Ava the Monster Slayer by Lisa Maggiore

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Ava the Monster Slayer:  A Warrior Who Wears Glasses.  is a tale about a young girl who slays monsters right in her own basement.  Written by Lisa Maggiore, this story teaches young readers that heroes come in all shapes and sizes.

In the story, we meet young Ava – a cute and adorable little girl.  One night before going to bed, she loses her favorite stuffed toy.  She soon learns that the toy is not lost at all, her mom left it in the dryer.  There’s just one big problem.  The dryer is in a dark and creepy place: the basement.  After unsuccessfully soliciting her mom and brother’s help in getting piggy, she learns that there are just some things that kids must do on their own.  Armed with a superhero cape and sword,  quirky Ava embarks on a very exciting rescue mission – proving that little kids can do big things.  Hidden behind this book is a message about being different and conquering your fears. With its bold and vibrant illustrations, this book is definitely more than meets the eyes.

Recommended for young readers between three and six.  For more information, visit the author’s website.

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Meet Tom Hoefner

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Tom Hoefner is a writer, director, and teacher (not necessarily in that order) who lives in Brooklyn with his wife Jaime, his daughters Gabby and Audrey, and their cat Zelda. In his spare time he stages college and high school musicals, plays too much Nintendo, and roots for the Mets.
Read his interview below.
How long have you been writing?
That depends on your definition of “writing”. I’ve been writing to entertain others since junior high, I’ve been writing full-length plays and screenplays since college, and I started writing fiction about eight years ago. I’m 38 now, so… I’ve been writing for twenty-five years? Give or take? Man, I’m old.

What is your most recent literary/artistic project? 
The full first volume of my serialized adventure comedy book series THE UNLIKELY ADVENTURES OF RACE & COOKIE McCLOUD is available on Amazon (alongside my YA Rom-Com JUST DEBBIE) and I’m working on Vol. 2, Book 1 right now – CLOCKPUNKED. I’m also rewriting RAP’T, a work-in-progress stage play, and I have a blog for which I compose short essays centered around my love of Japanese video game giant Nintendo, aptly named NINTENDO & ME.

Who’s your favorite author and why? 
My favorite author doesn’t exist. But if he or she did, they would be a composite of J.K. Rowling’s heart, Douglas Adams’ brain, George R.R. Martin’s raw talent, Nail Gaiman’s work ethic, Brian Michael Bendis’ sense of humor, and David Ives’ wordplay.

What inspires you to write? 
J.K. Rowling’s heart, Douglas Adams’ brain, George R.R. Martin’s raw talent, Nail Gaiman’s work ethic, Brian Michael Bendis’ sense of humor, and David Ives’ wordplay. That wasn’t just a copy-and-paste cop-out answer, it was a CLEVER copy-and-paste cop-out answer. I swear it was. (It also happens to be true.)

What advice can you give to other authors or writers? 
Three things. First, write primarily for yourself. You don’t know if anyone else is ever going to see it. Second: allow yourself to write crap. Writing crap is better than writing nothing. If you dig around in it, you may find a diamond. This metaphor is gross. Three: if you’re bored while writing it, your audience will be bored while reading it. Find another way. I lied; here’s the fourth thing: always strive for perfection, but accept that you will never, ever reach it.


Where can readers go to find out more information about your work?
I’mma start with my Amazon page (http://amazon.com/author/tomhoefner) cuz that’s where people can buy stuff from me.
Then there’s my GoodReads page (https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14048553.Tom_Hoefner) which is kept as up-to-date as anything on all of my work. You can also check out my aforementioned blog page, ME AND NINTEND(https://meandnintendo.wordpress.com/) which is a great read if you really like Nintendo, and there’s definitely at least five or six of us left who do. Finally, here’s a link to sign up for my mailing list (http://eepurl.com/bnOGyj); any new book or play news will be publicized through here. I don’t do much on Twitter and Facebook anymore, even though one of the main characters of JUST DEBBIE is obsessed with them. They’ve become incoherent cesspools, particularly in this past American election cycle. That’s pretty harsh, but I’ll stand by it. Besides, they’re too general. GoodReads is a much better platform on which to target people who still read books.

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Meet Tim Van Minton

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Yarnmouth Abduction is a  thrilling tale that will leave you breathless. Falsely accused of murder, twelve-year-old Evan Peregrine battles through a raging storm to get home to the island of Little Yarnmouth only to find it deserted. Searching for explanations he is soon plunged into the savage world of the Conkwoyoto, an Arctic tribe that turned to piracy after the polar ice cap broke apart. But there is something strangely familiar about these fearsome men and their tattooed faces, and memories of the day he lost his leg and his mother in a collision with an iceberg come flooding back. Now Evan must avoid being captured by the police and Conkwoyoto while trying to track down the missing islanders, prove his innocence in a murder, and uncover the mystery of the Arctic tribe that’s traveled thousands of miles to Little Yarnmouth Island.
Read the author’s interview below:
How long have you been writing?
I’ve been writing fiction for almost fifteen years. I was immediately attracted to the longer format of novel writing as opposed to short stories. The second manuscript I wrote was about the New York art world set in the nineties. I found an agent for it but unfortunately she never found a publisher (The first manuscript I wrote never saw the light of day and never will!). The next thing I wrote was a multi layered story set in Spain with local gangsters and unsuspecting individuals who get caught in their world. This I compared to the works of T.C. Boyle and Carl Hiaasen. It never found a publisher. One day I will revisit this and the art world manuscript, give them a fresh edit and publish on Amazon.
I started The Little Yarnmouth Abduction a few years ago. I really wanted to write a Young Adult book that I would have loved to read as a boy. I was also drawn to the idea of creating new worlds and so set it in the near future. In it I imagine the Arctic ice breaking apart and the discovery of tribes that lived on the ice undisturbed for centuries. They turn to piracy when their homes are torn apart.
What is your most recent literary/artistic project? 
I am currently working on a manuscript called St. Georges P.R.S. It is in the second edit phase. I’m excited as it’s my first step into YA paranormal. I’ve written it in the first person present tense so it’s got a real immediacy when you read it. Here’s the blurb about it:
Such is the fear of St. Georges Private Reform School that the mere mention of it could scare even the toughest and meanest boys straight. When Arun Anderson is sent for stealing a boat he expects the horror stories about prison guard like teachers, harsh discipline techniques and inedible food to be true. But after an arduous ferry ride to a remote island he and his new classmates learn that St. Georges P.R.S. is not a reform school but a Paranormal Research School that they have been individually selected to attend. Baklander, the headmaster, warns, “This is not a ghost hunting school, nor is it a vampire obsessed, UFO chasing, Big Foot trapping, Bermuda Triangle believing school.  At St. Georges we concentrate on real paranormal occurrences.” Within days Arun accidentally enters a mysterious room full of strange artifacts, one of which comes alive in his presence. Following the experience, he suffers terrible screaming nightmares. No sooner do they stop than the whole school starts suffering from them, yet no one but Arun is aware of it. Unusual occurrences are happening throughout the vast grounds. Teachers are acting different, pupils are acting different and Arun’s visionary nightmares are turning into reality. Now he must find out why everyone is acting so strangely and what has left an enormous hole in the Arctic ice and is now making its way south towards St. Georges Island.
What inspires you to write? 
Life and other writers. I love to write and although thankless, lonely and full of rejection I couldn’t think of not doing it. I love that moment of joy when I write something that makes me smile and say, “I can’t believe I thought of that!” I’m totally inspired by other writer’s works.
Who’s your favorite author and why? 
I don’t have a favorite but I do admire many. My tendency is toward writers who I consider write well. Margaret Atwood is one. I love her writing style and love most everything she has written, especially Oryx & Crake and the MaddAddam Trilogy. I loved the future bleak world she created. I like the works of Jim Crace, Jeffrey Eugenides, Tim Winton and many many more. The list is too long for here. But I am adding them to my Good Reads page which I recently started. At the moment I’m reading “A Brief History of Seven Killings” by Marlon James, which is stunningly brilliant and very thick!
What advice can you give to other authors or writers? 
Write tons and read tons more. Ask yourself why something you have read is so effective. Think about how the writer set it up. How they created the scene. How they introduced the characters.
Keep writing. Don’t over think it. If you can’t think where it’s going just keep writing and you’ll find the way. I truly believe this is the way to create surprise. If you can think of every move your characters are going to make before they make them then your reader probably will too. If you don’t know what they are going to do then neither will your reader.
Where can readers go to find out more information about your work? 

 

Publishing News

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DATA DRIVEN PUBLISHER INKITT LAUNCHES IOS APP

Inkitt empowers readers and publishers to discover world’s next best sellers

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BERLIN, NOVEMBER 16, 2016: Inkitt, the world’s first algorithm-based book publisher, is introducing an iOS app for iPhone and iPad available to readers globally today.

In less than 2 years from launch, Inkitt has attracted over 700,000 unique readers: the iOS app will give book lovers and publishers greater access to Inkitt’s digital library of over 80,000 stories by up-and-coming authors.

“As more people read digitally we want to make it easier and faster for people to access great literature wherever they are, whether on the go or relaxing at home,” says Inkitt’s Founder and CEO, Ali Albazaz. “Inkitt’s iOS app will better enable emerging authors to share their work with test readership groups and give readers globally the opportunity to turn the page on one of the world’s next best sellers.”

Key features include:

  • Access to 80,000 stories in every genre: fantasy, sci-fi, romance, thriller, horror, adventure, action and more
  • Personalized suggestions: hand-picked novels based on reader’s preferences
  • App customization according to user preferences (e.g. font size, colors)
  • Online/Offline: readers can save novels to their offline library to access them without an internet connection

For more information, click here.

 

Meet Duncan Milne

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Imagine being able to travel back in time so that you could go to any rock ‘n’ roll concert in history, anywhere in the world.
Now imagine discovering that rock ‘n’ roll actually “died” in 1984 and that you and your best friend are the only people who can save it!
That’s exactly what author Duncan Milne has done in his latest novel, “And Then They Ruined Everything,” the second book in his trilogy “The Death of Rock ‘n’ Roll.”
The boys, Kenn Ramsleyer and Sid Itious, trace the decline of rock ‘n’ roll to the theft of a bootleg concert tape in 1984. Now they must travel back in time, once more, to retrieve the cassette and return it to its rightful owners. But to do that they’ll need to take on some of biggest counter-culture celebrities of the 1980s. Sid’s new girlfriend isn’t quite what she appears to be either–though he is too blinded by love to see it at first… (Excerpt )
Read the author’s interview below.
How long have you been writing?
I’ve always written, but since 2011 I started a transition from writing legal briefs and research papers to writing something that people might actually want to read. The real impetus to this chapter of my writing came through a flash of inspiration and one of my many sarcastic remarks.
As it happened, I was working as a lawyer in Australia when I was handed a contract to review. At that same time, I was told that they needed it “for last week”, my response was, “right, if I could travel through time your contract wouldn’t be the first thing on my ‘To Do’ list.” Later that day, I was bitterly recounting the story to the local barista (she had commented that I looked grumpy, which wasn’t unusual for where I was presently working), she laughed and asked “what would you do if you could time travel?” The answer was to travel to rock ‘n’ roll shows that I never saw. She’s in a local band and we both roared with laughter. “What a great idea for a book,” she said. When I got home that night I started drafting. That manuscript became “The Death of Rock’n’Roll, The Impossibility of Time Travel, and Other Lies”. I’ve now finished the second book of what will become a four book series.
What is your most recent literary/artistic project?
I’ve just published the second book in the Death of Rock’n’Roll series, “And Then They Ruined Everything”.
In addition to this series, I’m working on a novel set in Sydney, a collection of unrelated short stories, and co-authoring a non-fiction book about sports performance.
What inspires you to write? 
The human condition is the source of most of my inspiration. There is a tremendous amount of conflict and tension that we co-exist with. I enjoy exploring this relationship, while trying to make sense of it in a meaningful and hopefully inspiration (or at least motivating) manner.
Who’s your favorite author and why? 
Favorite. Hmmmm. I don’t really believe in a ‘best in class’ sort of assessment of anything, so I’ve got a list of ‘go to’ authors.  I like courageous authors who are willing to take a reader somewhere unexpected.  These are also the writers who delve into the human condition and inspire my own writing.
Currently Ransom Riggs is at the top of list with his Miss Peregrine series. I’ve rushed through reading the series and now I’m circling back to take it slowly.
Rounding out the (current) collection is:
  • Italo Calvino (Invisible Cities, Cosmicomics);
  • Arturo Pérez-Reverte (Queen of the South, Saville Communion, Club Dumas, Captain Alatriste series);
  • Michel Faber (Under The Skin);
  • Giles Foden (Last King of Scotland, Turbulence) and
  • Christopher Moore (Bite Me, Dirty Job, You Suck)
What advice can you give to other authors or writers? 
Try to find small group of people to read your work. People who’ll be honest, but supportive, about your prose, the direction the story is taking, the characters, the language, the jokes, the emotion, everything. I’ve had a number of re-writes because I’ve been told, “I hate this; I know what you’re trying to say, but it doesn’t work.” Conversely, I’ve had input from people who’ve uncovered things that were unintended, but the feedback then lead me to explore that theme more. You write for yourself, but others read your work. It’s important that it makes sense to both sets of eyes.
Where can readers go to find out more information about your work?
The easiest place to find my writing is my website: http://www.Duncan-Milne.com
I regularly post news as well as short stories or samples that I’m working on.  Additionally, there are links to the Elm Grove Publishing where there are other interesting works and samples of novels.
Additionally, I’m on Facebook  —> https://www.facebook.com/TheyRuinedEverything/

Meet Kevin McAllion

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Moristoun, which is a black comedy that speculates about the afterlife for Scottish suicide victims. People are banished to Moristoun when they take their own lives and they stay there in perpetuity until they attain the wisdom and understanding to move to a higher realm. The main character, a lawyer named William Hughes, has been there for 200 years but finds out he might be able to escape if he volunteers to help modern-day Scots avoid suicide back in the real world.
He is charged with saving a hopeless loser called McSorely and decides to bring him back to Moristoun as his legal assistant in a bid to boost his self-esteem. In the book McSorely slowly learns about the warped reality of Moristoun and falls in love with the bar maid at the local pub, who is the only other mortal on the island as she was brought there by Buchan as a baby when her mum died by suicide. Their fates then become darkly linked together.
Read the author’s interview below.

 How long have you been writing?
I have been working as sports journalist since I was 19 years old, which is now sadly 19 years ago. Since then I’ve written and edited for a range of newspapers and magazines in Scotland. In terms of fiction, I’ve been writing for about 10 years on and off. I started writing Moristoun, my debut novel, in 2012 and it was finally released earlier this year.
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What is your most recent literary/artistic project?
I’ve just started writing a second novel, which is set in Thailand, where I lived for 18 months between 2002 and 2004. In addition to that, I continue to amuse myself by writing more stories for my website rhesuspark.com, which is perhaps the only spoof, online monkey park in the world (although with some of the wacky things you see on the internet, it is a claim I can’t make with much certainty).
What inspires you to write?
Mainly a desire to amuse myself. I like playing with language to create situations that are funny or ridiculous. Since the birth of my daughter Jennifer, who is now three years old, I’m also motivated by a desire to give her something to remember me by, even when I she is old and I have long since shuffled my mortal coil. Every year since she has been born, I have written about all the things we have done together in a private diary so she can get a glimpse of what she was like when she was younger. I can’t remember anything about my early years, bar a couple of hazy memories, and it would have been great to read about all the things I did as a toddler.
Who’s your favorite author and why? 
Gunter Grass had the biggest influence on me as the Tin Drum opened my eyes to a completely different style of writing. Grass created a totally unique world and although he bent the rules of reality you still believed everything that happened to little Oskar. I need to thank my brother Danny for introducing me to his work. I read his biography a few years ago and it was fascinating to see how his own experiences shaped many of the scenes that ended up in the book. He lived through a remarkable period in history and managed to channel so many of the horrific things he saw during World War II into creating a masterpiece.
What advice can you give to other authors or writers? 
Set aside a specific time every day to write. The only reason I managed to get Moristoun finished was because I got up at 7am every day and made sure I wrote something for at least an hour before starting the rest of my day. I’ve lapsed out of this habit since the birth of my daughter and that has slowed down my attempts at another book. I’d also recommend sticking to your own style and not trying to mimic any other authors. Try to be unique and to write about something that has never been tackled before. The last thing I want to read about is another grizzled detective who sometimes bends the rules but always gets results.
Where can readers go to find out more information about your work?
The Moristoun website, http://www.moristoun.com, has links for buying the book, reviews and more information about me and Moristoun.
There is also a Moristoun Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/Moristoun/) while you can find me on Twitter @Moristoun and @kevmcallion.