I’m on the Bonnie Kaye Blog Radio

Leave a comment

If you just want to hear the sound of my voice or find out about India tune in to this radio interview. Welcome to my world and stream of consciousness.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bonnie-kaye/2013/07/21/books-of-excellence

So Comes the Novel

Leave a comment

2321115942_3791fb6a6b

Via www.flickr.com by the Italian Voice

After experimenting with short pieces of writing and getting paid on the Internet, I joined the Institute of Children’s Literature shortly thereafter. I had been dabbling in writing to heal along with oil painting and increasing my music activities. Teachers at the Institute are high level authors that are published, have won awards and are the most patient people in the world. The course has a component where the instructor has you set your own goals for your writing. I started doing the assignments and began to make further progress reaching a new norm in my life after the triple “D” years. (See blog Why Write?)

The Writing Nudge

640px-Lao_schoolgirls_reading_books

Via www.wikimedia.com by Blue Plover

The assignments were subjects found in your life making it personal and then were taken to the next level. Several things happened at once. I began to have a nudge to do a children’s book about math so I drafted “Ways to Say Zero” using the skills I had gained from Kristin Nitz, the writing teacher and from traits my youngest son, Morgan,  had. It was not an assignment, but I used the techniques.

My Friend Rajiv

My SEO writing became much  improved and I received more assignments.  My editor became Rajiv Karran for many of my assignments. At work he was the consummate professional. He made friends with me on FaceBook where he shared his family, friends and life with me.

Creating Narrative From Real Life

For an assignment I wrote a character sketch from Rajiv’s description of his brother, Sajiv, who had been in a tragic accident in young adulthood. For another assignment, I wrote the first chapter of my novel “The Grand New Delhi Escapade” using the title “Market Boom” based on information about India from him. “Ways to Say Zero” was accepted for publication in April 2012 by Guardian Angel Publishing and is in progress. For the course, I wrote a non-fiction children’s book “White Shark Cafe” which Kristin Nitz helped develop the idea for and edited several times for me. When my novel reaches a certain level then “White Shark Cafe” becomes next for publication.

A Novel is Born

The novel developed slowly at first. As Rajiv and I’s friendship continued I learned more about India. We had some deep discussions about life. I did not want to forget the many things I had learned about India from him. Combining what I learned with SEO writing, all the lessons from the Institute, my prior education experiences, and the friendship the characters came to life in my mind. Dr. McGowan, Sajiv and Sharlene began to wander in and out of my life having conversations and adventures. I rewrote parts of the first chapter and with the help of my adult son, Jake, I discussed ideas and plot lines. His advice was insightful from a young adult perspective. Then Rajiv suggested editor Crystal Ross also a young adult who he had worked with. Her input increased the flow of the novel.

Finding a Publisher

Once a novel is finished you have to find a publisher so about the time I decided to have it edited I was talking to publishers. My children’s book I pitched to various publishers, had the rejection letters, and then the glorious acceptance but that company did not do adult books. Working in SEO and reading the blogs you learn of developing trends in the digital world. I had read about hybrid publishers who collaborated like a partner. So I searched for a company who globally did that. I ran across Sherrill Cannon’s blog on SBPRA who described the process used to publish her children’s books. I sent the manuscript in and Tom the acquisition man accepted it.

Look Mom! I am on Amazon

SBPRA  has taught me the process of publishing to marketing. In future blogs I will describe the process. As of May, I have novel on Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble and more than 55 other outlets I have found when Googling it. Presently the novel has been scheduled for marketing at five top-level Asian Book Fairs. The video for the book appeared at a major Indian news site. My SEO jobs taught me how to market with social media so typing in “The Grand New Delhi Escapade” it pulls up many sites that have my novel.

As Rajiv taught me whether life is good or not so good when one gets up every morning say “Thank you. Thank you. Thank you and I accept the gift for today.”

Writing has given me many unexpected gifts and pleasures. Until next time may you have grand escapades of your own anyway you wish.

Where Does an Idea Come From?

1 Comment

sand_writing_little_girl

                                                                    Via www.flickr.com by Elaine Ashton

Where do the ideas come from for a novel or any piece of writing? For me it is an odd mix. Often everyday ordinary life gives me a spark. Something I heard someone say in passing, an ad on the TV, a discussion with a friend or here is where it gets artistic —a vision or a dream. My mind will shift to the part that is images and emotions. I will see the world a bit differently then. It begins to do associated thinking patterns. That is where I see one thing which triggers another thought from something I saw, learned or experienced which triggers another round of imagining. It is like when you draw and you feel your mind relax. Images arise that you view nonchalantly. When it happens during the waking hours it lasts for a long time. Characters create and I have conversations in my head, persuasive debates with famous figures or those in the know. Sometimes pieces of conversations had over the years rise up inside me and synthesize into something new. Fortunately that is extremely pleasurable for me. Most of my fiction items come from that. And I also like to take a bit of real life–an event, a person I know with an interesting personality, known issues and craft a narrative story around it.

I Teach Therefore I Am and I Write

Teacher                                                                     Via www.wikimedia.com by MrMaxEnglish                                                                      

For nonfiction writing it becomes items I have read, studied or talked with an expert about. I write on the Internet for various companies. I love the variety. Some writing I do is educational pieces since I was a teacher for 14 years. An education degree gives me the broad information necessary to do high levels of medical, technical, web copy, assessments etc. After all I taught others to read, do math, discover science, and social studies as children, but I also mentored many teachers and spent one year as an administrator. All professions owe many of their skills and successes to a teacher who took the time to develop it in a person. No one is a self made person. A long line of family, community people and teachers develop the next generation for better or worse.

SEO Writing

seo-process

                                                                                                                                                                           Via www.searchengineoptimization.com

I do SEO writings which means they are part information, part advertising in an educational way and partially scaffolded. Most companies have clients who have meetings with the marketers. They design a campaign even down to a document that scaffolds what is needed for that particular campaign. The places I work for emphasize honesty, do your research, have high quality writing and ideas. If the information is not credible, and trustworthy the reader is not going to buy. We buy from people who we think are fair and give value. Or we buy from people we think we can get a good deal from (unfortunately we take that to mean sometimes to cheat but that is another story. No one wins when you cheat including you) They have research telling them what words viewers key on which by the way is extremely cultural. What people in India cue in on is slightly different from Americans. Even within the same culture different geographical areas have slight differences just ask the Google elf who does all the mathematical formulas. Of course each company has its own special format for that in some cases. Other companies trust the writer they hire to craft something intriguing especially if they want their web copy or content to be different.

Novel Writing

tablet-books-300x225

                                                                                                                                                                       Via www.digitalbookworld.com

Novels are a different type of writing all together.  It is this large synthesis of fiction and nonfiction woven together with the writer’s voice and ways of stringing words into phrases into sentences into paragraphs into chapters into novel. Pieces of yourself or others a writer admires or detests morph in your mind into real human beings with a history to be discovered and a future to develop. For me the characters carry on conversations in my head. They have opinions about my writing or life. Even when I am interacting with real people in my day or on social media they are participating in the debate or viewing. Whole scenarios and conversations spill out on the page so fast that all I can do is get the words down. I come back later and shape the whole, the paragraph, the sentence, the words and finally the mechanics of grammar and spelling. I am not a writer who says mechanics first. I am a writer that says get your ideas down on paper. Give it some time and then go back and read it, and even read it out loud. Then shape and edit. I have always been like that. It is me whether I was a student, a teacher, a mother etc. I view things as a process. Nothing is ever perfect thank goodness. It separates us from machines and software who get things down technically perfectly, but the writing has no soul, no voice and at times makes no sense. It takes a human with all our strengths, weaknesses, biases, experiences and unique life to breath life into writing. Sometimes it is the imperfect view, the perchance for conflict, the serendipity of it all that leads to creating a wonderful engaging piece of writing whether fiction or nonfiction but especially with a novel.

Back to the question—where do ideas come from? Any where, any place, anytime a writer is experiencing their life and notices something. Depending who you are and what matters to you in your life there will be some things imperfectly done you will notice in this article and some things done very well. Hopefully your writer soul will spring forth and you will decide on a better way to word it, a more concise word choice, or a better format. You know what I am just glad you noticed. Until next time may you have a grand escapade any way you wish.

Author Interviews

Leave a comment

I joined a group called http://www.booksofexcellence.com. It is a co-op for authors. Bonnie Kaye runs the site. She gives book reviews and interviews. The link below is an interview of CN Bring “The Pact” as part of Celia Kelly series. Amazing woman and amazing site that helps authors in a way that supports the industry in a positive way and an innovative way to promote author’s work.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bonnie-kaye/2013/07/07/books-of-excellence

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

OMGoodness! Look at where I found my video for my book on one of India’s major Internet newspapers. Humble, grateful and I know not who to thank so thank you India, Shiva, Ganesh, Krishna and Jesus. Hopefully they will hear. http://www.firstpost.com/topic/place/new-delhi-the-grand-new-delhi-escapade-by-mary-page-video-CvTQIlSEb3k-140-1.html  Take a look it is grand.

Tokoyo Bookfair

Leave a comment

“A room without books is like a body without a soul.”
― Marcus Tullius Cicero

Books are sold globally now. Finding an agency to do that helps increase sales and exposure of your book. Here are some pictures. As many ebooks here it must be a soulful place full of life and love.

Tokoyo_Book_Fair_Cuddle_Bug

 

TOKOYO_Book_Fair_Cuddle_Art

 

Why Write?

Leave a comment

What do you want to be when you grow up? I never answered writer. I did not even consider becoming a writer until a series of  triple “D” events happened in a two year period. Divorce. Disability. Devastating job loss. Abandoned by a husband of 28 years who became a stranger, left with an empty nest with sons in college, discovery of an underlying condition, and slowly exited from a teaching position leaves one questioning every decision they ever made.

Some people are sympathetic at first of course, but get a disability and one rapidly learns just how cruel the world can be. More bad days than good a person searches for a moment of happiness any way they can find it. For me it was doodling and scribbling my disconnected thoughts from my disconnected life while humming some forlorn tune on envelops, bulletins and finally notebooks.

As the months passed by and I realized help was fleeting and shallow in most cases unless from family who was far away I tried to pick up the shattered pieces of my life and stitch them together into some type of crazy quilt. It failed. Not enough of my life before the “D” days existed to become a cohesive whole again—ever. I would cry except when I wrote things in my notebook.

A year later with no good job prospects in my old field of work because of an economy that laid off thousands of teachers—ones without a disability I began writing education articles for free sites on the Internet. I had dabbled in writing all my life. Even taught 4th graders  how to write well for state exams. Used it to receive money for going to school, getting grants and helping others. Now I used it to fill the long days that were endlessly tiring from dealing with insurance that was not going to pay, human resource who was exiting me and not willing to compromise, and dealing with the emotions of watching a marriage die. Never dare dreaming I could use the tool that was healing me to create a new life.

On a whim and since I had articles on the Internet, an academic folklore paper published, education writings I began to fill out applications for SEO writing jobs. It was entry level, and short articles which at the time was all I could manage. They taught you how. Hired by Mometrix Media and a place called CopyPress. As I wrote in different styles, different topics and met new people I slowly began to heal, have coherent opinions again, and feel sometimes normal. Because it was creative my occasional moodiness was not abnormal.

Back to the question. Why write? It is for “self”. It is an extension of who you are and what you think. You are compelled to do it. It is like breathing or eating. A part of your natural biorhythms and needs. Oh what did  I want to be when I grew up? A helper and in some ways I still am.

Older Entries