A Blog of Writing Tips, Interviews, Thoughts on the Writing Process, Book Reviews, Blog Hops, and Things NESCBWI Conference Related.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Let the World Know!

Have you read The Casting? Did you like it? Let the world know!




  • To like Joyce's author page on Facebook, click here


  • To subscribe to Joyce's newsletter, sign up on the left side of this page


  • To invite Joyce to speak at your event, click here

Friday, November 30, 2012

Author Spotlight


It's always nice to open an email to find that you are the subject of a nice blog post at someone else's blog. To read the interview, click on the links. Enjoy!



http://clcreviews.blogspot.com/2012/11/award-winning-author-joyce-shor-johnson.html





http://www.authorsbistro.info/2012/11/author-spotlight-joyce-shor-johnson.html

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Thinking about Gifts?

It's that time of year again, where the holiday decorations suddenly explode - and it seems as if it starts earlier every year. I've already ordered my photo holiday cards. They are sitting on the dining table waiting for Thanksgiving day morning. This is when I will address them and have them ready to send on December 1st.

In the meantime, I have started to shop. This year, I thought I would put together a list of cool places to visit online for awesome gifts that you might not have known about.


Eco-Friendly Gifts

http://www.sproutwatches.com/
If you are looking for watches, these bright and eco-friendly timepieces are made from corn! Better wear than to eat! The company page really is well written and tell the consumer all about their ideals. Read it here.


Great gift ideas at UncommonGoods
http://www.uncommongoods.com/gifts/collections/recycled-gifts
They even have bicycle chain bowls! How cool is that?
Here is what UncommonGoods has to say about their company: "At UncommonGoods, we want to change the way business is conducted by making sustainability a part of every decision we make. Each month, employees from all areas of our company gather to discuss how we can make UncommonGoods more environmentally friendly, socially responsible and an ever-more rewarding place to work."



http://eco-friendly.novica.com/

I think they have some wonderful gifts!
Novica has this to say about their company: "[Novica] want[s] to give artists and artisans around the world a global platform to express their true artistic talents and to spur their creativity. And, we want to provide you with access to unique, hard-to-find items at great values that only the Internet infrastructure can allow. At the deepest essence of our philosophy, we want to create a bridge between you and the many talented artisans across the globe. [Novica] want[s] you to know about who you're buying from. [Novica] want[s] you to feel that attachment to the product and to the hands that created it."

Fun Gifts

Perpetual Kid - Fun & Unique Gifts
BOWLING ZOMBIES
Who doesn't like Bowling for Zombies? Perpetual Kid has so many goofy and fun items. Go wild.

Fave Online Gifts
MoMA STORE
I love the Fish Tank Hotel.


 


















But the best gift you can give is the gift of reading.

Order an autographed copy of the THE CASTING
Morgan Hill Bookstore
253 Main Street 
PO Box 2455
New London, NH 03257

(603) 526-5850
HOURS:
Monday to Friday 9:00 - 5:30
Saturday 9:00 - 5:00
Sunday 11:00 - 3:00


or go to PugaliciousPress.com 

Have Fun Shopping!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Review of The Casting by Superfastreader

Lovely Review of The Casting by Annie on her blog Reading is My Superpower.

You can read it here!

Final Call for 2013 NESCBWI Conference Proposals


August 27th brings with it the close of
2013 New England SCBWI Conference Proposals,
so take a moment and submit your most awesome idea today! 
Proposal Due Date: August 27, 201
Presenter Notification Expected: October 15, 2012
For Additional Information go to NESCBWI

Presenters from New England who send in more than one, well-crafted and detailed proposal will receive preferential consideration. Also, you may be asked to present your workshop twice during the conference. You might consider doing a 120 or 180 minute presentation and then tweaking it to fit a 55 minute format. With so much talent in our New England and surrounding regions, bringing you together to share knowledge and skill is what makes New England SCBWI the largest regional conference.
Types of Presentations:
55-minute workshops; 120-minute intensives; 180 studios w/15 minute break.

To Submit a Proposal: Please complete a conference proposal form. Separate submissions are required for multiple presentations or workshop/intensive versions of the same presentation. 

Selection Criteria and Topics
Every year SCBWI New England receives so many excellent proposals, more than can fit into a conference schedule. Therefore, we must choose on the basis of experience, quality, variety, novelty, attendant costs, and other factors. Please use the 2013 NESCBWI Workshop Rubric for more explicit selection criteria and standards.

We would love to see presentations on the following topics. If you are an expert on one of these topics, we would love to see your proposal.
  • Hands-on writing workshops that spotlight elements of craft: outlining, story arc, tools, tips, character, dialogue, sketching, etc.
  • Hands-on illustration workshops
  • Publishing 201 session for intermediate authors or illustrators
  • Developing an idea from conception to completion
  • How to complete a Detailed Novel Outline
  • Secrets of Story Arc
  • How to lay out a picture book dummy
  • How to start your own publishing company
  • Gesture and emotion for illustrators
  • School and library visits and promotion
  • Grassroots Marketing strategies to libraries and other overlooked venues
  • Writing nonfiction articles and short stories
  • Mystery writing, organizing your mystery
  • Planning Out Clues
  • How to write chapter books
  • How to design an eBook
  • Writing Teen Romance
  • What I publish/represent and why
  • Historical Fiction for middle grade and YA - What makes it work!
  • How to reinvent yourself as a writer and reignite your career
  • What exactly happens at BEA, ALA, Frankfurt, Bologna and how can it help you with book sales? 
  • How to write suspense for MG & or YA
  • Illustration techniques - making the magic happen
  • Defining the terms: High Concept, Realistic Fiction, Magical Realism, etc.
Got Questions? Ask in the comments section below!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Ammi-Joan Paquette, Children's Author

It's Wenesday and that means another New London, New Hampshire Market on the Green.

Kendra Johnson and Ammi-Joan Paquette



















This week's Children's Author was Ammi-Joan Pauqutte.


Joan's latest picture book Tip Toe Guide to Mermaids is just delightful. It is the companion book to Tip Toe Guide to Faries.


 

Joan is also the author of Nowhere Girl, a middle grade novel that is beautiful, evocative, and full of rich language that lingers long after the book is closed (via Kate Messner's Goodreds Review). Luchi Ann only knows a few things about herself: she was Born in a prison in Thailand, Luchi Ann knows only that her American mother was an inmate there. With her mother's death, Luchi must leave the only place she's ever known. Being neither Thai, because of her fair skin and blond hair, nor a foreigner, because of her knowledge of Thai life and traditions, Luchi feels as though she belongs nowhere. Nowhere Girl is a beautifully rendered story of courage, resilience, and finding the one place where you truly belong.



Visit Ammi-Joan Paquette's website to learn more about her and her books.



On July 11th, the Children's Author at New London, New Hampshire's Market On The Green is Jane Sutcliffe.

I hope to see you there! Get Directions

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Ann Haywood Leal, Children's Author

Ann Haywood Leal braved the 98 degree temperature to spend time at Market on the Green in New London, NH to sign her books, A Finder's Keepers Place and Also Known As Harper. It was a pleasant (and very hot) afternoon.




















An interested reader get's to meet the author.





















 Boys do read!


Ann and my daughter, Kendra had so much to talk about.
You can follow Ann @AnnHaywoodLeal


Thanks for sharing your wonderful books!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Reunited by Hilary Weisman Graham

I had the opportunity to attend the pre-launch party on Saturday for Reunited by Hilary Weisman Graham. Really what this party consisted of was helping to set up the most amazing book launch prop created by Kirsten Cappy of Curious City and watching Hilary's excitement grow as everything came together.

Kirsten Cappy & Hilary Weisman Graham at the REUNITED book Launch
I was lucky enough to also be at the head of the line for Hilary to sign my book so I didn't have to wait in the heat of the day.

Hilary Weisman Graham signing her book, Reunited
Congratulations, Hilary!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Call for Proposals 2013 NESCBWI Conference



Call for Proposals NESCBWI 2013 Conference Word-By-Word: The Art Of Craft
It's that time of year when we start looking for the amazing workshops, intensives, and panels for next year's conference.

Here is what we are looking for:

The workshop committee of New England SCBWI welcomes proposals for the 2013 Spring conference, "Word by Word: The Art of Craft."

Art of craft is always at the forefront of a venue like ours. This year’s focus will be on improving ones crafting the various parts of writing and illustrating NEEDS MEGA WORK HERE!

We'd like to invite more intensive, hands-on workshops and advanced and master level studio proposals that focus on a specific aspect of the craft and would love to see more than one proposal from each you. Of course, larger lecture-style workshops are still welcome as well.

This is one of the largest regional SCBWI conferences, and last year we sold out the conference in two weeks. We welcome proposals from everyone involved in the world of children’s writing and publishing.

Important Information
Conference Dates: Friday afternoon through Sunday afternoon, May 3-5, 2013
Conference Location: Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place Hotel, Springfield, MA
To Submit a Proposal: Please complete
a conference proposal form. Separate submissions are required for multiple presentations or workshop/intensive versions of the same presentation.
Proposal Due Date: August 27, 2012
Presenter Notification Expected: October 15, 2012
Types of Presentations: 55-minute workshops; 120-minute intensives; 180 studios w/15 minute break

We will give presenters who send in more than one, well-crafted and detailed proposal preferential consideration. Also, you may be asked to present your workshop twice during the conference.

NOTE: Be very specific when designating level of experience, pick only one level. (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced, or Master)

55-minute workshops
What are we looking for?
  • Presentations that relate to our conference theme of Word-By-Word: The Art of Craft.
  • A wide range of craft related presentations for all SCBWI members, including illustrators and writers in all genres.
  • Be very specific when designating level of experience, pick only one level. (Beginner, Intermediate, advanced, or Master)
  • Leveled presentations. We are not trying to find one presentation that everyone can attend. Instead, presenters should direct material toward a specific experience level. For example, an "advanced" illustration presentation should not begin with "Why you should carry a sketch book," and a "beginner's" writing workshop should not address marketing a contracted novel. 
  • Presentations that last 55 minutes in their entirety. When planning, leave time for participant questions and any required audiovisual setup.
  • Intensives that last 120 minutes and focus on specific pieces of the craft. i.e. story arc, character development, sex in YA, etc.
  • Focused presentations with clear learning outcomes. These should be clear, tangible "final products" that attendees take away. Plan the presentation thinking, "I want participants to leave with these tools or a real understanding of this piece of the craft." A few examples: How to map out an in-depth revision, a step-by-step outline or map, creating a storyboard, A first draft of a non fiction proposal, how to develop initial sketches, etc.
  • Hands-on workshops where attendees spend significant time working on current writing, illustration, or marketing project so they can apply your presentation content to their own work.
  • Engaging lecture-style presentations filled with information that participants can take back to their desks to ponder and play with. 
  • Presentations that include a range of examples. Attendees have expressed they want less presentations that draw solely from the presenter's experience or body of work.
  • Presenters who are published members of SCBWI, as well as editors, agents, MFA graduates, and other industry professionals. Past presentation experience is appreciated.

NOTE: Be very specific when designating level of experience, pick only one level. (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced, or Master)

120-minute intensives
Intensive proposals should meet all of the criteria listed above for 55-minute workshops. Also consider the following:
  • 120-minute intensives typically take place on Sunday, but there will be several slots for Saturday Advanced and Master level workshops.
  • Two hours are provided; so plan exercises or some interactive element in the workshop. An intensive should not only be a lecture.
  • Presentations that include a range of examples. Attendees have expressed they want less presentations that draw solely from the presenter's experience or body of work.
  • Past presentation experience and in-depth knowledge of the topic are required.
  • Partner presentations are welcome.

Note: If you apply to present a 55-minute workshop or a 120-minute intensive and we feel your presentation may better fit the other format, we will let you know!


NOTE: Be very specific when designating level of experience, pick only one level. (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced, or Master)

180-minute Studios
Studio proposals should meet all of the criteria listed above for both 55-minute and 120-minute workshops. But you must also consider the following:
  • 180-minute, 12 person studios will focus on Advanced and Master level authors.
  • Three hours are provided, so plan accordingly for intensive working sessions.
  • These include attendees submitting samples for you to review ahead of time.
  • Past presentation experience and in-depth knowledge of the topic are required.
  • Partner presentations are welcome as long as both are willing to work with a larger number of attendees. Total number in studio would be 24.

Note: If you apply to present a 55-minute workshop or a 120-minute intensive and we feel your presentation may better fit the other format, we will let you know!


Selection Criteria and Topics
Every year SCBWI New England receives many excellent proposals, more than can fit into a conference schedule. Therefore, we must choose on the basis of experience, quality, variety, novelty, attendant costs, and other factors. Please use the 2013 NESCBWI Workshop Rubric for more explicit selection criteria and standards.

We would love to see presentations on the following topics. If you are an expert on one of these topics, we would love to see your proposal.
 
  • Hands-on writing workshops: outlining, story arc, tools, tips, character sketching, etc.
  • Hands-on illustration workshops
  • Publishing 201 session for intermediate authors or illustrators
  • Developing an idea from conception to completion
  • Secrets of Story Arc
  • How to lay out a picture book dummy
  • How to start your own publishing company
  • Gesture and emotion for illustrators
  • School and library visits and promotion
  • Grassroots Marketing strategies to libraries and other overlooked venues
  • Writing nonfiction articles and short stories
  • Mystery writing
  • How to write chapter books
  • How to design an eBook

Saturday, June 2, 2012

2012 Debut Author Giveaway Hop




2012 Debut Author Giveaway Hop

June 7th to 13th

There are over one hundred blogs participating and each has their own entry rules and geographic limits, so be sure to read the rules for each one.  This hop starts June 7th and and runs through June 13th, midnight and is open to US Residents only.

HERE IS WHAT I HAVE FOR ONE LUCKY WINNER:
April 2012
ARC out August 2012
WANT TO WIN THESE BOOKS?

All of these authors started out blogging!

Contest is open to anyone over 13 years old with a reliable mailing address
Contest ends on 6.13.12 Winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter on 6.14.12
Winner will have 48 hours to respond to email or a new winner will be chosen.
This giveaway is sponsored by me and ONE SET of books is available.

Complete the below form 

Follow Me
Extra Entries
+1 Follow me on Twitter HERE 
+1 Like The Casting on Facebook HERE 
+1 Tweet this giveaway and post link in comments below. 
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

2012 Debut Author Giveaway Hop

Friday, May 18, 2012

Why I Like Teaching

I am very lucky to teach at a school full of amazing students. Yes, it's small and it's private, and I wish all schools could be.

What makes this school so wonderful, are the students! They each bring something so special into my life. This year, I have been especially lucky to have had had the chance to work with students I wouldn't usually interact with because I was able to sponsor two creative projects. These project were outside of my Learning Skills realm, and the students chose to take these classes.

The first, was an introduction to stained glass and the second, was recycling, Bottle Beauties .

Here are a few of the amazing pieces of art these kids made.

Stained Glass creations



























Bottle Beauties


























I LOVE MY JOB!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Summer 2012 - Prepping for the Next 12 Months

Summer 2012 is already booking up. The family calendar is starting to have fewer and fewer unmarked days. What I want to know is how do I fit it all in?

I have one writer's retreat scheduled and I can't wait. I've started a new YA and have been working on the outline. I'm hoping these three and a half retreat days will consist of writing as much as I can of a new first draft.

Now on to bigger and better things: 2013 NESCBWI Conference. The Call for Proposals for the 2013 NESCBWI Conference, "Word-By-Word: The Art of Craft will go out June 1, 2012. So mark your calendars. With the call going out earlier, the deadline will also be sooner, August 27th, 2012!

Registration Table at the 2012 NESCBWI Conference

We will be looking for all levels of craft workshops, particularly those that are for advanced or master level writers. These Master level classes we are calling studios and will be 180 minutes.

So, please start thinking about what you would like to propose. Also, preferential consideration will go to presenters who have sent in two or more proposals.


Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Spring Fling Hop W1nners!

The winners are:

Drum roll please....

Bridget H.
Melissa F.
Tobi H. 
 The winner of Timeless will receive their ebook copy in June when the book is released.


Thanks to all who entered! Check back often so you can enter the next book giveaway coming this summer.
Thanks

Monday, April 30, 2012

Spring Fling Giveaway Hop 2012

Spring Fling Giveaway Hop


Win 1 of 3 Books!

Giveaway Details 
Three (3) Winners,  win one book each, from the titles below.
Paperback to US only, Ebook open Internationally
Ends May 8, 2012



Click Here For More Spring Fling Giveaway Excitement!


Can't Wait To Win It? Buy it Now
Robyn must decide her future at the coming of age ceremony, but choosing the right path is a challenge. Most girls in Robyn’s village will choose traditional roles of healing, midwifery or farming. None of these choices appeal to Robyn. Instead, she yearns for the red-hot crucibles full of molten bronze and the roaring fire of her father’s foundry. But her future brother-in-law, Gilhey, her most ardent challenger at the foundry, has other plans. Will Robyn find the courage to stand up to Gilhey and become the bronze caster she longs to be?




Can't Wait to Win It? Buy it Now
As the littlest Hapenny, Maewyn Bridgepost spends her days from breakfast to midnight nibble scrubbing the hearth, slopping the pigs, and cooking for her guardian, who never spares a kind word. Mae dreams of her long-lost mother, the day she can be rid of Gelbane and finding a life worth living. As if life as a servant wasn't bad enough, Mae learns that Gelbane is a troll-and Hapennies are a troll delicacy.








New eBook Available June 1, 20
This Young Adult Romance Anthology makes its way through time, visit the Holy Roman Empire, French Revolution, Victorian England,








a Rafflecopter giveaway


Start Hopping

Z is for Zepplin

That is - Led Zepplin!
So now you know a little about me and what I grew up with!



My kids listen to these albums with us now.








These were the good old days!


Sunday, April 29, 2012

Y is for YOU Made It!

On day left in the A to Z challenge and this year, I've made it! This being my second year, I knew what I was up against. I had a better plan, a list of ideas and several set in stone topics to write about. This planning, made it so much easier.

What this challenge has really done is made me sit and write, every day for a month. No excuses. This has established a new pattern for me. One that makes me think of writing every day. After I write my A to Z post, I've been working on an outline for a new book.

I only spend 20 minutes researching the different themes that I want to include, it keeps me writing.

This is an exciting time. This idea that has been with me, festering for a few years, now feels fresh and new. I can't wait to work on it more.

So tomorrow is Z and I look forward to to it, knowing that I and many others have made it through this challenge. 

I finish with more than I started. Thank you!


Friday, April 27, 2012

X is for Xeranthemum

What exactly is a Xeranthemum? Why a flower, of course! There are many variations on color but they all have the same shape bud.






Wow, got though x with having to do an X marks the spot post! I do love this year's A to Z challenge and am so close, I know I will finish. Hang in there, I'm almost done. Just y and z to go!