Tuesday, December 27, 2016
Thursday, December 22, 2016
You know when most people have a talent they never think about how and why they have this gift. On the other hand, I am very different. At thirty-five, I suffered a brain aneurysm, putting me in a wheelchair, not a very nice experience. At this time in my life I could sing like a bird, but no more after this happened. The aneurysms paralyzed one of my vocal cords and I lost my ability to sing. But I soon discovered I had a hidden talent I had no idea I had. This hidden talent was the ability to write, something I had never ever suspected.
When I lost my voice, I felt so lost. I remarried soon after the aneurysm, and one day my husband dared me to write a poem. This is when it came to my attention that I could write, not just poetry but stories as well. I wasn't just a writer but I was a story teller. I had always hears if you were good in one art, you would be in another and I was.
I really hold on to my gift because I can do something, that many can't do. If pride is a sin then I am a sinner, because I take pride in my gift, it's something special I can do and I have never took any kind of classes for writing, so this gift is all me. I don't like to blow my horn, but I know I can write. I'm sure Aretha Franklin knows she can sing, so what is wrong with knowing I can write?
I feel like to be bonified in your gift, it will constantly on your mind. I eat and sleep writing and my ideas for writing. I can get inspiration from a stop sign. When I go to bed at night, I usually lie beside my husband for a couple of hours thinking about writing and ideas to write about.
I use to write about serial killers, ghosts, things of the paranormal, but now I would say my genre is historical thrillers. Like my last novel and the sequence I am working on now is about the Knight's Temper and their treasure. Not really of the paranormal. But kind of a book on Christianity. I feel this is my destiny. These novels were inspired by Dan Brown's DaVinci Code, but totally different. My book is called Seekers of the Suppressed and Forbidden. The title makes a lot of sense, just stop and think religion has been done this way.
If you feel you can write, pursue it, PLEASE! Don't sell yourself short! It just might be your calling and your destiny. Most any one that knows me has no idea in reality, I am shy wanting to stay behind the scenes. Well, with writing I can do so and I really like that. If you are shy it is perfect. I think my best pay is to see a person's face, especially after they read some of my work. I'm not in this for monetary gain, I love to entertain people with my gift.
I just hope if you have this gift, use it to entertain people, especially in these times that are a total uproar,everyone needs a temparary escape. If only with a book, a cheap way to escape, and in these times that's even better. If you feel you can give of yourself by writing, do so because it is only fear stopping you and you can overcome that.
Lanaia Lee Lanaia Lee was born in 1957 to a Navy father and a schoolteacher mother who home-schooled her.
In second grade, she was reading on a 4th grade level, so they moved her to a private school to enhance her education.
When she was nine years old, her mother died from a massive stroke. Because her father was rarely home, her grandmother,
a professed black witch, gained custody.
My website www.lanaiaslair.com
Thursday, December 15, 2016
Patricia Crandall received second place honor for her poem “Last of the Blueberries” on Writers Carnival.
Congratulations to my friend Patricia for writing a visual poem of picking the end of the season blueberries. I really enjoyed it.
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
There is considerable discussion out there about whether in-store book signings are of any value to the author - or to the book store itself for that matter.
As far as the retailer is concerned (particularly with e-books and online availability and everybody and his brother writing stuff, good or bad), as long as purchasing sufficient quantities is not a bookkeeping nightmare, they have everything to gain and nothing to lose. Other than the expense of purchasing your books with guaranteed returnability (a biggie!) and perhaps providing a quickly whipped up blurb on their website, and maybe a little on-table poster, there is virtually no expense to them. Some places will offer you a cup of coffee. No big deal.
As far as the author is concerned, this can be a little hairy. If you are a mega celebrity like Stephen King or Madonna, there is no problem. Your publisher takes cares of all expenses and the books stores stand in line clamoring to play host, ditto the customers. If you are like the other 99.99% of the author-world however, there are definitely some out-of-pocket expenses.
Forget about your time, as in “time is money.” Unless you still haven’t quit your day job, your time should be considered an investment. If you need to provide your own books for sale, this is usually not a huge issue, since you probably have sufficient quantity in the closet. Your car, on the other hand, can be very cranky. It is one thing to travel ten or fifteen minutes down the road. It is something else to drive fifty miles ONE WAY. There's gas, wear and tear, insurance, and maybe tolls involved. There is also no guarantee that anyone will buy a book.
Most authors do not mind too much if they don’t MAKE money. They do mind, however, if they LOSE money.
Probably the key to the value of book signings is the author’s expectations. One must be realistic. Where is the venue located? Little-Town is not New York. How many people are interested in your subject? (Be honest) How many books do you think you can reasonably sell? (Be honest) How much money can you expect to make per book? Your books cost you money to purchase. The store wants to make a little something. The reader wants a good value. And again, There is also no guarantee that anyone will buy a book.
But what will happen if you do nothing? Nothing. If you do nothing, nothing will happen for sure.
The bottom line truly depends on the author. How engaging are you? Announce yourself as the author of the day. If you stand, make eye contact and engage the customer, you may not always make a sale, but you stand a better chance. If you plunk down at the signing table and wait for people to come to you, you will have a long wait.
Major advice: You need to develop a sense of your target customer. Male or female? Old or young? If you write children's books, go for the grandparents. Kids don’t buy books. Grandma does, and she is more likely to buy one than tired, harried, worried and financially stretched parents. If you write serious or academic material, you need to be in a bookstore near a college or university.
Hand out your cards or bookmarks or flyers or whatever else you want to give away. You don’t need to bake cookies. You don’t need free pens. A backdrop poster is fine – if you are going to a book fair, or a venue with other authors. Otherwise a small dish of wrapped hard candies works just as well with no effort. And they don’t get stale. Encourage your prospect (if you get one) to email you with their comments. Have a guest book, and let them sign it if they want to be on your mailing list. If they don’t, let it go. And do not be surprised or disappointed if somebody's gives you a bogus email address. That comes with the territory.
Like Polonius said, “know thyself.” Shy does not work. Bored does not work. The store provides a venue, a chair and perhaps a public address announcement. That's all folks. They cannot provide customers, and they cannot make the customers interested in your book.
It is up to you. If you haven't done a book signing, you absolutely need to do one if you can. See if and how you can make it pay off.
Feather Schwartz Foster
MARY LINCOLN’S FLANNEL PAJAMAS and Other Stories from the First Ladies’ Closet
THE FIRST LADIES
LADIES: A Conjecture of Personalities
Sunday, December 11, 2016
Thursday, December 8, 2016
This would make a wonderful Christmas gift for that person you don't know who to buy for. Or, that person that loves reading about the four seasons.
Five Star Review:
What is it about poetry that sparks an interest in me? When I received I Passed This Way by Patricia Crandall, I was anxious for her imagery about the four seasons. Her perception of what she saw emanated in the words of her poetry. You can see as you take a walk with her through the snow of winter, fallen leaves in the fall, heat of the summer breeze and the buds of the new growth of spring. Her words flows effortlessly bringing the scene right to your doorstep as you relive it with her. It’s like taking your first step in the snow or smelling the changes in the different seasons. Your senses are heightened with each poem. I recommend this book of poetry and hope you receive the same sensations that I did. It would make a great gift for that person in your life that enjoys the breathless wonder of nature.
Great Christmas gift.