Writing for Children

HarperCollins India, Avid Learning, and Mumbai children's book promoter Lubaina Tyebji Bandukwala put together an informative workshop on writing children's literature this weekend. As I begin the search for a home to publish my own middle grade novels, I thought I'd confirm my take on the genre with people who actually know what they're talking about. A … Continue reading Writing for Children

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Opening Day

MLB opens today. With the game on my mind, I revisit how a small deformity of mine became an asset in fiction for the narrator---an all star pitcher---of my first published story. My thumb, badly slashed on New Years Eve by the broken neck of a champagne bottle, never healed properly. After surgery to reconnect … Continue reading Opening Day

When Publishing Was Hard

I tailor-made an essay for an in-house blog last month. Labored over 500 words and thought it a shoe-in. But they passed. The rejection would've stung if I thought the piece was lousy. This was for a blog, but the rejection didn't hurt: I don't submit rubbish, though I may write it. I knew the piece … Continue reading When Publishing Was Hard

Walden in Africa & Other Diplomatic Readings

Among the 53 titles compiled in this Month's Foreign Service Journal is Dan Whitman's Answer Coming Soon. Whatever else it provides to those who read it, Answer undeniably will provide this: a reflection on the power of books. The power is especially profound for those who spend their lives in places where electricity can be spotty … Continue reading Walden in Africa & Other Diplomatic Readings

Guest Post–Michael J. Sahno

Today I turn over this space to author and book marketing consultant Michael J. Sahno. Congratulations to Michael on today's re-launch of the novel, Miles of Files. Check back in later for a review. Marketing for Indie Authors Before I started my own publishing and consulting firm, I spent about 15 years working full time as a … Continue reading Guest Post–Michael J. Sahno

Peace Corps Writer’s Crime Debut

Congrats to fellow Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Chris Orlet (Poland, 1992-94), who's debut novel In the Pines came out this month from New Pulp Press. New Pulp is home to many other fine noir and crime writers like Mark Richardson (see my review of Hunt for the Troll--2015). NPP released my neo-noir satire, Two Pumps for the Body Man, this … Continue reading Peace Corps Writer’s Crime Debut

Foreign Service Writers

The March issue of the Foreign Service Journal covers the annual book fair and includes a call for FS-affiliated writers to submit news of forthcoming and recently published books for the November round up. Authors are also invited to submit work for review on this blog: I recently reviewed retired FSO James F. O'Callaghan's No Circuses. See below. From the FSJ … Continue reading Foreign Service Writers

Better Than the Local Library

Anyone interested in reviewing books should know about Edelweiss, a free online catalog housing a seemingly endless collection of forthcoming and recently-released titles. I can tell you what Edelweiss is, and I can walk you through how I use Edelweiss to select books for review. But the best way to really understand what’s available there … Continue reading Better Than the Local Library

Review: Gateway to Paradise

The six stories in Matthew Vollmer’s Gateway to Paradise (Persea books) plow dark furrows across the landscape, furrows at once unified yet unique, parallel channels promising individual reward. The unifying darkness is subtle, distinct, reassuring in its way. It is a darkness that blooms rather than dooms, mesmerizes rather than terrifies, reveals rather than obscures. As for … Continue reading Review: Gateway to Paradise