic way, the way children learn their first  language.  It's also quite fun.

I've also joined Luminosity and have been faithfully playing the games every day.  They suggest that you work on them 3-4 times a week, but they're too fun not to play them every day.  Memory has my lowest score, which comes at no surprise, but I'm hoping to bring those numbers up with practice.

I've sent several poems and short stories off to contests and am hoping that something will come of them.  

Saturday, August 2, 2014

First short story published next month!

Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Cat Did What? edited by Amy Newmark, goes on sale August 19, 2014.  On page 283 will be my first published short story called, "Cat-astrophe Avoided" as written by my pen name, NL Shank.  Yay, me!  It is exciting and addictive, and I can't wait to see my name in print on other projects in the near future.  

Whatever shall I do to celebrate?  Ah yes, the purchase of an extremely finely crafted knife by Jay Fisher and James Beauchamp, called Creature EL.  It's the second knife I've bought from Jay, and I'm so excited to receive this present to myself.

Books Read July 2014

Ashley, Jennifer
  • Shifter Made
Fiction.  First in a shapeshifter series.  Set in Ireland, Alanna travels through the standing stones portal to get the blacksmith Niall to forge a special silver sword for her brother.  Shifters and the fae do not get along, and now that the shifters are free and not tied to being the fae’s servants, Niall has no intention of granting her order.  When she informs him that his cubs have already been kidnapped and taken to the land of Faerie, Niall is forced to create the sword, one that Alanna intends to use in stopping her brother from his nefarious purpose.

Ball, Donna
  • The Hummingbird House
Fiction.  Derrick and Paul have their hands full trying to get The Hummingbird House B&B up and running.  The problem is not that the B&B isn’t ready, it’s that they aren’t, and running a B&B isn’t turning out quite how they thought it would be.  The ladies at Ladybug Farm decide it’s time for the boys to stand on their own two feet, and with the assistance of some unique characters, their Grand Opening is a success.

Bevill, C.L.
  • Bayou Moon
Fiction.  Mignon Thibeaux returns to the Louisiana bayou country where she had been born and lived until her mother’s disappearance when Mignon was five years old.  A lifetime of unanswered questions revolve around the event, and Mignon is determined to find the truth even if it puts her own life in jeopardy.

Christie, Agatha
  • The Under Dog and Other Stories
Fiction.  Collection of Hercule Poirot short stories.

Daley, Kathi
  • Pumpkins in Paradise
Fiction.  First in the Lake Paradise cozy mystery series set in Nevada.  Tj lives at the resort that her family owns, and she juggles her coaching job at the high school with raising her two half-sisters and helping to run the family business.  When her good friend dies, she questions his apparent suicide and follows a trail that takes her back in time and leads to the killer.

Galenorn, Yasmine
  • Night’s End
Fiction.  The final book in the Indigo Court series starring Cecily Waters, Queen of the Snow and Ice.  Cecily and her cohorts ready themselves for the final battle with Myst, Queen of the Indigo Court. 

Glazer, Melissa
  • A Murderous Glaze 
Fiction.  First in a cozy mystery series set in a small Vermont town.  Carolyn Emerson, owner of a pottery store, arrives at work one day to find a town nemesis dead inside her store, and the sheriff thinks Carolyn is a great suspect.  She, along with her friends known as The Firing Squad, work together to discover the true murderer.

Hopkins, Shawn
  • Progeny
Fiction.  The story of an ex-Ranger who has found God and refuses to kill any more.  Ex-SEALs, who worked with his brother, have contacted him to let him know that his brother has gone missing from Bermuda, and though they’ve been estranged, he agrees to travel to the island to help find his brother, only to find himself lost in a nightmare of epic proportions.

Hosseini, Khalid
  • The Kite Runner
Fiction.  Heart-wrenching tale of a young Afghani boy growing up in the turbulent 60’s and 70’s in Kabul, Afghanistan, his friendship with the son of his father’s servant, and how he betrayed that friendship, not once, but twice.  The guilt follows him through his life even after he moves to America and can possibly only be released by returning to his war-torn homeland to save one of his own.

Newmark, Amy
  • Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Cat Did What?
Non-fiction.  Collection of short stories written by humans who share their homes with felines.  Happy, sad, heartwarming, they’re all entertaining.

Ross, Barbara
  • Clammed Up

Fiction.  First in a clambake cozy mystery series set in Maine.  Julia Snowden  received a frantic call from her sister begging her to return to the small coastal town in Maine where she grew up.  Leaving her New York life behind her, she returns to Busman’s Harbor to pick up the reins of her family’s business, The Snowden Family Clambake Company, which is on the edge of being taken over by the bank.  Her experience as a venture capitalist might help her straighten out the company’s finances, but nothing will help her deal with a dead body.