Monday, August 31, 2009

Book Review - The Rock of Realm by Lea Schizas

Title: The Rock of Realm
Written by: Lea Schizas
Softcover: 242 pages
Ages: 12 and up
Publisher: Star Publish
ISBN: 1-932993-08-8 (Print Book)
ISBN: 1-932993-09-6 (E-Book)
Publication: March 31, 2005
Alexandra Stone, better known as Alex to her friends and family is like any fourteen year-old with concerns of what to do on a Friday night to babysitting responsibilities. The life Alex knows so well changes the day she recites a chant with her best friend, Sarah after being knocked on the head by a small pink rock. The chant is from her English teacher Mr. Ritchie’s book and before she realizes it Alex and Sarah are transported to a mystical world with her dog, Butch and his squirrel buddy, Pops.
“Glitter I toss, safely I will cross, into your realm it will lead, the rock I possess, evil digress, the Queen I am to thee.” Their life in Greendale Park has vanished and they are shined upon by two moons in the starless night. From talking trees and animals they find themselves thrust into a mystical adventure where Alex is considered the “enchanted one” of royal lineage and must concur “Dread.”
The decisions made along the way will test their friendship, trusting your instincts that, ‘things are not always what they appear’ and the endurance of family.
Lea Schizas intertwines two parallel worlds together with believable ease. The powerfulness of “The Rock of Realm,” will leave you wanting more. You will route for Alex and Sarah and their counterparts from the onset. Cheers to Lea Schizas for a well crafted flight through the fantasy world. To learn more about Ms. Schizas visit her at:

Friday, August 28, 2009

Book Review - Garden of Eve by K.L. Going

Title: Garden of Eve
Written by: K. L. Going
Hardback: 232 pages
Ages: 8 to 12
Publisher: Harcourt, Inc.
ISBN: 978-0-15-205986-6
Publication: September 2007

Evie and her mom had a very special relationship where they were able to bring their imaginations into the world of magic through bedtime stories. Evie longs for the days before her mother became ill, but it is not to be when her mother dies. In hopes of a new start Evie and her father move to Beaumont, New York where Evie takes a journey into a fairy tale of her own.

At first the dismal apple orchard that her father purchased is too dreary for Evie and to top it off it’s next door to a cemetery. The events that occur after Evie meets a boy that looks just like a local boy that died, the curse of the farm and the girl that vanished, and the gift of a single seed are nothing less than spectacular.

Her father has always been a scientific man and that if there is no explanation than it cannot be real.

“Evie,” he said at last, “you know I’m a realist. I always have been. I trust what I see with my eyes, and it’s hard to believe anything you’ve told me is true…” “But I can tell you this, I’m not going to make the same mistake again. If you need a seed to find Adam and bring him home, then, by God, we’re going to find a seed.”

Through her journey Evie’s father begins to BELIEVE in the unexpected and unexplainable.

K.L. Going immerses you in the heart and soul of Evie from the start and you’ll feel the beat of your heart in your head with every word you read. Kudos to K.L. Going for this wonderful heartfelt novel!

Visit K.L. Going at:

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Book Review - The Night Tourist by Katherine Marsh

Title: The Night Tourist

Written by: Katherine Marsh

Ages: 10 - 12

Publisher: Hyperion Books for Children

ISBN: 978-142310689-0

Published: September 2007

Hardcover: 232 pages

Price: $17.99

Brilliant young ninth-grade boy, Jack Perdu lives on the Yale University campus where his father is a professor. Jack leads a solitary life as a classic prodigy and his father finds it difficult to relate to Jack.

At the arrangement of his father, Jack finds himself traveling to see a doctor in New York City. Jack is bewildered by this turns of events, but intrigued at the same time. Jack has not been to New York City since his mother’s death eight years earlier. His appointment with the doctor is bizarre to say the least and Jack becomes more confused.

While waiting for his train in Grand Central Terminal he befriends a girl named Euri, who strangely enough no one else seems to know of her existence.

“Jack took a surprised step back from the column. The voice was a girl’s, one he didn’t recognize. He turned around to look for her. But as he scanned the other corner, his stomach tightened. The tour guide had left, and all the tourists were gone. Commuters were rushing through the mezzanine, but no one was standing near any of the columns.”

With the new formed friendship and Euri’s encouragement the two explore the underworld of Grand Central Terminal. Jacks discovery of the ghostly underworld with hidden tracks and stairwells brings him to a world where it may be possible to see his mother again.

The author, Katherine Marsh, easily brings to life the wonders of New York City history through mystical storytelling of those gone before. To learn more about Ms. Marsh visit:

Monday, August 24, 2009

Writing for Free Markets

In the ICL newsletter a few weeks back the article entitled, "Can You Profit From Writing for Free?" by Jan Fields was featured. Go to the link today: and read this worthwhile article.

Once you have had a chance to read it stop back and let's get a discussion going on what your thoughts are for non-paying markets to get published credits under your belt.

I'm looking forward to your comments.

Best wishes for your continued success!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Sharing with Writers Newsletter by Carolyn Howard-Johnson

Sharing with Writers
A newsletter that is also a community.
Share your ideas.
Learn from
Associated with the multi award - winning series of HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers,

Right at your fingertips you will find useful tips and information you can begin implementing immediately into your writing career. Don't wait another day. A typical newsletter includes:

Regular Features
~Note from Carolyn
~Letters - to - the - Editor
~Thank Yous (where you also find leads and great resources!)
~Tips and News Galore! (They're scattered, you'll just have to find
~On Poetry
~Author Successes
~ Subscribers Sharing with Subscribers: Joyce White
~Mindy Lawrence's Itty Bitty Column, The Business of Writing II
~Carolyn's Appearances and Teaching
~Wordstuff ™

Opt-in today:
"To subscribe to 'Sharing with Writers' send an e - mail to with
'Subscribe' in the subject line."


Thank you!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Blogger LinkUp

Looking for content for your blog and submitting your articles to other blogs. Well look no further. I recently came across this wonderful information in:

A newsletter all about SUCCESSFUL publishing and POWERFUL promotion.
August 6, 2009 Issue #201
(Author Marketing Experts, Inc.)

Blogger LinkUp

Blogger LinkUp is the creation of Cathy Stucker, the Idea Lady.

This is a free service that is all about helping bloggers - or anyone who wants to contact bloggers.

You can:
* Request guest posts
* Request sources for interviews and round-ups
* Offer guest posts to bloggers
* Offer products to bloggers for review

Who Should Join? You should join Blogger LinkUp if you are:

* A blogger who uses guest posts to fill in when you are away or just want to give your readers another point of view
* A blogger or web site owner who wants to get links and exposure by writing guest posts
* A blogger who does interviews or round-up articles and needs sources
* A representative of a company that wants to get your products reviewed by bloggers
* A PR person, publicist or social media consultant who helps clients with any of the above.

Here is how it works: Join the Blogger LinkUp list and you will get emails once or twice a day, Monday through Friday. These emails will list bloggers looking for expert sources, requests for guest posts, bloggers and web masters offering guest posts, and PR reps and others seeking reviews of products. When you see a request that you can fulfill, just respond directly to the requester.

Have a request of your own? Simply submit a request, and it will be forwarded to the list.

Blogger LinkUp
Email Cathy Stucker:

Reprinted from "The Book Marketing Expert newsletter," a free ezine offering book promotion and publicity tips and techniques.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Author Marketing Experts Newsletter

Are you looking for tips to market your book? Author Marketing Experts can help.

Each issue of The Book Marketing Expert Newsletter is jammed pack with different tips and suggestions to make your marketing efforts more effective.

Don't wait opt-in today subscribe to this newsletter:

You'll be happy you did!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Follow Stanley Bookman into the World of Ink

Come along for this wonderful journey with Stanley Bookman into the World of Ink at Stories for Children Magazine. You'll be happy to discover us!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Book Review ~ Babysitting SugarPaw by VS Grenier

Title: Babysitting SugarPaw
Written by: VS Grenier
Illustrated by: Kevin Scott Collier
Ages: 3-8
Publisher: Halo Publishing International
ISBN: 978-1-935268-06-2
Published: July 2009
Soft cover: 32 pages
Price: $13.95

Bonnie Whiskers happily arrives at her first babysitting job and becomes quite nervous upon hearing SugarPaw’s protests. In her best attempt not to be thwarted by SugarPaw’s negativity of being babysat, Bonnie Whiskers listens intently as Mama Bear explains the rules chart. Relieved her task at hand appears simpler than she thought Bonnie Whiskers relaxes and attempts to engage SugarPaw. Unbeknownst to all involved, SugarPaw tampered with the rules chart and chaos ensues. What can Bonnie Whiskers do to get SugarPaw under control without causing more harm?

Along with the colorful illustrations of Kevin Scott Collier, VS Grenier brings to life a first-time babysitter’s apprehension and mixes in the high jinxes of SugarPaw into a delightful story of acceptance and understanding. Your personal copy of Babysitting SugarPaw will surely become worn out from reading it many times over.

VS Grenier is an Award-winning author and Editor-in-Chief of Stories for Children Magazine ( She learned how to hone her writing skills at the Institute of Children’s Literature, and her works include: the Best of Stories for Children Magazine Volume 1 anthology and over 30 short stories, articles, and crafts for children along with newsletter articles for writers. Visit Grenier at: and learn more about her exciting career.

Check out the order details for Babysitting SugarPaw at: for an autographed copy and a portion of sales goes to

Kevin Scott Collier is a Christian youth fiction book author and illustrator. Explore his techno-colored world at:

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

VS Grenier teams with First Book

Hello Everyone,I wanted to share with you the cause I've recently joined . . . First Book!
Here is what Bonnie Johnson from First Book had to say about me joining their cause."First Book provides new books to children in need addressing one of the most important factors affecting literacy – access to books. Since 1992, First Book has distributed over 65 million new books to children from low-income families in thousands of communities nationwide."Programs that serve predominantly children from low-income families can receive books from First Book and that is why VS Grenier has joined First Book in our fight to bring children their first book.
"First Book works with many different authors and/or publishers big and small! We are thrilled to be working with VS Grenier at First Book in our donation program. We have done similar donations and generally because First Book works with thousands of recipient groups across the country we try to find a group near an author and/or publisher that could benefit from a donation such as this."Bonnie Johnson Manager, First Book Literacy Registry
How Can you help me give children their first book?
You can help me bring a child their first book a few different ways. The process is simple and anyone can help.
1. Place an order for an autographed copy of Babysitting SugarPaw and 25% of the sale will go to books for First Book. Place your order at
2. Buy and donate Babysitting SugarPaw to First Book. Once we reach the 100 book level First Book will proceed in donating the books to a group in VS Grenier's area. Place your donation at
3. Tell your friends about Babysitting SugarPaw and how VS Grenier has joined First Book in bring children their first book.
If you would like to know more about First Book please visit their website at
Written by VS Grenier
Illustrated by Kevin Collier
ISBN: 978-1-93526-806-2
Buy or Donate Babysitting SugarPaw to First Book Today at

Monday, August 10, 2009

One Lovely Blog Award

It always seems there are one or two people in your life who seem to have the intuition when to be in touch whether it be a phone call, a note, email, etc. Lea Schizas is one of those people in my life. I met Lea well over three years ago (even though we have never met in person) she has been a great support in my writing career. Today was a struggle to get moving with hearing the passing of one of my daughter’s friends parents and decided to bag my writing and SFC work today to spend some major quality time with my girls. I took a few moments out to check email and low and behold Lea sent an email. I was pleasantly surprised to be bestowed the honor, along with four other ladies (and to no surprise to me have been a strong sense of support for me too) the One Lovely Blog Award. Lea’s heartfelt words about me have touched me deeply, words I shall not forget. Words I deem worthy to printout and paste alongside my computer monitor. Check-out Lea’s blog today and learn of the additional recipients.

Now on to the simple rules and my recipients:

1) Accept the award, and don’t forget to post a link back to the awarding person.
2) Pass the award on.
3) Notify the award winners.

Lea would have been one of my choices, considering without her expert editing skills, my book, The Golden Pathway, may have never been accepted as my first book contract. And many thanks to Lea for creating the Muse It Club – without this group, I’m sure I would not have met so many of my writing colleagues, whom I now consider close friends.

For my choices these women each inspire and motivate me in some way:

Lori Calabrese – Lori and I first met through the Muse It Up Club and then unexpectedly in-person at the SCBWI Eastern NY Conference – June 2008. Since then Lori and I created our own critique group, along with Stephanie Hoina and Irene Roth. Lori always has the time to chat and share everything she has learned and continues to learn about writing. And of course, always making the connection a positive personal experience. Her writing career is flourishing with two pending picture books and numerous articles and short stories in print. I am proud to say, I knew Lori when and will continue to be connected with her professionally and personally for many, many years to come.

VS Grenier – Virginia was the first editor who took a chance on my writing and accepted my first non-fiction article for the July 2007 issue of Stories for Children Magazine. Since then Virginia and I have stayed in touch via email and I had the opportunity to attend her workshop at the 2007 Muse Online Writers Conference and a tighter kinship was formed and continues to flourish even more so with our work at Stories for Children Magazine. Virginia’s energy for her own writing, editing, and critique services, topped with her responsibilities of Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Stories for Children Magazine is certainly an inspiration to me. Confirming my dream of the written word for children is so much more than being paid for, but rather than reaching the depths of creativity in children.

Kristi Holl - - When I first started out writing for children through an Institute of Childrens Literature course I purchased the book, Writer's First Aid ~ Getting Organized, Getting Inspired, and Sticking to It by Kristi Holl and with my first read through it became earmarked and highlighted to the hilt. It is a book I continue to reference. Then several years later I had the opportunity to meet Kristi through a Margie Lawson's online course and we teamed up to be "Change Coaches" and what transpired has become a full fledge one-on-one support both in writing and personally. We encourage each other, but don't let each other off the hook on what we are striving for in our writing. And boy does it work! To be connected with an individual in such a profound way has made me a more confident writer and individual and I thank Kristi for her steady warm support and encouragement.

Beverly Stowe McClure – - Beverly is another individual who I met through the Muse It Up Club. We hit it off immediately and we continue to be in touch off the chat boards. Bev’s wonderful nature of checking-in with me to see how “things” are going keeps me energized to keep moving forward, so I’m always ready to share with her new accomplishments and of course those dreaded rejections. I consider Bev my cyber-space mother. Her caring and supportive words are always a comfort in what can be the lonely world of writing. I’m just glad she can’t give me a slap upside the head like my real mom…LOL. But then again, I don’t think I would mind Bev doing this, since she knows the frustrations of writing, working, and raising a family all too well.

Ladies, thank you from the bottom of my heart for your continued inspiration, friendship, and support of my writing career. Without you, I’d be a lost.

Saturday, August 8, 2009


Stories for Children Magazine
a trademark of Stories for Children Publishing, LLC
A monthly Ezine for Children (3 to 12)


CONTACT: Donna M. McDine
Marketing Manager, Stories for Children Magazine
Phone: 800-670-4416

For Immediate Release

SFC: Families matter blog - "SLOGAN FOR SLACKER" CONTEST

It's that time again, back to school and Slacker Radio Plus wants to offer 3 lucky readers a free 3 month subscription.Slacker is a free Internet radio service allowing users to create their own customized music stations. Slacker offers many traditional genre, specialty and artist stations pre-made by professional DJs like "Today's Hits", "80's, 90's and Today", "Country", etc. while also letting users build entire stations of specific artists just by typing in their name.Slacker Radio Plus is the upgraded subscription service and for $3.99/mo, listeners have unlimited song skipping, access to song lyrics, unlimited song requests and no audio or banner ads. Slacker has 4x the music library as the leading competition and is available via the web, BlackBerrys, iPhones, Sony BRAVIA TVs, etc.Slacker Radio Plus Offers:*Unlimited Skips*Unlimited Song Requests*No Audio or Banner Ads*Complete Lyrics*Over 2 Million Songs*Live DJ's programming stationsSlacker is also giving away free BlackBerry Curve smartphones to listeners in celebration of the overwhelming success of the Slacker Radio mobile application. For listeners who want to take Slacker with them everywhere they go and want to be able to get a smartphone that can do it, Slacker is making it easy with this offer. All major carriers are available (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile) and every offer features a Blackberry Curve smartphone. The offers aren't all identical, but they all offer the ability to get a free BlackBerry smartphone with either a new contract, or an extension (depending on your carrier and where you are in your current contract).Here is the direct link:

Want to enter the contest? Here's what you have to do.
Make up a "Slogan for Slacker.
"Rules:Contest is FREE to enter
You must be over 18 to enter
1 Slogan per entry
Slogan should be Clean and Family Friendly
Contest closes August 15th
Top 3 entries win a free 3 month subscription from Slacker Radio Plus
Email slogan to Sandie Lee at: with Slogan for Slacker in the 'subject' lineGOOD LUCK :)

Be sure to check out the entire August 2009 issue of SFC Magazine for all the outstanding articles, stories, and featured guest interview with VS Grenier.

Learn more about Stories for Children Magazine at:


Full Media Kit, Magazine Cover Art, and more are available upon request electronically.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Book Review - Hollowbush Mystery Players by Heather L. Adams

Title: Hollowbush Mystery Players ~ It’s been a Long Time Coming

Written by: Heather L. Adams

Ages: 9-12

Publisher: AuthorHouse

ISBN: 978-1434386359

Published: November 2008

Softcover: 256 pages

Price: $15.99

Nicholas Nichols is welcomed with open arms into a new circle of friendship when he visits his Great-Aunt and –Uncle for the summer. From the onset Nicholas clicks with Danny and sisters Cassidy and Caitlin. With the help of Cassidy and Caitlin’s mother Jan they form The Hollowbush Mystery Players to participate in the celebration of the 40th Annual Broadway Entertainer Festival Spectacular. In their off time, the foursome, explore the woods and discover an old abandoned building and mine shaft. From the moment of entry, odd noises and happenings occur. Unexplainable, the friends ignore and continue with their exploration. Within a short amount of time strange instances begin to occur at the theatre and Aunt Hannah and Uncle Ellis’ home.

Are the instances related? Will the members of The Hollowbush Mystery Players make the connection and discover what or whom is behind them? Time is of the essence to clear this matter up once and for all so the 40th Annual Broadway Entertainer Festival Spectacular can go off without a hitch.

Heather Adams takes the reader on a mysterious ride leaving the reader breathless with each turn of the page.

To learn more about Ms. Adams visit:

Reviewed by Donna M. McDine for the National Writing for Children Center. Donna’s publishing credits include over 25 print and ezine publications and is the Marketing Manager at Stories for Children Magazine. She placed 12th in the 77th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition in the category Children’s/Young Adult Fiction and recently signed her first book contract with Guardian Angel Publishing. She is also a member of the SCBWI and Musing Our Children. To learn more about Donna’s writing career visit her at Sign her guestbook and receive her FREE e-Book ~ “Write What Inspires You! Author Interviews”

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Writers' Journal - Article Accepted

I’m pleased to announce my article, “Children’s Writing Resources,” has been accepted by Writers’ Journal and will appear in either their January/February 2010 or March/April 2010 issue, with a lead-in on their website –
Best wishes to your continued success!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Book Review - Penny and Rio - The Locked Doghouse Mystery by Jennifer Swanson

Title: Penny & Rio – The Locked Doghouse Mystery

Written by: Jennifer Swanson

Illustrated by: Swapan Debnath

Ages: 4-8

Publisher: Mirror Publishing

ISBN: 978-1-936046-10-2

Published: August 2009

Softcover: 44 pages

Price: $11.99

Penny and Rio find themselves paw deep in their latest mystery when Hobbes, a huge Great Dane and new next door neighbor seeks them out for their expert detective skills. Not one to be easily intimidated, Penny stands her ground and listens intently of the new case thrust upon them. The dilemma and determination of Hobbes’ friend Squeaky to get into the old locked doghouse draws in the four legged detectives immediately. And with the evasiveness of Squeaky, Penny’s curiosity is piqued further and she pleads for her sister, Rio, to quit her napping and help in finding the missing key and gaining entry.

“Come on, Rio, I’ll let you have my bone tonight,” Penny smiled. Rio stopped. Her eyes narrowed. Say it’s for the next two nights, and you’ve got a deal.”

Up against an impossible deadline of less than a day, the cleverness of each is put to the test while on the case of finding the lost key. Will they make it in time? Ms. Swanson brings to life the adventures of Penny and Rio with such humanistic characteristics the reader forgets they are on a journey with animals. Children will certainly enjoy reading about the detective skills of such ingenious dogs.

Jennifer Swanson was born with the love of reading and at the age of 5, was already writing and illustrating her own stories. She is a 1990 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, a former chemistry teacher, a current graduate student and substitute teacher. Learn more about the author and Penny and Rio at:

Monday, August 3, 2009

Book Review - Caves, Cannons and Crinolines by Beverly Stowe McClure

Title: Caves, Cannons and Crinolines

Written by: Beverly Stowe McClure

Ages: 12 and up

Publisher: Twilight Times Books

ISBN: 1-60619-112-8

Published: Setpember 2009

Soft cover: 153 pages

Price: $16.95

The year 1863 finds outspoken, 14-year-old, Lizzie Stamford at a crossroads of what her parents believe to be acceptable behavior for a young lady, and secret desire to join the Confederate Army disguised as a boy. Her two brothers, Willie and Joseph willingly joined the Confederacy to defend Vicksburg from the Yankees and Lizzie longs to be part of the glory. Her blind courage brings her into the midst of a battleground at nighttime. Much to her dismay war is not what she believed it to be. The horrific acts of violence overwhelm her and she runs away as quickly as she arrived.

Her emotions and beliefs that all Yankees are evil is put to the test when an unexpected encounter with a Yankee soldier has her doubting her belief system. Will Lizzie come to terms of the ever changing world and circumstances which surround her? And what is to become of her beloved brothers and the city of Vicksburg?

McClure balances the emotions of the Confederate and Yankee characters with such in-depth feeling the reader will find themselves switching sides throughout the perilous journey of Lizzie Stamford and her family, and their quest to reclaim Vicksburg.

To learn more about Beverly Stowe McClure visit:


Reviewed by Donna M. McDine for the National Writing for Children Center. Donna’s publishing credits include over 25 print and ezine publications and is the Marketing Manager at Stories for Children Magazine. She placed 12th in the 77th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competition in the category Children’s/Young Adult Fiction and recently signed her first book contract with Guardian Angel Publishing. She is also a member of the SCBWI and Musing Our Children. To learn more about Donna’s writing career visit her at Sign her guestbook and receive her FREE e-Book ~ “Write What Inspires You! Author Interviews”

Saturday, August 1, 2009

VBT - Writers on the Move - August 1st Author Tour

VBT – Writers on the Move is happy to announce the following August 1st tour schedule:

Dianne Sagan to host Karen Cioffi at

Harry Gilleland to host Virginia Grenier at

Karen Cioffi to host Heather Paye at

Kathy Stemke to host Dianne Sagan at

Lea Schizas to host Carolyn Howard-Johnson at

Nancy Famolari to host Linda Asato at

Vivian Zabel to host Katie Hines at

Margaret Fieland to host Crystalee Calderwood at

Crystalee Calderwood to host Helena Harper at

Katie Hines to host Mayra Calvani at

Dorothy Massey to host Marvin Wilson at

Liana Metal to host Gayle Trent at

Carolyn Howard-Johnson to host Harry Gilleland at

Virginia Grenier to host Stephen Tremp at NOTE: date change for Stephen will be August 3rd and 5th.

Helena Harper to host Dorothy Massey at

Gayle Trent to host Kathy Stemke at

Mayra Calvani to host Liana Metal at

Marvin Wilson to host Lea Schizas at

Anita Yasuda to host Nancy Famolari at

Linda Asato to host Vivian Zabel at

Heather Paye to host Margaret Fieland at

Stephen Tremp to host Anita Yasuda at

Be sure to stop by and leave your comments or questions for each author. Each will check-in periodically throughout the day to field your comments and questions.

Thank you for your continued interest in the VBT - Writers on the Move blog tours.