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Saturday, January 21, 2017

Compulsive Reader Humorous How-To Business Book


A Vegas Publisher
Release: Dec 2016
ISBN: 978-0-9968437-4

Reviewed by Magdalena Ball first published by CompulsiveReader.com

 If you’ve never given a thought to digital manners, you clearly aren’t alone. One of the hallmarks of online interactions is speed - usual grammar and punctuation rules often don’t apply, but our world is becoming increasingly digital, and while the online world may look like a wild-west, the way you conduct yourself, particularly on social media, is critically important. It’s easy to forget how recent a phenomena our technological proliferation is. As Kristin Johnson reminds us, digital technology has been in popular use for less than twenty years. However, in that time the growth of social media has been exponential, particularly as more portable tools for access, such as the smartphone, have become ubiquitous. It’s easier to get hold of our kids, family and friends via messaging than via the telephone. Even our music listening and reading are starting to be piped in live through network enabled apps like Spotify or reading apps like Kindle and iBooks that instantly link up with our networks and share our preferences and activities.

Ain’t U Got No Manners is not only a complete guide to behaving with grace and charm online, it’s also entertaining and funny. The book provides extensive information on presenting your best self online. The writing is light, crisp and easy-to-read, and the many sidebars, symbols, stories, and takeaway points after each chapter ensure easy comprehension, even for readers with online attention spans. Despite the relaxed, humorous and conversational tone, the subject is serious.  With Facebook, Instagram, Google (including its search engine), Twitter, Snapchat, Skype and email all linking up, nearly everything that goes online is more or less in the public domain. An ill-thought through or offensive post can get you fired, can wreck your home life, can lose you friends, and even get you arrested. Like any good advice, much of the book is common sense: “When in public, act as if you’re on camera, because you just might be.” That said, it’s surprisingly easy to forget this, or not taking it seriously enough, while scrolling and commenting in the seeming solitude of your living room. 

Aint U Got No Manners is full of anecdotes, from fake Facebook fundraisers, employees who were fired after posting silly pictures, or the woman whose thoughtless Twitter post went viral while she was in an airplane and by the time she landed she was a notorious pariah. Johnson has done her research well. There are also tips on how to minimise the impact of social media overload, handing texts (and “textually transmitted diseases” - I particularly liked the texting takeaways in text language), navigating Twitter, including one of my favourite sections, the #dailysins of Twitter (7 deadly examples in hashtag form), commenting, how not to be a troll, dealing with online meanness, internet dating, public shaming, posting video, SnapChat, photo etiquette (including selfies), and lots more. Put simply, Aint U Got No Manners is a must read for the Internet age: a book as enjoyable as it is informative. The book should be part of every school’s curriculum. If you take away nothing more than #think (before you…), then it will be worth the price of the book.

MORE ABOUT THE REVIEWER

Magdalena Ball is a poet and novelist. She owns the review Web site, Compulsive Reader  and edits its newsletter packed with suggestions for literate reading. It is recommended in How To Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically (http://bit.ly/GreatBkReviews).

MORE ABOUT THIS BLOG

 The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, andreaders who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Beth Cox Reminds Authors to Apply for Reviews NOW

I borrowed this guest post from my #SharingwithWriters newsletter and from Beth Cox's Midwest Book Review newsletter. (You can tell I believe in recycling--especially when it something my subscribers and visitors need to know!). Thank you, Beth, for your perpetual permission to shout out your services for authors! And for offering your reviews for paperback books free! 

Now’s the Time to Get Reviews
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Excerpted from Midwest Book Review’s Newsletter
Edited by Beth Cox, Managing Editor
“Almost always, when The Midwest Review passes over a book for review consideration, it's simply because of "too many books, not enough reviewers, and not enough hours in a day". Over the years, we have noticed that review copy submissions tend to follow a seasonal cycle: they peak before Christmas, then sharply drop off.
“This means that, if you'd like to get your book reviewed in 2017, right now is the best time to submit it to The Midwest Book Review, while you're up against much less competition! Our full submission guidelines can be found on our website at
“I've recently updated our guidelines to read ‘there is an approximate 4 to 6-week window of opportunity for a book to be assigned out for review’ - the turnaround time window used to be much longer, but we've since become more efficient at managing our workload.”
----

Note from Carolyn: For my #SharingwithWriters newsletter subscribers, this seasonal tip means that it is also time to update, refresh, or learn anew all the intricacies of a smashing review-getting campaign with the newest in my HowToDoItFrugally Series of book for writers, How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically: The ins and outs of using free reviews to build and sustain a writing career now in release as an e-book or paper. http://bit.ly/GreatBkReviews. And, yes, I guarantee there is at least one great new way to use reviews in it that even veteran writers don’t know or don’t use.


MORE ABOUT THIS BLOG

 The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Ways for Authors to Up Review Efforts in 2017

Title: How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically
Subtitle: The ins and outs of using free reviews to build and sustain a writing career
Series: The multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers
By Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Authors' Web site: http://howtodoitfrugally.com
Genre: Nonfiction/Writing/Careers
ISBN: 978-1-5369-4837-0
Publisher: HowToDoItFrugally Press
Cover by Chaz DeSimone

A review of How to get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically by Carolyn Howard-Johnson

Reviewed by Magdalena Ball, originally for The Compulsive Reader
How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically

Reading Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s books is always a pleasurable experience. It’s not just because of her warm, intimate and accessible prose. Howard-Johnson is something of an industry expert, and she manages to make the most complex processes seem simple fun. Her How to do it Frugally series provides pretty much everything you need to know about all aspects of marketing your books without spending a fortune. The latest in the series, How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically, is no exception. This is a very thorough compendium that goes from importance of obtaining reviews through to building lists, writing query letters, using Amazon, how to deal with (and still use) negative reviews, and a whole lot more. How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically is the most comprehensive book on getting book reviews I’ve ever come across. In her usual warm and easy-to-follow manner, Howard-Johnson outlines everything you need to know to maximise your book’s chances.
Some of the information is a tidy and helpful distillation of commonsense, such as “review trippers,” or how to deal with things like passed deadlines, book bigotry (or publisher bias), what an ARC is, and how to get e-book reviews, even from reviewers who only take hard copies. Other chapters are really innovative, such as creating an early series of contact lists and working them, even (ideally) before the book is written, and “magic bullets” (or bullet points) to ensuring that you get more positive responses to your review queries than negative ones. The latter point is crucial. I often think about what makes me accept a book for review – even when I have an already massive stack, and what makes me reject it immediately, and Howard-Johnson’s “legitimate hacks” are spot on. They really get to the crux of what a reviewer is looking for, not only in the approach or query, but in the way the book is packaged and presented. Howard-Johnson’s chapters on making use of Amazon are also particularly valuable, as this information is both key to sales, and not readily known or easy to find out.
The overall focus of the book is around getting reviews, but How to get Great Reviews Ethically and Frugally does more than simply focus on the review. It really parcels up the entire promotional process around a book and presents it in a handy format for new, and more experienced authors. There are chapters around book tours, quality control, what to do with the reviews you get, and even how you send your book, and I completely concur that parceling a book up nicely, and not stamping it all over with “Review copy” (including on the inner page where a reviewer might be trying to read, which has happened to me), makes a difference in terms of the reviewer’s personal experience with the book and how much value they assign to it.
Frugality is Howard-Johnson’s stock-in-trade, and since none of her suggestions involve a large outlay, I’d say that picking up a copy of this book is about the most frugal and valuable thing a new author can do in order to generate inexpensive and highly credible publicity. The book is easy to read, and rich with Howard-Johnson’s own considerable experience. Above all, I think the point that she makes about treating the acquiring of reviews, not as an ancillary activity, but an integral part of the promotional campaign and one that cannot be skimped on, is key. If you have a new book out, or are contemplating having a book out, you need this guide. How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically is an excellent resource that both beginning and seasoned authors can return to again and again.


MORE ABOUT THE REVIEWER
Magdalena Ball runs The Compulsive Reader Web site and edits its newsletter (http://compulsivereader.com). She is an author in her own right including a book on becoming a professional reviewer titled The Art of Assessment (http://bit.ly/ArtAssessment), and the author of several books of poetry and novels.



MORE ABOUT THIS BLOG
The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Book Publicist Lauds How-To Book on Getting Reviews

Title: How To Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically
Subtitle: The ins and outs of using free reviews to build and sustain a writing career
Series: HowToDoItFrugally multi award-winning series of book for writers
ISBN 978 1 5369 4837 0
Pages: 336
Author’s Web Site: http://howtodoitfrugally.com
Cover Design, Chaz DeSimone, http://DeSimoneDesign.com



By R. Scott Lorenz, publicist, originally for Amazon

As a book publicist I can attest to the fact that getting thoughtful reviews is an important part of a book marketing promotion. Potential buyers of a book will often turn to the reviews to find credible comments about the book they are possibly going to buy.

In addition, members of the media will read the Amazon reviews to see what people are saying about a book before they book the author on a radio or TV interview. Nobody wants to take a chance on a book that the public does not like.

The advice Carolyn offers is important and useful. If you are an author buy this book! You'll find tips and techniques that'll help you obtain reviews
as the title says... both Frugally and Ethically.


MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Carolyn Howard-Johnson brings her experience as a publicist, journalist, marketer, and retailer to the advice she gives in her HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers and the many classes she taught for nearly a decade as instructor for UCLA Extension’s world-renown Writers’ Program. The books in her HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers have won multiple awards. That series includes both the first and second editions of The Frugal Book Promoter and The Frugal Editor won awards from USA Book News, Readers’ Views Literary Award, the marketing award from Next Generation Indie Books and others including the coveted Irwin award. How To Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically is the newest book in her HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers.
Howard-Johnson has also published quick-read booklets for writers including Great Little Last-Minute Editing Tips for Writers and Great First Impression Book Proposals, both available as e-booklets and in paper.




MORE ON THE NEW BOOK REVIEW

The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Kristin Johnson Awards Science Poetry Book Five Stars


Unmaking Atoms
By Magdalena Ball
Genre: Poetry/ Poetry: Science
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Ginninderra Press (January 11, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1760412821
ISBN-13: 978-1760412821
Rated: Five stars

Reviewed by Kristin Johnson, reviewer, author and consultant

Magdalena Ball, the author of eight collections of poetry (several in collaboration with Carolyn Howard-Johnson) as well as two novels and a nonfiction book, The Art of Assessment: How to Review Anything, is a multifaceted author, but her specialty is verse, especially scientific, astronomical and physics-themed poems, with threads of anthropology, zoology and biology.
 
From a cursory review of the titles, you might not think the verse offerings and prose poems (there is at least one, a prose/verse hybrid) have anything to do with protons, neutrons and electrons. Titles such as “Pranayama,” “Gargantua Redacted,” “Woman with her hair loose,” “Most of Everything is Nothing,” and the intriguing “Shallots and Garlic” (based on an Indonesian/Malaysian folktale) all seem on the surface to be more literary than scientific.
 
Look deeper. Look with the wonder that physicists have when they observe the atom. Like atoms, words combine to make different elements, different states of energy (passion, anger, fear, celebration, grief). So it is with Unmaking Atoms.
 
How, exactly, can one unmake atoms? Through nuclear fission. How, exactly, can one unmake the illusions of our human lives? Through poetry fission.
 
In the first poem of the collection, “The Last Report of the Day,” Ball introduces a recurring theme that hovers throughout the collection like cosmic radiation: the death of a parent, specifically a mother. She references a renowned woman poet in the opening line.

“I saw you, Adrienne Rich.
In my dream we were
walking like old friends
conspicuously cool
our maps drawn
before we took up pens
eyes searching for something
deeper than the wrinkles on our skin.
I felt your hand, crooked with arthritis
brush mine
in the depths of my consciousness”
 
How do the longing for an absent mother and a famous poet as a mother-figure in this passage relate to atoms? Or this verse in the next poem, “Charitable Crumb”:
 
“mother, father, siblings, lovers
the loss that kept coming
like water
suspended over blue-grey stones.”
 
Loss, specifically the loss of a mother, is the atom at the heart of this collection, split and reassembled in myriad ways with a dizzying elegance and versatility. Although the poetry examines birds, exhibits at the Museum of Modern Art, “loamy” soil (a favorite word in the collection), paintings as the subject of several ekphrastic poems (poetry that is in response to a work of art), yellow jacquard sofas, the sense of loss and wistfulness, of losing oneself in nature, science, literature and art, create the atomic chain reaction and the “Atomic Mess” that, in essence, is death. Those who have lost a mother will probably be saying, “She gets me, she understands,” when they read “Yellow Jacquard.”
 
However, matter cannot be created or destroyed, and this collection unmakes, and then reassembles, the words and images as well as emotions including the sense of joy that permeates Ball’s lyricism. That joy manifests in a “laugh that shakes the floor,” the line and curve that brings wholeness, a light “softer than the cut of love.”
 
The reader encounters surprises, such as anger and yearning for the same person/subject within the space of a few lines:
“your feathers rise
poison in your beak
brightens the plumage
rainbow body, earth to water
water to wind
all I know: the taste in
my mouth says find you
find you find you”
 
The “you” in the poem has “poison in your beak,” and yet Ball’s narrator yearns for the subject. A subtle commentary that what we love is not always sentimental or full of hearts and flowers, and that loss is painful.
 
We often create meaning, and different elements, by unmaking and reassembling aspects and details of our lives, misconceptions and words said and unsaid. This is the power of Ball’s poetry, especially in this collection.

ABOUT THE REVIEWER

Kristin Johnson is a prize-winning/prize finalist writer, blogger, ghostwriting/creative writing consultant, screenwriter, and editor. A graduate of the Master of Professional Writing Program from the University of Southern California, she has published/collaborated
on six books and has ghostwritten several books (and scripts) for clients that acknowledge her contribution. The Internet etiquette self-help book AIN'T "U" GOT NO MANNERS (A Vegas Publisher) is her latest book.
Visit http://www.augnm.com/ and http://www.kristinjohnson.net.
She is on Facebook at facebook.com/AuthorKJ, facebook.com/augnm. 
Find her on Twitter @AuthorKJ.




MORE ABOUT THIS BLOG

 The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Christian Futuristic Sci-Fi Book Applauded

Release date: February 7, 2016
$15.95
6x9 Trade paperback
242 pages
Science Fiction (FIC028000) / Christian Futuristic Fiction (FIC0402020)
Print ISBN 978-1-939844-29-3
eBook ISBN 978-1-939844-30-9
Order through Ingram, Follett, or from the publisher
$4.99 EBook available in all formats




THE REMNANT

by William Michael Davidson

One nation, without God...

Colton Pierce apprehends Abberants—those who display symptoms of faith—and quarantines them on a remote island to ensure public safety.  Years prior, the government released a genetically-engineered super flu that destroyed the genes believed to be the biological source of spiritual experience in an effort to rid the world of terrorism. As an extractor with the Center for Theological Control, Colton is dedicated to the cause, his only distraction a new CTC employee, Selma.

But Colton's steadfast commitment is challenged when he learns his own son has been targeted for extraction. An underground militia, the Remnant, contacts him, and he discovers the purpose of Selma’s interest. The Remnant agrees to help Colton save his son in exchange for his assistance with their plan to free the Aberrants on the island.

Colton is faced with the most important decision of his life. Does he remain faithful to the CTC? Or trust Selma and the Remnant and give up everything to save his son?



ABOUT THE AUTHOR

William Michael Davidson lives in Long Beach, California with his wife and two daughters. A believer that "good living produces good writing," Davidson writes early in the morning so he can get outside, exercise, spend time with people, and experience as much as possible. A writer of speculative fiction, he enjoys stories that deal with humanity's inherent need for redemption.


L. Diane Wolfe is the publisher of Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. Inquiries may be sent to:


She is also known as  Spunk On A Stick author. She is a professional speaker. Learn more about her at: 


ABOUT THE NEW BOOK REVIEW

The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Sarah Dillard Has TWO Mouse Scouts Books!

Mouse Scout Series
Including Mouse Scouts and Mouse Scouts Make a Difference
By Sarah Dillard
Hardcover Paper Books
ISBN: 978-0-385-756-3-7 and 978-0-385-75599-3
Published by Knopf
Fiction – Children




                                Lessons in Creativity and Doing Good!

Mouse Scouts Ideal Annual Gift for Kids


Reviewed by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, columnist and reviewer for MyShelf.Com and author of multi award-winning fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry,
and the HowToDoIt Series of books for writers

If you are not a grade school teacher, you may not have thought of using trash as a teaching tool. If you are not an artist with a penchant for collage or sculpture (or your name isn’t Bill Nye the Science Guy), you may not have thought about turning castoff straws into musical instruments, siphons, or hoses.

Violet, Tigerlily, and their scouting pals from Sarah Dillard’s Mouse Scouts are back in Mouse Scouts Make a Difference to help parents, kids, and teachers with fun new ideas for ways to make a difference in the world.

This second little book includes ideas for repurposing bottle caps, fast-food containers, water bottles, old mouse pads from Mom’s computer, and—if you’re a mouse—mousetraps used as rowing machines!

This is makes a lovely giftbook for children with parents who want their children to think creatively, compassionately, and universally.  It is also a book that may encourage parents and children everywhere to take scouting more seriously. In fact, make the two of them the beginnings of a Mouse Scouts library.



MORE ABOUT THE  REVIEWER
Carolyn Howard-Johnson is a mother, grandmother and former teacher.  She is the author of multi award-winning fiction and poetry and the HowToDoItFrugally Series of books—one series for writers and one for retailers. Learn more at http://HowToDoItFrugally.com or tweet with her @FrugalBookPromo



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The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.