Part III: Science Alert, Serious Wonder and Cosmos Up

Part III: Science Alert, Serious Wonder and Cosmos Up

[All three posts in this series have the same introduction, but I choose info from each of the four science compilation sites separately for each post. This post focuses on gleanings from Cosmos Up]

INTRO: I should have been a research scientist. I love science. I’m extremely intelligent, determined, creative, and organized. I coulda been a contenda for a Nobel prize. That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.

Why am I not a scientist? I had a series of misogynistic (one of my teachers hated the four girls in my advanced science class so much he would pith [paralyze] the frogs by holding them in the air directly in front of one of us so that each frog would urinate on our blouses), anti-Semitic (another one wore his “John Birch Society” pin to school every day, displayed prominently on his lapel; there were three girls in my class and he insulted each of us daily), incompetent (in an lab accident at his “real” job, this poor man had lost most of his sight and drive and spent each class time mostly ignoring all of us) and otherwise horrible science teachers in 8th, 9th, and 10th grades.

With better teachers in those critical years, my life could have turned out very differently. Those terrible teachers turned me so far off science I only took one more “hard” science course (because it was required, in undergraduate college), despite many more years of education, through getting a doctorate.

As an adult, I became enthralled with quantum physics, health/anatomy, nutrition, child development/learning and the multiverse/astrophysics, so I read. A lot. I also watch documentaries. I am not even close to understanding some of the physics stuff, but the rest I got quite adept at utilizing. To “keep up,” I subscribe to many science-oriented blogs and curation sites.

My favorites are: Science Alert, Serious Wonder, Brain Pickings Weekly and Cosmos Up. I will excerpt from some of the “best of the best” of what I’ve recently perused.

Part III is all from Cosmos Up, which means this month’s offerings are all astronomical! I hope you enjoy! Go subscribe!


CosmosUp.com

Cosmos Up logo

Astrophysics and Quantum Physics/Mechanics
1. Jan 11, 2015, “NASA Reveals Three Amazing Travel Posters for Earth-Like Planets”
http://goo.gl/gfZgB1
“NASA has marked the discovery of potentially habitable worlds by its Kepler space observatory with a poster series imagining the ‘out of this world’ holiday options they may one day offer. Drawing inspiration from travel billboards of the 20s, 30s and 40s, the posters are the brainchild of NASA visual strategists Joby Harris, David Delgado and Dan Goods.”

NASA travel poster 1
and

NASA travel poster 2
and

NASA travel poster 3
“These posters are even available online and can be downloaded for free via JPL’s website. There are additional exoplanet posters in the works, NASA said.”

  1. January 14, 2015, “Rare Phenomenon In The Solar System, What Has Cassini Photographed?”
    http://goo.gl/EiDpnM
    “Cassini…captures a strange hexagonal formation present at one pole of Saturn. The diameter of the ‘hexagon’ is 30,000 miles. This formation is present at the north pole of the planet. Inside the formation…the wind blows up with a colossal speed [of] about 322 kilometers per hour. The center of this strange formation is actually a very powerful storm. Scientists say that…it isn’t present on any other planet in our solar system.”

    Cassini photo Saturn hexagon

  2. January 27, 2015, “Oldest Star System in Galaxy Discovered by NASA ‘could Point to Extremely Advanced Alien Civilisations’”
    http://goo.gl/kJG1Ue
    “’There are far-reaching implications for this discovery [of a sun-like star with 5 orbiting planets ranging in size from Mercury to Venus],’ lead researcher Tiago Campante said in a statement. ‘We now know that Earth-sized planets have formed throughout most of the Universe’s 13.8 billion year history, which could provide scope for the existence of ancient life in the Galaxy.’
    “’Planetary systems around stars have been a common feature of our galaxy for a long, long time.’”

    Kepler 444 and 5 planets

  3. February 11, 2015, “New Crazy Theory: The Universe has ‘No End and No Beginning’”
    http://goo.gl/t7HUkr
    “They showed that quantum particles can never meet or cross paths.’As far as we can see, since different points in the universe never actually converged in the past, it did not have a beginning,’ Professor Saurya Das said.”

  4. April 14, 2015, “New Map Reveals Distribution Of Dark Matter At Cosmic Scale”
    http://goo.gl/8uIp6G

  5. April 15, “NASA: No Signs Of Advanced Alien Civilizations In 100000 Galaxies”
    http://goo.gl/DNhEEy
    “Either they don’t exist, or they don’t yet use enough energy for us to recognize them.”

MY VIEW: Or, they don’t use energy in the form we expect them to be using it, which is “high levels of mid-infrared radiation.” Why do earth-based scientists presume that signs of alien “intelligence” will be recognizable to humans from great distances or at all? We could be looking for “life” in all the wrong ways.

  1. July 7, 2015, “There Are Millions Of Hidden Supermassive Black Holes In The Universe, Scientists Says”
    http://goo.gl/A97g4h
    The closest supermassive black hole to Earth is V4641 Sagitarii which is 1,600 light years away.
    “Astronomers have spotted five monster black holes previously hidden by dust and gas in space and they suggests that there might be millions more of them lurking around our universe.”

Look for Part I, published on June 1, which focused on info gathered by Alert.

ScienceAlert.com

Science Alert logo

Part II was published June 30, with info from Serious Wonder

SeriousWonder.com

SeriousWonderLogo

and Brain Pickings Weekly.

Brain pickings logo

One-year Anniversary of *CHANGES* *conversations between authors* on 8/5/15!

CHANGES Episode 37, with teen author, Vartika Singh Sikarwar, and host, Sally Ember, Ed.D.

CHANGES Theme Image_3

For my one-year anniversary of the CHANGES conversations between authors show, I am proud to be hosting my first teen author guest, Vartika Singh Sikarwar, who is also a memoir writer, essayist and poet!

Vartika looking forward

We are LIVE on Wednesday, August 5, 10 – 11 AM EDT USA,
Google+ https://plus.google.com/events/cj1b52u2sjs7ul83c11urdicqno  or
Youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52tbA0kZ4jI

Vartika’s writing can be found: http://www.wattpad.com/user/VartikaS ,
https://www.facebook.com/MyAdventureToTheSecretDoor
and http://www.teenink.com/users/VartikaSinghSikarwar

Vartika Door

Watch conversations with my previous CHANGES guests any time: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPbfKicwk4dFdeVSAY1tfhtjaEY_clmfq

CHANGES Trailer Image_3

Learn more about and get yourself on or recommend someone to be scheduled as a guest for CHANGES conversations between authors:  https://sallyember.com/changes-videocasts-by-sally-ember-ed-d/


HOWEVER: I seem to be “running out of guests” for CHANGES conversations between authors. Coming up next week on its one-year anniversary and only have 2 guests scheduled after that; done by mid-Sept., at this point.

Should I close up shop?

Do you have ideas about whether or not to continue, and, if so, how to attract fascinating author guests?

Thanks, Crew!

Looking for reviewers who like utopian science-fiction, and seeking book bloggers

PLEASE SHARE! Vol III, This Is/Is Not the Way I Want Things to Change of The Spanners Series, ebook by Sally Ember, Ed.D., releases 12/8/15.

Looking for reviewers who like utopian science-fiction/romance with multiverse and psi elements, and seeking book bloggers to help with Volume III’s release. ARCs and info ready in late Sept. through early December.

Pre-orders: 11/1 – 12/7/15

Release date: 12/8/15

sallyember AT yahoo DOT com if you’re interested and available!

logoAuthorsDen
Cover art and logo by Aidana Willowraven: http://www.willowraven-illustration.blogspot.com/

This Changes Everything, Vol I, is a perma ‪#‎free‬ ‪#‎scifi‬ ‪#‎romance‬ ebook

This-Changes-Everything----web-and-ebooks

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HFELTG8
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/376197

Vol 2, This Changes My Family and My Life Forever, is $3.99

51-N7O96ZSL._UY250_

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/424969
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KU5Q7KC

Always love reviews for the first two volumes (free to reviewers), of course! http://www.sallyember.com/Spanners-2

The Indie author help page questions

Tagging all #Indie #authors (most of my clan, here): consider sending in responses to any and all of these questions weekly!

readful things blog

For anyone who would like to answer these questions, feel free to copy them and send your responses to readfulthings@gmail.com

For anyone who missed it the other day, Charles Yallowitz and I are starting a help page on both of our sites for indie authors who are new to the publishing arena. Nothing too complex, just asking authors the same set of questions and hoping to get answers from those who write across a broad array of genres. The answers will be posted to the blog once a week and then links to those posts will be put on a page where authors can go and refer back to them. We will also be listing sites that have useful info for authors about marketing and promotion both free and paid.

So if you’d like to take a moment and answer the questions, it would be much appreciated. Only thing we…

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YUP!!! DALAI LAMA SAYS MORE WOMEN AS LEADERS MIGHT LEAD TO LESS VIOLENT WORLD

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama speaks to what would help reduce violence in this modern world: more women as political leaders.

Yes.

Not a cure-all, but a great start.

IMHO: Make sure they’re also: compassionate, creative, independent (not bought by lobbyists or corporations), intelligent feminists who are also pacifists and socialists. THEN we’re on our way to somewhere great!

Ask a Bisexual: “Can Men and Women Ever Just Be Friends?”

Thank you SO MUCH!

I appreciate and admire everything about this post, especially because I am a lifelong #bisexual woman and also because I am a researcher, writer, sexuality educator and compassionate human being, as you clearly are, also.

Best to you,

Sally

The Lobster Dance

In this Feminist Friday post, I’m going to discuss bi1 erasure in social science research and news coverage. It’s bad enough having to do the closet hokey-pokey literally every single day of my life2, but when heterosexual/monosexual/cisgender social scientists and writers decide to pointedly ignore non-monosexual folks or write their thrilling conclusions about our personal lives without our input3, it very much affects us.

Edit: WordPress was supposed to embed posts from tumblr and didn’t. The head image is from this post.

Exhibit A: Erasure by Exclusion as Data 

This very scientific article from 2012 from Scientific American (the link is from donotlink, so click away) is here to sell you a pack of lies (which hurt het folks, too!):

[Image: Scientific American, Headline reads [Image: Scientific American, Headline reads “Men and Women Can’t Be ‘Just Friends'” NO.

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8 Books That Teach Kids About the Fluidity of Gender and the Importance of Acceptance

Great #childrenslit for #genderdiversity
You two should know each other! Lori Duron of “Raising my Rainbow” and Melita Noël Cantú of “Censored 2 Celebrated.”

Raising My Rainbow

Its-Okay-to-Be-Different“Transgender and gender nonconforming people (think Caitlyn Jenner or Ruby Rose) are gaining more visibility as they find the courage to come out and live publicly as the most authentic versions of themselves. Around his third birthday, my son started showing signs of gender nonconformity — wearing a dress, growing his hair out and only playing with dolls while insisting he was boy and preferring masculine pronouns.

9780618159895My husband and I have been committed to showing our son positive examples of differently gendered people in literature. We’ve read the following books countless times and always encourage an open dialogue about what it means to be a boy, a girl, a human. More importantly, we use these books to teach about love, acceptance, equality, empathy, and the beauty of diversity. Read these books to your child to help them better understand their gender identity and be a better friend to the boy who…

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5th Year Party Kick-off

Mazel Tov to Charlee Alden, a guest on Episode 6 of *CHANGES* *conversations between authors*, on this Blogaversary!

Inviting any and all of your co-horts to consider coming on my show! OPENINGS July 29 and beyond on *CHANGES* *conversations between authors*, so…

Watch conversations with my previous *CHANGES* guests any time: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPbfKicwk4dFdeVSAY1tfhtjaEY_clmfq

#Authors, learn more about and get yourself on or #Readers, recommend an #author to be scheduled as a guest:  https://sallyember.com/changes-videocasts-by-sally-ember-ed-d/

Best to you all,

Sally

Observations from a Master of #Timetravel: Guest Post by Devorah Fox

I am so pleased to welcome Devorah (Dee) Fox as my guest blogger today. Dee is a #fantasy/ #thriller #author and #columnist who was my guest on CHANGES conversations between authors for Episode 18.

Dee is a contributing writer to a new anthology about time travel releasing this month and has an interesting set of questions posed, below, regarding the distinctions (or not) among #Fantasy, Science-Fiction (#scifi) and general #fiction, with a discussion of #parallel/ #alternate #universes and multiple #timelines as well. Since I deal with many of these topics in my own writing, via The Spanners Series, http://www.sallyember.com/Spanners-2, we both welcome your comments, questions and experiences! Join the conversation, please!

For more information about how to reach Dee and know more about her writing, to become a guest on CHANGES or become a guest blogger on my site, see below this post.

Thanks for visiting!


Observations from a Master of #Timetravel

by Guest Blogger, Devorah Fox

A couple of years ago, I ruminated on what categorized a story a Fantasy as opposed to General Fiction. Fiction is about made-up stuff. That’s why it’s fiction and not nonfiction. I asked myself: is a work considered Fantasy simply by virtue of the degree to which the fiction is imaginative?

Although I am now on the fourth book in The Bewildering Adventures of King Bewilliam, labeled by me as an “epic Fantasy series,” I’m still not convinced that these stories belong in the Fantasy genre. It’s true that they are set in an imagined geography and in a period that is more “once upon a time” than an actual historic era. And yes, the hero battles dragons, sea monsters, and other mythical creatures. However, the life challenges that King Bewilliam faces are contemporary: career displacement and divorce in The Lost King; parenting in The King’s Ransom; the nature of leadership and the morality of war in The King’s Redress. So, are those stories Fantasy?

When I embarked on a short story for Masters of Time: A Sci-Fi and Time Travel Anthology, I found myself wondering about the difference between Fantasy and Science-Fiction. I’ve seen the comment that Science-Fiction explores the possible, albeit improbable, while Fantasy explores the impossible, but I wouldn’t agree. I don’t see a clear distinction between imagining a world that includes aliens versus one that includes werewolves.

mastersoftimecover
Masters of Time: A Sci-Fi and Time Travel Anthology

Ray Bradbury, whose work falls into both genres, suggested that Science-Fiction is a logical projection of the future. Science-Fiction takes as its departure point what we do know about reality, whereas Fantasy is based in invention.

I prefer to think that Fantasy explores what we don’t know about reality. At the risk of sounding metaphysical, there are planes of existence for which we cannot provide evidence using our five senses. Nevertheless, spiritualists and religious leaders encourage belief in the numinous. Fantasy embraces the supernatural and the paranormal, but notice that “natural” and “normal” are at its roots. I’d go even further and say that scientists are very imaginative and fantasize about what we don’t know…yet. What makes them Scientists is that they then seek to prove or disprove that, while Fantasists don’t seek proof.

Many a Fantasist has explored time travel as if it were possible. Even noted scientists take the idea seriously, according to a blog post by theoretical physicist, Dr. Michio Kaku. He wrote that a contemporary of Einstein, mathematician, Kurt Goedel, suggested that time is flexible: it speeds up and slows down. Also, time has whirlpools in which it could wrap itself into a circle. This would enable anyone walking along the direction of rotation to find themselves returned to the starting point but backwards in time.

Decades later, mathematician, Roy Kerr, proposed the concept of a rotating black hole. Dr. Michio Kaku explained it this way: “…[T]he black hole would not collapse to a point (as previously thought) but into a spinning ring (of neutrons). The ring would be circulating so rapidly that centrifugal force would keep the ring from collapsing under gravity. The ring, in turn, acts like the Looking Glass of Alice. Anyone walking through the ring would not die, but could pass through the ring into an alternate universe.”

Before we all run off and start building time machines, though, we should address some paradoxes. Take, for instance, this problem: if you go back in time and undo the circumstances that led to your birth, you would never come to be, much less be around to time travel. This is what’s known as the Grandfather Paradox, which results in an inconsistent causal loop. It puts “effect” ahead of “cause” instead of the other way around, as we commonly understand it. This paradox creates an infinite loop: you go back in time and kill your grandfather, thereby preventing your own birth, thereby preventing yourself from going back in time to kill your grandfather, thus your grandfather is never killed, which allows you to be born, so you can go back in time and kill your grandfather….

Let’s say, instead, that time is fixed, that even if occurrences of the past are changed, the future that they led to cannot be. For example, you travel back in time and kill your grandfather (poor Grandad. Whatever did he do to deserve all this antagonism?). To cover your actions, you replace him with someone else, but that man marries and somehow gives birth to your father, who has a child—–you–—so, you are born, after all.

Another possibility is that there are alternative and parallel universes. If this is so, you can travel back in time, kill your grandfather and thwart any offspring, including you. However, all you have done is alter one timeline. Others, including the one in which you do exist, continue unchanged. However, you (the homicidal maniac time-traveler), cannot return to that timeline.

Indeed, the protagonist of my story, “Turning the Tide,” doesn’t so much travel through time herself as she changes it. She reaches into the past to put two men she loves on different paths, effectively moving them into parallel universes, where they enjoy brighter futures.

It’s not hard for me to believe in parallel timelines. At any point in any of our lives, there are different tracks we can follow, deliberately or reactively. The Time Master in “Turning the Tide” knows that the consequence of her manipulation could be that she never meets the men she so loves. However, it’s also entirely possible that, even though their lives took different courses, one or both of them could still meet her. There are so many roads, with so many forks in them. Any one of them could intersect with another parallel timeline, just at a different point.

You’ll find both Fantasy and Science-Fiction at the heart of the stories in the newly-launched Masters of Time: A Sci-Fi and Time Travel Anthology Check it out: http://meet-the-time-masters.blogspot.com.

You can find about more about my epic Fantasy (or not) series, The Bewildering Adventures of King Bewilliam: http://devorahfox.com and http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B006L9BJAO.

threeKBWbooks
The Bewildering Adventures of King Bewilliam


Dee’s Links:

website: http://devorahfox.com
Facebook: https://facebook.com/DevorahFoxAuthor
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B006L9BJAO
YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/devorahfox/videos

MOT links:

webpage: http://timeanthology.blogspot.com/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Masters-Time-Science-Fiction-Anthology/dp/1514173727
Trailer: http://youtu.be/PovabW4fyjQ
Apple iBooks/iTunes: http://apple.co/1bp77vK
Smashwords: http://bit.ly/1K3ggGi
Barnes & Noble/ nook: http://bit.ly/1Kkkr0C

Devorah actual
Devorah (Dee) Fox


Dee Fox was also my guest on CHANGES conversations between authors, an almost-weekly, Google+/Youtube video chat show, on Episode 18. Watch conversations with my previous CHANGES guests any time: http://goo.gl/eX0D8T

OPENINGS occur frequently! #Authors, especially those in sci-fi/speculative fiction and who blog, learn more about and get yourself on CHANGES, and
#Readers, recommend an #author to be scheduled as a guest: http://goo.gl/1dbkZV


If you’d like to be a Guest Blogger, please visit my Guest Bloggers’ Hall of Fame and learn what’s involved.

Thanks for visiting, commenting, following, and enjoying this site! http://www.sallyember.com

4 Phrases That Sell More Books

Thanks, Chris (aka The Story Reading Ape) for reblogging. Doing the same. Thanks, E.T. Carlton, for collecting this info and posting the results. #blurbs #bettersales #bookmarketing

readers+writers journal

4 tips for improving book descriptionsStudy Reveals the Elements of Book Descriptions that Sell More Books

Discount eBook newsletter giant Book Bub recently conducted A/B testing for several elements of book descriptions, with the intent of finding out which words sell more books. The testing was conducted by sending two different descriptions of the same book to their newsletter subscribers, and then seeing which description received the most clicks from potential readers. Clicks, in this case, mean interest in a particular book.

The results are revealing – and useful for book descriptions, press releases, blurbs and even book trailers and social media posts about your book. The variables that caused the biggest change in click rates among potential readers who receive the  discounted books newsletter are highlighted below.

Book Description Factors That Matter

quotation marks1. Blurbs Should Quote People, not Publications. Those short quotes on the front of your book (“The Best Beach Read of 2015!”) should be from a…

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You’re Not Alone: An Indie Authors Anthology in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support Group

You’re Not Alone: An Indie Authors Anthology
in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support Group

is being Released 7/15/15!

[I am promoting this excellent compilation for a great cause. Info below. I’m NOT one of the authors, FYI, just helping out.–Sally Ember, Ed.D. http://www.sallyember.com]

Indie Anthology cover

The following info comes directly from their “Press Pack”:

What is You’re Not Alone?
“An international group of #indie #authors, inspired by the personal grief of one, decided to collaborate in the spring of 2015 in a project to create this multi-genre smorgasbord of original short stories, all with the same potent theme – relationships. Some are heartfelt, some funny, some poignant, and some are just a little bit scary – much like relationships themselves. All are by authors fired by the shared enthusiasm to give something back in aid of Macmillan #Cancer Support. Cancer touches us all. It has in some way affected those who have contributed their time and talent here. This is our way of showing that we care.

“Indie authors carry forward a revolutionary shift in publishing, which allows the author to be creative director in their own work. There are many exceptional, experienced and acclaimed writers who have decided to take this bold step in publishing. In producing this anthology, we have also had the inestimable assistance on board of artists, graphic designers, and bloggers – all of whom have a place in our acknowledgements. You, the discerning reader, are the other vital part of this equation. By buying this book you are supporting the work of indie authors, as well as discovering their worth. You are also supporting the charity to which we have chosen to dedicate our work.”

100% of the royalties earned or accrued in the purchase of this book, in all formats, will go to the Pamela Winton Tribute Fund, which is in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support.

Worldwide Links for You’re Not Alone: An Indie Author Anthology
http://smarturl.it/YoureNotAloneAnth
http://bookshow.me/B00Y5RCOOE
The above links will take readers to the Amazon store in their country of registration from anywhere in the world.

“Artist Christine Southworth’s original sketch interpretation…is quite simply, amazing. So talented.”

TABLE OF CONTENTS

01. A YEAR AFTERWARDS By Lesley Hayes
10. CLOSURE By BL Pride
19. COLIN AND SANDY By Anthony Randall
29. ONE OF THOSE DAYS By Ian D. Moore
37. DOLPHINS DANCE By Mike Billington
51. A SPECIAL EVENING By D. Avraham
59. AT THE HANDS OF THE HEALER By Sallyann Phillips
67. DAD By Kayla Howarth
77. FOREVER YOURS By Christoph Fischer
87. FRUITS By Phyllis Edgerly Ring
91. THE YOGA BOWL By Felipe Adan Lerma
96. LILIES FOR THE MANTEL By Sylva Fae
102. GABRIEL AND THE MINISTER BIRD By Andy Updegrove
108. INSIDE OUT By Penny Luker
116. WITCH’S MARK By Katerina Sestakova Novotna
127. LOVE’S SILENT ACHE By Lisa Shambrook
133. GOALS By Tom Benson
144. IF THE SHOE FITS By Katharine E. Hamilton
154. THE BIRTH By Lucinda E. Clarke
157. LOTTA BLUM By Barbara Doran
163. NEVER TOO OLD By Angela Lockwood
168. OOH AIR MARGRIT By Rebecca Bryn
173. BABES By Max Power
182. LAST GOODBYES… By Paul Ruddock
188. A STITCH IN TIME By S.K. Holmesley
198. DAY LATE, DOLLAR SHORT By Eric Lahti
207. LOVE IN AN ELEVATOR By S. E. Meyer
215. NO LONGER BROKEN By Nico Laeser

Indie anthology working cover

Meet the Indie Authors

All contributing authors were asked: “Why have you given your time and work to this cause”
Below, you will find a list of their individual answers and links to their books or websites, to help you discover more about them and their other works.

IARE collage authors photos and names

Lisa Shambrook: Carmarthenshire, Wales
“My family life has been touched by cancer with two of my children’s grandparents suffering. We’ve seen both those who’ve won and lost the battle, and this is a chance to do something to help.”
http://www.lisashambrook.com
http://www.thelastkrystallos.wordpress.com

Sallyann Phillips: Swansea, Wales
“My dad died of cancer, but his strength and determination amazed me. This is my way of honouring him, and the nurses who helped keep his spirits up.”
http://www.Angelsblood.co.uk

Penny Luker: Cheshire, England
“I wanted to contribute to this anthology because of the dear friends I have lost to cancer and because the Macmillan nurses gave them such help and support.”
http://www.pennyluker.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/pennyluker.writer?

Anthony Randall: Dorset, England
“Both of my Grandmothers died from cancer. My maternal Grandmother spent her last week in a hospice where she received brilliant care, the nurses were formidable. It’s an essential charity that I am more than happy to support in this humble way.”
http://www.amazon.co.uk/English-Sombrero-Nothing-but-run-ebook/dp/B00IHH209W
https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-English-Sombrero/555658614480373

Katharine Hamilton: Texas, Unites States of America
“In memory of my cousin, Melissa. One of the most hilarious, kind-hearted, and genuine women I have ever known. Fifteen years later, I still wish I had taken that crazy car ride around Murfreesboro with you. But thank you for making my awkward, teenage-self feel cool… even if it was in Arkansas.”
http://www.katharinehamilton.com

Christoph Fischer: Carmarthenshire, Wales [He organized the press packet: THANKS, Christoph!]
“I lost both of my parents to cancer and also a few close friends, so I’m naturally committed to the MacMillan cause. I have seen the MacMillan nurses in action and couldn’t be happier to support their marvellous work.”
http://www.christophfischerbooks.com
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Christoph-Fischer/e/B00CLO9VMQ

SK Holmesley: Colorado, United States of America
“I contributed because Ian asked, and it was a way that I could say: ‘Sorry you lost a loved one.’”

Rebecca Bryn: St David’s, Pembrokeshire, Wales
“My mother was a volunteer cancer nurse, and also nursed my father who died from prostate cancer. This is my chance to honour their courage, love and strength.”
http://www.rebeccabrynandsarahstuart-novels.co.uk
http://www.independentauthornetwork.com/rebecca-bryn

D. Avraham: Hebron Hills, Israel
“When I lost my mom, it would have been that much harder if there hadn’t been caring people supporting us at the time. Ian’s project reminded me of need to thank them. I have donated my piece in their honor, a small gesture to say thank you.”
The Shepherd King Chronicles: Foundation Stone (Beith David Publishing, 2010).
Off-Wire (Lulu 2014), and the author/illustrator of the children’s book, Squared (beith David Publishing 2013).

Tom Benson: Scotland
“I lost both my father-in-law and mother-in-law to cancer before I really got to know either of them.”
http://www.tombensonauthor.com/

Ian D. Moore: North Yorkshire, England
“I began and contributed to this anthology to support the work that the Macmillan Nurses do. My father, father-in-law and mother-in-law were all taken by cancer. This is a tribute to them all.”
https://www.iandmoore.com

Andy Updegrove: Marblehead, Massachusetts, United States of America
“I have dedicated this story to the memory of my father, mother and sister, all of whom died from cancer.”
https://updegrove.wordpress.com/

Lesley Hayes: Oxford, Oxfordshire, England
“I’ve been alongside several people affected by cancer. One familiar emotion is powerlessness. Contributing here seems a concrete way of continuing to be alongside, and to show that I care.”
http://www.lesleyhayes.co.uk

Nico Laeser: British Columbia, Canada
“I took a brief hiatus from writing my third novel for the opportunity to work alongside the many incredible authors taking part in this project, and to offer whatever help I could to such a worthy cause. You can find my novels on Amazon by searching ‘Nico Laeser’ or by visiting my author page:”
http://www.amazon.com/Nico-Laeser/e/B00SF3C732

Max Power: Maynooth, Republic of Ireland.
“Having lost my father through cancer, when asked, I had no hesitation in making a contribution through my writing, to this most worthy cause.”
http://www.amazon.com/author/maxpower
http://www.facebook.com/maxpowerbooks

Eric Lahti: New Mexico, United States of America
“I joined the anthology, at the time, because another story was needed. As I started to write, my story became a kind of goodbye to my dad and grandfather who died in 2001 and 2008 respectively.”
Arise: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PX710Y0
Henchmen: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GRXB5Ik

Phyllis Edgerly Ring: New Hampshire, United States of America
“In memory of my father, I am grateful to contribute to this healing resource of hope and compassion.”
http://phyllisedgerlyring.wordpress.com
http://www.amazon.com/Phyllis-Edgerly-Ring/e/B001RXUFD6

S.E. Meyer: Wisconsin, United States of America
“I made the decision to donate my time to this cause for my brother-in-law, Paul, who just recently fought and won the battle against testicular cancer.”
http://www.facebook.com/semeyerbooks
http://www.amazon.com/S.-E.-Meyer/e/B00CFRHL9Y

Christine Southworth: Lancashire, England
“I am involved in this project as a thank you to those who cared for my husband.”
Twitter: @bearprintstudio

Sylva Fae: Cheshire, England
“Helping with this anthology allows me to show my appreciation for those who cared for my dad.”
Sylvanian Ramblings: http://www.sylvafae.co.uk

Barbara Doran: Munster, Westfalen, Germany
“I submitted my story, Lotta Blum, to this Anthology because it’s for a good cause. Ian D. Moore wrote a moving statement on the wonderful works of the Macmillan cancer nurses in a recent post on an Indie Review Group and I responded. You can find my musings here:”
http://www.eclecticwrite.wordpress.com
http://www.serendipitydoit.wordpress.com

Kayla Howarth: Queensland, Australia
“Knowing it was for a good cause, I decided to try something I’d never done before: write a short story. This experience has been uplifting and therapeutic, and I’m glad I took up the challenge.”
http://www.kaylahowarth.com
https://www.facebook.com/KaylaHowarthTheInstituteSeries

Angela Lockwood: France
“Never too old, has been inspired by my mother, who lost her husband and my father to cancer in 1993. I wanted to add a positive story about life afterwards.”
http://www.cruftslover.adzl.com
http://languageintheblood.blogspot.fr

Katerina Sestakova Novotna: Honolulu, United States of America
“It was just an automatic response to a post that I saw. If my thoughts may support a good cause, it’s a great honor to get involved.”
http://www.amazon.com/Hawaiian-Shrunken-Katerina-Sestakova-Novotna-ebook/dp/B00OYUSO1Y

BL Pride: Slovenia
“After a close encounter with cancer I decided it was time I started pursuing my dreams. Being a part of this project is a tribute to a life-changing experience.”
http://www.blpride.com

Mike Billington: Reus, Spain
“I wrote this story for the anthology because, as a cancer survivor myself, I know first-hand just how important the kind of support MacMillan Cancer Nurses provide is. My hope is that Dolphins Dance reminds readers that life is better when we are connected to other people.”
http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KCABGK
http://www.amazon.com/author/billington

Felipe Adan Lerma: Austin, Texas, United States of America
“The simplest answer is of course because I wanted to share some of what I feel when writing. The question of whether we are ever truly alone sharpened my focus for this story, shifting the action several times. I am very grateful for the impetus to bring my thoughts to expression in this very short work.”
http://www.amazon.com/Felipe-Adan-Lerma/e/B005XCUUK0
http://www.felipeadanlerma.com

Paul Ruddock: London, England
“Having witnessed cancer first-hand I was absolutely delighted to contribute to such a worthwhile project in support of Macmillan Nurses.”
http://www.paulruddockauthor.com
http://www.echoesofthepen.com

Lucinda E. Clarke: Spain
“My father died when I was two years old, from cancer. When I was diagnosed with the same insidious disease in 1999 I was terrified. I have enormous respect and gratitude for the medical team that saved my life and I hope this is a small way of saying thank you.”
http://lucindaeclarke.wordpress.com
http://www.lucindaeclarkeauthor.com

What Kind of Role Model are You?

What kind of role model are you?

It’s not only the young who are “sponges.” We all absorb the turns of language, interesting or repeated facial expressions and behaviors, expressed or implied values, clothing and hair choices, products and locations to engage with, music and most other entertainment from those around us throughout our lives.

personal-success-wheel-300x268
image from http://keithferrazzi.com

Which of these: “giving back,” “spirituality,” “intellectual stimulation,” “physical wellness,” “financial success,” “professional growth” or “deep relationships” do you put the most time, energy, resources, money, courage and effort into accomplishing/improving?

Tell the truth.

It’s just between you and me, now.

Count the hours in each day. Count how many minutes/hours you spend engaged in tasks related to the above categories.

There’s your answer, like it or not.

I ask again: what kind of role model are you?

Every time you make a purchase and display, wear or use it, every choice you make that others can discover may influence someone. What you say, what you write, what you view, what you attend: almost everything we do, now, is tracked and used to influence what “producers” make available in the future.

Are you purchasing and using products with your ability to be an influencer in mind… always? sometimes? never?

When you speak, act, choose in front of children, they adopt or avoid what you choose, depending on the outcomes and their abilities to mimic. It is our responsibility to demonstrate being the kind of person we would want them to imitate. isn’t it?

blame_sign
image from http://www.magnamags.com

Research on motivation demonstrates that we have two distinct systems that influence our actions:

The approach system focuses us on the achievement of positive outcomes.
The avoidance system focuses us on preventing negative outcomes.

[from the April, 2015, issue of Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, by Lucia Bosone, Frederic Martinez, and Nikos Kalampalikis, referenced in Are the People Close to You Good Role Models? … and why positive role models aren’t necessarily better than negative ones.
By Art Markman, Ph.D., Apr 08, 2015, in Ulterior Motives.
Reposted on Psychology Today: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/ulterior-motives/201504/are-the-people-close-you-good-role-models]

Then, there is goal contagion: people adopt the goals of others, even without realizing that we are doing so. Learning of others’ goals via a kind of human osmosis that involves unconscious mirroring, imitation and copying, we attempt to do what others do when we believe that the outcomes are worth having.

When someone values what we do, what we have, our status or possessions, our ability to influence them goes up enormously. Research shows that “the influence of a role model is strongest when that role model fits the goal we are trying to achieve. Positive role-models, then, are most effective when we are approaching desirable states, while negative role-models are most effective when we are avoiding undesirable states.” We magnetize others to our goals by our examples of success, happiness, satisfaction, pleasure.

What kind of magnet are you?

More courage, motivation, energy, commitment and time: do you have any to spare? If so, you may be able to continue to work to achieve positive goals and to avoid negative outcomes. What do you have the most of that you can apply, for which of your goals? How consistently do you work toward each outcome you want and avoid each one you don’t want, simultaneously?

How devoted to your own goals are you?

Secondary problem: Many of us have a “rewards” system, especially if we are “thrill-seekers” or easily bored, that goes something like this: If/when we accomplish this task, we permit ourselves to do or have… However, that permission then provides us with exactly what we do not need or should not have (e.g., junk food, late nights or sleep-in mornings, recreational drugs, too much alcohol, unsafe or risky sexual encounters, dicey venues for “fun”) as a “reward.”

Accepting or accessing this “reward” then puts us in direct conflict with reaching our positive goals or avoiding negative consequences. How is that a “reward system,” then, and what does this demonstrate to others about who we are?

How involved in self-sabotage are you? What underlying messages are you communicating by these chains of behaviors and choices?

jms_prelim_jms_060610
image from http://journal.frontiersin.org

I ask one more time: what kind of role model are you?

I can tell you the quickest way to get an answer to these self-assessment questions: hang around a child between the ages of 4 – 9 for an extended period of time, particularly in a role that puts you in charge, conferring authority, influence, access, trust and affection (raising, tending, nannying, teaching, parenting, etc.). You will find out within a few weeks exactly what kind of role model you are from that child. The child will begin to talk and act like you, try to do what and be what you do/are. Daily. Frequently. In almost no time at all, you’ll have acquired a little mini-mirror-you, walking, acting and talking as you do, right there for all the world to see.

For you to see.

Yikes.

Get to work improving yourself.

Fast.

Small Publisher: Camel Press

Small press is accepting short-ish #novels in many genres! #Authors, check this out! Thanks, Kathy, for posting!

Writing and Illustrating

camel pressCAMEL PRESS is always looking for a fresh new voice in genre fiction.

If you have written a book that your friends adore? You are welcome here. As a small press, they are always looking for the next star and are willing to take chances on daring new stories that might otherwise be overlooked by bigger houses. They publish romance, mainstream fiction, mystery/suspense, thrillers, horror, westerns, science fiction, and fantasy.

Even if you feel that your manuscript transcends easy classification, if it is sensational in every sense, they say they want to see it. With that in mind, authors should be aware that genre novels that follow the rules are the easiest for readers to find. For us, it’s like writing a poem in iambic pentameter; the writer is finding a way to express their creativity within the conventions of the genre.

They also are happy to hear from agents, too.

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Infinite Waters: 9+1 Speculative Fiction Short Stories now Released!

Help my author friend, Nicholas C. Rossis, Episode 7’s guest on *CHANGES* conversations between authors, launch his newest collection of #specfic #scifi #fantasy #shortstories despite Greece’s economic snafus! Mazel Tov, Nicholas!

OPENINGS July 15 and beyond for #Authors, especially those in sci-fi/speculative fiction and who blog, learn more about and get yourself on *CHANGES*, and /or please recommend an #author to be scheduled as a guest:  https://sallyember.com/changes-videocasts-by-sally-ember-ed-d/
Watch conversations with my previous *CHANGES* guests any time: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPbfKicwk4dFdeVSAY1tfhtjaEY_clmfq  

Nicholas C. Rossis

Woo hoo, exciting stuff! As promised, Infinite Waters: 9+1 Speculative Fiction Short Stories has now been released and is available on Amazon.

I was planning on a big promo, but all of my funds are currently frozen (they have even forbidden us access to our safety deposit boxes). Even worse, PayPal has suspended operations in Greece (although I’m busy opening a new, UK-based account). So, I would very much appreciate any help in spreading the word while this mess is sorted out!

The anthology includes the following stories:

  1. Infinite Waters“: A woman seeks her future at a carnival. She discovers more than she expected.
  2. The Twist in the Tale“: A confused woman meanders through a sleepy town. But not all is as it seems.
  3. James’ Life“: A man with nothing to look forward to but oblivion, discovers it’s not that easy to escape…

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Grace and Frankie, Season 1, Netflix TV Series: my review is on Blog Critics’ site

Grace and Frankie, Season 1, Netflix TV series Starring Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda
My review is on Blog Critics‘ site

went live on June 24, 2015

http://blogcritics.org/tv-reivew-netflix-comedy-grace-and-frankie-starring-lily-tomlin-and-jane-fonda/

Same-Sex Marriage: It’s Not All Rainbows and Unicorns

A thoughtful, personal post about the impact of SCOTUS’ making marriage equality the law in the USA from a lesbian’s perspective. I would add my 2 cents, as a bi woman who has eschewed marriage for many reasons: it is NOT a great idea to get married.

Why? People of all backgrounds get married for specious and inadequate reasons, don’t keep their vows (or even understand the consequences of making vows), and divorce as easily as changing houses. I find all that very sad and that is makes “marriage” ridiculous.

That being said, anyone who wants to should be able to make that mistake, have that experience and/or enjoy that right and all the legal rights that come with it, any time, even in Vegas married by a fake Elvis. Period.

Best to you all,

Sally

A Letter I Wrote To Myself About Getting Fat

This is beautifully expressed and wonderful to read. Thanks for posting.
#loveyourbody #women #feminism #bodysize

Put On Your Happy Face

Screen Shot 2015-06-28 at 16

Shall we talk about your body?

Your body, which used to be thinner. Which you took for granted, because it fitted into cheap, tight dresses. Your body, which took you up and down Brixton Hill, every day, twice a day, never unheralded by catcalls, the stream of men and their “Oh baby hey baby nice tits nice ass hey WHERE YOU GOING?”

Your body was a girl’s body, made from dancing and late nights and skipped dinners, of hopefulness and sleeplessness and sadness. It took care of itself, or rather, you didn’t care that it couldn’t. It wasn’t for you, and so you didn’t mind that you couldn’t always afford to feed and nurture it. The admiration of others was nourishment enough. You often went to bed feeling empty. You thought it was heartbreak. It was probably hunger.

Then your body became plump with love.

Late dinners and later breakfasts…

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“Let’s Talk #Anthologies: How To Put One Together And Sell It”: Guest Blog Post by Alesha Escobar

I am so pleased to welcome Alesha Escobar as my guest blogger today. Alesha is a #fantasy/science-fiction and thriller author who does “mash-ups.” Alesha also concocted the idea of and edited an anthology of stories related to time travel, one of my favorite topics!

To honor the release of the anthology, Masters of Time (MOT), this month and because many of the included topics appear in my own writing, via The Spanners Series, http://www.sallyember.com/Spanners-2, we both welcome your comments, questions and experiences! Join the conversation, please!

Because MOT includes contributions from one of my CHANGES conversations between authors Google+/Youtube Hangout On Air (HOA) guests who is guest blogging here next week (July 15, ) about MOT-related themes, Devorah (Dee) Fox, and a previous guest blogger, Samantha LaFantasie (November 5, 2014, “5 Ways to Deal with Writer’s Block”), I am especially glad to help publicize this new anthology.

For more information about how to reach Alesha and know more about her writing, to become a guest on CHANGES or become a guest blogger on my site, see below this post.

Thanks for visiting!


Let’s Talk #Anthologies: How To Put One Together And Sell It
by Alesha Escobar

If I could gather some of my favorite sci-fi and fantasy authors into one room, I’d politely inform them that they couldn’t leave until they’ve handed over a compilation of new, addictive stories for my reading pleasure.

Except George R.R. Martin. I’d only let him participate if he promised to stop killing characters.

One of the best things about settling into a good sci-fi/fantasy book is being taken away to an imaginative world, running alongside characters you care about and feeling their heartache and triumphs. An anthology is a tasty buffet of good stories, whether they’re short tales or full-length ones. They can treat you to the scope of a single author’s creativity or a varied range of authors collaborating with each other.

Last year in an end-of-the-year blog post, I predicted (as much as one could) that we would see an uptick in time-travel stories. I decided to put my money where my mouth was and compile a time-travel anthology, Masters of Time.

mastersoftimecover

Now that I had the concept down (science-fiction and fantasy time travel), I knew I had to reach out to authors I respected and whose work I’ve enjoyed. Once I had that taken care of, then came in the “business aspect.”

If you’re an author thinking about contributing to an anthology or compiling one, I’ll share about this process in the hopes that it gives you an idea of the amount of work it takes, as well as how to avoid some pitfalls.

So, You’ve Got Your Book’s Theme and Your Author Line-up: Now What?

Contracts, Baby!

I’m the co-owner of a micro-press, Creative Alchemy, Inc. Not only was I going to contribute to this anthology as an author, I was also going to publish it through Creative Alchemy. As much as my co-authors love me, they have busy lives, projects, and bills to pay. They weren’t going to contribute a story for free, and as savvy writers, they wanted to know the royalties breakdown, publishing rights, and the length of time they’d have to wait before they could publish their individual stories on their own.

These are all valid concerns, so I drew up contracts in order to have it all settled and agreed upon. Even if the people you’re working with are friends or are trustworthy, still: have a signed contract. It won’t hurt.

Secure an Editor

I highly recommend that your editor is someone who is not a co-author of the project. It will help with objectivity, it will be one fewer thing you have to worry about, and it will guarantee that you’ll come out with a polished book. When compiling Masters of Time, our amazing editor, Charmaine, had no qualms with throwing us into the re-write dungeon when needed. Her insight, constructive criticism and feedback helped shape our work and mold it into something we could be proud of.

Set Deadlines

When is the first draft due? The second? And the last? Try to have a tentative release date scheduled as early as possible so you can work “backwards” toward that goal. Having specific dates written down also motivates writers and keep them accountable for turning in manuscripts.

Get a Professional to Format the Book

When six or more people email you their stories in MS Word format, they’re going to be coming in different fonts and sizes and with different formatting. Y’all know how picky Smashwords is with its vetting system and you don’t want to upload to Kindle Direct Publishing and use the preview feature only to find that your book looks horrible.

Save yourself the headache; once all the stories are compiled into a master document and edited, send it off to the formatter. This is also the perfect time to remind you to get your cover artist and work on the best image you believe will perfectly represent the book.

Dot Your I’s and Cross Your T’s

Don’t neglect things like spelling the co-authors’ names the way that they want them to be spelled. One of my co-authors always needs his middle initial included, otherwise he is confused with another author by the same name. Does your author want to go by a pen name? Make sure you’ve got that down as well.

Have your co-authors submit their bios, book links and social media profiles, storing them in Evernote or another handy place. It’s a pain to ask them twenty times for this information because you never bothered to copy it down.

Double-check each story title and make sure they’re the final choices. Sometimes authors will start off with one title (or a temporary one) and then change it for the final version. Everything should be up-to-date and consistent.

And, after all has been edited and formatted, do another comb-through!

Don’t Wait Until Release Day to Tell the World about It

I swear I still have friends and relatives shrugging their shoulders and telling me, “Sweetie, why didn’t you say you wrote a book? I didn’t know!” Oh, believe me, I’ve been saying it 😉

Many people, including interested readers, lead busy lives. The internet throws loads of information at us all day, every day, and our social media feeds get more crowded by the second. It’s not a surprise that some people miss the exciting news that your latest project has just been released—so don’t wait until release day to alert people.

Masters of Time will be officially released July 13, but I’ve been advertising the anthology since the beginning of this year. How? As soon as I could, I put the book on pre-order and alerted my email subscribers (if you don’t have an author newsletter, start one). Several book promotion sites will advertise your pre-order, and then there are some seriously cool book bloggers out there who will also be happy to do a cover reveal, an interview, feature or a review of an advanced copy. Bloggers also love giveaways, so if you have a giveaway attached to your book release, it’s a plus!

I’ve announced my anthology at my own blog as well as brought in and featured my co-authors. We’ve exchanged guest posts. I hit the social media pavement and let my Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ friends know. As we got closer to July, the advertising became more urgent, and I did all this while abiding by the principle of not spamming. It’s great to tell people about your book, but remember not to spam.

Also, while the bulk of your efforts may be through the internet, don’t neglect creating awareness in real life: is your local bookstore or library open to your holding an event? Can you share bookmarks, cards or flyers? Perhaps you can host a speaking engagement at your nearest book club or school campus? Get creative with the ways you can reach people and grow visibility for your book.

Now, Here Are Some Things I Already Wish I’d Done Differently

  1. I wish I would’ve added a few more authors to the anthology. While this collection is an amazing read, there are six of us contributing short stories and it’s 100 pages total. Not bad, but some promotion sites are used to presenting 800-page book collections and boxsets to their audience. I should’ve considered book length as one of my goals, though in my gut I do believe I chose the right authors and stories. This won’t necessarily harm us, but it will definitely be part of my planning process next time.
  2. I wish I would’ve done cross-critique among my co-authors. Though my in-house editor oversaw the book, I think there is additional value in authors reading one another’s contributing stories and offering feedback. This was done with the New Myths anthology I contributed to for HDWP Books, and it was an amazing process. It also lets your co-authors know what the other stories are about and it gives them room to mention these stories in interviews and blog posts.
  3. I wish I hadn’t had a “this is my responsibility” mentality. My co-authors were (and are) willing and ready to boost promotion and cross-promote, but sometimes I shied away because I felt that I needed to “prove myself” and show that I knew how to market a book. I also didn’t want to disappoint them. Duh! There is strength in numbers. If you’re the publisher or “leader” of an anthology, there’s nothing wrong with being open to letting your cohorts help you pick up the marketing and promotion slack. In fact, it’s better to have them all on board, helping. We have various skills, gifts, contacts and audience sizes. Working together to promote the book will only benefit the group—you’re in this together.

Hopefully, sharing my anthology process has given you an idea of what it’s like and what you should plan for.

If you’re a reader, perhaps this has been a nice peek into the world of writing and what it takes to get that amazing, finished product out to you.


Thank you, Sally, for inviting me today, and I hope you all continue to be entertained and inspired by great stories!


About the Author

Alesha Escobar writes fantasy to support her chocolate habit. She enjoys everything from Tolkien and Dante to the Dresden Files and Hellblazer comics. She resides in California with her partner-in-crime, Luis Escobar, a 20-year art veteran on The Simpsons television show.

Alesha is the author of The Gray Tower Trilogy, an action-packed, supernatural spy thriller set in an alternate 1940’s. The trilogy books have hit the Amazon bestsellers lists for Historical Fantasy and Mashups.

You can find Alesha at her weekly blog, Fantasy, Mashups, & Mayhem, where she discusses fantasy and science-fiction TV shows, movies and books, and celebrity gossip…She’s just kidding about the celebrity gossip.

But, there IS a giveaway for MOT: http://timeanthology.blogspot.com/p/enter-giveaway.html

The Black Dagger Gods (short story, New Myths Anthology)

 
Find Alesha on:

Alesha Escobar


MOT links:

webpage: http://timeanthology.blogspot.com/
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Masters-Time-Science-Fiction-Anthology/dp/1514173727
Trailer: http://youtu.be/PovabW4fyjQ
Apple iBooks/iTunes: http://apple.co/1bp77vK
Smashwords: http://bit.ly/1K3ggGi
Barnes & Noble/ nook: http://bit.ly/1Kkkr0C


CHANGES conversations between authors is an almost-weekly, Google+/Youtube video chat show. Watch conversations with my previous CHANGES guests any time: http://goo.gl/eX0D8T

OPENINGS occur frequently! #Authors, especially those in sci-fi/speculative fiction and who blog, learn more about and get yourself on CHANGES, and
#Readers, recommend an #author to be scheduled as a guest: http://goo.gl/1dbkZV


If you’d like to be a Guest Blogger, please visit my Guest Bloggers’ Hall of Fame and learn what’s involved.

Thanks for visiting, commenting, following, and enjoying this site! http://www.sallyember.com

Six Hens Magazine Looking for True Stories by Women

I know a lot of women who could write compelling nonfiction accounts of their “before and after,” so check this out! Deadline: 8/10/15 pays $50; 2K word limit.

Writing and Illustrating

six hens

Six Hens is looking for true stories about the moments that define and redefine. Our writers take us to the places and events that changed what they believe in, changed how they see their place in the world, and changed them. Through their storytelling, they change us.

The editors are seeking submissions for the second issue to be published this September.

Writers are invited to submit strong first-person nonfiction about places and events that changed what they believe in, changed how they see themselves in this world, and how they were changed.

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Look who’s featured on 7/6/15 as part of Indie Authors’ Month: Sally Ember, Ed.D.!

Look who’s featured on 7/6/15 as part of Indie Authors’ Month: Sally Ember, Ed.D.!

Visit every day this month and honor Indie Authors! Thanks, Mel Cusick-Jones and Tony Talbot, for organizing and promoting this event and including me!
http://Asidefromwriting.com

iam-2015-topper

Indie Author Month 2015 is finally here! Thirty-one days, thirty-one indie authors for you to meet, sharing the best of what it is to be an indie author from their own experiences…

So, welcome to the first day of our Indie Author Month – now in its fourth year, we’re excited to be hosting more fantastic indie authors during the event, which will run throughout July.

As in previous years, the event aims to bring indie authors into the spotlight, helping them find new readers, as well as letting them share their experiences of writing and publishing as an indie author. There are highs and lows to this creative life and everyone’s experience and approach is slightly different…

This year specifically, we have opened up the event to authors of every genre – variety is the spice of life! The only thing we’ve asked from each of them is to tell us about their experiences as an indie writer…from their personal writing journey, to the things they’ve learned about self-publishing, you’ll find it all here this month.

We hope you’ll keep coming back each day through the event, to meet the authors and chat with them about their writing.

Download and purchase Indie Authors’ books!
Write #comments on our #blogs!
Post #bookreviews and ratings of our books on sale sites, especially Amazon, and on Goodreads, Booklikes, Shelfari, Library Thing, nook, Kobo and iBooks!

All links for FREE downloads and purchase of ebooks in The Spanners Series as well as places to post comments and reviews: http://www.sallyember.com Look right; scroll down.

THANKS!

TV Reviews: Three New Summer TV Series – Proof, Complications, and Dark Matter: my reviews on Blog Critics’ site

Three New Summer TV Series – Proof, Complications, and Dark Matter: my reviews on Blog Critics’ site

went live on June 24, 2015

http://blogcritics.org/tv-review-three-new-summer-tv-series-proof-complications-and-dark-matter/

How Solar Sister is fueling a women-led clean energy revolution in Africa. #ClimateChange 

We need more projects like this! Thanks for posting. #microloans #solopreneurs #Africa #greenenergy #cleanenergy #solutions #solar #feminism #globalreach

jpratt27

Solar Sister has women in rural Africa sell clean energy solutions, which brings light to their communities and turns them into entrepreneurs in the process.
In rural Nigeria, a woman named Iniobong opened a maternity clinic to serve her community. It had no electricity, so she used candlelight or kerosene to deliver babies and care for mothers. One day, a woman named Blessing brought a solar light to her prenatal check-up. It sparked Iniobong’s interest, so Blessing told her that she could sell it and other clean energy products herself if she became a “Solar Sister Entrepreneur.”
Iniobong started out by buying solar lights and a better cookstove to use at her own clinic. Today, the money she earns as a Solar Sister entrepreneur goes into running her clinic and providing care for the women in her community.
“When it came time to bring Blessing’s son into the world, there…

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Giveaway 2day only (7/4/15): Celebrate my topping 5K Tweeps and get #Free #scifi #Ebook!

To celebrate that I just topped 5K Tweeps (no ‘bots! no Twitter sharks!) on Twitter, I’m giving away one of my Spanners Series #ebooks!

Contact me: sallyember@yahoo DOT com for a coupon on ‪#‎Smashwords‬ to get Vol II, This Changes My Family and My Life Forever, #free today, 7/4/15 only (usually $3.99)

final-cover-print

Intrigued by multiple timelines, aliens, psi skills, romance and planetary change? Clara and the alien “Band” are back in Volume II, This Changes My Family and My Life Forever of The Spanners Series. Now as Chief Communicator, Clara leads the way for interspecies communication on- and off-planet. Fighting these changes are the Psi-Defiers, led by one of the oldest friends of the Chief of the Psi-Warriors, its reluctant leader, Rabbi Moran Ackerman. Stories from younger Spanners about the first five years of The Transition fill Volume II. How would YOU do with the changes?

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/424969  
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KU5Q7KC

Vol I, This Changes Everything, is ‪#‎permafree‬

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Dr. Clara Ackerman Branon, 58, begins having secret visits from holographic representations of  beings from the Many Worlds Collective, a consortium of planet and star systems in the multiverse.  When Earth is invited to join the consortium, the secret visits are made public. Now Earthers must adjust their beliefs and ideas about life, religion, culture, identity and everything they think and are. Clara is selected to be the liaison between Earth and the Many Worlds Collective and she chooses Esperanza Enlaces to be the Media Contact. They team up to provide information to stave off riots and uncertainty. The Many Worlds Collective holos train Clara and the Psi-Warriors for the Psi Wars with the rebelling Psi-Defiers, communicate effectively with many species on Earth and off-planet, eliminate ordinary, elected governments and political boundaries, convene a new group of Global Leaders, and deal with family’s and friends’ reactions. In what multiple timelines of the ever-expanding multiverse do Clara and her long-time love, Epifanio Dang, get to be together and which leave Clara alone and lonely as the leader of Earth? This Changes Everything begins the 30-year story of Clara’s term as Earth’s first Chief Communicator, continuing in nine more Volumes of The Spanners Series. Are YOU ready for the changes?

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HFELTG8   
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/376197

‪#‎scifi‬ The Spanners Series by Sally Ember, Ed.D.

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http://www.sallyember.com FMI, reviews, more links

caliginous

Merlyn Ember and David Garelick will like this wordplay!

Sesquiotica

You do well to be cagey when unlacing a language’s insouciant linguistic genius, for you may find its dark underside, its cabinet of Doctor Caligari, its closet of Caligula. But sometimes these dark undersides are callipygian: light and lithe on the tongue, prettily curved for the eyes, exquisite for lexical carousing. So fine, in fact, that they may slip into a party purely by pulchritude and do a star turn on a stage not their own.

Consider this line from The Wizard of Oz: “You clinking, clanking, clattering collection of caliginous junk!” So expressive, so sound-symbolic. But therein is an obscurity: caliginous. What is this abecedarian coelacanth or architeuthis dux doing scaling de profundis into the mechanical racket as a sesquipedalian expletive? What, in fact, would caliginous junk be?

I’m rather inclined to think it’s what one finds in a Jawa sandcrawler or perhaps the corners…

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Why I have Always Hated Independence Day in the USA

Why I have Always Hated Independence Day (July 4th) in the USA

I am not the only one, either.

Fireworks
I could enjoy the fireworks from a great distance and up high, only. Sometimes I could get to my own or someone else’s rooftop or high window and watch from afar and admire the colors without hearing the awful noises: those I could appreciate, somewhat. But, I never forgot, even as a little girl, that these contraptions are supposed to represent bombs and I hate bombs, I hate war, and I, according to my mom and my own memories, have always hated fireworks up close. Still do.

illusion of democracy fireworks
image from http://www.247newsworld.com

Troy Patterson REALLY hates fireworks: http://www.slate.com/articles/life/a_fine_whine/2009/07/fireworks_suck.html

Patriotism
I am deeply disappointed in this country and have been for as long as I can remember. How can anyone around my age (60, born in 1954), whose first clear memory of a President is the insane, lying criminal, Richard M. Nixon, be patriotic?

The USA, in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, drafted and then sent millions of my classmates (and they were BOYS) to their maiming, mental health breakdowns, drug addictions or deaths in Korea, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia FOR NO GOOD REASON.

ALL the “wars” the USA has “fought” since World War II have been nothing but thinly disguised efforts to make some a-holes richer and further the political agendae of yet another group of ignorant buffoons that the people of this country keep electing.

It is shameful, embarrassing and horrible that the USA is STILL DOING THAT today in Iraq, Afghanistan, and anywhere else the war-mongers can stir up enough jingoism to get people to volunteer.

When Barbara Streisand sang “America, the Beautiful” for Bill Clinton’s campaign show, I cried. Not because it was so wonderful or she was so great, and not because I was moved by Clinton (the women-exploiting, lying sack of sh*t). No. I cried because I cannot feel what I wished I could feel: I can feel no pride and no love for a country I have lived in all my life.

Whatever does anyone have to be proud of? What is there to love besides the lands’ natural wonders (the ones we haven’t yet ruined) and the people we already care about?

The USA shows up far too low or is the lowest on the ranked lists, lowest among ALL “modern,” or “Westernized” countries, in too many categories to count. I’m talking about our ratings on handling issues that really matter, like infant mortality, educational attainment (high school graduation), child poverty, racist police violence, racist incarceration, numbers incarcerated, numbers of addicts/alcoholics, gun violence/mass shootings, domestic violence, rape, homelessness: on and on and on.

Aaron Sorkin nailed this problem (our mistaken belief in the USA as the “greatest country in the world”) in the rant he wrote for Jeff Daniels’ news anchor character to give in the HBO TV show, Newsroom (responses start after audience-member’s question at 3:10; Daniels’ actual rant begins at about 4:40): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rpn0vh2Rj0Y or https://youtu.be/Rpn0vh2Rj0Y

Are YOU an American and proud? How? I really want to know how you reconcile the actual dismal facts of this country’s historical record and current terrible policies and behaviors around the world with your desire to be a patriot: they don’t make enough booze in the world to drown out the noise of that cognitive dissonance for me.

Celebrating War
At its core, Independence Day, July Fourth, celebrates the Revolutionary War and the newly formed United States of America’s “victory” in it. As a lifelong pacifist who abhors violence and would avoid it in every case, except as a last resort or best tactic to prevent further harm and death (as in World War II), I deplore all uses of violence and especially warfare.

Scotland recently had a VOTE to determine whether or not it should become independent from Britain. Did anyone consider that option in 1776? I highly doubt it. Maybe it wouldn’t have worked; we can’t know. But I do not want to celebrate the deployment of violent methods to achieve something that may well have been attainable by nonviolent means and certainly was not necessary.

Hundreds of thousands of people died in the USA’s Revolutionary War and subsequent wars of “independence” around the world, due to the USA’s “shining example.” I am as ashamed of all of those wars as if I had started them myself.

I also DO NOT SUPPORT THE TROOPS who currently serve in the USA military, since they serve as volunteers who decided to go kill people the USA and its deluded allies have no business killing, to destroy and steal property we have no business wrecking, and otherwise to wreak havoc in other people’s countries FOR NO GOOD REASON.

These “wars” have NOTHING to do with the attacks on the USA on 9/11/01 and have actually increased the terrorism in the world rather than helped it abate. If you don’t believe me, look at the rise in terror attacks and the growth of ISIS. How else do you explain those?

No one made them go. No one should have volunteered. If no one had volunteered, the “war efforts” would have died in one year or a few months. Truly.

NO ONE should have volunteered. Period.

Why would ANYONE “support” those “troops” and these activities? I really want to know.

The USA’s “image” or “brand” has been “slipping” in the world everywhere but Western Europe for over a decade because of our hypocrisies, torture training centers and usage of torture, pollution and degradation of the planet’s resources due to corporate greed and war-mongering at others’ expense. http://www.pewglobal.org/2014/07/14/chapter-1-the-american-brand/

That is another reason NOT to “celebrate” this country on July 4th.

Gratitude and Wishes
Whom am I grateful to? Bradley/Chelsea Manning. Julian Assange. Edward Snowden. Bernie Sanders. Daniel Ellsberg. Karen Silkwood. Rosa Parks. Bree Newsome.

Rolling-Rebellion-Taos-4th-of-July-Parade-gratitude1-e1405261595292
image from: http://www.globalresearch.ca

I Wish…the USA would join the world in better living and cooperation. Start with these:
–Sign the nuclear non-proliferation agreement.
–Provide universal healthcare for all citizens in the USA for free.
–Provide college educations at public universities to all students for free and eliminate/forgive ALL student loan debt right now.
–Sign the reduction in land-mines agreement.
–Sign the reduction in carbon emissions agreement.
–Sign all treaties that attempt to stop human trafficking, sex slavery, child abduction and forced human drug smuggling from occurring.
–Improve and provide housing, alternative health care, better education, enough food and actual public safety (better policing) for ALL our own citizens.
–Model caring, democratic living for the world.
–Stop all forms of discrimination based on religion, appearance, gender, sexual orientation, and other types of social identities.
–Stop all forms of rape, sexual attacks and domestic violence by enforcing the existing laws and making better ones everywhere.
–Reduce child abuse and child poverty by providing more opportunities for jobs and meaningful employment at living wages for all citizens who want to and are able to work.
–Provide free childcare and pre-school to all children.
–Stop all armed conflicts, destroy all mass weapons we own and stop producing them.
–Repurpose the military budget to serve our citizens better (see above).

rebellion-when-injustice-becomes-law-e1412174046276
image from: http://kellidgordonlibertyblog.wordpress.com

What do you wish? Comment here. http://www.sallyember.com/blog

Best to you on this weekend, whatever you’re doing. I wish I could celebrate. Instead, I will meditate on world peace.

Amazon May Pay Authors $0.006 per Page Read

My take on the ‪#‎Kindle‬ Unlimited (‪#‎KU‬)/Borrows ‪#‎compensation‬ kerfluffle on ‪#‎Amazon‬…
The problem is actually this: *Kindle Borrows should be set up to reflect the length of what is being borrowed!* ‪#‎Authors‬ who write longer works (and work harder) should be paid more.
A novel-length “book” needs to be defined. I propose 60K – 80K words as the minimum cut-off for a novel-length book.
Go down by 20K and get a Novella, from 40K – 59,999 words.
Go down 20K – 39,999 words and get a “novellette.”
Anything shorter than 20K is a short story.
Or, come up with a similar schematic.
A “novel” should be credited differently than a “novella” or a “novelette” or a “short story” or something even shorter, progressively less by the length of the work.
Then, readers read what they want, no policing by length of time lingering on a page or number of pages “liked.”
What do you think?

readers+writers journal

Author Payment on AmazonAuthors of Shorter Works May Lose Out in New Kindle Unlimited Plan

via The Guardian

Self-published authors could be paid as little as $0.006 per page read under new rules planned by Amazon.

Writers who make their works available through Amazon’s Kindle Owners Lending Library, and a similar service called Kindle Unlimited, will no longer be paid per copy downloaded following a move announced last week.

Instead, they would receive a payment based on how many pages had actually been read, with longer books receiving a higher potential payment than shorter works.

In an email to authors, sent on Wednesday, Amazon revealed exactly how little that payment would be.

The company said that customers of its two services read nearly 1.9bn pages in June, while it expected to pay at least $11m a month for June, July and August.

That means the payment per page read could be as low…

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50 Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Author Platform

Thanks for posting, Dear Ape. Self-assessments for #authors’ #bookmarketing efforts: great idea!

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

To read this detailed and highly informative post by the Ami Team,

Click on the image or link below:

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50-questions-to-ask-yourself-about-your-author-platform/

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