Tammi Sauer Day Proclaimed!

Sometimes in can feel like the arts are being squeezed out of our children’s lives with educational budget cuts gutting arts programs, along with the emphasis on testing, one may worry that creative thought was being pushed out of emphasis altogether. It’s refreshing when city leaders take it upon themselves to thrust children’s literature into the spotlight.

Here’s some fantastic news about one of our very own OK SCBWI authors:

photo credit: Dana Lang Photography
photo credit: Dana Lang Photography

Press Release: July 9 Declared Tammi Sauer Day in Edmond

(Edmond, Oklahoma—June 26, 2015) Edmond Mayor Charles Lamb and the Edmond City Council have declared July 9 to be named in honor of local children’s author Tammi Sauer. Sauer, a three-time winner of the Oklahoma Book Award, is a dedicated Edmond resident who is committed to working with Best of Books, her local independent bookstore. Each year, Best of Books provides Sauer’s books for her many school visits across the state and region.

During Tammi Sauer Day in Edmond, Sauer will be at Best of Books to sign and talk about her latest book Ginny Louise and the School Showdown from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, July 9. She is tentatively scheduled to receive her proclamation at 5:20 and speak at 5:30. Crafts and goodies for kids and refreshments for all will follow.

I had the pleasure of getting a sneak preview of this book at our spring conference and it is just adorable. I got to hold this lovely book in my hands and admire shiny details of spot gloss while reading the tale of Ginny Louise, a hedgehog after my own heart. Her approach to dealing with outlaws of the bully variety is delightful and refreshing.

GINNY LOUISE AND THE SCHOOL SHOWDOWN (Disney-Hyperion, 2015) by Tammi Sauer, illustrated by Lynn Munsinger

The Truman Elementary Troublemakers are a bad bunch. Especially these three: Cap’n Catastrophe, Destructo Dude, and Make-My-Day May. But they are no match for Ginny Louise, the new hedgehog in school. Her unwavering cheerfulness in the face of their bullying will make young readers holler with glee. Full of rhymes, wordplay, and comic misunderstanding, this book will lend itself well to reading aloud as well as discussions about peer dynamics. (Plot summary from author’s website.)

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Her editors loved it so much, they asked her to write a second Ginny Louise story! You’ll love Ginny Louise, too. But don’t take my word for it, you can read the Kirkus Review here.

Order your copy today!

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Tammi has twenty-three books under contract with three of those titles debuting in 2015, including Ginny Louise. The two other titles are: Your Alien (Sterling), and Roar! (Paula Wiseman/Simon & Schuster).

I am so happy for Tammi and really enjoy watching her succeed. I may have to buy an additional bookshelf as my Tammi Sauer section is growing by leaps and bounds – I even have a rare signed copy of her first YA book. Don’t tell her, though! She may try to steal it back from me. (I kid.)

Many of us from the OK SCBWI gang plan to be there at Best of Books on July 9th to help Tammi celebrate her special day. If you’re in the neighborhood, or even if you have to travel half a day or so, come on over and join us! It’ll be a grand time!

Learn more about Tammi Sauer here.

Follow Tammi on Twitter here.

 

As an additional bonus, Tammi shares some background information about Ginny Louise on her group blog here.

 

TweetIf you can’t be there for the big event on July 9th, you can catch her on Twitter as Tammi will be our special guest this month on #okscbwichat! Come join us for a live chat with Tammi on July 28th from 7-8pm CST.

 

June #writemotivation Check In Number 3

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This month was quite the mixed bag as far as goal progress has been concerned.

To be honest, life has been throwing me some wicked curveballs lately, which has made just getting out of bed and taking a shower a major accomplishment. After another challenging week, I think I’m finally over the worst of it.

(* fingers crossed* and recognizing I’m totally tempting the fates by saying that.)

Here are my June goals:

1. Make word count goal of 2000 words five days each week. Nope. Total failure.

2. Complete requested project by the end of the month. Same. Not completed. Moving this to top priority – basically living, breathing this project – for next month.

3. Plan blog posts for the month and post weekly. COMPLETED! YAY! 

4. Read & review at least two books. Read total of seven books, and reviewed one. Overachieved on first part and I get partial credit on the other.

Overall, a very wobbly start, but at least it was a start. I know I’ll do better next month, and I’m already planning out how.

How about you? Do you need help sticking to your goals?

If so, why not join us? Sign up for July #writemotivation is open now! Click here if you’d like to join in.

SUMMER NIGHTS is here! – a TGNA post

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It’s Media Monday over at The Great Noveling Adventure and I’m discussing the release of our first flash fiction anthology! It’s a time of joyous celebration for us over at TGNA.

Normally, I give just a preview of the post, but I want share the whole thing here for once. I’d love for you all to download a copy and, of course read my story, A THOUSAND POINTS OF LIGHT.

Here’s the post:

Media Monday is all about giving our readers a gift and what better gift than our own stories?

We decided to add in stories from some of our talented readers. That’s what this site is all about – the shared writing journey.

I had the pleasure of reading through the entries and the agony of helping to eliminate all but the best stories to include alongside our TGNA alumni. This has been such a fun process and I hope you enjoy this collection as much as we enjoyed sharing it with you.

Here it is!

Our very first anthology, ready to download with love from us to you, our faithful readers.

And for FREE!

 

Summer Nights CoverSUMMER NIGHTS is the first flash fiction anthology compiled by The Great Noveling Adventure. The collected stories run the gamut from first love to heartbreak, revenge to forgiveness, redemption to murder. They, like the thirteen authors who contributed them, are widely varied, but they each demonstrate the same truth:

A lot can happen in a single night.

With stories from:
Jenny Adams Perinovic Gabriella Crivilare
Cristina R. Guarino Antonius M. Hogebrandt
Neil Kettles Sarah Kettles Valerie Lawson
Adriana Marachlian Kyrie McCauley L.S. Mooney
Susan Nystoriak Kate Sheeran Swed R.B. Stewart

 

Download your copy now!

 

Download for free: PDF · EPUB · MOBI

 

Please share this with your friends and let us know what you think. You can even post a review on Goodreads!

 

TweetFriendly Twitter reminder:  If you’d like some company as you write, please join us! I host AM #wordsprints @Novel_Adventure weekdays from 7-9am CST. (We’re starting an hour later during the summer months.)

June #writemotivation Check In Number 2

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I missed checking in last week.

It was a tough one.

I decided to put my focus where it was needed the most and my kids won. They will always win. Without going into the gory, emotional details, let’s just say we are all the better for the detour, and move on to this week.

Here are my June goals:

1. Make word count goal of 2000 words five days each week. Needless to say, I am behind on my word count goal. I do plan to catch up as fast as I can. I hope I can do that this week.

2. Complete requested project by the end of the month. I revisited the area that inspired this project over the weekend and really got some great ideas. So excited about this book! While I do hope to finish soon, it may take a little longer than I planned. I will write as long as it takes to get this done well.

3. Plan blog posts for the month and post weekly. Posts are going well for both sites – better than I expected.

4. Read & review at least two books. First review already posted for SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater! I’ve read five books so far this month – GOAL HALF ACCOMPLISHED. Maybe I can post another review before the end of the month. Maybe.

How about you? How are you doing with your goals?

2015 TBR Challenge – THE SCORPIO RACES Review

2015tbrbuttonMy fifth review for the Official 2015 TBR Pile Challenge is THE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater.

The goal of this challenge is “to finally read 12 books from your ‘to be read’ pile within twelve months”. To qualify for the challenge, books must be read and reviewed before the year is over, and all selections must have publishing dates from the year 2013 or older. (Here are the books I’ll be reading this year.)

Already a fan of Ms. Stiefvater’s work, I received this book as a Christmas gift a few years ago. Unlike many of her other works, this is a stand alone story. I’m not sure how it got buried in my TBR pile, but I’m so glad I unearthed it from the depths and dusted it off. Such a captivating read.

On to the review!

Scorpio-paperback-websiteTHE SCORPIO RACES by Maggie Stiefvater

Published by: Scholastic Press

Release Date: October 18, 2011

Genres: YA, Fantasy

Plot Summary:

It happens at the start of every November: The Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line.

Some riders live. Others die.

Based on the legends of the eich uisce — the Celtic water horse — The Scorpio Races take place on the tiny, fictional island of Thisby. Each November, water horses emerge from the black ocean and gallop the beach beneath the cliffs of Thisby. And each November, men capture these horses for a thrilling and deadly race.

Both Sean Kendrick, four time champion, and Kate “Puck” Connolly, newcomer to the races, will ride this year, and both of them have more to gain — or lose — than in any previous year. But only one can win. (Plot summary from author’s website.)

I loved Stiefvater’s adaptation of this legend.

(Click here to read about how she came to write this story.)

To win the race you have to capture something magical and wild that doesn’t want to be caught and that also likes the taste of human flesh.You have to become one with it; work in harmony with it. If you fail, you could die.

Pretty big stakes.

But Stiefvater doesn’t stop there: her two main characters are in the race of their lives. Both Sean and Puck have bet their futures on winning this impossibly dangerous race.

I so wanted both main characters to win, which I think says a lot about Stiefvater’s ability to make us care deeply about these imaginary people in a very real way. The relationship between Sean and Puck develops in such a gradual and believable way, with none of that pesky and annoying “instalove” that I just abhor. Their admiration for each other comes from a sincere place, which makes it all the more heartbreaking when you realize that only one of them can win the race, and each has an equally strong reason for needing to win.

Of course, I’m not going to tell you how the race ends, that would be cheating. I will say that it’s a very intense story that doesn’t disappoint. One of my favorite books from Ms. Stiefvater to date.

Learn more about Maggie Stiefvater here.

Follow Maggie on Twitter here.

Follow Maggie on Tumblr here.

Cool Reads for Hots Days – a TGNA Post

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It’s List of Five Friday over at The Great Noveling Adventure and I’m discussing great books to keep you cool on hot summer days.

Here’s a preview:

I have to say this one was inspired by my AC going out at 3 AM last night and my brain melting along with the rest of me. As I waited for the repairman to show “sometime this afternoon” which was obviously code for 6:45pm, all I could think about, all I wanted as I slowly turned into a human puddle of sweat and sadness, was to sit in a vat of frozen lemonade and read a fantastic story.

Here are some choice picks to get you through a scorching summer day:

1. SHIVER (The Wolves of Mercy Falls #1) by Maggie Stiefvater – I think the title says it all. I’m feeling cooler already, aren’t you? shiver cover

For years, Grace has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf—her wolf—is a chilling presence she can’t seem to live without.

Meanwhile, Sam has lived two lives: In winter, the frozen woods, the protection of the pack, and the silent company of a fearless girl. In summer, a few precious months of being human… until the cold makes him shift back again.

Now, Grace meets a yellow-eyed boy whose familiarity takes her breath away. It’s her wolf. It has to be. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human—or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever.

To see the rest of the List of Five, click here.

While you’re visiting the site, you may notice we have some exciting news! We have put together an anthology of short stories that will be available to download for FREE on June 21st!

Here are the details:

TGNATGNA Summer Nights is the first anthology compiled by The Great Noveling Adventure and includes flash fiction stories by current and former contributors to TGNA, as well as some of your fellow readers! They’re short and sweet (or not so sweet, depending on the story), and they range from romance to horror, friendship to fêtes to love lost.

What binds them together? They all take place in the course of a single summer night.

We are leaking the first lines of one story every day until the release on Twitter and Facebook. It’s been such fun. I can’t wait for this to come out!

 

TweetFriendly Twitter reminder:  If you’d like some company as you write, please join us! I host AM #wordsprints @Novel_Adventure weekdays from 7-9am CST. (We’re starting an hour later during the summer months.)

The Return of #writemotivation – Thank God! (Someone Hold Me Accountable!)

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After almost a year on hiatus, #WriteMotivation returns!

If you need help sticking to your goals or need some encouragement when all seems bleak, this is a fantastic group of people to help cheer you on and help you reach those goals.

The rules are simple:

1. Make a list of realistic goals for the month – and achieve them.
2. Make a Blog Post every week (preferably Wednesdays, but if you don’t post on Wednesdays just add it to the next day you would normally post ). This is to help us keep tabs on our own progress, and for others to cheer us on if it’s a difficult week. Please link to the post in the #writemotivation hashtag
3. Visit your #writemotivation team mates blogs, and participate in the #writemotivation hashtag to cheer people on.

Sign up for this month will go through the end of the week. You can fill out the form to join in here.

I have a major project to complete by the end of this month, so this is perfect timing for me. This one is going to take so much focus for me to stay the course. I need my #writemotivation gang to help me through this!

Here are my June goals:

1. Make word count goal of 2000 words five days each week. That’s the minimum. It wouldn’t hurt to go a bit higher.

2. Completed requested project by the end of the month. Very excited about this project! 

3. Plan blog posts for the month and post weekly. I have been less than consistent over the past couple of months, what with the youngling graduating high school and other major life changes coming into play. Time to regroup and refocus.

4. Read & review at least two books. Have one books already finished and ready to review. This may be the easiest goal to complete. :)

So how about you? What are your goals for the summer? For June? Want to join in #WriteMotivation?