Have YOU Discovered Litfy?

Love to read?
Are you a literature major?
Want to revisit the classics?
Need something on hand while cramming for a test this new school year?

The answer to all the above has arrived!

After months of planning and hard work, the web staff behind Litfy launched the new beta site August 23.

Litfy offers great reading of all the classical novels members want, free of charge, on any device, and at any time. While you’re there, why not also visit the forum, have a look at Lifty’s blog while browsing their their array of books, including those recently added?

In addition to the main site, you can also find Lifty on Facebook or follow them on Twitter.

Advertisements

Book of the Week/Free Press Book Review 8/23/11

Though I read and reviewed The Memory Palace hardcover version earlier this year, I couldn’t pass up reviewing the paperback version released this month. Nor did my opinion of this book change, no matter what cover the book was.

Mira Bartók’s memoir is not a run of the mill whining of “my life was lousy because my parents were mentally ill/alcoholics/abusive,” but a detailed yet poignant story of living among the chaos that was her mother, Norma Herr, a brilliant woman plagued for many years by schizophrenia.

Bartok discusses in detail how Norma was a child prodigy who seemed destined for greatness until the first signs of her mental illness became apparent at the age of nineteen. As Norma’s mental state deteriorated, she calls her daughters incessantly, shows up at their jobs and residences, and threaten suicide if Myra and her sister, Rachel, didn’t come back home with her.

A traumatic incident involving Norma compelled her daughters to change their names to avoid further embarrassing contact from their mother. Rachel Herr becomes Natalia Singer and Myra Herr becomes Mira Bartók (the last name taken after the Hungarian composer and pianist Béla Bartók).

While Ms. Bartók recovers from an injury sustained in a traumatic automobile accident, she had to once again learn to read, paint, and other tasks we often take for granted. As part of building her own “memory palace”, Ms. Bartók attempts to reach out to Norma, who had become homeless and was living in a shelter before developing a terminal illness.

Once it’s clear Norma is dying, Ms.Bartók and sister Natalia have an unlikely, yet touching, reconciliation with the mother they had taken great effort to cut from their lives years earlier when Norma’s mental state became too much for either to handle. Through the journey to learn about her mother’s life, Ms. Bartók discovers several of Norma’s mementos – among them seventeen keys inside a sock.

The Memory Palace is a beautiful story of mother-daughter bonds, which at times, brought tears to my eyes. There were many instances that touched me as I read this book. It’s a wonderful memoir which speaks from the heart without the ubiquitous sugar coating found in most topics of its kind. The Memory Palace is not a smooth road to travel, but this amazing memoir is one example that even in the worst of circumstances, reconciling with those we’d pushed away is the key in moving forward with our own lives.

Rating: 5.0/5.0

SEEN This Week 8/22/11

Starting off this week with a short note that AOS founder Lorraine Holloway-White will be offline for several days while she and her family are getting settled in their new home. In the meantime, the remaining staff will do everything to keep Authors On Show updated, and we wish Lorraine and family a happy move!

Though it states only for traditional publishers, but if it doesn’t include CreateSpace or other sites like it, and if you opened a company of your own, you can send an entry to Forward National Literature Award. Since this is their first year, there’s a better chance of winning.

Those interested in writing short fiction may find that Bo’s Cafe Life Fiction Contest is a good place to aim for publication.

Robert Craven received a plug the morning of August 15 for Get Lenin on the nation’s second biggest radio station, Today FM.

Like many of us, Night Publishing is strongly against abuse of any type. Please support Predator Down, an outstanding story of the FBI hunting serial killer dubbed “The Acid Rapist” in this real life effort to put the predator instinct down.

Want to be interviewed or write a blog? Come join The Blogging Mamma to promote your books. The blog also includes interviews, recipes, and more!

The Barnes and Noble store located in Mark Stone’s area recently sold out of his book. Don’t worry, there are more books ordered and should be in stock soon.

Joanna Penn passed 10,000 sales of Pentecost this past week, with 98% in ebooks and 87% sales in the United States.

Binary Books featured Shasta Summer by Teresa Geering this month in their second newsletter. Read it here.

The release date for the new edition of Jill Campbell’s book Celtic Rose, is set for September 15.

The Haanta Series, the longest online ongoing fantasy series, reached 28,000 readers this past week.

My news for the week:

The Cruiserweight reached the following best seller ranks on Amazon early last week: #25 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Nonfiction > Sports > Individual Sports > Wrestling and #91 in Books > Sports > Individual Sports > Wrestling

Do you have news that you’d like to see in an upcoming column? Either print it on a related site or send it to lori@authorsonshow.com before the following week. Also follow me on Twitter @lacarrington1.

Commentary: The Shadow of Envy and Jealousy

“Another writer’s success does not diminish your chance of success. Cheer on other writers.” ~ Debbie Fuhry

Wouldn’t our lives as authors go much smoother is the above quote were practiced more often? The quote is one of my favorites because it reminds me to not only keep myself grounded, but also be happy for my writers and colleagues when they achieve successes of their own.

While envy is a natural emotion, as writers, envy shouldn’t consume us to the point where more time is spent trying to tear down other people and their work and less time concentrating on our own projects.

For each successful person – no matter what degree of success it may be – there’s going to be several other who express jealously, especially toward authors. It’s no secret who make it into print will be targets of jealous people, no matter if it’s a major publisher or a small independent imprint.

We don’t even have to be in print to be targets of envy and derision; the fact we’ve actually sat down written is enough for some people to get in a few cheap shots. Unfortunately, there’s insecure people everywhere with some need to tear down others to make up for their own shortcomings. It’s a sad thought, since such energy could be spent doing something positive in their own right.

It’s been done various places – both on my work and others – the sniping, nasty comments aimed at authors, sometimes things that aren’t even relevant to their work. I recently read a Facebook post about an author when, after signing a contract with a major literary agent, started getting nasty “review” comments on her book.

Another author reported a discontented person wasn’t happy just posting a horrid one-star review on Amazon a few weeks ago, but posting the same “review” somewhere new every few days within the past week.

At one point, I even saw a comment under an article I enjoyed saying the person who wrote it wasn’t a “real” writer and “sounded stupid” because English wasn’t their first language. That caught me off guard, not only because it was the only negative comment among many positive ones, but also I couldn’t see how someone’s “first language” had anything to do with how their article was written (which was brilliant subject matter, may I add).

I had someone make snide comments about my voice after a radio interview (among other things), but so what? I was able to laugh it off, because that particular interview drew interest in my book and my web site. There’s been other craziness too, but apparently none of it has affected hits on my site, social media requests, or book sales.

This is another aspect we authors need to develop a thick skin, realize the lengths some people will go to to discredit others, and not take such tripe seriously. You, your readers/fans, and your publisher/agent know your talent; aren’t they the most important ones who matter? Plus, if you’ve made the best seller lists (yes, even if it’s Amazon), you must be doing something right.

One still can’t help but wonder, what do people who do such things get out of them? Do they really feel so inadequate about themselves that they have to spill their vile jealousy on one site after another, sites dedicated to creativity, support, and positivity? Frankly, if we wanted drama, we’ll take in a film.

As with most people of this kind, they’re usually aren’t brave enough to put their real names on comments. The latter alone says a great deal about the person who posts such comments, since it’s easier to hide behind a keyboard than approaching someone face to face.

We’ve all experienced jealousy several times in our lives, but is it worth it to destroy one’s own professional image by publicly tearing down others rather than offering a positive comment – or even staying quiet?

Potential agents and publishers not only look at your manuscripts, many also check up on authors themselves, and chances are good they’d rather sign a mediocre writer who is supportive of their colleagues than an excellent one who spends time writing cruel, derisive comments about fellow writers. This is just one more area to consider when the “green feeling” of envy overcomes any of us.

Envy/jealousy aren’t always bad things, however. Both can be motivators to help us improve or even try a new direction in our projects.

Let’s say you polished the manuscript you’d worked on for over a year and sent it to an agent or publisher which you dreamed of signing a contract as long as you remember. Several weeks later, you received a rejection letter, yet your colleague gets accepted. The first reaction is you’re going to feel a bit steamed and want to give your colleague a bad review on Amazon, right?

Wrong.

Sure, you’re going to feel a bit envious for the colleague; that part comes naturally. However, the professional move would be not only sending a note of congratulations to them, but also looking over your own manuscript and taking the advice of the publisher/agent who rejected it, see what needs improvement, and then submit to other places. We do it every day. I did it for over a year despite being told my first book was “quirky.” A lot of books were rejected for various reasons before someone stepped up and said, “We want to work with this.”

See how envy and jealousy can work in the latter example? I’m sure many of you have done the same.

While we can’t do anything to stop jealousy from others, we can control how we deal with it. How it’s done is up to us, but whatever route you take, always be the consummate professional.

The 17-Day Diet by Dr. Mike Moreno

As long as most of us can remember, the market has been saturated with diet books promising us one miracle after another. The advice in such books worked – at least for a short while, yet neither were easy to follow nor offered long-term results.Dr. Mike Moreno’s The 17 Day Diet: A Doctor’s Plan Designed for Rapid Results(Free Press, 2011) shows while there is no real cure for the obesity epidemic, there is a solution to weight loss that’s both easy to follow and contains some common sense in between.Dr. Mike’s plan contains no pre-packaged meals, no complicated steps, public weigh-ins, no long hours at the gym (Dr. Mike encourages that 17 minutes of exercise per day is sufficient), special drugs, or counting calories. Instead, there are four safe 17-day cycles to follow:Accelerate: This is the rapid weight loss portion, which the person could lose up to 12 pounds in the initial 17-day period. This step also helps flush fat storage from the system.

Activate: The metabolic restarting process, alternating high and low calorie days to help lose body fat.

Achieve: Learning portion control and developing fitness routines.

Arrive: Combining the previous three cycles to maintain your goal weight. At this stage, you can even cheat on the weekends!

Each stage of The 17-Day Diet offers sample menus and recipes for delicious meals to make working this weight loss plan less boring. You can even have your morning coffee with Truvia and the occasional glass of wine, all the while not feeling deprived (even during the Accelerate stage).

When I injured my knee recently, naturally, pounds creeped up on me from being inactive. I’d tried The 17-Day Diet as part of an earlier Free Press book review, so I pulled out this book and followed the Accelerating stage once more. I dropped 12 pounds in almost 10 days. Like the last time, I also had more energy, which, along with the nutritional advice in The 17-Day Diet, are  contributing factors of my knee’s healing process.

Both times, I found The 17-Day Dietto be easy, healthy, and versatile, with Dr. Mike’s advice helpful without being condescending or preachy. The beauty of this plan is that if weight is regained, just go back the Accelerate stage until th extra weight is lost, and then return to your Arrive stage. It doesn’t get any easier. I would recommend this book to anyone, whether they need to lose the last ten pounds for a special occasion or need something more long-term they know they can stick with the entire way.

Pittsburgh Fashion Week To Host TwitterChat

As part of your contribution to this fabulous event, Pittsburgh Fashion Week is seeking your support on Twitter. Soon, Pittsburgh Fashion Week be hosting a TwitterChat, where followers can ask questions and have them answered LIVE! What is needed from you is help getting Pittsburgh Fashion Week trending on Twitter!

Simply log into your Twitter account and provide an update using the hashtag #Pghfashionweek2011. This way all Twitter users can see what’s new and “trending” about Pittsburgh Fashion Week!

Thank you in advance for your participation! Stay tuned for more details!

If you have any questions, please contact Amanda Pearson at Amanda@pittsburghfashionweek.com.Stay connected to Pittsburgh Fashion Week 2011!

Buy your tickets NOW! Visit www.pittsburghfashionweek.com or call ShowClix customer care at 1888-71TICKETS and stay in the excitement of fashion!
Visit on the web: www.pittsburghfashionweek.com
Follow on Twitter: @PghFashionWeek
Like on Facebook: Friends of Pittsburgh Fashion Week

SEEN This Week 8/15/11

Around my part of the world, many students are headed back to begin the 2011-2012 school year. In addition, American football also got into full swing with kicking off the preseason this past week, and don’t forget fall book releases and big author news are happening as we speak.

Gabrielle Faust is featuring a new contest this month, featuring her new Android app.

Thomas J. Winton’s new novel The Last American Martyr was released August 9 on Amazon Kindle.

Want to read more about the amazing Katherine Holmes and the prestigious literary prize she won? Click here for the feature written by Hannah Warren.

Sean Kenniff, author of the celebrated novel,ETRE THE COW made an appearance on MSNBC to discuss his book with anchor Alex Witt

Ereader News Today featured Gerry McCollough’s acclaimed novel Belfast Girls August 9 as a bargain Kindle book.

Gary Ponzo featured criminologist Jennifer Chase on his Strong Scenes blog.

Coming soon from Pfoxmoor/Pfoxchase Publishing: Six Weeks by Jessica Degarmo Click here to view the book cover.

Bob Grant of Speak Without Interruption released a list of upcoming authors and Kindle books to be featured in upcoming weeks. The complete list may be found here.

Babs Morton won second place in the Novel category at the Yeovil Literary Competition.

My news for the week:

I was a guest blogger on Night Owl Romance August 9 on the topic of The World of Sports and Romance

The Cruiserweight was #34 on the Individual Sports – Wrestling books lists in the Amazon Kindle Store August 11.

Do you have news you’d like to see in an upcoming column? Either post it on a related site or email lori@authorsonshow.com before the following week. Also follow me on Twitter @lacarrington1.