Thursday, May 31, 2012

Book Review: Dream Seekers Book One: Fright Flight by Lisa Ard




Title:                            Dream Seekers Book One: Fright Flight
Written by:                  Lisa Ard
Illustrated by:             Majida K. Nelson
Soft cover:                  58 pages
Ages:                           8-12
Publisher:                    Puddletown Publishing Group, Inc.
Print ISBN 13:            978-1-61413-024-6
Published:                   October 2011
Print Price:                  $6.99 

The balance of reality and imagination can be difficult for anyone especially a young boy. Born into a family of “Dream Seekers”, 12-year old Patrick needs to develop his self-control so his dreams do not take over his waking reality and cause chaos in the “real world.” Recognizing Patrick is anxious to develop his “dream seeking” abilities his mother encourages him to do so but reminds him the need of developing his self-control at the same time. Does Patrick heed his mother’s advice and slowly venture into the “dream seeking” world or does his jump in with full force? Find out in this exciting fantasy middle grade novel of how reality and imagination intertwine for fascinating results.  

Visit with Lisa Ard and learn what other adventures she has in store for her readers:  


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Chick Lit All Grown Up – Love Under the Bubble Wrap by Donna Shepherd



Chick Lit All Grown Up – Love Under the Bubble Wrap by Donna Shepherd

Donna Shepherd, a well-known children's book author and writing workshop leader, has written Love Under the Bubble Wrap, a novelette story not for her usual elementary-age readers. Her newest passion is writing hen-lit. Her novelette begins with the arrival of a mysterious gift (hence, the bubble wrap), and comes complete with humor, romance, and even a little mystery to solve.

What is hen-lit? It's chick-lit all grown up. According to the popular blog "Chick Lit Books, "hen-lit books" feature women who are a little (and sometimes a lot) older than the average chick lit heroine. The age range is anywhere from late 30’s to mid 60’s. Generally, you will find the main characters dealing with normal situations, such as jobs, love the second time around, family situations, and more."

The female leading lady in Love Under the Bubble Wrap isn't your typical twenty-something drop-dead gorgeous reedy willow. No, this is a story about a marriage in trouble and real life issues to which many readers will relate. Ms. Shepherd's romantic escape resonates with comedy, love, and enough mystery to keep the pages turning.

About the author: Ms. Shepherd has hundreds of articles and devotionals to her credit. Her writings appear in Daily Grace for Women and The Best Grandma in the World. Her children's books No More Gunk!, OUCH! Sunburn, Poodle and Doodle, and Sully's Topsy Tale featuring short, playful rhymes and humorous illustrations. Donna is the founder of Greater Harvest Workshops and Middletown Area Christian Writers. She's also in demand as a Bible teacher, conference speaker, and singer. Donna lives in the Cincinnati area. Visit Ms. Shepherd's Facebook page for helpful writing tips, useful links, and updates about her writing: http://www.Facebook.com/donnajshepherd.

Love Under the Bubble Wrap a Novelette is the perfect length to read on your lunch break - or anytime, and available exclusively on Amazon. Readers can purchase the book for their Kindle, iPad, iPod Touch, iPhone, Mac, PC, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, or Android-based devices.
Publisher: Lilliput Press (February 1, 2012)
Language: English
ASIN: B007402K34
Price: $0.99

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day


Freedom Is Not Free

by Kelly Strong

I watched the flag pass by one day.
It fluttered in the breeze.
A young Marine saluted it,
and then he stood at ease.
I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud,
He'd stand out in any crowd.
I thought how many men like him
Had fallen through the years.
How many died on foreign soil?
How many mothers' tears?
How many pilots' planes shot down?
How many died at sea?
How many foxholes were soldiers' graves?
No, freedom isn't free.


I heard the sound of TAPS one night,
When everything was still
I listened to the bugler play
And felt a sudden chill.
I wondered just how many times
That TAPS had meant "Amen,"
When a flag had draped a coffin
Of a brother or a friend.
I thought of all the children,
Of the mothers and the wives,
Of fathers, sons and husbands
With interrupted lives.
I thought about a graveyard
At the bottom of the sea
Of unmarked graves in Arlington.
No, freedom isn't free.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Friday, May 25, 2012

Random Acts of Kindness Surprise by Sharon Mayhew


An online friend of mine, Sharon Mayhew recently surprised me with a heartwarming post to Celebrate Writers Through Random Acts of Kindness. I was a bit late to the "party" but nevertheless it has put me over the moon.

Come on over and visit...
http://skmayhew.blogspot.com/2012/05/random-act-of-kindness-blitz.html

Thanks Sharon! I'm truly blessed to have you in my life!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Guest Blogger - Sharon Stanley Visits Write What Inspires You



Welcome to writer, Sharon Stanley! I recently had the pleasure of meeting Sharon online during the Guardian Angel Publishing celebration of Children's Book Week. Sharon was a gracious visitor throughout the week and we made a quick connection through cyberspace. I'm delighted to share with you Sharon's guest blogger post entitled, "Labels." I hope you enjoy reading  Sharon's article as much as I did. 

"Labels"
by Sharon Stanley 

I have been writing as long as I can remember. After my youngest child graduated, I decided to submit for publication.  I joined the (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and revamped my blog but what would I call myself?  Author seemed pompous since I am unpublished. Writer seemed a little better, or was it?

Before deciding on a label I looked up the definition of "writer". Webster says a writer is "one who writes; one who has the occupation of writing." I'm OK with "one who writes" but occupation implies pay. I decided to pull out J.I.Rodales's Synonym Finder (l986) to find a better label.

First, I got sidetracked and looked up "housewife." There were many synonyms… housekeeper, chief cook and bottle washer, mate, consort and my personal fave, better half. I moved on to "mother”… female parent, matron,  old lady  and the one I love: motherkins.

"Oh motherkins, what's for supper?"  Maybe not.

As to writer, there were 71 synonyms. Here are some of my favorites: pen-pusher, ink-slinger, hack, leg-man, scribe, and the one that rang true.....scribbler.

I find it hard to admit I AM A WRITER.  I hate the thought of being compared to people who really write, make money at it, and are really good at it.

Then it occurred to me- I have many labels:  mother, housekeeper, wife, friend, Christian, sister, and daughter. There’s no monetary compensation for those, why should writer be any different?  I've been writing for years for the sheer pleasure of it; why should that change just because I now wish to pursue this pleasure seriously?

So I shall write my stories and blog and grocery list and whatever else I decide, and not think too much about labels. If I am fortunate enough to publish a book, perhaps I will be more comfortable with author.  Till then, I’m happy with writer.   I’m still pretty certain motherkins won’t work.

So what is your label?   


About the writer: Sharon Stanley writes picture books from the farm she shares with her husband and two boys. To date, pre-published, she lives in a crop circle of craziness where subject matter is never lacking. Sharon is a member of the SCBWI and began her writing journey in earnest when her youngest graduated last year. She strives each day to "live creatively....with cows."

Visit Sharon: www.sharonstanleywrites.blogspot.com "life is short. smile while you still have teeth."

Sharon, thank you for guest blogging at Write What Inspires You! I look forward to staying connected! 


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Gelati’s Scoop GZONE Chats with Tina Games, Certified Creativity and Life Purpose Coach – May 23 – 10 am EST


The humorous and delightful Giovanni Gelati of Blog Talk Radio Gelati’s Scoop GZone will be connecting through the airwaves and Internet to interview certified creativity and life purpose coach, Tina Games.

Come join us on Wednesday, May 23 at 10 am EST for an inspiring and insightful interview while they chat about Ms. Games’ book, Journaling by the Moonlight: A Mother’s Path to Self-Discovery. 

Have a question or comment for our host and/or guest, please dial-in 949-270-5955 or listen-in via http://www.blogtalkradio.com/gelatisscoop

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Dorit Sasson joins 46 Authors From Around The Globe in Sharing Their Stories of Hope and Inspiration




Pebbles in the Pond – Transforming the World One Person at a Time

Pittsburgh, PA, May 4, 2012: Dorit Sasoon, joins bestselling authors Sonia Choquette, Robert Allen, Arielle Ford, Marci Shimoff, and dozens more transformational authors from around the world in sharing their touching, amazing, and deeply inspiring true stories of their personal trials, triumphs, and ultimate transformations in the transformational book Pebbles in the Pond – Transforming the World One Person at a Time.

Through their wonderful writings, writers from all parts of the world are helping to shift the course of history through their own transformations and how they choose to live their lives every single day.

Pebbles in the Pond – Transforming the World One Person at a Time asks readers, "Can your most difficult moments be the ones that shed the greatest light in your life?" The book's 46 courageous visionaries say YES! and invite readers to be inspired by this small body of determined spirits. "You’ll connect with these authors as friends immediately, because they hold nothing back. They share their straight-from-the-heart stories and invite you to discover how to transform your toughest times into the greatest gifts and blessings in your life, even if you don’t think it’s possible," says publisher, Christine Kloser. "Through their wonderful writings, you’ll be inspired by the power of how one transformed life causes ripples that reach out into the world – just like a “Pebble in the Pond” – and you’ll be moved to discover what your pebble is so you can create a wave of positive change in your life, too!"


Pebbles in the Pond – Transforming the World One Person at a Time
Paperback: 275 pages
Publisher: Transformation Books; 1st edition (May 20, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0985140712
ISBN-13: 978-0985140717

Dorit Sasson is the author of Giving Voice to the Voiceless and a speaker. She uses the power of story to help others create their life and business in story. Download your free MP3Story Manifesto: A Guide To Stepping into the Authentic Voice and Vision of Your Story, at www.GivingAVoicetotheVoicelessBook.com. When you do, you’ll receive a complimentary subscription to the “Giving Voice to the Voiceless” ezine including a transformational tip of the week.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Children’s Weather Book – The Water Cycle: Water Play Series Book 1 by Mayra Calvani




Children’s Weather Book – The Water Cycle: Water Play Series Book 1
 by Mayra Calvani
A lyrical written children’s weather book takes the reader through the
range of feelings water evokes in the human race.

(ST. LOUIS, MO)Award-winning children’s author, Mayra Calvani cleverly creates the world of water droplets and how they journey from the clouds to the earth and back to the clouds again. The Water Cycle: Water Play Series Book 1 children’s weather book is the first in the series of four and teaches the different stages of water through the creation of rain, hail, snow, water vapor and how each travels through our atmosphere. As an added bonus, the book includes a word search and word match activities to further guide children in understanding the water cycle.

What reviewers are saying…
“Homeschooling families and elementary teachers alike will appreciate this fresh, new picture book about the water cycle.” ~ Nancy I. Sanders, award-winning children’s author

“This book will be useful for teaching scientific information to kids in a fun way.” ~ Janet Collins, author, speaker, and retired teacher

“Elementary, as well as middle school teachers will welcome this creatively written book, which introduces students to the continuous cycle of rain, water vapor and cloud formation.” ~ Carol Fraser Hagen, Literacy Specialist

About the author: Mayra Calvani writes fiction and nonfiction for children and adults and has authored over a dozen books, some of which have won awards. Her stories, reviews, interviews and articles have appeared on numerous publications such as The Writer, Writer’s Journal, Multicultural Review, and Bloomsbury Review, among many others. Her love for the violin has inspired her to pen three “violin” children’s picture books: The Magic Violin, Frederico the Mouse Violinist, and now the latest, The Doll Violinist www.violinandbooks.wordpress.com/books-i-wrote.

Visit her website at www.MayrasSecretBookcase.com and get the first two lessons of her popular Walking on a Rainbow Picture Book Workshop free! 

Title: The Water Cycle: Water Play Series Book 1
Author: Mayra Calvani
Illustrations: Alexander Morris
Genre: Children 4-8
Print ISBN: 9781616332372; 1616332379
eBook ISBN:
9781616332389; 1616332387 
Published: March 15, 2012
Pages: 20
Price: $10.95 print; $5.00 e-Book
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
http://guardianangelpublishing.com/water-cycle.htm


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Suzanne Lieurance Visits Write What Inspires You on her Working Writer's Club Virtual Book Tour



I met Suzanne online back in 2007 through the Children's Writers Coaching Club which is now the Working Writer's Cub and have the privilege of working for her as the WWC publicist. Without further ado, welcome Suzanne.

Thank you for following my on the second day of my 5-day virtual tour for my book, The Lucky Baseball - My Story in a Japanese-American Internment Camp. Let me tell you a little bit about what the writer's life is like for me.


First, since I'm also a writing coach as well as a writer, I spend part of my time each work day helping other writers. I also have to spend some time each day promoting my writing and my coaching club - the Working Writer's Club - at http://www.workingwritersclub.com. The rest of the time I spend searching for new freelance writing assignments or coming up with ideas for books or stories, then I spend time writing, too. Usually, I like to write first thing in the morning before I get distracted by all the other things I need to do.

One of the things I love most about the writer's life is that I can write most anywhere, most anytime. Sometimes I get up in the middle of the night and write for an hour or two, then I'll take a nap in the middle of the day. I also like to go to coffee shops and bookstores once in a while and do some writing there. And I like to go to the library to do some of the research for my books. Sometimes, I even travel to interesting spots to research my books. I'm scheduled to teach a week long writer's workshop this September in Cortona, Italy. You can find out more about that at http://www.toscanaamericana.com/lieurancewriting.html.

Happy reading!



P.S. If you're a writer, sign up for The Morning Nudge and I'll send you tips and other information about writing in an email every weekday morning!


Visit with Suzanne, tomorrow Wednesday, May 16th as she discusses Tradebook Tips for Teacher’s from Children’s Author, Suzanne Lieurance with host Karen Cioffi - www.karencioffiwritingandmarketing.com


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Children's Book Week 2012: Thank You!


Thank you one and all for visiting me and my fellow Guardian Angel Publishing children's authors as we celebrated Children's Book Week, it's been a true pleasure connecting with you. The winners of the two prizes will be announced by the end of this week.

We are all avid bloggers and welcome your visit and comments anytime.


Mayra Calvani - www.mayrassecretbookcase.blogspot.com
The contest is is not over yet, you have until midnight tonight to enter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Children's Book Week 2012: Coming Soon from Donna McDine - Hockey Agony


I'm over moon to share with you the book cover of my forthcoming children's book, Hockey Agony with Guardian Angel Publishing! My illustrator, Julie Hammond is busy creating the interior illustrations and I'm waiting with bated breath. When the publisher shared the book cover with me I gasped, for Julie truly captured the essence of the story!

In the meantime, I'd like to share with you a bit of Julie's background and book synopsis:



About Julie Hammond: 

Julie Hammond is the illustrator of Why Do We Celebrate Easter?, Riley's Heart Machine, Birds in a Flower Basket and Hockey Agony. She lives with her family of two girls, a loving husband and a few furry friends in a cozy house in St. Louis, Missouri. She loves to hear from her reading friends. You can contact Julie through her website at juliehammondart.com.





About Hockey Agony: Peer Pressure and Honesty many times go hand-in-hand.  What is Larry to do when his teammate asks him to cheat when he is given the responsibility to run the clock during the big hockey game?  Outwardly, it may seem he will follow suit, but his conscious tells him otherwise at the moment of truth.


Thank you for taking the time out to visit.


I invite you to visit with my fellow Guardian Angel Publishing authors at their blogs during Children’s Book Week 2012 and beyond:
Don’t forget to enter our contest:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Friday, May 11, 2012

Children's Book Week 2012: Be There Bed Time Stories



Families and friends who live far away from each other with hundreds of miles or even an ocean separating them can be emotionally draining at times. Close the gap by visiting through the wonderful technology of the Internet by sharing your favorite bed time story with the youngster in your life. I recently participated in creating a video excerpt of my award-winning Underground Railroad children’s book, TheGolden Pathway http://bit.ly/HtpqtW and I’m pleased to share with you a behind the scenes look of Be There Bedtime Stories with Alison Sansone.

About Be There Bedtime Stories:
Be There Bedtime Stories is a website that delivers bedtime stories from the web - known as  "Webtime Stories™" - for families far apart. We position webcam recorded video of a storyteller onto the page of a children's e-book, so grandparents, traveling parents, military parents or even aunts and uncles can still 'be there' for this age-old storytelling tradition, during the formative years of a child's life. We like to think that Webtime Stories™ build relationships and build readers, through these read-aloud video recordings.

How does it work?

It's super simple - as one of our focus group mommies put it "…I had a slight fear of the [webcam] technology, but your website did all the work!" 

1. Choose an e-book from our online bookstore; 

2. Read the story aloud in front of your webcam, as it displays on your
computer screen - sound effects, hand gestures and duets are highly encouraged; 

3. We position the video of you - the storyteller - onto the page of the e-book and then email a special link to anyone you choose; your recorded Webtime Stories™ are viewable any number of times, forever. 

And Webtime Stories™ play direct from your own bookshelf on our secure website, so you don't have to download anything or figure out how to transfer video files. 

What inspired it?

Well, I don't have children of my own and my only two nieces live 2000 miles away, in Chicago. It was really frustrating to not be recognized when I would visit in those early years. I wanted to be a part of those really neat memories that we all have from childhood - I wanted to make an impact on their lives.

I was running my own video marketing production company at the time and, so, combining video media with something for kids was making its way to the frontal lobe region of my brain and, wah-lah! video bedtime stories appeared!

The best part of the creating the demo was to see the organic interactivity between my father and my nieces. They loved it! I had my sister record video of them watching the first Webtime Story and all of their reactions were spot-on! My father naturally paused on one page to count the hippos and they counted out loud with him. Then at the end of the story, my father made mention of a little inside joke before saying goodnight; well, right on queue, my niece popped up from her pillow and bantered right back at her grandpa in the video. Both girls were glued to the screen and engaged, yet it was organically interactive despite the fact that it was a recording.

The fact that it is a video recording makes for a really unique family keepsake. I think it's so cool to think that my niece's great-grandchildren will be able to know a bit about me by watching my storytelling style, 100 years from now!

How many books do you offer?

We currently have ten small to med size publishers that have offered over 200 titles through our bookstore. Books are appropriate for ages ranging from 2-8 years old and we even have Spanish language stories, too! We're continuing to reach out to other publishers to add more titles.

Is there anything else you'd like to add?

Totally, I'm glad you asked! One of our best projects is offering people visiting the site the opportunity to buy Webtime Stories™ for military families. It's such a simple yet powerful way to support the troops deployed overseas. We have a great partnership with a leading military family support org - BlueStarFam.org. Visitors to our site can purchase a story for just $4.99 and then we distribute the Webtime Stories™ through Blue Star Families. 

We also have a way for folks to promote it in their workplace, church or organization. We can even track your group's donations, if your company or organization is interested in matching. Here is the link to that program: http://www.betherebedtimestories.com/milfamsupport/

I invite you to visit with my fellow Guardian Angel Publishing authors at their blogs during Children’s Book Week 2012 and beyond:
Don’t forget to enter our contest:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Children's Book Week 2012: Donna McDine Chats about The Reading Tub










The Children's Book Week 2012 celebration continues and I wanted to share with you a wonderful resource of children's books, The Reading Tub.

While searching the Internet for children's books and opportunities to connect with book reviewers and individuals/organizations on the front lines of children's literacy I discovered The Reading Tub. And what a find it is! A bit of what The Reading Tub has to offer...













Slogan:We Bring Reading Home for Families”

The Reading Tub is a volunteer-run non-profit for family reading and literacy. Here you'll discover great books to share and learn about ways to encourage your child's love of reading. The Reading Tub collects and distributes books to at-risk readers, whether it is a child with no books at home or a teacher building a classroom library for her struggling students. Donations fund this work, and 100% of the money we receive goes to providing literacy information and shipping books.



The Reading Tub offers:

Book Reviews

Author Showcase

Learning To Read Resources: literacy facts, reading activities, learning to read, when a child struggles to read, resources & articles, and Children’s Book Awards

Newsletter

Our Company: learn how The Reading Tub came to fruition, community projects, Board of Directors, partners, donors, accomplishments, etc.

Visit The Reading Tub today http://thereadingtub.com/index.php and be forewarned you will be spending countless hours getting to know authors and the resources The Reading Tub has to offer. 

I invite you to visit with my fellow Guardian Angel Publishing authors at their blogs during Children’s Book Week 2012 and beyond:
Don’t forget to enter our contest:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Children's Book Week: The Importance of a Teacher’s Guide for your Children’s Book




The Importance of a Teacher’s Guide for your Children’s Book
By Donna McDine

After I signed the book contract for The Golden Pathway I took the time out to discuss with teachers what sparks their interest in children’s books for their classrooms beyond what the school provides. Many times over I heard they are under strict confinements with their curriculum and books need to fit into their daily teachings. I then took to task to research state curriculum guidelines and learned the creation of an educator’s guide for The Golden Pathway needed to be a comprehensive across the curriculum guide. After meeting homeschool specialist, Amy O’Quinn through the Working Writer’s Club I approached Amy about hiring her to write a teacher’s guide for The Golden Pathway. The end result was beyond my expectations!

The teacher’s guide is a teaching tool for English, Social Studies, Math, Science, and Art teachers, as well as for Homeschooling families. Activities include:

  • Language Arts: Writing/Vocabulary
  • Integrated Language Arts/Social Studies: Topical Study/Presentation Boards
  • Social Studies: Timeline, Mapping and Geography
  • Math: Map Work Mathematics, Calculations, Time, Recipe Math, Quilt Math
  • Science: Astronomy, Skin, Plants and Crops, Alcoholism, Five Senses
  • Role Playing, Disguises and Escape/Safe Houses
  • Toys and Games of the 19th Century: Make a Rag Doll, Make a Nettie Doll, Information on Games/Toys
  • Songs of Slavery and the Underground Railroad: Background Information and Lyrics
  • More Fun Art Projects, Activities, and Resources: Coloring Sheets, Printables, Juneteenth, Make A Tin Can Lantern 
It is in my opinion well written children’s books have a better chance of finding their way into schools when it is accompanied with an educator’s guide. By having this guide for The Golden Pathway it has certainly helped spark additional interest with school visits. Case in point, when I participated in the New York State Reading Association, October 2011 I had the opportunity to meet with teachers from across the tri-state area (NY, NJ, and CT) and many commented on the educator’s guide I was chatting up with them as they stopped by my table. They were delighted and impressed to learn of this complimentary addition to The Golden Pathway, explaining their time is at a premium and to have activities already planned for them saves them valuable time. At this point in time, one of these conversations has turned into a weeklong visit to a local elementary school. The Parent Teacher Association purchased The Golden Pathway for each classroom and when I presented each teacher with the complimentary CD of The Golden Pathway Educator’s Guide their responses where overwhelming positive. Knowing even beforehand how essential an educator’s guide is, I’ve already hired Amy O’Quinn to create educator’s guides for my future books.

As writers many of us can and do create our own teacher’s guides, but for myself I wanted someone with the expertise of being in the trenches of teaching to formulate my teacher’s guide. By outsourcing this project, it has freed me to up to work on new manuscripts, marketing, and client work.

Details of my author school visit workshops, visit: http://thegoldenpathway.blogspot.com/2012/03/author-school-visits-bardonia.html.

To learn more about my writing career or to order an autographed copy of The Golden Pathway visit, www.donnamcdine.com. Gift with purchase: The Golden Pathway Educator’s Guide.

Additional ways to order The Golden Pathway:


Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-Golden-Pathway-Donna-McDine/dp/1616330813/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1331737065&sr=1-1

I invite you to visit with my fellow Guardian Angel Publishing authors at their blogs during Children’s Book Week 2012 and beyond:
Don’t forget to enter our contest:


a Rafflecopter giveaway


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Children's Author, Mayra Calvani's Virtual Book Tour at Write What Inspires You

A big thank you to Donna for having me on her cool blog today and for putting together this virtual book tour!

Mayra, my pleasure and thank you for visiting today through your Working Writer's Club virtual book tour and to celebrate even further it's Children's Book Week!

The Internet has made it possible for us to get to know people, especially authors, we normally would not have had the opportunity to meet through intimate conversations through social media. I am delighted to host award-winning children's author, Mayra Calvani as she discusses her typical writing life. Grab a cup of coffee and enjoy getting to know Mayra.

So, let’s see, a typical writing day for me...

I work best in the mornings. That’s when I’m rested and my mind feels fresh. After the kids are off to school and my hubby to work, I get a cup of coffee and sit at the computer with my golden retriever, Amigo, at my feet. Often, I do a short meditation. Next, I write my goals and objectives for that day. This is extremely important for me. Writing down my goals and objectives keeps me focused and productive—most importantly, it keeps me away from ‘bright shiny objects’ that can stir me away from my major goals. Then I start writing. I’ll usually write for 2-3 hours from Monday to Friday (I take weekends off to be with my family). After my writing session I have lunch and take a short walk with Amigo. Afternoons and evenings are for other work-related stuff such as promotion and publicity, networking, reviewing, blogging, etc.

I started adopting this system this January and it has worked wonders for me. The key points here are to write down my goals and objectives, then work on my work-in-progress before I do anything else.

For me, the hardest part about being an author is showing up on the page every day and completing a book. Inspiration isn’t always there, so I have to push myself and force myself to write even on those days when I don’t feel like it or my prose doesn’t seem exciting. Writing is hard work! At least, it is for me. It is immensely satisfying and I couldn’t live without it, but it can be maddening and frustrating and exhausting.

As far as the actual writing craft goes, the most difficult part is being able to closely, honestly and clearly articulate into words what I see and hear in my mind. I’d say, without a doubt, this is the greatest challenge.

The best thing about being an author?

So many things!

Creating fantastic fictional worlds and sharing those visions with readers in such a way that, if only for a moment, they’ll be suspended in space and time.

And who doesn’t like to be their own boss and work on their pajamas with free access to the fridge all day? J


About the book:
The Water Cycle: Water Play Series Book 1, for ages 4-8, follows the water droplets in their journey from the clouds to the earth and back to the clouds again. Written in a lyrical style, the book takes a new angle on the water cycle by showing the feelings it evokes in people. It also has fun learning activities at the end.

What reviewers are saying…
 “Written in Calvani’s delightful prose, “Huddle inside the CLOUD high up in the sky, the water droplets are excited,” While also complemented by the imaginative artwork of Alexander Morris’ fun illustrations, makes this book both easy to read and informative. The author also includes for her young readers a word search and glossary learning activity—a great addition to every teacher and homeschool parents’ teaching library.” –Carol Fraser Hagen, reading specialist and special education teacher.

Purchase The Water Cycle: Water Play Series Book 1 from Guardian Angel Publishing: http://guardianangelpublishing.com/water-cycle.htm

Purchase from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1616332379/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER

About the author: Mayra Calvani writes fiction and nonfiction for children and adults.  and has authored over a dozen books, some of which have won awards. Her stories, reviews, interviews and articles have appeared on numerous publications such as The Writer, Writer’s Journal, Multicultural Review, and Bloomsbury Review, among many others. Visit her website at www.MayrasSecretBookcase.com and get the first two lessons of her popular Walking on a Rainbow Picture Book Workshop free! 

Book information:

Title: The Water Cycle: Water Play Series Book 1
Author: Mayra Calvani
Illustrations: Alexander Morris
Genre: Children 4-8
Print ISBN: 9781616332372; 1616332379
eBook ISBN: 9781616332389; 1616332387 
Published: March 15, 2012
Pages: 20
Price: $10.95 print; $5.00 e-Book
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
http://guardianangelpublishing.com/water-cycle.htm

Learn more about Mayra when she visits with Karen Cioffi on Wednesday, May 9th: http://karencioffiwritingandmarketing.com.

I invite you to visit with my fellow Guardian Angel Publishing authors at their blogs during Children’s Book Week 2012 and beyond:
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Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist